The 12,499-ton Minerva is at Lloyd Werft for a 83-day extensive refit.
After 15 years in service, owners Arctica Adventure & Cruise Shipping Ltd are having the 135-meter long cruise ship converted for challenging future operation
On February 27th next year, the new-look “Minerva” is due to leave Bremerhaven and head back to Southampton, transformed both internally and externally.
She used to be called Alexander von Humboldt and Explorer 11 and was also called Minerva once before then renamed Saga Pearl and finally renamed Minerva again.
In her relatively short 15-year life, the cruise ship, delivered in April 1996 by the T. Mariotti Shipyard in Genoa, has had several owners. Now she faces her first really big conversion at Lloyd Werft and it will take her into a new class of cruise ships.
British passengers in particular will be able to enjoy the changes because after her conversion Minerva will mainly serve the UK market for tour operator All Leisure.
For Lloyd Werft Managing Director Rüdiger Pallentin, this comprehensive and expensive job is, above all else, a symbol of the “competence of Lloyd Werft in complex specialised shipbuilding”.
That’s true not only of work on Deck 9, which is being made bigger, wider and is getting a new superstructure, but also of work on Deck 8, where 20 suites are being enlarged and balconies added, while 12 cabins are being upgraded with balconies.
On the Fifth Deck six cabins are giving way to a new Beauty Centre and Fitness Area. In addition an on-board sauna is being taken out of operation so that the area covered by the Shackleton Bar can be extended. The Promenade Deck on Deck 8 is being lengthened to create more sunbathing areas for passengers. Also on the program is bathroom renovation in 150 standard cabins which will, at the same time, also get improved air-conditioning units.
However, the work being undertaken at Lloyd Werft does not only concern passenger comfort. A lot is also being carried out in the shipbuilding sector. Two new crankshafts complete with propellers are being fitted while the ship is in dock. This work is being carried out in conjunction with the installation of a Rolls Royce Promas integrated propeller and rudder system which optimises water flow between propellers and rudders and thus reduces fuel consumption. The existing old stern thruster on the ship is also scheduled to be removed and replaced with a new Voith stern thruster unit.
With such a comprehensive yard program planned it’s not surprising that Minerva will also get a new external outfit. When she leaves Lloyd Werft on February 27th she will be sporting a new royal blue livery.