Ponant took delivery of the sixth and final vessel in its Explorer class of ships, Le Jacques Cartier, from Norway's Vard shipyard on July 10.  

The ship features balconies or terraces on all 92 cabins; the Blue Eye underwater lounge with windows into the water; and the latest environmental technology, Ponant said. New on Le Jacques Cartier is a hidden work of art by Shuck One, a French graffiti artist who produced an allegorical diptych on the raw steel of the ship showcasing the oceans and nature.

It is the second cruise ship to be delivered during the Covid-19 pandemic. Silversea Cruises last month took possession of its expedition ship the Silver Origin from Dutch shipyard De Hoop.

With the delivery of Le Jacques Cartier, Ponant expanded its fleet to 12 ships. The line is scheduled to launch Le Commandant Charcot, a hybrid electric polar exploration vessel, in 2021.

The first Explorer-class ship, Le Laperouse, entered service in June 2018. Le Bellot was delivered in March and is sailing its first itineraries in Iceland this month, on a newly created eight-day, roundtrip itinerary from Reykjavik.

Le Bellot launched the first of seven sailings on July 13 that will visit Snaefellsjokull National Park and the Hornstrandir Nature Reserve and will cross the Arctic Circle. Ponant's Le Boreal will also sail Iceland itineraries in July and August.

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