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P&O and Princess Cruises
Page 1: 1962-1988
This is one of a series of pages devoted to postcards of the P&O and Princess Cruises fleets. An alphabetical list of ships shown on this page is shown below. Below this are official postcards of the fleet in chronological order. Later cruise ships delivered 1989-1999 are shown on Page 2, whilst ships delivered from 2000 are shown on Page 3. There is a Table of Ship Histories on the P&O Header Page.
These pages are devoted to postcards of the cruise ships of P&O and Princess Cruises fleet. P&O liners that have been used for cruising are linked from the P&O Header Page, only purpose-built cruise ships or major conversions are shown on this page. Ships from the 1989 Star Princess are shown on Page 2. Swan Hellenic Cruises, also part of P&O, are shown on Page 3.
P&O acquired a 51% interest in German cruise company Arkona Touristik in 1999, and links to their ships will be added, starting with Aida. In May 2000, it was announced that Festival Cruises would be acquired by P&O, bringing two former P&O ships, The Azur (ex-Eagle) and Flamenco (ex-Spirit of London/Sun Princess) back into their fleet. However, the two companies later agreed not to proceed with the merger. Following protracted negotiations, P&O Princess merged with Carnival in 2003.
Simplon Postcards have issued nearly 50 cards of P&O and Princess Cruises Vessels. A separate page is dedicated to showing these Simplon releases.
Ships on This Page:-
Dawn Princess (1) - ex-Sitmar
Fair Princess - ex-Sitmar
Fairstar - ex-Sitmar
Island Princess - ex-Flagship Cruises
Pacific Princess (1) - ex-Flagship Cruises
Pacific Sky - ex-Sky Princess
Princess Patricia
Princess Carla - Chartered from Costa Cruises
Princess Italia - Chartered from Costa Cruises
Royal Princess
Sea Princess (1) - later Victoria
Sea Venture - Flagship Cruises - became Pacific Princess
Sky Princess - ex-Sitmar
Spirit of London - later Sun Princess (1)
Sun Princess (1) - ex-Spirit of London
Victoria - ex-Sea Princess (1)
Ships delivered 1989-1999 Page 2:-
Adonia - new!
Arcadia (2)
Arosa Blu
Crown Princess
Dawn Princess (2)
Golden Princess (1)
Grand Princess
Ocean Village
Regal Princess
Sea Princess (2)
Star Princess (1)
Sun Princess (2)
Ships delivered 2000-2005 on Page 3:-
Coral Princess
Diamond Princess
Golden Princess (2)
Ocean Princess
Pacific Princess (2)
Star Princess (2)
Tahitian Princess (2)
P&O Pages:-
P&O Header Page
P&O Princess Cruises - Page 1 - 1962-1988 - this page!
P&O Princess Cruises - Page 2 - 1989-1999
P&O Princess Cruises - Page 3 - 2000-2005
P&O Liners - Page 1 - 1837-1899
P&O Liners - Page 2 - 1900-1914
P&O Liners - Page 3 - 1915-1939
P&O Liners - Page 4 - 1940-1961
P&O Australia
P&O Princess Cruises Photographs
P&O Princess Cruises Cards by Simplon Postcards
Ocean Village - P&O Subsidiary
Swan Hellenic - P&O Subsidiary
Associated Pages:-
Arosa Cruises
Sitmar Line
Cruise Ship Postcards
Ocean Liner Postcards
Simplon Postcards Home Page
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P&O Princess Fleet List - Page 1
Princess Patricia
Princess Cruises was formed by Stanley MacDonald in the mid 1960s, when he chartered the Canadian Pacific ferry Princess Patricia for cruises from Los Angeles during what would be the ferry's winter lay up. I have never seen any official Princess cards from this period, and am keen to hear from anyone who has any.
Official Canadian Pacific cards, posted in 1954.
Official Canadian Pacific cards, posted in 1955.
Postcard of Princess Patricia in Ensenada, Mexico in Princess Cruises service.
Scan: Drew Waveryn
Click to open larger image in new window
Postcard of Princess Patricia in Mexico in Princess Cruises service, with the Northern Star of Shaw Savill.
Scan: Drew Waveryn
Click to open larger image in new window
Princess Italia
The Canadian Pacific ferry Princess Patricia was not designed for warm weather cruising, and Princess followed her charter with a more suitable vessel, the purpose-built cruise ship Italia.
Italia was ordered by Sunsarda SpA in 1963, from the Felszegi yard in Muggia, near Trieste. Both the builders and ordering company were owned by the Giacomelli group. Italia was one of the earliest purpose-built cruise ships, and was of an advanced design with rear engines and lifeboats mounted on lower decks, giving a very spacious open top deck. Her interiors were designed by Gustavo Finali and Romano Boico, who designed many other fine Italian liners such as the Augustus, Guglielmo Marconi, Homeric, Raffaello and Oceanic.
