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Spotted: New look for Perfect Day at CocoCay dock

28 Jan 2021

Cruises or not, it looks like Royal Caribbean's private island in the Bahamas has a new look for its pier.

Celebrity Cruises Captain Kate McCue shared a video on TikTok of the Celebrity Edge docking at the private island recently, and the pier definitely looks different than the last time cruise ships visited with passengers.

CocoCay pier in 2019

CocoCay pier in 2021

The new look features either painted textures or decals affixed to the ground in a multitude of colors that lead all the way from where the cruise ships dock to the island itself.

Previously, the pier's ground was not painted and only had multicolored umbrellas along the way.

Read moreDo's & Don'ts of Perfect Day at CocoCay

In looking at the original concept art for the Perfect Day at CocoCay makeover, it does appear the pier was designed to have both decorations on the ground and umbrellas.

In August 2020, Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley said some minor work was still being done at CocoCay during the cruise shutdown.

In addition to finishing up some landscaping and painting work, there was a pressing need for a repair to Oasis Lagoon pool.

"We've also been conducting a fairly significant repair that we had to do on the Oasis Lagoon."

"We were struggling enormously with having to make a repair on the lagoon and we could never figure out when we could do it, but we knew we had to get it done at some point."

'We could never figure out when to do it because of Covid, obviously we have plenty of time, so that works."

According to Mr. Bayley, the island has an operational team to maintain things.

Read moreWho is maintaining Perfect Day at CocoCay while there are no cruises?

Thank you to Wise_Blueberry_5709 for spotting this change.

Who is maintaining Perfect Day at CocoCay while there are no cruises?

07 Aug 2020

Throughout Royal Caribbean's suspension of sailings, there have been questions about the impact on many aspects of life at sea, including Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Royal Caribbean International CEO Michael Bayley was asked earlier this week who is maintaining the cruise line's private island in the Bahamas.

Mr. Bayley compared the upkeep of Perfect Day at CocoCay to any of Royal Caribbean's cruise ships, which all have an operational team to maintain things.

"We have an operating team that rotates through Perfect Day and the maintenance and management and engineering."

The shutdown has provided Royal Caribbean the opportunity to address an engineering issue that needed attention for a while.

In addition to finishing up some landscaping and painting work, there was a pressing need for a repair to Oasis Lagoon pool.

"We've also been conducting a fairly significant repair that we had to do on the Oasis Lagoon."

"We were struggling enormously with having to make a repair on the lagoon and we could never figure out when we could do it, but we knew we had to get it done at some point."

'We could never figure out when to do it because of Covid, obviously we have plenty of time, so that works."

Mr. Bayley also gave a quick update on the impact to the island by Hurricane Isaias, in which the island was spared any significant damage.

"At one point, it was looking as if we were really going to get hit badly. We took one of our ships, Grandeur, went to Perfect Day, and picked up 90 percent of the operating staff to keep them safe and move out of harm's way."

"There was a small team of seven who stayed on the island as the storm passed through. And we're up and about the following morning, and called us and said it's looking good, you know, tree down here and bit of damage here and there.

"But Perfect Day came through perfectly."

Here is why overnight visits to Perfect Day at CocoCay didn't happen

05 Aug 2020

While Royal Caribbean confirmed in May that it would offer overnight visits to its private island in the Bahamas, we now have a bit more detail as to why it is simply not feasible.

Royal Caribbean International CEO Michael Bayley spoke on this topic during a webinar with travel agents on Wednesday, after being asked if the cruise line was considering overnight stays at Perfect Day at CocoCay.

"I've been considering overnight stays for Perfect Day almost since the beginning. One of the issues that we had, ironically, was that we had we had so much so many ships going there, it became problematic. Part of the ongoing capital investment in Perfect Day was allowing us to accommodate additional ships so we could have one ship stay overnight."

As you might imagine, nearly half a year of not being able to offer cruises has taken its toll on the cruise line.

"And sadly, a lot of our capital projects that were lined up were put on hold, obviously, because of the fact that we got no revenue coming in."

This adds onto what Royal Caribbean Senior Vice President of Sales and Trade Support & Service Vicki Freed indicated that they heard from guests they enjoyed the day on the island, but evenings on the ship.

"But as of now, it doesn't look like we will be doing overnights because our guests, even with our late night stays, once they want to come back, they really do want to come back onto the ship and enjoy the fine dining and they want to enjoy the entertainment that we have onboard."

Mr. Bayley did wrap-up by describing an overnight stay scenario as a "crown jewel" to the private island's offerings once cruises resume.

"When we do return to service, it will be phased in. It will not be like a light switch where suddenly the switch is on and everything's suddenly operating."

