Poor old Century: Celebrity Century Cruise Review by johnbrnc
Overall Member Rating
Poor old Century
It's some what obvious that this is Celebrities' oldest and smallest ship and when it comes too service I had to question if perhaps the most inexperienced crew could also be a factor. For example on the second day of the cruise the napkins More offered with silverware at the Islands Cafe buffet were little square cocktail napkins. The type usually placed beneath your glass. This left me to consider they must have run out of the correct napkins, yet the following day normal full sized napkins reappeared. Keep in mind though that my previous experience on Celebrity has included silverware rolled in a linen napkin at lunch. Buffet service staff seemed ill equipped as well, moving at a snails pace. One experience involved my approaching a carving station and staff telling me they would look for the Chef to carve the meat, yet a carving knife was right there on the cutting board, but when I asked if they could slice it and serve me they seemed paralyzed.
The Islands Cafe napkin mystery continues... I asked Selwyn the Islands Cafe maitre'd/manager for a napkin when none were available on the buffet and low and behold he retrieves a paper cocktail napkin for my dining pleasure... just unexplainable. On other occasions in the Islands Cafe had NO silverware or napkins and then suddenly on the 7th day of the cruise, rolled silverware in linen napkins appeared. If consistency is a measure of quality the Century prepare to be sorely disappointed aboard this aged rust bucket.
Then there is the ice issue. There are four self service beverage stations in the Islands Cafe. Consistently, over thirteen long days aboard Century two of the beverage stations had broken, non-functioning ice machines. The Century alternative was a plastic tub with ice and a scooper that had been in countless passengers hands laying in the ice. Needless to say this a huge health code violation and for good reason. From dirty hands a scooper handle lays in ice that a passenger is then expected to place in their glass! This example is so blatantly unsanitary and disgusting, I shudder to think what may go on behind the scenes involving the preparation of food.
The ice issue also brought about another issue for me personally. On the pool deck there is no source of water or ice. The only source of water and ice are the broken ice machines just inside the doors from the pool deck in Islands Cafe. One day in mid-afternoon I left my pool side lounge chair to get some water in swim-wear and entered the Islands Cafe without a shirt on. On this occasion the Cafe manager Selwyn sprang to action, yelling sir, sir from across the room. "leave the Cafe... you can not be here without a shirt". Honestly, I know better than to go through a buffet shirtless, but mid afternoon while cruising the Hawaiian islands... give me a break. Selwyn was rude and inappropriate and I would suggest that Celebrity has a responsibility to provide ice water to those sun bathing on lounge chairs poolside without the need to come indoors and face the cafe watch dog Selwyn. Selwyn perhaps should concern himself with more primary issues like providing napkins, with knives and forks to actually eat with rather than berating guests.
The remaining and unanswered question is why were two of four ice and water dispensers in the cafe broken and inoperative for the entire two week cruise? We all know that every cruise ship has an engineering team that fixes things. Had anyone reported the ice situation... was anything being done to resolve it. I think not.
The greeting question... As I made my way around the Century over the early days of the cruise and I crossed paths with many of the ships officers I noticed that none of them made eye contact or exchanged a greeting with the passengers. Even in the companion ways when we would pass directly no guest recognition what so ever. Yet oddly or interestingly enough it appeared that the lower on the ship's totum pole a crew member was the more friendly the were. All of the cabin stewards, every single server, the pool butlers all stopped, made eye contact and said hello. As it related to my cruise experience I found the arrogant attitude of the officers disturbing and it left me wondering if the Century's leadership actually had any understand or real care of guest service. Less