The Tampa Port Authority welcomed today’s announcement by Royal Caribbean International of its plans to replace its current cruise ship serving Tampa, Jewel of the Seas, with Brilliance of the Seas beginning with the 2013-2014 season.  Both belong to the Radiance Class of ships, with 2,112 passenger capacity.

In May 2013, before Brilliance of the Seas is deployed to Tampa, she will enter dry dock to undergo a major revitalization as part of Royal Caribbean's Royal Advantage program, and re-emerge almost as if she were a new ship.  This will involve introducing the highest guest-rated features from its award-winning Oasis Class of ships, to include a greater variety of new onboard dining and entertainment options, revitalized staterooms, and many other amenities including pervasive Wi-Fi, digital way-finding systems and an outdoor LED video wall.       

Vacationers can choose four- and five-night Western Caribbean itineraries aboard Brilliance of the Seas, sailing round-trip from Tampa and calling at Cozumel, Mexico on the four-night, and George Town, Cayman Islands and Cozumel on the five-night cruises. Aboard select five-night sailings, guests call at Key West, Fla., instead of George Town.  Vacationers also can select a 13-night Southern Caribbean itinerary, departing on Oct. 27 from Boston, Mass. to Tampa. These sailing will open for sale on Thursday, May 17.

“We look forward to welcoming Brilliance of the Seas to Tampa and believe the ship’s exciting new features will create a fresh buzz in Tampa’s robust cruise market and with the travel agent community,”  Richard Wainio, port director and chief executive, said.