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36 Celebrity Constellation Cruise Reviews for Family Cruises to Europe - Eastern Mediterranean

I traveled on the August 15 – 25, 2019 roundtrip voyage of the Constellation from Venice with stops in Dubrovnik, Crete, Mykonos, Athens, Rhodes, Santorini, and Katakolon. I was with my wife and 2 teenage sons (14 and 16) in an ... Read More
I traveled on the August 15 – 25, 2019 roundtrip voyage of the Constellation from Venice with stops in Dubrovnik, Crete, Mykonos, Athens, Rhodes, Santorini, and Katakolon. I was with my wife and 2 teenage sons (14 and 16) in an Oceanview cabin (i.e., 7004). This was the 17th cruise for my wife and me, all of them with Celebrity or Royal Caribbean. All of our other trips have been in the Caribbean or to Bermuda, but this very excellent port intensive Greek Islands cruise caught my eye because it went to so many locations in Greece. It was a really great trip overall, and we loved it. We spent almost 3 weeks prior to the cruise traveling around Italy (to Rome, Capri, Pompeii, Tivoli, Tuscany, and Venice) by train and by car. As fun and amazing as that was, we were looking forward to getting on board the ship. THE CABIN We’ve always had balconies before (except for an inside cabin on a last minute trip to Bermuda), but a balcony was going to add $2500 to the total price, and this was already our most expensive cruise and vacation, so we decided to try an Oceanview. While we obviously would have preferred a balcony, I could not justify the price and this worked out fine. This cabin had 2 upper Pullman bunks and was at the very front of the ship. The location was very convenient and the seas were smooth, so it worked out from that perspective. But, we were awoken several mornings at about 5:30 am by sounds of the ship we hadn’t heard in our other cabin locations. One morning, it sounded like an anchor was being lowered (even though I don’t think that’s what it was) and a few other mornings I think it was an outside door just below the bridge that was also accompanied by a warning bell. It wasn’t super major, but getting awoken early like that was annoying enough that I would avoid this cabin and the immediate location in the future. Our cabin attendant kept the cabin fresh and spotless and was helpful when we asked for ice and a corkscrew. THE SHIP The Constellation is a beautiful ship in great shape. I had read a few reviews that suggested there were areas of wear and tear, but the reviewers must have been on a different ship than us. Celebrity does a first rate job keeping their ships in top shape. While the Solstice class is our favorite class, we are happy with the M-class and would definitely sail on the Connie again, particularly if the itinerary were as great as this one. The overall vibe feels classy to us, from the décor, the other passengers, amenities, and the friendliness of the crew. I understand the ship is slated for an upgrade in the spring, although I think it is beautiful as-is. THE X-CLUB The X-Club for teenagers in the Fun Factory was a huge plus for us. Our sons spent a lot of time there and were busy with a variety of offered activities along with a friendly and engaging staff. They also made friends with a nice group of teenage boys from Spain, France, Ireland, and New Jersey who also participated in the X-Club activities. We liked how they were able to meet and become friends with kids from other countries. Their positive experience with the X-Club was a huge boon for my wife and me, because it allowed us to spend time together alone while they were having fun. If you have teens the same age, I would encourage them to go to the meet-and-greet the first night when everyone is new. Even though RCCL is known for being more youth-friendly, my sons have always said that they prefer the X-Club experience to RCCL (which is usually more crowded and more of a factory in their opinion). In fact, they said that if a ship has a Flowrider, they would prefer the ship (i.e., RCCL) hands down on that basis alone. But if there is no Flowrider, they prefer Celebrity hands down. My oldest son turns 17 next year, which is a shame, because he will age out of the X-Club, and we will probably go back to the ships with Flowriders and other similar activities. I really wish there were a way for the X-Club to have activities for the 18 – 21 age set. THE CREW The Crew was universally great and friendly. They all work so hard, many of them are young, and most of them are far from home. I tipped our cabin attendant extra and gave envelopes to some of the staff in the nightly Captain’s Club cocktail party in the Reflections lounge and in the X-Club. We really appreciated the great service all around. THE MAIN DINING ROOM The MDR experience on all of our cruises, whether with Celebrity or RCCL, have gone down in recent years. I’ve read of other people on the boards commenting on the same thing, but the staffing cuts that Celebrity and RCCL have made to MDR staff feel painfully obvious to us. The staff are clearly required to service more passengers than in prior years, which causes dinner to drag out way too long (even though the number of courses have been cut as have showy desserts the waiters would set aflame table-side, like Cherries Jubilee, Baked Alaska and Crepes with Bananas Flambé). On a human level, it also makes me uncomfortable to see human beings pressed to work as hard as they do in the MDR. I don’t fault the MDR staff at all – this is a management issue at the bean counter level. Please increase the MDR staff, Celebrity and RCCL. It used to be a positive experience for us, but has turned into a negative. We chose to eat up in the Oceanview Café for more than half of our dinners (we ate in the MDR only 4 times on the 10 night cruise and it used to be something we looked forward to). THE FOOD Overworked MDR staff notwithstanding, this was some of the best food we have had on any cruise in a number of years. The menus were interesting, the food was fresh, and all of the increased choices up at the Oceanview Café for dinner (they serve Beef Wellington up there the same night it was served in the MDR) really made the food a big plus for us, and I don’t usually get excited about cruise ship food. Loved the omelets in the morning and Indian food choices. We also enjoyed the lunch at the spa café near the Thalassotherapy pool. They had small plates with dishes like salmon salad, tuna salad, cold soba noodles, lentil salad, small spinach salads, etc. I wondered if Celebrity increased the per-passenger food budget because this cruise was so much more expensive than our Caribbean cruises and the passengers seemed to be a bit posher and not overwhelmingly American. Or maybe it was because the ship’s head chef, Singh Deoraj, was so great. Whatever it was, the food was terrific over all. THE PORTS Venice This was my third time to Venice. It was magical when I came in the 80s and then again in the 90s (in the spring). But, I felt it was very, very crowded this time everywhere we walked, on the vaporettos, etc. We spent 3 nights here before the cruise and while it definitely was special for me, the crowds and the heat rubbed the magic off. We ended up going over to Murano, Burano, and Torcello, which I highly recommend if you have the time. They are reachable by vaporetto rides (I think Burano and Torcello were about 45 minutes away by boat). Torcello in particular was small, quaint, charming and had some restaurants that looked very nice albeit a bit pricey. We had the vaporetto pass that was 30 euros per person for 2 days of unlimited use and thought it was a pretty good value if you took more than 2 round trips per day, even if it was rather expensive overall in my opinion. Our hotel was a few blocks to the East of the train station, so it was a pretty easy 15 minute walk to the people mover. I should say it was easy for us – we had to drag our suitcases over rough stones and over a bridge, which would be difficult for some people. If you are staying in Venice either before or after your cruise, you will have to make plans to get your luggage to your hotel, so think about it in advance. The People Mover (i.e., a mono-rail from the edge of Venice to the Cruise Port) was 1.5 euros per person and was pretty easy and convenient to use, though I ended up having to pay twice for one of my tickets and so did a woman who was there at the same time. We had purchased our tickets at the machine, but then the scanner said they were invalid even though her husband’s ticket worked and so did the 3 tickets for the rest of my family. There was no attendant, we just had to buy new ones. It’s possible my ticket was too close to the scanner when I scanned one of the tickets of my family members. A minor annoyance, so just be careful. The sail-away from Venice is a stunning trip down the canal from the cruise port, past Piazza San Marco, the Lido, and out to the Adriatic. Make sure you don’t miss it. It was really spectacular. Dubrovnik We took a taxi from the cruise port to the gates of the walled city. The taxi was 14 euros and was a posted and fixed rate. We arrived in the afternoon and had been concerned the crowds would make the walking of the wall too crowded, but it was really OK. We did that, although I must say you must be very mobile and steady on your feet or else it will be dangerous for you (more on that below). We were interested in going swimming afterwards and wore our swimsuits under our shorts. It turns out there is a rocky outcropping on the outside of the walled gates (just exit near the aquarium and walk around the bend). It wasn’t fancy, but was super convenient and there were showers. I would have lingered and kept jumping in and maybe get a cold beer from a vendor, but, alas, the family had had enough and wanted to go back to the ship. It was a really nice day. Crete We took a taxi from the ship to the center of the old town (I think it was a fixed rate of 10 euros) and walked around the town and the port, which was very pretty and charming. We continued walking about 20 minutes and ended up at a local beach, Nea Chora Beach, which is in a residential neighborhood. At first I didn’t think it was anything special, but we ended up having a really nice time here. It was a friendly, local, low key vibe. 2 chairs and an umbrella (along with use of the bathroom at the restaurant that managed the chairs) was only 6 euros total, for both. The water was warm and the beach sandy. We ordered food from the restaurant, and I was really impressed with how fresh, good, and inexpensive it was. Fresh octopus, fresh sardines (which are normally not appealing to me), calamari, grape leaves, etc. and a cold beer and a carafe of wine all came to 27 euros. As I said, it wasn’t the prettiest beach in my opinion, because it was in a residential neighborhood. But, that said, we had a lot of fun, I liked the food, convenience, price, and the vibe and would go back again. We walked about 20 minutes back to the town and grabbed a cab (which was actually a bit hard to find). Next time, I would ask the restaurant to help call a cab, which I assume would be about 15 euros back to the ship from this distance. Mykonos I wasn’t fully sure what to do here and had been worried about crowds and whether the beaches might be *too* interesting to my teenage sons. We ended up getting a day pass to the St. John Beach Resort (just search for them online and “info@” email address on their website). It was stunning and one of the highlights of the cruise. I highly recommend it, and this might have been our favorite day of the cruise. I had hesitated because it was 100 euros per person, but that included transportation from the ship, a spectacular breakfast buffet (take my word for it – don’t eat breakfast on the ship – eat it here, it was that great), a thick towel, a big lunch (I had grilled calamari that was incredible), and use of the chaise longues by the pool or down by the beach (which was narrow, but had a fun dock you could jump off of). The hotel was so deluxe, I had thought they might treat us differently because we were day passers from a cruise ship, but they could not have been friendlier and we felt very welcome. Even though it was more money than I might have wanted to spend, I thought the