Norwegian Cruise Line on Thursday took delivery of its largest ship to date, the 164,600 gross ton Norwegian Escape.
The delivery from German-shipbuilder Meyer Werft took place during a ceremony in Bremerhaven, Germany following a building period of just 17 months.
Norwegian Escape is the first ship in the company’s new Breakaway Plus Class, the largest and most advanced vessels in the company’s fleet to date. Delivery a second vessel is anticipated for spring of 2017. In July 2014, NCL ordered two additional Breakaway Plus ships with delivery scheduled in the second quarter 2018 and the fourth quarter 2019.
“Norwegian Escape’s arrival marks a true evolution for our brand – we’ve capitalized on the best of our Breakaway Class ships and taken freedom and flexibility to the next level with this incredible new ship,” said Andy Stuart, Norwegian Cruise Line’s president and chief operating officer. “Once again, the team at MEYER WERFT, along with our new build and operations teams, and all of the ship’s officers and crew have done a remarkable job and we cannot wait to welcome guests on board this spectacular new vessel.”
“We are thrilled to deliver the first in Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway Plus class,” said Bernard Meyer, managing partner with MEYER WERFT. “Norwegian Escape is the newest and most advanced cruise vessel on the seas and we are proud of the team that worked diligently to design and build her.”
The ship, the largest in Norwegian’s fleet of 14 ships, will carry 4,200 guests each week from Miami to Caribbean destinations including St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands; Tortola, British Virgin Islands; and Nassau, Bahamas. Norwegian Escape’s signature hull artwork is designed by marine wildlife artist and champion of ocean conservation, Guy Harvey.
From Bremerhaven, the vessel will set sail for Hamburg for the start of her European inaugural festivities, followed a two-night stop in Southampton before making the crossing to her year-round homeport of Miami on October 29.
The ship will be christened in Miami on November 9.
The first two ship’s in the Breakaway Plus class were ordered for euro 1.4 billion, NCL has said previously. The second two ships were ordered for euro 1.6 billion combined.