New neighborhood on Royal's upcoming Wonder for suite-guests only

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Royal Caribbean International's Wonder of the Seas will become the first Oasis-class ship to have an eighth neighborhood, with the debut of the Suite Neighborhood.

The Wonder, which will sail from Shanghai and Hong Kong starting next March, is the fifth Oasis-class ship. The first four in the class all feature seven zones called neighborhoods, such as the Boardwalk and Central Park.

Royal said the Suite Neighborhood will have areas only for suite guests, such as a sun deck with ocean views and a private lounge and restaurant. The neighborhood will incorporate the 1,350-square-foot Ultimate Family Suite, first introduced on the Symphony of the Seas, which has a slide that connects an upper level kid's sleeping area to the main floor.

The Wonder will offer 4- to 9-day itineraries that include Japan, Vietnam, South Korea and Taiwan. Currently under construction in Saint-Nazaire, France,  it will be the world's largest cruise ship when it sets sail, and the first Oasis-class ship to homeport in China.

"China continues to be one of the most important parts of the world for Royal Caribbean," Michael Bayley, CEO of Royal Caribbean International, said in a statement, adding that the line launched cruises from China 12 years ago. "By introducing Wonder of the Seas and the iconic Oasis Class to China, our strong commitment to the market's growth is reaffirmed yet again for years to come."

The 18-deck Wonder can accommodate up to 6,988 passengers, Royal said, and will have signature Oasis amenities, including the open-air AquaTheater -- which will have a new look -- and the Ultimate Abyss, the tallest slide at sea.

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