Silversea Cruise ship Silver Spirit cut in half in lengthening project

 A world first feat for a luxury cruise ship, Silversea's Silver Spirit has been sliced in half during an ambitious lengthening project.

A prebuilt 15-metre segment will be inserted inside in order to create more space on board the ship for public areas.

The dissection of the 32,600 tonne ship occurred in front of an audience of international press and VIP guests, who were able to watch the manoeuvring of the vast new midsection into place.

Cruise ship cut in half in lengthening project

A pre-built 15 metre section will be inserted into Silversea's Silver Spirit, increasing the ship's capacity by about 12 per cent.

The operation will not be completed until May 5 and is expected to take 450,000 hours to complete with more than 500 skilled workers.

The Silver Spirit's new length of 210.7 metres is expected to increase the capacity of the ship by around 12 per cent.

Four new restaurants will be found on board the ship's new midsection, bringing the total number of dining rooms to eight, capable of seating 15 per cent  more diners.

On top of the extension is an additional 15 metres of sky deck alongside the pool area, with 20 per cent more outdoor seating and a new aerobics area.

Inside, there will be a new spa, expanded gym and two cafes.

All suites will also undergo a refurbishment before the ship sets sail again on May 6.

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Silversea donated all the ships' old furniture to charity, filling 11 containers with 4652 items of furniture, computers and other articles, to be used for social welfare purposes in institutions across the island of Chania, Crete, identified as an island in need.

The ship's first service will be a seven day cruise between Rome and Barcelona.

See also: Megaships: The new cruise giants launching this year

See also: 25 insider tips about cruise ships

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