Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)
Anthem of the Seas
Not Yet Rated
Ship: NYR out of 500
Accommodation: NYR out of 200
Food: NYR out of 400
Service: NYR out of 400
Entertainment: NYR out of 100
Cruise: NYR out of 400
Overall Score: NYR out of 2000
Anthem of the Seas Statistics
Size: Large Resort Ship
Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean International
Former Names: none
IMO Number: n/a
Builder: Meyer Werft (Germany)
Original Cost: $1.03 billion
Entered Service: Mar 2015
Length (ft/m): 1112.2/339.0
Beam (ft/m): 134.5/41.0
Draft (ft/m): 27.8/8.5
Propulsion/Propellers: diesel-electric (41,000kW)/2 azimuthing pods
Passenger Decks: 16
Total Crew: 1,300
Passengers (lower beds): 4,180
Passenger Space Ratio (lower beds): 40.1
Passenger/Crew Ratio (lower beds): 3.2
Cabins (total): 2,090
Size Range (sq ft/m): 101.1-799.7/9.4-74.3
Cabins (for one person): 34
Cabins (with private balcony): 1,571
Cabins (wheelchair accessible): 34
Wheelchair accessibility: Good
Cabin Current: Meyer Werft (Germany)
Casino (gaming tables): Yes
Slot Machines: Yes
Swimming Pools: 3
Hot Tubs (on deck): 4
Self-Service Launderette: No
Dedicated Cinema/Seats: No
Onboard currency: US$
This is family-friendly, large resort ship ‘wow’ cruising
Overview. Anthem of the Seas has a slender profile. You will love it because it incorporates all of the latest features (you can even go flying aboard this ship!), and then some, for plenty of Royal Caribbean wow factor.
The Ship. Anthem of the Seas is an identical sister to Quantum of the Seas, which debuted with much acclaim in 2014. The ship employs the latest in hydrodynamics, hull shape, low emissions and, importantly, low fuel consumption. In terms of size, Anthem of the Seas looks somewhat like a ‘stretched’ version of the Celebrity Reflection. The stern (back of the ship) slopes nicely - actually, it looks like it could be the front! It contains Two70 o - an innovative multi-level venue that is a casual living area by day, and an entertainment venue by night.
Several novel features have been incorporated, mostly outdoors. North Star - quite the engineering marvel - is a 14-person glass capsule that lifts you off from the ship’s uppermost decks and provides a bird’s eye view of all below you (including the sea) as it moves around. It’s like a posh giant ‘cherry picker’ with attitude - and, lifting you almost 300ft (91m) above sea level (with an outreach of almost 135 ft (41m), is quite a ride! It is located in the front section of the ship, just behind the mast. It is complimentary (and wheelchair-accessible), although a charge will apply for booking at certain times such as Sunrise with Brunch, Sunset and Specialty Dining, and Private Flights - for weddings and other romantic occasions - think: the ‘300 Feet above Sea Level’ club!)
The second of the stunners is RipCord by iFly - a skydiving-cum-flying-experience in a two-storey vertical wind tunnel, a safe, controlled environment. The special in-your-face unit uses a powerful air flow to keep you up in the air and free-flying - like a giant hairdryer underneath you! It is located aft of the ship’s funnel housing. It accommodates 13 persons for each 75-minute class, which includes two ‘hovering in the air’ experiences, instruction, and gear.
Meanwhile, a SeaPlex complex − located (inside) just underneath the North Star mobile ‘eye-pod’-style observation unit − offers a circus ‘school’ and adrenalin-boosting bumper car rides, and acts as a roller-skating rink and basketball court. It’s a veritable active interactive sporting venue that replaces the ice rinks of other large RCI ships.
Families. For children and teenagers aboard this family-friendly ship the facilities are extensive - as part of the Adventure Ocean program (Adventure Ocean is located inside the ship on Decks 11 and 12). Royal Babies and Tots Nursery is for the really young ones; Aquanauts is for 3-5-year-olds; Explorers is for 6-8-year-olds; Voyagers is for 9-12-year-olds. Teenagers get their own chill-out zone - called Optix. There’s also Adventure Beach, an area for all the family, which includes swimming pools, a water slide and game areas outdoors in the AquaPark. DreamWorks events and entertainment will be featured, with live character appearances from Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, and Madagascar - and Barbie, of course.
Accommodation. There are many different price grades and categories for accommodation. The price you pay depends on the size and location you choose. Fortunately, every cabin aboard this ship has a view - whether it’s real or virtual. The ‘virtual’ balconies are a really neat feature of the interior (no-view) cabins; they can provide real-time ocean views (yes, you can turn them off). Although these cost slightly more than standard interior cabins, they’re worth it.
