2011/2012 Australia/NZ Century Cruise: Celebrity Century Cruise Review by PAFC2004
Overall Member Rating
2011/2012 Australia/NZ Century Cruise
Destination: Australia & New Zealand
Embarkation: Sydney (Australia)
No one cares about this. We were in a concierge class cabin - was quick. Seemed as if it wasn't too bad for those who weren't in concierge class.
As most of you know, the Concierge class cabins on the Century are the same size as the standard balcony cabins. This differs from the rest of the Celebrity fleet, as far as I know. Regardless, they are fantastic. There were 4 of us in the cabin (my parents, my sister, and myself). There was a queen bed, a fold-out sofa, and a top-berth single.
The TV was a good size, although the programming was average (CNBC, MSNBC, PBS, SKY News and a couple of other channels). There was plenty of storage space, even for 4 adults. The More balcony (my first balcony experience) was amazing. Very well appointed. I have cruised with P&O Australia 3 times before, and those cabins reminded you at every step that you were on ship. This one did not. You could be forgiven for thinking it was a 5-star room, on land (apart from the view!).
We received hors d'oeuvres each night, as well as fresh fruit and chocolates. For me, it wasn't worth it. The hors d'oeuvres consisted of fish-based spreads on crisp bread, covered with cling wrap... When the room attendends hand you a plate with hors d'oeuvres on them, wrapped in plastic - the effect is lost.
Extremely poor. The crowd on this sailing was skewed heavily towards the 60+ crowd, but the entertainment did not reflect otherwise. There was the standard 'party band' in the rendez vous lounge each night (they didn't want to be there), which was comprised of half a dozen middle-aged muso's who were clearly bored. The female acoustic artist near the Cova Cafe was brilliant though.
Richard Rubin (from Beauty and the Geek) played Piano, and did a musical trivia game each night in Michaels club (an old fashioned piano bar, with dark wood book shelves and leather seats). A definite highlight. He is hilarious.
The Martini bar was great. Michael had plenty of tricks, and remembered people's names after the first night. Great place to start your night.
The casino was ok. There were jackpots and special games each night, but the atmosphere lacked somewhat.
Hemisphere, the nightclub was OK. On this sailing, as previously mentioned, the crowd was quite old. There was a group of approximately 20 "younger" people that stayed out until the 3am closing time. I'm 28, by the way. Great venue, however the d-jay was a little strange. It seems that the late-night venue hours are dictated heavily by the audience.
We had the first seating each night (6pm). Not only was the view (aft) brilliant, the food and service were amazing. This was only my 4th cruise, but the staff gave the impression that they wanted to be there. This contrasted from my experiences with P&O Australia. My somewhat hard-to-please family were blown away also. The food was just amazing. I highly recommend the french onion soup (available each night, on the non-rotating menu). There was enough choice for meat eaters, vegetarians (my sister), and others. Service was prompt, and extremely friendly. The dining staff were great fun!
The breakfast buffet was brilliant. There was both an American style buffet (crisp bacon, bagels etc.) and a british buffet (baked beans, short back bacon cooked less than the good stuff etc.). Also, there were pancakes and waffles before 9am.
The lunch buffet consisted of your standard fare: roast meats, several types of potato, sandwiches to order, pizza, pasta, and amazing stir fry to order.
Furthermore, room service was available 24 hours a day, and it did not incur a further charge. The burger, chicken baguette, chicken noodle soup and club sandwiches were phenomenal. Great at 4am, after a hard night of dancing!
Many people will compare the Century to larger ships which cruise the med etc. I am basing this review on the fact we don't get much down in Australia. Hence, this review compares itself somewhat to P&O Australia.
Celebrity blow P&O away in every facet. Staff, cabins, food... everything. P&O service is actually great. Celebrity are somehow better. I'm looking forward to cruising on the solstice at the end of this year (we are getting 120,000 tonne ships finally!). I probably won't be able to afford it, as a student, but I can dream.
All I can say is: if you are tossing up between P&O and Celebrity - stop thinking now. Celebrity all the way. Less