Cruising an ocean liner is generally a great experience no matter the age of the ship. Some people even prefer older ships because they like the layout and features better. But just like a new car, it's exciting to cruise on a new ship. You won't be short on choices as several major cruise lines have scheduled maiden voyages for their new ships in 2020. Let's talk about it!
Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady
Richard Branson strikes again! This time at sea with his own cruise line. This should definitely be an experience you don't want to miss. Virgin Voyages promises the unique experience of being kid free (except your inner child ?). It also includes the following perks at no additional charge:
- Unlimited Wifi (Premium plan additional)
- All food (including the premium restaurants)
- Group Workouts
- Basic beverages (includes filtered still and sparkling water, non-presses juices, sodas, teas and drip coffee)
Other unique experiences on Scarlet Lady are a vinyl record shop, hammocks included on terrace staterooms and suites equipped with a music room that includes guitars and amps.
You can “sneek-a-peek” on Virgin Voyages starting in March with regular voyages to the Caribbean and Medditeranean starting in April.
Celebrity Cruise Line's Apex
Photo Courtesy of Celebrity Cruises
Sister to the Edge in Celebrity's Edge class of ships, Apex is Celebrity's newest offering to the cruising community. Apex also has a Magic Carpet and accommodations that will blur the line between indoor and outdoor living. You'll also be able to relax on Apex's rooftop garden. Suite guests will be able to take advantage of The Retreat which is an exclusive santuary that hosts beverages, gourmet bites and live entertainment available 24/7.
Celebrity Apex will sail out of Southhampton to the Medditeranean beginning in April and head over to Florida for Caribbean sailings in November.
VIDEO: Celebrity Apex℠
The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection Evrima
Photo courtesy of Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection
Here's another new entry to the cruise community. Ritz-Carlton's Yacht Collection will allow cruisers to visit ports the large ships can't get to. Most voyages will range from seven to ten nights and offer overnight calls with curated activities ashore.
Each yacht will feature 149 suites, each with its own private terrace, and accommodate up to 298 guests in a relaxed, casually elegant atmosphere.
The accommodations are Ritz-Carlton level:
- Luxury custom king bed
- Double vanity bathroom with modern soaking tub and separate shower
- Private, spacious terrace overlooking the ocean with private whirlpool
- 24-hour in-suite dining
- Complementary WiFi
- Choice of complimentary chilled bottle of Champagne upon arrival
- Espresso machine with complimentary coffee and teas
- Set of high-zoom binoculars
- And more!
You can start sailing in June!
Crystal Cruise Line's Endeavor
An expedition yacht? Yesss! Did you see my bucket list? I am about this life! Crystal Endeavor promises remote expeditions, cultural discovery and destination exploration itineraries.
Indulge in Crystal’s legendary six-star service with one of the highest staff-to-guest ratios in the industry. An experienced crew, selected from the award-winning ranks of Crystal, is joined by a team of experts – explorers, scientists and more.
The Endeavor will include:
- two helicopters
- a submersible vehicle,
- a platform for viewing spectacular sites (maybe the Northern Lights?),
- a solarium to relax day or night
And because it's an all-suite ship, you'll have a butler in classic Crystal style. Endeavor will have a 1 to 1 staff to guest ratio which is what allows them to provide such stellar service.
Endeavor sets sail in August.
Royal Caribbean's Odyssey of the Seas
Royal Caribbean is known for the motto “go big or go home.” They take that motto to heart. The Odyssey of the Seas is the first Quantum Ultra Class cruise ship to sail in the United States and Europe. This ship is built to hold over 4,000 passengers ?. Think about how many towns don't have that many people!
Activities you can experience onboard:
- Glow-in-the-dark laser tag
- Skypad (virtual reality trampoline)
- Bumper Cars
- North Star – observation capsule
Odyssey of the Seas starts sailing from Fort Lauderdale in November and will port in Rome for the summer of 2021.
Carnival Cruise Line's Mardi Gras
Photo courtesy of Carnival Cruise Lines
Carnival has gone all out with their latest ship. This ship is built differently. It has zones.
Grand Central is where you can take in the ocean view, have a cup of coffee, listen to live music or have a cocktail.
The French Quarter is lined with bars, eateries (Emeril's Bistro 1396 to name one) and even a jazz club.
Summer Landing hosts “the greatest chill spot at sea.” Here you'll have Guy's Pig & Anchor Smokehouse|Brewhouse, The Watering hole poolside bar and Swirls soft serve station.
La Piazza is the italian zone boasting Cucina del Capitano and a new Mediterranean spot that specializes in seafood.
Everybody knows about the Lido. On the Mardi Gras you'll find some old favorites like Guys Burger Joint, Seafood Shack and BlueIguana Cantina. You'll also find a few new spots like Street Eats (fast-good cuisine like empanadas, falafel and bao buns), and Big Chick (Shaq's latest enterprise).
The Ultimate Playground includes a roller coaster on the top deck where riders sit in motorcycle-like cars that allow them to control the speed (helpful when you're high above the ocean LOL).
The Mardi Gras will have the same familiarity you get with other Carnival ships with a few new features thrown in to help you enjoy your cruise more.
The Mardi Gras sets sail in November out of Port Canaveral
Do any of these ships tickle your fancy? I'm tickled by all of them. So many ships, not enough PTO…