#CruiseYacht- Cruiseship-yacht Wind Surf (14,000 tonnes) with her impressive five 164-ft masts docked today in Dun Laoghaire Harbour and during the port's third cruise season, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The flagship of Windstar Cruises five-strong fleet as reported yesterday has a capacity for 310 guests and towering above her passenger decks are the masts that set seven triangular shaped computer controlled self-furling sails that total 26,000 sq m.
She sailed overnight from an anchorage call off Dunmore East and her visit to Dun Laoghaire Harbour is a fly-cruise turnaround, likewise to her two previous calls last year.
On that final visit last July during the 'heatwave', as she departed her sails were furled -out (click link for photo) which was an added bonus to those strolling the harbour piers.
Wind Surf relies mostly on engine power (hence the funnel between the second and third masts), has four Wartsila diesel-electric generating sets and a pair of electrical propulsion motors that deliver 12 knots. This can be increased by combining her sails to achieve 15 knots with a favourable wind. During joint-power operations she has a sea-water hydraulic ballast system to limit heel when sailing.
As to be expected the 187m flagship has luxurious amenities and a crew of almost 200 on board the vessel that was launched as Club Med 1 a quarter-century ago for original owners Club Med. She was last extensively renovated in 2012. Her sister was in Irish waters this week when Club Med 2 called to Cobh.
Both vessels throughout their careers have cruised mostly in the Mediterranean and Caribbean, however last year was a first for operators Wind Star and Club Med to visit Irish ports. This evening she may or not 'self-furl' her sails, but will certainly motor out of the harbour bound for Douglas, Isle of Man.