Crystal Endeavor's launch date is August 2020, the maiden voyage to leave Tokyo just after the end of the Olympics on a journey to the Russian Far East, exploring the Sea of Okhotsk, the islands of Japan and eastern Russia.
If your awareness of the region is limited to knowing where Kamchatka is on the Risk board, you will be amazed to learn that it boasts extraordinary volcanic scenery, with breathtaking natural beauty, and plenty of wildlife including rowdy sea lions, many species of seal, and a huge range of bird and marine life. Way off the beaten track, you will explore by zodiac and visit locations that are totally inaccessible except by water.
Take the time to look at the subsequent itineraries announced for the Endeavor, first exploring Japan, then moving southwards to island hop around the Philippines, Borneo and Indonesia, before following the Great Barrier Reef en route to New Zealand, and after that to the barely visited side of Antarctica, the Ross Sea, and the largest penguin colony on earth.
Expected imminently is the arrival of new itineraries for 2021, so watch this space - we already know that the fabled Northeast Passage is one of them.
Of course there are a number of expedition ships in the world fleet, and as we know, that number is growing quickly, with many companies expecting their newly built vessels to launch over the next three years. So let's take a look at the Crystal Endeavor difference, and why you would choose Crystal over the competition.
At 20,000 GRT, with a capacity of 200 guests in 100 suites, Endeavor will be supremely spacious, and this will be apparent in the private accommodation (starting at 304 square feet plus a spacious 51 square foot verandah, up to 1,290 square feet plus a 735 square foot verandah), but also in the range of lounges, dining areas and deck space. All guests will enjoy the services of an attentive butler to enhance their private experience.
The ship will feel like a Crystal classic ship in miniature. Take, for example, Crystal's acclaimed dining options. From the contemporary Waterside, to Northern Italian cuisine at Prego, Nobu Matsuhisha's Umi Uma, the much loved Crystal Bistro and more, Crystal will maintain its reputation for excellent food available at all hours.
A ship built for comfort in the polar regions can often be a little unappealing in the tropics, but with her clever design, the two storey solarium, spacious observation deck areas (including outdoor Jacuzzi), sea level marina and of course all suites with their own verandah, Crystal Endeavor will be comfortable whatever the weather.
As for exploration, Crystal Endeavor will carry two helicopters (although there are itineraries where permission will not be given to use them) as well as a submersible, and will soon announce more about their new expedition team.
On their Northwest Passage cruise a couple of years back, Crystal showed us how very capable they are of operating the most exciting adventure cruise. Here at Mundy, we are convinced that this is going to be an outstanding product.