Celebrity Cruises was founded in 1988 by the Greek Chandris family. Although it later became part of the Royal Caribbean Group, 70 percent of the Celebrity fleet’s ship officers are of Greek descent, including the captain of the Apex, Dimitrios Kafezis.
Summer Eastern Mediterranean sailings that welcome North Americans include stops in Mykonos, Rhodes and Santorini in Greece, as well as Limassol in Cyprus and Haifa and Jerusalem in Israel.
All crew members and guests over the age of 18 must be vaccinated against COVIDA-19 to board and those under the age of 18 must present a negative PCR test result.
Celebrity Apex is the second ship in the award-winning Edge series. The first, Celebrity Edge, was named one of the best workplaces of 2019 by TIME magazine.
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The exterior design is particularly noteworthy, as it allows guests to interact with the outside world and the waters on which they sail. Accommodations offer a range of options, from modern two-story villas with a pool to cottages with infinity porches.
Apex also offers The Retreat, a luxurious space aboard the ship with its own restaurant, lounge and sun deck, designed to compete with high-end land-based resorts and luxury cruises. Guests in this exclusive enclave are pampered by butlers and concierges.
There are 29 different restaurants, bars and lounges on board the ship, including one of the most memorable at sea, the Magic Carpet, where guests can sip cocktails and dine on a moving platform above the sea. The world-class celebrity menu is curated by a team of celebrity chefs.
Celebrity Apex is such a beautiful ship and it is incredibly meaningful that after such a long voyage she is finally setting sail in the beautiful Aegean Sea, where it all began for our fleet, said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, president and CEO of Celebrity Cruises.
The prices of the yachts will reflect the company’s new concept, which includes wifi, drinks and cash gifts.
Apex will offer two different routes:
Greek Islands and Cyprus – This trip explores the ancient city of Rhodes with its classical acropolis and medieval architecture, the beaches and beauty of Mykonos and the incredible World Heritage Island of Santorini. During a stopover in Cyprus, visitors will discover the culture of the island, which has been influenced by Turkey and Egypt.
Greek Islands & Israel – Cruisers can discover even more dreams on this cruise that combines the wonders of the Holy Land with the history and beauty of Rhodes and Santorini. Haifa offers a thriving art scene and easy access to cosmopolitan Tel Aviv, while Jerusalem is one of the most atmospheric and influential cities in the world.
As the trip begins and ends in Athens, guests will also have plenty of time to explore this legendary city.
A range of tours are available at each port of call, including private excursions and small-group study tours for guests who prefer to explore destinations alone with family members or fellow travelers.
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The Apex date will not cause a rush of cancellations, as the next cruises will depart Barcelona in September. They’re still on paper. The ship was anchored on the private island of CocoCay in the Bahamas, alongside Celebrity Edge’s big sister and five other Celebrity ships.
The news comes days after Celebrity Cruises announced its return to the Caribbean with seven summer overnight cruises from St. John’s. St. Maarten, also in June.
Sister company Royal Caribbean International is also focusing on the Eastern Mediterranean this summer. The shipping company announced today that it will deliver a second vessel to the region. Jewel of the Seas will be based in Cyprus and offer cruises to the Greek islands. Three weeks ago, the cruise line announced that it would offer fully vaccinated cruises from Haifa, Israel, to Greece and Cyprus on the brand new Odyssey of the Seas.