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June 08, 2006

Celebrity Cruises Celebrates "New" Century

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MIAMI – May 30, 2006 – Today marks the beginning of a new century for Celebrity Cruises, as the line’s Century sets sail following a $55-million makeover that began just five weeks ago.

Designed to incorporate a variety of Celebrity’s most popular Millennium-class attributes, the revitalization of Century is the line’s most extensive refurbishment to-date, and the largest cruise ship modification completed by Fincantieri’s Palermo, Italy, shipyard.

A total of 314 new verandas have been added to the ship – a first, for an existing cruise ship – along with 14 new suites, 10 new staterooms ranging from inside to veranda categories, an expanded number of ConciergeClass category staterooms, a new specialty restaurant, an expanded AquaSpa, and a series of features and amenities that typify the line’s acclaimed Millennium-class fleet.

“This initiative is nothing short of miraculous, technically and otherwise – particularly the veranda program,” said Celebrity’s President Dan Hanrahan. “Think of what it takes to thoroughly renovate a home, then consider what it took to do what we did onboard a 70,000-ton ship…in just five weeks. It’s extraordinary.”

New Culinary Delights
Among Century’s multiple new attributes is a specialty restaurant, quite literally, featuring a heart of glass. The new “Murano” specialty restaurant in the center of the ship sparkles with magnificent chandeliers handcrafted of Murano glass, named for the island of Murano near Venice, Italy; where glass-blowing has been a fine art and tradition since the 13th century.

Celebrity’s longtime culinary and wine consultant, renowned Master Chef Michel Roux, designed the menu for Murano, with the cuisine and service following the celebrated style of Celebrity’s Millennium-class specialty restaurants, which presented the industry’s first tableside cooking, carving and flambé.

Century’s dramatic, two-level “Grand Restaurant” has been entirely refurbished, retaining the glamour and sophistication that made it so popular prior to the revitalization, and maintaining the quality of service and impeccable culinary standards that have won the line extensive praise every year under the deft direction of Chef Roux and Celebrity’s culinary team.

Among the many other dining options onboard Century is a 76-seat Sushi Bar – Celebrity’s first designed specifically to reflect the popular regional cuisine – with a casual Asian atmosphere, and a collection of thematic artifacts and artwork.

Surrounded by glass walls offering magnificent ocean views, Century’s Ocean Grill offers an alternative dining area with an upscale ambience, where guests can select cuisine ranging from steaks, chops, salads, antipastos and desserts from a fixed menu.

Opposite the Ocean Grill, guests will find fresh, made-to-order omelettes and crepes each morning, and an endless array of pizzas and made-to-order pastas every afternoon and evening. For the sweet tooth in everyone, just around the corner, there is a station offering a tantalizing array of homemade ice creams and sorbets.

Pairing refreshing sea air with panoramic views, Century’s outdoor Sunset Bar features a full-service bar where guests can enjoy an assortment of fresh tapas and appetizers with cocktails and other beverages.

A Celebrity favorite across the fleet, Cova Café, the seagoing version of the stylish coffeehouse in the fashion district of Milan, Italy, serves fresh pastries and cookies to complement its coffees, teas, and other beverages every day, while at night, the space transforms to a romantic, lamp-lit wine bar, with live music.

Ample Opportunities to Exercise Mind, Body and Soul
Celebrity’s award-winning AquaSpa onboard Century now welcomes guests within a new reception area featuring a 42-inch LCD TV highlighting spa services; 10 new sea-view treatment rooms; new locker rooms with lounge seating; a new beauty salon with enhanced manicure and pedicure bars; a dedicated teeth-whitening station; a new Persian Garden with Turkish steam room; three tropical showers; both infrared and Finnish saunas; Celebrity’s first barber shop, complete with a 42-inch LCD TV, and a new, 54-set Spa Café serving light, healthy cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Adjacent to the AquaSpa, Celebrity’s Acupuncture at Sea – the only such program in the industry – offers guests acupuncture treatments, therapies and enrichment lectures by licensed doctors of Oriental Medicine.

