MV Pacific Pearl

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For other ships with the same name, see Arcadia (disambiguation).
PacificPearl.jpg
Pacific Pearl in Auckland For The Naming Ceremony, 21 December 2010
Career
Name: Pacific Pearl (2010-present)
Ocean Village (2003-2010)
Arcadia (1997-2003)
Star Princess (1989-1997)
FairMajesty (1988)
Owner: P&O Cruises Australia (2010-present)
Ocean Village (2003-2010)
P&O Cruises (1997-2003)
Princess Cruises (1989-1997)
Sitmar Cruises (Construction Only 1987-1988)
Operator: P&O Cruises Australia (2010-present)
Ocean Village (2003-2010)
P&O Cruises (1997-2003)
Princess Cruises (1989-1997)
Port of registry:  Liberia, Monrovia (1989–1997)
 United Kingdom, London (1997–2013)
Builder: Chantiers de l'Atlantique
Launched: 1988
Completed: 1989
In service: 1989-
Identification: Call sign: GRFP
IMO number: 8611398
MMSI number: 234890000
Status: In Service
General characteristics
Tonnage: 63,500 GT [1]
Length: 247 m (810 ft)
Beam: 32 m (105 ft)
Draught: 8.2 m (27 ft)
Decks: Passengers: 11
Overall: 13
Installed power: Four diesel engines
Propulsion: Diesel-electric
Speed: 21.5 knots (39.8 km/h; 24.7 mph)
Capacity: 1,578-1,856 Passengers
Crew: 700

Pacific Pearl is the sixth cruise ship of the P&O Cruises Australia brand. She was built by Chantiers de l'Atlantique, at their shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France, and launched in 1988 as Sitmar FairMajesty. Originally ordered for Sitmar Cruises, she was sold and first entered service with Princess Cruises as Star Princess in 1989. From 1997 to 2003, she served in the P&O Cruises fleet as MV Arcadia. She was renamed Ocean Village in 2003 when the brand was established.[2] Ocean Village was the sole cruise ship of the Ocean Village brand after the Ocean Village Two became the Pacific Jewel. She was transferred to P&O Cruises Australia and renamed Pacific Pearl.

History[edit]

Sitmar FairMajesty had been launched and named but was still being fitted out when Sitmar was taken over by P&O in 1988. She was subsequently renamed Star Princess when she commenced operating for P&O's Princess Cruises division in 1989. In 1997 she was transferred to P&O's Southampton based UK fleet as a replacement for SS Canberra, which was scrapped that year. Appropriately, she was refitted for her new role at Harland and Wolff, the shipyard in Belfast that built Canberra.

As Arcadia leaving Station Pier, Melbourne

She was renamed Arcadia, in honour of an earlier P&O liner of the same name that served the UK-Australia route, and a new Princess Cruises ship took the name Star Princess.

Arcadia to Ocean Village refit[edit]

In 2003, P&O inaugurated its Ocean Village brand of cruises aimed at young people and families. Arcadia was renamed Ocean Village to undertake these cruises, and a new ship named Arcadia entered service with P&O Cruises. Arcadia was repainted as part of the refit to Ocean Village and featured a more colourful livery featuring a vivid purple, yellow and red swoosh on the front. The whole of the ship's interior was renovated to give the ship a more lively and casual feel as opposed to the more traditional and formal British interior Arcadia maintained during service with P&O.

The library and the Canberra Room were taken away and were replaced with a new casino. The Horizon Court Lounge had a new ocean-view gym fitted and was renamed the Bayside Club. The Palladium Theatre had two spiral staircases fitted connecting the ground level to the mezzanine and was renamed the Marquee. The Monte Carlo Club (the old casino) and the Trumps Card Room were removed and replaced by a lounge called Connexions.

