NEWS: The world’s first hybrid electric-powered expedition cruise ship and newest member of the Hurtigruten cruises fleet, MS Roald Amundsen, was named by polar pioneer and godmother Karin Strand
in Chiriguano Bay on Brabant Island, Antarctica during an historic ceremony honoring the legacy of polar hero Roald Amundsen.
Replacing the traditional bottle of champagne with a chunk of ice, Strand revived a ritual invented by the cruise ship’s famous namesake, smashing ice against the bow of the Hurtigruten cruises ship in celebration of the momentous occasion.
“We could not think of a better location than Antarctica to name MS Roald Amundsen,” said Daniel Skjeldam, chief executive officer of Hurtigruten. “I believe Roald Amundsen would be proud. With the ship carrying his name and legacy, Hurtigruten is redefining boundaries, challenging the industry, and continuing to push toward greener and more sustainable operations. As Roald Amundsen was the symbol of a new era of exploration, this ship is the symbol of a new era in the cruise industry.”
Added Strand, “I am truly honored to share in such a historical moment as this, with like-minded explorers and colleagues, all dedicated to navigating our oceans in a more sustainable way.”
In recognition of this momentous occasion, a donation has been made to the Hurtigruten Foundation to further support conservation efforts in the more than 200 destinations Hurtigruten cruises ships visit around the world.
Hurtigruten cruises, the world’s largest and leading expedition cruise line, specially designed the 500-passenger MS Roald Amundsen for exploring some of the most spectacular waters in the world. Equipped with groundbreaking green technology, MS Roald Amundsen uses large battery packs to support her low-emission engines, reducing CO2 emissions by more than 20 per cent.
MS Roald Amundsen made history this summer as the first cruise ship to sail on battery power and became the first hybrid electric-powered ship to traverse the legendary Northwest Passage. After completing the 2019-20 Antarctica season, she will spend the 2020 summer season in Alaska. A second hybrid electric-powered expedition ship, MS Fridtjof Nansen, will join the fleet in 2020.
MS Roald Amundsen and MS Fridtjof Nansen have been branded as the world’s greenest, safest and most advanced expedition ships.
One of the most eye-catching exterior design features of the Hurtigruten cruises ships will be the two-level indoor/outdoor Observation Deck wrapped around the top of the ships’ raked bow. In a vast area behind it, you’ll find the core of the onboard experience: Amundsen Science Center / Nansen Science Center.
Packed with state-of-the-art technology and high tech gadgets such as touch screens and science equipment, the immersive area will be the place guests and staff/crew meet, mingle and create a deeper understanding for the areas they explore. The flexible venue will feature lecture spaces, a small library, and speciality areas for workshops in photography, biology, and more. The area, featuring large windows, will also be the onboard HQ for Hurtigruten’s handpicked Expedition Team.
In addition to vast indoor and outdoor Observation Decks, guests can enjoy the scenery and drinks through the large panoramic windows on the forward-facing Explorer Lounge on deck 10.
The stunning scenery will be reflected in a rich and comfortable interior design. Scandinavian materials from nature, such as granite, oak, birch and wool will be used to create relaxed and stylish cabins and public areas. All cabins are outside, 50 % will have private balconies, aft suites will feature private outdoor Jacuzzis with spectacular views.
Both Hurtigruten cruises ships will feature three restaurants inspired by Nordic and Norwegian heritage:
- Aune Main Dining – named after the Norwegian ship chandler and polar expedition supplier Tinus Aune
- Fredheim – the ships’ informal and social meeting place – named after a 1900s hunting station on Svalbard
- Lindstrøm –a speciality restaurant named after Adolf Lindstrøm, the favourite chef of the Norwegian polar heroes
Both MS Roald Amundsen and MS Fridtjof Nansen will feature a vast variety of custom-built expedition equipment, including a fleet of Blueye underwater drones, kayaks and large inflatable Explorer Boats used for landings in otherwise inaccessible destinations.
After completing the daily adventures, guests can rejuvenate in the Wellness area, a panoramic sauna, a gym, or the pool deck featuring an infinity pool, jacuzzis and a pool bar.
To learn more about Hurtigruten cruises or to make a reservation, call 1-866-679-8305 or contact any travel agent.
Source/Photos: Hurtigruten/Oscar Farrera/Espen Mills