Go with the FlowRider
When it first took to the ocean wave in 1999, Voyager was heralded as the largest cruise ship in the world and changed the face of the industry. Fifteen years later, it's continuing to set the standard for cruise travel thanks to Australasia's first surfing simulator, Virtual Balconies and upgraded activities and restaurants. It's literally been described as a 'bow-to-stern makeover'.
The 12m-long FlowRider delivers an onboard surfing experience, as you ride waves being delivered through flaps at around 55-65kph, thanks to a pair of two-tonne pumps. Trained staff are always on hand to guide you and it promises to be hugely popular with cruisers of all ages. Ideal for surfing, boogie boarding or wakeboarding, you can even grab a private lesson or just watch other passengers perfect their skills.
Virtual Balconies (pictured below) are 80-inch, high-definition screens that appear to create an actual balcony. Originally employed on the Quantum class, they are being offered in interior staterooms on Voyager. They stretch from floor to ceiling, with digital real-time sights and sounds of the ocean.
Already a big hit with families, Royal Caribbean is looking to increase its dominance of this market with a 3D movie theatre. Top new releases from DreamWorks will be shown and there's also a 67sq m outdoor cinema by the pool. This will double up as video game entertainment.
A major focus on culinary excellence includes new restaurants. Izumi Japanese Cuisine will deliver fresh sushi, Royal Caribbean's signature Chop's Grille steakhouse is self-explanatory, while Giovanni's Table Italian trattoria continues the international theme. The R-Bar will also take customers back in time to the 1960s, resplendent with iconic furnishings and exotic cocktails.
Voyager Cruise Deals in Australasia
The updated Voyager will begin its new life in October 2014, as it enters dry dock in Singapore
before making her way back to Australia
. Voyager will start in Darwin from November 30 with a repositioning cruise from Singapore to Sydney. Cruise deals will be on sale for itineraries around Australia, New Zealand
and the South Pacific
Royal Caribbean has always trumpeted its Voyager class, having introduced active cruise holidays to the market, alongside an ice rink, sports courts and an interior boulevard. And regional vice-president Asia-Pacific Gavin Smith says the latest innovations continue that trend.
"We are renowned for our first-at-sea facilities. We can't wait to be able to offer Aussies, Kiwis and our international cruise guests the chance to catch a wave onboard Voyager of the Seas after her revitalisation in October 2014. Australia's biggest cruise ship will emerge looking even more impressive than she does now."
Royal Caribbean sister company, Celebrity Cruises
, has also launched a "Signature Event Sailings" program for 2015/16. This will incorporate VIP shore excursions to the Cannes Film Festival, Chinese New Year in Hong Kong, Carnival time in Rio and the British Open golf tournament.