The $40 Million Facelift: Big Changes Coming to Celebrity Cruise Ship

June 29, 2011

(9:40 a.m. EDT) -- Celebrity Millennium is on tap for more than a simple spruce up. Like its three sister ships, the 91,000-ton vessel will gain a number of popular features found on Celebrity's Solstice-class vessels during a massive makeover in April 2012.

Following the $40-million-plus dry dock, which will take place at the Grand Bahama Shipyard in Freeport, Millennium will emerge with 100 new or redesigned spa cabins, a trio of new restaurants and a new coffee house/gelateria. This 11-year-old ship will also get more crowded -- 60 new cabins will be added.

Here's what you can expect to find on Millennium come next spring:

Forty-three new cabins will be added to Deck 11 -- 37 spa-oriented "AquaClass" cabins and six inside cabins -- where the kids club is currently situated. The kids club will move next to the teen lounge, replacing one section of the observation lounge.

Seventeen other new cabins, which will be oceanview accommodations, will be added to Deck 3, replacing small meeting rooms and the cinema. A Solstice-class style conference room will be added, and the existing cinema will be remodeled.

In addition to the 37 new AquaClass cabins, 70 standard balcony cabins will be transformed into AquaClass cabins, which will sport massage showers, aromatherapy products and passes to the spa's thermal suites, among other perks. These cabins are priced 10 or more percent higher than standard balconies.

Blu, the AquaClass-passenger-only restaurant that's a staple on Celebrity's incredibly popular Solstice-class trio, will take over a portion of the main dining room's upper level on Deck 5.

Balconies will be added to the ship's eight oceanview Celebrity Suites.

Millennium will gain an iLounge computer center and Apple product store, first introduced on Eclipse.

Millennium will receive all the already-announced Solstice-class upgrades, including Qsine, an inventive restaurant that uses iPad menus (click here for a video); Cafe al Bacio, a combination coffee house and gelateria; Bistro on 5, a creperia; Martini Bar; Cellar Masters wine bar, which features enomatic wine dispensers; as well as upgrades to cabin and public area decor and furnishings.

The ship, known by its admirers as Millie, will be the last of the four Millennium-class vessels to receive Solstice-class upgrades. Celebrity Infinity and Celebrity Summit will go under the knife for nearly identical upgrades in November 2011 and January 2012, respectively, and Celebrity Constellation was refurbed in May 2010 as part of the $120-million-plus initiative.

If you want to get a sense of how Millennium's upgrades will change the look of the ship, check out our slideshow on sister ship Constellation's refurbishment.

See which other vessels are due for an upgrade on our cruise ship refurbishment chart.

--by Dan Askin, News Editor and Erica Silverstein, Senior Editor