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Royal Caribbean has done it again. The company, which has introduced dozens of new features and concepts in its ships, has offered its first look at the Quantum class, which debuts in the fall next year with the 4,180-passenger Quantum of the Seas, closely followed by sistership Anthem of the Seas in spring 2015.
On the heels of the success of the Oasis- and Solstice-class ships, the team has produced another prototype that has the agency community buzzing, with features from bumper cars and skydiving to a 13-person capsule that extends 300 feet into the air for panoramic views.
“This new generation of ships gave us an opportunity to make another leap in vessel design,” said Richard D. Fain, chairman & CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. “Innovation has always been part of our DNA and we have taken advantage of all that creativity to design Quantum cruising. The unique features on Quantum will boggle our guests’ minds, but the real strength of the design is how our people have integrated all these diverse components to create a comfortable and exciting experience.”
The Quantum ships will introduce North Star, a 14-passenger glass pod on a long arm that extends from the top of the ship. It rises to a height of more than 300 feet above the sea to offer 360-degree views, much like the extremely popular London Eye. There will be no charge for a 15-minute ride in the pod apart from three premium packages agents can sell: Sunrise and Brunch, Sunset and Specialty Dining and private flights marking special occasions.
At the stern of the ship, on the Sports Deck, RipCord by iFly is a wind tunnel that simulates skydiving. The 75-minute experience starts with instruction and gear, finishing with two one-minute flights. Two classes will be offered each hour, with 13 people per class.
Two70° is a multi-level great room with enormous floor-to-ceiling glass walls spanning almost three decks at the stern of the ship. It will provide a living room space for guests to sit back and relax by day. In the evenings, the technologically loaded Two70° offers multidimensional live performances, including aerialists, as well as video and digital scenery.
The largest indoor active space at sea, SeaPlex is a sporting and entertainment venue where guests can try a circus school with flying trapeze, play basketball on a full-size court, ride bumper cars, roller skate or dance under a floating DJ booth. In addition, the new two-story Music Hall also hosts DJs, live performances, billiards and more.
Every stateroom on Quantum of the Seas will have a view, with inside accommodations incorporating the virtual portholes Disney introduced two years ago. Quantum’s Virtual Balcony staterooms offer large real-time views of the sea and land outside the ship, and rooms across the board are 9 percent larger than those on Oasis-class vessels. Royal has introduced the largest variety of stateroom categories, including new studio staterooms, some with balconies for single travelers, three junior suite categories and larger loft suites. For multigenerational families, Family-Connected provide three different categories that connect to form a special layout with separate bedrooms and bathrooms for all.
Signature features are being carried over: the adults-only Solarium, along with an outdoor pool, a new indoor pool with operable roof and the H2O Zone kids’ aqua park, all on the top deck. The rock climbing wall, FlowRider, Adventure Ocean children’s program, Royal Babies and Tots Nursery and the DreamWorks entertainment and events featuring the characters from animated movies will all also continue.
Royal will be announcing additional details about dining, entertainment and other features on Quantum of the Seas in the coming months. The ship will sail from Cape Liberty, N.J., on seven- to 12-night itineraries during the winter 2014-2015 season, with bookings opening for Crown & Anchor Society loyalty program members starting May 27 and for the general public on June 4.