New Ferry Service to Set Sail Between Nova Scotia and Maine

By Daniel Berg on 14 May 2014
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A lighthouse in Maine

Nova Star Cruises announced that it will launch a new ferry service between Nova Scotia, Canada and Portland, Maine on Thursday. The Nova Star will ply the same route as its predecessor, a smaller catamaran that ceased operations in 2009.

The 212-mile (341.1-kilometer) trip will take 10 hours, and the ship will sail daily through November 2.  Basic fares range from $79 to $129 depending on the season, and a 22-hour-long round-trip option is also available.

The 528-foot-long (160-meter), 11-story-high cruise ferry was built in Singapore, and has a total passenger capacity of 1,215, with a hold space capable of carrying 336 cars.  The ship is outfitted with 162 cabins with 600 berths.

There are eight varieties of cabins, the largest of which are 15 feet 9 inches by 15 feet 9 inches (4.8 meters by 4.8 meters). In addition, the ferry has 254 recliner seats for those who do not wish to book a cabin.

The Nova Star has various other features, including a casino, a conference center, a spa, gym, an art gallery, and a smoking lounge. The ship also houses six dining establishments onboard, with an emphasis on regional cuisine.

Nova Star Cruises is the brainchild of shipping industry veteran Mark Amudsen. According to the company, the new ferry service is meant to provide a comfortable, upscale transportation alternative between Maine and Nova Scotia.

The revival of the route is expected to boost trade and tourism in the region. The Nova Star was christened in Boston on Monday, and made a port of call stop at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, before heading to Portland for the ribbon cutting ceremony and its maiden voyage.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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