Seabourn has released new details on what guests can expect from its two new luxury expedition ships. The cruise line signed a letter of intent with shipbuilders T. Mariotti and Damen in July, marking the brand’s first entry into the expedition cruise market.
The ships will represent a brand-new design, with the first slated for delivery in June 2021 and the second in May 2022. The first ship is currently planned to sail in the Arctic in late summer 2021, with a full summer season in Antarctica to follow.
Each will be designed with a high level of autonomy and a global deployment capability, which Seabourn says will allow them to go farther north and south than any ship in parent company Carnival Corporation’s history, visiting both warm and cool weather destinations. As previously reported, each will be built to PC6 Polar Class standards, allowing them to operate in both summer and autumn in medium first-year ice in Antarctica and the Arctic. The ships will be propelled by Azipods complemented by three bow thrusters, allowing for greater maneuverability.
Other newly released design details include shell doors at the ship’s waterline, which will allow guests to move easily on and off the ship via its onboard complement of Zodiacs. Additionally, dynamic positioning systems will provide the ship increased operational flexibility when it comes to maintaining its position.
For guests, the new ships will have approximately 29,600 square feet of open deck space, complemented by high-quality optics mounted in various areas on the decks when conditions permit, to maximize opportunities to view wildlife and dramatic scenery. Also notable: the ships will carry two onboard submarines for underwater exploration, as well as a complement of kayaks and 24 Zodiacs. Shore experiences will build on the brand’s existing Antarctica and Ventures by Seabourn programs, the cruise line said.
In terms of accommodations, each ship will have 132 oceanfront veranda suites, allowing for a capacity of up to 264 guests.
Onboard crew will include a 26-person expedition team, who will regularly interact with guests. These experts are also part of the Seabourn Conversations program, providing insights into the history, ecology and culture of the places the ships will visit. The expedition team will be available to guests in both formal presentations and casual conversations.
Seabourn said it will continue to announce design and itinerary details for the new ships over the next few months. Expect more on planned itineraries and booking availability this spring.