Royal Caribbean International ordered a new generation cruise vessel from Aker Yards (Finland). With the contract price of approximately EUR 900 million, this is the most expensive ship ever ordered in the history of commercial shipbuilding. A prototype of this 220,000 GRT ship was developed under Project Genesis. It is estimated that 5,800 man-years of work will be required to complete the vessel with delivery scheduled in autumn 2009. The contract includes an option for a similar vessel.
Taking a huge leap of 43 per cent in size from the new record breaking "Freedom of the Seas" to be delivered for Royal Caribbean from Aker Yards in April 2006, the new giant of the cruise market will be 360 meters long, 47 meters wide, 65 m high above waterline and will accommodate 5,400 passengers. The previous deliveries from Aker Yards to Royal Caribbean include eleven newbuildings, and there are three more in the present orderbook, the world's largest cruise vessels in the Freedom class, to be delivered in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Consisting of 18 newbuildings, the total value of the order book of Aker Yards in Finland is some 4.3 billion euro after this contract. The contract is subject to final confirmation of buyers financing.