The Cradle of Cruising Creativity?

Italy proved to be the cruise shipping powerhouse of 2000, delivering a plethora of technically advanced, style-leading ships. While that lead will be surely challenged in 2001 and beyond, particularly by France's Chantiers de 1' Atlantique which has garnered the lion's share of recent new contracts, there is little doubt that the cruise industry still calls Italy home.

Ocean Princess — fourth of a series of 77,000 GT vessels was delivered by Fincantieri Monfalcone Shipyard to P&O-Princess Cruises on January 29, 2000. Ocean Princess, which is the seventh ship built at Monfalcone for P&O-Princess Cruises, features engines supplied by Wartsiila NSD Italia. Propulsion and power generation are provided by a dieselelectric power plant with six Sulzer engines — overall power of 46 MW.

Carnival Victory, which debuted August 18, is the third "Destiny-class" vessel and the 15th "Fun Ship" in Carnival's fleet. Measuring 893 ft.

(272.1 m), the $440 million ship features 13 passenger decks, 18 bars and lounges, and 1,379 staterooms — 62 percent of which offer an ocean view or private balcony. Registered in Panama, the vessel, which was constructed at Fincantieri's Monfalcone yard, can move at a speed of 22.5 knots. Carnival Victory began a year-round program of seven-day eastern and western Caribbean voyages from its homeport in Miami on October 15, 2000. Eastern Caribbean cruises visit San Juan, St. Croix and St. Thomas, while the western route features Playa del Carmen/Cozumel, Grand Cayman and Ocho Rios. Beginning June 2, 2001, Carnival will reposition Victory's homeport to New York.

Silver Shadow, the newest member of the Silversea fleet debuted in September 2000, following final outfitting at the T. Mariotti Shipyard in Genoa. The ship was given the go-ahead during the last week of August following successful testing for speed and agility in the waters off the Italian coast. Silver Shadow surpassed her expected speed by surpassing 21 knots and proved to be very stable during stabilizer and turn testing. According to director of Marine and Safety, Stefano Pinna, the ship's performance in the turning circles test was one of the best he had ever seen.

"The ship can make a full turn even at tull speed, and within a small area," said Pinna. "We were also impressed by how easily it made sharp turns, as well as its excellent speed and stability overall." Designed by Petter Yran and Bjorn Storbraaten Architects of Oslo, Silver Shadow showed great capabilities for acceleration and performed well in "crash stop" testing — going from full speed to a dead stop within 1,640 ft. (500 m) — with very little vibration through the ship. At 28,258 gt and accommodating only 382 passengers. Silver Shadow and sistership Silver Whisper, set to debut in July 2001, are the smallest ultra-luxury ships currently under construction. Silver Shadow commenced its maiden voyage from the Mediterranean from Civitavecchia on September 15, 2000 following its naming ceremony.

Built by Fincantieri's Venice-Marghera yard for Holland America Line, Zaandam measures 781 x 115 ft.

(238 x 35 m), has a gt of 61,000 tons and can reach a speed of 23 knots. Maximum height from the waterline is 157 ft. (48 m) and there are 720 cabins on board. The vessel was designed to guarantee its 1,824 passengers maximum comfort and can accommodate up to 647 crewmembers. The seventh vessel built by Fincantieri for Holland America, Zaandam is a sister ship of the Volendam, which has been in operation since November 1999 and was the first in a new fleet of liners. This unique generation of ships is the result of a long-standing collaboration between Fincantieri and the Shipowner. The vessel constitutes a blend of the most advanced design and construction systems with select interior furniture and fittings.

On September 30, 2000 Fincantieri's Marghera Yard delivered the 781 x 157 ft. (238 x 48 m), 60,000 gt cruise ship Amsterdam to Holland America Line. The eighth cruise ship built for the company, Amsterdam can hold 1,380 passengers and is the premiere Holland America ship to boast an Azipod propulsion system — providing the ship with an operational speed of 22.5 knots — plus greater maneuverability and operating efficiencies.

Following its naming ceremony, which took place on October 30, 2000, Amsterdam departed on a 10-day maiden voyage through the Panama Canal.

Other stories from February 2001 issue


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