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While Cunard ships have long served as a romantic backdrop to love stories across the globe, couples will soon be able to say "I do" during a luxury cruise or voyage, for the first time in the Line’s 172-year history. Beginning in April , passengers will be able to celebrate a wedding day at sea, conducted by the Captain, aboard Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria.
Demand is already high.
Couples wishing to wed at sea can choose from the full spectrum of Cunard’s worldwide voyages lasting seven nights or more and departing after April 2012. In addition to Atlantic crossings, destinations include the Mediterranean and Scandinavia, Canada and New England, the Caribbean, the Panama Canal, Hawaii, the Far East and Australia.
To maintain exclusivity, only one wedding will be arranged per day, at either 11:00 a.m. or 3:30 p.m., and the ceremonies will take place on days at sea. With a dedicated on board wedding coordinator, the bride and groom will find that all of their wedding needs can be met, from hairdressing, make-up and manicures in the spa, to the wedding ceremony itself, as well as photography and video, and the reception afterwards.
In addition, weddings can be tailored with Cunard’s “Finishing Touches” to reflect individual requests and preferences, from an accompaniment by the ship’s own harpist, to a beautiful ice sculpture.
“There is nothing quite as special as the setting of a Cunard ship,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “Saying ‘I do’ at sea aboard Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth or Queen Victoria promises so much more than a land-based venue. With a backdrop of the world’s most exotic coastlines in the Mediterranean and across the world, or the extraordinary sense of timelessness that you only experience mid-Atlantic, a Cunard wedding promises the happy couple a ceremony of classic style and sumptuous luxury.”
Mr. Shanks continued, “And the ships are so much more than simply a setting for the ceremony itself – they are also honeymoon destinations, offering newlyweds a fresh view to wake up to each morning and a trousseau of unforgettable destinations to discover together ashore.”
Choosing to marry on one of the three largest Cunard ships ever built creates an exceptional setting for any style of celebration. Various venues are available aboard each ship depending on the size of the wedding party, from elegant lounges to award-winning restaurants, including The Verandah on Queen Elizabeth and Todd English on Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria. Under the guidance of Cunard’s global culinary ambassador, Chef Patron Jean-Marie Zimmermann, the ships’ world-class culinary teams will prepare wedding canapés, a delicious wedding lunch or an exquisite wedding dinner.
Cunard has created a Wedding Package – with an array of optional extras – to meet all requirements. The main package includes the ceremony conducted by the Captain, traditional wedding music, a White Star Bellman escorting the bride, floral arrangements, Veuve Clicquot Champagne and, of course, the wedding cake as well as priority check-in and luggage delivery.
A never-to-be-forgotten day is available for $US2,500 plus a marriage license fee of $575. An array of Cunard’s “Finishing Touches” is also available for purchase and include items such as a Bride and Groom’s Champagne and Caviar Breakfast in Bed, or a three-tiered fruit cake. In addition, wedding gifts of fine wines, champagne and spa treatments can be purchased in advance and arranged for on board.
What’s included in the Wedding Package:
• Priority luggage delivery
• Press service for bridal outfits
• Priority embarkation (and disembarkation) for the bridal couple
• Services of a wedding coordinator on board
• Two fresh floral arrangements for the ceremonial room
• Bridal bouquet and bridegroom’s boutonniere, with a choice of roses, lilies or exotic flowers
• One-tier wedding cake
• Traditional wedding music
• Elegant wedding ceremony venue
• White Star Bellman to escort the bride to the ceremonial room
• Ceremony at sea conducted by the Captain
• Commemorative wedding certificate
• Commemorative printed wedding menu
• Bottle of Veuve Clicquot champagne
• Bride & Groom Breakfast in Bed
• Wedding invitations and Thank You cards for voyage guests