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July 2015
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Royal Caribbean Adding Waterslides, New Suite Class, Private Stop Enhancements

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July 16, 2015 – Royal Caribbean had a burst of Twitter announcements last evening which, while short on details, gave a hint on where the cruise line is headed.

Waterslides figure prominently in those plans with the announcement that Liberty Of The Seas will receive one during it’s overhaul in January 2016, which comes on the heels of the recent announcement about adding a slide to Majesty Of The Seas. The company had previously announced that the all-new Harmony Of The Seas – the third ship in the Oasis class – would have waterslides, and now we know that there will be four total. One of them will called “The Abyss” and will be ten decks high, starting high above the Aqua Theater and ending in the Boardwalk neighborhood. The other three slides will be part of “The Perfect Storm” and named Cyclone, Monsoon, and Typhoon.

Royal Caribbean has lagged behind their competition when it comes to the perks offered to guests booked in high-end suites. Now we know that the new class will be named “Royal Suite Class” although no other information has been provided. Speculation swirls about the possibility of butler service, and Royal has already started adding amenities to it’s newest ships such as reclassifying the Concierge Lounges on Oasis and Allure as “Suite Lounges” and installing a suites-only “Coastal Kitchen” restaurant on both ships, which removed the Viking Crown Lounge. Quantum and Anthem were built with the Coastal Kitchen, although that class of ship still retains the Concierge Lounge (which is in a really poor location, access wise). I believe the plan is to make all Concierge Lounges into Suite Lounges, which will be gold-card access only (Grand Suites or higher, and Pinnacle Club members).

Royal Caribbean also tweeted that enhancements will be coming to both it’s Coco Cay and Labadee private resorts, although details were not provided. Labadee is already substantially built-up, but Coco Cay still retains a largely rustic feel. Labadee features a dock, which was a huge improvement.

Finally, the cruise line has given it’s high speed internet service a new name. It was initially called O3b after the satellite service providing it, but now is called VOOM. VOOM is on the Quantum and Oasis class ships and will be added to Majesty Of The Seas. The plan is to add it to all ships. Royal made a splash earlier this month by announcing VOOM will be free for all guests on Majesty Of The Seas, which of course started speculation as to whether they will roll out free internet fleet-wide. Royal Caribbean CEO Michael Bayley responded that they are considering it, with emphasis on “considering”.