value was terrific. The kids stayed on board, and it was a really special day for my wife and me. I would definitely do this again. They only sell 12 day passes. We met 6 other nice people from our ship who were doing the same thing, and I know everyone loved it. Incidentally, this was listed as a tender port, but we docked instead. Athens The last time I was in Athens was in the winter when I was in college with my parents. Going in the summer, with heat in the high 90s, and a lot more tourists, was different, but still great. We hopped in a cab from the port and had him take us to the Acropolis. It was a fixed fare of 25 euros and took about 20 or 25 minutes. It was spectacular, and I loved it, the heat notwithstanding (although the heat was overwhelming to some – more below). After a few hours there, we walked down through the plaka and got some food at an outdoor café, which was a little pricey given it was a touristy neighborhood, but it was pretty and we enjoyed it nonetheless. I wanted to go to the Agora, but everyone else was melting after all of the hours of walking, and we took a taxi back to the ship from the Plaka. Rhodes The ship docked at a pier right next to the walled old town, so it was an easy walk if you are reasonably mobile and steady on your feet. We walked through the old town and went to the castle, which is a Mussolini-era reconstruction that was pretty good. But, after seeing so much history over the previous month in Italy, I wasn’t super impressed walking through a reconstruction. After that, we walked about 30 minutes to Elli Beach, which was a local beach that had chair rentals, some of the clearest water I have seen anywhere, and a large, broad, nice pebbly beach. Yes, it was crowded and there were hotels behind it, but the beach was nice if you got on a decent part of it. We didn’t rent chairs, but if I had to do it all over again, I would have gone to Elli Beach straight away (an easy 15 minute cab ride) and got some decent chairs and an umbrella at one of the establishments that was nicer than the one we plopped our towels in front of. I would spend the morning at the beach before it got too crowded and then walk around the old town and get something to eat there. Santorini We loved, loved Santorini – but with a few important caveats. This was a tender port that was scheduled to have approximately 5 ships in port that day (and none the next day!). The cruise staff implored everyone to get up early and get on the earliest tender you can. We listened to them, and you should, too. We were lucky enough to get on the first tender and in the first cable car up the mountain. Tickets for the cable car were 6 euros each and we were lucky again that there was no line yet and we were up to the top at about 7:30 am (a hard feat for us to corral the whole family to do this!). We had decided to go to Oia on our own and grabbed the first taxi we found, which was easy because none of the swarms had arrived yet. It was 35 euros for an approximately 30 minute cab ride to Oia (which I think we may have been overcharged – I think the official rate, if there is one, is 30 euros, which is what it cost on the way back. I didn’t care – I was just happy to get one.) Incidentally, you can take a donkey ride up for 6 euros per person, but the crew staff advised people not to, both for safety reasons (the donkeys sometimes slip) and for animal cruelty reasons. I, for one, could never do it. Oia was empty when we got there at 8 am and stunningly beautiful. We had it to ourselves for 20 minutes and then the first buses started to arrive and it steadily became more and more crowded. We walked around for 4 hours or so and stopped for some incredible Greek pastries, Greek coffee, and an incredible view at a bakery/café called Skiza that was on the main pedestrian drag. It was a little pricey, partly because Santorini has a 25% city tax, but the view and food was amazing. It was a nice way to get away from the crowds, which had now descended upon Oia, rest our tired feet, and enjoy the view. By now, it was very hot and crowded and the narrow streets were packed. I actually ended up getting separated for a tense 30 minutes from my family after getting stuck behind people taking photographs that I didn’t want to interrupt (but politely would next time). The square was packed, too. There was a woman from the ship who had fallen (a man had stepped on her ankle, I had heard) sitting, injured, on a bench and later was in wheelchair on the ship (more on injuries, below). We walked a few blocks away and tried to get a cab, which was now impossible, so we walked for about 15 minutes to the other side of the town and were able to get a taxi for 30 euros back to Fira. We walked around and took some stunning photographs there, but by now had been off the ship for about 7 hours. We wanted to take the cable car down, but no dice – the line was at least 2 hours long so we opted to walk down. We are fit, so it was doable, but people were slipping (including us) all over the place, because some of the stones are shiny obsidian and there is a lot of donkey dung. It took us 30 minutes and while not difficult for us, I know it was difficult for others and it would be impossible and dangerous if you had any mobility issues. I think some of the ship’s tours that go by bus to Oia go to a different tender stop and then get a bus ride that picks them up right at the water without having to navigate the cable car mess. If you are going to Oia and don’t think you can get off very early like we did and go by cab, I would probably consider that. I know some people who took the public bus were furious that they were so jammed with passengers they felt it was dangerous, so make sure you allow plenty of time for whatever you do. As I said, Oia and Fira and our overall visit to Santorini was a highlight for us, but only because we were up very early and were able to avoid some of the mobs and we were able to walk down the mountain, albeit reluctantly, instead of taking the cable car down. Some people had no choice but to wait in the sun for a couple of hours. One woman on our return tender had waited for 1.5 hours in line and finally gave up and walked down, and was very hot and unhappy. We also so people arguing about others cutting in line. When there are this many cruise ships in port at once, I really think a better system would be ideal for everyone, both from safety and efficiency perspectives. While this was a really great day for us overall, I can see how this stop could easily be a bad one for some people, so please plan ahead. Katakolon (Olympia) This was our last stop, and we were feeling a little sad by now. There is a small train that runs from Katakolon to Olympia every 2 hours or so for 10 euros per person roundtrip. I knew my kids would think the train was fun, which was one of the reasons we chose it. It was also a pretty 45 minute ride through the countryside. We were off the ship at 9:00 and the train left at 10, so there was a little bit of a wait. You can search for information online about it – it is easy to find. After you arrive in Olympia, it is an easy 10 minute walk from the train station are the remains of ancient Olympia, which we really enjoyed walking around even though it was nearly 100 degrees. In fact, it was so hot that the Hellenic Red Cross very generously was handing out free bottles of water. I would have liked to have stayed a little longer, but we needed to get on the 1:10 train back because the next one was not until 3:30, which was cutting it too close. There are a number of waterfront cafes on the way back to the pier. I would have liked to have stopped for a bit for a cold beer or glass of wine and Greek seafood like we had in Crete, but we ended up getting back on board to have lunch. Incidentally, it was a VERY long walk from the ship to where the buses, taxi, and town were. If walking is an issue for you, please check into it in advance. If I had to do this stop all over, I might have gone by bus or taxi to Olympia, which probably would have given us an hour head start over the train even though the train was a nice way to travel and the kids liked it. If we had done that, it think it would have given us enough time to swim at a local beach for an hour or 2, which I would have liked to have done and it would have given some more time in Olympia (I could have used another hour there at least). I had my eye on Agios Andreas, a nearby beach as a possibility that I believe was accessible by a little trolley bus, but it wasn’t meant to be. Sea Day The last day of the trip was a sea day, and we spent most of it on lounge chairs by the Thalassotherapy pool. We had had trouble getting seats there on other parts of the trip, so we were happy finally to spend some time there. DISEMBARKATION Our flight back to New York left at 11:05, which had me a little nervous. We did the baggage walk-off, which was scheduled for 7:40 am. They actually started letting people off at 7:20 a.m. We were out of the customs building by about 7:30 and grabbed a taxi right away. It was 45 euros and we were at the airport in less than 20 minutes. We checked in and were through check-in and customs by 8:20, which gave us plenty of time. You would think we would have eaten enough by now after a vacation in Italy and a cruise, but there was a café near the gate that sold really nice sandwiches for about 5 or 6 euros each and cappuccinos. I couldn’t pass up the cappuccino, but wished I had bought sandwiches for us. The flight was 9 hours and they didn’t serve lunch until 1:00 or so and then there was only a greasy warm sandwich served an hour before landing. I would have preferred the nice sandwich from the airport J SOME GENERAL TIPS It can be hard to find free bathrooms, so make sure you have a handful of euro coins in case you need to go. I googled “bathrooms near me” on my phone, which was very helpful in terms of guiding us to the nearest one on several occasions. If you have a child under 18, many (but not all) venues are free, so make sure you ask, because it is not always posted. Importantly, many of the places require photo ID, so we had our passports with us when we got off. If you are between 18 and 25, there are usually heavily discounted rates, but you need to have proof of age and your school ID. Italy and Greece use the Euro, which was convenient for us. We used credit cards mostly, but had some cash for taxis, bathrooms, and bottles of water. In Dubrovnik, we used Euros for the taxi, but I don’t believe the Euro is taken everywhere in Croatia. *SAFETY* *Please* be careful on this itinerary in the summer if you have any mobility issues at all (or even if you don’t). I’m not trying to be melodramatic, but I have never seen more people injured on a vacation ever. At the Colosseum in Rome before the trip, a woman collapsed in the heat and fell to the floor while in the ticket line. Another woman fell down some stairs and cut her knee pretty bad. A lot of roads and walkways in the old towns are paved with small rocks that are uneven and slippery. We saw a woman from the ship who tripped and fell in Rhodes and her face was black and blue days later (and her glasses broken). An older woman passed out and was getting medical attention by paramedics at the Acropolis. There was the woman who had her ankle stepped on in Santorini and ended up in a wheelchair. We saw a woman on our flight home from the cruise who was in a wheelchair and her leg in a fresh cast, so we assumed she had fallen somewhere. We saw at least 5 or 6 people fall on the steps down the hill in Santorini when they couldn’t get a cable car and had to walk down. I’m not saying don’t go – but please be VERY careful! Also, make sure you drink a lot of water! This was a trip of a lifetime for us, and we really loved it! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise line because of the itinerary and that is the only reason, three days in Israel. Three cabins, two generations of cruisers. We have been on lots of cruises, never on Celebrity and never again! Let me start with ... Read More
