Award-Winning Actress Hannah Waddingham Officially Christens Sun Princess in Awe-Inspiring Ceremony

Michael Carbonara, Tyra Banks, Britto, Randy Fenoli, Original “Love Boat” Cast Members,
Celebrity Chefs and TV Personalities on hand to Celebrate
Plus Musical Performance by Natasha Bedingfield 

BARCELONA, Spain, April 23, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — In a spectacular celebration today at the Port of Barcelona, award-winning actress and performer Hannah Waddingham officially welcomed the newest and most innovative Princess Cruises ship – Sun Princess – serving as godmother during a star-studded naming ceremony.


Photo Credit: James Morgan for Getty Images

The time-honored maritime tradition took place onboard Sun Princess in the all-new Princess Arena and Waddingham, alongside the ship’s Captain Craig Street, joyously pronounced, “I name this ship Sun Princess. May God bless her and all who sail on her.” She then released the celebratory bottle of Champagne to smash against the ship wishing good fortune to all of the ship’s guests and crew sailing to incredible destinations all over the world.

“Hannah is globally admired and adored for her immense talent and determination. Those qualities coupled with her family’s deep connection and love for the sea make her the perfect godmother for our sensational new Sun Princess,” said John Padgett, Princess Cruises president. “We are honored that she has joined us for this pinnacle moment, and that she will remain a treasured part of the ship’s legacy forever.”

Known for her adored role as Rebecca Welton in “Ted Lasso,” Waddingham said being named Sun Princess godmother is a “pinch me” moment as she joins an esteemed group of women, including members of the Royal Family, who have also served as godmothers to Princess ships: Diana, Princess of Wales (Royal Princess, 1984); Kate Middleton, Princess of Wales (Royal Princess 2013); Audrey Hepburn (Star Princess, 1989); Sophia Loren (Crown Princess, 1990); Martha Stewart (Crown Princess, 2006); among many notable celebrities and dignitaries.

Waddingham grew up boating and has fond memories of weekends in Dunkirk. In addition, her grandfather served in the Royal Navy during World War II.

“As much as theatre has always rippled through my bloodstream so too has a strong, historic familial connection with the Royal Navy and all things nautical,” said Waddingham. “I have of course seen over the years the iconic godmothers who have been asked to represent these magnificent ships and looked on in awe. It is therefore such a great privilege to have been asked to act as Godmother to the Sun Princess, first of her class. I can’t quite believe it.” 

Actor and magician Michael Carbonaro served as master of ceremonies for the event, and joined by a host of celebrities and TV personalities including Tyra Banks, Romero Britto, Randy Fenoli, Jeff Corwin, Rob Floyd, along with celebrated chefs Dario Cecchini, Makoto Okuwa, and beloved original “Love Boat” cast members Jill Whelan (Vicki Stubing), Ted Lange (Isaac) and Bernie Kopell (Doc).

In addition, Natasha Bedingfield was on hand to fittingly perform her smash hit “Pocket Full of Sunshine,” along with other award-winning hits including “Unwritten.”

What’s New, What’s Next
Princess to Add Ship-within-a-Ship Concept to Sun Princess, Star Princess 
Sanctuary Collection Debuts in September
Prior to the Sun Princess naming ceremony, Princess President John Padgett shared a few details on what’s ahead for the world’s most iconic cruise brand. Notable news included introducing the exclusive, next-level Sanctuary Collection aboard Sun Princess, as the ship prepares to debut this select, all-inclusive oasis in October 2024. Guests reserving in the Sanctuary Collection will enjoy exclusive access to the ship’s top-deck retreat area, along with many additional bespoke events and high-end amenities designed to enhance their voyage.

Star Princess to Sail Alaska Voyages in Summer 2026
Also announced, the next Sphere-Class ship, Star Princess, will sail her first full summer in 2026 in Alaska, making it the first of its class to ever sail to the Great Land. Star Princess is currently under construction and scheduled to debut in the Mediterranean in September 2025.

Princess Collaborates with Celebrities to Launch Love Line Premium Liquors
Princess also revealed its newest indulgence – the “Love Line Premium Liquors” collection. Crafted in collaboration with renowned celebrities Pitbull, Jason Aldean and Romero Britto, this exclusive line of wines and spirits promises an unparalleled experience for guests sailing aboard ships from the Love Boat. The new premium collection features meticulously selected wines and spirits, each bearing the unique touch of its celebrity partner including Voli Vodka by Pitbull, Love Prosecco by Britto, and Melorosa Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon from Jason Aldean. The Love Line collection is currently available aboard Sun Princess, and will roll out to all the ships in the Princess fleets throughout the summer. 

Love by Britto Officially Debuts Aboard Sun Princess
During the day’s festivities, Love by Britto, an artistic-inspired dining experience from world-renowned artist Romero Britto, made its debut. Known for his bold, colorful, and joyful style, and a global advocate for happiness, Britto has created a dining concept that serves as an exquisite showcase of the artist’s iconic and joyful designs against the backdrop of a boutique restaurant designed to immerse couples in a world of vivid colors, bold patterns, and heartfelt emotions. Unlike anything else in cruising, the venue also highlights the talents of Princess Cruises’ Head of Culinary Arts Rudi Sodamin who has created an array of tantalizing choices that embody profound passion, exquisite flavor, and boundless creativity with a seven-course, prix fixe menu ($149 per person) that begins with a flute of Champagne upon arrival and features luxury ingredients including lobster, caviar and truffles, and dessert options that always include chocolate fondue.

