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Celebrity Cruises quest to bring luxury to midsize ships is succeeding in Celebrity Apex, sister ship to Celebrity Edge and the upcoming Celebrity Beyond, expected in April 2022. Apex hits the sweet spot between upscale and ultra-luxury, offering more space and variety than smaller luxury ships, but not so large and crowded that guest are unable to find their perfect quiet spot. Suite guests have even more choices for their perfect quiet spots within the exclusive Retreat and its “ship within a ship” amenities.

Celebrity Apex is 1,004 feet long, 128 feet wide, displaces 129,500 gross registered tons, has 16 decks with 1,467 staterooms and suites, which at double occupancy and full capacity can carry 2,910 guests and 1,319 crew while maintaining a cruising speed of 21.8 knots.

Public Areas: Suite guests have access to the exclusive Retreat, which Celebrity says is more of an amenity than a place. The Retreat includes accommodations, a private restaurant, and lounge and sundeck, which are all comfortably chic and staffed by a dedicated team of attendants, concierges and personal retreat hosts who will do practically anything to make guests happy. The Retreat Lounge offers complimentary beverages and gourmet bites. The Retreat Sundeck is a spacious outdoor lounge area with plush, stylish furniture, private pool, hot tub, and bar.

All guests have access to the The Grand Plaza, an open, three-story venue in the centre of the ship, inspired by the piazzas of Italy and home to the Martini Bar and Café al Bacio. The Martini Bar offers handcrafted cocktails under the glow of the Grand Plaza’s LED chandelier and features nightly choreographed light and flair bartending shows. Café Al Bacio is an Italian-inspired café that serves specialty coffees and sweet treats.

The Magic Carpet is Celebrity’s signature multi-purpose cantilevered bar/restaurant that moves up and down along the side of Edge class ships, stopping at different decks for different functions, including doubling as a disembarkation station when on Deck 2.

Apex has a smoke-free Vegas-style casino with a variety of games and 7,000 square feet of retail space featuring Bvlgari, Cartier and the first-ever Montblanc lifestyle boutique. The theatre on Apex is Celebrity’s most technologically advanced yet, with a 110-foot curved 4K LED screen working together with lighting and misting effects.

Accommodations: Interior designer Kelly Hoppen designed the staterooms and suites aboard Celebrity Apex. Her work evokes the intimacy of an inviting, indulgent urban apartment that opens to the outdoors. Cabins range from 120 to 131 square feet for an ocean view or interior stateroom to a pair of 1,900-square-foot Iconic Suites.

Of the 1,467 staterooms, the most common configuration with 500 cabins is the Infinite Veranda. A design exclusive to Celebrity that was introduced on the Edge and planned for Beyond as well, these 207-square-foot staterooms have more storage and larger bathrooms because the area usually dedicated to a balcony is incorporated in the living room space. With the flip of a switch, the far end of these cabins can convert from a solarium-like living space into a balcony and back again.

The Concierge Class of suites offer a total living space of 243 square feet and a veranda of 42 square feet. The AquaClass health themed suites are the same size but feature complimentary access to the SEA Thermal Suite in The Spa and exclusive dining at the ship’s healthiest restaurant, Blu. Other suite classes from largest to smallest are the Iconic Suite, Penthouse Suite, Edge Villa (two-story lofts), Royal Suite, Celebrity Suite, and Sky Suite. There are also 23 accessible staterooms at various suite levels, designed with wider doors, roll-in showers, grab bars, and other special features for guests with mobility issues and other disabilities.

There are 178 possible options of connecting staterooms. Combinations include two adjoining Edge staterooms with Infinite Verandas connected to become one, and the Iconic Suite and the Royal Suite connected to create a combination that comfortably sleeps ten.

All staterooms feature room controls for temperature and multiple lighting scenarios. Smartphones with the Celebrity app installed can access these same room controls as well as unlock the cabin’s door (and support just about every other aspect of a voyage as well). The king-size beds in 99 percent of the rooms are draped with Celebrity’s eXhale bedding, featuring Celebrity’s cashmere mattress. The rooms contain sufficient USB, 110 and 220 volt plugs for two people with modern electronics. Internet packages are available for different lengths of time and for one or multiple units.

Dining: Guests have a choice of four complimentary main restaurants—Normandie, Tuscan, Cosmopolitan, and Cyprus—and can dine at any of them at any time. Other complimentary dining options are Eden Café for morning beverages and casual culinary bites all day under three stories of windows in a fantasy garden environment; Spa Cafe for healthy fare; the Oceanview Café where guests are served an upscale buffet surrounded by two-story, floor-to-ceiling windows; and Mast Grill for quick, by-the-pool burgers, salad, or sandwiches.

For specialty dining, the Fine Cut Steakhouse features a selection of fresh meat and seafood. Le Grand Bistro is a boulangerie and patisserie that changes from morning to evening when the tabletops come to life with a brand new Le Petit Chef experience—an animated fusion of entertainment and dining. Raw on 5 is a raw bar of oysters, crab, and lobsters that caters meals for the Magic Carpet when it also arrives on Deck 5. The Rooftop Garden Grill is next to the Rooftop Garden and serves gourmet backyard BBQ favourites. Eden Restaurant features an open kitchen and innovative dishes just downstairs from the Eden Cafe. Luminae, the private exclusive restaurant for Retreat guests, features an elegant interior and a menu by Chef Daniel Boulud that cannot be found anywhere else on the ship.

Pool & Spa: The main pool is on Deck 14, the adults-only Solarium features a pool and two hot tubs, and a private pool for suite guests-only is hidden in The Retreat, which also offers three more hot tubs. The fitness centre is larger on Celebrity Apex than on Celebrity Edge. The Spa and wellness centre offer new programming, including spa-centric dining options that differ according to the cruise itinerary. Choose from more than 120 different treatments with views of the ocean, then visit the spa’s Persian Garden and thermal suite for more relaxation programs.

Entertainment: Celebrity Apex uses its state-of-the-art theatre to put on shows including “Rockumentary,” which features hit classics from the history of rock n’ roll, as well as “Tree of Life,” which features ballet and aerialists. A cabaret-style show takes place in The Club. There is also live music throughout the day all around the ship, as well as opportunities for dancing and karaoke, and games and activities lead by the crew.

The kids’ program is lifted from Celebrity Edge. The youngest children can go to the Toddler Time space where parents must be present. Older kids go to Camp at Sea where they are split into groups, ages three to five, six to nine and 10 to 12. Activities range from entertaining to educational. The Teen Club offers group activities, social events and games. Since Apex’s godmother is the founder of Girls Who Code, there are additional STEM classes and Girls Who Code-related programming available.

Celebrity Apex is for the guest looking for quiet luxury, but who still likes to participate in many activities and choose from many restaurants, the variety of which would not be available on smaller luxury ships.