In the long list of crazy things billionaire Clive Palmer has done in his life, his plan to build a replica of the Titanic has to be up there.
Palmer first announced his ambition to recreate the ill-fated ship last year, but yesterday in New York he unveiled his plans for the Titanic II.
Here are some Palmer gems from the press conference:
- On how much the ship will cost: “It’s not about the money … I’ve got enough money for it, I think that’s all that matters.”
- On the dress code: Passengers will be given Edwardian clothes to wear if they wished to help recreate the atmosphere of the original. First-class passengers will not be able to mingle with those in second and third-class and vice-versa. “It will really help you pretend you are in the movie,” Palmer said.
- On the ship’s chances of surviving the voyage: “One of the benefits of global warming is there’s not as many icebergs in the North Atlantic.”
- On the ship not having internet facilities: “If you go for six days and want to go back to 1912, you shouldn’t have internet.”
- On whether the Titanic II will be “unsinkable”: “Anything will sink if you put a hole in it … I think it would be very cavalier to say it.”
Palmer, who has a fortune of $3.85 billion, told the press conference the Titanic II ship would be built for his Blue Star Line in China and would make its maiden voyage in 2016.
But what’s the chance of Palmer actually following through with his latest hare-brained scheme?
So far his far-fetched plans which have not got off the ground include floating his company Resourcehouse, establishing Football Australia, running against Treasurer Wayne Swan, investing in air ship technology – Zeppelins – and in the media.
Clive Palmer certainly is putting “eccentric” back into billionaire but it’s probably best to hold off on booking your ticket for now.