Celebrity Cruises has named Nathaly Albán the captain of the Galapagos-based Celebrity Xploration, making her the first female seafarer to navigate the Galapagos archipelago as a captain, according to the cruise line.
A native of Ecuador, Albán has 12 years of experience sailing throughout the Galapagos. She has worked on several ships in the region, first joining Celebrity in 2006 as third officer onboard the Celebrity Xpedition.
Albán’s appointment is the latest milestone for Celebrity Cruises. Two years ago the line named Kate McCue the captain of Celebrity Summit, making her the first American woman to take the helm of a megaton cruise ship.
Albán was only one of six women in her graduating class at La Escuela de la Marina Mercante Nacional in Ecuador. Prior to graduating, she held a variety of roles in the maritime industry, most notably serving in the FLOPEC Tanker Fleet of the Ecuadorian Navy. Following her graduation, Albán worked on several ships in the region, including Celebrity Xpedition.
Albán will join the Celebrity Xploration this August. The ship began sailing in the Galapagos this March following renovations that upgraded its public areas with a refreshed bar in the Al Fresco outdoor grill area, a modernized dining room, climate controlled wine storage, a revamped sun deck and a renovated main lounge and boutique area with two 65-inch TVs. Following the upgrade the catamaran now has eight staterooms and junior suites, each with upgraded mattresses and pillows, as well as LCD TVs and Internet service.