Michael Bayley, RCI's President and CEO, said that Empress and Majesty had made "indelible marks on the cruise industry with their revolutionary design and size."
"Touted as the cruise industry’s most groundbreaking ships when they were introduced, they continued to make history throughout their more than three decades of service.
“Saying goodbye to these two beloved ships is a major moment in Royal Caribbean’s history - one that is difficult but necessary. With plans for new, innovative ships to join our fleet in the upcoming years, we look forward to our guests and crew continuing to make new memories with us.”
Empress OTS was the first cruise ship designed for mini-cruises in the Caribbean (3- and 4-night roundtrips from Florida USA) when she was launched in 1990. The initial cruises visited The Bahamas out of PortMiami FL. Empress OTS also made history as the first liner to sail from NYC (Cape Liberty, Bayonne New Jersey) when RCI opened the terminal in 2004. In 2017, Empress OTS started RCI's inaugural cruise to Cuba.
Majesty OTS was the 3rd RCI liner of the RCI's Sovereign Class and the fleet's largest when debuted in 1992. The new ship's program started with 7-night Western Caribbean voyages from PortMiami.
The two RCI cruise ships have been sold to an undisclosed company based in the Asia-Pacific. Details for future sailings will be revealed at a later time.
RCI contacted booked customers and travel agents informing them about their rebooking options.