The two Crystal Cruises ships that were arrested by Bahamian authorities in February are now going to auction next month.
An article on maritime news website The Maritime Executive revealed that The Bahamas’ Supreme Court published a notice of sale for both the Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity.
The ships were seized by Bahamian authorities after a Florida court ordered the arrest of the Crystal Cruises vessels when the company was sued in January by its fuel supplier over unpaid fuel bills.
The litigation began after it was announced in early January that Crystal’s parent company Genting Hong Kong went bankrupt.
According to The Maritime Executive article, the banks holding lien on the ships will have the final say on who gets to purchase the ships and at what price.
“The banks that hold the mortgages will decide the outcome of the auctions, as they could move to take over the ships through the auctions or petition the court to reject the bids if they are deemed too low,” the article said.
“The administrators in Florida overseeing the liquidation of the company reported recently that over 30,000 creditors filed claims.
“In addition, the fuel supplier that set off the collapse when they moved to arrest the cruise ships for unpaid bills, other suppliers, former crew members, travelers with reservations, and travel agents due commissions are believed to be among the claims.
“The Federal Maritime Commission has also set up a mechanism for passengers covered by the cruise line’s bond to be reimbursed.
“Separately in Florida, the contents of Crystal’s offices and warehouse are being sold off in an auction ending next week. It includes everything from surplus furniture to computer screens and even pallets of playing cards with the cruise line’s logo.”
Both ships remain in Bahamian waters, according to the article.
It added that bids for the ships, accompanied by a ten percent deposit, are due to the court by June 7.
“They would then have an additional seven days to complete the acquisition and take possession of the ships on an ‘as is, where is’ basis,” the article said.