Quark Expeditions marked a major milestone today in the construction of its technologically-advanced polar vessel, Ultramarine, with a traditional launch ceremony that also honored the ship-building team from Brodosplit, the largest shipyard in Croatia. Ultramarine’s inaugural season will begin with a 7-day Arctic voyage in May 2021.
On hand to watch Ultramarine enter the water for the first time was Tomislav Debeljak, owner and CEO of the DIV Group, which includes the Brodosplit shipyard, godmother Andrea Mutak (from the Split-based children’s charity Udruga Andeli-Association of Angels), dignitaries and Brodosplit employees.
“That very moment when ‘ship first meets water’ is a major milestone for any vessel”, said said Andrew White, President, Quark Expeditions. “The sound of Ultramarine’s hull entering the water from slipway No. 2 into Supaval Bay signified we’re one step closer to exploring the polar regions on this game-changing ship. But, of course, it’s not just any ship that we’re celebrating today – but a ship built specifically for polar exploration. Ultramarine will be an unrivaled operational base for exploring the polar regions in ways never thought possible.”
Ultramarine Features & Amenities
The 199-passenger expedition vessel features two twin-engine helicopters, 20 quick-launching Zodiacs, the most robust portfolio of off-ship adventure options in the entire industry, including heli-skiing, alpine kayaking and heli-hiking.
On-ship amenities and features include: a luxurious sauna with floor-to-ceiling windows, spacious spa-inspired suites, advanced sustainability systems, and a unique interior design that keeps guests connected to the breathtaking polar landscapes outside while they relax inside with more outdoor wildlife viewing spaces than other expedition ship of its size.
Leading-Edge Technology & Experiences
Ultramarine combines leading-edge technology and advanced safety systems that will allow passengers to get off the ship and deeper into the polar wilderness faster than ever before. The unique features of this advanced polar vessel include:
Two twin-engine helicopters and two helidecks. The robust twin-engine helicopters on Ultramarine are the safest and most capable helicopters in the Polar Regions. These robust twin-engine helicopters, which have exceptional viewing spaces and exceed all industry standards for safety, will allow passengers to experience aerial perspectives of the Polar Regions and landings only accessible by air.
The industry’s largest selection of adventure options. Ultramarine will offer, for the first time ever, helicopter flight-seeing, heli-hiking and heli-skiing. Ultramarine will offer every off-ship adventure in Quark Expeditions’ robust adventure activity portfolio, including sea kayaking, paddling, hiking, mountaineering, cross-country skiing, stand up paddle boarding.
Twenty quick-launching Zodiacs. Ultramarine will house 20 Zodiacs, located close to the waterline, which can be quickly deployed from the two Ready Rooms, which allow guests to quickly change in and out of their expedition gear.
Advanced sustainability features. In keeping with Quark Expeditions’ recently unveiled Polar Promise sustainability framework, Ultramarine will include technical features that minimize the ship’s environmental footprint to an extent previously unseen for a vessel of this size. It will also include environmentally friendly innovations such as dynamic positioning, which will eliminate the need to drop anchor in sensitive seabed areas.
Ultimate Onboard Experience
Ultramarine will provide guests an exceptional onboard experience, with 102 suites across nine categories, including six solo suites with floor-to-ceiling windows and the largest entry-level twin suites of its class. Each suite has been designed to keep guests connected to the breathtaking polar landscapes outside and include spacious entryways, spa-inspired bathrooms with heated floors and premium sleep zones.
Public spaces on Ultramarine include:
Main Restaurant – Featuring outstanding views from every seat, full access to the 360-degree wraparound deck, a wine-tasting bar, and a variety of seating configurations to comfortably accommodate all guests and expedition staff.
Panorama Lounge and Bar – A relaxed gathering spot featuring unobstructed panoramic views and an outdoor, forward-facing Observation Deck.
Lecture Theater – A comfortable space where passengers learn more from our world-class experts about the adventures enjoyed and the wonders to come, featuring a high-resolution LED screen, real-time translations, and live broadcasting for those who prefer to listen from the ease of their suite.
Wellness Center – A modern space featuring three distinct areas where guests can unwind before their next adventure: a luxurious spa with a wide range of treatments, a state-of-the-art sauna featuring floor-to-ceiling windows, and a fully equipped fitness room with separate yoga space.
Polar Boutique – Stocked with the industry’s top cold-weather expedition gear and a carefully curated selection of polar keepsakes, the boutique ensures guests have everything they need, including mementos of an unforgettable journey.
Ready Rooms – Designed for efficiency and situated next to the Zodiac hangar, Ultramarine’s two Ready Rooms include an individual locker for each guest to safely store and dry personal items and expedition gear between outings.
About Quark Expeditions
Specializing in expeditions to the Antarctic and the Arctic, Quark Expeditions has been the leading provider of polar adventure travel for three decades. With a diverse fleet of specially equipped small expedition vessels and icebreakers, it offers travelers unparalleled access to the most remote places on Earth.
Quark’s onboard program, led by passionate and seasoned expedition teams, including scientists, naturalists and researchers, focuses on guest interaction to educate and enrich the passenger experience.
Ultramarine’s inaugural season begins with a 7-day epic Arctic adventure departing from Oslo, Norway on May 3, 2021.