Silversea Cruises has confirmed it expects to take delivery of its new Galapagos Islands-based ship, Silver Origin, at the end of May, around a month later than originally slated.
The vessel has been under construction by the Dutch shipyard De Hoop, which itself was forced to adopt rigid safety procedures to overcome challenges arising from unusually shallow and high water levels since late 2019 and into Q1 2020, as well as the onset of lockdown and social distancing laws due to the coronavirus.
Over three days in late April, Silver Origin underwent its sea trials off the coast of Goeree-Overflakkee near Rotterdam, where the ship’s captain had the chance to put the vessel through its paces and enabling the shipyard to demonstrate proper operation of its machinery systems.
Silver Origin’s sea trials included a world-first during the dynamic positioning acceptance test which was remotely tuned and calibrated by a third party in St. Petersburg, Russia – 1,800 kilometres away. The technology means in the future dynamic positioning systems could possibly be fine-tuned by engineers on the land rather than onboard the ship.
Silversea President Roberto Martinoli said the efforts of the professionals at the De Hoop shipyard “were extraordinary and represent the resilience of European industry.”
“Silver Origin looks magnificent. Our pioneering new ship represents the dawning of a new age of travel in the Galapagos Islands and we look forward to welcoming guests aboard when the time is right.”
The finishing touches, including the installation of some custom furniture which was delayed in production due to C19, are now being applied to Silver Origin, ahead of the ship’s delivery in the coming weeks.
Martinoli confirmed that the delays in the production of the ship have resulted in a number of cancelled departures. Originally earmarked to debut on 17 July 2020, Silver Origin will now make its inaugural sailing of the Galapagos on 22 August 2020, pending certification in Ecuador where the ship will be registered.
More on Silver Origin and the ship’s scheduled voyages here.