ASENAV (Astilleros y Servicios Navales), the Chilean shipbuilder has announced that it is building a 100-pax expedition vessel for Antarctic deployment, Alan Lam reports
The Valdivia-based facility has already begun design and building process. The 4,900 gross ton ship will be named Magellan Explorer. Its owner Minke Shipping will charter the vessel to Antarctica XXI, a Chilean Antarctic expedition specialist that has a ship based on King George Island in the South Shetland Islands. For the 2017-18 season, the company charters Ocean Nova and Hebridean Sky for it eight-day-seven-night Antarctic fly-cruise itinerary, departing Punta Arenas.
The vessel will feature 50 cabins, including a number of them designed for single occupants. 42 cabins will have balconies. It will have a large forward observation lounge and an observation deck.
ASENAV is not new to passenger ship building. It has already built several small cruise vessels in recent years. As recently as 2010, it delivered the 210-pax Stella Australis to Cruceros Australis, another Chilean cruise operator.Powered by two Tier III class MAN diesel engines and Polar Class 6 compliant, the new ship will be the most advanced passenger vessel the company has ever built.
ASENAV is also in an advanced stage of building another 200-pax passenger vessel for Cruceros Australis. The builder is an off-shore vessel specialist. It has recently delivered three service vessels to Maersk of Denmark for off-shore exploration purposes.