Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and FlowRider, Inc. have a long-standing and amazing relationship.
In 2004 Royal Caribbean was on the hunt for something to differentiate themselves from other cruise lines, something that would make cruising fanatics want to book sailings with them time and time again. They figured a few FlowRider® surf similators would do the trick. Fast forward to 2016 – 10 years later and together we have arrived at SWEET SIXTEEN! Adventure of the Seas is RCCL’s newest fleet member to have a FlowRider aboard. We are pretty sure they found their main differentiator for their fleet to become one of the most popular in the cruising world.
Adventure of the Seas actually had its maiden voyage on November 18, 2001. It was decided a few years ago that this ship needed some TLC. Royal Caribbean poured $61 million (or maybe more due to Hurricane Matthew) into a full refurbishment of this beloved ship.
“We’re thrilled to debut an array of new enhancements to one of our guest’s most beloved ships,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “The name Adventure says it all; this ship is packed with action…” (source: Royal Caribbean Blog)
On November 14, 2016, just a few days before Adventure’s fifteen birthday, she sailed anew. With new restaurants, a new 2-story mini golf course, a full aqua park and of course RCCL’s sixteenth and shiny FlowRider wave machine! The whole family can enjoy the FlowRider whether they are participating or simply spectating. The age group that tends to flock to the FlowRider like a moth to a flame though is most definitely the tweens and teens. In 2006 that teen market-gap was successfully filled in the cruising market and continues to do so. In fact, many groups and families arrange to have the FlowRider to themselves for a few hours before or after “normal” busy times on the FlowRider deck. This is something that passengers often book well before boarding any Royal Caribbean vessel.
Freedom of the Seas was the first ship to be equipped with a FlowRider surf similator machine. That ship sailed for the first time in 2006 and in 2011 underwent a general refurbishment. Freedom is almost 4 football fields long, has 15 total decks and can accommodate 4,515 guests. There is an ice skating rink, a rock climbing wall and a 9-hole mini golf course, but the FlowRider has been and still is the main highlight on this ship.
Noteable accolades for Royal Caribbean from U.S. News include #2 for “Best Cruise Line for the Money” and coming in only behind mega-player Disney for “Best Cruise Line for Families.” Below is a list of ships in Royal Caribbean’s fleet that have either one or two FlowRiders aboard.
Adventure of the Seas
Allure of the Seas (2)
Anthem of the Seas
Explorer of the Seas
Freedom of the Seas
Harmony of the Seas (2)
Independence of the Seas
Liberty of the Seas
Navigator of the Seas
Oasis of the Seas (2)
Ovation of the Seas
Quantum of the Seas
Voyager of the Seas
Watch the list grow to 18 FlowRiders next year! See ya on the wave!