Are you ready to embark on a voyage of luxury and indulgence? The brand-new Celebrity Ascent Cruise Ship elevates the cruising experience, offering a perfect blend of elegance, innovation, service, and distinctive restaurants. I was a media guest on its inaugural sailing and I have all the details!
Check out my pictures and review so you can explore with me the latest addition to the Celebrity Cruises fleet.
Departing from Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, the Ascent is the fourth ship in the highly acclaimed, award-winning Edge Series, joining the esteemed ranks of Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Apex. The ships in this series have unique features that set them apart and the Ascent truly improves on its predecessors.
I stayed in a spa-inspired Aqua Class stateroom and enjoyed every second.
Not only do Aquaclass cabins have an infinite veranda, robes, slippers, complimentary room service continental breakfast, and elevated toiletries, but guests have access to the exclusive Blu restaurant, which is simply beautiful and offers delicious food. The biggest bonus? Aquaclass guests can enjoy the spa’s relaxation areas, including the sauna and SEA Thermal Suite, as much as you want. Regular guests have to pay a daily pass if they want to enjoy those perks.
With 17 decks, the Ascent has everything you need for a luxurious vacation. Celebrity’s newest ship especially appeals to couples, Gen Xers, and midlifers who appreciate great food, contemporary design and elevated experiences.
Design and Architecture: A Floating Masterpiece
The Celebrity Ascent cruise ship boasts a sleek and modern design, captivating passengers with its sophisticated aesthetic. From the moment you step on board, you’ll be greeted by stunning interiors that seamlessly blend contemporary style with classic elegance. The ship’s architecture is a testament to luxury, featuring spacious lounges, chic restaurants, and state-of-the-art facilities.
Don’t miss the inviting the multi-deck Sunset Bar, which has been expanded on the Ascent to offer breathtaking views. Despite its capacity for 3,260 guests it doesn’t feel crowded and I found it easy to navigate.
Accommodations: Your Home Away From Home
Whether you opt for a lavish suite or a cozy inside stateroom, the Celebrity Ascent ensures that your stay is nothing short of exceptional. The world-class accommodations are thoughtfully designed, offering great beds, plush furnishings, and amenities that cater to your every need. Prepare to be pampered in style as you relax and unwind in your private sanctuary at sea.
The Ascent has 179 more suites and staterooms than its sister ships. If you are staying in a suite, you’re in for a treat. Not only are the Ascent’s suites beautiful and include butler service, but you gain access to The Retreat, which boasts a 40% larger sundeck, special lounge, Luminae (an exclusive restaurant), and other perks.
Also, there are more options for singles, in case you want to cruise on your own.
Culinary Delights: A Gastronomic Adventure
Food enthusiasts will be delighted by the diverse culinary offerings on the Celebrity Ascent even in the main dining restaurants. From culinary experiences helmed by renowned chefs to casual eateries serving up delectable treats, there’s something to satisfy every palate. Indulge in gourmet cuisine, explore global flavors, unique experiences like Le Petit Chef, and enjoy exquisite dining experiences against the backdrop of the open sea.
I tried Raw On 5, which has a phenomenal sushi chef and also offers fresh seafood. The oysters were outstanding, so if you enjoy them, make sure to indulge!
If you love fine dining, do not miss the newly designed Le Voyage from chef Daniel Boulud, which takes you on a culinary journey with its tasting menu. The Fine Cut Steakhouse is perfection for meat lovers, and also offers fresh fish. By the way, I was impressed by the Oceanview Café buffet. There were so many different options, fresh fruit and the presentation was also appetizing.
Entertainment and Activities: Fun Yet Relaxing
The ship is a floating paradise of entertainment, ensuring that boredom is never on the itinerary. From new theater shows to live music performances, there’s new entertainment offerings so you feel there is always something fun happening on board. And let’s not forget the large pool, which has plenty of chairs around it and cabanas that you can rent for an extra fee.
