Holland America Line President Orlando Ashford opened an online media event this morning with an energetic announcement:
“Everybody, get ready to rock.”
The Facebook Live event featured a video touting design and culinary elements of the line’s newest vessel, Nieuw Statendam. Set to debut on Dec. 1, 2018, the 2,666-guest ship will feature Pinnacle-Class signature amenities and partnerships. A Girl’s Getaway cruise with Oprah Winfrey set for January 2019 is already sold out.
But, today’s big news was all about onboard music, and specifically, the line’s Music Walk. The innovative feature is a collection of live music experiences. Venues include Lincoln Center Stage, Billboard Onboard and B.B. King’s Blues Club. Now, the Rolling Stone Rock Room joins the lineup.
“A great cruise deserves a great sound track. The Rolling Stone Rock Room is a new classic rock club developed in partnership with Rolling Stone Magazine,” said Ashford.
The venue promises to showcase four decades of classic rock with live band performances.
“We are so excited to tap into Rolling Stone’s incredible expertise to create a new live entertainment venue that will appeal to all our guests,” said Ashford. “Innovative and authentic music experiences are at the heart of all our entertainment offerings and is what distinguishes us in the industry. Classic rock appeals to people across generations because the music is universal and Rolling Stone Rock Room will bring another incredible live music venue to our ships.”
Ashford emphasized that only serious rockers need apply for gigs at the club.
“We’re going to hire musicians the same way that we do for the B.B. King Allstar auditions. t’s the same level of talent and vetting that our Lincoln Center musicians get. We won’t just grab musicians from other shows and slap a label on them. We’re identifying the best in class,” he said.
The Rolling Stone Rock Room will open on Nieuw Statendam’s sister ship, the Koningsdam, in December. The decision whether to roll out to other ships in the fleet will depend on guest response.
Ashford suspects it will be positive.
“I enjoy reading letters from guests talking about how wonderful the quality of music is,” he said.
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