Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is introducing two new ships to its ocean-going fleet as the company looks to strengthen the brand on the other side of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The ships, to be named Bolette and Borealis, have been purchased from Holland America Line.

They previously sailed under the names Amsterdam and Rotterdam, carrying up to 1,380 and 1,404 guests respectively.

The acquisition of Bolette and Borealis will modernise and increase capacity across Fred. Olsen’s fleet of small ships, a move that will ensure the cruise line returns to the water in a stronger position.

Fred. Olsen Junior, chairman of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said: “I am delighted to be announcing this news today.

“We have chosen these vessels as they will fit seamlessly into our existing fleet of small ships, each carrying under 1,500 guests, bringing with them new and larger public areas whilst not compromising on our small ship experience.

“The naming of the vessels is important to us.

“Bolette and Borealis are both names of ships we have had in years gone by.

“This increase in our capacity demonstrates our confidence in the future.

“With over 170 years of seafaring history, we have sailed through many difficult periods.

“With these new additions to the fleet, we will come out of this current situation stronger than ever, ready to deliver the award-winning itineraries that we are famous for.”

The two new ships will enter the fleet later this year following time to allow for rebranding work to be undertaken.

Peter Deer, managing director at Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, added: “This is an exciting chapter in the history of our company, and I know that our loyal and returning guests will be looking forward to exploring our new ships as soon as they can.

“Of course, we also hope to attract new guests to Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines and we look forward to demonstrating the exceptional service that makes us the best UK cruise line for repeat business.”

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ current ocean ships – the 1,325-guest Balmoral, 924-guest Braemar, 853-guest Boudicca and 799-guest Black Watch – are currently in Babcock’s Rosyth Facilities in Scotland, where the two new ships will join them.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line also recently sold the S-Class Maasdam and Veendam, with both vessels expected to move to another company in August.

The deals are part of a wider sale at Carnival Corporation, with 13 ships to go in total.

“It’s always difficult to see any ship leave the fleet, especially those that have a long and storied history with our company,” said Stein Kruse, chief executive officer of Holland America Group.

“However, Holland America Line has a bright future ahead that includes recent Pinnacle-Class additions, with a third sister ship next year that will continue to maintain our overall capacity in the marketplace.”