Norwegian Cruise Line has taken delivery of its newest cruise ship, the Norwegian Bliss, from Meyer Werft during a ceremony in Bremerhaven, Germany, marking the conclusion of an 18-month building period. In attendance were executives from Norwegian Cruise Line, including Andy Stuart, president and chief executive officer, Harry Sommer, executive vice president of international business development, Robin Lindsay, executive vice president of vessel operations for the 16-ship fleet, representatives from Meyer Werft including Bernard and Tim Meyer, managing partners of the German-based shipyard, and the ship's captain and hotel director. Before cruising to Southampton, England, to begin its transatlantic journey on April 21, Norwegian Bliss will sail a two-day European inaugural preview cruise hosted by Andy Stuart and Harry Sommer.
Upon the ship’s arrival to the U.S. on May 3, the festivities for its U.S inaugural tour will commence with two-night preview events in New York, Miami, and Los Angeles, and will conclude with a grand christening ceremony and sailing from the ship’s first homeport at Pier 66 in Seattle, Washington, on May 30. Following a three-day inaugural voyage with a call into the port of Victoria, British Columbia, the ship will return on June 2 and will then embark on its first seven-day voyage to Alaska.
Norwegian Bliss, the third ship in the line's Breakaway Plus class, is designed with a number of amenities specifically tailored for Alaska cruises. Highlights include a two-level electric car race track at the top of deck 19, an open-air laser tag course, and the side-by-side Aqua Racer waterslide at the Aqua Park, which has two multi-story waterslides, one of which extends over the edge of the ship and loops down to the deck below.
New specialty dining and bar concepts range from the Texas smokehouse, Q, to the cruise line's first full-service Starbucks store at sea and Coco's, a chocolate and sweet treats shop. At The District Brew House, guests can enjoy a variety of craft cocktails and beers, including local Seattle favorites from Red Hook Brewery.
In terms of entertainment, Norwegian Bliss has new programming that includes the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical, Jersey Boys, and ¡Havana! – an original musical theater show created and produced specifically for Norwegian Bliss. The creative group behind ¡HAVANA! includes Tony Award-winning director and choreographer Warren Carlyle and Cuban-American design duo Isabel and Ruben Toledo. The show also incorporates original songs by Cuban-American, Grammy-winning singer Albita. Norwegian Bliss also has a new theatrical cocktail hour experience, Happy Hour Prohibition – The Musical set in a New Orleans speakeasy on the eve of the Prohibition era. At The Cavern Club, guests can enjoy songs from The Beatles live with a cover band, in a setting inspired by the Liverpool Club where The Beatles famously performed.
Accommodations include suites in The Haven by Norwegian, studio staterooms for solo travelers with virtual ocean views, and connecting staterooms aimed at large groups and families. Two observation lounges, one exclusively accessible for Haven guests, will offer cruisers uninterrupted views.
Beginning June 2018, Norwegian Bliss will spend its summer cruising seven-day voyages to Alaska, and its fall cruising to the Mexican Riviera from Los Angeles. In the winter of 2018, the ship will sail the Caribbean from Miami, and in the 2019 fall/winter season it will cruise from New York City to Florida, the Bahamas and Caribbean.