Captain Sindre Borsheim is charting an exciting course at the helm of Odyssey of the Seas, the latest to join our lineup of game-changing ships. With decades of experience—20-plus years of which have been with Royal Caribbean—he is no stranger to the high seas. But he is among the first to captain the ship as it sets off from South Florida on six- and eight-night Caribbean cruises.
When you’re on a ship like Odyssey, there’s a lot to explore, like the high-tech features, exciting adventures and mouthwatering cuisine. Who better than the captain to give an inside look at what’s in store on board?
We spoke with Captain Sindre about all things Odyssey, his career and what it’s like to “take the wheel” of the latest Royal Caribbean ship:
Q: What’s the most exciting aspect of being at the helm of a new ship like Odyssey?
Captain Sindre: I’m left in awe of this beautiful ship each day, deck by deck. All of us on board are eager and excited to share Odyssey with our guests, and it’s been a long time since we’ve had the opportunity to show what makes Royal Caribbean cruises such memorable vacations. Our crew sets high standards, and we strive to deliver beyond expectations.
Q: Can you give us an idea of your journey to becoming the captain of a cruise ship?
Captain Sindre: I started my seafaring career at 16. I felt the need to set a new course, so to speak, and was lucky enough to find what I wanted to do at an early age, which motivated me to go back to school and pass the nautical exams. I first ended up on Royal Norwegian Navy submarines as a navigational assistant. Afterward, I decided I needed space, fresh air and a big team, so I decided to give the cruise industry a go.
Royal Caribbean had (and still has) the best reputation for safety and innovation, which was appealing to me. I was fortunate enough to serve as a 2nd Officer on Rhapsody of the Seas in 1999. The brilliant mentors I’ve met on board since then have meant everything to me. They helped me reach my goal of becoming a captain in 2010.
Q: What are the top things guests can’t miss when they sail aboard Odyssey?
Captain Sindre: While the curry on board is my favorite dish, the specialty restaurants really are something else. I had the pleasure of trying our new Italian trattoria, Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar. It was spectacular, and I highly recommend it.
When it comes to activities, try our sky diving simulator, RipCord by iFly. And families will love SeaPlex; it’s the largest indoor and outdoor activity space you’ll find at sea. Everyone can have a good time there and then grab a bite at Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade — new to SeaPlex.
Q: Can you tell us about some of the efficiencies and technology on board?
Captain Sindre: There is plenty of tech behind the scenes. For example, Odyssey uses artificial intelligence (AI) to optimize our routes to improve fuel efficiency. There’s also Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology, which reduces the nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from our diesel engines.
Our guests will find the many benefits of technology on this ship in the palm of their hand too. With the Royal Caribbean app, they can open their stateroom using their smartphone, complete the safety drill independently, and use the Daily Planner to browse and schedule activities and entertainment. One of the new, exciting experiences you can’t miss is Virtual Adventure Zone, a virtual reality adventure that feels very real.
Editor’s note: Virtual Adventure Zone is the first fully immersive 4D VR experience at sea. It uses multisensory effects, like water, wind and scent, to enhance the journey from start to finish.
Q: Which destinations on Odyssey’s Caribbean itineraries are you most excited to visit and why?
Captain Sindre: I will finally get to visit Perfect Day at CocoCay! All the reviews of the island are excellent, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to experience it firsthand.
Pro tip: You’ll discover endless thrills and ways to chill at Perfect Day at CocoCay—from the tallest waterslide in North America and a helium balloon ride that offers the highest vantage point in the region, to serene, white sand beaches and private floating cabanas.
Q: What is the best part of your job?
Captain Sindre: In addition to watching our guests enjoy their vacations with us, I also love seeing and being a part of fellow crew members succeeding and advancing in their careers. I’m proud to represent a company that offers equal opportunity, regardless of sex, nationality, race, gender or age. The possibilities are enormous.
Q: When you’re not captaining a ship, what is life like at home?
Captain Sindre: In addition to spending quality time with my 8-year-old son, I love fishing, skiing and inviting friends over for a nice meal!
When you’re ready to set sail with Captain Sindre and his team on board Odyssey of the Seas, head here to choose your Royal Caribbean cruise.