MS Harmony of the Seas
Harmony of the Seas in Rotterdam
|Name:||Harmony of the Seas|
|Owner:||Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.|
|Operator:||Royal Caribbean International|
|Port of registry:||Nassau, Bahamas|
|Ordered:||27 December 2012|
|Builder:||STX France SA|
|Cost:||US$1.35 billion (2015)|
|Laid down:||9 May 2014|
|Launched:||19 June 2015 (float-out)|
|Acquired:||12 May 2016|
|Maiden voyage:||29 May 2016|
|In service:||15 May 2016|
|Class and type:||Oasis-class cruise ship|
|Displacement:||Approximately 120,000 t (132,000 short tons)|
|Length:||362.12 m (1,188.1 ft)|
|Draught:||9.322 m (30.6 ft)|
|Depth:||22.6 m (74 ft)|
|Decks:||18; 16 passenger decks|
MS Harmony of the Seas is an Oasis-class cruise ship built by STX France at the Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France for Royal Caribbean International. With a gross tonnage of 226,963 GT, she is the second largest passenger ship in the world, surpassing her older sisters Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, but surpassed by her newer sister Symphony of the Seas.
The success of the first two Oasis-class ships led Royal Caribbean Cruises to order a third ship of the type in December 2012. Harmony of the Seas was floated out on 19 June 2015, began her first sea trials on 10 March 2016, and was delivered to Royal Caribbean on 12 May 2016. After a construction time of 32 months, the ship first set sail on 15 May 2016 from the STX France docks in Saint-Nazaire, viewed by some 70,000 people. Her first destination was Southampton, England, although her home port was Barcelona until 23 October 2016 when she crossed the Atlantic.
Harmony of the Seas took two short "preview cruises", three nights to Cherbourg and four nights to Rotterdam, after reaching port in Southampton on 17 May. During these voyages, passengers complained of ongoing construction, a lack of hot water, unopened attractions, excessive waits at restaurants, and other issues. The ship's maiden voyage departed from Southampton on 29 May and arrived at its summer home port of Barcelona on 5 June. According to passengers on this cruise, construction had finished and the ship was ready to sail.
Harmony of the Seas has 2,747 staterooms, with a wide variety of types, to accommodate (at double occupancy) 5,479 guests ranging from small interior rooms to larger rooms and suites, some of which are fitted with wall-mounted 80-inch (200 cm) screens, covering nearly the floor to ceiling, that show the ship's environment as if through a window, named 'virtual balconies'. These screens were first fitted on the Quantum class of cruise ships. A full 43 categories of stateroom types are offered, starting at a size of 180 square feet (17 m2); several types of suites are available, including the new "Royal Class" suites.
As the third member of the Oasis class, Harmony of the Seas is very similar to her two sister ships. However, there are some design changes and extra amenities, most noticeably the "Ultimate Abyss" dry slide at the stern of the ship and the "Perfect Storm" water slides. Harmony of the Seas is the second Royal Caribbean ship to feature water slides, after Liberty of the Seas underwent a refurbishment in January 2016 that added water slides and Splashaway Bay. The ship is divided into seven neighborhoods, including Central Park and Boardwalk, like her Oasis-class sisters. Amenities include:
- "Vitality" Spa and fitness center
- "Splashaway Bay" water play area for young children
- "Perfect Storm" water slide complex, featuring three slides
- "Ultimate Abyss" dry slide complex, with two ten-story tall enclosed slides
- 23 swimming pools and 10 hot tubs, including two hot tubs cantilevered over the edge of the ship
- 2 Flowrider surf simulators
- "Casino Royale" casino with a full selection of slot machines and table games
- "Puzzle Break: Escape the Rubicon" escape room game designed by Seattle-based Puzzle Break and ShowFX
- 20 dining venues, including "Wonderland" molecular gastronomy restaurant
- 11,252 works of art
- Studio B Ice Rink
- The Aqua Theatre, an open-air stage which hosts diving, aerial and acrobatics shows
- The Bionic Bar, where drinks are made solely by two robotic arms
- The Royal Theatre, a 1,400 seat venue for Broadway-style shows such as Grease, Royal Caribbean's original show Columbus, and 3D movies
- DreamWorks Experience, with characters from Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, etc.
- Two rock climbing walls
- Full-size basketball court, miniature golf course and ping pong tables
- Zip line
- Adventure Ocean programs for children and youth; also Royal Babies and Royal Tots programs
- "Voom" high-speed Internet
- Optional RFID enabled wristbands (WOWbands) which will provide the same functions as the SeaPass cards
- Promenade shopping mall featuring jewelry, fashion and accessories
- Rising Tides Bar, a bar platform that raises and lowers three floors between the Promenade level and the Central Park level
- Carousel, Johnny Rockets, Starbucks, snacks and entertainment on the Boardwalk area
- Central Park, an open air garden path with food and shops
Harmony of the Seas is 20% more energy efficient than her sister ships Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas. Small air bubbles from the keel reduce drag and thus fuel consumption by 7-8%, and a smooth hull surface further reduces resistance. The bubble system also reduces propeller noise, and is used on Celebrity Reflection and Quantum of the Seas. LED and fluorescent lamps replace incandescent light bulbs, reducing power consumption and need for air conditioning. The engine system uses a waste heat recovery system, and drives three Azipod propellers.
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The ship is headed for Southampton in southern England and is to embark on its official maiden voyage on May 22 to its new home port of Barcelona.
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Most Harmony of the Seas staterooms are 180-270-sq.foot Balcony rooms (1772). There are a total of 2744 staterooms in 43 categories. 46 are the wheelchair accessible rooms. The largest aboard Harmony of the Seas are the Royal Loft Suites (142 m2).
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- "Micro-bubble system helps Quantum to whopping 20% efficiency gain on Oasis". Seatrade Cruise News. 28 August 2014. Archived from the original on 17 September 2016. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
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- Oliver, Alexandra Jane (24 May 2016), Harmony of the Seas joins DNV GL fleet, DNV GL, archived from the original on 17 September 2016, retrieved 17 September 2016
- Quioc, Marqaid (13 September 2016). "Cruise ship crewmember dies in lifeboat drill in France". Business Insider. Associated Press. Retrieved 14 September 2016.
- "Harmony of the Seas accident: One dead, four hurt in lifeboat crash". BBC News. 13 September 2016. Retrieved 14 September 2016.
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