Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas is not just a larger cruise ship, but a whole new breed of ship. Oasis of the Seas is the first ship to tout the cruise line’s new neighborhood concept of seven distinct themed areas.
In addition to Central Park, the “neighborhoods” include the Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, the Pool and Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa & Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone: 28,700-square-feet just for kids and teens with Kids Avenue, a central boulevard connecting various themed play areas; a nursery for infants and toddlers; a theater just for children. Central Park is an area of lush, tropical grounds spanning more than the length of a football field. The area features serene pathways, seasonal flower gardens and canopy trees. A central piazza functions as the ship’s “town square,” which also serves as a gathering space for alfresco evening dining and entertainment. Five decks of balcony staterooms offer views of the park below.
Boardwalk, inspired by the nostalgic seaside piers of yesteryear, features an original handcrafted carousel and AquaTheater, an amphitheater-style venue with tiered seating platforms that lead down to cruising’s largest freshwater pool. By day, AquaTheater serves as a spot for sunning, swimming and other water-based activities. By night, the venue is transformed into a performance space.
Two giant LED screens flank the stage as do a pair on enormous rock climbing walls. You also have the chance to try the first zip-line at sea suspended nine decks above ground level.
The Royal Promenade is home to a vast array of shopping, dining and entertainment options including the Rising Tide bar, the first moving bar at sea. The bar traverses three decks and allows cruisers to enjoy a cocktail as they slowly ascend into Central Park.
Stretching the length of the ship, the Pool and Sports Zone features private cabanas, four types of pools, and two FlowRider surf simulators – each larger than the single FlowRider found on the line’s Freedom-class ships. The first Beach Pool at sea has a sloped entry where guests will be able to wade into the water or relax in colorful beach chairs under an umbrella as the water rolls gently beneath. Two whirlpools flank either side of the “beach” for guests who prefer warmer waters.
Located on the opposite side of the ship from the Beach Pool and separated by Central Park six decks below, is the Main Pool with two side-by-side whirlpools. Overlooking both pools are private cabanas, complete with a dedicated attendant.
Adults looking for a retreat from the bustle of every day life find solace in the grandest Solarium yet. Boasting a redefined layout, guests will have the sensation of floating on air from the two-deck high, glass-paneled enclave designed with seating on various “islands” surrounded by water. The open-air Solarium offers a tranquil swimming pool, two serene whirlpools, and four cantilevered whirlpools suspended 136 feet above the ocean. The mezzanine level of the adult-dedicated area overlooks the pool deck below, offering additional chaise lounges and seating.
Created as the crown jewel of the cruise line’s Vitality program, the Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center encompasses various amenities that cater to complete body wellness. As a precursor to any treatment, guests are encouraged to begin the spa experience by unwinding in the calming relaxation rooms. The new Vitality at Sea Spa includes a Thermal Suite, featuring heated tile loungers, saunas and steam rooms; three couples massage suites and seven individual treatment rooms – the largest collection at sea. Kids and teen guests also find their own dedicated Spa in which to enjoy specially catered services.
Oasis of the Seas: Two Dozen Dining Venues Oasis of the Seas features two dozen dining outlets Here’s a breakdown of Oasis of the Seas’ restaurants by neighborhood.
Here are some of the main ones.
• Chops Grille, featuring fine steaks, with a $25 surcharge.
• Giovanni’s Table, featuring Italian. $10 for lunch, $15 for dinner.
• 150 Central Park, featuring tasting menus, and dinners paired with wines. $35 per person.
• Vintages, a wine bar with a tapas menu that includes a selection of free and a la carte items.
• Park Cafe, serving soups, salads, sandwiches and wraps. Specialty is the steak sandwich
• Johnny Rockets, featuring burgers, shakes and more. Additional charge.
• Seafood Shack, featuring items such as fried seafood, ribs and more. Additional charge.
Boardwalk Bar, serving salads and sandwiches.
• Boardwalk Donut Shop, offering donuts and coffee.
• Ice Cream Parlour, “shipmade” ice cream. Additional charge.
Fast Facts & Interesting Tidbits: Oasis of the Seas
• Oasis of the Seas uses more than 3,000 miles of electrical wiring. Think about that. The wiring could stretch across America – coast to coast!
• Central Park will feature more than 12,000 plants – and full-time horticulturists who will give guided tours.
• AquaTheater Pool is nearly 18 feet deep and is the largest pool afloat.
• The Rising Tide elevator takes about six minutes to transit from the Royal Promenade (deck five) to Central Park (deck eight) — or vice versa.
• Oasis of the Seas carries 5,400 passengers double occupancy and 6,296 when all berths are filled – plus, more than 2,000 staff.
• Oasis of the Seas is 1,187 feet long, 208 feet wide, and its 18 decks rise 213 feet above the waterline.
• Oasis features the first Carousel at sea as well as the first Coach boutique (think fine leather goods).
• There are 24 restaurants and 37 bars on board.
• Oasis of the Seas’ Royal Promenade is twice as wide as those on the Freedom- and Voyager-class vessels.
• Passengers can reserve shows before boarding — or once on board, on their stateroom televisions or the Box Office at the Royal Promenade.
• To control traffic flow, restaurants use technology that measures the head count, so that passengers can see which restaurants are busy from their stateroom televisions and on displays throughout the ship.
• Electronic mustering means that you’re no longer required to don your life jacket for the safety drill, and there’s no name calling to check off passenger participation. Life jackets, in fact, are stored at the muster stations, and not in the staterooms.
• Photo Finder integrates your check-in photo with photos taken on board, so that there is no more scanning the picture walls to find your photo. Kiosks will offer the ability to swipe your stateroom card and see all of the photos taken of you on a voyage.
I just returned from my cruise on the Oasis of the Seas and I must say it was a facsinating experience and one that you must experience for yourself.
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