It has taken me five years to write this blog – since we first started thinking about a new generation of ships which will eventually become OASIS OF THE SEAS and ALLURE OF THE SEAS. The idea of doing a blog scares the hell out of me. But I’m excited about the subject and ready to take the plunge. Even this old sea-dog can learn new tricks.
Last week, I got an illustration of how much interest there is in this ship. There’s an annual trade show called Cruise Shipping Miami (formerly Seatrade) which attracts over 5,000 people. The shipyard just finished a cut-away model of OASIS and had it on display at their booth. I hadn’t seen the model yet and when I arrived at the convention center (all 1 million sq ft of it) I asked the security person near the door where it was. He said, “Sure, buddy, just follow the crowd” (he obviously hadn’t been through our service training). And a crowd it was. People were lined up three deep all around the model. I admit it really made me feel good and I quickly asked that the model be delivered to our offices so our staff could feel the same way.
We are now entering the home stretch. After five years of preparation and effort, we are now a mere (mere?) seven months from delivery and I have volunteered to try my hand at writing a blog during these last few months. I have no intention of replacing the normal information our company distributes on Oasis but hope simply to augment it with some personal reflections.
I also hope that I can get contributions from some of the many other people who have been crucial to the design and construction of this wonderful project. In particular, I hope that Harri Kulovaara will be a frequent contributor. Harri is our executive vice president maritime and heads up our entire newbuilding program. He is the leading industry guru on building cruise ships and a key driver of the OASIS project. Also, I will ask Adam Goldstein, Royal’s President & CEO to add his own items.
I don’t want this blog to be a history lesson. I expect to focus on current events, but I’ll share some historical tidbits in an effort to put some of “how we got here” in perspective.
Obviously, I’m excited about the whole project and look forward to sharing that excitement. I can’t tell you how proud I am of the tremendous imagination, inspiration, and perspiration that so many people have invested in making this project so special.
I admit that we are entering uncharted waters (sorry for the nautical pun) with this blog and with Oasis. I’ll do my best, but please bear with me as I learn. And I look forward to hearing your feedback—which I want, but which I know will come with or without encouragement!