I’ve just disembarked a cruise on one of the most exciting and expensive cruise ships in the world. I saw and did things that I didn’t know were possible at sea!
The ship I was sailing on was Celebrity Edge, which was launched in 2018.
She is home to the world’s first floating restaurant platform, which rises up 12 decks on the side of the cruise ship.
For years I’ve cruised with the budget and mainstream cruise lines but a cruise on Celebrity Edge has always been just out of reach, as much as I wanted to do it.
When I saw that Celebrity had an offer that meant that flights would only be £1, I decided that it would be a good time to give it a go!
I’ve wanted to take my Mum on a cruise for a while and this seemed like the perfect opportunity for a quality mother-and-daughter adventure – or so I hoped!
Before this cruise, I didn’t know what to expect from Celebrity or from the ship.
I’d heard great things about Celebrity’s food and entertainment – but I’m pretty sure that this is the most expensive cruise that I’ve ever paid for myself!
I didn’t know how it could realistically be worth the price that I paid, and like with any cruise, alongside the great reviews, there were also plenty of bad reviews.
Some passengers had described Edge as “disappointing” or a “major fail.”
We embarked the ship in Barcelona, and set sail for a 7-night Mediterranean cruise.
A Stressful Transfer!
My cruise actually started off in a more stressful way than I’d have liked. We were directed into the airport’s car park to pick up our transfer bus, as my cruise had the transfers included.
We couldn’t see the bus anywhere and couldn’t get back into the airport to ask where we were meant to be going because everything was one-way!
We were just faced with escalators that were all going the wrong way – and I didn’t fancy running the wrong way up one of those!
It was very hot, and after about 15 minutes of frantically running from bus to bus, I was thinking that we would just have to give up and get a taxi – and hope that our bags would be taken to the ship.
All of a sudden we saw our bags on a baggage trolley across the car park – I was so happy to see them!
We followed them to the bus and were able to ask the person working there where we were meant to be.
It was not the straightforward start that I was hoping for but I was sure that the cruise would be worth it. I’d just be arriving a little more flustered than planned!
The stressful transfer was more than made up for when we managed to check in for the cruise at the cruise terminal in about 20 seconds!
Pre-cruise we had already taken our security photos, filled out the health declaration and added our credit card to our account. When we arrived at the port, all we had to do was show this QR code which was checked against our passports.
I’ve embarked on cruises in the past where it’s taken 2 or 3 hours, so checking in in 20 seconds was pretty incredible. I hoped that this was a sign of good things to come!
As soon as we stepped onboard we were directed towards our Muster Station – which happened to be the theatre.
It’s a legal requirement that on all cruises all guests have to complete a safety drill. This was once again made very easy because we’d already watched the safety videos on the App.
All we had to do was go to check in at the place where we would muster in case of an emergency.
The theatre was the first place that I had seen on board and it looked very impressive!
The stage comes out into the main room and the theatre can seat up to 900 people. It looked like all the seats had a good view and I’d heard lots of good things about Celebrity’s entertainment.
I knew that there would be a show in here every night and that Celebrity allowed the filming of their shows so I’m happy to report that I recorded lots of footage to share in my videos later.
As it was a beautiful day in Barcelona, we headed straight up the stairs to the top deck of the ship.
Here I got my first glimpse of the floating platform on the side that Celebrity call the “Magic Carpet.” I wandered through an area which made me think of shark’s teeth – or being inside of a whale!
I knew that Celebrity had spent a billion dollars on this ship – and the top deck certainly did feel like it had had lots of money spent on it.
There was a big pool in the middle and another inside pool in an area called “The Solarium.“
This was an adult-only area – but I didn’t expect that I would be seeing too many kids on this cruise.
Celebrity isn’t really marketed as a family cruise line, it’s a more luxurious, grown-up cruise – and that suited me perfectly!
At this point, I didn’t know how many nationalities would be onboard, but I was surprised to find out as the cruise went on.
I went to the toilet – and I think you can tell a lot about a cruise line, or any building really by the effort they put into their public toilets!
Celebrity Edge’s toilets were beautiful, the room I mean not the actual toilets, there were individual little towels/cloths to dry your hands on, not the usual paper towels.
It’s an odd theory I know but it’s never let me down before, if the toilets are gross, the ship probably will be too. If they’re beautiful, and smell lovely like these did, the ship probably will be lovely too!
There were real plants everywhere in the solarium, and it had that lovely humid “inside pool” smell.
Exploring the top deck a little further we found what is called the “Rooftop Garden.”
