ex Satoshi, Pacific Dawn, Regal Princess
Ambience – Artists Impression © Ambassador Cruise Line
Steel twin screw motor vessel built in 1991 by Fincantieri-Cant. Nav. Italiani, Monfalcone, Italy (Yard No 5840) as a Passenger (Cruise) Vessel for Sitmar Cruises
- Original Cost: $276.8 million
- Length: 244.96 m (overall) 204.0 m (between perpendiculars)
- Breadth: 32.25 m
- Depth: 11.40 m
- Draught: 8.100 m
- Tonnage: 69845 gross/34907 net/6896t deadweight
- Engines: Four MAN-B&W 8L58/64 diesels
- Power: 12000 kW/16314 bHP
- Speed: 19.5 knots (22.5 knots max)
- Capacity: 1900 passengers
- Crew: 621/710
- Passenger Decks: 11
- Call Sign: ICGP, 2AGH7, 3ZGF5, C6FH4
- MMSI Number: 311001109
- IMO Number: 8521232
- Official Number: 1166
- Port of Registry: Palermo/Italy 🇮🇹, Monrovia/Liberia 🇱🇷, Hamilton/Bermuda 🇧🇲, London/United Kingdom 🇬🇧, Panama City/Panama 🇵🇦, Bahamas 🇧🇸
- Sister Ships: Crown Princess (5839)
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1988: Ordered by Sitmar Cruises.
The first of twins (the sister ship is the REGAL PRINCESS). Their design was developed by the Mercantile Constructions Division of Fincantieri, with the design of the external form and the upper decks by Architect Renzo Piano, giving the ship its distinctive dolphin shape.
March 29th 1990: Launched.
June 5th 1991: Trials.
July 20th 1991: Delivered to Astramar, Palermo, Italy. (P&O Cruises).
August 8th 1991: Christened in New York by Margaret Thatcher (the then Prime Minister of the UK).
Regal Princess – © Wolfgang Kramer (27/06/2003)
Regal Princess – © Nigel Thornton (Dover) (Both)
Regal Princess – © John Mavin (Dover)
1992: Transferred to Princess Cruises, Monrovia, Liberia.
October 2007: Transferred to P&O Australia, London, U.K. and renamed PACIFIC DAWN.
January 1st 2008: Registered owner: Carnival PLC
Pacific Dawn – © John Wilson (Brisbane, 03/08/2013)
Pacific Dawn – © John Wilson (Brisbane, 20/12/2014)
Pacific Dawn – © John Wilson (Brisbane, 16/03/2017)
Pacific Dawn – © John Wilson (Brisbane, 29/04/2017)
April 2020: Arrived in Brisbane and laid up owing to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
2020: It was intended that the ship would be retired in 2020 then sold to CMV and renamed AMY JOHNSON. The sale did not materialize.
October 30th 2020: Arrived Piraeus.
Pacific Dawn – © Dennis Mortimer (Piraeus, 30/10/2020)
November 1st 2020: Sold to Ocean Builders Central Inc, Panama and renamed SATOSHI. The intention was to operate her as a “Crypto-Cruise ship” (being used for tourism, home residence, research and office space).
November 4th 2020: Transferred to her new owners.
December 3rd 2020: Arrived Gibraltar Anchorage.
December 4th 2020: Left Gibraltar showing destination as Panama.
December 19th 2020: Ocean Builders Central Inc made an announcement:
“After buying the ship, hiring a vessel management company and even completing a class drydocking, the company said they had hit an insurance roadblock. The ship has since quickly been sold to scrap and will sail to India.”
“”After an exhaustive search for an International Group P&I Club insurance group to insure the Satoshi we have hit the roadblock of having no insurance company willing to insure the MS Satoshi upon dropping anchor in the Gulf of Panama”
Source: Cruise Industry News
November 23rd 2020: Arrived Gibraltar.
December 2nd 2020: Left Gibraltar,
December 22nd 2020: Arrived Balboa (Panama) and arrested.
Satoshi – © Bengt-Rune Inberg (Cristobal Outer Anchorage, Panama, 26/12/2020)
December 28th 2020: Anchored off Port Colon, Panama.
February 23rd 2021: Left Panama.
March 27th 2021: Arrived at the Port of Bar in Montenegro.
March 28, 2021
“Former Bitcoin Cruise Ship Sold to New Startup”
“The ship was sold to Ocean Builders, which planned to turn it into a cryptocurrency tech hub off the coast of Panama with apartments aboard up for auction.