The Celebrity Ascent also offers a range of activities, including a cutting-edge fitness center, pickleball tournaments, state of the art spa treatments, and even thrilling shore excursions at its ports of call.
Don’t miss the Shine the Night party on the final night of your cruise. I had the best time while wearing my sparkly silver dress at this open-air celebration!
Environmental Responsibility: Sailing Towards a Greener Future
The Celebrity Ascent is not just a symbol of luxury; it’s also a pioneer in environmental sustainability. Celebrity Cruises is using new technology to make ships more efficient to burn as little fuel as possible. The Ascent’s elevators generate electricity as they go down and use that energy when they go up. The ship incorporates cutting-edge eco-friendly technologies, from energy-efficient systems to waste reduction initiatives, ensuring that your journey is not only memorable but also environmentally conscious. The ship’s buffet, for example, uses artificial intelligence to reduce food waste. Also, food is cooked a la minute, to improve quality and also to avoid preparing unnecessary dishes.
Top 10 Things to Do Aboard the Ascent
The Celebrity Ascent is designed to offer a wealth of experiences, and there are several must-see areas aboard the ship that contribute to its allure. Check out a quick video I posted on Instagram:
Here are some highlights you won’t want to miss:
1. Sunset Bar
Why: the stunning multi-level Sunset Bar is the perfect place to gather and enjoy sea breezes with a mocktail, cocktail or glass of wine.
2. Rooftop Garden
Why: The open-air Rooftop Garden is a unique outdoor space featuring lounge areas, a huge screen showing sports games, hot tubs, artistic sculptures, and a serene atmosphere. It’s a great place to relax, chill in the hot tub, or participate in outdoor activities such as Pickleball tournaments. There is also a restaurant, the Rooftop Garden Grill, in case you get hungry. It was honestly one of my favorite places aboard, especially because I always found shade.
3. The Grand Plaza
Why: This central hub is a stunning three-deck open space with an ever-changing LED art installation. It’s a gathering place with shops, cafes, and live performances that add to the vibrant ambiance.
4. Magic Carpet
Why: The Magic Carpet is a cantilevered platform that moves up and down the side of the ship, serving different purposes on each deck. From a specialty restaurant to a lounge, it offers unparalleled views and a unique experience.
5. Eden Restaurant
Why: Eden is a transformative space that blurs the line between dining, entertainment, and nature. With its innovative design and immersive performances, Eden is an experience unlike anything else on the seas.
During the day, the floor-to-ceiling windows offer gorgeous ocean views and there is plenty of seating so you can simply admire the view, read a book or listen to your favorite podcast. The specialty restaurant opens only at night and has a wonderful plant-based menu.
6. The Spa
Why: Indulge in the world-class spa facilities aboard the Celebrity Ascent. From therapeutic treatments to the Persian Garden relaxation area, the spa is a haven for wellness enthusiasts.
7. Specialty Restaurants
Why: While the main dining options are superb, make sure to explore the ship’s specialty restaurants. Each offers a distinct culinary experience, showcasing the talents of renowned chefs.
8. Theatre and Entertainment Venues
Why: The Celebrity Ascent features a state-of-the-art theater and various entertainment venues. Attend Broadway-style shows, live music performances, and other entertainment events for a memorable night at sea. I saw a couple of the new live productions and really enjoyed them. You can access the theater on decks 4 and 5.
9. The Solarium
Why: The Solarium is an adults-only indoor pool area with a serene atmosphere. Relax in the pool, enjoy the comfortable loungers, and take in the beautiful views through the expansive windows. At night, soothing blue lights make this space one of the most relaxing spaces. Don’t miss the sculptures!
10. Martini Bar
Why: The Martini Bar is a popular spot for pre-dinner drinks and socializing. Watch the talented bartenders put on a show as they craft your perfect martini.They even have Espresso Martinis on tap!
Exploring these areas aboard the Celebrity Ascent will undoubtedly enhance your cruise experience, offering a diverse range of activities, entertainment, and relaxation options.
