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March 8, 2001

Star to deploy Meyer newbuild on NCL Hawaii itinerary
Star Cruises has revised its plans for ship deployment in the Hawaii cruise market by its Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) unit. A $400 million, 91,000-ton newbuilding currently under construction at Meyer Werft will now no longer join Star Cruises as SuperStar Libra. Instead, it will now join NCL's fleet in December 2001 for year- round deployment in Hawaii. It will now be outfitted to NCL specifications and named Norwegian Sta. It will be one of two sister ships, the second of which, to be named Norwegian Dawn will be delivered to NCL at the end of 2002.

NCL and parent company Star Cruises had previously announced the transfer of the two-year-old, 76,000-ton SuperStar Leo to the NCL brand to serve the Hawaii market under a new name, Norwegian Leo. The ship will now remain with the Star Cruises fleet under its present name.

According to Colin Veitch, NCL's president and chief executive officer, two things happened to persuade Star to move Libra over to NCL instead. First, the booking response to Leo's maiden Hawaiian season indicated a strongly positive reception from both cruisers and travel agents. Second, the projected costs involved in stripping out Leo's casino to comply with recently enacted federal legislation became so high that the lower cost alternative of tailoring the construction of Libra to exclude a casino from the outset became increasingly attractive.

The federal legislation in question is seen by some as an attempt to protect the franchise of the new United States Lines U.S.-flag cruise ship operation in the Hawaiian market.

While Hawiian cruises once appeared to be reserved to U.S.-flag operations under the Jones Act's close relative, the Passenger Vessel Act, Star Cruises has found a way round that by including Fanning Island in the Republic of Kiribati.


Norwegian Star will be NCL's largest ship, accommodating 2,200 passengers and 1,100 crew, and is being built at the maximum size to fit through the Panama Canal.

Length overall......... 294,13 m
Breadth molded........ 32,20 m
Number of decks........ 15
Draft................ 8,00 mTonnage................ 91.000 BRZ
Propulsive Power....... 2 x 19.500 kW
Propulsion............. pod drives
Speed.................. 24,6 kn
Total power output..... 58.800 kW


Seventy percent of cabins will be outside staterooms and over 70% of these will have balconies.

"Unlike anything on any other vessel today," says NCL, "a steel and glass structure on top of the ship, aft from the main sundeck, will boast a fantasy-world complex of multi-room villas offering panoramic views of the ocean, each with a roof terrace and private garden featuring open-air dining, Jacuzzis and totally private sunning and relaxation areas."

In addition, one of the ship's most distinctive attractions will be the on-board theater, reaching up three decks and seating an audience of 1,150 in a traditional European opera house ambiance.

TBeginning December 16, Norwegian Star will feature a seven-day Hawaii itinerary, as follows:

* Sunday - Honolulu, Oahu
* Monday - Kona, Hawaii
* Tuesday - At Sea
* Wednesday - Fanning Island, Republic of Kiribati
* Thursday - At Sea
* Friday - Lahaina, Maui
* Saturday - Nawiliwili/Port Allen, Kauai
* Sunday - Honolulu, Oahu

NCL is also setting aside cabins for a weekly round trip Maui itinerary in which passengers wishing to begin and end their cruise in Maui rather than Oahu will be able to embark on the Friday of one cruise and disembark a week later on the Friday of the following cruise.

The Maui-Maui itinerary on Norwegian Star is:

* Friday - Lahaina, Maui
* Saturday - Nawiliwili/Port Allen, Kauai
* Sunday - Honolulu, Oahu
* Monday - Kona, Hawaii
* Tuesday - At Sea
* Wednesday - Fanning Island, Republic of Kiribati
* Thursday - At Sea
* Friday - Lahaina, Maui

Passengers already booked on Norwegian Leo, or who book prior to March 31, 2001 before the revised Hawaii brochure is published, will be re-booked on Norwegian Star in higher grade cabins.

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