It isn’t uncommon for cruise ships to have some real plants onboard, but Celebrity has taken this to a whole new level in the Rooftop Garden.
I felt like I would be spending a lot of time here during the cruise – and I was absolutely right. I didn’t expect to meet a real lizard here, but I did!
He must have been very confused to have crawled onto the ship somehow in one country and woken up in another!
I Googled it when I got home and apparently, the red thing under his throat means he is trying to fight me – maybe he didn’t want to be a YouTube star – too late though lizard!
By this time we were getting pretty hungry and we had seen a Grill down by the pool. All of the food here was included and I had a Veggie Burger with LOTS of pickles. (I think a pickle is a Gherkin in the UK.)
I absolutely love putting pickles on burgers, just as much as I love putting ketchup on Pizza!
To the side of the grill (which is called the “Mast Grill”) there were a couple of drinks machines and a soft ice cream machine.
I made myself a drink by watering down the juice to make something that tasted like the drink “squash” I’m used to in the UK.
On most cruises you’ll find that water and tea and coffee are free all the time in the buffet but juices are often only available at breakfast.
I was happy to see free lemonade and juices in the buffet at lunchtime. As I hadn’t bought a drinks package I was looking for all the free drinks that I could find!
This may have been the most expensive cruise I’d ever booked – but I definitely wasn’t going to spend more than I needed to! Free is definitely my favourite price!
Our cabins were ready to use from 2 pm, and I was so excited to get to have a look around.
Usually, I cruise in an inside cabin but I had booked myself the controversial “Infinite Veranda” cabin. It’s like an oceanview cabin – but with a big window that opens.
This is instead of the usual balcony area outside of the cruise ship.
My first impressions of the cabin were great, it felt very spacious and modern, and I was looking forward to spending my week here.
I wasn’t sure that I would like the Infinite Veranda concept more than a standard balcony, but only time would tell.
To hear more about the Pros and Cons of the Infinite Balcony cabin, read this article next:
One of my favourite things about embarkation day is that feeling when you run around the cruise ship and try to see as many things as possible. It’s always such a relief to actually be there onboard the ship after a long day travelling.
I’d heard that there was a space on Celebrity Edge called “Eden” that was split over 3 decks – and I knew I had to find it!
Checking one of the handy maps that you can find all over the cruise ship, I found Eden at the back of deck 5.
To get there I had to walk through a strange room where it was dark, and there were mirrors and trees everywhere! In this room, there was relaxing music playing and it felt like I was being transported magically into Eden!
I’ve been cruising for years but walking in Eden was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced on a cruise ship before!
The area is split over three decks with a bar in the middle and a restaurant on the lower level. Everywhere there were plants and lights hanging down, and the whole place had relaxing background music playing. I was looking forward to seeing what entertainment would be in here.
I think that Celebrity might have changed the entertainment that is put on in this venue recently because I definitely was surprised by how the space was used – even though I’d done my research.
The restaurant in Eden is what is called a “Speciality Restaurant,” meaning that it costs extra. There are plenty of restaurants onboard where the food is included.
It definitely isn’t a requirement that you ever spend any extra money on food on a cruise – but there are often extra options available if you want something special.
Celebrity Edge has four main dining rooms and they offer an early dining time, a late dining time and what is called “Anytime dining.”
I had “Anytime dining” which meant that each day I could book the restaurants on the App on my phone and could pick which restaurant and which time to eat each evening.
Each main restaurant feels nice and intimate – but they do hold over 300 people each.
I noticed in the App that the main dining rooms opened at 5.30 pm, which for me was perfect as I definitely am an early diner.
We decided to eat in the Normandie restaurant first. The restaurant felt very elegant, the food was great and the service was fantastic – helped perhaps by the fact that we dine at 5.30 pm so there weren’t many other people in the restaurant.
Celebrity do have a separate vegetarian menu in the main dining rooms, and allergens like gluten were usually marked on the main menus too
All meals in the main dining room also come with unlimited bread, and each day we were given 3 different kinds of butter or dips. Celebrity certainly knows how to do bread – and I made the most of it!
By the end of the cruise, I felt like I was mostly made of bread – and that isn’t a complaint, I love it!
After drinking the included water at dinner I wanted to go and get a proper drink. By a proper drink I of course mean a Coke Zero. I thought that we might as well start with a drink in the bar on the “Magic Carpet.“
Our day had started at around 5 am and the transfer stress and fun of exploring a new cruise ship had certainly worn me out. We decided to call it a night early and skipped the theatre show.
I knew that there was lots of entertainment later on the ship that I wanted to see, and I also knew that I had only explored a tiny part of the ship so far.
