MS Amera

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Amera in the Kiel canal VIII.jpg
Amera in the Kiel Canal, 2019
  • 1988 – 1999: Royal Viking Sun
  • 1999 – 2002: Seabourn Sun
  • 2002 – 2019: Prinsendam
  • 2019 – present: Amera
Port of registry
Yard number1296
LaunchedMay 1988[1]
Christened8 January 1989[1]
Acquired26 November 1988[1]
In service1988 – present
Nickname(s)2002 – 2019: Elegant Explorer
StatusIn service
General characteristics (as built)
Class and typeCruise ship
Tonnage38,848 GT
Length674.2 ft (205.5 m)
Beam91.8 ft (28.0 m)
Draught23.6 ft (7.2 m)
Decks9 passenger decks
  • 22 knots (41 km/h; 25 mph) (max)
  • 18.5 knots (34.3 km/h; 21.3 mph) (service)
Capacity740 passengers
General characteristics (2002-2019)
Capacity835 passengers
General characteristics (as Amera)
Class and typeLloyd's Register Cruise ship
Tonnage39,051 GT
Length672.57 ft (205.00 m)
Beam95.14 ft (29.00 m)
Draught23.78 ft (7.25 m)
Decks9 passenger decks
Installed powerWärtsilä-Sulzer, 4 x 7.179 PS
  • 22 knots (41 km/h; 25 mph) (max)
  • 18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph) (service)
Capacity835 passengers

MS Amera (formerly Seabourn Sun, Royal Viking Sun, and Prinsendam) is a cruise ship operated by Phoenix Reisen. She was launched in 1988 as Royal Viking Sun for Royal Viking Line, and began operating for Cunard Line under the same name in 1994. She was renamed Seabourn Sun when Seabourn Cruise Line acquired the ship in 1999. In 2002, Seabourn transferred the ship to Holland America Line, which was renamed as Prinsendam. In 2018, Prinsendam was sold to Phoenix Reisen, debuting in 2019.


1988–1999: Royal Viking Sun[edit]

Royal Viking Line[edit]

She was launched in 1988 as Royal Viking Sun for Royal Viking Line. Christened by godparents James Stewart and Gloria Stewart,[2] [3]and she was the largest ship in the fleet at the time she entered service.[4]

Royal Viking Sun prior to additional Cunard livery

Cunard Line[edit]

Amera as Royal Viking Sun

In 1994, Cunard Line purchased Royal Viking Sun and the Royal Viking brand when Royal Viking Line ceased operations. Cunard continued to operate her under the same name and initially retained the vessel's original livery. Later, Cunard repainted her funnel in their colours but retained the Royal Viking logo.[5]

1999–2002: Seabourn Sun[edit]

In 1999, Carnival Corporation merged Cunard and Seabourn and moved Royal Viking Sun to Seabourn.[6] After an extensive refit, she was renamed Seabourn Sun.[6][7] Her last cruise for Seabourn was a circumnavigation of South America in 2002.

2002–2019: Prinsendam[edit]

Amera as Prinsendam

In 2002, Seabourn Sun was transferred to sister brand Holland America Line, after Seabourn chose to focus on its fleet's smaller vessels.[8] Renamed Prinsendam, she underwent a refit before beginning operations.

On 1 February 2007, Prinsendam was hit by two 12-metre (39 ft) tall rogue waves near Cape Horn; 40 injuries were reported, with some requiring hospitalisation.[9]

On 22 March 2012, Prinsendam was en route to Portimao when she received a distress call from the Portuguese fishing boat Dario, which was sinking with eight people aboard. When the ship arrived, Dario's crew was entering a life raft. The Portuguese Coast Guard directed Prinsendam to pick up the fishermen and stand by for a helicopter to take the eight men to shore.[10]

During her career with Holland America, she had undertaken cruises to Antarctica,[11] and was able to transit the Kiel Canal due to her low height above the waterline.[12]

2019–present: Amera[edit]

In July 2018, Holland America announced that Prinsendam had been sold to Phoenix Reisen.[13] However, she was chartered back to Holland America to continue operating her scheduled voyages until 1 July 2019.[13]

On 2 July 2019, Prinsendam began her six-week renovation at Blohm+Voss in Hamburg, and left on 12 August 2019 for Bremerhaven.[14] She was rechristened Amera in Bremerhaven on 16 August 2019 by Petra Kaiser, a veteran Phoenix Reisen employee,[15] before sailing to Dover for her maiden voyage to Antwerp, Amsterdam, and the Norwegian fjords, where she cruised for her inaugural season.[16][17] She operated Mediterranean cruises beginning in October 2019.[17]


  1. ^ a b c d (in Swedish) Fakta om Fartyg: M/S Royal Viking Sun (1989), retrieved 7 December 2007.
  2. ^ "New Royal Viking Sun Sails to California".
  4. ^ "Cunard Line Cruise Ship Postcards".
  5. ^ "Royal Viking Sun on Unofficial Cunard Archives". 11 July 2019.
  6. ^ a b Kalosh, Anne (2 July 2018). "Holland America's Prinsendam has been sold to Phoenix Reisen". Seatrade Cruise News.
  7. ^ "Archives: Royal Viking Sun". Cruise Industry News. 16 July 2011.
  8. ^ "Seabourn Sun To HAL". 2 June 2009. Archived from the original on 22 May 2008. Retrieved 14 September 2009.
  9. ^ Liu, Paul C. (2007). "A Chronology of Freaque Wave Encounters" (PDF). Geofizika. 24 (1): 57–70. Retrieved 8 October 2012.
  10. ^ "Prinsendam Engages in Successful Rescue Operation | Holland America Blog". Archived from the original on 31 March 2016.
  11. ^ "Busy Year Ahead for Holland America Line's MS Prinsendam". Offshore Energy. 7 August 2014.
  12. ^ "Prinsendam Transits the Kiel Canal". Holland America Line. 23 June 2009.
  13. ^ a b "Holland America Cruise Ship Leaving the Fleet in 2019". 2 July 2018. Retrieved 2 July 2018.
  14. ^ "Extensive refurbishment - MS Prinsendam becomes MS Amera". Rheinhold & Mahla. 23 August 2019.
  15. ^ Smith, Alex (18 October 2019). "Columbus Cruise Center Bremerhaven breaks cruise passenger record". Cruise and Ferry.
  16. ^ "MS Amera Christening in Bremerhaven". BSM Cruise Services. 19 August 2019.
  17. ^ a b "Phoenix Reisen christen Amera in Bremerhaven". Cruise Cotterill. 19 August 2019.

External links[edit]