- John Oliver goes after mandatory minimum sentencing laws
- k-state football
- Steve Wynn sues ex-casino worker for defamation over sexual misconduct allegations
- US men’s national soccer team friendly vs. Ghana: Live stream and TV info, USMNT roster
- Maryland man dead, 4 injured after Alaska floatplane’s takeoff was aborted, officials say
River cruise giant Viking’s move into ocean cruising hit another milestone Thursday as the line’s fourth ocean-going ship took to the water for the first time.
The California-based company’s 930-passenger Viking Sun was “floated out” from a dry dock at the Fincantieri shipyard in Ancona, Italy, where it had been under construction for more than a year. The vessel is scheduled to debut in late 2017.
The initial stages of a cruise ship’s construction take place in a dry dock facility. Once exterior outfitting is completed, the dry dock is flooded and the ship is floated to a wet dock facility where construction continues.
As is tradition in shipbuilding, the shipyard held a ceremony Thursday to commemorate the float out. Yi Lou, a vice president at China Merchant Bank Financial Leasing, served in the traditional role of madrina — a godmother-like position. She participated in welding commemorative coins under the ship’s mast and cut a cord to allow water to begin flowing into the vessel’s building dock.
Fast-growing Viking to have six ocean ships by 2020.
China Merchant Bank Financial Leasing is involved with the financing of Viking ships.
The 47,800-ton Viking Sun is a sister to Viking’s first ocean ship, Viking Star, which debuted in 2015. A second vessel in the series, Viking Sea, arrived in 2016, and a third sister ship, Viking Sky, will begin sailing in February. Viking has ordered six vessels in the series for delivery by 2020.
Viking Sun will sail maiden voyages to Cuba and the Caribbean before embarking on a 141-day world cruise that spans five continents.
What are the new Viking ocean ships like? Scroll through our deck-by-deck tour of the Viking Star in the carousel at the top of this story.