Wednesday, September 12, 2012

FUNCHAL in Lisbon 2012-09-09

Portuguese cruise ship FUNCHAL photographed last Sunday 9 September 2012 at Matinha Pier, the Lisbon "Quai de L'Obli" where FUNCHAL is waiting the resuming of her reconstruction refit. She concluded the final cruise in Lisbon on 16 September 2010 and a very extensive refit was started in order to update the ship to conform with new SOLAS regulations and have her passenger facilities improved. However the gloomy financial situation in Europe led to some difficulties to obtain financing to conclude the work. Classic International Cruises new managers, Alex and Emilios Potamianos said recently on a statement to Portuguese newspaper Público that they are seeking a financing of a further 6 million euros in order to complete the ship's reconstruction. Alex and Emilios are now managing the company formed by their father, the late George P. Potamianos. Mr. Potamianos last dream was to have the FUNCHAL sailing again for many years as "a luxurious cruising yacht", so he started rebuilding the ship's interiors very much on her original style  but with less, larger cabins, doing one cabin in place of two existing ones, in order to position the FUNCHAL upmarket. If we consider she is now one of the very last classic post war passenger ships still afloat, this plan was cleaver. Let's hope the refit resumes soon as the alternative is her sale "where is as is" and this would most probably mean a breaker's yard... Meanwhile she is still taken in care by a small dedicated crew and her lay up has a monthly cost of about 20.000 euros every month.
These photographs show the FUNCHAL as she looks at present, with her timeless beauty intact despite the long lay up. For further FUNCHAL news and photos click here...
Texto e imagens /Text and images copyright L.M.Correia. Favor não piratear. Respeite o meu trabalho / No piracy, please. For other posts and images, check our archive at the right column of the main page. Click on the photos to see them enlarged. Thanks for your visit and comments. Luís Miguel Correia
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