Amidst fireworks and much fanfare last Thursday, Cunard Line’s flagship Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria joined the new Queen Elizabeth for her maiden call in New York, meeting for a historic Cunard Royal Rendezvous. Thousands of New Yorkers and Cunarders alike lined the shores of Manhattan, from Battery Park to Hudson River Park, to see the regal fleet gather for the first time. During a celebration that began with a 21-gun fireworks salute, the three Cunard Queens made a majestic procession into New York Harbor illuminated by a dazzling Grucci fireworks show, as they then departed on their respective luxury cruise vacations. The meeting of the Queens marks only the second time in Cunard’s 171-year history that all three of the company’s ships have met simultaneously in New York. The first Cunard Royal Rendezvous took place in 2008 celebrating Queen Victoria’s maiden call to New York.
“Cunard’s Queens have always been regally greeted in our US home port, and we are thrilled that our newest Queen has been met with an equally exquisite celebration,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “The City of New York is a core part of our legacy and a significant landmark for Cunard, and we’re delighted to celebrate the very rare and momentous Royal Rendezvous in The Big Apple.”
Along with this grand celebration in New York Harbor, as a salute to the Cunard Royal Rendezvous, the Empire State Building was lit in Cunard’s regal color of red. Shanks along with Cunard’s Commodore Bernard Warner and Micky Arison, CEO and Chairman of Carnival Corporation, rang the closing bell for the New York Stock Exchange yesterday, using the ship bell from the original Queen Elizabeth (circa 1938).
Most recently, Queen Elizabeth captured the world stage with her Royal Naming Ceremony on Oct 10, 2010 in Southampton, England, attended by Her Majesty The Queen, who performed the naming honors. Following her maiden call to New York, she embarks on her Maiden World Voyage (103 days), while flagship Queen Mary 2 begins her fifth World Voyage (103 days) and Queen Victoria begins her debut Americas Season, traversing between the east and west coasts through the Panama Canal.
For more information about Cunard’s three Queens, visit Cunard.com.