MIAMI — Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. will move at least one and probably two of its Oasis-class ships to a new terminal it expects to open in Miami in 2018.
Two of the 5,400-passenger ships, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, currently sail from Port Everglades about 30 miles to the north. The new Harmony of the Seas will sail from Port Everglades from Nov. 17 to April 18.
At an event at the waterside Perez Art Museum in Miami, RCCL chairman Richard Fain announced that the new terminal will be designed by the architectural firm Broadway Malyan of Singapore. He unveiled renderings of the building, expected to be finished by the end of 2018.
The 170,000-square-foot terminal has two glass-faced buildings with slanted roofs facing each other, forming a shallow V. Royal Caribbean has dubbed it the “Crown of Miami.”
It is unusual because most cruise terminals are designed by engineers, not architects. “If we had been doing this 10 years ago, we would not have been so ambitious with the aesthetic side of it,” Fain said.
But he said Miami has gone through an architectural renaissance. The Perez Art Museum, for example, was designed by the renowned Swiss firm Herzog & De Meuron.
The building will be part of a $200 million investment Royal Caribbean is making to build the terminal, which it will own, on land leased from Miami-Dade County.
Fain said the terminal is intended to handle a single large ship at a time, and has room for a ship slightly larger than the 225,000-ton Oasis class. By 2018, Royal Caribbean will have four in the class, including a ship under construction for delivery in 2018.
In a coup, Port Everglades in 2010 won the opportunity to be the home port for the first two Oasis ships, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas. It will now lose one, possibly both, of those vessels. The Oasis of the Seas will sail from Port Canaveral this winter.
“This will cement us as the cruise capital of the world,” said Port Miami director Juan Kuryla. He said the terminal is expected to boost the port’s annual traffic from 5 million to 6 million passenger movements and add 1 million passengers a year to RCCL’s current total of 750,000.