Stena passengers will be able to enjoy Jacuzzis, saunas and iPads on Irish Sea crossings from next week.
Stena Line’s new sister ships, Superfast VII and VIII, will be the biggest ferries ever to sail on the Scotland-Northern Ireland route.
They will operate from the ferry firm’s new £80m Loch Ryan Port from Monday (21 Nov), and take two hours, 15 minutes to reach Belfast.
The new terminal, near Cairnryan, will replace its current Stranraer base, eight miles further up the sea loch.
Each ship can carry up to 1,200 passengers and about 660 cars or 110 freight vehicles.
The new vessels will replace the HSS Stena Voyager, Stena Caledonia and Stena Navigator, which currently operate between the two countries.
Stena Line claims the ferries will provide ‘unprecedented levels of comfort on the Irish Sea’ for the 1m passengers a year on the route.
The Jacuzzi and sauna offerings are in the Nordic Spa, while the ‘Pod lounge’ will offer iPads, X-boxes and free wi-fi.
Passengers upgrading to the Stena Plus Lounge can use the spa facilities, as well as Apple Macs and iPads.
Stena said the vessels had ‘a look, feel and experience more akin to a cruise ship than a traditional ferry’, according to The Scotsman.
Professor Alf Baird, of Napier University in Edinburgh, told the Scotsman: ‘Compared with Stena’s previous high-speed vessel on the route [HSS Voyager], the new solution will enable them to carry more people, cars and freight at much lower overall fuel consumption and therefore at lower cost and with reduced emissions.’
To see the Scotsman report, click here.
See other Stena news:
Stena defends fast-ferry cuts (01/09/2011)
…as coaches and APD boost Stena Line (18/07/2011)
Spring surge for Stena (31/05/2011)
CC provisionally clears Stena/DFDS deal (25/05/2011)
Stena expands summer capacity (08/04/2011)
Stena adds Superfast ferries from new Scottish port (08/03/2011)