Royal Caribbean’s new Symphony of the Seas, including “Ultimate Family Suite,” will carry more than 5,500 passengers.
MIAMI — Royal Caribbean International’s new ship, Symphony of the Seas, will be an ode to the family vacation.
- Cruising the land of the midnight sun, Scotland to Scandinavia
- 'Mega' ships to cruise from Seattle to Alaska
- New 'world's largest' ship focuses on family
- Rounding Cape Horn on a South America cruise
- Can cruise lines protect excursion patrons?
- The scramble for the best Wi-Fi at sea
- Coming soon: not your typical cruise ships
The massive vessel will begin sailing from Barcelona this spring, carrying with it the title of biggest ship in the world, with a double-occupancy capacity of more than 5,500 passengers — or almost 6,900 if every berth is occupied, according to the CruiseMapper website. (The average ocean-liner passenger capacity is around 3,000.)
Inside “Symphony,” expect a bevy of family-focused activities.
Like each Oasis-class ship before it, dating back to the debut of Oasis of the Seas in 2009, the Symphony will introduce a new “biggest at sea” feature. This time, it’ll be the largest laser-tag arena at sea, located in Studio B, a multipurpose activity space that also doubles as the ship’s ice-skating rink.
Most Read Life Stories
- A 1,500-mile drive from Seattle to North Dakota amid the COVID-19 pandemic
- Need to get somewhere amid the COVID-19 pandemic but nervous to fly? Here are some alternate means of travel
- Level up your campfire cooking game with tips and recipes from 3 Seattle chefs
- And what do you do when the trip in question might be your last chance to say goodbye
- How to nab an impossibly popular bagel from Mt. Bagel — and two other intriguing Seattle pop-ups to try
The laser-tag feature is a popular choice this year. Norwegian Cruise Line is also debuting a laser-tag arena on its new Norwegian Bliss, but Norwegian’s will be outdoors. Both Royal and Norwegian’s laser-tag features will carry space themes, with Norwegian’s modeled after an abandoned space station and Royal Caribbean going with a battle for the fate of the last-planet-in-the-galaxy vibe.
“We think the kids are going to engage on this big-time,” said Michael Bayley, the Miami-based line’s president and CEO.
The other major family-friendly feature will be the 1,346-square-foot Ultimate Family Suite. This massive, two-level suite will include a kids-only bedroom — with slide access to the living room, no less — a separate adult’s room, a floor-to-ceiling LEGO wall, an air-hockey table, a 3D movie theater-style TV room — with a popcorn machine, of course, and video games — and a wraparound balcony with a full-size whirlpool and pool table.
There will only be one of these mega-sized suites on the ship, Bayley said, with room for up to eight.