Royal Caribbean reports it is investing $115 million into a revitalization of Navigator of the Seas ahead of the ship’s 2019 Caribbean season, when it will offer short, three- to four-night cruises out of Miami.
The revamped ship will sail its first cruise February 24, 2019, as well as a number of additional cruises starting in May of that year calling at the cruise line’s new private island in the Bahamas, Perfect Day at CocoCay.
In a written statement Royal Caribbean International President and CEO Michael Bayley said that the project builds on the line’s Royal Amplified modernization program, which began with Independence of the Seas and Mariner of the Seas.
The refresh will add a number of new top-deck amenities to Navigator of the Seas. These include The Blaster, the cruise line’s first-ever aqua coaster and, according to Royal Caribbean, the longest waterslide at sea. The attraction will see guests hop on a two-person raft that will propel them through more than 800 feet of hills, drops and straightaways, including a section that extends over the side of the ship. Also new will be Riptide, a headfirst mat racer that speeds through a translucent tube for ocean views, a FlowRider surf simulator and a rock climbing wall.
The ship’s pool area will be completely reimagined, with a resort-style deck that includes a Splash Pad for toddlers, as well as a new, two-level poolside bar called The Lime and Coconut. El Loco Fresh, serving Mexican street fare, and Johnny Rockets Express, serving American classics, will also be new poolside grab-and-go food and beverage venues.
In terms of dining and nightlife, the ship will get the cruise line’s signature Royal Promenade, which first debuted on the Voyager Class, with new restaurants, retail and nightlife. There will be a To Dry For blow dry bar offering blowouts, hairstyling and polish changes, plus a selection of wines and champagnes, as well as The Bamboo Room. First introduced on Mariner of the Seas, The Bamboo Room is a Polynesian-themed watering hole with kitschy-cool cocktails and tiki-chic décor. For those looking to catch the big game or host game night, Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade has 50 big-screen TVs, tabletop games, tournaments, trivia, a new Owner’s Box VIP room, and a menu of classic bar fare with a twist.
For dining, popular Royal Caribbean restaurants will join a refreshed Chops Grille steakhouse. Guests can go for Jamie’s Italian to get a taste of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s rustic Italian dishes made with seasonal ingredients and homemade pastas crafted in-house daily. For fresh seafood and ocean views in a casual setting, guests can find New England-inspired dishes, from lobster and crab claws to local fish and just-shucked oysters, at Hooked Seafood. Also new on board will be a Starbucks.
Finally, the project will include a number of new family-friendly amenities beyond the top decks, including glow-in-the-dark laser tag with Battle for Planet Z in Studio B, mini-golf and the Royal Escape Room: The Observatorium, where family, friends and foes team up to solve new mind-bending puzzles before time runs out.
Younger kids will enjoy Royal Caribbean’s new take on the Adventure Ocean youth program in a newly designed open, free play space. The teen areas will also sport updates with a redesigned Living Room, the teen-only laidback hangout, as well as a new “hidden” entrance and outdoor deck.
When Navigator arrives to Miami after its modernization, the ship will sail a series of five- and nine-night Caribbean itineraries. The ship will then offer vacationers three-night weekend and four-night weekday sailings to the Bahamas starting May 2019, becoming the first to visit Perfect Day at CocoCay – the debut destination in the cruise line’s recently announced private island collection. With a $200 million makeover, the family destination will have Thrill Waterpark with 13 slides, like Daredevil’s Peak – the tallest waterslide in North America; Oasis Lagoon, the Caribbean’s largest freshwater pool; Up, Up and Away, the helium balloon that floats up to 450 feet in the air for the highest vantage point in the Bahamas; Chill Island for some R&R on the beach; and South Beach with sports, paddle-boarding, glass-bottom kayaking and more.