Seattle, WA, April 26, 2010 â€” Her Royal Highness Princess MÃ¡xima of the Netherlands will name Holland America Lineâ€™s new Signature-class ship, ms Nieuw Amsterdam, in a ceremony in Venice, Italy, July 4, 2010. The 2,106-guest ship is the fourth to carry that name for the line and is being built by Italian shipyard Fincantieri-Cantieri Navali Italiani S.p.A. in Marghera, Italy.
“The Dutch Royal Family is continuing a long and proud tradition of naming Holland America Line ships that started more than 80 years ago, and we are truly honored that Princess MÃ¡xima will name Nieuw Amsterdam,â€ said Stein Kruse, president and chief executive officer of Holland America Line. â€œThe naming ceremony will mark a signature moment in our companyâ€™s 137-year history as Princess MÃ¡xima becomes godmother of Nieuw Amsterdam, which, with her sister-ship Eurodam, will share the distinction as the largest passenger ships ever to fly the Dutch flag.â€
Nieuw Amsterdam IV will be the 11th Holland America Line vessel launched by a member of the Dutch Royal Family. Previous ship dedications include ss Statendam III in 1929 by Prince Hendrik and ss Nieuw Amsterdam II in 1937 by Queen Wilhelmina. Then-Crown Princess Beatrix christened ss Statendam IV in 1957 as well as the ms Prinses Margriet in 1964. The ss Rotterdam V was launched in 1958 by Queen Juliana. Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet dedicated ms Prinsendam II in 1973, ms Nieuw Amsterdam III in 1983, ms Rotterdam VI in 1997 and ms Oosterdam in 2003. Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands served as ms Eurodamâ€™s godmother in 2008.
The naming ceremony will feature gala festivities in Venice, where an audience of special guests will witness an extravaganza of entertainment, the blessing of Nieuw Amsterdam and the traditional breaking of a champagne bottle across the shipâ€™s bow as the finale.
Princess MÃ¡xima was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, May 17, 1971, as MÃ¡xima Zorreguieta. She was engaged to His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange, March 30, 2001. On Feb. 2, 2002, MÃ¡xima wed Prince Willem-Alexander, who is Her Majesty Queen Beatrixâ€™s eldest child and first in line of succession to the throne. Upon her marriage, MÃ¡xima received the title Princess of the Netherlands.
Since October 2004, Princess MÃ¡xima has been a member of the Council of State, the Netherlandsâ€™ most important government advisory body. Princess MÃ¡xima represents the Royal House at official occasions, often accompanying Prince Willem-Alexander. She also accompanies Her Majesty Queen Beatrix on state visits. The princess passed her baccalaureate examinations at Northlands School in 1988 and graduated with an economics degree from Universidad CatÃ³lica Argentina in 1995.
In 2009, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon designated Princess MÃ¡xima as his Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development.
Princess MÃ¡xima advises the Secretary-General on access to financial services and works to ensure that everyone, everywhere, has access to all forms of financial service. At the invitation of the United Nations, Princess MÃ¡xima was involved in the Advisors Group to the International Year of Microcredit 2005. Throughout 2005 the Group met on a regular basis to discuss progress towards achieving universal access to financial services.
She has worked at Boston Securities SA in Buenos Aires, the European Union Representative Office of Deutsche Bank in Brussels and in New York at Deutsche Bank, Dresdner Kleinwort Benson and HSBC James Capel Inc.
Nieuw Amsterdam Defines â€˜Premiumâ€™
The second in the Signature-class series of vessels, Nieuw Amsterdamâ€™s dÃ©cor features stylized design elements from its namesake New York City, luxurious appointments and amenities as well as all the hallmarks of the Holland America brand.
Following its naming in Venice, Nieuw Amsterdam will sail several 12-day Mediterranean cruises, then embarks on an autumn trans-Atlantic crossing to the Caribbean, and will sail seven-day eastern and western island itineraries from November 2010 through March 2011.
For more information on Nieuw Amsterdam, visit www.hollandamerica.com.