PORTHOLE

Cruise Weekly - - NEWS -

THERE was plenty of typ­i­cally Vir­gin fan­fare at the keel lay­ing cer­e­mony of the first Vir­gin Voy­ages ves­sel in Italy this week (see page 2).

As well as ar­riv­ing via a crane, Vir­gin founder Richard Bran­son broke out the blow­torch to weld a cer­e­mo­nial coin into the keel in an event which he de­scribed as a “ship-tease”.

The puns kept com­ing, with Bran­son con­firm­ing the ves­sels would be called “Lady­ships” in a nod to the line’s Bri­tish her­itage, and in an­other piece of cre­ative mar­ket­ing he de­scribed what most of us call bal­conies as “sea ter­races”.

He also told po­ten­tial cruis­ers to leave the kids at home, with the first Vir­gin Voy­ages ship des­ig­nated as adults-only.

Bran­son ap­peared to be quite ex­cited about the prospects for the line, de­spite telling Cruise

Weekly ear­lier this year he had “never been in­ter­ested in go­ing on a cruise ship my­self” ( CW 06 Jul).

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