Here is a retirement idea—your own condominium on board a luxurious ship owned by its residents. It is The World, a 43,500-ton, $330 million, purpose-built vessel put into service in 2002. The house-at-sea concept is successful with 95% of the available 165 residences sold as of November 2005. While full capacity is more than 350 owners and guests, average occupancy is between 150 and 200, all supported by a crew of 250. Management of The World is by Miami-based ResidenSea Ltd. who represents the owners.
Today's cruise ship industry offers a broad spectrum of diversified products. This diversity is seen in the sizes and shapes of the ships and the programs they offer. At 150,000 tons and 2,600 passengers, the Queen Mary 2 is the world's largest passenger ship. At the other end of the scale are small boutique ships carrying 150 or fewer passengers. The small size of these ships enables them to visit smaller, less crowded ports.