MIAMI - The wonder of travel sails forward as Celebrity Cruises' latest ship, Celebrity Equinox, departed for the Caribbean from Fort Lauderdale, capping an exciting eight weeks that saw the new-luxury brand lead the industry with eight ships back in the water during that time. Celebrity Cruises restarted the North American cruise industry this summer on June 5 with Celebrity Millennium sailing the Caribbean from St. Maarten and quickly followed on June 26 with Celebrity Edge, the first ship to sail from a U.S. port in more than a year.
Celebrity Equinox at sea
The recently 'revolutionized' Celebrity Equinox's first sailing features a seven-night Western Caribbean itinerary visiting the beautiful ports of St. Maarten and St. Thomas, along with Nassau, Bahamas. She then rotates between Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries.
"With each new ship that goes in the water, I'm overwhelmed by the palpable sense of reconnection on board for both our guests and our crew – with each other, their families and the world," said Celebrity Cruises President and CEO Lisa Lutoff-Perlo. "Being together, again, and absorbing the beauty around us is what we've all dreamt about for over a year, and now it's really wonderful to be a part of our guests' aspirations to travel again."
"Bringing a large cruise ship back into service isn't as easy as turning the ignition key. It's a multi-dimensional process that involves moving and training crew, large-scale procurement, mechanical adjustments, destination outreach, port availability, sales and marketing and so much more," said Brian Abel, Celebrity's senior vice president of hotel operations. "I couldn't be more proud of the Celebrity team's accomplishments. We were ready and we successfully executed this herculean effort with finesse to welcome our guests back onboard for the Celebrity experience they know and love."
With today's sailing, eight of the 14 ships within the Celebrity Cruises' fleet have returned to sailing in 2021 and are full steam ahead taking guests to the Caribbean, Europe, Alaska and the Galapagos, including:
- The magnificent Celebrity Millennium, returning to service as the first ship to sail in the Caribbean on June 5 from St. Maarten. In early July, Celebrity Summit took over the service, allowing Celebrity Millennium to reposition for the Alaska season.
- Celebrity Apex, the newest addition to the Celebrity fleet, made her world debut in Athens on June 19, with seven-night sailings to the Greek Isles. The cruise marked a historic return to Greece for the company founded there 33 years ago.
- Apex's sister ship, Celebrity Edge, made history as the first ship to sail from a U.S. port in over a year, restarting the U.S. cruising industry.
- On July 3, Celebrity Silhouette began taking guests from Southampton, UK around and along the British Isles and coastline.
- Celebrity Flora, the luxurious, state-of-the-art mega-yacht, fulfilled guests' bucket lists as it resumed sailing the magical Galapagos Islands on July 4. She was followed into the water by the award-winning Celebrity Xpedition® on July 24.
- And, on July 23, Celebrity's long-awaited return to the incomparable natural wonders of Alaska began as Celebrity Millennium embarked on a journey to the Last Frontier.
The Celebrity Revolution
Voted 2020 "Best Service in the Large Ship Category" at the Cruise Critic Cruiser's Choice Awards, Celebrity Equinox is part of a $500-million fleet-wide modernization program that has made big waves in the cruise world. Guests will enjoy elevated design concepts, including The Retreat, a private resort-within-a-resort for suite guests that includes The Retreat Sundeck and The Retreat Lounge.
In addition, the ship boasts:
- Contemporary staterooms and suites featuring Celebrity's eXhale bedding with its luxurious Cashmere mattresses;
- Stunningly reimagined restaurants, bars, and lounges offering captivating culinary experiences;
- Over 40 handcrafted boutique beer selections, creative cocktails and a wide selection of a la carte, gourmet comfort food and bar bites at Craft Social;
- A half-acre lawn of real grass at the relaxing and aptly-named Lawn Club, perfect for trying outdoor games like croquet, or simply basking in the sunshine.
Healthy at Sea
Celebrity Cruises has established new health and safety measures in accordance with guidance from public health authorities, government agencies, and its own team of health and safety experts to provide guests with the peace of mind to fully enjoy their voyage.
All Celebrity ships will sail with a vaccinated crew. U.S. guests ages 16 and older must be fully vaccinated and, as of August 1, 2021, all U.S. guests ages 12 and older must be fully vaccinated. In Florida, vaccinations are strongly recommended. Requirements for Non-U.S. guests vary and more details can be found by visiting celebritycruises.com/healthy-at-sea. Guests are encouraged to regularly check the guidance on all health and safety measures across the entire Celebrity Cruises vacation experience as they will evolve in keeping with current public health standards.