Some background on me to begin. I’m a 32 year old heterosexual male bachelor. Celebrity Edge was my 16th cruise overall, and the 9th that I’ve taken with Celebrity. Like many of my cruises, I sailed with my 76 yr old father who has some health issues. —And although, it’s a cruise to spend some father/son time together as we live in different states, he usually goes to bed quite early, and I enjoy the night life well into the wee hours of the morning… So, inevitably It ends up becoming a “singles” cruise for me.
Before, I review the actual ship, and give you a very detailed breakdown of what I saw, experienced, and everything that this cruise has to offer, It’s important for anyone not familiar with Celebrity, to understand what this cruise line is about… “Virgin” Celebrity cruisers are always surprised(some negatively, and mostly positively about the differences between Celebrity and other lines. This line is not for kids(although they’re allowed). —There are no slides, or virtually anything similar to a Carnival or Disney ship. This is a sleek modern line that charges a little more to have the luxury’s and the lack of headaches that other “mainstream” cruise lines deal with.
So, if you are looking for the family cruise with ice cream for the kids, and strollers everywhere, THIS IS NOT FOR YOU. If you’re looking for the Carnival-Walmart (affordable booze cruise), THIS IS NOT FOR YOU. This is a sophisticated line that balances fun, copious amounts of alcohol, aesthetics, sex appeal, and adult-geared entertainment.
I’ve always thought that the line does a remarkable job at appealing to successful millennials(such as me) all the way up through baby boomers, into seniors. There’s simply a “cool” factor to Celebrity that’s hard to describe. —After experiencing the Eastern Caribbean Inaugural cruise on Edge, I think that this ship embodies everything that’s cool about this line. Enjoy the review below!
THE PASSENGERS AND CREW: A+
As previously mentioned, Celebrity is a little bit of a different crowd from your typical cruise lines. You’ll usually find slightly more affluence, and people willing to spend a few extra dollars for a higher level of service and fun. Edge embodies Celebrity’s attempt to appease their traditional baby boomer, and older crowds, while also attracting successful millennials. Edge nails this delicate balance!
***Although, I have no data to back up my numbers…. I would guess that the age of passengers on the ship was
15% elderly, 25% Baby Boomers, 25% Gen X, 20 % Millennials, and 15% Gen Z / children.
75% of passengers were American, 10% were Canadian, 10% were Latin-American, and 5% from elsewhere in the world.
I was shocked at how balanced the crowd was. Also, tons of single millennials on the ship to hang out/flirt with. I’m not saying that I was necessarily looking for a “target rich” environment… But It certainly makes things more interesting if you catch my drift.
I can’t say enough great things about the Edge crew! These people, no matter whether they’re a stateroom attendant, buffet bus boy, or an officer were simply perfect. –They’ve mastered the art of service. I would give you specific examples, but we’d be here all day.
THE SHIP ITSELF Overall grade: A+
I’m like a mosquito in a nudist colony, (I don’t know where to strike first)… After taking 16 cruises on 12 different ships, it’s going to be hard for any other ship to beat Edge from a pure aesthetics standpoint. The ship is absolutely gorgeous. The entire ship is a work of art. If anyone complains about the design of the ship, they’re simply stale people.
Beginning with the main promenade which covers decks 3, 4, and 5. This area like most ships, is the main interior gathering point, or crossroads of the ship. Also, you can see what’s going on, on each of the aforementioned decks... The famed celebrity martini bar is at the heart of this on deck 3. They’ve increased the size of the martini bar, along with the seating area’s and tables surrounding it…Above the bar is a massive light fixture capable of syncing to whatever song is playing, or general light shows and tone changes. It’s seriously a work of art, and a good conversation piece. My only complaint about the martini bar is that it’s no longer an “ice bar”—Not sure why Edge’s designers scrapped this very popular feature from the solstice class ships.
Continuing, the ship features a number of super premium shops on board. Cartier, Tiffany & Co., Louis Vuitton, and others. While these shops were fun to window shop at, and tease cruisers with outrageous price tags, I don’t think Celebrity is very concerned with how much people actually shop at these stores. It’s almost like they’re going for a “wow factor” with the level of store’s on board. I found the duty free, and general gift shops much smaller and not quite as well stocked. Almost like a, “well… I guess we have to have these shops, so lets put it here” type of mentality. —Not a big negative, just an observation.
