Royal Caribbean International will name its second Quantum Ultra class ship Odyssey of the Seas when it launches next year.
The decision was announced as the first piece of steel was cut for the vessel at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, on Friday.
Odyssey of the Seas will sail from the United States after it launches in fall 2020. Additional details will be revealed later this year, the line said.
The first Quantum Ultra class ship, Spectrum of the Seas, is slated to launch in spring 2019.
Quantum Ultra class is only slightly larger than Quantum class.
Quantum of the Seas, Anthem of the Seas, and Ovation of the Seas currently make up the Quantum class ships in the entire Royal Caribbean fleet.
Each ship is 168,666 gross tons compared to Quantum Ultra class vessels which are 168,800 gross tons.
Major development projects will help make it easy for cruise guests to get to their ships at the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal in Hong Kong.
New rail, bridge and road links will better connect Hong Kong with mainland China.
“The high-speed rail will bring 270 million people within a four-hour ride of Hong Kong, and will also allow pre- and post-tours to major attractions like Guilin,” said Jeff Bent, managing director, Worldwide Cruise Terminals, which runs Kai Tak.
In addition, the Hong Kong – Zhuhai – Macao Bridge will open up more opportunities in conjunction with a cruise trip.
In June the port celebrated a major milestone as it marked a passenger record with 15,307 guests in a single day as the World Dream and Ovation of the Seas both docked, coinciding with the modern facility’s fifth year anniversary of being in operation.
That came just after a busy month of March, with six inaugural calls which saw the Viking Sun, Star Legend, Silver Discoverer, Columbus, Norwegian Jewel and Queen Elizabeth tie up at Kai Tak.
Traffic at Kai Tak will be slightly down year-over-year, with headwinds in North Asia, Bent said.
“South China has benefited from both a more diverse and sustainable distribution model, and increased attention to the Philippines’ newly-rediscovered port-of-call destinations for locally-based ships,” he said.
Near the terminal in Hong Kong, more land is set to be developed as road and other infrastructure improvements are expected to be conducted in the next year.
“Hong Kong has already met the government’s goals for passenger throughput in 2023,” Bent said, noting the just under one-million cruise guests the city served in 2017.
“For significant growth to happen, we need to help make the source market pie bigger. China has been the world’s largest outbound travel market for a number of years, but penetration for cruise is still only a fraction of a per cent. The better we grow the Chinese source market, the more the entire world will benefit.”