We just returned from the Jan 9 sailing of the Summit. This was our first time with Celebrity. In the last 18 years we have sailed on over 20 cruises, Royal Caribbean, NCL, HAL, and Princess. We flew down a day early and stayed at the Sheraton Old San Juan. The hotel was very nice with a great $$ casino. DH got lucky. We went to breakfast at the oldest restaurant in Old San Juan. I don't recall the name but our hotel desk clerk told us about it. We took a short $12.00 cab ride there and walked back. It was very good and lots of locals there so you know it's good. Check out time was 11am and we stored our luggage with the hotel. They told us the ship had cleared and was ready for boarding at 11:30. We avoided the first wave of boarders and spent some time in the casino.
Our traveling companions did not have great luck flying down. Flights cancelled and re-routed. They arrived 10 hours late without luggage. While BIL went to airport to chase down the luggage we waited at the hotel. Cab rides from airport to Old San Juan averaged around $22.00. All problems solved, we headed to the ship. Very short lines to check our luggage with no problems. We picked up two bottles of wine in the duty free liquor store. Our friends picked up bottled water too. We had the water package but more about that later.
Check-in was quick and easy. Our luggage was screened and we were on our way. Note here. I had a large bottle of water and a water jug both half full. No one questioned what was in there. I had water but could have been Vodka. FYI. We boarded the ship and were greeted and given a glass of champagne. We then proceeded to our cabins. We were in a category 2B category. VERY small cabin. Lots of storage. Bath was clean. Hair dryer is a joke. The carpet looked worn and dirty. The small balcony had drab indoor outdoor ruff carpet and an ugly door mat. Two chairs and a small table. Ok, here it comes. We arrived to find three bottles of wine and a box with assorted nuts. I ordered the wine and nuts and our travel agent sent us the third bottle of wine. Also there was a note accompanying each bottle. We had a note for the Vodka package we pre ordered but no Vodka. We informed the room steward and he said he would check it out. Our friends had no Vodka either. We went to the waterfall cafe and enjoyed lunch.
Then off to check out the ship. Very nice and clean. The Summit showed her age with a little wear and tear but overall very nice. Back to our cabins to see if any luggage had arrived. Our travel mates had theirs, so they unpacked while we called about no ice, and no wine opener, and still no Vodka. We were told they were working on it. Something about no Vodka available. We decided to do some more exploring. We played some cards off the back deck so the guys could have a cigar. The drink staff are very friendly and polite. Back at cabin DH had his luggage so I made a drink from the mini bar as there was ice, but no wine opener and no vodka. We had muster around 5pm. No life jackets, YEA, we were gathered in the theater and then sent outside. Smooth and easy. Stopped off at Michaels for a drink. Back to cabin to clean up for dinner. Still no luggage for me. We called and they said they had it. My SIL saw it on another deck so we were relieved that it was on the ship. Still no Vodka or wine opener after a couple more phone calls, but we were asked what mixes we wanted with it. Long story short we were told they were out of Vodka and could we order something else. We settled for gin. Our friends were given a credit after still being promised Vodka for two days. No big deal just surprised at how long it took to resolve this. We went to dinner to find four people sitting at our table for six. Two passengers goofed on their table number so we were taken to a table for four just for that night.
FOOD Main dining room. Over all very disappointing. Soups were watery and tasteless with the exception of the french onion. The salmon from the every day menu was good although one of us had it uncooked at one end. The Caprice salad was two chunks of mozzarella cheese and two wedges of tomatoes. Steaks were tough. We did enjoy the sea bass, pork chops mommas way, turkey dinner, and the lamb dishes. The Lobster seafood medley was good. I tried a vegetarian one night of eggplant etc. Very nice. Desserts were nothing to write home about. Water fall cafe. Breakfast was great. The scrambled eggs were a hit with DH. We discovered the french toast, waffles and poached eggs at the back of the ship. Waffles were so so but french toast delicious. I enjoyed the variety of poached egg combinations. Lunch was ok. Pizza lover said it was good. Tried the Asian buffet once, that should say it all. Pasta buffet was wonderful with a great salad bar. I was very surprised to find out that the best thing we ate on the ship was the Hamburgers at the outdoor grill. BIL loved the hot dogs too.
Two nights we ate earlier at Destinations. It is part of the waterfall cafe done up very nice. Table cloths and candles. We loved this. It was intimate and very quiet. We loved the scallops and seafood cakes. The Caesar salad was so fresh tasting. Sea bass was great. Tilapia good. We were able to get shrimp cocktails though not on the menu. It is the same menu every night so back to the noisy dining we went. We did not try the Normandy as we felt an additional $70.00 was too expensive. We can eat out well at home. I had a massage and facial and was very pleased. As per every cruise, they try to sell you lots of expensive products. Just say NO. We had no problems with shore excursions and thought they had this down pretty good. The lack of noisy announcements was a pleasant surprise. Although we did miss out on a few activities do to our lack of attention to the daily paper. No formal bridge but we did enjoy the card room. Bingo has gotten so expensive. DH won twice but payoffs were small. Final Bingo pay off was $500.00. Celebrity makes a killing here. They guys played in the Texas Hold'em tournament twice. That's why we ate early two night. We felt late seating missed out on some activities and entertainment. We went to two shows. Both were good.