P&O Cruises has finally taken delivery of its new P&O Iona cruise ship, the largest ever purpose-built vessel for the UK market.
P&O Iona Delivery
The British cruise line has taken delivery of the new P&O Iona, the largest ever cruise ship built for the UK. The delivery ceremony took place on Friday and now the cruise line takes control of the vessel and she officially is part of the fleet.
The ship has been constructed at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. P&O Cruises president, Paul Ludlow, who was present at the event in Papenburg and signed the Protocol for Delivery and Acceptance said:
“Iona’s delivery is a very positive signal for the future of cruising. She is now officially part of the P&O Cruises fleet and we are focused on readying her to welcome guests during her new maiden season to Northern Europe, Spain, Portugal and the Canary Islands from our home port of Southampton.”
Even though Iona is now part of the fleet the new mega-ship won’t be offering cruises until early 2021 due to the suspension of operations and port restrictions.
“Already eagerly anticipated by our guests, crew and the communities we visit, events this year have increased the sense of anticipation even more.
“Whilst our operations are currently paused until early 2021 Iona will not be sailing for the moment but we look forward to our guests experiencing this game-changing ship as we will continue to offer unparalleled holidays at sea whilst also upholding the latest approved travel protocols.”
Iona takes P&O into a new era of cruising with a new design and features. Parent company Carnival Corp has also built and ordered the same designed class cruise ship for sister lines Aida Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Costa Cruises.
At 185,000 tonnes, 345m in length with 17 guest decks, and setting the new ground for the guest experience, Iona is the first British cruise ship to be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG).
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The ship will have eight specialty restaurants including yet to be unveiled concepts, as well as 13 entertainment venues, four swimming pools including a spectacular infinity pool at the aft of the ship and 16 whirlpools.