Marella Explorer 2 Review

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By Adam Coulter
Cruise Critic UK Managing Editor

Marella Explorer 2 Overview

Marella Explorer 2 joined Marella Cruises in April 2019 as the first adults-only ship in the fleet.

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About Marella Explorer 2

The 1,814-passenger ship previously sailed in China as SkySea Golden Era, though the ship began life in 1995 as Celebrity Century. It is a sister ship to Marella Explorer, formerly Celebrity Galaxy, which launched in May 2018. 

The key difference is the exclusive Veranda (the adults-only area on Marella Explorer) is double in size on Explorer 2; and a new Royal Suite which measures 102 square metres, featuring a separate bedroom, dressing room, dining area and whirlpool bath. The ship will have a total of 907 cabins, of which nearly 40 per cent have balconies.

Marella Explorer 2 features four brand-new venues for the line: A pizzeria-style dining option called Nonna's; a clubhouse bar called The 19th Hole; an elegant Prosecco and Champagne bar called Flutes, and The Beach Cove with a beach-barbecue theme.

The 19th Hole serves drinks including golf-themed cocktails and craft beer and feature quirky golf-buggy-style seating and two golf simulators. Flutes is more of a pre- and post-dinner drinks venue, with unique "Press for Bubbles" buttons scattered around to make ordering your next round effortless. 

The ship has many of the same new-to-the fleet features which debuted on Marella Explorer, including a Champneys Spa and a number of brand-new shows. 

It will also have a number of speciality dining and drinking venues, including Asian-fusion restaurant Kora-La and Surf and Turf Steakhouse. There's also The Dining Club for fine dining; Snack Shack for seaside-themed daytime dining; the Market Place buffet; Italian restaurant Vista and the main dining room, Latitude 53. There's also The Terrace, which serves the same dishes as the Market Place buffet, Scoops ice cream parlour and The Coffee Port for daytime drinks and snacks. 

For drinking and general merriment from daytime through to the early hours, there's also The Shack, Squid and Anchor pub, Indigo Bar, Broadway Show Lounge, Indigo Casino, Aperitif and Indigo Club. 

The entertainment offering includes two new theatre shows in the Broadway Show Lounge -- "Revive - The Forgotten Circus" and "Lovestruck" -- and eight shows carried over from Marella Explorer, such as Bud's Diner, a '60s tribute; classic rock (Rockology) and Cogs (classic '70s sounds) and movie themes. As an adults-only ship, the entertainment is aimed squarely at grown ups. 

For enterintment, there's an open-air cinema, Movies by Moonlight, on the pool deck, mini golf, plus bingo, quizzes and sports fixtures every afternoon in The Squid & Anchor pub. 

Marella Explorer 2 is based in Naples with seven-night itineraries to include stops in Venice, Rome and Dubrovnik.


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Marella Explorer 2 Ship Stats

  • Launched: April 2019
  • Passengers: 1,814
  • Registry: Malta
  • CDC Score: N/A
Marella Explorer 2 Ratings
Category Editor Member

Marella Explorer 2 Member Reviews

Marella Explorer 2
Sail Date: May 2019
Chose the cruise as a late booking, to compare with our experiences with P&O so far, as well as choosing an interior cabin for the first time. We usually travel as a party of 4 adults, so this was our first cruise...Read More
Marella Explorer 2
Tiger Beresford
Sail Date: May 2019
Destinations and fitted in with work etc. Reason for choice of Cruise. From the time we checked in on board to the time we left all was perfect. Ship new, clean and great taste. Latitude restaurant was first class....Read More
Marella Explorer 2
Sail Date: Apr 2019
The first thing to note is that whilst this ship is new to Marella it was built in 1994 and in places despite a refit is showing its age. You will need to travel on TUIs German Mein Schiff 1 & 2 if you want brand...Read More
Marella Explorer 2
Sail Date: Apr 2019
Booked under no illusion this would be like a Celebrity, Princess Cruise ect for the money paid, and that it was also an old shop which had been renovated rather than brand new. Overall impression public areas were...Read More

Marella Cruises (formerly Thomson Cruises) Fleet