(11:25 a.m. EDT) -- Carnival Cruise Line today confirmed the sale of Carnival Fascination, along with sister-ship Carnival Imagination, and announced further suspension of sailings for four other ships until after their scheduled 2021 drydocks.
The 1994-built Carnival Fascination had until recently made its homeport in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where it sailed weeklong voyages to the eastern and southern Caribbean. While a buyer wasn't announced, it is expected the ship will be sold to shipbreakers in Turkey.
Sister-ship Carnival Imagination, built in 1995, arrived this week off Aliaga, Turkey where it will be run aground for final demolition. The ship had been based for several years in Long Beach, operating three-and-four-night cruises to Baja Mexico.
Both vessels had previously been placed on long-term layup with Carnival. There were no plans to return the two Fantasy Class ships into the fleet.
Carnival did, however, confirm that the remaining four Fantasy Class ships -- Carnival Ecstasy, Carnival Sensation, Carnival Elation and Carnival Paradise -- would return to service once operations resume.
Two Fantasy Class ships, Carnival Fantasy and Carnival Inspiration, are already being scrapped in Turkey.
"While we are sad to see Carnival Fascination and Carnival Imagination leave our fleet, it is a necessary move as it allows us to focus on ships that offer the greatest variety of features and stateroom accommodations for our guests," said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.
Continued Suspensions for Four Ships
Carnival also announced entry-into-service delays for four other ships, which are being pushed back until their scheduled drydocks can be completed in early 2021.
Affected ships include:
- Carnival Magic itineraries operating from Miami will be cancelled until March13, 2021
- Carnival Paradise itineraries operating from Tampa will be cancelled until March 19, 2021
- Carnival Valor itineraries operating from New Orleans will be cancelled until April 29, 2021 (including the transatlantic cruise from New Orleans on Jan. 25, 2021 and the return from Barcelona on Feb. 26, 2021)
- Carnival Spirit itineraries operating from Brisbane will be cancelled through May 16, 2021, with the first sailing being the Singapore to Brisbane voyage embarking on June 12, 2021.
Carnival's Duffy said in a statement to media that the extended pause in cruise operations has impacted shipyard availability, which has necessitated the rescheduling of drydock space.
"As we continue to work through issues related to our eventual return to operations, we are committed to providing our guests and travel agent partners with certainty where we can, although we regret disappointing our guests," said Duffy. "We appreciate the continued support and understanding of our guests and hope to welcome them back on board soon."