Emerald Cruises names CLIA president godmother of new ship

Kelly Craighead will name Emerald Sakara in a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico

Emerald Cruises names CLIA president godmother of new ship

Emerald Cruises

Kelly Craighead will name Emerald Sakara at a ceremony in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on 2 December

By Alex Smith |

Emerald Cruises has named Kelly Craighead, president and CEO of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Global, as the godmother of its second oceangoing luxury yacht, Emerald Sakara.

As head of CLIA, Craighead represents a community of ocean, river, and specialty cruise lines, as well as a network of over 66,000 CLIA-certified travel agents and shareholders throughout the industry. In addition to her CLIA leadership role, Craighead is also the vice chair and executive director of the Cruise Industry Charitable Foundation, a non-profit public charity that focuses on enhancing the quality of life in communities served by the cruise industry.

“I am honoured to have been chosen as godmother to the luxury ocean yacht Emerald Sakara and am proud to represent this beautiful and ecologically friendly ship in this esteemed maritime tradition,” said Craighead. “The name Sakara reflects my deep personal belief that positive thoughts manifest reality, and the strong rebound of cruise from the past few years – along with our commitment to a future of sustainable cruising – demonstrates the optimism that drives this industry forward every day.”

The inaugural voyage of Emerald Sakara will take place on 5 August 2023, sailing from Piraeus in Greece to Civitavecchia in Italy on an eight-day ‘Ionian Sea Adventure’ itinerary. The naming ceremony will be held on 2 December in San Juan, Puerto Rico, after the yacht has repositioned to the Caribbean.

“Kelly’s unwavering commitment to travel agents, whom Emerald Cruises relies on every day, and her work with the ports and destinations we visit around the globe, drives our passion for growth and success,” said Richard Twynam, UK managing director of Emerald Cruises’ parent company, Scenic Group. “As Emerald Cruises’ fleet continues to expand with our newest luxury ocean yacht, we find it fitting that Kelly, who carries the same attributes and more, is recognised and honoured by Emerald Cruises as the godmother of Emerald Sakara.”

Emerald Sakara is the second ocean yacht in Emerald Cruises' ocean yacht fleet, following Emerald Azzurra's launch from Aqaba, Jordan, in April 2022. The yacht features 50 luxury suites, with 80 per cent of them including balconies. It also features an infinity-style Aqua Pool, Elements Spa, a gym, and the Marina Platform, equipped with a range of marina toys including Seabobs, paddleboards, and snorkeling equipment. A fleet of electronic bikes from Gocycle is also available onboard for local shoreside trips and active explorations.

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