The Pool Deck: A+
I think Edge hit’s a homerun with the redesigned pool deck. I found the main pool deck spacious and ascetically pleasing. There’s really 3 decks to enjoy around the main pool. Deck 14(which is the pool itself), Deck 15 just overlooking the pool deck, and finally deck 16 (which is the sun deck)… Like most cruises, deck chairs fill up quickly with towel clips, bags, and magazines holding chairs for sometimes hours before they’re actually occupied. But, I legitimately found very little overcrowding on any of the pool decks(including the actual pool deck 14). There was always available lounge chairs at any time of day(including sea days). The pool deck really embodies a Miami modern theme without being too over the top. The martini glass hot tubs above several corners of the pool provide an extra vacation luxury feel. Gone are the cumbersome stages for “sexiest legs contests”, or “bingo trivia”. -There’s a subtle live band for a portion of the day, and a D.J. For other parts of the day. It has a really relaxing, yet cool feeling. It looks different from any other pool deck that you’ve experienced.
Magic Carpet: B+
Although the magic carpet is cool, and certainly a conversation piece… I didn’t think it was nearly one of the main attractions of this incredible ship. Don’t get me wrong, it’s very unique. It’s fun to experience it either on deck 16(where it typically rests for most of the day), or on deck 3 where it makes several shorter stints throughout the evening. But, it’s relatively small, and there were may times throughout the cruise that it was occupied with the sign “private function”, and unavailable. The CEO of Celebrity was on the ship for the first 3 days of the cruise, so this could’ve been a reason why. Also, my stateroom on Deck 12 was right in between the two orange beams of the Magic Carpet. So, I got to witness it’s ascension and descent multiple times.
Keep Eden Weird: A+
Strap in… Because this is where this review gets fun. Eden is strange AF.
-Even as I try to explain it to you, I’m not sure the you’ll truly grasp what I’m saying until you experience it for yourself. The area of the ship is truly remarkably unique. It’s almost like a fancy greenhouse with great cocktails, impeccable lighting, and like nothing else you’ve ever experienced at sea. From the early evening hours, there’s boozing, and weird fairy-like entertainers and acrobats performing around you. Although they’re somewhat interactive, and certainly a good icebreaker(if you’re single like me). But the real Eden fun doesn’t start until 10PM. From 10P-12M, there’s a show filled with acrobats, strange sounds, bells, and bizarre interaction between a dozen or so actors, and you. For instance, I’m sitting with a younger 20-something newlywed couple that I befriended on the ship…A fairy comes up to me and asks, “what do they call you”? —I responded ‘Matthew’….”What do they call you?” “I’m Zoom—Nice to meet you.” ….Then in my southern gentlemanly baritone Louisiana voice, I say “Pleasure”. (As-in pleasure to meet you). Zoom then responds “Nice to meet you Pleasure Matthew. I got a surprise for you later”???. Then there’s queens who walk around in full extravagant costumes. Along with the (god of time) “Chronos” who sends sound/shock waves throughout the venue.
Basically, to wrap up Eden… It’s somewhere between Alice in Wonderland, a Scientology novel, and an LSD trip that takes place in a beautiful glass atrium overlooking the sea. YOLO… Embrace it for what it is(entertainment). I have a feeling that there will be very mixed reviews on it. One thing that cannot be argued about Eden(It has the best speciality cocktails that I’ve ever enjoyed at sea). It’s setting and what they did with the space is nothing short of remarkable.
Roof Top Garden: A
Loved it! Very unique with the artwork tree-like structures. Lots of seating and very cool green spaces and live plants ETC…. They also have bands and D.J.’s playing (mostly in the late afternoon/evening hours). Great place to watch sunset, and enjoy an early evening cocktail… Also well lit at night. This clearly replaces “the lawn” from the solstice class ships.
The Main Theater: A-
Very spacious, very nice. It has arguably the largest performance stage that I’ve seen at sea. However, the biggest improvement/innovation that the Edge theater has that no other theater that I’ve ever experienced has, are massive LED screens that surround the entire stage and provide additional scenery and set themes to each show/performance. One small knock is that the theater lacks organization… There’s three levels that are only accessible by two floor entrances. So, many elderly or disabled people with wheelchairs or power scooters could not access the bottom floor. In addition, they added loose seats and bar tables on the first floor that are kind’ve disorganized and facing different directions, and are smashed close together. --It’s almost like after they built the theater, they said, “we’re not going have enough seating, so lets throw these extra 200 chairs in here over on the side. —Not a big deal.
They give Angola and San Quintin a run for the money on the amount of bars. No problem utilizing my premium drink package…. Credit to Celebrity for clearly preparing better for large crowds. RARELY ever waited for more than a min to get a drink.
To Wrap Up the actual Ship Section:
There are many nooks, crannies, and small spaces between and around the areas that I’ve described that are very nice and worth seeing. But In the interest of not writing forever, I’ll let you discover them for yourselves once you see the ship.
