Aboard Celebrity the highest level of experience is the Retreat. The suite guests only, “hotel within the hotel” concept provides guests with a list of additional amenities, services, and areas to access. Of all but the room itself, the most notable extra benefit of the Retreat is Luminae, the finest restaurant in Celebrity’s fleet. We take a look at the design, the menu, and the best ships to enjoy Luminae.
Luminae is designed to provide guests with the Retreat dining that is a cut above. The personal touch from Celebrity’s Global Culinary Ambassador, Michelin Star Chef, Daniel Baloud with hand-selected signature selections. In his own words, Chef Baloud believes travel to be an exploration of global flavors. This same spirit of exploration with a journey through the Mediterranean.
The warm inviting ambiance creates an intimate space for guests to enjoy. The dress code is smart casual allowing guests to relax in comfort. The experience is akin to a chic New York Restaurant.
The restaurant serves breakfast lunch and dinner. Guests can select wine pairings with each dish or work with Celebrity’s Sommelier to come up with something special. These additional touches add luxury to the experience, keeping with that concept of providing something a little extra.
While it is not the main event, breakfast at Luminae is elevated fare with selections from the griddle, fresh-fruit bowls, cold dishes, and continental favorites. The apple cinnamon crepes with a cappuccino is an excellent way to start your day’s activities.
Lunch features heartier, chophouse classics. It is a great time to sample one of the signature cocktails, the Spicy Passion is an intoxicating combination of Ketel One Vodka, passion fruit, mint, and jalapeno. It serves as an excellent compliment to the Creamy Lobster Roll Entree on a potato bun.
First and foremost, Daniel’s Signature Selection should be the first place guests look for their entree. When the Global Dining Ambassador for a cruise line that holds fine cuisine as one of its brand pillars, highlights a menu item, it is wise to choose that item. Like most special features, these menu items change regularly. Our three-course selection included an appetizer of chilled carrot and ginger veloute with prawns, lime, and cilantro. The entree of Moroccan Chicken Tagine with saffron couscous, cauliflower, preserved lemon, and olives definitely embodies the Mediterranean flavors. For dessert, a light raspberry pistachio vacherin with vanilla creme provides a perfect finish.
Luminae is available on every Celebrity Ship however the Retreat has not made it to every ship. For the most complete experience, Luminae is best on the Edge class ships. Its location on deck 15 amongst the suites provides the best view in the fleet. However, the quality of the cuisine does not suffer across the other classes of ships. Celebrity is in the midst of a $500 million fleetwide renovation to ensure that they maintain the brand’s quality fleetwide.
Celebrity’s large fleet provides guests with a variety of suites and destinations to enjoy them. Luminae is included with every suite, so the trick is deciding where you want to visit. Finding the best itineraries and accommodations can be a pain, take advantage of the experience of your travel agent so you can start relaxing even before your cruise.