Celebrity Cruises has announced the name of its new Galápagos expedition cruise ships: Celebrity Xperience and Celebrity Xploration. Celebrity Cruises currently operates one expedition ship, Celebrity Xpedition, in the Galápagos Islands.
The line acquired the two new ships, previously known as the 48-guest Eclipse and the 16-guest catamaran Athala II, when it purchased Galápagos Islands tour operator Ocean Adventures in March. Together the two new ships represent a 65 percent increase in Celebrity’s Galápagos Islands capacity, the line said at the time.
The two vessels will join the Celebrity Cruises fleet in the spring of 2016, pending the closing of the acquisition deal. Until a January 2017 drydock, the ships will continue to offer the Ocean Adventures experience; after the refresh, the ships will sail as part of Celebrity Cruises’ fleet, with Celebrity's signature brand amenities. All existing Ocean Adventures’ bookings and reservation commitments will remain unchanged, both before and after the drydock.
Celebrity said the ships will make possible new itineraries with an expanded list of destinations for the line, like Puerto Villamil, Darwin Bay, Black Turtle Cove, Chinese Hat Islet, and Wall of Tears. Ashore, guests can take advantage of local hotel stays, encounters with local residents and tours. The fleet expansion will also allow Celebrity guests to take advantage of new packages that offer expanded travel in Ecuador, such as to the Andes Mountains, and in Peru, where Machu Picchu and Amazon packages are available.
Celebrity said to expect more details on the new ships soon.