Celebrity Cruises

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Celebrity Cruises
Industry Transportation
Founded 1989[1]
Headquarters Miami, Florida
Area served
Key people
Michael Bayley
(President and CEO)
Products Cruises
Parent Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
Website celebritycruises.com

Celebrity Cruises is a cruise line which was founded in 1988 by the Greece-based Chandris Group.[2] In 1997, Celebrity Cruises Ltd. merged with Royal Caribbean International to become Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., which operates Celebrity, Royal Caribbean International, Azamara Club Cruises, Pullmantur Cruises and CDF Croisières de France. The signature "Χ" displayed on the funnel of Celebrity ships is the Greek letter chi, for "Chandris".[3][4] The company has its headquarters in Miami, Florida.[5] Common features on board Celebrity brand ships are aft-glass dining rooms, formal foyer areas, alternate dining venues, balcony and suite staterooms, large pools and lounging areas, signature bars and lounges, libraries, elegant spas and gyms, and relaxation areas.


Celebrity Cruises was founded in April 1988 as a subsidiary of the Greece-based Chandris Group to operate upmarket cruise ships to Bermuda.[2] Chandris had been involved in cruise traffic since the 1960s,[4] and during the late 1980s the company operated in the United States market under the brand name Chandris Cruises. Chandris Fantasy Cruises targeted the lower end of the cruise passenger market, with fleets consisting of second-hand ocean liners.[6] Celebrity Cruises came into existence when, in April 1988, Home Lines, at the time one of the world's leading premium cruise lines, was sold to Holland America Line. Home Lines' ships had held two of the five contracts offered by the Government of Bermuda to cruise lines, giving the ships priority berthing arrangement and unlimited access of sail to the islands in exchange for the ships sailing to Bermuda between April and October each year. Although these contracts were highly valued, Holland America Line decided to withdraw the former Home Lines ships from this service, leaving an opening for two new ships to gain access. Chandris wanted to acquire the contracts, but the Government of Bermuda was only willing to award them to upmarket cruise lines, which Chandris Fantasy Cruises was not.[2]

In order to gain the Bermuda Government contracts, Chandris created Celebrity Cruises and immediately began negotiating with the Bermuda Government in April 1988. As a result of the negotiations, Celebrity Cruises was awarded the contract for two ships for a five-year period beginning in 1990 [2] In order to fulfill the contract, Chandris Fantasy Cruises' Galileo was rebuilt at Lloyd Werft, Germany in 1989, re-entering service as Meridian for Celebrity Cruises in February 1990.[2][3] As the second ship Horizon, that had been ordered in 1988 as a replacement for Amerikanis in the Chandris Fantasy fleet, was transferred to Celebrity Cruises fleet, entering service in May 1990.[2][7] In late 1990 Celebrity Cruises placed an order for a sister ship of the Horizon, delivered in 1992 as Zenith.[2][8]

Summit, a Millennium-class ship, renamed Celebrity Summit in 2008.

In 1997 the Chandris family sold their interests in Celebrity Cruises to Royal Caribbean International.[9] During the same year Celebrity Cruises took delivery of the first Century class vessel, Century, that was followed by Galaxy in 1996 and Mercury in 1997.[8] Following the delivery of the Mercury, the Meridian was sold to Singapore-based Sun Cruises.[3] Between 2000 and 2002 Celebrity took delivery of a quartet of new ships, the gas turbine -powered and aptly named Millennium class ships Millennium, Infinity, Summit and Constellation.[8] The Celebrity Expeditions sub-brand was launched in 2001 with the acquisition of Celebrity Xpedition, a small boutique ship offering specialized cruises around the Galápagos Islands.[10] In 2005, the Horizon was transferred to the fleet Royal Caribbean's United Kingdom -based subsidiary Island Cruises.[7] In the same year, the first ship of what was to be named Solstice class was ordered from Meyer Werft.[11] By 2007, three more ships of this class were on order.[12]

In 2006, plans were made to transfer Blue Moon and Blue Dream from the fleet of Pullmantur Cruises to Celebrity Cruises under the names of Celebrity Quest and Celebrity Journey. The ships would have joined the Celebrity Expeditions sub-brand,[13][14] but in the end the decision was made to form an entirely new line, Azamara Cruises, to operate these ships in 2007.[15] Also in 2007 the Zenith was transferred to Pullmantur Cruises 'in exchange' for the Azamara ships.[13] Transfer of the Zenith also meant the end of Celebrity Cruises' association with Bermuda for the time being, as no ship was brought in to replace her on the cruises to Bermuda.[16] In April 2010, The Celebrity Summit reposition yearly to New Jersey and offers cruises to Bermuda.[17]

Celebrity Solstice, the lead ship in the Solstice-Class.

