Branson, centre right, launched the new cruise line in Miami earlier
Richard Branson was in earlier to reveal Virgin Voyages as the new identity for Virgin’s cruise line.
Joined by the company’s president and chief executive Tom McAlpin, they announced the name and shared that Virgin Voyages has officially signed a ship building contract for three vessels with Italian master shipbuilder Fincantieri.
The company will become the first cruise line to adopt the clean energy system, Climeon Ocean.
“Thousands of future sailors and travel professionals shared their thoughts with us and tasked us with delivering the most irresistible vacation at sea and that our name alone should leave them dizzy with anticipation,” Branson said.
“I’m excited to reveal we are now Virgin Voyages, and while we have lots of work ahead to build out three ships, we can’t wait to welcome you aboard the ship of things to come.”
Virgin Voyages is the first major cruise line to partner with Climeon, a world-renowned clean energy innovator.
Virgin will install Climeon Ocean, a system that will transform low-grade energy into clean electricity on all three of its ships.
The resulting environmental impact will be an estimated 5,400 tons of carbon dioxide saving annually per ship – an amount that would take 180,000 trees 30 years to absorb.
McAlpin added: “Our world class partners like Bain Capital Private Equity, Virgin Group and Fincantieri as well as financial powerhouses like Cassa depositi e prestiti, UniCredit, SACE and SIMEST, showcase Virgin Voyages’ strong backing and commitment to developing an incredible product.
“This is anything but just another cruise or holiday, it will be a transformational experience delivering a very ‘Virgin style’ of adventure.”
Virgin Voyages’ first ship will arrive at PortMiami in 2020, hosting more than 2,700 sailors and 1,150 spirited crew members.
For the first ship, Virgin Voyages will offer a range of Caribbean itineraries to ports that deliver unique and very social experience.
“The Climeon heat power system is an environmental breakthrough, and working with Virgin is of major importance to us,” Climeon founder Thomas Öström said.
“We are excited that Sir Richard Branson and Virgin, with their focus on sustainability, have decided to become a pioneer of this technology.
“Transforming hot water to electricity will be a major source of energy production going forward.”