Virgin Voyages brings maritime tattooing tradition back to sea

Virgin Voyages brings maritime tattooing tradition back to sea
Squid Ink will be the only tattoo parlour onboard a cruise ship (Image: Virgin Voyages)

Virgin Voyages has partnered with World Famous Tattoo Ink to bring the time-honoured maritime tattooing tradition to the cruise industry for the first time.

When she debuts in 2020, Virgin Voyages’ new Scarlet Lady will be the only cruise ship in the world to have her own onboard tattoo studio. Named Squid Ink, the venue will be staffed by two full-time resident tattoo artists and a series of guest artists – all of whom will be chosen by Lou Rubino Jr., owner of World Tattoo Ink. All tattoos will be created using vegan ink from World Famous Tattoo Ink.

“Tattooing is a time-honoured seafaring tradition, and we’re continuing that legacy with rock and roll style by bringing some of the best ink artists to sea,” said Tom McAlpin, president and CEO for Virgin Voyages. “Our sailors are looking to make lifelong memories, and we think there’s no better way to commemorate their first voyage with us than with a souvenir they’ll never lose track of.”

Squid Ink will offer a range of exclusive voyage tattoo designs, as well as permanent make-up treatments and body piercings.

“The World Famous Tattoo Ink family has been working with sailors, pirates and rock stars for more than 50 years,” said Rubino. “As global acceptance of tattoos and body art continues to grow, partnering with Virgin Voyages gives us the unique opportunity to bring colour to places people might have never thought possible before.”

Scarlet Lady is the first of three cruise ships Virgin Voyages has ordered from Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri. Featuring a hull designed by UK-based superyacht designer RWD and Magpie Studios, Scarlet Lady will be an adults-only ship and have interiors designed by a ‘Creative Collective’ of international design companies led by Giacomo Mortola, architect and founder of Gem SRL. They include Roman and Williams, Concrete Amsterdam, Design Research Studio, Softroom, WORKac, Knibb, HL Studios, HKS and Pearson Lloyd.

Onboard highlights will include nine well-being spaces, a laboratory-style Test Kitchen restaurant, a private club on the top deck, a nightclub, an outdoor lounge inspired by upscale US coastal resort The Hamptons and much more.

Scarlet Lady will be powered by engines, hybrid exhaust gas cleaning systems, selective catalytic reduction systems and integrated navigation systems from Wärtsilä. ABB is to provide its Azipod gearless propulsion systems, while Scanship will deliver technology to turn waste into energy and Climeon will supply a system that will transform low-grade energy into clean electricity.

Read more about how Virgin Voyages is transforming the concept of cruising in our exclusive interview with CEO Tom McAlpin in our Spring/Summer 2018 issue of International Cruise & Ferry Review.

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Rebecca Gibson
By Rebecca Gibson
Friday, October 19, 2018