SunStone Ships and China Merchants Industry Holdings (CMIH) have signed a framework agreement for the construction of four expedition cruise vessels ꟷ with options for an additional six vessels.
CMIH has entered into an agreement with Ulstein Design & Solutions, who will supply the vessel’s design and equipment package and supervise the vessels’ construction.
CMIH has also entered into an agreement with Mäkinen, Finland. Mäkinen will establish a cabin assembly plant and interior workshop at the shipyard’s facilities, and will be responsible for all interior spaces on the newbuilds. They will move a project team to China and set up factory facilities at the shipyard.
The hotel design of the new fleet will be done by Tomas Tillberg Design International, with whom SunStone has worked with for many years.
SunStone said in a statement: “The combination of five companies in this project, each having vast experience within their market, makes for the building of highly advanced and quality expedition vessels.”
The 104m long vessels will be classed by Bureau Veritas and will be Ice Class 1A.
The vessels will be part of the SunStone Fleet and chartered to new and existing clients.
SunStone is the largest tonnage provider of expedition vessels to the cruise and travel industry, with an existing fleet of 10 small cruise vessels on charter to companies within the expedition market. The company said this new order “positions the company as the leading tonnage provider in this segment of the cruise industry”.