Sea Princess

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Sea Princess 2015.jpg
Sea Princess leaving Sydney, in September 2015
  • Sea Princess (1998–2003)
  • Adonia (2003–2005)
  • Sea Princess (2005–present)
  • Princess Cruises (1998-2002)
  • P&O Cruises (2002-2005)
  • Princess Cruises (1998-2002)
Port of registry:
Builder: Fincantieri – Cantieri Navali Italiani S.p.A., Monfalcone, Italy
Yard number: 5998
Laid down: 1 December 1997
Launched: 26 January 1998
Status: In service
Notes: [1]
General characteristics
Class and type: Sun-class cruise ship
Length: 261 m (856 ft)
Beam: 32 m (105 ft)
Draught: 8.11 m (26.6 ft)
Decks: 14
Deck clearance: 9.290 m (30.48 ft)[clarification needed]
Installed power:
  • 4 × GMT Sulzer 16ZAV40S (4 × 11,520 kW)
  • 46,080 kW (combined)
Speed: 22.4 knots (41.5 km/h; 25.8 mph)
Capacity: 2,000 passengers
Crew: 900
Notes: [1]

MS Sea Princess (formerly Adonia) is a Sun-class cruise ship operated by the Princess Cruises line. She has three sister ships: Sun Princess in the Princess Cruises fleet and Oceana (formerly Ocean Princess) and Pacific Explorer (Formerly Dawn Princess) in the P&O Cruises fleet.


The vessel was delivered to Princess Cruises from the shipbuilders of Fincantieri, Italy and began operation in 1998, under the name Sea Princess.

Sea Princess was transferred to P&O Cruises in late 2002/early 2003. P&O renamed her Adonia on 21 May 2003 (not to be confused with a different P&O vessel of a different class which was also given the Adonia name later in 2011, and as of 2018 is named MV Azamara Pursuit ). The Princess Royal and her daughter Zara Phillips renamed the vessel to Adonia at a launching ceremony with sister ship Oceana, in the first double ship naming ceremony ever in the UK.[2] Adonia filled the gap left in the P&O Cruises fleet in the period between Arcadia leaving the fleet to become Ocean Village and the launch of the new Arcadia in 2005, when the vessel was transferred back to Princess Cruises. The ship also received the "Movies Under The Stars" feature.

While sailing as Adonia the vessel was dedicated as an adults-only ship, and for this period the children's playroom was refitted as a quiet lounge that featured massage chairs facing the panoramic windows. The children's play pool was converted into a Feng Shui relaxation area.[citation needed]

When Princess Cruises took her back again in 2005, the vessel was once more named Sea Princess, in a ceremony by Joanna Lumley.[2] It is expected for the Sea Princess to be based year round out of Australia, joining her sister, the Sun Princess. She, like the Sun Princess, will sail her maiden world cruise in May 2013. Grand Princess will replace the ship on seasonal ten-day Alaska cruises roundtrip San Francisco.[needs update]


Sea Princess passing underneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge, 2013.

From 11 September to 25 September 2009, Sea Princess went into dry dock at BAE Systems, Pier 70 in San Francisco. The forward open deck area directly above the buffet restaurant became Princess' "Oasis of Tranquility", the Sanctuary, removing the "splash pool". The propellers, rudders and thrusters were refurbished. The photo gallery area and Lotus Spa were remodeled and the passenger services desk re-floored.[3]

Film crews from the National Geographic channel were on hand to film the dry dock repairs. The ship's refurbishment was the subject of the 3 June 2010 episode of World's Toughest Fixes.

The next refurbishment was scheduled for the end of the 2012 cruising season.[needs update]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

Norovirus outbreaks[edit]

The main deck of Sea Princess during a cruise in the Mediterranean Sea.

At the end of May 2006, 250 people, including 18 crew, were affected by a norovirus. Evidence of a gastrointestinal virus had been found during the last two days of the previous cruise, but the company stated that it did not believe the two outbreaks to be linked. The passengers were notified of this occurrence by a letter found in their cabins after boarding. Although the ship's itinerary had been altered, and the vessel ordered to dock away from other vessels, no other countermeasures were effected. Sea Princess returned to port in Southampton a day early, and the vessel underwent a complete sanitisation and decontamination before resuming cruising. Passengers were offered a 30% refund and a £150 voucher for use on a later Princess cruise; some demanded a full refund. A norovirus outbreak occurred again on the following cruise, although to a lesser extent, and visible precautions included waiter service at the buffets and the absence of salt and pepper shakers. This cruise was also affected by force 11-12 winds in the vicinity of Ushant, causing the first scheduled port to be missed, while the remaining itinerary remained unaltered. The ship was undamaged, the nearby Legend of the Seas suffered broken windows, and Pride of Bilbao terminated her Spain-bound voyage in France due to storm damage. It is likely that the rough seas caused increased use of the handrails, contributing to the difficulty of eradicating norovirus.[4][5]

In January 2018, about 200 passengers were reported to have been infected with norovirus during a two-week round trip from Brisbane to New Zealand.[6][7]

Drug smuggling[edit]

Sea Princess as Adonia in 2004
Sea Princess at Fort-de-France, Martinique, 2006.

On 28 August 2016, three Canadian nationals were arrested after Sea Princess berthed in Sydney Harbour. After the ship docked Australian Border Force officers along with drug sniffing dogs boarded the ship. During a search of the ship 95 kg (209 pounds) of cocaine was found packed in suitcases. The estimated value of the cocaine is $30 million AUD ($22 million USD). The maximum penalty for this offense is life in prison.[8] The three arrested were André Tamine (63), Isabelle Lagacé (28), and Melina Roberge (22), all from Canada.[9] They were arrested on day 51 of a 68 day cruise.


  1. ^ a b "Sea Princess (IMO: 9150913)". VesselTracker. 1 October 2010. Retrieved 1 October 2010.
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ "Sea Princess Drydock Photo Journal". Princess Cruises Ltd. Retrieved 2009-10-03.
  4. ^ Will Pavia; Steve Bird (3 June 2006). "In sickness and in health ... but mainly sickness". The Times. Retrieved 3 July 2010.
  5. ^ "Disinfected virus ship sets sail". BBC News. 4 June 2006. Retrieved 2009-10-03.
  6. ^ Roe, Isobel (4 January 2018). "Sea Princess cruise gastro: Passengers tell of staff 'sanitising everything' after outbreak". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  7. ^ "Ship docks in Qld after gastro outbreak". SBS News. Special Broadcasting Service (source: Australian Associated Press). 4 January 2018. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  8. ^ "Cruise ship raid nets 95kg cocaine and three arrests in Sydney". 2016-08-28. Retrieved 2016-09-01.
  9. ^ "Three Quebecers charged with smuggling $30M in cocaine on cruise ship in Australia | Toronto Star". Retrieved 2016-09-01.

External links[edit]