Jovanka Goronjic joined Celebrity Cruises’ AquaSpa staff in 2009 after working with Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity’s sister brand. Her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005, and endured several rounds of treatment. In tribute to her mother and the cause, Jovanka donated her hair for the creation of wigs for cancer patients. With support from Celebrity, she arranged time off to be with her mother at critical times during her treatment. Her mother has since defeated the illness, and Jovanka is now AquaSpa Manager on Celebrity Solstice. We recently sat down with Jovanka to ask her a few questions about the honor bestowed upon her.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I was born on January 1, 1979, and was raised by my mother. In 1997, I graduated with a degree in Business of Economy, and then continued my studies in the health and beauty fields. In 2004, I started working on ships as a massage therapist. Currently, I am the AquaSpa Manager aboard Celebrity Solstice.
I love animals, and I love taking care of people. I believe that overall well-being is crucial to leading a full and rewarding life. I try my best to be a good listener, while always being available for any advice, support, motivation, or inspiration.
How did it feel when Celebrity selected you to be a ship’s Godmother?
I was delighted, thrilled, emotional, and proud, all at the same time. I’m not sure that it has fully sank in yet, but it will when I¹m onboard for the naming ceremony next month.
What are you most looking forward to with this honor?
I really hope to help the Breast Cancer Research Foundation by raising more awareness and giving support to people that are dealing with the heartache of this illness.
What preparations have you made for the ceremony? What do you plan to wear?
I have prepared a short speech for the ceremony. On the special day, I plan on wearing a formal black dress with pink details, which serves as a small reminder and connection to breast cancer awareness.
Are you nervous or excited about the naming ceremony?
I’m both nervous and excited. My emotions are supercharged about this whole experience. I’m glad I’ll have three other women to share this moment with.
Can you tell us about something that is dear to you?
As an only child, growing up without my father, I am very close to my mother. Even at the age of 34, while working on ships and being away from home, I would call her every other evening just to wish her a good night, hear her voice, and tell her that I love her.
What do you plan to do onboard Celebrity Reflection? Are there venues or people you are looking forward to seeing?
I am currently on Celebrity Solstice, but I will be transferring to Celebrity Reflection to become their AquaSpa Manager. I can¹t wait to see the enhancements to the spa that are only currently available on this new ship, including the enlarged Persian Garden, the Hammam, and the hot and chilly Sensory Circuit. This career change happened suddenly, but I am so happy to have been given the honor of being one of Celebrity Reflection’s Godmothers.
Who has been most proud of you receiving this honor?
My family, my friends, my work colleagues, and, probably most of all, my mother.
The four Godmothers of Celebrity Reflection will preside over the naming of the ship in Miami on December 1. In true Celebrity tradition, they will be joined by the Godmothers of each of Celebrity Reflection’s sister ships.