Princess Cruises has announced that it has sold the Pacific Princess, better known as “The Love Boat,” to an undisclosed buyer.
The sale of the cruise ship is in line with parent company Carnival’s plan to accelerate the removal of “less efficient” ships from the fleet.
Pacific Princess first joined Princess Cruises’ fleet in 2002, and originally entered service in 1999 as R3 for Renaissance Cruises. The ship offered an intimate cruising experience with a total of just 670 passengers, but offered many of the dining and entertainment options available on the cruise line’s larger ships.
The ship sailed more than 1.6 million nautical miles, 11 World Cruises, and offered itineraries to destinations all over the world. In fact, ICaptain Stubing” of “The Love Boat” and Princess Cruises Ambassador Gavin MacLeod was on the ship’s navigation bridge as it sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge for the first time to kick off the inaugural season sailing to Alaska from San Francisco in 2003.
“Pacific Princess holds so many memories and cherished experiences to all who sailed upon her,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises president. “Pacific Princess offered a traditional style of cruising to unique destinations. While it’s difficult to say goodbye to our ‘Love Boat,’ our World Cruise and exotic itineraries continue onboard our Medallion Class-enabled Island Princess and Coral Princess, featuring the best Wi-Fi at sea, allowing guests to keep in touch with loved ones and share vacation memories along the way.”
Another historic moment for Pacific Princess was sailing a throwback cruise, recreating the cruise line’s very first itinerary to the Mexican Riviera in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Princess Cruises on Dec. 3, 2015. Cast members of “The Love Boat” attended the special cruise, including MacLeod, Fred Grandy (Gopher, the chief purser), Ted Lange (Isaac, the bartender), Bernie Kopell (Doc, the ship’s doctor), Lauren Tewes (Julie, the cruise director), and Jill Whelan (Vicki, the captain’s daughter). Together with guests, they celebrated the role the show played in Princess Cruises’ five-decade-long history.
Guests with bookings for the Pacific Princess will be notified, and, along with their travel advisors, will receive information on how to book another Princess Cruise when operations resume. Those who prefer to receive a refund will also be accommodated.