Miami-based SunStone Ships is associated with CMI Ship Management and CMI Leisure who provide crew and technical management for Sunstone’s fleet of cruise and expedition vessels.
Sunstone manages a commercially manages a fleet of cruise and expedition ships available for charters to tour operators and travel companies worldwide. They have plans to build an additional five expedition Polar-class ships between 2021 and 2022.
History of SunStone Ships
SunStone Ships was formed in 2012 for the purpose of taking over the commercial management of passenger ship activities previously handled by International Shipping Partners (ISP). By the end of 2013, International Shipping Partners had joined the FleetPro Group, and SunStone assumed the role of vessel owners’ representative of ISP-managed vessels in connection with chartering.
FleetPro Ocean provided technical management of deck and engine officers on small ocean-going vessels and FleetPro Leisure managed the hotel and catering activities for the vessels. Unfortunately, the partnership with FleetPro would sour in 2015.
In the summer of 2015, the 210-passenger ship, Saint Laurent struck a lock while navigating the St. Lawrence Seaway, resulting in cancelled cruises. The St. Laurent was chartered by Haimark Line and owned by Bahamas-based Clipper Group. Although SunStone represented the owners of the vessel, it was being managed by FleetPro at the time of the collision. In November 2015, Haimark Line filed for bankruptcy, prompted by an unresolved claim with Clipper Cruises Group that arose after the collision.
Another FleetPro-managed vessel that ran into financial difficulties was the Nova Star. In the summers of 2014 and 2015, Fleet Pro provided the technical and hotel operational management of the cruise-ferry service, Nova Star, between Portland, Maine and Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, in October 2015, the Nova Star was “arrested” in Portland due to complaints filed by creditors. Although Nova Star’s owner, Singapore-based ST Marine, paid some of the claims in November 2015, in order to get the ship released, in April 2016, Nova Star Cruises also filed for bankruptcy.
Crew Management of Chartered Ships
According to Sunstone’s fall 2015 newsletter, Sunstone’s President, Niels-Erik Lund, stated that “the problems with our technical manager, Fleet Pro Ocean and the hotel manager, Fleet Pro Leisure continued.” After a decision was made to cancel their management contracts with Fleet Pro, four of the vessel owners represented by SunStone Ships (including owner, Mr. Lund) bought out Fleet Pro Leisure and Fleet Pro Ocean.
Effective October 2015, Fleet Pro Leisure was acquired and renamed CMI Leisure. As a result, CMI Leisure took over all the hotel and catering management of the chartered vessels. The same owners also formed a new technical management company, CMI Ship Management. These management contracts encompass technical and marine operations, crewing, and purchasing.
For information about deck and technical cruise jobs, visit CMI Ship Management.
For information about hotel, restaurant, entertainment, spa, and gift shop jobs, visit CMI Leisure.
Updated: August 14, 2020