Tag Archives: titanic

New luxury hotel in Belfast: Titanic Hotel Belfast pays a tribute to ill-fated ship

Titanic Hotel Belfast Drawing Room

The Titanic may have sunk 105 years ago, but its legacy lives on through an unforgettable film, countless of museums and now, at a luxury hotel in Belfast. Titanic Hotel Belfast opened its doors to the public earlier this month, much to the fascination of history fans. That’s because the hotel is housed within the former Harland & Wolff headquarters and historic Drawing Offices — the birth place of the Titanic.

The legendary passenger liner is famous for the tragic end that it had met on 15 April 1912. During her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York, the RMS Titanic fatally collided with an iceberg and sank to the depths of the North Atlantic Ocean.

Titanic Hotel Belfast Drawing Room

It dealt a major blow to the engineers and shipbuilders behind the Titanic, who were driven by the admirable goal of building the world’s largest ship at the time. They had made their first sketches and drafts of the ill-fated ocean liner within the Harland & Wolff Drawing Offices, which has since been restored by the Harcourt Developments team to form a part of the £28 million hotel.

In its place, guests of the Titanic Hotel Belfast will find a bar, lounge, ballroom and exhibition space instead. Other heritage spaces that have been preserved include the board room, the directors’ entrance, lobby and the offices of the Titanic’s leading architects and other influential figures of the former company.

Titanic Hotel Belfast Foyer

“History and heritage helped build this hotel, and it can be seen in every aspect of the finish, form the carpet to the cornices,” said John Doherty, group creative director at Harcourt Developments.

Thanks to its prime location, the hotel’s 119 rooms offer views that capture Belfast’s rich shipbuilding history. The sights include Queen’s Island; the Titanic Belfast visitor experience that sits next to the hotel; the notable Harland & Wolff gantry cranes in the east; and the slipways in the west. Starting at £125 a night, the Art-Deco-inspired rooms feature subtle nods to the building’s history as well, with Harland and Wolff artwork and bespoke furniture. On top of deluxe and superior rooms, the luxury hotel also boasts a number of suites, a penthouse and a champagne bar.

To commemorate its inauguration, Titanic Hotel Belfast is hosting public-access tours of the main Drawing Offices, along with a six-week exhibition that chronicles the building’s construction and conservation.

Luxury residence in London: Oceanic House presents 6 apartments and a 2 story penthouse for purchasing

The neoclassical façade of the Grade II listed Oceanic House conceals a storied piece of British history, a turn-of-the- century memory of mankind’s transatlantic travel ambitions that is sure to inspire attention today. Originally the London headquarters of the famous White Star Line, the company behind the RMS Titanic and Olympic Ocean liners, the building has been transformed into a luxury residence containing six spacious apartments and a two-storey penthouse occupying the top two floors. Units range from 1,679 sq. ft. to 5,447 sq. ft. in size and feature bespoke interiors by BLDA, reminiscent of the glamour of early 20th century ocean travel, Poggenpohl fitted kitchens, under-floor heating, comfort cooling, and en-suite bedrooms. Residents can also benefit from round-the-clock security.

The building’s sumptuously renovated ground floor was once the company’s First Class booking office, playing host to eminent Titanic passengers such as the Countess of Rothes, Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon and Lucy, Lady Duff-Gordon. With high- ceilings and an Edwardian-inspired interior, the entrance hall provides a reception area for guests, a dedicated 24 hr concierge, and a refurbished foyer featuring a scale model of the luxurious Titanic liner on display.

Commissioned by White Star Line Chairman Joseph Bruce Ismay, the descendent of a sailing and shipbuilding dynasty, and designed by architect Henry Tanner Junior, Oceanic House was completed in 1907 and sits in the heart of London ’s West End at 1 Cockspur Street, adjacent to the ritzy Mayfair and Belgravia districts. The surrounding Trafalgar Square area also accommodates some of the capital’s finest hotels such as The Savoy, Corinthia, and The Waldorf Hilton. Though the building was later converted into offices for Barclays Bank, the Ministry of Defence, and then the Texas Embassy, a promotional centre for the State of Texas, its prestigious White Star Line origins are definitely not to be forgotten with the residences serving as a fitting homage to its rich history. Scheduled for completion in Spring 2017, the development is helmed by Misland Capital and Oceanic Developments Ltd.

This article was first published in Palace 18.

5 Largest Cruise Ships of All Time

Over the last few decades, a whole line-up of supersized ships have handed down the title of “world’s largest passenger liner,” due to be taken in 2016 by the Harmony of the Seas. As this latest floating giant prepares to set out on its inaugural cruise from Barcelona June 5 to 7, here’s a look at some of history’s biggest and most legendary passenger liners.

