The first moves towards construction of P&O Cruises’ biggest cruise ship, due for delivery in 2015, has started at an Italian shipyard.
British hospitality design company Richmond is overseeing the whole ship’s interior to incorporate the “classic and iconic history” of the line.
Richmond has worked on the Langham London, Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, The Intercontinental London and Four Seasons Hampshire Hotel together with Sandy Lane in Barbados.
Specifications and new product innovations to be introduced onto the 3,611-passenger vessel will be announced at a later date, according to the company.
All P&O Cruises will say is that the as yet unnamed 141,000-ton ship will be a “modern classic” offering a new design and an “unprecedented” number of passenger facilities, along with many of the brand’s classic and iconic features.
Speaking at a ceremony marking the first steel-cutting for the ship at the Fincantieri shipyard, managing director Carol Marlow said: “Richmond’s design will make a stunning statement across the entire ship’s interiors.
“Through their ideas they will imbue the ship with a cohesive personality which works across all the public areas including the cabins, cafes, bars, restaurants and lounges.
“Richmond’s designs will add an elegant and timeless Britishness to appeal to everyone who steps on board, and will facilitate an excellent evolution of the ‘P&Oness’ our passengers know and love.”
The keel-laying, which involves the placement in the dry dock of one large section of the ship’s hull and the start of the actual ship build, will take place in May 2013.
The vessel will take to the water for the first time at its float out in summer 2014, before her delivery in spring 2015.
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