Celebrity Cruises is taking its Celebrity Life programming to a new level. "Savor," the popular culinary-and-wine/spirits-focused pillar of Celebrity Life, is expanding to include a line-up of special interest cruises aimed at celebrating Celebrity's already outstanding onboard culinary experience by inviting guest chefs and other food and wine experts to enhance select sailings. Celebrity's new "Savor Your Destination" themed cruises kicked off yesterday when Celebrity's newest ship, Celebrity Eclipse, set sail with Australian chef Benjamin Christie onboard for an 11-night Canary Islands cruise roundtrip out of Southampton, England. Christie is an acclaimed television host, author, online food personality, and unofficial culinary ambassador based in Sydney, Australia.
"Our guests are always looking for new ways to celebrate their love of great cuisine, which is why an outstanding culinary experience is one of the key aspects of a Celebrity Cruises vacation," said Jacques Van Staden, Celebrity's Vice President, Culinary Operations. "By expanding the already robust 'Savor' series of our Celebrity Life program to include the 'Savor Your Destination' themed cruises, we are not only giving our guests a unique opportunity to interact with exceptionally talented chefs, but also celebrating the fact that, from a culinary perspective, our ships and the restaurants onboard are destinations in themselves."
During each Savor Your Destination cruise, guests will have the opportunity to attend a meet-and-greet-style cocktail hour where they will be able to interact with the chef and even enjoy side-by-side photo opportunities. Each guest chef will lead a cooking demonstration in the ship's largest venue, the theatre, where he or she will highlight the techniques, ingredients and flair specific to their individual style. Guest chefs who have published cookbooks may hold book signing events. On every Celebrity Cruises sailing (with the exception of Celebrity Xpedition, the 90-guest mega-yacht that sails year-round in the Galapagos Islands), the Celebrity Life Savor series includes a "Star Chefs" competition in the ship's theatre. During the event, guests are selected from the audience, then guided by the ship's own highest-ranking chefs to compete in a cook-off judged by a panel of spontaneously selected guests. When possible, guest chefs participating in Celebrity's Savor Your Destination chef-focused cruises will take part in the Star Chefs competition. Most of the events are complimentary; the hands-on cooking class and food-and-wine-pairing dinner will require reservation fees, and space is limited. Guests who attend the class or dinner will receive a special recipe booklet featuring the chef's own creations.
During Celebrity's Savor Your Destination cruises, guests will have several opportunities to engage their taste buds and their minds. Guests who wish to elevate their own culinary knowledge can participate in hands-on cooking classes led by the chef in the ship's main galley. There, under the tutelage of the guest chef, with assistance from Celebrity's own award-winning culinary operations team, guests can gain invaluable hands-on experience that will help them gain new insight into the joy of cooking, while experiencing the rare opportunity to go behind the scenes into the galley. Each guest chef also will design and present an exclusive food-and-wine-pairing dinner in Murano, Celebrity's spectacular gourmet specialty restaurant, sharing insights into the inspiration behind the ingredients, the menu, and the specific pairings.
Celebrity also is folding its popular wine cruises along the Pacific Coast into the Celebrity Life Savor Your Destination program. In the coming weeks and months, Celebrity will announce additional Savor Your Destination events designed to give discerning cruisers the opportunity to expand their culinary horizons while at sea. To learn more about Celebrity's Savor Your Destination cruises or Celebrity Life, interested cruisers should call their travel agent, or visit celebritycruises.com/savoryourdestination.