Meyer Werft hands over Saga Cruises first ever newbuild

Malcolm Latarche

Malcolm Latarche · 25 June 2019


German cruise ship builder Meyer Werft has delivered Spirit of Discovery to the British cruise line Saga Cruises. The 38,350gt vessel is Saga cruises first ever newbuilding with the line previously operating with secondhand tonnage. It is also the second newbuilding completed by Meyer Werft in 2019 after Spectrum of the Seas was handed over to Royal Caribbean International in April.

Earlier this month, the keel laying for Spirit of Adventure, Saga Cruises’ second new build, was celebrated at the yard. Spirit of Adventure will be completed in summer 2020. The ships each have an overall length of 236m, a beam of 31.2m and can accommodate 999 passengers. Spirit of Discovery replaces the Saga Pearl II which was sold earlier this year. It will begin its cruising season later this month after arriving in Dover.


The relatively small size for a modern cruise ship suits the Saga market but the addition of the new vessels will double overall fleet capacity. The size was also beneficial to Meyer Werft allowing use of the yards smaller of two building halls for whole ship construction.

Spirit of Discovery features an environmentally friendly and resource conserving design and also marks the first time the builder has equipped a ship with the eSiPod fully azimuthing podded propulsion system developed by Siemens. A quartet of nine-cylinder MAN 32/44 engines each rated at 5,400kw give the ship a cruising speed of 16kt.

Meyer Werft currently has a long term orderbook delivery until end of 2023 and is looking for new employees in all departments.

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