Victory Casino Cruise plans to be back in business with its Friday night gambling cruise. The ship, which operates out of Mayport, was shut down by the Coast Guard last week after it inspected the ship following an anonymous tip.
Tim Levensaler, the ship’s senior captain and marine superintendent, would not say exactly what the problem was but did say the Coast Guard’s actions were legitimate. He said the repair itself would not take that long. But since the ship’s annual inspection was scheduled next month, he moved that up to get it all done at the same time.
The ship, which features gambling, entertainment, food and drink, sails twice a day, seven days a week. Levensaler said it averages about 100 people a cruise early in the week, rising to 300 per cruise on weekends.
Levensaler did say that if his crew had been told of the problem, it would have been fixed immediately.
“We have a crew of at least three on the ship every night for maintenance,” he said. “And we have a warehouse of parts.”
Ray Silva, operations manager, said all pre-paid reservations for the time the boat didn’t operate have been refunded. Those passengers will receive free boarding, $10 gaming and $15 food vouchers on their next cruise, he said.
Victory, which also operates a casino cruise out of Port Canaveral, began its Mayport operation last year. The previous gambling ship there left in 2012.
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By Roger Bull