French publication ‘Le Marin’ is reporting that Corsican operator Corsica Linea has agreed a charter for STENA SUPERFAST X. Although no length is specified for the charter, it is understood to be a long-term arrangement. The ship is to go for refit during March and April, during which she will be fitted with over 100 additional cabins to make her more suitable for her new role. She will serve Corsica Linea’s routes linking Corsica (and Marseille) to North Africa and will be renamed A NEPITA. The refitting of additional cabin accommodation means she will revert to being a ‘night’ ferry, with a configuration more similar to that with which she was built. It is also understood that she will be fitted with scrubbers and fly the French flag. According to local sources, this work will be undertaken in Greece.
At present STENA SUPERFAST X is acting as relief ship on her former Holyhead – Dublin route during the absence of STENA ADVENTURER for refit. With ‘Adventurer’ expected to be away for around three weeks, the current spell at Holyhead is likely to be the final assignment in Stena colours for STENA SUPERFAST X. ‘Adventurer’ is currently expected to return to service during the final week of February.
Return to the Med
This latest charter means the ship will finally see service from Corsica. SNCM had purchased her from Superfast Ferries during 2007 to operate a service as JEAN NICOLI. However, they failed to win the contract for the service and so the ship was chartered out to CoTuNav and Anek Lines instead before her sale to SeaFrance at the end of the same year.
Once delivered to SeaFrance in March 2008, the French company had her rebuilt as a day ferry for service on the Calais – Dover route as SEAFRANCE MOLIERE. Following that company’s demise and after a period laid up at Tilbury, DFDS chartered her towards the end of 2012. Again, this was for the Dover to Calais route but under the name DIEPPE SEAWAYS. She replaced DEAL SEAWAYS (BARFLEUR) which was returned to Brittany Ferries.
Although not widely reported until May of the same year, Stena RoRo purchased DIEPPE SEAWAYS during January 2014. The charter to DFDS would continue until December, however. After another rebuild at Nauta in Gdynia, the now renamed STENA SUPERFAST X entered service on Stena Line’s Holyhead – Dublin route on March 9, 2015 in place of STENA NORDICA. STENA SUPERAST X was herself replaced on the route by the first of five Stena Line ‘E-Flexer’ ferries, STENA ESTRID, last month. More information about STENA SUPERFAST X can be found on her dedicated profile page here.