Queen Elizabeth on Monday officially named a new British cruise ship after herself. “I name this ship Queen Elizabeth. May God bless her and all who sail in her,” she said during the ceremony in Southampton, on the south coast of England, where the Cunard ship is docked.
She then pressed a button that released a lever holding a bottle, which smashed against the side of the tall white ship with the trademark Cunard black-and-red smokestack.
British monarchs have launched seven ships bearing royal names since the Queen Mary in 1934. The newest vessel is the third named Queen Elizabeth.
The bottle used in Monday’s naming was white wine, not Champagne, according to CruiseCritic.com, which said that white wine was also used to launch the first two Queen Elizabeth ships. The wine used Monday, supplied by Rothschild Wines, is served on Cunard ships, CruiseCritic.com said.
The QE is nearly 1,000 feet long and boasts a capacity of over 2,000 passengers. It will embark on its maiden voyage to Portugal and the Canary Islands on Tuesday.