New Shipyards Entering Cruise Business Face Uphill Challenge

Two new shipyards have entered the cruise ship building business recently, while an additional yard with a surprise cruise order has some passenger vessel history, but all will be facing a set of staggering challenges when it comes to building customized ships for picky clients and pulling off a flawless hotel build.

The major players in the cruise-ship building business have been going at it for decades, and most specialize in passenger vessels.

Meanwhile, major cargo-ship building yards in South Korea have tried again and again to land orders without success.

In Japan, Mitsubishi has built for local companies along with Princess Cruises and AIDA Cruises, but late deliveries and cost overruns on the recent AIDA ships have not helped the cause.


New Hurtigruten Ship Rendering

The last time a cruise ship was built in Norway, the shipyard went bankrupt. That was just over a decade ago with the ship being The World and the shipyard Fosen Mekaniske Verksted against a backdrop of an extremely expensive labor environment.

Earlier this year, Kleven entered into a contract with Hurtigruten to build a set of expedition cruise ships earlier this year, with an option for two more. The ship’s are being built on a Rolls-Royce technical platform.

Shipyard executives declined to speak on the record, but the yard’s website said Kleven was a family-owned operation dating back many decades.

The yard’s recent deliveries show no shortage of supply and platform vessels for the offshore industry, in addition to Coast Guard ships.

A log of ship deliveries back to 1961 shows everything from fish vessels to tug boats, with the last passenger vessel being the Finnmarken, which was built in 2002 for coastal service. The yard has only built three (coastal) passenger ships.

Uljanik Group

Scenic Elipse

In Croatia, Uljanik Group will build its first cruise ship for a new entry to the cruise ship market in Scenic.

The agreement calls for a five-star level expedition ship to be delivered in August of 2018, with an option for a second vessel. The ship is 16,500 tons with capacity for 228 guests.

In 2015 the yard delivered a 3,311-ton ro/ro ferry, the second in a two-ship order. However, the yard mainly builds barges and other supply vessels, but did deliver a series of car carriers as recently as 2008.

The Croatian builder can trade its history back to 1856, when it started out building ships for the Austro-Hungarian Navy.

In 2013, the yard added another facility and building site, 3.Maj, to its portfolio, which has upped its capacity.

The group also owns an engine factory, ULJANIK Diesel Engines Factory Ltd, and has recently delivered a number of large tanker vessels.


New Star Clippers vessel

Another Croatian yard, Brodosplit, landed an order from Star Clippers for a sailing ship, and is believed to be working toward a separate order for smaller niche vessels.

Of note, the yard has built new motor vessel ships for Grand Circle Cruise Line over the years.

The shipyard is located in Split, Croatia, and was formed when several smaller ship repair facilities combined forces in 1922. The yard builds various types of ships including commercial, container and passenger vessels.

The new Royal Flyer for Star Clippers will be 162 meters long and 18.5 meters wide, and feature five masts and sails.

While it is a sailing ship, the vessel will have two fully independent electric propulsion engines and be compliant with Safe Return to Port rules with two engine rooms.

Star Clippers building new masted ship for 2017

Star Clippers Royal Clipper Pictured.

Star Clippers said it will build its first new ship in 15 years, a five-masted barque that will be the largest in its fleet and the largest such cruise sailing vessel afloat.

The ship will have more than 60,000 square feet of sail, which will be its primary motive power. It will be designed to carry 300 passengers, larger than the 227-passenger Royal Clipper that is the biggest of the three vessels now in Star Clippers’ fleet.

As yet unnamed, the 8,770-gross-ton ship will be modeled on the France II, a ship that was primarily a cargo vessel built in 1911. Nearly 500 feet in length, it was the largest tall ship of its time.

Star Clippers owner Mikael Krafft said it has long been his ambition to build a modern replica of the France II. “The ship’s rig will be identical to France II and dimensions will be very similar, although we have added various features that will make this the most magnificent passenger sailing ship afloat,” he said.

The ship will have three pools, including one that will funnel light into the atrium and main dining area.

Star Clippers said the ship, being built in Croatia, is scheduled to be delivered in the second half of 2017.  Sales will open in 2016, Star Clippers said.

British holidaymaker, 64, drowns in Dubrovnik

British holidaymaker, 64, drowns in Dubrovnik after falling off luxury cruise ship in the early hours of the morning

  • The tragedy happened in the early hours of Sunday morning 
  • Crew members on ship The Emanuel saw the woman falling overboard
  • They pulled her to the shore but medics were unable to save her.

A British holidaymaker has drowned after falling off a tourist ship – The Emanuel (pictured) – in the ancient picture postcard city of Dubrovnik in southern Croatia

A British holidaymaker has drowned after falling off a tourist ship in the ancient picture postcard city of Dubrovnik in southern Croatia.

Crew members who spotted the woman falling overboard dived into the water and pulled the 64-year-old to the shore, but despite the fact that medics were quickly on the scene, they were unable to save her.

The tragedy happened in the early hours of Sunday morning while the boat, The Emanuel, was moored in the port of Gruz in Dubrovnik.

The mini cruise ship was recently refurbished as well as upgraded. It now has 18 cabins and seven crew offering two-day trips to tourists in the region.

A police spokesman said the woman had been fine before the incident. She was with her husband and friends enjoying a drink on deck when she fell.

An autopsy is due to be done today to find out the exact cause of the death.

Police have not yet named the woman as her relatives in the UK have not all been informed.