German TUI Group has given the green light to the construction of the third Hanseatic class expedition cruise ship for Hapag-Lloyd Cruises.
Hapag-Lloyd Cruises will shortly launch the planning and negotiation process for a further Hanseatic class ship, which is scheduled for delivery in 2021, TUI Group CEO Fritz Joussen said while presenting the group’s results for the first half of 2018 on board the new Mein Schiff 1 in Hamburg.
“This market is growing strongly. Thanks to its experience, competence and high-quality standards, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises offers great potential to attract new international customer groups and deliver stronger growth in the expedition cruise segment,” Joussen added.
The first two ships from the series were ordered in 2016 from Fincantieri’s subsidiary Vard Holdings Limited (Vard). The hulls of the vessels are being built by VARD’s shipyard in Tulcea, Romania, and delivery is scheduled from Vard Langsten in Norway in the first quarter and the fourth quarter of 2019, respectively.
The keel of the first expedition ship, Hanseatic Nature, was laid in Romania in January 2017, while the keel laying for the Hanseatic Inspiration, the second ship, followed in October 2017.
The christening and maiden voyage of Hanseatic Nature are planned for April 2019. Hanseatic Inspiration is scheduled to launch six months later in October 2019.
The 16,100 gross ton vessels, designed for cruises in polar regions in the Arctic and Antarctica, feature a length of 138 meters and a width of 22 meters.
Each vessel will have seven passenger decks, with accommodation for a total of 230 passengers.
During the six months ending March 31, TUI Group increased its turnover by 7.2 percent to EUR 6.81 billion. Earnings growth reached 26 percent year-on-year driven by its hotel and cruise business segments.
As informed, the cruises segment remains on a growth path, and due to the rise in demand TUI is planning to expand the segment through additional newbuilds.
TUI’s cruise brands are TUI Cruises, Marella Cruises and Hapag-Lloyd Cruises.