"But certainly that is kind of the crown jewel of our return to service will be Perfect Day."

Royal Caribbean won't offer overnight stays at Perfect Day at Cococay

27 May 2020

It looks like overnight stays at Perfect Day at CocoCay will not be happening after all.

In the past, Royal Caribbean hinted at the possibility of offering cruises that had an overnight, or even longer, stay at its private island in the Bahamas.

Royal Caribbean Senior Vice President of Sales and Trade Support & Service Vicki Freed answered a question during a webinar on Wednesday that touched on the status of the cruise line's plans to offer overnight stays.

"It's something that we have talked about and we even did late night days in Perfect Day at Coco Cay, where we had fireworks and we had a concert." 

"But as of now, it doesn't look like we will be doing overnights because our guests, even with our late night stays, once they want to come back, they really do want to come back onto the ship and enjoy the fine dining and they want to enjoy the entertainment that we have onboard."

While overnight stays may be sidelined as an idea right now, cruises that feature multiple stops at CocoCay seem to be a hit with guests.

"Those have been more successful because people say, Oh, I didn't get a chance to really experience everything I wanted to do at Perfect Day at CocoCay. Maybe today I want to do the thrill side and the next visit I want to do the chill side."

Royal Caribbean celebrates one year anniversary of Perfect Day at CocoCay opening

05 May 2020

It may be hard to imagine, but it has been exactly one year since Royal Caribbean officially opened its revamped private island in the Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay.

In the year since Perfect Day at CocoCay opened, it has quickly become a favorite destination of so many cruisers, even those who questioned the massive overhaul concept.

In celebrating the anniversary of the opening, I thought it might be fun to look back at the highlights from the first year of paradise.

The announcement

At a ceremony in March 2018 in New York City, Royal Caribbean announced its plans to expand its private island in the Bahamas, CocoCay.

The $200 million transformation (later it increased to $250 million) was part of an even bigger announcement to reveal the Royal Amplified fleet upgrades.

Originally, the timeline had an early opening in September 2018 with the completion of the pier, followed by the majority of the island will launch spring 2019. This timeline changed quite a few times in the months to come, but the objectives remained in tact.

Royal Caribbean hoped this destination would offer guests more than just a beach day experience.  A water park, zip-line, cabanas, dining venues, and even an upgraded luxury beach option were part of the initial plans.

“It’s true that our ships are technological and engineering marvels in their own right and offer a multitude of unexpected experiences; but our destinations are an equally important part of the cruise vacation,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “We are introducing the Perfect Day Island Collection to deliver the most memorable vacation for adventure seekers on land and on board our ships. Once completed Perfect Day at CocoCay will be the ultimate family destination in the Caribbean.”

Pre-opening - March 2019

Royal Caribbean took a phased approach to opening its private destination, beginning with opening its new pier, along with the Oasis Lagoon pool, Snack Shack and Chill Grill.

On March 16, 2019, Mariner of the Seas docked at CocoCay, marking the first time a Royal Caribbean ship docked and disembarked guests on the island.  

While the water park and other venues were still under construction, guests got their first look at what Royal Caribbean had in mind.

The largest freshwater pool in the Caribbean, Oasis Lagoon,offered a massive complimentary pool day for guests to enjoy. This included a swim-up bar, fountains and in-pool seating.

Two dining venues opened as well, Snack Shack and Chill Grill. These venues served up more than hot dogs and hamburgers, with the largest variety of private island food Royal Caribbean has ever had.

The Artisan Market was also revamped and opened, where Bahamians could sell guests their many wares in a straw market environment.

April 2019 - Splashaway Bay and Skipper's Grill open

A few short weeks after the initial venues opened, Royal Caribbean opened up two new areas: Splashaway Bay and Skipper's Grill.

Splashaway Bay is a complimentary aqua park for kids that features geysers, drench buckets, sprays and more. A complimentary option, it is a real hit with younger kids who enjoy non-stop splashing.

Skipper's Grill is another complimentary dining option on the island that provides lunch and snacks to guests.

In addition to the newly opened venues, it appears Royal Caribbean has expanded its Voom internet access to the island, marking the first time any of its private destinations offer internet access on the island.  

Up, Up and Away goes up for the first time

About a week later, one of the signature attractions Royal Caribbean added to Perfect Day at CocoCay launched.

The Up, Up and Away helium balloon takes guests 450 feet above Perfect Day at CocoCay, providing the highest vantage point in The Bahamas.

May 4 - Grand Opening of Perfect Day at CocoCay

Fourteen months after being announced, Royal Caribbean officially opened Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Guests sailing on Navigator of the Seas were welcomed to Perfect Day at CocoCay, where a number of new venues, activities and offerings were officially open for guest use.

