VESSEL REVIEW | Explora I – First in new luxury ship series for MSC Cruises
Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri has handed over the first in a series of four new cruise ships being built for MSC Cruises’ recently established Explora Journeys brand.
Like its Explora-class sisters, class lead ship Explora I has a gross tonnage of 63,900, an LOA of 248 metres, a beam of 32 metres, and 461 all-balcony guest cabins in various categories across 14 decks. One of the cabins is an owner’s residence with 280 square metres of indoor and terrace space. Some of the other cabins even provide access for wheelchair-bound guests.
Onboard facilities include restaurants, bars, lounges, boutique shops, nine spa rooms, a beauty salon, 1,000 square metres of indoor and outdoor wellness facilities, and indoor and outdoor pools.
The vessel is equipped with selective catalytic reduction technology, shore power plug-in connectivity, a RINA-certified underwater noise management systems to help protect marine life, a smart HVAC system, LED lighting, and other energy-efficient equipment to optimise engine use to further reduce emissions. Also installed is an advanced wastewater treatment system that enables the vessel to comply with the IMO’s Baltic Standard resolution as well as a US Coast Guard-approved ballast water treatment system with UV treatment to prevent the introduction of invasive species in the surrounding marine environment through ballast water discharges.
Trim optimisation software will meanwhile allow the crew to monitor and optimise ship stability in real-time. This technology helps the crew keep the vessel’s trim optimised to reduce fuel consumption and optimise performance. The hull is coated with special environmentally friendly anti-fouling paint.
Explora I will sail under the flag of Malta. The ship will depart on August 1 for its maiden voyage from Copenhagen. It will then spend several weeks in Northern Europe to offer a range of different itineraries in Scotland, Iceland, and the Arctic Circle before crossing the Atlantic to spend the winter in North America and the Caribbean Sea. It is scheduled to return to Europe in the summer of 2024 for voyages in the Mediterranean.
|Type of vessel:||Cruise ship|
|Owner:||MSC Cruises, Switzerland|
|Operator:||Explora Journeys, Switzerland|
|Length overall:||248 metres|
|Other electronics:||Trim optimisation software|
|Other equipment installed:||Selective catalytic reduction system; underwater noise management system; HVAC|
|Accommodation:||461 x guest cabins; restaurants; bars; lounges; boutique shops; spa rooms; beauty salon; wellness facilities; pools|