We chose this cruise line because of the itinerary and that is the only reason, three days in Israel. Three cabins, two generations of cruisers. We have been on lots of cruises, never on Celebrity and never again! Let me start with the positive: big upgraded rooms (we paid for this!) nice staff. Now the negative: we paid to upgrade my parents, we show up at entry, there is no cabin for them and no one seems concerned. I pitched a fit and they found one. They charge for spin and Zumba and yoga classes, a first in my experience. No free Internet --in fact Internet charge was close to $500. Many rooms off limits thruout the cruise for private functions. Unless you drink tap water, coffee (lukewarm) or tea, you pay for ANYTHING you drink. You pay for specialty restaurants. You pay for gelato! Food in dining room and café was unbelievably tasteless even desserts!! Even croissants! No real fridge in rooms.No bottled water.Certain room service items were extra. Ship dirty and smelly Entertainment and activities scant.Forget TV movies and channels, very limited and mostly UK game shows!! Hard sell on everything, in fact, most "activites" were sale shows. 26 such events in ONE DAY. Port lectures were very poor and unreliable, mostly telling you where to shop at their "preferred: shops. It took us three hours to get a rerplacement bathroom light. Towels and sheets are very old and paper thin. Tap water is vile yellowish. Prized for trivia contests were pathetic...sunglass paper cover, small USB stick...?deck of cards Charged $50 for one small sack of laundry. The experience was laughably bad. Avoid at all costs. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We are a Canadian couple in our early 50's have done both cruising and all inclusive packages. This was our 20th cruise and 2nd with Celebrity. ( some back ground details so you understand this was not our first experience at ... Read More
We are a Canadian couple in our early 50's have done both cruising and all inclusive packages. This was our 20th cruise and 2nd with Celebrity. ( some back ground details so you understand this was not our first experience at travel.) We had chosen Celebrity as this was our second European journey with Celebrity. Love the size of the ships and the itineraries. We also landed a few perks that were nice incentives as well. Embarkation was smooth and quick in Venice. We did stay at an Airbnb for 3 days prior to tour around. Water taxis are easy to negotiate in Venice. Purchase a multi day pass and explore on and off. We water taxied from the airport to our Airbnb. Easy peasy. Just research in advance. We were on the ship in 20 mins of arrival at the port. Smooth, checked in and eating our lunch on board at 12:30 cabins were ready at 1:30 luggage at room by 2:30pm Muster drill at 3:45ish then off to the races for 10 amazing days. The ship is wonderful. My only complaint. Not even a complaint more of an observation was the main piazza. It really did not exist like in most ships there is a vast opening from the 3rd floor all the way up to the 7th. Seats all around so you can ppl watch and listen to entertainment. As this is an older ship the design, it is quint and areas are choppy. Like I said an observation and unique. Not a disappointment. The staff were friendly and polite at all times. They are hard working people miles away from their families for months on end to ensure that we as passengers have a pleasurable experience. I often get to know our waiters, they have wonderful stories. Food was excellent. Bar service never an issue. The Classic booze package was just perfect. House wines wonderful, from Tuscany, Chili, South Africa to name a few. Did not feel the pressure to upsell at all. Spirits were plentiful and mid range. Really unless you are a alcohol expert Classic is perfect. Cabin was well appointed. Balcony was perfect size, room steward was tentative. Our ports. 1. Koper Slovenia: itself is very small, so an hour or so is likely to be enough time to stroll then head out and explore. Ships dock opposite a lift which takes you up to town level. You can also walk its about 6mins. We took the public from Koper to Piran which is a really pretty town a little along the coast and the drive there and back has some scenery too. Regular city buses and inexpensive. Travel every 30 mins to and from Piran is a must. Go to the info centre and we booked a 7 Euro per person walking tour for 90 mins. It was excellent. Such a beautiful spot and have the narrative along the way was exceptional. Eat at a seaside restaurant. Excellent seafood. 2. Zadar Croatia: Free shuttle from the ship to town. Bus lets you off at the boardwalk first hit the The Sea Organs (http://vinovo.magnify.net/video/ZADAR-Morske-orgulje-Sea-Orga) Then continue on the board walk into old town. Explore I suggest you stay in the old part of the town, sit in a caffees, do some people watching, than change a spot and do the same. The church St. Donat and the treasury chamber are worth the visit inside, other than that Zadar is more an experience of strolling through the streets (like ST. Paul de Vence near Nice or Aix a Provance near Marsellies if you are familiar). 3. Dubrovnik Croatia. Having stayed there 6 yrs ago did not want to visit old town. That is amazing and walk to the bus terminal which is adjacent to the cruise terminal and busses travel to and from old town for cheap. .The ship charges 5 xs the cost for the same thing. We opted to visit sea-side town of Cavtat. Not a long bus ride but what a beautiful town. We just strolled along the waterside that borders the town. Swam in the Adriatic. 5 areas to sun yourself on a pier. rent chairs and relax for a couple of hours. A lot of nice café’s and places to sit as you walk. Hiking / walking paths easily marked worth strolling. What a great day and a must see this town. A ferry ride back to Dubrovnik or the bus. we opted for the bus as it brought us back to the terminal next to the ship. You can take Libertas #10 from the Gruz Harbor directly to Cavtat. Bus cost is 25 Kuna per person, no foreign currency. Take the small boat back to the old town, 4.Kotor Montenegro. Wake up early and watch the sights pulling into the harbor.Bay of Kotor surrounded by steep,mountains lined with historic buildings, churches, towers, docks, and marinas along the shore. It’s onthe list of the 25 most beautiful bays in the world. We tendered and walked the stairs 430 up the side of the mountain. The views amazing. Arrive early and do this. the hike up is aprox 50 mins. Not for the faint of heart. Bring water. The walk down was good but started to get crowed by fellow tourists. Spend the rest of the day in Old town getting lost in the streets and enjoy an Aperol Sprits and seafood. 5. Sea day..need I say more. Sleep in and enjoy the amenities of the ship. Message special at the spa for this day. FYI. Book it the evening before they promo that on the ship. 6 & 7. Malta Valetta. 2 days. purchase the hop on hop off pass for 2 days. 32.00 usa and it is charged to your room by the ship. Excellent cheap way to see the Island. We did the red line one day and the blue line the next. Spent time in the old town. they have 2 for 1 dinks on the main street. 2 aperol spritz for the price of one. Good way to finish an afternoon. We swam in the Mediterranean at the Grotto. 8. Sicily - Sircusa ( did not stop in Catania Italy due to berth availability.) Sircusa was an amazing surprise. Tender to the Island. Walk to the right. find the market what a great experience. The market with the local produce, spices, cheeses and the vibe of the shop keepers. Stoll old town and have a lunch. Walk the marina. Impressive yachts. 9. Naples. Having been before we opted for the Fast ferry to Capri. Beautiful, stunning and totally worth the 40min Ferry ride. Ferry from Naples to Capri departs at 8:35 / 9:10 Purchase at the ferry. Once on Capri immediately purchase ticket for Naples ( fills up fast) Capri harbour a taxi or trolly up to the town for glorious views - especially dizzying vertical views waaaaay down to sea- level from viewpoints on the edge of town. Capri there are a number of little restaurants and shops right by the docks Don't buy the ticket online ahead of time. When you get off the ship just go to the left and you can buy your ticket. Check the schedules though as you may not want a round trip with the ferry company. Some are faster then others. If you aren't going round trip with the same company just buy your ticket in Capri right there when you get there and you are set for your return. Be sure to do the chair lift, the views are amazing!!!!!!. We hiked the Arco Nature walk. totally worth the view. took us 25 mins of meandering through small walk ways with surprising views around each corner. Away from the crowds. It was fabulous. We had a great sea view lunch then back to the ship on the 2:50 Ferry gave us time to relax on the ship. 10. Rome. Having been before. Unfortunately high tailed it to the airport. aprox 50 mins from the port. Pre arrange a driver. Fellow travellers are congested at this port trying to arrange for transportation. If you choose to do Rome for a few days. It is a must. Book and Airbnb. Book tours through Viator. and take in the sights and food you will not be disappointed. This was an amazing journey. My apologies if this seemed long winded. These reviews do help me with journaling my travels. I found these tips to be of help for me while doing my research. I hope this will be of benefit to others. Celebrity will not disappoint. Bon voyage. Ciao Safe travels. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Well, we have just returned from our first Celebrity Cruise in 5 years having spent the last 5 on P&O. We were onboard the Celebrity Constellation having done 3 cruises on the Silhouette when she was new. Our cruise was the Adriatic ... Read More
Well, we have just returned from our first Celebrity Cruise in 5 years having spent the last 5 on P&O. We were onboard the Celebrity Constellation having done 3 cruises on the Silhouette when she was new. Our cruise was the Adriatic and the Greek Islands Cruise from the 20th August for 10 nights starting from Venice. We had stayed in Venice for 3 nights prior to the cruise and organised all transfers ourselves. First impressions of the ship were very positive, and embarkation was very smooth and efficient. We were onboard at about 11.30am and had not had to wait more than a minute to check in. We liked the size of the ship and loved the fact that she had a large prom deck, though disappointed that it does not go all round the front or the aft of the ship. Our cabin was superb – we had Concierge Class 7203 which had a huge aft balcony with 2 sun loungers and a small table, a large table and 4 chairs. There was easily enough space for more! I would say that the balcony was about 15ft by 8ft at the least. The shades above made it very private and it was very quiet, with a mixture of shade and sun. We had been worried that the length of the balcony would make the cabin dark, but this was not the case and the cabin was light and airy. As travellers from the OK we were really pleased that we were asked If we wanted a tea kettle – and very surprised. A nice touch for us Brits! One thing that surprised us was that the cabin next to us was a family cabin and not another CC cabin. This was a surprise as had we realised this we would have chosen another one. No offense to anyone with children but in the school holidays it can be a lottery re possible noise with children on a balcony. Thankfully, the family next to us were generally respectful of others and quiet and we thank them for that. If we travelled in an aft cabin on this class of ship again we would check out what cabins are either side in case we were not as lucky next time. One thing that struck us about this aft cabin was that, unlike the Silhouette aft cabin and an aft cabin we have had on P&O’s Britannia, there was no juddering or vibration and when docking we very rarely felt anything. Connie came across as a very smooth, well balanced ship – if that makes sense. No soot either! Our cabin was comfortable, though some of the furniture a little worn and our balcony rail needed some TLC (but looking at the one nearby I think it was the next one to have some varnish!). The bathroom was excellent, and the storage space was amazing. We’ve never had a cabin with so much space to store our belongings! Have to say, the one thing that we both disliked was the