From the initial design to the laying of the keel, through to the launch, the process of getting a new cruise ship on to the seas normally takes between two and three years. Throughout this period, information about the ships gets drip-fed to us, building our anticipation until the big reveal. In 2020 there are no less than eight new ships due for launch. Read on for all the info on the new best ships at sea and everything you need to know about them.
New Cruise Ships in 2020
|SHIP||CRUISE LINE||LAUNCH DATE|
|Scarlet Lady||Virgin Voyages||Early 2020|
|Celebrity Apex||Celebrity Cruises||Spring 2020|
|P&O Iona||P&O Cruises||May 2020|
|The Spirit of Adventure||SAGA Ocean Cruises||Summer 2020|
|Enchanted Princess||Princess Cruises||June 2020|
|Mardi Gras||Carnival Cruises||August 2020|
|MSC Virtuosa||MSC Cruises||September 2020|
|Odyssey of the Seas||Royal Caribbean||October 2020|
1. Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages
Scarlet Lady will be the first of three identical ships to debut for the brand new Virgin Voyages brand. She will be a mid-sized ship by current standards but the largest adults-only ship in the industry. Notable features include 10 private cabanas, dedicated spaces for blowouts and mani/pedi treatments, an outdoor boxing ring, a test kitchen, and a tattoo studio. She will also feature a "Vitamin Sea" concept, which focuses on passenger wellness, relaxation, and fun. A series of public spaces including a fitness centre, spa, salon, bar, and nightclub will be positioned so that passengers can easily move between them to detox by working out or having a spa treatment, and then "retox" with a drink or two and a night of dancing.
2. Celebrity Apex, Celebrity Cruises
Celebrity Apex is the sister ship to the game-changing Celebrity Edge and will feature a number of the same ‘new-to-cruise’ features. Most prominent among these is the Magic Carpet, a movable deck cantilevered off the side of the ship which rises from decks 2 to 16 and transforms into a bar, restaurant, and an extension of the embarkation area. Then there’s a Resort Deck, which features a large pool flanked by sculptural trees, and two "martini glass" Jacuzzis that overlook the deck below. The Rooftop Garden venue borrows from the hugely popular Lawn Club of the Solstice Class ships, and The Retreat is a serene area that includes a private pool and sundeck, lounge and restaurant.
3. Iona, P&O Cruises
Due to set off on her inaugural cruise in the spring, Iona will weigh in at 180,000 tons making her the biggest-ever ship built specifically for the UK market. Accommodating around 5,200 passengers, P&O Cruises’ Iona will be powered entirely by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), making her the greenest ship in P&O’s history. Stand-out features include a half-mile Lanai deck complete with alfresco dining and drinking; a giant glass dome, a massive atrium with triple-deck glass windows, 17 eateries (including seven speciality restaurants), 12 bars, 13 entertainment venues, four pools, and 16 whirlpools.
4. Spirit of Adventure, Saga Ocean Cruises
The second new build for Saga, Spirit of Adventure will be of a modest size catering for just under 1,000 guests. There will be 540 cabins, 100 of which will be specifically designed for solo travellers. Little is known at this stage, but it is likely that she will have the same features as Spirit of Discovery, with single sitting dining in a range of restaurants as well as a number of bars, speciality restaurants, and alfresco dining options. There will also be a well-stocked library, outdoor and indoor swimming pools, a spa, saunas, treatment rooms and beauty salon.
5. Enchanted Princess, Princess Cruises
The fifth ship in Princess Cruises' Royal Class, Enchanted Princess will embark on a season of Mediterranean cruises in June 2020. The 3,560 passenger vessel will feature fleet-wide staples such as the multi-story Piazza atrium, adults-only Sanctuary and Movies Under the Stars concept, as well as a number of Royal-class features like the SeaWalk (a glass walkway that extends from the top deck) and Princess Live TV studio. An all-new venue on Enchanted Princess is the Salty Dog Gastropub, a rustic-styled pub where cruisers can catch a sporting event while having a drink and some food.
6. Mardi Gras, Carnival Cruises
So named as a fun throwback to Carnival Cruise Line's first-ever ship (which retired in 1993), Mardi Gras will be the largest in the Carnival fleet – accommodating up to 5,200 guests. In a first for the line, Mardi Gras will feature six themed zones; The French Quarter, Summer Landing Zone, Grand Central, La Piazza, The Lido, and The Ultimate Playground. Mardi Gras will be based in Port Canaveral (Orlando), and will also be the cruise line's first ship to run on liquefied natural gas (LNG), a form of fuel that produces considerably fewer emissions than regular fuel.
7. MSC Virtuosa, MSC Cruises
The second ship in MSC Cruises' Meraviglia Plus Class, MSC Virtuosa will be the largest cruise ship to launch in 2020 (in passenger terms), with room enough to cater for 6,297 guests. She will feature Cirque du Soleil performances, an indoor amusement park, an outdoor water park, and the first contemporary fine art museum at sea. There will also be 111 metres of indoor promenade with numerous restaurants, bars and shops, covered by a "digital sky" LED screen showing events and vistas around-the-clock. Another fantastic addition is that passengers will be able to access their cabins, book reservations, and make purchases throughout the ship using wristband technology.
8. Odyssey of the Seas, Royal Caribbean
Like her Quantum-class fleet mates, Odyssey of the Seas is expected to feature activities such as onboard bumper cars and a skydiving simulator. It should also feature the North Star, a pod that extends up and over the ship for 360-degree views, and the innovative entertainment space, Two70, which integrates HD-digital technology with singing, dancing, and acrobatics. She will actually be the second Quantum Ultra Class ship, behind Spectrum of the Seas, which we know will feature an exclusive, key-card-access-only, all-suite complex with a private swimming pool, and restaurant.
New Cruise Ships in 2021 and 2022
We don’t have many details about the cruise ships that are on the horizon beyond 2020, but these are the confirmed ones that we know of;