St. Maarten is celebrating Icon of the Seas’ first visit with a spectacle as iconic as the world’s largest cruise ship! The Caribbean destination is planning a special fireworks display to commemorate the ship’s debut in the port.
Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas is expected to make its debut in St. Maarten on Tuesday, February 13, 2024. When the world’s largest cruise ship arrives in the port, passengers and crew members can expect an extra special welcome.
The 7,600-passenger vessel is expected to arrive in Philipsburg, St. Maarten, at 6:30 a.m. local time and depart at 7:00 p.m.
Upon arrival, there will be a traditional plaque exchange between officials from the Port St. Maarten Group (PSG) and Royal Caribbean International (RCI) executives to commemorate the ship’s inaugural visit, with government officials and key stakeholders also in attendance.
As Icon of the Seas prepares to set sail at the end of the day, the Caribbean port will bid the 250,800 gross-ton cruise ship adieu with a celebratory fireworks display. The show will take place close to the scheduled departure time, which guests can enjoy from their balcony cabins or on deck.
“The partnership between RCI and PSG demonstrates with the inaugural call of Icon that cruise opportunities continue to grow for the destination in 2024 with this visit being one of the highlights of more to come throughout the year,” read a statement from the Port St. Maarten Group.
In addition to Icon of the Seas, Celebrity Apexwill also be in St. Maarten during the festivities on Tuesday, February 13. Celebrity Apex is the newest Edge-class ship and joined the Celebrity Cruises fleet in 2020 – a brand which is also owned by Royal Caribbean Group.
Icon of the Seas will visit St. Maarten as part of its third official voyage – a 7-night Eastern Caribbean cruise that departed from Miami on February 10, 2024. After making her debut in St. Maarten, the gigantic vessel will call on St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands on February 14 and CocoCay, Royal Caribbean’s private island, on February 16.
Beginning with her maiden voyage on January 27, 2024, Royal Caribbean’s newest and largest ship will continue to alternate between 7-night cruises sailing through the Western and Eastern Caribbean, which will continue well into 2025.
Icon of the Seas’ debut in St. Maarten is one of many firsts the new ship has celebrated thus far – with more milestones likely to come as she settles into her career at sea in the coming months. So far, the ship has already made several other inaugural calls throughout the Caribbean.
Prior to arriving in Miami for her maiden voyage, Icon of the Seas had already docked in Ponce, Puerto Rico, for the first time, where shipyard workers disembarked to return home and new crew members joined the ship. She then sailed to Perfect Day at CocoCay for a well-deserved party to celebrate the crew members prior to welcoming paying guests on board.
On her maiden voyage, Icon of the Seas made her debut in St.Kitts on Tuesday, January 30, 2024. Not only was this the vessel’s first visit to the Caribbean port, but it was also her first port call ever with paying passengers onboard.
The following day, January 31st, the Royal Caribbean ship made its inaugural call on St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands. The arrival of the world’s largest cruise ship was much anticipated and celebrated by locals – with the Virgin Islands alsosigning an agreement with Royal Caribbean to secure the island’s future in cruise tourism on the same day.
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