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Chandris S.S. Brittanis???


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Quite amazing to read....I travelled from the UK to New Zealand in May 1974 on the Brittanis as a 4 year old boy. I remember visual snapshots to this day...I nearly died of chicken pox on the trip and remember seeing Table Top Mountain from medical quaranteen on the ship in South Africa.

So sad to see that she sank 6 years ago....very special memories and a truely beautiful ship!!!

Stew Poole - Christchurch, NZ

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That's quite an interesting story! The photos of her sinking really give me the chills and I get teary every time! I'm sure you're all aware, but there are a few good books out there on the Britanis. On Amazon.com if you browse around on cruise related books there are a few...some of them are under her previous names but it's still kinda neat that it's the same ship.

LAura

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  • 1 month later...

I had actually forgotten the name of the cruise ship on which I took my second cruise.....poring through this thread "Whatever Happened To", it hit me. I also cruised on the Britanis in 1993, my husband's and my first cruise together, to Key West, Playa Del Carmen and Cozumel. At the time we booked it, our travel agent told us that it was the oldest cruise liner in service. She was old, but very well taken care of. It was the tiniest cabin ever - we had either a double or a queen sized bed, an inside cabin, and the bed took up most of the room! We were one of the lucky ones, our bathroom actually had been converted electrically so that I could blow dry my hair in it. Others on our deck had to go to a "group" room with the correct outlets. I remember having to iron my clothes there too.......! We had a wonderful time, the food was GREAT, the service great. It was my husband's first cruise - he was hooked! I wondered what happened to the ship. I also think it is fitting that she sank. Better that than taken apart and sold for scrap. :o

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I had actually forgotten the name of the cruise ship on which I took my second cruise.....poring through this thread "Whatever Happened To", it hit me. I also cruised on the Britanis in 1993, my husband's and my first cruise together, to Key West, Playa Del Carmen and Cozumel. At the time we booked it, our travel agent told us that it was the oldest cruise liner in service. She was old, but very well taken care of. It was the tiniest cabin ever - we had either a double or a queen sized bed, an inside cabin, and the bed took up most of the room! We were one of the lucky ones, our bathroom actually had been converted electrically so that I could blow dry my hair in it. Others on our deck had to go to a "group" room with the correct outlets. I remember having to iron my clothes there too.......! We had a wonderful time, the food was GREAT, the service great. It was my husband's first cruise - he was hooked! I wondered what happened to the ship. I also think it is fitting that she sank. Better that than taken apart and sold for scrap. :o

 

Good point! I never thought of it that way. I guess it's better to imagine her sitting at the bottom of the ocean all in one piece (as haunting as that sounds) than to be destroyed be people that are just going to make a profit off of her.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

My husband and I went on our first cruise on the Brittanis in 1984. It was a 4 day cruise from Providence, RI to Burmuda. We remember very rough seas, and the ship was rolling and pitching. The "comfort" bags were distributed around the ship before we even left Narragansett Bay.

 

Our room was very small, with bunk beds, and the shower ran either very hot or very cold! On the plus side, the crew was excellent, and the food was terrific. At the time, we were told that the Brittanis was the oldest cruise ship in the world.

 

On the way back to Providence , the ship went off course to pick up some injured crewmen from a commercial vessel.

 

It' been over 22 years since that cruise, but we still talk about it, and will never forget the Brittanis!

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I sailed the Brittannis in the early 80's for San Juan,

I fell in love with the Greek crew!!

Met a great friend and went to Greece the next year for an unbelievable

trip.

Every now and again I look at the pictures of that great ship!

Lou

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  • 1 month later...
For a full history of BRITANIS, and a photo tour of her as she was just before she was broken up, see here.

 

As you can see from that article, she actually had two sisters, one of which made it to Chandris as ELLINIS. BRITANIS was by far the last surviving of the three sisters.

 

Also, on the relationship between Chandris and Celebrity. There was no merger or takeover involved - Celebrity was a new brand created by Chandris in 1989 as they wanted to move into a more upscale market. The existing Chandris brand became Fantasy Cruises (initially the brands were Chandris Fantasy Cruises and Chandris Celebrity Cruises, but "Chandris" was soon dropped) and was slowly phased out. The last Fantasy ship to be retired was AMERIKANIS in 1997. In 1992, Chandris sold half of Celebrity Cruises (including Fantasy Cruises) to Overseas Shipholding Group (a large owner of bulk carriers). Celebrity operated as a joint venture between Chandris and OSG until 1997 when it was sold to Royal Caribbean. As part of the deal both Chandris and OSG received large amounts of RCI stock. OSG sold theirs but Chandris is still a major RCI shareholder and John Chandris is a member of the RCI board.