Among the many options now available to guests, Thrill Waterpark was highly anticipated and open as well. 

Thrill Waterpark is home to Daredevil’s Tower, where guests can try a number of single-rider waterslides of various heights, including the 135-foot-tall Daredevil’s Peak – the tallest waterslide in North America.

Additional highlights are the twin Dueling Demon drop slides, launching riders from a vertical position; the Manta Raycers, where friends can race down twin open flume slides; the high-speed, fully vertical Screeching Serpent; and the coiling Green Mamba, a massive aqua tube slide.

Younger kids could enjoy the complimentary Captain Jill’s Galleon, which is an interactive play structure loaded with swashbuckling thrills.

Royal Caribbean also revamped its beach offerings with the dedication of Chill Island.

The 1,600 foot zipline opened as well, marking yet another fun activity for families to try.

Summer 2019: Late night stays & Two-stops

Off the bat, Perfect Day at CocoCay was such a hit with guests that Royal Caribbean announced it would add select sailings that visit Perfect Day at CocoCay twice, along with late night stays.

Beginning September 30, 2019, Royal Caribbean began to offer 4-night itineraries to the private island destination across nearly 40 sailings. 

In addition, three one-of-a-kind cruises with late-night visits to the island were offered on Navigator of the Seas. These visits included traditional Bahamian-inspired activities, including a Junkanoo Jam Up Party, an island barbeque and performances by a calypso band and fire dancers, topped off with unforgettable farewell fireworks before setting sail.

The official beer of Perfect Day at CocoCay!

In the fall, Royal Caribbean teamed up with Funky Buddha Brewery to create an exclusive beer for Perfect Day at CocoCay.

The Chilla Thrilla beer is available only at the island, and offers a fun and different option for guests to enjoy while spending the day there.

Coco Beach Club opens - January 2020

The final phase of Perfect Day at CocoCay opened on January 31, 2020 with the grand opening of the Coco Beach Club.

The Coco Beach Club is a exclusive area of Perfect Day at CocoCay that offers an oceanfront infinity pool, upgraded cuisine and the only floating cabanas in the Bahamas. Plus, there is a complimentary restaurant at Coco Beach Club featuring lobster, snapper, and steak— plus a buffet of soups, salads, and starters. 

Entry to the Coco Beach Club requires an additional cost. Guests can choose between a day pass to the Coco Beach Club, as well as the option to reserve a cabana or floating cabana.

The attention-grabbing floating cabanas also debuted, which sought to bring a bit of Bora Bora to the Bahamas.

The 20 luxurious cabanas feature a private slide into the ocean, overwater hammock, dining area, freshwater shower, wet bar and an unbeatable ocean vista.

Have you visited Perfect Day at CocoCay yet? What is your favorite spot on the island? Share your memories, tips and advice in the comments!

Recipe: Make the Coco Loco official CocoCay cocktail at home!

04 Apr 2020

With there being no Royal Caribbean cruises for many weeks (if not months), that also means there are no visits to Perfect Day at CocoCay.

If you want to get that private island feel back at home, you might consider putting on your sunglasses, turning up the reggae music and making yourself the official concoction of CocoCay: the Coco Loco.

The Coco Loco is the kind of frozen concoction that is sure to put a smile on just about anyone's face, and ever since I had my very first one, I was hooked.

While at home, it is easy enough to make a batch yourself so that you can feel like you are sitting on Chill Island.

Photo by Lori Barrett

Coco Loco Ingredients

Makes one cocktail

  • 1/2 oz Orange Juice Concentrate
  • 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice Concentrate
  • 1/2 oz Papaya Juice Concentrate
  • 1/2 oz Coconut Cream
  • 3/4 oz Dark Rum (Or make it a virgin Coco Loco without the rum)
  • 3/4 oz Coconut Rum
  • 1/4 oz Grenadine
  • Crushed ice

Suggested music while preparing

  • Kenny Chesney - No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems

Coco Loco Instructions

  1. Toss all the ingredients into a blender, and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour the potion into a cocktail glass.
  3. Dress it up with a fresh wedge of pineapple.

Royal Caribbean to live stream sunrise at Perfect Day at CocoCay on April 2

01 Apr 2020

Royal Caribbean will live stream sunrise over Perfect Day at CocoCay on its Facebook page.

In an effort to "brighten" everyone's day, Royal Caribbean sent an email that they will live stream sunrise on the Royal Caribbean Facebook page to‌mo‌rr‌ow.

The video will take place at the cruise line's private island in The Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay.

Live streaming will begin at ‌7‌:‌1‌5a‌m E‌S‌T on A‌pr‌i‌l 2‌, 2‌02‌0.

