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Emerald Princess in Boston, MA (Photo: Marilyn Borth)

Emerald Princess Inaugurates Homeporting in Boston, Offering 10 Canada & New England Sailings

Emerald Princess in Boston, MA (Photo: Marilyn Borth)
Senior Editor, News and Features
Aaron Saunders
Jorge Oliver
Assistant SEO Editor
Marilyn Borth

Last updated
Jul 22, 2024

Read time
15 min read

(July 15, 2024) -- The city of Boston is home to Fenway Park, the USS Constitution, the famed Boston Tea Party and now, Emerald Princess.

On July 14, Princess Cruises' Emerald Princess sailed into Raymond L. Flynn Black Falcon Cruise Terminal in Boston, inaugurating both homeporting in Boston and the debut of its 10 seasonal voyages from the city.

From July 14 to October 7, 2024, Emerald Princess is offering 10 seasonal sailings to Canada & New England, along with one 17-day round trip itinerary to Canada’s Maritime provinces that includes ports of call in Greenland.

Five of the 10 sailings are roundtrip from Boston, all of which are new, while the others are one-way to/from either Quebec or Boston. A majority of the sailings are seven or 10 days in length, with the one exception being the 17-day Canada & Greenland itinerary.

Canada & New England round trip sailings from Boston include popular ports of call like Portland, Halifax, Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island), Cape Breton and Sydney (Nova Scotia).

View of Boston from Emerald Princess (Photo: Marilyn Borth)

The 3,080-passenger Emerald Princess was first launched in 2007 and refurbished in 2017, but it isn't the only Princess ship coming to Boston this season. Larger fleetmate Enchanted Princess will follow in a few weeks by making stops in Boston, including the Love Boat reunion sailing on August 31, 2024 to New England & Canada.

Both Emerald and Enchanted Princess are just two of the 160 total vessels coming into Boston from March to November, a record-breaking year for the city of Boston.

-- Marilyn Borth, Assistant SEO Editor

Princess Cruises Introduces Loyalty Accelerator Program

Crown Grill aboard Sun Princess (Photo: Aaron Saunders)

(June 20, 2024) -- For a limited time, cruisers will have the opportunity to hop on a fast lane to loyalty status with Princess Cruises.

The cruise line announced today a new Captain’s Circle Loyalty Accelerator program that allows passengers to double their cruise credits with the purchase of the Princess Plus and Premier Packages. The fast-track program will be available for cruisers sailing on voyages between August 1 and December 1, 2024.

The Princess Plus and Princess Premier packages add amenities like WiFi, beverages, specialty dining, desserts, fitness classes, crew gratuities and more. According to the cruise line, passengers can save up to 65% by purchasing these packages instead of buying the amenities separately.

“Princess Premier and Princess Plus are the best way to experience Princess and offer the best value in the vacation business,” said John Padgett, Princess Cruises president. “The Loyalty Accelerator Program gives our most valued guests even more reasons to sail with our industry-leading bundles.”

Princess Cruises' Captain's Circle Loyalty Program consists of four levels: Gold, Ruby, Platinum and Elite.

Gold status is available after the first cruise and unlocks perks like early booking offers, members-only onboard events and access to the onboard Circle Host. Ruby status is attained after three cruises or 30 days, and includes all the Gold perks plus exclusive access to the Captain's Circle help desk and Princess Platinum Vacation Protection upgrade.

Platinum tier is available to passengers that complete five cruises or 50 cruise days. Members are entitled to all the benefits of Ruby level plus 50% off MedallionNet Packages, 10% off Lotus Spa treatments, and access to Platinum and Elite Lounge.

Elite is the highest status available and it can be unlocked by travelers with 15 cruises of 150 cruise days. In addition to all the perks included in the previous status tiers, Elite members get 10% off at the Shops of Princess, 10% off shore excursions, priority boarding for ship-to-shore tender service, stateroom mini-bar setup, Grapevine Wine Tasting event, complimentary canapes on formal nights, afternoon tea in stateroom, laundry and shoe polish services, and priority disembarkation.

--Jorge Oliver, Editor

Princess Cruises Partners with Pitbull, Jason Aldean, Romero Britto to Launch New Liquor Collection

Sun Princess in Palma de Mallorca, Spain (Photo: Aaron Saunders)

(May 30, 2024) -- Princess Cruises has announced it will partner with artists Pitbull, Jason Aldean and Romero Britto to curate its new "Love Line Premium Liquors" which are now available aboard the brand-new Sun Princess and will be rolled out fleetwide this summer.

