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Balmoral is a cruise ship owned and operated by Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines. She was built in 1988 by the Meyer Werftmarker shipyard in Papenburgmarker, West Germanymarker as Crown Odyssey for Royal Cruise Line. She has also sailed for the Norwegian Cruise Line as Norwegian Crown and Orient Lines as Crown Odyssey. In 2007–2008 she was lengthened by at the Blohm + Voss shipyard in Hamburgmarker, prior to entering service with her current operator.


The vessel was built by Meyer Werftmarker of Papenburgmarker, Germanymarker in 1988, for service with Royal Cruise Line as the Crown Odyssey. In 1989, Royal Cruise Line was sold to Norwegian Cruise Line, which continued operation of the company, along with the Crown Odyssey until 1996. A reorganization of all of the fleets owned by Norwegian Cruise Line saw Crown Odyssey enter service with NCL's main fleet, and it was renamed Norwegian Crown

Following the purchase of Orient Lines by NCL in April, 2000, Norwegian Crown was transferred, regaining her original name, Crown Odyssey, in the process.

In September, 2003, Crown Odyssey was refurbished and returned to the NCL fleet, again with the name Norwegian Crown.
On May 25, 2006 – NCL Corporation announced that its parent company, Star Cruises, had agreed to sell Norwegian Crown to Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines effective August 2006. Star Cruises concurrently chartered the vessel back from Fred. Olsen and NCL continued her deployment through to November 2007. “Although a beautiful and well-maintained vessel, Norwegian Crown’s smaller size is less suitable for Star Cruises’ ambitions in Asia,” said Colin Veitch, president and CEO of NCL Corporation. “Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines specializes in operating smaller and mid-sized upscale vessels and this ship should fit perfectly in their fleet.” Her last NCL cruise was on October 28, 2007.

During a January 21, 2009 cruise the ship sailed into rough weather in the Bay of Biscay smashing through 50ft waves & 60mph winds. Two of the passengers were sent to a hospital in La Coruna, Spain for serious injuries.

Future Plans

The Balmoral has been chartered by Miles Morgan Travel to follow the original route of the Titanic, intending to stop over the point on the sea bed where she rests on 15th April 2012.


Fred. Olsen took delivery of the ship on November 7, 2007, renaming her after the Balmoral estatemarker. The company initiated a major refit at the Blohm + Voss repair shipyard in Hamburgmarker, Germanymarker, before her inaugural cruise on February 13, 2008 to Floridamarker—her base for Caribbeanmarker cruising. The work included the insertion of a 30 meter (99 ft) midsection, built in conjunction with Schichau Seebeckwerft in Bremerhavenmarker, and floated into Hamburg at the end of October 2007.

The reconstruction added a further 186 passenger and 53 crew cabins, making the ship currently the company's largest. It also introduced 60 new balconies, along with new and modified public areas, all designed to appeal particularly to the Britishmarker cruise market.


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