Fred Olsen Expands the Fleet

Fred Olsen have announced the addition of 2 new ocean-going ships to their fleet. The ships were both previously part of the Holland America Line fleet. MS Amsterdam and Rotterdam were purchased by Fred Olsen to expand their fleet and strengthen their brand position post Covid-19

Fred Olsen currently operates 4 ships within their fleet; Black Watch the smallest of their fleet carries 799 passengers, Boudicca carries 853 passengers, Braemar carries 924 and their largest ship at the moment, Balmoral carries 1325 passengers. Previously sailing under Amsterdam and Rotterdam the new ships will be renamed Bolette and Borealis. They carry between 1380 – 1400 passengers so will expand the capacity of the fleet whilst fitting seemlessly into the Fred Olsen brand . Both ships will need to spend some time being rebranded and are expected to join the fleet later this year.

Alan Lynch Managing Director of Cruisescapes who represents Fred Olsen in Ireland told Travel Biz (Ireland’s largest travel publication) “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” Alan added “ We are delighted by this news as it gives a very positive message, especially in these strange times, that cruising is going to come back stronger than ever. These additions to the fleet will no doubt add to the excellent service, food and itineraries that Fred Olsen is renowned for. The news comes just as Fred Olsen’s Balmoral has been voted ‘Best for Dining’ by guests and consumers in Cruise Critic’s annual Cruisers’ Choice Awards – for the second year in a row.

Having cruised on 2 of Fred Olsen’s current ships I’m delighted to hear this news. Fred Olsen is known throughout the industry for excellent food, classically designed small ships and superb service. I found the ships to be more traditional in style but they offered large spacious cabins and excellent food. Because the ships are smaller they are much easier for passengers to move around and the ship’s crew are super friendly, remembering each guest by name only a day after embarkation.The entertainment was more low key than on some of the larger ships which is understandable but it was perfectly tailored to their clientele.


For anyone looking for a cruise on a small traditional style ship Fred Olsen is great. Their itineraries are varied and take in lots of unusual destinations, their cabins although decorated in an older style they are very spacious and well equipped and the food is excellent.

If you have cruised on Fred Olsen let me know in the comments below.

Happy Cruising

Best Wishes

The Cruise Queen x

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