Aroya Cruises opens inaugural season aboard AROYA

Saudi Arabia's first cruise line will feature a 'Ship-within-a-ship' concept.

Saudi Arabian start-up cruise line Aroya Cruises has begun accepting reservations for its first destination, the Red Sea. The new cruise line says it will offer an “authentic Arabian experience to guests at sea and on land”.

Bookings went live last week with Aroya Cruises – the first cruise line of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and operated under Cruise Saudi. Cruise Saudi acquired the 1,678-cabin World Dream which was being constructed for Genting’s Dream Cruises before the company’s collapse in 2022. Spread across 18 decks, the 335-metre ship accommodates up to 3,362 guests in a variety of cabins, suites and villas. The vessel was rebranded as Manara, but will change its name to AROYA when it enters operation later this year.

AROYA will debut in December 2024

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Within the cabin inventory are 154 “VIP” suites and villas which appear to be a ‘ship-within-a-ship’ concept adopted by many contemporary cruise lines to appeal to the high-end market. Elsewhere, the website – – indicates this VIP section is branded as “Khuzama by AROYA”.

The bulk of the accommodations in Khuzama by AROYA are the “Suite+” categories (seven types) which are 25-39 square metres; 14 Premium Suites (38-58 square metres) and 9 Villas (96-392 square metres) including the Signature Suite, Presidential Villa and Royal Villa.

Super Suite Bedroom, AROYA

Guests in the VIP section will receive butler service, premium drink packages, dedicated venues and restaurants and priority boarding and disembarkation – all similar traits of the ‘ship-within-in-a-ship’ concept.

Facilities on board AROYA include 15 restaurants, 20 venues, a waterpark with five slides and a wellness area measuring nearly 2,000 square metres.

Launching in December 2024 from Jeddah and running through to late May 2025, AROYA offers three core itineraries. They are:

  • a three-night Red Sea voyage to a private island called ‘Exploring the Red Sea’s Charms’
  • and a pair of four-night sailings to either;
    • Sharm El Sheik (Egypt), called ‘A World of Discoveries to the City of Peace’
    • or Aqaba (Petra), called ‘Ancient Cultures from the Depths of the Sea’

Aroya Cruises also offers a six-night voyage that combines the two four-night destinations on the ‘Magical Journey along the Seas and the Sands’ (just one departure), and a seven-night cruise entitled ‘An exceptional Voyage along the Shores of the Red Sea’ that includes a call to Ain Al Sokhna in Egypt (two departures only).

La Tavola - Italian Restaurant

The cruise line’s website also indicates future itineraries will be offered to the Arabian Gulf and the Mediterranean.

To mark its launch and encourage families to reserve their cruise, Aroya is offering an early booking deal whereby the 3rd and 4th guests sails free (in the one shared cabin).

AROYA’s first sailing is scheduled for 16 December 2024 on the three-night voyage from Jeddah.


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