Cruise Line, founded in 1968, is the second largest cruise line in the industry. As of 2009, the fleet consists of 22 luxury liners, with more on the way. The line's current flagship, the Allure of the Seas, is the world's largest passenger ship afloat, capable of holding 6,400 travelers. The Miami
-based corporation has ships sailing in all seven seas and in and out of hundreds of ports worldwide. On board any of the fleet's ships, passengers are treated to a luxury lifestyle with an endless multitude of meals, entertainment and sporting opportunities. With each new class of ships manufactured, the company has introduced new and innovated designs that keep the faithful coming back for more cruises
. Recent ships literally have shopping malls, re-creations of city streets and more. Royal Caribbean is a popular with families due to its kid-oriented activities as well as its competent baby-sitting services. Accommodations begin with the standard inside views to premium oceanview cabins and top out with oceanview suites offered in a range of styles and sizes. All the fleet's ships feature Wi-Fi hot spots, and the Freedom Class vessels have Wi-Fi throughout the ship.
Oasis Class Ships
The Oasis Class ships are the biggest in the Royal Caribbean fleet. Able to house thousands in their double-occupancy cabins, the ship can accommodate 6,400 souls. Sixteen decks in height, with a length of 1,184 feet, it can reach speeds of 22 knots. Oasis Class ships offers the height of luxury. By comparison, the Titanic was only 882 feet long. On board, the ships offer seven distinctive "neighborhoods" and a multitude of dining facilities, most of which offer complimentary meals throughout the cruise
Oasis Class ships:
Oasis of the Seas: entered service April 2009
Allure of the Seas: expected April 2010
Freedom Class Ships
Royal Caribbean has three ships sailing in the Freedom Class. With a gross tonnage of 154,410 tons, these ships surpassed the Queen Mary 2 as the largest ships in the world, only to be surpassed by the Oasis Class ships. The ships feature three swimming areas, a water park, plus two adults-only whirlpools. With numerous restaurants available, there is also a casino, miniature golf, a wave pool for mock surfing, an ice-skating rink and Wi-Fi Internet access throughout the ship. Passengers can shop in the 400-foot mall named the Royal Promenade.
Freedom Class ships:
Freedom of the Seas: entered service April 2006
Independence of the Seas: entered service April 2008
Liberty of the Seas: entered service April 2009
Radiance Class Ships
Built with the cruise enthusiast in mind, the Radiance Class ships offer more open space and more than three acres of glass. Glass elevators punctuate the glass themes, as does the retractable glass roof over the pool. Running on gas turbine engines, the Radiance Class ships are the greenest in the fleet. At 90,000 tons, the ship carries 2,500 passengers at 25 knots per hour.
Radiance Class ships
Brilliance of the Seas: entered service July 2002
Jewel of the Seas: entered service May 2004
Radiance of the Seas: entered service March 2001
Serenade of the Seas: entered service August 2003
Vision Class Ships
Technically not a class of ship as this grouping of ships are not all identical, the Vision Class ships have a gross tonnage of 70,000-80,000 tons and more than two acres of glass. Measuring between 800 and 867 feet and capable of doing 24 knots, this class has seen the most travel in the fleet, being based out of the South China seas. As with all ships in the fleet, the Vision Class ships have a casino that operates when the ships clear international waters. Vision Class ships offer themed dining rooms, a multitude of pools and lots of deck space to take in the ocean air.
Enchantment of the Seas: entered service September 1994
Grandeur of the Seas: entered service September 1994
Legend of the Seas: entered service September 1994
Rhapsody of the Seas: entered service August 1996
Splendor of the Seas: entered service March 1996
Vision of the Seas: entered service April 1998
Sovereign Class Ships
The Sovereigns were the first "mega-ships" in the industry. Like other larger Royal Caribbean ships, Sovereign Class ships have pools, theaters, open bars and lounges. The two current floating Sovereigns have been retrofitted to bring them in line with Royal Caribbean's most modern ship. The two ships offer nine bars and lounges each, a rock climbing wall, cinema, two pools and whirlpools, spa, fitness center and youth programming.
Monarch of the Seas: entered service April 1992
Majesty of the Seas: entered service November 1991
Tom Nari has been writing professionally since 1998 and has written extensively for a variety of websites. He has coached competitive swimmers and triathletes and holds an additional degree in Kinesiology Theory, specializing in nutrition and resistance training. Nari holds a Master of Arts in creative writing from Loyola Marymount University.