Hamburg, Germany-based Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ brand-new, five-plus star MV EUROPA 2 is equal in luxurious amenities to Berlitz’ world’s highest rated ship, the MV EUROPA but the newer ship maintains an elegant casual dress code, caters to families and English-speaking guests and sails on shorter itineraries than her more formal, Old World consort. Part one of this Decked! feature covers EUROPA 2’s upper deck areas and public spaces.
Keep up to date with Peter Knego on Twitter by clicking here
THE SANDS OF ALANG: Peter Knego’s new DVD about shipbreaking in Alang, India
MV EUROPA 2
STX Shipyard, St. Nazaire, France (hull number H33)
11 Decks (8 for guests)
739 feet (225.38 meters) long
87.6 feet (26.70 meters) wide
6.30 meters draft
All photos by and copyright Peter Knego 2013 unless otherwise noted.
MV EUROPA 2 at Valletta, Malta.
When deluxe German cruise operator Hapag-lloyd announced it was going to build the EUROPA 2, they were not contracting for just another cookie cutter newbuild.
MV EUROPA 2 at La Savina, Formentera, Spain.
At 42,830 gross tons and with a guest capacity of 516 , the EUROPA 2 is half again as large as the 28.890 gross ton EUROPA, which carries 408 guests. And based on double occupancy, her space ratio is an astounding 83 versus EUROPA’s 70.
MV EUROPA 2 funnel.
So why have two EUROPAs under one handsome orange and blue banner? With this ship, Hapag-Lloyd is staking out a brand new market. The EUROPA will continue to sail on elegant, formal, globe-trekking voyages and cater to her sophisticated adult clientele. Meanwhile, the EUROPA 2 is just as elegant and even more spacious but retains a casual, ultra modern ambiance and caters to younger guests as well as families. EUROPA 2 also sails on shorter itineraries (mainly one week) that can be combined with other sailings for those who have more time to cruise.
MV EUROPA 2 Builder’s Plate.
The smaller, older sibling was built by Kvaerner-Masa shipyard (now STX) in Helskini, Finland, while the new ship is a product of STX Europe’s St. Nazaire, France-based shipyard, formerly the celebrated Chantiers de l’Atlantique, which built the NORMANDIE, FRANCE and many other historic liners. More recently, STX has produced NCL’s NORWEGIAN EPIC and the entire MSC Cruises’ fleet.
MV EUROPA 2 at La Savina, Formentera, Spain.
With EUROPA 2, extra attention and expense was taken to give the ship a stately profile. She has nice proportions, a long bow and a raked stern to avoid the over-stacked, boxy appearance of most modern ships.
MV EUROPA 2 at La Savina, Formentera, Spain.
EUROPA 2 has eight passenger decks, beginning at the top with Deck (11).
MV EUROPA 2 Deck 11 empty space, facing aft.
The far forward portion of Deck 11 is a crew area which is curiously followed by an empty expanse of open deck that separates the crew space from a passenger sunning deck. Such prime “real estate” could surely be utilized for something more than the occasional helicopter landing…
MV EUROPA 2 Deck 11 sunning area, facing forward.
MV EUROPA 2 Deck 11, facing forward from starboard.
The Deck 11 sunning space is served by an open air bar, is lined in fresh teak, features a jacuzzi and is furnished with cushioned rattan loungers and cabanas.
MV EUROPA 2 Magrodome at night from starboard Deck 11.
Aft from port Deck 11.
Stairs on either side of Deck 11 lead down to Deck 10. From here, there is a nice view facing aft over the Magrodome and Deck 10 promenades.
MV EUROPA 2 Wheelhouse, facing starboard.
Deck 10 begins with the wheelhouse, which is open, conditions permitting, once per cruise, for guests to visit.
MV EUROPA 2 port bridge wing.
MV EUROPA 2 aft from port wing.
Unlike most modern cruise ships, EUROPA 2 has open bridge wings.
MV EUROPA 2 Deck 10, facing aft from port.
2 Category 11 Owners Suites, 2 Category 10 Grand Penthouse Suites, 10 Category 9 Grand Suites and 4 Category 5 Veranda Suites follow the bridge on Deck 10. On EUROPA 2, a central passage connects the accommodation, resulting in fewer but larger cabins.
MV EUROPA 2 Midships Deck 10, inner portion, facing aft from starboard.
MV EUROPA 2 Midships Deck 10, inner portion, facing forward from port.
MV EUROPA 2 Under the Magrodome from Deck 10, facing aft.
Teak promenades continue aft along midships Deck 10, each divided by glass screens with an inner portion overlooking the pool from underneath the Magrodome and an outer portion overlooking the sea.
Aft/port Deck 10, outer portion, facing forward.
The outer promenades on Deck 10 have more sunning space and even a shuffleboard court.
MV EUROPA 2 aft Deck 10, facing starboard.
At the far aft end of Deck 10, there is a terrace of cushioned loungers shaded by a large cabana. A fleet of eight zodiacs are stowed just aft of the funnel.
