You arrive at your destination and, after checking in, you have access to fine-dining meals from a Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star chef and tailored wellness experiences, all in luxurious, modern spaces brought to life by world-class designers and architects. While this might sound like you’re at a hotel, it’s actually a ship. Or more accurately, it’s both. Celebrity’s ships embody resorts at sea — offering all the luxurious hotel amenities you could want, alongside the daily change of inspiring destinations that only cruises can provide.
Celebrity’s efforts are resonating with guests. After its newest Edge Series ship, Celebrity Beyond, set off on its inaugural U.S. sailing last month, the company shattered two major sales records: it marked its largest booking day in history on Black Friday, followed by its strongest-ever Cyber Monday.
Here’s how Celebrity is elevating hospitality on the high seas:
Celebrity landed a major coup when it brought aboard Daniel Boulud as its global culinary ambassador. Renowned for establishments like the Five-Star Daniel and Le Pavillon, both in New York, the French master chef debuted his first restaurant at sea with Beyond’s Le Voyage.
Don’t expect your typical cruise cuisine here. Boulud’s global menu spans dishes like five-spice duck pithivier with bok choy, shiitake and sweet and sour sauce; grilled Rubia Gallega filet mignon with black truffle sauce, hazelnuts and Saint-Nectaire potato mille-feuille; and risotto with lobster, zucchini and sauce Américaine.
To top it off, you can pair dinner with the most decorated wine collection at sea — it’s racked up Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence 10 years in a row. In fact, wine is considered so crucial to Celebrity’s guest experience that certified sommeliers preside over every restaurant on the ship.
For a special epicurean experience, opt for Chef’s Table by Daniel Boulud. It starts with a champagne reception and a galley tour where you can snap a photo with Celebrity’s chefs before sitting down to your five-course meal. You will leave more than sated with Boulud’s global cuisine, taking home one of his cookbooks as a souvenir.
But if you crave something else, Celebrity offers up to 33 restaurants bars and lounges. You’ll find 10 complimentary dining venues, four of which are main restaurants. Savor diverse cuisine like authentic French fare at Le Grand Bistro, the bold flavors of Italian steakhouse Tuscan Grille and the innovative globally inspired dishes at Eden Restaurant.
Aboard Celebrity Beyond, you will find a luxurious spa with a SEA Thermal Suite (that includes a hammam, a crystalarium, a salt room, a steam room, an infrared sauna, a float room with hanging basket chairs, an area with heated loungers and a rainfall water therapy room) and a wide-ranging treatment menu (it features Kérastase hair services, acupuncture, dermal fillers, ELEMIS Biotec facials and more). For a robust workout, head to the fully equipped gym for classes like F45 (a high-intensity group option), cardio boxing, LIT bungee and pulse barre.
To expand its wellness offerings, Celebrity has curated on-demand, in-stateroom classes and fitness equipment, like an acupressure mat; domes for self-massaging and core strengthening; a crystal-infused meditation pillow; and an infinity-shaped roller (available in wellness-focused AquaClass staterooms and Aqua Sky Suites). And wellness touches are found elsewhere on board, such as The Spa Café, which whips up a detox smoothie with coconut water, mango, kale, celery, mint, parsley, spirulina and chia seeds.
To create its sleek and distinctive spaces, Celebrity assembled a team of acclaimed architects and designers, including American interior designer Nate Berkus (the popular Edge Series travel ambassador who also has a design renovation show on HGTV), British designer Kelly Hoppen CBE (she did the interiors for LUX* Grand Baie in Mauritius), Paris-based design firm Jouin Manku (it recently renovated Marrakech’s La Mamounia); and British architect Tom Wright (who devised Dubai’s sailboat-shaped Burj Al Arab Jumeirah).
Wright is behind the innovative design of the inventive Magic Carpet, a cantilevered venue first appearing on Celebrity Edge. The size of a tennis court, the tangerine deck moves up and down the exterior of the ship and can be used for anything from an alfresco dining space to a tender platform. You can experience the Magic Carpet on Beyond as well.
The Retreat, Celebrity’s resort-within-a-resort, is even bigger on Beyond. Its two-story sundeck is 40 percent larger than those found on previous Edge Series ships. Check into premium accommodations like the two-story Edge Villa with its own plunge pool or the two-bedroom, two-bathroom Iconic Suite. The largest in the fleet, the Iconic Suite boasts unbeatable wraparound vistas.
But even if you don’t stay in The Retreat, you’ll enjoy spacious accommodations. Edge Series staterooms offer groundbreaking indoor-outdoor spaces and are 23 percent larger than the Solstice Series staterooms.
You may decide not to spend much time in your stateroom once you visit Beyond’s Nate Berkus designed Sunset Bar. Inspired by international beach clubs, the alfresco multi-tiered bar mixes influences from Greece, Mexico, Uruguay and California, and it’s 180 percent larger than those on previous ships.
Celebrity provides a host of other amenities that you won’t find at most hotels. Order the complimentary continental breakfast via room service. Drop off the kids at the free children’s program while you catch a Broadway-caliber show in a cutting-edge theater or some live music or try your luck in the onboard casino. Though, perhaps the best perk is the ability to see up to eight countries in one trip and only having to unpack once.