Randy and Leah Ann Ingram, who took over the charter agreement for the National Historic Landmark Delta Queen steamboat in 2010, said the vessel "has not been sold and will remain in Chattanooga."
A publicist for the couple said, "While the Ingrams and the boat’s owner, Xanterra Park’s and Resorts, acknowledged that over the years there has been some interest from other companies in possibly purchasing the Delta Queen, currently there is no deal on the table or in play."
"There was a story that came out of New Smyrna Beach, Fla.
, that indicated a letter of interest had been submitted to the city to try and make the necessary arrangements to accommodate the boat down there,” said Albert Waterhouse, spokesperson for the Delta Queen. “This was a simple first step formality that any potential owner might take and a long way from the purchase of the Delta Queen or any boat offering these same amenities.
"It’s business as usual as Easter Brunch and Mother’s Day reservations are filling up and the hotel continues to enjoy solid bookings.”
Judy and Wayne Heller of New Smyrna Beach say they have signed a letter of intent with a 30- to 45-day window to buy the Delta Queen and anchor it by a hotel they own on the waterfront.
They say they want to move it by June.
The Hellers are seeking to acquire five acres from the city at the waterfront as a spot for mooring the Delta Queen.
The New Smyrna Beach City Commission will discuss the possible sale to the Hellers on Tuesday.