I knew that there were so many bars, restaurants, and cafes – I hadn’t even seen the main Atrium at this point, but I was very happy to see the inside of my eyelids as I fell asleep!
When I woke up and opened the window blind the next day I was greeted with an incredible view of Cannes in France.
We were “tendering” which means that you don’t dock by the land, you use little boats to get from the ship. It’s like a free boat tour and you get fantastic views as you sail into and out of the ports.
In the buffet we decided to get breakfast. They do have main dining rooms open for breakfast too and there is a cafe in Eden as well – but I’m not an early riser and prefer to just grab some bread or a banana (or both if I’m feeling very adventurous!)
The buffet onboard Celebrity Edge was MASSIVE and I was looking forward to coming back later in the day to explore the food options properly.
I was amazed by the quality of the decor in the buffet, sometimes buffets can feel like school canteens -but this space always felt elegant and classy.
You could tell that they had spent a lot of time thinking about the details and the different designs of each space.
At the back of the buffet was an area that usually served pizza and there was seating all the way around and out the back and an outside seating area too.
It was a beautiful day in Cannes and I visited the beach, had a wander through the town and did a little bit of yacht “window-shopping.”
I don’t know what it was about my itinerary on this cruise, but we saw a lot of Yachts. Just when I felt like I had got on a fancy ship for a change, the yachts come to one-up me…
Boarding Celebrity Edge again did feel very nice though, we were given little glasses of water and icy cold towels while we waited for the tender- which definitely is a premium cruise line thing. Some other budget cruise lines might offer to sell you water, so to get it free was lovely.
We also had to tender the next day in Portofino, Italy – which is one of the prettiest places I’ve ever been to.
It was really busy but so worth a visit. I even found a restaurant with a floating platform that you could sit and eat on. This would definitely make me feel seasick, I don’t think I’d last very long on there!
On the way back from Portofino we had the pleasure of the Captain of the Celebrity Edge actually sailing us back to the ship in the tender boat!
He was a funny guy, and later in the cruise when I did a live stream on my YouTube channel he accidentally guest-starred by broadcasting his announcement into my cabin – it was very funny!
When asked how to become a Captain he joked that it was a “two-week online course” but it took him “15 years because “I must be a slow learner!”
Heading back to the ship, we decided to stop to get a drink in the onboard Cafe. The Cafe has lots of cakes and cookies which are included in the cruise fare.
I can confirm Celebrity absolutely does have the best cookies at sea – not just because of the quality (which is very good) but also because of the access to cookies. Day or night they had cookies here waiting for me!
As I didn’t have a drinks package a can of Coke Zero cost me a little over $5. The advertised price was $4 but there is a gratuity of 18% added on top of that. Sometimes we did have some French or Spanish tax added on top of that too!
I don’t usually drink enough to make back the cost of an alcoholic drinks package, but they do have a soft drinks package available.
Before the cruise I wondered if this might be worth it – but at $30 per day, I’d have to drink at least 6 sodas a day to break even. I don’t doubt that I could do that, but I probably shouldn’t – so I decided not to buy a package and to just pay as I went – which was the right decision for me.
We went to the buffet for lunch and I was amazed by just how much choice there was.
The Oceanview buffet is easily double or three times the size of the buffets I’ve seen on other cruise ships of a similar size.
I loved the ice cream station – which also had cookies available all the time. There were Nachos, doughnuts, Fish and Chips – all kinds of things that you wouldn’t usually put together on a plate!
When you’re in a buffet and all the food is included, you can create the weirdest meals! They had the most incredible cakes and doughnuts and one day they had terrifying-looking fish! I definitely avoided those, but I could because there were probably about 70 other potential dishes to choose from.
The buffet was open from 6 am to 1 am and it only closed briefly in that time. There was an hour between breakfast and lunch that it was closed. Breakfast went on until 11 am – which was great.
It wasn’t normally too busy in the buffet, the only day that it was was when we had a sea day a little later in the cruise.
There weren’t any main dining rooms open for lunch, so everybody was in the buffet or the poolside grill.
There is room service available at a cost and there were plenty of speciality restaurants you could pay extra for – but I was disappointed that none of the main dining rooms opened for lunch.
Considering that there were four main restaurants onboard, I’d have thought they’d open one or two for lunch on sea days – but they never did.
Even on that busy day though, it still wasn’t unbearable, it was just as busy as you’d see on other cruise lines on regular days.
Heading back to our cabin and picking up our daily schedule I noticed that it was “Chic Night.”