More About Sun Princess Godmother Hannah Waddingham
British actress and singer, Waddingham is beloved for her role as Rebecca Welton in Apple TV+’s “Ted Lasso,” in which her performance garnered a Primetime Emmy, Critics Choice Television Award and Screen Actors Guild Award, as well as two individual Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild nominations. She will next be seen in the highly anticipated Universal film “The Fall Guy” opposite Ryan Gosling and Emily Blunt in theaters on May 3, 2024. Earlier this year, Waddingham earned a BAFTA TV Award nomination for her own Apple TV+ holiday special “Hannah Waddingham: Home for Christmas.” Waddingham made her worldwide hosting debut in April 2023 at The Olivier Awards (she returned as host for the 2024 ceremony) followed swiftly by the BBC Eurovision Song Contest 2023, for which she has gained her second BAFTA TV nomination and won The Royal Television Society award for “Best Entertainment Performance” in 2024. Her upcoming films include Sony Animation film “Garfield” out May 24, 2024 and in 2025 “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two.”

More About Sun Princess
The new 177,882-ton, 4,300-guest Sun Princess introduces an innovative new ship platform designed exclusively for the world’s most iconic cruise brand. A true engineering marvel, Sun Princess officially started its inaugural cruise season on February 28, 2024, and currently is sailing a series of Mediterranean voyages before debuting in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., in October for the ship’s first Caribbean season. 

Princess ships are renowned for offering spacious venues and Sun Princess takes that to the next level. Sun Princess debuts new eye-catching experience venues including The Dome, a groundbreaking geodesic, glass-enclosed structure at the top of the ship inspired by the terraces of Santorini. The outward and suspended Sphere Atrium, the namesake of this new class of ship, takes the central Piazza hub of the ship into a new dimension. Here guests are enveloped with expansive ocean views and an open concept, inspired to deliver the desired lifestyle of relaxed indoor and outdoor living.

Sun Princess offers an extraordinary cruise experience with not-to-be-missed culinary, entertainment and luxury accommodations, including: 

The Greatest Foodie Destination at Sea
Sun Princess serves up 30 inviting restaurant and bar venues with an unprecedented collection of celebrity collaborators, high-end ingredients and culinary experiences from: 

  • Spellbound by Magic Castle: Blending the captivating world of magic with the art of culinary and mixology to create an extraordinary, innovative and immersive dining experience, steeped in magic and adventure.
  • Makoto Ocean: Reshaping traditional sushi with a creative approach, the Master of Edomae-style sushi, Chef Makoto Okuwa brings his 25 years of experience with a new concept crafting playful, exquisitely presented dishes paying tribute to Japanese traditions.
  • Love by Britto: A high-end boutique restaurant with the most romantic view from the ship celebrating love and art from world-renowned artist Romero Britto.
  • The Butcher’s Block by Dario: A new specialty pop-up restaurant from the world’s most famous butcher Dario Cecchini, guests enjoy perfectly prepared beef and steak, including Cecchini’s signature cuts.
  • The Catch by Rudi: An exceptional dinner concept from renowned Chef Rudi Sodamin showcasing delectable treasures from the sea.
  • Good Spirits at Sea with Rob Floyd: Destination-inspired, one-of-a-kind cocktail creations from celebrity mixologist Rob Floyd.

Debuting a three-story dining room with endless aft views, inaugural menus have been created in collaboration with the Culinary Institute of America. While retaining what guests love about Princess, the ship also features favorites like Crown Grill, Sabatini’s and Crooners with new design elements to impress.

Showstopping Entertainment in Technically Advanced Spaces
The Princess Arena is the most technologically advanced theater at sea, offering showstopping and original productions including performances in the round. At night, The Dome astonishes audiences with acrobatic Cirque Éloize performances while the Piazza dazzles with a retractable stage and immersive Champagne Waterfall. 

Elevated & Welcoming Areas & Accommodations
Sun Princess also features the cruise line’s largest casino, two-story Lotus Spa, and an expanded retail environment with more than 200 premium brands. The retail space also includes several firsts a sea including an upscale showroom dedicated to luxury horology showcasing TAG Heuer and Breitling and more than 25 new brands available to cruise guests like Italian handbag brand, Pinko and athleisure favorites Beyond Yoga and Varley. 

With diverse accommodations to suit every preference and more than 1,500 cabins with balcony views, Sun Princess’ re-imagined staterooms include exceptional suites and new Cabana Mini-Suites with extra space for secluded outdoor relaxation.

Rooted in sustainability, Sun Princess is the first LNG (liquefied natural gas) vessel for the cruise line, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and features ingenious energy recovery systems for eco-conscious cruising.

Sun Princess cruises to the Mediterranean and the Caribbean are on sale now. More ship details can be found at www.princess.com/sunprincess

More information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel advisor, by calling 1-800-Princess (1-800-774-6237) or by visiting www.princess.com

About Princess Cruises
Princess Cruises is The Love Boat, the world’s most iconic cruise brand that delivers dream vacations to millions of guests every year in the most sought-after destinations on the largest ships that offer elite service personalization and simplicity customary of small, yacht-class ships. Well-appointed staterooms, world class dining, grand performances, award-winning casinos and entertainment, luxurious spas, imaginative experiences and boundless activities blend with exclusive Princess MedallionClass service to create meaningful connections and unforgettable moments in the most incredible settings in the world – the Caribbean, Alaska, Panama Canal, Mexican Riviera, Europe, South America, Australia/New Zealand, the South Pacific, Hawaii, Asia, Canada/New England, Antarctica, and World Cruises. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE:CCL; NYSE:CUK). 

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