Posts Tagged ‘Oasis of the seas’

Symphony of the Seas

October 12, 2017

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Symphony of the Seas, the fourth Oasis-class ship launches in April 2018 and will begin home-porting November in Miami, 2018.

After its launch, the ship will offer seven-night Mediterranean cruises from Barcelona; it will then re-position to Miami and sail seven-night Caribbean cruises. Symphony of the Seas will become the fourth Oasis-class ship in Florida when it arrives at PortMiami’s Terminal A, which is under construction and expected to be completed by October 2018.

New Cabin Option for Families

A new Ultimate Family Suite will cater to those with little ones in tow, with features such as a slide from the kids-only bedroom to the living room; a movie theater-style TV room with a popcorn machine and library of video games; a floor-to-ceiling LEGO wall; and an air hockey table.

The cabin also will have a 212-square-foot wraparound balcony with a full-sized whirlpool, climbing wall and kid-friendly pool table.

Redesigned Boardwalk

Symphony of the Seas’ Boardwalk will be enhanced with a new entertainment venue.

The Playmakers Sports bar will span the length of the Boardwalk and will be aimed at families, with more than 30 TVs streaming sports games (such as professional football, college basketball and soccer) and a variety of arcade games including Ms. Pacman and Skeeball. A menu offering craft beer and pub-style fare such as wings and burgers also will be available.

Passengers also will be able to satisfy their sweet tooth at Sugar Beach, the Boardwalk’s candy shop — an expanded version of the candy shop found on other Oasis-class ships.

New Dining Venues

Symphony of the Seas will introduce two new eateries to the line. El Loca Fresh will be located in the Sports Zone and focus on quick bites such as tacos and Mexican food to-go.

In the Solarium, seafood lovers can get their fill of New England-inspired fare at Hooked Seafood. The casual venue will feature a menu of fresh seafood and a raw bar; it will be open for lunch and dinner.

New Production Shows and Laser Tag Arena

In addition to its headlining show “Hairspray,” which Royal Caribbean revealed only a couple weeks ago, the Royal Theater will host “Flight,” a historical satire on the evolution of air travel, with homage to the Wright Brothers.

The AquaTheater high-diving outdoor theater and Studio B ice rink theater also will feature new shows: HiRo (a high-energy acrobatic show) and 1977 (inspired by time traveling), respectively.

Another highlight for families, Symphony of the Seas will boast a laser tag arena — which Royal Caribbean touts as the world’s-largest laser tag arena. The experience, which will take over Studio B, will be glow-in-the-dark and boast a galactic theme.

(RCI)

Sister: ‘Oasis of the Seas’ review: HERE

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Carnival: The Biggest Ship They Never Built

July 7, 2017
Pinnacle?

Pinnacle? (Fincantieri rendering)

In 2004, the Carnival Corporation launched a development program called the ‘Pinnacle Project’.

The project was shrouded in secrecy, however it is said that the aim was to design the world’s biggest cruise ship at the time.

They say project Pinnacle was to be about 200,000 gross tonnes, carrying some 6,000.

Read full article HERE

Malcolm

XXL – Is The New Standard

October 30, 2016
(Genting's Global Class)

(Genting’s Global Class)

Have you ever noticed how cruise lines tend to build similar sized ships?

O.K, there are exceptions where a luxury line will build a smaller ship. There are also exceptions when a cruise line will be building a ship bigger than anybody else’s (normally Royal Caribbean). However in general the big players are influenced by each other.

I can remember some 20 years ago (mid to late nineties), when many mega-ships were being built at around the 75,000 gross tons, in size. For example, RCI’s five ‘Vision’ class ships and NCL’s ‘Sun’ and ‘Spirt’ classes. Although Carnival (Destiny, 1995) and Princess (Grand Princess, 1998) pushed the boundaries with vessels over 100,000 gt.

In about 2005, many megaships built for NCL, RCI, P&O and Cunard etc. we’re around 90,000 gt. Although Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 had pushed the boundaries in 2002, to 148,000 gt .

Royal Caribbean’s 225,000 gt ‘Oasis of the Seas’, which entered service in 2008, was the world’s largest cruise ship. She was considerably larger than anything else. The ‘Oasis’ class (Oasis, Allure and Harmony) continues to dominate in size and probably will for some years to come.

The 180,000gt Costa LNG ship

The 180,000gt Costa LNG ship

However the goal-posts have moved once again. We now see a new wave of ships in the order book for 2019 onwards, which are 180-200,000 gt in size. These new mega-ships, or maybe they should be called ultra-ships, will each carry up to 6,600 passengers.

  • Carnival has announced that they have ordered seven 180,000gt mega-ships: two for Costa, two for Carnival, two for AIDA and one for P&O to be delivered between 2019 and 2022.
  • Genting Hong Kong announced they have ordered two new ships for Star Cruises in 2019 and 2020. These ships will be 201,000 gross tons.
  • MSC Cruises announced that they would be ordering up to four new class cruise ships, called the “World Class”. These would be around 200,000 gt and would be delivered between 2022 and 2026.

