On the heels of her formal naming ceremony, Celebrity Eclipse officially entered service, following pre-inaugural activities. Just prior to being named on April 24, Celebrity Eclipse – the latest in a series of five stunning Solstice Class ships from Celebrity Cruises – replaced a previously-planned two-day promotional cruise to instead transport from Bilbao, Spain, to Southampton, England, approximately 2,200 vacationers who had been stranded by the travel disruption caused by the volcanic eruption in Iceland.
Presiding over the naming ceremony was Godmother Emma Pontin, ocean-racing yachtswoman and breast cancer survivor. Prior to her remarks, Hanrahan shared an emotional and personal comment: “Like far too many mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, sisters and brothers, I, too, have lost a loved one to breast cancer. It is therefore especially poignant for me that we have such a noble champion in the fight against breast cancer serving as our Godmother.”
Fain described Pontin’s continued devotion to the sport, even in the midst of treatment for breast cancer, from which she emerged victorious: “Her determination to make every day count, her courage, and her positive attitude, even during times of adversity, are tremendously inspiring for everyone – whether battling this disease or overcoming other challenges large or small.”
Celebrity Eclipse departed Southampton today on a three-night Paris (Le Havre) cruise. She returns to Southampton to embark on the ship’s official maiden voyage departing April 29 with a four-night cruise to Cork (Cobh), Ireland, followed by a series of Mediterranean and Russia and Scandinavian cruises throughout the summer. Celebrity Eclipse will offer Caribbean sailings from the Port of Miami, Florida, beginning this winter.