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Massive water park, zip lines among thrills planned for CocoCay

(Photo: Anne Kalosh)
Mark Tamis - Vision for CocoCay is 'Chill, thrills and the perfect day'
Royal Caribbean's improvements to CocoCay, which include building a dock to handle Oasis-class vessels, are 'one of the largest non-ship investments we've ever made,' Mark Tamis, svp hotel operations, told Seatrade Cruise News.

'It's already a great experience, a beautiful day at the beach. We're creating an environment perfect for relaxation, or thrills, with a massive water park, zip lines, additional excursions and sports. You'll have choice,' Tamis said.

'Chill, thrills and the perfect day' is his vision for the future CocoCay experience. At Royal Caribbean, private destinations fall under hotel operations, so Tamis is leading this development.

Many lines offer private islands. Tamis wants CocoCay to be distinguished by its quality. He compared what the destination will provide to the huge leap forward that Oasis-class ships represent.

'It's a lofty goal,' he said.

Royal Caribbean is among several cruise operators developing new or existing Bahamas destinations. Carnival Cruise Line has just announced it's moving ahead with a port development including a two-berth pier at East Grand Bahama Island. MSC Cruises is building Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve with a dock, and Norwegian Cruise Line is upgrading facilities and attractions at Great Stirrup Cay.

Until now, CocoCay has been one of the more laid-back private islands. Tamis said more areas will be 'brought to life.'

An entire beach will be dedicated to sports including basketball, beach soccer and volleyball. The food selection will be expanded while keeping the focus on 'great, simple beach barbecue food,' like tacos, burgers and grilled chicken.

There will be multiple different types of cabanas for rental.

The dock at CocoCay will be ready in time for the introduction of the fourth Oasis-class ship, Symphony of the Seas, in spring 2018, with the destination's transformation scheduled for completion in 2019.