We are a retired couple, usually traveling with one other couple, sailing once or twice a year. We prefer 10 to 14 or more days. We have been to the Caribbean seven times, Hawaii once, and New England/Canada once. We have Alaska/West Coast scheduled as well as another Caribbean in 2012. Our preferred lines are Celebrity and Holland America.
We just returned from a 14-day voyage on Celebrity Constellation that took us to St Maarten, Antigua, St Lucia, Barbados, Grenada, Aruba, Bonaire & Curacao. We had previously visited Barbados, Grenada, Aruba & Bonaire, but the others were new to us.
Generally, we were very impressed with the update of the Constellation. We sailed with her in Oct 2009, so were eager to see what had been improved. The bedding, upholstery, carpets, & drapes had been done, not only in the cabins, but in the public areas as well. The whole new decor is beautiful.
The update seemed to flow over to the crew - this whole crew was so friendly, eager to please and upbeat in every way! From the Captain all the way down, they made themselves available. Our first female Cruise Director, Sue, was really fantastic. And the female Maitre D, Lucy, was available every night of the cruise, not just the last night as we have seen before.
Dining: We hope they never get rid of the "everyday" menu in the dining room because we do not always find something on their daily menu we can eat. We are pretty conservative eaters, not used to lots of sauces and gravies. We like our veggies to look like veggies and even though we are old, we don't need them mashed up or chopped. So, we usually had things like salmon or steak but getting the steak done to order was sometimes a problem (no matter which side of the menu it was on). That said, our waiters bent over backward to make it right for us and they brought anything and everything we ask for. We did not go hungry and we did not go to the specialty restaurant and pay for what we should have been getting in the dining room!
Entertainment: We enjoyed all of the entertainment on board. The Take Note Quartet entertained us nightly in the Rendez-Vous Lounge - they were super. Of course, Perry Grant was good (when you could get in the door for his show). Inspiration Strings group was fantastic. The acapella group lost one of it's members early on to illness and he eventually had to fly home, but they managed to entertain with only 3 of them and the help of a 15-year old passenger who sat in one night. The orchestra and dancers were good, the comedians entertaining, singers very talented, etc.