US-based Norwegian Cruise Line is planning to launch a new vessel, Norwegian Bliss, for cruising in the Alaska region by June 2018.

Representing the third ship of the company’s Breakaway-Plus class, Norwegian Bliss will be constructed at Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany.

Set to be delivered by 2018, the custom-built ship has a 167,800t capacity, and can accommodate 4,000 passengers.

"Norwegian was the first cruise line to begin cruising to Alaska from Seattle in 2000."

US marine mammal conservationist Robert Wyland has been selected to design the hull of Norwegian Bliss.

Norwegian Cruise Line president and CEO Andy Stuart said: “Norwegian was the first cruise line to begin cruising to Alaska from Seattle in 2000 and it’s only fitting that we bring our newest ship, Norwegian Bliss, directly to this incredible location.

“Alaska is one of the top destinations for our guests to explore and we are thrilled to be the first cruise line to offer our guests the opportunity to experience this coveted destination aboard a brand new, state-of-the-art cruise ship custom designed for Alaska, the first of its kind to ever debut in Seattle.”

Once commissioned, Norwegian Bliss will sail weekly seven-day Alaska cruises each Saturday from Pier 66 in Seattle, US and will offer several features, entertainment, dining and other onboard experiences to its passengers.

Additionally, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, the parent company of Norwegian Cruise Line, has signed a 15-year agreement with the US Port of Seattle to jointly invest $30m to upgrade the Pier 66 facilities.

The investment, which is aimed at improving the overall guest experience for cruisers from the Seattle area, includes the expansion of the guest check-in space, a new VIP lounge, and two new elevated passenger boarding bridges.

Image: Rendering of Norwegian Bliss. Photo: courtesy of NCL Corporation Ltd.