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Small Ship 'Swoops' In Before Spanish Schooner Set Sails for Dublin

7th June 2017
The letter 'S' on the funnel represents operator, Swoop-Antarctica whose small yet high-end luxury cruiseship Hebridean Sky called to the capital and during the Dublin Riverfest. At this same Berth 18 next to the Tom Clarke toll-bridge is where an impressive Spanish Navy tallship is to visit this weekend. The letter 'S' on the funnel represents operator, Swoop-Antarctica whose small yet high-end luxury cruiseship Hebridean Sky called to the capital and during the Dublin Riverfest. At this same Berth 18 next to the Tom Clarke toll-bridge is where an impressive Spanish Navy tallship is to visit this weekend. Photo: JEHAN ASHMORE

#SwoopSail - An impressive visitor to Dublin Port this weekend will be one of the world’s largest tall ships, the Spanish Navy’s trainee ship Juan Sebastián de Elcano, writes Jehan Ashmore.

Before the arrival of this striking four-masted majestic steel-hulled schooner at 370ft, a small cruise had taken up Berth 18 on the North Wall Quay extension. This is located next to the Tom Clarke Toll-Bridge where last weekend at this berth was occupied Swoop-Antartica's high-end luxury cruiseship Hebridean Sky. As previously reported those on board had elevated views of the Dublin Riverfest Bank Holiday held event in which other cruiseships were also in port.

The all-suite ship of five decks was renovated in 2016 at a cost of $10 million. The upgrade work is reflected with these only outward facing cabin suites.

At around 4,200 gross tonnage, this 90m ship is certainly small given the ever increasingly giants in service or that are on order. The 1992 Italian built Hebridean Sky, however belongs to a league of small intimate vessels where guests expect high levels of luxury based on this 5-star experience cruiseship.

Spacious cabins ranging from 20 - 34 sq m (215 - 366 sq ft), including a capacious Owner's Suite, dedicated single cabins and the option of outside balconies in the higher cabin categories

Each of the ‘suite’ accommodation is at least 225 square ft. They offer a choice of either twin- or queen-sized bed, flat-screen TV, mini-bar and sitting area with a sofa-bed. Also included are independent temperature controls and a marble-appointed en-suite bathroom.

As Hebridean Sky is an adventure ship cruising Antarctica, stern step provides easy access into zodiacs as an alternative to the gangway. This cruise in northern hemisphere, saw the ship depart Dublin where the vessel made a call to Waterford yesterday before calling to Portsmouth today.

The ship under a different guise, Sea Explorer had spent a lay-over period while berthed in Dun Laoghaire Harbour. On that occasion several years ago, the vessel was alongside St. Micheals Pier, where recently the private charter motor-yacht veteran Talitha called for maintenance repairs.

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