CUNARD QUEEN VICTORIA DAY IN SAN FRANCISCO

San Francisco the only US port of call for luxurious new ocean liner

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By Seán Martinfield
Sentinel Editor and Publisher
Photo by Lynn Imanaka

Wrapping up her Expedition of the Americas segment, a part of her current world voyage, Cunard Line‘s Queen Victoria made her inaugural visit to San Francisco this past Wednesday. Welcoming her to this historic maritime port was the honorable Mayor Gavin Newsom, along with travel agents, media and local dignitaries – including the British Consul-General of San Francisco, Julian Evans. In addition, by official order of proclamation, Mayor Newsom declared Wednesday as “Cunard Queen Victoria Day” in San Francisco.*

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Mayor Gavin Newsom and Captain Paul Wright
Photos, Seán Martinfield

“This is a big deal to our economy in The City,” said Mayor Newsom. “We estimate – to the extent that it matters, Captain – about $800,00 of spending that we will benefit from just by this quick exchange of passengers. Some 1200 people coming off the boat, some 1200 people coming back on. This creates real jobs and continues to support our economy – which is not struggling as most other ports of call, certainly in this country. But, hardly doing as well as we had hoped and expect to be. This is a city that has been the beneficiary of 62 other ships that made their way into our city last calendar year. We understand the importance of the cruise industry. We also understand we need to upgrade our facilities. You have done your job with ships like this. We took the opportunity to mark the occasion with your visit to announce that we have sold some 36.65 million dollars of bonds. This is the first time since 1984 that The Port has sold revenue bonds to, on our own, begin to update the facilities here and our permanent new cruise ship terminal that will be complete by 2014, real construction starting in 2012. But of the $36 million, ten will go immediately to start the design and planning of a world class terminal.”

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Captain Paul Wright, Master, Queen Victoria

“We are once again delighted by the warm welcome we received today, and it is with great pride that we now add San Francisco to the list of more than 150 different ports visited since Queen Victoria began service two years ago,” said Captain Paul Wright, Master, Queen Victoria. “Our maiden call today marks Queen Victoria’s third maiden call on this world voyage and our only U.S. maiden call of the eight in total on this around-the-world-journey,” he added.

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Also welcoming Queen Victoria to the City by the Bay was the CEO and President of the San Francisco Convention and Visitors Bureau, Joe D’Alessandro; President of the San Francisco Port Commission, Rodney Fong; and the President and CEO of Nautilus International Holding Corporate (parent company of Metro Cruise Services), James Callahan. Queen Victoria continued her third World Voyage at approximately 6:00 pm departing San Francisco en route to her next port of call – Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii.

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Queen Victoria will spend more time on the west coast in winter 2011, sailing her Americas voyages, when she will make two transits through the Panama Canal, two roundtrip voyages from Los Angeles to Hawaii, and her first short Getaway voyage to Mexico. Designed in grand Cunard tradition, Queen Victoria is the second largest Cunarder ever built, weighing in at 90,000 gross tons.

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The Royal Court Theatre

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The Royal Court Theatre, from stage right

Having debuted in December 2007, she captured the world stage in a way few ships ever do – becoming one of the most fêted ships to be introduced in recent years and quickly establishing herself in the Cunard fleet. Every inch of the 2,000-passenger liner is infused with a sense of luxury and tradition, from the Royal Court Theatre, which includes the first private viewing boxes at sea, to the signature two-storey library with a spiral staircase and nearly 6,000 volumes.

library The Library, MS Queen Victoria

Queen Victoria features double- and triple-height public rooms that evoke the rich and well-recorded history of ocean liner and Victorian era design. Most distinctive of all, of course, is the line’s legendary White Star Service for which Cunard is renowned. Onboard, guests revel in the luxury of time, experiencing such Cunard hallmarks as traditional afternoon tea served by white-gloved waiters, an engaging variety of intellectual and stimulating pursuits – including fencing – and extraordinary dining rivaling the finest restaurants in the world.

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* PROCLAMATION:

WHEREAS, Cunard’s youngest ship, Queen Victoria, makes her maiden call to San Francisco, marking her only U.S. inaugural port of call as part of the first segment of her 2010 World Voyage, before continuing across the Pacific Ocean to Hawaii; and

WHEREAS, San Francisco welcomed Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 in 2007, and has been eagerly anticipating Queen Victoria’s arrival to the City by the Bay since the ship entered service; and

WHEREAS, Queen Victoria celebrates her third full year in service with a traditional 99-day westbound circumnavigation of the globe from New York to Southampton, featuring three convenient U.S. embarkation points, and then continues on the third World Voyage with three overnight calls in Sydney, Hong Kong and Dubai, as well as 10 additional maiden calls; the ship will traverse the Panama and Suez Canals, visiting 41 ports including Acapulco, Melbourne, Shanghai, Cartagena, Phuket, and Sharm El Sheikh; and

WHEREAS, designed in grand Cunard tradition, Queen Victoria is the second largest Cunarder ever built, weighing in at 90,000 tons and has captured the world stage in a way few ships ever do, becoming one of the most fêted ships to be introduced in recent years; every inch of the 2,000 passenger liner is infused with a sense of luxury and tradition, from the Royal Court Theatre, which includes the first private viewing box seats at sea, to the signature two-storey library with a spiral staircase and nearly 6,000 volumes with a Victorian era design; now

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that I, Gavin Newsom, Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco, in warm welcome of this historic voyage to the Port of San Francisco, do hereby proclaim January 27, 2010 as…

CUNARD QUEEN VICTORIA DAY
In San Francisco!

* * * * * *

Visit Seán on YouTube:

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Seán Martinfield
Sentinel Editor and Publisher
Seán Martinfield, who also serves as Fine Arts Critic, is a native San Franciscan. He is a Theatre Arts Graduate from San Francisco State University, a professional singer, and well-known private vocal coach to Bay Area actors and singers of all ages and persuasions. His clients have appeared in Broadway National Tours including Wicked, Aïda, Miss Saigon, Rent, Bye Bye Birdie, in theatres and cabarets throughout the Bay Area, and are regularly featured in major City events including Diva Fest, Gay Pride, and Halloween In The Castro. As an Internet consultant in vocal development and audition preparation he has published thousands of responses to those seeking his advice concerning singing techniques, professional and academic auditions, and careers in the Performing Arts. Mr. Martinfield’s Broadway clients have all profited from his vocal methodology, “The Belter’s Method”, which is being prepared for publication. If you want answers about your vocal technique, post him a question on AllExperts.com. If you would like to build up your vocal performance chops and participate in the Bay Area’s rich theatrical scene, e-mail him at: sean.martinfield@comcast.net.

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