Former Costa cruise ship beached for scrapping in Pakistan



2020 and 2021 have not been good years for cruise ships showing their age. Many Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean cruise ships have been scrapped over the past couple of years, and now we can add one more to this list.

Antares Experience, formerly known as Costa Romantic, Costa neoRomantica, and Celestial Experience, was beached at the Gadani Shipbreaking Center in Pakistan, the third largest shipbreaking yard in the world.

Celestyal Cruises sells fast

At the start of last year it became clear that Costa Cruises would sell or scrap Costa neoRomantica. What seemed like luck for what was the oldest ship in the Costa Cruises fleet, the vessel was sold to Celestyal Cruises in July 2020. Based in Cyprus and operating primarily cruises around the Greek Islands, the smaller cruise line bought the ship and renamed it Celestial experience.

Celestyal had big plans for the ship and even intended to use her as the company’s newest flagship. However, he was never to sail for Celestyal Cruises. Since July of last year, the ship had been decommissioned in Piraeus, the port city near Athens in Greece.

Celestyal would never return the ship to guest service; instead, it was sold to a company called Beacon & Bay Shipping Services. This company bought the ship, renamed it Antares experience, and changed its flag to Liberia. The company intended to use it as a hotel ship or to be sold at a later date.

Besides all the well-worked out plans, the vessel set sail for the Gadani shipbreaking yard in Pakistan for demolition in November 2021. The vessel was beached on December 3. With steel prices reaching historic highs, scrapping a ship is currently a more economical choice than keeping it on hold.

Costa neoRomantica

Built in 1993, the 56,700 gross tons Costa Romantic sailed for many years around the world; her maiden voyage was in November 1993. The 1,800-passenger cruise ship underwent extensive renovations and renovations in 2012, amounting to 90 million euros.

The upgrade added additional cabins on the upper decks and balconies and a full modernization inside the ship. Meanwhile, Costa Cruises also took the opportunity to rename the ship Costa neoRomantica.

Photo credit: GEORGE STAMATIS /

After having sailed for many years in Europe and South America, in 2017, Costa neoRomantica has been assigned to sailing cruises to the Asian market from Hong Kong and China. However, with the stopping of cruises from China in February of last year, the end of Costa neoRomatica was near. When Costa Cruises sold the vessel, she was the oldest vessel in the Costa Cruises fleet.

Also Read: Which Cruise Ships Are Scrapped Or Sold Due To The COVID-19 Pandemic?

During the pandemic, Carnival Corporation set out to significantly modernize its fleet. To achieve this, the company has landed 20 cruise ships in most of its brands, including Carnival Cruise Line, Princess, Holland America, P&O, P&O Australia and Costa. The only cruise lines that have not lost a ship are those with relatively modern fleets; Seabourn Cruise Line, Cunard and AIDA.

Old beached Costa cruise ship



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