Following in the footsteps of Prince and John Mellencamp, Princess Cruises will be changing the name of its South Pacific-based Tahitian Princess, one of its trio of intimate 700-passenger vessels. The new name will be ... Ocean Princess.
The reason for the moniker change? Based primarily in the South Pacific since it was acquired by Princess in 2002, Tahitian Princess is expanding to a more world-wide deployment, including a summer 2008 season in Alaska, a world cruise in early 2009 and a summer 2009 season in the North Atlantic (Canada, Iceland, Greenland, U.K., Norway, etc.). Then, at the end of 2009, the newly named ship will head to Asia for a series of sailings out of Shanghai and Bangkok.
Rational-minded Princess decided that such a specific geographically derived name no longer makes sense.
Tahitian Princess will be renamed Ocean Princess in November 2009 during a period of routine maintenance in Singapore.
Fans of the Princess' small-ship South Pacific cruises need not fret. Sister ship Pacific Princess -- which oddly enough is busy sailing the Middle East, Mediterranean, Caribbean and a world cruise in 2008 -- will offer South Pacific cruises out of Papeete, the former staging point for Tahitian Princess.