Jurgen serenades Island Escape

//Jurgen serenades Island Escape

escape.jpgJurgen.jpgThe busiest man on board Splendour of the Seas during its dry dock is Jurgen Bailom (left); as Hotel Director in charge of Royal Caribbean’s $300 million fleet revitalisation programme he has to co-ordinate more than 1,000 workmen and 760 crew to ensure that everything is completed on time.
Making sure every square inch of 170 miles of new carpet has been laid; the cabins all have their new furniture and flat-screen TVs installed, and the kitchens for the five new restaurants are fitted and working involves constant chasing, intricate inspections and regular meetings.
The routine was broken a week ago when Jurgen saw a familiar shape across the other side of the dock in the Navantia yard in Cadiz, Spain.
Cruise ship Island Escape (above), which is taking a break for the winter, had arrived; Jurgen served on board the vessel during the ’90s when it was Royal Caribbean’s Viking Serenade. Working with him then was Marious Georgiadis – by coincidence now Hotel Director on Splendour.
“It brought back lots of memories when the ship arrived,” said Jurgen. “We had some wonderful times together on that ship.”
Unlike Splendour, Island Escape – which featured in the 2002 TV documentary series Cruise Ship – is not in Cadiz for a refit. A spokesperson for operators Thomson said :” The Island Escape is out of service for the winter, currently there are no major refurbishments planned. She will be back in service on March 27.”

By | 2017-06-15T15:59:58+00:00 21 November 2011|Cruise Ships|3 Comments

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.


  1. Anita pollitt 22 November 2011 at 1:13 pm - Reply

    We sailed on Island escape in September and the captain told us the ship was having a bit of a refurb so is it or not

  2. John Honeywell 23 November 2011 at 11:09 am - Reply

    The full statement I received from Thomson head office in the UK was: “The Island Escape is out of service for the winter, currently there are no major refurbishments planned. She will be back in service on 27 March.” You were told by the captain “a bit of a refurb.” So it looks like they may be doing some minor work only.

  3. Helen Mclaren 9 March 2012 at 12:19 pm - Reply

    I rang Thomson head office on Monday as I concerned about some reviews and pictures I have seen on the ship – Im going on it 8th may 2012 – The customer adviser person informed me the ship is currently in dry dock being refurbished and will return to ‘work’ again in April…..
    I am very concerned now and wondering if it is worth me upgrading or not..

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