RMS Titanic 1912


This enormous and infamous ocean liner is one of history’s most famous passenger ships. After taking to waves in the early 20th century, its tragic fate has gained the RMS Titanic legendary status, with an international community of enthusiasts who continue to collect details of the ship and its sinking. The subject of numerous documentaries and blow-by-blow reconstructions, the ship met a tragic end after colliding with an iceberg in the North Atlantic during the night of April 14, 1912, leading to its total submersion. The ship found renewed fame as the setting for a big-screen love story in James Cameron’s Titanic movie, which won the 1997 Oscar for “Best Picture.” This led to renewed interest in the story of this fateful liner, which sunk on its maiden voyage from the English port of Southampton.

  • Dimensions: 269 meters long, 28 meters wide
  • Company: White Star Line
  • Passenger capacity: 3,503 people (905 in first class, 564 in second class, 1134 in third class and 885 crew)
  • Did you know? The Titanic set sail loaded with 40 tons of potatoes, 34,000kg of meat, 6,819 liters of milk, 36,000 oranges and 20,000 bottles of beer.

The Queen Mary 1952

Queen Mary

As well as holding the title of world’s largest passenger liner for three years, the Queen Mary was also the world’s fastest ocean liner for 14 years straight. The ship was originally intended to be called Queen Victoria, in homage to the former British monarch, but when the name was submitted to King George V for approval, he preferred to name the vessel after his wife. Plenty of famous people stepped aboard the ship during its years of service, including Winston Churchill. After setting sail on its maiden voyage May 27, 1936, RMS Queen Mary – nicknamed “Old Mary” – traveled the globe as a troopship during the Second World War, carrying Australian and New Zealand soldiers from Sydney to the United Kingdom. The liner later regained its original function as a cruise ship before retiring in 1967. The Queen Mary has now been turned into a hotel and restaurant based in Long Beach harbor in California, USA.

  • Dimensions: 310.74 meters long
  • Company: Cunard Line
  • Passenger capacity: 2,139 people
  • Did you know? Legend has it that the Queen Mary is haunted by the ghosts of former passengers. Today’s guests can take a tour of the corridors at night to try to catch sight of the spooks.

SS France 1962

SS France

Following in the footsteps of the SS Normandy, this French ocean liner – built in the Chantiers de L’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire – was the world’s biggest passenger liner in the early 1960s. After a career mainly spent carrying passengers between Europe and the USA, and with a few round-the-world trips to its name, SS France was bought by a Saudi Arabian businessman and re-registered in Norway. The vessel was renamed SS Norway in 1979, before becoming Blue Lady in 2006 prior to its scrapping in India.

  • Dimensions: 315.7 meters long
  • Company: Compagnie Générale Transatlantique (at launch)
  • Passenger capacity: 2,032 people
  • Did you know? Before its sale in 1977, several ideas were floated for the SS France‘s fate. Proposals included turning the liner into a retirement home or a floating hospital off the coast of Lebanon. It was even suggested as a hotel ship for the 1976 Winter Olympics in Montreal, Canada.

Oasis of the Seas 2014

Oasis of the Seas

In 2009, Royal Caribbean set out to steal the title of world’s largest passenger liner – held at the time by the Queen Mary 2 – with the Oasis of the Seas, a new 365-meter-long ship that raised the game once again. The ship was above all innovative for its wealth of onboard activities, giving rise to distinct neighborhoods onboard the vessel and turning the ship itself into a holiday destination. Guests can, for example, get active on a climbing wall, shoot hoops on a basketball court, plunge down water slides, relax in a hot tub or try out surfing in a special wave pool. MS Oasis of the Seas is still in service, taking guests around the world’s oceans. It’s also the forerunner to a series of new superships, such as the Harmony of the Seas, set to follow in the coming years.

  • Dimensions: 362 meters long
  • Company: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
  • Passenger capacity: 5,400 people
  • Did you know? This liner brought an environmentally conscious slant to the cruise ship sector with a system for recycling used water. Its successors are likely to green ideas even further.

Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas

Harmony of the Seas

After being tested at sea in March from the French port of Saint-Nazaire, MS Harmony of the Seas sets sail on its maiden voyage May 29. This new super ship delivered this past week to Royal Caribbean beats all kinds of records with its 66-meter width, 16 decks, 22-knot cruising speed and 24 lifts.

  • Dimensions: 362 meters
  • Company: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line
  • Passenger capacity: 6,410 people
  • Did you know? Although barely even out of the shipyard, Harmony of the Seas is due to be knocked off the top spot in 2018, when the Oasis 4 takes over as the world’s largest passenger ship.

The Titanic: A New Beginning

All Aboard the Titanic II! No, you are not in 1912 and no we have not let the Monday blues get to us. We are in fact talking about the Titanic replica that Australian billionaire Clive Palmer is creating.