 

 

Thank you for that very interesting story! I too am fascinated with the old ships from way back when. I remember seeing her in St. Thomas while on a RCCL ship and always thought "wow, now that's an old ship!" I knew she was built in 1932 and still sailing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

My first cruise was on the Brittanis in '92. My wife(fiance at the time) was working for a cruise agency at the time, we wanted a quick get away to leave behind the stresses of planning a wedding. I only remember a few things, the food was outstanding, you had to go down the hall to a common room to use electrical appliances, and we couldn't get the ac to turn off in the cabin!!:eek: All in all we still had a really great time. It was the perfect first cruise for me.:D :)

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:) How interesting. Cool Cruiser has a post #58 that linked a web site that was originally posted by Host Doug in post #7 22 March 2005. It concerns the old Matson ships and in the post after you go to the third sub link at the bottom of the first page you will find the title page of postwar stories and a color photo there taken in the lounge of the then Lurline of Matson. The folks are dressed formal and in the backgound is a gray haired gent in a black tux at a table looking to the right of the photo with another man with his back to the camera. I was able to save it and blow it up and now can present this.

 

 

I am sure it is my father the then Dir. of Passenger Service for Matson and the ship was near his office at piers 30-32 which had been Matson's since the 20's in S.F. He was Charles Christian, Sr. Went to sea for 30 years on passenger ships until he got his first shore job in 49. He died in 1972.

 

It was a nice treat for me tonight.

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I enjoyed reading Matsonbrat's postings and other's reminiscences of Matson Lines in this thread. I'll mention that I remember very well sailing on Matson Mariposa on a South Pacific cruise in 1961. (I was 10 at the time.) We went on board either Lurline or Matsonia when Mariposa docked in Honolulu. The ship was larger than Mariposa and very elegant, with wooden decks and 1930's appointments.

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:) AHL has a good memory about his voyages in 1961 in post #61.

 

His Mariposa trip to the South Pacific was on a Mariner freighter converted in Portland, Oregon to a passenger ship in 1956. She and her new sister ship Monterey were one stackers and only 365 passengers. My father went up to the shipyard there to see that his designs for the galley and dining rooms were followed properly. He also put women on the ships after WWII as waiters and room stewards. When he was scattered at sea in 1972 in the shipping channels between Molokai and Koko Head, Oahu, the now PFL owned one stacker Monterey had it's fantail full of these women who were originals or replacements. ( I have photos of the service sent by her Master with a copy of the ship's log of the funeral .

A few years ago I went to Koko Head and had my own private memorial service as I looked across to Molokai.) AHL's Lurline trip was really the old Monterey from the 30's with her sister ships Lurline and Mariposa with about 715 passengers each. The Matsonia was a 1929 smaller ship then the other 3 of the 4 great white liners of Matson. I truly envy AHL his South Pacific trip. Imagine today going from HNL or the Mainland on a cruise ship with only a max. of 365 passengers on that voyage.

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The Lurline was my first cruise when i was like 9, i think it was in 1969/70, Honolulo to LA. I only remember the one night, my dad and me were about the only people in the dinning room, He was Retired Navy, the ship was all over the place. We hit 30 foot seas, and were to redevous with a US Destroyer, they had a medical emergency, and we had a surgeon on board. My dad woke me up in the middle of the night to watch them swing the poor sailor over to us via a rope system, all in high seas.

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  • 4 weeks later...

OMG! Our very first cruise in 1989 - The SS Amerikanis! St. Thomas, St. Maarten, Barbados, even Palm Island (though it was shallow water). Last cruise was in Feb 07 on the X Zenith. Same heritage, and the same great service and food.

 

When we left San Juan for the cruise, we were ported next to the Brit!

 

Thanks for the memories. :D

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  • 4 years later...

I didn't realize when I started reading this thread how old it is. Is anyone still reading it? I, too, sailed on the Britanis. It was January, 1989. We went to Grand Cayman, Jamaica and the San Blas Islands. I still remember the time on the San Blas Islands as a highlight and I have been on many cruises since.

What I am wondering is how I can get credit for that cruise? What proof would I have to have to show Celebrity? Will Royal Caribbean also accept it for points? Anybody know?

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Paddy,

 

We were on the Britanis in 1976 and still have a copy of the passenger directory (yes, they use to give passengers a list of everyone on board and their addresses).