Ocean Builders took delivery of the ship in November, hired a vessel management firm, paid for a dry docking and even sailed the ship to Panama, but abandoned the project citing insurance issues.
At that point, the vessel was arrested in Panama.
Now, legal issues aside, the cruise ship may have a new life with a new cruise line, yet to be revealed, starting service later this year.”
Source: Cruise Industry News
13th May 2021: It was officially announced that the Satoshi had been acquired by the new British startup Ambassador Cruise Line. After an extensive refit the ship would enter service in April 2022 as the Ambience.
13th May 2021
THE MOST EXCITING NEW DEVELOPMENT IN THE UK TRAVEL INDUSTRY
Ambassador Cruise Line has officially launched in the UK market. The exciting announcement will be welcomed by the UK travel industry. The first British cruise line since 2010 will commence sales in June 2021 with the first cruises beginning operation in the Spring of 2022.
In the most significant signal yet of the return of the UK travel economy, the first new British cruise line since 2010 has been launched, with sales commencing in June 2021 and its inaugural cruises beginning in Spring 2022.
Ambassador Cruise Line offers a premium-value, authentic cruise experience, sailing for the British market from its home port of London Tilbury. It will offer no-fly itineraries that are adult-focussed and primarily aimed at the 50-plus market. Ambassador’s first ship, Ambience, is designed to carry approximately 1,400 guests, creating a welcoming and social atmosphere. There are 798 cabins, a choice of five restaurants offering a selection of locally inspired dishes, including speciality dining options, as well as two cafes, nine lounges, two swimming pools, a spa, day and evening entertainment, fitness and leisure facilities complemented by enticing enrichment and lifestyle programmes.
The maiden season for Ambience commences on 6 April 2022 with an inaugural short break cruise to Hamburg, before embarking on a mixed itinerary programme with sailings to the Norwegian Fjords and the British Isles planned throughout spring. The first full year programme operating until May 2023 will consist of 33 sailings visiting over 90 different ports, featuring the Baltics and St. Petersburg, Greenland, the Arctic, and Iceland, whilst for the winter months a range of expedition style voyages will sail to the Canary Islands, Cuba, the Caribbean, Cape Verde and Scandinavia.
Through funds managed by Njord Partners LLP, London the company is fully equity-financed (no financial debt). The Chair of the Board of Directors is Gordon Wilson who has over 30 years’ experience in the global travel industry including as the President and CEO of Travelport until July 2019. He is a member of the Supervisory Board of BCD Holdings which owns global corporate travel management company, BCD Travel. He has been appointed to the Chair of the Board of Interactive Investor, the second-largest direct-to-consumer investment platform in the UK.
Ambassador has an extremely experienced management team led by CEO Christian Verhounig supported by CCO, Christopher Coates, CIO, Gary Hides and CFO, Simon Weeks.
Gordon Wilson remarks: “We are hugely excited to launch the first British cruise line in over a decade. It is just what the industry needs right now to reboot the British cruise market and inject confidence into the sector. Ambassador Cruise Line offers the best of British cruising – we’re a new company offering a distinctive product but maintaining traditional cruising values which we know are important to our guests.
This is just the beginning. We have ambitious growth plans, and the travel industry is a crucial partner in this. We’re looking forward to working collaboratively with agents, partners and the shipping community. Investment on this scale, and the launch of such a significant business as we emerge from the pandemic will make a significant contribution to the local economy and travel industry, particularly as we look to fill at least 100 jobs from the UK.”
Ambassador’s proposition is to bring back the joy of cruising in ships which look and feel like cruise ships and which take environmental responsibility seriously. As such, prior to its first voyage, Ambience will be upgraded with emission reduction technologies to be IMO Tier III compliant prior to the start of the cruising season.
She will not only adhere to the latest updated rules regarding emission reductions (Tier II from 1 January 2022 in certain NOX Emission Control areas) but will already be compliant with rules which will come into force by 1 January 2025 (Tier III of the IMO NOX regulations – aiming to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by approximately 70% compared to the Tier II standards).
In addition, Ambience will be equipped and outfitted with the latest ballast and sewage water treatment systems enabling her to sail in all seas, including those strictly environmentally protected. Guests will notice that single-use plastic onboard has been eliminated, and technology has been used as an innovative alternative to printing menus, shore plans and activity schedules. The huge investment in this area means Ambience will be an innovator in its class and fully Tier III compliant.
