Get ready for some company, Sydney Opera House. Another thing of beauty will share Sydney Harbour when premium cruise brand Celebrity Cruises sends its award-winning Celebrity Solstice to Australia and New Zealand for the winter of 2012-13.
“Celebrity Solstice has satisfied guests around the world since we introduced her in 2008, and the obvious next step is to send her to Australia,” said Dan Hanrahan, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. “With this move, we are delivering another way for people to have the best vacation experience possible, in one of the most stunning geographic regions of the world.”
Australians will enjoy the return of the Celebrity Cruises brand to the region this coming winter with the deployment of the 1,814-guest Celebrity Century. Her subsequent replacement by the 2,850-guest Celebrity Solstice is a symbol of the premium cruise brand’s ever-expanding global presence and the popularity of the service, activities, cuisine, and stylish design exemplified on its Solstice Class ships, which are as the best by consumer- and travel agent-focused publications around the globe.
“Travelers around the world value their vacation time, and we want to give them more opportunities to enjoy Celebrity’s signature attributes, including the first Lawn Club and Hot Glass show at sea, more spacious staterooms, our AquaClass toward the spa enthusiast lifestyle, multiple specialty restaurants, the Celebrity iLounge and state-of-the-art entertainment, in more places. The culture and way of life in Australia and New Zealand are an ideal back drop for our Solstice Class style and the overall onboard experience.”
Celebrity Solstice will transition from a 2012 summer in the Mediterranean to Australia/New Zealand via the Suez Canal and through Southeast Asia before arriving in Sydney, Australia in early December. The repositioning sailings will include multiple overnights in ports including Dubai, United Arab Emirates and Cochin, India.
Upon arriving in Australia, Celebrity Solstice will present a series of 12- and 13-night open-jaw sailings between Sydney and Auckland, New Zealand. The season also will include a circumnavigation of Australia, consisting of two open-jaw sailings between Sydney and Perth (Fremantle). Many of the itineraries include overnight stays in Sydney.
Celebrity Solstice will continue a series of destination-immersive onboard activitiesthat will debut during Celebrity Century’s upcoming Australia/New Zealand season; activities include local vineyard and wine shore excursions, onboard talks by local cultural entertainers and speakers, and destination-focused food and drink menus. Some activities will be complimentary.
Celebrity will continue to offer its popular Australia/New Zealand cruise tour program geared toward guests who wish to combine a land-based vacation with a cruise. Premium concierge-style service is the hallmark of Celebrity’s four- and five-night pre- and post-cruise escorted land tour packages in Australia, which will visit destinations including Port Douglas (Great Barrier Reef), Ayers Rock (Uluru) and Sydney. A six-night pre-cruise New Zealand package will visit Auckland, Rotorua, Queenstown and Sydney. Highlights include a full-day tour over the Great Barrier Reef and a gourmet barbecue dinner under the outback sky in Ayers Rock. All of Celebrity’s cruise tours are escorted by local tour directors, and include hotel accommodations, transportation, select activities, breakfast and some additional meals.