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Straight from the source: P&O's vision for the future of cruising

Meghan on May 29, 2015

Straight from the source: P&O's vision for the future of cruising

You may have been following along on our #CSFSpotlight journey to Norway, where we got to see the splendours of a beautiful European country, while enjoying the comforts of Holland America's Ryndam soon to be P&O's Pacific Aria.

We asked you to send us your questions with the hashtag #CSFTellMeMore as we learned from the source about P&O's expanding fleet. Well, the time has come for us to tell you more!

We got a first-hand account of the inspiration behind the designs for P&O's two new ships, debuting in Australia in late November this year. Pacific Aria and Pacific Eden will join Pearl, Jewel and Dawn, bringing the local Australian cruise line's flotilla to 5 ships.
With these two new additions and upgrades to the existing trio, you will see a fresh direction that aims to bring a revolution to the world of cruising.

Tillberg Design of Sweden took on the challenge of reinventing the perception of what it means to cruise in the 21st century.

Tillberg Design of Sweden

Art director Fredrik Johansson explained that the concepts used throughout the ships aim to bring land-based luxury to the high seas, with a nod to modern Australian influences.

He and his design partner Petra Rydberg boarded the ship in Oslo, and enthusiastically described the 18-month process of bringing their ideas from concept to fruition.

"It was a specific request from the owner to begin with that they wanted to move away from this formal upright mass-market look and much more into the private, intimate, more like a boutique hotel or a residential style," Johansson said.   

Answering the modern demand for more choice and putting control into the hands of cruisers, P&O brings options in food, entertainment and affordable luxury.

"I think if we design something here and now to be launched next year, it will last maybe three or four years before some of it will feel outdated and will need to be replaced. That's the new approach a lot of cruise owners are going to take. Design something that looks fresh and really inviting right now."

Residential stylings with a touch of glamour and humour, the interiors are meant to be classy, inviting and comfortable all at the same time.

In the low-key relaxing areas, you will see light and airy patterns, designed to make you feel like you're sitting in your mate's living room. In the energetic spaces, you will see audacious patterns and striking colour.

living room

All over the ships, you will find bold carpets and a lot of playful details that may not jump out at you upon first glance.

Aria and Eden will be identical except for one room: the Salt Grill, P&O's famed specialty dining restaurant. Aria's version will keep a purple hue, while Eden will embrace its red roots.

You may have read about the exciting new theme parties scheduled for the 5-strong fleet. In keeping with its contemporary focus, P&O promises entertainment experiences that cater to the young and the young-at-heart.

Having had a good look at the "before" stage of the new ship, I can tell you the spaces on the ship are plentiful and inviting.

The slightly smaller size of the ship (compared to the Pearl, Dawn and Jewel) is not felt in terms of living area but can be considered a plus in regards to manoeuvrability and number of passengers.

Main relaxation areas and bars offer beautiful views and a layout designed for comfort, while smaller rooms provide private spaces for corporate meetings and group functions.

The pools and the main dining areas hold so much potential for P&O's vision for communal space that offers a little seclusion. It will be a thrill to see it come to light after the refurbishment scheduled in Singapore later this year.

My favourite part of the ship is the area that will be the "Adult's Only Oasis" on Pacific Aria. Located at the aft overlooking the stern, you have a clear view of the incredible vistas as you sail away. The Norwegian fjords from this vantage point were absolutely phenomenal!

Norwegian fjord

Adult Only Oasis

Another nice touch, and a rare feature on ships, is the spa baths in the suite rooms, the added luxury brings home comfort to the experience.

While I could certainly go on and on about the fabulousness of P&O's cruising revolution, perhaps it is time for you to see for yourself!

Take advantage of two fabulous P&O Sales happening right now!  

Struck with an incurable case of wanderlust many years ago, I have traveled all over the globe determined to see and experience it all. Highlights are an African safari and a Great Barrier Reef diving adventure. From beach to mountains, I love it all! Next to cross of off my list, Antarctica - the last and coldest continent for me to experience. Until then, I’m more than happy exploring the beauty and splendour that is the South Pacific. Inspiring others to travel is what makes me tick, and I hope to help you find your next adventure sooner than later!

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