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Classic liner Monterey and modern Costa Classica berthed at Barcelona April 2006 - both on Med circuit

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Coata Classica will possibly remain a cruise ship and never ply a line voyage. I remember Monterey coming into Auckland during her liner days. She and Mariposa used to ply the Los Angeles to Sydney run calling at Auckland and other ports en-route returning to San Francisco then back to LA. They did this run all year. I once had lunch on Monterey with one of her officers on my table telling us all about the ship. She was very luxurious. David
 

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Costa Classica is in fact 15 years old, so she is not all that new Brandane, but I know what you mean. When you visited Monterey as a liner David, you regarded her as being very luxurious, now she is two star and regarded as very austere. It is interesting how the industry has developed.

Fred
 

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They were originally fast Cargo Ships built in 1952-53 as 'Pine Tree State' and 'Free State Mariner'.
Matson Lines bought them in 1956, had them converted to all first class vessels for about 360 pax on the run from San Francisco to Sydney,which was a round trip of some 45 days. Some relatives of mine sailed on the Monterey to the US. They were pretty 'de-luxe' compared with the opposition, fully airconditioned for a start.
Matson got out of pax shipping in early 70's and they were sold to another SFO company, the Pacific Far East Line, but due to the laberinthyne subsidy system in the US merchant service, they soon became uneconomical to operate,(+jets had recently been introduced across the Pacific), and by 1978 it was all over.
The Chinese got them and the "Mariposa" sailed on till 1996 before being scrapped at Alang.
I am not fully aware of the cir***stances surrounding her passing to MSC, but I believe it had something to do with ownership/charter by Lauro Lines in the 80's.
Long may the "Monterey" continue, but I suppose SOLAS will put an end to that in the next few years.
 

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You are right David, they were all first class vessels an cetainly \'de-luxe\' compared to the opsosition. Having emigrated on Northern Star, and taking a cruise from Auckland on Australis, my lunch on Monterey was like having lunch at the Ritz instead of a run of the mill restaurant!. It is a shame she no longer has such high standards. When working on both Canberra and Arcadia later, we were often in Honolulu with either Monterey or Mariposa. Yes, her after end does not look too great cockerhoop, but she was not exactly a good looking ship before until you walked board when another world opened up. A bit like Britannia really I suppose, not much to look at outside(depending on your taste), but pure luxury inside. David
 

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A great photograph of her identical sistership in Pacific Far East colors:
http://www.timetableimages.com/maritime/images/pfel74i.htm

The two ships always flew the flag of the Matson subsidiary, the Oceanic Navigation Company, keeping alive the route of the Oceanic Steamship Company, aka the Spreckels Line, which Matson took over in 1926.

Bruce C
 

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