We have found it rather odd cruising the North Sea, the North Atlantic… all the way up into the Arctic Circle, on the incongruously named, Caribbean Princess. And while our beautiful ship is very well equipped with many desirable and luxurious features, we feel it has been a little lacking for this particular itinerary, and so we have given over to a small flight of fantasy and designed ourselves a different ship – a better ship – more aligned to the icy cold conditions in the Arctic, better designed to chase the Northern Lights and more in keeping with the Baltic and the Arctic theme.
*pictured here in Alaska 😉
The foremost attraction of the Arctic Princess will be its unique Dark Skies Deck. Perfect for viewing the Northern Lights; the Dark Skies Deck will be outfitted with muted glow-in-the-dark strip lighting at floor level for safety, while not creating any light pollution to reduce opportunities for seeing aurorae. Also fully equipped with heated deck chairs, cosy blankets and a spiked hot chocolate fountain, the Dark Skies Deck will be the perfect place to wrap up against the cold and while away the hours hoping to catch a glimpse of the magical Northern Lights.
The Arctic Princess wants her passengers to maximise their opportunities to experience this unique phenomena while at sea, so has a purpose built Opt In Wake Up Service for a recorded announcement from the bridge and officers of the watch, that will let passengers know when the aurorae are clearly visible so they can rug up and make their way to the Dark Skies Desk to enjoy the show. Additional ‘Opt In’ alerts will also be available for whales, dolphins and other wildlife sightings and for special scenic cruising viewing opportunities.
All decks on the Arctic Princess will be outfitted with observation deck type telescopes that passengers can use to scan the horizon for icebergs, swimming polar bears, whales, dolphin pods or even other cruise ships.
In another new innovation, the Arctic Princess will introduce the ’66° North’ ice bar, complete with all your favourite cold weather cocktails, fluffy parkas, and carved ice luge for lay back shots of the distinctive Icelandic schnapps, Brennavin… or for the not so brave, local vodkas sourced from the Baltic. The ceiling for this unique bar will have simulated aurora lighting effects to dazzle patrons while they enjoy the cool dark interior of the ’66° North’ ice bar.
The Arctic Princess’s outdoor friendly design will see Princess favourite, Movies Under the Stars, being played under a retractable observatory roof to cut down on the biting Arctic winds, as well as being simultaneously shown in one of the indoor facilities, such as Club Fusion or the Explorers lounge – that’s right, not just NFL games, movies being shown concurrently indoors as well.
Further, to make the Arctic Princess even more outdoor friendly on her icy itinerary, all pools will be heated and feature retractable observatory style roofs so that passengers can enjoy swimming under the beautiful blue skies as we traverse the Atlantic.
The Fine Art Auctions onboard will be transformed from the normal Park West pieces of art to unique works of art sourced from the Baltic, Alaska and Iceland’s unusually prolific and thriving art community. Imagine taking home a hauntingly beautiful landscape painted by one of Isafjjodur’s premier artists, or a sculpture created from the unique lava rocks found in Reykjavik’s scenic Golden Circle. A truly unique opportunity to take home a special souvenir to commemorate your once in a lifetime trip to the remote northern parts of the world.
Last but not least, the Arctic Princess will spend most of her time doing Baltic, Alaskan and trans-Atlantic voyages taking in the beautiful sights of Nova Scotia, Iceland (with o’night stops in Reykjavik – one day to see the scenery, one day to see the town and the history), ports in Greenland, the Faroe Islands, the Shetlands and Norway, Denmark and well, basically anywhere you might once have seen Vikings. Her itineraries will continue through the winter months to maximise opportunities for seeing the Northern Lights.
There’s only one problem… the Arctic Princess – well, apparently she already exists, and she is a bloody ugly Norwegian LNG tanker. 🙁