Hurtigruten recently announced that three of their vessels will be transformed to premium, hybrid powered expedition cruise ships. The current MS Trollfjord will be renamed MS Maud, Ms Finnmarken to MS Otto Sverdrup and MS Midnatsol to MS Eirik. Hurtigruten CEO Daneil Skjeldam said of the transformation, “With these new expeditions cruise vessels, you will be able to explore Norway like never before, with all the comforts, facilities and expertise you need for creating a perfect adventure. Combined with ground-breaking green technology, these ships will truly stand out.”
Sustainable cruise ships
Equipped with battery packs and other green technology, the three ships will operate year-round expeditions cruises along the Norwegian coast from 2021 on yet to be disclosed itineraries. MS Otto Sverdrup will have battery packs installed during a 2020 dock, with a letter of intent for the same battery installation on MS Maud and MS Eirik Raude in 2021. The battery packs will support the ships engines, drastically cutting emissions. The ships will also be equipped for shore power, to cut emissions to zero when docked in ports with shore power facilities. “At Hurtigruten, the push for sustainable solutions and introduction of green technology is the core of everything we do. We operate in some of the most spectacular areas of the world. This comes with a responsibility,” said Skjeldam.
The transformation will introduce several new features and venues. Some highlights include:
- All public areas on MS Maud, MS Otto Sverdrup and MS Eirik Raude will be redesigned using natural Scandinavian materials such as granite, oak, birch and wool.
- A specially designed Expedition Launch will be added to all ships, complete with tender boats and other expedition equipment.
- Cabins and suites will be completely refurbished with new suites and spectacular views added to all three ships.
- Hurtigruten’s signature Science Centre will be added to all three ships. Packed with state of the art technology and high-tech gadgets such as touch screens, science equipment and other interactive features.
- A brand new wellness-area will be built complete with gym, lounge and treatment rooms.
- A speciality restaurant named after the favourite chef of the Norwegian polar heroes, Restaurant Lindstrøm, will be added. An upper premium fine dining restaurant, Lindstrøm will serve traditional Norwegian dishes contrasted with modern cuisine.
Honouring explorer heritage
The current MS Trollfjord, MS Maud is named after one of the most famous polar vessels of all time, Roald Amundsens “Maud” from 1917. The original “Maud” got her name from the first Queen of modern-day Norway, who also had her namesake in Hurtigruten’s 1925 flagship DS Dronning Maud (“DS Queen Maud.”)
The current MS Finnmarken, MS Otto Sverdrup is named after one of Norway’s most notable polar heroes. Alongside Fridtjof Nansen, he was the first to ski across Greenland, a key contributor to several expeditions and captain on the legendary polar ship “Fram”. Sverdurp also has a close connection to Hurtigruten: between the expeditions he was a captain on board Hurtigruten ships. MS Eirik Raude, the current MS Midnatsol, is named after one of the most famous Viking chiefs in history. Eirik Raude – also known as Eric the Red – got his name from his huge red beard, and is not only known for discovering Greenland, but also for giving the island its name.