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PRINCESS CRUISES: New Royal Princess unveiled

Princess Cruises unveiled details of the new 141,000gt, 3,600-passenger Royal Princess, due to enter service in spring 2013. She is the first of a new series and not an evolution of the successful Grand class ships, although certain signature elements will be retained.

All of the outside staterooms will have balconies, which means that 80 per cent of her accommodation will provide this feature. There will be 260,000ft2 of inside public space, with multiple dining and entertainment venues as well as other amenities, which will be revealed in due course. A sistership, Regal Princess, will be introduced in spring 2014.

New on Royal Princess is a SeaWalk, a glass-bottomed enclosed walkway on the starboard side of the ship’s top deck which overhangs more than 8.5m beyond the side of the vessel. From here, passengers will have dramatic views and be able to look down at the sea nearly 40m below. On the port side, passengers will find a similarly unique cantilevered SeaView Bar.

This is the third Royal Princess in the company’s history. The first sailed as Artemis (1984/44,588gt) for P&O Cruises until April, when she was sold to Artania Shipping and chartered to Phoenix Seereisen as Artania. The second is currently sailing for Princess Cruises as Royal Princess (2001/30,277gt) and is the former R Eight, which later became Swan Hellenic’s Minerva II. She was transferred to P&O Cruises last month as a replacement for Artemis.

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