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Silversea Floats out Silver Spirit

(London – 2 March, 2009) Silversea Cruises' newest ultra-luxury ship, Silver Spirit, reached an important milestone on Friday, 27 February when she was transferred ("floated out" in shipbuilding parlance) from dry dock to wet dock at the Fincantieri shipyard in Ancona, Italy.

Silver Spirit's first connection with the sea was marked by an official ceremony at the shipyard attended by senior management from Silversea and Fincantieri. Over the coming months, the new build will undergo her final outfitting works and be ready for delivery in December.

“This is the dawn of a new era of luxury cruising for Silversea and the industry at large”, declared Manfredi Lefebvre, Silversea chairman. “Much planning and collaboration has gone into the design of our newborn, and it is exciting both as a company, and personally, to see Silver Spirit evolve through the final phases of her construction."

On 23 December 2009, the all-suite luxury ship will embark on an 11-day "Holiday Spirit" maiden voyage, sailing from Barcelona to Lisbon, followed on 3 January 2010 by a 16-day "Maiden Crossing" from Lisbon to Fort Lauderdale, where a formal naming ceremony will be held on 21 January.

After the event, Silver Spirit will set a course for New York on a fascinating Grand Inaugural Voyage. During this magnificent 91-day "Spirit of South America" journey, guests will visit more than 45 ports in over 20 different countries and island destinations across two continents. Highlights include a visit to Rio de Janeiro in time for Carnival, a journey around the end of the earth at Cape Horn, an in-depth exploration of the Mexican Riviera and a crossing of the Panama Canal.

After completing her inaugural season, Silver Spirit will spend the summer in the Mediterranean and then reposition to the Caribbean for autumn and winter cruises.

The 36,000-tonne vessel will welcome 540 guests who shall indulge not only in the spaciousness of their suites, the largest in the fleet, 95% of which feature a private veranda but also in one of the highest space-to-guest ratios at sea (namely 6,700 cubic feet of personal space per guest). The décor designed by Italian architect Giacomo Mortola will lend a sophisticated 1930s Art Deco ambience to the public areas, and new wellness and dining venues further enhance the shipboard experience: a new 8,300 square feet (770 square metres) indoor/outdoor spa with a whirlpool (and another three by the pool), and a choice of no less than six restaurants, including an alternative venue for Asian-inspired fusion cuisine and an innovative supper club offering contemporary foods and all-night entertainment.

Silversea Cruises is recognised as an innovator in the luxury segment, offering guests large-ship amenities aboard its intimate, all-suite vessels: Silver Cloud, Silver Wind, Silver Shadow and Silver Whisper (with the addition, shortly, of Silver Spirit), all designed to offer an atmosphere of conviviality and casual elegance. And with the regal expedition ship Prince Albert II, the company's itineraries now encompass all seven continents.

In the U.K., Silversea has been voted "Number One" small-ship line in the Readers' Choice survey conducted by Britain's Condé Nast Traveller magazine (eight times) and Best Luxury Cruise Line according to UK's Travel Weekly Globe Awards (2009). International awards include "World's Best" by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler (nine times) and by the readers of Travel & Leisure in the US (seven times); "World's Leading Luxury Cruise Line" from World Travel Awards (2007); "Five Star Diamond Award" from the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences (2009); "Best Luxury Cruise Line" by Spain's Cruceros & Destinos magazine (2008); "Best Cruise Line" by Australia's Luxury Travel Magazine (2009); and Best Luxury Cruise Operator according to Asia's Travel Weekly (2008).

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