A new Russian cruise line is set to commence service in the Black Sea in June.
The company Rosmorport, has purchased the former Royal Iris ship. The 764-passenger ship last sailed for Mano Cruises.
The ship will be renamed Prince Vladimir and undergo a refurbishment before starting its new summer program.
Cruises will depart every Sunday, round-trip from Sochi with calls in Novorossyisk, Yalta and Sevastopol. The ship will overnight in Yalta. The first sailing is scheduled for June 11.
Malcolm Says: MS Royal Iris (also formerly Azur) is a 1971 built car ferry which in 1981 was converted into a cruise ship.
She is the last surviving ship ever owned by the Chandris Lines. She is the last surviving ship out of three near identical sisters, the others being the ill-fated Scandinavian Star* and the Fred. Olsen & Co. ferry Bolero. In late 2014, Mano Cruise stopped the ship’s service.
She is a modest 14,717 gross tons yet can carry 770 passengers. She looks a charming little vessel.
Mano Royal Iris promo-video HERE
*(The ship was set on fire by an arsonist in 1990, killing 159 people.)