SPECIALTY RESTAURANTS, MAIN DINING ROOMS, & BUFFET Had a chance to eat at 4 of the specialty restaurants. All of them were excellent from a pure culinary perspective. And most were even better with the extra experiences and atmosphere’s that they provided.
IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER:
1.) Roof Top Garden Grill: A-
Delicious BBQ in a cool outdoor setting that would remind other celebrity loyalists of the “The Lawn Club Grill” on some solstice class ships. The difference is that this has more of a traditional American BBQ menu. Chili, brisket, ribs, wings, etc…
2.) Le Petite Chef: A+
Truly the most unique experience in specialty dinning that I’ve ever had at sea. Your whole table becomes an animated screen with little chefs who prepare your food right there on your table. The little chefs explain what you are about to eat and how it’s prepared. Then the actual food is placed by a waiter onto your plate. It’s a pre-set menu with one French dish, Italian dish, American dish, and a Japanese dessert. All four dishes were delicious. Pretty sure the menu changes sometimes.
3.) Fine Cut Steakhouse: B+
Very traditional looking steakhouse that you could experience in most large US cities. The food was pretty good. I had the ribeye, and a new lady friend had the filet. Both were pretty good. However, I must admit that I’ve had better steaks on other ships. —Nothing really stands out about Fine Cut, other than great views of the main promenade because of being on the 5th floor mid-ship. That’s the reason that they got the score I gave them.
4.) Eden Restaurant: A+
Interesting and delicious. Like the main part of Eden, the restaurant has the mythical characters walking around and performing as you eat. Also, the menu has a pre-set 6 courses that you can choose 1 from each side of the menu for each course. So, you order 6 Items out of 12 possibilities. There’s steak, lobster, various fish dishes, etc…
Main Dinning Rooms: A
We ate at 3 of the main dinning rooms. Cosmopolitan, Normandy, and Cypress. All very consistently good, and great service. I tried to eat something unique to each menu at each restaurant. Cosmopolitan has more fancy cuisine, Normandy has more comfort food, and Cypress has Greek Food.
Excellent. Good choices for breakfast and lots of variety. Pretty typical for a mega ship buffet, but added variety. Did not eat lunch or dinner here during cruise.
Without a doubt, the most controversial aspect of Edge, that I expect the most disagreements on is the Entertainment(mainly in the main theater). One small negative that cruisers who take maiden/inaugural voyages should understand is that there will be kinks to work out. Nothing is more prevalent of that statement than the entertainment on Edge. Two shows were impacted by sound issues that the cruise director openly apologized for…Including a situation to where all the lights and power went out during the middle of a show. Major credit to the singers and dancers who showed remarkable professionalism and finished the song via a-cappella until power was restored. Unfortunately, inconsistency is the best that I can give the shows on Edge. “HYPE” is by far the best theatrical show on the ship. —One of the best shows that I’ve ever seen at sea in fact.
On the other hand, the show “PURPOSE” was an embarrassment to the cruise industry. Wayyyyyy too much political undertones, and “we are the world, we are the children” BS. —I get it that Celebrity has made their gains in the industry by taking risks and being innovative. But, this simply was a little much…and I’m a millennial. I heard NUMEROUS people(both young, old, different races ETC chatting and rolling their eyes over “Purpose”). —I’m sure some think that it was great…. But I’m on vacation. The last thing that I want to talk or hear about at sea is race, religion, politics, or anything going on in the world. —Like come on, that’s a cardinal rule of cruising and vacationing in general.
That being said, the singers and dancers of all shows were excellent! The comedian on the ship was absolutely hilarious! If pinned down to give an overall score of the entertainment, I would grade it as a “B-“. I love Celebrity, and always have. -The line is the reason why I love cruising! But, MSC’s newer ships’ entertainment simply kicks Celebrity’s ass in this one department.
Bottom line, Celebrity Edge managed to deliver on some of the most anticipated and unrealistic expectations in the history of cruising! I credit their staff, and their company on creating a masterful experience! That being said, this cruise was not perfect. (What cruise is?) --They still have some things to work on which is to be expected of ANY new ship. Also, outside of HYPE, the comedian, and Eden, they need to take a serious look at a few of their theater shows. I fully expect “Purpose” to be scrapped from the routine soon. If they’re able to address some of that, I think you’d be flirting with a perfect cruise.
In my opinion, it’s the coolest ship, on the coolest cruise line in the world. I’ll see you on the Edge again soon…
Matthew from New Orleans, Louisiana Read Less