What Is The Fastest Ship?

August 31, 2016

I was wondering what the fastest ship is TODAY.

When I say “ship”, I mean “passenger vessel”. Now I don’t doubt that there are some super-charged speed-boats out there, but my criteria is a large vessel that carries paying passengers.

(SS United States Today - source unknown)

(SS United States Today – source unknown)

Ocean Liner fans will know of the SS United States, built in 1952 for the United States Line. She broke the transatlantic speed record on her maiden voyage. She still holds the Blue Riband for being the fastest ocean liner of all time. They say she could achieve 38 knots. (The SS United States was laid-up in 1996 and her fate remains uncertain).

Given the fact that she was a bloody-great Ocean liner carrying 2,000+ passengers, that is a VERY impressive and unparalleled achievement.

The Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 must certainly be one of today’s fastest cruise ships (liner). She can achieve 30 knots, which is faster than most.

(Courtesy Incat)

(Courtesy Incat)

People no longer cruise for speed.  My research tells me that Fast-Ferries (SeaCats etc.) hold the maritime speed records today.

The fastest ferry on the planet is Incat’s ‘Francisco’ (2012). She operates on the Rio de la Plata estuary (River Plate) between Buenos Aires, Argentina and Montevideo, Uruguay.

The 99-metre long ‘Wave Piercing Catamaran’ accommodates 1024 passengers and 150 cars. Her water-jet engines can achieve a maximum speed of up to 58.1 knots, or 67 mph.

Interestingly she can be powered by duel fuel, one being LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) which looks set to also be the future choice of cruise ships.


Video of ‘Francisco’ HERE

Malcolm says: The various fast-ferries around the world are very impressive. However their service normally has to be suspended when the seas get rough. Condor currently operate fast-ferries up to a 3.5 meter wave height.  After this they become very uncomfortable for passengers.  In contrast the QM2 is designed to cross the North Atlantic, in winter, whatever the weather.

The SRN4 Hovercraft HERE

Russian Shipyard To Build First Cruise Liner In Post-Soviet Time

August 30, 2016


The Lotos shipyard in Astrakhan in south Russia will hold a ceremony on August 15 to lay out the first passenger liner in the post-Soviet time for cruises in the Caspian Sea…

See full TASS article HERE


Thanks to Pozdeevvo for alerting to this story – https://pvoblog.wordpress.com

Crystal River Cruises: Newbuilds Commence

August 28, 2016
(Courtesy of Crystal)

(Courtesy of Crystal)

A keel-laying ceremony at the Werften shipyard in Germany, has marked the start of the building process for Crystal River Cruises’ Crystal Bach and Crystal Mahler vessels. Both vessel will carry only 110 passengers in luxury.

The two new Rhine-class vessels will Join Crystal’s existing river cruise fleet in summer 2017. They will be dedicated to sailing Europe’s the Rhine, Main and Danube Rivers.


The Myths & Reality of River Cruising

There are many myths about river cruising and many truths too.

For example: Isn’t it overpriced? Isn’t it just for very old people? Isn’t it boring?

As a new convert myself, I have created a document to dispel some of the myths and confirm some of the truths. I hope that it is useful.

River Cruising – Myth & Reality: HERE


Hapag-Lloyd: Two New Expedition Ships

August 27, 2016

(Courtesy Hapag-Lloyd)

Germany’s TUI Group is investing in two new vessels for its Hamburg based subsidiary Hapag-Lloyd Cruises.

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has confirmed that they had ordered two expedition ships with the Fincantieri shipyard, Italy, which will both be delivered in 2019.

The ships will have capacity for 240 passengers at 16,100 tons.


Malcolm says: It’s nice to see some small new-ships being built in this age of mega-ships, even if I won’t be able afford their fares!

Fast Ferry

August 26, 2016

I know a few of my readers have an interest in ferries and fast-ferries.


After all the big car ferries (such as Ulysses) are just like state-of-the-art cruise ships with a car deck or two.

Then we also have the fast-ferry technology: often catamarans (Seacats) propelled by water-jets.

Below is a slide-show of the fast-ferry ‘Condor Rapide’:

Regular readers will also know that I am a big fan of HOVERCRAFT.


