Celebrity Apex has sailed out of the Port of Athens to begin her maiden voyage and first summer season in the Aegean.

The trip marks an historic moment for the company, which had originally planned to introduce its newest ship in March last year.

With the vivid and vibrant backdrop of the azure Athens sky, Celebrity Apex, the second ship in the Edge Series, set sail on a seven-night cruise of the historied Aegean.

The return to the Aegean is all the more poignant given Celebrity Cruises’ proud Greek heritage.

Founded in 1988 by the Chandris family of Greece, the company later became a part of the Royal Caribbean Group.

Celebrity Cruises is still rooted in its Greek origins today, with 70 per cent of marine officers across the fleet hailing from the country.

More than 40 captains and chief engineers, including the captain of Celebrity Apex, Dimitrios Kafetzis, are Greek.

“Her sail-away today is a meaningful moment for our guests, our crew and our company.

“I think we are all having ‘pinch me’ moments,” said Celebrity Cruises chief executive, Lisa Lutoff-Perlo.

“Returning to sailing in the Aegean, where it all began for us, and after such a long time, is also very special for me and for the Celebrity Apex crew.”