While we’ve had to endure sailing suspensions and travel bans in 2020, that hasn’t stopped cruise lines looking ahead and sharing exciting new launches for 2021. Here are some of the new cruise ships set to take to the seas this year.
As we welcome in a new year, and edge closer to cruise lines sailing again, it’s time to take a look at the new cruise ships taking to the seas in 2021. Some of these were built last year and had initially intended to make their maiden voyages before the pandemic hit, however other cruise lines have build brand-new vessels, kitted out with all-manner of exciting new features, for the season ahead.
From the tattoo parlour onboard Virgin’s Scarlet Lady, to Carnival Cruise Line’s rollercoaster-clad Mardi Gras this is just some of what you can expect from the new cruise ships in 2021.
New Cruise Ships for 2021
Scarlet Lady – Virgin Voyages
Originally due to make its debut in April 2020, Scarlet Lady is the eagerly anticipated first ship from Richard Branson’s brand-new Virgin Voyages cruise line.
The adults-only ship features contemporary, stylish design from some of the most sought-after interior designers, on-trend city-like dining (no buffets nor set dining times) and RockStar suites with a guitar-clad music room, hot tub and hammocks.
The focus is very much on the experimental, with an onboard tattoo parlour, array of wellbeing and pampering spaces, and immersive entertainment experiences for its 2,800 passengers. Sailings will be based in the Caribbean. Among the highlights will be a stop at a private island in the Bahamas, where Mark Ronson will play in The Beach Club for four nights next year.
Celebrity Apex – Celebrity Cruises
Celebrity Apex is the second of Celebrity Cruises‘ revolutionary Edge Class ships and is equally as packed full of innovative and ground-breaking features. Staterooms feature balconies that extend at the touch of a button, dining options include seven new speciality restaurants and a dazzling fusion of performance and food is available in Eden.
Features found on its sister ship, Celebrity Edge, will also be found on board. These include the cantilevered Magic Carpet, the Rooftop Garden and the Kelly Hoppen-designed spa. What’s more, the new ship will be making Southampton its home – perfect for UK-based guests.
Iona – P&O Cruises
Joining the P&O Cruises fleet in 2021 (originally built for voyages starting in May 2020), Iona is the largest ship ever built for the British cruise line. Exciting new features include a half-mile-long Lanai deck, a stunning glass-walled atrium and a SkyDome – one of four entertainment spaces on board. It will run aerial performances and immersive shows, while food also takes centre stage with 30 different eateries on board and new menus by Marco Pierre White.
In a first for the cruise industry, Iona has a its own gin distillery on board. The ship was due to host Ionafest in July 2020 during a voyage to the Norwegian Fjords – it’s thought this will be rescheduled for 2021.
Enchanted Princess – Princess Cruises
Princess Cruises’ fifth Royal-Class ship, Enchanted Princess shares the style and luxury of its predecessors while introducing a selection of brand-new attractions. These include one-of-a-kind dining experiences (Chef’s Table Lumiere and Bistro Sur La Mer by Emmanuel Renaut), the most pools and whirlpool tubs ever and new entertainment venues, such as jazz lounge Take Five.
That’s not all – adults-only deck area Sanctuary has been redesigned, there’s an interactive ‘escape room’ and two Sky Suites have the largest balconies at sea with a private vantage point of the Movies Under the Stars cinema screen. The new arrival will also be part of the Princess Medallion Class.
Silver Moon – Silver Sea
The latest from Silversea was originally set to sail in August 2020, however Silver Moon will now take to the seas in 2021. It’s a vessel that maintains the small-ship intimacy and spacious all-suite accommodation guests know and love about Silversea, while introducing some original concepts. Most significant of all is the S.A.L.T programme, an immersive culinary concept that enables guests to travel deeper through gastronomic experiences.
Billed as the ‘epitome of 21st century luxury travel’, 596-passenger Silver Moon will also feature the new and improved guest areas seen on its sister ship Silver Muse.
Silver Origin – Silversea
Much smaller than Silversea’s other 2021 offering, Silver Origin will be the cruise line’s first single-destination vessel. Set to sail around the islands of the Galápagos, voyages will offer expert-led tours and lectures from local guides on the unique wildlife synonymous with the area. In the evenings, guests onboard the 100-passenger can unwind by the fire pit in The Explorer Lounge before indulging in Ecuadorian cuisine in The Restaurant and Grill.
Spirit of Adventure – Saga Cruises
Saga’s Spirit of Adventure is a sister ship to Spirit of Discovery, but boasts its very own surprises, including two new speciality restaurants – Nepalese eatery Khukuri House and high-end Italian Amalfi. All the cabins have a new look too, as well as their very own balconies.
Expect more boutique luxury from the 999-passenger ship, as well as the Living Room ‘hub’, the Playhouse theatre, a sumptuous spa and the outdoor Lido. Its inaugural season, originally intended for summer 2020, is set to include classic cruises to the Norwegian Fjords and Mediterranean, and hops around the British Isles before voyaging to the Caribbean.
Mardi Gras – Carnival Cruise Line
When Mardi Gras finally sets sail its standout feature is sure to be Bolt – the world’s first rollercoaster at sea. The unique concept can be found in the ship’s Ultimate Playground, one of six distinct zones that make up the new addition to the Carnival Cruise Line fleet.
Other areas include a three-story atrium known as Grand Central, the French Quarter with bars and restaurants inspired by New Orleans and Summer Landing for chilling outdoors. There’s also La Piazza specialising in Italy’s la dolce vita and Lido with a Red Frog Tiki Bar, Street Eats and a pool.
MSC Virtuosa – MSC Cruises
MSC Virtuosa, which accommodates 6,300 guests, will be one of the two largest ships in MSC Cruises fleet. Part of the line’s Meraviglia Plus Class, its shares many features with its sister ship MSC Grandiosa. These include a Galleria with LED dome shows, an Atmosphere Pool and an MSC Aurea Spa.
Other highlights include two brand new Cirque du Soleil at Sea shows performed on a purpose-built venue, and digital offerings MSC for Me and virtual personal assistant Zoe. MSC Virtuosa comes from the word virtuosa, meaning someone highly skilled in music, and each deck will be named after a different musical instrument. The ship also claims to house the largest shopping area at sea.
MSC will also add MSC Seashore to its fleet in August 2021. An evolution of MSC Seaside and MSC Seaview, MSC Seashore is 16 meters longer and has more to offer onboard in the way of restaurants, casinos, retail and entertainment areas.
Odyssey of the Seas – Royal Caribbean
Another new ship originally due to take to the seas in 2020, Royal Caribbean’s Odyssey of the Seas will feature a resort-style pool deck with two open-air pools, hammocks and casitas. It will also host the next generation SeaPlex – the largest indoor activity centre at sea. Expect bumper cars, a flying trapeze, glow-in-the-dark laser tag and a Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade.
There will also be multidimensional theatre Two70 and a number of speciality dining choices. The ship was intended to begin its debut season in late 2020 with six-night itineraries from Fort Lauderdale before sailing to its new homeport in May 2021. Once here it will become the first Quantum Ultra Class ship to cruise Europe for the summer.
Viking Venus – Viking
Scheduled to debut in early 2021, Viking Venus will spend her maiden season sailing itineraries in the Mediterranean and in Northern Europe.
The 930-guest vessel was ‘floated out’ in June 2020 and is now under final construction at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Ancona, Italy. On Tuesday 5th January, Viking announced that journalist and broadcaster Anne Diamond will be the godmother of Viking Venus, its seventh ocean ship.