This is Celebrity’s version of a formal night and they define Chic as “dressing to impress, glamour and sophistication in your own way.”
I didn’t get the impression that the dress codes were particularly strict or enforced, as long as you wear a shirt with a collar or a decent dress, it’s fine.
In recent years most cruise lines have made the move to relax their dress codes, I did put on a dress but not everybody took part and each person’s definition of “sophisticated” is different.
On our seven-night cruise, we had one “Chic Night” and the rest were “Smart Casual” nights.
All of the food onboard was fantastic and this was no exception. I’ve always thought that Celebrity was a cruise line for foodies – and this cruise definitely did confirm that.
We headed to another of the main dining rooms, Cyprus. Here I found the stringiest cheese in the world!
I was looking forward to an evening of entertainment onboard the ship, seeing as how I’d missed most of it the night before.
In the theatre was a show called “Kaleidoscope” which is a word that I struggle to spell! I was amazed to see that there were 16 singers and dancers during the show and every single one was incredible. I never saw a foot out of place, there was never a note out of tune, it was amazing
Everybody has different things that they like in theatre shows and for me, I like colours and costumes, I like sets that change and technology.
Every show that we saw onboard Edge had this and more. Most of the shows didn’t really have a story, they were collections of songs but they felt much more modern than the classic cruise ship entertainment that I’m used to.
They used songs that I liked, and we saw 3 shows from the theatre team during the cruise.
There were incredible acrobatic shows and later in the cruise, we saw a theatre team show that was backed by a 7 person band. That was just incredible, the musicians didn’t even have sheet music half the time, so that blows my mind!
Up next was a silent disco in the Atrium – and apart from walking by it occasionally this was the first time that I’d really used this space.
The Atrium of a cruise ship is usually the heart of the ship, it’s right in the middle and lots of restaurants and other things will come off of it. Celebrity Edges atrium was huge, they’d have live music in here in the evenings and there was a bar on the bottom level.
We grabbed our silent disco headphones. Everybody can pick which station their headphones are tuned into, theres a red, blue and green station and each one has a different song.
It’s a lot of fun to see what everybody else is listening to, but it’s perhaps even more fun to watch it without any of the sound!
It’s so awkward and funny to see 20 people suddenly singing a random Abba song in tune! It’s a great idea for a cruise ship and Celebrity had quite a few silent discos onboard.
At this point, I still hadn’t seen much in the way of Trivia or Gameshows and I still hadn’t seen areas like the casino but I knew that I still had plenty of time onboard to explore.
I’m convinced that you could be on this ship for 7 days and still not find everything if you weren’t looking. Even if you were just trying to look at all of the art that would be a challenge!
We headed back to our cabin and found a chocolate on our pillow waiting for us. If you were to go back 20 years most cruise lines did this but due to cutbacks they mostly stopped.
I was really enjoying the more luxurious cruising experience – and I was starting to understand why the cruise cost more than I was used to.
There were some real benefits – like the number of crew that were always around and the space per person that I hadn’t really understood the value of before this cruise. We never had to wait for anything and could always have multiple seats if we wanted to.
I’ve been on some busy cruise ships over the years and recently cruised on a ship with 900 children onboard. Celebrity Edge couldn’t ever be described as busy, there were always quiet places to be found.
The next ports that we visited were La Spezia in Italy and Ajaccio in Corsica. I hadn’t ever been to either of these before, and I was happy to see that we were docked so we could just wander straight off the ship.
In La Spezia, we were docked next to the MSC Seaview which is a big cruise ship from the budget cruise line that I sailed on a couple of years ago.
Find out all about my amazingly cheap Caribbean cruise on MSC Seaview by watching this video:
I loved my time on that ship – and was loving my time on Celebrity Edge – but it was clear that the two were very different!
I probably could have taken the cruise on the MSC Seaview for half, or maybe even a third of what I paid for Edge but I wouldn’t have nearly as much space per person. I wouldn’t have enjoyed the entertainment or food as much and I definitely wouldn’t have got a chocolate on my pillow!
Still, I don’t think I’ll ever give up on budget cruising, there’s something really great about being on a cruise that costs less than staying in a hotel on land.
Next up on my schedule was Trivia and I decided to start with the general knowledge version, they had Trivia multiple times a day and it usually happened in a venue that is called “The club.”
It was a two-story lounge in the middle of the ship, and late at night this area really comes alive. It was the perfect place to watch a gameshow and they do also do a few exercise classes in here too.
