Compagnie du Ponant
Le Ponant Review and Specifications
Specifications of Le Ponant
|Year built||1991 / Age : 28|
|Builder||SFCN Shipyard (Villeneuve-la-Garenne, France)|
|Class||3-masted motor sailing ship|
|Building cost||USD 50 million|
|Owner||Groupe Artemis (Financiere Pinault)|
|Operator||Compagnie du Ponant Cruises|
|Speed||14 kn / 26 kph / 16 mph|
|Length (LOA)||88 m / 289 ft|
|Beam (width)||11 m / 36 ft|
|Gross Tonnage||1189 gt|
|Decks with cabins||3|
Review of Le Ponant
Launched in 1991, the Le Ponant yacht is a charming and intimate luxury sailing cruise ship. The 64-passenger vessel is a luxury yacht managed by Compagnie du Ponant. The three-masted sail ship has 32 cabins. Built in France, the ship entered service in 1991. It was designed for French vacation travelers, as well as for North American under charter operations (cultural and expedition-style cruises).
History - construction and ownership
Compagnie du Ponant (CDP) is a French cruise shipping company founded in April 1988 by former French Merchant Navy officers. All Ponant ships are France-flagged. The company specializes in premium adventure cruise travel targeting the French-speaking source market with all-inclusive deals. Most of CDP's fleet is based in Antarctica (December through March). All these mega-yachts offer modern amenities, premium service by highly-traned staff and crew, 5-star hotel amenities onboard. Exotic, offbeat itineraries visit popular travel destinations worldwide, including Caribbean, Baltic, Mediterranean, Southeast Asia, South America, Australia.
Somali pirate attack April 4, 2008: On this date Le Ponant sailing only with the crew was attacked by Somali pirates. All people on board were taken hostage. The incident happened in the Gulf of Aden while the yacht was sailing from the Seychelles to the Mediterranean. Despite being in pirate hands, Le Ponant was under constant surveillance by the French forces and a Canadian CH-124 helicopter from HMCS Charlottetown. Hopefully the pirates decided to release the hostages 8 days later after a paid ransom. French helicopters did not abandon the yacht and tracked the pirates to a village. The bandits made an attempt to escape in the desert but a sniper disabled their vehicle and all 6 attackers were captured.
Cruise itinerary program
Le Ponant itinerary program is based on luxury Mediterranean cruises with departures from Nice. The itineraries offer calls at smaller ports on the French Riviera coast and Corsica.
The ship has 4 passenger decks, including a sun deck, with 32 outside staterooms (all staterooms are Oceanview, 3 triple, 29 with king size bed) in 2 grades.
Shipboard dining options - Food and Drinks
Le Ponant cruise ship features two restaurants on board. Karukera Dining Room offers French cuisine. The outdoor restaurant Le Diamant (Diamond Room) is suitable for more informal meals.
Shipboard entertainment options - Fun and Sport
Le Ponant is registered in France and her sails are taking 16,140 sq ft. The number of the crew members (French and Filipino nationality) is 30. This unique luxury yacht has two lounges: the Emeraude Lounge (main entertainment lounge), and the Saphir Lounge (a lecture hall that provides internet computers). Other public spaces include the Sick bay and Observatory. Why choose Le Ponant for sailing? At first - because of luxury. The yacht is designed with respect to traditions and French style.
Le Ponant wiki
Le Ponant yacht is a 3-masted, commercially operated luxury cruise yacht, also available for private charters. Her passengers tend to be European (mostly French), though charter cruises through North American operators appeal to English-speaking crowd (USA and Canada).
Le Ponant cruise ship offers intimate onboard spaces with convivial atmosphere. Reflecting the vessel's luxury rates, service on board is superior, and highly personalized. The yacht boasts a vast Sun Deck area from which guests can observe its 1500 sq.meters of sails. There is a platform above sea level for water sports.
Cuba cruise itineraries 2017-2018
Compagnie du Ponant in 2017 and 2018 will offer cruises to Cuba in the period January through April (2017 and 2018). Operated by the Le Ponant yacht, the Cuban itineraries are themed "People-to-People Cultural Exchange". Le Ponant yacht cruises to Cuba leaving from Miami Florida, with ports of call Havana and Santiago de Cuba.
NEW Solidsail ship technology by Silenseas
In early-March 2018, STX France revealed a carbon-free cruise vessel design (named Silenseas) using wind as main power source. The new wind-power technology was trialled on the yacht Le Ponant, on which one of the existing sails was replaced and the new technology tested.
STX France's project was something never done before. The carbon-free sailship design is an alternative to the popular hybrid powered vessels. Hydrogen and fuel cells are still expensive, plus hydrogen is not available in most ports.
The technology uses company's patented "Solidsail" concept. The sails (total size up to 1200 m2 / 12900 ft2) are mounted on masts, but without any ropes or cables. The STX France design has 3 masts and 3 rigs, with masts rotating in order to adapt the sails to the wind. The new design also includes latest hybrid propulsion technologies, combining wind with LNG, and potentially batteries, solar panels and fuel cells.
