Sailing beyond expectations on Celebrity Cruises’ new cutting-edge ship

Celebrity Beyond challenges cruising stereotypes with a design-led vessel that brings the best of land-based architecture to sea. Jeannine Williamson discovers more.

I enter the darkened art installation and make my way through a mirrored area filled with gleaming tactile sculptures, including ones resembling smooth golden nuggets where you are encouraged to sit down and take in the surroundings. Walking out I find two playful figures of deer looking at their reflections in an imaginary glacial river.

It feels as if I am in an art gallery – indeed there are works by 700 artists from 40 counties still to discover – but I am actually at sea on Celebrity Beyond, the third vessel to join Celebrity Cruises’ third (cutting) Edge-class vessel. Following on from sister ships Edge and Apex, this is the largest in the trio as it is 20 metres longer, one deck higher and carries 3,260 passengers.

This means even more room to enjoy a ship that is a destination in its own right and oozes a feeling of relaxed luxury, without ever feeling starchy or ostentatious. Once again, award-winning British interior designer Kelly Hoppen has worked her magic on cabins and public areas. She has been joined by other acclaimed names including fellow Briton Tom Wright who conceived the distinctive sail-shaped Burj al Arab hotel in Dubai.

Each day I discover new things, from a signed Picasso to a wall that has been deliberately left unfinished so passengers can see the hull of the ship. That said, nobody can miss the jumbo (in every sense) elephant sculpture in the pool area which also features new infinity plunge pools that extend six feet over the side of the ship.

Another standout feature is the Magic Carpet, a hallmark on Edge and Apex, which is another unique engineering feat. Around the size of a tennis court, it’s a cantilevered platform that moves between several decks and offers guests uninterrupted views through panoramic windows while relaxing during the day, sipping cocktails in the evening or signing up for one of the speciality Dining on the Edge meals.

That said, one of my favourite spots for a sundowner is the aptly named Sunset Bar. The al fresco bar at the back of the ship has a new pergola-covered entrance and is spread out over a variety of terraces so you can find the perfect place to enjoy sunny days or capture the moment when the final rays slip over the horizon.

On the restaurant front, an all-new venue on Celebrity Beyond is Le Voyage, the first-ever fine dining restaurant at sea for French Michelin chef Daniel Boulud. With a travel theme, the intimate 50-seat dining room includes tables surrounded by balloon-like cocoons.

At night the ship takes on another guise with a raft of entertainment in different venues. The two-level theatre, with a semi-circular stage set against a curved LED screen, stages exciting and innovative shows involving acrobatics. I really loved Decadence, the high energy show at the multi-purpose space Eden, which includes a lounge, bar, cafe and restaurant. Taking place right in front of the audience, the cabaret performers mingled with the crowd and even danced on tables. Another night they moved to The Club nightspot for an evening of jazz, again with the twist of tumblers showing off their skills as part of the show. Both were great fun.

More action can be found at the extended Martini Bar which is the focal point of the three-deck Grand Plaza area. Each night, beneath a contemporary chandelier lit by glowing LED lights, the dexterous bar staff juggle cocktail shakers and bottles to music. It’s another unmissable highlight.

When it’s time to chill out there are plenty of tranquil spots, too. The ship has more deck space than its predecessors and suite guests have the extra perk of the exclusive Retreat area. Celebrity puts a big accent on wellness, so there’s also a large spa and thermal suite as well as a lush and verdant roof garden.

At the helm of Celebrity Beyond is Captain Kate McCue, America’s first female cruise ship captain and the first woman to ever sail a brand-new ship out of the Saint Nazaire shipyard in France. Yet another notable first on this stunning trailblazing vessel that challenges many presumptions about cruising and turns them on their head.

More information

Celebrity Beyond will spend its inaugural season in the Mediterranean before repositioning to the Caribbean in October for the winter 2022/23 season. A nine-night Italian Riviera & France cruise starts from £1,321 excluding flights

Silver Travel Advisor recommends Celebrity Cruises. You can get a quote and book by calling our Silver Travel Advisors at 0800 412 5678.

1 people found this helpful

Share Article:

Jeannine Williamson

Award-winning travel writer

One Response

  1. I was on the inaugural cruise from Southampton that set sail on the 27th April 2022. I enjoyed everything about the ship from our infinity cabin to the entertainment, food and the it’s luxurious surroundings. Especially worth a mention is Eden which I felt was unique and just a lovely area to be in with relaxing entertainment and a great restaurant. It was a wonderful one-way cruise which ended in Barcelona – my first visit to this fantastic city and it’s many attractions. All the staff from across the world were helpful and professional. A memorable cruise.

Leave a comment


Sign up to our newsletter to receive the latest travel tips on top destinations.

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Most Recent Articles

Ambassador offers unique ways to focus on health and wellness while enjoying the beauty of the sea….
Who can resist an invitation to a birthday party in Paris? Gillian Thornton celebrates 40 years of Riviera Travel, the…

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.