MV Ola Esmeralda (1966)

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Black Prince Nantes.JPG
Black Prince in Nantes, April 2009
  • 2009–: Ola Esmeralda[1]
  • 2009: Prince
  • 1966–2009: Black Prince
  • 1970–1985 (summers): Venus
Owner: Fred. Olsen & Co.[2]
Port of registry:
Builder: Lübecker Flender-Werke, Lübeck, West Germany[2]
Cost: $20 million[3]
Yard number: 561[2]
Launched: 14 May 1966[2]
Acquired: October 1966[2]
In service: October 1966[2]
Status: sold for scrapping in November 2012
General characteristics (as built)[2]
Class and type: Black Watch-class ferry
Length: 141.64 m (464 ft 8 in)
Beam: 20.02 m (65 ft 8 in)
Draught: 6.10 m (20 ft 0 in)
Installed power:
Propulsion: 2 propellers[3]
Speed: 22.5 knots (41.7 km/h; 25.9 mph)
  • 693 passengers
  • 350 berths
  • 200 cars
General characteristics (as rebuilt, 1987)[4]
Type: Cruise ship
  • 11,209 GT
  • 3,043 t DWT
Length: 141.62 m (464.6 ft)
Draught: 6.42 m (21 ft 1 in)
Depth: 8.8 m (28 ft 10 in)
Decks: 7 (passenger accessible)[3]
Speed: 18.5 knots (34.3 km/h; 21.3 mph)[5]
Capacity: 472 passengers[3]
Crew: 200[3]
Notes: Otherwise the same as built

Ola Esmeralda was a cruise ship, owned and operated by Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines. She was built in 1966 by the Lübecker Flender-Werke in Lübeck, West Germany for Fred. Olsen Lines for combined ferry/cruise ship operations. From 1970 until 1983 she sailed the northern hemisphere summer seasons on ferry service for Det Bergenske Dampskibsselskab as Venus, while returning to cruise service with Fred. Olsen for the winter seasons. In 1983 the summer ferry service was taken over by DFDS, and in 1985 it passed to Norway Line. In 1986 Fred. Olsen bought the ship outright and she was converted to a full-time cruise ship, retaining the name Black Prince.[2]

The Black Prince has been retired from the Fred. Olsen fleet on 16 October 2009.[6] Although her withdrawal is reportedly due to the new SOLAS 2010 regulations,[7] she has been sold to SAVECA for further cruise service in Venezuelan waters.[6] SAVECA planned to use the ship for cruises between islands within Venezuelan waters, also as a floating hotel. The ship's last stop was in the port of Santo Domingo before being scrapped.


The cruise ship Black Prince had on board: A show lounge (towards the stern) which was spread over two decks, with a bar on each level - the majority of the seating was on the lower level. The bar on the upper level opened to the outside, with waiter service on the open decks than as a traditional bar. A piano lounge & bar towards the bow also contained a small casino, a buffet-style restaurant on the upper deck and two traditional restaurants serving the same menu, and an outdoor pool with two Whirlpool spas.


  1. ^ a b "Ola Esmeralda (6613328)". Equasis. French Ministry for Transport. Retrieved 2012-09-28. (Registration required (help)). 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Asklander, Micke. "M/S Black Prince (1966)". Fakta om Fartyg (in Swedish). Retrieved January 27, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Ward, Douglas (2008). Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships. Singapore: Berlitz. pp. 218–219. ISBN 978-981-268-240-6. 
  4. ^ "Black Prince (00774)". DNV GL Vessel Register. Det Norske Veritas. Retrieved January 27, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Black Prince brochure" (PDF). Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines. Retrieved January 27, 2009. 
  6. ^ a b Reinikainen, Kari (2009-05-06). "Fred. Olsen sells Black Prince for further trading". Cruise Business Online. Cruise Media Oy Ltd. Retrieved 2009-05-10. 
  7. ^ Reinikainen, Kari (2009-02-28). "At least 7 old cruise ships face uncertain future due to SOLAS 2010". Cruise Business Online. Cruise Media Oy Ltd. Retrieved 2009-03-01. 

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