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Ahoy! Oceana Cruises

(October 29, 2002)

Renaissance Cruises fans rejoice; an old friend is returning. A new cruise line called Oceana Cruises is set to launch next year, using two former Renaissance 'R-Class' vessels (R One and R Two). The new cruise line will be headed by former Renaissance CEO Frank del Rio and Joe Watters, former executive of Royal Viking Line, Princess Cruises, and Crystal Cruises. The company will be headquartered in Miami.

The first ship is to be called Oceana Regatta and is scheduled to make a 12-night maiden voyage from Barcelona to Dover on May 5, 2003. The second ship is expected to enter service in the winter of 2003. There is a possibility of Oceana utilizing a third 'R-Class' vessel (R Six) in the summer of 2004.

Oceana aims to carve a niche at the upper end of the premium/lower end of the luxury cruise market. Oceana Cruises promises its ships will sail mostly at night allowing for full-day explorations in ports of calls. As for pricing, the cruise line is targeting a low $200 per diem, less than half of what the luxury lines currently charge.

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