full-length mirror that covered the wall right opposite the bed. Useless as a mirror to use to dress as you couldn’t stand far enough back and not at all flattering first thing in the morning (ha ha). We found the crew on the whole to be friendly and attentive. Staff in the bar areas were helpful and chatty but we did feel that they seemed a little understaffed at times and quite often it was far easier to go to the bar ourselves to get a drink than wait from someone to come to us. We found the perks from Concierge Class to be really good – we loved the special chance to go to the helipad on our sail in to Dubrovnik and some of the little extras we received. We would definitely go CC again in the future if funds allowed. The enhanced breakfast menu was excellent, and we made use of cabin service for breakfast a number of times. It was very efficient - though we wished that the times given to order went beyond 9 – 9.30am as some days when we wanted a lazy day we would have preferred a time after 10am (particularly when the clocks had changed an hour). We have to mention our cabin steward Neranda who was amazing – a superb advertisement for the cruise line and probably one of the best stewards we have ever had. His was polite, friendly, helpful, and thoughtful. His decoration of our cabin for our anniversary and bottle of wine was a lovely surprise and very much appreciated. In effect, it was thanks to him that we had a special cruise and we would very much like to meet him again on a future cruise. Dining. On our last cruises on Celebrity we found the food to be better than this time. We ate in Qsine on the first night and enjoyed the meal once again. We did think that the staff in there sometimes try too hard though – if that makes sense. We did not eat in the other speciality restaurants though – with Sushi on 5 not being to our taste and the menu in the Tuscan Grill not inspiring us at all. The food in the Main Dining Room was good when we chose, but we found that our choices were very limited, and it was a case of ‘which one item do you fancy tonight’. In fact, the MDR was the main disappointment of the cruise as we had chosen select dining and, on this occasion, it seemed chaotic most evenings. We expected to wait, but on one occasion our pager did not work, and we waited an hour or more with little apology when we gave up and went back to check. We sat in 3 main areas and service was hit and miss. 2 areas were ok(ish) but nothing special and some staff tried their best. Another one where we sat for 2 nights was terrible and everyone we sat with made the same comment. Service for the wine was hit and miss too – with the wine steward checking and topping up your glass in one area and no sign of them in the other. On 2 evenings we ate in the Buffet Restaurant and that was ok – we ate at the back in the open air and it was enjoyable. The food was good and the service very good and friendly. We used the buffet restaurant a number of times for breakfast and lunch in the late afternoon. We were never disappointed, and service and the quality of the menu was excellent. I have to say that the quality of the Celebrity buffet has been and still is way above any we have had on other cruise lines. We also used Café al Bacio several times for speciality coffees and, again the service there was excellent and the coffees very good! We are not a couple who tend to go to the major shows and prefer a walk around the ship after our meal and sit is a quiet bar. This time we found that the singers were a mixed bag. Sadly, we can’t remember are the names but the male soloist in the Oceanview Bar at the back was excellent (just as well as we could hear him from our cabin balcony), as were the group who performed most nights. A female soloist had a voice that was not to our taste (if that is a polite way of saying it) and it was not much fun listening to her trying to sing Whitney Houston! The string duet – well, words fail. The arrangements for the items they were playing really were not good and, though we both like classical music, we just did not like this duet at all. They certainly emptied some of the bar areas quickly and just didn’t seem to fit with the ‘vibe’ of the ship. The Movies under the Stars seemed good and in a good location at the back of the ship. We were going to make use of this but that will have to be another time! Drinks packages. We had a free Classic Drinks Package (if anything is ever free) and we used our onboard credit to upgrade to Premium when we boarded. We are unsure if it was worth the upgrade charge, but we found it easier to use, but had to keep a check on our bill on the TV as sometimes we found that we had been charged extra for some drinks. A mention must go to the Customer Service Team. They were excellent and though we had had a problem with one of our suitcases being damaged they dealt with the issue immediately and sorted any issues we had with our bill quickly and friendly. Shopping – loved the way that the shops were laid out and there seemed to be a good range of goods. A shame that they did not have a small shop for little odds and ends though. It may sound a small think but when we ran out of small packets of tissues it was a pain having to walk around Mykonos to find more. Surely the ship could stock more ‘must haves’ for passengers. Sun loungers – there always seemed to be plenty of sun loungers available, even on a sea day and the pool areas were well maintained and an idea place for a swim. One thing we did miss on Celebrity was the end of the day message from the Captain as we left port. I know that this is not a Celebrity thing, but it seemed strange not to have a message from the Bridge as we sailed away. We did see several Officers around the ship and they were always polite and friendly. On one occasion the Captain stopped to chat with us and that was a very pleasant surprise. Finally, the ports of call: Dubrovnik 2 days, Mykonos, Crete, Athens, Santorini, Kotokolon – what more can you say! All great ports of call with amazing opportunities for site seeing. We did some of the ship’s excursions and they were a mixed bag! Next year we will be doing a similar itinerary and will be checking out the chance to do more alone as we found the cost of the ship’s excursions quite expensive. To summarise our first cruise with Celebrity on one of their smaller ships – we had a great time as always. Looking back at the review there are some negatives, but these are generally minor issues and just our objective viewpoint having returned to Celebrity after a short time. Things weren’t perfect, but we have yet to sail on a cruise line where everything is! The test is would be go again and the answer is a most definite ‘YES’ and have booked again to go on Edge next year. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
This was our first cruise and from the outset the travel agent we arranged through assured us we were comingin at a high level, with the Celebrity experience recognised as one of the best. He was right - everything about this cruise was ... Read More
This was our first cruise and from the outset the travel agent we arranged through assured us we were comingin at a high level, with the Celebrity experience recognised as one of the best. He was right - everything about this cruise was fantastic from start to finish. For months in advance I looked at every website I could find which carried information on the Constellation and published reviews. I tried to be as sensible as I could about those who posted negative reviews but have to admit to being a bit concerned about those that talked about a tired, old ship. In my honest opinion, and allowing for not having anything to judge by and accepting that some people may genuinely have had some issues that I am unaware of, this is a very unfair assessment. The ship was beautifully decorated and maintained. The staff from start to finish were friendly, helpful and attentive. The itinerary (which we picked the cruise for) was perfect and was made even better by the really lovely atmosphere on the ship. The food was exceptional and, while we stuck mainly to the Ocean View and San Marco, we did on one occasion (my birthday) take a meal on Sushi on Five. That was both fantastic and extremely reasonable for what we got - indeed the staff actually helped us select and in doing so made sure we did not over-order. Which takes me to comments about pushy arroaches to upgrade - not once in my experience. Somehow, and this is still unclear to me, the staff found out that I was celebrating a birthday and brought me a cake that they had prepared while we ate! All in all, absolutely perfect and I am hooked on both crusing generally and cruising with Celebrity in particular. A massive thanks to all at Celebrity! Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose to cruise with Celebrity for our Greek Island trip. We have been cruising for 15 years and have sailed with several other companies. Unfortunately, after flying to Venice, staying in Venice, cruising for a week, and spending a ... Read More
We chose to cruise with Celebrity for our Greek Island trip. We have been cruising for 15 years and have sailed with several other companies. Unfortunately, after flying to Venice, staying in Venice, cruising for a week, and spending a couple days in Rome after the cruise, the highlight of the trip was the disaster that happened on the island of Santorini. We arrived excited to take the excursion that we booked via Celebrity. After leaving the ship, we found ourselves in a half hour traffic jam. Evidently, there were three cruise ships that arrived as well as a cargo ship that was being unloaded. It took so long to get up the mountain on the bus that we only had 30 minutes when we arrived at the first stop which was the winery. We arrived at the winery and the chaos started. We were to sample three different wines and enjoy the view, and then if we wanted to go through the gift shop, we could purchase our favorite wine. Unfortunately, as soon as the Winery specialist began to talk about the wine, several other tours groups swarmed the place and we were not able to hear the complete introduction. Next, the lines were so long, we were not able to sample each of the three wines. Our excursion leader then began calling for everyone to get on the bus for the next part of the tour. A very frustrating beginning to what would be a disastrous day. The next stop was Oia, which is a neat cliff hanger type of village, however it is basically all shopping and eating establishments. I like to experience the culture and meet the local residents. I did meet many shop owners and only a few of them were actually from Greece. Other than the view there isn’t much to see or do. Of course, getting back to the bus was quite a hike and the traffic jams continued. We finally arrived at our last stop and our guide parked the bus quite a way from the main town of Fira. We had several older folks in our tour so we helped them walk up the steep incline to get to the town. We could have parked closer, but there were so many busses jamming the small city we ended up in the first available spot. Our guide showed us to the line to ride the cable car back down to the port area. She stated we could spend some time in the town then go to the port. We looked at the line and decided it was so long that maybe we should get in line so we weren’t late for our dinner reservation. After 2 hours in line we finally made it to where we go see the cable car entrance. About this time, other tour guides brought there tours and marched them to the front of the line. Now we had been in line for about 2 hours with the sun beating down on us, we were thirsty and also needed to use the restroom which was nowhere in sight. A tour guide operator started to push to the front of the line with her group and those of us in line moved in front of the group to block them from cutting in front of us. People were booing and shouting. The tour group that was cutting in front of us, starting pushing and pulling to get to the front of the line. A riot was about to break out. Two men started pushing and pulling me, then I intervened, my children and wife started worrying that I was about to get into a fight with these people. It was really an