Royal Princess alongside in Harwich International Port
|Name:||2001–2003: R Eight
2003–2007: Minerva II
2007–present: Royal Princess
|Owner:||2001: Renaissance Cruises
2006–present: Princess Cruises
|Operator:||2001: Renaissance Cruises
2001–2003: laid up
2003–2007: Swan Hellenic
2007–present: Princess Cruises
|Port of registry:||2001: Monrovia, Liberia
2001–2006: Majuro, Marshall Islands
2006–2007: Nassau, Bahamas
2007–present: Hamilton, Bermuda
|Builder:||Chantiers de l'Atlantique, St. Nazaire, France|
|Acquired:||1 February 2001|
|General characteristics (as Royal Princess)|
|Class and type:||R class cruise ship|
|Length:||180.45 m (592 ft)|
|Beam:||25.46 m (83 ft 6 in)|
|Draught:||6.00 m (19 ft 8 in)|
|Decks:||11 (8 passenger accessible)|
|Installed power:||4 × Wärtsilä
combined 13500 kW
|Speed:||18 kn (33.34 km/h)|
MS Royal Princess is an R class cruise ship owned and operated by Princess Cruises. She was built in 2001 by Chantiers de l'Atlantique, St. Nazaire, France for Renaissance Cruises as MS R Eight. Between 2003 and 2007 she sailed for Swan Hellenic as MS Minerva II, before being transferred to Princess Cruises.
She was built as R Eight as part of 8 identical cruise ships originally ordered by Renaissance Cruises. As such, she is a sister ship to two of Princess's other vessels, Ocean Princess/Tahitian Princess and Pacific Princess, which were bought when Renaissance Cruises collapsed in 2001.
The R Eight was constructed as the eighth and final vessel in Renaissance Cruises's R class. She began operation in 2001. After Renaissance ceased operations and filed for bankruptcy in late 2001, the vessel was seized by creditors and laid up in Marseille, France.
In 2003, the vessel re-entered operation, this time as the sole cruise ship in Swan Hellenic's fleet. The vessel was named Minerva II, after both the Roman goddess and the company's previous vessel, Minerva.
On 7 April 2007, the Minerva II completed her final voyage with Swan Hellenic and was transferred by the parent company, Carnival Corporation & plc, to Princess Cruises. She was renamed Royal Princess and entered into service for Princess in April 2007.
On 18 June 2009, fire broke out in her engine room. The Royal Princess was on a 12-day Holy Land voyage and just left Port Said, Egypt. A little while later a serious fire broke out in her engine room, disabling the ship. She waited to dock in Port Said for an assessment of the damage.