“Carnival Sunshine’s transformation was nothing short of spectacular and we wanted someone as special as Lin, who has a deep connection with Carnival Cruise Lines, to serve as godmother,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival president and CEO. “Providing families with a memorable vacation experience is at the heart of our success and Lin’s passion for fostering the artistic development of youth through her charitable endeavors made her the perfect choice.”
“Carnival Sunshine holds a special place in my heart, and I am honored to serve as godmother,” said Arison. Lin’s association with Carnival Cruise Lines dates back to the company’s inception in 1972 when she named Mardi Gras, the line’s first ship. She also served as godmother to Carnival Destiny—at that time the world’s largest cruise ship—when it entered service in 1996. She is the only person to be godmother to three Carnival ships, having also named the Holiday in 1985.
Arison has dedicated her life to the advancement of the arts and the support of young and developing artists in Miami and around the world. Recently, she was awarded the 2012 National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama for her contributions as a philanthropist and arts education advocate. She is responsible for many of the major initiatives that sparked Miami’s cultural renaissance and, along with her late husband, founded the National YoungArts Foundation and its core program, YoungArts, as well as the New World Symphony (NWS) in Miami Beach. YoungArts is an arts scholarship program that identifies emerging artists and assists them in their educational and professional development.
Carnival Sunshine debuted in Europe in May 2013 following an unprecedented transformation that introduced a host of on-board innovations, including a variety of dining, bar and entertainment options that are part of the Fun Ship 2.0 product enhancement program. Carnival Sunshine’s innovations include top-deck attractions such as the SportSquare recreation area, a spectacular three-level Serenity adults-only retreat, and the WaterWorks water park featuring the longest slide in the “Fun Ship” fleet, as well as a wide range of engaging bars, including the RedFrog Pub, Havana Bar, EA Sports Bar, and the poolside BlueIguana Tequila Bar and RedFrog Rum Bar. Among the ship’s many dining options are Ji Ji Asian Kitchen, the line’s first full-service Asian restaurant, as well as the Fahrenheit 555 steakhouse, BlueIguana Cantina, and Guy’s Burger Joint, developed in tandem with Food Network star Guy Fieri.
The ship will make its North American debut with a series of 7-day Caribbean cruises from New Orleans November 2013 through March 2014. Carnival Sunshine will sail a special 11-day cruise departing April 6, 2014, from New Orleans to Port Canaveral, visiting Montego Bay, Aruba, Curaçao and St. Thomas. Following a one-time two-day Bahamas cruise departing April 17, the ship will launch year-round seven-day Caribbean cruises from Port Canaveral April 19. Carnival Sunshine’s year-round schedule from Port Canaveral includes port-intensive 7-day cruises to the eastern and western Caribbean, along with a number of 8-day Caribbean cruises and 5-day departures featuring Florida, Caribbean, and Bahamian ports.
Image Courtesy of Carnival Cruise Lines