Former Cruise West ships enter service for InnerSea

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Safari EndeavourInnerSea Discoveries, parent company of American Safari Cruises and InnerSea Discoveries, christened two ships on May 18 — one for each brand.

In a dockside ceremony at Seattle’s Fishermen’s Terminal, the 86-passenger Safari Endeavour joined the American Safari Cruises fleet and the 76-passenger Wilderness Explorer entered service for InnerSea Discoveries.

Both ships previously were operated by Cruise West, the small-ship line that went out of business in 2010. The Wilderness Explorer is the former Spirit of Discovery and the Safari Endeavour is the former Spirit of Endeavour.

The two ships will cruise in Alaska.

Company CEO and principal Dan Blanchard led the traditional maritime christening. He and Tim Jacox, executive vice president of sales and marketing, unrolled a banner announcing the firm’s marketing theme: the Un-Cruise.

Margaret Propper, a Birmingham, Ala.-based travel agent and a top producer for the company, inaugurated the Safari Endeavour with a crack of a champagne bottle against the hull. Linda Reist, a sales counselor and employee at InnerSea Discoveries, christened the Wilderness Explorer with another champagne bottle.

Propper was named godmother of Un-Cruise Adventures. A spokeswoman for the company explained that the names of the brands are not changing. Un-Cruise Adventures is being used “in marketing, as an umbrella over both brands.”

The Safari Endeavour is sailing weeklong cruises in the Inside Passage through August, roundtrip from Juneau. The Wilderness Explorer operates weeklong cruises between Juneau and Sitka through August.

For cruise news and updates, follow Donna Tunney on Twitter @dttravelweekly.

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