 

We provided a photocopy of the directory cover and our name listing to RCI and we were given credit for the cruise.

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  • 1 month later...

i worked on the ss brittanis as the master-at-arms. from may 73 - jan 74. round the world trips. i also worked on the ss australis. in 1968,1970,71,72,75,76 and 77. i worked on the sister ship of the ss brittanis, the ss ellinis in 1969. cruising from NY to Bermuda and Caribbean.

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Yes, still reading - I happened on this thread today. My husband and I sailed on the Britanis for our honeymoon, in 1981. There was a mixup, and the ship's roster showed me in a cabin with another person, with my husband not even listed. The purser said, sorry - nothing we can do - I was in tears - then he said "Just kidding!" and assigned us another cabin. Was a great cruise. Remember those reserved teak deck chairs?

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  • 2 months later...
I had actually forgotten the name of the cruise ship on which I took my second cruise.....poring through this thread "Whatever Happened To", it hit me. I also cruised on the Britanis in 1993, my husband's and my first cruise together, to Key West, Playa Del Carmen and Cozumel. At the time we booked it, our travel agent told us that it was the oldest cruise liner in service. She was old, but very well taken care of. It was the tiniest cabin ever - we had either a double or a queen sized bed, an inside cabin, and the bed took up most of the room! We were one of the lucky ones, our bathroom actually had been converted electrically so that I could blow dry my hair in it. Others on our deck had to go to a "group" room with the correct outlets. I remember having to iron my clothes there too.......! We had a wonderful time, the food was GREAT, the service great. It was my husband's first cruise - he was hooked! I wondered what happened to the ship. I also think it is fitting that she sank. Better that than taken apart and sold for scrap. :o

 

Groovymom

The Brittanis was also my first cruise and have been hooked ever since. We got the cheapest room we could get and ended up with no shower in our room.Ahhhhh......We had to use the shower room. It was fun times and great memories.

 

 

 

We sailed on the Britanis in 1991 on our second cruise. I loved that ship.

Like Groovymom, we also had a very inexpensive cabin - but we did splurge for a private bath. Our sleeping accommodations were like this: http://www.ssmaritime.com/britanis-2.htm Unlike many of you I do not have fond memories of THAT cabin.

 

But the remainder of the ship was one classy lady filled with brass and teak and leather. That era is now gone and I am delighted to be able to say that I experienced some small part of it. My post Chandris cruising is fun. I have a great time. But the sophistication, the stateliness of the Britanis is missing.

 

Imagine my shock when 4 years later we boarded Joe Farcus's Carnival Fantasy.

;)

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i worked on the ss brittanis as the master-at-arms. from may 73 - jan 74. round the world trips. i also worked on the ss australis. in 1968,1970,71,72,75,76 and 77. i worked on the sister ship of the ss brittanis, the ss ellinis in 1969. cruising from NY to Bermuda and Caribbean.

 

Do you by any chance remember Michael Charlambis-Entertainment Director?

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I just stumbled upon this thread. My first cruise was on the Britanis in 1985. Just me and two of my college roommates.

 

I guess you could say we stuck out in the crowd. After meeting the captain, we were invited to sit at the captain's table at dinner later in the week.

 

Since we were poor college seniors, we had an inside cabin where the beds pulled down from the wall. I think the lower berth slept two and the upper berth slept one.

 

A day or two into the cruise we were told we had to change cabins. That was fine with us because there was a single guy in the cabin next to us, and he was a complete jerk, making lots of noise all hours of the night. Little did we know we were being upgraded to an outside cabin with three separate berths and an actual porthole!

 

Boy, do I wish I could go back in time and "visit" that cruise again. We, too, went to San Blas. A photo I shot there won 1st place in the New Jersey State Fair that fall. I still have two of the hand crafted cut work pieces of art I bought while we were there.

 

While in San Blas, we were taken to a "deserted island." What a laugh! It was an unpopulated island just a stone's throw from San Blas. But, I can honestly say I was once on a deserted island.

 

I also remember all the armed soldiers in Cartegena, Colombia. We were told repeatedly that they were there for our safety. I also remember the absolutely breathtaking emeralds in the jewelry stores in Colombia. It was said that Colombia kept the best emeralds and exported stones of lesser quality.

 

Our walk in a duty free zone in Panama was memorable, too. Apparently we walked a little too deep into the duty free zone, and suddenly we realized we were all alone. You bet we turned around and made fast tracks back to the populated area of the zone!

 

What great memories!

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