Meyer Werft Wins Order to Build Residential Yacht Cruise Ship

Meyer to build residental yacht cruise ship Njord
Rendering of the Njord (Ocean Residences)

Published Jul 30, 2021 1:39 PM by The Maritime Executive

Meyer Werft and Ocean Residents Development Ltd. confirmed that a contract has been signed, subject to financing, for the construction of a new resident yacht cruise ship. It represents only the second order for a new cruise ship since the beginning of the pandemic and is an important win for Meyer Werft which is looking to increase utilization for the yard in Papenberg, Germany in 2024 and 2025.

Named Njord, the vessel would consist of 117 residential apartments that will be sold to individuals who will become the owners of the vessel. In similar arrangements, the buyers design their staterooms apartments in their individual styles and the cruise ship roams the globe to destinations selected by the owners. 

Designs call for the vessel to be one of the most advanced passenger ships yet built. It will be powered by dual-fuel engines, with the ability to run on LNG or traditional MGO fuel, and to future proof the design the engines and fuel tanks will also be ready for easy conversion to take advantage of future fuels, such as ammonia. The ship will also be fitted with a hybrid battery system which with the motors will provide a top speed of 21 knots. There will also be a modern heat recovery system and advanced energy management systems.

Another unique feature of the vessel is that it will be equipped to conduct scientific and oceanographic research during its travels. Ocean Residences envisioned that the cruise ship will collaborate with oceanographic research organizations and scientific groups with Njord funding research projects.

The target delivery date for the Njord is 2025. According to the announcement the vessel is designed to be 84,800 gross tons, which would make it the largest residence cruise ship. The ship will be approximately 950 feet long, with a total capacity for passengers and crew of 1,000 people.

"This is another very important step for securing the location in Papenburg,” said Thomas Weigend, Managing Director of Meyer Werft. “With the new order, we are expanding our portfolio of ship types and can thus also improve the previously difficult prospects, especially for the years 2024/2025. This order is urgently needed to ensure that the decline in capacity utilization will not be even greater than 40 percent in these years. Many different measures and new orders are absolutely necessary for the company's program for the future." 

This week, Meyer also announced that it had reached an agreement with the shipyard’s union for a voluntary reduction of more than 10 percent of the workforce at the yard in Papenburg. Since the shutdown of the cruise industry due to the pandemic, only one new cruise ship order has been placed and it went to Meyer to build a 52,000 gross ton ship for NYK. Meyer extended the delivery dates for existing orders but has been continuing to seek ways to raise productivity and lower costs as well as to diversify their operation into other types of vessels.