MIAMI, FL â€“ March 7, 2009 – A ceremony marking the Keel Laying for Oceania Cruisesâ€™ Marina was held yesterday at the Sestri Ponente shipyard of Fincantieri near Genoa, Italy. During the age-old ceremony which was attended by members of both Oceania Cruisesâ€™ and Fincantieriâ€™s management teams, Frank Del Rio, Chairman and CEO of Prestige Cruise Holdings and founder of Oceania Cruises, welded a US Silver Dollar and a pre-Castro Silver Cuban Peso into the keel of the new ship. The welding of the coins into the keel is long-standing maritime tradition which is believed to solicit good fortune for the ship, its crew and its passengers during its seagoing life. After the coins were welded into the keel, the first of the 55 steel blocks which comprise Marina was lowered into the building dock thus marking the official start of the construction of Oceania Cruisesâ€™ first purpose-built ship.
â€œThis is a momentous day in the history of Oceania Cruises, one which will only be eclipsed on the day we take delivery of Marina in 2010. We want to express our sincere thanks to our loyal guests, travel partners and the entire Oceania Cruises team for all their dedication and hard work in making this new ship become a reality,â€ stated Frank Del Rio, Chairman and CEO of Prestige Cruise Holdings.
Marina, the first of the new Oceania-Class, represents an evolution of the lineâ€™s extremely popular Regatta-Class ships, retaining all of the warmth, popular design elements and signature amenities the line is renowned for while affording guests an additional level of comfort, convenience and many new luxury amenities. Designed to cruise to all corners of the globe, the new ships will boast a cruising speed 20% faster than the Regatta-Class.
The new ships will be awash in rich woods, Italian marble, lustrous granite, fine wool carpets and sumptuous leather. No detail is being overlooked to create an array of spacious, yet intimate public spaces and luxurious staterooms and suites. They will accommodate 1,252 guests in 626 staterooms and suites who will be served by more than 780 staff members. 96% of all accommodations will feature private teak verandas and guests will dine in their choice of six open seating restaurants.
Additional details on the Marinaâ€™s suites and staterooms, restaurants, guest facilities and itineraries will be released in the coming months.
For additional information on the Oceania Cruises Experience or to order a brochure on the 2009 European Collection or 2009-2010 Winter Collection, call your Travel Agent or Oceania Cruises at 800-531-5658 or visit us online at OceaniaCruises.com.