P&O Cruises Recruits Global Experts For Britain’s Biggest Interior Design Challenge

P&O Cruises has begun Britain’s biggest interior design challenge, to furnish and decorate Iona, its newest ship to be launched in spring 2020. The ship, which itself is a visual spectacle will also be Britain’s biggest art gallery at sea with more than 4,600 works of art being commissioned for display.

Iona will benefit from the expertise of the world’s leading engineers, architects and designers; brought together for the first time to create a ship that will truly make the sea the star with its vast glass walls giving panoramic views. Each expert is delivering exciting new innovations to enhance the guest experience on Britain’s newest flagship.

In a just released short film these seven luminaries shed light on their contribution to Iona, taking viewers deep into the collaborative process. From the design and build of the stunning glass SkyDome that is Iona’s crowning glory, to collecting millions of pounds worth of art to complement Iona’s naturally lit social spaces – each expert will help bring Iona to life, as the ship is under construction in Germany.

Those eager to know more about Iona can gain a valuable insight from those who are creating this stunning new ship. They’ll discover more about Iona’s wide decks and outside spaces and its light filled atrium framed by three storey high glass walls.

Among those contributing are:

P&O Cruises director of hotel design and projects, Alison Clixby: Heading up the team of experts and design process, Alison explains the inspiration and ideas behind Iona’s interiors and the challenges that come with furnishing a ship of such size.

Art curator, Tom Tempest-Radford: Tom, who also curated the collection on P&O Cruises Britannia, is currently sourcing the biggest collection of art for the largest ship ever created for the British market. The multi-million pound art collection is being curated by Tom to complement and enhance Iona’s interior designs and to give the feel of relaxed luxury. Much of the art takes its inspiration from the sea, the wonder of nature and the sense of being outdoors.

Richmond International director, Terry McGillicuddy: The company which is responsible for the overall interior design of Britannia is the expert behind the innovative Conservatory Mini-suites. Iona will have 95 of these suites when she launches in 2020 and each one will deliver a new experience for P&O Cruises guests, offering unparalleled views and a relaxing natural environment. The conservatory-style room gives an extension to the cabin, with greater flexibility and a distinct space for relaxation and socializing, whilst enjoying the connection to the sea and landscape.

Jestico + Whiles director, James Dilley: This is the first project in the cruise ship industry for the company which helped create W Hotel (London), Aqua Shard (restaurant in the Shard) and The Yas Hotel (Abu Dhabi). Amongst many of the other key public areas, Jestico + Whiles is responsible for the Grand Atrium which will be at the heart of Iona, a lively and ever-changing focal point that encapsulates the exciting spirit of the ship. With triple height bay windows with panoramic views to the sea, the Grand Atrium unites three decks, served by an extraordinary spiralling silver and stone staircase, offering an exciting journey to a choice of “destinations.”

Meyer Werft shipyard managing director, Tim Meyer: Tim explains the intricacies of building Iona, the biggest ship for the British market at over 180,000 gross tons. Iona features P&O Cruises “green cruising” design. It is one of the first generation of cruise ships to be powered by Liquefied Natural Gas, which will significantly reduce emissions.

Partner Ship Design senior project manager, Franz-Josef Wolf: PSD is responsible for creating the multiple-use elements of SkyDome, which will offer a unique space whatever the weather. By day SkyDome will be the perfect place for relaxation and informal dining. By night it will come alive with spectacular aerial performances, immersive shows and deck parties.

Trying to explore each and every inch of this wonderful planet via cruise ship.

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