Spanish line Iberocruceros’s ship Grand Holiday is to join Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) to run ex-UK cruises from next spring.


The 1,250-passenger former Carnival Cruise Lines’ vessel, which originally entered service in 1985, will be re-named Magellan and become the flagship of the CMV ocean fleet alongside Marco Polo, Astor and Azores.


A new brochure detailing Magellan’s debut CMV summer 2015 and winter 2015-16 programme is to be released tomorrow (Tuesday).


Special introductory fares with discounts of up to 50% plus a 25% single supplement deal will be on offer to launch the programme.


The maiden voyage will be a 12-night cruise to Iceland and the Faroe Islands from London Tilbury on March 15. The ship will also be sailing from Newcastle.


Other programme changes include an Azores ex-Liverpool summer season, an 11-night autumn Mediterranean fly-cruise series plus a second 34-night autumn voyage to Canada by Maroc Polo.


Magellan will be cruising to the Amazon in winter 2016 while Marco Polo will embark on a new 54-night voyage to Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Tierra del Fuego.


CMV chief executive and chairman, Christian Verhounig, said: “The introduction of Magellan to our growing ocean fleet is another important milestone in the expansion and strategic development of the group’s presence in the UK and wider international markets which will increase overall capacity to 115,000 passengers.


“The CMV brand is now creating much wider recognition and we remain confident that our medium to longer term growth objectives will be achieved.”


Commercial director, Chris Coates, added “We are delighted to have secured this excellent addition to our fleet which we believe will be very well suited to our core British market.


“The introduction of Magellan will increase UK capacity by 40% increasing carryings up to 74,000 passengers. Having already sold 65% of capacity for next year we remain confident that Magellan will help satisfy the growing demand for our product”.