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Celebrity plans new wine cruises and Europe deployments

Celebrity has been busy planning its 2007 and 2008 cruising seasons. The highlights of its recent announcements have been two new wine cruises bracketing its Alaska season, the introduction of the Celebrity Quest’s European itineraries, and the unveiling of the cruise line’s 2008 Europe voyages.

This year, Celebrity will hold two wine cruises in the Pacific Northwest before and after its Alaska season. The Mercury will sail a seven-night voyage departing from San Francisco for Vancouver on April 27. Ports-of-call include Monterey, California; Astoria, Oregon; Seattle, Washington; and Victoria, British Columbia. On November 2, the ship will sail a 10-night cruise from Vancouver, headed for San Diego. Ports-of-call include Victoria, Seattle, Astoria, and Catalina Island, and the ship will spend a night in San Francisco. Onboard activities will have a food-and-wine theme, with expert lectures, wine tastings, and culinary demonstrations. Shore excursions include visits to wineries and dinners at restaurants known for their wine cellars.

The Celebrity Quest launches this year, and will make its way to Europe on April 12, 2008, where it will remain through the fall. Because of its small size, the ship can dock at ports the larger Celebrity ships cannot reach, and therefore, it will introduce 25 new European destinations to Celebrity guests in one season. The Quest will sail a variety of itineraries, including a Cannes Film Festival cruise, a Black Sea cruise, and an “Ancient Empires” cruise. The ship features butler service and concierge-class amenities in all its staterooms, two specialty restaurants, and an excursion expert to help passengers plan their days ashore.

Finally, Celebrity has announced it will deploy four ships in Europe in 2008 in addition to the Celebrity Quest. The Century will sail Scotland/Ireland, Scandinavia/Russia, Arctic Circle, and Norwegian Fjords cruises, as well as a series of western Mediterranean/Morocco sailings. The Constellation will also sail Scotland/Ireland and Scandinavia/Russia cruises, and the Galaxy will sail 10- and 11-night Mediterranean cruises from Rome, with overnight stays in Istanbul. The Summit will embark on Mediterranean cruises from Barcelona and Venice, as well as a “Best of Europe” cruise from England to Spain.

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