Celebrity Constellation Cruise Review by cruisefritz: Decent cruise experience but not a great one
Overall Member Rating
Decent cruise experience but not a great one
Destination: Southern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
Overall service, decor, comfort and dining were quite good but entertainment was fair at best, with a few exceptions. There was a decided lack of adequate information about spa treatments, shore excursions, and many activities. It's not enough to just list something without letting people know what the activity is about.
The food in the main dining room varied, but was mostly quite good, and thankfully updated and modernized. I'm not sure why there were no special themes nor the expected more special menu on the "formal" nights. The "Ocean Liners" restaurant food was mostly excellent, as was decor, presentation and service. The cheese course selections offered before the dessert was bold and outstanding, even by top shoreside restaurant standards. The "Tuscan Grill" was decent enough, but not very authentic. How can a "Bisteccha Toscana" become a ribeye steak with "cajun" butter as offered here? Anyway, the wine selections in the various bars and restaurants was very good and More quite improved since we last sailed on Celebrity several years ago. We tried the "Select Dining" option, and found that there are still some kinks to be worked out, especially with some of the host staff, which seemed often to be distracted and error prone.
Our biggest gripe is the fact that almost everything that is not part of the basic room and standard dining, carries an extra charge, often relatively high by shoreside standards. For instance, a single cappuccino ends up costing almost $5 with the forced service charge included. Even the use of the self-service wine dispenser charges an extra 15% for service in spite of the fact that one must pick up one's own glass and then dispense a measure of wine from the machine. Canned sodas and bottled water are $2.30 each; a glass of fresh juice is over $4; wine by the glass in the bars and dining venues is not measured, and can vary from a measly 3 to a standard 4 ounces, but is priced the same in each case.
Spa and shore excursions are relatively expensive to other cruise lines and lack adequate descriptions for one to make an informed choice. The staff often seemed relatively clueless as well. There was only one inadequate description list available in the shore excursion lounge that had to be shared by over 2000 passengers. The in-room interactive TV offered even less information.
Another gripe is that most passengers seemed to have ignored the posted dress codes for evening wear and the staff did not seem to care. Why bother to have a dress code when you see so many T-shirted and shorts and blue-jeaned individuals not only on the predominantly "elegant-casual" nights but also on the so-called "formal" nights? Celebrity might as well do away with dress codes if so many people ignore them anyway and Celebrity doesn't bother to enforce them.
Overall, the cruise was pleasurable enough, our complaints notwithstanding. Less
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