Construction on Royal Caribbean’s first vessel in its all-new Icon Class reached a milestone at a keel-laying ceremony at Finnish shipyard Meyer Turku. The ceremony marks the official start of the physical construction of the new ship.
“Five years ago, we began dreaming of Icon of the Seas, and now the next phase of this iconic adventure is beginning,” said Michael Bayley, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean International. “As this game-changing ship takes shape, the excitement from families and travelers alike, travel advisors and our partners continues to build. Later this year, we’ll reveal the lineup of firsts and favorites that will set a new standard for vacations come fall 2023.”
Bayley was joined at the shipyard by Jason Liberty, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean Group; Richard Fain, chairman of Royal Caribbean Group; Bernard Meyer, Meyer Group managing partner; and Tim Meyer, Meyer Turku CEO.
As part of the ceremony, a 3,000-ton craned lifted a massive steel block into the ship’s building dock and placed it on top of several freshly minted coins, which represent the shipyard and the line. Per maritime tradition, the coins are meant to bring good luck during construction. They will be retrieved later and given to Icon’s captain and crew before sailing.
Icon of the Seas, which will be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), is scheduled to be delivered in the fall of 2023. It will be the first of three Icon-class ships so far announced.