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|Headquarters||Los Angeles, United States|
Crystal Cruise Lines, most commonly referred to as Crystal Cruises, is a luxury cruise line with its headquarters in Los Angeles in the United States. The line was established in 1988 as a wholly owned subsidiary of the large Japanese shipping company Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK).
Readers of Condé Nast Traveler have voted the line Best Midsize Cruise Ship Line for 21 years. Readers of Travel + Leisure have voted Crystal Cruises World's Best for 19 consecutive years. The cruises offered by Crystal Cruises include an annual World Cruise on the Crystal Serenity of about 110 days in length.
In March 2015, NYK announced that it was selling Crystal Cruises to Genting Hong Kong (GHK), the owner of Star Cruises and a major shareholder in Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. The transfer was expected to close within the second quarter of 2015.
The company was founded in 1988 and is notable for its two medium-sized, high-end ships, Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity, each of which carries about 1,000 guests. In 2003, the new Crystal Serenity entered service with Crystal Cruises. In 2005, the Crystal Harmony, was retired from the Crystal fleet and transferred to the parent company, underwent some renovations, renamed the Asuka II, and now caters to the Japanese cruise market as part of Asuka Cruises.
On March 3, 2015, NYK announced that it was selling Crystal Cruises to Genting Hong Kong (GHK), the owner of Star Cruises and a major shareholder in Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. The sale price was US$550 million in cash, subject to certain adjustment items. Simultaneously, NYK announced that Crystal Cruises would be building a new ship, but did not provide any specifics, such as the new ship's size, or date of entry into service. In a statement accompanying NYK's announcement, GHK said that it would provide financial resources and proven expertise in innovative ship design, to build the new ship so as to set the highest standard in luxury cruise ships. On May 15, 2015, GHK announced that it had closed on the acquisition.
|Crystal Symphony||1995||Kvaerner Masa-Yards||1995||51,044 tons||Bahamas|
|Crystal Serenity||2003||Chantiers de l'Atlantique||2003||68,870 tons||Bahamas|
|Crystal Harmony||1989||Mitsubishi Heavy Industries||1990–2006||50,142 tons||Bahamas|
The Crystal Symphony is the smaller of the two, holding 940 passengers. It was last refurbished in 2012. The Crystal Serenity can hold 1,050 passengers and about 650 crew, and was last refurbished in 2011.
Each Crystal ship features two complimentary specialty restaurants, including the Italian restaurant Prego (overseen by Piero Selvaggio of Valentino restaurants), and Silk Road and the Sushi Bar (overseen by Japanese restaurateur Nobu Matsuhisa). Daytime activities include pools, lectures, a movie theater, lessons by Yamaha keyboard instructors, and instruction by Berlitz language teachers.
Crystal Cruises enlisted Caesars World to operate an onboard casino, Caesars Palace at Sea, on its first liner, Crystal Harmony. The partnership continued with Crystal's current vessels, Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity. Each casino had about eight table games and 100 slot machines. Caesars received "minute" earnings from the casinos, but considered them good marketing. The management agreements with Caesars expired in the spring of 2006.
In February 2015 Crystal Cruises announce that passengers will be able to use on-board credit in the casinos on their ships, making it the first to allow credit other than cash in a cruise ship casino.
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