SHIPPING & MARINE | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Hong Kong to be final home for QE2?

Famous liner could be bound for HK.

Singapore is thought to be the other final destination for the storied RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 that first sailed for Cunard in 1968 and was retired from luxury liner service in 2002.

The QE2 is now berthed in Port Rashii, Dubai and is expected to begin its journey to Asia in October. Although the exact fate of the famous liner is uncertain, her new Singaporean owners want to make her a landmark cultural and tourist attraction. Other reports, however, claim she has been sold to China for scrap,

She could find her final berth in either Hong Kong or Singapore to fulfill this aim. The Oceanic Group, based in Singapore is renting the QE2 from Dubai World for around US$1 million a year with the option to buy it outright for some US$35 million after 10 years.

Daniel Chui, managing director of Oceanic Group, said the company’s vision is for the Queen Elizabeth 2 is to become a landmark cultural and tourist attraction. The renovation will see the addition of a maritime museum, a shopping mall and several restaurants.

Chui sees the QE2 as “. . . a beacon of luxury, glamour, quality and tradition in the heart of a leading Asian city that shares her rich maritime heritage and is prepared to give this very special ship the prominent waterfront home she deserves."

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