Christening cruise ships has been a long standing tradition and people of significance are chosen to become cruise ship godmothers. They bless a new ship during a grand ceremony which entails breaking a bottle of champagne on its bow and wishing the vessel good luck and safe travels.
Certain cruise lines have surprised guests before by choosing celebrities that you might not expect.
1. Audrey Hepburn
2. Jennifer Hudson
Jennifer Hudson began her career onboard Disney Wonder back in 2003 so, in 2011, when she was asked to be the godmother for Disney Dream, it was a true full circle moment. Alongside Captain Mickey, Hudson waved a magic wand at the naming ceremony whilst a helicopter hoisted a bottle of champagne across the bow.
3. Whoopi Goldberg
Originally godmother to Viking Serenade before it left the fleet, Whoopi Goldberg then became godmother to Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas in 2003. The Grammy, Academy Award, Golden Globe, Emmy and Tony award-winner saw off the ship as she sailed her inaugural season from New York City, a first for the cruise line.
4. Dame Helen Mirren
5. Kate Middleton
Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge was the most fitting choice for Princess Cruises’ first Royal-class shop, Royal Princess. As a royal princess herself, Kate Middleton brought an air of sophistication to the nautical traditions in 2013. This was her final public engagement before going on to have her first son, Prince George.
6. Oprah Winfrey
In 2019, Oprah Winfrey became the godmother of Holland America Line’s new ship, Nieuw Statendam with a naming ceremony held in Fort Lauderdale. This is following the cruise line’s partnership with the godmother’s publication, O, The Oprah Magazine.
7. Queen Elizabeth II
There would be no other person more fitting to be the godmother of Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth II than the late Queen herself. Her Royal Highness launched the ship back in 1967 before it underwent its inaugural sailing, a 5-say Transatlantic crossing from Southampton to New York City. Although Queen Elizabeth II christened the vessel, its first passenger was actually King Charles (at the time, Prince Charles).
8. Kelly Clarkson
In 2019, it was announced that Grammy-winning singer, Kelly Clarkson, would be the godmother of the new Norwegian Encore. Norwegian Cruise Line believed the singer really aligned with their core values and they also collaborated on the Giving Joy Program which recognises deserving teachers and educators.
9. Dame Judi Dench
A true British icon and well-loved actress, Dame Judi Dench christened Carnival Legend back in 2002. The actress was left covered in champagne after the ceremony due to it taking 3 attempts to smash the bottle over the bow!
10. Nicole Scherzinger
Last year, it was announced that Nicole Scherzinger was going to be the godmother of the newly launched P&O Cruises Arvia. As the first non-Brit to be given this duty, it was the beginning of an exciting entertainment partnership. She sang live at the naming ceremony which was held beachside in Barbados.
Breaking the traditional mould, international music superstar, Pitbull became the godfather of Norwegian Escape in 2015. Mr Worldwide performed in front of a huge crowd in Miami for Norwegian Cruise Line.
Could you name any other cruise ship godmothers?
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