Hebridean Sky Review and Specifications
Specifications of Hebridean Sky
|Year built||1991 / Age : 27|
|Flag state||Marshall Islands|
|Builder||Nuovi Cantieri Apuania (Marina di Carrara, Italy)|
|Class||ice-strengthened expedition ship|
|Speed||17 kn / 31 kph / 20 mph|
|Length (LOA)||90 m / 295 ft|
|Beam (width)||15 m / 49 ft|
|Gross Tonnage||4200 gt|
|Passengers||114 - 120|
|Decks with cabins||5|
|Former names||Renaissance VII (Renaissance Cruises), Regina Renaissance, Renai I, Sun, Island Sun, Corinthian II, MV Sea Explorer|
Review of Hebridean Sky
MS Hebridean Sky (former "Sea Explorer") belongs to the fleet of Noble Caledonia, together with MS Island Sky and MS Caledonian Sky. The company acquired the vessel in early 2016 after a planned dry-dock refurbishment. The ship was originally built for the Renaissance Cruises line (defunct) and launched in 1991 under the name "Renaissance VII".
History - construction & ownership
The 4,200-ton, 114-passenger cruise ship Hebridean Sky was under construction at the same time and in the same Italian yard as the other Noble Caledonia ships (Island Sky, and Caledonian Sky). The vessel offers to its passengers wine at lunch and dinner, a high-brow guest speaker programme and in-depth excursions included in the price of the ticket.
After changing ownership and names several times, in June 2014 AP Touring (Australian cruise line) in a partnership with the UK-based travel company Noble Caledonia announced that they had acquired the vessel. In October 2014, MV Sea Explorer joined the Noble Caledonia fleet, together with the other 2 former Renaissance sister ships - MS Caledonian Sky and MS Island Sky. The vessel had a drydock refit and refurbishment in April 2016 and was renamed to "MS Hebridean Sky" in 2017. Just like her sisters, the cruise ship is now fully equipped with Zodiac crafts allowing passengers to get the most out of the remote places in Scotland.
Cruise itinerary program
Hebridean Sky itinerary program is based on cruises to Patagonia and the Chilean Fjords from Ushuaia to Valparaiso/Guayaquil; Panama Canal cruises; exploration tours to the islands of England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland.
Hebridean Sky is a spacious, yet intimate, all-suite expedition vessel. Following her 2016 renovation, all Hebridean Sky 59 suites are outward-facing. Each is at least 225 sq.feet (21 sq.meters) and offers a choice of either queen-sized or twin- bed, flat-screen TV, sitting area with a sofa-bed, mini-bar, independent temperature controls, marble-appointed en-suite bathroom. 23 of the suites have private balconies.
Shipboard dining options - Food and Drinks
With a maximum of just over 100 guests and only one sitting, the cuisine onboard Hebridean Sky is of consistent superior quality. Where possible, the chefs obtain local produce or buy the catch of the day from passing fishing boats. Pre-dinner canapes and afternoon tea take place every day in either the lounge or out on the Lido Deck.
When dining, guests are able to choose their seating arrangements, whether that be joining a table of 4 to 6 other passengers outside on the Lido Deck or whether enjoying meals in the à la carte restaurant. Those travelling alone are seated with other like minded travelers. In the main stylish dining room, breakfast is buffet-style, with certain items cooked to order. Lunch and dinner are an à la carte 5-course affair. A selection of wines are included with both meals to further enhance dining experience.
Shipboard entertainment options - Fun and Sport
The beautifully designed public spaces of Hebridean Sky include a large lounge with piano, stylish bar, sun deck, enclosed panoramic viewing deck, library, and small gym. The ship carries a fleet of Zodiacs, available for accessing remote shores and islands and equipped to offer scuba diving.