The ship that introduced cruising on a grand scale
When Grand Princess emerged from Fincantieri Monfalcone Shipyard in Italy in May 1998, she launched Princess Cruises' Grand Class of cruising, weighing in as the largest passenger liner ever to be built.
At 109,000 tons and with capacity to carry 2,600 passengers, she made her debut on May 26 with a 12-night cruise from Istanbul to Barcelona.
The addition of two more Grand Class ships - Golden Princess and Star Princess - in fairly quick succession positioned Princess Cruises as one of the leading Caribbean cruise operators and increased its overall capacity by 50 per cent.
The $400 million ship, which underwent Princess Cruises largest drydock makeover in the line’s history in April 2011, includes three state-of-the-art show lounges - she was the first cruise ship to do so - each offering passengers a different option for after-dinner entertainment.
She also features three main dining rooms, an entire deck dedicated to suites and 750 cabins have their own private balconies.
And on top of all that, she boasts
Following the ship’s most recent transformation, passengers now find a completely new Piazza atrium, several new eateries - including Alfredo’s Pizzeria and the Crown Grill - and the line’s first specialty tea lounge called Leaves.
Also included in the renovation are seven new window suites, remodelled casino, boutiques and art gallery, enhancements to the Horizon Court, Lotus Spa, and wedding chapel, and the addition of Crooner’s Martini Lounge and the new nightclub, The One5.
Operated by Princess Cruises
Built by Fincantieri Navali, Italy
Entered service: May 1998
Refurbished: April 2011
Gross tonnage: 108,806 tons
Passenger decks: 13
Cabins: 1,300 including
- 28 Suites with private balconies
- 180 Mini-suites with private balconies
- 502 Outside cabins with private balconies
- 218 Standard outside cabins
- 372 Inside cabins
- 28 with wheelchair access
Three main dining rooms (two sittings), alternative dining options, three show lounges, 12 lounges/bars, casino, cinema, wedding chapel, virtual reality centyre, five swimming pools (one with magradome), nine hot tubs, fitness centre, expansive spa, golf simulator, 9-hole putting course, internet cafe, library, children’s and teen centres, self-service launderette.
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