Small ship expedition line Atlas Ocean Voyages is accelerating the expansion of its Antarctic fleet a year earlier than originally planned with the addition of the 198-passenger World Voyager.
Launched in 2020, World Voyager has been sailing for Nicko Cruises which is owned by Portugal-based Mystic Investment Holding. Mystic is also the parent company of Atlas Ocean Voyages which is headquartered in Fort Lauderdale. The vessel is undergoing a style refresh before joining the Atlas fleet in fall 2023. It will be the sister ship of ice-class vessels World Navigator, launched in 2021, World Traveller which set sail in 2022 and World Seeker which is set to debut in 2024.
The yacht expedition line offers polar expeditions plus sailings to the Mediterranean, northern Europe and British Isles, South America, Holy Land and Egypt.
World Voyager has six cabin categories situated across three of the six passenger decks. All cabins are outside facing and accommodations lead in with 12 porthole cabins on deck 3 that measure 185 square feet. There are four 240-square-foot balcony cabins on deck 6 that sleep up to three and are offered as family cabins. All the other cabins are double occupancy and can be configured with double or twin beds.
The majority of cabins, numbering 48, are 215-square-foot cabins with walk-out verandas that measure an additional 55 square feet. These cabins are located on decks 5 and 6. On the same decks are 24 French balcony cabins, with a floor-to-ceiling sliding windows, that measure 270 square feet.
All cabins are equipped with a closet, refrigerator, TV, shower, L'Occitane toiletries, hair dryer and robes. Room service is also available in all cabin categories. Decor is based on a traditional maritime design with rich wood veneers complemented by contemporary furnishings and classic artwork.
There are three types of suites. There are four Superior Suites on decks 5 and 6 which measure 280 square feet and have large 100-square foot balconies. These suites have a separate bedroom and living area, two TVs and a walk-in closet. The balcony is furnished with a table, two chairs and two loungers.
On deck 5 are a pair of two-room Deluxe Suites which are 335 square feet with a 110-square-foot balcony and similar amenities to the Superior Suites with the addition of a double sink unit. The largest staterooms on the ship are the four 355-square-foot Owner's Suites, with verandas measuring 110 square feet, which are also on decks 5 and six. These are the only cabins on the ship with a bathtub as well as a shower.
The refresh will see the ship redecorated in a Scandinavian style with light ash wood tones and marble accents throughout accommodations and social spaces. Atlas Ocean Voyages says this will create an open and airy atmosphere. The ship's main dining room will be renamed Madeira in a nod to the Portuguese heritage of Mystic Investment Holding. Similarly, the lecture hall where expedition team members host illustrated enrichment talks will be named Ferdinand Magellan Auditorium after the famed explorer. In addition to a new navy blue livery the existing lido grill will become 7-Aft Grill, the main lounge will be renamed Atlas Lounge, the forward-facing observation lounge will become the Dome, and the "grab and go" dining venue will be named Paula's Pantry. Amenities on the ship include swimming pool, hot tubs, a spa and fitness room, mud room for changing into expedition gear and a fleet of Zodiacs.
World Voyager fares cover shore tours, all drinks including craft beers and specialty coffees, Wi-Fi, gratuities and medical evacuation insurance.
Constructed at the West Sea shipyard in Portugal, World Voyager is fitted with advanced equipment for comfortable and safe expeditions. Like its two siblings, the vessel is a Polar Category C and Ice Class 1B certified vessel and incorporates 3D forward-looking sonar (FLS) technology to detect underwater hazards, obstacles, and shallows. The state-of-the-art system enables the ship to navigate ice fields along with small harbors and rivers that are inaccessible to larger vessels.
The vessel's first sailing for Atlas Ocean Voyages is a nine-night round trip from Ushuaia, Argentina, departing on November 8, 2023. The sailing will include a navigation of Drake Passage and visit to the South Shetland Islands followed by "Captain's Choice" ports of call in Antarctica which are based on weather and sailing conditions
The addition of World Voyager has enabled Atlas Ocean Voyages to offer fly and cruise expeditions for the first time. These vacations will include air departures from Punta Arenas, Chile -- removing the need to cross Drake Passage with its unpredictable sea conditions -- with direct charter flights to Chile's Eduardo Frei Montalva on King George Island, Antarctica.
World Voyager will sail on two new five-day round trips from King George Island and four new one-way seven-night voyages from King George Island or Ushuaia, Argentina. The one-way expeditions include charter flights from Punta Arenas to King George Island and Buenos Aires to Ushuaia. Additionally, fares include a pre-cruise hotel night on all expeditions and a post-cruise hotel night on all journeys ending in Punta Arenas. World Voyager will also sail on nine- to 11-night round trip cruises from Ushuaia.
The ship is 9,934 gross tons and carries 198 passengers at full occupancy with 109 crew.