07 December 2010

FUNA delivers Allure of the Seas: Royal Caribbean's biggest cruise ship ever, with 3D digital cinema and Dreamworks on board

Emden, Germany -- FUNA International, a global design, engineering, integration and consulting firm employing more than 200 professionals in 11 international locations, provided technical design and engineering for entertainment, display and communications in most of the theaters, restaurants, clubs, and public spaces - as well as the crew recreation and support areas - of Royal Caribbean International's (RCI) new Allure of the Seas. The 16-deck, 5,400-guest, 225,282-ton, $1.5 billion Allure of the Seas shares the title of world's largest cruise ship with sister vessel Oasis of the Seas, for which FUNA provided a similar range of technical services. Of special note is the new, custom 3D cinema in Allure's Amber Theater: a first for RCI cruise ship lines. Royal Caribbean International took delivery of Allure on Oct 28 from STX Europe in Turku, Finland. Her US debut into her homeport of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. occurred Nov. 11.

Guests in Allure's Amber Theater will be able to watch the latest 3D movies from Dreamworks. And due to a strategic alliance between RCI and Dreamworks, the visitor experience on Allure includes additional encounters with Shrek and other Dreamworks characters elsewhere on the ship, in the form of parades, ice shows, mascots and more. Her Nov 28 naming ceremony, streamed live on video, was performed by Dreamworks' Princess Fiona, Shrek's animated life partner and the godmother of the ship.

Building upon the popularity of 3D exhibition and the alliance with Dreamworks, Royal Caribbean will next upgrade several existing cruise lines with new 3D cinemas, starting with Allure's sister ship and immediate predecessor, Oasis of the Seas. "We're doing Oasis in the first quarter next year, Liberty of the Seas in January and Freedom of the Seas in March," confirms Christopher Vlassopulos, Entertainment Technology and Technical Direction for Royal Caribbean International & Celebrity Cruises, adding, "It was a pleasure to work with FUNA. I am always confident that they will do an outstanding job."

FUNA provided technical design of the venues for Allure of the Seas as the company had previously provided for sister ship Oasis of the Seas, under contract to the ship owner, Royal Caribbean. Under contract to the ship builder, STX, FUNA realized those designs, providing equipment, installation, and commissioning. Allure, like Oasis, was a vast, specialized contracting project for FUNA from a management and logistics viewpoint not only in the sheer size and number of venues, but also having to work within the unique requirements of international cruise ship construction. FUNA's various entities came into play: FUNA Oy (detailed design/installation), FUNA GmbH (commissioning) and FUNA Inc. (design, purchasing, logistics, and commissioning).

"These ships are literally vast, floating, state of the art resorts, of the same complexity and scope as a land-based resort complete with hotel, retail and entertainment but totally self-contained," says Doug Ellis, Senior VP of FUNA and Program Director for Finland operations. "But - due to tighter safety regulations and a bevy of special considerations unique to marine projects - they're designed and built to be more robust, more energy efficient and make fuller use of a limited footprint than you find in land construction."