Cruise Line Focus

Cruise Line Focus: Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises is the premium cruise brand of Royal Caribbean Cruises, the second-largest cruise company in the world after Carnival Corporation.

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The beautiful lobby atrium aboard Celebrity Solstice.

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Celebrity Cruises is Royal’s answer to Carnival’s Princess Cruises, this is a cruise line that’s all about style, comfort and great service, aboard some of the largest and most glamorous cruise ships in the world.

Founded in 1988, Celebrity Cruises was originally a Greek brand, the premium cruise arm of the Chandris Group (the distinctive ‘X’ in the Celebrity Cruises logo is actually the Greek letter chi for Chandris).

In 1997 it was purchased by Royal Caribbean and embarked on a major fleet expansion and overhaul that has made it one of the most dominant US cruise brands today.

All nine of Celebrity’s current cruise ships entered service between 2000 and 2012 (apart from the Xpedition fleet, which has been significantly expanded in the last year or so).

The Eden rain forest aboard Celebrity Cruises’ new Celebrity Edge.

However, after its highly successful Solstice program between 2008 and 2012, Celebrity is now expanding again, with a new cruise ship class, the Edge.

Celebrity Edge will be Celebrity Cruises largest ship ever, at 129,000-gross tons and is the first in a planned class that will eventually include four new Edge-class ships by 2022.

These vessels will consolidate everything that Celebrity passengers have come to love about the line, namely new, innovative on-board experiences (such as cantilevered panoramic showers and a ‘magic carpet’ restaurant) with top-notch service.

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The new Celebrity Edge features restaurants over the side of the ship that descend from the pool deck to the water line.

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Celebrity Cruises on-board experience

It’s difficult to pinpoint the one defining feature of the Celebrity Cruises brand.

The cruise line has taken the four primary elements to a successful cruise experience (destination, ship, service and food) and combined them all into one product.

The cruise line describes itself as providing passengers with ‘modern luxury’, but so do most other premium and luxury cruise lines.

The distinction lies in the way in which Celebrity does it, with exceptionally well-designed ships, culinary experiences (its menus are designed by Michelin-starred chef, Cornelius Gallagher), on-board amenities and exclusive destinations.

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Celebrity Cruises’ destinations and itineraries

Celebrity Cruises sails to all corners of the world, with long and short cruise itineraries to suit the needs of its diverse target demographic (primarily middle class and wealthy North Americans and European, including retirees, couples and families).

In the 2018 and 2019 cruise seasons it will be cruising in sixteen of the world’s primary cruise destinations, including Alaska, Canada & New England, Hawaii, Bermuda, the Bahamas, the wider Caribbean, Europe, Australia, Asia, the South Pacific, and of course the Middle East.

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Celebrity Cruises itineraries are characterized by longer stays in port and more port calls whenever possible. It’s 2018 brochure features 236 overnight port calls and 30 double overnight stays. In Europe especially, a hugely popular destination for the cruise line, Celebrity ships will stay overnight in port more than any other premium cruise line.

In addition to these fabulous cruise itineraries, Celebrity Cruises also sets itself apart by offering what it calls its ‘Signature Event Sailings’ matching cruise itineraries to major world events, such as the Rio de Janeiro Carnival, the British and French tennis Open, Independence Day in the US and Canada, and New Year’s Eve in the UAE, with a cruise that offers views of the iconic Burj Al Arab fireworks.

Celebrity Cruises in the Middle East

Celebrity Cruises has been homeporting its cruise ship Celebrity Constellation in Abu Dhabi for several years. In the coming 2018/19 cruise season, she will be cruising roundtrip from Abu Dhabi to India, on a 14-night itinerary visiting Dubai (where she will stay overnight), Muscat in Oman and Mangalore, Goa and Mumbai in India.

She’ll also cruise from Abu Dhabi to Singapore on a 15-night itinerary that’s then repeated in reverse from Singapore to Abu Dhabi. This itinerary will be the norm during her next Middle East cruise season in 2019/2020.

Cruise ships in the Celebrity Cruises fleet:

Celebrity Constellation

Celebrity Eclipse

Celebrity Equinox

Celebrity Infinity

Celebrity Millennium

Celebrity Reflection

Celebrity Silhouette

Celebrity Solstice

Celebrity Summit

Due in 2018: Celebrity Edge

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