Princess Cruises News Center

press-release

The History of Princess Cruises: A Timeline of Key Events

 

1965

  • Company founder Stanley B. McDonald charters Princess Patricia and forms Princess Cruises -- first winter season of Mexico cruises starts in November

1966

  • Princess Patricia returned to owners

1967

  • Princess Italia chartered (one of first modern ships built specifically for cruising)
  • First Panama Canal cruises (company pioneered regularly scheduled Canal cruises)

1968

  • Princess Carla chartered
  • Seawitch logo makes first appearance
  • Boise Cascade purchases Princess
  • First Alaska season (Princess Italia)
  • First transatlantic sailing (13-day Nassau-Genoa, Princess Italia)

1970

  • Stanley McDonald repurchases Princess from Boise Cascade
  • Princess Carla returned to owners

1972

  • Island Princess joins fleet (formerly Island Venture)
  • Princess Tours founded

1973

  • Princess Italia returned to owners

1974

  • Princess acquired by the Pennisular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O)
  • Pacific Princess joins fleet (formerly Sea Venture)
  • Sun Princess joins fleet (formerly P&O's Spirit of London)

1975

  • "The Love Boat" TV series developed by producer Aaron Spelling; Princess agrees to become backdrop for the show

1976

  • "The Love Boat" begins filming

1979

  • Princess Tours acquires Johansen Royal Tours

1980

  • Stanley McDonald departs company

1981

  • Princess begins calling at first private Caribbean island, Palm Island in Grenadines

1984

  • Royal Princess joins fleet (innovative ship features all outside cabins)

1985

  • Pacific Princess launches company's first Mediterranean season
  • First major cruise line to base a ship in San Diego (Pacific Princess to Mexico)

1986

  • Sea Princess joins fleet from P&O (formerly Kungsholm)
  • New "Voyage of the Glaciers" route debuts (Vancouver/Whittier on Sea Princess)
  • New private island, Mayreau (Grenadines), replaces Palm Island

1987

  • Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge opens
  • First Caribbean cruises from Miami
  • First Asia cruises (Royal Princess)
  • First Northern Europe (Baltic) cruises

1988

  • P&O acquires Sitmar Cruises
  • Dawn Princess joins fleet (formerly Fairwind)
  • Fair Princess joins fleet (formerly Fairsea)
  • Sky Princess joins fleet (formerly Fairsky)
  • Sun Princess sold
  • First Midnight Sun Express Railcars built

1989

  • Star Princess joins fleet

1990

  • Crown Princess joins fleet
  • Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge opens
  • Captain's Circle loyalty program begins

1991

  • Regal Princess joins fleet
  • Sea Princess transferred to P&O as Victoria

1992

  • New private island launched (Princess Cays in Eleuthera)

1993

  • Golden Princess chartered (formerly Royal Viking Sky)
  • Dawn Princess sold
  • Fairbanks Princess Hotel opens

1995

  • Sun Princess joins fleet (debuts largest number of balcony cabins)
  • First 24-hour café debuts
  • Fair Princess transferred to P&O Australia

1996

  • Golden Princess returned to owner
  • C.R.U.I.S.E. customer service program debuts

1997

  • Dawn Princess joins fleet
  • Star Princess transferred to P&O becoming Arcadia
  • Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge opens

1998

  • Grand Princess joins fleet 
  • Sea Princess joins fleet
  • "Love Boat: the Next Wave" debuts
  • First world cruise (Island Princess -- 64 days Rome/San Francisco)
  • First wedding chapel and wedding program at sea
  • Santa Clarita, California customer service center opens
  • Princess Cays expanded

1999

  • Island Princess sold
  • Company web site debuts

2000

  • P&O Princess International demerged from P&O
  • Ocean Princess joins fleet
  • Sky Princess transferred to P&O Australia becoming Pacific Sky
  • First Bermuda cruises (program ran 2000-02)
  • Fleet transferred to British/Bermuda registry

2001

  • Personal Choice Dining debuts on Grand Princess
  • Golden Princess joins fleet
  • Princess headquarters moves to Santa Clarita, California
  • Use of shore power debuts in Juneau

2002

  • Star Princess joins fleet
  • Original Pacific Princess sold
  • Tahitian Princess joins fleet
  • Crown Princess transferred to A'ROSA becoming A'ROSA Blu
  • Ocean Princess transferred to P&O Cruises becoming Oceana
  • Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge opened

2003

  • P&O Princess International acquired by Carnival Corporation 
  • Coral Princess joins fleet
  • New Pacific Princess joins fleet
  • New Island Princess joins fleet
  • Sea Princess transferred to P&O Cruises becoming Adonia
  • First Antarctica cruise

2004

  • Cunard Line integrated into Princess operations
  • Diamond Princess joins fleet
  • Caribbean Princess joins fleet
  • Sapphire Princess joins fleet
  • First Movies Under the Stars screen debuts
  • First Caribbean sailings from Galveston, Texas

2005

  • Royal Princess transferred to P&O Cruises becoming Artemis
  • Sea Princess returns to Princess fleet
  • Princess Cruises celebrates 40th anniversary

2006

  • Crown Princess joins fleet
  • First Sanctuary debuts

2007

  • Emerald Princess joins fleet
  • New Royal Princess joins fleet
  • First Chef’s Table debuts
  • Regal Princess transferred to P&O Australia becoming Pacific Dawn

2008

  • Ruby Princess joins fleet
  • Ultimate Ship Tour debuts

2009

  • Shore power begins in Vancouver
  • Tahitian Princess renamed Ocean Princess
  • Royal Princess transferred to P&O Cruises to sail as Adonia

2010

  • Digital travel documents debut
  • Bon Voyage Experience program begins
  • eZAir program debuts
  • Shore Power begins in San Francisco

2011 

  • Gavin MacLeod 80th birthday party on Golden Princess
  • Most significant drydock transformation – Grand Princess
  • Princess launches first blog – “50 Essential Experiences”

2012 

  • “Inspired to Cruise” blog debuts
  • First Entertainer of the Year competition held onboard

2013 

  • “Linked by the Sea” blog debuts
  • Japan-based cruising begins
  • New Royal Princess joins fleet (christened by The Duchess of Cambridge)
  • First "Cruising with a Cause" cruise to support U.S. veterans charities

2014 

  • New Regal Princess joins fleet

2015 

  • Princess Cruises celebrates 50th anniversary