MS The World

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The World in Cape Town, South Africa, in 2024
NameThe World
OperatorROW Management, Ltd. Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States
Port of registry Bahamas
BuilderFosen Mek. Verksteder A/S in Rissa, Norway
Yard numberN.71
Laid down2001
Launched28 February 2001
Completed20 February 2002
StatusNot in service (privately owned)
General characteristics
TypeResidential cruise ship
Tonnage43,188 GT
Length196.35 m (644 ft 2 in)
Beam29.8 m (97 ft 9 in)
Draft6.7 m (22 ft 0 in)
Installed powerMarine diesel
Speed18.5 knots (34.3 km/h; 21.3 mph)
Capacity150-200 passengers average

MS The World is a private residential cruise ship operated like a condominium complex, with large apartments that can be purchased. The residents, from many countries, can live on board as the ship travels. Some residents choose to live on board full-time while others visit periodically throughout the year.[1] The ship is operated by ROW Management, Ltd., headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States.[2]

The ship has 165 residences (106 apartments, 19 studio apartments, and 40 studios), all owned by the ship's residents. Average occupancy is 150–200 residents and guests.

The World is registered in The Bahamas and has a gross tonnage of 43,188. It is 196.35 metres (644 ft 2 in) long, 29.8 metres (98 ft) wide, and has a 6.7-metre (22 ft) draft, 12 decks, and a maximum speed of 18.5 knots (34.3 km/h; 21.3 mph). The crew numbers approximately 280.

On 28 January 2017, The World broke the then world record for being the southernmost ship, which was later surpassed by the icebreaker ship Laura Bassi in February 2023. The voyage was achieved by her Captain Dag H. Sævik and the 63 residents on board at the time as well as crewmembers. The ship reached 78°43•997´S and 163°41•421´W at the Bay of Whales in Antarctica’s Ross Sea.[3]

In March 2020 the ship was emptied of passengers and non-essential crew because of concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic.[4] The World returned to service in July 2021.[5]

Several other residence cruise ships are under construction or planned, including Utopia,[6] Njord,[7] Dark Island [8] and Storylines MV Narrative.[9]

Original concept and construction[edit]

The ship was the idea of Knut Kloster, whose family had a long history in the marine industry.[1] The vessel's originally announced name was The World of ResidenSea, which was later shortened to The World.[10] The hull was built in Landskrona, Sweden, by Öresundsvarvet, and it was then towed to Fosen Mekaniske Verksted in Rissa, Norway, for completion. The vessel was launched in March 2002 and purchased by its residents in October 2003.

The management company is responsible for operations and administration of the ship, including hiring the employees. The residents, through their elected board of directors and a network of committees, provide guidance to the management about the ship's itinerary, finances, and lifestyle.[1]


The ship has a large lobby, deli and grocery store, a boutique, fitness center, billiard room, golf simulator and putting greens, tennis court, jogging track, spa, swimming pool, and cocktail lounges.[1]

There are six restaurants for dining that supplement the kitchens or kitchenettes in most of the residences.[1] For on-board entertainment there is a movie theater, library and music performances.[1] In addition to shore excursions, various classes have been offered on board.[1] The World provides internet access in each residence.

Northwest Passage transits[edit]

Setting sail from Nome, Alaska, U.S. on 18 August 2012 and reaching Nuuk, Greenland on 12 September 2012, The World became the largest passenger vessel at the time to transit the Northwest Passage.[11][12] The ship, carrying 481 passengers and crew, for 26 days and 4,800 nautical miles (8,900 km) at sea, followed in the path of Captain Roald Amundsen, the first sailor to complete the journey in 1906.[13] In 2019, the ship traversed the Passage from east to west, becoming the 300th vessel to make the voyage, and the largest to do so in both directions.


The ship in Santa Cruz de Tenerife in October 2020

In March 2020 the ship unloaded all passengers and non-essential crew because of concern about COVID-19 infection.[14][15]

In April 2020, the ship was asked to leave the port of Fremantle, Australia. The government of New Zealand received a request to let the ship shelter in a local port. This request was denied, as New Zealand had banned cruise ships (and non-New Zealand residents) from entering the country. In 2020, the ship was in lay-berth in Falmouth, United Kingdom.[16] and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain, before returning to service in July 2021. [17]

See also[edit]

  • Seasteading, the concept of creating permanent dwellings at sea


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Hallman, J. C. (October 2009). "A House Is a Machine to Live In". The Believer. Archived from the original on 21 April 2021. Retrieved 7 February 2011.
  2. ^ "The World — Contact Us". ResidenSea. Archived from the original on 24 February 2011. Retrieved 7 February 2011.
  3. ^ "New record set for furthest south ship has ever sailed". RNZ. Radio New Zealand. 31 January 2017. Archived from the original on 11 April 2020. Retrieved 11 April 2020.
  4. ^ Mathisen, Monty (17 March 2020). "The World, Residence Ship, Also Lays Up". Archived from the original on 1 October 2020. Retrieved 14 April 2020.
  5. ^ "The World Yacht Ready for its Post-Covid Return". 17 May 2021. Archived from the original on 5 January 2022. Retrieved 5 January 2022.
  6. ^ "MS Utopia Residences Itinerary, Current Position, Ship Review".
  7. ^ "Ocean Residences MY Njord Itinerary, Current Position, Ship Review".
  8. ^ "Clydebuilt MS Dark Island Itinerary, Current Position, Ship Review".
  9. ^ "Storylines MV Narrative Itinerary, Current Position, Ship Review".
  10. ^
  11. ^ "The World gets green light to transit Northwest Passage". Nunatsiaq News - Nortext Publishing Corporation. 31 August 2012. Archived from the original on 14 October 2013. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  12. ^ "Shrinking ice makes Nunavut more accessible to cruise ships, but money stays on board". Nunatsiaq News - Nortext Publishing Corporation. 4 September 2012. Archived from the original on 14 October 2013. Retrieved 2 October 2012.
  13. ^ "Northwest Passage with Raul Touzon". 30 September 2012. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021 – via YouTube.
  14. ^ Luxury private cruise ship is making star shapes off West Australia coast. 10daily. Australia. 14 April 2020. Archived from the original on 13 April 2020. Retrieved 14 April 2020. (geolocked)
  15. ^ "The World also lays up". Cruise Industry News. 17 March 2020. Archived from the original on 1 October 2020. Retrieved 14 April 2020.
  16. ^ Jones, Nicholas. "Covid 19 coronavirus: The World, Residences at Sea ship sought New Zealand refuge, documents reveal". New Zealand Herald. Archived from the original on 23 August 2020. Retrieved 23 August 2020.
  17. ^ Archived 5 January 2022 at the Wayback Machine (access-date 21 April 2021) /

External links[edit]