With the delivery of Celebrity Flora in 2019, Shipyard De Hoop was the first shipyard in The Netherlands,
since Prinsendam from the Merwede shipyard in 1973, to once again deliver a cruise ship. Intended for
cruising the Galápagos Islands, this small cruise ship formulae turned out to be such a big success that
soon the Royal Caribbean Group / Celebrity Cruises took an option for a second ship. However, after the
takeover of Silversea Cruises by Royal Caribbean (becoming the majority stockholder with almost 67%),
the option was handed over to Silversea.
This vessel, to be named Silver Origin, was launched on the 30th of December 2019. After recent
completion of successful sea trials, the innovative expedition cruise vessel, tailored in design and build to
provide high-end luxury cruising in the Galápagos area, has been delivered to Silversea Cruises on the 3rd
of June in the Rotterdam harbour area.
The management at De Hoop are certain that more than a decade of participating in smaller seagoing
cruise vessel projects, with the associated design development and investment in knowledge, has now
paid off. De Hoop’s CEO, Patrick Janssens, states that this was the ideal basis for entering the growing
market of expedition cruise vessels – their designers were fully prepared when the Galápagos Islands
cruises challenge arose. Furthermore, with many Dutch suppliers and subcontractors on the clientapproved
‘makerslist’, this project presented a great opportunity for the Dutch shipbuilding industry as a
Redefining luxury cruises in the Galápagos
Silver Origin is based around 5 pillars: Sustainability, Destination Onboard, Expedition Experience,
Authentic Culture and Comfort & Service.
Pillar 1: Sustainability – Protecting the Galápagos, today and tomorrow.
Being aware of the impact of traveling on the planet, Silver Origin has the lowest possible carbon
footprint. Including state-of-the-art technology, a dynamic positioning system that protects the delicate
seabed and an advanced propulsion system is introduced in her design. All suites feature a fresh water
purification system that will significantly reduce plastic bottle usage.
Pillar 2: Destination onboard – The passengers’ destination begins on board.
No matter where you are on board, you will feel like the Galápagos is right there with you. The ship
features 24-hour sweeping views over the Galápagos, thanks to large floor-to-ceiling windows that
extend throughout the ship, whilst the Observation & Stargazing Platform offers uninterrupted views.
Pillar 3: Expedition experience – Becoming an expedition expert
All the Silversea guides – more per guest than any other ship – will not only be experts in their field, but
also certified by the National Park of the Galápagos. For the same reason, Basecamp, an outdoor
explorer lounge in the aft ship, was introduced. Being an innovative “knowledge lounge”, Basecamp
features materials and tools that provide a wealth of inside knowledge of the cruise environment.
Opening out directly onto the Marina, Basecamp gives easy access to the Zodiac deck with the rigid
inflatable boats providing the most personalized on-shore experience possible.
Pillar 4: Authentic local culture – Authenticity is everything
To experience the local customs and cuisine, Silver Origin will only provide the most authentic culinary
experience possible. In the galley, only truly authentic Ecuadorian recipes will be prepared, using the
freshest local ingredients, accompanied by the best regional wine. Furthermore, live gourmet
preparation sessions and seminars will be given, to experience how to create and recreate all the flavors
Ecuador and the Galápagos have to offer.
Pillar 5: Comfort and service – The luxury you expect, the service you deserve
Silver Origin’s crew will host the unparalleled luxury and industry leading personalized service that
Silversea is famous for. On top of that, Silver Origin is the only ship in the entire Galápagos region to offer
butler service in every suite, making the stay on board as enjoyable as the visit to the islands themselves.
Observed from a more technical perspective
Designed and Lloyd’s Register classed for worldwide service, Silver Origin is built according the latest
probabilistic damage stability regulations and therefore complies with the relevant Rules and Regulations
for 2020. This is supplemented with the client’s constraint to comply with a two-compartment damage
stability regulation. Moreover, along with compliance with future international rules and regulations, the
vessel also commits to specific Galápagos National Park Directorate Regulations, whereby specific
environmentally low-impact features were applied.
As this vessel is expected to be stationary – in a bay or near one of the islands – for 66% of the
operational time, considerable thought went into the design and selection of equipment, allowing the
ship to perform efficiently under DP (Dynamic Positioning). Combined with a zero-speed stabiliser
system, the DP system will choose a heading to minimise the roll and heave motions on the vessel,
significantly improving passenger comfort. To achieve a high level of redundancy and to meet the Class
requirements (PSMR* and DP1 / DP-AM notation), the power and propulsion plant of Silver Origin is
duplicated and housed in two separate engine rooms.
