If there's one thing you can say for it, Titanic II does not lack audacity.
The brainchild of eccentric Australian billionaire Clive Palmer, Titanic II aims to precisely replicate the experience of the doomed liner for a 21st century clientele — minus the iceberg.
It will have the same ornate staircase, the same Turkish baths, the same smoking rooms, and even the same "Marconi room," where the Titanic sent out its final SOS. Passengers will even be provided with early-20th-century-style clothes and undergarments in their cabins. The safety equipment will be up-to-date, however, and will include more than enough lifeboats and inflatable rafts for the 2,400 passengers and 900 crew.
It's as if a dirigible company sold tickets for a new and improved Hindenburg. At a lavish gala and press conference in the Chinese gambling mecca of Macau, Palmer rolled out his vision for Titanic II in a pre-recorded speech filled with non sequiturs and allusions to the movie Titanic.
(Read More: How Much Was Titanic Victim John Astor Worth?)
"Why build the Titanic? Why go to the moon? … Why did Hong Kong and Macau stand up and become part of China? Because they could. And they can. And we can build the Titanic," he explained.
"As James Cameron reminds us, my heart will go on. All of us have gone on in love. In the love we have for each other, and the love that goes into our children. Our love goes out to the families of the Titanic."
Apart from safety features and the number of lifeboats, Titanic II will differ from its predecessor in another crucial way: It will be made in China. Palmer has hired CSC Jinling, a state-owned shipyard with no experience building luxury passenger ships, to construct the Titanic II. When completed in 2016, the vessel is expected to launch from Shanghai, and proceed eventually to Southampton, UK to "complete" the Titanic's voyage to New York City.
(Watch More: James Cameron, Titanic Accomplishments)
Asked if this was an attempt to rewrite history, Blue Star representative Andrew Crook said, "I just think it's a tribute to the people of 100 years ago."
CSC Jinling's involvement is intended to mark China's entry into the luxury passenger liner market. "Titanic II will be the start of a massive Chinese challenge to the European luxury shipbuilders," said Raymond Tam, operations director of Blue Star Line.
Biao Ge, director of CSC Jinling, admitted it would not be easy. "For a Chinese shipyard, it is difficult to build Titanic II, but we have confidence to build it," he said in translated remarks.