P&O’s newest member of the fleet, Britannia, hits the waves this March and will be the largest cruise ship ever designed exclusively for the British market.
She is entirely British, from her name, to her passengers, to the largest ever union jack (spanning 94 metres!) painted on her front. But being British isn’t all she’s about! She has plenty of new features to wow cruisers as well – so here’s what to expect from the newest ship on the seas.
Décor and Atmosphere
P&O have pulled out all the stops to make the Britannia a hotel, not a ship. By pairing up with Richmond International (a team of top hotel designers who have created fancy venues such as the Four Seasons in Hampshire) P&O have made sure their guests will be transported into ultimate luxury when they step on board.
With marble floors, glinting chandeliers, sculptures, an expansive 1 million pound art collection and breath-taking interiors, the Britannia provides a cruising experience of a 5 star hotel.
Don’t believe that a ship can be a hotel? Then have a look at the fantastic starburst chandelier in the atrium, the boutique style rooms and the out of this world spa.
Attracting a mixture of first time cruisers and seasoned cruisers alike, Britannia is perfect for singles, couples, groups and families.
Below is what the atrium looks like as it is lit up in the evening.
With up to 13 different places to eat, diners on Britannia will be spoilt for choice! The dining choices are also championed by their five celebrity food heroes; James Martin, Eric Lanlard, Marco Pierre White, Olly Smith and Atul Kochhar.
James Martins’ Cookery Club is a brand new feature aimed to get guests cooking with celebrity chefs. 24 passengers will learn from James or one of the ten featured celeb chefs in a fully equipped kitchen (including Kitchenaid equipment) with cooking stations for two hour lessons. The demonstration at the front is also filmed and streamed to a small screen at your station – ideal to make sure you don’t miss Mary Berry doing that delicate icing!
You might be trying your hand at European or Asian cuisine and there are even kids’ lessons. This unique experience will give passengers the chance to ask the famous faces any questions and learn from the best in the business. If the celeb chefs aren’t around, then you will be taught by chefs that have been trained and employed by James Martin, who shares his expertise and passion for cooking.
Famous faces that will join James Martin in his cookery club are: Mary Berry, Nathan Outlaw, Pierre Koffman, Theo Randall, Lawrence Keogh, James Tanner, Vivek Singh, Daniel Galmiche, Antonio Carluccio and Paul Rankin.
The atrium will feature Eric Lanlard’s Market Café which is a haven for foodies with French style patisserie, cheese & breads, tapas, a coffee menu and gourmet ice cream. P&O have always seen the importance in relaxing with afternoon tea and in recognition of this they have also got Eric Lanlard to completely re-design the experience. Eric’s quirky take on tradition is far from the usual tea and scones!
Marco Pierre White was the youngest ever chef to receive 3 Michelin stars and now his Gala Menus have been given a complete makeover to produce an even better dining experience.
In addition to these amazing new options, Britannia includes P&O dining favourites like Sindhu select dining restaurant by Atul Kocchar and The Glass House with wines by Olly Smith. Both have new features including an Indian Tapas menu from Atul and a redesign of The Glass House to include a stunning outdoor terrace and sea-view. Don’t forget that The Glass House continues to serve the enomatic wine system – allowing passengers to sample as many wines as they like by the glass!
Britannia continues to offer club and freedom dining, meaning that you can either dine at the same time every day (club dining) or at a time to suit you (freedom dining.) The fine dining restaurant on Britannia will be called The Epicurean Restaurant.
As well as 13 dining options, P&O have 13 bars on board Britannia. Highlights of this include The Great British Gin Menu with 20 artisan gins. Other bars include the Blue Bar, serving fine wines, spirits and classic and contemporary cocktails.
Did you know? There are also 4 bars on deck, which gives you the chance to sip on a cocktail as you watch the sunset!
As well as improving menus, P&O have gone all out to keep guests entertained!
Britannia will showcase on-deck shows – an entirely new entertainment experience, with explosions of light, colour and sound. Dancers will not be on stage but will move through the crowds instead, to provide an interactive experience that keeps everyone guessing about what is coming next!
New venues on-board include The Studio – a multifunctional entertainment space which resembles a TV studio. Perfect to sit back and relax in comfortable seating to enjoy films, guest speakers, cookery demonstrations and more.
Another new for P&O is the Limelight Club, a combined dinner and entertainment venue, which provides a fantastic evening in the style of a supper club. After you’ve eaten, you can enjoy a late night of dancing and live music with jazz bands, blues, pop and soul music.
The shopping experience on Britannia is almost 20% larger than those on Azura and Ventura. Some of the luxury brands you can enjoy are; Gucci, Calvin Klein, Chanel, Michael Kors, The White Company, Harrods, Pandora, GHD and many more.
Britannia will also include previous features of the Crystal room (a venue dedicated to dancing that will also feature lessons and demonstrations from the Strictly Come Dancing guests) and the live lounge (featuring vocalists, bands, comedians, and tribute acts.)
The Oasis Spa and Retreat is one of the most opulent and luxurious options available on P&O with brand new features including a private spa villa, 17 private spa rooms and a new salon menu. There is a full range of treatments and massages available, so why not sit back and chill out in a whirlpool eating chocolate dipped strawberries…we know we want to!
If you’re feeling more active then try the new Arena sports court & gym, which offers sports courts for tennis, football and cricket to name a few! If swimming is your thing, then Britannia has four different pools to offer.
Did you know? P&O were the first cruise line to put a theatre on their ships. They’ve continued to up their game since then, creating more fantastic shows at sea in Headliners Theatre (below) that rival West End shows!
P&O’s new Arena Sports Court can keep your kids entertained for hours (playing on the court with your kids is optional – you could just watch from the side lines and top up your tan!)
Pools are always a delight to children, but Britannia has also included pop jets and a children’s splash area for extra entertainment. If you can’t drag them away for the poolside to eat (we’ve all been there!) then fear not – because there are plenty of poolside food options, allowing you to eat great food informally. Choices include, the Deck & Grill Pizzeria, the Lido Grill and a “grab and go” outlet.
There is also a soft play area which provides a colourful, engaging and safe area for children to enjoy.
Don’t forget that P&O will also operate their popular children’s club “The reef” which offers childcare for kids between two and seventeen years old. Whether your child is in “surfers” (for five to eight year olds) or “H20” (for thirteen to seventeen year olds) they will be well looked after in one of the four different clubs by P&O’s qualified staff. Read more about this here.
Britannia will also have a dedicated area for children under two and there is a free night nursery available if you wish to spend an evening without your kids.
Did you know? Not only does Britannia have an adult only area – but it has a teen only area to keep adults out! The Teen Deck allows them to relax with their new friends, without Mom and Dad, for a bit of welcome space!
Sailing on your own? Then Britannia offers 15 single balcony cabins and 12 single inside cabins – which is more than any other cruise ship! You will also be assigned seats at dinner to help you meet new people.
Fancy a break from the kids? Then you’ll be pleased to know that Britannia has an adult only area – Serenity Pool. It’s the perfect place to relax whilst your kids hang out at kids club! There are also plenty of adult-only bars.
Britannia’s gym comes with state of the art facilities and fitness experts to assist with any questions you may have and they can also provide you with a personal fitness plan.
All of Britannia’s boutique style rooms will come with daily steward service, TV, radio, telephone, hairdryer, refrigerator, safe, tea and coffee making facilities and air-con. They even come equipped with pamper packs from The White Company – so run a hot bath and relax!
There will be Wi-Fi across the ships so bring along your laptop, smartphone, tablet and e-reader if you like!