Royal Caribbean will this weekend proudly show off the long list of improvements to Voyager of the Seas, the biggest ship to be homeported in Australia.
She will be packed with the latest hi-tech gadgetry and amenities including the much anticipated flowrider, the first surfing simulator in the Asia Pacific.
Right now, the ship is in dry dock in Singapore’s Sembawang Shipyard undergoing a $22.3 million facelift, according to the shipyard. The bow-to-stern revitalization is part of Royal Caribbean’s long-term strategy to upgrade all cruise ships to the standard of its Oasis class fleet.
The installation of the flowrider module on deck 13 will take 30 days to complete and Australians will be among the first to break the waves when Voyager leaves Singapore on November 25 for a 13-night cruise calling at Darwin on Nov 30, Brisbane on December 6 and Sydney two days later on her third local season Down Under.
“And you never have to wait for good wind conditions with the flowrider,’’ says Royal Caribbean in its latest update.
“Now you can ride the perfect wave and test your skills on the 12 metre long surf simulator at any time on the ocean.’’
This is the third time Royal Caribbean has picked Sembawang Shipyard for the makeover of its cruise lines including Legend of the Seas last year and Rhapsody of the Seas the previous year.
Voyager is the first of five ships in the line’s Voyager class. It has 15 decks, accommodates 3284 passengers and first entered service in 1999. It has been refurbished three times before in 2004, 2009 and 2012.
Under the current makeover, Voyager’s interior staterooms will now have a virtual balcony with an 80-inch, high definition television screen framed to look like a real balcony with real-time sights and sounds of the sea displayed on the screen. This concept was first introduced on the Quantum class of ships and Voyager will only be one of three ships to have this feature.
Film lovers will be able to get all the action on the ship’s new 3D movie theatre plus an outdoor movie screen by the pool which can also be used for giant video game challenges.
No upgrade is complete without the addition of new restaurants on Voyager. The ship will now have a restyled Japanese Izumi restaurant serving fresh sushi, the line’s signature Chop Grille Steakhouse and Giovanni’s Table Italian Trattoria. The ship’s old champagne bar will be turned into a retro chic drinking hole taking patrons back to the swinging ‘60’s. There will also be a new Diamond Lounge.
The ship’s Wi-Fi service has been updated and flat panel televisions sets will be installed in every stateroom.
Voyager’s sister ships, Radiance of the Seas and Rhapsody of the Seas will also be homeported in Australia this summer.