In 2007-2008, all of Celebrity Cruises' ships were renamed with a "Celebrity" prefix added to the pre-existing ship names.[8][18] Celebrity Solstice, the first ship in the new Solstice class, was delivered to Celebrity on 24 October 2008.[19] In May 2009 Galaxy was transferred to the fleet of TUI Cruises, a joint venture between Celebrity Cruises' owner Royal Caribbean International and TUI AG and renamed as Mein Schiff.[20] Two more Solstice Class ships entered service - the Celebrity Equinox in 2009 and the Celebrity Eclipse in 2010.

Celebrity Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line embarkation point, Port of Seattle Bell Street Pier

In 2011, Celebrity Mercury was sold by Celebrity fleet to become Mein Schiff 2 for TUI Cruises.[21] The fourth Solstice Class ship the Celebrity Silhouette entered service in 2011. The Celebrity Reflection was recently delivered in 2012. After the Solstice class ships were released, Celebrity renovated all their older ships to make them more modern, they also put features that were only in the Solstice class. Therefore, they called the renovations "Solsticising".[citation needed]

In 2014, Celebrity Cruises launched a new modern luxury blog called Catalyst, which covers travel, fashion and culture.[22]

In April 2015, Celebrity's oldest ship, the Celebrity Century will depart the fleet.[23]

On December 4, 2014, Celebrity Cruises has signed of a letter of intent for a new class of vessels, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and French shipbuilder STX France announced. The two 2,900-guest, 117,000 GT ships, will be developed under the project name EDGE and will build upon the modern luxury experience of the brand's Millennium and Solstice class vessels.The company expects delivery of the first ship in Fall 2018, with the second vessel delivered in the early part of 2020.[24]


Current fleet[edit]

Century class[edit]

Ship Entered service
for Celebrity
Capacity Gross tonnage Flag Notes Image
Celebrity Century 1995 1,778 71,545 GT  Malta Previously Century, Will be Transferred to Ctrip in April 2015. Celebrity Century (ship, 1995).JPG

Millennium class[edit]

Ship Entered service
for Celebrity
Capacity Gross tonnage Flag Notes Image
Celebrity Millennium 2000 2,138 91,000 GT  Malta Previously Millennium, renamed in 2008. Celebrity Millennium (3725431646).jpg
Celebrity Infinity 2001 2,170 91,000 GT  Malta Previously Infinity, renamed in 2007. GTS Celebrity Infinity 2014 Ushuaia.JPG
Celebrity Summit 2002 2,158 91,000 GT  Malta Previously Summit, renamed in 2008. Celebrity Summit.jpg
Celebrity Constellation 2002 2,038 91,000 GT  Malta Previously Constellation, renamed in 2007. GTS Celebrity Constellation La Rochelle.jpg

Xpedition class[edit]

Ship Entered service
for Celebrity
Capacity Gross tonnage Flag Notes Image
Celebrity Xpedition 2001 96 2,842 GT  Ecuador Last refurbished in June 2012 Xpedition Galapagos.jpg

Solstice class[edit]

Ship Entered service
for Celebrity
Capacity Gross tonnage Flag Notes Image
Celebrity Solstice 2008 2,850 122,000 GT  Malta First ship in the class Cruise ship Celebrity Solstice.jpg
Celebrity Equinox 2009 2,850 122,000 GT  Malta CelebrityEquinox-maidenvoyage.jpg
Celebrity Eclipse 2010 2,850 122,000 GT  Malta Celebrity Eclipse-1.jpg
Celebrity Silhouette 2011 2,886 122,000 GT  Malta Celebrity Silhouette San Juan.JPG
Celebrity Reflection 2012 3,046 126,000 GT  Malta Celebrity's biggest cruise ship (by passenger count) CelebrityReflection.jpg

Future ships[edit]

Ship Class Year To Be Built Capacity Gross tonnage Flag Notes
Project EDGE 1 TBA 2018 2,900 117,000 GT  Malta [25]
Project EDGE 2 TBA 2020 2,900 117,000 GT  Malta [26]

Retired ships[edit]

