One Ocean Expeditions Doubles Its Polar Adventure Fleet

One Ocean Expeditions (OOE) has announced that the highly regarded Akademik Sergey Vavilov will join her sister ship Akademik Ioffe as its second polar expedition vessel with effect from November 2012.

The Akademik Sergey Vavilov, seen here in icy Antarctic waters

Both ships were built  in Finland in the late 1980’s for the Russian Academy of Sciences.  They undertook hydro-acoustic research and are consequently extremely quiet, fast and stable ships, widely acknowledged as among the the best expedition vessels for difficult polar waters.

Andrew Prossin, who founded OOE in 2006, is a twenty-year veteran of both Antarctic and Arctic expeditions and has worked extensively with both vessels.

“This addition to our fleet was both necessary and timely for OOE. It is necessary because our 2011/12 season has almost completely sold out and we definitely need a second vessel. It is timely because the opportunity to take the Vavilov now puts us in a leading position with the two best expedition vessels in the world,” said Prossin.

With berths for 105 passengers, (but limited by OOE to 92) the Vavilov will initially be deployed in Antarctica, followed by the 2013 Arctic season. But first, the ship will be extensively refurbished. “The Vavilov is a great ship, and with the forthcoming improvement program we will have no trouble bringing her up to the high expectations of One Ocean Expeditions’ clients”, said Prossin.

Partial view of a typical twin cabin on the Akademik Sergey Vailov

“This is a terrific platform where we can offer an innovative expedition product and continue to hone the high levels of onboard guest services our clients have come to expect from us.” A major renovation is planned, including redecorated cabins, enhanced, modernised public areas and a wellness centre.

For further details of Arctic and Antarctic expeditions with One Ocean please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

Did the Octopus Salvage the Explorer’s Black Box?

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Paul Allen's 414-foot yacht Octopus, owned by Navigea Ltd

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s 414-foot yacht Octopus has been down in southern Argentina and Antarctica this winter and, according to today’s Norwegian shipping paper TradeWinds, on February 8 she may have salvaged the black box recorder from GAP Adventures’ pioneer expedition cruise ship Explorer, lost by sinking in ice on November 27, 2007.

On Wednesday, March 30, Navigea Ltd, owners of the Octopus, filed suit in Seattle against Kelvin-Hughes NDR 2000 Voyage Data Recorder and GAP Shipping Ltd for the cost of salvage, which it is said could be between $2 and $3 million. GAP of course did not sanction this work and will resist any responsibility for this effort. As well as helicopters, the Octopus is outfitted with two submersibles that could have carried out this work.

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GAP Adventures' 345-foot expedition ship Expedition replaced the Explorer.

While the merits of this case are debated why not think about a cruise in GAP’s new ship Expedition, commissioned in 2009 to replace the original Explorer. The Expedition cruises the Antarctic by winter and the waters around the British Isles and Svalbard, or Spitsbergen, by summer.

Call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 for further details.

Photos courtesy of Wikipedia and GAP Adventures.