Odyssey of the Seas,  which debuts from first-time homeport Haifa, Israel in May 2021 and Fort Lauderdale, Florida in November, completed its construction today. The ship became Royal Caribbean International’s 25th ship in the fleet.

Royal Caribbean Group chairman and CEO Richard D. Fain, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International Michael Bayley, and Master of Odyssey of the Seas Captain Per Kristoffersen received the new ship from Meyer Werft Yard’s managing partner Bernard Meyer and managing director Jan Meyer in the customary handover ceremony with a virtual twist.

“Receiving Odyssey of the Seas into the Royal Caribbean family is a welcomed breath of fresh air. The ingenuity, passion and hard work our dedicated crew, teams on land and partners at Meyer Werft put into building a new ship always deliver, and to pull it off so well during a time unlike any other is incredible,” said Michael Bayley, president and CEO, Royal Caribbean International, in a press statement. “We are looking forward to delivering the memorable vacations we’re known for today on a ship that will mark several firsts for us, from making Israel a first-time homeport to introducing Quantum Ultra Class to North America. Every new ship is a blank slate to go bolder and be different, and Odyssey is bringing the very best of the new and guest-favorites across two continents for the years to come.”

Later today, the public will get to view the ceremony celebration during an untraditional Facebook premiere event—a first in the cruise line’s 52-year history. The lineup includes the ship’s blessing led by Seafarers’ House at Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, a performance from Two70, which performs on board Quantum of the Seas sailing in Singapore, and executives of Royal Caribbean in Florida and Meyer Werft Yard in Papenburg, Germany. The celebration exclusively takes place on Royal Caribbean International’s Facebook page at 5 p.m. EDT.

Odyssey is the second Quantum Ultra Class ship, it will welcome Royal Caribbean’s first guests to cruise from Israel on sailings where travelers above the age of 18 and crew members are fully vaccinated. Israeli residents can embark on 3- to 7-night getaways through October to visit destinations in the Mediterranean, including Rhodes, Santorini, Mykonos and Athens, Greece and Limassol, Cyprus. Following its inaugural summer season, Odyssey will embark on a transatlantic crossing for its North American debut this November, where it’s slated to offer 6- and 8-night Caribbean itineraries from Fort Lauderdale to ports of call like Aruba, Curacao and Perfect Day at CocoCay—Royal Caribbean’s private island destination in The Bahamas.

Weighing 169,000 gross tons and measuring 1,138 ft. long and 135 ft. wide, Odyssey will be the newest and largest ship to homeport in Israel and the first of its kind to call Florida its home later this year. Vacationers of all ages are in for a combination of 12 all-new and first-to-brand experiences, as well as the signature adventures guests know including:

  • Caribbean-inspired pool deck—Sporting a new look across two decks, Odyssey’s two open-air pools, four whirlpools and Splashaway Bay, anchored by a Quantum Ultra Class first—The Lime & Coconut bar.
  • SeaPlex—Debuts Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade.
  • Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar and Teppanyaki—Two Royal Caribbean restaurants new to North America join the lineup of dining options on board. The fresh take on the cruise line’s signature trattoria is the first to introduce its new wine bar concept, while the other serves up East Asian flavors in the traditional Japanese style.
  • Top Deck Activities—Returning attractions include the gravity-defying SkyPad virtual reality bungee trampoline adventure, FlowRider surf simulator, skydiving with RipCord by iFly, and the North Star all-glass observation capsule that offers 360-degree views from 300 ft. above sea level.
  • Entertainment—Odyssey’s full-scale productions take top billing in teched-out venues such as the Royal Theater and Two70, where immersive technology, special effects and world-leading performers and aerialists take the stage alongside six agile Roboscreens for a multidimensional live show.

For more information, visit royalcaribbean.com/cruise-ships/itinerary-updates.