The daily schedule was fairly busy with events but Celebrity are definitely known for being a relaxing luxurious cruise line, as opposed to a party line. They do have parties of course but not in the same way that you’d find on a cruise line like Carnival.
Whenever I cruise I spend $10 in the casino in a slot machine, overall I am definitely down but I still always give it a go. It didn’t take me very long at all to lose my $10!
When I was pressing the buttons on the screen I realised that I had $5 in the bonus credit section, this wasn’t mentioned anywhere that I’d seen and I just found it by chance.
I checked my mum’s card and she had the bonus credit too. After losing my $10 credit I lost the $10 bonus credit too – but I could have won it big, so it’s always worth checking that bonus button!
It’ll be linked to your cruise card if it is there and your password is usually something to do with your date of birth – but you can ask anybody working there if you don’t know it.
One of my favourite ways to spend my time on this cruise was to sit up in the Rooftop Garden with my Mum, either in the afternoons in the shade or as the sunset.
We’d get a drink from the bar at the back called “The Sunset Bar” and I’d catch up on my work. Not a bad place for an office!
We would watch live music in Eden and one day I even managed to get up before 9 am to make it to the breakfast they have in Eden that’s included in the cruise fare.
I had a wrap for breakfast, and found a lovely little outside seating area by the Eden Cafe.
On the other side of the ship was a smoking area that was beautiful – and I’ve never used the word “beautiful” to describe a smoking area before!
Usually, the people that smoke are left in the worst locations but there was a lovely area here and another up by the Sunset Bar.
As well as the theatre teams show they also had guest acts performing and we saw a great show called “Women of Rock” and a couple of shows by a fantastic trumpeter.
The man behind the trumpet was called Ollie and he was also a great singer, he performed songs from all genres and the big screens and live band really helped to take performances like this up a notch. I loved sitting on the top level of the theatre as I had a great view and they had bar service in here too.
From up there I could get a great overview of who else was on this cruise.
In terms of passenger age demographic, this was definitely one of the most diverse cruises I’ve been on. There were people of all ages onboard.
There were some children onboard but Celebrity isn’t really aimed at kids, you won’t find Peppa Pig by the pool or ropes courses or anything like that but if do bring kids they won’t feel out of place or uncomfortable.
They have great kids clubs and I suppose that’s why I didn’t really see any kids during this cruise, they were all happy in the clubs – and me not in the clubs!
Our cruise director Tim who was fantastic told us that there were 400 children onboard, which surprised me. I would have guessed maybe 100 -probably not even that.
There were plenty of teenagers onboard and people my age, all the way up to people who I assume were in their 80s or 80s or 100s – but it is not polite to ask of course!
The majority of people onboard were from the UK, the US or Spain but I did also meet people from Australia, Canada and Germany. All of the entertainment and everything was done only in English but I did often hear people speaking other languages – which I like.
Personally, I like to cruise with a mix of nationalities, I think it makes it more fun and it feels to me more like being away on holiday. If I go on a cruise and everybody else there is exactly the same as me, that’s sometimes a bit weird, it’s like you just picked up your town and floated it out somewhere.
Some cruise trivia is that Celebrity Edge was the first cruise ship to set sail from the United States after the Covid shutdown. That was in June of 2021. The ship was limited to 40% capacity and the industry had been shut down completely in the US for 15 months.
Watch this video next to find out more about this amazing, billion-dollar cruise ship!
I said earlier that this was the most expensive cruise that I’ve ever booked – and I’m pretty sure that’s right.
I usually like to stick to a budget of around £100 per person per night which is $127 USD, I like that price to include all of the taxes and fees and gratuities. I have cruised on multiple cruises that have cost me less than half that.
In total for this cruise for me and my Mum sharing an infinite veranda cabin, I paid £2920 ($3715) which comes in at just over £200 per person per night.
That price did include flights and transfers, but the daily gratuities weren’t included. These came in at $17.50 per person per day so that added on an extra couple of hundred dollars.
As much as I love budget cruising the thing that I care about most is that the price that I paid matches the experience that I got, I paid more than usual for this cruise but it certainly felt like I got more in return.
One of my favourite things about this ship was the “Magic Carpet” which is used as a bar and a tender boarding platform.
We had two tender ports during this cruise, so had the chance to use it lots of times. To find out how this platform moves, what it’s used for and why it doesn’t cause the ship to topple over, check out this video next.
Before You Go!
Celebrity has a reputation for being a great cruise for those who love their food! To find out more about the food I ate whilst onboard, read this article next.
To see how this compares to food on the more “budget” cruise lines like MSC, find out what I ate on my MSC Seaview cruise here:
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