The newest ship in the luxurious French owned Ponant expedition fleet has been christened. Le Lapérouse was officially named by godmother, Maryvonne Pinault, the wife of billionaire and company owner François Pinault. The vibrant ceremony took place in the port of Hafnarfjörður, near Reykjavík, Iceland and in time honoured tradition a bottle of Champagne was broken against the side of the new vessel.
The Le Lapérouse christening ceremony was inspired by the company’s Brittany heritage with bagpipes from the French Navy, oboes and drums. An emotional acapella rendition of the Breton anthem was sung by Bleuwenn Mevel.
Le Lapérouse is the first in the new Explorer series of ships for Ponant. At a time when other luxury cruise lines are building ever larger vessels, the Explorer series is different. Each vessel will offer guests the ultimate, intimate expedition cruise.
A maximum of 184 guest will enjoy the yacht-like Le Lapérouse and her yet-to-sail sister ships in the Explorer series. Each will measure just 131 m. / 436 ft. in length with 92 beautifully appointed suites – all with balconies.
There are also gastronomic dining venues as well as sophisticated public areas including The Blue Eye – a World first multi-sensorial underwater lounge.
Of course, the brand new Le Lapérouse also boasts the latest technologies designed to enhance the expedition experience too.
Another five ships will be added to the Ponant Explorers series. The first of these, Le Champlain, is already under construction and is set to sail in October 2018. Le Bougainville and Le Dumont-d’Urville will be delivered in 2019, and Le Bellot and Le Surville in 2020.
As Le Lapérouse sailed out of Hafnarfjörður harbour she was met by Le Soléal, one of Ponant’s other ships. In nautical tradition the vessels greeted each other by sounding their whistles. A fitting way to end the celebrations for Le Lapérouse christening.
Visit the Ponant website for more information.