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Crown Princess Debuts June 14th With a Host of Firsts
by Roy Witman © 2008

From a shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy, the Crown Princess has been taking shape over the last year. Though you would never know it from seeing construction photos, this massive body of steel beams will soon be sculpted into a luxury vessel boasting a list of firsts including innovative features, fresh amenities and new ports of call that will sail you off into the sunset of your choosing.

Several distinctive differences are noted about Crown Princess. Upon her maiden voyage in June 2006, she will be the first in the Princess Cruise fleet to sail roundtrip Caribbean itineraries from New York (Red Hook, which is located in Brookland). Unique destinations await passengers including the Eastern Caribbean port of Bermuda. Equally fascinating are the added ports of Grand Turk and the Turks and Caicos Islands which have been virtually undiscovered until now.

Along with the Grand Turks port comes 20 new shore excursions. As innovative as the port itself, adventures of all activity levels will be available to passengers from exhilarating Harley rides to relaxing super-sized pools.

According to Princess Cruise Line, “Hop-On/Hop- Off Island Tours are first of their kind island tours that operate as a hop-on-hop-off tour which includes stops at a restored 1800s prison and a historic lighthouse.” Also available: Harleys In Paradise, where passengers to St. Maarten can tour the scenery on Harley-Davidson motorcycles; zip line tours amid the canopy of St. Lucia's tropical rainforests; river tubing on Grenada's Balthazar River and more.

If you think you've heard the name “Crown Princess” before, you are correct. Initially built in 1990 by controversial designer Renzo Piano, the original Crown Princess has been transferred to a sister cruise line where she serves under a different name. As for the new Crown Princess, she is totally redesigned with cruising in mind and features numerable amenities not found on other ships.

Onboard the Crown Princess you'll find more firsts including Movies Under the Stars - an exclusive to Princess Cruise Line - where you can view blockbuster hit films outdoors on a gigantic, 300 square foot, LED screen. Passengers can make complimentary chaise lounge reservations for available features. Cocktail specials are available as well as free popcorn and other movie munchies. Atrium dining is also a specialty of Princess Cruises as well as Personal Choice Dining that allows you to choose seating at any restaurant at any time.

From exciting nightclubs to digital golf simulators and a nine-hole putting course, from four pools to a sports court and jogging track, you'll find something for everyone, including one of the largest casinos afloat.

Kids and teens even get their own special spaces with The Fun Zone, Off Limits Teen Center, a video arcade and the Chill Out splash pool. That's the perfect place for them to hang out while adults visit the Sanctuary - a quiet poolside area of the ship just for adults to relax and unwind.

According to Princess officials, Crown Princess' summer season will include 12 departures from New York between May 12 and September 6 on the Eastern Caribbean. Ports include Bermuda, San Juan, St. Thomas, St. Maarten and Grand Turk. In fact, her inaugural season is expected to be such a success that a second season in New York has already been slated.

Departing from New York in June 2006, the all- new Crown Princess offers a host of firsts designed to captivate passengers and provide exciting new adventures on and off the ship.

Read more about the Princess Cruise Line.