Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), also known in short as Norwegian, is a cruise line founded in 1966 and based in the United States. It is the third-largest cruise line in the world by passengers, controlling about 8.7% of the total worldwide share of the cruise market by passengers as of 2018. It is wholly owned by parent company Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings.
|Norwegian Cruise Line|
Headquarters in Miami-Dade County, Florida
|Headquarters||Miami, Florida, United States|
|Andrew Stuart (CEO)|
|Revenue||$6.06 billion (2018)|
|Parent||Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings|
The cruise line was founded as Norwegian Caribbean Line in 1966 by Knut Kloster and Ted Arison, with the 8,666-ton, 140-m cruise ship/car ferry, Sunward, which in 1966 operated as a car ferry between Southampton UK and Gibraltar, for that one, short season only. Arison soon left to form Carnival Cruise Lines, while Kloster acquired additional ships for Caribbean service. Norwegian pioneered many firsts in the cruise industry, such as the first Out Island Cruise, the first combined air-sea program (marketed as "Cloud 9 Cruises"), which combined low-cost air fares with the cruise, and first shipline to develop new ports in the Caribbean, such as Ocho Rios in Jamaica. Like the original Sunward of 1966, Norwegians's second ship, the Starward, had the capability to carry automobiles through a well-concealed stern door. Later, this area was turned into cabins and a two-deck movie theater, which is now a casino. Norwegian was responsible for many of the cruise innovations that have now become standard throughout the industry.
Norwegian made headlines with the acquisition of the France in 1979, rebuilding the liner as a cruise ship and renaming her Norway. The conversion cost more than US$100 million. The Norway was at the time significantly larger than any existing cruise ship, and exploited the extra space available by adding a greater than usual variety of onboard entertainment. Her success paved the way for a new era of giant cruise ships. A boiler explosion in May 2003 forced Norwegian to withdraw the Norway from service, later being laid up in Bremerhaven, Germany, until 2005, when she was towed to Port Klang Malaysia with the claimed intent to use her as an anchored casino or slow overnight casino cruises on her remaining boilers. Instead, she was sold for scrap and renamed the SS Blue Lady and later beached at Alang, Gujarat, India, in August 2006 with claims that she had not been cleaned of toxic materials. On September 11, 2007, the India Supreme Court issued an order permitting her to be broken up at Alang, despite the presence of large amounts of hazardous asbestos remaining on board.
Norwegian has expanded to other parts of the world, including Alaska, Europe, Bermuda, and Hawaii. Between 1997 and 2001, the company also operated cruises out of Australia under the name Norwegian Capricorn Line.
Norwegian acquired Orient Lines in 1998. After talks, Norwegian itself was acquired in 2000 by Star Cruises, a subsidiary of Genting Hong Kong, part of the Malaysia-based Genting Group. In 2007, Star Cruises sold Orient Line's Marco Polo to Transocean Tours, and Orient Lines ceased operations in early 2008.
In 2002, Norwegian purchased the half-complete hull of the first Project America ship, at the time under construction at Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Mississippi, US, which was towed to Germany to be completed at the Lloyd Werft shipyard. Subsequently, Norwegian acquired the rights to move two ships built entirely outside the United States under the US flag, making it possible to start a US-flagged operation under the brand name NCL America. In 2003, the company announced the purchase of the American-flagged liners SS United States and SS Independence. In their July 2007 fiscal report, Norwegian noted the sale of the Independence, renamed SS Oceanic some time before. On July 1, 2010, the SS United States Conservancy struck a deal to buy the SS United States for $3 million. On February 1, 2011, the ownership was officially transferred to the SS United States Conservancy.
Subsequently, Norwegian reported in February 2008 that the Pride of Aloha, one of the two remaining NCL America ships, would be withdrawn from service in May of the same year. Initial reports suggested she would be transferred to the fleet of Star Cruises, but it was later announced that she would return to the Norwegian international fleet as the Norwegian Sky, while the Norwegian Majesty and Norwegian Dream would be sold to Louis Cruise Lines. The sale of the Norwegian Dream was subsequently cancelled. The Norwegian Dream became the Superstar Gemini for Star Cruises, from January 2013.
On June 1, 2012, Norwegian announced the signing of a memorandum of agreement to exercise its option to purchase Norwegian Sky. The purchase price was roughly $260 million, financing being provided by the seller.
On October 17, 2012, Meyer Werft and Norwegian reached a second agreement for the construction of two new vessels, slated for delivery in October 2015 and 2017, respectively. The project was under the code name "Breakaway Plus Class", with the vessels expected to be 163,000 gross tons and hold 4,200 passengers. The Norwegian Escape entered service in November 2015 and weighs 164,600 tons. Two more vessels were ordered on July 14, 2014, and they will enter service in 2018 and 2019 and will be slightly bigger at 164,000 GT.
