James Rodriguez and Preet Chandi. CREDIT: Judi Cuervo


MBE Winner Harpreet Kaur “Preet” Chandi Names Atlas Ocean Voyages’ Third Expedition Ship

Last night, beneath sunny Ushuaia skies, Atlas Ocean Voyages’ World Voyager was christened by Harpreet Kaur “Preet” Chandi, the first woman of color to ski solo to the South Pole.

Prior to introducing Chandi during the poolside ceremony aboard the 9,934 grt, 198-guest World Voyager, Atlas Ocean Voyages CEO James Rodriguez became emotional as he thanked the line’s crew, staff, officers, and captain, stating it was their commitment to excellence that drives the brand.

“Alongside our core DNA — perseverance, determination, and endurance — there’s a reason why we do what we do,” explained Rodriguez. “It’s our love. We truly believe here at Atlas Ocean Voyages that travel changes people’s lives. It opens the hearts and minds not only of the travelers, but of the people that we meet along the way.

“That’s why these ships are so important. Along with their officers, staff and crew, they have an important mission in the world. That is what makes today so special. The spirit of Atlas Ocean Voyages is not just about the destination, but about connecting with the world, one adventure at a time, in a way that makes you feel and see humanity from an entirely different perspective.”

Following a blessing in both Spanish and English, and the release of a bottle of bubbly to shatter against the ship’s upper deck, godmother and MBE winner Chandi stepped up to the podium. She told the inspiring story of how in 2023 she, a British Army officer and “part-time adventurer,” came to break two Guinness World Records — the longest solo unsupported one-way ski journey by a woman and the first woman of color to complete a solo expedition to the South Pole.

Chandi’s expeditions tested her physical resilience, mental strength, and sheer determination, facing conditions that included -40 degree F temperatures, 60 mph winds and challenges that ranged from painful injury to lost toilet paper!

“I’m so excited for you as you begin your first Antarctica expedition,” Chandi told World Voyager’s guests. “My journey and now your experience is all about pushing boundaries and experiencing an adventure that will leave you changed. There may be times when you’re intimidated by the wind and the cold. I remember times like that when I didn’t want to get up! But there’s beauty in the wind and the cold so face them, as I did, in the spirit of the explorer.”

World Voyager is Atlas Ocean Voyages’ third expedition ship, joining World Navigator and World Traveler. She employs an innovative hydro-jet propulsion system that’s less disruptive to the ecosystem of Antarctica in order to bring guests closer to the environment and wildlife. The ship sails Antarctica through March 2024 and, for the remainder of 2024, offers a variety of itineraries including South America, the Caribbean, Norway, Greenland, Iceland, and the United Kingdom.

By Judi Cuervo

Judi Cuervo is a New York City native who fell in love with cruising in 1976 during her first sailing aboard Carnival Cruises’ Mardi Gras. Twenty years later, she began her freelance cruise writing gig and, since that time, has covered mass market, ultra-premium, riverboat and expedition ships for regional, national and international publications as well as cruise websites.