In anticipation of the upcoming float-out of MS Nieuw Statendam in November next year, Holland America Line held the ship’s coin ceremony earlier this month at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard in Italy.

Following Italian shipbuilding tradition, Anne Marie Bartels, a member of the line’s President’s Club, served as the ship’s Madrina and participated in the festivities.

Orlando Ashford, the company’s president, said: “The coin ceremony is one of the most time-honoured traditions in the building of a ship, and having Anne Marie, one of our most valued guests, serve as Madrina makes the celebration all the more special.

“Nieuw Statendam reflects the next generation in our brand evolution while maintaining the classic hallmarks we are known for. By placing an authentic Dutch guilder in the hull from the year our first ship named Statendam came into service is a meaningful way to build that bridge from our past to our future.”

Bartels first sailed with Holland America Line on the s.s. Nieuw Amsterdam from Rotterdam, the Netherlands to New York when she was 21 years old. She has since been on 79 cruises with the company, including 12 Grand Voyages. Bartels has more than 2,500 cruising days with the line, which gives her elite President’s Club status for guests with more than 2,500 days on board.

During the festivities a drydock gate was opened briefly and water touched Nieuw Statendam’s hull for the first time as is tradition during the coin ceremony. On December 21, the ship will be fully floated out and move to an outfitting pier.

Nieuw Statendam is the second Pinnacle Class ship for the cruise line, joining MS Koningsdam, which launched in April 2016 from the same shipyard in Marghera. A third Pinnacle Class ship will set sail for the cruise line in 2021.

The 99,500-ton ship will carry 2,660 guests and feature all of the hallmarks of Pinnacle-class design: grand light-filled spaces; visual drama; and sumptuous interiors inspired by the fluid curves of musical instruments.

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