Fincantieri has already built for the French company 4 cruise vessels in Ancona Italy - Le Boreal, L’Austral, Le Soleal, Le Lyrial (delivered in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015). VARD in 2018-2019 built 4 “PONANT Explorer” class ships. The last two of the series will be delivered in 2020. VARD also is building PONANT's first hybrid electric LNG-powered ship - Le Commandant Charcot, to be delivered in 2021.
The newbuilds, due for delivery both in 2022, are expected to represent an evolution of the “PONANT Explorers” class ships. They will be operated in the South Pacific for Paul Gauguin Cruises as well as the eponymous ship recently acquired by PONANT, bringing the number of vessels under this brand to three. They will be constructed by VARD group’s production network and will be about 11.000 GT with the capacity to accommodate around 230 passengers.
They will be hybrid electric as well as equipped with cutting-edge technology in terms of population protection and environment, featuring the market's most extensive battery-package application, allowing smokeless operation in ports, at anchor, and in environmentally sensitive areas.