Anybody remember when ships were just a means of getting from point A to point B? We’ve come a long way. Here, a time line.
1907: Cunard Line’s Mauretania and Lusitania launch the tradition of dressing for dinner. Savory “potted sheep’s head” pre-dates lobster thermidor as formal-night fare.
1912: Strike! The now-defunct French Line builds an onboard bowling alley on the France.
1920: Masquerades are now de rigueur. P&O installs its first cruise-ship swimming pool on the Viceroy of India.
1948: Romance on the High Seas (with Doris Day) and Luxury Liner (with Jane Powell) play up the glamour of cruising.
1961: A handful of slot machines appear on the Queen Mary. Four years later, the Oceanic opens the first full-fledged casino afloat.
1977: The Love Boat premieres, making pop icons of Captain Stubing and the Pacific Princess during its nine-year run.
1997: Titanic wins 11 Oscars; in its wake, Céline Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” plays in constant rotation in cruise-ship dining rooms.
2003: Onboard shows get more sophisticated. NCL’s Norwegian Dawn stages a Bollywood-inspired revue, complete with acrobats.
2010: Kids ahoy! NCL teams with Nickelodeon to host SpongeBob and Dora, while Royal Caribbean partners with DreamWorks for breakfasts with a very hungry Shrek.