Royal Caribbean dedicates new cruise terminal for Quantum of the Seas

In:
24Oct2014

Earlier today Royal Caribbean and the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey dedicated the new cruise terminal at Cape Liberty Cruise Port, which will be the home for Quantum of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean President and COO Adam Goldstein and Vice President of Port Operations Juan Trescastro along with Bayonne Mayor James Davis, Port Authority of New York & New Jersey’s Director of Port Commerce Richard Larrabee dedicated the new cruise terminal to Art on the Working Waterfront.

Together, the gentlemen unveiled 10 photographs that capture the unique energy and character of historic New York Harbor through the eyes of photographer and International Longshoreman Association-member John Bacaring.

Following the unveiling, the officials and executives were invited to the very first preview of the new terminal, slated to welcome guests for the first time when Quantum of the Seas, arrives in New York Harbor on November 10, 2014.

“The development of the new cruise terminal is another example of how public private partnerships are supposed to work. By working together, Royal Caribbean and the Port Authority have been able to bring this world class terminal on line which can service the newest generation of large cruise ships,” said Port Authority Port Commerce Director, Richard Larrabee. “We look forward to continuing passenger growth with the arrival of the Quantum Class vessels to the harbor in 2014 and 2015. It’s been a pleasure working with Royal Caribbean on this important project.”

Thew new terminal is located at 4 Port Terminal Boulevard is a successful partnership between Royal Caribbean and the Port Authority to develop the Bayonne waterfront for cruise tourism. The first phase of the $55 million port expansion includes a new, state-of-the-art guest terminal, with 125,000 sq. ft. of check-in, customs and immigration, and luggage processing space, as well as a 950-car parking structure and pier improvements. The new facility is adjacent to the first cruise terminal, opened in 2004.

“Royal Caribbean thanks the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey and the City of Bayonne for this successful collaboration to develop Cape Liberty for cruise tourism.,” said Adam Goldstein, president and COO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. “The planned state-of-the-art cruise terminal at Cape Liberty will perfectly complement our Quantum-class ships, which will be the most technologically advanced ships in the world, and help generate jobs and grow the cruise industry regionally.”

99 days of Quantum: Bionic Bartending

In:
24Oct2014

There's less than 99 days until Royal Caribbean's brand new Quantum of the Seas debuts and we're counting down each day with a brand new blog post all about this amazing ship. Check into the blog every day for something new to read about Quantum of the Seas.

Bionic Bartending: Quantum of the Seas' Robots Serve Precision Straight Up

Royal Caribbean has another new video to share, this one features another Royal Caribbean first at sea - the robot bartenders at the Bionic Bar!

Shaken or stirred, the cocktail concoctions are endless at the Bionic Bar powered by Makr Shakr. Go behind-the-scenes to see what it took to create Royal Caribbean's two newest crew members B1-0 and N1-C, onboard Quantum of the Seas.

First time cruisers: Dinner on Royal Caribbean

In:
24Oct2014

If you're new to cruising or just Royal Caribbean, dinner onboard may seem different than you're used to, so here's a guide to how dinner is handled in the main dining room on your cruise ship.

There are three types of dinner experiences you can expect on a Royal Caribbean cruise.  Which type you have the opportunity to get to experience depends on the ship you pick.

Traditional dining

Available: All ships except Oasis-class and Quantum-class

As the name implies, traditional dining is the classic means of experiencing dinner on your Royal Caribbean cruise.

There are two seatings, first and second seating.  First seating is usually around 6:00pm and second seating is usually around 8:00pm. Exact times will vary.

When you book your cruise, you can choose which seating you like. Typically families choose first seating because it's harder to keep kids up later for the second seating.  You will still see kids in second seating, but there tends to be more families in the first seating.

You will be assigned a table in the main dining room that can be as small as two people or as large as 16 or even larger.  Royal Caribbean can also place you at a table with other guests onboard your ship.  Who you sit with (if anyone else) depends on a few factors but it's usually the norm to be seated with others.  

