Now after a maritime career spanning 40 years and circling the world as a cruise ship master more times than he cares to remember, Captain Antonellos is an extremely happy man.
It’s not only that he has fulfilled all his early ambitions many times over but that he now has command of the classic M/V Marco Polo, a ship which he says is high on the list of those he has loved the most.
“She is deep drafted, has fine lines, is beautifully proportioned, small and intimate, so much so that it is possible to meet most if not all of our passengers during the course of a voyage,” said Capt Antonellos who first went to see after studying at the university in Athens.
He gained his Master’s Ticket, aged only 28, but became a staff captain on cruise liners sailing mainly out of Miami for more than 20 years and took full command of his first ship when he was in his mid 30s.
Now he sails for cruise ship management company Global Cruise Line Ltd and has been master of Cruise and Maritime Voyages M/V Marco Polo for the past three years.
“Marco Polo was built in the former East Germany in the 1960s, underwent an extensive rebuild and refit in Greece in the 1990s and is now enjoying a completely new lease of life giving thousands of UK cruise lovers a classic cruising experience,” he said.
“She is an ice class registered vessel and twin screwed with stabilizers and is capable of operating in all parts of the world and in all winds and weathers and I am extremely proud to be her master,” said Captain Antonellos.
Cruise and Maritime Voyages operate the Marco Polo and her consort Ocean Countess , formerly a Cunarder, and specialise in providing cruising holidays direct from the UK .
Marco Polo sails mainly out of Tilbury but also from Newcastle and Leith while Ocean Countess operates from Hull, Liverpool and Greenock. Their wide range of UK originated destinations include the Baltic capitals and St Petersburg, Spain, Portugal, Morocco and the Canary Islands.
Published March 2012