By Peter Lynch
It’s Royal Caribbean’s most technologically advanced and expensive ship in Asia. And last night, Chinese actress Angelbaby and a host of dignitaries attended the official launch of the Spectrum of the Seas in Shanghai.
There were dancers, singers and a sea of Southeast Asian and Chinese travel agents who saw the new Quantum Ultra Class sail away from Shanghai on her first cruise from her new homeport.
Angelbaby – popular actress and singer Angela Yeung Wing – is the vessel’s Godmother, and performed the traditional breaking of the champagne bottle on the ship’s bows from the Royal Theatre.
The ship represents a billion-dollar investment in a market where Royal Caribbean sees enormous potential. Some lines have recently pulled back from China, moving their megaliners to areas where they feel they can earn bigger returns.
Royal Caribbean is doing the opposite, after a decade of experience in the Asian market.
Royal Caribbean’s international president Michael Bayley said the ship “broke the mould in a sea of sameness”. He said it was the largest, most expensive ship Asia had seen and contributed to innovation in the market with new food offerings, digital and mobile apps, augmented reality and a private suite-class enclave.
With 4,000 guests and 1,600 crew, Spectrum of the Seas will sail new and longer itineraries to Japan and around Asia.
She will be marketed in Asia as a “cultural experience” – aimed at adventurous cruisers who want to experience something new.
The ship features fresh specialty restaurants, including Sichuan Red, Wonderland DaDong and a new Tepanyaki restaurant.
She also features new shows including The Effectors, a super-heroes take-off, and Showgirls, a dance spectacular.
The vessel headlines Sky Pad, an innovative virtual reality bungee jumping experience, laser tag and even fencing.
Popular exclusives from Royal Caribbean, like viewing platform North Star, RipCord by iFly and FlowRider are also on board.