New cruise ships might be all the rage, but those who want some new bells and whistles without the price tag a new ship can command have another option: the cruise ship refurbishment, which can make an old ship look new again. Ships are required to head into dry dock every few years for the "routine scrape of the barnacles" (minor cosmetic and engineering updates), but quite often cruise lines will take this time -- or even extend it -- to refresh a ship's public areas and cabins.
Cruise Critic has assembled a list of currently known cruise ship refits and drydocks. Only cruise lines with current refit plans are listed; check to see if your favorite cruise ship is due for a sprucing-up.
Dates: May 2023
Details: The 1,200-passenger Ambition -- Ambassador Cruise Line's follow-up ship to Ambience -- previously sailed for German cruise line AIDA as AidaMira. Currently undergoing refurbishment, Ambition will have 714 cabins, 125 of which have balconies and 113 of which are suites with up to 62 square meters of living space. Squarely geared to British, typically over 50 passengers, Ambition has two main restaurants and specialty dining options, a more casual bistro-style cafe, four bars and lounges, and a wine bar, a tiered main theater, card room, library, craft studio, wellness center, gym, two swimming pools and a range of shops.
Ship: Carnival Venezia
Dates: June 2023
Details: Carnival Venezia will be the first ship to operate under the banner "Carnival Fun Italian Style." Originally launched as Costa Venezia in 2019, the ship is receiving a transformation to change it from a vessel that would cater to Chinese passengers to a more typical Carnival audience. The renamed 4,072-passenger vessel will sail year-round from New York in spring 2023.
Among the traditional Carnival venues that will be added in the refit: the steakhouse Fahrenheit 555, Bonsai Sushi & Teppanyaki and the Chef's Table, along with Lido Marketplace, Guy's Burgers, Seafood Shack and Pizzeria del Capitano, Piano Bar 88 and Heroes Tribute Lounge. In the cabins, Carnival will add a new Terrazza space, which is similar to Havana cabins on other ships in the fleet. The cabins will also receive mini-bars and U.S. power outlets to cabins and a new bar featuring spritzes in the adult-only Serenity area on the top deck.
Ship: Carnival Firenze
Details: Carnival Firenze will be the second ship to operate under the banner "Carnival Fun Italian Style," and it's another former Costa ship, Costa Firenze. Expect the similar changes in drydock as Carnival Venezia, although details have not been announced yet.
Ship: Celebrity Reflection
Dates: Completed in October 2022
Details: All cabins and suites got new balcony furniture while the ship was in drydock. Other refurbishments included new carpets, upholstery and pool furniture on the pool deck and in the solarium.
Ship: Celebrity Infinity
Dates: Winter 2024
Details: Celebrity Infinity’s drydock will include a bit of a facelift, with new soft goods (usually includes things like carpeting, upholstery, and linens). Suites will have Jacuzzis replaced and the galleys will get new equipment.
Ship: Celebrity Constellation
Dates: Spring 2024
Details: This drydock for the Constellation will include all new carpeting as well as updated crew quarters. Suites are scheduled to get new Jacuzzis and some galley equipment will be replaced.
Ship: Celebrity Eclipse
Dates: Spring 2025
Details: Celebrity Eclipse is slated for all new carpeting in this drydock along with new draperies. All staterooms and suites will get new balcony furniture and the galley is getting new equipment.
Ship: Celebrity Solstice
Dates: First quarter 2026
Details: Celebrity Solstice received all new soft goods (carpets, drapes, linens) in early 2023. The next drydock is scheduled for early 2026, but no details are available yet on those refurbishments.
Ship: Celestyal Journey
Dates: Ongoing, spring 2023
Details: Holland America Line's former Ryndam is joining Celestyal Cruises following an extensive $21-million refit in Piraeus, Greece. The 1992-built former Ryndam is a decade younger than both of Celestyal's existing ships, with more balcony cabins and amenities. Carrying up to 1,800-passenger with four restaurants, seven bars and lounges, two pools and a standout 47,300-square-foot spa spanning two decks with a gym, thalassotherapy baths, massage rooms, saunas and thermal suites.
