(10:15 a.m. EST) — Pandaw River Cruises has purchased a 22-passenger motor yacht that will sail coastal cruises in Burma (Myanmar) and Indonesia, starting in June 2016.
The Andaman Explorer, originally built in 1963 as Atlantic Guard, was a Norwegian coast guard vessel with ice class capabilities, and most recently owned by a Dubai shipping family. Before that, it had been acquired in 1998 by an Italian oligarch whose family owns the Carrara marble quarries; the 11-suite ship is currently floored with Carrara marble and other upscale amenities.
The ship is traveling from Dubai to Rangoon (Yangon), where the company says it will be "redecorated and refurnished in Pandaw style." A fuller refit will follow in 2017.
Each suite has a sitting room, a bedroom and a marble bathroom. The ship has a saloon, an indoor dining room and two teak decks, one for outdoor dining and the other with a Jacuzzi. The ship has two rigid inflatable boats (RIBs) for excursions to islands and beaches.
The ship will begin sailing Pandaw itineraries June 2016, on Indonesia cruises out of Bali with stops in Lombok, Sumbawa, Komodo Islands and Flores. Beginning October 2016, the ship will cruise the Burma coast between Ranong, Thailand, and Rangoon, stopping at the Mergui Archipelago and the old colonial seaport of Moulmein.
Pandaw is planning an "informal" shakedown cruise between Ranong and Rangoon in February 2016. "It will be a haphazard, unplanned voyage, so this is not for people who want to know what is happening next," the line said. For inquiries, contact Pandaw.