Carnival Corporation announcedthat it has reached an agreement with the Italian shipyard Fincantieri
Cantieri Navali Italiani
S.p.A. for the construction of a new 110,000-ton "Conquest-class" vessel for its Carnival Cruise Lines unit.
The as-yet-unnamed 2,974-passenger vessel, to be built at an approximate all-in cost of $450-460 million (U.S.), is scheduled for delivery in late
fall 2005, approximately 14 months after the delivery of the third "Conquest-class" vessel, Carnival Valor.
The agreement with Fincantieri for a fourth "Conquest-class" vessel comes
just days after Carnival Corporation Chairman
and CEO Micky Arison toured the Carnival Conquest, currently in the final stages of construction at the Italian shipyard and slated to debut from New Orleans in November 2002. The attractive price offered by Fincantieri played a key role in the decision to add a fourth vessel to the series.
"The Carnival Conquest is simply stunning. Joe Farcus has done an outstanding job designing the ship's elegant Impressionist-inspired
interiors and there is no question in my mind that we have successfully taken the very best of Carnival's 'Spirit-' and 'Destiny-class' to create a new class
of vessel that will set a new standard in cruise vacations," Arison said. "We're so confident in the success of these ships that we have committed a $2 billion investment in 'Conquest-class' alone," he added.
Commented Fincantieri Executive Chairman Corrado Antonini, "We are very proud that Carnival has chosen Fincantieri to construct its magnificent new
'Conquest-class.' Fincantieri has built 13 cruise ships for Carnival
Corporation and we are building 12 more which will usher in an exciting new
era for our industry."
Added Fincantieri Chief Executive Officer Giuseppe Bono, "This order is
particularly significant for Fincantieri, not only because it further
strengthens our relationship with Carnival but it is also a clear signal
that the market has recovered from the impact of the tragic events of Sept.
11. Thanks to Fincantieri's 'cutting edge' expertise in shipbuilding
technology, today the company has reaffirmed its position as a world leader
in the cruise sector."
Representing a brand new series, Carnival's "Conquest-class" ships will be
the largest in the "Fun Ship" fleet. Each will feature Farcus' inventive,
award-winning interior design and offer a number of expanded amenities and
facilities, including the widest variety of entertainment and dining choices
in keeping with "Today's Carnival" theme.
Stretching more than three football fields in length (U.S.), the
952-foot-long vessels will house an unprecedented 22 lounges, nightspots and
bars, everything from pulsating dance clubs and three-deck-high, 1,500-seat
theaters showcasing lavish Las Vegas-style revues to piano bars, jazz clubs,
sports bars, wine and caviar bars, cigar bars and a host of live music
Additionally, 917 of the vessels' 1,487 spacious staterooms will
offer an ocean view with 556 of those featuring private balconies. Outside
cabins will measure a generous 220 square feet with 42 suites boasting 340
square feet of living space while 10 penthouse suites will offer 430 square
feet of luxury.