Flights booked direct with Virgin Atlantic to from London(LHR)to LAX Premium Economy excellent flights,brilliant service,although the inflight breakfast was of poor quality and I should know I am a frequent flyer. Stayed overnight at the 3* Marriott Airport Hotel LA and again this proved to be an excellent choice.The following day we picked up a luxury rental car from Dollar just off the airport and had a choice of 30 automatic cars to choose including Lincoln Town car and Chrysler 300. My wife liked the Silver one,so Silver Chrysler 300 was selected and it was fine.I drove down to San Diego the scenic route and there was evidence of the scorched earth and smoke in the air due to the forest fires that had occurred at the time of our trip especially when we approached San Diego on the 25/10/07. Stayed overnight here at the Crown Plaza on Circle North and that was also a good 4* hotel but not in the best location for the port of San Diego.
Joined the Celebrity Ship "Summit" at San Diego dock at 2pm. Check In was slightly delayed by security although we were met by one of the ship's Butler's offered a glass of Brut or Orange juice and shown to our Sky-suite on the penthousedeck 6. The baggage arrived a couple of hours later and we settled in and familiarized ourselves with our surroundings. The safety drill was mandatory but its implementation was poorly executed. The Sky Suite was small and really a balcony cabin with twin beds and a two seater sofa, analogue television that needed a thump to make it work.The suite had a bath and shower. It was serviced well by the butler and other staff. I did try to book a Royal Suite but this was a late booking. The Sky Suite on the Penthouse deck was the only suite choice available,so we took it at a value for money price. We spent 8 days at sea going to and from San Diego to Hawaii, this ship needs urgent refurbishment. It is showing signs of wear and tear. It has noisy engines which vibrate particularly in the Public restaurant areas.I would not recommend this ship to passengers prone to sea-sickness as it rock and rolls too much when travelling at 21 knots, the sea was not rough.The Spa area was superb as was the sauna which I used frequently.The weather was disappointing as was the amateurish entertainment on board. The food was of a good standard although the Buffet area was often overcrowded, especially after shore trips. The tender operation had technical difficulties and Priority disembarkation was non-existent. Branded soft drinks were not free and a charge was made for a glass of pure orange juice, latte/cappuccino etc.The hard sell was in evidence from the waiting staff. Celebrity Penny-Pinching Practices were also evident.The quality of the merchandise sold in the ship's shops is best described as what I term "TAT" low quality merchandise bearing the Celebrity motif. The library was small with a poor selection of books.
The islands of Hawaii were attractive, Honolulu was very busy although the trip to the Pearl Harbor Memorial was a very moving experience and well worth a visit. Whalers Village at Maui was probably the pick of the island beaches that we saw over the 4 islands visited. We completed our holiday with a couple of days in a suite at the Marriott Desert Springs Resort Palm Springs and this hotel was stunning with again high quality food good service.Wished we stayed here longer but demands of business prevented this. In summary Celebrity Cruises advertises itself as a Premium Cruise operator and I think that is not an unfair claim.The crew on board the ship were courteous and helpful and the food was of good quality. Our table companions at dinner were great fun and it was a pleasure to be part of their holiday. Terry Bartlett