01st April 2013, www.ft.lk
MS Queen Victoria, the luxury cruise ship operated by Cunard Line, arrived in Colombo on her maiden call yesterday.
In January this year, she set off on a stunning 105-night circumnavigation of the globe and arrived in Colombo from Port Kelang in Malaysia. She sailed from Colombo last evening, heading towards her next Port, Mumbai in India.
With a length overall of 294 m (964 ft) and a total of 16 decks, Queen Victoria is a near identical sister ship of the Queen Elizabeth, which also made her maiden call in Sri Lanka in March 2012.
Built at the Fincantieri Marghera shipyard, Italy, the vessel was commissioned by the Duchess of Cornwall in December 2007.
The facilities on board Queen Victoria include seven restaurants and 13 bars, three swimming pools, a ballroom and a theatre.
To commemorate her maiden call in Colombo, a ceremony was held on board and the vessel exchanged plaques with the Sri Lanka Ports Authority and its local agents, Shipping Agency Services Ltd.
He also mentioned that they were pleased to be involved in the important contributions made to the Ports Authority and the tourism industry with these high profile vessel calls in Sri Lanka.
Over 1,000 passengers travelled on excursions to Kandy, Pinnawala, Ingiriya and on city tours.
The ground tours were arranged by Gemini Tours and Travels Ltd.