Keel laying ceremony held for Celebrity Xcel

Author: Kaye Holland

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The keel laying ceremony has taken place for Celebrity Cruises’ fifth Edge-series ship

The longstanding maritime tradition took place at the Chantiers de ‘Atlantique shipyard in France on June 13 and saw president and chief executive of Royal Caribbean Group Jason Liberty, Celebrity Cruises' president Laura Hodges Bethge and shipyard general manager Laurent Castaing lower the first steel block for the new ship.

Celebrity Xcel will make her debut in November 2025 in the Caribbean, sailing seven-night itineraries alternating between the Bahamas, Mexico and the Cayman Islands, and Puerto Plata, Saint Thomas and Saint Martin.

The ship will be powered with the first tri-fuel capable engine, with the ability to use three types of fuel, including methanol, a first for the company as it looks to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.

Hodges Bethge said: “We can’t wait to debut Celebrity Xcel and her unrivalled guest experiences, living up to her name in every way with surprises that confirm ‘Nothing Comes Close’ to a Celebrity holiday.

“We are grateful for the continued partnership of the Chantiers de l’Atlantique team for lending their craftsmanship to further elevate the innovative design and world-class features of our beloved Edge Series ships.”

Liberty added: “Today, we not only mark the start of construction, but we are laying the foundation on which countless memories will be created.

“Each new ship also represents an opportunity to advance our journey to net zero, and with Xcel, we are building our first methanol capable ship, which helps advance our transition to the energy platform of the future.”

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About Kaye Holland

Kaye is a London-based wordsmith who has written for a range of publications including The Times, The Independent, The I, Culture Trip, The Sun, and ABTA among others. In June 2022, Kaye joined the Real Response Media where she looks – together with Lucy Abbott – after the World of Cruising website. Want to get in touch? Kaye can be reached at: [email protected]