Ships of the Line


Behold the Independence of the Seas and the Grandeur of the Seas, the two Royal Caribbean ships docked at RC’s private resort of Labadee, in Haiti. People noted, once they got out of the darkish corridor created by the towering presence of the two ships, that the Grandeur looked kind of small compared to the Independence. They were not wrong, but it’s also worth noting that the Grandeur is longer, taller at the beam and grosses more tonnage than the Titanic. Also worth noting that the Independence is not Royal Carribean’s largest boat; that distinction belongs to the Quantum of the Seas. We live in an interesting age, we do.

This is likely to be my last post until sometime Monday, as today is packed with events and tomorrow is packed with travel. See you on the other side, folks.

17 Comments on “Ships of the Line”

  1. I’ve been on two Royal Caribbean cruises. The first one, I did the “ship’s tour,” of bridge, engineering, and maintenance areas (which included very robust recycling technologies). Those ships are essentially floating cities and, according to our tour guide, capable of going at least a month without returning to port or getting resupplied.

    If you haven’t done the ship’s tour, I highly recommend it.

  2. Quantum of the Seas is gigantic – we saw it sail off from Barbados and it’s about the same size as the island…

    Robot bartenders sound cool, but if AIs ever get to be self aware, it will ask to be called a mixologist, start wearing a dodgy pornstar tash, and wear braces (the English kind).

  3. The sheer size of the Quantum of the Seas makes me want to stay on it. I remember going on a Disney cruise when I was a kid and loved it – I like being out at sea and on big boats.

  4. So, Quantum of the Seas is really, really big… are they being ironic in some way that I’m missing, or was the word quantum chosen for its cool factor?

    Oh well, each to their own and all that but my idea of the romance of sea travel doesn’t stretch to 18 eating venues.

  5. As a child of the 1970s, who has never been on a cruise (and my people-specific claustrophobia makes cruising seem like my personal nightmare), the Love Boat is my standard for big cruise ship. These modern biggest ones are all 2x bigger in all directions. 8x the size. Insane.

  6. So, Quantum of the Seas is really, really big… are they being ironic in some way that I’m missing, or was the word quantum chosen for its cool factor?

    Perhaps it’s in two ports at the same time, and until the customs inspector comes aboard, nobody knows which.

  7. I’m unable to resist being That Guy for a moment, but I actually fell down a Wikipedia hole after the first JoCo Cruise. It’s hard to explain just how ridiculously large these boats are, but nerdy fun to read about nevertheless.

    The boats that the last 3 JoCoCruises have been on belong to what RCI calls the “Freedom class,” named for the first of its type, the Freedom of the Seas on which we spent JCCC3, and to which we’ll return in 2016. The other two are the Independence of the Seas (the JCCC home this year and last year) and the Liberty of the Seas. This group USED to be the biggest cruise ship class in the world, but when they were eclipsed it was by their immediate successor, the Oasis class in 2009. (There are only 2 of them right now, but 2 more are planned.)

    Anyway, numbers: The Oasis ships are about 225K GT and 361m long, which I think we can agree is monstrous. The Freedom is “only” 339m long and 154K GT.

    The Quantum John mentions IS the absolute newest class (just went to sea last year), but the Quantum isn’t bigger than the Oasis class. It fits between the Freedom class and the Oasis class in size, at about 347m long and 169K GT. (Yeah, there’s a huge GT gap between Freedom/Quantum and Oasis.)

    My guess is that bigger turned out not to always be better, so the “flagship” class is now just super fancy and nice, and RCI is seemingly happy with its fanciest ship no longer also being the biggest.

    Fun fact: It’s my impression that the JoCoCruise event is, in its current form, bound to the Freedom class for floorplan reasons right now. Nothing else has two venues that can accommodate enough Sea Monkeys, and we can’t ALWAYS have the theater until/unless the Home Office books a whole boat.

  8. The Grandeur makes her home in Baltimore. Lucky for me, I live 15 minutes from the port. I’ve had the pleasure of sailing on her twice: once we got engaged, the second was our honeymoon a few months ago. She’s a lovely older lady and an absolute joy to cruise upon.

    That said, my Beloved and I look forward to joining the Sea Monkeys next trip!

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