Until now, it has been referred to jokingly as Nonamedam. From today, Holland America Line's new 99,500-ton cruise ship is ms Koningsdam.
While the name pays homage to the company’s heritage and roots in the Netherlands, it also reflects a new era with a bold name that is an original in Holland America Line’s 141-year history. Since 1883 every Holland America passenger vessel has borne the “dam” suffix, and ms Koningsdam carries on that tradition. The word koning means “king” in Dutch, and the name celebrates the majestic new ship. The name also pays honor to His Majesty King Willem-Alexander, the first king of the Netherlands for more than a century.
The 2,650-passenger ship, being built at Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri's Marghera yard near Venice, is scheduled for delivery in February 2016.
Many of Holland America Line’s ships have been christened by members of the Dutch Royal Family over the past 75 years. Most recently, ms Nieuw Amsterdam was christened by Her Royal Highness Princess Máxima in 2010. And in 2008 ms Eurodam was christened by Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands.
“In choosing the name Koningsdam, we are honouring our rich Dutch heritage while reflecting that we’re entering a new era as a company,” said Stein Kruse, chief executive officer of the Holland America Group. “This new Pinnacle Class ship will be our largest, most contemporary vessel, and it was only fitting to give it a name that embodies great achievement for the future, while embracing timeless tradition.”
Holland America Line was founded in the Netherlands in 1873 as the Netherlands-American Steamship Company headquartered in Rotterdam. The original headquarters building still stands today as the Hotel New York on the Wilhelmina Pier, with the company’s European headquarters located nearby.