Back in the 90’s and into most of the 2000’s, Cruise West was a major player in the small ship cruising niche industry. Many of our clients fell in love with their Alaska experience and the ships. With the one-year anniversary of the Cruise West’s demise approaching, we like to check in on the former Cruise West ships to see where they are now.
Spirit of Oceanus
The one time 120-passenger flagship of the line was the most luxurious ship in the fleet, and sailed grand Alaska and Asia itineraries. The Spirit of Oceanus was in the midst of sailing a world cruise when Cruise West halted operations. The ship terminated its sailing in Newfoundland, Canada and was immediately sold to TN Cruise K/S, who now charters the ship to other cruise lines.
Today, the ship, renamed Sea Spirit, is now chartered to several expedition lines, including Quark Expeditions and Zegrahm Expeditions, sailing the Antarctic.
Sea Spirit Itineraries
- Crossing the Antarctic Circle – Quark Expeditions
- Explorers’ Quest – Quark Expeditions
- Antarctic Explorer – Quark Expeditions
- Circumnavigation of South Georgia with the Falkland Islands – Zegrahm Expeditions
Spirit of Discovery
The 84-passenger Spirit of Discovery sailed the waters of Alaska’s Inside Passage for Cruise West.
On August 17, 2011, InnerSea Discoveries acquired the ship and renamed her Wilderness Explorer. The ship will undergo significant renovations, including reducing the number of cabins from 43 to 38 cabins, enlarging several of them. Other enhancements include microbrews on tap, a massage room, in-suite flat screen TV/DVD, iPod docking stations, on-deck hot tubs, sauna, exercise equipment, an underwater bow camera that will stream images to cabins and the lounge, and a sophisticated launch system for kayaks.
Wilderness Explorer will sail 8-Day / 7-Night active, adventure un-cruises between Juneau and Sitka, Alaska beginning summer 2012. This itinerary will feature 3-Day stays in Glacier Bay National Park. A 15-Day / 14-Night itinerary will start and end the Alaska cruise season between Seattle and Juneau.
Wilderness Explorer Itineraries
- Northern Passages & Glacier Bay – 8 Days / 7 Nights
- Wilderness Passages of Discovery – 15 Days / 14 Nights
Spirit of Endeavour
The 102-passenger Spirit of Endeavour sailed the waters of Alaska’s Inside Passage for Cruise West. When Cruise West stopped operations, the ship was docked with no activity.
Spirit of Endeavour was purchased by American Safari Cruises on August 10, 2011 and renamed Safari Endeavour. The Safari Endeavour will undergo a major renovation to transform it into an upscale vessel ready to sail in Southeast Alaska in summer 2012. Upgrades include decreasing the number of cabins from 51 to 43 (decreasing passenger capacity from 102 to 86), while increasing the size of several cabins, a resource library, wine bar, massage room, memory foam mattresses, flat screen TV/DVD, iPod docking stations, on-deck hot tubs, sauna, exercise equipment; 4 two-room suites with step-out balconies, some Jacuzzi tubs, an underwater box camera and a kayak launch system.
Safari Endeavour will sail a 8-Day / 7-Night roundtrip Juneau ALaska itinerary with two days exploration in Glacier Bay National Park and expedition cruising in Icy Strait, Frederick Sound, Thomas Bay, Chichagof Island, Ford’s Terror and Endicott Arm. A 15-Day / 14-Day itinerary between Seattle and Juneau will start and end the Alaska cruise season. Safari Endeavour is also scheduled to begin 7-night Mexico Sea of Cortés explorations in November 2012. Details on that itinerary to follow.
Safari Endeavour Itineraries
Spirit of Yorktown
The 138-passenger Spirit of Yorktown sailed the waters of Alaska’s Inside Passage for Cruise West. When Cruise West stopped operations, the ship was docked with no activity.
In August 2011, Travel Dynamics International announced they had purchased Spirit of Yorktown, to be renamed Yorktown. The ship is scheduled to sail the Atlantic Coast, Canadian Maritimes and Great Lakes in 2012.
- A Springtime Voyage from New England to Montreal – 13-Days / 12-Nights
- From the St. Lawrence Seaway to Chicago – 12-Days / 11-Nights
- Great Lakes Grand Discovery – 11-Days / 10-Nights
- From the Gold Coast of Chicago to the Walls of Quebec City – 15-Days / 14-Nights
- North America’s Enchanting Seaway – 8-Days / 7-Nights
- From the St. Lawrence River to Coastal Maine – 14-Days / 13-Nights
- The Historic Towns & Sites of the Chesapeake Bay, Delaware, James & Potomac Rivers – 8-Days / 7-Nights
- New Orleans & the Gulf Coast – 8-Days / 7-Nights
Spirit of ’98
The 96-passenger Spirit of ’98 was a classic, emulating an early 20th century coastal steamer. The interiors were lush, with carved wooden cabinetry, plush floral upholstery, a Grand Salon, plus a full bar with old-world charm. Even with this settle, the ship traversed the coastal wilderness, bringing passengers ‘up close & personal’ with Alaska’s scenery, natural assets and wildlife. When Cruise West halted operations, the ship, like others were held up without activity.
On August 23, 2011, American Safari Cruises purchased the ship, renaming her Safari Legacy. The ship is schedule to sail the Columbia River for American Safari Cruises starting in 2013, after a refurbishment.
Spirit of Alaska
The 78-passenger Spirit of Alaska sailed the waters of Alaska’s Inside Passage for Cruise West.
In October 2010, shortly after Cruise West’s demise, the ship was purchased by Alaskan Dream Cruises and renamed Baranof Dream, currently sailing Alaskan waters during the Alaska cruise season.
Spirit of Columbia
The 78-passenger Spirit of Columbia sailed the waters of Alaska’s Inside Passage for Cruise West. Like Cruise West’s other ships, the Spirit of Columbia featured a shallow draft, allowing it to explore where many other ships could not.
In October 2010, shortly after Cruise West’s demise, the ship was purchased by Alaskan Dream Cruises and renamed Admiralty Dream, currently sailing Alaskan waters during the Alaska cruise season.