Senior directors from Silversea’s global offices, plus members of the trade and media watched the spectacle, which was completed in two parts. The final section of the hull was cut in ceremonial style on Saturday and a pre-fabricated new midsection was rolled into place on Sunday (March 11).
Silver Spirit is the first luxury ship to be lengthened in this manner, and it will now have the biggest capacity in Silversea’s fleet, having increased from 540 guests to 608. The crew-to-guest ratio is unaffected, with crew numbers increased to 412.
The change has been inspired by the line’s newest vessel, Silver Muse, which entered service in April last year.
As a result of the lengthening, there will be two additional restaurants, taking the total to eight. Four of the restaurants have been replicated from Muse - Atlantide (surf ’n’ turf), Indochine (Asian), Spaccanapoli (pizzeria), Silver Note (tapas and jazz), while four already exist on Spirit - Seishin (Japanese), La Dame (French), The Grill and La Terraza (Italian).
There will be new public areas in the form of the Arts Cafe and Dolce Vita, a new spa and fitness centre, 35 new suites and a ship-wide upgrade of fixtures and fittings. While in dry dock, a stern thruster will also be fitted, to increase maneuverability, and allow Silver Spirit to call at smaller ports in remote areas.
Barbara Muckermann, chief marketing officer, Silversea said the lengthening was intended to provide more onboard choice for baby boomers. She said: “It’s fundamental for us to consider our current customers and start working towards those of tomorrow.
“Silver Spirit, Silver Muse and Silver Moon (due in 2020) are perfect for baby boomers. The most important thing for that generation is choice so we are giving them more restaurants and a variety of cabins.”
Peter Shanks, managing director, UK & Ireland, said: “Seeing this feat of engineering gives me enormous pride and a sense of excitement that we are able to demonstrate Silversea’s resurgence, growth and investment.”
UK trade will get their first look at Silver Spirit in Greenwich on June 2. Silver Cloud will be docked by Tower Bridge the same day, and the sister ships will pass each other later that afternoon.