First look at Royal Caribbean’s new ship Icon of the Seas

New for 2024, Icon of the Seas is set to deliver an ‘iconic’ take on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship with a focus on fun activities and crafted spaces for the whole family – but is this the right ship for you?

20 decks high, 7,600 guests, seven pools, 1,198 feet long and 250,800 gross tons with the largest waterpark at sea, Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas is set to be a beast at sea.

After all, the line is known for adopting the ‘bigger is better’ mantra, with the most recent release of Wonder of the Seas, what is currently the largest cruise ship in the world.

Yet this record is soon to be overtaken by LNG-powered Icon of the Seas on its launch in 2024 at six percent larger than Wonder of the Seas – and Icon is jam-packed with even more things to do, see and eat with an intensified family focus.

We give you the low-down on what to expect onboard Icon of the Seas and whether it’s the right ship for you.

Icon of the Seas cabins

It only makes sense to begin where you will be heading straight when you step onboard – your cabin.

Overall, there are 2805 staterooms across eight neighbourhoods– made up of 179 suites, 1815 balcony staterooms, 276 ocean view staterooms and 535 interior staterooms.

Onboard Icon of the Seas, it’s not your typical Royal Caribbean cabin choice, with over 50% of Icon’s room types being new to the cruise line, as there are eight new suite categories and rooms.

New staterooms include the family infinite ocean view balcony, infinite ocean view balcony, infinite central park view balcony, surfside family view interior and interior plus.

The new infinite balcony concept allows you to open up your indoor space with a push of a button as your upper window panel slides down to create a balcony – with the bottom panel remaining.

Those who appreciate a bigger bathroom will rejoice at the fact Royal Caribbean has increased the shower size in every stateroom as well as adding an integrated bench as part of the shower – ideal for shampoo and conditioner.

Surfside is a new space dedicated to young families. Credit: Royal Caribbean

Families are more than catered for with more than 82% of cabins accommodating three or more guests – more than double the Oasis Class ships.

In fact, there are five brand-new neighbourhoods onboard Icon of the Seas Thrill Island, Chill Island, Surfside, The Hideaway and AquaDome.

Surfside is dedicated to young families and features a splash area for babies and kids, a bar with matching mocktails and cocktails for children and parents, Splashaway Bay and Water’s Edge pool for grown-ups.

The Hideaway is another new neighbourhood onboard Icon of the Seas. Replicating a party-like atmosphere features the first suspended infinity pool at sea encapsulated with a multi-level sun terrace with whirlpools and a bar.

Thrill Island is where the heart-racing entertainment lives – from the tallest drop slide at sea to family raft slides and Chill Island is the complete opposite with a serene atmosphere with four pools including the line’s first swim-up bar at sea.

AquaDome has a similar feel to Chill Island throughout the day with a peaceful waterfall – which then gets transformed into the entertainment hub at night with a variety of aqua-themed shows.

Icon of the Seas features the largest water park at sea. Credit: Royal Caribbean

Icon of the Seas entertainment

Water lovers (families, couples and groups alike) should take full advantage of the largest water park at sea, six record-breaking waterslides at sea and the Pressure Drop - the first open freefall waterslide on a cruise ship.

The AquaDome area will take prominence at the front of the ship, featuring an indoor AuquaTheater that will put on shows with aerialists, acrobatics and the tallest waterfall at sea at 55 feet high.

The largest water park at sea, known onboard at Thrill Island, features six waterslides as follows:

  • Frightening Bolt: The tallest drop slide at sea
  • Pressure Drop: The first open freefall slide at sea
  • Storm-Chasers (2): The longest mat racing slides at sea
  • Hurricane Hunter: The first family raft slide at sea
  • Storm Surge: The first suspended family raft slide at sea
Physical entertainment options include a FlowRider surf simulator. Credit: Royal Caribbean

The slides are open from 9am to 10pm for all day and all-night fun.

For more thrills, head towards Crown’s Edge for a skywalk/ropes course/thrill ride hybrid where the floor may disappear at any given moment, truly testing a sailors stomach.

Other physical entertainment options include a FlowRider surf simulator, the Adrenaline Peak, Sports Court and mini-golf court.

Information about other entertainment is yet to be released…

The Lime and Coconut returns onboard Icon on the Seas. Credit: Royal Caribbean

Cuisine onboard Icon of the Seas

Those who are loyal Royal Caribbean cuisine and beverage fans will be happy to learn that Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade, Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar, Izumi Hibachi & Sushi, Chops Grille, Coastal Kitchen and The Lime and Coconut return onboard Icon on the Seas.

Although not all cuisine information is released yet, new dining options include The Pearl, a complimentary grab and go café serving speciality coffee – handily located next to a large window for stunning ocean views.

The Lemon Post is a new bar concept for kids and adults. Located next to Splashaway Bay the bar will be the perfect location to toast with the whole family – with cocktails and mocktails. Drinks include the Watermelon Hibiscus Lemonade, made with fresh lemonade, watermelon juice, pineapple hibiscus syrup, grapefruit & rose botanical and soda water.

For a quick bite to eat, the new ‘Bites’ eatery serves up casual eats with a soft serve ice cream machine next door – similar to Mini Bites on Oasis Class ships.

i. Credit: Royal Caribbean

Get onboard Icon of the Seas

If this ship sounds like the perfect base for your next family holiday or group trip, then you can get onboard the inaugural sailing on 27 January 2024 for a seven-night Eastern Caribbean & Perfect Day at CocoCay sailing.

This itinerary sails roundtrip from Miami, visiting Phillipsburg, St Maarten, Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas and Perfect Day at CocoCay.

It’s clear to see that Icon of the Seas is a welcome addition to the Royal Caribbean fleet and a must-sail for any cruise addict.

For the latest updates on Icon of the Seas, keep up with us at

About Lucy Abbott

Lucy is a cruise journalist who has sailed on a variety of ships, from expedition to river – with her favourite being expedition cruising.

Lucy is interested in new sustainable ways to cruise as well as how cruising is becoming accessible for all.

She works together with Kaye Holland to keep the World of Cruising website up to date with all the latest cruise news.