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Ever since Royal Caribbean announced their new class of ships, originally called Project Sunshine and now officially called Quantum Class, there's been rampant speculation as to where these cruise ships would sail from. Over the last two to three months, we've received a lot of tips from our readers that the new Quantum of the Seas or Anthem of the Seas will sail out of Port Liberty in Bayonne, New Jersey.
We haven't had any solid proof other than second or third hand reports but today we found two interesting tidbits that could point to where one of these new cruise ships will sail from.
The port of St Maarten in the Eastern Caribbean publishes the schedule of cruise ships that will call on the island at any given time. For its December 2014 schedule, it lists a stop on December 5 by a ship called "Sunshine", which many believe is a reference to Project Sunshine. This is followed by other monthly or bi-monthly calls by a ship of the same name.
Moreover, a dedicated fan took the time to compare cruise schedules in St Maarten for the next three years between Explorer of the Seas (the current Royal Caribbean ship based out of New Jersey) and this mystery "Sunshine" ship.
Monday, May 6, 2013 12:15 - 20:00 Explorer of the Seas
Monday, May 20, 2013 12:15 - 20:00 Explorer of the Seas
Monday, May 12, 2014 12:15 - 20:00 Explorer of the Seas
Monday, May 26, 2014 12:15 - 20:00 Explorer of the Seas
Monday, May 11, 2015 12:15 - 20:00 Sunshine
Monday, May 25, 2015 12:15 - 20:00 Sunshine
Adding more fuel to the fire of this rumor is the fact the Royal Gazette, a newspaper in Bermuda, published an article detailing a proposed wharf expansion that would accommodate larger cruise ships. In particular, the paper mentioned, "to determine the docks’ capacities to accommodate the latest cruise ships in production by both the Norwegian Cruise Line and the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line."
Since Explorer of the Seas currently sails out of Port Liberty and offers cruises to Bermuda in addition to the Caribbean, this seems like another indication that Quantum of the Seas or Anthem of the Seas might be based out of New Jersey.
All of this is speculation and we have no "silver bullet" proof quite yet. Royal Caribbean is still slowly announcing details about the two new cruise ships and we will post news immediately about these two ships as they are announced.
Episode Six of our review of the Freedom of the Seas cruise from January 13th – January 20th 2013. Departing from Port Canaveral, Florida with stops at Cococay, Bahamas, Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas and Philipsburg, St. Maarten.
Main topic: All About the ship on our seven night cruise onboard Freedom of the Seas.
Special thanks to: Our Cabin stewert Mart from Belize.
Host: Jamie Snyder and Veronica Snyder
Royal Caribbean has launched a new help phone service in the United Kingdom that is staffed by moms and dads to help travel agents expand their family vacation sales.
Royal Caribbean is calling it the "Royal Mums and Dads advice line" and is operated by parents who work for Royal Caribbean and have experience planning, booking and taking family cruises with their kids.
The Royal Mums and Dads can answer questions from travel agents about selling family cruising, from what is on offer to keep children entertained, to health and safety questions.
Royal Caribbean assures that the all of the staff have cruised recently and there's a wide range of children ages included from young children through teenagers.
Royal Caribbean head of trade sales Nicki Tempest-Mitchell, who has a seven-year old and a 10-month old, commented on the new service, "Trying a new kind of holiday for the first time can be daunting so, by giving parents the reassurance that they can talk to a mum or dad who has already cruised with their children, we hope to share our favourite family holiday memories and provide all the information that a diligent mum or dad would want to know before taking to the ocean waves with their children. We hope to assist agents in converting a sale by offering our own expertise to reassure clients looking at cruising for the first time."
The Royal Mums agents’ advice line is open between 9.30am and 2:30pm every weekday.
Royal Caribbean is monitoring the effects that the large winter blizzard snow storm that is impacting the northeast of the United States. There are no changes to any cruise ship itineraries yet.
Royal Caribbean International is closely monitoring the severe winter storm affecting much of the East Coast, which will impact travel in the region. Currently, all Royal Caribbean ships are scheduled to depart this weekend as scheduled.
Guests who did not purchase their air transportation through Royal Caribbean and have flights scheduled from the East Coast should contact their airline directly to check on the status of their flight.
If you are sailing this weekend and you feel you will not be able to arrive to your ship before its departure, please call us at 1-800-256-6649 in the U.S., and +1-305-539-4107 internationally.
Royal Caribbean will continue to closely monitor weather conditions and will update this information if there are any changes.
Royal Caribbean's Legend of the Seas emerged from a month-long $50 million refurbishment in Singapore yesterday and will resume cruises in Asia before returning to Europe. The upgrades to Legend of the Seas are part of Royal Caribbean's fleet-wide upgrades to bring amenities from their Oasis-class cruise ships to all the ships.
Legend of the Seas refurbishment saw these additions to the ship
- New speciality dining restaurants
- Park Café
- Chef’s Table
- Chops Grille
- Izumi Asian Cuisine
- New bars
- R Bar
- Viking Crown Lounge nightclub
- Outdoor movie screen
- New and updated staterooms
- flat-panel TVs
- digital signage
- bow-to-stern Wi-Fi
For the next few weeks, Legend of the Seas will offer Southeast Asia itineraries out of Singapore. Beginning in April, the ship will sail a four night Southeast Asia itinerary roundtrip from Singapore and then reposition to Europe for the summer season. It will begin by sailing seven-night Western Mediterranean itineraries roundtrip from Rome.
