We booked two cruises this year, one in February on NCL and this one for our 40th Anniversary over the July 4th week. The PRIMARY reason for booking both cruises was that they left from local ports with no need for the expense of air travel. In both cases, we booked Accommodation's similar to those we book aboard Princess, which is a Mini-Suite.
NCL was a disappointment in just about every way, but the Celebrity Summit was a delight. Our pampering began with the priority service given us when we arrived at the port to check in. We went through the check in process in less than 10 minutes. That was followed by a brief wait for the reservation for dinner that night in the Normandie Restaurant (The only specialty restaurant aboard). After making the reservation, we had our picture taken, and we boarded the shuttle bus to the ship. Being experienced cruisers and knowing that our suite would not be ready until after lunch, we had only our laptop and a beach bag with us as we toured the ship and ate lunch in the Waterfall Cafe.
Our Butler Elvis,was waiting for us as we made our way to our cabin, and he informed us of all the amenities (including afternoon tea served in our cabin)that came with our accommodations. He and our Cabin Steward Clarence were both very thoughtful, and doted on our every need and desire. I have to mention at this point that we had paid for our entire family to cruise with us for our 40th, and they had standard ocean view cabins. They were all happy with the ship as well. We had chosen the "Select Dinning" plan rather than fixed seating so that we had a bit more freedom as to when we ate. This turned out to be less flexible aboard Celebrity than it is aboard Princess and NCL (NCL pioneered this type of dinning). It didn't however prove to be a problem.
We actually found(on our second night), a wait staff that we enjoyed, and asked to be seated at their station for the rest of the cruise. I could probably go on for pages about the good points, but suffice it to say that the ONLY negative we found was the usual reservation of lounges around the pool. Being a bit picky, I would have to say that the food while very good and the selection being quite broad, was a bit less elegant than aboard Princess. To make up for that though, the smokeless casino was a BIG plus. All in all, we had a GREAT cruise. We will definitely consider Celebrity for future cruises.
The ship docked at Kings Wharf, due to its inability to dock elsewhere, and I prefer that to having to tender in to the port.
While on the opposite side of Bermuda from the "Big City", the island is small enough and the transportation good enough so that there was no problem seeing anything you wanted to.
We had booked tours through a link provided in a letter e-mailed to us by Celebrity, but the company booked with was not affiliated with Celebrity. When the second half of our booked tour did not materialize, I went to the travel desk aboard and they assisted us in booking a similar tour through them. They also arranged for me to call both the tour operator in Florida, and AMEX to put a stop on payment to the defaulting tour company. While they were helpful, and rescued my group from a bad situation, I indicated that they should in the future investigate a company before allowing them to offer tours through a Celebrity e-mail or site affiliated with Celebrity.