Following an initial public offering and corporate reorganisation in 2013, Norwegian was made a wholly owned subsidiary of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH), while Norwegian's previous owners Genting Hong Kong, Apollo Management and TPG Capital exchanged their stakes in Norwegian for shares in the newly listed NCLH.
On 11 March 2014, Norwegian announced that it was cancelling all future port calls in Tunisia following an incident wherein the country forbade Israeli nationals from disembarking.
In December 2016, Norwegian Cruise Line announced it had reached an agreement with the Cuban government. In May 2017, the Norwegian Sky was the first Norwegian vessel to ever visit Cuba. The Norwegian Sky makes weekly trips from Miami to Havana, making Norwegian the only line sailing that route weekly.
On May 2, 2017, Norwegian Cruise Line announced a new PortMiami Terminal. The construction began on May 1, 2018, and is scheduled for completion by fall 2019. Between 2022 and 2025, Fincantieri will deliver four ships and in July 2018, the company announced an order for two more Project Leonardo ships. They are expected to enter service in 2026 and 2027. In December 2018, Norwegian revealed plans to build a new pier in Alaska's Icy Strait Point.
As of January 2018, Norwegian Cruise Line operates 16 cruise ships, with seven on order. It has also previously owned or operated 19 other ships. All its ships are flagged to the Bahamas, except for the Pride of America, which operates cruises within the United States and is flagged and registered in the US, as well as being owned by a US-registered subsidiary, NCL America.
|Ship||Built||In service for NCL||Last
|Norwegian Spirit||1998||2004-present||2014||75,904||Bahamas||Previously SuperStar Leo|
|2019||77,104||Bahamas||Originally constructed as Costa Olympia but sold to NCL during construction, sailed under NCL America as Pride of Aloha from 2004 to 2008|
|Norwegian Star||2001||2001-present||2018||91,740||Bahamas||Originally ordered as Superstar Libra|
|Norwegian Dawn||2002||2002-present||June 2016||92,250||Bahamas||Originally ordered as SuperStar Scorpio|
|Pride of America class|
|Pride of America||2005||2005-present||March 2016||80,439||United States||The only US-flagged ship in Norwegian's fleet|
|Norwegian Jewel||2005||2005-present||November 2018||93,502||Bahamas|
|Norwegian Jade||2006||2006-present||March 2017||93,558||Bahamas||Formerly Pride Of Hawaii, reconstructed in 2008 as the Norwegian Jade|
|Norwegian Pearl||2006||2006-present||February 2017||93,530||Bahamas|
|Norwegian Gem||2007||2007-present||November 2015||93,530||Bahamas|
|Norwegian Epic||2010||2010-present||October 2015||155,873||Bahamas||The only ship in her class|
|Norwegian Breakaway||2013||2013-present||April 2018||145,655||Bahamas|
|Norwegian Getaway||2014||2014-present||June 2019||145,655||Bahamas|
|Breakaway Plus class|
|Norwegian Joy||2017||2017-present||February 2019||167,725||Bahamas|
|Norwegian Bliss||2018||2018-present||None||168,028||Bahamas||9th largest cruise ship in the world after Royal Caribbean International's Quantum Class and Oasis Class|
|Ship||Inaugural Voyage||Gross tonnage||Flag||Notes||Image|
|Status as of 2019||Image|
|Sunward||1966||1966–1976||10,558||Scrapped in 2004 at Chittagong, Bangladesh.|
|Starward||1968||1968–1995||15,781||Scrapped in 2018 at Alang, India.|
|Skyward||1969||1969–1991||15,653||Since 2000 Leisure World for New Century Cruise Lines.|
|Southward||1971||1971–1994||16,710||Scrapped in 2013 at Aliaga, Turkey.|
|Sunward II||1971||1977–1991||14,194||Scrapped in 2014 at Aliaga, Turkey.|
|Norway||1961||1979–2003||76,049||Scrapped in 2008 at Alang, India.|
|Seaward / Norwegian Sea||1988||1988–2005||42,285||Previously SuperStar Libra. Now used as hotel ship for workers at MV Werften.|
|Westward||1972||1991–1993||28,613||Since 1996 Black Watch for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines.|
|28,551||Since 2005 Boudicca for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines.|
|Dreamward / Norwegian Dream||1992||1992–2008||50,764||Since 2012 SuperStar Gemini for Star Cruises.|
|Windward / Norwegian Wind||1993||1993–2007||51,309||Since 2007 SuperStar Aquarius for Star Cruises.|
|Leeward||1980||1995–1999||25,611||Since 2007 Cristal for Louis Cruise Lines.|
|43,537||Since 2008 Balmoral for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines.|
|Norwegian Star||1973||1997–1998||28,518||Since 2004 MS Albatros for Phoenix Reisen.|
|Norwegian Dynasty||1993||1997–1999||24,344||Since 2001 Braemar for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines.|
|Norwegian Majesty||1992||1997–2009||41,662||Since 2018 Crown Iris for Mano Maritime.|
|Independence||1951||Never entered service||26,658||Wrecked and scrapped in 2010 off Alang, India.|