The fitness center within the AquaSpa area features new equipment throughout, including treadmills and cardio machines with personal LCD TVs, and a variety of strength-training equipment.

To exercise the mind, “High Seas Computing” offers computer training courses ranging from basic program use to web site creation to digital photography, within a newly dedicated space.

An art gallery joins a new array of trendy boutiques in “The Boulevard,” allowing art aficionados the opportunity to purchase one-of-a-kind works, and avid shoppers to purchase designer beauty products and fashions, leather goods, premium gifts, rare gems, and designer accessories, including watches and sunglasses.

“Cool” Clubs and Lounges
Century boasts the first “ice bar” concept at sea within its Martini Bar, featuring a liquid wall that freezes to form a sparkling crystalline appearance, and a bar counter that freezes into ice-cold stone, while a solid block of ice will creatively display bottles of liquor behind the bar, creating a very “cool” way to serve Celebrity’s famed menu of more than 30 versions of martinis.

All other clubs and lounges onboard have been entirely refurbished, including the Crystal Lounge, Michael’s Club jazz/piano bar, Rendezvous Lounge, and Hemispheres observation lounge and disco.

Teen travelers also have a lounge all their own – Century’s new “X-Treme” teen lounge and video arcade. The dedicated space includes a dance floor, video arcade, juice bar, jukebox, and karaoke, along with computers offering Internet access.

Stylish Staterooms, Suites and Sweet Dreams
Century promises sweet dreams, as the first ship in the Celebrity fleet to present Celebrity’s new bedding program – which will be introduced onboard Galaxy and Millennium later this year, and across the balance of the fleet in 2007. The program features new premium mattresses, 100 percent Egyptian cotton linens, duvets, Euro pillows, colorful bed throws and pillow shams.
Every ocean-view and inside stateroom onboard Century is now equipped with new flat-screen TVs, wireless Internet access, new carpet, textiles, windows, lighting fixtures, and art. The bathrooms have new vanities and enhanced lighting, stylish surface-mounted sink basins and fixtures, curved-rod shower curtains, and renewed architectural surfaces.

Century’s suites are now that much sweeter, with new carpeting, wall covering, windows and textiles, luxurious new bedding and new light fixtures. Each suite also is equipped with new phones, 26-inch LCD TVs, DVD players, wireless Internet access, new accessories, and new veranda furniture.

Enticing Itineraries
Celebrity’s “new” Century sets sail today on a 9-night "Best of Europe" cruise, followed by a series of 12-night Baltic and 10- and 11-night Mediterranean sailings, a 13-night “Best of Europe” voyage, and a seven-night Norwegian Fjords cruise.

Century also will be one of the first Celebrity ships to offer short cruises from the cruise capital of the world, the Port of Miami, beginning in November 2006. The ship will present four- and five-night roundtrip Caribbean cruises through April 2007, offering travelers with more limited vacation time the opportunity to experience what the award-winning Celebrity brand has to offer.

“When Century returns to the Caribbean this fall, Celebrity will have the best short-cruise product in the industry,” said Hanrahan.

Celebrity Cruises offers a comfortably sophisticated, upscale cruise experience with highly personalized service, authentic five-star dining, and extraordinary attention to detail. Its nine ships and the line's service, cuisine and spas consistently dominate top travelers' surveys. Celebrity sails in Alaska, Bermuda, California, the Caribbean, Europe, the Galapagos Islands, Hawaii, the Mexican Riviera, the Panama Canal and South America. For more information, call #1-800-738-8837 or visit one of the website below.

Press Release by Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises Alaska Cruise Information
Celebrity Cruises Alaska Cruisetour Packages
Celebrity Cruises Canadian Rockies Cruisetour Package
Celebrity Cruises Mexican Riviera Cruise Information
Celebrity Cruises European Cruise Information

Posted by Denise at June 8, 2006 09:05 PM

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