Villa Vie Residences to Set Sail July 20

Odyssey in Drydock

In a video update shared across the company’s social media profiles, Villa Vie Residences’ CEO and Founder Mikael Petterson said that the Odyssey is now scheduled to set sail on July 20, 2024.

Formerly operated by Fred. Olsen as the Braemar, the 1993-built vessel was initially set to depart on the company’s continual world cruise on May 15, 2024.

“The ship needs to be completely recertified, meaning every piece of equipment onboard, from lightbulbs to machinery needs to be tested and made sure it works,” Petterson said.

While common areas and staterooms are ready, an issue with the Odyssey’s rudder stock has been pushing back the launch date, he added.

“A couple of weeks ago we got word on our rudder stocks, which are the originals from 30 years ago,” Petterson said.

The stocks were originally 300 millimeters thick and, to be recertified, could not be thinner than 295 millimeters, Petterson explained.

“They were measured at 283 millimeters, significantly lower than what’s acceptable. We tried to argue with them but there’s no chance,” he added.

To solve the issue, Villa Vie had to replace the pieces, which were machined in Denmark and shipped to the Harland & Wolff shipyard, where the Odyssey is currently in drydock.

“This is not a new issue, they have been deficient for 15, 20 years but nonetheless we faced the music and got new rudder stocks,” Petterson said.

The details of the equipment are now getting matched up with the openings in the Odyssey’s rudders, making sure they have a proper fit.

“Then, they need to be inspected by DNV so we can get the rudders back up, flood the dock, and finally move out of here,” he added.

The stocks are currently at the machine shop to undergo a series of tests while new grooves, keys, and other material are worked on.

“It’s a bit of a complicated process, but we are nearing the finish for the first one,” Petterson said, noting that both rudders are expected to be at the drydock early next week.

While occasional delays may still happen, Villa Vie expects to float the dock “anywhere around Wednesday (July 10) to Friday (July 12),” he added.

“It’s a bit of a fluid situation, so we’ve given ourselves a timeline. We would like to get ready by July 15 to July 20,” Petterson added.

The company then decided to settle on July 20, 2024, for the new launch date, giving itself some “room to wiggle” if something doesn’t go according to plan, he noted.

“Things haven’t exactly gone perfectly, and this is still an older vessel,” Petterson added, noting that the Odyssey will also need to get additional certifications and clearances before setting sail.

“We are still facing some challenges here and there. It wouldn’t be so wise to think that we are going to go in and get everything done perfectly all of a sudden.”

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