This Week in Cruise: New Cruise Ships for Ecotourism, Luxury

The Celebrity Flora is designed for cruises in the Galapagos Islands.

It’s been another busy week for new cruise ship announcements, particularly in the small ship and luxury space.

Celebrity Cruises announced a new ship designed especially for cruises in the Galapagos Islands, the Celebrity Flora. Notably, the newbuild, 100-guest vessel will be all-suite, with suites incorporating the line’s Infinite Verandah concept. Other features will include an anchorless positioning system that will allow the ship to maintain its position without damaging the sea floor; an energy efficient drive; a marina capable of accommodating up to three Zodiacs at once; and a number of onboard lounges and public spaces with views of the surrounding landscape and stars.

In river cruise news, American Cruise Lines has announced that its new riverboat will be named American Song. The first ship in the line’s new Modern Riverboat Series, American Song will sail its inaugural season in fall 2018 on the Mississippi River, before continuing on to the West Coast in 2019 for American Cruise Lines’ Columbia and Snake River itineraries.

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Built to be wider, faster, and quieter than other river cruise ships, American Song will also incorporate a number of environmentally friendly features, as well as signature design elements like a four-story glass atrium and spacious lounges. The ship will be a new build and will accommodate 200 guests.

Finally, this week Regent Seven Seas Cruises announced that its newest ship will be named the Seven Seas Splendor. A sibling vessel to the Seven Seas Explorer, which launched in 2016, new the ship will have many of the same high-end amenities when it launches in the first quarter of 2020. As part of the naming process, Regent Seven Seas Cruises sought suggestions from its travel agents, loyal guests and employees for the ship’s name in a sweepstakes held in September. Seven Seas Splendor was chosen among nearly 2,600 unique names from more than 14,000 submissions.

Like the Seven Seas Explorer, the new all-suite, all-balcony Seven Seas Splendor will have a capacity of 750 guests. Details on the new ship’s inaugural season are expected to be announced soon.

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