P&O Cruises Celebrates Half Century of Cruising to the Melbourne Cup and is Doing it in Style with Fashion Expert Fiona Falkiner

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

It is 50 years since P&O first sailed to the Melbourne Cup and a half century on the cruise line is doing it in style with Australian model and media personality Fiona Falkiner leading the ‘Fashion at Sea’ glamour on flagship Pacific Explorer.

As Pacific Explorer sails to and from ‘the race that stops a nation’, body positive advocate Fiona will headline P&O’s signature catwalk show allowing guests to see the latest fashion trends at Flemington this year.

The annual ‘Fashions at Sea’ event has been an integral feature of P&O’s Melbourne Cup cruising since Fairstar was the first to sail from Sydney to Australia’s most famous race for thoroughbreds  in 1969.

This year, Pacific Explorer will depart Sydney on November 2 for a six-night cruise with guests treated to  a stellar line-up of fashion, entertainment and great dining opportunities.

Produced by esteemed Australian fashion stylist Fernando Barraza and choreographer to the stars Amé Delves, the fashion extravaganza features more than 20 local and international designers and brands including Leona Edmiston, Colette by Colette Hayman, Elliatt, Czarina Kaftans, Peter Lang Jewellery and Tina Holy Couture.

With Pacific Explorer sailing from Sydney and Pacific Dawn sailing from Brisbane, P&O Cruises will bring 3500 racing and fashion fans to Melbourne for the Cup. Pacific Dawn arrives on the morning of the Cup to spend two days in Melbourne, and Pacific Explorer will be in Melbourne for three days allowing guests plenty of time for last minute race-day shopping.  

There is a jam-packed lineup of Melbourne Cup-themed activities onboard.  These include  hearing  from ‘The Voice of the Cup’  Greg Miles, jockey John Letts with two Melbourne Cup winning rides to his credit, and trainers of Cup winning horses, Brian Jenkins (Jezabeel in 1998) and Sheila Laxon (Ethereal in 2001) along with other well-known racing names.

There will also be onboard workshops enabling  guests to design their own headpieces hosted by Melbourne’s finest Milliner, Kim Fletcher Millinery, plus all the fun of P&O’s signature seahorse racing event.

P&O Cruises Head of Entertainment Brett Annable said nothing had been spared in producing the biggest and best line-up to mark the fiftieth anniversary of cruising to the Melbourne Cup in perfect style.

“P&O Cruises and the Melbourne Cup are quintessentially Australian and both have an iconic status in their own right,” Mr Annable said. “It’s the perfect combination of Australians and their love for cruising and the race that stops our nation.

“This year’s Melbourne Cup cruises with Pacific Explorer and Pacific Dawn are all the more special because of the added celebration of the fiftieth anniversary cruise. Fashions might have changed over a half century but the national obsession with the Melbourne Cup is an indelible part of Australia’s DNA.”


Next year’s Melbourne Cup program is also shaping up as a major event with P&O’s latest ship Pacific Adventure set to be there for the first time offering a huge choice of onboard events, dining, relaxation, entertainment and family friendly activities.    

With accommodation and meals included in the cruise fare plus transfers and entry to Flemington on Melbourne Cup day, cruising to Melbourne with P&O is a great value way to experience the race that captures worldwide attention.

Bookings for next year’s cruise on P&O’s newest ship Pacific Adventure are available now. The six-night cruise to the Cup starts from $859 per person for a quad share cabin, departing Sydney on October 31, 2020.