Croatia-based Brodosplit Shipyard has secured a contract to build a polar expedition cruise ship for Quark Expeditions.

The Polar Class 6 vessel has already been designed by Sembcorp Marine subsidiary LMG Marin.

To be specifically built for conducting operations in the high latitudes of the Arctic and Antarctica, the vessel will carry 200 passengers and 116 crew members.

Construction of the vessel is scheduled to be completed by 2020.

Brodosplit board chairman Tomislav Debeljak said: “By building this ship, Brodosplit will continue to build our already-strong reputation as one of the best shipbuilders in the market.

“We are pleased to share that the Government of the Republic of Croatia has recognised that this contract will have a significant, positive effect on the Croatian economy, and that the Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development (HBOR) stands firmly behind this great export deal that incorporates 75% domestic production.”

The 128m-long and 21.5m-wide ship will be equipped with 103 luxury cabins, as well as two restaurants, and indoor and outdoor observation space.

“The Government of the Republic of Croatia has recognised that this contract will have a significant, positive effect on the Croatian economy.”

It will be powered by four main engines with diesel-electric gensets generating a total power of 4,400kW and a maximum speed of 16kn.

The ship will also include two simultaneously operable helidecks to facilitate exploration of some of the most remote areas of the world.

An internal Zodiac hangar will also be included to ensure quicker and safer disembarkation.

The vessel’s top deck will feature infrastructure for two helicopters.