The Marshall Islands registered cruise ship Gemini continues to lay idle in Tilbury docks. She arrived on the Thames in October 2011 for lay-up following the failure of Spanish operator Quail Cruises who operated her under the Happy Cruises brand.

Owned by Jewel Owner Ltd, a subsidiary of International Shipping Partners, Inc of Miami, the vessel was chartered for 30 days to LOCOG to provide accommodation for security workers at the London 2012 Olympic Games. Prior to the charter she visited Vlissingen in June 2012, where she was readied for the games and dry docked for a five-year survey. She was then moored in London’s Royal Albert Dock astern of her sister, Fred. Olsen’s Braemar, returning to Tilbury in August 2012 where she has lain ever since.

Gemini was built in Spain as Crown Jewel in 1992, together with her Fred. Olsen sister, for Crown Cruise Line, a subsidiary of EffJohn International, owners of Silja Line, and was operated on cruises from the USA to Bermuda and the Caribbean. The venture was short-lived and she was chartered to Cunard in 1993, becoming Crown Jewel before being sold to Star Cruises in 1995 and renamed SuperStar Gemini.

In 2009 she became Vision Star for Spanish operator Vision Cruises but the line folded and she was chartered to Quail as Gemini for whom she sailed until 2011 when they went bust. She is now for sale or charter, but the longer the vessel remains out of use the less likely a return to service appears. MD

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