Seabourn takes delivery of Carnival’s first expedition cruise ship

Seabourn Venture is the first purpose-built expedition cruise ship by the company (Mariotti)

Posted on June 29, 2022 5:31 PM by

The Maritime Executive

Seabourn Cruise Line has taken delivery of its first expedition cruise ship, Seabourn Company, today during an official handover ceremony at the T. Mariotti shipyard in Genoa, Italy. The Seabourn Venture is the first of two purpose-built ultra-luxury expedition vessels and the first dedicated expedition vessel in Carnival Corporation’s fleet. Carnival, the world’s largest cruise line, is looking to expand into the rapidly growing expedition segment with ships focusing on polar region cruises.

“Today is incredibly special and important as we take possession of our first ultra-luxury expedition ship and welcome Seabourn Company to the Seabourn family,” said Josh Leibowitz, President of Seabourn. “The Mariotti team did a terrific job building the vessel and bringing Adam Tihany’s designs to life. Seabourn Company will raise the bar for ultra-luxury expedition travel.

The 23,000 gross ton cruise ship and a sister ship still under construction in Italy were designed and built to PC6 Polar Class standards with the ability to operate in a variety of environments. According to the shipyard, the design features advanced maneuvering technology and stability to operate in harsh polar regions. Each of the cruise ships is 558 feet long and can accommodate up to 260 passengers in 132 oceanfront verandah suites.

Following the trend of expedition travel, amenities on board cruise ships are being enhanced to provide luxury travel to a segment that has traditionally been more destination-focused than luxury on board its ships. The Seabourn Company and her sister ship Seabourn Pursuit which is expected to enter service in 2023, offers amenities including two gourmet restaurants, an arched lounge with large windows, an infinity pool, and a spa and fitness center.

Expedition programming will be led by a 26-person team of scientists, scholars and naturalists, who will conduct educational programs at the Discovery Center and Ships Expedition Lounge, as well as guide cruises in zodiac, hikes, nature walks, scuba diving, and snorkeling, among the ship’s shore programs. Passenger amenities supporting the expedition program include a ship-ready room to prepare for shore excursions as well as a landing area to board the two custom-built submarines, kayaks and 24 zodiacs that each ship carries.

Seabourn announced plans to enter the expedition market in 2018 and construction began in December 2019. Both cruise ships were hull built at the CIMAR shipyard in San Giorgio di Nogaro, Italy, and each has then transferred to the T. Mariotti shipyard. to Genoa for completion. The Seabourn Company is a year behind schedule due to construction delays partly due to the pandemic. The maiden voyage has been postponed from April to July 2022 and has just been postponed for another two weeks to the end of July. The ship will sail in Norway and Iceland before repositioning to South America and finally to Antarctica for the 2022-2023 season.

The ships will expand both the cruise line and its parent company, Carnival Corporation, participating in the growing expedition market. In the past, Seabourn had cruised to destinations such as Antarctica, but lacked the purpose-built equipment. Their two new vessels are part of a wave of new vessels designed for this market segment. By 2023, 40 new cruise ships, with nearly 8,000 berths, are expected to come into service to offer expedition cruises to exotic destinations.

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