Celebrity Beyond has officially joined the Celebrity Cruises fleet, the third in the iconic Edge series. Simone Biles, the 19 times world champion, seven-time Olympic Champion, and the most decorated US gymnast in history had the honor of leading the ship’s naming ceremony in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, today, November 4.
Simone Biles follows Reshma Saujani of Girls Who Code and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai, who previously inaugurated Celebrity Apex and Celebrity Edge.
All three are renowned for their advocacy of women everywhere. Biles found herself in the fitting company of barrier-breaking Captain Kate McCue, who is at the helm of Celebrity Beyond.
Simone Biles Heads Celebrity Beyond Naming Ceremony
World-famous gymnast Simone Biles, the most decorated gymnast in the United States and an inspiration for boys and girls worldwide, had the honor of heading the naming ceremony for Celebrity Cruises’ newest cruise ship, Celebrity Beyond.
The third of four Edge-class cruise ships has operated in Europe this summer and completed her maiden Caribbean voyage around the Southern Caribbean earlier today (November 4), followed by the official naming ceremony in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Photo Credit: Melissa Mayntz
Captain Kate McCue, who is at the helm of Celebrity Beyond, Royal Caribbean Group CEO Jason Liberty, and Celebrity Cruises President Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, all attended the ceremony, during which Biles was beyond excited to be named the official Godmother of the newest cruise ship in the fleet:
“It is an honor to be selected as Beyond’s Godmother and to join such a distinguished group of strong, barrier-breaking women who have been named as Celebrity’s Godmothers before me,” said Simone Biles.
“I appreciate the important message this designation holds in recognizing our accomplishments as empowering women, and I am honored to share the stage today with fellow brave, boundary-breaking leaders like Lisa-Lutoff Perlo and Captain Kate McCue.”
During the ceremony, 2500 guests were in attendance, together with media and executives from Royal Caribbean Group and Celebrity Cruises. The ceremony concluded with a live performance by award-winning singer-songwriter Leona Lewis.
Photo Courtesy: Celebrity Cruises
Jason Liberty, President and CEO of the Royal Caribbean Group: “I can think of no one better to be the Godmother of this incredible ship than the G.O.A.T. herself – Simone Biles.”
“This ship’s beauty, power, and resilience sets the standard by which all others will be measured. Simone’s determination, progressive nature, empowered attitude, and grace in the face of challenges make her such an inspiration to so many around the world. All of these attributes are why Simone Biles is perfectly suited to watch over Celebrity Beyond’s journey.”
Celebrity Beyond Inaugural Caribbean Cruise Season
Construction of Celebrity Beyond commenced with the cutting of the first steel on January 29, 2020, just months before the global pause in operations. After several delays due to the pandemic, Celebrity Beyond sailed on her sea trials in February of this year, with her maiden voyage sailing from Southampton, England, in April 2022.
Celebrity Beyond arrived in New York City late last month, and the 140,600 gross ton cruise ship now kicks off a season rotating Western and Eastern Caribbean itineraries.
Photo Credit: Melissa Mayntz
“I’ve been waiting for this day to arrive for a long time, and I am ‘Beyond’ excited to be able to share her with our guests. She is the gold standard by which other ships are built and embodies the meaning of relaxed luxury,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, Celebrity Cruises President and CEO.
“She is ‘FULL’ of wonder and excitement, and our guests will undoubtedly feel reconnected to the world around them as they visit new destinations and immerse themselves in culinary experiences and wellness amenities not found anywhere else at sea.”
Her first ‘Official’ cruise will set sail today, the Eastern Caribbean itinerary visits Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic, St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands, and Philipsburg in St. Maarten. Western Caribbean cruises will visit ports such as Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Costa Maya, Roatan, and Nassau.