by Philbert Ono, Updated: Sept. 20, 2022
Pacific Venus (ぱしふぃっく びいなす) is the second largest cruise ship in Japan and the least known among the Japanese public. It might be because the parent company is not as famous as the huge maritime shipping companies behind the other two Japanese cruise ships, Asuka II and Nippon Maru.
The ship is operated by Osaka-based Japan Cruise Line (日本クルーズ客船) founded in April 1989. The cruise line is branded as Venus Cruise.
The ship is owned by Osaka-based Shin Nihonkai Ferry Co., Ltd. (新日本海フェリー株式会社), a car ferry company operating in the Sea of Japan since 1970. Ferry routes ply between Maizuru (northern Kyoto), Fukui, Niigata, Akita, and Hokkaido. It has a fleet of large car ferries outfitted with passenger cabins in multiple classes. Core member of the SHK Line Group of Japanese ferry operators and hotels.
Japan Cruise Line started cruise ship service in July 1990 with two ships, an old ship named New Utopia (built in 1974, retired in 1997) and a new ship named Orient Venus. In 1998, the newly built Pacific Venus was added.
In 2001, Orient Venus was given to Nihon Charter Cruise Co., an affiliated charter cruise company. It was later sold off in 2005. Nihon Charter Cruise Co. was a joint venture with Mitsui O.S.K. Passenger Line, Ltd. and dissolved in 2014. Japan Cruise Line now operates only the Pacific Venus.
Pacific Venus was the last Japanese cruise ship to restart cruising in late March 2022 after laying idle for seven months during the pandemic.
Pacific Venus’s motto is “Friend Ship.” Meaning that they are very friendly and full of warm hospitality. Even first-time cruisers are made to feel comfortable and not intimidated. It’s nice that they have a motto. All cruise ships should have a catchy motto or nickname that we can remember.
“Venus” is associated with love. The official website currently includes a large photo of a couple hugging each other with PR text saying that you can meet an unforgettable person onboard. A Japanese-style love boat? There are no single cabins though, so solo travelers will be paying slightly more to stay in a twin-bed cabin alone.
All cabins have an ocean-view window or balcony. Very few cabins have a balcony. Since the ship’s home port is Osaka, many cruises start from Osaka or Kobe. Good for people in western Japan.
The top-deck lounge on the 12th deck is a casino game room (adults only) with panoramic windows in front of the funnel. The ship also has a tea ceremony room, outdoor pool with seawater, freshwater jacuzzi, and free Wi-Fi in the ship’s public spaces, but not in the cabins. Free Wi-Fi can be used up to 30 minutes at a time, and up to ten times a day.
The PC Room is where you can rent a laptop computer to access the Internet for around ¥500 per 15 minutes.
Being all white, the ship looks kind of plain. Perhaps they should paint some hull art like so many mega-ships overseas. Give it some pizazz to stand out more. On the inside though, it’s certainly not plain. As gorgeous as any cruise ship can be.
|Built||1998 by Ishikawajima Heavy Industries (IHI Corporation), Tokyo|
|Capacity*||620 pax, 204 crew|
|Wheelchair cabins||2 “Deluxe Rooms”|
|Length / Width||183.4 m / 25 m|
|Operator||Japan Cruise Line|
|Parent company||SHK Line Group|
|Remarks||Parent company is a consortium of ferry companies.|
Pacific Venus Pros
・Homeported in Osaka for frequent cruises from western Japan. Great for people in Kansai.
・Very friendly staff and crew.
・Geared better for families.
・Few cabins have a balcony.
・Not so famous in Japan.
・Not international (passengers almost exclusively Japanese).
・No website in English.
Official website (in Japanese): https://www.venus-cruise.co.jp/
Also see: Nippon Maru or Asuka II
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- Pacific Venus (Current page)
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