Celebrations on the inaugural cruise for Carnival Cruise Line’s Mardi Gras were held in Amber Cove, Dominican Republic, as the ship’s Godmother and Miss Universe, Dominican Republic, Kimberly Jiménez, welcomed the ship to her home country.
In conjunction with the visit, Carnival Cruise Line President Christine Duffy presented a $25,000 donation to Niños de Cristo home for girls in La Romana, which is a special cause for Kimberly.
“We are thrilled to bring our flagship, Mardi Gras, here to the Dominican Republic with our Godmother who is such an incredible ambassador for the beauty, hospitality and culture of this island,” said Duffy. “In honor of Kimberly, we also wanted to show our support for the amazing work she does with Niños de Cristo.”
Mardi Gras was christened on Oct. 23 in Port Canaveral, Fla. The celebration marked the first ship naming ceremony held in the U.S. since the cruise industry’s restart this summer. Godmother Kimberly blessed the ship and activated the traditional champagne bottle break, officially naming the ship.
Mardi Gras is the first cruise ship in the Americas powered by eco-friendly Liquified Natural Gas and features BOLT, the first roller coaster at sea.
Guests can enjoy entertainment experiences throughout the ship’s 19 decks and six themed zones, including the first shipboard version of the hit TV show Family Feud, and more than two dozen restaurants with venues from Guy Fieri, Emeril Lagasse, Rudi Sodamin and the line’s Chief Fun Officer Shaquille O’Neal.
Mardi Gras is sailing year-round from Port Canaveral, offering seven-day itineraries to the eastern and western Caribbean and calls on the Dominican Republic every other week.