If you are staying in a suite, I have to add one more must: The Retreat, an exclusive area for suite guests, providing a luxurious and private space. Enjoy personalized service, a private sundeck, and access to The Retreat Lounge. The Ascent’s Retreat is the largest in the Edge class cruise ships and is truly the perfect place to relax, enjoy a cocktail and bask in the sun.
My Aquaclass Review
As part of the inaugural sailing, I stayed in stateroom 9255, which is considered category A1.
Pros: loved the cashmere mattress bed, robe, electric window verandah and Blu restaurant. The complimentary room service continental breakfast was super convenient. Ability to use SEA Thermal suite is a huge perk, as is the phenomenal exclusive restaurant. In your closet you will find bathrobes, slippers and a yoga mat, all of which are nice details.
Cons: room size is the same as other verandah rooms. Housekeeping was lacking. No access to the Retreat since these rooms are not suites. Only accommodates up to 2 passengers. No connecting rooms.
Tips to enjoy your Celebrity Ascent Cruise
Making the most of your cruise aboard the Celebrity Ascent involves a combination of planning, exploration, and relaxation. Here are some tips to enhance your experience:
1. Plan and Book Early
- Secure your preferred stateroom or suite by booking early. This ensures you get the accommodations that suit your preferences, whether it’s a spacious suite with a balcony or a cozy interior cabin.
2. Take Advantage of Onboard Activities
- Explore the daily itinerary for a variety of onboard activities. Attend enrichment lectures, cooking classes, fitness programs, and entertainment shows. The Celebrity Ascent offers a diverse range of options to suit various interests.
3. Indulge in Specialty Dining
- While the main dining options are excellent, treat yourself to at least one night at a specialty restaurant. The Celebrity Ascent is known for its exceptional culinary experiences, and trying different venues adds a special touch to your cruise even if it means spending extra.
4. Spa and Wellness Time
- Schedule some pampering at the onboard spa. Enjoy a relaxing massage, indulge in a facial, or take advantage of other wellness services. It’s an excellent way to unwind and enhance your overall cruise experience.
5. Participate in Shore Excursions
- Make the most of your port stops by participating in shore excursions. Whether it’s a cultural tour, an adventure activity, or a leisurely exploration, shore excursions allow you to experience the local culture and scenery.
6. Connect with Fellow Travelers
- Join social events and gatherings on board to meet fellow travelers. The Celebrity Ascent often hosts mixers, theme nights, and other activities that provide opportunities to make new friends and share experiences.
7. Embrace Theme Nights
- Participate in theme nights or formal evenings and take pictures. The Celebrity Ascent has a new Shine the Night Party and dressing up in shiny, sparkly outfits only adds to the festive atmosphere.
8. Download the Celebrity app before you board
- Take advantage of the free Celebrity apps so you don’t miss anything. Internet access is extra, unless you took advantage of a promotion that includes it, but you can use the app free of charge during your cruise. The app can help you navigate the ship, access daily schedules, and even make reservations for dining and activities.
9. Stay Active
- Don’t forget to stay active. The Celebrity Ascent offers a well-equipped fitness center, group classes, and even outdoor activities. Maintaining an exercise routine can help you feel energized throughout the cruise. You can also jog or walk in the upper deck overlooking the main pool.
10. Relax and Enjoy the Views
- While it’s fun to explore and participate in activities, also take time to relax. Find a quiet spot on deck (the Solarium, Rooftop Garden, and Eden were my favorites), enjoy the sea breeze, and marvel at the ocean views, especially if you have a verandah. Whether it’s reading a book or simply daydreaming, these moments contribute to a truly rejuvenating cruise experience.
By incorporating these tips into your cruise aboard the Celebrity Ascent, you’ll create lasting memories and ensure that your time on the ship is as enjoyable and enriching as possible. Bon voyage!
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Special thanks to Celebrity Cruises for inviting me as a media guest and paying for my accommodations, food and beverages. I paid for spa treatments and other expenses. No other compensation was received in exchange for this post.