Portsmouth to host new Saga ship naming

Image result for Spirit of Adventure

Portsmouth is to host the official naming ceremony of Saga’s second new-build ship.

The event on August 19 will be the first time a cruise ship has been christened in the port.

Portsmouth was chosen for the city’s “dramatic harbour, maritime heritage, and wider regeneration plans for the port”.

The 999-passenger Spirit of Adventure will then set off on its 17-night inaugural cruise to the Baltic from Dover on August 21 with further itineraries for 2020 including the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Canary Islands and Norway.

Inside Saga Cruises’ new ship Spirit of Adventure

Spirit of Adventure will feature three speciality restaurants including the first Nepalese restaurant at sea.

The ship will also feature a 500sq metre spa, an outdoor swimming pool and a 444-seat theatre.

It will join the boutique sister vessel Spirit of Discovery, which entered service last year.

Saga Cruises managing director Nigel Blanks said: “We are absolutely delighted to announce that our second new ship, Spirit of Adventure, will be named in Portsmouth.

“The city is steeped in British maritime history and it will be another first for Saga Cruises with Spirit of Adventure being the first-ever cruise ship to be named in this historic port.

“Whilst the ships are recognisably sisters, they are most certainly not twins. Spirit of Adventure will have a distinctly different identity to her sister ship, which is why we have chosen a different port for her naming ceremony.

“Alongside the port and the city’s partners, we are planning another utterly memorable event.

“Carrying just 999 guests, Saga’s unique boutique cruise ships have been designed specifically for the needs and tastes of the over-50s luxury market. This means there’s no casino, ice rink or climbing wall.

“Instead they boast the largest percentage of single cabins of any modern ship, a high crew to guest ratio, West End standard entertainment, five different dining options, balcony cabins for all guests and countless other features offering the latest in luxury, boutique cruising.

“The interior design for Spirit of Adventure is bold and striking.  Yet again we have risen to the challenge set us by our guests. They have told us that life for them is not ‘beige’ and they want to see something that showcases the best of British contemporary design.”

Portsmouth City Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson added: “Portsmouth’s dramatic harbour entrance is a stunning backdrop to showcase the ship and we will work closely with Saga to put on an event to match.

“It will also be a fantastic spectacle with the opportunity to welcome the ship as she arrives in Portsmouth and put on a firework display that will take place in the evening from Southsea Common.

“We’re looking forward to Saga’s new vessels becoming a familiar sight in our city. Our cruise transformation is already well underway with a significant berth extension plan, followed by a terminal transformation, which will be completed next year. This is a new cruise era for Portsmouth, and we can’t wait for leading brands like Saga to join us on our journey.”

Spirit of Discovery Leaves on Ems River Conveyance

Spirit of Discovery

Saga Cruises first-ever new-build, the Spirit of Discovery, has left on her Ems River conveyance.

The Spirit of Discovery will proceed in reverse up the river Ems to the North Sea. According to a press release, this approach has proven successful in the past as it makes it easier to steer the ship. Two tugs will be providing assistance in the process.

The plans call for the ship to arrive in Emden on Monday, May 27 at 8:00 a.m. local time, with the rest of the week scheduled for technical tests and sea trials.

River Conveyance Schedule:

Sunday, May 26, 2019
Approx. 09.00 pm: ship in waiting position (Papenburg)
Approx. 10.00 pm: ship passes sea lock (Papenburg)

Monday, May 27, 2019
Approx. 00.30 am: ship passes Friesenbrücke (Weener)
Approx. 02.30 am: ship passes the Jann Berghaus bridge (Leer)
Approx. 05.00 am: arrival at the river Ems barrier (Gandersum)
Approx. 06.45 am: ship passes the Ems barrier
Approx. 08.00 am: arrival Emden sea lock

Saga Sapphire to Leave Fleet in 2020

Saga Sapphire

Saga Cruises today announced the Saga Sapphire will leave its fleet, with the last cruise heading to Norway on a “Musical Norway” sailing in spring of 2020.

“For Saga Sapphire’s last foray to the Norwegian fjords, we’re cruising off the beaten track for an in-depth exploration of this country’s beautiful fjords, mountains and villages,” the company said.

The 10-night cruise leaves from Dover on April 11, 2020, and offers live jazz performances onboard while sailing 2,376 nautical miles through the Norwegian fjords.

Sailing roundtrip from Dover, calls include Alesund, Trondheim, Geiranger, Ulvik and Haugesund, along with four days at sea.

The Sapphire leaving Saga’s fleet complete’s the British company’s fleet renewal program. The Pearl II will depart the Saga fleet in early 2019, making way for the Spirit of Discovery, a 1,000-guest newbuiild that joins the fleet in summer 2019.

As the Sapphire leaves in early 2020, the Spirit of Adventure, a second newbuild, joins the fleet in summer 2020.