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Crystal Cruises refloats with reimagined Serenity and Symphony

The popular luxury cruise brand is back under Abercrombie & Kent ownership.

Crystal Cruises is back under new A&K ownership.

The sun is rising once again for luxury cruise line Crystal Cruises, relaunching with a new website, branding and energy under the revitalised stewardship of Abercrombie & Kent.

After a little over a year sitting idle following the collapse of former owner Genting Hong Kong, Crystal Cruises returns under the mantra ‘Exceptional at Sea’ with Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony both sporting new interior designs, dining and entertainment.

Under the tutelage of Crystal Cruises veterans Captain Birger Vorland and Captain Nenad Willheim, Crystal Serenity will kick off the line’s new era with a 12-night voyage from Marseille to Lisbon.

Departing on 31 July 2023, the ship will visit Cannes, Monte Carlo, Portofino, Corsica, Barcelona, Ibiza, Cartagena, Malaga and Portimão before arriving in the Portuguese capital.

Both ships feature redesigned staterooms.

Sister ship Crystal Symphony won’t be far behind, returning to the seas on 01 September from Athens on a seven-night sailing to Istanbul, calling in Santorini, Patmos, Kos and Izmir before tying up in the Turkish city. At the helm will be Captain Tonci Hladilo – formerly the captain of Crystal Esprit - and Captain Vincent Taillard, a qualified ice pilot.

Both ships will sport redesigned staterooms and suites starting at nearly 20 square metres, climbing up to the magnificent Crystal Penthouse Suite at nearly 89 square metres, inclusive of the verandah.

Following their maiden voyages, the two ships will then continue on a similar annual global path familiar to those who booked and sailed on the ships prior to the ownership change, with voyages available in the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, Canada and New England, Alaska, the Caribbean, through the Panama Canal, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand.

The Penthouse bathroom is almost as big by itself as some of the staterooms.

Guests can enjoy a comprehensive and complimentary dining program available when they want to dine, with a regular roster of local and regional chefs also coming onboard at various stages to showcase flavours inherent to different parts of the world.

In total, nine different restaurants will be available, including decadent Italian at Osteria D'ovidio, a classic Parisian Bistro and authentic Spanish-style tapas, among others.

To work off the exquisite dining, a large fitness centre will feature on both ships, with a large swimming pool available on the top deck.

For a spot of indulgence, an immersive day spa will offer a menu of treatments across solo and couples rooms.

Crystal Cruises President Jack Anderson said he was delighted to reintroduce the reimagined line to travellers all over the world.

“Palatial suites, spacious verandas and guest rooms have been rolled out on both ships, reducing overall guest capacity,” Anderson said.

“Personalised service – long a Crystal signature – has been elevated further. Dining is a journey through culinary specialties, with authentic food from around the globe.

“Local experts at Abercrombie & Kent have planned memorable experiences in each destination to guarantee beyond-the-guidebook access.”

An early booking window has opened today exclusively for travel agents and travellers who hold Open Deposits rescued by the line prior to Genting’s collapse.

Bookings will open to the public later this month.


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Written by: Matt Lennon
Published: 2 February 2023

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