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Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -019Without a doubt, the hit television show The Love Boat, which ran from 1977 to 1986, jumpstarted the cruise industry and did wonders for Princess Cruise Lines since it was their ship, the Pacific Princess, that was the real star of the show. I remember as a young kid watching the cast and the endless list of famous guests every Saturday night, travel all around the world visiting exotic ports. There’s a very good chance that this show was responsible for giving me the travel bug, because it was so exciting that I dreamt of doing something similar. And by the grace of God, hard word and some luck I’ve been able to, too.

Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -080

So when I received an invite from Princess to join them in Fort Lauderdale with all six of the original Love Boat cast members, who played the roles of Captain Stubing, Gopher, Isaac, Doc, Julie and Vicki for them to christen their newest ship, Regal Princess, I jumped at the chance … and brought my dad as my guest.

The Duchess of Cambridge has sparked a Babyboom
The Duchess of Cambridge has sparked a Babyboom

The Regal Princess was brought out of an Italian shipyard in May and it sailed around Europe before making its North American and Caribbean debut, which begins officially today (November 8). But on November 5, they had a cruise christening (followed by a three-day preview sailing) that I doubt could ever be topped. I know … I said something very similar last year after attending Regal Princess’ sister ship christening, Royal Princess, in Southampton, England when Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge was the Godmother on her final public appearance before giving birth to Prince George.

Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -057The ceremony officially launched the golden year anniversary celebrations for Princess Cruises, which will celebrate five decades of operation throughout 2015. The actors didn’t just include Gavin MacLeod (Captain Stubing) Fred Grandy (Gopher, the chief purser), Ted Lange (Isaac, the bartender), Bernie Kopell (Doc, the ship’s doctor), Lauren Tewes (cruise director Julie) and Jill Whelan (Vicki, the captain’s daughter). But they also brought in a host of celebrities who all made guest appearances on the show, including: Loni Anderson, Joyce DeWitt, Jamie Farr, Pam Grier, Florence Henderson, Christopher Knight, Diane Ladd, Lorenzo Lamas, Carol Lawrence, Rich Little, Kristy McNichol, Lee Meriwether, Don Most, Tracy Nelson, Mackenzie Phillips, Doris Roberts, Marion Ross, Frank Sinatra, Jr., Charlene Tilton, Joan Van Ark, Dick Van Patten and Adrian Zmed. They also brought in the guest star with the most number of appearances on the show – Charo – and she gave a classical guitar performance that evening after Jack Jones sang The Love Boat theme song.

Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -049Tori Spelling, actress and daughter of famed Love Boat producer Aaron Spelling, was supposed to serve as the official Master of Ceremonies but she had to cancel at the last minute due to some health problems but Jill Whelan (aka Vicki) and Florence Henderson (aka Mrs. Brady) both stepped up and took her place and did a fantastic job. (I actually overheard one of the cast members say that Tori would have been a nightmare to work with so perhaps it worked out for the best.)

Regal Princess Princess Cays Bahamas -029The 3,560-guest Regal Princess is a beautiful ship and is obviously huge: It’s 1,083-feet long, 217-feet high and has 19 decks. It’s the same size and has all the same special features as Royal Princess (here are 20 Reasons to Sail on Royal Princess). The only different thing about Regal is that they added a pool on the aft end.

The celebrations honored the founder of Princess, , in a video tribute and a video message from the 94-year-old’s home in Seattle. I had no idea that Stan coined the term “Mexican Riviera” after seeing the success of the French and Italian Rivieras. They also paid tribute to the real-life Princess cruise director Jeraldine Saunders, who wrote the non-fiction book, The Love Boats. The show was based on it and she still collects checks today since the show is in syndication worldwide in 98 countries.

Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -020After the christening, all of the stars had dinner in the main dining room and lucky me for being with the media, because we got to eat at surrounding tables. After dinner we got to meet quite a few of the stars and take photos with them. The nicest was Florence Henderson and I fulfilled a childhood dream when I got my picture taken with my two favorite TV moms: Mrs. Brady and Mrs. Cunningham (Marion Ross).

Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -059Love Boat Cast Q&A
All of the stars left the following morning except the original cast, Charo and Jack Jones who went on and did the three-day sailing to Princess Cays in the Bahamas. Some of the highlights included attending the cast Q&A where it was a totally unplugged and unscripted hour. Two of the cast members made some crazy statements, as evidenced on the faces above, including Princess’ president Jan Swartz.

Regal Princess Love Boat Party Nov 2014 Fort Lauderdale -009Chocolate Journeys
Another highlight was the introduction of , which is an industry-first. Princess has partnered with one of the world’s foremost experts in chocolate, Norman Love (amazing that his name is really Love) to create a premium chocolate experience onboard its fleet of 18 ships. The program offers guests a variety of opportunities to taste his inspired creations. Chocolate Journeys premiered on Regal Princess but will roll out to all Princess ships by January 1, 2015.

Regal Princess Princess Cays Bahamas -050Fran and David’s Wedding
Two popular cruise writers, Fran Golden and David Molyneaux tied the knot yesterday aboard the ship in the middle of the atrium and invited the general public to attend. They even had Gavin MacLeod do a reading. It was a beautiful way to do a wedding since all of your loved ones will be with you for multiple days and you don’t have to worry about who’s picking up the meal or drink tabs.

WP_20140621_002_editedThe whole cruise was amazing (except the long line to get back on the ship on Princess Cays) and having the whole cast onboard really felt like I was living in a fantasy. It was the next best thing to being a guest star on the actual Love Boat.

Additional information about Regal Princess’ inaugural Caribbean season is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS (1-800-774-6237), or by visiting the company’s website at .