Reduced environmental footprint as a result of energy efficiency
The power supply for two rudder propellers, two bow thrusters and other consumers, is supplied by four
caterpillar C32 diesel generator sets of 994kW each. The emergency diesel generator is a Scania of
339ekW. The diesel engines are equipped with an SCR (Selective Catalytic Reduction) installation,
whereby the emission of nitrogen oxide (NOx) is greatly reduced. The rudder propellers, type 20 CRP of
1450kW each, were supplied by Steerprop from Finland, while the 400kW bow thrusters are provided by
Veth from the Netherlands. With this configuration, a 12-knot cruising speed can easily be achieved and
a high-manoeuvrability is guaranteed.
The introduction of this advanced propulsion system, the hull configuration (improved with CFD
calculations) and the specially developed diesel engine arrangement, guarantee an average 25%
reduction in hull resistance, 15% reduction in fuel consumption and equivalently fewer exhaust emissions. These characteristics make this cruise ship one of the most energy-efficient ships in its class,in addition to being IMO Tier III compliant. One glance at the ship’s profile reveals the flared bow with anintegrated bulb. This bulbous bow both reduces resistance in waves when in transit and saves energy
when staying in position, similarly due to the higher efficiency of the bow thruster. The exterior design of
this vessel was successfully boosted by the works of Dutch yacht designer Cor D. Rover who worked in
close cooperation with De Hoop and Silversea to combine the efficient hull lines with a truly special and
highly functional exterior design. The top deck design, especially, now adds a destination to the journey.
To further reduce the environmental footprint, the cruise ship accommodates an enhanced sewage plant
to improve the quality and reduce the amount of wastewater. An improved HVAC system and improved
thermal insulation, as a result of energy-efficient low-emissive glazing, leads to 50% less energy
consumption. It almost speaks for itself that the HVAC equipment, installed by Heinen & Hopman, is
capable of handling the challenging environmental parameters, warmer seawater and higher outside air
temperatures of the Galápagos. In the electric system, many more energy-saving measures have been
taken. All electronics were successfully integrated and installed by Droste Electro, following a multi-year
subcontractor relationship with the yard.
Truly built around the passengers’ experiences
Aside from its state-of-the-art design and use of eco-friendly technology, the vessel will feature the
largest and most luxurious accommodations in the Galápagos region. The raw materials for carpentry,
upholstery, finishing and decorations of all eight accommodation decks consist of sustainable, natural,
regionally inspired materials. With 51 staterooms divided over decks five and six and a capacity to host a
total of 102 passengers, Silver Origin transports its guests in spacious all-suite cabins, featuring generous
bathrooms and connected to the outside world through outward-facing layouts and integrated
balconies. The Owner’s suite, Grand suite and Royal suite – the largest in the Galápagos – feature
separate indoor and outdoor living areas, whilst all other suites have large, private veranda/balcony
arrangements. All of the vessel’s luxurious cabins feature full room automation that allows you control
everything with just the touch of a button. Designed by Giacomo Mortola and build to the highest
standards by MJM from Ireland, Silver Origin’s all-suite accommodation has been conceived with the
unicity of the islands in mind.
Also accommodated onboard, divided over 53 cabins, are the 87 crewmembers and personal suite
attendants, to attend to the guests’ every need. These crew accommodations were built by the
carpenters of De Hoop themselves.
Characteristic for this vessel is the large variety of public areas, to be found on decks 3, 4, 7 and 8. A
choice of seven different seating locations includes a floor to ceiling glass-wrapped observation lounge
and the open-air hideaway on the forward respectively mid and aft part of deck seven. Guests can relax
or enjoy naturalist presentations and excursion information sessions in the Explorer lounges, (one
outdoors and one indoors), to the stern of deck four. On deck three, the outdoors and indoors
Basecamps are home to the tourist offices and there is also a Stargazing Platform on deck eight.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served in the restaurant on deck four, while the Barbecue bar area, aft of
the Observation lounge on deck seven, offers a more casual dining space, panoramic views and dinner
under the stars.
The Marina, the embarkation area located aft on deck three, is the primary point of access to the ship
and guests will be brought on-board over water, in one of the available Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIBs).
Silver Origin’s transom features integrated aft stairs, combined with a foldout stern platform with special
boarding facilities, to allow safe and easy boarding for the passengers.
Behind the scenes, the dry/cold/freeze stores, galleys, pantries and eateries, up to and including the
scullery and the waste/sewage management, are unique in their layout – allowing seamless service in the
restaurants. On deck 2 and 3, a RIB garage with hydraulic hull doors, hatches and dedicated cranes is
provided for storage of the tenders. To allow for swift and unseen provisioning logistics by the crew, to
starboard side – near the dry, cool and freeze stores in the fore ship – a loading bay is provided for
provisioning as well as luggage handling. This unique RIB handling, in combination with the dedicated
stern boarding facilities for passengers, is the money-maker of this design.
