Rebekah Keeler, Head of Cruise, ABP Southampton with Captain Michael Schmid, AIDAnova
In the space of four days, the Port of Southampton, owned and operated by Associated British Ports (ABP), has welcomed two LNG-powered cruise ships on their maiden calls, proving its capability to support these types of vessels at its state-of-the-art Horizon Cruise Terminal.
AIDAnova arrived in Southampton on Sunday, 23 April, and Le Commandant Charcot arrived on Wednesday, 26 April - two very different vessels in size and cruise destinations. AIDAnova has a capacity of just over 5,000 passengers, with Le Commandant Charcot a total of 270. At Southampton, we are very adaptable and proud to be able to support cruise ships of varying sizes and operational requirements.
AIDAnova, one of the first ships in the world to be powered both at sea and in port by liquified natural gas, was at the mid-point of its 10-day cruise from Lisbon to Kiel, Germany and is also calling at Zeebrugge, Bruges and Oslo. The 337-metre-long ship left Southampton on Sunday evening.
During its call, Rebekah Keeler, Head of Cruise at the Port, greeted Captain Michael Schmid and exchanged plaques in a traditional plaque and key ceremony.
Rebekah Keeler commented: “It was fantastic to welcome AIDAnova to Horizon Cruise Terminal. Since we launched ABP’s sustainability strategy earlier this year, what better way to have our first plaque and key exchange of the 2023 cruise season than with a cruise ship powered on LNG, capable of taking shore power and calling at our Horizon Cruise Terminal. We look forward to welcoming AIDAnova back to Southampton during her future cruises.”
Le Commandant Charcot had a short stay in Southampton, arriving at 7 am and departing for Brest, France, at 10 am. Built in 2021, the luxurious hybrid electric polar exploration ship is also powered by LNG.
Rebekah Keeler added: “It was wonderful to welcome Le Commandant Charcot into Southampton on its maiden call. It was a first for Southampton, welcoming a hybrid exploration ship to the port. I am proud that, alongside our fantastic partners the Port of Southampton can cater for all vessels, large and small, as shown this week.”
Horizon Cruise Terminal is the Port of Southampton’s newest cruise terminal and was opened in September 2021. It is equipped with shore power capability and is fitted with more than 2000 roof-mounted solar arrays.