2020 will be an epic year for cruise ships and here are just 4 of the many amazing ships you can expect to see on the high seas. 

Carnival – Mardi Gras 

Paying homage to its first ship, 1972’s TSS Mardis Gras this is Carnival’s biggest ship in the fleet and it’s seen a ton of updates from its predecessor. Mardi Gras brings the fun to a number of destinations in the Caribbean. Here’s the quick rundown on its features.

Carnival’s Excel Suites: These suites have exclusive, suite-level amenities, unlimited access to a new resort-style, and an open-air enclave called Loft 19.

Loft 19: Located on the ship’s highest deck, Loft 19 is a secluded retreat designed like those of the world’s finest resorts. It has a full bar and private pool. Spacious cabanas have extras like fresh fruit, chilled towels, lunch delivery and concierge service. Carnival’s Excel Suite guests receive priority status when reserving a Loft 19 cabana.

Fun Zones: The first Carnival ship with distinctive zones that offer mini-onboard excursions to different “worlds” and experiences. Here are a few zones to note:

  • The French Quarter zone features Emeril’s Bistro 1396, the first restaurant at sea from chef Emeril Lagasse.
  • The Ultimate Playground zone features BOLT: Ultimate Sea Coaster, the first roller ever on a cruise ship.
  • Summer Landing zone delivers casual summer classics all year long, with BBQ from Guy Fieri at Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse Brewhouse and a poolside bar called The Watering Hole.
  • Lido will be debuting the RedFrog Tiki Bar, Street Eats, and basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal’s restaurant; Big Chicken.

Princess Cruises – Enchanted Princess

Fifth in line of Princess Royal-class ships, comes with all the style and luxury boasted by this class and introduces new attractions all her own. Here are is a quick glance.

Sky Suite, is the big buzz about this ship. Each Sky Suite hosts up to five guests and has a 270-degree panorama throughout your voyage. A furnished 1,000-square-foot continuous balcony; the biggest at sea. Princess will also accommodate catered events in this suite.

Food is always amazing on Princess and this ship is no different.

  • Salty Dog Gastropub, a rustic-styled pub where cruisers can catch a sporting event, while having a drink and some food, including the mouthwatering Ernesto Burger, created by Chef Ernesto Uchimura.
  • Sabatini’s: Trattoria style, featuring handmade past courses developed in collaboration with Los Angeles-based chef Angelo Auriana.
  • World Fresh Marketplace buffet and Crown Grill, the line’s signature steakhouse.
  • Bars include: Wheelhouse Pub (beer and whiskey), Vines wine bar.
  • Enchanted Princess (like its sister Sky Princess) will have a cafe inside the Princess Live! studio, so coffee lovers can watch a live recording.

It will be the second ship in the fleet to feature the musical production “Rock Opera” in its main theater. This live showcase is a soundtrack spanning classic rock, musical theater and opera with songs performed in a variety of languages. The live eight-piece orchestra and costumes were inspired by one of New York City’s most glamorous annual events; the Met Gala.

Virgin Voyages – Scarlet Lady

Virgin Voyages is touting itself (so far) as an adults-only cruise line where “super-yacht design and your dream destinations meet”. Add to that the Rock-star amenities and you’ll have quite the vacation. The Scarlet Lady’s named was inspired by an early Virgin Atlantic airliner and is (according to Virgin) … “a premium take on what luxury cruising is. Designed with a unique approach to how Caribbean cruises look and feel.” Here’s the lowdown on Virgin’s first ship.

First the aforementioned Rock-star amenities:

  • 78 suites with access to a personal assistant that Virgin has dubbed a “Rock-star Coordinator”
  • First ever tattoo studio at sea
  • Original craft beer
  • On-demand champagne delivery service

The ship will have no main dining room, no set dining times, no dress code and no buffet. All restaurants will be included in the cruise fare, there are 20 in total including Mexican, Korean BBQ, Italian, Café Style, Steak BBQ, and Pub Fare.

Scarlet Lady will also feature a unique restaurant called the Test Kitchen that will host a number of different experiences throughout the voyage from cooking classes, mixology school, coffee labs, and “late-night lock-ins”, where participants will be invited to raid the chef’s fridge and dig into a midnight feast.

Virgin is also going to be offering Beach Club at Bimini, a private retreat for its cruise guests. This Mediterranean-inspired port will allow its guest to spend the day on the beach and in the evening features world-renowned DJs like Mark Ronson, who will be the first DJ in residence.

The 8 types of Rock-star suites range in size from the smallest ‘Seriously Suite” being 385 sq ft to the “Massive Suite” which will be 2147 sq ft.

Royal Caribbean – Odyssey of the Seas

This is the second in RCCL’s Quantum Ultra-Class of ships. The ship will launch is a sister ship to Spectrum of the Seas and will have many of the same features, including a two-level pool deck; FlowRider, RipCord, and SkyPad on its top deck.  Here’s a look at this ultra modern ship.

RCCL will be unveiling three cruise industry firsts on this ship like the Bionic Bar (complete with robotic bartenders) and the North Star, a glass observation capsule that takes guests more than 300 feet above the ocean for 360-degree views. To cap of the trifecta of fun it’s SeaPlex activity center will be the largest at sea offering a full-size basketball court, roller skating, circus school trapeze, laser tag, arcade, bumper cars and more.

The pool deck will take up two levels and offer two open-air, resort-style pools and four whirlpools, all surrounded by lounge chairs, shady casitas and hammocks. Near the pools will be The Lime & Coconut, serving up two stories of pool-front views, liquid fun and live music from morning to night.

As for food, RCCL offer up some of its best:

  • El Loco Fresh: Grab-and-go Mexican eatery located on the pool deck.
  • Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar: Rustic Italian dishes, from hand-tossed pizzas, charcuterie, and beyond. The menu also features a wide selection of wines and limoncellos from many of Italy’s well-known regions.
  • Teppanyaki: Hibachi-style Japanese eatery.
  • Chop’s Grille: Royal Caribbean’s signature steakhouse.
  • Izumi: Royal Caribbean’s signature sushi and sashimi dining venue.
  • Wonderland: Unique dining experience offering a dreamscape menu of adventurous dishes presented in an Alice in Wonderland-inspired setting.
  • Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade: Located within the SeaPlex complex on Odyssey of the Seas and offers up a variety of pub food (chicken wings, burgers, sliders, fries, etc.) and ice-cold beers.

Ready to set sail? Want to find out more about other new ships launching this year? Contact us or any of our experience specialists today! 


Sean Mitchell

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