All about Vision Class cruise ships

Royal Caribbean’s Vision Class cruise ships may be the oldest and smallest in Royal Caribbean’s fleet, but still offer plenty to choose from in terms of itineraries, activities, dining, and entertainment onboard.

Cruising on a Vision Class ship offers more of a traditional cruise experience compared to an Oasis or Quantum Class ship, and many guests find they love the no-frills, relaxing atmosphere found onboard.

Vision Class ships were built to sail the entire world, and this certainly rings true as the class offers among the most diverse cruise itineraries of Royal Caribbean’s fleet.

Let’s take a deeper look into Royal Caribbean’s Vision Class to see what they have to offer for guests and where in the world they can take you.

Vision Class cruise ships

Royal Caribbean currently has four Vision Class cruise ships in service:

  • Grandeur of the Seas is the third ship of the class, and she sails from Barbados, Miami, and Galveston, offering cruises to the Caribbean.
  • Enchantment of the Seas is the fourth ship of the class, and she sails primarily from Baltimore, Ft. Lauderdale, and Vancouver, offering cruises to the southeast coast of the US, the Caribbean, Canada, New England, and Alaska.
  • Rhapsody of the Seas is the fifth ship of the class, and she sails from Haifa, Limassol, Venice (Ravenna), Barcelona, Athens, Rome, Miami, and Barbados. She offers cruises to Europe, the Middle East, and the Caribbean.
  • Vision of the Seas is the sixth ship of the class, and she sails from Ft. Lauderdale, Baltimore, and Barcelona, offering cruises to the southeast coast of the US, Mediterranean, and Southern Caribbean.

There were two other Vision Class cruise ships that have since been sold to Marella Cruises. The first was Legend of the Seas, which was launched in May 1995 as the first Vision Class ship. The second was Splendour of the Seas, which launched in March of 1996.

The Vision Class did not follow the same naming pattern found in the rest of Royal Caribbean’s fleet. With other classes of ships, the first ship in the fleet shared the same name as the class. However, Vision of the Seas was actually the last ship in the Vision Class.

Vision Class size & design

The Vision Class ships are all of a similar length, gross tonnage (GT), and capacity (at double capacity).

  • Grandeur of the Seas: capacity of 2,440 guests, 916’ long, 73,817 GT
  • Enchantment of the Seas: capacity of 2,730 guests, 989’ long, 82,910 GT
  • Rhapsody of the Seas: capacity of 2,416 guests, 915’ long, 78,491 GT
  • Vision of the Seas: capacity of 2,514 guests, 915’ long, 78,340 GT

Enchantment of the Seas is bigger and offers different features than the other three Vision Class ships due to the vessel being extended by 73 feet in 2005. To do this, the ship was cut apart in the middle and welded back together once the new sections were added.

Not only does she fit around three hundred more passengers than other Vision Class ships, but she has lounges and activities not found on other Vision Class ships. However, lengthening Enchantment went over the initial budget and time Royal Caribbean had allotted, so plans to stretch the remaining Vision Class ships were scratched.

Vision Class ships, like Radiance Class ships, were constructed with plenty of glass. This leads to panoramic views of the ocean or port through large windows and glass walls around the ship.

Vision Class ships also have a Centrum instead of a Royal Promenade or Royal Esplanade. While a promenade provides a main thoroughfare spanning one or two decks, the Centrum is an open area that spans several decks up the ship. A set of elevators is located in the middle of the Centrum and bars, dining venues, and lounges are found on the decks overlooking the Centrum.

Activities and things to do on Vision Class ships

Rock climbing wall 

Like all Royal Caribbean ships, there is a rock climbing wall on each Vision Class cruise ship. This is a complimentary activity open to guests at select times throughout the sailing. Rock climbing shoes and a harness are provided, and guests can test out their strength by climbing to the top.

Jump Zone

On Enchantment of the Seas is the Jump Zone, a set of four bungee trampolines where guests are strapped into a harness connected to bungee cords. This is similar to the Sky Pad on Royal Caribbean’s newer or amplified ships, although without the virtual reality feature. Both kids and adults can try this activity.

Arcade & kids activities

Each Vision Class ship has an arcade, and while this comes at an extra cost, kids are sure to be entertained with air hockey, racing games, and prizes.

Each ship also has Adventure Ocean, with childcare and activities available for kids aged 6 months to 17 years.

Spa and fitness

Like all Royal Caribbean ships, Vision Class ships have a spa and fitness center onboard. The spa offers a wide selection of treatments including deep tissue massages, facial treatments, and salon services.

The fitness center is complimentary, but offers fitness classes and nutrition consultations at an extra cost.

Inside the fitness center locker rooms on Vision Class ships are showers, a sauna, and a steam room. These facilities are complimentary for guests to use throughout the cruise. On newer Royal Caribbean ship classes, guests must purchase a spa pass to access the sauna and steam rooms, so this is a great benefit of sailing on a Vision Class ship.

Other activities

Classic cruise activities such as trivia, game shows, dance classes, craft classes, and live music take place on Vision Class ships throughout the day. 

Pool Deck on Vision Class ships

Vision, Rhapsody, and Grandeur of the Seas have one main pool and four jacuzzis on the main pool deck area.

Due to being stretched, Enchantment of the Seas has a larger pool deck. She has two main pools and a kids area. Kids onboard will enjoy her Splash Deck area, an interactive splash area with 64 jets. Many of the jets are connected to a touch-pad system, allowing kids to direct where the water is splashing.

