MS Thomson Destiny

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Thomson Destiny
Thomson Destiny at Gran Canaria, January 2007.
Name: 1982—1999: Song of America
1999—2005: Sunbird
2005 onwards: Thomson Destiny[1]
Owner: 1982—1999: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
1999—2004: Airtours
2004 onwards: Louis Cruise Lines[1]
Operator: 1982—1999: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
1999—2005: Sun Cruises
2005 onwards: Thomson Cruises[1]
Port of registry: 1982—1999: Oslo,  Norway
1999—2004: Nassau,  Bahamas[1]
2004—2005: Limassol,  Cyprus
2005: Unknown, 22x20px Marshall Islands[2]
2005 onwards: Limassol,  Cyprus[1]
Builder: Wärtsilä Hietalahti shipyard, Helsinki, Finland[1]
Cost: $ 140 million[3]
Yard number: 431[1]
Launched: 26 November 1981[1]
Acquired: 11 November 1982[1]
In service: 5 December 1982[1]
Identification: IMO number: 7927984[1]
Status: In active service as of 2010
General characteristics (as built)[1]
Type: cruise ship
Tonnage: 37,584 GT (gross tonnage)
5,237 metric tons deadweight (DWT)
Length: 214.51 m (703 ft 9 in)
Beam: 28.41 m (93 ft 3 in)
Draught: 6.80 m (22 ft 4 in)
Decks: 11
Installed power: 4 × 8-cylinder Sulzer-Wärtsilä diesels, combined 17060 kW
Propulsion: Twin propellers[3]
Speed: 21 knots (38.89 km/h; 24.17 mph)
Capacity: 1575 passengers
Crew: 540
General characteristics (as Thomson Destiny)
Tonnage: 37,773 GT (gross tonnage)
5,000 metric tons deadweight (DWT)[4]
Decks: 12
Capacity: 1611 passengers[3]
Crew: 540[3]

MS Thomson Destiny is a cruise ship owned by the Cyprus-based Louis Cruise Lines, under long-term charter to the United Kingdom-based Thomson Cruises. She was built in 1982 at Wärtsilä Hietalahti shipyard in Helsinki, Finland for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines as MS Song of America. Between 1999 and 2004 she sailed for Sun Cruises as MS Sunbird.[1]

Concept and construction

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines had operated throughout the 1970s with three ships that had been built at the Wärtsilä Hietalahti shipyard in Helsinki, Finland. Two of these had been lengthened towards the end of the decade, but due to increased demand RCCL decided to order a larger new ship, again from the Wärtsilä Helsinki shipyard.[5]

For the interior layout of their new ship RCCL decided to adapt a system with cabins to the fore of the ship, furthest from engine noise, and public spaces to aft. This layout was widely used on ferries built by the Wärtsilä shipyard, but has been rarely used for cruise ships.[5] The public spaces on decks five and seven were built with 1½ times the standard deck height, leading to deck 6 only existing in the forward part of the ship.[6]

The Song of America was launched from drydock on 26 November 1981. Following fitting out she was delivered to her owners on 11 November 1982.[1]

Service history

1982—1999: Song of America

Following a voyage across the Atlantic, the Song of America entered service with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines on 5 December 1982 on a cruise from Miami to Nassau, San Juan and St. Thomas. This remained her main itenerary for the early parts of her career with RCCL.[1][5]

1999—2005: Sunbird

In May 1998, the Song of America was sold to Sun Cruises (owned by Airtours) for $94.5 million (recognized gain on the sale was $31.0 million). Sun Cruises then chartered the ship back to RCCL until March 1999.[citation needed] Unlike with earlier ships the RCCL sold, the 'sky lounge' around the ship's funnel was not removed before she was handed over to the new owners. The ship was renamed MS Sunbird,[1][5] rebuilt with additional suites on deck 9[citation needed] and used for cruising around Europe, mainly in the Mediterranean. Later during her Sun Cruises service the ship received MyTravel colours.[1][5] In 2004, Airtours decided to withdraw from the cruise business, and the Sunbird was sold to Louis Cruise Lines, who chartered her back to Sun Cruises until May 2005.[1]

2005 onwards: Thomson Destiny

Following the end of her charter to Sun Cruises, Louis Cruise Lines chartered the Sunbird to Thomson Cruises, who renamed her MS Thomson Destiny.[1] With Thomson, the ship was used for cruising in the Mediterranean, Red Sea, Canary Islands and the west coast of Africa. In the winter of 2009 she cruised in the Caribbean.[citation needed]


As Thomson Destiny

Thomson Destiny has twelve decks, eleven of which are accessible to passengers.

  1. Engine room, crew spaces, gangway
  2. B deck - Outside and inside cabins, gangway
  3. A deck - Outside and inside cabins, gangway
  4. Main deck - Outside and inside cabins, internet cafe, reception, library, The Seven Seas restaurant (formal), shops
  5. Cabaret deck - Outside and inside cabins, Can Can Lounge (show lounge), casino Royale, Clipper bar, Oklahoma Lounge (Nightclub), Oceans Beauty salon, video arcade
  6. Upper deck - Outside and inside cabins (deck only exists in the forward part of the ship)
  7. Promenade deck - Deluxe cabins, Blakes bar/café/lounge, Kidzone , outdoor promenade
  8. Bridge deck - Bridge, saunas, Oceans gym
  9. Sun deck - Suites & Grand Suites (deck only exists in the forward part of the ship)
  10. Compass deck - Lido bar, swimming pools, Lido buffét restaurant, sundeck[6]
  11. Mast bar, sundeck
  12. Skybar


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 Asklander, Micke. "M/S Song of America (1982)" (in Swedish). Fakta om Fartyg. Retrieved 29 January 2009. 
  2. "Thomson Destiny - Previous flags". DNV Exhange. Det Norske Veritas. Retrieved 29 January 2009. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Ward, Douglas (2008). Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships. Singapore: Berlitz. pp. 654–655. ISBN 978-981-268-240-6. 
  4. "Thomson Destiny - Dimensions". DNV Exhange. Det Norske Veritas. Retrieved 29 January 2009. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Boyle, Ian. "Song of America". Simplon Postcards. Retrieved 29 January 2009. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Thomson Destiny Deck Plans". Thomson Cruises. TUI UK. Retrieved 29 January 2009. 

External links

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