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Cruises and Sailing

 August 09, 2002
Princess Adds Two Former Renaissance Ships To Fleet

 P&O Princess Cruises has announced that two former Renaissance vessels, R3 and R4, will soon be joining the Princess fleet, introducing Princess? trademark ?big ship choice? in a smaller, more intimate cruise environment. The ships will offer sailings in Tahiti and the wider Pacific Ocean region. The 688-passenger R3 will premiere as Pacific Princess, while sister ship R4 will debut as Tahitian Princess. Both vessels, which originally entered service in 1999, are well suited to offer many of the Personal Choice Cruising options that have become Princess trademarks, according to the company. This includes a wide variety of dining experiences including a 24 hour Lido and alternative dining programs with both an Italian restaurant and an American steakhouse; and 92 percent outside staterooms ñ with over two-thirds of these including a private balcony.

Beginning with a holiday cruise on December 24, 2002, Tahitian Princess will sail year-round in Tahiti and the South Pacific, debuting the only 10-day sailings in the region. Three unique itineraries, with a total of 50 departures roundtrip from Papeete, Tahiti, each include calls at the tropical paradises of Bora Bora, Moorea and Raiatea. Passengers can choose one of the 34 French Polynesia/Cook Islands sailings that explore ports like mystic Huahine and Raratonga and feature overnight stays in both Papeete and Bora Bora; enjoy one of eight French Polynesia/Samoa cruises to discover the dramatic beauty of Pago Pago and Apia; or travel on one of eight French Polynesia/Marquesas voyages to unwrap the secrets of Nuku Hiva and Hiva Oa. A full range of pre and post Tahiti packages will also be available.

The Pacific Princess will operate on a split deployment, sailing half the year throughout French Polynesia and the wider Pacific region for Princess Cruises, and the other half for the P&O Cruises Australia brand, serving the growing Australian market in the South Pacific region. The specific Princess itineraries for this ship are in the process of being finalized, and are expected to be available soon.

?This announcement is exciting to us on several levels,? said Phil Kleweno, president of Princess Cruises. ?First, these smaller Princess ships will complement our fleet of larger vessels, furthering our commitment to provide passengers with exotic itineraries that allow them to discover the world in their own way. Our choice of three different 10-day French Polynesian itineraries are the most extensive in this part of the world, and should be a must for any traveler looking to fully experience the beauty and unique character of this fascinating region.

?Additionally, the design of these small, modern ships will enable us to provide a ?boutique version? of our Personal Choice Cruising program, with over two thirds of the ship?s cabins having balconies and with a variety of dining and entertainment options. At the same time the Princess onboard staff will be providing the high levels of service that weíve come to be known for wherever we cruise. And finally, no other cruise to the French Polynesia region is as affordable as those offered aboard these new ships. The combination of itinerary, onboard service and affordability will clearly differentiate Princess from the competition.?