Re-Launch Of Princess Diana Aboard The QUEEN MARY

All Photographs By Shawn J. Dake, © 2013.

Original signage for Diana: Legacy Of A Princess, at the entrance to the QUEEN MARY.
Original signage for Diana: Legacy Of A Princess, at the entrance to the QUEEN MARY.
The redesigned exhibit on Sun Deck, featuring a pink and cream colored formal satin dress designed by Catherine Walker for Diana in 1987.
The redesigned exhibit on Sun Deck, featuring a pink and cream colored formal satin dress designed by Catherine Walker for Diana in 1987.

For a limited time, the Sun Deck of the QUEEN MARY has been transformed into a 9,000 square foot gallery, showcasing the newly expanded exhibition, Diana: Legacy Of A Princess.  Nineteen gowns and garments worn by Princess Diana between the years 1980 to 1995 are showcased among numerous other personal artifacts, family heirlooms, tiaras, and photographs.  The wonderfully curated exhibits include memorabilia from other members of British royalty going back as far as Queen Victoria, all the way to the present day with outfits worn by Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge during her recent pregnancy.

An armoire from the Drawing Room of the QUEEN MARY houses memorabilia of Wallis Simpson, the controversial Duchess Of Windsor.
An armoire from the Drawing Room of the QUEEN MARY houses memorabilia of Wallis Simpson, the controversial Duchess Of Windsor.
Fashion worn by Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge at the christening of Princess Cruises new ROYAL PRINCESS
Fashion worn by Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge at the christening of Princess Cruises new ROYAL PRINCESS

The QUEEN MARY is partnering with Pink Ribbons Crusade on the revitalized exhibit, in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  An opening reception was held October 11th  featuring a question and answer session with Richard Dalton, personal hairdresser and confidant of Princess Diana.  The following day a charity fashion show dubbed Runway Alive In Pink was held to benefit Breast Cancer Angels Of Southern California.  Among the models showing off pieces from Princess Diana’s favorite designers were Crystal Lee, the reigning Miss California 2013, and runner-up in the recent Miss America pageant, along with Leah Cecil, Miss California 2012.  These lovely ladies were in attendence at both events and could not have been nicer.

Miss California 2013, Crystal Lee poses amid a small portion of  memorabilia from Princess Diana.
Miss California 2013, Crystal Lee poses amid a small portion of memorabilia from Princess Diana.

The Sun Deck area of the QUEEN MARY that is now being used for Diana: Legacy Of A Princess, once was home to several First Class cabins forward and the Engineer Officer’s quarters aft of that.  After the ship arrived in Long Beach, the entire area was gutted.  It has been used for a variety of exhibits since then but this most recent transformation is by far the most extensive and certainly the most elegant.  Important furnishings and artifacts from the QUEEN MARY itself have been incorporated into the displays.  The personal items of Diana range from the whimsical to the extravagant.  In addition to the beautiful gowns, there are letters and Christmas cards from the Princess to her friends and even some mementos from her honeymoon with Prince Charles on the Royal Yacht Britannia.  More than anything, this latest exhibition showcases her extraordinary sense of humor and dedication to charitable causes around the world that were near and dear to her.  The traveling collection of Princess Diana’s dresses is one more way of carrying on the charitable legacy of  The People’s Princess.  For more information please visit www.queenmary.com.

Humor plays a role as illustrated by the tackiest of bedroom slippers displayed next to Christmas Cards signed by Diana.
Humor plays a role as illustrated by the tackiest of bedroom slippers displayed next to Christmas Cards signed by Diana.

 

Shawn Dake

Shawn Dake

Shawn J. Dake, freelance travel writer and regular contributor to MaritimeMatters, worked in tourism and cruise industry for over 35 years.  A native of Southern California, his first job was as a tour guide aboard the Queen Mary.  A frequent lecturer on ship-related topics he has appeared on TV programs.  Owner of Oceans Away Cruises & Travel agency, he served as President of the local Chapter of Steamship Historical Society of America.  With a love of the sea, he is a veteran of 115 cruises.
Shawn Dake
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