Back in 2012, Palmer had announced his plans to recreate the Belfast liner that sank on its maiden voyage across the North Atlantic Ocean, and set sail this year. However, the plans have now been pushed back to 2018. A little over a century after the Titanic began its journey the replica will mirror the ship —with a few modifications. To meet modern maritime safety regulations, the vessel will measure 4 m wider and the hull will be welded, not riveted, reported The Belfast Telegraph.

When complete, the Titanic II will measure 270 m long, 53 m high, and weigh 56,000 tons. Like its predecessor, the Titanic II will have three cabin classes. The ship will span nine floors and be able to carry 2,400 passengers. Other features will include Turkish baths, a swimming pool and gymnasium. As far as we know, Kate and Leo are not scheduled to be on it.

As an aside, it is important to note that as far as cruise liners go, this one is far from the largest, with gross tonnage these days clocking in at above 100,000. The largest such ship in the world, Allure of the Seas, has 2,700 staterooms, for example, and weighs in at an incredible 225,282 tonnes. For the truly curious out there who may wonder if this is a coal-powered ship, given that the original boiler uptakes will be recreated, in fact it is diesel-powered. Four diesel engines power three azimuth thrusters and two bow thrusters.

Instead of Southampton to New York, however, the ship’s maiden voyage will be between Jiangsu, China, where it’s being built, to Dubai. This story remains a work in progress as rumors continue to swirl around Palmer and the health of his businesses but we are tracking it closely. The key question remains, if the project is actually completed, would you book passage?

Last Titanic lunch menu

Titanic’s Last Lunch Menu Up for Auction

Last Titanic lunch menu

Three artifacts belonging to passengers who survived the 1912 sinking of the Titanic are to be sold online next month. The items are a letter written by a survivor, a menu and a ticket to the Turkish bath aboard the vessel.

The September 30 Internet sale is being held by Lion Heart Autographs, and the online auction house Invaluable.com, and coincides with the 30-year anniversary in September of the discovery of the RMS Titanic at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

Bidding will get underway at noon (1600 GMT) on September 30, with would-be buyers from around the world able to take part.

The menu shows the meal served at the last luncheon aboard the Titanic, and is expected to fetch as much as $70,000.

The letter was written by one Titanic survivor to another six months after the disaster, and makes mention of the ordeal.

Also on sale is one of only four known printed tickets from the Titanic’s weighing chair, a device used to record a person’s weight in the Titanic’s Turkish Baths’ cooling room.

Each of the items belonged to some of the very few passengers who succeeded in escaping from the disaster by boarding Life Number One, made infamous by several Titanic crew members who rowed away in it to flee, leaving more than 1,500 to perish in the icy water.

Titanic violin sold for world record $1.4 million

Titanic violin

The violin played by the bandmaster of the Titanic to calm passengers as it sank sold at auction for £900,000 ($1.45 million) on Saturday, a world record fee for memorabilia from the doomed liner.

The instrument belonging to Wallace Hartley was found strapped to his body after he drowned with his seven bandmates and some 1,500 others on board the supposedly unsinkable ship in 1912.

It was sold to a British collector after a feverish 10-minute battle between telephone bidders at Titanic specialist auctioneers Henry Aldridge and Son in Devizes, southwest England.

The instrument carries an inscription from the 33-year-old’s fiancee Maria Robinson to mark their engagement and was sold with its leather luggage case, initialled W.H.H, in which it was found.

For decades the violin was believed lost but it was found in the attic of a house in northwest England in 2006, prompting a debate about its authenticity, which experts only recently resolved.

Hartley’s band played the hymn “Nearer, My God, to Thee” to try to calm passengers while they climbed into lifeboats as the Titanic sank beneath the icy waves in the North Atlantic on April 15, 1912, after hitting an iceberg. Hartley and his seven fellow band members all died after choosing to play on.


RMS Titanic

Australian billionaire to build Titanic II

One of Australia’s richest men, Clive Palmer, on Monday unveiled plans to build a 21st century version of the doomed Titanic in China, with its first voyage from England to New York set for 2016.

Palmer, a self-made mining billionaire, said he had commissioned state-owned Chinese company CSC Jinling Shipyard to construct Titanic II with the same dimensions as its predecessor.

“It will be every bit as luxurious as the original Titanic but of course it will have state-of-the-art 21st century technology and the latest navigation and safety systems.”

titanic 2

“Titanic II will sail in the northern hemisphere and her maiden voyage from England to North America is scheduled for late 2016,” Palmer said in a statement.

He added that he had invited the Chinese navy to escort the Titanic II to New York.

