Queen Beatriz (the ship...) burns in dry dock

I just learned from the Queen Beatriz's main sales representative that a fire took hold on board while this 16 passenger first class ship was undergoing biennial maintenance procedures in Ecuador's main port city of Guayaquil.  This happened on October 13th - but because the ship was not in service - it took a while for the news to reach me.  The fire started with an explosion in the engine room, where apparently cleaning was taking place using gasoline.  One man was taken to hospital with serious burn wounds.  

Though I have no firm news yet, it does appear that the ship will be out of service for quite a while, if not completely withdrawn from Galapagos and replaced with another.   The ship is owned by Angel Vilema, whose family owns the Lobo de Mar hotel in Puerto Ayora.  CNH Tours ran its first charters with the Lobo de Mar ship, and got to know the Vilema's quite well in those days.  Angel is an elected member of the national assembly.  

If anyone out there is booked on the Queen Beatriz, I would recommend you get in touch with your agent as soon as possible to ensure alternative plans are made to your satisfaction. 

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