The twelve lives of the MV Astoria: World’s oldest cruise ship to make final sailing

The MV Astoria is the world’s oldest serving cruise ship.

In her 72 years since sailing out of the Swedish dockyards in Gothenburg, she has survived some remarkable things. Originally called the MS Stockholm, she has changed names no fewer than eleven times. The Astoria’s long service record might dispel the maritime myth that it is bad luck to rename a ship. Although, during her twelve lives, she has been less auspicious than those sailing on and around her.

In 1956 she ploughed into and sank the SS Andrea Doria. The impressive icebreaking prow of the ship sent the Italian luxury liner to the bottom of the north Atlantic, killing 51.

Four years later she was rebuilt and sold to the East German government to become a leisure ship for cruising communists.

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