This month the National Geographic Endurance expedition cruise vessel, delivered from Ulstein Verft in March 2020, would have been sailing to the Arctic. But her grand entrance had to be postponed. However, these interior photos and film give an impression of the welcoming atmosphere on Lindblad’s first polar newbuild.
Lindblad Expeditions Holdings, Inc. has taken delivery of National Geographic Endurance from Ulstein Verft, marking the official completion of the line’s first polar new build.
The state-of-the-art 126-guest ship has been designed by Ulstein Design & Solutions AS as the ultimate expedition platform with a focus on safety and comfort.
A core feature is ULSTEIN’s X-BOW® solution, a distinctive bow that provides fuel efficiency and gives a smoother ride with softer motions in head seas. The X-BOW design feature has been proven on more than 100 offshore vessels, operating in rough conditions.
With the PC5 ice class, the vessel can access deep into polar regions. The ship’s expanded fuel and water tanks provide for extended operations in remote areas; while the zero-speed stabilizers contribute to increased comfort at zero speed when stopped for wildlife observation or embarking/disembarking the ship.
The huge, open bridge has enough room for all the passengers. This is a very welcoming place for the guests who can come there to watch the navigation and see where the vessel is going. From here, they can go right out on deck and take photographs.
The bow area of a cruise vessel is often a gathering place in the early morning. This is where you can stand to look at whales, penguins and dolphins.
The ‘Endurance’ has a very different kind of bow. Being on a ship with a traditional bow you will have to lean over the side of the ship and look backwards down towards the waterline. On this vessel, due to the X-BOW, you’ll be able to look straight down into the water. And this is quite a magnificent way of viewing wildlife in the sea. The ship also has plenty of places in the forward part where the passengers can look right down to the waterline in front and observe the ship plough through the water. This means, if there are dolphins there you will see them riding the bow wave of the ship.
THE ON-BOARD ARCTIC INFINITY EXPERIENCE
The ship has been designed to connect the passengers to the outside environment from anywhere on the ship. The cabin measurements range from 13 sqm solo cabins to the 40 sqm suites. 77 per cent of the cabins feature balconies with floor-to-ceiling sliding doors to let in the spectacular surroundings and Arctic light.
Glass is also an important part of the design around the public areas.
The main restaurant, Restaurant 270º, is named for its panoramic views, with floor-to ceiling windows. There is also an outdoor barbeque and bistro area.
The spa and fitness area include a yoga room, treatment rooms, saunas, a fitness room, a relaxation area, as well as the infinity hot tubs and the spectacular glass igloos with seatings on daybeds covered in reindeer fur. The yoga studio offers great views out the aft side of the vessel.
There are multiple observation decks and also observation wings for the passengers to get views from an angle outside the ship’s side.
All are solutions to give the passengers everlasting memories not to be experienced on any other ship.
Getting off the vessel, there are various options to explore, even underwater. The ship carries its own submarine, a Remotely Operated Vehicle, capable of reaching 305 metres below water. There are 14 expedition crafts for landing in otherwise inaccessible places, a high number of crafts to reduce waiting time. For other adventures, the vessel holds a variety of gear and equipment, including kayaks, paddling boards, snorkelling gear and wetsuits, cross-country skis to name a few.
The ship will afford gracious comfort and an unparalleled level of service, with the highest comfort class for guests to ensure a quiet and peaceful environment onboard.