Construction of a new ship begins with a traditional maritime keel laying ceremony. That’s what took place on Friday, May 4 at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. Norwegian Cruise Line executives and shipyard officials cheered as the first of 73 blocks that will comprise the 144,000 gross ton Norwegian Breakaway, was lifted into the covered building dock, marking the start of the block assembly.
Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s chief executive officer, laid the traditional “lucky coin,” before the 350-ton first block was placed by the 800-ton crane. A special commemorative coin was created to celebrate the day’s activities.
“The anticipation is building for this incredible ship,” said Sheehan. “It’s thrilling to mark the start of the block assembly and realize that in one year we will take delivery of Norwegian Breakaway. We can’t wait.”
Norwegian Breakaway is the first ship being built by Meyer Werft utilizing a more efficient construction process which will deliver a ship of more than 140,000 gross tons in less than 12 months.
The 4,000 passenger Norwegian Breakaway will arrive in her year-round homeport of New York City in early May 2013. The ship will begin weekly summer seven-day cruises to Bermuda on Sunday, May 12, 2013. From October 2013 through
April 2014, the ship will offer voyages from the heart of Manhattan to the Bahamas & Florida and the Southern Caribbean.
Recently, the company has revealed the ship’s groundbreaking design, including The Waterfront and 678 Ocean Place, a wide range of indoor and outdoor venues on three dynamic decks that will create a whole new complex at sea that enhances guests’ connection with the ocean.
The top decks of Norwegian Breakaway will feature the first Aqua Park at sea with five full-size water slides, including twin Free Fall slides, the first ever at sea, and a three-story sports complex that includes the largest ropes course at sea, a nine-hole miniature golf course, basketball court, rock climbing wall and more.
The ship will also feature a rich mix of stateroom options including The Haven by Norwegian, comprised of 42 Suites at the top of the ship and 18 additional Suites located throughout the ship; the innovative Studios, designed and priced for solo travelers; the re-introduction of Oceanview staterooms, Balcony and Mini-Suites; along with Spa Balcony, Mini-Suites and Suites in close proximity to the spa.
Photo credit: Norwegian Cruise Line