The Love Boat brought the idea of cruising to the entire country during its 10-year run on ABC in the 1970s and 1980s as fans dreamt of spending a vacation with the lovable crew.
Now Princess Cruises is giving those same fans, and anybody else who is interested, a chance to cruise with the actors who made those roles famous. Fans can “come aboard, we’re expecting you” for a trip from Los Angeles to the Mexican Riviera February 26–March 5.
Hosted by Princess Cruises celebrations ambassador Jill Whelan, who played young Vicki Stubing on the show, she will be joined by Lauren Tewes (cruise director Julie McCoy), Bernie Kopell (Doc), Fred Grandy (jack-of-all-trades Gopher), and Ted Lange (bartender Isaac).
The cast will participate in various guest activities and share their favorite memories from the show, including tributes to Gavin MacLeod, who played Captain Merrill Stubing. The show’s star, who was also a co-star on the Mary Tyler Moore Show, died earlier this year.
McLeod was a brand ambassador for Princess Cruises for 35 years until his death in May.
“Reuniting with the cast for a very special themed Love Boat cruise and celebrating the show’s lasting impact with guests is sure to be nostalgic, fun, and incredibly memorable,” Whelan said in a release. “While we always love to connect with fans, this cruise will be extra special because we will also celebrate the life and career of Gavin, our fearless leader, who not only played my dad on TV, but was also a true father figure to me beyond the show.”
The cruise will actually take place on what would have been McLeod’s 91st birthday — February 28 — and cruise to the Mexican Riviera, which was a regular destination on the show.
The cruise will make stops in Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, and Cabo San Lucas before returning to Southern California. Tickets for the cruise start at a remarkably low $499 and can be purchased online at the Princess Cruises website.
In addition to the cruise to Mexico and the chance to interact with the cast members, there are numerous other activities planned for the Love Boat cruise.
- Whelan will host and the cast will join in a renewal of vows ceremony.
- A Q&A with the cast
- A special birthday celebration honoring McLeod
- Love Boat trivia contests
- Cast photo opportunities
- A 1970s-themed disco deck party
- Love Boat-themed menus and drinks
This is not the first time The Love Boat has been connected to a special cruise. Cast members reunited in 1997 and 2014 for two ship christenings, and the cast appeared on the cruise lines float in the 2015 Rose Parade.
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