LONDON – Queen Elizabeth II has christened P&O Cruises' 141,000-ton liner Britannia — a 473 million pound ($714 million) mega ship that's longer than four superjumbo jets.
With a gloved hand, the monarch pressed a button that swung a bottle of Sussex sparkling wine against the hull of the 1,082 foot ship at a ceremony in Southampton.
The queen is likely to have a special affection for the new ship's name. Britannia was also the name of the royal yacht, which saw service from 1954-1997.
The new ship can carry over 3,600 passengers and 1,350 crew. It features 15 passenger decks, 13 bars, four swimming pools and a 936-seat theater. It is decorated by 308 foot (94 meter) Union flag painted on its bow.
P&O is owned by Miami-based Carnival Corp.