With just 66 days until the official debut of Celebrity Flora, Celebrity Cruises has unveiled three new cutting-edge partnerships for the revolutionary new ship: A world-renowned conservationist turned Godmother, a one-of-a-kind designer with an unmatched vision, and a leading university specializing in marine and atmospheric sciences.
"We are also thrilled to unveil three one-of-a-kind partnerships, which help underscore our passion for protecting this beautiful archipelago," said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. "Each of these new partners are helping shape a better tomorrow for our planet in one way or another – whether it's through the research, sustainable material sourcing or conservation – and we couldn't be prouder to be a part of this sea change."
Lutoff-Perlo also added: "These new partnerships are accentuating the already incredible work we've done with our other partners, including the amazing Francesca Bucci of BG Studio International, a New York City hospitality design firm – who designed every aspect of this stunning new ship – and the world-renowned marine scientist and regional destination expert Dr. Ellen Prager – who crafted new and exciting science- and discovery-based programming exclusive to Celebrity Flora."
Naturally, sharing Celebrity's passion for environmental stewardship was the most important factor in choosing a godmother for one of the most eco-friendly ships of its size in the Galapagos Islands. No one was a better match than Yolanda Kakabadse.
Recognized as a prominent environmental leader and a global champion of sustainable development and biodiversity preservation, Kakabadse is a former Minister of Environment for the Republic of Ecuador and a former president of both the International Union for Conservation of Nature and World Wildlife Fund International. Kakabadse is passionate about reducing the economic, social, and environmental impacts of food waste, and is a member of Champions 12.3. She has dedicated her career to leaving the world a better place.
"The Galapagos Islands are an ecological treasure and I am excited to showcase its one-of-a-kind biodiversity through Flora," said Kakabadse. "I am proud to partner with a company that is committed to sustainability in the Galapagos and showing leadership on an issue critical to sustain this beautiful ecosystem, food waste."
As part of Celebrity's more than 20-year repertoire of environmental efforts and inspired by the work of Celebrity Flora's Godmother, the brand is pleased to partner with Kakabadse to further focus on continued efforts to further reduce the any food waste and to create passionate advocates for conservation in every guest who sails.
Located at the intersection of five ocean currents are the lush Galapagos Islands, with their world-famous ecology featuring some of the most diverse flora and fauna anywhere in the world. Understanding how those currents and weather patterns have impacted development of the unique island environment and wildlife is a key part of conserving the one-of-a-kind archipelago for years to come.
With the launch of their newest ship, Celebrity Cruises had the opportunity to blend exploration and research by making Celebrity Flora the first vessel in the Galapagos to be equipped with cutting-edge oceanographic research equipment, known as Oceanscope. The program builds on a more than 20-year relationship with University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science that benefits from a cruise ship's consistent itinerary to create a perfect and cost-effective way for scientists to gather and measure ocean circulation dynamics.
The system will track and map the region while measuring sea-surface temperatures and gathering data critical to research prediction of El Niño and La Niña. All findings gathered by Celebrity Flora will become open source data – globally accessible to research – a first for scientists around the world and anyone with a passion for this information.
"Celebrity Flora's repeated circumnavigations of the Galapagos Archipelago will not only yield data essential to understanding the physical system that has created and maintains the unique Galapagos ecosystem but will be an invaluable contribution to our understanding of the effects of global weather and climate upon eastern equatorial Pacific circulation and regional ocean acidification," said Peter B. Ortner, Research Professor, University of Miami, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science.
When Celebrity set out to build the first ship designed with the Galapagos in mind, the brand knew it needed to bring on a designer whose aesthetic not only drew inspiration from the region, but who also had a personal connection to this one-of-a-kind destination and would complement the stunning ship design by BG Studio.
Ecuadorian-native Adriana Hoyos was the perfect choice. A renowned interior and furniture designer, Hoyos pulls inspiration from her heritage and her extensive travels and highlights sustainable materials when crafting a new collection. Her one-of-a kind pieces can be found throughout the Discovery Lounge, Penthouse Suites and the Marina, complementing the ship design with local elements that connect to the destination organically.
"The Galapagos have always been a great inspiration for my work. Each island has different elements like the sand, the volcanic ashes, the leaves and all of those textures put together have a place in my furniture. That is why we chose selected pieces to complement the ship' design with local elements that will connect organically to the design of the cruise," said Hoyos. "The ship is unique and Galapagos is a unique place as well!"
One of the most energy-efficient ships of its size in the diverse archipelago, the 100-guest Celebrity Flora is the first ship of its kind designed specifically for the Galapagos. The cutting-edge new ship will feature Celebrity's signature outward-facing design concept, giving guests 360-degree views of the islands, and all-suite accommodations – including an unprecedented 50% Sky Suites with Infinite Veranda – equipped with personal attendants. Unique to Celebrity Flora are the first-ever glamping experience at sea, new dining venues, an open-air stargazing platform, expert-led ecological seminars, and custom-designed Novurania yacht tenders, which create a seamless sea-to-shore experience for guests.
Celebrity Flora will sail from Baltra year-round, making her first sailing on June 30, 2019.