Fred Olsen to sell Braemar as it consolidates fleet after Holland America acquisitions

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has announced it will sell its smallest cruise ship Braemar as it looks to consolidate its expanded fleet around more modern and cost-effective tonnage.

The 1993-built Braemar is the second-oldest ship left in the fleet, and carrying just 977 passengers, she is also the smallest, which means she does not earn as much on a per-passenger basis than the larger and more modern Balmoral, Borealis and Bolette.

Borealis and Bolette were purchased from Holland America Line during the pandemic as HAL undertook its own fleet consolidation under the direction of parent company Carnival Corporation, which sold 18 ships out of its fleet during the global shut down of the cruise industry.


Borealis previously sailed as Rotterdam for Holland America, while Bolette sailed as Amsterdam. Both ships carry 1,400 passengers and in terms of tonnage are almost three times the size of Braemar.

“While Braemar’s smaller size brings many benefits, her size also brings constraints that are not aligned with where we now want to be as a business,” Fred Olsen Cruise Line said in a statement.

“Our two new ships, Bolette and Borealis, brought with them an opportunity to modernize our fleet, still offering a small-ship experience but with plenty of space in enhanced public areas and larger cabins that our guests have enjoyed and come to expect from us since we resumed sailing,” it added.

While the 1988-built Balmoral is older than Braemar, she is larger, carrying 1,325 passengers, putting her on-par with the rest of the fleet in terms of capacity.

Braemar is currently in lay up in Scotland and will not be brought back into service. Fred Olsen says they are looking for a buyer for her, while crew from the ship will be spread throughout the fleet.

Braemar originally launched service in 1993 as the Crown Majesty and also served as the Crown Dynasty and Norwegian Dynasty before being sold to Fred. Olsen in 2001. If a buyer cannot be found for the ship, she will likely be scrapped, like many of the older cruise ships that were decommissioned during the pandemic.

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