ugly scene. When asked why the tour operator did not go to the end of the line, she stated she would go anywhere she wanted. My family ended up separated from me during this time as the tour group merged into the people that had been waiting peacefully. During this time, I saw team members from Royal Caribbean and Costa. They were walking up and down the line checking on their guests and telling them not to worry about the ship leaving as it was approaching their departure time. We did not see anyone from Celebrity until we were at the entrance to the cable car building. I did let her know that this situation was nearing a riot and they needed to help diffuse the situation and also people needed water, restrooms etc. After finally getting on the cable car and walking toward the boarding point to get back on the ship, I mentioned to the attendant the trouble that we had and what was happening. He took our room number and said they would follow up with us. Back on board the ship, we had to quickly change and run to the dining room. We were still sweaty and not really ready for a nice dining experience. We had to rush through dinner so we could watch the show. Our day that we had looked forward to, had become a day we did not want to remember at all. I may not be painting this picture properly, but the next day at breakfast my family did not want to leave the ship. They were nervous that since the same ships were going to Mykonos as well, that the same situation would occur and they were not happy with the Greek islands at all. Luckily, Mykonos was much better. I want to describe how Celebrity handled the Santorini disaster. After notifying the attendant at the port entrance, I went to the guest relations desk to ask for a refund for the terrible shore excursion and to share my experience. The guest service attendant told me that the shore excursion desk would follow up with me. I had a message on my room phone after getting back from Mykonos to come to the shore excursion desk. My wife and I proceeded to the shore excursion desk and they asked us to describe the situation and told us that there manager would review the situation and get back to us. The next day was a day at sea and we received another message to come to the excursion desk. We went to the desk and they said that they would offer a 30 percent refund of our excursion cost. At this point, I asked to speak with the manager. I informed the manager that I flew from the USA to Venice for this cruise, spent a couple days in Venice to get used to the time change and also show my children around Venice. (I am very familiar with Venice) I also paid for 3 staterooms, excursions, meals, gifts, etc. on this trip and planned a couple days in Rome after the cruise and then fly home. I told him that I had an extremely high investment in this trip and for one of the days to be ruined by a terrible excursion that I booked via Celebrity, that I should receive at a minimum a 100 percent refund. He finally relented and gave the refund. I want to point out that in each of these encounters with Celebrity on this event, they never took ownership of the situation and only blamed the tour operator. I believe that a sign of a quality company is what they do when things go wrong. I wished they said “Sorry and we will take care of you” and make a bad situation, better. I wanted them to take ownership the first time that I engaged the guest relations desk and not have to deal with them three separate times. I should not have had to ask for a full refund, it should have been a given. The solution should not have taken three days to resolve, but should have been immediate. The take away I have from Celebrity is that customer satisfaction is only something that you get if complain multiple times. By the way they eventually offered 50 dollars off of my next cruise. Really? I spent so much money on this trip, 50 dollars would not pay for a taxi ride. Many of my fellow cruisers were really upset and Celebrity said they were overwhelmed by the number of complaints and that is why it took so long to respond. I think that they were attempting to minimize their financial impact instead of making a ship wide announcement talking about the issue. Celebrity should have described what they were going to do in the future to prevent this from happening again and taken ownership of the problem. A refund and some empathy would have gone a long way. As a matter of statistics, only 10 percent of the people actually ever complain, most just never come back as customers. I heard a lot of complaints on the ship for the rest of the cruise. FYI, Celebrity knows that this situation will happen time and time again based upon their cruise schedule. I wonder how many people they have notified that they will have a bad experience in Santorini. Now to talk about the cruise in general: We booked three staterooms for my family of six, however I will reflect on my stateroom and experience. One of the things that made this cruise on the Constellation nice, were the fellow cruisers. What a nice courteous group of people. I have sailed on other ships with other companies and was very surprised at some of the things that I saw and heard. I will say no more. The Constellation is older and is showing some signs of age, but a nice ship overall. No bells and whistles like the newer ships, but decent. Our dining staff the first night was not very good, but the second and remaining nights they were top notch. Our two waiters Nevada and Frederick were awesome. I love sitting down at the table and the drinks that you want arrived without asking. Promptness and professionalism more than accurately describe these fantastic waiters. Our room attendant was great as well. He would open the door for us when we returned to the stateroom and was pleasant and seemed to love the job he was doing. Our stateroom was nice and well lit. The balcony was not huge but larger than the tiny balcony we had last year on NCL. The lounge chairs reclined which was very nice as well. I think the food quality and choices were nice. The coffee and tea seemed watery and not as good as I would have expected. The dessert choices were great and the Fathers Day cakes were a nice touch. I have been a cruiser for 15 years and fortunately I have not had any significant issues. I obviously like cruising. The Celebrity cruise was good, not great. Other than Corfu, I really didn’t find the Greek islands that intriguing. I would go back to Corfu and Capri, I also like Venice, Naples, and Rome. Overall, I am glad I went on the trip, I will never go back to Santorini. All I can do is share this with others and hope they have the info they need to make a good decision. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I enjoyed this cruise very much, which I took as a combination continuing education conference and vacation. For a ten-day cruise, it offered fantastic port opportunities, starting in Venice (we stayed in the Best Western Mestre on the ... Read More
I enjoyed this cruise very much, which I took as a combination continuing education conference and vacation. For a ten-day cruise, it offered fantastic port opportunities, starting in Venice (we stayed in the Best Western Mestre on the mainland, across the street from the Mestre train station, for an easy commute into Venice). Embarkation and disembarkation were easy and uneventful: the transfers to the airport were overpriced compared to what we would have paid for a cab (which was readily available, it turns out). We stayed in balcony cabin 9036, which was comfortable but had a curtain in the shower (and a clothes line--very handy for in-room laundry!). We are travelers who prefer the variety and flexibility of the buffet, which met our needs perfectly (plenty of salmon lox, omelettes to order at the stern eggs station, and a nice grill station for lunch and supper too, etc.). Be alert to the small signs if you are gluten-sensitive or need to avoid sugar, as the larger signs do not apply to all items in the area, I learned. We enjoyed the overnight stay in Dubrovnik, and would recommend taking a cab to the Old Town for an 8 AM start to the city walls walk (fee applies) before the heat and the crowds. At the port of Zadar, we took Celebrity's Krka River National Park excursion, which was a wonderful experience (shorter travel time than Plitvice Lakes). We also enjoyed the "Beautiful Taormina" excursion from Catania, Sicily, and would recommend a ship's tour due to the limited port time (9 AM to 4 PM). We would likely recommend a tour from Naples, which we found to be interesting but a bit gritty (it is absolutely true about the chaotic drivers running red lights despite pedestrians crossing!) as we tried to explore it on our own and in a guided Napolitours walking tour (suggest buy a good map, or have data and GPS on your smartphone). The authentic Neapolitan pizza was worth it, though! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
As a first time cruiser, travelling with a disabled person, I had read some reviews that worried me but Connie and her staff were fabulous. My companions and I found the staff to be extremely proactive at offering help. We had a super ... Read More
As a first time cruiser, travelling with a disabled person, I had read some reviews that worried me but Connie and her staff were fabulous. My companions and I found the staff to be extremely proactive at offering help. We had a super quick check-in where staff came forward to assist us and get us through every stage quickly. The ship is spotless, the crew friendly, caring and professional. We had two balcony staterooms, one at the stern and the other on the starboard side. This meant we always had a great view of sail always or port arrivals. Departing Venice on the stern balcony was breath taking as was arriving at Corfu. The two stewards attending our rooms were outstanding, offering a friendly smile or assistance whenever they saw us. We found the ship had plenty to entertain us and we would definitely pick a cruise on Constellation again. We had an amazing holiday. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
After having fantastic cruises with celebrity in the past this ship is old and tired . Our bed sheets were full of holes and torn in places they were also not white any longer but yellow from age or from lack of cleanliness together ... Read More
After having fantastic cruises with celebrity in the past this ship is old and tired . Our bed sheets were full of holes and torn in places they were also not white any longer but yellow from age or from lack of cleanliness together with bad service in most places and overcrowded restaurants made this a unpleasant trip for all of us . with the result we were totally put off from this cruise line and will for sure choose another one for this year and for future cruises Even the bathroom towels were worn to its thinnest limit Theatre entertainment was of a very average standard so after 4 nights we just simply gave up and entertained ourselves we occupied 3 concierge class staterooms and all of us have dropped the idea of using celebrity as our first choice in future . Such a pity . Cape Town South Africa Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
I would give this 3.5 stars if I could. We had very high expectations for this cruise as our cruise on the Equinox last year really set the bar quite high. My wife and I 32 and 37, respectively and consider ourselves “foodies” who ... Read More
