AIDAblu is the fourth of six Sphinx-class cruise ships being built by Meyer Werft for the German cruise operator AIDA Cruises. It is a sister ship to AIDAdiva, AIDAbella and AIDAluna, and the seventh ship in the AIDA fleet. AIDAblu was delivered and christened in February 2010.
AIDAblu has a 50% larger deck space compared to its sister ships in service. The ship design is based on the informal club resort cruise concept of AIDA Cruises and is especially focused on the German market. The onboard facilities and amenities are designed to attract young and active guests.
The 71,100t ship has an overall length of 252m and a breadth of 32.2m. It has 1,087 cabins to accommodate 2,050 passengers and 600 crew members. The ship can sail at a speed of over 22 knots.
AIDAblu cruise ship construction
The first steel for AIDAblu was cut in January 2008. The keel was laid at Meyer Werft’s Papenburg shipyard in October 2008. A total of 55 steel blocks were assembled using the advanced laser welding technology at the shipyard.
AIDAblu offers a range of stateroom categories, including inside cabins, outside cabins, balcony cabins, suites, spa balcony cabins and spa suites. The sunny-yellow shaded cabins are decorated with fine wood finishes, fabrics and a purple-red carpet.
The cabins feature an interactive entertainment system, iTV, a twin-size bed, a sofa and a bathroom with a shower. The spa cabins have the access to Oasis Spa and exclusive spa amenities. The suites offer a wide range of amenities to passengers.
Cruise ship dining facilities
The AIDAblu cruise ship has seven restaurants: Bella Donna, East Restaurant, Rossini, Buffalo Steakhouse, California Grill, Sushi Bar and Markt-Restaurant (market restaurant). The Bella Donna offers Italian cuisine, including pizza, pasta and fish dishes. The restaurants have outdoor terraces with over 200 seats. In addition, the ship has ten bars and a brewery offering fresh draught beers.
AIDAblu entertainment facilities
The glass Theatrium is a main activity centre on the ship, combining entertainment venues, theatres and bars, and is equipped with a large stage system.
Theatrium occupies a total floor area of 3,000m² and spreads over three decks. The cinema on deck 11 presents films in 4D quality. The sun deck features a casino and a giant LED video screen.
Other entertainment areas on-board include a pool deck, biking counter, the Pier 3 Bar, Blu Bar, Beach Bar, AIDA Lounge, Kids Theatre and a TV studio. The special internal and external entertainment areas are also available for children.
Cruise ship spa and sports facilities
The ship’s spa and fitness facilities include the 2,602m² Oasis Spa, which has a sauna area with panoramic windows, a glass roof and a large jacuzzi. The spa features a total of 15 treatment cabins in a purist-Japanese design. Asian and classical treatments are offered in the spa. The sports and fitness facilities on board include a golf course, volley ball court, running and fitness track.
Cruise ship diesel-electric propulsion system
AIDAblu is equipped with a diesel-electric propulsion system. The ship is powered by four MaK 9M43C diesel engines providing a total output of 36,000kW. The diesel engines can be operated with both diesel oil and heavy-fuel oil.
The ship has two bow thrusters and two stern thrusters. The four generators installed on the ship provide a total power of 48,000kVA. The engines are designed to reduce fuel consumption and exhaust emissions.
The electricity is distributed by a power management system, which starts and stops the ship units according to the electrical output required for propulsion and the hotel load.
AIDAblu cruise ship itinerary
AIDAblu entered service on 9 February 2010 with an eleven-day maiden voyage from Hamburg. Following the inaugural voyage, the ship started the Mediterranean journey operated as a round-trip from Palma de Mallorca.