Treating our guests right is not just about the booking and onboard experience. In accordance with The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018, we have insurance cover in place to financially protect all guests booking with Ambassador Cruise Line. In addition, we will operate a fully independently managed Trust Account where guests’ funds are deposited and only released when the cruise departs. Our offer also includes a booking guarantee in the event we are forced to cancel a cruise.
Cruise customers, and the travel trade, understand that cruise lines are already one of the most extensively regulated sectors of the tourism industry for health and safety. Ambassador will also operate a policy whereby all guests and crew will need to be vaccinated prior to setting sail to provide that additional peace of mind.
Detailed prices for individual cruise itineraries will be available in June 2021 including some introductory offers. A 68-page brochure will also be launched.
The trade sales team will be reaching out to agents and encouraging trade partners to sign up to the registration website for more news and information about the range of itineraries and Ambience.
Source: Ambassador Cruise Line
Ambience – Artist Impressions © Ambassador Cruise Line
October 11th 2021: Sailed from Bar, Montenegro to Rijeka Anchorage in Croatia.
Satoshi – © Ambassador Cruise Line (Bar, 11/10/2021)
October 13th 2021: Arrived Rijeka Anchorage (Croatia) before going to the Viktor Lenac shipyard for an extensive overhaul.
Satoshi – © Lappino (Rijeka Anchorage, 13/10/2021)
October 14th 2021: Arrived at the Viktor Lenac shipyard for refurbishment. Extensive works are to be carried out, such as installation of new equipment, scrubbers, wastewater treatment system, water purification system, ballast water. Extensive interventions are needed in order to renew all of the ship’s expired certificates.
Satoshi – (Viktor Lenac shipyard, 15/10/2021) © Lappino
Satoshi – © Ambassador Cruise Line (Movement within repair yard)
Satoshi – © Dragec (Rijeka, Croatia 15/12/2021)
Ambience – © Ambassador Cruise Line
Ambience – © Dragec (Rijeka, Croatia 15/01/2022 – 12/02/2022)
March 16th 2022: Due to leave dry-dock.
Ambience – © Antun Penjak (Rijeka, Croatia 23/03/2022
March 25th 2022: Announcement made that the inaugural sailing will be delayed by two weeks because of supply problems during dry dock in Croatia. The maiden voyage to Hamburg planned for April 6 has been moved to April 20, and the first two sailings to the Norwegian fjords have been cancelled.
March 31st 2022: Announcement made that Sally Gunnell OBE will be the ships Godmother and will officially rename the vessel in April 2022
March 31st 2022: Left Rijeka showing destination as Ravenna (eta: 01/04/2022)
April 1st 2022: Arrived Ravenna Anchorage.
Ambience – © Luka Milevoj (Plomin, Croatia, 31/03/2022)
April 4th 2022: Arrived Bar, Montenegro.
Ambience – (Montenegro)
April 5th 2022: Left Bar showing destination as Valletta. Malta.
April 6th 2022: Arrived Valletta.
Ambience – © Ambassador Cruise Line
April 14th 2022: Arrived Tilbury.
Ambience – © A2B via Sea (Tilbury, 14/04/2022)
Ambience – © Bob Scott (Tilbury, 15/04/2022)
(Special Photographic Feature)
Ambience – 🆕 © Andrew Cooke (Tilbury 19 & 20/04/2022)
April 20th 2022: Left Tilbury on her maiden voyage to Hamburg.
Ambience – © Robert J Smith (Tilbury, 20/04/2022)
April 22nd 2022: Arrived Hamburg.
Ambience – © Christian Eckhardt (Hamburg, 22/04/2022)(All)
April 2022: Maiden season for Ambassador Cruise Line and will sail on cruises ranging from 7 to 14 nights to the British Isles, the Norwegian Fjords, Iceland, Baltic, and the Mediterranean.
All information is believed to be correct and no responsibility is accepted for any errors or omissions. All items included in this article are subject to © copyright. We would like to take this opportunity of thanking: A2B via Sea, Ambassador Cruise Line, Bengt-Rune Inberg, Dragec, Christian Eckhardt, Wolfgang Kramer, Lappino, John Mavin, Luka Milevoj, Dennis Mortimer, Bob Scott, Robert J Smith and John Wilson for their assistance in producing this feature.
Special thanks go to Andrew Cooke