Crystal Cruises Will Double Fleet Size With New Ship Order

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Crystal Cruises announced plans to double the size of its fleet with the order of two new ocean vessels from Italy’s Fincantieri shipyard.

The preliminary agreement, revealed on June 27, 2024, calls for delivery of the first ship in the spring of 2028, while the launch plans for the second ship are expected in a few months.

The order also includes an option for a third new-build. The announcement did not reveal the names of the new-builds nor did it provide any hints as to their future deployments.

New Crystal Cruises Ship Render
New Crystal Cruises Ship Render

Both of the newly ordered ships will accommodate 690 guests in all-suite staterooms and feature the luxury amenities and high-end finishes that Crystal’s upmarket guests expect. 

The cruise line is partnering with two Italy-based interior design and architectural firms, Studio Ibsen and Gem Cruise Ships Design, which spearheaded the refurbishments of Crystal’s two existing ships, Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony, in 2023.

The interior design will feature the most precious marbles, Italian fabrics and natural materials, offering a level of research and sophistication typically reserved for high-end private residential properties,said Cristina Levis, CEO of Abercrombie & Kent Travel Group.

Wellness and relaxation will be at the heart of the new ships, with a comprehensive Spa and state-of-the-art fitness center available to all guests. Families traveling with children will appreciate a dedicated area, designed to provide engaging activities and a safe space for younger guests,Levis added.

Dining options on the new ships will feature Umi Uma, the cruise industry’s only Nobu venue, and accommodations will include a single occupancy option for solo travelers.

Entertainment will include Crystal’s newly announced Casino de Monte-Carlo at Sea, which will soon be added to both of the line’s existing ships.

The partnership with Monte-Carlo Société des Bains de Mer to operate a glamorous casino onboard its ships was revealed just days ago.

With a variety of gaming options, including slot machines, blackjack, and roulette, the casino will debut onboard the Crystal Symphony during its Chairmen’s Cruise, which departs from Venice on November 14, 2024. It will open onboard Crystal Serenity in December 2024.

Abercrombie & Kent bought the Crystal brand and two of its three blue-water ships in 2022, following the bankruptcy of the line’s former owner, Genting Hong Kong.

The third ship, Crystal Endeavor, was sold to luxe line Silversea Cruises and renamed Silversea Endeavour. Crystal had also operated several river cruise ships, but they were not included in the acquisition.

The Silversea connection continues in the ships’ new ownership, since Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio, Silversea’s former owner, is co-chairman of  Abercrombie and Kent.

The value of the construction contract, which is subject to financing and other conditions, was not disclosed but was categorized as “significant” by Fincantieri.

Crystal Brand Was Officially Relaunched in 2023

Following the acquisition of Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony, Abercrombie and Kent invested in a substantial refurbishment of both ships, including reducing guest capacity to make their cabins and suites more spacious.

The 68,870-gross ton Crystal Serenity now has a maximum guest capacity of 740, down from 1,040 passengers, and the 51,044-gross ton Crystal Symphony now has a guest capacity of 606, down from 960 passengers.

Crystal Symphony Cruise Ship
Crystal Symphony Cruise Ship

Read Also: Top 10 Smallest Cruise Ships in the World

The cruise line was rebranded in 2023 under the tagline “Crystal – Exceptional at Sea.”  Both existing ships offer nine dining venues and six bars, and eight stateroom categories — Crystal Penthouse Suite, Junior Crystal Penthouse Suite, Sapphire Veranda Suite, Sapphire Ocean View Suite, Aquamarine Veranda Suite, Double Guest Room with Veranda, Double Guest Room with Ocean View, and Single Guest Room with Ocean View.

Crystal Serenity is currently operating in Alaska, sailing 7-day cruises roundtrip from Vancouver, British Columbia, and between Vancouver and Seward, Alaska. In late August 2024 she will reposition to New York and operate a series of Canada/New England cruises in the autumn season.

Crystal Symphony is sailing Mediterranean and Northern Europe cruises during summer 2024 and will remain in the region through winter 2024/25, offering a variety of sailings with embarkation options in Barcelona, Lisbon, Rome, Venice, and Athens.

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