World’s Largest Cruise Ship ‘Icon Of the Seas’ Departs On Its Sea Trials

The excitement surrounding the new largest cruise vessel in the world continues to rise. The Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas is being built in Finland; however, it reached a key milestone.

The cruise line released photographs of the Icon sailing for the first time as the vessel set sail from the Meyer Turku shipyard to start the days of sea trials. The vessel wouldn’t sail with paying guests until early 2024, but this marks its initial time to cruise in the open water.

During trials, Royal Caribbean says there are over 450 experts carrying out preliminary tests with the Icon’s main engines, lifeboats, hull, and thrusters.

Icon of the Seas
Image Credit: Meyer Turku / Facebook.

This is much ahead of a way more strenuous test later in the year when the vessel will be pushed to the limits.

In photographs, you can see some onboard features that got the industry talking about this new vessel. The most noticeable is the AquaDome that sits at the front of the vessel. The structure boasts a forward lounge area and serves as a home to the cruise line’s well-known aquatic shows.

Icon of the Seas
Image Credit: Meyer Turku / Facebook.

Also noticeable are the vertical hull, the huge and elaborate name on the side, and the launch of “infinite balconies” along the ship’s midsection. The gorgeous balconies feature a big windowed wall that closes to offer more space within the cabin or drop-down halfway for creating a balcony space for the room.

Toward the back of the vessel, you will see some slides of the Category 6 water park in the Thrill Island portion of the ship.

But there is enough aboard the vessel. For example, the pool deck continues to be obscured, as are many new neighbourhoods similar to the family-friend Surfside sitting in the vessel’s split at its back.

Even so, it gives the first glimpse at how Icon of the Seas appears in reality after seeing renderings for several months and over the years. However, plenty of work remains to be done as the vessel will not resume passenger voyages for nearly six more months.

At over 250,000 gross tons, Icon of the Seas’ size in the photos has been staggering. The vessel will carry over 5,600 passengers at double occupancy and over 7,500 when complete. That is besides its almost 2,500 members of the crew.

Even so, per the list of vessels ranked by their size per passenger, the Icon of the Seas will have a roomy space ratio 44.7. That further ranks it close to the top of the list, proving that more individuals do not always indicate more cramped on today’s mega-vessels.

The Icon of the Seas is experiencing record demand per the cruise line. Given the excitement about its arrival and all the new amenities, sailings are relatively more expensive than other vessels in the fleet. The estimate would be an average of $850 more per individual for the lowest-priced interior cabin on the Wonder of the Seas, the newest vessel in the fleet at the moment.

Still, the higher prices appear to do little to dampen demands for what promises to be the most revolutionary cruise vessel in years.

References: Cruzely, Cruisehive

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