This was first cruise with Celebrity for us (after 3 with Carnival) and overall it was a great experience. My wife upgraded us to Aqua class which was a great move. We walked into the large terminal at Cape Liberty and were ushered to a separate check-in area and were on the ship very quickly. Consistent with other reviews we had read, the new rooms on the 11th deck were smaller than others we had on previous cruises but adequate enough. We had excellent cabin service throughout the cruise and enjoyed the treats that came with Aqua class.
We didn't take much advantage of the free spa option that came with Aqua but did enjoy eating in the specialty restaurant, Blu, every night. I had a few nights of difficulty getting drink orders, but once I got our excellent Maitre'd involved, the attention was excellent. I don't think others had any issues -- it seems that once you get started with regular drinks from the same staff, they remember what you want and were very attentive and pleasant. We typically had breakfast at the Waterfall Cafe as the made to order omelets and the plentiful sides were more than adequate. We had lunch just once in the dining area which was fine but we preferred the quick buffet meals of Waterfall and for a fast stop, the pizza and burgers were very good.
I hit the gym every morning early so there weren't many lines. My wife did some yoga which she didn't really care for but she loved the spa treatment (massage) that she had. There were some good shows and having the dancers do their thing and teach others in the Revelations Lounge was a nice touch. The highlight may have been the pianist, who was excellent. (His playing along to Lady Gaga video was great). We couldn't get enough of Nestor Santurio, whose personality, showmanship and Spanish guitar flair were amazing enough for my wife to buy his CDs.
We met some great couples on this trip and shared the first day with a couple on an all day taxi tour of Bermuda. I had read much about blue flag taxis but didn't see any like that on the pier. I did see a sign held up by Duke, who I had read about, as he was waiting for someone who had reserved him. I talked to him about it and he said to just talk to them and go with someone you felt comfortable with. Our riding companion was astute enough to observe the vehicles while we were waiting to get off the ship so he picked out one who had a very nice vehicle. She turned out to be an excellent tour guide and we got to see a little of everything on the island. With 2 couples, it worked out that we paid about the same as a ship excursion but got more time and were able to "customize" it. (Example: Two of us were golfers and we spent some time at Port Royal and Southampton courses). Of course we had to stop at the renowned Swizzle Inn for lunch. We had an open ended day, but I would suggest people specify the max time if they want to limit the expense. We were all flexible and she was good enough that we were planning to tip her 20 per couple but since she was closer to 7 hours and charged for 8 we did 10 each so it worked out like 7 Â½ with tip. I tlaked to one couple who had done such a tour by themsleves and I think without doubling up, it might be better to do the ship excursion.
We planned to take the ferry to St. Georges on Day 2 but it was full so we got on the Hamilton ferry but decided that we didn't want to take the bus over so just had a short day there. There were still things to do on the ship and the eating was expensive in Bermuda so we were content to take it easy. On the last day we spent time at the Dockyard area in King's Wharf. While my wife was checking out the glass making, I wandered over to Snorkel Beach. It was drizzling so there was no charge that day and soon the clouds opened up. I regret not going there once -- looked like a nice little area to get wet and have something to eat and drink. The Bermudans really needed the rain for their drinking water so we weren't that upset that the last day was shortened.
We decided to have breakfast in Blu the last morning instead of Waterfall and except for getting one last chance to see many of the friends we had made, it was a bad decision food wise. They were just not ready to handle all those people in such a short time and service was slow and orders were messed up. It didn't detract from the wonderful evenings we'd had, but they need to address that. Disembarking was delayed slightly, possibly due to some unfortunate health-related events (there may have been a passenger death), but once it got going it was super smooth. Off the ships, found our bags, customs was very well organized and Cape Liberty and in no time at all we got to our car and headed back home.