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World's third largest cruise ship to arrive at Southampton

The new cruise liner 'Anthem of the Seas' in March this year Credit: Ingo Wagner/DPA/PA

One of the largest and most expensive ships ever built will arrive in Southampton later today.

Royal Caribbean's Anthem of the Seas, the joint third largest cruise ship in the world, will be launched next week.

She has cost more than one billion US dollars and was built in Germany.

Able to carry over 6,000 passengers and crew the superliner will base itself in Southampton for the summer before sailing to her permanent base in the United States.

Facilities in the Southampton passenger terminals have been enlarged to cope with the large number of passengers and crew.

The ship is being launched just a month after Southampton based Britannia was named by the Queen.

She has cost £500 million and can carry 3,600 passengers and 1,500 crew and is the largest ever built for the UK market and is registered in Southampton.

Key facts and figures about Royal Caribbean's newest ship:

  • At 1,142 feet (348m), Anthem is longer than both The Shard and New York's Chrysler Building
  • Her 18 decks can hold up to 4,905 guests and 1,500 crew
  • Of the 2,090 cabins, 1,571 have a balcony and 375 come with a "virtual" balcony
  • Her combined bow thrusters have 4,694 horsepower giving the ship a top cruising speed of 22 knots