The docking of the world's largest cruise at the end of its first trans-Atlantic crossing at Florida's Port Canaveral on Thursday, November 8th may not have been front-page news around the world, but then who would want to jinx that? The last time that type of pandemonium took place, it surrounded the launch of Titanic in 1912 and we know how well that turned out.
Still, anything that beats its counterparts based on size is still worth mentioning and the ornate vessel, Royal Caribbean's Symphony of the Seas, speaks volumes about its, ummm... volume. We're talking 228,000 tons of boat here, capable of holding roughly 9,000 folks overall, including nearly 6,700 passengers.
Add in the novelties at their disposal, including a water slide traversing two-story family suites, a laser tag area, a carnival-like boardwalk section, and a new seafood restaurant; the presses of yesteryear would have stopped in mid-print to squeeze all that exclusive material into columns.
With a price tag of $1 billion, all that tonnage and a population the size of Rio Vista, California, some allowances for hyperbole could have been arranged. But, alas, the Symphony of the Seas sailed into port at around 4 a.m. local time for a few local and national media scribes to document the historic arrival from Barcelona, a bit early for mainstream media to interrupt programming.
But the bigger celebration apparently takes place Nov. 15th in Miami, where the vessel is now docked after a brief stay at Port Canaveral's Terminal 1. Before the ship departs on a circuit that includes Roatan, Costa Maya, Cozumel and Nassau, an official christening ceremony is being scheduled.
On hand to do that heavy lifting will be celebrities Carlos and Alexa PenaVega, best known for their roles in kid shows Big Time Rush and Spy Kids respectively. Evidently, the two are such cruise fanatics, they named their 17-month-old son Ocean, who'll also be on hand at the festivities.
The Symphony of the Seas cruises for the rest of the year range in price from $470 to $1,625 depending on duration. Prices are per person, although discounts are available for additional passengers per paying guest. For more information on scheduled cruises visit Royal Caribbean online.