Celebrity Cruises, which has made “new luxury”, all-inclusive itineraries and revolutionary ship design game changers, has unveiled plans for one of its new vessels to sail in Australia.
The Celebrity Edge will make her maiden voyage in Australian waters in December 2023, sailing 12 bespoke itineraries in Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific during a short summer season until April 2024.
And the message from Tim Jones, Celebrity’s Vice President and Managing Director of Australia and APAC, is: book quickly. With just 12 sailings, there aren’t many opportunities to sample this brand new ship design, which has taken Europe by storm.
“This is a moment of real celebration for Australian travellers and Celebrity Cruises,” said Mr Jones. “Celebrity Edge is a class of her own with a plethora of firsts on board.
“By offering all-inclusive itineraries we have re-positioned the brand’s concept of luxury holidays at sea. Our guests can now just get on with the holiday itself.
“We are not offering old, stuffy luxury – instead our guests will enjoy a rich and contemporary experience and a great level of service. We have made luxury more accessible to more people. Instead of old luxury which tends to exclude, we have broken the small ship hold on luxury as we are able to offer a luxurious experience to Celebrity Edge’s 3000 passengers.”
The Edge will offer six to 13-night itineraries from Sydney with overnights in Cairns and Hobart and for the first time visit Kangaroo Island, known for its rich nature reserves and wildlife.
Celebrity has made huge strides over the past two years, bringing out a class of ship which is genuinely unique.
Celebrity Edge was named “one of the world’s greatest places” by Time Magazine – thanks largely to its “magic carpet”, an extraordinary cantilevered space that literally move up and down the ship creating different new spaces for dining and entertainment.
But the ship also has 29 distinct restaurants, bars and lounges, a massive spa of 22,000 sq feet (sister ship Apex plays host to Gwyneth Paltrow’s goop).
The exclusive The Retreat is Celebrity’s “ship within a ship” luxury area with dedicated teams of hosts and concierges.
But it was Celebrity’s “always included” offers in the ultra-premium space that shook up the industry and forced lines like Princess to come up with similar packages that ended the relentless and bewildering sale of drinks packages and Wi Fi.
With the pandemic depriving Australians from sailing on the high seas, Mr Jones expects sales to run hot when bookings open in mid-October. He also expects to see passengers spend more and upgrade to more luxurious suites.
After months of lockdown, Mr Jones said: “We are seeing a trend where guests are ready to spend in a big way on their next holiday. They want to be looked after and pampered.”
From Celebrity’s sailings in the Mediterranean and the Caribbean, more Australians are already booking the Aqua class staterooms and suites, which have access to The Retreat with a private restaurant, lounge and sundeck reserved for suite guests.
The sailings will be offered to Captain’s Club members from October 13 – you can join online to take advantage of this booking period – and to the general public on October 15.
No decision has been made about vaccination mandates in Australia yet, though elsewhere Celebrity is sailing fully vaccinated crew and passengers.
Highlights of Celebrity Cruises’ upcoming 2023/24 season Down Under include:
● Uniquely themed itineraries including ‘Sun and Beach Escapes’, ‘Food and Wine Classics’, and ‘Five Star Getaways’, providing deeper immersion into the region’s unique culture, brought to life through enhanced onboard and shoreside programming.
● Overnight opportunities in Cairns, Australia; Auckland, New Zealand; and Hobart, Tasmania, for guests to take in more of the wonders of the magnificent surroundings.
● A new port visiting the scenic Kangaroo Island, one of Australia’s most vibrant nature reserves.
● Every New Zealand sailing exploring both the North and South islands of this incredibly scenic country;
● A sun-filled South Pacific itinerary transporting guests to some of the world’s most beautiful islands – New Caledonia, Vanuatu and Mystery Island.
All Celebrity ships now sail with a COVID-19 vaccinated crew and require all vaccine-eligible guests to also be vaccinated.
Guests are encouraged to review the new health and safety measures in place across the entire Celebrity Cruises holiday experience at celebritycruises.com/au/healthy-at-sea.
For more information visit celebritycruises.com/cruise-ships/celebrity-edge