One word that perfectly describes the innovative culinary creations and experiences that guests will enjoy on the new Celebrity Edge, debuting in November 2018 from Celebrity Cruises, is finesse – which is defined as refinement and delicacy of performance, execution or artistry. With Michelin-star Chef Cornelius Gallagher as the Associate VP of food and beverages for the line, Edge will offer guests unique culinary offerings made from locally-sourced ingredients to create globally-inspired menus based on the destinations the ship will travel to.
Onboard the Celebrity Edge, there will be – in total – 29 food and bar venues that include four main dining rooms, two Suite and AquaClass restaurants, seven new specialty restaurants that are unique to the Edge, five complimentary dining venues and 11 bars and lounges.
When looking at the different food and beverage venues on the Edge, it is very evident that not only finesse is important to them, but diversity as well. The four main dining rooms will offer signature dishes that are available fleet-wide, but they will also be featuring regional and international dishes inspired by Celebrity’s heritage and guest favorite specialty restaurants. Tuscan Restaurant, which draws inspiration from the well-loved Tuscan Grill, will feature Italian-inspired dishes with freshly made pasta, whereas the Normandie Restaurant will take inspiration from its French specialty restaurant, Murano.
The Cosmopolitan Restaurant will be focusing on elevated new American Cuisine, and the Cyprus Restaurant will have dishes inspired by the Mediterranean, as a nod to Celebrity’s Greek heritage. Since there are now four main dining room options for guests, Celebrity will be allowing passengers to choose when and where they would like to have dinner by making reservations at any of them with the Celebrity Select Dining Plus program.
The two specialty dining options that really stood out to me as a chef were Eden Restaurant and Le Grand Bistro. Eden is an extremely unique restaurant concept, and it is certainly not something that I would expect to see on a cruise ship. With modern, avant garde cuisine and a variety of sensory experiences, it is certain to deliver a very memorable culinary experience for every individual who visits.
Le Grand Bistro will offer guests a very traditional French boulangerie-patisserie during the day with artesian handmade pastries and freshly baked bread. However, its most interesting experience will be happening in the evening. Celebrity has partnered with TableMation Studios to create a unique dining experience for guests utilizing Skullmapping’s Le Petite Chef, which brings the table and plate alive and shows an animated character creating each course on the guest’s plate.
The Magic Carpet featured on the Celebrity Edge will also offer a one-of-a-kind dining option for guests as this moveable venue is on the side of the ship. When the Magic Carpet is on deck 5 and next to the seafood restaurant, Raw on 5, guests will be able to enjoy an al fresco dining experience, and when the Magic Carpet is on the very top level, guests will be able to enjoy Dinner on the Edge, which will feature locally-sourced ingredients from the ports of call.
Based on the diverse food offerings, memorable experiences, advanced technology being utilized and emphasis on regionally-sourced ingredients, it is evident that the Celebrity Edge is trying to appeal to a broader demographic, particularly including Millennials. When deciding on a vacation, Millennials look for hospitality venues that are socially responsible, immerse them in the local culture and create a unique experience for them because having that memorable experience is what drives them to make that purchasing decision.
From bartenders cutting mint off of the living wall for a mojito in Eden to chefs bringing in local ingredients from the port’s market to create a special menu for the night, these are the types of experiences that younger travelers are looking for because they are unique, immersive and brings the local culture back on the ship. As a Millennial chef, I am excited by what I saw at the Celebrity Edge’s culinary reveal on Wednesday evening, and I hope I have the opportunity to experience all that the new Celebrity Cruises ship has to offer one day.