P&O Cruises Reveals Major Investment in Adult-Only Ships

P&O Cruises reveals investments in two ships following Carnival Corporation's announcement of a strategic focus on building the brand further.

P&O Cruises has revealed a multi-million-pound investment plan for significant updates to its adult-only ships, Arcadia and Aurora. The refurbishments are set to be completed by May 2023, with more extensive refits scheduled for November 2024 and April 2025.

Upgrades to Arcadia and Aurora

P&O Cruises is set to invest heavily in improving guest areas on its adults-only ships, Arcadia and Aurora, the cruise line announced on March 28. 

The changes will include new balcony furniture, new cabin chairs, and updated furniture in the ships’ open deck areas. Arcadia’s Neptune Pool will also receive substantial investment, adding new lounge chairs, sofas, tables, and armchairs.

P&O Cruises President Paul Ludlow shared his enthusiasm for the investment: “Arcadia and Aurora are two of our most beloved ships in the fleet offering guests a more intimate experience in stylish surroundings. After a busy season hosting guests on longer-duration itineraries and world cruises, we will be making sure that both ships look their absolute finest ahead of the summer season.”

Aurora and Arcadia Refits Part of Broader Plan for P&O Cruises

The announcement today comes as no surprise, as Carnival Corporation has announced its plans to focus on three of its highest returning brands: Carnival Cruise Line, P&O Cruises, and AIDA Cruises, during the first quarter earnings call on March 27.

As part of this strategy, P&O Cruises will invest millions into significant updates for its adult-only ships, Arcadia and Aurora, with more extensive refits scheduled for November 2024 and April 2025. Carnival Corporation CEO Josh Weinstein highlighted the company’s growth strategy during the company’s first-quarter earnings release.

P&O Arcadia Cruise Ship
P&O Arcadia Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Lukassek / Shutterstock)

Carnival Corporation CEO Josh Weinstein: “Our growth is weighted towards three of our highest returning brands: Carnival Cruise Line, AIDA, and P&O Cruises UK, following our portfolio and fleet optimization.” 

To support the cruise lines, Weinstein has been actively working with each brand to develop strategies:

“To help support this growth and drive overall revenue generation over time, I’ve actively been working with each brand on their strategies and roadmaps to ensure they have clearly identified target markets, capacity that is appropriately sized to the market potential, demand generation capability to hone in on the target market at the lowest possible acquisition cost and deliver an amazing guest experience,” Weinstein continued.

This strategy’s first phase involves bringing Arcadia and Aurora up to more modern standards, aligning them with the company’s two Excel-class cruise ships, Iona and Arvia

Arcadia and Aurora

MS Arcadia, constructed by Fincantieri in Marghera, Italy, joined P&O Cruises in April 2005. She is the second smallest of the seven ships in the fleet at 84,000 gross tons and with space for 2,388 guests. 

Holland America Line initially ordered Arcadia in 2000 as their fifth Vista-class vessel. In 2003, the ship was reassigned to Cunard Line to become their Queen Victoria but was transferred to P&O Cruises just before her launch.

MV Aurora, built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany, is the smallest and oldest ship in the P&O Cruises fleet at 76,152 gross tons and with space for 1,878 guests at double capacity. Both Arcadia and Aurora cater exclusively to adult guests.

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