You can change your seating if you prefer not to sit with others or are unhappy with whom you are seated with.  Speak to the head waiter to arrange a change, although changes are subject to availability.

Once seated, you will be taken care of by your main waiter, assistant waiter, and to a lesser degree, head waiter.  

The main waiter takes your orders and brings you your food.  Your main waiter is your primary point of contact and will do most of the serving.  The assistant waiter is the head waiter's help and brings you beverages, bread and otherwise assists the main waiter.

The head waiter largely manages the wait staff he or she is responsible for and can handle special requests.  You may not see the head waiter that much but it's usual to have the head waiter visit your table once every night or two.

Eating at the main dining room is a lot like eating at any restaurant at home in that you get a menu of appetizers, entrees and dessert and you can choose anything on the menu.  In fact, you can order as much food as you want so feel free to get a few entrees and appetizers.

THE TRUTH ABOUT DINNER DRESS CODES

My Time Dining

Available: All ships except Oasis-class and Quantum-class

My Time Dining is a lot like traditional dining with one big exception: you do not have a set time that is the same every night of your cruise.

You will still dine in the main dining room, but you can choose between making reservations or showing up and waiting for a table.  

My Time Dining advertises its benefit as being you do not have a set time to eat each night.  So if one night you feel like dinner at 6pm but another night you want to stay at the pool later, you can come eat at 8:30pm.

Like the main dining room, you may be seated with other people at your table.  Where you sit is subject to availability.  Unlike the main dining room, you may not have the same wait staff each night.  You can request certain waiters but you may have to wait to be seated at a table they serve.

The my time dining experience once seated is nearly identical to traditional dining.  You order off of the same menu as traditional dining and can order as much food as you like from that menu.

Dynamic Dining

Available: Oasis-class and Quantum-class ships

New to Royal Caribbean is the concept of Dynamic Dining.  There's no main dining room at all.  Instead, smaller restaurants are available for you to choose from to make reservations at each night.

Some restaurants are complimentary while others are specialty restaurants that have a cover charge.

Think of Dynamic Dining as like eating out in your home town.  You pick a restaurant that night that interests you and either make a reservation in advance or show up when you're ready and hope the wait isn't too big.

Royal Caribbean encourages guests to make reservations in advance via the new Cruise Planner app. You can opt to simply wait for your cruise and make reservations during the cruise or even show up without any reservations but just like your favorite restaurant at home, sometimes you may have to wait for a table.

We don't know for certain yet but likely dining with others may be less likely with Dynamic Dining.  With specialty restaurants (the restaurants with a cover charge), Royal Caribbean has traditionally not seated guests with other guests.

In terms of food, you can order multiple dishes at most restaurants but it will depend on where you eat.

Friday Photos

In:
24Oct2014

The calendar says it is Friday so that means we are sharing Royal Caribbean photos our readers sent in with all of you!

The photos we have to show this week are fun and of course anyone can send us their Royal Caribbean photos to use as well!

We will begin this week with a photo by Michael Poole of the pool deck on Enchantment of the Seas.  With the weather getting chillier this time of year, I would love to be able to swim here!

Here's another Enchantment of the Seas photo, this one by Ken Slusser.  It's of the deck party during a cruise back in June 2012.  In addition to a swim, a deck party also sounds like a great idea!

Love this photo by Paul Westbrook of enjoying a little Royal Caribbean while at home.  If you can't be on the ship, I think this has to be the next best thing!

Danny sends in this photo of Oasis of the Seas docked with cars in view behind it.  Leave the car behind and get on that ship!

We will round things out with a photo by Christine Wenman of Rhapsody of the Seas in Sydney harbor after Christine wrapped up a 17 day cruise to Hawaii and back. Great vacation!

Thanks to everyone who sent in their photos this week.  Be sure to send your photos in as well by using this form.

Live Quantum of the Seas webcam in Hamburg

In:
23Oct2014

Quantum of the Seas is currently in Hamburg, Germany and there's a great live web view of the city harbor with a view of the new ship.

99 days of Quantum: The Via

In:
23Oct2014

We're counting down to the 99 days until Royal Caribbean's newest cruise ship, Quantum of the Seas, launches with a brand new blog post every day. Be sure to check back for something new everyday here.

