Law firm Watson Farley & Williams (WFW) has advised two cruise companies recently over a newbuilding contract and a delivery.
The delivery concerned Virgin Voyages ‘Valiant Lady’ handed over by Fincantieri.
She is the second of four 110,000 gt, 2,850 pax cruise ships ordered by Virgin and is expected to be based in the Mediterranean next year.
Virgin’s first ship, ‘Scarlet Lady’, recently sailed from Portsmouth to begin her revenue-earning cruises over the remainder of the UK summer before repositioning to Miami. She is the largest commercial vessel to call at Portsmouth.
WFW advised Virgin on the financing, shipbuilding contracts and delivery of both the vessels from start-up to the beginning of operations, as well as providing regulatory, tax and employment advice regarding the start of passenger carrying cruises on the ’Scarlet Lady’.
The WFW London Maritime team was led by Chairman, Nigel Thomas, working closely with Partner, Richard Smith and Associates, Tanpreet Rooprai and Charlotte Humphreys on financing matters.
Partner Robert Platt advised on shipbuilding contracts with assistance from Associate Philip Chope, with Milan Partner Furio Samela advising on the Italian aspects of the delivery of both vessels. Tax advice was provided by Partner Richard Stephens, with Partners Devan Khagram and Solange Leandro advising on employment and regulatory/competition law matters, respectively.
In addition, WFW advised Ocean Residences Development (ORD) on the signing of the shipbuilding contract for the development of a luxury residential vessel ’M/Y Njord’ to be built by Meyer Werft.
‘M/Y Njord’, which has a target delivery date in 2025, is a 289 m long private residential yacht featuring 117 luxury residences. Her primary goal is to act as a home base for individuals and families sharing a passion for travel, adventure and discovery.
WFW said that the vessel had been meticulously designed with sustainability and the environment in mind. As a result, she will be built to the highest environmental specification using new technologies to reduce emissions and using sustainable materials.
A professional oceanographic research laboratory will be fitted on board containing equipment to enable scientists and experts to research the changing environment during her circumnavigation of the globe.
ORD specialises in integrated real estate and high-end ocean living concepts, ship design and luxury living. For many years, the company has developed long-standing partnerships with many of the leading players in the yacht and cruise shipbuilding and design sectors.
WFW London Maritime Partner, Robert Platt advised ORD on the signing of the shipbuilding contract.