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Saga sells Sapphire cruise ship to Anex Tour

Saga sells Sapphire cruise ship to Anex Tour

Saga has finalised a deal to sell the Sapphire cruise ship to Anex Tour of Turkey.

With a farewell season already on sale, the ship will be delivered to Anex in mid-2020 and will home port in Antalya.

Neset Kockar, chairman of Anex Tour, said: “With changing habits of travellers, we must adopt our product offering accordingly.

“By acquiring Saga Sapphire, we will be able to create a unique eastern Mediterranean cruise experience for our valued guests.”

Kockar recently made headlines when he took an eight per cent stake in struggling tour operator Thomas Cook.


Saga Sapphire serves approximately 800 passengers with 382 cabins, 12 decks, restaurants, pools, spa centre, shopping arcade and many other recreational activities.

The cruise ship is 200 meters in length.

Nigel Blanks, chief operating officer, Saga Cruises, said: “With her spacious cabins and comfortable public areas, Saga Sapphire has become hugely popular with our guests over the last seven years.

“As the time approaches for her to leave the Saga fleet, we are delighted that she will now have a new career launching Anex Tour’s exciting new cruise product.”

Sapphire was built in 1981 and entered service in early 1982, sailing under the name Europa for Haps-Lloyd.

It traded hands several times between 1999 and 2011 when it was acquired by Saga.