Episode Five of our review of the Freedom of the Seas cruise from January 13th – January 20th 2013. Departing from Port Canaveral, Florida with stops at Cococay, Bahamas, Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas and Philipsburg, St. Maarten.
Main topic: A review of Monday’s stop at the RCI private Cococay Resort and a dining review of Chops steakhouse onboard Freedom of the Seas.
Special thanks to: Our Cruise Critic friends and all the folks who work on Little Stirrup Cay, Bahamas.
Host: Jamie Snyder and Veronica Snyder
Royal Caribbean has released the 2014-2015 deployment schedule for the summer Caribbean and northeast itineraries for Allure of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas, Explorer of the Seas, Grandeur of the Seas and Freedom of the Seas.
In summer 2014, Allure of the Seas will offer 7-night eastern Caribbean itineraries on June 8, 22; July 6, 20; August 3, 17, 2014. Allure will also sail 7-night western Caribbean itineraries on June 1, 15, 29; July 13, 27; August 10, 24, 2014.
Oasis of the Seas will also offer 7-night eastern Caribbean itineraries on June 14, 28; July 12, 26; August 9, 23, 2014. The 7-night western Caribbean sailings aboard Oasis will occur on June 7, 21; July 5, 19; August 2, 16, 2014.
Explorer of the Seas will sail out of Bayonne, New Jersey in Summer 2014 and offer 5-night Bermuda cruises on May 3, 17, 31; June 14, 28; July 12, 26; August 9, 23, 2014. Explorer will also offer 9-night Bermuda and Caribbean itineraries on May 8, 22; June 5, 19; July 3, 17, 31; August 14, 2014.
Grandeur of the Seas will cruise out Baltimore, Maryland and offer 6-night Bermuda cruises on April 26, 2014. Grandeur will also offer 7-night Bahamas cruises on May 2, 16, 30; June 13, 27; July 11, 25; August 8, 22, 2014. Slightly different 7-night Bermuda itineraries will be available on Grandeur of the Seas on May 9, 23; June 6, 20; July 4, 18; August 1, 15, 2014.
Freedom of the Seas will continue to offer 7-night eastern Caribbean cruises out of Port Canaveral on May 4, 18; June 1, 15, 29; July 13, 27; August 10, 24, 2014. Freedom will also offer 7-night western Caribbean itineraries on May 11, 25; June 8, 22; July 6, 20; August 3, 17, 2014.
Royal Caribbean will roll out the rest of its 2014-2015 deployment schedule as follows
- Fall Bermuda & Canada: March 6, 2013
- Alaska: March 13, 2013
- Europe & Transatlantics: March 14-28, 2013
- Australia and Hawaii: April 10, 2013
- Winter Caribbean and Northeast: April 18, 2013
- Short Caribbean and Bahamas: April 23, 2013
- Brazil, Asia and Panama: Coming soon
Wonder how Royal Caribbean named its two newest cruise ships, Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas? Royal Caribbean CEO Adam Goldstein shared some insight into the process.
According to Goldstein, Royal Caribbean worked with a naming consultant that provided several different names to consider (probably the list looked a lot like these). The names offered a few different takes on the ship name including experiential names, cosmopolitan names, leading edge names and more. However, the name Quantum fit the tone Project Sunshine Steering Committee was looking for.
After each member of the team voted on paper, the consensus reached was almost unanimous to Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas.
Goldstein feels that the names represent what the ships will hopefully offer guests, "The word anthem is defined as a song of praise and Anthem of the Seas is indicative of many of the best qualities and features of Royal Caribbean International. Quantum represents a step change in cruising and anthem is a song of praise for that step."
Royal Caribbean has announced its new class of ships that has been referred to internally as Project Sunshine, will officially be called Quantum Class. Additionally, the first two ships will be named Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas.
Quantum of the Seas will debut in 2014 and Anthem of the Seas will be ready in 2015.
“We are extremely excited to celebrate this important milestone for our first Project Sunshine ship. After three years of design and advance planning this is the first step of the construction of the ship and I look forward to seeing it all come together in the coming months,” said Adam Goldstein, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “The new ship will be such a leap forward in terms of vessel design and guest experiences that we thought the name Quantum of the Seas was perfectly appropriate.”
“Throughout our history we have made huge strides in cruise ship design and innovation and the Quantum class will be no exception,” said Richard D. Fain, Chairman and CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. “We look forward to introducing consumers to Quantum cruising."
UPDATE 9:58AM: Royal Caribbean has officially confirmed the ship class name and names of the cruise ships. In addition, the first piece of steel was cut for the first two Quantum class ships. The steel cutting took place at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, where the two ships will be built.
Episode Four of our review of the Freedom of the Seas cruise from January 13th – January 20th 2013. Departing from Port Canaveral, Florida with stops at Cococay, Bahamas, Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas and Philipsburg, St. Maarten.
Main topic: A review of Thursdays stop at Philipsburg, St. Maarten. We visited Orient Beach, The French capital of Marigot and the airport beach of Maho.
Special thanks to: Joe Liburd from Jo Junie Tours – St.Maarten.
Host: Jamie Snyder and Veronica Snyder