Celebrity Mercury Next in Line for Upgrade

April 5, 2007

Last year's massive refurbishment of Celebrity Century was widely thought to be a test case for the line -- the success of which would determine whether its siblings Celebrity Mercury and Celebrity Galaxy would get a new life as well. Well, the initiative must have passed the test: Celebrity Cruises has announced a refurbishment for Mercury.

The 71,545-ton, 1,814-passenger ship will enter a six-day scheduled dry-dock on April 13, 2007, in San Francisco for its overhaul; though not on as grand a scale as Century (that redo took about five weeks and cost $55 million), there are significant changes planned including:

New verandahs: Like Century, Mercury will get new balconies; 14 verandahs will be added to 210-square-ft. staterooms on the aft end of the ship. (As a comparison, Century received 314 new verandahs, 14 new suites and 10 new staterooms.)

New boutiques: The ship's "boutique boulevard" will be transformed with fresh additions. Beauty, the line's first "cosmeceutical" store (pairing science with cosmetics), will feature products from Dr. Brandt, DermaNew, Freeze 24/7, Fekkai, L'Occitane, MD Skincare, Origins and StriVectin -- picture a Sephora at sea.

The boulevard will also include Boutique C, Celebrity's by-appointment-only jeweler; an upscale branded-apparel shop; and a destination shop selling merchandise reflective of the ship's current sailing region (Mercury splits its time between Alaska and Hawaii, and will embark on the line's first season in Australia/New Zealand in December).

New gym gear: All fitness equipment (cardio and strength training) will be upgraded; cardio machines will feature individual TV's. The pool deck will also receive all new flooring.

New carpeting and bedding: Carpeting will be replaced in the main restaurant, Martini and Champagne bars, Cova Cafe, Fortunes Casino, guest corridors, staircases, and the main foyer. Celebrity will also continue the roll-out of its new bedding program; the new bedding is already in place on Celebrity Millennium and Celebrity Century, and will be implemented fleetwide by the end of July 2007.

Celebrity's Senior Vice President of Marine Operations John Krousoloudis tells us that "the work being done onboard Mercury is designed to enhance the overall ambience and guest experience."

Celebrity Mercury will re-enter service on April 20 with a seven-night Pacific Coastal cruise roundtrip from San Francisco.

--by Melissa Baldwin, Senior Editor