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Royal Caribbean will have a dog that lives on Star of the Seas

18 Apr 2024
Matt Hochberg

Expect another family dog on Royal Caribbean's second Icon Class cruise ship.

Sailor the dog on Star of the Seas

Royal Caribbean made headlines when it announced a golden retriever puppy would live on Icon of the Seas as a crew member, and it garnered a lot of attention.

The "Chief Dog Officer" on Icon of the Seas is Rover, who joined the ship at just 6-months-old.

Rover will soon be joined by a second dog in the fleet when Star of the Seas debuts in 2025.

Star of the Seas coming 2025

Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley confirmed to travel agents on a webinar on Wednesday that Star of the Seas will have its own dog, "Rover is super happy on Icon. And of course we're going to have Sailor on Star of the Seas."

There's no word yet which dog breed Sailor will be, but Star of the Seas will indeed continue the trend of having a "family dog" on the ship.

Having a dog on a cruise ship is a symbol for the fun and family-centric nature that Royal Caribbean wants for its Icon Class vessels. If you're going to appeal to families and be a game-changer in terms of being different from other ships, a dog onboard is one way to do that.

Royal Beach Club groundbreaking scheduled

Royal Beach Club in Nassau

Mr. Bayley also confirmed the Royal Beach Club will have its groundbreaking next week.

"Next week we're going to the Bahamas for a groundbreaking ceremony for the Royal Beach Club in Nassau, which will be another new and exciting product for Royal Caribbean guests," he said during the webinar.

Nassau Cruise Port’s chief executive Michael Maura told local media last week the ground-breaking ceremony will take place on Monday, April 22. 


The goal is for a summer 2025 opening.

Royal Beach Club will be a new type of shore excursion experience opening in 2025, exclusively for Royal Caribbean guests.

Read more: Everything we know about the Royal Beach Club at Nassau

Royal Beach Club render

Once opened, it promises to create, "the ultimate beach day" for its guests. The Royal Beach Club is exclusively for Royal Caribbean cruise passengers, but unlike its private island of Perfect Day at CocoCay, admission is not complimentary. Instead, it will cost extra to visit the beach club and space is limited to about 2,750 guests per day. 

Full details have not been announced for the new beach club, but Mr. Bayley added during the webinar the cruise line will share more news about that destination experience over time.

Construction equipment was spotted last week arriving to the site of the club, and the confirmation of a groundbreaking ceremony means formal construction will begin soon.

Ready to shake up the short cruise market

Utopia aerial

While hyping the launch of Utopia of the Seas later this summer, Mr. Bayley talked about the significance of having a new Oasis Class ship start off with short cruises.

He began by explaining why a new Oasis Class ship makes a difference, "If you look at the kind of the history of the short product in the cruise industry, over time, it kind of degraded. There was older hardware placed into the short market, and it was really a bad representation of the industry in terms of new to cruise."

"We decided to turn that upside down some time ago when we started taking ships like Freedom and Navigator and investing significant significantly into upgrades of the product."

Utopia of the Seas pool deck

"Bringing Utopia, a brand new Oasis class, straight into the short product market is just literally putting the best hardware in the planet into this market. And it is absolutely a green light for new to cruise."

Royal Caribbean thinks dominating the short cruise market means big opportunities given the numbers they're looking at.

"Our statistics tell us that in the United States, the market of potential cruisers is around 120 million people," Mr. Bayley explained.


He said about 15-20 million people cruise right now in the United States.

"We've only really touched 20% of the potential market in the United States and this kind of product, and you combine Utopia with with Icon, for example the seven night product, we've really got this stunning lineup of products that are really exciting and really tick the box, particularly in this multigenerational family."

He also said the current makeup of cruisers is evenly distributed among generations, "if you look at our demographics at Royal Caribbean International, we're kind of evenly split across all generations, and that's something that's quite special."

Matt started Royal Caribbean Blog in 2010 as a place to share his passion for all things Royal Caribbean with readers. He oversees all the writers at Royal Caribbean Blog, and writes a great deal of content on a daily basis.  He has become one of the foremost expert on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

Over the years, he has reached Pinnacle Club status with Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

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