The world's first hybrid cruise ship is currently on its maiden voyage, an 18-day trip to Antarctica with 450 guests onboard. Here's a look inside.

Courtesy of HurtigrutenRates for its maiden voyage start around $US14,000 per person.
  • Hurtigruten, a Norwegian expedition cruise company, unveiled the world’s first hybrid cruise ship earlier this year. It is currently on its maiden voyage to Antarctica with 450 passengers aboard.
  • The vessel, MS Roald Amundsen, runs on low sulphur diesel fuel that is supported by battery packs, cutting emissions by 20%.
  • But it’s not all science and technology on board: The ship is also equipped with an infinity pool, luxury suites, three restaurants, and a glass-encased sauna.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Luxury and sustainability are merging in the world of yachts.

In September, the world’s first hydrogen-powered superyacht was unveiled at the Monaco Yacht Show. And right now, the world’s first hybrid, battery-supported cruise ship is making its maiden voyage to Antarctica with 450 passengers aboard, according to Robb Report.

The MS Roald Amundsen‘s first expedition to Antarctica is fitting – it was named after the eponymous legendary Norwegian polar explorer. The ship was unveiled by Hurtigruten, a Norwegian expedition cruise company, this summer.

The 459-foot cruise ship is equipped with battery packs that support its low sulphur, diesel-powered, Rolls Royce-built engines.

That’s not to say the cruise is devoid of the lavish trappings of a typical cruise ship: There’s also an infinity pool, a glass-encased sauna, three restaurants, and luxurious cabins on board. Throughout the ship, there are almost 600 works of art produced by young Norwegian artists, handpicked by the queen of Norway.

Prices for a future cruise featuring the same route start at $US14,720 per person. The more lavish cabins raise that baseline to $US23,046 per person.

Keep reading for a look inside the cruise ship.


The MS Roald Amundsen is the world’s first hybrid cruise ship.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


Source:
Hurtigruten


It runs on Rolls Royce-built engines powered by low sulphur diesel fuel and batteries, which, according to the ship’s developer, lowers the ship’s CO2 emissions by 20%.

Courtesy of HurtigrutenThe battery room.

In addition to its operating systems, the ship is also committed to sustainability in other ways. There are no single-use plastics aboard and the uniforms worn by the crew are made from recycled ocean plastic.


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Hurtigruten


The cruise ship is currently on a full capacity, 18-day maiden voyage to Antarctica.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten

The maiden voyage started in Valparaíso, Chile before cruising south along the coast of South America toward the Drake Passage. From there, the ship spends three days in Antarctica before returning to Punta Arenas, Chile.

Passengers can disembark in Antarctica and partake in activities that include kayaking, hiking, whale-watching, and penguin-watching.


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Hurtigruten


And it’s not just science and sustainability on board: Like other cruise ships that support travels of that length, the ship is flush with luxury amenities. The ship has 264 cabins.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


Source:
Hurtigruten


The Scandinavian-inspired interior design features oak, granite, birch, and wool throughout the cabins.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


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Hurtigruten


Many of the suites have private lounging areas and balconies with hot tubs.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


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Hurtigruten


All passengers have access to the infinity pool and the hot tubs on the observation deck …

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


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Hurtigruten


… and the sauna and wellness centre, which also offer sweeping views.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


Source:
Hurtigruten


The ship has three restaurants and other communal amenities …

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


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Hurtigruten


… including a science centre where passengers can attend lectures and learn more about Arctic exploration.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


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Hurtigruten


The ship will be conducting arctic expedition cruises into 2020.

Courtesy of Hurtigruten


Source:
Hurtigruten


The MS Roald Amundsen is just one example of the luxury travel industry becoming more eco-friendly in 2019.

Courtesy of SinotA rendering of Aqua, what will be the world’s first hydrogen-powered yacht.

Business Insider previously reported that a model for the first hydrogen-powered yacht was unveiled in September by Sinot, a Dutch yacht-design company. The 367-foot vessel will be completely powered by liquid hydrogen and fuel-cell technology. Its only emission will be water.

Beyond boats, luxury African safaris are also embracing the eco-friendly. In August, Business Insider’s Katie Warren reported on a Botswana safari company equipped with conservation camps for children, where lessons on the environment, health, and nutrition are taught.

Increased attention to sustainability and conservation in the luxury travel sector play into the larger trend of “transformational travel.” Ultimately, the ultra-wealthy want to leave their vacation with a transformative, emotional experience to bring home, and in some cases, want to make a positive impact on the places they visit.

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