The rainy weather in Miami could not stop the christening of Carnival Celebration, Carnival Cruise Line’s newest Excel-class ship.
The ship was christened by her godmother, actress Cassidy Gifford, alongside Captain Vincenzo Alcras, with the traditional breaking of a champagne bottle. Gifford was also joined by her mother, Kathie Lee Gifford, who is the godmother of Carnival Celebration’s namesake, M/S Celebration.
The naming ceremony, held in Celebration Central, was hosted by Carnival Cruise Line brand ambassador John Heald. Shipyard and cruise executives were in attendance along with celebrities such as Emeril Lagasse, Romero Britto, and Rudi Sodamin who represent different elements of the ship. There was also a record number of back-to-back cruise guests. 200 passengers in all who had just completed the ship’s maiden voyage.
“This naming ceremony of our new flagship Carnival Celebration is the perfect culmination of our 50th birthday as this spectacular ship honors our past and signifies the fun and growth ahead,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “Carnival Celebration builds on the success of our incredible Mardi Gras and the many innovations we introduced with our Excel-class, including a top-deck roller coaster, and offers unique features all her own that give guests a truly incredible new cruise experience to have fun and make memories.”
Kathie Lee Gifford, who sang the legendary commercials for Carnival brand in the 1980s, gave an impromptu performance. Guests were also treated to an aerialist performance and a concert by Kool & the Gang who appropriately sang their hit song, “Celebration.”
In addition to the naming ceremony, Terminal F was opened with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The terminal offers a new level of technology allowing a quicker experience as guests embark on their vacation.
Carnival Celebration sailed her first voyage on Monday. She departed from Miami on a special Thanksgiving cruise.