Genting Hong Kong marked the start of production on Dream Cruises’ two new Global Class ships during a steel cutting ceremony held last week at the MV Werften shipyards in both Wismar and Rostock, Germany.
“(Global Class) ships are not only the largest cruise ships to be built in Germany; they are also the most technologically advanced with artificial intelligence (AI),” touted Genting Hong Kong’s chairman and chief executive Lim Kok Thay.
The ship will utilise facial and voice recognition for most services onboard, contextual marketing to even out demand for ship facilities, automated robots to perform mundane tasks, along with other AI and digital systems, he elaborated.
Complimentary Internet will also be offered onboard the new line of ships.
Genting said in a statement that the Global Class ships are designed for the rapidly growing Asian cruise market with features such as a cineplex, theme park, spa, Asian dining experiences including fast-casual food alternatives, and retail options.
Global Class ships will be 342m long and 46.4m wide with a draft of 9.5m. With a capacity of 204,000 gross tons, the ship can accommodate about 5,000 passengers in 2,500 cabins based on a twin share basis.
However, Genting says the rooms, designed for Asian families, can comfortably sleep two to four persons with split bathrooms, allowing for a wider price point for the market.
In addition to 28 elevators, Global Class ships will also have eight sets of escalators connecting the public areas, making them the first of their kind to have public escalators.
Thatcher Brown, president of Dream Cruises, said: “Building on the successful debuts of Genting Dream in 2016 and World Dream in 2017, the addition of two Global Class ships to the fleet will allow Dream Cruises to offer our partners and guests more itineraries worldwide.
“Our plans are to have Shanghai and Tianjin as homeports in summer and then, to offer itineraries in Australia, New Zealand, the ASEAN region, and the west coast of the US in winter.”
Dream Cruises will hence be able to offer a cruise alternative to land vacations for the market of eight million Asian tourists estimated to be visiting Australia and New Zealand annually by 2021.
Such efforts to expand the brand would be in line with the company’s new-build programme that aims to double capacity by 2021.