January 5, 2007
Celebrity Cruises' partnership with Michel Roux is toast. The cruise line has announced today that it has ended its 15-year affiliation with the Master Chef.
Interestingly enough, it was this very partnership that kicked off the trend of mainstream lines collaborating with celebrity chefs -- one that is still going strong in the industry today. Since Celebrity signed Roux in 1989, for example, Carnival has teamed up with renowned culinary star Georges Blanc; Cunard's Queen Mary 2 features a restaurant designed by restaurateur Todd English.
Roux is credited with providing Celebrity with culinary consultation and direction; over the 15-year period, Roux made 100-plus onboard visits to coach each ship's Food and Beverage team leaders; the line's most promising chefs trained with Roux on location at his Michelin-starred Waterside Inn in London.
According to a statement from the cruise line, the split coincides with the end of Roux's current contract with Celebrity -- and the decision was mutual. However, Roux will assist Celebrity during the transition, and "be available in the future to offer advice and guidance."
At this time, Celebrity Cruises hasn't announced any new culinary partnerships for its fleet.
--by Melissa Baldwin, Senior Editor