Ship Class Years in service Tonnage* Status after Celebrity Image
Meridian 1990–1997 30,440 GRT Burnt and sank at the Straits of Malacca in 1999 as the Sun Vista for Sun Cruises.[27] MN Galileo Galilei.jpg
Horizon Horizon class 1990–2005 46,811 GT From 2005-2012, Island Star for Island Cruises. Since 2012 sailing for CDF Croisières de France.[28] MV Horizon Dock.jpg
Zenith Horizon class 1992–2007 47,255 GT Since 2007 sailing for Pullmantur Cruises.[29] Zenith at Ocho Rios.jpg
/Celebrity Galaxy
Century class 1996–2009 76,522 GT Entered service with TUI Cruises as Mein Schiff in May 2009.[30] Celebrity galaxy ship.jpeg
Celebrity Mercury Century class 1997–2011 77,713 GT Entered service with TUI Cruises as Mein Schiff 2 in February 2011.[21] Celebrity Mercury at Cabo San Lucas 1.jpg


  1. ^ Celebrity Cruises Career in Marine & Hotel Operations
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Plowman, Peter (2006). The Chandris Liners and Celebrity Cruises. Rosenberg Publishing. pp. 198–203. ISBN 1-877058-47-5. 
  3. ^ a b c Maritime Matters: Sun Vista, retrieved 29. 11. 2007 Archived October 16, 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ a b Ulrich, Kurt. (1997). Monarchs of the sea : the great ocean liner. London: Taurus Parke Books. p. 177. ISBN 1-86064-373-6. 
  5. ^ "Contact Us." Celebrity Cruises. Retrieved on January 20, 2010.
  6. ^ NineMSN: Cruising: Celebrity Cruises, retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  7. ^ a b "Fakta om Fartyg: M/S Horizon (1990)" (in Swedish). , retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  8. ^ a b c d Asklander, Micke. "Celebrity Cruises". Fakta om Fartyg (in Swedish). Retrieved 13 November 2008. 
  9. ^ "About Celebrity: History". Celebrity Cruises. Retrieved 2008-04-04. 
  10. ^ Ward, Douglas: Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships 2006, page 237. Berlitz Publishing 2006. ISBN 981-246-739-4
  11. ^ Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release: Celebrity Cruises Orders New Cruise Ship, Launches Innovative New Class, retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  12. ^ Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release: Celebrity Cruises Announces Fourth Solstice-Class Ship, retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  13. ^ a b Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release: Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Receives Antitrust Approval On Pullmantur Purchase; Announces Celebrity Expeditions And Celebrity, Pullmantur Ship Swap, retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  14. ^ Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release: Celebrity Cruises Expands 'Celebrity Expeditions'; Adds Celebrity Quest to Exotic Brand Extension, retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  15. ^ Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release: Celebrity Cruises Presents New, Deluxe Cruise Line: Azamara Cruises, retrieved 29. 11. 2007
  16. ^ "Celebrity returns to Bermuda in 2010". Cruise Business Review. Cruise Media Oy Ltd. 24 November 2008. Retrieved 25 November 2008. 
  17. ^ Sloan, Gene. "Most Popular". USA Today. 
  18. ^ Ward, Douglas (2008). Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships. Singapore: Berlitz. p. 8. ISBN 978-981-268-240-6. 
  19. ^ "Meyer Werft delivers Celebrity Solstice". Cruise Business Review. Cruise Media Oy Ltd. 24 October 2008. Retrieved 13 November 2008. 
  20. ^ Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release. Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.. 29 April 2008. http://www.rclinvestor.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=103045&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1136131&highlight=. Retrieved on 29 April 2008.
  21. ^ a b Celebrity Mercury to Become Second Ship in TUI Cruises Fleet - Cruise Industry News | Cruise News. Cruise Industry News. Retrieved on 2011-12-10.
  22. ^ "About Celebrity Cruises Catalyst". http://catalyst.celebritycruises.com. Celebrity Cruises Catalyst. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  23. ^ http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=5735
  24. ^ http://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/11946-celebrity-cruises-orders-two-new-ships.html
  25. ^ http://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/11946-celebrity-cruises-orders-two-new-ships.html
  26. ^ http://www.cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/11946-celebrity-cruises-orders-two-new-ships.html
  27. ^ Knego, Peter. "Sun Vista (ex-Galileo Galilei, Galileo, Meridian)". Maritime Matters. Archived from the original on 16 December 2007. Retrieved 28 January 2012. 
  28. ^ "Horizon 2012". CDF Croisières de France. 28 April 2012. Archived from the original on 28 April 2012. Retrieved 28 April 2012. 
  29. ^ "Zenith (107402)". Register online. Germanischer Lloyd. http://app.gl-group.com/register/index.jsp?STyp=204&RegNo=107402. Retrieved 2012-07-29. 
  30. ^ "Celebrity Cruises' Celebrity Galaxy to Become First Ship in New TUI Cruises Fleet". Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. press release. Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. 2008-04-29. Retrieved 2008-04-29. 

External links[edit]