Crystal Cruises celebrated the resumption of its ocean cruise operations as Crystal Serenity, on July 3, set sail from the Port of Nassau on her Luxury Bahamas Escapes, a seven-night voyage exploring the islands of The Bahamas.
Crystal Serenity will now homeport in The Bahamas through November for her series of Luxury Bahamas Escapes cruises, featuring a unique all-Bahamian itinerary.
After more than a year of anticipation and planning, the long-awaited return to cruising was celebrated with a Homeporting Inauguration Ceremony in Nassau by Crystal executives, Bahamian government officials including the Honourable Minister Dionisio D’Aguilar and Director General Joy Jibrilu from The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, and dignitaries from the Port of Nassau.
Guests boarded Crystal Serenity for the first time since spring of 2020 and were enthusiastically welcomed back by the joyous and eager officers, staff and crew of Crystal’s flagship.
A Junkanoo parade entertained guests in a lively Bahamian tradition of music, dancing and colourful costumes at the pier.
The ship received a water cannon salute as she left the harbour with the sounds of Crystal Cruises’ signature sail away song “What A Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong as the musical backdrop for this milestone moment.
“We are delighted to celebrate this historic day in Nassau as Crystal Serenity resumes sailing and welcomes our guests, who we consider our Crystal Family, back on board,” said Carmen Roig, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Crystal who was in The Bahamas for the festivities. “We thank the Honorable Dionisio D’Aguilar, Minister of Tourism & Aviation for The Commonwealth of The Bahamas and Director General Joy Jibrilu, The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism for their partnership in helping to accomplish these special voyages and for the warm welcome Crystal has received."
“This is a historic moment for Crystal, our employees, and especially for our officers and crew and we are happy to be back where we belong, sailing the oceans of the world and creating experiences that become cherished lifelong memories. We want to thank our travel partners for their support during this long journey back to sailing and our loyal Crystal guests for standing with us and cheering us on to this joyful moment,” Roig said.
Luxury Bahamas Escapes opened for reservations to record demand in March, representing the biggest single day of bookings in the company’s history within the first 24 hours of its release.
“It’s a momentous day in Nassau as we bid bon voyage to eager passengers and crew aboard Crystal Serenity. It’s our great pleasure to welcome Crystal Cruises back to The Bahamas after months of anticipation, collaboration and tremendous planning,” said Minister D'Aguilar, Bahamas Minister of Tourism & Aviation. “The thrilling itineraries that await travellers will help refuel our local economy while also providing an unforgettable experience for guests.”
“Our exceptional partnership with Crystal Cruises has brought an entirely new experience to the market. Never have travelers had the opportunity to explore so much of The Bahamas on one vessel. From the lively downtown of Nassau to the secluded escapes found across the beautiful Out Islands,” added Minister Jibrilu. “We’re confident that these special voyages will prove why ‘It’s Better in The Bahamas!’”
Crystal Serenity will homeport in Nassau through November 13, 2021, departing round-trip every Saturday for the line’s Luxury Bahamas Escapes.
Guests will also have the option of sailing round-trip from Bimini for Luxury Bahamas Escapes.
The seven-day voyages feature a unique all-Bahamian itinerary exploring the island nation’s “Out Islands” also knowns as the “Family Islands” with calls in Great Exuma, San Salvador and Long Island.
Exclusive enclaves of pristine natural beauty, the Out Islands feature gorgeous beaches, incredible ocean reefs for snorkelling and diving, and a relaxed vibe all their own.
Crystal has partnered with more than 30 local Bahamian businesses to offer guests small group experiences that are both local and authentic, with the additional goal of contributing to the reinvigoration of tourism in these island destinations.
Guests will enjoy the exuberant and distinctly Bahamian sendoff by a 15-member Junkanoo band on every Luxury Bahamas Escapes voyage as the ship departs the port of Nassau.
Crystal has implemented new Crystal Clean+ protocols that address the unique challenges of COVID-19 with measures that include mandatory vaccination for guests and crew, COVID-19 testing at embarkation, and more.
Because of the mandatory vaccination requirement, guests will be able to explore ashore independently.
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