|SS United States||1952||Never entered service||38,216||Laid up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.|
|Seaward||1972||Never entered service||17,042||Sank in 2016 near the port of Laem Chabang, Thailand.|
Norwegian Bliss is a cruise ship for Norwegian Cruise Line, which entered service on 21 April 2018. The ship was built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany. The ship had a schedule of debuting in Alaska in June 2018, and is designed for improved energy efficiency to meet Alaska's environmental regulations.Norwegian Breakaway
Norwegian Breakaway is a cruise ship of Norwegian Cruise Line.Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) is a holding company that is domiciled in Bermuda and based in the United States. It operates three cruise lines as wholly owned subsidiaries: Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, and Regent Seven Seas Cruises. With its subsidiaries combined, it is the third-largest cruise operator in the world. It is a publicly traded company listed on the New York Stock Exchange.Norwegian Dawn
Norwegian Dawn is a cruise ship that entered service in 2002 and is in operation with Norwegian Cruise Line.Norwegian Epic
Norwegian Epic is a cruise ship of the Norwegian Cruise Line built under that line's F3 Project by STX Europe Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France. When built it was the third largest cruise ship in the world.
Two ships in this Epic class were ordered by NCL in November 2006, with an option for a third vessel that was not exercised. A dispute between NCL and STX initially resulted in the construction of both ships being placed on hold until a new agreement was reached. That called for completion of the first ship would be completed; the second ship was cancelled in 2008. The sole remaining ship, Norwegian Epic, was delivered to NCL on 17 June 2010.After completion and acceptance, the Epic sailed on Thursday 24 June 2010 from Southampton to New York.Norwegian Escape
Norwegian Escape is a cruise ship for Norwegian Cruise Line, in service since October 2015. She was built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany, in just 17 months.Norwegian Gem
Norwegian Gem is a Jewel class cruise ship of Norwegian Cruise Line. She is the final cruise ship of the Jewel class and was built by the German shipyard, Meyer Werft.Norwegian Getaway
Norwegian Getaway is a cruise ship of the Norwegian Cruise Line. It was built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany, and was delivered to its owner on 10 January 2014. At the time of its christening it was the world's ninth-largest cruise ship with a passenger capacity of 3,969 and a crew of 1,640.Amenities on board the ship include restaurants by chef Geoffrey Zakarian, an entertainment venue devoted to magic called the "Illusionarium", and another entertainment venue themed in conjunction with the Grammy Awards. The ship is based in Miami and mostly sails seven-night Eastern Caribbean cruises. It was christened in Miami on February 7, 2014, with the Miami Dolphins Cheerleaders serving as godmothers. The ship departed on its maiden voyage the next day.Norwegian Jewel
Norwegian Jewel is a cruise ship operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. She is the lead vessel of NCL's Jewel class cruise ships and entered service in 2005.Norwegian Joy
Norwegian Joy is a cruise ship for Norwegian Cruise Line, which entered service in April 2017. She was built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany.Being a ship of Norwegian's Breakaway Plus-class, Norwegian Joy is a sister ship to the Norwegian Escape, which was completed in October 2015. The ship was originally going to be named the Norwegian Bliss. The original name for the ship was selected through an online contest hosted by Norwegian Cruise line. The construction of the Norwegian Joy started on 16 September 2015.It was announced on 12 October 2015, that the ship would be built with a different name, be reintroduced and redesigned specifically for the Chinese market. On 30 March 2016, the ship's new name, Norwegian Joy, and the new home ports of Shanghai and Tianjin (for Beijing) were announced. During the ship's construction, two separate fires broke out on 28 September 2016 and on 8 October 2016.In October 2016, construction of a new ship was announced, taking over the Norwegian Bliss name, and was delivered in 2018.The Joy is unusual in that it was given a godfather, Chinese singer Wang Leehom, rather than a godmother. The vessel was christened 27 June 2017.It was reported that she would visit Dubai on her re-positioning cruise to China. The keel was laid on 5 April 2016. A first section was launched on 4 June 2016. A second section was launched on 19 August 2016.
