Aranui AraMana

Former name: Aranui 6

Specifications of Aranui AraMana

Year of build2024 new ship
BuilderHuanghai Shipbuilding Co (Weihai, Shandong China)
ClassRo-Pax cruise ship
Ferry route / homeportsHong Kong (China)
Building costXPF 7 billion (USD 65 million / EUR 58 million)
Speed17 kn / 31 km/h / 20 mph
Length (LOA)140 m / 459 ft
Beam (width)22 m / 72 ft
Gross Tonnage14500 gt
Decks with cabins5
Former namesAranui 6
Christened bytba
OwnerCPTM (Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime)
OperatorAranui Cruises

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The 2024-built MS AraMana (initially named "Aranui 6") is a cruise ship currently under construction in China and originally planned to start cargo and passenger shipping operations in 2022-Q2. The vessel class and design are untraditional for Aranui Cruises (CPTM-owned subsidiary and travel brand) as the shipowner company (CPTM) specializes in "cargo cruises" in French Polynesia, on the itinerary route between Tahiti Island (homeport Papeete) and the Marquesas Islands.

Due to the Coronavirus crisis, the vessel's construction was delayed and the inauguration was postponed twice - first to 2023 and later to 2024.

The Aranui 6 vessel (IMO number 9878759), just like the fleetmate Aranui 5, will be French Polynesia-flagged (MMSI tba) and registered as "passenger vessel" under the SOLAS Convention (Safety of Life at Sea), which allows the liner to operate international passenger shipping services.

During the inaugural cruise season, AraMana will be homeported in Hong Kong China. When deployed in the South Pacific Ocean, the ship is homeported in Papeete and visiting Pitcairn Island (UK) and Cook Islands.

Aranui 6 cruise ship AraMana

The shipowner CPTM is a 3rd generation maritime shipping company that operates in French Polynesia exclusively. Established in 1954 by the Wong family (Tahiti), initially, the company was named "Wing Man Hing". its cargo vessels serve French Polynesia for over 6 decades. Originally, the company serviced Tuamotus and Gambiers Archipelagos, conducting freight shipping between the islands and Tahiti.

In 2016, the shipowner CPTM officially replaced the old Aranui 3 (freight-passenger ship launched in 2002) with Aranui 5 (2015-built cargo cruise ship). The ship names "Aranui 2" and "Aranui 4" were never used due to superstitious reasons. The new AraMana cruise ship is bigger (as size and GT-tonnage) and differently designed in comparison to Aranui 5. Aranui 6 is designed as cruise liner" - without the fore-located cargo decks, with a large Sun Deck (with retractable roof cover, swimming pool, 2 jacuzzis, grill-bar, shaded seating and sunbathing areas) and Helideck (midship-topdeck located helipad used in cases of emergency). Both Aranui ships are smaller sized (in comparison to most South Pacific Ocean-based cruise liners) and with smaller draught (just 5,2 m / 17 ft) which allows them to safely navigate in smaller ports and shallow harbor waters.

Aranui 6 cruise ship AraMana

The builder is Huanghai Shipbuilding Co Ltd (1944-founded as Shandong Huanghai Shipyard) at the company's shipyard in Weihai (China's Shandong Province).

Shipboard facilities and amenities

AraMana's signature shipboard facilities include an outdoor theatre (with an open-air stage for live performances), main dining room (full-capacity complimentary restaurant with plush booths), steakhouse (specialty BBQ restaurant), swimming pool with 2 whirlpools and poolside bar-grill, tax-free shopping mall, conference centre (group meeting room), indoor children's playground, library, wellness complex (indoor fitness/gym room, spa treatment rooms for massages, beauty salon, tattoo studio), indoor Observation Lounge, Bar Lounge (Disco Nightclub with dance floor), Amphitheatre (indoor theatre / main show lounge / Cinema), Piano Bar, Casino (gaming lounge with bar). The cruise ship has 4 elevators (passenger lifts) and provides a 5-star luxury level of hotel services.

Public areas are highlighted by a sweeping grand staircase (in the Atrium), spacious walkways, signature Polynesian decorations.


Over 50% of all cruise staterooms (cabins and suites) are with private step-out balconies (accessed from the cabin via floor-ceiling sliding door windows). In-cabin amenities and furniture include large HDTV, double bed (most convertible to twins), headboard, premium bedding, bedside tables (2-door nightstands), wall-mounted reading lamps, pillow menu, LED lighting (ceiling-mounted lights), mirrored vanity (writing desk with chair), lounge area (with sofabed for 3rd/4th passenger), coffee table, sideboard, en-suite bathroom (toilet, glass-enclosed shower, large mirror, single-sink vanity with under-sink storage), individually controlled air-conditioning. The larger-sized suites additionally have a 4-seat dining table.

All balcony staterooms (including all suites) are fitted with deck chairs and tables. The number of cabin categories is 11. For the first time, on AraMana Aranui Cruises introduces the category Grand Suite with Balcony.


