A factory in Finland has finished building what will be the world’s largest cruise ship. It has already made its first trip into open water for sea trials, and it will likely be delivered in October of this year.

The Icon of the Seas, which is owned by Royal Caribbean International, is a huge ship that is 365 meters (nearly 1,200 feet) long and is expected to weigh 250,800 tons. That’s like trying to keep two CN Towers up in the air.

When it sails to the Caribbean in January 2024, the cruise ship will be able to hold 5,610 passengers and 2,350 crew members with ease. The best part of the boat will be the biggest water park at sea in the world. It will be called Category 6, and it will have six water slides that break records. Guests who want to take it easy can also relax in the boat’s seven pools and nine whirlpools.

‘Mind-blowing cruise ship’

It is being made at the Meyer Turku factory in Turku, Finland, which is one of the best shipyards in Europe. Michael Bayley, the president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International, told reporters at a press conference held on-site earlier this year that the ship was on track to join the Royal Caribbean fleet on October 26, ahead of its debut in 2024.

Wonder of the Seas, another ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet, is the biggest cruise ship in the world right now. It just set sail for the first time last year and is only 1,188 feet long with 18 decks.

Royal Caribbean International says that Icon of the Seas is the cruise line’s most advanced ship ever. It uses the newest technology and builds on what the company has learned over the past 50 years.

Bayley said, “We’re marketing it as the best family vacation ever, and when you step back and think about how much work and time went into making this ship, it’s mind-blowing.”

A Royal Caribbean statement says that the Icon’s first set of tests at sea were done on June 22.

“During her first set of sea trials, Icon of the Seas went hundreds of miles, and the main engines, hull, brake systems, steering, noise, and vibration levels were all tested,” the statement said. “Everything went according to plan, even though she had to wait longer to leave because of the wind,”

There are more than 40 ways to eat, drink, and have fun on the ship, and many of them are included in the price of the trip. With 20 floors and eight neighborhoods to explore, the idea is to have something for every kind of vacationer, from places for young families to places just for adults, like the first dueling pianos bar from Royal Caribbean International.

There are 28 different types of rooms, with more options for families, more plans with ocean views, and more space for groups. The cruise line says that this is the longest amount of time it has ever spent “designing the perfect home base.”

Icon of the Seas is also the first ship from Royal Caribbean International to use liquefied natural gas (LNG) and fuel cell technology. This is part of the company’s move toward using clean energy in the future.

2,600 people per day
About 2,600 people work on the Icon of the Seas every day. During the sea trials, hundreds of experts were on board for four days to test how well the ship worked.

Royal Caribbean says that there will be a second set of sea trials later in 2023.

Sales that broke records

People are so excited about the ship that pre-sales have broken records. During the company’s quarterly financial report, Michael Bayley is said to have said that Icon of the Seas was “literally the best-performing new product launch we’ve ever had.”

Icon of the Seas will leave from Miami all year for seven-night trips to the Eastern and Western Caribbean. Every cruise will stop at Royal Caribbean’s award-winning private island, Perfect Day at CocoCay, and its new addition, Hideaway Beach.