P&O Cruises new ship - Iona
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P&O Cruises names new ship IONA

New 180,000 GRT ship due in 2020

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P&O Cruises have announced the name of their new ship today. Iona will set sail in Southampton in 2020 and is the first of two brand new 180,000 GRT cruise ships for P&O Cruises.

The name was part of a competition run by P&O Cruises last year that invited its fans to submit names for the new ship. The winning name, Iona follows in the tradition other P&O Cruises ship names have, that is ending in the letter A!

Iona will be the largest ever cruise ship built for the British market. With a capacity of over 5,200 passengers, it will even dwarf their current flagship Britannia’s 4,300 passenger capacity.

Earlier this week, P&O Cruises released a video showing the first steel-cutting of the new ship and also confirming the order for the second ship at the Meyer & Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany. This shipyard is familiar to many – Royal Caribbean’s current Quantum-class fleet (Quantum of the Seas, Anthem of the Seas, Ovation of the Seas) have all been built here.

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A Sneak Preview

There isn’t a huge amount of details about Iona yet – but what we do know is:

  • There will be over 15 places to eat to suit all appetites and occasions
  • 8 speciality restaurants
  • More than 10 places to enjoy a drink and take in sea views
  • 18 whirlpools
  • 4 swimming pools (three outside and one inside)
  • More than 6 places to have breakfast
  • Plenty of entertainment venues from the theatre to venues for adults only

Although the ship is unlikely to mirror ships like Symphony of the Seas or MSC Seaside we get the feeling it will be a larger version of Britannia with the usual P&O Cruises DNA that has a specific British-feel to it.

P&O Iona coming in 2020!
P&O Iona coming in 2020!

The story behind the name

We look forward to watching the new ship progress through its build stages and we’ll be reporting back on all the new designs and features that it will include, especially for the British cruise traveller!

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