Marina christening: It’s Ralph Lauren, darling

Oceania’s new ship is named in a lavish ceremony in Miami.

On Saturday afternoon, Oceania Cruises and shareholder executives, celebrity chef Jacques Pépin, a stream of Miami’s glitterati and 500 travel agents descended on Miami’s cruise terminal to celebrate the naming of new ship Marina, which has owner’s suites decked out in Ralph Lauren furnishings.

It was long-serving Entertainment Tonight host Mary Hart who officially named Marina while the 15-litre Nebuchadnezzar of Champagne, signed by guests as they arrived for the ceremony, broke against the ship’s hull signalling the release of confetti overhead.

Guests had gathered on the pier earlier in the day; here, music set the jovial mood when a violin band, a flamenco guitarist and a solo singer serenaded guests.

Key figures in the conception and building of Marina spoke at the ceremony, including Bob Binder, Oceania Cruises’ president, Marina’s Captain Dimitrios Flokos, Steve Martinez, whose company funded the $600 million ship, and Frank Del Rio, chairman and CEO of Prestige Cruise Holdings, which owns Oceania Cruises.

All involved in the production of Marina were thanked and Jacques Pépin was granted Commodore status, before a rabbi and priest blessed the ship.

Marina departs Miami today on the first of two Panama Canal cruises. She will then sail a 12-day Caribbean cruise before sailing eastwards around the US to Europe for her Mediterranean season.

Regular Cruise Passenger contributor Sue Bryant be giving you an insider look at Marina in New Ships in the Autumn issue of Cruise Passenger. Make sure you get your hands on a copy or subscribe here!

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