History has been made in Brisbane today as the first Royal Caribbean ship to ever call the city home – Legend of the Seas – arrived this morning to begin its inaugural season sailing from the Queensland capital. Its five-month stay is expected to pump more than $24 million into the state’s economy.
Pulling up at Brisbane’s Dockside Wharf in Hamilton, the 1,832-passenger vessel navigated along the Brisbane River for the first time, completing its 18-night relocation from Hong Kong. The ship’s first voyage will be a two-night sampler, designed to give those onboard a chance to experience everything the ship has to offer.
Legend of the Seas will spend the coming months escorting Queensland cruisers to the South Pacific, operating nine voyages of between 8-11 nights and calling in New Caledonia, Vanuatu and Fiji. Further sailings will include two seven-night adventures along the Queensland coast to the Whitsundays & Cairns as well as a 14-night cruise to New Zealand.
A recent $50 million refurbishment on the ship in 2013 saw the latest facilities and dining venues onboard installed. The ship offers six restaurants including three specialty venues such as Izumi Japanese, Chops Grille steakhouse and the 12-seat Chef’s Table. Other facilities include a nine-hole mini-golf course, outdoor rock climbing wall and two swimming pools, one of which indoor is for the exclusive use of adults.
Royal Caribbean Commercial Director Adam Armstrong said the company had been working to bring a ship to Brisbane since the line’s Australian office opened in 2009.
“Queensland is one of the fastest growing markets in the country and has been a major source market for our Sydney-based ships over the last decade,” Armstrong said.
Legend of the Seas is the fourth Royal Caribbean ship based in Australia for the 2015/16 season and has been committed to Brisbane for the next two seasons at least.