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Anthem of the Seas set to sail in 2015

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Anthem and Quantum to have eye-catching features

Anthem of the Seas, a new Royal Caribbean International vessel, will start its cruise operations out of Southampton in the UK in 2015, the cruise line has announced. However, the ship will head to Florida for the winter 2015/2016 season, sailing from Ft. Lauderdale.

The ship will be able to carry up to 4,180 passengers, not quite as massive as the same company’s Allure of the Seas and Oasis of the Seas or the future Oasis-class megaships also under construction, but Anthem and its sister ship Quantum of the Seas will have a number of eye-catching features.

Anthem and Quantum will be the first at sea to offer bumper cars, simulated skydiving and an observation capsule called the North Star, which will give passengers a “top of the mast” view 90 metres above the water.

“Our business has a long history with the port of Southampton, and over the last ten years we have annually increased the number of cruise opportunities from the port,” said Adam Goldstein, Royal Caribbean International’s president and CEO.

Quantum will enter service in November 2014 and will be based in Bayonne in the USA, with winter sailings to the Bahamas and Caribbean.

Speaking at the Anthem of the Seas announcement, Dominic Paul, Royal Caribbean’s vice president international, denied it was a deliberate attempt to provoke rivals. Instead he claimed that Anthem’s arrival would benefit the UK cruise industry.

“We’re not doing this because of what other cruise lines are doing. Cruise accounts for only about 3% of the holiday market. We don’t see our competitors particularly as the cruise companies, we see them as the other holiday businesses and that’s where we want to get our customers.”

Cruise Critic / TTG Digital

[pictured: View from the North Star capsule on Anthem’s sister ship Quantum of the Seas, due to enter service a year from now]

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