CNH Tours - Cultural and Natural Heritage Tours Galapagos
NAVIGATING FICKLE CURRENTS WITH INTEGRITY
In recent years, a bevvy of new luxury ships have replaced older tourist class vessels in Galapagos. Almost invariably, the new ships are replete with polished fiberglass, stainless steel trim, modernist furnishings and adorned with pastel colours - right out of the latest ship design trends magazines. One is led to conclude that, in their eagerness to project a chic / modern image, the design folks forgot that they were dealing with ships meant to ply Galapagos waters, and not Miami waterways. There is barely a nod to natural materials nor to the nautical environment. The result is an impression that these ships are intruding among the islands and not complementing them.
In this fleet of luxury ships, the Integrity stands out for its traditional nautical warmth. Beautifully finished with generous use of fragrant, amber-coloured tropical cedar, simple yet attractive features in both the common and private quarters of the ship give the Integrity an authentic feel that you can find in only a small handful of the higher end ships in the islands. The general ambiance is zen, calm and peaceful - precisely what is called for in a ship whose purpose is to have you focus on the wide world around you.
Below, the lounge with the dining room in the background. Large windows on both sides provide for excellent views and much appreciated natural lighting.
YOUR PRIVATE SPACE
Cabins have large wall-to-wall windows, keeping you in close contact with the sea around you. Furnishings are all hand-made in Galapagos from trees grown on the owner's farm. Every cabin has individual climate controls, a small desk, a mini-fridge and video monitor.
The ships boasts a very spacious (350 sq.ft. / 32 sq.mts) "owner's cabin" with king bed, near the bow:
There are 5 cabins that accommodate either a king sized bed, or two spacious twin beds (150 sq.ft. / 13 sq.mts):
One cabin is a dedicated queen, while another is configured exclusively for twin beds.
Finally, the Integrity boasts a very rare commodity in Galapagos... a dedicated solo cabin, making it a lot easier to accommodate solo travellers, or odd-numbered parties without having to pay exhorbitant single supplement fees.
Every cabin has its own ensuite bathroom with all the necessary fixtures.
Luxury ships in Galapagos invest in a well-equipped galley and professionally trained cooks/chefs. You can expect to enjoy a diverse range of hearty yet delightful national and international meals, tastefully served. The galley staff are experts at accommodating all kinds of dietary restrictions. The chef is happy to prepare something extra for special celebrations. Ask for for sample menus. Dining can be al fresco on the upper deck, when conditions allow.
Breakfast is buffet style with cereals, juices, fresh fruit, toast, muffins, hot items and eggs cooked to order. Fresh brewed coffee, a selection of teas, milk and cocoa are served. Lunch and dinner are served in several, elegantly plated courses and often start with a soup, followed by salad and a main course of fish, chicken, beef, seafood or vegetarian. And there's always dessert, coffee and tea.
The wine list is made up exclusively of Argentine and Chilean vintages and there's no corkage should you prefer to bring your own selections.
A spacious dining area, illuminated with natural light, surrounded by large windows:
Tastefully presented, wholesome cuisine:
Al fresco dining when conditions allow:
The Integrity has generous outdoor areas. The bow (seen in the background, picture below) is readily accessible and allows for excellent close-up views of bow-riding dolphins, a spectacle you are almost guaranteed to enjoy (nothing is guaranteed though...). The circular sitting area, known as "Rolf's Roost" is on the salon deck (foreground, picture below).
The sun deck boasts a small jacuzzi surrounding by informal sitting / lounging areas, several lounge chairs and an area protected from the sun, with cafe tables and a bar.
- Length: 141 feet Beam: 24 feet Draft: 7 feet Cruising Speed: 12 knots
- Stabilizers reducing the heaving / rolling motion of the ship: Vosper
- Crew: 10
- Naturalist Guides: 2
2 Detroit - MTU Series 60, 4-cycle electronically controlled, set on Lo-Rez mounts and shaft couplings for vibration control
Main generators: 2 Isuzu 96 kW 60 Hertz 120-240 Volts
Emergency generator: Kubota 12 kW 60 Hertz 120-240 Volts
SAFETY / NAVIGATION
Life rafts: 2 - 25 person each Zodiacs: 2 - 16 person each
Radar: 2 Sonar: 1 Depth Sounder: 1 DSC/VHF: 1 VHF: 1 DSC/HF radio: 1
Navtex: 1 Autopilot: 1
Closed circuit video surveillance in key areas
Emergency Position-Indicating Radio Beacon
Smoke and fire detection and extinguisher systems
Intellian V100 8W Aura Marine VSAT / Download speed (shore to ship) 2 Mbps
Upload (ship to shore) 1 Mbps
- Staterooms: 7 doubles 150 sq. ft. / 1 single 120 sq. ft. / 1 Owner’s suite 350 sq. ft.
- Staterooms have private facilities, air conditioning, entertainment center, refrigerator and telephone
- Salon and dining area has a bar, entertainment center and library
- Sun Deck has full bar, spa and barbeque
- Foredeck and owner’s favorite topside venue, Rolf’s Roost.
- Satellite phones (usage fee applies) / Wi-Fi / Internet
ENVIRONMENT / SUSTAINABILITY
All staff receive ongoing training in environmental issues.
All waste generated is separated in organic, recyclable , non recyclable and hazardous material before disposal.
The waste water treatment system is capable of processing up to 2,000 gallons per day. The Headhunter HMX unit is not only compliant with IMO MEPC.227(64), but is also equipped with an electrocatalytic system that generates sodium hypochlorite from seawater, eliminating consumable chlorine during operation. The six-stage treatment system treats both black and gray water, producing a sterile effluent for disposal.
There is also a bilge water separator with an OMD unit to make sure no oily water above 15ppm gets pumped into the sea. Bilge water has been further reduced to a minimum with the use of Duramax mechanical shaft seals, which meet or exceed current MARPOL regulations.
We cannot say enough good about CNH Tours, particularly Heather Blenkiron who handled our request. Throughout the whole process of planning our Galapagos island vacation, the personal attention that she paid us made us feel like we were her only clients, knowing full well that we weren't. We found out later that she was a Canadian consular officer on the Islands for several years. She was very knowledgeable and very open and honest in her suggestions. We felt like she was working for us, not for the boat companies. Their pre-tour information book (44 pages!) covered every conceivable issue.
For the full trip report, on an independent website, click here