Barbados Welcomes Virgin Voyages’ Valiant Lady To Its Shores

Barbados has welcomed another vessel, Valiant Lady, to its shores.

Minister of Tourism and International Transport, Ian Gooding-Edghill, speaking during an inaugural ceremony on board the vessel today, said he was ‘truly delighted” to welcome the Valiant Lady, which is one of the three newest ships in the Virgin Voyages’ fleet.   It is a five-star, 100 per cent adult-only, luxury ship.

“Today is a major celebration for Barbados, as this is not only the first time the Valiant Lady is sailing to our shores, but also the first time in history that any Virgin vessel has made a call on Barbados.  And, we are pleased to have Barbados as a part of its Caribbean programme this winter for the very first time,” Minister Gooding-Edghill stated.  

The Minister noted that Virgin Voyages is a joint venture between the Virgin Group and Bain Capital, and launched its commercial sailings in August 2021.

He said the Valiant Lady has a carrying capacity of 2,816 passengers, and began its service in March 2022, sailing from Portsmouth, England, to Belgium, until it was repositioned to the Mediterranean during summer; and then to Miami, Florida, for winter.

He thanked Virgin Voyages for its confidence in Barbados, as one of the ship’s destination ports for the winter cruise season, and expressed the hope that the partnership with Virgin Voyages would continue to grow.  He added that Barbados always looks for homeporting opportunities and other areas of new business.

Captain of the Valiant Lady, Justin Lawes, said coming to Barbados is “almost like coming home”. “I must truly say, you know, it’s so great to be bringing our first Virgin Cruise to Barbados.  We have a great cruise ship [and] we have a great cruise experience. Everything Sir Richard touches is very different and new and we pride ourselves on being an industry disrupter,” Captain Lawes said.

He added that he believes the passengers would have a “great experience here in Barbados” and that he hopes the relationship between Virgin Voyages and Barbados would “go on for a very long time”.

The vessel was also welcomed by officials from the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc., Barbados Port Inc., Platinum Port Agency, and UN Resident Coordinator for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Didier Trebucq.

Today was the first of five transit visits for the ship’s cruise winter season to Barbados.  The Valiant Lady docked this morning at the Port of Bridgetown with 2, 317 passengers and 1,142 crew members. The next port of call is Castries, St. Lucia.