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I don’t often blog about Royal Caribbean – I have no experience with them and whenever I’ve looked at their offerings there’s always been something not quite right. However, even I have taken note of the delivery and apparently the success of the two Oasis class ships – Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas – which came into service in 2009 and 2010 respectively. There has been speculation in the last couple of months that Royal Caribbean would order a third ship in the class but nothing was certain. It has now been announced that an order has been placed, with STX France. This is a bit of a surprise as the previous two ships were built at STX Finland. The new ship will be delivered in 2016, and will probably cost in the region of $1,3B. There’s also an option for a fourth ship, for delivery in 2018.

We all know this stuff, but it has to be said: with a gross tonnage figures of 225,000, a maximum passenger capacity of 6,400 and a crew of just over 2,000, these are by a long way the largest passenger ships ever built. Royal Caribbean claim they they are ‘redefining cruising’, and I’ve read comments and reviews that suggest that this may be true. I don’t know what to think of them, myself: my initial reaction is they are far, far too big, but pretty much everyone who has been on them comes away impressed, including people with views similar to my own on what constitutes a ‘proper cruise’. For example, have a look at this review on Malcolm Oliver’s CruiseBlog.

No word yet on a name, nor where she will cruise. However, it has to be in the Caribbean, surely: there aren’t enough ports in Europe with the capacity to handle a ship  that size. In fact, I’m not sure there are any.

2 Responses to “You want big??? – Royal Caribbean order third Oasis-class ship”

  1. Thanks for linking my review Tom. Much of the success of the Oasis twins is due to the purpose built cruise terminal at Fort Lauderdale (curb to cabin in 15 mins) and the adaptation of the piers at the various ports of call. Not everywhere could handle these monsters.

    I loved my Oasis experience but I also loved cruising on Marco Polo earlier this year. In term of contrast Marco Polo is some twenty-two times smaller (gross tonnage than Oasis.

    For me, mega-ships represent just one of many facets of cruising. ‘Big’ is certainly NOT always best, but it is always very ‘impressive’.


  2. Malcolm Oliver says:

    …I forgot to say that It is a ‘myth’ that all big ships feel crowded and smaller ones do not!

    I found my August 2012 Cruise on ‘Ventura’ felt more crowded than my August cruise on ‘Oasis’, even though Oasis can carry approaching twice the number of passengers.

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