Among the new premium spirits, which will be included as part of Princess Cruises' Princess Premier beverage package, are Voli 305 Vodka by Pitbull; Love Prosecco by Britto in collaboration with Villa Sandi; and Melorosa Sauvignon Blanc, Red Blend and Cabernet Sauvignon by Jason Aldean.

"We are proud to partner with esteemed celebrities like Pitbull, Jason Aldean and Romero Britto to introduce the 'Love Line Premium Liquors' collection and deliver an exceptional selection of spirits that reflect the diverse tastes and preferences of our guests," said John Padgett, president of Princess Cruises.

"The Love Line Collection is a natural extension of the elegance and sophistication found throughout our Princess ships and makes every sip a journey worth savoring.”

-- Aaron Saunders, Senior Editor, News and Features

New Northeast Cruisetour to Debut for 2025

Enchanted Princess at Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale (Photo/Chris Gray Faust)

(May 13, 2024) -- Princess Cruises has announced the creation of a brand-new cruisetour option for select voyages departing aboard Enchanted Princess in 2025 bound for Canada and New England.

The all-U.S.-cruisetour -- one of the first for the East Coast -- is a seven-night hosted overland tour that begins in Washington, D.C. and ends in New York City, prior to embarking Enchanted Princess at its berth in Red Hook, Brooklyn.

This Eastern America cruisetour will include overnight stays in Washington D.C,, Williamsburg, Staunton, Gettysburg and Philadelphia, along with important sights like Independence Hall and Thomas Jefferson's Monticello estate, itself a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

While cruisetours are common for cruises to Alaska, organized, hosted tours are still relatively uncommon for these Canada & New England runs, making Princess Cruises' new offering a very unique experience on the U.S. East Coast.

“Visiting our nation’s capital, nearby historic cities and landmarks always ranks high on travelers’ lists of places to visit in their lifetime,” said Terry Thornton, chief commercial officer, Princess Cruises.

“We make traveling to historic America easy, educational and memorable with our knowledgeable and inspiring tour guides sharing the incredible stories of our country’s settlers, leaders, landmarks and historic sites.”

A total of 10 dates for Princess Cruises' new Historic America cruisetour in 2025 are on sale now: August 16, 23, 30; September 6, 13, 20, 27; October 4, 11 and 18, 2025.

-- Aaron Saunders, Senior Editor, News and Features

Grand Princess to Offer Caribbean Cruises from San Juan

Grand Princess (Photo: Princess Cruises)

(May 7, 2024) -- Princess Cruises announced it will deploy the 1998-built Grand Princess on a series of new Caribbean cruises departing roundtrip from San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The new 7-night voyages will depart San Juan between October 2025 and March 2026, and will replace Grand Princess' previously-scheduled deployment in Australia and New Zealand. The redeployment of Grand Princess to San Juan marks the first time Princess has offered voyages from Puerto Rico in over 10 years.

“Our return to San Juan after more than a decade not only reconnects our guests with a port rich in history and charm, but further expands the variety of departure points across North America that our guests can sail from,” said Terry Thornton, chief commercial officer for Princess Cruises.

“Puerto Rico remains one of the fastest-growing destinations in the Caribbean and continues to attract new airlift from source markets across the U.S. as well as markets in Europe and South America, which makes it a great fit for Princess. Plus, there are many outstanding options to choose from for a great pre- or post-cruise stay.”

The new weeklong sailings -- which can be combined to create one unique 14-day Caribbean cruise -- will go on sale May 16, 2023.

--Aaron Saunders, Senior Editor, News and Features

Star Princess Delivery Postponed; Nine Voyages Canceled

Star Princess Port Side Render (Image: Princess Cruises)

(April 19, 2024) -- Princess Cruises has decided to postpone the arrival of its new Sphere-class ship, Star Princess, following a comprehensive review of the vessel's remaining construction milestones with shipbuilder Fincantieri.

The 4,300-passenger ship was initially scheduled to arrive on July 29, but it will now be delivered on Sept. 26, 2025. The two-month delay will also result in the cancelation of the first nine originally scheduled sailings.

Star Princess' new inaugural sailings will consist of roundtrip sailings from Barcelona, including an 11-day Mediterranean trip on Oct. 4 and a 7-day Mediterranean journey on Oct. 15. The ship will then embark on a 14-day transatlantic crossing to Fort Lauderdale on Oct. 22 to kick off Star Princess' first Caribbean season.

