Vard Delivers Coral Geographer Expedition Cruise Ship
The second expedition cruise ship being built by the Vard shipyard in Vietnam has been handed over to Coral Expeditions of Australia. Unlike many of the cruise ships that have been delivered in the past year, the Coral Geographer, due to her size and unique operations, will be able to enter service at the end of this month.
The vessel was developed by Vard Design in Norway in cooperation with the cruise line and is a sister ship to the Coral Adventurer which was delivered to the line in 2019. The Coral Geographer has been specially tailored for personalized expedition cruises to remote and exotic destinations in Asia and Oceania. The on-board environment is geared for daily shore expeditions, lectures, and briefings, while the ship is also outfitted to a high standard of comfort.
Measuring 307 feet in length, the Coral Geographer has accommodations for a maximum of 120 passengers although the cruise line currently markets the ship with a capacity of 99 guests. The vessel features public areas with ample open deck space and large staterooms with private balconies. To emphasize the ship’s Australian operations, original artwork sourced from indigenous communities visited by the company’s fleet was used to decorate the interiors.
“This is the second ship we are building with Vard. We are pleased with the result,” said Mark Fifield, Group General Manager of Coral Expeditions. “We would like to place on record our deep appreciation for the professionalism and commitment of all the Vard staff involved in this project.”
The Coral Geographer was built at Vard Vung Tau, Vard’s shipyard in Vietnam. She was ordered in June 2019 as part of an ongoing fleet expansion program. Three months earlier, Vard had delivered the Coral Adventurer, the first of the exploration cruise ships for Coral Expeditions.
As an all-Australian firm, operating with an Australian crew, Coral Expeditions was permitted to resume cruise service in January 2021 with its Tasmanian summer season. The Coral Geographer will sail on her maiden voyage at the end of March with a 19-night cruise from Cairns to Broome. She will then be cruising in the Kimberly region of Australia along with her sister ship.
Vard Vung Tau, which built the cruise ship, is an advanced and fully integrated facility that undertakes the entire shipbuilding process, from hull construction to final vessel outfitting. The company was established in 2007, with the yard opening for business in 2010. Since then, it has delivered a range of offshore and specialized vessels.