Travel insights from Luke Gibson, director of VAX VacationAccess

Celebrity Edge and Flora, What Agents Need to Know

Celebrity Cruises has been has been tantalizing travel agents with its throttled release of details, design treatments, traveler perks and culinary experiences. "It has been a year since we launched a new ship so it's Celebrity's turn," Dondra Ritzenthaler, vice president of sales and marketing at Celebrity, said in a recent mainstage interview at CLIA's Cruise360. A slow release means a new excitement and market demand from travelers as well as a heightened anticipation from travel agents.

Celebrity Edge

Celebrity Edge is a new and exciting product for agents, and they're hoping to change the way your travelers experience the world through cruising with a new class of ships designed to change expectations through inspired cuisine coupled with truly unique interior designs.

Rooms to Roam: From elegant Stateroom Verandas to 950-square-foot, two-floor Edge Villas (which sleep up to four), and Iconic Suites to Penthouse Suites, Celebrity Edge has a lot to offer higher end travelers. Edge has the widest range of staterooms in the Celebrity fleet, from the new Single Staterooms designed for modern independent travelers, to larger-than-life Panoramic Ocean View Staterooms. All in all there are 178 possible options of connecting staterooms, making it easier than ever for families and friends to get together and get away in modern luxury.

Globally Inspired Dining: Celebrity Edge brings the destinations to your customers while onboard through not one, but four main restaurants, plus a whole host of specialty and complimentary dining options. Your customers can expect 29 separate food and beverage experiences crafted by a Michelin-starred chef.

An Eye for Design: Celebrity tapped design guru Nate Berkus as travel ambassador for the Edge brand of ships, and coupled with stateroom designs from arguably one of the world's most sought-after designers, Kelly Hoppen, Edge is a ship designed to change the way travelers experience the world. The ship features two unique event spaces, one of which is Eden, a three-level "room that lives" boasting over 11,800 square feet of event space. "It's by far the grandest space Celebrity has ever designed that purposefully connects [your customers] to the sea — and the exciting destinations beyond," Ritzenthaler said. The sheer size of Eden will amaze everyone who enters.

The other incredible event space is Magic Carpet, an over-the-ocean entertainment venue and feat of design and engineering excellence where guests can relax and share conversation while soaring over the open sea.

Celebrity Flora

Smaller but equally as exciting for agents is Celebrity Flora, whose maiden voyage is set for May 2019. The books are now open for 2020, booking with limited availability. Flora is Celebrity's first and only ship designed exclusively for the Galapagos Islands. Smaller and more intimate, this 100-guest experience allows for more local experiences from the destination in smaller areas of the Galapagos.

Impressive Offerings: This small-scale, intimate ship really packs a punch with its breadth of itineraries and destinations. The ship offers six itineraries ranging from seven- to 15-night experiences, reaching 30+ destinations, 15 islands and 35 ports of call. Travelers can enjoy in-room dining experiences or dine outside under the stars, with beautiful panoramic views of the Galapagos Islands.

Committed to the Environment: In a fragile ecosystem like the Galapagos Islands, sustainability is key. Celebrity is making that commitment to sustainability with Flora. It's one of the most energy-efficient ships in its class, with a 15 percent reduction of fuel consumption and equivalently fewer air emissions. Flora is a terrific product for your customers who want to experience an incredible destination while making a smaller environmental impact. Another first in the Galapagos: Celebrity Flora's dynamic positioning system allows the ship to stay in position without physically anchoring and damaging the sea floor.

Thoughtful Design: "Celebrity Flora marks another example of our revolutionary ship design by allowing the destination and its environment to influence every decision we've made," Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, president and CEO, Celebrity Cruises said in a recent statement. "From the luxurious all-suite accommodations to industry-first, eco-friendly innovations, we created a ship that brings a new level of luxury, sustainability and natural exploration to the region. Guests will feel as though they're boarding a high-end yacht for a week of unparalleled adventures, and they are!"

Celebrity believes in authentically opening up the world. "Agents and their customers want to do business with companies that are like them and share the same values," Ritzenthaler said. What customer type should agents put on Celebrity? Well according to them, it's not just for one group or type of traveler. "Celebrate with celebrity," Ritzenthaler said. "We have something for every celebration."

About the Author

Luke Gibson Headshot

With more than 18 years of business experience in brand marketing, media and sales development, Luke has tackled issues across multiple categories of business including travel, automotive, technology, luxury retail, media, e-Commerce and manufacturing. His breadth of experience across consumer direct, wholesale and e-Commerce distribution channels makes him an effective omni-channel thinker.  Luke currently serves as Managing Director of VAX VacationAccess.

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