Finnish shipbuilder Meyer Turku Shipyard delivered the state-of-the-art LNG fast ferry Megastar to owner Tallink on January 24. The newly built ferry will begin plying the Helsinki-Tallinn route on January 29 as the most technologically advanced fast ferry in the Baltic Sea.
The 212-meter-long Megastar uses liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel, but is also able to run on marine diesel. With LNG, the vessel will create no sulphur or soot particles and decreasing the nitrogen and CO2 emissions. Designed for the Tallinn-Helsinki route exclusively, Megastar will comply with the current and future emission regulations for the Emission Control Areas (ECA), including the Baltic Sea. Megastar’s hull shape also results in substantial fuel savings during operation.
Megastar is co-financed by European Union, the Connecting Europe Facility, Transport – Motorways of the sea.
Tallink Grupp CEO Janek Stalmeister explains the full vision for their €230-million investment, “Connecting Finland and Estonia, and even further – Northern Europe to the Baltic States and being the preferred hub for that is an important goal for us. With Megastar, this hub becomes the most modern sea-hub in the region.”
“At Tallink we have been researching what our customers want in a next generation ferry. Then we worked closely with Meyer Turku on a fresh and functional design of the ship,” Stalmeister continued.
“Delivering this ship full of latest environmentally friendly technologies and exceeding our expectations in fuel efficiency and increased comfort level with low vibrations Megastar nicely demonstrates the excellence and quality of Meyer Turku and Finnish shipbuilding.”
Meyer Turku CEO Jan Meyer reminds that the construction of Megastar has been a multidisciplinary effort taking almost two years to finish: “We started Megastar by imagining how a new design can again bring a next level of improvements to ferry operation. It follows over a year of design work that is closely linked and partly overlapping with the preproduction, assembly, fine-tuning and testing the ship. Yet the big moment of hard truth comes in the end, when we are delivering one large and sophisticated ship, like we did today with Tallink Megastar – a product of great team work that is bigger than all the individual efforts.”
Megastar will take onboard 2,800 passengers and offers three travel classes (Star, Comfort and Business), as well as two separate lounges for standard class: a Sitting lounge and Driver’s lounge for cargo drivers. There are seven different restaurants and cafés on board, including a buffet restaurant, a la carte restaurant, fast food restaurant and cafés. In addition, the new ship features pubs and bars, 2,800 square meters of shopping area and a children’s playground.
For car passengers, double level loading and wider car deck access will improve the loading and unloading time. Supermarket type of parking garage accessible during the voyage will add convenience to travelers who take advantages of the Megastar’s shopping possibilities.