Shipyard De Hoop has put a lot of effort into minimizing noise and vibrations, the result of which can be
seen in floating floors, flexibly mounted equipment and anti-vibration panels in walls and ceilings. The
practical implementation of this was supported by theoretical frequency analysis of the ship and its
interior construction. With Comfort Class 1 notation achieved (the highest possible Class notation), quiet
and comfortable passenger areas are assured. In addition, thorough wind tunnel tests on the vessel’s
superstructure shape ensure passengers on deck will not be subjected to exhaust gasses.
Built with true dedication – defying the odds
In the first months of 2020, the Corona / Covid-19 virus rapidly developed into a worldwide pandemic.
Many counties (and companies) went into lock-down, governments introduced strong measures and just
around this time the Silver Origin was being prepared for departure to the Rotterdam harbour area. For
passing the bridges in the Rhine River, the top deck modules were removed. These would be refitted in
Rotterdam, where the final stages, including sea trials and final finishing, were planned to take place.
With rapidly implemented (stringent) virus protection procedures, the transport commenced and the
build continued. Delays of materials and equipment (being stuck in warehouses all over the world),
unavailability of technical services and other side effects started to interfere with the build planning.
Nevertheless, the yard, her suppliers and subcontractors continued to find solutions for the issues which
Despite limitations on workforce, other limitations and severe side effects, the overall delay on the
vessel’s readiness remained less than 6 weeks. During the sea trials, the DP tuning was done by IT
specialists from Navis of St. Peterburg, who logged on to the ship and with this performed the first
remote DP tuning ever.
Length, over all : 110.01m
Length, waterline : 101.50m
Length, between perpendiculars : 97.72m
Beam, over all : 18.92m
Beam, moulded : 17.00m
Depth, moulded (maindeck) : 6.50m
Draught, design : 4.50m
Propulsion power : 2x 1450kW
Bow thruster power : 2x 400kW
Speed, max : 15.0kn
Passengers : 102 persons in 51 suites (in 6 different varieties)
Crew & Personal suite attendants : 87 persons in 55 cabins
Fuel oil (MDO) 210 cu.m
Fresh water 160 cu.m
Sewage grey 153 cu.m
Sewage black 45 cu.m
Treated water holding 142 cu.m
Urea 16 cu.m
Water ballast 530 cu.m
Lloyd Register of Shipping
X100A1, Passenger Ship, *IWS, Shipright (ACS B)
EC0 (BWT, IHM, OW, P, SEEMP),
XLMC, UMS, DP(AM), NAV1, PCAC 1 – 3, PSMR*, BWTS*
About SILVERSEA CRUISES
Since its inception in the early 90s, Silversea Cruises has been recognised as the gold standard in
luxury cruising, acclaimed both for its legendary European lifestyle and global reach of destinations. With
the debut of luxury cruise ship Silver Explorer in 2008, Silversea introduced expedition cruising —
Silversea style, adding yet another unique niche in the luxury cruise market. Along with both polar
extremes, Silversea’s expedition ships sail to the islands of Oceania, Southeast Asia, the Russian Far East,
Australia’s remote Kimberley Coast, Central and South America (including the Galápagos Islands) and the
exotic western coast of Africa.
2018 saw the exciting partnership with Royal Caribbean, with RCL acquiring two-thirds of Silversea.
The strength and expertise of Royal Caribbean’s portfolio, coupled with Silversea’s strive for excellence
aboard, means superlative sailing for guests, across all four corners of the globe. Today, Silversea Cruises
operate a global portfolio of itineraries to all seven continents and over 900 destinations worldwide. The
cruise line’s headquarters are based in Monaco and the company maintains branch offices in the United
States, United Kingdom, Germany and Australia.
About SHIPYARD DE HOOP
Shipyard De Hoop is a successful Dutch designer, engineer and builder of custom-built vessels. Each
and every ship that is built is unique and built in-house, which means no standard processes, but
customisation. De Hoop has a positive approach to trends and developments in the industry, allowing
them to quickly embrace change and even anticipate future developments.
Shipyard De Hoop is a medium-sized shipyard headquartered in Lobith, in the east of the country, with
a workforce of 250 to 500 people depending on the workload. The yard offers slipway facilities for
vessels up to 200 metres length and has a combined quay length of 450 metres locally and a further
200m in the Rotterdam harbour area available for outfitting.
Shipyard De Hoop has an impressive track record in designing and constructing custom-built ships.
This comprises both seagoing vessels and inland vessels, including river cruise vessels and passenger
vessels, as well as high-end work and accommodation vessels for the offshore industry and renewables
markets. Having their own design and engineering department, together with all other disciplines (not
only hull building, but also prefabrication, carpentry/interior manufacturing, installation facilities, piping,
etc.) allows them to build a complete ‘turn-key’ ship. The company is characterised by its flexibility and
quality, whilst simultaneously offering fast delivery dates.
Shipyard De Hoop has celebrated its 130th anniversary with the turn of the year from 2018 to 2019.