Viking Cruises (www.vikingcruises.com) today announced it has set a new world record with the inauguration of its newest Viking Longships™. In a multi-phased event taking place over 24 hours, the company christened 16 of its award-winning Viking Longships – nine were christened in Amsterdam; four were christened in Rostock, Germany; and three were christened in Avignon, France. The first-of-its kind ceremony was subsequently certified by a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS™ adjudicator as ‘The Most Ships Inaugurated in One Day by One Company.’ Viking already held the previous record, having christened 10 new ships in one day in 2013. Adding to the festivities, on Friday, March 21, Viking will also christen two new, unique river vessels in Porto, Portugal – bringing the total to 18 new ships launched across four countries in five days.
All of Viking’s new ships will be deployed on its most popular itineraries in Europe, and 2014 marks the first year that the company’s award-winning Longships will sail in France. A total of four Viking Longships will be deployed on Viking’s itineraries in France, including one vessel dedicated specifically to the company’s new Chateaux, Rivers & Wine itinerary in Bordeaux. Also, as a testament to the popularity of Viking’s Portugal’s River of Gold itinerary, the two new ships there will double the company’s current capacity on the Douro River.
“Today we mark a new milestone for Viking and for modern river cruising. We are proud to celebrate the arrival of our newest ships, and it is an honor to have each one named by a prominent godmother,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking Cruises. “River cruising is the fastest-growing segment of travel, and it is in large part because of the enthusiasm of our guests and travel trade partners that we have enjoyed such success.”