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|The mv Discovery was christened on May 7, 2003, at Harwich, England, after a two-year, multi-million dollar refurbishment. The vessel was launched as the Island Venture in December 1971 for Flagship Cruises, operating Caribbean itineraries from New York with her sister ship Sea Venture. By the end of her inaugural year, Island Venture had been renamed the Island Princess. In 1974, Sea Venture was reunited with her sister and named Pacific Princess. Both ships served as the set for the popular U.S. television series "The Love Boat," which was broadcast on ABC from 1977-1986. Episodes were filmed during cruises to the Mexican Riviera, Alaska and the Caribbean, and later in Australia, the Mediterranean and China. In 1999, the Island Princess was sold to the Hyundai Corporation of Korea. After an attempt to operate pilgrimage cruises to the Korean holy shrine of Mount Kumgang, the ship was purchased in 2001 by cruise and tour entrepreneur Gerry Herrod, a pioneer in large-scale European land tour vacations for the U.S. market. Herrod previously had founded Ocean Cruise Lines and, later, acquired Pearl Cruises, and in 1993 launched Orient Lines. Between 2003 and 2005, Herrod's Discovery World Cruises sold principally in North America only during the winter season. The spring, summer and fall months were under charter to UK-based Voyages of Discovery, a unit of All Leisure Group. In May 2005, All Leisure Group acquired Discovery World Cruises and the mv Discovery. Founded in 1985, All Leisure Group specializes in destination-oriented land tours and cruises throughout the world. All Leisure Group also operates Discover Egypt, offering land-based sightseeing and Nile River cruises. All Leisure Group markets the mv Discovery in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa under the Voyages of Discovery brand. In the summer, the mv Discovery sails to the Baltic, Scandinavia, North Cape, Greenland, Iceland and United Kingdom. In the fall, the ship sails throughout the Mediterranean, Black Sea, Red Sea, Middle East and North Africa. In the winter, mv Discovery explores the Caribbean, Antarctica, the Galapagos, Amazon and the South Pacific. Now sold year-round in all markets, the Discovery program appeals to well-traveled individuals seeking unique destinations, expert lecturer programs and the amenities of a 650-passenger, classically styled cruise ship. In May 2008, the line will increase its capacity and programs with the launch of new cruise programs aboard the 394-passenger Explorer II (ex-Minerva).|
|Discovery World Cruises - Official Web Site|
MV Discovery, Honolulu Harbor Pier 2, March 18, 2004