Enchantment of the Seas also has a 65 foot suspension bridge on each side of the pool deck, allowing guests to cross over the pool deck area from above.

The pool deck is a hub of activity during the cruise, from live Caribbean music to the Men’s International Belly Flop Competition and guided morning stretches. Each ship has an outdoor movie screen on the pool deck as well, which plays movies throughout the day and evening.

In addition to the pools in the main pool area, the adults-only Solarium on each Vision Class ship has one pool and two whirlpools. The Solarium features a retractable roof that can be open or closed depending on the weather, although the roof usually remains closed.

Park Cafe is also located in the Solarium, which is a complimentary venue offering soups, salads, sandwiches, pizza, and dessert. While children under 16 cannot use the Solarium’s facilities, they can eat at Park Cafe.

Entertainment on Vision Class ships

While Vision Class ships may not have the same amount of entertainment venues found on Royal Caribbean’s newest ships, they still offer plenty to see and do during your cruise. The main entertainment venue on Vision Class ships is in the theater.

The main entertainment lineup on Vision Class ships is as follows:

  • Grandeur of the Seas: All Access, Broadway Rhythm & Rhyme, and Tango Buenos Aires
  • Enchantment of the Seas: Stage to Screen and Can’t Stop The Rock
  • Rhapsody of the Seas: Ballroom Fever, Pure Country, and Piano Man
  • Vision of the Seas: Broadway Rhythm & Rhyme and Boogie Wonderland

In addition to original production shows in the Royal Theater, Vision Class ships provide a wide range of additional entertainment, from vocalists to comedians, live bands, game shows, guest lectures, and more.

Each Vision Class ship also has a lounge area in the aft of deck 6. The name of this venue differs by ship, but it features plenty of seating and a stage, and is used as a secondary entertainment venue onboard.

Food & Dining

Vision Class ships share the following dining and bar venues:

  • Windjammer Marketplace
  • Main Dining Room
  • Park Cafe
  • Chops Grille
  • Chef’s Table
  • Caffe Latte-tudes
  • R Bar
  • Schooner Bar
  • Solarium Bar

The following specialty dining venues are available on Grandeur, Vision, and Rhapsody of the Seas but not Enchantment of the Seas:

  • Izumi Japanese Cuisine (sushi and hot rocks option)
  • Giovanni’s Table
  • Chef’s Table

Due to Enchantment being stretched in 2005, she is quite different from the other Vision Class ships. She has Boleros, a Latin-themed bar with live Latin music and dancing. There is also the Oasis Bar on the pool deck that directly faces the ocean, offering spectacular views as you sail.

Unique Itineraries

Just like Royal Caribbean’s Radiance Class ships, the smaller size of the Vision Class cruise ships means they can offer a more diverse range of cruise itineraries around the world. Here are some of the unique itineraries offered:

  • 7-night Israel and Egypt Cruise on Rhapsody of the Seas departing Limassol, Cyprus and visiting Israel (Haifa and Jerusalem) and Egypt (Port Said and Alexandria).
  • 11-night Southern Caribbean Cruise on Vision of the Seas, departing Ft. Lauderdale and visiting Colón (Panama), Puerto Limon (Costa Rica), Cartagena (Colombia), Aruba, Curacao
  • 8-night Canada & New England Cruise on Enchantment of the Seas, departing Baltimore and visiting Boston, Bar Harbor, Portland (Maine), and Halifax
  • 14-night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise on Grandeur of the Seas, departing Barbados and visiting St. Vincent, Grenada, Curacao, Bonaire, Cartagena, Colón, Puerto Limon, Aruba, and Dominica

Shorter cruises are also common on Vision Class ships, including 4 and 5-night Caribbean and European cruises.

Who is the Vision Class for?

The Vision Class is a great choice for those guests who don’t mind sailing on a ship without the latest attractions and activities Royal Caribbean provides, and who want to explore more unique destinations.

Those looking for Royal Caribbean’s newest attractions like waterslides, ziplining, skydiving simulators, bumper cars, and virtual reality zones would be better off selecting newer and bigger ships. But for passengers looking for a place to relax, sit by the pool, and enjoy live music in a lounge at night, a Vision Class ship can be a good option.

Vision Class ships may not have as many dining options as new ships, but they still offer three specialty dining venues in addition to the complimentary restaurants (with the exception of Enchantment of the Seas). Therefore, guests will have a few dining options to choose from each night or when celebrating a special occasion.

Those looking for more adventurous itineraries are sure to love the Vision Class, too. From Egypt to Panama, Costa Rica, and Colombia, you’ll be able to tick more countries off your list with a Vision Class ship.

Many Vision Class itineraries are port intensive, so you may find yourself spending less time onboard than when you sail on a larger cruise ship. On a port-intensive itinerary, many passengers are tired from several days in a row exploring ports, so the ship is used more of a rest and relaxation area than the main attraction of a vacation.

This differs from an Oasis or Quantum Class ship, for example, where the ship is often advertised as the main attraction and the ports are an afterthought. 

Vision Class ships are best for those wanting a traditional, relaxing cruise experience while still being able to enjoy excellent entertainment, dining, and activities.

 

original article can be found here

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Mike Hunter

Mike is the owner of the local pool shop. He's been in the business for over 20 years and knows everything there is to know about pools. He's always happy to help his customers with whatever they need, whether it's advice on pool maintenance or choosing the right chemicals. He's also a bit of a pool expert, and is always happy to share his knowledge with anyone who's interested.

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