SANTA CLARITA, Calif.
March 2, 2012
/PRNewswire/ -- As time nears for bookings to open on
highly anticipated new ship,
, the line is holding an unprecedented charity auction for a chance to secure a stateroom aboard the ship's inaugural sailing on
June 16, 2013
. The auction, which opens on eBay today under the eBay Giving Works program, will enable one lucky bidder to become the very first passenger booked on the ship, while at the same time raising money to support worldwide charitable causes.
All proceeds from the
will go directly to the
Princess Cruises Community Foundation
, a 501(c)(3) charity, which supports causes around the globe.
The winning bidder will secure a coveted cruise for two on the maiden voyage – a seven-day, four-port Iberia sailing from Southampton to
with calls at Vigo,
. The lucky passengers will sail in a new class of accommodation debuting on
, a deluxe balcony stateroom offering additional space, a sofa bed and enhanced amenities.
Bidding starts at just
, and the 10-day auction will close with the highest bid winning the cruise on
March 12, 2012
. Anyone with an eBay account, regardless of location, may bid on the cruise.
"We don't open the books on Royal Princess until
, but we know many passengers are eager to reserve their stateroom," said
, Princess Cruises executive vice president. "This auction will give someone the unique opportunity to be the very first passenger booked aboard the ship's maiden voyage while at the same time supporting the worldwide charities that benefit from the work of the Princess Cruises Community Foundation."
Princess today also revealed details about
staterooms and a number of updated features inspired by suggestions made by the line's passengers.
Among the changes are more contemporary decor, larger showers and hand-held shower heads, pillow top mattresses, upholstered headboards, bigger television screens, energy efficient lighting and card readers to help conserve electricity. A slideshow of stateroom images is available at
"Our passengers really did design these stateroom additions, because we've incorporated many small changes that they've requested over the years," noted Swartz. "And often the smallest changes make the biggest difference."