Sea ViewsFrom President and COO, Adam Goldstein

Sea Views Blog with Adam Goldstein

Sometimes No News is Good News! Part 1: All Systems Go


Guest Blog by Captain Hernan Zini, Captain, Allure of the Seas.

Finally, I have found a few minutes on a very busy schedule to reflect on the incredible journey we have had so far with our team onboard Allure of the Seas.

It is incredible how fast and well things are going.  I think we have managed to capture all the hard work done by the crew in order to get all our new products ready, whether it is a new food area like Samba Grill or Starbucks or all the Entertainment options like Chicago: The Musical and the DreamWorks experience.  It is all there.

The other day running from one interview to another I called our Chief Engineer, Staale. I felt that we have not been talking as much as we typically do in normal operation and I wanted to know how things were going for him….Staale’s reply was very quick… “No problems…everything is running very smoothly.” .I probably wanted to hear a bit more than that but then I thought that in the marine world sometimes no news is good news. The engines, propulsion system and all the machinery onboard have been running very smoothly.

But we should not confuse no news with no work. The marine team has been working very hard during the past weeks, just like any of the other crewmembers onboard, but their story is silent.

Today I wanted to talk about their story. A story that for many marine Officers and Crew started at least six months before delivery of Allure at the yard (STX) in Turku. They worked very hard walking hundreds of miles on the steel decks of Allure, testing all systems with STX as they were being built. During this period, STX operated the systems and we witnessed they were working as intended.

The day of delivery, when the ship was officially ours at 0856, the marine team started a very detailed and extensive testing protocol called Pre Departure checks. Basically, we tested all the systems that have been tested during the past six months one more time over a 16 hour period. Everything from a Black Out test (when you force a power shutdown on the ship and you start the power recovery process), to testing the propulsion system, including the anchors, navigation equipment, lifeboats, etc. You name it, everything was checked one more time. But that time it felt different, because we owned the ship and we were in charge of operating the equipment for the first time.

This detail might seem trivial, but for the marine crew this is a moment of pride, when you finally get to operate your new ship. There was no ribbon cutting for this opening. It was more like a race start. The ship is ours…go…start testing ….and as the delivery dinner and celebrations were taking place that evening, our marine crew was still silently running with their task. By midnight, all of our tests were completed and we were getting ready to sail by 0500. It was a very long and successful day for them, the first of many more to come.

Watch how the engine team and the rest of the crew managed to move the modern wonder that is Allure:

The departure went very well other than a small delay starting one of the Azipods.  But finally I found my keys and we got underway. During the first five hours we were sailing inside the archipelago, a beautiful day. With rocks close to the ship on both sides at all times, this was not a place to have a propulsion failure. The engine team delivered on their task and the navigation went very smoothly.


Once in open sea we were in need to start producing fresh water. Not so much for immediate consumption, but to increase the draft of the ship. If we were going to reach the right draft to pass under the Great Belt Bridge the next day, we were in need of producing 2,500 tons of fresh water over the next 24 hrs. I have to admit that this was one of the few items that kept me up at night. I was sure that we would get the plant working soon, but to do it right away and reach full production in such a short time is another task… Staale’s team answered again… No problem, it is running smoothly…We also needed to fill up the Aqua theater pool (500 tons of water) in order to reach the correct draft for going under the bridge. I remember that we had some challenges to start this because there was air in the piping system. Our Chief Engineer Jr. Tommy took the lead with the Facilities Manager Jacksa and Chief Officer Mikael and they got the task done just in time.

Thanks for reading the first of my three-part blog series – I’d love to hear your feedback here or on Facebook. Also, stay tuned for Part 2 where I’ll be covering more exciting news about the onboard and environmental safety of Allure.

21 responses to:
“Sometimes No News is Good News! Part 1: All Systems Go”

  1. Barbara Muckle

    I am a loyal RCI customer and enjoy these updates about the new ships. I especially enjoy hearing Captain Zini speak….he always seems to have a smile on his face! I would be interested on knowing some of the background on Royal’s captains.

    • Adam

      Thank you for the kind words, Barbara. We’re happy to hear you are enjoying all of our updates regarding our latest ships. Thank you for your suggestion, we’ll keep it under consideration for future articles. In the meantime, we hope you will continue to enjoy and participate on the blog.

