American Classic Voyages (AMCV) has reached an agreement with Holland America line to buy MS Nieuw Amsterdam for $114.5 million, contingent upon various conditions expected to be resolved by this coming fall.
A unit of Carnival Corporation, Holland America Line is scheduled to transfer the 1,214-passenger cruise ship to AMCV during fall 2000. AMCV plans
to re-document Nieuw Amsterdam as a U.S.-flag vessel, complete with American crew, to sail the Hawaiian Islands as part of the company's Project America - the result of the U.S.-Flag Cruise Ship Pilot Project Statute passed by Congress in 1997.
The project, which is expected to create more than 5,000 American jobs, is based on the goal of the revitalization of the U.S.-flag oceangoing cruise ship fleet.
"The acquisition of Nieuw Amsterdam will expand cruising options in Hawaii, offering consumers the highest level of service," said Philip C. Calian, president and CEO of AMCV. "The vessel will not only expand cruising opportunities in Hawaii, attracting more cruisers to the state, but also will create approximately 400 new U.S. jobs onboard this ship."
Measuring 704-ft. (214.5 m), 33,930-gt Nieuw Amsterdam provides
the amenities of a posh resort hotel with the conveniences of cruising. Its Hawaiian Island itineraries will showcase the natural beauty of the Islands, allowing passengers to partake in the vessel's five lounges, two restaurants and 15-ft (4.5 m).-wide teak deck, encircling the Upper Promenade Level.