Swan Hellenic announced the keel laying of its SH Vega, the 2nd of 3 purpose-designed ice-class expedition ships that Helsinki Shipyard is building for the cultural expedition cruise pioneer.
The keel of the newbuild was laid in accordance with seafaring tradition and current COVID restrictions, receiving the outfitted and painted block 302 which arrived at the yard last weekend.
The official ceremony included the customary placement of coins, with Jonas Packalen - Helsinki Shipyard Project Manager, Jukka Hujanen - Lloyd´s Register representative, and Victor Olersky - Helsinki Shipyard Chairman, doing the honours.
Named after the first ship to navigate the Arctic Northeast Passage, the stylish new vessel represents the next generation of polar expedition ships, having been designed for worldwide cruising with a focus on high-latitude areas.
SH Vega will boast a PC5 ice-strengthened hull, a 5-megawatt diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system with selective catalytic reduction, and 3-megawatt max. battery package. At LOA 113 m, the vessel has been designed to explore the most inaccessible places in the world.
Providing 5-star accommodation for 152 passengers in 76 staterooms and suites, the majority of which with large balconies, SH Vega is to be operated by an onboard team of 120 crew to provide high level of personal service.
The first ship in the series, SH Minerva, is scheduled for delivery in November 2021, while SH Vega is due early 2022. The 3rd ship, which will be larger than her sisterships, is scheduled for delivery months later, towards the end of next year.