I would give this 3.5 stars if I could. We had very high expectations for this cruise as our cruise on the Equinox last year really set the bar quite high. My wife and I 32 and 37, respectively and consider ourselves “foodies” who enjoy some of the nicer things in life. Considering the majority of people on these cruises are older, I hope this review will help for the relatively younger people. Overall, I would recommend this cruise ship and cruise line as Celebrity does a great job generally. Here are the details: Ship: Definitely showing some age. The brown/tan with teal trim on our deck (9) didn’t even look modern for when the ship was built 17 years ago. It looked like 80s décor. A lot of windows looked like they hadn’t been cleaned in quite a while. Our room had a fair amount of dust accumulating in various areas. But we went through with some disinfectant cloths and cleaned it up quickly. No need to complain on the first day for just some dust. Bed was comfortable, balcony was average. Be aware that the pool is on deck 10. We were on deck 9 and at about 6:30am I would start to hear kids running around above us. My wife is a deep sleeper and didn’t notice, but I heard a lot. Service: Drinks: Get ready to wait for your drinks. This is not a jab at the bartenders, but rather the process that Celebrity makes them follow. It literally takes them as long to key in what you’re drinking as it does for them to make your drinks. I asked a few bartenders about it and they all agreed that it’s very frustrating for both themselves and the guests. Most of us bought the premium drink package, so why force them to take 15-20 seconds to chronicle what we drink each day? It can really become quite a laborious process. Food: We upgraded to Aqua Class and we bought the Specialty Dining package with four dinners, so we never ate in the regular dining room (San Marco). The service and food in the Tuscan Grill and Qsuine was top notch, as was the food. The food on Celebrity is fantastic and is one of the best selling points for us. We don’t go on cruises to eat as much as possible and we try to stay as healthy as we can while also enjoying nicer dishes. This is definitely doable on this ship. Blu is the other option for Aqua Class and above. The first night we got there at 8pm and were told it would be 10-15 minutes to wait. 20 minutes later, the host told us it could be another 30 minutes. We ended up going upstairs to the Oceanview Café and getting stir fry (which was great!). No big deal, but we ate earlier than we would have liked when we went to Blu because of the wait later on. Rooms: Our room attendant, Martin was fantastic. We couldn’t have asked for a better experience and he was super respectful when we wanted to sleep in or when we needed something. Entertainment: My wife and I used to work in the theatre industry in NYC so we have seen a lot. We realize this cruise ship is not a Broadway theater, so we don’t set our expectations that high. The cast on the ship is great and really put on a decent show. The special guests they bring on throughout the cruise are FANTASTIC. We were blown away at the quality of the magic, singing, piano playing and comedy. After the show, we elected to go to the lounge most nights where we met our favorite bartenders (Adi & Jose Javier) and a bunch of new friends. The first night, I asked the DJ for a request. His response was “I’m in the middle of my set” and then told me he had already played a bunch of what I was asking for. I was very surprised by this reaction as the entire point of being a DJ on a cruise ship is to cater to the guests’ musical tastes to the best of your ability. He didn’t do that very well. However, he was a good DJ and a lot of people stayed up LATE dancing. Ports of Call: Venice (extremely crowded in August, but that’s to be expected), Dubrovnik (also very crowded but super cool and we spent a night docked there), Mykonos (rent an ATV!), Athens (get ready for long lines at the Acropolis and drink water), Santorini (VERY long lines for the cable car and make sure you have Euros- we had to walk up 600 steps because the ATM on board wasn’t working), Katakolon (get off the ship and go see Olympia!). Overall: Our time on the Equinox last year was preferable. I realize it’s a newer ship, but it’s still a fact. It was cleaner and better laid out. It seemed like the crew generally were happier. The gym was three times larger. However, we will look back on this cruise fondly and all the small annoyances will go away with time. I just feel that when you are paying thousands of dollars per person for an international cruise, the things I’ve pointed out in this review should be addressed. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinery which allowed for an overnight in Dubrovnik and a further sea day later on. The ship had had a refit in May and you could see new carpet in most areas and most public areas looked great - not ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinery which allowed for an overnight in Dubrovnik and a further sea day later on. The ship had had a refit in May and you could see new carpet in most areas and most public areas looked great - not sure what other reviewers mean by tired as we didn;t notice this in public areas. Our cabin was a bit tired and there was rust on the balcony but otherwise the cabin was fine. Service was excellent in all areas -again, was expecting this to be worse than our previous Celebrity cruises from some reviews - but we had good, fast service and in all lounges the areas were well attended e.g. in Reflections from 10pm waiters arrived to serve during the bands and you were turning them down they circulated so often. Main dining room - generally good food - some strange choices on some nights but we looked at the menu then decided to eat elsewhere if nothing appealed. Our waiter (Clint) and helper (Yanti) were great as was the sommelier too. The Ocean View buffet is now great in the evening and offers a really high quality alternative to the MDR. The Greek nights were superb - three large Greek joints of meat and other Greek meals on offer. On the last day there was a great dessert display with croque en bouche and baked alaskas etc (photo). Qsine was good but they need to change some meal choices as we had been before 2 years ago and little seem to have changed. The ipad concept is now wearing thin too - no longer innovative. They need to lose the Sushi on 5 and change to a Tempanyaki that many other cruise companies have or have a "Lawn Grill" type restaurant from the larger ships. The ports were great. The excursions well organised as always. No issues with guides - all excellent, as has been our previous experience. The entertainment was excellent in the Reflections area - the three bands and DJ good. The main house band were outstanding - Just in Time. The lead singer is quite simply something else in her energy and a very high standard. The CD was visible and to the point and the young Activities leader, Emily was fabulous. They both said goodbye to guests on disembarkation - never seen this before and it was appreciated they made the effort. The theatre shows were a bit more hit and miss than we have experienced before but maybe not our taste. We loved Clare Maidin - superb pianist/singer we had heard on Reflection last year. The Base Tones and Mo Town performer were excellent too. There was a poor comedian, magician and Sam Kane who was strangely popular with some but we didn't enjoy his mimicking of Dean Martin. Two shows we attended by the cast - the Movies theme and world theme - both very good. We had seen the other two before (fairy tale and the over 18s one) and neither were good to our taste. (It did make me laugh to hear a lady refer to this show before she went to see it as the "Sex Show" - she must have been disappointed to see a poorly written panto which is delivered by a large Julian Clary wannabe.) Overall, we had a great cruise and would go again with Celebrity and on Constellation. The customer service is excellent and the ship a happy one. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We decided on the Jet Set Sail package. Really excellent service etc leaving from stanstead, but do think more could be done with regards to transfers in venice. Boarding went well, as includes priority boarding. Booked concierge ... Read More
We decided on the Jet Set Sail package. Really excellent service etc leaving from stanstead, but do think more could be done with regards to transfers in venice. Boarding went well, as includes priority boarding. Booked concierge class cabin, we had sailed with celebrity before and always chose this catagory We found the constellation an excellent choice. The recent refurb showed in the cabin and in other areas and we werent disappointed. The service, food and crew were all excellent. The only complaint we had was the groups of children that were allowed to run round the ship and in the bars at night. We witnessed verbal abuse from some of them when challenged by the crew and celebrity need to correct this. All ports of call around the greek islands were first class and disembarkation into the ports was swift and efficient. The restaurant staff were faultless and couldnt do enough for us. On return to venice, again the Jet Set Sail package was sadly lacking and the coach we were transferred in had major engine problems and we really thought we wouldnt even get to the airport. Marco Polo airport was chaos, definitely need more than the customary 2 hours prior to departure. But all in all a really great cruise and looking forward to travelling with celebrity again next year, keep up the good work. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We we a family of four with two teenage boys (13 and 15) , originally we chose this cruise for the itinerary and having sailed the previous year on the Reflection we wanted to visit a mixture of places we had been to before with some new ... Read More
We we a family of four with two teenage boys (13 and 15) , originally we chose this cruise for the itinerary and having sailed the previous year on the Reflection we wanted to visit a mixture of places we had been to before with some new ones thrown in. Having booked and then subsequently reading the reviews of the Constellation I was concerned that is wasn't going to be a patch on the Reflection(especially as its missing the Lawn Grill) However how wrong could we be, this ship is smaller yes but somehow it still had everything you need with the added extra of the outdoor cinema. The service in the bars and San Marco restaurant was outstanding and the food was soo good we didn't even consider eating at any of the speciality restaurants. The sunset bar was our favourite spot for sail away and post dinner cocktails. We only went to a couple of shows as these are not really our thing and whilst we didn't enjoy the magician particularly, we loved the base tones the following night and the late night comedy on the final evening. The teens also had a ball , after meeting up with others on the first night in the X Club , whenever we were on the ship they were off with their friends, only gracing us with their presence for dinner. They really get a chance to feel grown up and trusted to stay up late , but in safe surrounding with no access to alcohol. I would not hesitate to sail on the Constellation again most definitely our best cruise holiday to date. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We took our four daughters, their spouses and our eleven grandchildren (ages 4 - 18) on an Adriatic and Italy cruise to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. There were 21 of us altogether, and we picked Celebrity because of the family ... Read More
