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All Aboard: How To Feed & Entertain Guests On The World’s Largest Cruise Ship

May 2017

May 29, 2017 | 10:30 | Dubai

When holidaying on the ocean, it’s often easy to forget all the little details that go into making the perfect cruise. From endless fun in the water, to evening show spectaculars, entertainment galore; as a guest on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, it’s all carefree fun and relaxation. Enhanced by a seemingly endless variety of food and beverage options, whether it’s cooling down with ice cream, indulging in fine seafood, and sipping on refreshing drinks, it’s unlikely that the typical holidaymaker puts much thought into the logistics of having what is surely one of the world’s biggest shopping lists – and it’s a truly epic undertaking indeed.

When it comes to the numbers, Harmony of the Seas has achieved some pretty staggering statistics. Her AquaTheater pool is 17.9 feet deep and is the largest performance pool at sea, while her Central Park neighbourhood has a living park at sea with 10,600 plants, 52 trees, and two Living Walls, which each contain 10,240 live plants. When she sets sail, she not only floats on the water, but carries 5,070,632 lbs. of water in her swimming pools.

With more than 200,000 meals served throughout a seven-day cruise, the ship’s turnaround day is an exercise run with military precision to ensure that every ingredient for the 200,000 meals needed for a seven-day sailing on a vessel are available. Take Harmony of the Seas – the world’s largest cruise ship; it takes nine hours, 20 trucks brimming with goods, for a total check-out price of US $1 million, to make sure every taste and culinary desire is catered for.

While the wide variety of food items may not come as much surprise – there are more than 200 different dishes available to be served throughout the ship’s 15 restaurants each day, which includes eight specialty restaurants. When it sets sail, the hold includes 3.5 tonnes rice, 6.3 tonnes flour, an astonishing 31 tonnes vegetables in 80 different varieties, as well as 10 tonnes baking potatoes, 15.8 tonnes oil, 7.5 tonnes beef, 700 lbs ice cream, and the piece de résistance; 2,100 lbs lobster tails, an ocean-going favourite. The ship carriers around 86,000 eggs, and 4,000 lbs of salmon, as well as 200 varieties of spices, and 30 fresh herbs to be used by the culinary team.

A small towns worth of staff, a little over 1,000 people, comprising 249 chefs, 532 restaurant staff, 184 beverage staff and 91 galley stewards – not to mention the two robot bartenders at the Bionic Bar – who sauté, shake, sear and slice the ingredients into cuisine of all specialties in 13 bars and restaurants to make around 30,000 meals per day, which across the week will include: 18,000 slices of pizza, 11,500 cans of soft drinks, 5,800 lbs of cheese, 4,200 individual pots of yoghurt and 3,500 bottles of drinking water.

Finally, don’t forget about the water. While on board, it’s all around in the form of vast and paradisiacal seas, but there’s an astonishing amount along for the ride as well with about 479,314 gallons consumed daily, and 55 tonnes of ice cubes made day in and out.

It’s an intimidating exercise in food preparation, but as a guest along for the ride all you need to do is sit back, leave any cares on shore, and let the Royal Caribbean team turn these details into an effortless holiday.

About Royal Caribbean Arabia

Royal Caribbean International is an award-winning global cruise brand with a 48-year legacy of innovation and introducing industry “firsts” never before seen at sea.  The cruise line features an expansive and unmatched array of features and amenities only found on Royal Caribbean including, jaw-dropping, Broadway-style entertainment and industry-acclaimed programming that appeals to families and adventurous vacationers alike. Onboard, guests are catered to with the cruise line’s world-renowned friendly and engaging Gold Anchor Service by every staff and crew member. Royal Caribbean has been voted “Best Cruise Line Overall” for 14 consecutive years in the Travel Weekly Readers Choice Awards.

The cruise line sails 24 of the world’s most innovative cruise ships to the most popular destinations in Bermuda and the Caribbean, Europe, Canada and New England, Alaska, South America, Asia, and Australia and New Zealand. Media can stay up-to-date by following @RoyalCaribME on Twitter, and visiting For additional information or to make reservations, vacationers should call their travel agent; visit; send an email to or call +971 4 331 4299.

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