19 January 2012

Bremen in Helsinki, 24 September 2011


IMO 8907424
Former name: Frontier Spirit
Built 1990, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Kobe, Japan
Tonnage 6 752 GT
Length 111,51 m
Width 17,05 m
Draugth 4,80 m
Ice class: 1A Super
164 passengers
184 berths
2 Daihatsu diesels, combined 4 855 kW
2 propellers
1 bow thruster
Speed 15 knots

The header for this entry sounds strange when reading it out (a bit like saying Stockholm in New York, it makes no sense unless you know the first city name is actually a ship), but I'm a sucker for consistency so no deviating from the pattern.

So, the Bremen. Like so many other Hapag-Lloyd ships, it carries a traditional name from the fleet of Norddeutsche Lloyd, being in actual fact the sixth Bremen in the fleets of NDL/HL. This Bremen started out as the Frontier Spirit, built for Frontier Cruises in 1990 by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. After three years of service for Frontier Cruises (who do not appear to have had any other ships), the Frontier Spirit was chartered to Hapag-Lloyd Cruises in late 1993. The ship was rebuilt at Werft Nobiskrug in Rendsburg, Germany, and renamed Bremen after the refit. Instead of being repainted in normal Hapag-Lloyd colours she retained the mostly blue hull from the Frontier Cruises days, with the stripe above the hull (originally red) was painted orange.

In early 1995 Hapag-Lloyd purchased the ship outright. In 2001 the ship lost her previous unique (and quite stylish) livery in favour of the standard Hapag-Lloyd Cruises livery of a white hull with narrow white and orange decorative lines. The funnel was also modified by adding blue top and aft. At the same time (or possibly earlier) the aft superstructure was somewhat extended, which probably contributed to the ship's slight aft-heaviness (evident in the images below).

The photographs below show the Bremen in Helsinki South Harbour, departing from the Pakkahuoneenlaituri used only by smallest cruise ships (and yachts) on 24 September 2011. Because my camera was misbehaving, only these few images turned out alright from the day. Click on the photos to see them in larger size.

The Bremen is really a tiny little thing, fitting into the quay previously normally used by the Kristina Regina (and not looking much bigger). Also notice how huge a single standard-sized container looks like compared to the rest of the ship.
In the harbour pool, with the Helsinki Cathedral in the background. The design of the bridge look really out-of-date for a ship built in 1990 in my opinion.
On Kruunuvuorenselkä, with the aft-heaviness quite evident.


  1. A nice looking ship though


  2. Certainly it's not bad at all on the looks. Anjd come to think of it, maybe the design isn't so out-of-date, considering that she was built as the same time as the Sitmar Fairmajesty and the other ordered-by-Sitmar-but-delivered-to-Princess ships that also (in my opinion) look quite old-fashioned.