Holland America Line’s partnership with US talk show legend Oprah Winfrey is “far more than just putting a name on the door”, the cruise line says.
The American star was named godmother of Nieuw Statendam earlier this year and will host a “Girls’ Getaway” cruise on the vessel in January 2019.
Winfrey’s monthly publication, O The Oprah Magazine, has been associated with Holland America Line in recent years.
Michael Smith, the line’s senior vice president for guest experience and product, said: “It is very clear that it is not just putting a name on the door or on a programme.
“It really is a partnership. A lot of these partners have very specific brand standards. They have to regularly sail with us to ensure that we are maintaining that in everything that we do.”
Winfrey sailed with Holland America Line for the first time in Alaska in 2017.
Last month Orlando Ashford, the line’s president, hinted at the World Leading Cruise Lines summit that Winfrey may sail with Holland America Line in Australia in the future.
He admitted that creating partnerships, as it has done with Winfrey, and the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts, takes time.
“We reach out and there are lot of negotiations,” he explained. “We try to do it in a way that is reflective of their brand.
“You can imagine that [chamber music company] Lincoln Centre has pretty high standards for how it positions on a ship. It is a lot of work.
“Our brand builds with that brand – it is a partnership. And if at some point it is not working, we will renegotiate those situations.”
He added that everybody at Holland America Line was “pretty excited” with the partnership with Winfrey so far.
Ashford said the third Pinnacle-class vessel, set for delivery in 2021, will be revealed sometime next year.
And the name would be picked from the same list of options that contained “Nieuw Statendam”. Five other ships in Holland America Line’s history have also included the name “Statendam”.
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