Paul Gauguin Shipping Limited today announced that Paul Gauguin, French Polynesia’s premier luxury ship, will undergo a $6 million renovation during its dry dock in Brisbane, Australia, which is scheduled for January 25-February 5, 2009.  The positioning cruises offered in conjunction with this dry dock have sold out, but wait lists are still being accepted.

Designed to enhance the five-plus-star vessel’s existing classic Polynesian elegance, renovations will include converting 26 oceanview staterooms to balcony staterooms; modifying and refurbishing the vessel’s casual poolside restaurant, Le Grill; expanding the al fresco dining space for the ship’s La Veranda restaurant; an Internet area upgrade; a fitness center upgrade; new sports boats for the watersport activities; extensive restoration of all public areas, including new carpeting, upholstery and refinished woodwork; and refreshing all staterooms and suites.

For 2009, Paul Gauguin’s other seven itineraries throughout the South Pacific, which include airfare from Los Angeles, are as follows:
Fiji, Tonga, Cook & Society Islands: Nov:  14 nights from $7,295
Cook Islands, Society Islands, Tuamotus & Australs: Aug:  14 nights from $6,950
Marquesas, Tuamotus & Society Islands: Apr, Dec:  14 nights from $6,550
Society Islands, Marquesas & Tuamotus: May, Jul, Oct:  11 nights from $5,695
Society Islands & Tuamotus: May, Jul, Oct:  10 nights from $5,250
Society Islands & Tuamotus Holiday: Dec:  9 nights from $5,850
Society Islands: Feb-Jun, Aug-Oct:  7 nights from $4,150

The 332-passenger Paul Gauguin is the region’s longest continually operating cruise ship: between the ship’s inaugural sailing in 1998 and the beginning of 2009, Paul Gauguin will have completed nearly 500 South Pacific cruises and served more than 128,000 guests, including more than 11,000 honeymooners.  No other luxury ship in history has offered this kind of single-destination deployment on a year-round basis for such an extended period of time.