Princess Unveils First Sphere-Class Ship – Sun Princessby Dori Saltzman /
Princess Cruises pulled the curtain back on its first-ever Sphere-class ship, Sun Princess, at a rainy event at Port Everglades. But even the gray skies and raindrops couldn't dampen the crowd's enthsiasm as details of the new 4,300-passenger ship were revealed. Sun Princess will be the largest ship for the cruise line, the first with a suites-only restaurant and sun deck, and the first to feature the Dome, an indoor/outdoor entertainment space. It will also be Princess’ first ship built to 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design.
According to Princess president John Padgett, the design for the ship started with a blank page. "The input for the design was all driven by our guest feedback And that could be summarized with one word, 'more,'" he said. "So we’re talking about more stateroom options, more entertainment, more dining – there’s almost 29 venues – more places to connct with your friends and family like in the bigger Piazza. It is spectacular... This is the best manifestation of Princess ever."
Sun Princess is “designed to simultaneously embrace Princess heritage, while boldly pressing into the future with iconic, elegant and pure lines unique to our brand," he added. "A show-stopping, first-of-its-kind Dome on the top deck and suspended glass Piazza in the center of Sun Princess offer innovative designs showcasing expansive ocean views for incredible opportunities to connect with the sea.”
The stand-out structure onboard Sun Princess will be The Dome. According to the line, The Dome is inspired by the terraces of Santorini and is a multi-level, covered deck and glass-enclosed dome space that features an indoor/outdoor pool by day, along with a “unique water feature.” At night, the pool becomes a stage and the entire space transforms into an entertainment venue with a South Beach vibe, state-of-the-art lighting effects and "the ability" to deliver aerial performances. While Princess didn't make any announcements about entertainment on the ship, a spokesperson said they "hope" to deliver such performances in the future.
Signature Suites & Complex
Launching on Sun Princess will be a new level of suite accommodations, the Signature Collection. In addition to premium stateroom amenities, the Signature Collection suites will include access to the Signature Restaurant, Signature Lounge and the Signature Sun Deck, a private area of the Sanctuary.
With Sun Princess, the cruise line is also renaming its Club Class accommodations. Now the Reserve Collection, this grouping of best-located mini suites will include an all new stateroom category – Reserve Collection Cabana rooms that offer a balcony and an extra-large outdoor lounge space (the cabana). Reserve Collection suites also have exclusive access to the Reserve Collection Restaurant.
In total, Sun Princess will 2,157 staterooms, including 50 suites and 100 connecting rooms. All staterooms with balconies feature an in-room sofa.
Returning Favorites & New Areas
Like all Princess ships, Sun Princess will feature a multi-level Piazza but this one will also have an oversized LED screen that can be moved and configured to deliver live entertainment programming.
Adjacent to the Piazza will be a new coffee shop called Coffee Currents and the Bellini’s Cocktail Bar, along with Princess signatures including Crooners Bar and Alfredo’s Pizzeria. In total, the ship will have 29 dining options, the most in the Princess fleet.
As with all Princess ships, there will be multiple pools -- five in total -- and 14 hot tubs.
When it debuts, Sun Princess will sail an inaugural spring/summer season in the Mediterranean, followed by Western and Eastern Caribbean cruises out of Port Everglades in the fall of 2024.
The ship’s first voyages will go on sale at 3 p.m. (ET) on September 16.
Sun Princess is currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard, with a launch date expected in early 2024. It is the third ship to carry the Sun Princess name. A second Sphere-class ship is also on order, slated for delivery by Fincantieri in spring 2025.