Since I post a fair amount of ships on this blog, I figured a tutorial of some of the terms of a ship would be helpful. I've enlisted a few of my ship pictures to illustrate these terms.
The right side of a ship is called the starboard. It actually has nothing to do with the stars but more to do with how our language has changes over the years. Before the invention of the rudder, ships would have steering oars to guide the ship. Because the majority of the sailors were right handed, these steering oars were affixed to the right of the ship. In Old English, this was spelled steorbord which meant the side the ship was steered on. This came from the Old Norse words styri which meant rudder and bord which meant the side of the ship.
The left side of the ship used to be called larboard which came from the Middle English word ladebord. Lade meant the side the ship was loaded on. But larboard could easily become confused with starboard, so port came into usage. The reason it was called port was because ships would have to dock on the left side so that they wouldn't damage their steering oars. The term port did not officially become a part of the Royal Navy lexicon until 1844 when the captain of the HMS Beagle instilled it in his crew (it was used in the merchant service much longer).
Sometimes you may notice colored lights on ships. These are always red and green. The red light indicates the port or left side of the vessel and green always indicates the starboard or right side of the vessel. These colors are also the same on aircraft. Next time you are on a plane and if you have a window seat, look out at the wing and notice the color at the tip of the wing.
On a classic laker, the area below the pilothouse is where the captain and VIPs sleep.