Celebrity Cruises has unveiled its return to cruising in Europe with Celebrity Apex scheduled to make its debut on seven-night sailings from Athens, starting on 19 June.
The ship – the second in the line’s Edge class – will call at Mykonos, Rhodes and Santorini, Greece; Limassol, Cyprus; and Haifa and Jerusalem, Israel.
Itineraries, which will run through to September 2021, go on sale on 30 March.
All crew and guests above the age of 18 will need to be vaccinated against Covid-19. Those under the age of 18 will need negative PCR test results.
The announcement comes just days after Celebrity Cruises announced its Caribbean comeback with seven-night summer cruises departing from St. Maarten, also beginning in June.
Celebrity Cruises vice-president & CEO EMEA Jo Rzymowska said: “I can’t imagine a more perfect setting to finally launch our beautiful Celebrity Apex than the birthplace of the brand and with such stunning itineraries.
“While British holidaymakers will have to wait a while longer to experience our flagship until international travel opens back up, we hope to welcome them on board later in the season. I for one will be first in the queue as soon as that day arrives.”
Celebrity Cruises president and CEO Lisa Lutoff-Perlo added: “Celebrity Apex is such an exquisite ship and for her to finally begin sailing in the beautiful Aegean, where it all began for our fleet, and after so long away, is incredibly meaningful.
“I actually can’t wait to finally experience Apex and the Greek Isles this September during my rescheduled 30th wedding anniversary cruise.
“This is a very special homecoming for Celebrity Cruises, made possible with the strong collaboration of the Greek government. I extend my enduring gratitude and wish them well as they celebrate their country’s bicentennial today.”
Greek tourism minister Haris Theocharis said: “I am proud to be welcoming Celebrity Cruises back to its Greek roots on this special occasion of our country’s independence bicentennial and am eager for travellers to return to the unforgettable experiences of all of our destinations on one of the world’s newest ships.”