  2. Tyron

    Capt. Zini let me say that your recognition of this department of your crew speaks volumes as to what type of you leader you are. Not many leaders would take the time to acknoweldge the hardwork, dedication & contributions of others that went towards making the dream of bringing the Allure into operation a reality.

    Kudos to you along with your entire staff, crew & officers.

    • Adam

      From the entire Royal Caribbean team, we thank you for your kind words Tyron. Captain Zini is truly a great representation of how our entire team, ranging from engineers to our crew members, strives for going above and beyond for our guests. Thanks again, and we hope to see you onboard again soon.

  3. Joseph Masciulli

    I had the opportunity to sail on the Maiden Voyage. I must say it was truly a wonderful experence for my wife Linda and I. The ship was so beautiful, the crew was extremly acomadating. I spoke to Capt. Zini on two ocassions and I must say I was very inpressed with him. He answered my questions and was very cordual to me. With a man like him in charge it truly filters down to the rest of the crew. While we were onboard we booked our next cruise on the Allure next October. We will be traveling with my classmates. the Insalaco’s from High School. Can’t wait for Oct. 2011 to come!!!!

    • Adam

      Joseph, we are delighted to hear you had such a great time on our Maiden Voyage. Captain Zini is definitely a great representation of what we try to achieve here at Royal Caribbean, as well as a great leader for the entire crew. We can’t wait to have you back onboard with us in October with your classmate, as we’re sure you will all have a great time. Thanks again for sharing your kind words and feedback.

  4. tricia Scroggins

    I have enjoyed reading all about the Allure and I found your first blog very interesting. You have given us a real insiders look at things. I am looking forward to your next blog.

    • Adam

      Thank you for your kind words, Tricia. We’re glad to hear you enjoy reading the blog as much as we like writing it. Always feel free to share your thoughts and opinions, and even suggestions for any future topics you would like us to cover. Thanks again and we hope to see you onboard with us soon.

  5. jodi

    I’m a loyal Royal who can’t wait to board the Allure on March 6th. My first RCCL cruise was abord the Song of Norway (91 or 92). The greatest crew member ever, named Raimund Gschaider was then the Dining Room Manager. I have fond memories of him with our group, as well as photos. I was overwhelmed with joy to learn that he is now the director of hotel operations on the Allure. Raimund, it would be my pleasure to meet you once again. I am not surprised he is where he’s at. I plan on sending in the photos of Raimund and I from way back then.

    • Adam

      We also can’t wait to have you onboard, Jodi! We’re sure you will have an excellent time, and we’re also delighted to hear you had such a great experience with our crew member Raimund. We’re sure he will be just as pleased in meeting you once again. We look forward to seeing you in March, and have a Happy New Year.

  6. RON wilkes

    I found your blog entry interesting. I got to see Allure of the Seas arrive for the first time in Ft. Lauderdale and, it is an impressive ship. It’s interesting to learn more about it and how it operates. I remember the Captain of the Adventure of the Seas having a question and answer session during my first Royal Caribbean cruise. I was impressed by his professionalism and surprised by some of his answers. I found it incredible that as big as the Adventure of the Seas is, only 26 feet of it is underwater. I look forward to reading more blog entries by Captain Zini.

    • Adam

      We’re happy to hear you enjoyed the Question and Answer session onboard Adventure of the Seas, Ron. We truly have some remarkable captains who always strive to go above and beyond for our guests. They’re great personalities and vast knowledge are great for helping to answer guest’s questions. We hope you continue to enjoy the blog, and stay tuned for the rest of Captain Zini’s three-part series.

  7. Alexandra Heistracher

    I must admit to all the comments that were written below. It is always a true pleasure to hear Updates about the amazing Allure, but especially from her own Captain! I was lucky enough to be sailing with her, but now that is miss her, it’s great to still get a glimpse of whats going on. Royal Caribbean always seem to make it right. They built the most amazing ship and also designated no other than Captain Zini to be her new Captain – there would have been no better choice! Warm regards from cold Germany to you Captain, the Crew and Allure!

    • Adam

      Alexandra, we’re delighted to hear you’ve been enjoying our updates. We’re also appreciate your kind words and praise for Captain Zini, he truly is a great captain. We hope to see you soon, and if you ever want to escape the cold weather of Germany sometime, you know where to find us!

  8. Elizabeth linnie

    Capt Zini, it was a great pleasure to meet you on 12/1 and 12/5 sailings. I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for your kind words with regards to the International Critters and their Labadee school supplies project. Next time we will have an official Name Tag for you, I promise.

