We picked this cruise for the itinerary and were not disappointed. The shore-excursions were booked via Thomson to ensure we got the most out of the holiday and I would really recommend them all. Celebration is small ship and beginning to show her age, however the team on-board work hard to give the best holiday experience they can.
The entertainment: lots to choose from and (almost) all of a very high standard. The onboard party band, Meetch & The Peakles, are just fantastic. They seem to be able to play everything and despite playing up to four sets a day we never heard them repeat a set. The show team had good nights and bad nights. Sadly some of the harmonies were fairly excruciating but overall the shows were good. The crew show is a real show-stopper, when the staff get to show off their undoubted talents. Jeffery the waiter is an absolute star! Bram Lorenz is the cruise director and we loved his style. In addition to acting as MC for everything, he played a great Thernadier in the Musicals Show, and ensured that every member of the team was introduced to us and credit given to each one. He also provided a very informative narrative as we sailed through the Dardenelles and past the war memorials. The minute silence was both respectful and moving.
The Shore Excusions Team were both informative and helpful. When we had cause to discuss disappointment with one tour (Istanbul - too much hanging around) the net day we had a letter of acknowledgement delivered to our cabin. An impressive touch and one we've not had with other cruise companies. They also advised on how to make the most of the ports even if not taking an organised tour which was very good.
We never had a problem getting sunbeds on deck, even on the day at sea.
But there were some negatives however:
On the whole the food was a real disappointment. The vegetarian options were on a par with motorway service stations and very repetitive. Sadly this applied to both the Lido (buffet) and the waiter-service Meridian dining room. The service was also hit and miss, sometimes very good but more often than not pretty ordinary. The wines are also very expensive for what they were. Australian Shiraz on "special" at around Â£20 a bottle? Hmmm, enough said.
I was also very unimpressed at having to ask for water, even at mealtimes.
If you're hoping to purchase any of the photos taken on board, do be sure to plan your finances wisely. At Â£14.95 PER PHOTO you'll need to. That said they do some "great" offers - buy three and get two free. So that's the best part of Â£45 for five - a bargain indeed...!
Disappointed to have to have the same pool towels all cruise, with the threat of Â£10 per towel being added to our account for "failure to return". Other cruise lines have laundry deposit boxes on deck and clean towels available as required.
The cabin safety deposit boxes are charged at Â£15 per week or Â£24 for the fortnight. Simply an outrage. The cabins do not have a fridge and do note that you need a European plug for UK appliances.