Monday, 22 February 2010

Enter the iLounge!

When Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Eclipse launches in April, guests will find the first “Celebrity iLounge” onboard. Designed to offer what guests said they wanted most in an internet café: easy access to the internet, inspiring classes and new products.

(PS: That latter is a euphemism for new ways to sell you things!)

The iLounge will be composed of three main areas: a series of 26 workstations where guests can check their email, or print boarding passes; a retail space offering cruisers the opportunity to see and try out the latest MacBooks®, iPods® and accessories; and an 'enrichment centre' where staff will offer guests tips on Mac or iPod usage.

“Our new Celebrity iLounge is a direct expansion of our new ‘Designed for you’ brand platform, and our commitment to listen to our guests and offer experiences expressly designed for them,” said Celebrity President and CEO Dan Hanrahan. “Our surveys show that our guests rely heavily on the Internet for research, learning and staying in touch, so we think this new offering will be a big hit, as will the contemporary online classes offered through the ‘Discover’ series of our inspiring and enriching ‘Celebrity Life’ experiences.”

The iLounge will offer a series of engaging new courses designed to suit its guests’ interests – including DIY photo books, movie editing and web design, through programmes including iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD and iWeb. And, whether guests are savvy or novice users of Mac or iPod products, Celebrity staff will be well-equipped to assist, following more than 125 hours of training in operating systems, applications and products.

Guests eager to expand their collection of merchandise will also find the iLounge an "enticing venue" (say Celebrity). As an authorised Apple reseller, the line will have products available for guests to purchase, including iPods, MacBooks and various accessories.

Located on deck six, the iLounge will house the 26 MacBook Pro’s, classroom and retail area, in addition to display pods, a 56-inch flatscreen TV for use during classes and an accessible workstation.

The iLounge will also feature on Celebrity Silhouette, which launches in 2011, and the fifth ship in the Solstice Class, which launches in 2012.

It all adds up to quite a thoughtful and new onboard programme (albeit quite heavy on the Mac sell) which should help to make the Eclipse (and her sisters) even more attractive against all the various competition.