by Paul Motter
Celebrity is out to remake its image as the “Modern Luxury” cruise line for cuisine, entertainment and service
Reflection is the newest cruise ship in the fleet
Celebrity Cruises has been a premium brand name in cruising since its inception by John Chandris in the late 1980s. The line has always tried to attract discriminating cruisers who wanted a more refined cruise ship, with more accent on fine food, drink, art and entertainment and less on the usual shipboard antics affiliated with other “Fun Ship”-style cruise lines.
Royal Caribbean International acquired Celebrity from its original founder, Greek Shipping magnate John Chandris, in 1997; just about the time the line was starting to reinvent itself with a fleet of new ships of the Millennium-class. Today, the fleet is dominated by two classes of ships, four from the Millennium and five from the Solstice family.
Building out the fleet the last dozen years was carried out under the direction of former president and CEO Dan Hanrahan, an executive who came to parent company Royal Caribbean International from outside the cruise business. Just last year, Hanrahan was replaced by long-time Royal Caribbean executive Michael Bayley, who has far more experience in the cruise business.
Under Bayley, the line is redefining itself with a number of new marketing slogans, sales initiatives, a planned change in itineraries and new affiliations with entertainment providers. Let’s take a look at these new efforts.