Cruising is officially making a comeback, and whether you’re a boat-going regular or have said in the past it’s ‘not really your thing’, you might want to make an exception for Celebrity Cruises.
Their luxury raft of ships has redefined the modern cruise holiday, taking guests to the most exciting destinations on earth in the total lap of luxury – no wonder they’ve already won a Telegraph Travel Award (for Best Large Cruise Line) and a UK Cruiser’s Choice (for Best Ship in the UK). Banish thoughts of sub-par food and mediocre entertainment, here are ten legit reasons why you’ll soon be swayed to holiday at sea…
From the dazzling metropolis of St. Petersburg, Russia, to the hustle and bustle of Bangkok, Thailand, to the futuristic skyline of Dubai, there’s a surfeit of destinations to visit (280 across seven continents to be exact). Choose from longer stop-offs in the likes of Bridgetown, Barbados, or Oranjestad, Aruba, plan your trip around world-class events like The Rio Carnival or the Cannes Film Festival, and be one of the first in the world to homeport in Abu Dhabi for 2016.
Fancy some peace and quiet? Retreat to the on-board, adults-only solarium, for a session of tanning, swimming and a dip in the Jacuzzi.
Boasting up to 12 speciality restaurants with cuisines from a host of countries – including everything from high-class Japanese to rustic Italian – you can literally eat your way around the globe. A choice of 400 wines – one of the largest collections at sea – and nearly 200 certified sommeliers ensures you’ll enjoy some fabulous vintages (perhaps this is why they hold the current Food & Travel Magazine Readers Award), and if you’re feeling too lazy to get dressed up for dinner, just order from the 24-hour room service.
With everything from a well-stocked library to a $60 million art collection on board, culture vultures will be more than occupied, while active types will love getting out onto the acre of real grass lawn to play golf, croquet, or even just enjoy a picnic in the sun. Make the most of specially organised experiences (balloon ride, anyone?) and come evening enjoy live music and a never ending supply of cocktails at one of the many bars. One thing’s for sure, when you’re not off exploring new and exciting cultures, you won’t be bored.
Want the insider’s guide to your favourite places? Then an exclusive excursion designed by Ben Fogle (just look for Ben Fogle's Great Adventures on site) is well worth doing for engaging destination talks. Fancy a wine tasting? There are wine and tasting and destination talks available too (sometimes even with Oz Clarke, the ship’s Wine Ambassador), or is food at the heart of your holiday choices? Then the special two-day Waitrose cruises – focusing on regional specialities – should float your boat.
Travelling en famille? Celebrity Cruises have family-based packages designed to keep little ones as well as adults happy and entertained. From family-friendly dining options to kids clubs, sports to Xbox experiences, and also babysitting services, kids of any age will be taken care of. Plus, with special activities as varied as cultural adventures in the cities of Europe to exploring the great outdoors in Alaska and the Caribbean, Kodak-moments abound.
With stop-offs at some of the most romantic destinations in the world, plus low-lit restaurants or table dining with ocean views on board, every night can be date night.
Extra special attention to detail is what we like in staff and this is pretty much guaranteed on these cruises, where there’s an amazing 2:1 guest-to-staff ratio. They’ll know what you want before you even ask for it, take care of all the details of your holiday, welcome you back on board with cool towels and drinks (don’t mind if we do), while waiters will remember your name and favourite drink whenever you dine. Go on, test them…
Almost as important as the food is the spa and Celebrity Cruise’s offering, partnered with Canyon Ranch, is second-to-none. As well as having won yet another award (Best Spas at Sea), it offers treatments, Jacuzzis, steam rooms and saunas, you’ll find a well-equipped gym for channelling pent-up energy.
85% of rooms on board have a balcony (Instagram opportunity here we come) but if you want to go all out, book one of the luxurious ‘Suite Class’ accommodations. Not only do you get access to a VIP lounge and dedicated private restaurant as part of the package, you’ll be treated to complimentary drinks and a personal butler.