The Crystal clear United States bombshell


The Crystal bomb.
I was still shivering from Crystal Cruises fairly recent expansion announcement, when another even bigger announcement hit me last week, with a blast force seldomly experienced before. The first place I heard about it, was on my dear friend, Lady E’s facebook page. My first thought was that she was intently trying to pull my leg with an overly elaborate joke, not as if that was her first time giving it a try. But, after confirming with Crystal Cruises own blog, it certainly appeared to be very true. As newsmedias around the world, and reputable sites like maritimematters.com started reporting, I basically could not believe it quite yet. Crystal Cruises had indeed announced that they are in agreement to purchase the ship, and guaranteeing for her monthly docking fees of the long-time laid up SS United States for almost the rest of the year, while they will be conducting a feasibility study on returning her to active, seagoing service.†


An announcement had been announced and expected from the United States Conservancy, but I was confident that this would rather be something more in the lines of a relocation to a pier in or near New York, and refurbishment to become some kind of static attraction.†


Never, in my wildest fantasy, would I have expected that Crystal Cruises would have such great aspirations, and deeply rooted history-interested leaders. I know they are the best in absolutely everything they do, and that they have some of the culturally richest and educative lecturers that can be found, but that also the most Senior Directors of such a prestigious cruise line had deep historical interests, still baffles and impresses me. †I know they are humans too, much like me and you, but to even consider a project like this seriously, makes me respect them more than I can possibly put in words.†


Why does it excite me?†

It’s quite simple actually. Having been a part of the Crystal experience and family myself, and after they have given me some of my life’s richest and best years at sea, I can’t help myself being immensly proud. When Crystal Cruises hired me back in 1999, to serve on their Crystal Symphony as a Safety Officer, they threw me a lifeline I wish I had never needed to cut. Resigning from Crystal Cruises was, and still is, the absolutely hardest descision I have ever had to make in my life. It’s true, once a Crystal Family, always a Crystal Family. That being said, I still have regular communication with a handful number of Crystal Family members, even though 10 years have now passed since I last shut down my workstation on board. In fact, I have more commuication with these handful people, than I have communication with my own personal family. The Crystal Family is the family I’m the most proud of having been a part of, and that I still feel a strong commitment, and connection with.†

With all that in mind, nothing pleases me more than seeing all kinds of success and expenasion within Crystal Cruises. Their newbuilding plans excited me beyond words and this latest news, blew me right out of my socks.†


Will it actually happen?

Well, this is a question I do not know quite yet what to say about. I do not know what has been said in their board-room meetings, what have been discussed in their corporate offices, nor do I know what are the true facts and details behind the news. Naturally, I hope with the full power of my heart that this will matearilize. If anyone is able to take upon such a project, Crystal Cruises is perhaps the best lifeline the ship can ever have hoped for? The professionalism, tireless dedication, great ethics and outstanding moral standards behind Crystal, is perhaps the absolutely best recepy for future success in a project of this magnitude.

Can you imagine seeing that beautiful American ship after a full top to bottom sand- and/or waterblasting, with a fresh coat of paint? That will be a sight to absolutely die for. Imagine the day she is brought back to life, with lights all over, beautiful decorations, lush furnitures and even better, with Crystal crew, officers and guests on board. That is a day it’s worth waiting for. Gawd, I both wish and pray from the bottom of my heart, that there was some way I could be a part of that restoration. It would be so much more than a job, it would be the greatest honor a seaman could be bestowed.†

In closing, I recommend this article found on the website of National Geographic†(opens in a new window).†


My personal memory from retired Master of SS United States, and Commodore of United States Lines, Leroy J. Alexanderson.†

Oh, dearest Crystal Cruises, perhaps you would like a smaller project for a luxury-division of your cruise line?
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