P&O Cruises' new green vessel Iona to be officially named in Hampshire ceremony tomorrow

BRITAIN’S largest and most environmentally-friendly cruise ship will be officially named in a virtual ceremony tomorrow.

Saturday, 15th May 2021, 5:49 pm

On Sunday, May 16, P&O Cruises will be unveiled in a glitzy naming ceremony, after sailing into her home port of Southampton.

Iona, powered by liquefied natural gas, ground-breaking for the UK cruise industry and one of the cleanest fuels in the world, will arrive for the first time tomorrow morning.

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P&O Cruises newest ship, Iona. Picture: Herman IJsseling, Flying Focus

The ship will be officially named by Dame Irene Hays, chair of Hays Travel, with a specially produced Nebuchadnezzar of Alex James’s Britpop cider to smash against the hull to bring Iona good fortune in the future.

At 185,000 tonnes and 345m long, Iona is practically a floating city, with a capacity for 5,200 guests and 1,800 crew members.

There are more than 30 places to eat and drink on board, with four swimming pools and even a gin distillery.

The liquefied natural gas, there are no no sulphur or nitrogen emissions.

The event, to be held at sunset, will be hosted by Jo Whiley and broadcast to a ‘virtual’ audience of an expected 25,000 guests.

The highlight of the show will be a performance from Iona’s music director Gary Barlow, set against the backdrop of a spectacular laser display.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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