Royal Caribbean has unveiled the first ship in their newest line of cruise ships the “Icon” class with the “Icon of the Sea” and it is giant, the biggest in fact at a whopping estimated 1,198 feet long about 10 feet longer then the oasis class of cruise ships. 20 total decks, 2805 staterooms, 7 pools, 9 whirlpools, and a maximum of over 9000 passengers(including crew) there is a lot to unpack here so lets over the neighborhoods.
We will start with a returning neighborhood in the Royal Promenade. First of its kind in the promenade is the floor-to-roof ocean view with a staggering 36×95 foot window to watch the world drift by through. The Promenade also comes packed with 15 different restaurants, cafes, bars, and lounges sure to keep all the foodies busy all cruise long. This neighborhood is also home to the Pearl which will be replacing the Rising Tide Bar from the Oasis class, and the Absolute Zero which is the biggest ice arena on a ship so far.
Another returning favorite is Central Park lined with 13,000 tropical plants and trees this neighborhood is 5 decks tall and will feature many shops and restaurants. This will be quite the sight for all of the nature enthusiasts out there.
The final returning neighborhood is the Suites Neighborhood which is exclusive to suite guests found in the C-class, Sky-class, and Star-class suites. Some of the exclusive benefits include a private pool and hot tub, two restaurants in the Coastal Kitchen and the Mediterranean at the grove, and a multilevel sundeck.
The first and possibly most exciting new neighborhood is Thrill Island which includes the first ever ship bound water park Category 6. Category 6 includes 6, go figure, different record breaking slides the first of which is the Pressure Drop which is the first at sea open free-fall slide also has a staggering 66 degree incline which is just crazy. The Frightening Bolt which is a tremendous 46 feet tall making it the tallest drop slide at sea. Another first at sea are Storm Surge, and Hurricane Hunter the first family raft slides at sea that can hold 4 passengers each, and finally the pair of slides Storm Chasers the first at sea mat racers. The nice thing is entry to the water park is covered by your cruise fare so you won’t have to pay extra to get access to Category 6. Rounding out the the thrill in Thrill island is Crown’s Edge a multistage attraction where you traverse the iconic crown and anchor symbol. The course includes a rope course, skywalk, and a sudden drop 154 feet above the ocean for the thrill seekers and adrenaline junkies out there. This neighborhood also includes the sports court, rock wall called Adrenaline Peak, the Lost Dunes a minigolf course, and the Flowrider.
At the rear of the ship is the Hideaway a beach club inspired getaway with a dedicated DJ, and bar. Another cruising first is the suspended infinity pool that can be found here designed to seamlessly blend into the sunset as shown above. The infinity pool is surrounded by Whirlpools, and a multi-level sun terrace where you can find many seats and loungers. This will be quite the classy venue for sure.
Next is Chill Island where if pools are your thing then this is where you will want to be. First is the Royal Bay pool the new largest pool at sea with underwater loungers and raised whirlpools. Next is the Swim & Tonic the first swim up bar at sea for all your drinking and lounging needs. There is also the cove pool an edge infinity pool with more underwater loungers. The last area of note is Cloud 17 an adults only zone that has its own pool and private access to the coveted Lime & Coconut bar.
Now we have Surfside with even more pools, the difference being these pools are more dedicated for families with Splashaway Bay and Baby Bay for kids to go enjoy themselves in the water. There is also a pool called Water’s Edge here which is not an adults only zone but is designed with adults in mind while their kids play in the aforementioned Splashaway Bay and Baby Bay. Surfside also has it’s own carrousel much like Wonder’s own Boardwalk. You can also find many restaurants and shops here as well as the Adventure Ocean and the teens clubs down here making Surfside a one stop shop for families.
Last but not least at the top of the ship is the Aquadome this is where world class shows with artists and divers will be taking place with yet another record broken in the tallest waterfall at sea which can be synced with shows for spectacular effects. All of the show will be indoors so if the weather is a little crazy out you won’t have to worry about missing the shows now. When there isn’t a show going the Aquadome will be more of a lounging/shopping area with bars, shops, restaurants, and lounging areas strung throughout the neighborhood making this neighborhood much more of an all day experience. With amazing views everywhere you won’t want to miss the Aquadome.
Now we have gone over each of the neighborhoods and there was a lot to unpack and we haven’t even gone into the specifics like restaurants, and shops, or even the rooms. The “Icon of the Seas” will be launching January, 28th, 2024. If you want to take a look for yourself take a look at this link to get a vacation quote today.