Norwegian Cruise Line Announces 8 New Ships and Dock at Great Stirrup Cay for Sister Brands

The parent company of Norwegian Cruise Line revealed on Monday that it has ordered eight new ships across its three brands. In addition, it plans to construct a pier for its cruise ships to dock directly at its private Bahamas island instead of using ship-to-shore tenders.

According to Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, the plan includes four new ships for NCL, two for upper-premium brand Oceania Cruises, and two for luxury brand Regent Seven Seas. The ships will be constructed at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy and they’re set to debut in a 10-year period from 2026 to 2036.

The NCL ships are expected to be the brand’s biggest ever, with around 200,000 gross tonnes and room for roughly 5,000 passengers. They will come after the delivery of the final Prima-Plus class ships, which are scheduled for 2025 to 2028. These are the larger sister ships to the Norwegian Prima and Viva launched in recent years. The arrival of these four ships from the yet-to-be-named class is expected in 2030, 2032, 2034 and 2036.

Oceania Cruises will also get its largest class of ship ever, weighing 86,000 gross tons and accommodating up to 1,450 guests. This comes after the successful debut of the Oceania Allura, its first new ship in over a decade, in 2023. The new class of ships for Oceania Cruises is slated for 2027 and 2029.

The future fleet of the Regent Seven Seas will welcome new, larger vessels, carrying a capacity of 850 guests each and weighing 77,000 gross tons. The launch of these ships is planned for 2026 and 2029, following the recent premiere of the third ship from its Explorer class in December 2023.

Harry Sommer, the president and CEO of NCLH, expressed his thoughts about this new-ship order, stating in a press release that it marked a significant milestone for their three award-winning brands. According to him, the influx of cutting-edge vessels would steadily boost their fleet’s growth. He also added that it allows them to benefit from their operating scale, reassert their dedication to innovation, and improve their ability to provide new experiences and products for their guests, while optimizing their fleet’s efficiency.

Despite the anticipation and excitement, no further details about the ships have been disclosed. As for the financial aspect, funding to cover 80% of the total costs for the four ships among the Oceania and Regent orders has been secured. However, funding for the other four ships belonging to NCL is yet to be finalised.

Once all eight ships are active, they expect their capacity to accommodate an additional 25,000 passengers for the three cruise lines.

The line is planning to build a multi-ship pier at Great Stirrup Cay, a popular private destination in the Bahamas visited by all three brands. Following the creation of a dock that can accommodate two Oasis-class vessels at the neighboring Perfect Day at Coco Cay for Royal Caribbean, other private Bahamas destinations such as Disney’s Castaway Cay and the new Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point have begun featuring docks without the need for tender boats for easy access.

With the construction of a new pier at Great Stirrup Cay, anticipation is high as this would support increased capacity in the Caribbean, allowing multiple ships to dock on the island. This is expected to enhance the guest experience by providing consistent and reliable access to the private island throughout the year, said Sommer.

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