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Dawn of a New Era in Australasian Premium Cruising

Monday, 7 March 2005

Dawn of a New Era in Australasian Premium Cruising

Princess Cruises has announced the Australian deployment of the largest ship ever tailored for local cruise passengers - the 77,000 tonne superliner Dawn Princess.

The biggest and most luxurious liner to be based here, Dawn Princess will be geared to the Australasian market and will offer a summer season of round-trip cruises from Sydney.

Sailing South Pacific waters between October 2006 and March 2007, the superliner will replace the acclaimed 30,200-tonne Pacific Princess, which has sailed Australasian waters each summer since pioneering premium cruising for New Zealanders and Australians in 2002.

Announcing the deployment of Australasia's own superliner, Princess Cruises Australia Managing Director Gavin Smith said the 1950-passenger Dawn Princess would offer almost three times as many beds as the 670-passenger Pacific Princess, confirming Princess Cruises as Australia's leading premium cruise line.

"Deploying Dawn Princess from Sydney represents an enormous expansion for the Australian cruise industry. With more balcony cabins than Pacific Princess has cabins, Dawn Princess is testimony to the growing demand for affordable premium cruise holidays in the South Pacific," Mr Smith said.

"The popularity of Pacific Princess, coupled with the success of recent visits by international megaliners such as Star Princess and Sapphire Princess, has opened the way for a larger 'Australasian' ship," Mr Smith said.

Dawn Princess will offer passengers an exciting array of features that only big ships can provide, including multiple choices in entertainment and 'Anytime Dining' where passengers can dine with whom they want, when they want.

The ship will be tailored for the needs and tastes of New Zealand and Australian passengers with local-flavoured entertainment and an onboard currency of Australian dollars.

However she will retain the Princess features that have defined the brand, including superb service, multiple dining options, state-of-the-art amenities and an abundance of affordable balcony cabins.

The superliner will offer 8-13 night cruises from Sydney to the South Pacific, New Zealand and Tasmania, together with a special four week circumnavigation of Australia. Itineraries and fares will be available from September this year.

Launched in 1997 and currently cruising in the Caribbean and Alaska each year, Dawn Princess boasts a grand four-storey atrium, eight restaurants and cafes, four pools, five jacuzzis, seven lounges and bars, a glass-walled gym, golf simulator, spa, a teak-lined wrap-around promenade deck, nightclub, two children's clubs and a library.

Mr Smith said in addition to Dawn Princess' deployment, Sapphire Princess would continue to cruise in Australasian waters in the summer of 2006-2007.

He said the expansion of Princess Cruises' premium product in Australasia follows a substantial increase in P&O Cruises' local cruise ship capacity. Last November Pacific Sun joined Pacific Sky to offer contemporary, value for money cruises year-round from Australia, while in December 2005 a third ship, Pacific Star, joins the fleet.

Mr Smith said the deployment of Dawn Princess again underlined the flexibility offered by parent company Carnival Corporation & plc which operates 12 cruise brands worldwide including Princess Cruises, P&O Cruises Australia and Cunard.

ENDS

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