Excitement and anticipation hung in the air as Celebrity Cruises’ G.O.A.T., and newest and most luxurious ship, Celebrity Beyond, set sail from Fort Lauderdale today, kicking off its inaugural Caribbean season.
Experiencing Celebrity Beyond
I had the opportunity to attend the naming ceremony in Fort Lauderdale [Ad-gifted]. We had already spent nearly two weeks on board on holiday as Celebrity Beyond sailed from New York for Florida, so this was an opportunity to celebrate everything about Beyond.
Naming ceremonies are always emotional and exciting times (you can read about them and how cruise ships are built here). It’s a point where everyone comes together and celebrate inspirational people, the future and of course it goes without saying the ship.
And in this instance, Celebrity Beyond really does go above (and beyond) what to expect from a cruise holiday. You can read my full review here from our time on board earlier in 2022. Having spent more time on board, I can easily say that this ship is a gamechanger in so many different ways and sets a new standard for cruising.
Naming Celebrity Beyond
Headlining the sailing’s highly-anticipated festivities was the ship’s official naming ceremony, led by her lauded Godmother and inspirational female powerhouse, Simone Biles – a G.O.A.T. in her own right – a 19-time World Champion, seven-time Olympic Medalist and most decorated American gymnast in history.
Helmed by the barrier-breaking Captain Kate McCue, the first and still only woman to be named captain of a “Mega” cruise ship, Celebrity Beyond’s much anticipated arrival to the U.S. ushers in a new era of cruising for the industry; coming on the heels of Celebrity’s new brand campaign that defines what a relaxed luxury resort at sea is. As it kicks off its inaugural season with rotating Western and Eastern Caribbean itineraries visiting the sun-drenched beaches of Grand Cayman and picturesque vistas of Puerta Plata, guests will recharge as they are treated to luxury hotel- style accommodations, Michelin-level dining, and world-class wellness amenities.
“I’ve been waiting for this day to arrive for a long time and I am ‘Beyond’ excited to be able to share her with our guests. She is the gold standard by which other ships are built and embodies the meaning of relaxed luxury,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, Celebrity Cruises President and CEO. “She is ‘FULL’ of wonder and excitement and our guests will undoubtedly feel reconnected to the world around them as they visit new destinations and immerse themselves in culinary experiences and wellness amenities not found anywhere else at sea.”
Simone Biles officially named Celebrity Beyond in a beautiful ceremony attended by 2500 lucky guests and media, capped by a live performance from award-winning singer and songwriter, Leona Lewis.
Simone Biles follows Reshma Saujani of Girls Who Code and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai, who previously inaugurated Celebrity Apex and Celebrity Edge, respectively. Both women are renowned for their advocacy of women everywhere, inspiring them to soar above their limits.
“It is an honor to be selected as Beyond’s Godmother and to join such a distinguished group of strong, barrier-breaking women who have been named as Celebrity’s Godmothers before me,” said Simone Biles. “I appreciate the important message this designation holds in recognizing our accomplishments as empowering women, and I am honored to share the stage today with fellow brave, boundary-breaking leaders like Lisa-Lutoff Perlo and Captain Kate McCue.”
As the most decorated American gymnast in history, with 32 medals from the World Championships and seven medals from the Olympics, Biles is also the first American woman to win seven national all-around titles and is the first female gymnast to earn three consecutive World All-Around titles. As well as her more than inspiring gymnastic accomplishments, she has been included in important lists such as TIME’S 100 Most Influential, Forbes 30 Under 30, Ebony Power 100, amongst many others, placing herself firmly as a role model for women everywhere.
It was truly an honor to be part of this naming ceremony. It feels very much full circle, as I was present when the first steel was cut for the ship back in 2020 (and have a piece sad proudly in my kitchen!). I cannot wait to spend more time on board in the future (but that’s a story for another day!).
To learn more head here.