The prototype is a whopping 43 percent bigger than Royal Caribbean's next largest ships -- the not-yet-launched Freedom class of vessels, which measure 158,000 tons and carry 3,600 passengers.
While design details are not yet available, the ship will obviously build on -- and expand upon -- some of the elements from its Voyager and Freedom classes of ships. These features include indoor promenades, elaborate sun decks, a host of recreational facilities from ice skating rinks to rock climbing walls, and more.
Even as Royal Caribbean is announcing this newest evolution for the cruise line, it is also ramping up for delivery of its first-ever Freedom-class ship. When Freedom of the Seas debuts in June, it will feature new innovations such as an onboard surf park, a water-park-style sun deck, and family-friendly cabin designs, among others. There will be three Freedom class ships, all total -- two more, as yet unnamed, are in various stages of pre-construction and slated for launch in 2007 and 2008 respectively.
The Genesis-class ship, like the Freedom and Voyager siblings, will also be built at Finland's Aker Finn yards. In Royal Caribbean's statement, the company says that its contract, which is contingent upon the completion of certain conditions by the end of February, also includes an option for a second ship.