The announcement comes just weeks after the 100th anniversary of the sinking of Titanic, which went down on April 15, 1912 after striking an iceberg on its first voyage, from Southampton to New York.

Palmer said the new ship would be a tribute to the spirit of the men and women who worked on the original, which sank with the loss of 1,514 passengers and crew.

“These people produced work that is still marvelled at more than 100 years later and we want that spirit to go on for another 100 years,” he said.

Titanic was commissioned by White Star Line and was the largest liner in the world at the time.

Palmer said he has established his own shipping company, Blue Star Line, with the new vessel having the same specifications as its predecessor — 270 metres long (885 feet), 53 metres high and weighing some 40,000 tonnes.

RMS Titanic

It will have 840 rooms and nine decks with design work in conjunction with an historical research team underway. No figure was given on how much it would cost.

The only changes to the original would be below the water line including welding and not riveting, a bulbous bow for greater fuel efficiency, diesel generation and enlarged rudder and bow thrusters for increased manoeuvrability.

“Titanic II will be the ultimate in comfort and luxury with on-board gymnasiums and swimming pools, libraries, high class restaurants and luxury cabins,” Palmer said.


Titanic’s last lunch menu sells for £76,000


A menu for the last luncheon served to first class passengers on the doomed Titanic sold for £76,000 ($122,000) at a British auction on Sunday.

The menu, which records the last lunch served to first-class passengers before the Titanic hit an ice floe and sank, is dated April 14, 1912.

It was on the table of Dr. Washington Dodge, a banker traveling first class from San Francisco, accompanied by his wife, Ruth, and son, Washington Jr.
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Titanic First Class Menu Recreated in Belfast

A special menu has been created in concert with the Made in Belfast Festival, an annual event that celebrates the making of the Titanic in Belfast 100 years ago.

Conor McClelland, chef and owner of the Rayanne House in Ireland, has decided to modernize the 13-course ‘last supper’ of April 14, 1912.

According to Slashfood, a food news blog, McClelland and his wife “spent months researching” the menu that originally “included items such as asparagus and watercress salad and spiced peaches with jelly and ice cream.”

Apparently their interest in the Titanic was piqued because the same man who painted their Rayanne House also painted the Titanic.
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Titanic life jacket sells for $70k

An unused life jacket from the doomed transatlantic cruise ship “Titanic,” which struck an iceberg in 1912 and sank, fetched 68,500 dollars at auction at Christie’s in New York late Wednesday.

The cork-filled life preserver – still largely intact, but stained and torn in parts – was thought to have been found by farmer John James Dunbar on the Halifax shoreline after the passenger ship sank off Newfoundland in April, 1912.

The liner sank during its maiden voyage from the British port of Southampton to New York when it hit an iceberg, causing some 1,500 people to die.

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Luxury watch : Romain Jerome Titanic DNA Limited Edition

If you really loved that Titanic movie then you’d probably also be interested in owning a piece of the infamous luxury liner.

Romain Jerome, a Swiss watchmaker has created a new timepiece called the Titanic DNA which uses parts of the actual ship in its construction.

The watchface has a black dial thanks to a lacquer paint made with coal recovered from the wreck and the housing will be composed of precious metals like platinum in addition to steel procured from what’s left of the ship.
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RMS Titanic Scale Model is framed for $2,500,000

RMS Titanic Scale Model is one of its kind as till date a authentic scale model of the Titanic had never been built.
However Fine Art Models, the world’s premier scale model makers managed to seek the permission to build a definitive 1:48 scale model of the Titanic as a limited edition (
$2,500,000). At 18 feet, she looks stunning sporting an all brass look.

Weighing 1,500 pounds, the hull is of fiberglass while the deck and its furniture is made from real wood. The telegraph in the Bridge is internally lit and the lighting is so complex that it required the installation of more than 8 miles of fiber optic cable.

Encased in a wooden case with glass on both sides for a crystal clear view, this Titanic model won’t fail to evoke all the memories of this unsinkable luxurious liner.

With Harland & Wolff support, in seven years time, this1:48 scale builder’s model was finally completed in 2002. Since then this miniature yet genuinely replica version of Titanic has toured the United States and abroad via museums and private events.

Titanic connection: Waltham American Pocket watch Up for Auction

Carl Asplund’s watch has reached the Henry Aldridge and Son auctioneers in Devizes, Wiltshire, England and is anticipated to fetch £15,000-£20,000 ($30,000-$39,000).

The watch was recovered from the body of Carl Asplund who sinked on the Titanic and is part of the Lillian Asplund compilation of Titanic associated objects that will be auctioned on 19 April.

Asplund was just 5 in April 1912, when the Titanic hit an iceberg and submerged on its maiden cruise from England to New York. Amongst the 1500 others who died included her father and three siblings.