OASIS OF THE SEAS – REALLY HUGE SUCKERS
Written by: Kuki
It appears I’ve hung around CruiseMates long enough that they’re showing faith in me by giving me my very own space to Blog, unedited. We’ll see if they live to regret it… of if you do.
In the coming weeks and months I’ll be trying to share my views, opinons, and my own slant on cruising, and the cruise industry with you. At times we’ll attempt to take a humorous look at some of the happenings, and when it’s called for, a more serious tone. I won’t be shy about posting my views about what may be seen as controversial items, and I don’t expect you to be shy about expressing your opinions right back to me. In fact I’m counting on it. Let’s just be respectful of each others views, even when we strongly disagree.
One of the first articles I wrote for CruiseMates when the site first went public was a debate; the topic was small ships vs mega-ships, and I wrote about my preferences, and the advantages I saw in the “Mega-ships”. At the time the “Mega-ships” I was speaking of were just over 100,000 tons (GRT). Today’s big buzz in the industry is the up and coming Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas - at more than twice that size; 220,000 GRT.
So now we’re left to come up with a new “tag” to describe the various ship sizes. Do we call all the ships 150,000 tons and over MONSTER ships? Well, that seems to carry with it a bit of a negative connotation. On the flip-side, do we now call 100,000 ton ships “medium-sized”? Trying to say ships that large are “medium-sized” would likely get stuck in my throat. While I wait for all the outstanding Public Relations writers to come up with the perfect “tags” for their brochures I’ve decided that I’m still going to refer to the ships in the 100,000 ton range as Mega-ships, and I’m going to call the larger ones built, and about to be built, those “REALLY HUGE SUCKERS”.
Now, those “REALLY HUGE SUCKERS” have excited a great many people. In fact, at present thousands await each and every new announcement about the REALLY HUGE SUCKER, Oasis of the Seas. Bookings have recently opened, and people are lining up to place their deposits.
I have to admit I’m not one of those. I do love creature amenities on ships, and that’s perhaps one of the reasons I did like the move from 40,000 ton ships, to 70,000 ton ships, to 100,000 tons plus. With larger ships, came larger pool decks, and one of my favorite features was the addition (because of space availability) of more than one swimming pool. Some designers opted for indoor atrium-style pools, which I’m personally not that fond of. I am however a fan of two full outdoor pools, though having one of the two with a removable maga-drome roof are a nice comprise in case of bad weather. All of this might seem odd when you learn I’m not a big fan of swimming. I am however a big fan of sunshine, with umbrella drink in hand, people watching, while staring out at miles and miles of sea.
And it’s the “staring out at miles and miles of sea” where the REALLY HUGE SUCKERS lose me. I of course haven’t seen the Oasis design yet, but on her predecessors like the Voyager Class I found the pool deck to be a very small area for the size of the ship, and the size of the passenger loads. These ships seem to drive much of the action on the ship to their indoor Promenade decks, which in my view are much like a visit to a mall. Which by the way was a significant turn from Royal Caribbean’s earlier Vision Class of ships, which I always described in my reviews as the ships with Walls of Glass. On those Vision Class ships the atriums were virtually surrounded with decks high windows, and you could sit in a number of bars and look out at the sea; a far superior design for my tastes.
I know there’s many of you who simply love the Rock Climbing Walls, and the Flow Riders, and whatever the next trick ride innovation that may be coming along. The people who do love those, are also probably those who also love theme parks and fairs, and frankly those numbers are likely higher than the those who are “stick in the muds” or “wall flowers” like me. At 58 I’m just getting to be an “old foggie” who wants to sit and enjoy time on a sunny deck, with glimpses to appreciate the awe of the ocean, enjoy great conversation with fellow cruisemates. Now I do enjoy some “fun activities” as well, but I enjoy the more spontaneous and sometimes mischievous interactive activities that we’ve been known to come up with the odd time.
I’d certainly be interested in hearing your thoughts. Are you chomping at the bit, credit card in hand, waiting to book the next REALLY HUGE SUCKER that escapes from a shipyard?
And, btw, do you have a better name for them than REALLY HUGE SUCKERS? If so, I may want to be your agent to sell the new classification to the cruise lines for their brochures…… and hundreds of cruise industry writers will be forever indebted to you.
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