Clive Palmer, and Australian billionaire who made his money mainly through mining operations, has announced he intends to enjoy the money he has earned over his life by spending it before he dies. His first big investment? Building a new cruise ship that will be a replica of the Titanic.
The announcement was made and a blueprint of the ship released on board the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York. It’s called the Titanic II and is set to be constructed in China at the CSC Jinling Shipyard over the next 3 years. Passengers are expected to be using it to cross the Atlantic beginning June 2016.
The ship is a replica of the original, but the design actually makes it 3-inches longer than the 1912 version at 883 feet. Anyone enjoying the luxuries of modern cruise ships will be disappointed, though. To keep things “real,” the Titanic II won’t be outfitted with access to the Internet or even a TV. Your entertainment looks likely to be whatever was on offer in the early 1900s. Who knows, they might even ask for your gadgets to be handed in before you are allowed to board.
Despite that, Palmer says he’s already had a lot of interest and over 40,000 people sign up for tickets. That’s good news as he needs 2,435 passengers to fill it and 900 crew members to keep the ship running during its 5 day trip across the Atlantic.
The worry is that after the excitement has died down there won’t be much interest on using the ship to travel. Some have even said it’s a bit tacky recreating the ship that 1,500 people died on when it hit an iceberg. There’s also the issue of cost, with Palmer quoting $750,000 to $1 million if you want to secure one of the cabins on board.
Looking on the bright side, even if the Titanic II does fail it will still be able to act as an almost perfect recreation of the original ship and could become a museum attraction once it stops sailing.
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