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3 min read

PONANT’s Le Commandant Charcot: Where Luxury Meets Polar Expedition

There's an undeniable allure to all things French...

...—a sense of luxury and refinement that sets them apart. PONANT's latest addition to their fleet, the Le Commandant Charcot, not only boasts a beautiful name but also embodies the concept of elegance in the realm of oceanic expedition travel. Luxury can be a subjective term, varying from one individual to another. Yet, in the case of the Charcot, a blend of intimate exploration, exquisite accommodations, gourmet dining, and specialized offerings collaborates to deliver a lavish and unforgettable polar expedition experience.

©StudioPONANT/Olivier Blaud

Meet the Charcot, acclaimed as the world's inaugural luxury polar expedition vessel with ice-breaking capabilities. She's decked out with cutting-edge technology and features, including environmentally conscious propulsion systems and contemporary navigation tools. Designed with a reinforced hull and robust structure to handle moderate ice conditions, she possesses the capability to forge through ice, creating navigable routes that standard cruise ships cannot. Her eco-friendly approach involves a combination of clean-burning liquefied natural gas (LNG) and electric battery power, which not only minimizes environmental impact but also furnishes the necessary power to navigate through ice—a testament to the growing emphasis on sustainable and responsible polar tourism.

A culinary delight awaits aboard the Charcot, with complimentary flow of French wines, Champagne, and spirits (excluding premium vintages) included in the fare. The illustrious fine-dining haven, Nuna (Inuit for Sky), proudly bears the Michelin-starred Alain Ducasse name. It accommodates all passengers in a single seating, offering a fine-wine cellar and a secondary navigation bridge as an intriguing backdrop. An indulgent four-course nightly tasting menu, complete with vegetarian options, graces the menu. The à la carte selection features offerings like lemongrass consommé, grilled octopus with braised fennel, seared scallops with pumpkin and hazelnut, and a medley of desserts, including panna cotta. And let's not forget the quintessential French Bordier cheeses that make an appearance.

Gastronomic Restaurant Nuna (the earth) - Deck 5

Staying true to the PONANT ethos, the Charcot envelops passengers in a distinct ambiance akin to sailing on a private yacht. Comprising 123 staterooms and suites, all with step-out balconies, each accommodation offers conveniences such as a stocked mini-bar, bathrobe and slippers, in-room safe, direct-line phone, WiFi (included in the fare), premium Diptyque toiletries from Paris, satellite TV boasting English-language channels, and a Bose Bluetooth speaker. With a crew of 215 members, a spa offering the revered Biologique Recherche methodology, and an open-air grill serving international comfort cuisine, the Charcot, larger than PONANT's other ships, makes space for amenities uncommon on typical expedition cruisers. Among these shared spaces are an indoor heated pool, outdoor lagoon, sun room, grand fire pit, and alfresco bar.

Prestige staterooms decks 6 7 and 8 - 20 m2 / Prestige Staterooms decks 6 7 and 8 - 20 m2

In true French fashion, every detail exudes an exquisite touch. The ship's designers have masterfully crafted an ambiance of soothing elegance. After a day of exploration with one of the vessel's 23 naturalist guides in the Arctic or Antarctica, returning to the embrace of PONANT's Le Commandant Charcot offers a harmonious blend of rugged adventure and grace. It's a feat that only a select few have the privilege of experiencing in a part of the world that holds a unique allure. PONANT has triumphed in creating an expedition vessel that epitomizes elegance, an embodiment of French ingenuity and elegance.
Curious about her upcoming itineraries for 2024 and 2025? Feel free to reach out to us for more information. Your journey to the extraordinary awaits.