To check out the broadcast on Thursday, simply visit Royal Caribbean on Facebook and you’ll find the live stream at the top of the page. I'm looking forward to starting my day by being virtually transported to paradise!

Will you start your day with the sun rise at Perfect Day at CocoCay? Let us know in the comments below!

Royal Caribbean adds option to add extra guests to cabanas

05 Mar 2020

Royal Caribbean has updated its cabanas at Perfect Day at CocoCay to allow additional guests to be added beyond the cabana capacity for an added price.

The description of the private cabanas at Perfect Day at CocoCay now lists an added option to go beyond the maximum capacity for $50 per person, up to 2 additional people.

The new option shows up for Chill Island cabanas, Oasis Lagoon cabanas & South Beach cabanas on the Cruise Planner site.

Thanks to RoyalCaribbeanBlog reader CGTLH for alerting us to this change.

Video: 10 things you didn't know about Perfect Day at CocoCay

25 Feb 2020

Perfect Day at CocoCay is filled with great activities and things to do for the family. Chilling at the beach, going down water slides, dining around the island and more are part of a day at this private island.

Matt shares a look at the top ten things you might not be aware of prior to visiting Royal Caribbean's destination.

And if you love this video, there’s plenty more for you to enjoy over on our Royal Caribbean Blog YouTube Channel!

By the way, have you subscribed yet? Be sure to subscribe to our channel and never miss a single video!

So check out the video and then let us know: What are you most surprised by at CocoCay?

8 things you should know about the Coco Beach Club before you go

10 Feb 2020

Royal Caribbean just opened the Coco Beach Club at Perfect Day at CocoCay, and it is already a big hit with guests who love having a secluded enclave to enjoy during their visit to the island.

This extra-cost venue is all about providing an exclusive, brag-worthy spot to anyone that values being in a limited-access spot.

Having just visited the Coco Beach Club, you will not want to miss any of these important tips prior to checking it out for yourself.

No tickets needed

If you buy admission to the Coco Beach Club, there are no shore excursion tickets to show.

When you check-in at the entrance, the staff will scan your SeaPass card and be able to see your admission purchase and grant you access.

If you do decide to leave the club to venture around the island, the staff will give you a bracelet to make reentering super simple.

Food is amazing

Royal Caribbean's culinary offerings in the Coco Beach Club are worthy of a specialty restaurant back onboard a ship.

You will not find burgers, hot dogs and other typical island fare here.  Instead, there is lobster, steak, grilled fish, ceviche, babaganoush and plenty more to enjoy.  The menu reminds me of a cross between Coastal Kitchen and Solarium Bistro, and it is so good that you will want to come very hungry to the meal.

Moreover, you can order unlimited entrees at the Coco Beach Club restaurant, so feel free to try a couple of dishes while you are there.

Day beds and loungers are first-come, first-seated

The beach club offers lounge chairs, day beds and in-pool loungers throughout the club and they are available to whomever claims them first.

There are plenty of beach lounge chairs and umbrellas, but if you want an in-pool lounger or day bed, be sure to get to the club as soon as you can.

Book early before it sells out

Royal Caribbean has clearly hit a home run with the Coco Beach Club, because passes to this exclusive area sell out quickly.

If you want to visit, be sure to book a spot as soon as you can prior to the cruise.  

Access Royal Caribbean's Cruise Planner site in the months leading up to your cruise and book a pass to ensure you get in.

Ask to be on waitlist if it does sell out

If you are too late to buy a pass because it is sold out, then you can ask the Shore Excursion desk once onboard about being put on a waitlist.

This happened to me after I booked a cruise at the last minute and passes were sold out.  The Shore Excursion staff on your ship can add you to the waitlist upon request.

Keep in mind that the waitlist may or may not work, but it is the last hope for getting in if it is sold out.

Coffee and tea available in the morning

The Coco Beach Club is the only place on Perfect Day at CocoCay that serves coffee in the morning.

If you hurried off the ship to get one of those day beds by the infinity pool, you will be happy to know there is coffee, tea and Danishes available to enjoy in the morning.

The coffee cart is located to the left of the entrance area as you walk into the Coco Beach Club.

Reservations needed for lunch

The Coco Beach Club restaurant takes reservations for lunch to prevent lines or extended waits to dine.  

There is a staff member throughout the day at the entrance to the restaurant taking reservations, with lunch running between 11am and 3pm.

Stop by there early to secure a spot for your family.

Towels provided

No need to grab towels off the ship, because the Coco Beach Club provides towels for you to use during the day.

In fact, these towels are not the typical blue Royal Caribbean towels. The cruise line came up with a special towel just for the Coco Beach Club, adding to that sense of exclusivity.

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