Tuesday 4 July 2017

New expedition cruise ship, Ventus Australis, floats out

#expeditioncruising .

Ventus Australis – the new expedition cruise ship being built for Patagonian cruise line, Australis, for ‘bottom of the world’ voyages to Cape Horn and the glaciers and fjords of Tierra del Fuego – has met the sea for the first time with a float out in Chile.

To mark the occasion, Australis is offering a 10 per cent discount on bookings made by July 31, 2017, on the new ship’s debut season this coming summer.

Latin for southern winds (Australis – southern; Ventus – wind), the new, 210-passenger Ventus Australis slid smoothly out of the Asenav shipbuilding yard, where she has been under construction since February, 2016, and into the Calle Calle River in the southern Chilean city of Valdivia.

More than 200 workers will now attend to the ship’s interior finishings, generators and main engines ahead of her launch on January 2, 2018, in time for Australis’ 2017/18 summer season of cruising in Patagonia.

Australis CEO, Pedro del Río, said: “Construction has gone according to plan and we are looking forward to the launch of our new ship, which was especially designed to sail the southern channels. We have paid careful attention to every detail to provide our passengers with a unique experience in the Chilean-Argentinian Patagonia, while ensuring that they enjoy maximum comfort and a world-class service.”

Tailor-made for cruising on the southern tip of South America, Ventus Australis replaces the smaller, 136-passenger Via Australis, which was built in 2005 and sold recently to Lindblad Expeditions. Ventus Australis will be a twin sister to Australis’ other ship, the 210-passenger Stella Australis, launched in 2010, which also offers expedition voyages through the channels and fjords of southern Chile.

When she commences service, Ventus Australis will offer four-night cruises from Ushuaia in Argentina to Punta Arenas in Chile or return – the two southern-most towns in the world.

Australis is the only operator to offer regular cruises through the narrow fjords of Tierra del Fuego and to offer passengers the chance to go ashore on fabled Cape Horn. Australis incorporates the latest environmental technology to ensure the conservation of the pristine nature areas its ships visit each year.

Like Stella Australis (Latin for southern star), Ventus Australis will offer cabins with extra-large panoramic windows (almost floor to ceiling) so guests can enjoy vistas of spectacular scenery bathed in extended summer daylight. All guests will be offered complimentary, guided excursions and nature lectures as well as a free open-bar. Cuisine aboard includes local dishes as well as Chilean and Argentine wines. English and Spanish are spoken on board.

Cruises aboard Australis’ ships through the spectacular fjords of the Magellan Strait, Beagle Channel and Tierra del Fuego can be added on to tours exploring the rest of South America.

Contact specialist South America travel agent, Robyn Smith at www.movidas.com.au

Bookings can be made by through South American specialist agency, Movidas [www.movidas.com.au]

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