Chris Jenkins News editor

Chris works from BRW's Sydney newsroom. He has previously written and edited in print and online for titles including The Australian Financial Review and The Australian.

View more articles from Chris Jenkins

‘Global warming means fewer icebergs’: Clive Palmer unveils his plans for Titanic II

Published 27 February 2013 07:24, Updated 08 May 2013 09:19

+font -font print
‘Global warming means fewer icebergs’: Clive Palmer unveils his plans for Titanic II

His heart will go on ... a digital impression of the forthcoming Titanic II to be built for Clive Palmer’s Blue Star line. Passengers will be offered a time-travel experience with Edwardian clothing and no internet access. But the new ship will have air conditioning, enough lifeboats for every passenger, and, Palmer insists, a better chance of making it to New York. Photo: Blue Star line

Clive Palmer has pulled the cover off plans for a replica of the ill-starred ship RMS Titantic, which sank in the North Atlantic more than 100 years ago.

I’ve got enough money for it, I think that’s all that matters.

Palmer told a new York press conference that the new Titanic II ship would be built for his Blue Star Line in China and would make its maiden voyage in 2016.

That voyage will follow the same route as the original ship from Southampton in England to New York.

Palmer ranked eighth on the 2012 BRW Rich 200 list, with a fortune of $3.85 billion, down from $5.05 billion in 2011.

He declined to put a price tag on the new ship. “It’s not about the money,” Palmer said. “I’ve got enough money for it, I think that’s all that matters.”

The ship will be built by China’s state-owned CSC Jinling shipyards.

Palmer said 40,000 people had already registered to buy tickets for the trip, with some expressing interest in paying up to $1 million to sail aboard the replica.

Passengers would be given Edwardian clothes to wear if they wished to help recreate the atmosphere of the original.

Clive Palmer talks in New York about his plan for building a perfect replica of the Titanic in New York.Photo: AFP

The ship will carry three classes of passengers and the classes would be kept separate, Palmer said.

The replica ship has a better chance of making landfall in New York than the original. “One of the benefits of global warming is there’s not as many icebergs in the North Atlantic,” The Age reported Palmer as saying at the announcement.

However the mining magnate stopped short of calling the ship “unsinkable”, a label famously carried by the doomed original, which sank in two hours in April 1912 with the loss of 1500 lives.

A digital rendering of the planned third class dining room aboard the Titanic II.Photo: Blue Star Line

“Anything will sink if you put a hole in it,” Palmer said. “I think it would be very cavalier to say it.”

The Titanic II will have more than enough lifeboat spaces for every passengers and extra staircases, Reuters reported. It will also include some modern comforts, such as air conditioning, but offer no internet or television services.

“If you go for six days and want to go back to 1912, you shouldn’t have internet,” Palmer said.

The main staircase planned for the Titanic II will replicate the grandeur of the original.Photo: Blue Star Line

Undoubtedly one of the BRW Rich-list’s more eccentric members, Palmer has previously announced plans for a rebel football federation to run soccer in Australia, as well as a plan to run against and defeat federal treasurer Wayne Swan in the Queensland seat of Lilley.

- with Reuters, AP