Oceanwide Expeditions orders new polar cruise ship
Polar cruise company Oceanwide Expeditions has ordered a new 180-pasenger vessel from Croatia-based yard Brodosplit. To be named Hondius when she launches in 2019, the Polar Class 6 ice-strengthened newbuild has been designed to serve Oceanwide’s exploratory programmes and activity-based shore excursions in the Arctic and Antarctica.
“We currently sail with our ice-strengthened 116-passenger vessels Plancius and Ortelius, and the Hondius will give us the opportunity to accommodate more travellers, to grow as a company, and to offer new, innovative products in the Polar regions,” said Michel van Gessel, Oceanwide Expeditions’ CEO. “The name Hondius follows our custom to name our ships for celebrated Dutch-Flemish cartographers who continue to inspire us as we carry on their passion for exploration and discovery.”
The 107m vessel will offer a range of suites and cabins, some of which have balconies, and an observation lounge with a separate lecture room for multilingual lectures and presentations. Other highlights include zodiacs, two separate gangways and an indoor platform that can be used for outdoor activities such as kayaking.
“While travelling with Hondius, our passengers will recognise our distinctive Oceanwide approach – a pleasant, informal atmosphere onboard, with a main focus on in-depth nature and wildlife programs and related shore activities”, said Van Gessel.
Hondius will be built according to the latest International Maritime Organization requirements and will be powered by two main engines so she can sail at a speed of 15 knots. The flexible power management system will ensure fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions remain low, reducing the vessel’s impact on the environment. Other environmental features include the use of biodegradable lubrication oils, hazardous-free coating and paint, the use of steam for onboard heating, LED interior and exterior lighting, and the use of waste heat to cool water for the main engines.