Princess Cruises’ 77,000-ton ship, Dawn Princess, is to join P&O Australia as part of a surprise fleet change by Carnival Corporation — which owns and operates the two cruise brands.
Announcing the fleet change earlier this week, Carnival’s Pacific cruising division cited growing demand in the Australian cruise market as the reasoning behind the fleet switch, which will swell P&O Australia’s capacity by a further 2,000 passengers.
Despite Dawn Princess already being stationed down under with Princess Cruises, the vessel will become part of the P&O Australia fleet in 2017 — taking the cruise line’s total fleet size to six ships and cementing it as Australia’s leading supplier of year-round cruise holidays.
Ann Sherry, CEO of Carnival Australia, said: “Australia is the world’s fastest growing cruise market, so as the biggest cruise operator Down Under we’re delighted to be expanding our local presence even further. These fleet changes will help us further increase the range of exciting cruise options on offer to Australians and continue to meet local demand for holidays at sea.”
2015 has already proved to be a bumper year for P&O Australia, with the launch of two new ships, Pacific Aria and Pacific Eden, and the announcement that Holland America Line will transfer two ships to the cruise line before the close of the year, bringing its total fleet size to five ships.
Speaking on behalf of P&O Australia, Sture Myrmell, senior vice president of P&O Australia, enthused: “This ship is a great addition to P&O Cruises’ fleet, with her larger size opening up opportunities for new on-board product and experiences”
Myrmell went on to add that Dawn Princess will receive a complete overhaul before joining P&O to bring the ship in line with the rest of the fleet. According to Myrmell, the ship will also be renamed prior to its inaugural voyage with P&O.
Be sure to check back with Cruise1st Australia regularly for more news on P&O Cruises Australia as it develops.
Image sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credit: Kabacchi