Construction proceeded slowly, and Italia was not launched until April 1965. During fitting out, both the owners and builders were declared bankrupt, and ownership passed to the creditor bank BNL. BNL formed a new company Crociere d'Oltremare, based in Cagliari, Sardinia, to charter or sell the ship. Italia was delivered in 1967, with a logo of red and yellow triangles on her white funnel. A bareboat charter with Fratelli Cosulich (Genova) had been arranged, and Italia ran three Mediterranean cruises for them. Crociere d'Oltremare then chartered her to Princess Cruises, who used her to inaugurate their Mexican cruises out of Los Angeles. Italia was marketed as Princess Italia during her time with, although her name was not officially changed. At this stage she retained her original funnel logo, not receiving the famous Princess logo until the following year. In 1969, Princess Italia moved to Alaskan cruises out of San Francisco. The charter to Princess Cruises was cancelled in 1973, and Italia was returned to Crociere d'Oltremare. After a partial modernisation, Italia was then chartered to Costa in February 1974, although she was not purchased by them until 1977. She cruised around the world with Costa, plus served on further charters, until sold in September 1983 to Ocean Cruise Lines.
Complete history of Princess Italia
Official Princess Cruises release of Princess Italia in Acapulco.
This is an early card still showing Crociere d'Oltremare funnel colours.
Scan: Sergio de Luyk.
Official Princess Cruises release of Princess Italia in Alaska (plus card back).
Scan: Sergio de Luyk.
Official Princess Cruises release of Princess Italia.
Princess Carla
The next ship chartered was the Carla C, marketed as Princess Carla. Carla C was originally the French Lines' Flandre. She was bought by Costa Line, and given a major rebuilding (including replacement of her steam turbines by diesels). Princess chartered her almost immediately, and it was aboard this ship that Jeraldine Saunders wrote the first chapters of 'Love Boat', the popular TV series which has been credited with assisting in the subsequent American boom in cruise holidays.
Complete history of Princess Carla
The following official cards show her at Acapulco and in the Panama Canal.
Spirit of London - Sun Princess
Spirit of London was to have been a sistership to NCL's Southward, to be named Seaward. NCL pulled out of the deal after price rises following the Italian builders' nationalisation, and the hull was sold to P&O. She was eventually completed in the autumn of 1972. When P&O later acquired Princess Cruises in 1974, she was transferred to that fleet, becoming the Sun Princess. She was later sold to Premier Cruise Line, as StarShip Majestic, and then operated for Festival Cruises as Flamenco. Following the collapse of Festival Cruises, Flamenco was sold for $12.25 million to Cruise Elysia, being renamed the New Flamenco. In 2007 she was sold to Club Cruise for £26 million and renamed Flamenco I. In November 2008, Club Cruise defaulted on their payments and she was sold at auction for just $3.4 million.  
Complete history of this ship
Official P&O postcard of Spirit of London.
Official P&O postcard of Spirit of London.
Official P&O postcard of Spirit of London.
Official Princess postcard of Sun Princess.
Postcard of Sun Princess.
Pacific Princess (1974-2003)
Island Princess (1974-2000)
These ships were completed in 1971 as Sea Venture and Island Venture for Flagship cruises, a Norwegian company set up by established lines Lorentzen, Fearnley & Eger etc. They were sold to P&O, for their recently acquired Princess subsidiary, in 1974. Flagship Cruises then bought the Kungsholm, which was also, in turn, sold to P&O. Island Venture was renamed Island Princess in the Princess fleet, and served with them from 1974-2000. She was then sold to Korean interests as the Hyundai Pungak. In 2003, Island Princess was acquired by UK-based Voyages of Discovery, who renamed her Discovery. Sea Venture was renamed Pacific Princess (1), and served with Princess until 2003 when she passed to Spanish Operator Pullmantur and renamed Pacific. From summer 2008 Pacific is operating in Europe for new Spanish company Quail Cruises then New Pacific.
Complete history of Island Princess - Complete history of Pacific Princess
Flagship Cruises official card of Sea Venture.
Flagship Cruises official card of Sea Venture.
Flagship Cruises official card of Island Venture.
Scan: Rogerio Gouveia
This is an early card of Pacific Princess, when the fleet only consisted of Sun, Island and Royal Princess
An early card of Island Princess, although Sea Princess had joined the fleet.
A later card of Island Princess, immediately prior to the arrival of Grand Class ships.
The Pacific Princess card contemporary with the one above.
A later Island Princess card, maybe the last since issued.
A later Pacific Princess card.
The Pacific Princess card included in the Princess Postcard Set available in 2000.
Pacific Princess is due to leave the Princess fleet in 2002.
Hyundai Pungak
Island Princess was sold in 2000 and became the Hyundai Pungak.
This photograph of Hyundai Pungak was taken by Ken Murayama at Pusan on 4th July 2001.
There were no postcards available on board when he travelled on the ship in March 2001.
