Royal Caribbean International's construction of the state-of-the-art Icon of the Seas cruise ship has reached a major milestone. The Finnish shipyard Meyer Turku hosted a keel-laying ceremony attended by Royal Caribbean and Meyer Turku executives and employees.
Keel-laying — a long maritime tradition involving the lifting of a massive steel block by a 3,000 tonne crane, which was then docked to build a new ship. Participants of the ceremony “for good luck” they threw freshly minted coins with the image of the shipyard and the symbols of the cruise company. Before the maiden voyage, the coins will be retrieved and handed over to Icon's captain and crew.
“Five years ago we were just starting to dream of Icon of the Seas, and now the next phase of this iconic event begins,” — said Michael Bailey, President and CEO of Royal Caribbean International. “This ship will change the rules of the game and set new standards for recreation in the fall of 2023.”
Icon will sail next year. This is the first of three Royal Caribbean ships to be powered by liquefied natural gas — the cleanest fossil fuel available for cruise ships today. Icon also plans to connect to the shore power grid and waste heat recovery system to redirect excess energy to run the vessel, making it even greener.