^What do you do with an old ocean liner. Image Courtesy of Duncan Smith at bbc.com
Crystal Cruises, the high-end luxury cruise company, has finally signed a nine-month option to possibly re-power and restore the 65-year-old fastest liner and will soon be back to the sea.
Edie Rodriguez, CEO of Crystal Cruises, said that the nine months will give them enough time for a feasibility study on the rehabilitation of the 990’x101’ ship. They said that approximately $700 million would be needed to return the ship to service, possibly as soon as 2018.
Westinghouse turbine drove each of the ship’s our propellers, fed from eight Babcock & Wilcox boilers. They provided the SS United States its maximum speed of 38.32 knots at 241,785 hp during sea trial and record Atlantic crossing cruise speeds around 35 knots.
Crystal Cruises still imagines the refurbished SS United States will remain its iconic red, white and black stacks with winglets. But the passenger decks and cabins would be much modernized, including the extension of new stateroom balconies that are standard on modern cruise liners.
Rodriguez also acknowledged that there will be several challenges to bring the ship up to modern safety and environmental standards.