Royal Caribbean's Grandeur of the Seas finally arrived today in New Orleans -- just two days later than originally scheduled. Grandeur of the Seas pulled in around 10 a.m. C.S.T. It will sail off on its abbreviated five-night voyage (ports of call will be Cozumel and Key West) at about 8 p.m.
As we've reported since the middle of last week, the ship, midway through its seven-night Western Caribbean swing from New Orleans (its homeport), plowed into the concrete dock at Costa Maya. The result was a 42 ft. by 5 ft. gash in the ship's first deck, about five feet above the water line. Repairs were fairly comprehensive -- and because Costa Maya is virtually in the heart of the jungle without a nearby airport, the ship remained docked there until Saturday, when it departed for New Orleans.
Royal Caribbean chartered aircraft for some 600 folks who needed to get back as scheduled on Saturday. The 1,370 passengers who elected to remain -- and receive two extra days of vacation -- sailed home with the ship.
Those folks whose April 23 seven-night cruise was necessarily abbreviated were offered two options: cancel outright and receive a full refund, or sail on the five-night voyage and receive $300 in onboard credit. Royal Caribbean spokesman Michael Sheehan says that of the 2,049 travelers originally booked on Grandeur's cruise this week, 475 canceled.