Louis Group first became active in the field of cruise ship ownership and management in 1986, even though it had been involved in the representation of passenger vessels and cruise ships in the past.
The period between 1989 and 2001 was a period of rapid growth for the cruise sector. During this time, the Group acquired in total 10 ships. In 1996, a cruise ship was chartered for the first time to Thomson Cruises, owned by TUI, the world’s largest tour operator.
Following the growing trend in the cruise sector, Louis plc creates in 2014 a new brand, “Celestyal Cruises”.
Celestyal Cruises has fast built an award-winning reputation and recognition as the number one choice for cruise travelers to the Greek Islands and East Mediterranean thanks to its regional expertise and exceptional hospitality. The company operates two vessels, each one intimate enough to provide genuine and highly personalized services. The foundation of the company’s philosophy is built on a unique Greek heritage which combines outstanding hospitality with genuine cultural destination immersion and provides authentic, lifetime experiences both onboard and onshore. Celestyal Cruises currently operates in 16 countries such as USA, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Turkey, etc. Celestyal Cruises passengers come from 140 countries.
In November 2021, Louis plc announced that it has signed an agreement for the recapitalization of Celestyal Cruises Limited and the formation of a strategic partnership with Searchlight Capital Partners, L.P., a leading global private investment firm.
Under the terms of the agreement, Searchlight will provide funding to Celestyal Cruises to support the development plans of the company, including its fleet renewal.
Louis plc, through its subsidiary Louis Hotels Public Company Ltd, will acquire 40% of the limited partnership interests in the sole shareholder of a newly incorporated holding company. Searchlight will be the owner of 60% of the limited partner interests in the sole shareholder of such newly incorporated holding company.
As a result of this transaction, Celestyal Cruises will no longer be considered a subsidiary company, but an associate of Louis plc.
THE 2 CRUISE SHIPS BELONGING TO CELESTYAL CRUISES TODAY ARE THE FOLLOWING:
1. Celestyal Discovery
2. Celestyal Journey
Since 2014, Celestyal has received top honors in the Tourism Awards, one of the largest and most prestigious awards programs within the Greek tourism industry. These include one Platinum, 15 Gold, 10 Silver and nine Bronze awards covering Guest Experience Excellence, Solo Travel, CSR Initiatives, Contribution to National Economy, FAM and Press Trips, Communication Campaign and Multichannel Marketing Campaign.
In December 2022, Celestyal won a Bronze Award at the British Travel Awards in the ‘‘Best Operator for Mini Cruises’’ category and was named one of the top ocean cruise lines for ‘’Best Service’’ at the annual Cruise Critic Editors’ Picks Awards 2022, an award also received in 2018 and 2019. Ιn 2019 and 2020, Celestyal was recognized for its overall contribution and commitment to the development of the cruise industry in the Eastern Mediterranean region at the MedCruise Awards.
Celestyal is deeply committed to sustainability and ethical business practices. The company actively supports the local communities in the destinations it visits, particularly in the field of education. Additionally, Celestyal supports cultural NGOs to promote youth entrepreneurship, marine student development and child welfare.
The entire spectrum of Celestyal’s ship management, including technical, hotel and crew management, and offices, are certified in accordance with ISO 9001/14001 standards. The certifying authority is DNV, which is widely recognized as the biggest and most respected rating agency in the marine industry.