|Not for publication before 08.00 hours UK (BST) / 11.00 hours Dubai; 18
QE2 TO LEAVE CUNARD FLEET AND BE SOLD TO DUBAI WORLD TO
BEGIN A NEW LIFE
AT THE PALM
Cunard Line today announced the sale of QE2 to Dubai World, in a US$100
million deal which will turn this iconic liner into a first-class
tourism destination at The Palm Jumeirah in Dubai.
The QE2 will be delivered to Dubai World in November 2008, where she
will cease her role as an ocean-going passenger vessel and be
refurbished and adapted for her new home. From 2009, the vessel will be
berthed at a specially-constructed pier at The Palm Jumeirah, the
world’s largest man-made island, to create a luxury floating hotel,
retail and entertainment destination.
The ship, which was launched by Her Majesty The Queen in September 1967,
40 years ago this year, is the longest-serving ship in Cunard’s 168-year
history, and was their longest-serving flagship. Since she came into
service in 1969, she has undertaken 25 world cruises, has crossed the
Atlantic more than 800 times and has carried more than 2.5 million
QE2 has been purchased by Istithmar, the investment arm of Dubai World,
a wholly owned company of the Government of Dubai. Nakheel, developer of
The Palm Jumeirah, is also a Dubai World company.
Carol Marlow, president and managing director of Cunard, said:
“We are delighted that when her legendary career as an ocean liner ends
there will continue to be a permanent home for her that will enable
future generations to continue to experience fully both the ship and her
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, chairman of Dubai World, said:
“QE2 is without a doubt one of the wonders of the maritime world, and is
easily the most famous serving liner in the world today. I am delighted
we will be able to create a home for her on the newest wonder of the
world, The Palm Jumeirah.
“QE2 at The Palm Jumeirah will become one of the must-see experiences of
Dubai and of the Middle East. We are investing in creating a truly
global tourism destination.
“Dubai is a maritime nation and we understand the rich heritage of QE2.
She is coming to a home where she will be cherished.”
Istithmar said its refurbishment programme will aim to recreate QE2’s
original interior décor and fittings. QE2 at The Palm Jumeirah will also
include a museum celebrating the rich history of the ship.
For further information:
• Cunard: Eric Flounders, Corporate Communications Manager, on + 44 207
940 5390 / email@example.com
Michael Gallagher, Corporate Communications Executive, on +44 207 940
5391 / firstname.lastname@example.org
• Dubai World (Istithmar): Greg Moore, Four Communications, on:
o +971 50 794 4923 or +44 7748 968695 / email@example.com
• The Palm Jumeirah (Nakheel): Charlie Taylor, PR and Communications
Manager, Nakheel, on:
o +971 50 5538459 / Charlie.firstname.lastname@example.org
Images of QE2 can be downloaded from www.nakheelmediacentre.com
Notes to editors:
1. The Palm Jumeirah
The Palm Jumeirah is currently the world’s largest man-made island and
home to a residential, tourism and leisure destination created by
The Palm Jumeirah is a landmark in engineering, providing luxury
residences, retail and leisure facilities across three main areas – the
trunk, the crescent, and the fronds. Over the next five to six years,
The Palm Jumeirah will become one of the world’s premier resorts,
offering more than 30 beachfront hotels, including Atlantis, The Palm.
The 17 fronds which form the head of The Palm Jumeirah will be home to
some of the most luxurious villas in the world each with its own
Nakheel is one of the world’s largest privately held real estate
developers, and a key player in realising the vision of Dubai for the
21st century: creating a world class destination for business and
Cunard Line was formed in 1839 principally to carry the Royal Mail
between the UK and North America, and in doing so inaugurated in 1840
the first timetabled steamship service across the Atlantic. The company
now operates the only scheduled passenger service across the Atlantic,
along with world-wide voyages on the most famous (and only) ocean liners
in the world. These legendary voyages offer like-minded travellers the
epitome of British refinement through impeccable White Star Service®,
fine dining and the elegance and grandeur of these iconic vessels.
Cunard’s current fleet consists of Queen Mary 2, the world's largest and
grandest liner, and Queen Elizabeth 2, the world's fastest and best
known liner. The 1,980 passenger Queen Victoria, a truly Classic
Cunarder, will join the fleet in December 2007.
Cunard Line is part of Carnival Corporation & plc, which is the largest
cruise holiday group in the world, with a portfolio of cruise brands in
North America, Europe and Australia, comprised of Carnival Cruise Lines,
Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line, AIDA
Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard Line, Ocean Village, P&O Cruises, and P&O
Cruises Australia. These brands operate 80 ships totaling 149,000 lower
berths. Carnival Corporation & plc also operates the leading tour
companies in Alaska and the Canadian Yukon, Holland America Tours and
Princess Tours. Traded on both the New York and London Stock Exchanges,
Carnival Corporation & plc is the only group in the world to be included
in both the S&P 500 and the FTSE 100 indices. Combined, the companies
attract seven million guests annually.
3. Istithmar and Dubai World
Istithmar PJSC is the investment company of Dubai World. It is 100 per
cent owned by Dubai World, which is in turn wholly owned by the
Government of Dubai. It has an investment portfolio which includes more
than 50 successful companies. The real estate business aims to acquire
and manage a distinguished and diversified portfolio of properties in
commercial property, hotels and resorts, the leisure sector and in
retail. Existing investments include Kerzner Group, International Hotel
Investments, Mandarin Oriental in New York, The Adelphi in London,
Jumeirah Golf Estates and Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront.
Dubai World is the holding company which manages and supervises a
portfolio of businesses and projects for the Dubai Government, working
towards making Dubai the leading hub for trade and commerce. Dubai World
has more than 50,000 employees in more than 100 cities around the world
and its companies include DP World, P&O, Nakheel, Istithmar PJSC,
Inchcape Shipping Services and Tejari.