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Luis Fonsi has played to sold-out concert halls and stadiums around the world, but the Latin superstar is taking to the water for his next big performance.
The singer has been announced as the latest godparent for Norwegian Cruise Line, the upscale cruise ship brand known for its music and entertainment-inspired sailings. Fonsi will serve as the godfather of NCL’s newest ship, the Norwegian Viva, which will be christened in the singer’s current hometown of Miami before homeporting in his native Puerto Rico this fall.
For Fonsi, who marks the 25th anniversary of his debut album Comenzaré, in September, the new partnership is a chance to celebrate his career milestone, while finding new ways to bring his fans — and family — together.
“I was brought up near the ocean, so sea ships, boats and maritime culture is what I love,” the singer tells Rolling Stone. “When I’m not on stage, when I’m not touring, I’m out on my boat; that’s what makes me happy.”
“It also my 25-year anniversary in the [music] business, and with two young kids now, I get to celebrate it in a different way,” Fonsi says. “Before, it was all about me and my personal goals — I need to be number one; I need to break records. Now, it’s all about leaving a beautiful legacy for my kids and creating new memories with them.”
As part of his NCL godparent duties, Fonsi will fulfill the longstanding maritime tradition of christening the new ship, which involves a ceremonial breaking of a champagne bottle on the ship’s bow, to bid the vessel and its voyagers good fortune. The entertainer will also perform on the inaugural sailing, joined by an all-Latin lineup, as part of Norwegian Viva’s “Live It Up!” cruise theme. In addition to Fonsi, performers include the “Queen of Latin Pop,” Paulina Rubio, Puerto Rican singer Pedro Capó and SNL cast member Marcello Hernandez.
“I’ve never actually performed on a cruise before, which makes this really exciting,” Fonsi says. “I feel like people will be disconnecting from the world and ready to have an amazing time with awesome entertainment and lots of music. And I feel proud to be supporting Latin culture and Latin artists this way.”
The Norwegian Viva is one of NCL’s largest ships, with a three-level Go Kart track, casino and nightclub. After completing its christening voyage this fall, Norwegian Viva offer a variety of Caribbean itineraries through April 2024, before heading to Europe, with ports of call in Greece, Portugal and Italy.
Fonsi’s appointment as “godfather” comes on the heels of other NCL celebrity partnerships: Katy Perry was named the godmother of her own ship last spring, while Kelly Clarkson helped to kick off the brand’s inaugural voyage from Galveston, Texas in October.