Glen Etive

(2:40 p.m. GMT) -- Scottish small-ship cruising specialist The Majestic Line has confirmed a new purpose-built small ship which will launch next year.

Glen Shiel, which is named after a glen in northwest Scotland, will increase the line's fleet to four. It will feature seven double or twin cabins, taking a maximum of 12 passengers including space for two singles. The build begins this month at Ardmaleish Boatbuilding Co. Ltd on the Island of Bute.

The Majestic Line shot to prominence last year when it was featured on the first series of "Cruising with Jane McDonald." Jane took a mini-cruise to the Inner Hebrides and the Isle of Mull on Glen Tarsan, a traditional wooden fishing vessel -- ingeniously refurbished -- which usually accommodates a maximum of 11 passengers in six double cabins, although there is room for 12.

In an exclusive Q&A with Cruise Critic, Jane said: "I shouldn't really have favourites but let me say, I love Scotland!"

Similar to sister ship Glen Etive, Glen Shiel will offer 10-night cruises, sailing to the stunning West coast of the Outer Hebrides, St Kilda and rugged and remote Wester Ross.

"The Majestic Line needs a new ship primarily because we cannot meet demand with only three vessels," said Andy Thoms, director of The Majestic Line. "Our fourth ship, to be called Glen Shiel, will be similar to our first new build Glen Etive. She will be fitted with the same stabilising system which has proved so successful in the Glen Etive, and she is designed to be slightly faster so that she can cover the distance out to the Outer Hebrides and St Kilda Isles in a shorter time allowing for more time to enjoy the islands. Like the Glen Etive the design will be very traditional with lots of brass and hardwoods to achieve the character and comfort of a 1930s Gentleman's Yacht."

--By Adam Coulter, Managing Editor, UK