“VIKING STAR, the most exciting and innovative cruise ship for years, has been floated out at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard outside Venice”, according to MaritimeMatters contributor Peter Newall.
Today’s release from Viking Cruises: Viking Cruises announced its inaugural Ocean ship – the 930-passenger VIKING STAR – was “floated out,” the first time the new ship has touched water. The traditional ceremony took place at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard outside Venice. With a total of three sister ships now under construction, VIKING STAR debuts in early 2015 with maiden voyages in Scandinavia and the Baltic; and the Western and Eastern Mediterranean – as well as two new itineraries for 2016 that visit the British Isles.
Viking Cruises Chairman Torstein Hagen said at the ceremony, “Today is a proud day for our entire Viking family, as we are one step closer to launching a new era of ocean cruising. VIKING STAR’s maiden season was sold out before she even touched water, which just demonstrates how enthusiastic our guests are for destination-focused ocean cruises. It is this enthusiasm that has led us to place orders for two additional sister ships, VIKING SEAand VIKINGSKY.”
According to Italian shipbuilding tradition, a float out ceremony is significant because it denotes a ship moving into its final stage of construction. VIKING STAR’s float out began at 10.30 a.m. local time, when a “madrina” – a woman of honor from the shipyard – cut a cord to allow water to begin flowing into the ship’s building dock. Following a two-day process that set VIKING STAR afloat, she will now be moved to a nearby outfitting dock for final construction and interior build-out.
MARTIN COX - Founder and publisher of MaritimeMatters, inspired by maritime culture and technology growing up in the port of Southampton. He works as a photographer in Los Angeles, and his works has been exhibited in LA, San Francisco, New York, London and Iceland. Martin is the co-writer of the book “Hollywood to Honolulu; the story of the Los Angeles Steamship Company” published by the Steam Ship Historical Society of America. The Los Angeles Maritime Museum has commissioned artworks and collected his photographs.