The cruise line announced that the new sailings will open for sale on April 30, 2024.

"Despite our collective dedication and relentless pursuit to deliver the ship in late July, it has become evident that additional time is required to ensure the Star Princess is delivered to the highest standards expected by our guests," said John Padgett, president of Princess Cruises.

The cruise line also shared than passengers booked on any of the original nine impacted voyages will be given the option to book any Princess cruise worldwide, and receive future cruise and onboard credits, depending on the cruise they choose. Passengers also have the option to cancel their voyage and receive a full refund of the cruise fare.

Star Princess is scheduled to become the cruise line's second Sphere-class ship, following the February 2024 arrival of Sun Princess.

--Jorge Oliver, Editor

Princess to Expand Traditional, Reservable and Open Seating Main Dining Options Fleetwide

Horizons includes set dining on Deck 6; Anytime Dining on Deck 7, and a casual American-style eatery on Deck 8. (Photo: Aaron Saunders)

(April 15, 2024) -- Following the recent implementation aboard Sun Princess, Princess Cruises has announced that passengers will have three table service options for main dining available fleetwide.

The three options -- Traditional, Reservable or Walk-in Anytime -- will be available in separate dining rooms. Traditional consists of an early and a late seating every evening; Reservable allows passengers to reserve preferred dining times; and the Walk-in option offers open seating at any time.

The trio of dining formats debuted aboard the new Sun Princess, which offers a three-story dining room with one floor dedicated to traditional dining, another one devoted to flexible reservations and a third for anytime walk-ins.

Aside from these three options, Princess also offers the OceanNow alternative, allowing passengers the freedom to order anything at anytime and receive it anywhere on board.

“Our guests have been delighted with the dining flexibility aboard Sun Princess and we’re pleased to extend the concept to all the other ships in our fleet,” said Sami Kohen, Princess Cruises vice president of food and beverage. “Now whether guests prefer an early seating every evening, or change things up every night, or even change their mind, these flexible dining options ensure that their dining preference is effortlessly accommodated.”

The new main dining approach will launch on Princess voyages departing Sept. 14, 2024 and beyond. Starting on June 17, booked passengers will be able to use Princess Cruises' app to opt for one of the three dining options on their voyage.

Princess Unveils "Rail & Sail" Partnership with Brightline Train in Florida

Princess Cruises' Love Boat branding adorns Brightline's cars (Photo: Princess Cruises)

(April 5, 2024) -- Princess Cruises has become the first cruise line to partner with intercity train company Brightline to offer passengers access to ships departing from Port Canaveral and Fort Lauderdale.

The "Rail and Sail" Program, announced today at Brightline's Orlando International Airport station, gives Princess passengers access to the full schedule of daily train departures, with 16 round trip transits between South Florida and Central Florida. Princess will also provide guests with complimentary motorcoach service between Brightline’s Orlando and Fort Lauderdale stations and their embarkation terminal.

As part of the partnership, Princess passengers will also have the option to check their bags at the Brightline station and have them delivered directly to their staterooms aboard the ship. This service has a cost of $35 per bag and is initially available on Orlando to Fort Lauderdale trains. The cruise line announced that the baggage service will soon be expanded to Fort Lauderdale to Orlando trains in time for Caribbean Princess' arrival and homeport at Port Canaveral in November.

“A Princess cruise is already the best value in travel and this new partnership with Brightline makes it even easier and more enjoyable to sail with us from the top-rated ports in South and Central Florida,” said John Padgett, president of Princess Cruises. “Our guests can just sit back, relax, and let us do the rest, including delivering their luggage directly to their stateroom.”

The announcement also featured the debut of a Brightline train with four custom-designed cars fitted with Princess Cruises' Love Boat branding, including the seawitch logo and depictions of popular ports of call.

“Brightline has been connecting travelers to South Florida ports since we began operations in 2018 and cruisers from the beginning have found our train to be the easiest way to start their vacation,” said Patrick Goddard, president of Brightline. “Today’s partnership with Princess Cruises and this train wrap with the iconic Love Boat branding is yet another example of the connection between cruisers and Brightline.”

The partnership also offers other perks for Brightline passengers. For instance, by entering the code PRINCESS15, travelers can enjoy a 15% discount when booking through Brightline’s website.

