EUROPEAN EXPRESS (ΓΙΟΥΡΟΠΙΑΝ ΕΞΠΡΕΣ)
-NEL Lines (2009-2019)
Built in 1974, scrapped in 2019 (age 45). Was registered in Limassol.
The ferry EUROPEAN EXPRESS was built in 1974 in Japan. She began her career there, as the TAKACHIHO MARU, being deployed for Nippon Car Ferry on the Kawasaki-Hyūga line. She was transferred to Seacom Ferry in 1990. The latter company was renamed Marine Express in 1992, and, the following year the TAKACHIHO MARU was deployed on the Osaka-Miyazaki line. She remained there until 1996, when she was transferred to the Kobe-Hyūga line. She was sold in 1999 to the Greek-Cypriot company Access Ferries. She was temporarily renamed HO MARU and arrived in Perama for conversion. She was subsequently renamed MILLENNIUM EXPRESS, and was deployed in 2000 on the Piraeus-Limassol-Haifa line, with mixed results. As a result she was chartered the following year to Ferries del Caribe, where she operated on the Santo Domingo-Mayagüez line on the Caribbean Sea. In 2003 she returned to Access Ferries and was deployed on the Brindisi-Çeşme line. She stayed there just one year, as she was then chartered, from 2004 to 2006, to the Algerian company CNAN, being deployed on the Barcelona-Oran-Marseille line. She was then chartered in 2007 to Algérie Ferries, being deployed on the Marseille-Oran line, after having been renamed EUROPEAN EXPRESS. In 2008 she was chartered to the Moroccan company COMANAV for service on the Melilla-Sète-Nador line. When her charter ended in 2008, she was laid-up in Elefsina. She stayed there until 2009, when she headed to Perama, having been transferred to the Greek company NEL Lines. She was converted and was deployed in 2010 on the Piraeus-Chios-Mytilene line on the Northeast Aegean Sea. She collided with the VITSENTZOS KORNAROS of LANE Sea Lines in Piraeus in 2011, but both ships were quickly repaired and returned to their respective services. In 2012 she operated on the Piraeus-Chios-Mytilene-Limnos-Kavala line. In 2013 she was chartered to Ventouris Ferries, and was deployed on the Zakynthos-Kefalonia-Igoumenitsa-Corfu-Bari line on the Adriatic Sea, where she operated successfully. She returned to NEL Lines in 2014, being initially deployed on the Kavala-Limnos-Mytilene-Chios-Samos-Ikaria line, and then deployed on the Piraeus-Syros-Ikaria-Fournoi-Samos line. She suffered a major engine failure at the end of that year's summer and was subsequently laid-up in Drapetsona. As NEL Lines eventually ceased operations due to very serious financial difficulties, she remained in Drapetsona, where she had numerous minor collisions with other ships docked in the port. After producing too many incidents with nearby ships, she was towed to Perama in 2016. After spending three years there, and having been laid-up for a total of five years, she was sold for scrap to Turkey in 2019, arriving there under the name EXPRESS.
The rusting EUROPEAN EXPRESS laid-up in Perama (7/2018).
The EUROPEAN EXPRESS laid-up in Perama (7/2018).
The EUROPEAN EXPRESS abandoned in Perama, awaiting her fate. It was ultimately my last-ever picture of the ship, as she headed for scrap in early 2019 (7/2018).