Hornblower Acquires Two Major Offshore Vessels Now Available For Charter. The Multi-purpose Vessels Further Expand The Company’s Offshore Services Portfolio


The Global Leader in Experiences and Transportation will offer the two Multi-Purpose Supply Vessels for hire/charter, expanding the company’s government and commercial portfolio under the Seaward Services’ brand. The acquisition supports the company’s overall business strategy of providing business-to-business solutions within the ferry and transportation industry

New York, NY (January 19, 2022) – Hornblower Group announced today the acquisition of two major offshore vessels available for hire: the Seaward Explorer and Seaward Endeavor, previously the California Responder and Pacific Responder, respectively.  Seaward Services, Inc. (SSI), part of the Hornblower Group of maritime businesses, is offering the multipurpose supply vessels for charter, with prompt availability.

The Seaward Explorer and Seaward Endeavor were built at VT Halter Marine in Mississippi, commissioned by Marine Spill Response Company (MSRC) in response to the Exxon Valdez oil spill.  Since their construction, both vessels have operated strictly under the ownership of MSRC, fulfilling their mission as prepositioned oil spill response assets.

Seaward Services’ acquisition of both vessels marks the first endeavor to leverage the full capabilities of this class of former spill response vessels to serve as Multi-Purpose Supply Vessels (MSV) in a variety of commercial operations.

“As we continue to position Hornblower as a Global Leader in Experiences and Transportation and expand our portfolio of client service offerings within the maritime industry, we are proud to be the first company to take this class of Multi-Purpose Supply Vessels like the Seaward Explorer and the Seaward Endeavor and offer them to clients for commercial use,” said Scott Thornton, Chief Operating Officer, Ferries and Transportation Division, Hornblower Group.  “Offering these two dynamic and operationally versatile vessels for client use practically anywhere is a first for us and is a testament to work of our incredible Seaward Services team.”

At 208’ in length, the ABS classed – Subchapter D and Subchapter I former spill response vessels will integrate into Hornblower Group and Seaward Services’ expansive global maritime operations, where these vessels will be available for uses including, but not limited to, offshore wind construction/berthing and operational support, emergency response, global expeditionary support, cargo and freight operations, and government and private maritime training activities.

The Seaward Explorer and Seaward Endeavor are each equipped with:

  • Command & Control Room workspaces and offices with enhanced berthing for up to 38 persons. Expanded personnel capabilities upwards of 50 individuals for short-duration operations.
  • Launch and recovery equipment for small craft, ROV, and towed-array operations, including two 20-ton cranes and three hydraulic deck winches rated to 5, 10, and 20 tons, respectively.
  • Two 6.5 meter Brunswick Impact 650 Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats (RHIB) powered by 170hp Volvo Penta outdrives included for charterer’s use.
  • A helicopter deck rated for Bell L206 and suitable for aerial drone support.
  • Deadweight capacity of 1,235 tons, with approximately 3800 ft2 of open deck space and an additional 900 ft2 of covered deck space, equipped with Peck & Hale securing systems throughout.
  • 4k barrels of oil storage capacity across four tanks with each equipped with in-tank thermal oil heaters, Framo deepwell centrifugal pumps, and International Intershield 300V epoxy coatings.
  • Port and starboard oil transfer manifolds suitable for ship-to-ship and ship-to-shore operations.
  • Towing bitt with hydraulic McElroy MC-21 Capstan
  • A Nautical Range of 7,200 nautical miles, allowing for diverse global operations.

Seaward Services’ unparalleled history in operating a diverse fleet of military and commercial vessel classes as an IOS 9001 certified operator – most recently chartering the now Seaward Explorer in support of naval research and aerial drone projects – will ensure world-class operations and an expertly-trained crew provide the operational expertise for safe and successful commercial services to meet the needs of maritime clients across commercial, government, defense, research, and support sectors.

“The acquisition of these vessels signals a bright future for Seaward Services and our expanding operational footprint within the global maritime industry,” said John Keever, President, Seaward Services, Inc.  “I look forward to what’s ahead for our clients, particularly in the area of new technologies in offshore wind construction and operational support.”

These new vessel offerings support Hornblower’s overall business strategy in expanding its product offerings for its clients and guests, which spans 111 countries and territories, and 125 U.S. cities, with offerings including water-based experiences, land-based experiences, overnight cruise experiences, ferry and transportation services and full-service support.

 About Hornblower Group

Hornblower Group is a global leader in world-class experiences.  The corporate entity of

Hornblower Group is comprised of American Queen Voyages® and City Experiences.  Seaward Services, Inc., a marine services company specializing in the operation, maintenance and repair of government and privately owned vessels, is also a subsidiary of Hornblower Group, operating and maintaining U.S. Navy Ranges and port facilities, including local oil spill response.  Today, Hornblower’s footprint spans 111 countries and territories, and 125 U.S. cities, with offerings including water-based experiences, land-based experiences, overnight cruise experiences, ferry and transportation services and full-service support via Hornblower Shipyard at

Bridgeport Boatworks in Connecticut.   Hornblower Group is headquartered in San Francisco,

California, with additional corporate offices in Boston, Massachusetts; Chicago, Illinois; Fort Lauderdale, Florida; London, United Kingdom; New Albany, Indiana; New York, New York; and across Ontario, Canada.  For more information visit hornblowercorp.com.

 Press Contacts: 

Melissa Gunderson / Hornblower Group / [email protected]  Michael DeiCas / Hornblower Group / [email protected]

Chartering Inquiries: 

[email protected]