On 19 July 2018, Norwegian announced plans to move the Norwegian Joy from China to the U.S. The company was planning to utilize the ship for cruises to Alaska, Mexican Riviera, and the Panama Canal, depending on the season. The ship underwent an extensive renovation at a cost of about $50 million to bring her designs and offerings to be virtually identical to those of sister ship, Norwegian Bliss.As of August 2019, the Joy is currently homeported in Seattle and cruising in Alaska. She will reposition to Los Angeles for winter and spring 2020 before repositioning to Seattle to resume cruising in Alaska. In October 2020, the Joy will be homeported in Miami for the first time, cruising to the Caribbean. She will then reposition to Manhattan in April 2021 for her inaugural season cruising out of New York on sailings to Bermuda as well as Canada and New England, replacing her newer sister ship, the Norwegian Encore.Norwegian Pearl
Norwegian Pearl is a Jewel class cruise ship of Norwegian Cruise Line, launched in 2006, sailing itineraries primarily around Alaska and the Caribbean.Norwegian Sky
Norwegian Sky is a Sun-class cruise ship owned and operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. She was originally ordered by Costa Cruises as Costa Olympia from the Bremer Vulkan shipyard in Germany, but she was completed in 1999 by the Lloyd Werft shipyard in Bremerhaven, Germany for the Norwegian Cruise Line under the name Norwegian Sky. Between 2004 and 2008, she sailed as Pride of Aloha for NCL America.Norwegian Spirit
Norwegian Spirit is a cruise ship currently operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. She was built for Star Cruises as SuperStar Leo.Norwegian Sun
Norwegian Sun is a Sun class cruise ship operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. She entered service in 2001 in a dual christening ceremony at the Port of Miami with Norwegian Star. She was constructed at the Lloyd Werft shipyard in Bremerhaven, Germany.Oceania Cruises
Oceania Cruises is a premium cruise line based in Miami, Florida, that operates six premium cruise ships on worldwide itineraries. While it also offers cruises as short as ten days, the norm is 10- to 14-days and the line is also known for its long cruises lasting up to 195 days. The line's President and CEO is Bob Binder; he is vice-chairman and also a co-founder of the brand.
Since September 2014, Oceania Cruises has been a wholly owned subsidiary owned of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, which also owns Norwegian Cruise Line and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Regent Seven Seas Cruises (RSSC) is a luxury cruise line, formerly known as Radisson Seven Seas Cruises, headquartered in Miami, Florida. The company offers cruises which visit over 300 ports worldwide. Regent Seven Seas specializes in ships with a small passenger capacity.
Since September 2014, Regent Seven Seas Cruises has been a wholly owned subsidiary owned of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, which also owns Norwegian Cruise Line and Oceania Cruises.Seven Seas Explorer
Seven Seas Explorer is a cruise ship built by Fincantieri of Italy for Regent Seven Seas Cruises. She was ordered in 2013. She entered service in July 2016, and features all balcony suite accommodation.The ship was christened on July 13, 2016, in Monaco and departed on her maiden voyage later that evening. Charlene, Princess of Monaco, is her godmother. Measuring 55,254 tons and with a capacity for 750 passengers, the vessel is said to be one of the most luxurious cruise ships ever built, adorned with huge amounts of Italian Carrara marble and stone. Significant quantities of gold leaf were used by the shipbuilder, Fincantieri, to add to the opulence, along with many glass chandeliers made from Czech crystal.
Frank J. Del Rio, president and chief executive officer, Norwegian Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. was personally responsible for commissioning hundreds of pieces of art for the ship. On the top deck, deck 14, and above the bridge, there is 4,443 sqft suite, the Regent Suite. The bed in the suite is reputed to have cost $115,000.Spector v. Norwegian Cruise Line Ltd.
Spector v. Norwegian Cruise Line Ltd., 545 U.S. 119 (2005), was a United States Supreme Court decision that determined (in a 6-3 decision) that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to foreign cruise ships in American waters.SuperStar Gemini (2012)
MS SuperStar Gemini is a cruise ship owned and operated by Star Cruises. She was built in 1992 by the Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard in St. Nazaire, France as MS Dreamward for traffic with Norwegian Cruise Line. In 1998 she was lengthened at Lloyd Werft in Bremerhaven, Germany and renamed as the Norwegian Dream. In late 2012, she was transferred to the fleet of Star Cruise and renamed SuperStar Gemini.
Norwegian Cruise Line fleet
|Norwegian America Line|
|Breakaway Plus class|
Subsidiaries of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings