Golden Princess, California

The Opportunity:

Golden Princess is a grand-class cruise ship accommodating 2,600 passengers and 1,100 crew members. As one of the first major cruise ships to sail in Antarctic waters, the Golden Princess has enabled passengers to enjoy luxury travel experiences to exotic locations throughout the world including Australia, Singapore, Hawaii, Alaska and more. In addition to a main atrium, guest rooms, formal dining rooms, high-end restaurants, swimming pools, children’s recreation areas and a miniature golf course, the Golden Princess features multiple live entertainment venues. The 1000-capacity Princess Theater and two intimate show lounges host a wide range of live events including musical performances, “Voice of the Ocean” talent shows and major original productions including several created in partnership with Stephen Schwartz—Oscar, Tony and Grammy award-winning composer of “Wicked,” “Pippin,” and “Godspell.”

The Solution:

In order to ensure world-class lighting for live events on Golden Princess, Princess Cruises recently decided to update the ship’s lighting systems with new state-of-the-art lighting rigs. Derrin Brown, Manager of Production Operations at Princess Cruises, consulted with lighting designers Kelly Easterling, Eric Wade, Mathew Tunchon and Jack Mehler for guidance and support while planning the new lighting system. After careful consideration, Princess Cruises hired Silver Bullet Projects to install a full array of Martin by HARMAN lighting fixtures for its superior color-mixing, unmatched reliability and energy efficiency.

Productions and events in the Vista and Explorer lounges benefit from the fully pre-mixed colors of MAC Aura XB LED wash fixtures and the versatile effects of RUSH MH1 Profile Plus moving spot fixtures. In addition to RUSH MH1 Profile Plus and MAC Aura XB fixtures, the main lighting rig in the Princess Theater notably features the new best-in-class MAC Encore Performance, a full-featured, LED moving head fixture that generates pristine, full-spectrum light with ultra-high color rendition.

Another huge benefit of the new Martin lighting rig on Golden Princess is significantly reduced fuel and electrical costs. All of the ship’s power has to come from onboard power generators, which require exorbitant amounts of diesel to power all of the ship’s electrical needs. Martin fixtures’ incredibly high output enables Brown and his team to produce brighter light with less energy. The reduced heat of the Martin fixtures also helps by requiring less air-conditioning to maintain a comfortable temperature in the venues. By switching to a complete, cutting-edge Martin lighting solution, Brown has effectively cut the fuel costs associated with the entertainment venues in half.

The Impact:

“Our previous lighting rig had seen its fair share of voyages and it was time for a major upgrade,” said Brown. “I asked a lot of lighting directors we work with about their favorite fixtures, and they all said the same thing; if you want innovative features and reliable performance, Martin is simply the best. Even though I had very high expectations, I was still blown away by the sheer beauty and power of the new Martin rig when I saw it in action for the first time. There’s a lot of things I love about Martin fixtures, but the most important factor is its gorgeous colors—no other fixture looks as rich and vibrant as Martin’s.”

“When you’re shopping for a primary profile these days, there are few good LED options, so I’m ecstatic about the new MAC Encore Performances,” continued Brown. “We use them as the primary fixtures in the Princess Theater because they’re unbelievably amazing. They’re extremely bright, their beams are fully uniform and they’re very well-engineered, so I know that I can trust their performance to be consistent and reliable.”

“Since installing the rig, we’ve seen at least a 50% reduction in the venues’ heat and power consumption,” notes Brown. “And we’ve had to perform zero maintenance on the system since the installation, which also cuts down on labor costs. The new Martin system is a win-win in so many ways, I definitely look forward to using these fixtures again when it’s time to update other ships in our fleet.”