Aranui AraMana cruise itineraries vary between 10-12-days and visit new for the company destinations. The ship is all Polynesian-crewed and visits islands not included in Aranui's cargo cruise itineraries - French Polynesia's archipelagos Austral, Gambier, Society and Tuamotus, as well as to Pitcairn Island and Cook Islands.

In the Australs Islands (French Polynesia's southernmost archipelago), AraMana stops at the islands Rapa Iti, Raivavae and Rurutu as part of Aranui's new Cook Islands itinerary. Ship's Society Islands itinerary visits French Polynesia (Bora Bora, Huahine, Moorea, Rangiroa, Tahaa) and Tuamotus (Makatea Atoll).

Aranui Cruises Pitcaim itinerary map (AraMana ship)

Aranui's new "Pitcairn Itinerary" was introduced on April 11, 2020, on Aranui 5.

  • Day 1 - Papeete Tahiti (embarkation/boarding between 7-9 am), departure
  • Day 2 - Anaa Atoll (Tuamotus)
  • Day 3 - Amanu Atoll (Tuamotus)
  • Day 4 (sea day)
  • Day 5 - port Rikitea (Mangareva Island, Gambier Islands, French Polynesia)
  • Day 6 - port Adamstown (Pitcairn Island)
  • Day 7 - Bounty Bay (Pitcairn Island)
  • Day 8 - Aukena Island (Gambier Islands, French Polynesia)
  • Day 9 (sea day)
  • Days 10-11 - Rapa Iti Island (Bass Islands, Austral Islands, French Polynesia)
  • Day 12 - Raivavae Island (Austral Islands, French Polynesia)
  • Day 13 - Papeete Tahiti (arrival at ~5 pm), debarkation

Apart from supplying cargo to the 6 ports in the Marquesas Islands, the Aranui company also operates passenger shipping (cruiseferry) and land excursions/tour service as part of a 14-day roundtrip Papeete itinerary. Aranui ships also stop in Tuamotus (at the islands Takapoto and Rangiroa) before returning to Bora Bora Island on Day 13.

With Aranui 5 in 2021 were introduced the company's first Cook Islands cruise, first Society Islands cruise and a revamped (expanded with the Marquesas) Pitcairn Itinerary. These voyages were also included in AraMana's/Aranui 6's schedule.

  • The 13-day Cook Islands itinerary (Papeete roundtrip) is planned for September 4, 2021, and visits Aitutaki, Rarotonga, Rurutu, Rapa, Raivave and Anaa. The revamped with Tuamotus Pitcairn itinerary visits Hikueru Atoll, Pitcairn Island (Adamstown overnight) and Oeno Island (Pitcairn).
  • The 12-day Society Islands itinerary is also Papeete roundtrip (planned departure May 8, 2021) and visits Rangiroa-Fakarava-Makatea (Tuamotus) and Raiatea-Tahaa-Maupiti-Huahine-Moorea-Bora Bora (Society Islands).

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Unlike the fleetmate Aranui 5 (cargo-passenger vessel), the new AraMana (Aranui 6) is a modern cruise ship designed by SDARI and currently built in China (by Huanghai Shipbuilding Co Ltd). SDARI (Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute, 1964-founded) is one of CSSC's (China State Shipbuilding Corporation) three R&D (research and development) companies specializing in marine and offshore engineering projects - together with MARIC (Marine Design and Research Institute of China, 1950-founded) and GUMECO (Guangzhou Marine Engineering Corporation, 1974-founded).

CSSC is one of China's two largest shipbuilding corporations - together with CSIC (China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation). Both were founded in 1999 and headquartered in Beijing China. While CSSC's shipbuilding activities are in eastern and southern China, CSIC's shipbuilding operations are in northern and western China.

The Aranui 6 shipbuilding order was officially signed on August 22, 2019. The newbuild will be classed by Bureau Veritas SA (1828-founded international marine certification agency headquartered in Neuilly-sur-Seine, Paris City, France). Aranui 6 is registered as "passenger vessel" under the SOLAS Convention (Safety of Life at Sea), allowing it to operate international cruise shipping services. The vessel also complies with the SOLAS regulation SRtP (Safe Return to Port) which was adopted by IMO (International Maritime Organization) in 2010.

CPTM's AraMana, like the 2015-launched Aranui 5, will be French Polynesia-flagged. The cruise ship has endurance 6000 nautical miles (6900 mi / 11100 km), max passenger capacity 280 (plus 119 crew), electric propulsion system based on 4 diesel-generator sets (driving 2 full-slewing propellers). The vessel is equipped with a fully submerged cabin water mist system - a technology that replaces the traditional CO2 firefighting and stationary water mist systems.

Vessel's shipbuilding cost is ~XPF 7 billion (French Pacific Francs), or ~USD 64,5 million (~EUR 58 million). On July 31, 2019, French Polynesia's council of ministers granted local tax exemption for XPF 3,3 billion (USD 30,4 M / EUR 27,3 M) to the Aranu 6 project.

On January 21, 2020, Aranui Cruises officially changed the cruise ship's name from "Aranui 6" to "AraMana". Company's decision was explained with the vessel design - being a typical cruise liner rather than cargo-passenger vessel - like the fleetmates Aranui 3 and Aranui 5.