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April 27, 2006

Senator Daniel K. Inouye to christen Pride of Hawaii

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Senator Daniel K. Inouye to christen Pride of Hawaii

Ship is the largest, most luxurious U.S.-flagged passenger ship in the world

MIAMI – April 24, 2006 – Today, NCL Corporation announced the Honorable Daniel K. Inouye, senior United States Senator from Hawai`i, will give the keynote address and officially name NCL America’s newest U.S.-flag ship at her christening on May 20th in Los Angeles, California. Pride of Hawai`i is the third in a series of U.S.-flag cruise ships sailing under the NCL America brand and built for the Hawai`i market in furtherance of the “Hawai`i Cruise Ship Initiative,” legislation sponsored by Senator Inouye and passed by the United States Congress in February 2003.

“Senator Inouye is the father of this project and its most steadfast supporter,” said Colin Veitch, President and CEO of NCL and NCL America, “and the introduction of Pride of Hawai`i is its crowning event. So there can be no one more fitting than he to name our newest U.S. flag ship.”

Senator Inouye added, “I have always believed in the potential of Hawai`i as a major cruise destination and I am very pleased that, thanks to NCL, at last this has happened. This project has required a tremendous commitment from this fine company, from its partners in organized maritime labor, from the Coast Guard and the Maritime Administration, and many others. It will be my great pleasure to salute their efforts and to name this wonderful ship.”

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At just over 93,500 gross registered tons, carrying more than 2,400 passengers, and costing over half a billion dollars, Pride of Hawai`i is by far the largest and most expensive U.S. flagged passenger ship ever built. It will employ a crew of over 1000, bringing the total seagoing workforce of NCL’s U.S. flagged fleet to approximately 4000, making NCL America the largest private employer of American seafarers in the world. The economic impact of the three ship fleet has been estimated by PriceWaterhouse Coopers to be nearly $830 million a year and an additional 20,000 jobs, including over a quarter of that impact occurring in other parts of the U.S. outside of Hawai`i.

NCL’s U.S. flag fleet, the first ship of which began service in July 2004, and its one international ship, will boost Hawai`i cruise passenger carryings to in excess of 650,000 a year by 2007. At these levels, Hawai`i as a cruise destination will be comparable in size and importance to Alaska and, together with Alaska, will be one of the top two domestic cruise destinations in North America.

Recent studies by the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the North American cruise industry’s marketing and travel agent association, have revealed that travel agents believe Hawai`i will overtake Europe as the third most in-demand worldwide destination for American cruise passengers (after Caribbean and Alaska).

Daniel K. Inouye is the third most senior member of the U.S. Senate, and, with Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska, co-chairs the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. The panel’s responsibilities include U.S. maritime commerce, which Senator Inouye continues to support. Senator Inouye was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1962, and is now serving his eighth consecutive term. When Hawaii joined the Union in 1959, he was elected the first Congressman from the new state, and was re-elected to a full term in 1960.

Press Release by Norwegian Cruise Line

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Posted by Denise at April 27, 2006 08:43 AM

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