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Gwen Stefani Names Carnival Jubilee in Galveston

Gwen Stefani Names Carnival Jubilee in Galveston

Carnival Cruise Line celebrated the naming of its newest ship Carnival Jubilee along with the ship’s godmother, music superstar Gwen Stefani, in Galveston, Texas.

Galveston’s mayor Craig Brown declared February 24th “Carnival Jubilee Day,” honoring the Texas-themed ship—the first to be christened in the city. The day also marked the 100th birthday of Carnival’s late founder, Ted Arison.

“We hold a very warm place in our hearts for Carnival Cruise Line because they initiated the entire cruise industry for the City of Galveston. They were the first and will always be first in our hearts,” Brown said in a press release.

Jubilee’s godmother Gwen Stefani spent the day aboard

Gwen Stefani spent the day aboard Jubilee, first meeting Captain Stefano Bonica on the bridge and blowing the ship’s horn. The musician then cut the ceremonial ribbon at several venues.

Carnival Jubilee‘s godmother Gwen Stefani joined Captain Stefano Bonica on the bridge (image courtesy of Carnival Cruise Line)

After joining Carnival’s Chief Culinary Officer Emeril Lagasse at the opening of his newest Emeril’s Bistro location, Stefani then met Ty Crowninshield, a former St. Jude’s patient, to unveil the ship’s St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s sculpture. Crowninshield drew the artwork that inspired the sculpture while he was a patient at the hospital.

Ty Crowninshield, Christine Duffy, and Gwen Stefani unveiled Jubilee‘s St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s sculpture (image courtesy of Carnival Cruise Line)

Stefani was also presented with her godmother gift, an EFFY Legacy panther ring, at the opening of Jubilee‘s EFFY jewelry store.

Related: What Is a Cruise Ship Godmother (or Godfather)?

Carnival’s president promised Galveston will be Jubilee’s forever home

Following a cocktail reception and celebratory lunch, invited guests—including public officials, community leaders, travel advisors, business partners, and Carnival cruisers—attended the 45-minute naming ceremony in the ship’s theater.

During the ceremony, Carnival Cruise Line president Christine Duffy thanked the Galveston community for their decades of support, noting that Carnival Jubilee is the first brand new ship to be homeported in Galveston as well as the first cruise ship to be christened in Galveston.

Referring to the embossed Texas star on the ship’s bow, she assured the crowd that Galveston is Jubilee’s forever home.

Jubilee’s christening ceremony highlighted Carnival’s charity partners

The cruise line also used the occasion to celebrate its ongoing relationships with two national charitable partners. Duffy announced that after meeting its goal of $33 million for St. Jude by 2024, the company has set a new pledge goal of $50 million by 2030.

A custom pair of Carnival Jubilee-themed cowboy boots by Houston-based Parker Boot Co. was auctioned off for $25,000 to benefit Operation Homefront, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting military families.

Carnival Jubilee’s Texas-style christening included performances by Gwen Stefani

Gwen Stefani pulled the lasso-style rope at Carnival Jubilee‘s traditional Champagne bottle smash (image courtesy of Carnival Cruise Line)

“I know she has been honored in so many ways for her music with numerous awards and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and now she has a ship!” said Duffy as she introduced Stefani. “She’s also put giving back as an important focus in her life, especially to a number of children’s causes, so we are truly thrilled to have Gwen as the Godmother of our flagship Carnival Jubilee!”

Joining Duffy and Captain Bonica on stage, Stefani blessed and named the ship before pulling a lasso and lever—releasing a Champagne bottle to smash on Jubilee‘s bow in the time-honored christening ceremony.

Related: 29 Weird Cruise Ship Superstitions Cruisers Should Know

Stefani then treated the guests to a private concert of some of her hit songs, including “Just a Girl,” “The Sweet Escape” and “Hollaback Girl.”

Carnival Jubilee sails year-round in the western Caribbean

The Excel-class Carnival Jubilee homeports year-round in Galveston, sailing week-long Western Caribbean cruises. The ship accommodates 6,500 guests and 1,750 crew, and is powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Carnival recently announced that a fourth Excel sister ship will join Jubilee, Carnival Celebration, and Mardi Gras in 2027.

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What do you think about Carnival’s choice to name Gwen Stefani as godmother of Carnival Jubilee? I’d love to hear your opinions in the comments below!

Carrie Ann Karstunen