Montreal Gazette

New cruise ship ‘a game changer’


NEW YORK — Royal Caribbean cruise line dazzled cruise aficionado­s Tuesday with details of its forthcomin­g Quantum of the Seas ship, which will be the first at sea to offer attraction­s like bumper cars, simulated skydiving and an observatio­n capsule called the North Star, with a bird’s-eye view 91 metres above the water.

“Without a doubt, Quantum of the Seas is a game changer with technologi­cal innovation­s never imagined aboard a cruise ship,” said Stewart Chiron, who writes at

“I can’t wait to get on it,” said Barbara Lippincott, who’s taken 160 cruises on Royal Caribbean and was among a number of the company’s devotees at a Manhattan event unveiling the ship’s features.

Richard Butz, a Pennsylvan­iabased travel agent with Cruise One, said he’ll have no trouble selling trips on Quantum. “Royal Caribbean comes up with things nobody ever thinks of,” he said.

Quantum, which will carry 4,180 passengers, will launch in November 2014 and will home port in Cape Liberty, in Bayonne, N.J., with winter sailings to the Bahamas and Caribbean.

Royal Caribbean executives said the North Star was inspired by the London Eye. The capsule can hold 14 people and is attached to a cranelike arm.

The skydiving attraction, called Rip cord, uses a powerful wind flow to keep participan­ts aloft while floating and spinning over an outdoor deck.

An indoor complex called SeaPlex will host basketball, table tennis, trapeze instructio­n and bumper cars. The space converts to a dance floor for roller-skaters, with a DJ hovering above in a see-through pod. Another space, Two70, has a 270-degree panoramic view and will host aerialists and other performanc­es.

Tickets for Quantum’s first sailing will go on sale to the public June 4, with Royal Caribbean regular cruisers getting an early shot at tickets starting May 27.

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