Regal Princess
Regal Princess
Love Boat Cast Reunites to Christen Regal Princess (Photo by Karen Candy)
Love Boat Cast Reunites to Christen Regal Princess (Photo by Karen Candy)
Regal Princess hallway
Regal Princess hallway
Passenger photos in Regal Princess' hallway
Passenger photos in Regal Princess' hallway
Regal Princess Stateroom
Regal Princess Stateroom
Regal Princess Stateroom
Regal Princess Stateroom
Regal Princess bathroom
Regal Princess bathroom
Regal Princess artwork behind passenger services
Regal Princess artwork behind passenger services
Regal Princess artwork
Regal Princess artwork
Regal Princess elevator quotes
Regal Princess elevator quotes
Regal Princess SeaWalk
Regal Princess SeaWalk
My dad on Regal Princess SeaWalk
My dad on Regal Princess SeaWalk
Standing on Regal Princess SeaWalk
Standing on Regal Princess SeaWalk
Horizon Court Buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court Buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court breakfast buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court breakfast buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court breakfast buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court breakfast buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court breakfast buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court breakfast buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court dessert buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court dessert buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court dessert buffet on Regal Princess
Horizon Court dessert buffet on Regal Princess
Regal Princess Retreat Pool
Regal Princess Retreat Pool
Regal Princess Lotus Spa
Regal Princess Lotus Spa
Regal Princess Lotus Spa workers
Regal Princess Lotus Spa workers
Regal Princess Lotus Spa locker
Regal Princess Lotus Spa locker
My dad in Regal Princess Lotus Spa
My dad in Regal Princess Lotus Spa
My dad in  after his Lotus Spa massage
My dad in after his Lotus Spa massage
Regal Princess Chocolate Journeys
Regal Princess Chocolate Journeys
Regal Princess sushi
Regal Princess sushi
Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Mickey Arison on Regal Princess
Mickey Arison on Regal Princess
Wearing Mickey Arison's Miami Heat Championship ring on Regal Princess
Wearing Mickey Arison's Miami Heat Championship ring on Regal Princess
Doris Roberts and Jill Whelan during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Doris Roberts and Jill Whelan during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Don Most and Jill Whelan during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Don Most and Jill Whelan during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Mackenzie Phillips and Jill Whelan during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Mackenzie Phillips and Jill Whelan during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Rich Little waiting to be interviewed during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Rich Little waiting to be interviewed during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Christopher Knight during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Christopher Knight during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Charlene Tilton during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Charlene Tilton during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Dick Van Patten during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Dick Van Patten during Regal Princess Gold Carpet event
Priest during Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Priest during Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Florence Henderson official Master of Ceremonies
Florence Henderson official Master of Ceremonies
Jack Jones singing the Love Boat theme
Jack Jones singing the Love Boat theme
Charo giving a classical guitar performance during Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Charo giving a classical guitar performance during Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Magnum champagne bottle for Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Magnum champagne bottle for Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Regal Princess Love Boat Christening
Me and my pops at Regal Princess Love Boat Christening dinner
Me and my pops at Regal Princess Love Boat Christening dinner
Marion Ross and Florence Henderson at Regal Princess Love Boat Christening dinner
Marion Ross and Florence Henderson at Regal Princess Love Boat Christening dinner
Love Boat Dream dessert
Love Boat Dream dessert
Hundredbacklinks and Don Most on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Don Most on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Bernie Kopell on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Bernie Kopell on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Ted Lange on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Ted Lange on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks, Rich Little and my dad on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks, Rich Little and my dad on Regal Princess
Charo and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Charo and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Loni Anderson and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Loni Anderson and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Joyce DeWitt and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Joyce DeWitt and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Regal Princess dramatic atrium
Regal Princess dramatic atrium
Love Boat cast Q&A on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast Q&A on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast Q&A on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast Q&A on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast Q&A on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast Q&A on Regal Princess
Gavin MacLeod and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Gavin MacLeod and Hundredbacklinks on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Jill Whelan on Regal Princess
Hundredbacklinks and Jill Whelan on Regal Princess
Regal Princess leaving the Port of Fort Lauderdale for the first time
Regal Princess leaving the Port of Fort Lauderdale for the first time
Another wedding on Regal Princess
Another wedding on Regal Princess
Fran Golden and David G. Molyneaux wedding on Regal Princess
Fran Golden and David G. Molyneaux wedding on Regal Princess
Regal Princess tender at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess tender at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess tender at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess tender at Princess Cays Bahamas
Princess Cays Bahamas
Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Princess Cays Bahamas
Princess Cays Bahamas
Princess Cays Bahamas sand
Princess Cays Bahamas sand
Princess Cays Bahamas beach bungalows
Princess Cays Bahamas beach bungalows
Princess Cays Bahamas beach bungalows
Princess Cays Bahamas beach bungalows
Princess Cays Bahamas beach bungalows
Princess Cays Bahamas beach bungalows
Princess Cays Bahamas shop
Princess Cays Bahamas shop
Looong line to get back on Regal Princess from Princess Cays Bahamas
Looong line to get back on Regal Princess from Princess Cays Bahamas
My dad and I on Princess Cays Bahamas
My dad and I on Princess Cays Bahamas
My dad and I on Princess Cays Bahamas
My dad and I on Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
Regal Princess at Princess Cays Bahamas
My dad and I on Regal Princess
My dad and I on Regal Princess
Flying fish in the Bahamas
Flying fish in the Bahamas
Norman Love on Regal Princess
Norman Love on Regal Princess
Sunset on Regal Princess
Sunset on Regal Princess
Sunset on Regal Princess
Sunset on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast on Regal Princess
Love Boat cast on Regal Princess

 

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1 Comment On "Love Boat Cast Reunites to Christen Regal Princess"
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