We took our four daughters, their spouses and our eleven grandchildren (ages 4 - 18) on an Adriatic and Italy cruise to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. There were 21 of us altogether, and we picked Celebrity because of the family cabins (allowing people to a cabin, with the ability to create two separate sleeping areas, and the huge verandahs for the family cabins) and of course, the itinerary. The Concierge class cabins were nothing to speak of, however. Most of the family have been on luxury cruises before, and one family in particular are Celebrity fans, so it seemed a good choice for the age groups (4 to 73) involved...it seemed to offer something for everyone. Boarding and disembarkation went well, the kids loved their cabins, and loved the dining in the Marco Polo restaurant every evening...to Celebrity's great credit, the waiters particularly Ishkander and Sagar, were wonderful and patient and creative.. offering magic tricks and extra desserts to keep all 11 grandchildren happy and entertained.. Plusses.. the wait staff in the Marco Polo, the cabin attendant, Dora, who was never without a smile.. the menus in the Marco Polo which were varied and kept everyone happy. The condition of the ship was fine, well kept and up to date...the itinerary was great.. Venice, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Malta, Sicily, Naples and Rome.. all were fascinating ports with lots to see and do. Entertainment in the theatre was good on the whole, with one fabulous British lady singer whose name I cannot recall...but some of the costuming was not appropriate for younger audiences. Minuses...the ship staff is constantly up-selling, from beverage packages to art auctions to yada-yada...(used Rolexes was one day's offering).. yet there was very little good information available about the ports to be visited.. and you were left with the impression that the cruise ship was only interested in selling things on board the ship.. the shore experiences were inconsequential. That was disappointing, since most people, I assume, were on the cruise to visit those ports in particular. The so-called Kid's Clubs were over-rated.. there was actually a dearth of children on board, which seemed odd to us since we had chosen a cruise line that catered to families.. the teens in our group were disappointed with the activities for their age groups. Service was spotty.. great in some areas (cabin attendants and the Marco Polo) but got sluggish and bogged down in other areas. Much of that was due, surely, to the outbreak of norovirus which hit the ship....and for our family, it was a painful experience..in all, seven of our 21 family members were sickened by the norovirus, with several family members falling ill the day we disembarked, which sadly affected their stay in Rome and worse, their flights back to California. While the ship acknowledged the outbreak of the norovirus, and repeatedly reminded passengers to use the hand sanitizers offered everywhere, the expansion of the virus aboard quickly affected the meals being offered in the casual dining food areas, and caused meal service to slow to painful and long lines... The medical center on the ship did provide free medical care, including shots and pills for virus victims, plus a mandatory 24 hr. quarantine for each affected passenger...but the fact that so many families were affected by the norovirus...certainly no one expected to travel thousands of miles on a family vacation to become ill! put a damper on the vacation...particularly on the part of myself and my husband who has planned this trip for 18 months...and expended more than $50,000 for the cruise. I would say that our kids and grandkids all enjoyed the cruise and the ship and the ports visited...and the ice cream! on the ship! I would say that, from my perspective.. wanting this to be a most memorable trip for our family.. I was somewhat disappointed. Would I go again? No. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
chose this route as there was six of us and we all wanted to go to croatia, first the embarkation was very good streamlined, but having said that we did have quite a long wait at venice airport for a few stragglers and the celebrity ... Read More
chose this route as there was six of us and we all wanted to go to croatia, first the embarkation was very good streamlined, but having said that we did have quite a long wait at venice airport for a few stragglers and the celebrity agents didnt really know what to do it was hot when they eventually got us on the coach to the ship,they didnt even start the air con or offer us bottles of water which we thought was poor. Embarkation for concierge was good on board pretty smooth straight to special lunch and cases in room after that. Room very nice but in need of facelift lovely balcony, donny our cabin boy couldnt do enough for us to make the stay special as it was four special birthdays. Dining, that wasnt so good food pretty mediocre and not always hot when reaching the table so we started using the buffet which was pretty varied and enjoyable fresh cooked stirfrys were very good,deck 10 is the buffet and the wonderful oceanview bar where all the staff are very friendly especially Igusto who always remembered all our names and there was six of us!!! Unfortunately the Constellation is in need of a makeover and this showed in some areas,and to make matters worse on the fourth day there was an outbreak of norovirus on board and two of our party were unlucky enough to get this.Overall the holiday was very enjoyable pool area good but not much shade, we did not do excursions we made our own arrangements, entertainments were fine tho we didnt really do shows apparently they were good, service was very good in all areas nice touches with freezing cold towels round pool and when you were waiting to get back on board bottled water too, tho we did have a drinks package that is definitely worth having dont upgrage to premium classic is enough., would definitely go again..disembarkation just as seamless too Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We had excellent experiences on two previous Celebrity Equinox sailings, but our last experience on the Constellation was not good. I no longer believe this is a premium cruiseline as advertised. Here are the problems we had: 1. No ... Read More
We had excellent experiences on two previous Celebrity Equinox sailings, but our last experience on the Constellation was not good. I no longer believe this is a premium cruiseline as advertised. Here are the problems we had: 1. No water in our stateroom on two separate days--took over an hour or two to fix. When I put this in my evaluation and talked with the Captain's Club representative--Celebrity's version of customer service and complaint department. Don't bother. I was told no report was on file from maintenance on the ship. Cover-up? Other staterooms had no water either.... 2. This is hard to believe, but at four different bars men were repeatedly served before women--even though women were seated first. 3. Embarkation was tedious, slow, and hot. 4. Disembarkation was a mess. The rep at Celebrity tried to tell me it was the fault of the local pier workers, but it was the Comstellation staff directing people to one deck and then changing disembarkation to another deck--over an over. This was for the independent walk -off passengers hauling their own luggage. I had great difficulty finding the deck holding a package for me. I had to chase after a ship officer to find the package because the deck was covered with disgruntled and confused passengers. 5. We never seemed to have enough shampoo in our stateroom. 6. On 2 out of 3 cruises with Celebrity a port destination has been dropped after booking. I was compensated well a few years ago but not this time--even after these other complaints. I have been told about how Celebrity cares about my business--but only told. 7. After booking a shore excursion by telephoning an agent, there was no reservation when we boarded the ship. And, the excursion was by then full. I was told at the shore excursion desk that Celebrity could not be responsible for the agents on land. What? 8. Our shore excursion to Pompeii and Mt. Vesuvius was terrible. The speakers didn't work well and would not stay in anyone's ear. The guide was difficult to understand and didn't tell any of the great stories about Pompeii--or maybe she did and we just couldn't hear them. This was our third visit to Pompeii--and our worst. Will I cruise with Celebrity again? NO--because I don't trust them. Unfortunately, I had already booked another cruise with them in January 2018, and I am regretting it now. I will lose my insurance money and airfares if I cancel. Perhaps I would feel differently if they would have thrown some sort of compensation at me. I have already booked a family trip of 4 staterooms with Princess--no more Celebrity for us. I have spent hours in returning evaluations and conversations, but no one really cares about my future business or their reputation. This is not as much about the problems on the Constellation as a result of being treated as if I deserve no compensation. It would have been an easy fix. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Pre-Cruise: We were a group of 8 adults traveling from Philadelphia and Boston to Venice. American Airlines had a very convenient non-stop from Philadelphia directly to and from Marco Polo Airport in Venice. Pre and Post cruise we ... Read More
Pre-Cruise: We were a group of 8 adults traveling from Philadelphia and Boston to Venice. American Airlines had a very convenient non-stop from Philadelphia directly to and from Marco Polo Airport in Venice. Pre and Post cruise we stayed on the mainland at the Crowne Plaza Quarto d’Altino which was modern, not too expensive, and on a direct train line into Venice (3.40 euro and 25 min to St Lucia Station). The Hotel had a cruise package which gave us free transportation to/from the airport and to/from the cruise port. Our rate also included a free breakfast buffet. This strategy allowed us to drop off all of our luggage and then take the train to enjoy Venice. Embarkation Day 1: We were dropped off at the cruise port and were on the ship by 11AM. No issues. We had one sky suite (6132) and three balcony cabins (6032, 7100, 7102). The sky suite near mid-ship had a great expanded balcony. We all had Go Best and the Premium Drink Package. The sail out from Venice was just amazing! We all gather on the large balcony of our sky suite and had champagne and treats. Overall the rooms were in good shape for an older ship. On boarding, two of us had lunch in Luminae (excellent!). That night the eight of us dined for my Birthday in the Tuscan Grill where we had an excellent meal and outstanding service. A couple of us did not care for the sweet steak sauce on the filets. Day 2- Koper, Slovenia – Ordered Room Service Breakfast. It really beat going to the Oceanview Café! We took a Celebrity tour around the area by bus and a walking tour of Piran which was beautiful. The Koper old city was really beautiful for walking around as well. We had dinner for the first time in the main dining room. Meals in the MDR all week were just OK at best. We did Celebrity Select dining and always had to wait 20-30 min for a table. Service was slow but waiters were friendly. Day 3- Zadar, Croatia – We ate breakfast in the Oceanview Café. Advice- go to the rear and get fresh eggs and omelets or on the starboard side fresh poached eggs. Everything written about the beauty of Croatia is more than true! There was plenty to experience just walking around Croatia. You need to get kuna from an ATM as euros are not taken by the local vendors. We had another non-memorable dinner in the MDR after waiting a long time for a table. Day 4- Dubrovnik, Croatia- possibly the most scenic and beautiful of all of the scenic ports on the entire trip. This was our only tender port and the locals were not too good with the process. We took a private Game of Thrones tour and it was fantastic. It included the botanical gardens (Kings Landing gardens) as well. Old town Dubrovnik is spectacular! Yes there is a Game of Thrones shop there too. That night the eight of us dined in Qsine for my wife’s birthday celebration. It is a new addition to Constellation. It was great fun for our group and food and service were excellent. Day 5- Split, Croatia- Another scenic gem with an amazing old town area. Just walked around and ate pizza, prosciutto, and gelato. This was a general theme in these towns and a good plan! Some went to the beach- beautiful but not sandy- just pebbles. That night back to waiting for a mediocre meal and slow service in the main dining room. We kind of decided we were done with it! Day 6- Kotor Montenegro – The group was not in agreement on the best and most scenic port – either Dubrovnik or Kotor. It was hard to choose! We took a private tour around the area which included a boat to Our Lady of the Rock. Montenegro is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and again the old town area was a gem as well. That night we tired of the MDR so I paid extra for the entire group ($30pp) to have dinner in Luminae as my guests. Everybody thought this was the best dining experience of the entire cruise. The service from the Luminae team is on another level entirely above the MDR. Day 7 – At Sea – finally a break from the port intensive itinerary. Everybody slept in and had a lazy day. Lunch for some was at the new Top Deck Burger Bar (for a fee). See my separate mini-review. We had lunch in Luminae and again it was very good. Day 