|By Staff and Wires, South Florida
Sun-SentinelMcClatchy-Tribune Regional News
Jun. 18, 2007 --DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- The Queen Elizabeth 2, the majestic ocean liner that has carried millions of people across the Atlantic during its 40-year history, has been sold to a Dubai-owned company for $100 million, the company said Monday.
State-owned Istithmar said it plans to turn the giant passenger ship into a first-class floating hotel, retail and entertainment destination, berthed off Dubai's manmade Palm Jumeirah island.
An earlier Cunard ship, Queen Mary, is a floating hotel in Long Beach, Calif.
The aging QE2 vessel, bought from the Cunard Line division of Carnival Corp., will end its days as a tourist attraction, opening to the public in the beginning of 2009, Istithmar said. Istithmar is a division of Dubai World, a government-owned holding company that also owns Nakheel, the developer of Palm Jumeirah.
Launched in 1967 by Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, the QE2 became the longest-serving ship in Cunard's 168-year history. The vessel has crossed the Atlantic more than 800 times and has carried more than 2.5 million passengers, Istithmar said.
QE2 made one call at Port Everglades this year on its 108-day world cruise, and departed for Europe on April 29 from Fort Lauderdale. It has been primarily sailing from the United Kingdom to Europe since 2006.
To see more of The South Florida Sun-Sentinel or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.sun-sentinel.com/.
Copyright (c) 2007, South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services. For reprints, email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 800-374-7985 or 847-635-6550, send a fax to 847-635-6968, or write to The Permissions Group Inc., 1247 Milwaukee Ave., Suite 303, Glenview, IL 60025, USA. NYSE:CCL,