Heads turned when Cunard’s Queen Victoria made the cruise line’s maiden call at St Raphael on the Cote d’Azur this summer. The ship, and her 2,000 passengers, were almost a week into their 14-night voyage from Southampton and had already called at Cartagena and Barcelona in Spain before arriving in St Raphael’s Bay, 30 miles west of Nice. After spending the day at anchor, Queen Victoria sailed on towards Florence.
Captain Peter Philpott, master of the 90,000 ton vessel, said: “It’s a privilege to bring Queen Victoria into a new port for the first time, and to be in command of the first Cunard ship ever to sail into St Raphael makes the call particularly special. The Cote d’Azur is one of the most beautiful and most celebrated coastlines in the Mediterranean – almost synonymous with summer holidays. I hope this maiden visit proves to have been a joy for our passengers – it feels like we are the biggest yacht in this delightful bay.”