In a first for the industry, P&O Cruises’ newest ship will get quite a send-off when its naming ceremony is held during a beachside extravaganza on the Caribbean island that will become its homeport starting in March 2023.
The Arvia, a P&O Excel-class vessel and sister ship to the Iona, was built at the Meyer Werft yard in Papenburg, Germany, and will be delivered to the cruise line this month.
Global Audience Invited to Arvia’s Naming
The 5,200-guest Arvia will be anchored off a Barbados beach when it is named on March 16 in what the line is calling a spectacular event featuring some of Britain’s most popular performers and presenters, and will be broadcast live online to a global audience.
P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said, “We always aim to do things differently, to create stand out and memorable moments for our current and future guests. Arvia will spend her first season sailing in the Caribbean so it is fitting that we mark her naming in one of our favorite ports of call with a week of celebratory performances and experiences on board.”
Ludlow said the ship will be positioned off one of the island’s most stunning beaches so the audience at home will be able to see the interior design of the ship as well as the performances and events taking place on the shore. He promised it would be “an unmissable event.” The names of performers will be announced later, P&O said.
The Prime Minister of Barbados, the Honourable Mia Amor Mottley said, “I want to thank P&O Cruises for choosing Barbados as the location for this unique event. Barbados continues to share a rich relationship with our sea and tourism, and the cruise industry has been of vital importance to our island and our economy.”
“I am delighted that Barbados can be that place that continues to bring more ‘firsts’ to the world, and through this beachside ceremony, give thousands of people the opportunity to see a glimpse of what we have to offer to visitors.”
The Arvia was originally scheduled to debut on a sailing from Southampton December 9, but construction delays forced a postponement and the maiden sailing was canceled. The ship is now scheduled to sail on December 23.
Once in Barbados, the ship will sail a series of 7- and 14-day cruises. Seven-day sailings will call at Tortola, Dominican Republic, St. Maarten, and Antigua-Barbuda, while 14-day cruises will visit those ports and also call at St. Kitts and Nevis, Martinique and St. Lucia.
Arvia to Feature 20 Dining Venues, Escape Room
The Arvia was floated out from its building dock at the Meyer Werft yard last August 27 and was transferred on the Ems River to Eemshaven (Netherlands) in November for technical and sea trials. It will be delivered to P&O Cruises in Bremerhaven.
The new ship is equipped with an LNG propulsion system, which eliminates nitrogen oxides and particulate matter in addition to reducing CO2 emissions. There are 20 dining options onboard, and four cabin categories: inside, seaview, balcony, and suite. Entertainment venues include the Limelight Club and Headliner’s Theater.
The Arvia also will boast the cruise line’s first escape room, called Mission Control, built and designed by Düsseldorf, Germany-based technology company, Tennagels. Through an immersive experience, combining an escape game with multimedia simulation and a live-action story, Mission Control takes guests into ocean canyons, encountering sunken cities, and offers encounters with underwater creatures onboard the submarine Arvia II.