As the ship was configured for buffet dining, room service no longer provided and passenger cabins serviced once daily instead of morning and evening, there was less crew accommodation required. All of the AB grade suites on board Arcadia were split into two equal-sized BB grade outside cabins with balconies (the only ones on the ship). This left the ship without any full suites; because of this the BA and BB grade mini-suites with balconies were re-designated as AA grade suites with balconies. Some crew cabins were re-allocated as passenger cabins - forming the AB grade suites (without balcony) and the NN grade twin inside cabins. The refit work was carried out between 28 March and 17 April 2003 at Lloyd Werft Bremerhaven.[3]

Ocean Village[edit]

Ocean Village was the only ship in the Ocean Village fleet after 2009, a former brand of Carnival UK. It was aimed at mature cruisers who prefer casual informal cruising. The ship was sailing from Bridgetown, Barbados in the winter and from Palma de Mallorca, Spain in the summer.

Painted in Ocean Village livery

Onboard features included a 3-storey atrium called Village Square incorporating shops, a performance space, coffee and cocktail bars. A 2-storey show lounge called the Marquee featured tribute acts and dance/show routines from the onboard cast. A second smaller lounge called Connexions was used for comedy and light entertainment, a traditional English Pub called the Oval with occasional sports shown on TV, a nightclub called Bayside, cinema called the Movie Drome, 2 swimming pools (Crystal and Riviera), 4 jacuzzis, a kids and teens-club, 2 Gyms, a sports net area and a health Spa. Food is provided in two buffet style restaurants Waterfront and Plantation (the latter of which is open 24hrs), and two waiter service restaurants called La Luna and the Bistro for which supplements were charged.

During the transformation from Arcadia to Ocean Village, a large steel arch was fitted over the lido deck, used for acrobatic shows, during which the ship has to be slowed to around 5 to 8 knots (9.3 to 14.8 km/h; 5.8 to 9.2 mph).

Farewell sail[edit]

Ocean Village sailed on her final farewell voyage on 21 October, a 23 day cruise stopping at Cairo-Egypt (from Port Said), visiting the Suez Canal, Safaga, Egypt, Muscat, Oman, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Cochin, India, Langkawi, Malyasia, Kuala Lumpur (from Port Kelang, Malaysia) and finally stopping at Singapore where she entered dry dock to become Pacific Pearl, also marking the end of Ocean Village Cruise Line. There was the option for a 30 day cruise, a week in the Mediterranean and the final cruise itself, both the 23 or the 30 day cruises are adults only.[4][5] The port call at Dubai was changed to Fujairah over security concerns. Passengers heading to Dubai took a free shuttle service, which was about a two hour bus ride away from the port.

P&O Cruises Australia[edit]

Pacific Pearl in March 2012

On 30 October 2008, Carnival Corporation & plc announced the closure of their Ocean Village brand. Coinciding with this both Ocean Village ships were to be transferred to the fleet of P&O Cruises Australia. Ocean Village joined the P&O Australia fleet as Pacific Pearl towards the end of 2010.[6]

Some new features to be found on Pacific Pearl are the Salt Grill by Luke Mangan, new bars, lounges, on the pool deck is the big screen, also the new Aqua HealthSpaFitness.[7] Her first sailing as Pacific Pearl was on 22 December 2010.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Cruise Ships & Cruise Liners | P&O Cruises". Oceanvillageholidays.co.uk. 2011-11-30. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  2. ^ "M/S STAR PRINCESS (1989)". Faktaomfartyg.nu. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "P&O Cruises - Discover a different world... | Cruise Holidays". Oceanvillageholidays.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  5. ^ "P&O Cruises - Discover a different world... | Cruise Holidays". Oceanvillageholidays.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  6. ^ Niemelä, Teijo (2009-02-05). "Pacific Pearl name chosen for the next P&O Cruises addition". Cruise Business Online. Cruise Media Oy Ltd. Retrieved 2009-02-10. 
  7. ^ "Contract Signed for Pacific Pearl Drydock - Cruise Industry News | Cruise News". Cruise Industry News. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]