Carnival, Genting and MSC are clearly catching up to Royal Caribbean’s ‘Oasis’ class.

However this constant race for size, is not without its issues.

Older/smaller tonnage will be retired. Cruise ships rarely have a life longer than 30 years. This means that most of the cruise lines fleets, have ships growing in size. What was once a megaship (say 70,000gt) look like a ‘medium’ sized vessel now, maybe even a ‘small’ one.

Megaship are packed with facilities, including multiple dining rooms and multiple entertainment venues, even a few gimmicks throw in like a Park or Bumper cars. However bigger is not always best. These floating theme parks lack intimacy and a ‘connection’ with the sea. Arguably the world’s best cruise experiences, in terms of fine-dining and attentive service, are not to be found on-board mega-ships.

Megaships are also limited to what ports they can visit as they need long berths, deep water and extensive shore-side terminal facilities to deal with the thousands of passengers that they carry.

There is also much debate about the impact thousands of passenger arriving at a Caribbean island (for example) has on the local environment.

Irrespective of  any negative aspects, the big ships are still coming and the masses love them. They almost generate their own publicity. A new “Giant Ship” makes a great headline.  A new “Small Ship” does not.

As a result the existing smaller/older ships will be facing extinction. However there will always be some intimate ships on offer, but these are likely to get rarer and will become an increasingly expensive option to cruise on.

Malcolm

(There are reviews of some of the world’s biggest ships, menu right)

Beauty & The Beast

December 12, 2015

Many of my readers enjoy smaller ships. They enjoy their  intimacy and often prefer the aesthetics of smaller (often older) ships to todays floating apartment blocks.

I found this picture below, of two lovely ship models, to illustrate the point:

unitedstates7a

The apartment block in question is ‘Oasis of the seas’.  The smaller ship is the legendary ‘SS United States’ Ocean Liner.

Now I don’t doubt the achievement and facilities that Oasis represents. However in terms of aesthetics the SS United States wins hands down. She is a machine of beauty and the fastest Ocean Liner ever built.

‘Oasis of the seas’ is of course extremely successful, while the ‘SS United States’ is in lay-up, slowly rusting away. Over the years, she has regularly faced the prospects of being scrapped.

I love both ships.

You can find my review of  ‘Oasis’ and material about the ‘SS united States,’ on this site, if you want to know more about either ship.

Malcolm

Carnival: The Biggest Ship They Never Built

June 17, 2015

Not a news item, but a bit of nostalgia.

Pinnacle?

Pinnacle? (Fincantieri rendering)

In 2004, the Carnival Corporation launched a development program called the ‘Pinnacle Project’. It was shrouded in secrecy, however it is said that the aim was to design the world’s biggest cruise ship, at the time.

They say project Pinnacle was to be a 200,000 gross tonnes, 6,000 passenger prototype, cruise ship.

untitled

(Fincantieri rendering)

Around the same time Royal Caribbean International were developing their ‘Genesis’ Project, which later went on to become ‘Oasis of the Seas’.

Carnival abandoned their Pinnacle project, stating that the Dollar to Euro rate was not conducive to making such a large investment in a giant ship.

(Photo from intelcom)

(Oasis: Photo, intelcom)

Clearly RCI disagreed and ‘Oasis’ entered service in 2009, at 225,000 gt easily making her the world’s biggest cruise ship – and her class still is.

In fact there is now a third ‘Oasis’ class ship, ‘Harmony of the Seas’ in service, which is slightly bigger at around 227,000gt. RCI also have a fourth on their order books ‘Symphony of the Seas’ which will enter service in 2018.

However Carnival have announced some ‘new big’ ships for some of their Carnival, AIDA, Costa and P&O brands at around 185,000 gross tonnes carrying up to 6,600 passengers.  The first ship will be delivered in 2019 for AIDA.

I wonder if ideas from the ‘Pinnacle’ design will be incorporated into their design?

 

Below is a video from the Fincantieri shipyard, designed by Maurizio Cergol, which was almost certainly one of the ‘concepts’ for the Carnival Pinnacle:

However begining in 2019, Carnival and some of their brands such as P&O, Costa, AIDA, Carnival, will receive their biggest ships yet at 185,000 gt:

Biggest class of ship today: ‘Oasis of the Seas’ review: HERE

Malcolm

So How Big Is ‘Oasis of the Seas’?

December 9, 2009

Does my bum look big in this?

The image above is a web cam grab of ‘Oasis of the Seas’ at St. Thomas. She is docked next to ‘Costa Atlantica’ (85,700 gross tons) a Vista class ship like Cunard’s Queen Victoria and many others.  It’s not so long ago that a ship the size of ‘Atlantica’ would have been the worlds biggest cruise ship, but NOT now!