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Fincantieri's Ancona lays the keel for Seven Seas Splendor

Regent's Jason Montague, left, with Ancona's Giovanni Stecconi and 'lucky' coins for the keel-laying
Fincantieri's Ancona shipyard held a keel-laying ceremony today for Regent Seven Seas Cruises' Seven Seas Splendor.

The 55,000gt ship is the sister of 2016's Seven Seas Explorer, delivered from Fincantieri's Sestri Ponente yard and touted as the most luxurious ship ever built.

Officials including Jason Montague, president and CEO of Regent Seven Seas Cruises, were on hand, along with Giovanni Stecconi, the Ancona yard manager.

Three symbolic coins

'Lucky' coins were placed under the keel. They include an ancient Roman coin featuring Neptune, god of the sea, that was minted during the reign of Hadrian (117 to 138 AD) and commemorates the ship being built in Italy. A Spanish gold escudo from the 1700s represents Seven Seas Explorer's inaugural voyage on Feb. 7, 2020, from Barcelona to Miami. And a commemorative coin etched with the date of the keel-laying commemorates the partnership between Regent and Fincantieri.

'We are creating a work of art'

'In our pursuit to exceed guest expectations, we are creating a work of art, from bow to stern. Wherever you turn on Seven Seas Splendor, you will be surrounded by elegance, comfort and hospitality,' Montague said.

2020 summer Europe sales open July 12

When reservations opened for the ship's first 10 voyages, Regent chalked up the best booking day in its history. The line will open Seven Seas Splendor’s 2020 inaugural European summer itineraries on July 12.

Fincantieri's Luigi Matarazzo, EVP new building, Merchant Ships Business Unit, expressed satisfaction for the 'opportunity to partner for the second time with a shipowner like Regent Seven Seas Cruises. It means that we have met all the expectations of a company that has made quality and sophistication the distinguishing features of its business.

Ancona's mission: Medium-sized luxury ships

'I am sure that this vessel will represent another success for our shipyard in Ancona,' Matarazzo continued, 'which confirms its mission in the medium-sized luxury ships segment, but also for the Fincantieri group, a leader in the cruise market.'

Fincantieri has built 85 cruise ships since 1990, 62 of them since 2002, while another 42 are currently being designed or built in the group’s yards.