Monday, February 4, 2013
Once upon a time, cruise ships focused chiefly on all-you-can-eat buffets and ports of call activities. While these features are just as important as ever, cruise lines have learned that it takes a bit more to entice passengers than promises of jungle excursions and chocolate fountains. Cruise ships have expanded their offerings in leaps and bounds. Many have become high tech masterpieces that must be seen to be believed.
1. Disney Dream
1. Disney Dream
Arguably the best use of technology on a cruise ship, the Disney Dream employs fiber optics, animated characters, and virtual reality as only some of the entertainment devices on this family-focused cruise. The Disney Dream, which sails the Bahamas, also has digital sports simulators and a 24 x 14 LED outside Donald's Pool. This large screen is used for informational as well as entertainment purposes.
2. Oasis of the Seas, Royal Caribbean
When looking for cruiseabout Caribbean deals, look to Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas. The vessel was the largest of the type when it was built only six years ago. It features such technological advancements as a science lab for children as well as a computer gaming area. However, what is most impressive about Oasis of the Seas is its Wayfinder technology. Guests can find LCD touch screen displays throughout the ship. These screens give passengers easy access to information such as directions and onboard activities. Wayfinder is also available on Allure of the Seas and is being rolled out to Royal Caribbean's other vessels as well.
3. Allure of the Seas, Royal Caribbean
Not to be outdone by its predecessor, Allure of the Seas surpassed Oasis of the Seas both in size and functionality. Equipped with all of the technological features of Oasis, Allure of the Seas also uses shape recognition software on its cameras to determine how many passengers are in any given place at one time. This technology is mainly used by passengers, chefs, and wait staff to plan meals around the highest traffic times while on the Bahamian cruise
4. Norwegian Epic
Cruising in Europe may take passengers aboard the Norwegian Epic. One of the world's newest cruise ships, the Epic was built in 2010. All rooms are equipped with flat screen televisions. The Bliss Ultra Lounge puts on a funky light display for evening participants. An Internet cafe is available for those who need to stay in touch with the rest of the world. A two story Wii screen plays movies and sports events on board. Guests can also stay connected and communicate via their iPhones or Android phones with the iConcierge app.
5. Disney Fantasy
Nearly identical to the Disney Dream is its sister ship, the Disney Fantasy. However, this ship also boasts first run 3D movies. The fitness center aboard the Disney Fantasy is equipped with personal workout gear, each with their own television screen. The Disney Fantasy is based out of Port Canaveral, Florida and sails the Caribbean.
6. Carnival Breeze
Carnival Cruise Lines has found a new way to cater to families aboard their ships with 5D theatre. Those taking the Mediterranean cruise on the Carnival Breeze can experience a 3D film with real-world stimulation. Thrill Theater seats move and vibrate while guests are occasionally doused with water, blown with air, and even poked and prodded during the film.
7. Queen Mary 2, Cunard
Looking to cross an ocean? Take the Queen Mary 2 where passengers can visit a planetarium, watch satellite TV from their own staterooms, or take computer lessons with Cunard Connexions. Sports lovers can take advantage of the golf simulator, which is equipped with 51 different courses.