Iberocruceros was the new name for the former cruise division of Iberojet, that was before a part of the Orizonia Corporation, once the largest travel organization in Spain. In 2007, to devellop the Spanish market in cruising, Carnival Corporation and Orizonia, a company founded in 2006, formed a new company out of Iberojet, in which Carnival owned 75% and Orizonia the remaining 25%. From the Iberojet fleet, the Grand Mistral and Grand Voyager entered the fleet of Iberocruceros and Carnival provided the Grand Celebration, one of the oldest ships within the fleet of Carnival Cruises. One of the main reasons that the big companies like Carnival and Royal Caribbean are entering those specific markets, is to have a way of replacing older tonnage from the leading fleets into new ventures. This way, their ships will not become parts of other companies, but remain under the same control. On the other hand, several markets are or were really growing and those are in need of large ships, like the Spanish, Australian, Asian and German markets.
Below, a part of the distinctive hull-art on the Iberocruceros ships is shown, this one from the Grand Mistral. On the ships, several happy and colourfull persons act in a holiday-ish matter.
In 2010, Carnival brought in another older member of its fleet, when the Holiday was renamed Grand Holiday and started sailings for Iberocruceros. From 2012 onwards, the Grand Voyager was placed in the fleet of Costa Cruises as Costa Voyager, replacing the smaller ships within the fleet of Costa, Costa Marina that was sold to a new Maleysian company Harmony Cruises and Costa Allegra, that was sold to the scrappers at Aliaga, Turkey after an engineroom fire. Before the Carnival/ Orizonia combination, the company also sailed with the Grand Latino, now sailing for Fred. Olsen as Boudicca. From february 2014 onwards, also Grand Mistral ended her sailings with Iberocruceros, reducing the fleet even more. Also this ship was transferred to Costa Cruises as their Costa neoRiviera, opening up a new Costa Cruises concept named Costa neoCollection. In the same year, after a drydock period at Genoa, Italy, also Grand Celebration was to swap lines and become Costa Celebration for Costa Cruises, leaving Iberocruceros with only one ship, the Grand Holiday. Just before entering Costa service, she was suddenly reported to have been sold and her cruises cancelled. But one year later at the end of 2014, it was also announced that also Grand Holiday would be leaving the fleet and the Iberocruceros dockingspace at Barcelona would be used for the new Costa Diadema instead. What it of course meant was that the Iberocruceros name was discontinued. Grand Holiday was sold to the British based CMV Cruises as their new flagship Magellan from the 2015 season onwards, sailing for the British market. It seems that Royal Caribbean, through Pullmantur Cruises, has won the battle over Iberia.
Orizonia had a lot of other company brands, reaching as far as Brazil, Mexico and India. But on the 15th of february 2013, the company declared itself bankrupt to protect itself from creditors. This arrangement, called 'pre-concurso de acreedores' in Spanish, meant that 5000 people lost their jobs and more then 900 million euros were paid to its creditors. Of course, it also meant that Orizonia ended their operations. It is expected that Carnival, now the sole owner of the cruise-operations, will end the Iberocruceros brand in 2015, leaving the Spanish market to Costa and Royal Caribbean through Pullmantur.
Below, the funnel of Grand Mistral shows the logo of Iberocruceros. This logo was also used within other parts of the Orizonia Corporation.
Ships that have sailed for Iberocruceros but are placed elsewhere at the site are listed below.
Grand Latino (2004-2005) is placed under Fred. Olsen Lines as Boudicca
Grand Holiday (2010-2014) is placed under CMV Cruises as Magellan