Entitled 'Captains in Cádiz', this was only the second time ever that the fleet has converged in one place, anywhere in the world.
Fred. Olsen's four ships sailed into Cádiz harbour at just before 8am, carrying 4,000 guests, who were welcomed by the ‘Los Sones de Cádiz’ band and a port bedecked with ‘Captains in Cádiz’ fiesta-style bunting and banners.
170th anniversary of Fred. Olsen
Mike Rodwell, md for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said: ‘This year marks the 170th anniversary of Fred. Olsen’s start as a shipping company and we are delighted to be celebrating today in the stunning city of Cádiz. Our cruise ships have been calling here since 1987, and the excellent port facilities mean that we can berth all four ships in close proximity to each other.
‘Captains in Cadiz’ has been two years in the planning, and follows on from the line’s ‘Four Ships in Bergen’ event in July 2015, when its fleet were brought together for the very first time in Bergen, Norway.
A key part of the Cadiz celebrations day was the bringing together of the eight ships’ masters from across the Fred. Olsen fleet: Captains Victor Stoica and Rommel Pineda from Balmoral, Captains Jozo Glavic and Jens Erik Gulowsen from Braemar, Captains Juha Sartela and Mikael Degerlund from Boudicca, and Captains Henrik Mattsson and Valentin Giuglea from Black Watch.
Also attending the event was chairman of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, Fred. Olsen Junior.
Working closely with Cádiz Port Authority and the various Cádiz and Andalusian tourism partners involved, Fred. Olsen laid on a fun-packed programme of festivities and activities during the day, along the quayside and throughout the city.
Guests also had the rare opportunity to visit all of the Fred. Olsen ships during the day, and many took advantage of the chance to meet up with each other – or their favourite crew members.
At 5pm, all four ships made a departure from Cádiz in convoy, serenaded by a local jazz band. Braemar was returning to Southampton, UK; both Balmoral and Black Watch continued to Lisbon, Portugal; and Boudicca headed to Ibiza, Spain.
Next fleet meet in Funchal
Fred. Olsen has already started planning its next fleet reunion – the third such event – in Funchal, on April 4, 2020.