P&O to test the waters for Sunshine Coast cruise visits
  • Friday 11 April 2014

P&O Cruises and Sunshine Coast Council have today announced the 64,000-tonne superliner Pacific Pearl will make an inaugural call to Mooloolaba in August as a major highlight of a four-day cruise from Sydney.

The scheduled visit will give Pacific Pearl’s 1800 passengers an opportunity to discover the many attractions of Mooloolaba and the Sunshine Coast.

“Pacific Pearl’s visit to Mooloolaba is a destination ‘test drive’ for P&O Cruises, which could well become the forerunner of more short-break cruises to the Sunshine Coast,” P&O Cruises Senior Vice President Tammy Marshall said.

“There is a growing trend towards short-break cruises and we are constantly looking for great new destinations to add to the appeal of our cruise itineraries. We know from experience cruising from Sydney to Moreton Island that our passengers love their short breaks to include a feature destination.

“Pacific Pearl’s planned visit to Mooloolaba could only have been made possible by the active support and encouragement of Sunshine Coast Council and Mayor Mark Jamieson, especially in relation to logistics involved in the passenger tendering operation.”

Pacific Pearl will depart Sydney on August 14 for the four-day food and wine-themed cruise with the Mooloolaba call set for August 16 with passengers being transferred from ship to shore by tender vessels, and Whale One. Passengers will step ashore at the Underwater World Sea Life Aquarium jetty at Mooloolaba.

Mayor Jamieson said P&O's decision to introduce the Sunshine Coast to its Pacific Pearl passengers was great news.

"The Sunshine Coast will welcome these passengers with open arms," he said.

"That we have a major cruise line considering the Sunshine Coast as a potential regular stop in the itinerary of one of its ships is excellent news; that the cruise line is P&O – one of the most famous names in cruise ship history – makes this even better.

"I would like to thank P&O and Merlin Entertainment Group for working with us to bring about this wonderful development.

"May I encourage Pacific Pearl passengers to visit our piece of paradise and enjoy as much of our attractions as possible," Mayor Jamieson said.

Fast Facts about Pacific Pearl

  • Passengers: 1800
  • Decks: 11
  • Length: 247 metres
  • Tonnes: 63,875

Pacific Pearl’s top deck has a giant LED Big Screen and an outdoor circus arena where jaw-dropping acrobatics are performed. Just inside the top deck is The Dome with its 270-degree views.

Throughout the ship are a range of bars including MIX cocktail bar and pub-style venue, The Orient along with spectacular production shows in the Marquee Theatre.

Restaurant dining is excellent with the Waterfront Restaurant and Salt Grill by P&O Cruises’ celebrity chef, Luke Mangan. Children can enjoy four age-specific children’s centres including the largest teen lounge in the fleet which has been specially designed for 11 to 17 year olds.

There are two outdoor pools (one with a swim up bar), two spas, library, duty-free shopping, adult’s retreat The Oasis, a gym and day spa.