Sunday night’s christening in Miami of Regent Seven Seas Cruises‘ new ship, Seven Seas Grandeur, was a momentous celebration of luxury cruising and travel advisor partnerships. More on that below.
The black-tie event, held aboard Regent’s sixth vessel, also provided a platform for the brand’s President of 12 months, Andrea DeMarco, to publically heighten awareness of preventative screenings in the detection of cancer – a scenario she is currently facing head-on.
DeMarco said she was humbled to be the first female President to christen a ship for Regent Seven Seas Cruises and the wider parent company of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings [which includes the sister brands of Norwegian Cruise Line and Oceania Cruises] during its 55-plus year history.
“It’s an honour to carry the torch for the women leaders of tomorrow,” DeMarco said before changing gear to confirm her current health issues.
“As most of you know, I personally have been in some rough seas lately as I’m currently undergoing a battle with breast cancer.” Following a pause, a deep breath and a rousing applause for her tenacity, DeMarco continued.
“But I do not want breast cancer to keep me from being here with all of you tonight.
“It’s a night so many of us have been waiting for and working to reach for years and it’s finally here, and while it hasn’t been easy, I truly feel like I’m one of the luckiest people in the world because preventative screenings detected the cancer at an early stage and I’m expected to have a positive outcome,” she revealed to cheers from the audience.
“As a result, I’ve made it my personal decision to use this platform to share my story publicly because I know I can help save lives through sharing my own personal experience and how extremely important it is to have preventative screening.
“So please make sure you book your preventative screenings now and take them very, very seriously. Look after yourself. And after the health of your loved ones.”
DeMarco continued, urging people to live life and each day to its fullest and not to take time for granted.
She thanked her husband, children, parents and sister in believing in her, “no matter how big the dream”.
“Their unconditional support, that through the good times and also through difficult journeys such as today, gives me confidence that I can get through anything with them by my side,” she said.
DeMarco then went on to thank travel partners “who have supported us every step of the way.
“Thank you for entrusting us with you clients,” she said.
Harry Sommer, President and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, said DeMarco’s courage in recent months has “truly underscored the importance of life, family and love.”
“And while the journey has been difficult for you. Much too difficult, you have inspired all of us to overcome obstacles and live our life to the fullest. I am so proud to work side-by-side with you every day,” Sommer remarked.
“I wish to have some of your strength, as you continue on this journey,” he added with what sounded like a lump in his throat.
Moving gear, Sommer spoke enthusiastically about how Regent offers “the best ships, the best dining offerings, the best services and the best experiences.”
“This excellence is embodied on Regent Seven Seas Grandeur and beautifully appointed spaces, culinary venues delivering on the brand’s promise of epicurean perfection, and an unmatched collection of art, including the world’s first and only Faberge egg to be permanently exhibited at sea.”
“This ship shines from stem to stern, and I couldn’t be more pleased.”
Sommer also highlighted Regent and NCLH’s meaningful partnerships with communities and stakeholders.
“But of particular importance to me is the trade community. We have a special relationship that continues to grow and as our fleet expands there are more opportunities for your clients to enjoy the offering of our unique brands.
“We grow and we prosper together, and we thank you for your unwavering support,” he added.
Christening the ship was Sarah Faberge, who revealed for the first time the stunning Faberge Egg that will live onboard the vessel.
Broadway starlet, Kristin Chenoweth, entertained the audience with some classic hits, post-ceremony, with the audience including Shanaia Twain.
More from the Christening tomorrow in LATTE Cruise.