Mega cruise liner Oasis of the Seas completed on schedule
World’s largest and most expensive cruise liner delivered to Royal Caribbean in Turku
The world’s largest and most expensive cruise liner in the history of shipbuilding, the MS Oasis of the Seas, was completed on schedule and delivered to its owner on Wednesday morning.
In other words, the cruise vessel passed from the South Korean-owned shipbuilding concern STX Europe to the US Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines (RCCL).
”The money has been transferred into our bank account. The ship is now yours”, said Martin Landtman, the President of STX Finland Cruise at a press conference, addressing Richard Fain, the Chairman of the Board of Royal Carribean Cruise Lines.
The price tag of the 220,000 GRT vessel is about a billion euros, which gives Fain a superb vessel with a number of new features to promote.
One third of the ship is revolutionary and new, with attractions such as a large central park, the first-ever living park at sea, which is open on top and where passengers can stroll under palm trees.
”This ship is a real wow”, Fain noted.
However, the palm trees and more than 12,000 plants will be placed in the ground later, in the vessel’s home port in Florida. In Finland they would have frozen.
The Oasis of the Seas will offer passengers a number of innovations, including a bar that can move up and down between three floors in 11 minutes.
The ”Youth Zone” is a space dedicated to youth activities, from teen areas to learning environments for the smaller guests.
It provides for children the world’s first carousel at sea, an adventure science lab, and a large range of computer games - but not a traditional ball pit of the kind familiar to passengers on the Viking Line and Silja ferries to Sweden.
The Oasis of the Seas and its sister ship the Allure of the Seas, which is to be completed in 2010, will enter challenging markets.
The recession has also been seen in the international cruise travel business, but Fain said that he has faith in the new vessel’s allure to customers.
The Turku shipyard is also looking forward to a new upswing, as at present there is not enough work for all employees, while hundreds of those watching the departure of the Oasis of the Seas have been laid off.
According to Landtman, the shipbuilding industry is experiencing the worst crisis in its history, but he says that he still has faith in the future of shipbuilding in Turku. The owner of the shipyard has the same opinion.
Sang-Ho Shin, the President and COO of STX Europe, regarded as groundless the fears according to which the cruise liner production would be transferred to the company’s domicile, South Korea.
Previously in HS International Edition:
A surfer on a FlowRider machine does not have to worry about sharks (11.8.2009)
World´s largest cruise liner launched in Turku (24.11.2008)
State takes on heavy responsibility for new giant cruise liner (20.4.2009)
Oasis of the Seas Royal Caribbean Cruise site
Oasis of the Seas (Wikipedia)