Loft cabins (including a 975-sq-ft/90.5-sq-m Owner’s Loft) vary in size and configuration, but measure approximately 502 sq ft/46.6 sq m and are located at the ship’s stern.
Inter-connecting family cabins are really good for multi-generational accommodation and much sought after. The 15 units consist of a junior suite, balcony cabin, and interior studio connected through a shared vestibule. Together they can create a 575.8-sq-ft/53.5-sq-m living space with three bedrooms, three bathrooms, and a 216-sq-ft/20.0-sq-m balcony.
Studio cabins (there are 16 of them, 12 of which have real balconies) for solo occupancy, are a first for RCI. As there’s no single supplement, they are priced in a new category for solo travelers.
Dining. There are 18 restaurant and eatery choices (there’s no main dining room as such), part of what the line calls Dynamic Dining (meaning you will need to make reservations in some venues - just like eating ashore). In The Grande, the dress code is formal, but in all others the dress code is smart casual.
These are complimentary, all with tablecloths for dinner, and include:
American Icon Grille: this 430-seat restaurant features many of America’s favorite ‘comfort food’ dishes’ like New England clam chowder, Southern buttermilk fried chicken, and New Orleans gumbo.
The Grande: with 432 seats, the ship’s most elegant restaurant (think good old-fashioned Southern mansion hospitality) featuring classic dishes that are reminiscent of the days of the grand ocean liners of yesteryear. Menu examples: beef wellington, chicken à l’orange, sole almondine. Sound familiar?
Chic: this 434-seat restaurant features ‘contemporary’ cuisine and sauces made from scratch. Menu examples: rib-eye steak, lamb chops, and Mediterranean sea bass.
Silk: this 434-seat restaurant features pan-Asian cuisine, including a touch - or more - of spice. Menu examples: yeriyaki steak, sake-glazed salmon, slow-cooked lamb curry.
For (no extra cost) ultra-casual meals, the 860-seat Windjammer Marketplace is a self-serve buffet-style eatery. Other casual (no extra cost) spots include: The Café @ Two70o; SeaPlex Dog House; Sorrento’s - for pizza slices and calzones; and Café Promenade.
Extra-cost dining venues: Wonderland: based on the (real and imagined) elements Fire, Ice, Water, Earth, and Dreams, this surreal 62-seat Alice in Wonderland venue offers food with a quirky touch (like the oddly-shaped chairs) thanks to ingredients like Japanese bonito flakes. I can just imagine the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party here.
Jamie’s Italian: it’s a 132-seat extra-cost, reservations-required tablecloth-less Euro-Italian restaurant - and British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s second restaurant at sea. Rustic!
Chops Grille: for premium-quality steaks and grilled seafood.
Izumi: a 44-seat Japanese-Asian fusion venue that features hot-rock tableside cooking, sashimi, sushi, and sake.
Chef’s Table: this exclusive 16-seat venue is good for private parties, with wine and food pairing the specialty.
Johnny Rockets: a retro 1950s all-day, all-night diner-style eatery for hamburgers, extra-cost malt shakes, and jukebox hits (all tables feature a mini-jukebox). A la carte pricing applies.
Additionally, there’s a gastro-pub called Michael’s Genuine Pub, with à la carte pricing for items at lunch and dinner.
Entertainment. The entertainment spaces and events are designed to knock your socks off. The Royal Theatre spans three decks and is the principle showlounge for ‘book’ shows and large-scale productions by a resident troupe of singers and dancers. An LED screen provides the backdrop for stunning scenery or moving action stage settings.
Two70o is a multi-level, glass-walled ‘living’ room (spanning almost three decks in height), located at the ship’s stern (in many other ships this would probably be a main dining room), and includes a food-court-style marketplace, and sit-down eateries, including The Café @ Two70o. By night, the big venue morphs into an entertainment house, with aerialists, live performers, digital video ‘performances’ on 100in/254cm LED screens on robotic arms that descend from the ceiling, and an ice bar.
Music Hall is a two-decks-high rock-’n’-roll joint, outfitted with all the right paraphernalia; it features DJs and theme nights. The venue features a raised main stage (with unobstructed views) for live ‘music.’
Spa/Fitness. Vitality at Sea Spa facilities include a thermal suite (extra-cost), beauty salon, barber shop, and gymnasium with Technogym equipment. Massage and other body pampering treatments take place in 19 treatment rooms.
Sports/activity facilities include an around-ship jogging track, a Flow Rider surfing experience (with a closed-loop air system that makes it quieter than previous versions), and those in the SeaPlex (mentioned above).