May 23, 2008
The world's newest contenders for biggest-ship-ever, until now known as Royal Caribbean's "Genesis" class, have been awarded their official monikers. Get used to it: The 220,000- ton, 5,400-passenger ships will be called Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas.
The names were chosen by travelers as a result of Royal Caribbean's innovative "Name That Ship" Contest. In conjunction with USA Today, some 91,000 possibilities were submitted (reportedly there were many duplicates). Contest participants were encouraged to submit a pair of names that, according to Royal Caribbean's announcement today, "best encapsulate the universe of experiences a Royal Caribbean cruise provides guests."
The company's press release notes that the winning Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas combo was ultimately submitted by George Weiser, of Livonia, Michigan. The names were judged by a panel of judges appointed by Royal Caribbean.
Royal Caribbean notes that the "Name that Ship" contest was judged by a panel of industry experts including Lauren Teton, founding partner of Name One!, which specializes in finding unique names for products and business entities; John Maxtone-Graham, maritime historian, lecturer and author of numerous books, including the latest, "Normandie: France's Legendary Art Deco Ocean Liner"; and Albert Mehrabian, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus of Psychology at UCLA and author of more than 14 books, including "Baby Name Report Card: Beneficial and Harmful Baby Names."
USA Today's Cruise Log report notes that "Of the more than 180,000 names submitted (each entrant could submit two names), Oasis was the 24th most common suggestion (picked by 816). Allure was submitted 803 times, making it the 25th most common choice.
"The most popular names? Serenity of the Seas, sent in by 2,457 readers, and Paradise of the Seas (2,447). Both of the names, alas, already are used by rival cruise lines (Crystal and Carnival, respectively) — a fact that likely kept them out of the running.
"Indeed, quite a few of the 20 most submitted names were already in use by rival lines, including Wonder (used by Disney), Harmony (Crystal), Glory (Carnival) and Inspiration (Carnival).
"Another 637 people submitted the name Genesis, Royal Caribbean's code name for the ships. Royal Caribbean never picks its code names as final names. And quite a few readers made the mistake of submitting names that already are used in the Royal Caribbean fleet, including Majesty (picked by 477), Grandeur (460), Jewel (375), Adventure (368), Liberty (328) and Brilliance (266)."
Weister's Oasis of the Seas is also the new name for this class of ships. So heretofore, "Genesis class" is banned in place of Oasis class.
Oasis of the Seas, the first of the two ships to launch, will debut in late 2009.
--by Carolyn Spencer Brown, Editor in Chief