A Great Maritime Tradition: Regent Seven Seas Cruises Names Godmother
PHOTO: Princess Charlene of Monaco will serve as the godmother for the Seven Seas Explorer (Photo courtesy Regent Seven Seas Cruises)
In keeping with a tradition that dates back centuries, Regent Seven Seas Cruises has announced the godmother for the Seven Seas Explorer will be H.S.H. Princess Charlene of Monaco. She will be present at the gala christening event in Monte Carlo, Monaco, on July 13, to launch what is being billed as the most luxurious ship ever built. Joining Her Highness at the ceremony will be renowned Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, who will give a 40-minute virtuoso performance.
“It’s fitting to have the world’s most luxurious ship, Seven Seas Explorer, christened in one of the most glamorous cities in the world by H.S.H. Princess Charlene of Monaco, who is the definition of elegance, grace and passion,” said Jason Montague, president and COO, Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “Her Highness’ stature, her career as a world class athlete and the charitable endeavors she pursues through the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation are inspiring. We are extremely proud and humbled that she agreed to serve as godmother for Seven Seas Explorer.”
H.S.H. Princess Charlene, who is married to the Sovereign Prince of Monaco, is the mother of twins born in 2014, Crown Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella. Born in Zimbabwe and raised in South Africa, she was a competitive swimmer and represented South Africa at various world-class swimming competitions, including the 2000 Olympic Games, throughout her career. She launched The Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation, whose mission is to teach basic water safety to both children and adults. H.S.H. Princess Charlene spent years teaching underprivileged children basic water safety techniques, using the approach that the simplest ideas often prove to be the most effective.
Today, her foundation sponsors a number of “Learn to Swim” and “Water Safety” programs in 27 countries, including the United States. She recently inaugurated the first U.S. chapter in Los Angeles in May, 2016. She is also a Global Ambassador for the Special Olympics.
While having royalty, notable public figures and celebrities as godmothers for ships, the tradition actually dates back to ancient Babylon when deities were called upon to watch over ships. In fact, nearly every world culture has a tradition of bestowing good luck upon a seafaring vessel.
In the Middle Ages it was believed that women on board ships would bring bad luck–so much so that any woman found onboard would be thrown overboard. Later in the 1700s, shipbuilders carved female figureheads to be affixed to the ship’s bow, as it was believed that women had better eyesight and rough waters could be tamed from fear of the nude bust at the prow.
Today, it’s thought that a having a godmother graces the ship with a feminine benevolence and protects future sailings. And as for the champagne? It’s thought to impart the ship with the godmother’s personality and give good luck for future sailings.
More by Kristina Rundquist
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