Earlier this year, Cruise Arabia & Africa took a look at the ten most expensive cruise ship concepts ever conceived, Regent Seven Seas Explorer was included in the list because she is astronomically expensive relative to her modest size. Now, we’ve just received word that she is officially being built.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises confirmed this week that the first pieces of steel have been cut for Seven Seas Explorer, marking the start to her construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Genoa – the modern-day equivalent to a keel-laying ceremony.
The event was attended by Kunal Kamlani, president of Regent Seven Seas Cruises, and Gabriele Cocco, senior executive vice president of merchant ships for Fincantieri. The ceremony culminated in a Champagne toast and confetti-filled celebration.
“Seven Seas Explorer will surpass the current standard in luxury cruising, offering a new level of grandeur throughout the ship from its lavish suites to its elegant public spaces and gourmet restaurants,” Kamlani said in an apparent reference to the USD $450-million expected cost of the cruise ship’s construction.
To put the cost of her construction in perspective, it is the same amount of money Costa Cruises spent building Costa Concordia, a ship that was much longer, carried more than four times as many passengers and was twice the size in terms of gross tonnage.
The 54,000-gross ton Seven Seas Explorer will carry 750 passengers and is scheduled for launch in summer 2016. Regent Seven Seas Cruises have indicated that reservations for the cruise ship’s maiden voyage and inaugural cruise season will be opened in early 2015.
The ceremonial first piece of steel will be incorporated into the ship’s owner’s suite.