Anthem of the Seas is in Royal Caribbean's Quantum Class. The 4,180-passenger cruise ship features innovations like RipCord by iFly, a skydiving simulator; North Star, a jewel-shaped glass capsule that rises 300 feet above sea level, providing 360-degree views from high above the ship; and the SeaPlex, the largest indoor sports and entertainment complex at sea, with attractions ranging from bumper cars, roller skating and video gaming to a circus school, complete with flying trapeze classes.
Anthem has 2,090 cabins. The ones that hit the headlines are the 375 rooms with virtual balconies (floor-to-ceiling ultra-HD screens with real-time views of the ocean and destinations visited). The ship also features interconnected family staterooms, which prove more accommodating for large groups, and studio staterooms with balconies for solo travellers.
On board entertainment is exceptional, highlighted by West End musical, "We Will Rock You," which rivals anything you'd see on Broadway. At night, the ship's innovative Two70 venue blends technology with live performance, including aerialists, singers and dancers.
Artwork is abundant throughout the ship is and it’s fun and beautiful. It's epitomized by Gigi, a two-deck high giraffe wearing an inner tube!
Another fun piece, is an interactive Chandelier that allows passengers to place their hands on a podium. Plates on the podium measure your heartbeat, which is then "shown" on a huge chandelier that beats in time. It really is unique.
The ship's Esplanade and The Via, are the ship's hub of night-time activity, with bars and restaurants throughout. In total, the ship features 18 dining venues, including -- Jamie's Italian, Michael's Genuine Pub and Devinely Decadence -- created in association with celebrity chefs. Also on board is a quirky restaurant called Wonderland, which offers a different type of gastronomy. You'll pay for a number of the restaurants, but the extra-fee venues by far offer the best food on board.
Technology-wise, Anthem raises the bar for the cruise industry. Not only does it offer superfast Internet, but it also uses iPad check-in, RFID bracelets, online bookings for restaurants and activities, and robot bartenders -- and the good news is that it all seems to work.
Anthem is a big, bold, beautiful ship, with more restaurants, bars and entertainment on board than you can hope to experience in a week. It's entertaining and flashy, and it reminds us of being in a Las Vegas hotel for a week. The atmosphere is equal parts modern sophistication and straight-up fun.
In general, my one gripe about Anthem of the Seas is that you could spend a lot of money on board, and the cruise fares are already pretty expensive. But if you're looking to have a blast on your cruise, and you like a choice of dining, bars and mind-blowing entertainment, this is the ship for you.