North Sydney’s Kristy Rowe will be among the first to try out Royal Caribbean’s newest ship, Quantum of the Seas, after winning the first ever Instagram Film Festival.
The announcement was revealed at a special media event inside Voyager of the Seas’ ice-skating room.
Kristy’s 15-second video captured the innocence of youth as her relative’s two and a half year old son jumped for joy when he spotted Santa on Christmas Day.
According to Royal Caribbean, Kristy’s video was one of 1,082 entries submitted since September last year when the festival launched.
The entries include 54 sunrises and sunsets; 78 thrill seekers; 100 views on board a Royal Caribbean ship; and a number of Miley Cyrus, Beyonce and Ricky Martin concerts.
Only 82 videos were rejected because of their adult content.
Kristy told Cruise Passenger that she’d submitted her entry only two weeks before the competition closed and didn’t expect to win.
“It was such a special moment for me and this just makes it so much more special,” she said.
Kristy said Santa in the video was her father, who she’d never seen dressed up as Father Christmas before.
“In my entire life I’ve never seen dad dress as Santa so it was pretty amazing,” she added.
Royal Caribbean managing director for Australian operations Gavin Smith told Cruise Passenger the festival is an interpretation of the brand’s fun and innovative personality and reflects the company’s growth.
“It’s helped us make an entrance into new technology, new media and new forms of communication,” he said.
WOW-ing media at the event, Royal Caribbean Australasia commercial director for Asia Pacific Adam Armstrong showed off his ice-skating skills [or lack thereof] as he told guests how the Festival represents the line’s many WOW moments.
“We are a family of firsts,” he said. “Each ship creates thousands of WOW moments for passengers everyday with their many first, including the first at sea sky diving experience, rock climbing walls and flying fox.”
The winning entry was selected by a panel of four popular Instagramers. According to Adam they each receive up to 10,000 likes a day on their posts.
Lauren Bath, who has 331,321 Instagram followers said when she was choosing a winner, she was looking for someone who really made her say ‘WOW’.
“Choosing the winning entry was really hard because of the quality of the videos,” she explained. “This particular one for me, it was a wow moment and I always said from the beginning that that was what I was looking for.”
Quantum of the Seas’ inaugural voyage will depart in November this year from New York.
The ship carries a number of firsts for the line, including the first sky diving experience at sea.