Celebrity certainly knows how to deliver!
Having sailed a luxury product recently I have to say that I was quite surprised at how elegant and welcoming this older ship was. By taking the Bar Package and never thinking about the "cost" of wine or drinks really was the way to go. It changed the entire experience and made is a lot easier and calmer you never had to worry about who would pick up the check when you did pre dinner cocktails. Service was good not great but good. A bit standoffish a first but by the middle of the cruise you had your favorite people that you went to time and time again and they got to know you.
Let me tell you about a little known splurge. The Chef's Table. Once, sometimes twice, per cruise the Executive Chef cooks dinner for 8 lucky people . It's about $135 pp but it comes with a table photo ($20) that gorgeous Celebrity cookbook (Signed) and all the wines are selected and included with each course. You tour the kitchen with just the Chef, it's amazing. We had a ball - DO THIS! It is worth every penny.
We met a couple who had dinner every night in the SS United States and they told us that after the 5th night they had pretty much exhausted the menu so the chef was going off menu for them, they seemed to be having a ball. The SS United States is a lovely environment and we went twice during the cruise. Top Notch! The lamb was incredible
The most fun you'll have dining will be QZine. It's just a hoot! The staff seems to really enjoy working there. you use ipads to order your food- There are even short cartoon videos on some of the dishes.
The cabin was nice nothing unique but nice- Since we were in colder climate we asked for a blanket and the steward was on it! As always the cabin steward was amazing! He had a split section so we didn't see him much but he hunted us down every so often so he could make sure that everything was ok.
The few meals we ate in the dining room were much better than expected. the food was good the service even better. Oh how to get our busboy into our bag to take home.
I found the shows a bit cheesy and seemed dated certainly not the level of NCL or RCI in terms of production but it's an older ship and I sort of expected that. The guest lectures on board were pretty interesting and was glad that celebrity had this enrichment opportunity.
Casino was dead - Since about 65% to 70% of the crowd was european and a bit older I think it just wasn't of interest. Many nights I played at the craps table by myself. Very weird and certainly not what you'd see on a Caribbean cruise.
The ports were all fantastic and the itineray unfolded as we got further and further into Norway, each port better than the last. We had incredible weather (Shocking actually) One thing to the planner at Celebrity - Don't stop in Oslo on a Sunday - everything is closed- Why do that?
Over all a GREAT experience and I have to say was a much more affordable way yo see Norway ( so expensive there!) Hats off to Celebrity on this one!