Royal Caribbean International has announced that the two oldest ships in its fleet, the Empress of Seas and Majesty of the Seas have sold to an undisclosed party in Asia-Pacific
“Empress and Majesty of the Seas made indelible marks on the cruise industry with their revolutionary design and size. Touted as the cruise industry’s most groundbreaking ships when they were introduced, they continued to make history throughout their more than three decades of service,” said Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International.
“Saying goodbye to these two beloved ships is a major moment in Royal Caribbean’s history – one that is difficult but necessary. With plans for new, innovative ships to join our fleet in the upcoming years, we look forward to our guests and crew continuing to make new memories with us.”
Majesty of the Seas – once the largest ship in Royal Caribbean fleet
Empress of the Seas was the first ship designed for 3- and 4-night cruises when she launched in 1990, with her initial sailings visiting the Bahamas from Miami. Empress of the Seas also made history as the first cruise ship to sail out of Cape Liberty in Bayonne, New Jersey when Royal Caribbean opened the terminal in 2004.
In 2017, the ship took center stage again when she set sail on the cruise line’s inaugural cruise to Cuba.
Majesty of the Seas was the third ship to round out the Sovereign Class and was the largest in the vacation company’s fleet – when she debuted in 1992, sailing 7-night Western Caribbean cruises from Miami.
Departure hits home for Royal Caribbean CEO Bayley
Bayley revealed that he had been part of the crew on the Empress of the Seas (formerly called the Nordic Empress) and on the Majesty of the Seas when she was launched and said their departure from the fleet “hits close to home for me as well.”
“Decisions like these are difficult, but they are part of our necessary evolution to continue introducing new ships and bring our guests, the most innovative ships in the industry. Today marks a new chapter in our history, and we are excited about what the future holds.