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Living in SoCal was a weekend cruiser's heaven back in the '90s and early '00s. Carnival and Royal offered three- and four-day itineraries to Mexico with Catalina thrown in on the four-day. After the Viking Serenade was retired, Royal based the Monarch of the Seas at the Port of Los Angeles to take over the short runs for several years before being sold to Pullmantur Cruises in 2013. We only sailed on her three times with the last being in 2007, but we had great experiences and  have fond memories of both the ship and the excellent staff. Alas, all good things must end and that time has come for the Monarch. She is on her way to the shipbreakers in Turkey after being retired as a result of Pullmantur cruises' bankruptcy proceedings. 

 

1077480105_PoolMaidLight.thumb.jpg.576419ec641a6eb005927ed251279a98.jpg

 

I wonder where the Pool Maid (no idea what the real name was) will end up?

 

Dave

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Dave -- You had me scared for a minute, as I thought you were no longer going to be posting on this Discussion Board!  My wife and I sailed many times on the Viking Serenade out of Los Angeles, and enjoyed Ports of Call such as Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta, and Cabo San Lucas.  Unfortunately, Royal Caribbean decided to exit that market several years ago, apparently due to drug cartel violence in Mexico.  Anyway, I'm glad you're still posting . . .

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That's really a shame.  The first time we saw Monarch was in 1992 in San Juan when she was docked next to the ship we were sailing on, Carnival Festivale.  We were on the itinerary out of San Juan but they had the cruise ships docked across the bay at the industrial area due to the replicas of the Columbus ships for the 500th Anniversary Celebration.  We got great views of Monarch, at the time one of the largest cruise ships.  Had a chance to see her again while in the Bahamas in September 2010.  Attached pic is the scanned film print from our 1992 cruise out of San Juan.  Compared to Festivale, she was HUGE.

SCAN0172A-01-1.jpg

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