Cruise Ship History: SS FLORIDA sails to Havana, Cuba in 1952 for $42.00 per person. Including all transportation, two nights aboard ship, a day in Havana and all meals.

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Florida’s Peninsular and Occidental Steamship Company was a pioneer in today’s billion-dollar Florida cruise business.  Until Castro’s regime closed Cuba to cruise ships in 1960, the SS FLORIDA was sailing three times a week from Miami.  The SS FLORIDA had first sailed from Key West to Cuba until the 1934 devastating hurricane destroyed the terminal and rail connections to Miami.  Built in New Port News, Virginia, in 1931, the SS FLORIDA accommodated 612 passengers in first class and 130 in second class.  After World War 2 the overnight ship was turned into a one class liner.

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Today, Americans can travel to China but not Cuba.  Seems one kind of Communist regime is okay for the current administration but not another.

Maybe that will change in November and Americans will be able to sail again to Havana!

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Painting of the SS FLORIDA.

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Postcard from the SS FLORIDA arriving in Maimi, Florida.

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SS FLORIDA and the SS IROQUOIS.

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