13 September 2016

Koningsdam in Helsinki, 12 September 2016

As you may have noticed, I haven't been too active with photographing visiting cruise ships in Helsinki during the soon-to-end summer. Today, however, the weather was good and HAL's new(ish) Koningsdam made its last call of the season in the Helsinki. So it was time to dust off the bike and head to Lauttasaari for a spot of photography.


IMO 9692557
Built 2013, Fincantieri Porto Maghera, Italy
Tonnage 99 836 GT
Length 299,57 m
Width 38 m
Draught 8,20 m
2 560 passengers
4 Caterpillar-MaK diesels, combined 50 400 kW
2 azipods
3 bow thrusters
Service speed 18 knots
Maximum speed 22,3 knots

So, the Koningsdam is Holland-America Line's newest and largest ship, delivered in March 2016. It is also the lead ship of what HAL call the Pinnacle-class, a further development of the older Signature-class. Her interiors, something of a departure from HAL's traditionalist outlook, are by Adam Tihany (who has previously worked on the interiors of the Solstice-class ships built for HAL's competitors Celebrity Cruises) and Bjørn Storbraaten. Since the ship has been in service only for a little over five months there's not much else to say, so let's go to the photos!

The photos below show the Koningsdam departing from Helsinki Länsisatama (West Harbour) on the afternoon of 12 September 2016, photographed from Vattuniemi. As per the usual, click on the images to see them in larger size.

While I do have a liking for HAL and the looks of their ships, I must admit the Koningsdam could look better, especially if you compare it to the older but very similar Vista-class ships.
By this time of the year, the light is already coming in very low in the late afternoon. I admit to some fiddling with the brightnesses of various hues to make the ship stand out better from the sky.
My wife's comment on the livery was 'I like the classic dark hull, but the white funnel looks a bit cheap'. I agree. It would look much superior if they simply reversed colours and put the company logo on white on a dark blue background.
Something a bit more atmospheric.
Next time: Fred. Olsen's classic Black Watch is due to call on Wednesday, giving me a chance to not only photograph the ship itself (I'm surprised I never have, actually!), but also Fred. Olsen's new livery for the first time. So if the weather is passable on Wednesday, look forward to that some time after.

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