#25mOffshorePool- Mein Schiff 4, the newest in a series of 99,500 tonnes cruiseships for German premium-class operator, TUI Cruises, made her maiden call offshore of Dun Laoghaire Harbour this morning, writes Jehan Ashmore.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the large cruiseship Mein Schiff which cost $625 million, called to Belfast Harbour yesterday, as part of her inaugural 11-day cruise of Britain & Ireland that is to return to Hamburg. The visit today of the 2,506 passenger / 1,030 crew Mein Schiff involved anchoring off Dun Laoghaire and marks the final cruiseship of this summer. For a list of cruise season 2016, Afloat.ie reveals by clicking here.
To give an impression of how long Mein Schiff 4 is, it would take a cruise-goer to swim almost 12 lengths on board the newbuilds notable 25m long swimming to match the ship’s overall length (LOA) of 294m. These large pools, are the first to feature on any cruiseship, that began with the newbuild’s sister, Mein Schiff 3 the leadship of a series that was delivered in 2013.
The swimming pool on Mein Schiff 4 is located on deck 12, however cruise-goers do have alternative choice of an indoor pool with a whirlpool. On a related but separate matter, is Dun Laoghaire Harbour's €2.5 million heated floating swimming pool inspired by the 'Badeschiff' in Berlin, which is to be constructed using a converted river barge at the East Pier following planning permission granted by An Bord Pleanála last year.
The ‘Urban Beach’ is a joint venture of Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company and Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council which in addition to the swimming pool (using treated seawater) is to feature an artificial beach, a cafe, changing area and other facilities. For a visual impression of the amenity to be built on the East Pier, click here.
It is off the East Pier's pierhead, is where the Mein Schiff 4 arrived to anchor and only within one nautical mile offshore. A fleet of her tenders are ferrying German speaking passengers to and fro to the harbour's cruise-pontoon located in the Coal Harbour.
Asides the swimming pool, there’s also a basketball court and sea views which can be seen from saunas, a feature that is not surprising given her Scandinavian builders, Meyer Turku, previously STX Finland that also built the leadship, Mein Schiff 3.
The introduction last month of the 15 deck newbuild Mein Schiff (clearly translating to ‘My Ship 4!) is for the German speaking market and where her guests have a wide choice of facilities with 11 restaurants and bistros, 11 bars and lounges. Among her entertainment options the outdoor arena is where a large LED is located as well as a cinema.
Mein Schiff boosts TUI’s fleet passenger total to 6,342 berths. She alone has accommodation for 1,253 cabins, of those 90% are outside and in which 82% feature balconies that can be up to 24m² in size.
For the added ultra-luxury of space and privacy are ten ‘Himmel und Meer Suiten’ (Sky & Sea Suites) that occupy an impressive two decks coupled with a 29m²roof terrace exclusively to client’s use.
TUI Cruises was formed in 2008 in a joint venture between TUI AG and Royal Caribbean Ltd.
Additional sisters are on order from Meyer Turku, part of the German shipyard group. They are to replace an existing pair of cruiseships Mein Schiff 2 and 3 (orginally from another operator) when they transfer to UK brand, Thompson Cruises.