In a very real sense, they were made for each other.
When Celebrity Edge docks for the first time at its new home in Port Everglades on November 19, it will do so at a facility that was created to equal the sophistication of its stunning resident.
With a prosaic name that belies what’s to be found inside, Terminal 25 (T25) is Celebrity Cruises first-ever brand-designed terminal. As such, it offers exactly what Celebrity wanted in a guest-forward shoreside logistical center.
“The arrival of Celebrity Edge book-ends a major chapter in the growth of Celebrity Cruises,” said Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., Richard D. Fain. “It’s the culmination of years of dreaming, designing and dedication to bring this magnificent ship to life. A new era is truly upon us.”
Edge – perhaps the most anticipated newbuild in Royal Caribbean’s long line of innovation-driven additions to the fleet – is already well known for the eye-catching tangerine Magic Carpet, a multi-use platform the size of a tennis court that rides vertical rails on the vessel’s starboard side.
Inside, it offers split-level “villas” with their own private terraces and plunge pools; stateroom automation for controlling lighting, shades, temperatures and other creature comforts; and an “Infinite Veranda” in staterooms that, like an infinity swimming pool, tricks the eye into thinking it meets the water’s edge.
It was entirely designed in 3D virtual reality, the defining feature of RCL’s Innovation Lab at its PortMiami headquarters.
“When designing the revolutionary Celebrity Edge, we knew we wanted to design a terminal that perfectly complemented the ship and matched its one-of-a-kind experience,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, Celebrity’s president and CEO. “With cutting-edge technology, in service of a gorgeous design, T25 is that perfect new home.” To begin “the perfect guest experience,” T25 includes such unique tech amenities as “Frictionless Arrival,” which promises what it says – seamless check-in – aided by facial recognition technology. GKD Mediamesh, a stainless steel web interwoven with energy-stingy LED lights, wraps the exterior for use as a dynamic art and messaging medium without blocking daylight inside or views out of T25’s 18,000 square feet of outward-facing glass.
With Edge offering more than twice the complement of suites on Celebrity’s other ships, T25 caters to Suite Class guests with exclusive features – their own screening areas, elevator lobbies, lounge and a rooftop terrace. These are situated along their path to The Retreat, a suites area on Edge with an exclusive restaurant, indoor and outdoor lounges and a private pool.
While guests enjoy the attention lavished upon them by these and more features of T25, onboard staff is also remembered with the first purpose-built crew lounge in any RCL terminal. In place are complimentary Wi-Fi, TV, quiet areas for the seafarers and optimized storage.
The new terminal replaces two smaller, outdated facilities on the quay, and was backed with more than $100 million from Port Everglades. It’s LEED certified, can accommodate ships up to 1,150 feet long, and when not being used by Edge and other Celebrity ships, will be open to other cruiselines.
Broward County Mayor Beam Furr said it is the largest investment the port has ever made in a cruise terminal “and we fully anticipate that Terminal 25’s iconic design will be a showcase for Broward County and Celebrity Cruises as we strive to create an inviting and fun environment for the millions of cruise passengers who visit here.”