Copenhagen, 3 August, 2023 – EXPLORA I, the first ship to join the fleet of Explora Journeys, the luxury lifestyle brand of the MSC Group, has commenced her maiden journey on August 1, for a seven-night sailing that will take guests through the majestic landscapes of Lerwick, Shetland Islands and Kirkwall, Orkney before heading to Reykjavik, Iceland.
The first in a series of upcoming itineraries which will span three continents, this northern European journey, has been designed to emphasise the brand’s ‘Ocean State of Mind’ philosophy with immersive experiences that aim to reward guests physically, intellectually and spiritually. Along with the on-board experience, this also includes activities like exploring Copenhagen’s beguiling waterways by kayak, discovering Shetland through its heritage pony breed, and an overnight stay in Iceland to explore the soul-enriching sites inside the Golden Circle.
Michael Ungerer, CEO Explora Journeys said “It is our absolute honour to welcome the very first guests onboard our extraordinary ship and share this special moment with them as we embark on the maiden journey of EXPLORA I from Copenhagen. Our guests will be able to experience the very best European hospitality at sea and our vibrant, cosmopolitan sense of luxury, while discovering some of the world’s most remarkable destinations. A new era of transformative luxury ocean travel begins now with the first sailing of EXPLORA I.”
The festivities held in Copenhagen on 1 August 2023 also included the traditional crest exchange, a maritime tradition to celebrate a ship’s first visit to a destination – on board with the ship’s master Captain Serena Melani, Johan Hoganfalt, Deputy Port Captain, Sune Christensen, Chief Commercial Officer Copenhagen Malmö Port, Klaus Bondam, Director of Cruise Baltic and Cruise Copenhagen and Michael Ungerer, CEO, Explora Journeys
EXPLORA I will also call the port of Copenhagen on 15 August 2023 with a sailing to Hamburg, Germany.
The luxury ship will spend several weeks in Northern Europe to offer a range of different itineraries and will then cross the Atlantic Sea and spend the winter in North America and the Caribbean Sea before returning to Europe in Summer 2024 for voyages in the Mediterranean Sea.
EXPLORA II is currently being built in Italy and will come into service in August 2024. EXPLORA III will become the first of two LNG (liquefied natural gas) powered vessels to join the Explora Journeys’ fleet with the ship due to be delivered in 2026 and EXPLORA IV in 2027.
About Explora Journeys
Explora Journeys is the privately-owned luxury lifestyle brand of the MSC Group, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, created at the heart of Swiss luxury hospitality. The brand stems from the long-held vision to redefine the ocean experience for a new generation of discerning luxury travellers, drawing on the Aponte family`s 300 years of maritime heritage. The brand’s aspiration is to create a unique ‘Ocean State of Mind’ by connecting guests with the sea, with themselves, and like-minded others, while remarkable itineraries will blend renowned destinations with lesser-travelled ports, for a journey that inspires discovery in all its forms.
The four ships on order will be launched from 2023 to 2027, starting with EXPLORA I’s delivery on 20 July 2023. Equipped with the latest environmental and marine technologies, Explora Journeys will introduce a new style of transformative ocean travel. EXPLORA I offers 461 oceanfront suites, penthouses and residences designed to be ‘Homes at Sea’ for our guests, all with sweeping ocean views, private terrace, a choice of eleven distinct culinary experiences, across six vibrant restaurants plus in-suite dining, twelve bars and lounges, (eight indoor and four outdoor), Chef`s Kitchen, four swimming pools, extensive outdoor decks with 64 private cabanas, wellness facilities, and refined entertainment. Inspired by the company`s European heritage, Explora Journeys will provide guests with an immersive ocean experience and respectful and intuitive hospitality.
EXPLORA II is currently being built and will come into service in August 2024, followed by EXPLORA III in 2026 and EXPLORA IV in 2027 with both ships being LNG-powered.