• The 168-metre (551 ft) mega-cruise yacht, with a 21.5-metre (70.5 ft) beam, will include the latest innovations in naval design and technology for exploration in extreme environments, such as the Arctic and Antarctic coasts and the seabed
  • The 17,000 gross tonne vessel is currently being built at a Croatian shipyard and its maiden voyage is scheduled for August 2018
  • Oliver Design’s task has been to develop an attractive external design for the vessel, together with an architectural design providing all the necessary spaces for the super-luxury cruiser to operate in optimum conditions
  • The design had to meet complex requirements to ensure the vessel could operate in the most demanding conditions – storms, extreme temperatures, large waves and ice
  • The magnificence of the ship’s 114 suites is complemented with features including two helicopters, a seven-seater submarine, Zodiacs, diving equipment and kayaks which will allow passengers to discover the destinations and the seabed from close up

Bilbao, April 25th 2016

OLIVER DESIGN, a company specialising in naval design and architecture with Head Offices in Getxo (Bizkaia), has won a contract from cruiser operator Scenic Cruises to develop the architectural design and exterior styling of the “Scenic Eclipse”, the world’s most sophisticated luxury vessel. The Spanish company, based in the Basque Country, is playing a key role in this iconic project, which will redefine the concept of the cruiser, combining the opulence of a first class cruise with a chance to discover almost virgin landscapes and extreme natural environments, including the Arctic and Antarctic coasts and even the seabed.

The “Scenic Eclipse” is a pioneer in its class, defined by the owners as the “world’s first discovery yacht”. This is a ship Jules Verne would have loved for its capacity to reach destinations most people have ever only seen on TV documentaries.

This 168-metre, 17,000 gross tonne super-luxury cruiser in mega-yacht format, with a beam of 21.5 metres, will incorporate the latest novelties in naval design and technology. Although intended for an exclusive clientele (carrying 228 passengers in 114 luxury suites), the ship will be adapted to withstand the most demanding conditions – storms, extreme temperatures, ice, etc. The icebreaker-like reinforced hull, special stabilisers to smooth large swells and duplicated critical ship systems will all ensure maximum passenger safety.

The vessel will be fitted with two helicopters, a seven-seater submarine, Zodiacs, diving equipment and kayaks to offer passengers a unique experience discovering different marine and coastal environments. The “Scenic Eclipse” will also be adapted to minimise impact on protected environments, using a system that will allow it to remain stationary without an anchor, and energy systems that minimise emissions.

Together with its six-star suites, the ship will have services comparable to those of a super-luxury hotel: restaurants serving international cuisine, a butler service, a 240-seat conference room, gyms and a heated swimming pool with retractable roof.

The vessel is currently being built in the Uljanik shipyards in Pula (Croatia) and is due to make its maiden voyage between Istanbul and Venice in August 2018. A further twenty cruise itineraries are scheduled in the Mediterranean, the Norwegian fjords, Antarctica, the Arctic and various routes in North and South America.

The marine and off-shore division of the leading certification and classification firm, Bureau Veritas, will be responsible for certifying the ship to the strictest safety criteria.

The owner, Scenic, is company founded in 1987 by Glen Moroney, specialising in luxury cruisers. It already operates twenty rivergoing cruisers in Europe, Russia and South East Asia. Created in the environs of the city of Melbourne, the firm soon began to diversify, and it entered the river cruise scenic market in 2008. The company has 400 employees, a fleet of 21 ships, and annual turnover of around 40 million dollars.


Competing against specialist firms from around the world, OLIVER DESIGN was chosen by this demanding shipowner to develop the entire exterior styling of the vessel, as well as the architectural conceptual design.

In developing the architectural project, OLIVER DESIGN has worked in coordination with the Finnish naval engineering firm Foreship to meet the highest technical, legal and regulatory requirements required of a polar class vessel, as well as the even more challenging demands involved in the complexity of the “Scenic Eclipse”.

Some of the most significant and complex aspects of OLIVER DESIGN’s architectural design include:

  • A large heliport and two hangars for medium-large sized helicopters in the upper part of the stern, with two folding wings on the sides.
  • An “indoor/outdoor ” pool with a retractable roof, also in the stern.
  • A 300 square metre spa with access to Jacuzzi-type swimming pools on the stern of Deck 5.
  • Five different on-board restaurants, with very individual and welcoming ambiences.
  • An onboard garage for several kayaks, fourteen inflatable dinghies and a small submarine to allow passengers to enjoy the full experience of discovering the marine environment.
  • A 240-seat theatre fitted with the most advanced media for hosting shows, meetings, lectures, etc.
  • One of the most complex tasks involved layout of the midship cabins and the luxury suites in the bow, together with the necessary service and upkeep.
  • All of these features are coordinated with a stunning external design, finalised after numerous different proposals, alternatives, external impact studies, etc.