Sea Princess - Victoria
This ship was originally the Kungsholm, bought by P&O in 1979 to replace the aging Arcadia. She was given a major overhaul in Bremen, which ruined her classic liner appearance. Initially Operated by P&O Cruises in the Australian, then British markets, she was later transferred to the US market and appeared in Princess colours. She eventually returned to P&O, and has subsequently been renamed Victoria. In Winter 1999/2000 Victoria operated a cruise on charter to the Union-Castle Line, and received a red/black funnel. An official card was issued in these colours. Victoria will leave the P&O fleet in 2002. 
Complete history of Sea Princess - Victoria
An early official card is shown below, before the black top was added to the funnel to hide the effects of soot.
A strange Sea Princess card to release, with distorted proportions.
A recent Sea Princess card after returning to P&O colours.
A postcard as renamed Victoria - one of the short-lived series of cards with blue borders issued in 2000.
A recent card as renamed Victoria.
A recent card as renamed Victoria.
A recent card Victoria, available on board in 2002, her final season.
A variation on the same card of Victoria, now with farewell season logo.
In Winter 1999/2000 Victoria operated a single cruise on charter to the Union-Castle Line, and received a red/black funnel. This oversized official card was issued.
Royal Princess
When she entered service in 1984, the Royal Princess was the largest new British passenger ship in over a decade.
Complete history of Royal Princess - Artemis
This oversized card was issued by the builders Wartsila.
The data on the back is shown beneath, or follow this link for a larger image.
This is the Royal Princess inaugural season postcard.
Four further standard-sized Royal Princess postcards are shown below.
The Royal Princess card included in the Princess Postcard Set available in 2000.
(P&O: 1988-1997)
In 1988, P&O acquired Sitmar Cruises, consisting of the ex-Cunarders Fairwind and Fairsea, the ex-Bibby Fairstar, the 1984-built Fairsky and three new ships under construction. The Fairstar had been serving the Australian market for some years, where she had built up a dedicated following. She was the only Sitmar ship to retain her original name, and was operated by a separate office in Sydney. She carried the new Sitmar blue funnel colours, with a white swan symbol, which was to have replaced the famous yellow funnel and 'V'-symbol (for Vlasov) throughout the whole Sitmar fleet. The card below is in this condition, and as the card-back indicates, she was marketed as P&O-Sitmar Cruises at this time. She later had the funnel colours reversed - blue swan on white background - and later still the swan was replaced with a dolphin symbol. I do not have official cards in these later colours - can anyone help? Fairstar was scrapped in 1997, following numerous engine and boiler problems.
P&O-Sitmar Line postcard of Fairstar.
Card back from the P&O-Sitmar Line postcard of Fairstar above.
David Messent postcard 478 of Fairstar at Sydney.
David Messent postcard 478 of Fairstar at Sydney.
Enlarged image from the card above, with QE2 in the background.
Dawn Princess
Fair Princess
Sitmar's Fairwind and Fairsea became the Dawn Princess and Fair Princess within the Princess Cruises fleet. Both ships were eventually displaced by new tonnage, and Dawn Princess was subsequently sold back to the Vlasov Group (owners of Sitmar) and operated as Albatros until 2004 when she was broken up. Fair Princess was moved to serve the Australian market, replacing the Fairstar which was scrapped in 1997. Fair Princess was in turn replaced by Sky Princess, ex-Fairsky. Fair Princess became the China Sea Discovery in 2001, and was broken up in 2005.
Complete history of Dawn Princess
Complete history of Fair Princess
Princess Cruises oversized postcard of Fair Princess.
Princess Cruises oversized postcard of Fair Princess.
The card below is Dawn Princess.
Another card of Dawn Princess.
Fair Princess received a P&O buff funnel when moved to Australia, replacing the Fairstar which was scrapped in 1997.
Sky Princess - Pacific Sky
Fairsky was built for Sitmar by Chantiers Navales et Industrielies de la Méditerranée, La Seyne Sur Mer (near Toulon), in 1984. She was yard number 1436. Unusually for a ship this new, she has steam turbine machinery, the last large turbine passenger ship built. She became the Sky Princess in the Princess fleet. She replaced Fair Princess in the Australian market in 2001, renamed the Pacific Sky.
Complete history of this ship
Princess Cruises official postcard of Sky Princess .
Princess Cruises official oversized postcard of Sky Princess .
The Sky Princess card included in the Princess Postcard Set available in 2000.
Official P&O Cruises postcard of Pacific Sky.
Official P&O Cruises postcard of Pacific Sky.
Princess Cruises Fleet Postcards
Finally, on this page, a multi-view Princess Cruises card showing Royal, Star, Crown/Regal and Island/Pacific Princesses.
P&O Header Page
P&O Princess Cruises-Page 1 - P&O Princess Cruises-Page 2 - P&O Princess Cruises-Page 3
Swan Hellenic - Simplon P&O Princess Postcards - Sitmar Line
Top of Page - Simplon Postcards-Recent Updates - Simplon Postcards-Home Page

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