The sailing ship can reach speeds of 12 knots (14 mph / 22 kph) under sail in 15 knots (17 mph / 28 kph) winds. In winds over 15 knots, vessel's propellers will be used, acting as turbine that draws power from the sails. On Caribbean Sea routes, the new technology could reduce propulsion energy by 60%.
STX France's Solidsail-ship design was developed for 3 vessel sizes, the biggest being 15,000 GT tons vessel with LOA length 190 m (620 ft) and 150 passenger staterooms. The French shipbuilding company started research in sail propulsion in 2009, Silenseas has technoly patents (2009 and 2017) for the new sail. The unit is made from fibreglass, carbon and epoxy-resin panels.
Solidsail system debuted on October 31, 2018, on the yacht Le Ponant. The new Solid Sail (sized over 300 m2) was construvted at Chantiers de l’Atlantique (Saint-Nazaire) and installed in Marseille. As the three-masted Le Ponant deprted from France to Cape Verde Islands, then embarked on Transatlantic crossing to Cuba, testing the new sail for 1 year.
Le Ponant - user reviews and comments
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Le Ponant ship related cruise news
- Cruise Industry
The only French-owned cruise line and global leader in luxury expedition voyages, Ponant, launched its new, Winter 2019-2020 program, featuring 114...September 19, 2018
- Cruise Industry
Ponant announced it returns to Cuba for a 2nd season with a cruise scheduled to run between January 25-February 3, 2019. Passengers who book early...May 28, 2018
- Cruise Industry
On March 3, 2018, STX France revealed a carbon-free cruise vessel design (named Silenseas) using wind as main power source. The new wind-power...March 12, 2018
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Other Compagnie du Ponant cruise ships
Le Ponant Itineraries
The below listed Le Ponant cruise prices on itineraries are only indicative and Per Person (in US dollars, based on double occupancy). These are the cheapest Compagnie du Ponant fares on the ship’s lowest category cabins available for booking. Cruise fares typically change with departure dates approaching, last minute deals, discounts, promotions, independent travel agency offers.
|Date||Cruise Name||Departure Port||Price from|
|2018 Nov 17||9 days, one-way from Praia to Fort-de-France||Praia||$1539|
|2018 Nov 18||7 days, round-trip Cape Verde Islands||Praia||$4174|
|2018 Dec 06||10 days, one-way from Philipsburg to Havana||Philipsburg||$4870|
|2019 Feb 15||10 days, one-way from Santiago de Cuba to Fort-de-France||Santiago de Cuba||$4532|
|2019 Apr 02||23 days, one-way from Havana to Valletta||Havana||$3670|
|2019 Apr 12||7 days, round-trip Cape Verde Islands||Praia||$4819|
|2019 Apr 19||5 days, one-way from Praia to Santa Cruz de Tenerife||Praia||$806|
|2019 Apr 24||7 days, one-way from Santa Cruz de Tenerife to Valencia||Santa Cruz de Tenerife||$2804|
|2019 May 01||8 days, one-way from Valencia to Valletta||Valencia||$4694|
|2019 Jul 18||7 days, round-trip The Great Corsican loop||Villefranche-sur-Mer||$3807|
|2019 Jul 25||7 days, round-trip The Great Corsican loop||Villefranche-sur-Mer||$3807|
|2019 Aug 01||7 days, round-trip The Great Corsican loop||Villefranche-sur-Mer||$3807|
|2019 Aug 08||7 days, round-trip The Great Corsican loop||Villefranche-sur-Mer||$3807|
|2019 Nov 08||3 days, one-way from Marseillan to Valletta||Marseillan||$2195|
|2019 Nov 11||8 days, one-way from Valletta to Piraeus||Valletta||$4326|
|2019 Nov 14||16 days, round-trip Falkland Islands, South Georgia and Antarctica||Buenos Aires||$9923|
|2019 Nov 19||8 days, one-way from Piraeus to Antalya||Piraeus||$4326|
|2019 Nov 27||8 days, round-trip Discovering the Levant||Antalya||$3135|
|2019 Dec 05||9 days, one-way from Antalya to Aqaba||Antalya||$5903|
|2019 Dec 14||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$4595|
|2019 Dec 21||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$4595|
|2019 Dec 28||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$5321|
|2020 Jan 04||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$4595|
|2020 Jan 11||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$4595|
|2020 Jan 18||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$4595|
|2020 Feb 18||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$3303|
|2020 Feb 25||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$3303|
|2020 Mar 03||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$3303|
|2020 Mar 10||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$3303|
|2020 Mar 17||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$3303|
|2020 Mar 24||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$3303|
|2020 Mar 31||7 days, one-way from Eilat to Aqaba||Eilat||$5070|
|2020 Mar 31||9 days, one-way from Aqaba to Antalya||Aqaba||$5070|