Celebrity Cruises’ latest ship Celebrity Apex has made a visit to the UK, with a call in Southampton.
The ship was originally due to be make its debut here at the end of March, with a naming ceremony, sailings for the trade and a series of short cruises, but plans were cancelled as the pandemic took hold.
Celebrity Cruises then took a landmark industry-first "virtual delivery" of the ship, with company executives accepting command of the vessel via video conference with officials from Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard.
Celebrity Apex was welcomed into Southampton this week by Jo Rzymowska (pictured below), the line’s vice president and managing director, EMEA, and the crew will now prepare for the ship’s first transatlantic sailing to Miami.
The ship is now set to be named in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in October by author, activist and chief executive of non-profit organisation Girls Who Code, Reshma Saujani.
Celebrity Apex can carry up to 2,900 passengers, and features several of the innovations first seen on Celebrity Edge, such as the Magic Carpet, a movable deck cantilevered off the side of the ship; the two-level Edge Villas; and the suite-only enclave known as The Retreat.
The appearance of the ship in the UK comes in the same week as the Healthy Sail Panel – created in collaboration by Celebrity Cruises’ parent company Royal Caribbean Group with Norwegian Cruise Line – concluded its initial assessment.
The panel has now made 74 recommendations to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention in a bid to restart the industry.