It’s been a long, painful year-plus for the cruise industry, with ships stuck ashore as the world battled the pandemic. But innovation was never shuttered, and as cruise ships return to sea, travelers will be witnessing a revolution in cruise-ship design and amenities. Here’s a peek at what the ships of today and tomorrow will look like.
Atlas Ocean Voyages’ World Navigator, launching this summer, offers ecologically sustainable features, including a hybrid power generator and management system from Rolls-Royce that allows the ship to consume as little as 20% of low-sulfur fuel compared to conventional engines. It won’t need to run its engines while docked, and it features hydro jets to limit underwater noise that scares and stresses fish and marine animals. Onboard, they’ve banned single-use plastics, and they recycle or reuse waste.
Extreme Adventure in True Luxury
Get ready to explore even the most remote areas of the world in style. Crystal Expedition Cruises is introducing its agile PC6 polar class Crystal Endeavor in July, which will be the most spacious, fastest and most powerful expedition ship in the industry, allowing her to venture into the Arctic and Antarctic regions in absolute comfort. The 200-guest ship will feature Michelin-inspired dining, luxurious rooms and onboard fun, including a casino, a marina and a two-story solarium.
The adults-only Virgin Voyages was set to sail their Scarlet Lady just before the pandemic hit. When she finally takes to the seas in September, the ship will feature some of the most high-tech cabins in the industry. From mood lighting at the touch of a button to in-room tablets to control your environment and entertainment — plus, of course, upgraded Wi-Fi — you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into the future when you’re onboard.
The luxury line Silversea knows what people want on a cruise, and great food tops that list. The new, all-suite Silver Moon features the S.A.L.T. (Sea and Land Taste) culinary-enrichment program, enabling guests to get a taste of a destination onboard or off. S.A.L.T. Kitchen’s menu will change along with the ship’s destination, while the S.A.L.T. Lab Test Kitchen will teach passengers about local ingredients and artisanal techniques through workshops, tastings and demonstrations.
The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection will offer luxury voyages in the Mediterranean, the Caribbean and Northern Europe when they launch this fall. With a name like Ritz-Carlton attached to the cruise line, you can expect the finest amenities, services and accommodations, as well as expertly curated shore excursions. But get ready for ocean fun thanks to the aft-located Marina Platform, which offers direct ocean access and easy entry into the sea, plus water toys to help turn the ocean into your playground.
Aboard the MSC Seashore, connected cabins will make it much easier for families to travel together without being cramped in one room or having to secure a limited-supply family suite. You can connect two rooms (for up to six guests) or three (housing 10 guests total) and have plenty of space to sprawl out. Although, with the ship’s many new restaurants, as well as family-amusement and swim areas, you may not be spending much time in your cabins anyway.
The Suite Life
On the Regent Seven Seas’ Navigator, every room is a suite and every suite is sumptuous and spacious, featuring L’Occitane toiletries, plush bathrobes and slippers, as well as superior beds to ensure a good night’s sleep. Upgrade to the 1,000-plus-square-foot Master Suite and you’ll get a cocktail party for eight, caviar service and personalized stationery so you can literally write home about it.
“Next” Level Enhancements
While cruising was paused, the Oceania Cruises team reimagined the onboard experience for their guests. What ensued was OceaniaNEXT, a sweeping array of enhancements to the ships and the onboard experience. Menus have been refined and the guest experience has been elevated to new levels, promising an even better experience for passengers when Oceania resumes operations in August.
Adventurous Activity Options
Built for diverse environments, the Seabourn Venture, setting sea in December, is an adventure lover’s paradise. The ship will feature two submarines on board, providing views of underwater life. Venture has been built to carry a plethora of sea kayaks, mountain bikes, e-bikes and enough Zodiacs for every guest on board, ensuring an active and engaging experience for all.
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