A high seas behemoth sailed into the Port of Los Angeles last week, its top deck bristling with monster-size toys and games. Norwegian Joy, more than 1,000 feet long and able to hold nearly 4,000 passengers, was on an inaugural West Coast voyage, showing itself off to travel industry personnel, the media and anyone in the vicinity of the San Pedro cruise terminal.
The big ship’s top deck racetrack and giant slides were hard to miss. Joy is one of an increasing number of cruise ships that will sail out of Southern California ports in the near future. Its sister ship, Norwegian Bliss, began cruising to Mexico from Los Angeles last fall.
“Bliss was so popular that we decided to bring Joy to the West Coast too,” said Andy Stuart, Norwegian president and chief executive.
Joy, built in 2016 for the China cruise market, got a $50-million refit before heading west.
“Tea rooms became bars, we took out cabins to expand the observation deck, changed every carpet, expanded the gym and spa treatment rooms,” Stuart said during a shipboard interview. “We wanted to bring a new ship to the West Coast market. We wanted it to have a new ship smell.”
Like sister ship Bliss, Joy has a two-level racetrack, a tech-drive virtual world in the Galaxy Pavilion, and a VIP ship-within-a-ship area called Haven, with its own accommodations, pool, lounge areas, restaurant, bar and concierge.
Joy will sail to the Mexican Riviera from San Pedro beginning in the fall. Prices start at $599 per person, double occupancy, for an inside cabin.
After leaving San Pedro last week, Joy sailed for Seattle, where it is beginning round-trip voyages to Alaska, visiting the Inside Passage and ports such as Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan and Victoria, British Columbia. Prices for an inside cabin start at $799 per person, double occupancy.
It will sail from Vancouver, British Columbia, to L.A. on Oct. 6, sail from L.A. through the Panama Canal to Miami on Oct. 11, begin sailing weeklong Mexican Riviera cruises from L.A. between Nov. 24 and Jan. 12, and sail a five-day Baja, Mexico, cruise from Los Angeles on Jan. 12.
Info: Norwegian Cruise Line, (866) 234-7350, or contact a travel agent