SunStone takes delivery of second eco-friendly expedition ship

Florida-based expedition cruise ship owner SunStone Ships has taken delivery of the second out of seven next-generation, Infinity-class expedition cruise vessels at China Merchants Heavy Industry (CMHI).


As informed, the vessel Ocean Explorer is 104 meters long, 18 meters wide, and has a draft of 5.1 meters. It is built with mechanisms for safe return to port, dynamic positioning and zero speed stabilizers and belongs to ice class 1A, Polar Code 6.

Furthermore, the ship features Ulstein’s X-Bow design that is expected to deliver significant operating efficiencies.

“We have developed a vessel where the hull has been optimised for low fuel consumption with CFD (computational fluid dynamics) analysis,” said Lead Naval Architect Torill Muren.

“In addition, we have implemented the ULSTEIN X-BOW hull line design, a solution firstly introduced to the offshore segment and only recently to the cruise industry. In addition to fuel savings, the X-BOW softens the movements in head seas, reducing slamming and vibrations, and increases the comfort and rest for passengers and crews.”

The expedition cruise ship has a passenger capacity between 130-200 and a crew capacity between 85 and 115. After delivery, it will head to Manilla to pick up crew, then a short stop in Malta to get the remaining hotel crew and supplies onboard.

From there, the voyage will continue to Poole in the UK where cruising will begin in late August, according to the company.

The Ocean Explorer will be operated by Vantage Cruise Line.

Current Infinity newbuilds underway, after the delivery of Greg Mortimer and Ocean Explorer, are Ocean Victory, Sylvia Earle with deliveries in 2021, Ocean Odyssey and Ocean Albatros in 2022, and Ocean Discoverer in 2023.

All vessels ordered have long-term charter agreements in place.

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