Celebrity Cruises has seen a lot of success in the past, but it’s now looking to take things up a notch with its newest endeavor—Celebrity Beyond. The company is bringing blockchain into the mix as well; it will use technology that puts all ticket sales on one decentralized ledger. Experts believe this is just one step towards streamlining travel transactions and making them more efficient than ever before.
WHY IT RATES: Captain Kate McCue is the first American woman to command a cruise ship, and she will assume the helm of the new Celebrity Beyond. —Donald Wood, Senior Writer for Breaking News
Celebrity Cruises President and CEO Lisa Lutoff-Perlo announced today that Captain Kate McCue, the first American female cruise ship captain, would command Celebrity Beyond, the company’s third ship in its industry-changing Edge Series, which will launch in spring 2022.
The dynamic and decorated captain will usher in a new era for the new-luxury brand, sailing a ship designed by a dream team of modern lifestyle icons, including multi-award-winning British designer Kelly Hoppen CBE, celebrated American designer Nate Berkus, Michelin-starred chef and restaurateur Daniel Boulud’s culinary gifts, and wellness experiences and products from Gwyneth Paltrow, the brand’s Well-Being Advisor.
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Captain Kate McCue’s desire to be a captain was sown on a voyage she took with her family when she was 12 years old. She informed her father that when she grew up, she wanted to be a cruise director. He told her that she could be whatever she desired, even the captain of the ship.
Captain Kate has been a trailblazer and pioneer since then, breaking the gender barrier in 2015 when Lutoff-Perlo designated her the first – and still only – American woman to command a major cruise ship, the Celebrity Summit. She then went to Celebrity Equinox before being named at the leadership of the opulent Celebrity Edge in September of this year. McCue sealed her place in history on March 8, 2020, when she commanded the first-ever all-female bridge and officer crew on a cruise ship when she captained the history-making, barrier-breaking voyage aboard Celebrity Edge.
Due to the worldwide coronavirus epidemic, Captain Kate also led the Celebrity fleet – and the industry – back into operation when, on June 26, 2021, Celebrity Edge became the first cruise ship to sail with passengers from a U.S. port in more than a year.
“I’ve been looking forward to this day since we cut the first steel on our stunning Celebrity Beyond. “As a voice and example of inclusiveness, diversity, and transformation, Captain Kate has transcended what it means to be a captain,” Lutoff-Perlo said. “She is continuously considering how she might go above and beyond, complementing the ship’s remarkable design and ingenuity.” I can’t wait to see her take our passengers to places that will open their eyes to the wonders of the globe and let them to travel on a new-luxury ship unlike any other.”
McCue has pushed others to go for the stars since becoming the captaincy and has encouraged individuals from all walks of life to pursue their aspirations. By humanizing the role of captain and offering behind-the-scenes peeks at nautical life, the lovable and charismatic McCue has also become a social media star, gaining almost 3.5 million followers across TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube.
“For any captain, being the ‘take out’ skipper for a new vessel is an honor, and it is an absolute dream come true for me.” “I often believe that if you see it, you can be it,” said Captain Kate McCue, “and I hope that Celebrity Beyond serves as an example to anyone to look beyond convention in pursuit of any objective in life.” “I’ll be eternally thankful to Lisa for entrusting me with this labor of love.” Her forward thinking to elevate the industry beyond what it is currently and understand what it should be is only matched by the thoughtfulness and inventiveness she put into this ship.”
Not only will the Celebrity Beyond be the biggest ship in the fleet, but it will also be the most luxury vessel in the brand’s history.
Celebrity Beyond is 17 decks tall and 21 meters longer than her forerunners, Celebrity Edge (2018) and Celebrity Apex (2018). (2020). With freshly envisioned areas and larger versions of the brand’s iconic hallmark spaces, every aspect of Celebrity Beyond’s look and feel has been meticulously selected, including:
—The Retreat, a private space reserved for suite guests that now has a two-story sundeck
—Innovative accommodations that blur the lines between indoor and outdoor life, from sophisticated two-story villas with plunge pools to staterooms with endless verandas
—A magnificent resort deck with cantilevered float pools and an extended Rooftop Garden
—The ship’s aft is defined by a spectacular multi-level, multi-terraced Sunset Bar.
—Le Voyage, the first-ever Daniel Boulud fine-dining restaurant at sea
—A rebuilt Grand Plaza that spans three decks and creates an airiness that has never been seen on a cruise ship before.
—And there’s the Magic Carpet, an engineering marvel that soars cantilevered over the sea, providing visitors with unobstructed views as they drink cocktails or dine.
The Celebrity Beyond will sail from Southampton, England, on April 27, 2022, on a 10-night Western Europe cruise that will include stops in Bordeaux, France; Lisbon, Portugal; and Seville, Malaga, Palma de Mallorca, and Barcelona, Spain.
She will then offer a range of Mediterranean cruises until early October, including nine-night Italian Riviera and France itineraries and 10-night Greek Isles itineraries. Voyages are now available for purchase.
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