Celebrity Cruises’ 2016/17 programme sees Celebrity Constellation homeport in the dazzling city of Abu Dhabi, making the cruise line the first ever to base a ship in the city. Recently reinvigorated to even more exceptional standards through Celebrity’s ‘Solisticization’ programme, Celebrity Constellation provides stunning surroundings from which to explore the jewels of the Arabian Gulf. In celebration of the new sailings, we thought we would take a closer look at what are some of the hottest destinations in cruising for the year ahead.
Dubai is a country of excess and extravagance. Discover a new echelon of opulence at the sparkling Dubai Marina, dominate the sand dunes in an off-roading desert adventure or relax in ultimate luxury at one of the many exclusive beach clubs scattered around the coastline. However you choose to see Dubai, it won’t take you long to realise that this emirate doesn’t do anything by halves.
Shopping is a national pastime here and the country is home to over 70 shopping malls. With the heat soaring into the 50’s during summer months, the air-conditioned shops provide a welcome refuge from the heat and the tax-free savings are rather tempting too.
Arid landscapes, ancient ports and azure waters make up this 17th century harbour city in the enclave of Oman. Khasab provides a historic contrast against the architectural audacity of Dubai.
Explore the Musandam Peninsula, observe fishing boats that float close to the shore and find material treasures and memorable experiences at the Old Souk. A visit to Khasab Castle is a must and a ‘dhow’ boat trip around the coast is a memorable experience; dolphins can usually be spotted swimming and jumping alongside the boat as you journey through the emerald waters of the Khor Sham fjord.
Muscat is the capital of Oman and an area of rugged landscapes and traditional architecture. While its Emirates neighbours are expanding in a blur of record-breaking skyscrapers, Old Muscat remains true to its rich heritage with beautiful arabesque design and majestic administration buildings.
Wind your way through a labyrinth of narrow alleyways and bustling souks, or escape the hustle and bustle of the Old Town with a trip to Bandar Jissah beach; just 30 minutes from the main city by taxi. Muscat’s Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque and gardens must be seen to be believed, and the natural beauty of Oman’s Mazera Dam situated just south of Muscat is breathtaking.
The waterfront city of Abu Dhabi offers her guests the grandest of welcomes. The ultra-modern malls of the city’s cosmopolitan centre sit just minutes away from the peaceful white beaches of Saadiyat and Yas. Thrill seekers should head to the Yas Marina; home to the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and Ferrari World, and an area littered with super yachts and cutting-edge architecture.
Enjoy sandwiches amidst the utmost splendour with one of the world’s most indulgent afternoon tea experiences at the Emirates Palace or opt for the ‘highest’ of High Tea in the 300 lounge and observation deck at the Jumeirah Etihad Towers.