The Via

Quantum of the Seas will feature a brand new area called, The Via, which is an "enclave of elegant dining and boutiques for leisurely moments spent in good company".

In the Via, you can enjoy a fine wine, do some shopping for fine jewelry, watches, fragrances and more. 

The Via will be home to Vintages wine bar and Jamie's Italian restaurant.  

Right around the corner you will find boutique shopping at Hublot and BVLGARI shops.  The Via is the place for high-end indulgences.

The Via is a brand new area that we've not seen on any other Royal Caribbean ships before.  It's part of the Royal Esplanade and looks to be a neighborhood within a neighborhood.

Stay tuned for tomorrow's post as we celebrate 99 days of Quantum!

Royal Caribbean releases full Quantum of the Seas deck plans

In:
23Oct2014

Royal Caribbean has finally revealed all the public areas aboard Quantum of the Seas in its full deck plans that are now available for the public to see.

Previously the deck plans had were available only showed staterooms and select public areas, with many areas of the ship unnamed on the deck plans.  Royal Caribbean was waiting for formal announcements of entertainment, shopping and tech before allowing the deck plans to be fully revealed.

In conjunction with Royal Caribbean's announcement of the Royal Esplanade yesterday, the new deck plans show off everywhere you can go onboard the ship and where all the new areas will be.

The new deck plans also answer some other questions that were still lingering, including if there would be a library onboard (deck 6 aft).

You can view the full deck plans on Royal Caribbean's site.

Royal Caribbean reports better than expected third quarter income

In:
23Oct2014

Royal Caribbean reported today earnings of $490.2 million in its third quarter.

On a per-share basis, Royal Caribbean had net income of $2.19. Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring costs and restructuring costs, came to $2.20 per share.

The company's third quarter results beat Wall Street expectations for income.  It did, however, post revenue fo $2.39 billion for the period, which missed analysts forecasts of $2.4 billion.

Its fourth quarter forecast was reduced a bit, with fourth-quarter adjusted earnings per share of 35 to 40 cents, below analyst projections of 48 cents.

For its 2015 outlook, ROyal Caribbean is experiencing strong early booking trends for 2015. Booked load factors and APDs are higher than same time last year and the booking window has extended. Europe sailings are off to a particularly good start, with strong booking trends from North America and from Europe. Caribbean pricing pressure continues through the first quarter, but the company expects that to improve thereafter.

Royal Caribbean is optimistic that 2015 will be the sixth consecutive year for yield growth. The company has sufficient visibility into 2015 to say that it is comfortable with the Street consensus of $4.55 per share. That would represent more than a 30% increase over this year's record profitability.

99 days of Quantum: Dhani Jones Episode 6: A Day On Deck

In:
22Oct2014

Royal Caribbean has released a new that video features Quantum Experience Advisor, Dhani Jones and President & COO, Adam Goldstein as they speak to the sports and fitness program onboard Quantum of the Seas.

Royal Caribbean confirms Quantum of the Seas will feature Royal Esplanade

In:
22Oct2014

After much speculation, Royal Caribbean confirmed its newest cruise ship, Quantum of the Seas, will feature a Royal Esplanade in lieu of a Royal Promenade.

Royal Caribbean describes the Royal Esplanade as, "Step into the striking Royal Esplanade and discover a world of possibilities at the heart of Quantum of the Seas. This winding multi-level thoroughfare is lined with charming boutiques, clubs, restaurants and bars amidst whimsical works of modern art that will ignite your imagination. Around every corner, find something new to discover — whether it’s a smooth beer, a surprise live performance, or the perfect gift for someone back home."

The Royal Esplande will be home to shops such as Cartier, Kiehl's and Tag Heuer.  It will also feature specialty restaurants of Michael's Genuine Pub, Wonderland and Chops Grille.

For entertainment, you can try a drink at the Bionic Bar or stop by the Music Hall.  You will also find the Boleros latin-themed bar as well as Two70 and the Royal Theater.

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