Iconic Hong Kong floating restaurant capsizes at sea

Source: news.sky.com : 2022-06-21 00:04:00 :

Hong Kong’s iconic Jumbo Floating Restaurant has capsized in the South China Sea less than a week after it was towed away from the city.

According to the restaurant’s owner, it encountered “adverse conditions” as it was passing the Xisha Islands, also known as the Paracel Islands.

Water got inside and it began to tip.

No one was injured but efforts to save the vessel failed and it capsized.

Aberdeen Restaurant Enterprises said it was “very saddened” by what had happened.

Closed iconic Jumbo Floating Restaurant sails away after the operator announced it would leave Hong Kong because of a lack of funds for maintenance, in Hong Kong, China, June 14, 2022. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu
The journey had started calmly

It added that since the water was more than 1,000 metres deep, it was “extremely difficult to carry out salvage works”.

At almost 80 metres (260ft) in length, Jumbo had been a landmark in Hong Kong for more than four decades, serving Cantonese cuisine to more than a million guests including the Queen and Tom Cruise.

It closed in 2020 due to the pandemic and laid off all its staff.

Staff members worship god on board of the Hong Kong's iconic Jumbo Floating Restaurant in Hong Kong, Tuesday, June 14, 2022. Hong Kong's iconic restaurant on Tuesday departed the city, after its parent company failed to find a new owner and lacked funds to maintain the establishment amid months of COVID-19 restrictions. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Aberdeen Restaurant Enterprises said the restaurant became a financial burden to its shareholders, with millions of Hong Kong dollars spent on its inspection and maintenance even though it was not in operation.

It was towed away last Tuesday.

An aerial view of Jumbo floating restaurants in Hong Kong, Tuesday, March 3, 2020. Hong Kong's Jumbo floating restaurants is closed "until further notice" as the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak continues to slam the city's food and beverage industry. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
The restaurant, which lit up every night, was a much-photographed part of Hong Kong’s skyline

The company had planned to move it to a lower-cost site where maintenance could be carried out.

Before departure, the vessel had been thoroughly inspected by marine engineers and all relevant approvals were obtained, it said.

An investigation into what happened is under way.

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