Airlanded Crashes (In Slow-Motion)

August 25, 2016

 It was hailed a ‘great British innovation’ by its makers following a successful maiden flight just seven days ago.

However the world’s largest aircraft suffered cockpit damage in what was described as a ‘heavy landing’ yesterday.


(Courtesy BBC)

UK Power Networks said the aircraft had come into contact with one of its power lines. Hybrid Air Vehicles said a mooring line had been in “contact” with a cable.

All crew are safe and well, and there are no injuries.

It is estimated the damage will cost about £20,000 to repair.

Malcolm says: Now I’m no aviation expert, but when the £25m future of lighter-than-air hybrid aircraft crashes (sorry “lands heavily”) on it’s second flight, that is EMBARASSING.

I know it was a ‘test’ flight, but the flying conditions must have been very good, if not perfect. I believe the pilot’s have spent many hours training in flight-simulators to avoid such situations.  If I had ten tonnes of cargo to transport, Airlander would NOT be first choice at the moment!

Also see Zeppelin NT Flight: HERE

CMV’s Columbus: 2018 Round The World Cruise

August 24, 2016


On 5th January 2018, Columbus (CMV’s latest addition to thier fleet) will set sail from London Tilbury on a spectacular ‘round the world’ voyage. It will be a truly historic occasion, as it will be 20 years to the date since this popular cruise ship operated her maiden world cruise.

Escape the winter and return home at the beginning of May on this 121 night grand voyage on which you can truly relax, enjoy leisurely days at sea, carefree evenings and so many incredible highlights as you circumnavigate the globe.

Columbus will take you to the Caribbean, Central America, the Panama Canal, French Polynesia, New Zealand, Australia, the Philippines, Taiwan, China, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Dubai, Oman, Egypt, Jordan, the Suez Canal, Athens, Malta and home via the Mediterranean.

With her spacious lounge areas, comfortable accommodation and wide range of facilities, Columbus is the ideal ship for such an adventure. For most of this voyage, you will be able to enjoy warmer climes and therefore make full use of the expansive deck areas, swimming pools and whirlpools.

CMV have set aside 150 twin cabins for single occupancy priced with just a 25% single supplement on the equivalent category twin share prices. In addition, our special on-board singles programme of events including a welcome cocktail party and get together will ensure the opportunity to meet like-minded travellers.

(Cruise & Maritime Voyages)

Malcolm says: Columbus’s world cruise marks the day of the  20th Anniversary of the ship’s inaugural world cruise as P&O’s ‘Arcadia’ according to Mike Hall, CMV’s head of marketing.

Dream Cruises Branding Campaign

August 23, 2016
(Courtesy of Genting)

Click to enlarge (Courtesy of Genting)

As ‘Genting Dream’ floats-out (here) Dream Cruises is launching a new branding platform called “The Mermaid’s Dream.” The campaign features a love-story between a mermaid and an astronaut.

The campaign will include a commercial and was developed by Leo Burnett, China.



MSC Meraviglia – Virtual Tour

August 22, 2016

The Mediterranean  Shipping Company (MSC) have become a major player in the global cruise industry with three classes of innovative newbuilds on the way: Seaside, Meraviglia and their still somewhat secret ‘World Class’ ships.

I find myself increasing posting YouTube material here, as this provides some of the best renderings of these amazing new ships.


P&O’s Oceana To Homeport in Malta

August 21, 2016
Oceana (Courtesy P&O)

Oceana (Courtesy P&O)

P&O Cruises will sail a new Malta-to-Malta (Valletta) itinerary on the P&O Oceana in 2017 and 2018.

The Minister for Tourism in Malta, Edward Zammit Lewis, explained that this development “is exciting for the tourism sector” and that he looked forward to enhancing further the relationship with P&O.

The Minister remarked that during 2017 over 100,000 passenger movements will be handled through this fly and cruise program on 27 calls, with an extra 10,000 passengers on five more calls. Moreover, additional port calls are planned for 2018.

(Malta Tourism)

Malcolm says: An interesting move.  At the time of writing, I have yet to see the full itineraries.