P&O Cruises New 141,000-ton Britannia Will Have Two Funnels But Will Abandon Traditional P&O Colours For A New Red, White & Blue Livery

New ship announced for 2015

P&O Cruises’ new Britannia will have two traditional fore-and-aft funnels

Britannia new livery

But will give up the traditional P&O colours worn since 1931 for this. You decide whether you like it or not!

P&O Cruises has announced an order for a new 141,000-ton cruise ship to be based on the recently-designed platform for Princess Cruises’ Royal Princess and Regal Princess, which are being introduced in 2013 and 2014, respectively. The new P&O ship, to be named Britannia, will accommodate 3,611 passengers in lower berths. What is most interesting about the design is P&O’s reversion in the new ship to a more traditional appearance in that she will feature two conventional funnels. This is unusal in that P&O went straight from three funnels with the Strathnaver and Strathaird, the first P&O ships to carry the now traditional white hull in 1931-32, to one funnel in the Strathmore, Strathallan and Stratheden of 1935-38. The last important P&O ship to have had two funnels arranged fore and aft was the original Oriana, built for the Orient Line in 1960. Previous to that, the most famous two-funnelled P&O ship was the Viceroy of India, delivered in 1929.

The last major P&O ship to have been built with two funnels was the Viceroy of India in 1929

Now being built at Fincantieri’s Monfalcone yard, Britannia will cost about €560 million, or €155,000 per lower berth. Ushering in a new era for P&O Cruises, the ship will offer a stylish and innovative design and an unprecedented number of passenger facilities, along with many of the line’s classic and iconic features.

The original Oriana was built for the Orient Line in 1960 and became a P&O ship in 1965

Commented Micky Arison, Carnival Corporation & plc’s chairman and CEO, “P&O Cruises is Britain’s number one cruise operator, and is synonymous with high quality holidays that celebrate its rich British heritage. The UK continues to be a key growth market and innovative vessels such as this new P&O Cruises ship – targeted specifically to British clientele – underscore our commitment to leading the expansion of this important cruise region. With a progression of highly successful new ships introduced over the last 15 years, P&O Cruises is uniquely experienced in designing vessels to meet the specific needs and aspirations of British passengers.”

At tge time of the announcement of the order, then P&O Cruises Managing Director Carol Marlow said, “This next-generation ship will deliver the ultimate P&O Cruises experience, with ‘sophisticated wows’ and new features to attract thousands of newcomers to our brand, and equally to resonate with existing P&O Cruises passengers by giving them the ‘P&O-ness’ they recognise and love. She will offer ‘the best of the best,’ combining the favourite classic features of Oriana and Aurora, the choice and variety of Azura and Ventura, and a host of new ideas and concepts which together will deliver to our passengers the holiday of a lifetime, every time they travel with us.”

Two funnels have made quite a comeback in the past fifteen years. Starting with the original Disney Magic and Disney Wonder in 1998-99, these were followed by six Holland America “Vista” types (Zuiderdam through Nieuw Amsterdam)  in 2002-10 and joined by five Celebrity Solstice class  ships in 2008-12, then Disney Dream this year and Disney Fantasy to follow next. Cruise ships have now entered a size bracket where two funnels have become relatively common once again. Indeed, after the new P&O ship is delivered there will be sixteen ships carrying two funnels in the fore-and-aft mode. Meanwhile, the last of the traditional two-funnelled ships, NCL’s Norway, was retired in 2003.

For more details on cruising with P&O, sister company Cunard Line or any other cruise line please contact The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

About thecruisepeople
Specialists in sea travel - ultra-luxury cruising, freighter travel, small ships and expedition voyages.

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