MV EUROPA 2 forward Deck 9, facing port.
MV EUROPA 2 totally random teak shot.
Deck 9 begins with a gorgeous teak-topped observation area.
MV EUROPA 2 starboard Deck 9 promenade, facing forward.
Open promenades continue aft on either side to the stern.
MV EUROPA 2 Belvedere Lounge, facing port.
The interior portion of Deck 9 begins with the L-shaped, 157-seat Belvedere Lounge with a span of full length windows forward and along the starboard side.
MV EUROPA 2 Belvedere counter.
The Belvedere and all of the EUROPA 2’s light and airy interiors were created by Hamburg-based Partnership Design. On the port side of the room, there is a snack and dessert counter as well as a bar.
MV EUROPA 2 Belvedere Lounge, facing aft.
The Belvedere Lounge is a wonderful place to relax, read and just gaze out at the sea. Each afternoon, it is the elegant setting for high tea with live music.
MV EUROPA 2 Culinary Center, facing aft.
Directly aft of the Belvedere Lounge on the starboard side of Deck 9, a Culinary Center can host between 8 and 16 guests for cooking classes.
MV EUROPA 2 Art Gallery, facing port/aft.
A dedicated art gallery follows the Culinary Center on the starboard side of Deck 9. A number of German-based galleries supply key works for the on board gallery on a revolving basis. In addition, the ship’s public spaces and key accommodation are filled with contemporary art compiled by curators from International Corporate Art (ICA).
MV EUROPA 2 3-D Theater, facing aft.
On the port side of Deck 9, there is a 3-D Cinema with 75 seats that can be used for enrichment lectures, port talks, meetings and, of course, movie screenings.
MV EUROPA 2 Card Room, facing aft.
Twin Libraries face each other from either side of the midships Deck 9 passage. On the starboard side, the dynamic space is largely used as a card and games room.
MV EUROPA 2 Library, facing port.
The Library on the port side of Deck 9 has books and DVDs in German with a small selection in English.
MV EUROPA 2 Deck 9 Foyer, facing port.
The forward foyer spans the height of the ship from Deck 4 to Deck 10 with a pair of panoramic elevators and stairs on either side. Each vestibule is enhanced with full length windows and artwork from the 890-piece, multimillion dollar EUROPA 2 collection.
MV EUROPA 2 Pool Bar, facing port.
Under the Magrodome, midships Deck 9 continues with one of the largest pools afloat. On either side, there are wood veneered bars that each seat 9 guests.
MV EUROPA 2 Pool, facing aft.
The long pool is surrounded by a tiled basin and wet seating area.
MV EUROPA 2 aft Deck 9 vestibule, facing forward.
Another stairtower spans the aft part of the ship from Decks 9 through 4. More top-notch artwork adorns its landings.
MV EUROPA 2 Yacht Club children’s dining area, facing forward.
The U-shaped interior portion of the Yacht Club buffet eatery seats 142 and is divided into three sections. The forward port area is the children’s dining area.
MV EUROPA 2 Yacht Club counter.
MV EUROPA 2 The Yacht Club, facing starboard.
The center portion of the Yacht Club has action stations and a buffet counter as well as seating that overlooks the al fresco terrace aft.
MV EUROPA 2 Sakura, facing forward.
The forward starboard wing of the Yacht Club is Sakura, a dedicated sushi restaurant.
MV EUROPA 2 Yacht Club terrace, facing starboard.
Seating an additional 134 guests, the aft portion of Deck 9 is the Yacht Club terrace, an extremely popular al fresco dining area that overlooks the EUROPA 2’s wake.
MV EUROPA 2 forward Deck 8 terrace, facing starboard.
Deck 8 begins with a narrow, sheltered observation terrace that is accessed from Deck 9. Immediately aft is officers’ accommodation, which is followed by guest suites in four categories (12 Category 8 Grand Suites, 2 Category 13 Grand Suites, 22 Category 4 Veranda Suites and 8 Category 12 Family Apartments).
MV EUROPA 2 Knopf Club nursery.
MV EUROPA 2 Knopf Club, facing aft.
The Knopf Club/Kid’s Club is located on the starboard side of Deck 8 near the stern. It is divided into several sections to accommodate different ages.
MV EUROPA 2 Sansibar, facing port.
MV EUROPA 2 Sansibar, facing starboard.
Sansibar is an extremely handsome nightclub/bar on aft Deck 8 that accommodates 48 guests inside…
MV EUROPA 2 Sansibar terrace, facing starboard.
…and 77 on a sheltered al fresco terrace.
MV EUROPA 2 Teen Center, facing aft/port.
Deck 7 starts with officers’ accommodation followed by a large block of suites (24 Category 2 Veranda/Ocean Suites and 46 Category 3 Veranda/Ocean Suites). On the starboard/aft side, there is a small Teen Center.
End of EUROPA 2 Double Decked!, Part One
Much More To Come…
Very special thanks: Martin Cox, Moritz Krause, Cindy Tanenbaum