Royal Caribbean reveals details about megaship Harmony of the Seas

Royal Caribbean International’s Harmony of the Seas will include multi-story water slides, as shown in this rendering.
Royal Caribbean International’s Harmony of the Seas will include multi-story water slides, as shown in this rendering.

Miami-based Royal Caribbean International launched the world’s largest cruise ship in 2009, when the 5,400-passenger Oasis of the Seas made its debut. Allure of the Seas came along a year later and shared the designation, even though it was a few inches longer.

Next year, the third ship in the Oasis class will take the title from its older siblings. Harmony of the Seas, which sets sail in April of 2016, will be slightly bigger and hold a few dozen more passengers than its predecessors.

Royal Caribbean revealed those and other details on Wednesday, two days after confirming the new ship’s name.

Harmony of the Seas is expected to encompass 227,000 gross registered tons compared to Oasis and Allure’s 225,282 gross registered tons. While those ships have 2,706 staterooms with capacity for 5,400 passengers at double occupancy, Harmony of the Seas will have 2,747 staterooms with room for 5,479 passengers.

Like the first two ships in the class, Harmony will include seven neighborhoods such as Central Park, Boardwalk, Royal Promenade and Entertainment Place. In a new twist for the class and brand, the ship will feature three multi-story water slides.

The vessel will also pick up some features that were introduced on Quantum of the Seas last year, including the robot-powered Bionic Bar, faster Internet and wristbands that passengers can use to shop, make reservations and unlock stateroom doors. Inside cabins will feature virtual balconies, a design element that originated with the Quantum class.

“The Oasis class ships continue to astound and delight both new and experienced cruisers. They shatter preconceived notions of what cruising can be and continue to stand in a category by themselves,” Richard D. Fain, chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises, said in a statement. “With Harmony of the Seas, we are making the most exciting experience at sea even better.”

The flexible Dynamic Dining model, which has undergone some tweaks since rolling out on Quantum, will be in place on Harmony. Passengers will be able to choose the “classic” experience that allows them to rotate through each main complimentary restaurant with the same group and assigned waiter.

Royal Caribbean has not yet said where Harmony of the Seas will be based. The cruise line will also launch Ovation of the Seas, the third Quantum-class ship, in April of 2016.