Princess Cruises, the world’s largest premium cruise line, and the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (Friendship Association) have officially begun Majestic Princess’ journey from Rome to China.
The 37-day voyage will feature a cultural exchange program themed “Telling the Chinese Story along the Silk Road Sea Route”, with performance groups including the Ansai Youth Waist Drum team, the Luochuan Youth Yangge Dance team, the China National Orchestra and the China National Opera & Dance Drama Theatre set to entertain and educate more than 6500 guests from more than 40 countries.
Princess Cruises and the Friendship Association held a press briefing and luncheon onboard in Rome this week prior to the ship’s departure, with the Ansai Youth Waist Drum team and the Luochuan Youth Yangge Dance team presenting an authentic Shannbei style performance during the sailaway ceremony to celebrate the start of the Silk Road Sea Route voyage.
The event was attended by President of the Friendship Association Madam Li Xiaolin, Chairman of Carnival UK David Dingle, Chairman of Carnival Asia Roger Chen and Malcolm Morini from Rome’s Civitavecchia cruise port, among other officials.
“The Friendship Association aims to enhance international cooperation and promote common development between China and other countries,” Madame Li said. “We continually develop innovative ways to communicate the China story by utilising more active and engaging programs to present China’s diverse culture along the Sea Silk Road. Our efforts support the economic development of the ‘Belt and Road’ initiatives and boost the cultural communication between countries along the route.”
Princess Cruises Executive Vice President of International Operations Anthony Kaufman said the cruise line’s partnership with Friendship Association and celebration of Chinese culture reinforced its brand promise to provide authentic international experiences to guests and reflected its commitment to the China market.
Majestic Princess will visit some important Silk Road ports in countries including Greece, United Arab Emirates, India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia before arriving in its first Chinese port of Xiamen on June 26. She will begin her first homeport season in Shanghai on July 11.
The luxurious flagship will debut in Australia next year, homeporting in Sydney from September 2018 through to March 2019, when she will return to China.