Oceania Cruises’ newest ship, Riviera, is nearing completion at Fincantieri’s Sestri Ponente shipyard near Genoa, Italy. The line’s founder and chairman, Frank Del Rio, and the vessel operations team has been on-site for the last two weeks focused on every detail.
Among those on hand for the countdown to the May 11, 2012, christening in Barcelona are interior designers Dakota Jackson and Susan Bednar Long who are putting the finishing touches on the ship’s spacious suites.
Oceania Cruises’ newest entry in the upper-premium category blends the line’s country club casual atmosphere with the elegance of a luxurious private estate. Several one-of-a-kind features distinguish Riviera, including a museum-worthy collection of more than 100 works by some of Latin America’s contemporary artists; the BonAppétit Culinary Center, a cooking school at sea offering hands-on learning; La Reserve by Wine Spectator, a professional facility for wine tastings and pairing dinners, as well as 10 dining venues including Jacques, the namesake restaurant of the world-renowned master chef, Jacques Pépin.
The ship’s gala christening ceremony in Barcelona will be presided over by Riviera’s godmother, Cat Cora, who is a master chef, restaurateur, humanitarian, author, and co-host of Bravo’s new “Around the World in 80 Plates.” Following the inaugural festivities, the ship sails a 10-day Maiden Voyage on May 16 from Venice to Athens. Through Nov. 2012 Riviera will offer 12 distinctive itineraries on a total of 20 Mediterranean voyages, calling on ports in France, Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal and Turkey as well as Israel, Croatia, Cyprus, Montenegro, Morocco and Monaco, with maiden calls in Cephalonia (Argostoli), Motril (Granada) and La Palma in the Canary Islands.
For more information, visit www.OceaniaCruises.com.