Celebrity Constellation Cruise Review by californiacritic: Constellation adventure
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My wife and I went on a honeymoon cruise 30 years ago and we couldn't wait to go again. It turned out we could wait, 30 years while we raised 4 children. I chose the Constellation because of Celebrity's excellent record and because of the specific island itinerary. We had a stateroom in the middle of the ship on deck 3. We spent a lot of time on the higher decks and in theaters, bars and dining rooms that were in the front and rear of the ship. When we were in our room I never felt anything more than the gentle rocking of the ship, whereas sometimes it was hard to keep my footing when we went to higher decks or to the front or rear of the ship.
The ten day itinerary was two days at sea, then 5 days of 5 different islands, then two days at sea as we made our way home. The two days heading toward the islands were fun and full of anticipation. The two days headed for home were fun but full of a feeling of finality. I think it would be better to have a stop just before coming More home.
The Celebrity Theater was extremely nice. However, the shows were pretty mediocre. If you watch American Idol and you hear Simon make cracks about how a contestant sounds like they are cruise ship entertainment, well, after sitting through a few of these shows I realize how rude Simon is being. We spent most evenings at Michael's Club where Perry Grant is featured. He is a very talented entertainer with perhaps an unhealthy adoration of Judy Garland. He is an acquired taste, but once acquired he should not be missed. Come early as it's standing room only after he gets going.
We loved our dining experience. I had read in other reviews that it was wise to stay away from the beef so I usually ordered fish. The food was very good. Our table of eight had the most cordial and interesting people. They were a big part of the pleasure of the cruise. Our waiter, Remy, was very likable and extremely professional. We had first seating at 6 p.m. which was just right. The dining room is elegant. We sat near the captain's table. I can't say enough about our enjoyment of the dining experience.
Our first Island was St Thomas. I was up on deck 11 at 6am as we moved into port. Deck 11 is outdoors and has a track for walkers. Taking pictures is my passion, and I got beautiful photos of the port just before dawn. We had an 8:30am excursion to St John's and Trunk Bay. I got beautiful pictures. It was a gorgeous day. Not many fish to see snorkeling at Trunk Bay because it's a National Park and they don't throw food in the water to attract the fish. The second island was St. Kitts. We had the Fan-Ta-Sea excursion which took 70 of us by crowded catamaran snorkeling off St Kitts and then over to the island of Nevis. The snorkeling was the best of the trip. On Nevis they take you to Pinney's Beach which is a beautiful beach but they take you to a location that has obvious un-repaired hurricane damage. And what they fed us there was basically inedible. Hotdogs cooked on the outside, cold in the middle. Still, this was my favorite excursion and I got wonderful photos. That night while we were on the Constellation, on the way to Barbados, my camera was stolen. I was inconsolable, not that anyone from Celebrity felt a need to console. My impression is that on ship they try to pretend that there is no crime and they do not appreciate victims who won't let them turn a blind eye. It felt like we were victimized again when we had to pay $140 more for a camera on ship than it would have cost us in the U.S. In Barbados we got on the Silver Moon Catamaran with just 12 passengers. It was a completely different experience than the Fan-Ta-Sea, but I can't say it was better. The food, however, was a whole lot better. The Silver Moon crew were also much nicer in every way. Where Fan-Ta-Sea was rockin', the Silver Moon was peaceful and subdued. The next day was St Lucia. We got off the ship and took a speedy little boat to the Pittons. We talked to people from the Constellation who went over land on this island and what we heard was the winding roads were unpleasant. I was glad we stayed on the water. The last island was St Martin. Our excursion was the America's Cup Regatta, that is voted every year as the best excursion in the Caribbean. My warning here is this excursion is not for the faint of heart. They had me working so hard cranking something that adjusted the sails on the Star's And Stripes that I didn't even see when we beat Canada II to win the race. My wife didn't have a job, other than just trying not to fall out of the boat. She said it was definitely a man's thing but she had a good time and at least she got to see us win. Then we headed for home.
Getting off the ship was not a problem, but it should be said that I was prepared to be patient. The last day at sea you can fill out a questionnaire about the cruise. Many of the service people on the ship pleaded with us to give them an excellent rating or they would not be able to get a promotion. I found it sad that the people who were so attentive in every way throughout the cruise were pleading for their jobs, while those whose jobs were secure in Guest Relations who showed no concern for us when our camera was stolen were not even critiqued. Less
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