Updated: May 20, 2019
We had the sheer pleasure of stepping onboard Celebrity Cruises Edge this week as part of the CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) Cruise Conference 2019 in Southampton!
As we embarked we had a mixture of excitement and trepidation. Excited because we had heard, read and seen lots of coverage about Edge... we had experienced all the hype about how this ship would change the game, how revolutionary it was etc etc...! Trepidation? Well because we were worried we were going to be disappointed... that it wouldn’t live up to the hype and we’d walk away that Wednesday afternoon vowing never to fall for cruise ship PR campaigns again...! We need not have worried...
We we’re led straight to the theatre via the lift complete with the fancy touchscreens instead of the traditional buttons... the theatre was ‘in the round’ with the largest wraparound LED screen at the back of the stage we’ve ever seen with ‘She’s here’ emblazoned upon it... it could not have shouted any louder and as we found out it was right to do so!
The glimpse of show Kaleidoscope was thrilling ... not just the performance but moreso the potential of other & future productions! The presentations we received were fantastic but we were anxious to be let loose around Edge and before long we were guided around her at an exhilarating rate of knots... One wow was quickly followed by the next and the next and by the time we sat down in Normandie restaurant for lunch we were in need of the seat!!!
Eden is an amazing space, 3 decks high, greens and golds and bathed in light from the floor to ceiling windows. A picture of the rooftop garden without any skill produces a picture that looks identical to the stunning 2 year old computer generated image! We can visualise what dining would be like in the rooftop grill as the sun sets with the sounds of the sea and the music emanating from the treetops!
The pool deck is most striking for the space & light with a lack of white metal surrounding the sides dominated by... the sea!! The loungers face out towards the sea as well as in towards the longest pool we’ve seen! Even the jacuzzi pools aren’t standard shaped into giant cocktail style glasses...
On one side of the pool deck was the floating magic carpet posing as a relaxed afternoon champagne bar but come back later and it won‘t be there at all instead becoming something different somewhere else... including operating as a tender platform walking onto the most deluxe launches (not simply tender boat) to bring you to shore!
Dining? We love the idea that the main dining room doesn’t exist... instead you have 4!! Get the right (complimentary) package and you can experience them all! 75% of the menu is the same in all but each one has 25% of its menu unique so every visit is different! Unfortunately our lunch service wasn’t quite what we would expect but having experienced better before and knowing Celebrity’s rapidly growing foodie reputation on land & at sea we put it down to a changing staff compliment and we’ll reserve judgement!
Other reservations? Its always hard on a visit to truly appreciate what life would be like onboard though having experienced a lack of mid ship stairs on P&O Britannia we’d have similar concerns here... and speciality dining for us remains a little expensive for our tastes BUT we’d pay more than the $55 to experience the unique dining experience of Le Petit Chef to be fair...
Pricing to get onboard is high but as always there are exceptions and with Apex arriving next year you may see the pricing adjust in the next 12-18 months!
If you do book though you will find this ship as one of the most beautiful ships... scrap that... one of the most beautiful hotels you‘ll ever stay at... Is this game changing? For Celebrity yes... for the cruise market... They’ve definitely raised the bar and hotels on land should be worried!
Celebrity Edge has arrived and Cruising as a result is on the Edge of a new golden period... it’s time to get onboard!