ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/28 April) –2GO Travel on Monday launched the M/V St. Francis Xavier (SFX) as the newest addition to its fleet in this city.
Stephen Rey Tagud, 2GO Travel vice president for passage, said the SFX arrives every Monday sailing to this city once a week via Cebu and Dumaguete from Manila. It leaves Manila Saturday. From Zamboanga, it sails back to Manila on Monday via Dumaguete.
It has a maximum speed of 19 knots.
Every Wednesday the SFX departs Manila to Bacolod and Iloilo and then back to Manila.
Tagud said the SFX has a capacity of 1,910 passengers and can carry 180 TEU (twenty-feet equivalent units) of cargo. It is an 11,000 tonner and 151 meters long.
Tagud said the SFX, which promotes cruise-like experience on board, has mix accommodations of economy, tourist and business classes, cabins, and presidential suites for family and honeymooners.
He said the SFX has spacious economy and first class restaurants, a relaxing spa and saloon, a 24-hour convenience store, karaoke and event halls for various forms of entertainment held nightly, a conference room and an open air deck where guests can converge for island sight-seeing and stargazing in line with the company’s slogan “Sarap maglakbay.”
He said the ship also serves as a training vessel for students studying tourism and maritime courses.
“Basically, we are not just selling transportation. We are trying to sell service and experience on board,” he said.
He said the SFX undergoes quarterly and yearly audits and it is accredited with the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) as well as internationally-certified with the Bureau Veritas and also American Bureau of Shipping.