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Thursday, March 19, 2009

New superliners for Sydney & Brisbane as P&O Cruises expands its fleet


P&O Cruises Australia’s two biggest markets – Sydney and Brisbane – will each get new superliners to drive even further growth in cruising, which is already at record levels.

Brisbane will now become the new homeport for Pacific Dawn, making it the first time a superliner has been based in this city, while Sydney will welcome the latest addition to the Australian fleet, Pacific Jewel.

The move follows new research which shows how the distinctive features of each ship are better suited to the holiday requirements of passengers in their new home ports.

It found that Sydneysiders tended to be more focused on taking time out for themselves when they are on holidays compared with Queenslanders who place more emphasis on being entertained.

Jenny Lourey, Senior Vice President of Carnival Australia, which operates P&O Cruises, said the research findings had prompted the decision to base superliner Pacific Jewel – which has the biggest spa at sea in this region – in Sydney at the end of the year, rather than Brisbane as initially flagged.

Meanwhile, the stunning Pacific Dawn – with its large Dome entertainment complex – will switch to Brisbane.

"The wonderful promise of family relaxation was a universal reason why our passengers choose to cruise, but there are some fundamental differences in the holiday preferences between our two main markets of Sydney and Brisbane," Ms Lourey said.

"The research shows that Sydneysiders were keen to extend their relaxation with a massage, facial or other spa treatment, while our passengers from Brisbane emphasised entertainment and quality time spent together with the family as a key decision for booking their cruise.

"It seems cruise passengers from Brisbane put more value on maximising every moment of their holiday pursuing a varied range of family activities. The Pacific Dawn supports this with greater children’s capacity and a second multi-use entertainment venue."

The research showed*:

• A large range of entertainment was considered more important for those in Queensland (64%) than those in NSW (54%).

• Twice as many people from Brisbane placed emphasis on family time whilst on holiday compared to those from Sydney

• Sydneysiders were more than twice as likely to prioritise ‘taking time out for themselves’ compared to those from Brisbane.

Pacific Jewel and her sister ship, Pacific Dawn, are two of the most spacious and modern ships to cruise in Australian waters – both with an abundance of balcony cabins, high-quality children’s amenities and spa treatment facilities.

Although sisters, the two ships use the space above the bow of the ship to offer distinctly different facilities.

On Pacific Dawn this space is used to accommodate a massive entertainment area, the Dome, while Pacific Jewel houses a stunning 1300m² ocean-view spa and fitness centre.

Pacific Jewel will feature an amazing open-air deck with aerial stage for circus and music performances, a three-storey atrium foyer and almost 200 private balcony cabins, the most in the P&O Cruises’ fleet.

Brisbane-based superliner Pacific Dawn features 11 decks with two swimming pools, a choice of five evening dining areas, three large kids clubs, nine bars and lounges, a two-storey show lounge and fitness centre.

Pacific Jewel will be based in Sydney from 13 December 2009, following an extensive renovation and refit. Meanwhile, Pacific Dawn will commence the first ever year round program of cruises from Brisbane on 19 December 2009.

Itineraries for the new Pacific Jewel and Pacific Dawn deployments will go on sale on March 21.

For complete convenience, passengers booked on affected cruises departing from December 2009 have been automatically transferred to a cruise that best matches their original booking.

For further information on the new deployments contact your travel agent, visit pocruises.com.au or call P&O Cruises on 1800 129 961
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