Brisbane, Australia CNN  — 

For more than a decade, Australian billionaire Clive Palmer has been the driving force behind plans to build Titanic II – a replica of the ill-fated ship that sank in 1912 with more than 2,200 people on board.

Only about 700 survived, creating history as the world’s most disastrous voyage – and the light bulb of an idea for a billionaire with an interest in cruising and cash to burn.

Palmer first launched plans for Titanic II in 2012, and again in 2018.

Six years later, he’s done it again, relaunching the project on Wednesday during a press briefing at Sydney Opera House against the backdrop of the city’s famed harbor.

Once again, the question is why?

“It’s a lot more fun to do the Titanic than it is to sit at home and count my money,” Palmer reportedly told local media with the blunt honesty of man who earns almost half a billion dollars in mining royalties every year.

For Palmer the question is not how to earn money, but where to spend it.

The replica of the doomed cruise liner will feature a grand staircase.

When he first floated his dream of building a more buoyant version of the Titanic more than a decade ago, the popular view was that he was rich and eccentric enough to do it.

But headwinds of the pandemic hit, and the multimillion-dollar project was put on hold as ports closed and passengers reassessed their risk appetite for being quarantined at sea.

Palmer, chairman of the Blue Star Line company behind the Titanic project, also had other issues on his agenda.

In recent years he’s launched multiple court cases against state and federal governments.

He took on the Western Australian state government over its decision to shut its borders during in the pandemic. Another High Court loss came when he sought billions of dollars in damages from the same state government over its decision to block his access to compensation over an iron ore project.

He’s now taking that to an international tribunal, seeking almost $200 billion in damages from the federal government.

Then there’s his bids for political office, as the founder of the United Australia Party, registered in 2018, whose policies included an Australian Bill of Rights and bans on Covid lockdowns and vaccine mandates.

He famously spent millions of dollars on advertising for very little electoral return, and the party was deregistered in 2022.

Now the pandemic has passed, and cruise ships are once again at sea, Palmer said the time is right to revive his Titanic dream.

“We are very pleased to announce that after unforeseen global delays, we have reengaged with partners to bring the dream of Titanic ll to life. Let the journey begin,’’ Palmer said in a press release.

The Titanic II will include third-class dining.

The plans are very similar to previous iterations, checked to ensure they comply with current regulations.

Tenders are being sought, with plans to confirm a ship builder by the end of the year, to begin work in the first quarter of 2025.

Right now, Palmer expects the winning bidders to be based in Europe. He doesn’t believe Chinese standards are up to the task, he told reporters.

At the relaunch, his team distributed an eight-minute video that’s been around for several years, showing the layout of the ship and how each room will look, complete with actors dressed in period costume.

Passengers will be encouraged to dress for the 1900s, but it’s not mandatory, a spokesperson said.

The ship itself will be 269 meters (833 feet) long and 32.2 meters (105 feet) wide  – slightly wider than the original. Capacity will be 2,345 passengers spread across nine decks with 835 cabins. Almost half of those will be reserved for first class passengers.

Third class passengers will be treated to stew and mash at long tables in a communal dining room – as they were on the original boat – though a spokesperson said other meals will also be available for those who want a less authentic experience.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in 'Titanic.'

More than a century after the Titanic went down, researchers and historians remain captivated by its story.

The tragedy inspired James Cameron’s Oscar-winning 1997 blockbuster “Titanic,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, and has fascinated amateur explorers drawn to the wreck.

One such mission ended in tragedy in June last year when all five passengers aboard the Titan submersible were killed when the vessel suffered a catastrophic implosion en route to the wreckage.

Palmer wants to replicate the Titanic – without the tragic ending – and he also wants world peace.

“We all know how to make war. We get armies and we fund wars. People know about that. But it is a lot harder to make peace. To make peace you have got to stick with it every day. You progress inch by inch,” he said in the press release.

“Titanic ll is something that can provide peace. It can be a ship of peace between all countries of the world.

“Millions have dreamt of sailing on her, seeing her in port and experiencing her unique majesty. Titanic ll will be the ship where those dreams come true,’’ Palmer said.