The first of the two 600-passenger cruise ships on order for Seabourn Cruise Line, Seabourn Encore, was named in Singapore on 7 January 2017 by the British soprano Sarah Brightman.

The new ship, which completed her sea trials on 7 November 2016, is the largest unit to serve up to now in the Seabourn fleet, with a passenger capacity of 600, compared with the 450 passengers carried by the Odyssey class trio.

Seabourn Encore’s maiden season sees her leave Piraeus on 4 December 2016 before heading through the Suez Canal and on to the Middle East, India, South East Asia and Australia.

After a voyage to New Zealand, she will then make her way back to Europe for a Mediterranean season, starting from Piraeus on 6 May. At the end of this first season she will leave Civitavecchia on 4 October bound for Australia.

Although Seabourn Encore’s passenger capacity is a third higher than those of the Odyssey class ships, her gross tonnage is greater by only a quarter, 40,350gt compared with 32,477gt.

The new ship, which is 12m longer (210m) than her older fleetmates, has an additional deck housing cabins, a larger restaurant and a Sushi bar. The new ships are being built by Fincantieri’s Breda shipyard near Venice.

William Mayes