The world’s largest cruise ship has 20 decks, 7 pools and would cover almost 4 city blocks

Category: Business


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. maiden voyage / ˈmeɪd n ˈvɔɪ ɪdʒ / (n.) – the first journey or trip made by a ship, airplane, or other vehicle

    The newly built ship is set to make its maiden voyage across the sea next week.

  2. christen / ˈkrɪs ən / (v.) – to officially give a name to someone or something

    The businessman christened his ship “The Voyager.”

  3. culmination / ˌkʌl məˈneɪ ʃən / (n.) – the end or final result of something, often after a period of planning or effort

    The culmination of all her hard work was when she received the special award.

  4. avid / ˈæv ɪd / (adj.) – very eager or interested

    He is an avid reader, often finishing multiple books in a week.

  5. scrutinize / ˈskrut nˌaɪz / (v.) – to examine something closely, often with careful attention to details

    The detective scrutinized the crime scene for any clues that could help solve the case.


Read the text below.

The world’s largest cruise ship — the size of almost four city blocks — began its maiden voyage on January 27 as it left from the Port of Miami.

Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas runs nearly 1,200 feet (365 meters) from bow to stern.

The ship, which left South Florida for its first seven-day island-hopping voyage through the tropics, was officially christened on January 23 with help from soccer legend Lionel Messi and his Inter Miami teammates.

“Icon of the Seas is the culmination of more than 50 years of dreaming, innovating, and living our mission — to deliver the world’s best vacation experiences responsibly,” Royal Caribbean Group President and CEO Jason Liberty said in January. “She is the ultimate multigenerational family vacation, forever changing the status quo in family travel and fulfilling vacation dreams for all ages on board.”

The ship set sail as Royal Caribbean’s cruises had a moment online. Since December, the company’s 9-month “Ultimate World Cruise” captivated — and confused — a following of avid watchers on social media.

Millions are following the journey through the eyes of the passengers, as they live and post their lives aboard a vessel they’ll be on for nearly a year. If it sounds like a reality show, that’s exactly what some watchers have turned it into.

The Icon of the Seas is divided into eight neighborhoods across 20 decks. The ship includes six waterslides, seven swimming pools, an ice skating rink, a theater, and more than 40 restaurants, bars, and lounges. The ship can carry up to 7,600 passengers at maximum capacity, along with 2,350 crew members.

It is powered by six dual-fuel engines, which can be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), a fuel alternative that the Cruise Lines International Association says reduces sulfur and greenhouse gas emissions. However, some environmentalists worry that LNG-powered ships increase methane emissions. Others say that vacationers generate eight times more carbon on a cruise than they do on land.

Royal Caribbean says every kilowatt used on the Icon of the Seas “is scrutinized for energy efficiencies and emission reductions.”

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • How do you feel about the concept of a nearly year-long cruise, as seen with Royal Caribbean’s “Ultimate World Cruise” (ex. it’s too long, it’s exciting)? Would you consider going on such an extended journey? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • In your opinion, how long should a vacation last? Why? What factors would you say make up an ideal vacation (ex. an extraordinary activity, a long time for rest)? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • What are your thoughts on the increasing size of cruise ships, such as the Icon of the Seas (ex. it is unnecessary, it is exciting)? Do you think larger ships offer a better cruise experience? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • The ship has various features like waterslides, swimming pools, an ice skating rink, and numerous dining options. Which of these features would you be most excited to experience on a cruise? Why? Discuss.