Iona will depart on her maiden voyage from Southampton on 7 August
P&O Cruises is to commemorate the maiden voyage of new ship Iona with a firework display, aerial shows and a musical performance by singer Tony Hadley this August.
Iona will depart from Southampton, UK on 7 August. She will then cruise past Cornwall before sailing to her namesake island of Iona for the firework display. This will be followed by three days of cruising around Scotland passing by sights including the Isle of Colonsay, Lochbuie, Duart Castle and Tobermoay, among others.
Hadley, formerly a member of band Spandau Ballet, will perform songs including ‘True’, ‘Gold’ and ‘Through the Barricades’ as part of the entertainment onboard the seven-night cruise. Guests will also be able to see aerial shows devised for Iona by Canadian entertainment company Creativiva, with one of the shows, ‘Rise’, created to reflect the design of the ship.
In addition, chef Marco Pierre White and wine expert Olly Smith will host talks and share their gastronomic and drinks expertise during the cruise. They have also collaborated to create The Chef’s Table, a concept developed for Iona’s celebration nights, which will allow guests to choose dishes from menus designed by White and complemented by wine recommendations from Smith. The food that will be served during the inaugural voyage celebrations has been inspired by Scotland, with Highland smoked salmon, single malt whisky Cranachan Verrine, a regional cheese selection and Iona whisky fudge petit fours among the options available.
“Iona’s maiden voyage is a momentous milestone for travel,” said Paul Ludlow, president of P&O Cruises. “The ship sets a precedent for a new type of holiday packed full of firsts – we have Gary Barlow as music director of The 710 Club, Iona is Britain’s most environmentally friendly cruise ship powered by liquefied natural gas, and we have the first gin distillery at sea. We are immensely proud of this ship and are excited for guests to experience it for themselves.”
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