Superfast ferries revamped for Irish Sea

02 Sep 2011
New Stena charters in Gdansk for refit

New Stena charters in Gdansk for refit

Stena Line’s two chartered Tallink ferries Superfast VII and Superfast VIII are now undergoing extensive refit, repair and upgrading at Remontowa Gdansk prior to entering service between Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Tom Todd writes: Remontowa’s Krzysztof Madrala told The Motorship the 30,285gt ships had arrived together late August and that the refit work would be completed in October and November. Stena Line has appointed specialist marine outfitters MJM Marine in Newry to carry out the job.

The ferries, with top speeds of more than 30 knots, were completed at Germany’s HDW Shipyard in 2001 and have been chartered for three years with an option to buy. Superfast VII and Superfast VIII are each powered by four Wärtsilä-Sulzer NSD ZA V40S Diesels with a combined output of 46,000kW. They are 203.9m long and 25m wide and boasted 1,908 lane metres as they went into conversion

Stena spokesman Jesper Waltersson said the Tallink livery would be rebranded to Stena Line standards during work which reports said was costing €14 million. It will also include major ship layout changes and conversion to day ferry operation because overnight accommodation will not be required on the 2 hour 15minute Irish Sea crossings.

More than 600 cabins on Decks 7 and 8 will be removed to make way for more public restaurant, bar and lounge areas. Freight customer demands will also be better catered for with more space for freight. For the first time on the route, said Stena, there will also be no height restrictions meaning that virtually any load can be carried.

Stena says they will be the biggest ships ever to sail between Northern Ireland and Scotland and will accommodate 1,200 passengers, 660 cars or 110 trucks. They will offer “an even better onboard experience, including a Nordic spa, an interactive POD lounge and new dining facilities”, the Swedish operator said.

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