    Hopefully you will be onboard 4th Dec next year when we have our reunion cruise and our next Labadee school project.

    Your devotion to your job shows in many ways,most importantly for me as a guest is how the staff onboard are very happy under your command,that speaks volumes.

    Hope 2011 is a healthy happy year for you and your family.

    Critters Captain Liz

  9. Mary Lou Jordan

    I am a retired cruise ship nurse having sailed on over 100 cruises working along side several professional medical doctors and nurses. Today, I have to say, I’ve sailed on twenty cruise ships from several different companies, and I have to say, my favorites have been from your company. I am able to sail to destinations I only got a few hours visiting because of my schedule. I have taken my companion on cruises throughout the caribbean and mexico, so far. He loves your ships, Our next cruise will have to be one of your newest ships. I look at layouts and ease and safety of my surroundings. Your company has met our needs to the max and we are completely satisfied of the modernization and innovations we see once we board.

    • Adam

      Thank you so much for your kind words Mary Lou. Coming from someone who has your experience means so much to us. We are happy to hear that you and your companion choose our cruise line and we are looking forward to having you onboard and letting us know your feedback on latest innovations.

  10. Richy conachey

    Hello from Ireland! It’s great to see Captain Zini doing blog posts like these, It show us readers what he’s like as a person which I like about these blog posts. I watched every single Captains log and tracked Allure of The Seas as she crossed the Atlantic from Turku, Finland to Fort Lauderdale, Florida and at the start I noticed he was slightly nervous on his first log without Captain Bill Wright but he soon got comfortable doing it. You are well and truly ‘The Nation of Why Not?’ and I have to admit I do love using that as an excuse to not only go on a cruise, but to go on a cruise with you! From documentaries and videos I’ve seen on the television and YouTube your whole team of staff seem like genuinely nice people which always give a good impression to guests. You have definitely won me over to cruise with you after bringing out the Oasis class, you definitely brought the wow! factor to the cruising world and I’m sure you’ll continue to amaze the world with this as you bring out the next series of ships in the next few decades. I’m constantly watching the Oasis of The Seas cams whenever I’m online and I’m just wondering when will the Allure of The Seas cams go live? I noticed there was testing going on with them during the transatlantic crossing. Thanks for reading this and I thank yourself and Captain Zini for posting these blog posts….it really gives us the chance to see what kind of things go on behind the scenes when you bring out a new ship, Thanks again! :) Bon Voyage!

    • Adam

      Thank you so much for your kind words Richy. It truly means a lot to us that you’ve taken our “Nation of Why Not?” to heart and have chosen to cruise with us. We are always striving to deliver the wow in bigger and better ways, and our Oasis class definitely delivers. In regards to the live Allure cams, we’re working diligently to get those up as soon as possible, so stay tuned! We hope you continue to enjoy the blog and Captain Zini’s posts. From the entire Royal Caribbean team, we also wish you a Happy New Year!

  11. CHARLES austin

    Hi, we are sailing on the Mariner around South America. Our first cruise was on the Song Of Norway, June 9th, 1980. We had a great time, and was treated so good we didn’t want to try any other cruise line,so we came back, and back, and back for 10 cruises. We were so happy when RCCL brought the Grandeur to New Orleans, and we didn’t have to fly to cruise. We did many cruises on her, and was sad to see her go. Captain Zini was the Captain on the Grandeur, and we sailed with him on the Brilliance in the Med and also from Barcelona to Dubai. I remember on the Med cruise, we had some very bad weather, and he had to hide the ship behind Sardania, he was always keeping us informed as to why and what he was doing, keeping romuers to a minimum. Again on the cruise throuht the Suez Canal and the Sea of Aden with the pirates in the area, he did an outstanding job. I can see why he is now Captain of the Allure. We have been asking and wanting RCCL to bring a ship back to New Orleans, and now our wish is coming ture. We will be bringing the Voyager from Venice to New Orleans on Oct.22nd.2011 for the first time, and looking forward to having her there for a long time. Good luck to Captain Zini, and will see him on the Allure on Sept.4th…………Charles

    • Adam

      Charles, Captain Zini is as highly skilled as they come and we are more than proud to have him on our team as Captain on the Allure. Thank you so much for your heart felt comment as we are happy that you have been so loyal to Royal Caribbean over the years. Best of luck to you this year and we look forward to seeing you this September.

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