Additionally, passengers who book a Princess cruise through May 5 will get a Brightline credit of up to $150 per person for the train's Smart and Premium class service. The value of the credit is based on the cabin type booked: Interior and oceanview staterooms are eligible for a $50 per person Brightline credit; balcony and deluxe staterooms get a $100 per person credit; and passengers who book a mini-suite or suite get the full $150 per person Brightline credit.

Brightline Smart fares start at $69 per person for the full Miami to Orlando route and as low as $114 per person for the Premium class. The train company uses dynamic pricing, so rates can vary depending on the time of day and day of the week, with the more on-demand dates and times commanding higher prices.

The company serves the South Florida and Central Florida regions, with stations in Miami, Aventura, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, West Palm Beach, and Orlando. Brightline has also announced future stops in Stuart and Cocoa in Florida's Space Coast.

--Jorge Oliver, Editor

Love Boat Themed Princess Cruise to Set Sail with Original Cast

Enchanted Princess at Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale (Photo/Chris Gray Faust)

(February 7, 2024) -- The Love Boat soon will be making another run.

Princess Cruises announced today that a Love Boat themed cruise will take place this summer, featuring the members of the original show’s cast. This will be the second time that the cruise line offers a Love Boat-inspired voyage, following the inaugural theme cruise held in 2022.

The voyage will take place aboard Enchanted Princess from Aug. 31 to Sep. 7, 2024. The seven-night roundtrip trek from New York City will travel to Canada and New England, visiting ports like Newport, Rhode Island; Boston; Rockland, Maine; Saint John, New Brunswick; and Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Princess Cruises Celebrations Ambassador Jill Whelan, who played the role of Vicki Stubing in the show, will be joined by fellow castmembers Bernie Kopell (Doc), Fred Grandy (Gopher) and Ted Lange (Isaac). Ezra Freeman, who plays the bartender on the recently-aired The Real Love Boat on CBS reality dating series, will also join the themed cruise. Other surprise guests will be announced at a later date.

“We had such a blast connecting with fans on our theme cruise in 2022, so bringing it back in 2024 feels like it was meant to be, especially with the addition of some surprise guests,” said Jill Whelan, Celebrations Ambassador for Princess Cruises. “Sailing with our fans brings us so much joy and this cruise will undoubtedly be a special reunion, taking us back to where it all began – on a Princess Cruise.”

Activities onboard the 2024 Love Boat themed cruise featuring the stars of the tv show will include a sailaway party introducing the cast, meet-and-greet photo and signing opportunities and Love Boat cast Q&As, as well as a cocktail demonstration hosted by Ezra Freeman and Ted Lange, and symbolic renewal of vows ceremony officiated by the cast.

Other events and special features include The Love Boat-inspired activities with prizes; episodes of the show airing on Movies Under the Stars and in staterooms; The Love Boat trivia with the cruise director; menus and specialty cocktails inspired by the show; and themed décor, photo backdrops and merchandise.

The original Love Boat tv show aired on ABC from Sep. 24, 1977 to May 24, 1986. The series was set aboard Pacific Princess, a 626-passenger ship operated by Princess Cruises from 1975 to 2002. In 2023, a reimagined version of the series was launched as The Real Love Boat on CBS, a reality dating show hosted by Rebecca Romijn and Jerry O'Connell and set onboard Regal Princess.

--Jorge Oliver, Editor

Princess Adds New Boston Homeport Cruises

Piazza on Emerald Princess (Photo: Cruise Critic)

(January 22, 2024) -- Princess Cruises is shaking things up on the U.S. East Coast this year, offering new Canada & New England departures from Boston for the first time.

A new homeport for Princess, Emerald Princess will sail roundtrip from Boston on weeklong cruises to the Canadian Maritime ports of Halifax, Sydney and Charlottetown, along with calls on Bar Harbor or Portland, Maine.

Princess will also offer longer 10-day voyages on Emerald Princess that sail between Boston and Quebec City or reverse, with additional calls on Saint John, New Brunswick and an overnight stay in Quebec City.

Princess is even offering a 17-day voyage to Greenland roundtrip from Boston this year that also includes calls on several East Coast ports of call.

It's a new move for Princess, which has historically always based its ships from Brooklyn's Red Hook Cruise Terminal for its Canada and New England cruises. Princess will continue to offer additional departures to the U.S. and Canadian Maritimes from Brooklyn aboard Enchanted Princess throughout much of the summer and fall of 2024.

Emerald Princess will be based in Boston from July 14 to October 7, 2024.

-- Aaron Saunders, Senior News and Features Editor

Publish date March 10, 2023
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