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Sunday, December 8, 1991 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Don't Count On Seeing The Marguerite Sailing Again

While the ferry service between Seattle and Victoria is coming back to life, it doesn't mean the historic steamship Princess Marguerite will once again sail between the cities.

The Princess Marguerite, a familiar sight on Pacific Northwest waters since 1949, has been languishing unused in Victoria in recent years.

Sea Containers of London, which plans to start up Seattle-Victoria ferry service next May, has also purchased the Marguerite - and is expected to refurbish the former Canadian Pacific Railway liner for use as a "luxury hotel."

The good news is that the ship is apparently safe from the scrap yard; the bad news, for nostalgic Northwesterners, is that the Marguerite likely will be shifted away from the Pacific Northwest.

Sea Containers spokeswoman Lynn Harvey said the firm is considering a number of options worldwide for the ship.

Harvey declined to disclose the purchase price. A value of about $750,000 "scrap value" was placed on the Marguerite when it was put up for sale two years ago. It had been feared that the stately old ship would be scrapped.

The Marguerite's restoration is in keeping with the concept of its new owner "to restore and maintain quality, classic old trains and hotels," said Harvey.

The firm operates the Orient Express, the classic luxury train from London and Vienna, and owns or manages about 15 stately hotels in Europe.

Copyright (c) 1991 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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