2013 © Copyright Debbie King. All rights reserved.
M/S Balmoral vital statistics
Company: Fred.Olsen Cruise Lines
Home Port: Nassau, Bahamas
Gross Tonnage: 43,537 tons
Cruising Speed: 20 knots
Passenger Capacity: 1350
Passenger Decks: 11
Built: 1988 (refitted 2008)
Voyages sailed on this ship: Transatlantic
(2012), North Sea (2016, 2017 and 2019)
The Balmoral is the flagship of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines.
She was built in 1988 as the Crown Odyssey operated by
Orient Lines, then sold to NCL and renamed Norwegian Crown.
In fact we sailed on her in 2003 when she was the Norwegian
Crown, but there was little we recognised from those days
after the Balmoral’s refit in 2008.
In April 2012 we sailed from Southampton to New York in the
wake of the Titanic on the amazing and unique Titanic
Read my 2012 review of the Balmoral on cruisecritic.co.uk.
In June 2016 we spent a terrific week cruising the very
picturesque Norwegian fjords. Read the review here.
Lifeboat muster station 9 on the boat deck of the
Balmoral. It was invigorating (and bracing, in the
transatlantic April air) to walk around the deck on sea
days, and feel the wind in your hair and the taste of
salt on your lips.
The aft pool and jacuzzi deck on the Balmoral,
showing the elegant cascading decks on which it was
very pleasant to sit in finer weather.
The wake of the Balmoral as she steams across the
Atlantic ocean, en route to the Titanic wreck site
during the Titanic Memorial Cruise.
It was from this deck (Deck 7, aft) that the Memorial
Service was held, with the White Star Line pennant
hoisted aloft from the stern mast.
Cabin 4170 which was our home for two weeks in
April 2012. As you can see it isn’t posh, but it was
clean and comfortable and contained everything we
needed to enjoy our voyage.
The Morning Light pub, which also doubled as an
alternative entertainment venue as well as being a
pleasant place to relax with new friends over a drink.
The Balmoral docked in Cobh, Ireland in April 2012.
The Balmoral leaving Southampton in May 2015.
These photos were taken from our vantage point
on board the Queen Victoria.
The Balmoral in her new livery of grey hull with red
stripe. Photo taken June 2016 in Geirangerfjord,
The Balmoral docked in the Port of Tyne, Newcastle,
in July 2016. This picture was taken from our
vantage point on board the DFDS ferry M/S King
Video slideshow of some scenes from Balmoral on our August
2017 cruise of the German Waterways. Best viewed in full
Balmoral in Bremen, Germany in August 2017.
Cabin 4137 was spacious and comfortable.
Upper pool / sun deck. Unlike the mammoth cruise
ships, no-one feels crowded and there is plenty of open
space per person.
Another view of Balmoral’s upper pool deck.
Atrium and shopping area, with interesting brass
Aft pool deck with hot tubs. Photo taken while docked
in Wismar, Germany, in August 2017.
Cabin 6009 on the Balmoral, which was our home for nine days in August 2019 on
our cruise of the canals and rivers of Europe.
Trevor in the Ballindalloch Restaurant on the Balmoral on 9th August 2019, his
birthday, which was also a formal evening. All the waiters sang “Happy Birthday”
and presented him with a cake.
Our table, #78, in the Ballindalloch Restaurant. On the
left you have Trevor with Gill and Bev behind him. On
the right is me with Carl and Barry behind me.
Just a small sample of the amazing food sculptures
which featured at the Grand Gala Buffet lunch on the
last day of our August 2019 cruise.
Some of the talented and hard-working crew perform
a traditional Thai dance for us during the very popular
Crew Show on the Balmoral.