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Published in: Cruise News

A set of newbuilding projects on opposite sides of the world are being run by Nikolaos Doulis, senior vice president of newbuildings at Lindblad Expeditions.

The first of those projects will come to completion later this year when the company takes delivery of its second 100-guest newbuild from Nichols Brothers Boat Builders in Washington State.

“These vessels are built specifically for the Jones Act and for Alaska and the West Coast,” Doulis said. “American crew and American flag. The uniqueness is that it has all the characteristics of Lindblad. It’s a small ship, with 100 passengers, and it’s purpose-built to deliver an amazing experience to our guests.”

The National Geographic Venture will be a sister to the Quest, but feature a number of technical updates.

“As a result we can go to more places, this is one of the major changes,” said Doulis.

With the Venture nearing delivery, Doulis will turn his attention to Europe, where the company is building a pair of advanced 126-guest polar expedition ships.

Under construction with Ulstein, the keel for the National Geographic Endurance is being worked on at CRIST shipyard in Gdynia, Poland. Blocks, meanwhile, are being built at a facility in Lithuania.

“We will move the blocks and assemble the vessel at CRIST, and then move it to Norway next year for final outfitting,” Doulis explained.

Built with the innovative X-Bow technology, the ship will offer a smoother sailing experience.

“We have also invested time and effort on reducing noise and vibration, and we will have the highest comfort class notation,” he added.

With a deep roster of expedition team members at Lindblad, Doulis said the entire company has been lending knowledge to the newbuilding project.

Growing up in Greece, Doulis followed his father into the maritime world, and eventually joined Celebrity Cruises in various onboard positions before moving shoreside. He joined Lindblad in 2017.

“I love to manage and develop people,” Doulis said. “I like to hire for character and train for skills. I want to support my team as much as possible, and never micromanage; give clear directions and remain in communication.”

Excerpt from Cruise Industry News Quarterly Magazine: Fall 2018

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