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Celestyal Journey to debut in September after €20m upgrade

Celestyal Journey will comprise 24% balcony staterooms, seven dining venues, eight bars and lounges, expansive sun decks and a wellness area
Celestyal Cruises’ newly acquired ship – formerly Holland America Line's Ryndam – will make its debut in September, after undergoing extensive refurbishment costing millions of euros.

Following the extensive works amounting to €20m, the new Celestyal Journey will take over Celestyal Crystal’s program, initially on its seven-night ‘Idyllic Aegean’ itinerary starting September 2.  

Customers currently holding reservations to sail onboard Celestyal Crystal from that date will be contacted by the line regarding re accommodation onboard the new addition to the fleet. 

Special launch offers will be announced shortly.

‘It has always been our mission to renew and rejuvenate our fleet, and we’re thrilled to see this come to fruition with the arrival of Celestyal Journey,’ said Celestyal Cruises CEO Chris Theophilides. ‘She is already undergoing her extensive refurbishment program and will be deployed in a matter of just a few months.’


Further itineraries announced for Celestyal Journey include the ‘Steps of Paul’ departing October 14, followed by a seven-night Three Continents’ programme running from October through December and calling at ports in Greece, Egypt, Israel, Cyprus and Turkey. 

It will also operate a 19-night Christmastime voyage offering an overnight call in Haifa, Israel enabling passengers to spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in the Holy Land. Other ports of call included in the programme are: Thessaloniki, Volos, Rhodes and Crete in Greece; Izmir, Kusadasi, Antalya, Istanbul in Turkey; Limassol in Cyprus; Alexandria in Egypt. The voyage can instead be split in two, for an itinerary of eight nights or nine nights. 

24% balcony staterooms

Theophilides added that the vessel will offer passengers more in the way of premium accommodations with balconies, a greater choice of dining and bar venues, public areas and open decks, creating a greater sense of space. He said, ‘At the same time, the newest member of the Celestyal family continues our tradition of operating intimate, mid-sized vessels, allowing us to take our guests to destinations that larger ships cannot, reinforcing our in-depth regional destination knowledge and genuine, warm Greek hospitality, both of which have consistently been recognised as second to none.’

The 1,260-passenger mid-sized ship comprises 630 staterooms, 149 of which feature balconies – three times that of the previously available balcony staterooms offered by Celestyal on its  seven-night cruises. 

Of the 149 balcony staterooms, 120 are junior suites, 28 are grand suites and one is the spacious penthouse concept suite.  In addition, the vessel will have 80% outside staterooms as well as a high passenger to space ratio. 

Expansive space

Celestyal Journey features many open deck areas, creating an overall greater sense of light and space. Expansive sundecks with two pools and two Jacuzzis offer views and connectivity with the sea, while a secluded and tranquil outdoor space, the Beach Club, will be created for exclusive use by all grand suite and junior suite passengers.

Passengers booked in grand suites will also have access to Celestyal’s concierge service, which features a dedicated priority check-in counter, expedited embarkation and express luggage delivery service including assistance with unpacking.

The dedicated concierge will be available in the exclusive-use Poseidon Lounge to assist grand suite guests with tailored service requests.

Dining options

A larger range of dining options will be available, with seven one-of-a-kind venues including specialty and themed restaurants appealing to a wide array of tastes and cuisines - from Mediterranean to European and Asian dishes.

The ship will have a cooking demonstration area and an exclusive Chef’s Table venue that may also be used for celebrating special occasions or for private group functions.

Eight bars and lounges will be found onboard, each with its own distinctive character to try out Celestyal’s signature cocktails.

Wellness areas

Other features include a large, comprehensive spa, fitness and wellness area offering ocean views and two, fully-equipped conference rooms and a multi-purpose amphitheatre complete with a cinema.