Celebrity Edge: Style Over Practicality?

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The Magic Carpet (Courtesy Celebrity)

Celebrities new-build, ‘Celebrity Edge’ has entered service and has now been cruising for a couple of months. Reviews form the press, travel partners and the paying customers have been appearing on-line. In general the ship has been getting quite ‘pounding’, not only from new cruisers, but from Celebrity stalwarts.

I’ve not been on-board, but the ship does look super stylish, which everyone seems to be agreed on. However it is the ‘innovations’ (gimmicks?) which seem to be the most controversial aspect of this new design.

The ship has all sorts of innovations’ like the ‘Magic Carpet’, the somewhat weird ‘Eden’ space on deck and the Infinite Veranda (IV) cabins.

In addition popular features (themed bars etc.) have not necessarily been carried over form the ‘Solstice’ class. One commentator said: “There is nowhere on the new ship for a quiet drink with maybe a acoustic guitar or a good duo”.

Metal trees: Eden (Courtesy Celebrity)

The IV cabins have received the most negative comments. The design is very similar to many modern river boats, but they of course are not faced with ocean sea conditions.

The Captain can close all the IV windows remotely and does so at the slightest sign of rain, it has been reported.

In addition, If you have the window open, the air-conditioning switches off, even if you have the inner folding doors shut. This causes the cabin to become a furnace in the likes of the Caribbean. If one occupant sits on the balcony and the other person wants a lie-in, they have no black-out.

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Infinite Veranda Cabins ( Courtesy Celebrity)

Another commentator said: “Sorry Celebrity, You may just have lost a lot of your loyal customers. As the saying goes, “If it aint broke, Why fix it?”

It is worth noting that the fares onboard Ede are still at a premium at present. This is normal for a brand new ship, but it can add insult to injury.

Is Edge A White Elephant?

With innovation comes with the risk of forgetting where you came from, and if the new product  is so far removed from the product that your existing customers are used to and like,  then it’s not going to be perceived as change for the better.

However there may be a period of adjustment, where the new designs needs to ‘grow’ on the public. I recall ‘Norwegian Epic’ (NCL) being severally criticized as a new ship, for it’s novel bathroom/toilet arrangements in the cabins. However nobody even mentions it anymore.

However, I do feel that the ‘gimmicks’ on-board Edge are more suited to the RCI brand and not an upmarket experience.

Public consensus at the moment, seems to be that Celebrity have missed the target.

Malcolm

Q: What do you think? Am I wrong? Have you been on-board?

‘Celebrity Apex’ slide-show: HERE

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