Viking Line, the Finnish cruise ferry company, has decided to name its 58,000 gross ton newbulding Viking Grace. The ship is currently under construction at the Turku shipyard of STX Finland, which is part of the STX Europe shipbuilding group.
“The vessel, which begins service in January 2013 on the Turku (Finland) – Åland Islands (Finland) – Stockholm (Sweden) route, will officially receive its name during a christening ceremony that will take place at the time it begins service. The planning process has placed great importance on new innovative passenger experiences related to product and service concepts, as well as fresh design thinking and environmentally friendly solutions,” the company y said in a statement.
An interactive naming competition was organised during the period December 1, 2011 to January 15, 2012 on the vessel’s own website, www.nb1376.com. The competition certainly stimulated people’s creativity: more than 23,000 suggested names were sent in, of which more than 9,900 were unique. A large proportion of these names ended with “–lla”, like the names of many of Viking’s earlier-built vessels. Another very popular suggestion was Victoria. After various elimination rounds, three names remained in the final round. From these, the name Viking Grace was then selected.