Flew into San Juan Saturday around 2pm. We took a taxi ($25 for 2 pp and 4 bags…$19 to port, $2 gas charge, $1 per bag, $3 extra pp over 4). The ride is about 15 minutes. From the minute we stepped out of the taxi until the champagne was in our hands was about 10 minutes. We had the beverage package and had requested to upgrade to the premium with cruise host when I booked. Our printed cards showed no beverage package. So our first stop on board was to the customer service desk. We added our upgrade ($80.50 each) and got new cards printed.
We went to our room 1130 aft aqua room. We loved our cabin. We overlooked the sunset bar but were never bothered by noise or smoke. The balcony size is 10 X 10 (hubby walked it off), we had two reclining chairs with foot stools and a great size table. There was no cabin to our left. We had plenty of water in our cabin all week. Our steward always had 3-4 bottles full in our room along with tea. The shower and toiletries were great. The bed was very comfortable and the room was quiet and dark. There was plenty of space to put clothes away. We requested that the nightly canapés be a cheese plate and that worked out great. One tiny complaint the dryer needs you to hold button non-stop and I kept moving my hand off it (oh well)
So Blu, I cannot say enough good. The maître de (Mazy) was the best on 13 cruises. He was very genuine. The sommelier (ERen) was great, never an empty glass, our waiter who we requested (Rambo) was perfect. We loved all our main dishes every night, especially the lobster. But we also enjoyed the filet, braised short ribs, veggie lasagna, ribeye, shrimp cocktail, veal loin, and the sea bass was good (I think people complained because they are used to Chilean sea bass, which is much thicker). We only ate desert once or twice, but it was delicious. We arrived at 5:30 most nights because you would get a private window seat and great service. Which lead to us grabbing pasta from the pasta station every night between 11-1 (the garlic called us). We did eat the buffet food for lunch most days and it was delicious. For breakfast we had room service several times, buffet a couple times, and Blu a few times….nothing for breakfast wowed us. The sea day brunch is worth it to see, very nice (10-1)
Entertainment. We are not show people (sometimes we don’t see any). But here is what we did see. The second night the captain does a champagne toast and introduces his officers, this was a great touch. The captain and officers were visible throughout the week. Then there was a production show, we stayed for3/4 and it was good. The second night we watched the comedian and he was awesome. The third night we went to the Newlywed game in Revelations and it was so funny (the cruise director, Kyle is great). After the show was dancing and it was a blast, great dance club music until 2am. We saw dancing with the stars also and the captain was a judge. We also spent 1-4 hours a day in and out of the casino (smallest casino of 13 cruises). We are regular gamblers and we had bad times and good times. Of course we lost on the slots for the week, but we are used to that, it is just fun for us and we budgeted it. We spent time at the martini/flair/ice bar everyday. We always went there pre/post dinner. Love the martinis. We had the premium beverage package and we ordered whatever we wanted and never paid a dime or signed a slip or were ever questioned about a request drink. Gede and Numan the flair bartenders are so great (good moves too).
The crew….awesome awesome awesome! Great job to all.
The spa. We were aqua class so we had use of the Persian gardens. We went twice. We liked it, but the walk was so far (opposite end of boat) that we didn’t want to walk in robes in the morning. I love steam rooms and the seats were straight up and down and very uncomfortable, so I gave up on going just to sit on heat tile seats (which were really comfortable) for a few minutes. The thalossotherapy pool was too warm for me, but it was adults only so we enjoyed it a day or two.
Pool and decks. We did not use any hot tubs or pools (very crowded), but if you walked away from pool area there was always nice quiet chairs to sit in.
The boat. Loved this boat. Very clean and pretty. So many great intimate relaxing places to sit and enjoy a drink.
Stops…weather was amazing and stops are perfect
1. St. Croix, so I wasn’t feeling so great in the morning (too much fun the night before), so we got a late start getting off and I forgot suntan lotion. So we walked around town and then down the beach. If you are looking to go to beach, save money and swim a very short walk from the boat with beautiful sand and water.
2. St. Kitts, we took a taxi from port to Carmabola (spelling) beach club. This was heaven. We were the first to arrive around 9:20 am. We paid $16 each way for the taxi and $30 at beach club for chairs and umbrella. The chairs are heavy duty wooden chairs with thick cushions. The view of the volcano all day was amazing. The water, the sand…perfect! Worth every penny.
3. Dominica, we booked the cooking excursion with the cruise. We did not really enjoy this. It was a little boring. The food was good…really good, but we have done others that were so much more fun. You get one glass of rum punch at the end and we waited 40 minutes for ride back. We walked around the tents and bought a few things.
4. Grenada, we took water taxi ($8 per person round trip) to Grand Anse beach. Be aware the water taxi will scare you. The wait until the boat is super full (SUPER) full! And then leave, don’t get in an empty boat, you will sit there over 30 minutes. It feels like it might tip, but they drive slow and once you move it is safe feeling. The beach is a high pressure beach..sell sell sell! We got off the dock and took the first seats..don’t! This is were employees hang out and they fight and swear and yell all day. The water, sand was good. We paid $20 for 2 chair (with cushions) and umbrella for the day. Walked around port building and bought a few things.
5. St. Thomas, we have been here many times, but never to St. John. We did ship’s excursion and it was great ($40 each). Took Catamaran over (sit in back…bumpy and scary, but beautiful new boat with American crew). Dropped off 7/8 off people on board and then took ride up coast (so pretty) and then dropped off at pier. We took a taxi to Trunk Bay ($12 each way total). Wow Trunk Bay (National Park), threw our towels on the beautiful powder sand and spent the day in the gorgeous water. I have never seen anything so beautiful. Worth the trip over. Went back to town, grabbed a drink before our boat ride back. It was not advertised with the tour, but it was unlimited strong rum punch on the way back. Made it back just in time to board before we set sail.
This cruise was my favorite of 13 cruises (Carnival, Royal, NCL, 1st Celebrity). WE are 100% sold on Celebrity. The beverage package made the week…no signing or worrying about the bill.