After a bankruptcy during the pandemic, the Crystal Cruises brand has been given new life with owners Abercrombie & Kent. The new owners are taking the line's two ships and modernizing them before they set sail in summer 2023.
Ship: Crystal Serenity
Dates: Ongoing, spring 2023
Details: Crystal Serenity will be going from 980 passengers to 740, with all suites onboard being revamped to create more space. Wellness areas are also being given more real estate, including a 3,000 plus square feet fitness center with panoramic views, which has a separate weight room and aerobics studio.
Ship: Crystal Symphony
Dates: Ongoing, summer 2023
Details: Crystal Symphony is getting the same treatment as its sibling, with a reduced passenger count and a focus on making the suites more spacious and luxurious.
Ship: Queen Mary 2
Dates: Fall 2023
Details: Cunard Line's Queen Mary 2 is scheduled for a four-week refit in the fall, described as a "freshen up." No additional details are available at this time.
Ships: Eurodam, Nieuw Amsterdam
Details: Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam are among the five ships getting refurbished and expanded casino spaces. The additions include more slot machines, including additional video poker machines and on-demand slot tournaments.
Ships: Rotterdam, Nieuw Statendam, Koningsdam
Details: Three ships in the Holland America fleet will now have expanded casino offerings, as well as a separate nonsmoking casino area.
Ships: All seven Coastal Express ships, starting with MS Richard With
Details: All ships will undergo massive refurbishments designed to reduce NOx emissions by eighty percent, including conversion to hybrid power systems, hull changes, new boiler systems, and power management systems.
Ship: Marella Voyager
Dates: June 2023
Details: Marella Cruises' next new ship was built in 1997 for Celebrity Cruises as Mercury, and most recently sailed as TUI's Mein Schiff Herz. The 1,912-passenger family-friendly ship goes into dry dock in April 2023 for a bow-to-stern refurbishment, before a christening event planned for May 2023 in Palma, Mallorca.
Marella Voyager features 10 restaurants, including three new-to-the-line venues, three new bars and an extensive family program with more family cabins. The new restaurants include Abuela's, a Mexican-themed restaurant; Silver Fork -- a new specialty restaurant, featuring upscale British cuisine and The Platter, a venue for cheeses, charcuterie and vegetarian platters with wine pairings.
Dates: Fall 2023
Details: Occupancy is being reduced and staterooms are being completely redone on Marina in 2023, following similar changes that took place on sister ship Riviera in 2022. Expect new furnishings, new color palettes, more outlets and USB ports and larger bathrooms with huge showers (and in a controversial move for some, no tub). The ship is also receiving a new alfresco pizzeria and trattoria.
Ship: Pearl Mist
Dates: By May 2023
Complete interior re-design, including carpets, furniture and art throughout staterooms and public spaces featuring new color palettes. The redesign will be complete prior to the start of the 2023 season in May.
Ship: Silver Endeavour
Dates: April 2023
Details: Silver Endeavour is headed for a major refurb in Genova, Italy, where it will gain two all new suite classes: Master and Signature Suites. These will replace the former helicopter hangar space, providing stunning views near the aft of the ship. Removal of the casino and relocation of the medical facility will gain space for additional veranda suites and crew quarters, a move designed to increase the crew-to-guest ratio and allows for additional expedition team members onboard.
Ship: Star Legend
Dates: Completed early 2023
Details: Two Classic Suites on Deck 5 forward have been redecorated in a style inspired by of two of Windstar’s sister-company land resorts. The Broadmoor Suite reflects that of the iconic Colorado Springs luxury hotel, right down to wallpaper that matches that found in the main building of the hotel, though it had to be designed to meet the specifications of the International Maritime Organization certification for fire retardant materials. The Sea Island Suite features décor in soft blues and greens reminiscent of sea glass, as found at the five-star Sea Island resort on the coast of Georgia.
Ship: Star Breeze
Dates: Spring 2023
Details: Themed suites are slated for completion on Star Breeze in the spring of 2023.
Ship: Star Pride
Details: Star Pride, which completed its full Star Initiative renovation and stretching in 2022, is slated to have themed suites in 2024.
Updated April 14, 2023