The Love Boat Makes Final Voyage

Quail Love Boat
StefanoF, Flickr

The iconic MS Pacific, better known as “The Love Boat,” has made her final voyage.

Purchased for 2.5 million euro by a Turkish ship recycling company and taken to a scrapyard on the Aegean Sea coast of Turkey, the cruise ship will be stripped for metal and parts, as a renovation of the 42-year-old ship would have been too costly.

On the Aaron Spelling comedy, the Pacific Princess sailed between California and the Mexican Riviera from 1977 to 1986, with cruise director Julie, bartender Isaac and Captain Stubing at the helm. The actual ship had been decommissioned years ago and was languishing in Italy’s Genoa port, after sailing for Princess Cruises until 2002 and later Quail Cruises.Take a photo tour of the ship in its glory days here.

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LEGO Love Boat gets surprise ship inspection

LEGO Love BoatProfessional LEGO builder Ryan McNaught knew that a lot of people would attend the Brickworld LEGO convention in Chicago where his model of TV’s Love Boat would be on display. But little did he know that among those visiting Brickworld would be actor Gavin MacLeod, captain of the original Love Boat.

MacLeod, a Princess Cruises ambassador, paid a visit to the convention to surprise McNaught. One of the few master LEGO builders in the world, McNaught had no idea he would come face to face with the real “Love Boat” captain.

Presented with his own captain’s hat, McNaught called the experience “mind blowing, especially after seeing him on TV for all those years.”

MacLeod was astounded by the ship constructed from more than 250,000 LEGO bricks. His surprise “inspection” revealed that the ship even features the TV show cast, with LEGO models of his own Captain Stubing, as well as purser Gopher, cruise director Julie, and even some of the show’s most famous guests.

The model features the exterior of the ship on one side, while the other side is an open cutaway showing everything from chefs in the kitchen to passengers working out in the health club. Flashing LED lights for the disco and tiny motors powering the propellers and elevators complete the replica.

The son of a Melbourne, Australia travel agent, the 36-year-old McNaught was inspired by the many cruises he has enjoyed over the years.

“I wanted to do something with character so I chose the original Love Boat, Pacific Princess, and studied photos and deck plans to capture her features and her beauty,” McNaught told Gadling last January.

Love Boat captain cruises to 80th birthday, at sea of course

Love Boat Captain birthday

On one of television’s longest running shows he was Captain Merrill Stubing of The Love Boat, cruising through 10 seasons from 1977 to 1986. Gavin MacLeod celebrated his 80th birthday this week along with friends, family and crew members aboard Princess Cruises Golden Princess in Los Angeles.

While the show stopped production in 1986, MacLeod has been “at sea” as Princess Cruises spokesperson. This year marks his 25th anniversary with the line and fans still gather wherever he may be appearing. Still in syndication in 92 countries worldwide, The Love Boat has generated what one expert estimates at over $3 billion in sales for the cruise industry.But my how far things have come since kindly Captain Stubing and the gang rode the high seas on national television. The 20,636 ton Pacific Princess that sailed for Princess Cruises between 1975 and 2002 carried 646 passengers and was seen as seen as one of the latest and greatest of ships, setting the table for a feast of unprecedented growth in the cruise industry.

Today’s latest and greatest ships are easily ten times larger carrying close to ten times more passengers. You can bet that if Captain Merril Stubing was in command, he would know every one of their names too. Happy Birthday Gavin.