First time sailor Camille Allcroft spends a few days afloat on board the latest addition to the Celebrity Cruises fleet
It is that time of year when many of us are making holiday plans and there are few ideas more appealing than setting sail to enjoy the timeless elegance of a cruise. We recently boarded the Celebrity Edge for a few days of sun, sea and indulgence – this stunning new addition to the Celebrity Cruises fleet was four years in the planning and the sheer scale of the towering ship takes your breath away.
Once on board, we checked in to our Edge Stateroom, one of the many accommodation options available which range from staterooms to suites and opulent villas which sleep up to four. The accommodation was designed by Kelly Hoppen and the understated style allows the sea to be the main focus as you step from your stateroom on to the private Infinite Balcony, which has a retractable glass screen so you can enjoy uninterrupted views.
After settling in, it was time for lunch and the phrase ‘spoiled for choice’ is applicable when deciding where to eat on board, with an incredible 29 restaurants, cafés and bars to choose from. There are several all-day casual dining spaces and in the evening the choice of dinner venues includes Fine Cut Steakhouse as well as Greek, Italian and French eateries. Cornelius Gallagher oversees Celebrity Cruises food and beverage operations and he is passionate about bringing a diverse selection of cuisine to the ship – he has recently unveiled a partnership with legendary chef Daniel Boulud, whose signature dishes are on the menu at Luminae restaurant.
It takes a while to navigate your way around the labyrinthian ship and along the way you will discover the collection of 4000 carefully curated art works dotted around the decks, there are many on board shops to explore too and you can refuel with coffee and cake from Café Al Bacio if it all gets a bit tiring.
One of the most striking and unique features of the ship is the Magic Carpet, the world’s first cantilevered floating platform on a cruise ship, which ascends the side of the ship to the height of 13 storeys above sea level. The unique platform travels up and down the ship and is used variously as a dining space, lounge area or bar depending on the time of day.
After a few laps in the pool after lunch, it was time to get ready for the evening and we gathered for cocktails at Eden to get the night underway; this multi-level bar and restaurant venue brings the outdoors inside with a botanical inspired interior and air scented with aromatic plant fragrances. Later, it was time to head to dinner at Le Grand Bistro, where the innovative dining experience Le Petit Chef awaited us. Using cutting edge technology, the table springs to life with fun animations as every course is served, making for a unique and immersive meal.
Day two began with a hearty breakfast at Grand Plaza Café, where every breakfast food imaginable was available and we marvelled at the sweeping ocean views. After a stroll on deck, we retreated to The Spa where the rejuvenating therapy rooms include The Salt Room and The Rainfall Water Therapy Room. If you feel like being more active on board, there is a gym and on deck running track as well as outdoor and indoor pools to keep you motivated when you can prise yourself away from the lounge beds.
Our choice of dinner venue for the second night was Blue, where lighter options of fresh seafood and meat dishes are served alongside a varied list of sustainable wines in a plush dining room decorated in myriad shades of blue. Fans of sushi should not miss Raw on 5, the ship’s dedicated sushi and seafood bar where irresistible delicacies are created to order by a team of skilled Japanese chefs.
After dinner we made our way to The Grand Plaza, a striking open plan space inspired by Italian Piazzas which spans three decks of bars and restaurants. The popular Martini Bar played host to live music which got everybody on the dance floor and later we headed up to the rooftop garden to stroll on deck beneath the stars.
If you are looking for a truly memorable holiday, Celebrity Cruises has so much to offer. The inaugural season for Celebrity Edge will see the ship sailing around some of the most popular destinations in the Mediterranean, with various itineraries available to book now.