In these days of cancelled sailings, delayed inaugurals and postponed launches, it’s almost unheard of to hear of a new ship…but today we welcome the intimate Silver Origin, the latest addition to Silversea Cruises’ luxury fleet and, with just 100 passengers and remote and uncrowded destinations, the ultimate way to dip your toe back into cruising.
Galapagos Islands Cruise Ship
Designed specifically for sailing the Galapagos Islands, this 5,800 grt, all-suite, all-balcony expedition yacht overcame both small hurdles and giant obstacles before it was able to head on March 26th from DeHoop shipyard—a small 130-year-old shipbuilding facility located in a remote corner of Holland– to Rotterdam.
With challenges that ranged from water levels on the Waal River (too shallow in November and December for float out and too high in January and February) to a worldwide pandemic, Silver Origin was rewarded with super successful sea trials off the coast of Goeree-Overflakkee on April 27th-29th.
Included in these sea trials was a historic world first triggered by the Covid-19 travel ban which prevented sub-contractors from reaching the ship: A remotely-operated dynamic positioning acceptance test. The test, which evaluates the ship’s ability to remain within 10 cm of a fixed point without dropping anchor so as not to damage the Galapagos’ delicate seabed ecosystems, was tuned and calibrated by a third party in St. Petersburg, Russia (over 1,000 miles away!) through near-instant communications using a headset and camera while the ship’s captain served as onboard lookout.
Curating a Luxury Cruise Experience
Like all of Silversea’s expedition vessels, Silver Origin will bring luxury to the expedition experience with butler service in all suite categories (the only ship in the Galapagos to do so) and accommodations that range from a 269 square-foot Classic Veranda to a 1,076 square-foot Owner’s Suite.
Select categories will feature an ocean-view bathtub and shower that may be accessed from balconies and an innovative horizon balcony which transforms this into an indoor seating area at the touch of a button. A choice of dining venues are designed to connect guests with the soul of the destination, sourcing native ingredients from independent suppliers as well as local farmers and fisherman.
Silver Origin will begin a schedule of 7-day Galapagos Island sailings on August 22, 2020.
Judi Cuervo is a New York City native who fell in love with cruising in 1976 during her first sailing aboard Carnival Cruises’ Mardi Gras. Twenty years later, she began her freelance cruise writing gig and, since that time, has covered mass market, ultra-premium, riverboat and expedition ships for regional, national and international publications as well as cruise websites.