Man Bought Entire Cruise Ship Online In 2008. 15 Years On, He Is Still Not Done With Renovations

Now, Mr Wilson is hoping to raise 2.5 million pounds to finally complete the ship.

A man in the United States bought a 293-foot cruise ship online in 2008 but 15 years down the line, he is still not done renovating the vessel. Christopher Wilson found the huge liner for sale on the internet over a decade ago and he has since poured his heart, soul and almost all of his money into the ship’s restoration. However, even after so many years, Mr Wilson, who lives onboard with his partner, spends most of his working days restoring the ship, which he named Aurora. 

According to CNN Travel, Mr Wilson stumbled across a 293-foot vessel listed on the Craiglist website back in 2008. The cruise ship, built in Germany, was moored in the California Delta at the time, and its then owner was keen to offload it. After seeing the listing numerous times, Mr Wilson decided to go and see the 2,496-tonne cruise ship. 

The vessel came with three decks, 85 cabins and en-suite bathrooms, a dining room and salon and a huge outdoor swimming pool. Mr Wilson then did a little more investigation into the ship and found that it was originally built in 1955 in Germany and named Wappen von Hamburg. He discovered that the vessel had been the first significant passenger liner built by Germany after World War II. The ship also enjoyed a brief career in Hollywood after being a filming location for the 1963 James Bond movie ‘From Russia With Love’

The more Mr Wilson learned about the ship, the more convinced he became to buy the giant vessel. “The next thing you know, I own a ship,” he told CNN Travel. Then, he started working on the historic ship. “I figured it was going to be a long project,” he said. “The scale of it was massive. It’s almost the same as redoing 15 houses all by yourself,” he added. 

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Mr Wilson revealed that he and his partner Kin Li moved into the rusting ship to help speed up the renovation project. However, now, even after almost 14 years, Mr Wilson still lives on board and spends his working days restoring Aurora. 

“As far as actually working on the ship goes, I’ve learned so much,” he said, as per The Sun. “There’s nothing I don’t know how to fix. But it all takes a bunch of money to get there,” he added.  

According to the outlet, as of last year, only 40% of the massive renovation project was completed and the couple had already spent around 900,000 pounds. Now, Mr Wilson is hoping to raise 2.5 million pounds to finally complete the ship. He is even utilising the power of social media by sharing all his progress on a new YouTube Channel, the Aurora Restoration Project. 

The cruise ship will never set sail, but Mr Willson hopes that one day the giant vessel can become a bed and breakfast and events centre.

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