Royal Caribbean International announced that the line’s third and final Freedom-class ship will be named Independence of the Seas. The ship, currently under construction at Aker Yards in Turku, Finland, is set to make her debut in May 2008. She will follow Liberty of the Seas, which is scheduled to make her entrance into Southampton on Sunday 22nd April, 2007.
“Independence of the Seas will have all of the signature elements of her sister ships, Freedom of the Seas and Liberty of the Seas, making the Freedom-class ships the most innovative and forward-looking class of ships in the cruise industry,” said Adam Goldstein, president for Royal Caribbean International. “Her name reflects the all-encompassing mindset behind Freedom of the Seas and Liberty of the Seas, where guests have the freedom to create their own unique adventure by choosing multiple onboard options, from active pursuits such as rock climbing, surfing or ice skating; to more relaxing experiences, such as spa treatments, fine dining or world-class entertainment.”
At 160,000 GRT and holding 3,634 guests double-occupancy, Independence of the Seas will share the title of the world’s largest cruise ship with Freedom of the Seas and Liberty of the Seas. Among new programmes and onboard embellishments yet to be announced, facilities on Independence of the Seas will include the popular innovations already found on her sister ships including the FlowRider® surf simulator; the H20 Zone aqua park; cantilevered whirlpools, suspended 112 feet above the ocean; an ice-skating rink; a boxing ring; and the 1,215-square-foot Presidential Family Suite, which sleeps up to 14.
Beginning 19th May 2007, Liberty of the Seas will sail alternating seven-night Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries year-round from Miami, calling on San Juan, Puerto Rico; Philipsburg, St. Maarten; and Labadee, Haiti in the east; and Labadee; Montego Bay, Jamaica; George Town, Grand Cayman; and Cozumel, Mexico in the west. Price for a nine-night fly/cruise starts from £1,199 pp (based on two sharing).
Liberty of the Seas will depart Miami on Saturdays while Freedom of the Seas, also sailing alternating seven-night Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries out of Miami, will depart Sundays.