Princess Cruises will name the first of its 3,600-passneger newbuilds the Royal Princess, after the original Royal Princess in 1984, which was the first purpose-built ship for Princess. Fincantieri cut the first piece of steel for the newbuild, expected to launch May 2013, on March 15.

Royal Princess

Alan Buckelew president and CEO of Princess Cruises, made the announcement today in Miami.

“The new ship will be consistent with the existing fleet,” he said. “Our strategy is to provide a consistent experience to our passengers. We’ve been concentrating on fine-tuning our product and making it consistent since we introduced the Ruby in 2008.”

The Princess ship will have an “open-deck sea-walk” that extends over the ship, further out than the bridge wings, with views 128 feet down to sea-level. The opposite side of the ship will feature a similar structure with a trendy bar.

Eighty percent of staterooms on the ship will be outside rooms with balconies, according to Buckelew.

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