Crystal Symphony’s Cruise Director Shane Morley has his hands full, which is nothing new for the master of entertainment aboard this beautiful ship. Except currently, he is not juggling daily schedules of performances, destination spotlights, enrichment briefings and all things otherwise entertaining. He is up to his shoulder epaulets in construction and the carefully managed, but massive, project of Crystal Symphony’s dry redesign, currently underway in Bremerhaven, Germany. Straight from the heart of the action, Shane shares his observations of the progress of her remarkable transformation here on the Crystal Insider.
Our dry dock work kicked off with more than 220 contractors coming aboard to dismantle 66 Deluxe Staterooms with Verandahs. I’m so happy that many of the contents from these rooms (Beds, Mattresses, bedside table, sofas and tables) have been donated to a local charity in Portugal.
On the 20th we sailed across the Bay of Biscay through the English Channel and into Bremerhaven. During this time, all the “covering teams” went to work covering the public areas that are not being refurbished so, that when the dust began to fly, these spaces would stay protected. We arrived in the afternoon of September 23 and by evening, we were already “high and dry” and connecting to shore power ready to start the enormous evolution of our beautiful ship.
By about 8pm on September 23, the hull inspection was already underway, and it was found to be in excellent condition. It was eerily quiet in anticipation of all of the major works, from the propeller to the stabilizer, and of course the repainting of the hull with the special paint that keeps everything ship shape underneath the waterline. Such marine projects can only be completed once the ship is up on the blocks.
Major engineering and deck projects also burst into action the moment we were docked. On Sunday came the influx of contractors. With nearly 500 contractors on board focusing on every facet of the process, the ship is a hub of activity at all times.
The major projects for the first week were the Deck 9 Penthouse conversion and the Deck 11 Trident area, where we are to have the new Silk Kitchen & Bar. Both of these areas will be incredible when finished, but in the meantime, we had to take everything back to the bare bones.
Teams worked around the clock to remove all of the staterooms and lounge areas that are being redesigned, ready to be replaced by the newly imagined spaces.
Of course, all work and no play is not good so the crew has been able to relax in the evening in the impromptu Starlight Club and there has been a tent set up on the Deck 12 forward area of the ship for evening refreshments and social interaction.
Speaking about refreshments, the F& B department should be commended for the wonderful effort that they are making in feeding almost 1000 crew members three meals a day! They are truly doing a wonderful job and the food has been great. The daily procession to the canteen is really a sight to be seen. The bar department is also doing a great job keeping up with the feverish demand for sandwiches and coffee at the morning & afternoon tea breaks.
And the work goes on…stay tuned for more updates from the yard.