Inspired by the piazzas of Italy, the Grand Plaza spans three decks at the heart of the ship
Space is a key concept onboard Celebrity Cruises’ latest Edge-class ship, Celebrity Beyond, which was delivered in April 2022.
Building on the design concepts of its sister ships, Celebrity worked with Tom Wright, lead architect of UK-based firm WKK, to lengthen the ship by 20 metres and increase the height to 17 decks to provide extra room for outdoor spaces.
“With Celebrity Beyond, we saw an opportunity to take the extraordinary features of Celebrity Edge – like the focus on the connection with the ocean and the grand spaces – and really amplify them,” said Richard Fain, chairman of Royal Caribbean Group, parent company of Celebrity Cruises. “We focused on providing more openness, height and spaciousness throughout the ship’s most popular spaces. The end result is a next-generation ship that embodies the intersection of architecture and design.”
The Sunset Bar is among the outdoor areas that have been enhanced. Created by Wright and interior designer Nate Berkus, the venue is nearly twice as large as previous iterations, with two open-air decks, a pergola-covered entrance and cascading terraces with ocean views at the aft of the ship.
The ship also features the Rooftop Garden, which has been reimagined by British designer Kelly Hoppen. The venue is 40 per cent larger than on Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Apex, allowing space for additional seating, new private nooks and the extended Rooftop Grill. The highlight of this area is two ‘floating pools’ cantilevered six-and-a-half feet over the side of the ship, created by Wright.
Indoor spaces have also been expanded. The Grand Plaza, which spans three decks at the centre of the ship, is larger than on the first two Edge-class vessels. French design firm Jouin Manku took advantage of the space to include a circular Martini Bar and a chandelier centrepiece made up of hundreds of LED lights.
Jouin Manku was also involved in the creation of Michelin-starred chef Daniel Boulud’s first-ever restaurant at sea. Le Voyage will feature intimate seating cocoons, luminous portals highlighting the themes of journey and travel, and graphically lit “glass flutes”.
Increasing the onboard space has also provided Celebrity with new wellness opportunities. New to Celebrity Beyond are the AquaClass SkySuites, which offer guests uninterrupted views from floor-to-ceiling windows and private verandas, as well as luxurious bedding and in-room menus for pillows and fitness activities. At the centre of the ship’s wellness programme is the Sea Thermal Suite, a collection of eight distinct spaces for relaxing before or after spa treatments or fitness classes. They include the Mist Aroma Steam and Desert Infrared Sauna rooms, the Rainfall Water Therapy room, the Crystalarium, the Hamman Turkish Bath, and the Float Zen Zone.
Onboard entertainment venues have not been overlooked. Taking advantage of the greater length and height, Celebrity has included an onboard theatre with a 110-foot curved 4K LED screen with moving panels and floor projection technology. Here, guests can enjoy three art-focused productions. These include Arte, a combination of dance, acrobatics and visual effects to music that will highlight the ‘Peace Makers’ sculpture by Brazilian artist Rubem Robierb that is showcased onboard, and Elements, which focuses on the five elements of air, water, earth, fire and ether. The latter will include ‘dancing’ air sculptures by New York-based artist Daniel Wurtwel which will be created by blowing air into large sheets of flowing fabric.
“It has been such an honour to collaborate with some of the best live show creative minds to develop world-class performances and experiences at every turn throughout the ship,” said Lisa Lehr, vice president of entertainment at Celebrity Cruises. “Beyond delivers an onboard entertainment experience that our guests will be talking about long after they have returned home.”
This article was first published in the 2022 issue of Cruise & Ferry Interiors. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.
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