8- Naples – Our group split up. Two went to Pompeii by private taxi. The rest of us took a private tour to Capri where we truly enjoyed Anacapri and then had a lunch at a private winery with an amazing view. We did the Blue Grotto too. Tourist trap but we are glad we did it. The fast ferry was about an hour each way and was packed. Go early! Dinner was in Oceanview Café – the buffet is very good and in the back there was an area for made-to-order grilled steaks, chicken and fish. On the port side there was a custom stir-fry station which was very good. Day 9 – Messina, Sicily – Again we took a private tour where we spent three hours in Taormina on our own, then lunch above it in Castelmola. Just as beautiful and much less crowded. Our tour guide then took us to the best cannoli shop in Messina before going back to the ship. I again invited the entire group to dine in Luminae which was yet another great dining experience. Day 10- At Sea – We were all very tired and just relaxed. And Packing! Had burgers at the Top Deck Burger Bar for lunch. Day 11- Back in Venice. We were able to get off the ship by 9AM and it was a breeze! We later spent the next two days in Venice before flying home. We utilized the Hop On Hop Off Boat for 20 euro instead of public transportation. Well worth it. What We Loved – the Adriatic itinerary and ports are just amazing! Dinners in specialty restaurants and Luminae. Every night at the Sunset Bar for sail away. Of course the Martini Bar every night before dinner. Roulette in the Casino. Everybody also just loved Café al Bacio for coffee and pastries. The live music was always very good across the ship. The concierge in Michael’s Club (Nadia) was exceptional. Not so good- It pains me to say this but overall the staff and service on the Constellation is well-below every other Celebrity ship I have sailed on. Not sure what is wrong. The ship is understaffed at the bars and in the MDR in my opinion. The staff is friendly enough but does not have that extra spring in their step for top notch customer service. I grew tired of being ignored by bartenders who seemed to find ways to not serve customers quickly. Everybody in our group was frustrated. We just did not enjoy the main dining room at all. The entertainment (shows) was so-so. Officers were hardly visible. Maybe some changes are needed. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I chose this cruise because of the ports of call. We we totally pleased with the ship and the service. The cabin was larger than other cruises I've been on. The ship was beautiful and just the right size. We totally enjoyed having ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the ports of call. We we totally pleased with the ship and the service. The cabin was larger than other cruises I've been on. The ship was beautiful and just the right size. We totally enjoyed having breakfast in the Oceanside Cafe every morning and I absolutely loved having my own "coffee guy". Oceanview was also open for a late lunch when we returned to the ship. The food in the Main Dining room was excellent and we were encouraged to order more than one appetizer and entree for dinner. We did the select dining, which gave us the flexibility to have dinner whenever we wanted to. We especially enjoyed the cold towels waiting for us when we returned to the ship every day. Overall, service was excellent. As far as the ports of call... Croatia was beautiful. We stopped in Zadar, Dubrovnik and Split. In Zadar we saw the Sea Organ and went to the Archological Museum. We walked the wall in Dubrovnik and this was one of the most beautiful ports. In Split we took a car to Krka National Park, which was beautiful. Slovenia was beautiful (we went to Ljubjana and Lake Bled) and Koter Montenegro which was AMAZING!! Breathtaking!! Highly recommended. The pool was not too crowded and we enjoyed relaxing the Solarium pool. Had fun playing ping pong and bingo on board. Lots of activities at any time of the day. Nighly shows were wonderful...magic, juggler, singers, violinist, etc. Wide variety for everyone. Highly recommended. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Wonderful cruise, excellent friendly staff, fantastic entertainment , great cruise director in Richard Spacey.. Good food. The staff all remembered your name wherever you went on the ship, always smiling and very very friendly. ... Read More
Wonderful cruise, excellent friendly staff, fantastic entertainment , great cruise director in Richard Spacey.. Good food. The staff all remembered your name wherever you went on the ship, always smiling and very very friendly. Entertainment was the best ever, acapella group called We3 were amazing. Jane curry female vocalist and comedian got standing ovation on both evenings. Ju.ian smith, saxophonist from britains got talent was fantastic. Husband loved the hypnotist, but not my thing. And one of the house bands joe and Olivia were just great, bought their cd too. Richard spacey , cruise director was friendly and very very funny. We didn't really enjoy he MDR as we were always sitting in the traffic lanes and felt uncomfortable, nothing to do with quality of food though. We enjoyed the ocean view cafe though, always a good selection and always hot and fresh. The ship is very clean and comfortable, but it does need a refurb soon, nothing to upset you, just the odd scuffs and scratches here and there. Done 22 cruises and this is definaetly in our top 3. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Just back from our first Celebrity Cruise onboard the Constellation. We were travelling with our 6 year old son on 11 Night Eastern Mediterranean Cruise. Cannot fault the cruise at all. Everything was above and beyond our expectations. ... Read More
Just back from our first Celebrity Cruise onboard the Constellation. We were travelling with our 6 year old son on 11 Night Eastern Mediterranean Cruise. Cannot fault the cruise at all. Everything was above and beyond our expectations. Food was all excellent. Dining room experience wonderful. Staff were all so friendly and remembered us all by name. Fun Factory was amazing our son went everyday even 3 times a day on sea days. Fun Factory staff amazing. They were only a total of 23 children onboard our cruise. The Fun Factory had only 2-8 children in total at each session, which was great for our son who prefers small groups I think that's why he enjoyed it so much alot of one on one attention. We travelled 8-20 September. However I heard that in August there was 250 and 500 children onboard for those cruises. As our cruise was when all UK/USA schools just started back so not many children were onboard so that worked out to our advantage.We are from Australia and currently our Spring school holidays. We had the classic beverage package which was wonderful it was a free perk when we booked so it great for us we didn't see the need to upgrade to the premium package.If anyone has any questions please let me know I would be happy to answer them. I kept all the Fun Factory Daily programs aswell as our Celebrity Dailes. Fantastic cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This was our second cruise with Celebrity. Our group comprised my husband and I and our 21 year old son and 19 year old daughter. The itinerary was marvellous, we loved all the ports. "Connie" was great but not quite as good as ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Celebrity. Our group comprised my husband and I and our 21 year old son and 19 year old daughter. The itinerary was marvellous, we loved all the ports. "Connie" was great but not quite as good as Equinox. Felt a bit tired and dated and definitely more crowded somehow. A MUCH older crowd on board, again different to last year's cruise. I think this may have been down to the timing of the cruise. We upgraded to Aqua class for this cruise and I'm not sure if that was worth it. Eating in Blu was the main perk and Blu was brilliant, however the first 2 nights we waited an hour and almost an hour for a table. Upon complaining - this didn't happen again, we were seated promptly but all over the restaurant so we did not build up much of a rapport with waiters etc.. which was a pity. We mourned the loss of formal night. On one of the formal nights whilst eating in Blu my husband and son sat in dinner jackets and on the next table was a gentleman in jeans and polo shirt. Formal nights are now called something like "Casual Chic" euphemism for "anything goes". My advice is to treat all the nights in the same way as far as dress goes. We love the ship organised tour excursions for the quality of the tour guides, really excellent. However our fellow guests were another matter. There would be a great rush to get on the coach and we were always near the back of the coach which was absolutely fine except that others at the back ignored the commentary and talked (loudly) making it difficult to follow the commentary! One hoped to get nearer the front on the return journey to enjoy the return commentary however passengers reserved their seats. This exacerbated the crush to get on in the first instance. It was all a bit much really. These oldie cruise goers are quite something. The food and drink was incredible as last year. Getting a seat in the coffee shop was not always possible and getting a sun bed around the pool was tricky. Neither of these was an issue last year - We enjoyed it very much but not sure we will do this again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
This cruise was a family cruise which included 3 generations of 12 people. We chose the Eastern Mediterranean on the celebrity Constellation as we had been to the western Mediterranean previously with the same group. We had a fantastic ... Read More
This cruise was a family cruise which included 3 generations of 12 people. We chose the Eastern Mediterranean on the celebrity Constellation as we had been to the western Mediterranean previously with the same group. We had a fantastic time on the ship and at all of the ports: Olympia, Santorini, Athens, Ephesus, Malta, and Messina. The ship is great for the Mediterranean. The pools were great, lots of "loungers" when you want to sun and the shows were great. While very clean, the ship needs some TLC. There are multiple places where small amounts of carpet are coming from the floors. I can only expect that Celebrity has plans to take care of this soon. We did all but our port visits on our own, except Ephesus. Given the number of people we were and the age gap, this worked for us. We had some mishaps which will be the stories of the trip, no doubt: pick pocketed in Athens and almost missed the ship in Messina due to missed busses. We also had an opportunity to see an incredible fireworks show through a cruise critics organizer. Beautiful opportunity. We enjoyed the shows very much, as always. Lots of fun and the cruise team did an excellent job varying the options. We chose select dining, but chose to eat consistently with Darko every night. Me was EXCELLENT. He paid attention to our needs and responded to everything we needed and wanted. We had celiac family and he was so careful and informative. DArko should be an up an coming member of this crew. Don't lose him Celebrity. He has a lot of potential. Great people skills. The food was great. I would love to know how they serve so many people so well nightly from a ship!!! Thanks Celebrity Constellation for a great vacation. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
I recently cruised for the first time on the Celebrity Constellation, on the June 12, 2016 12-night Adriatic cruise out of Venice. I thought I would share the good and bad. I’ve cruised on Princess eight times and RCCL once, so I was ... Read More
I recently cruised for the first time on the Celebrity Constellation, on the June 12, 2016 12-night Adriatic cruise out of Venice. I thought I would share the good and bad. I’ve cruised on Princess eight times and RCCL once, so I was looking for a bit of change from Princess. Our last Princess Western Caribbean trip out of Houston was a giant dud, since it rained on us the entire trip; we missed one port and really couldn’t get off on another. I was cruising with my 16-year-old daughter, and had read that Celebrity tended to have as many or more teens as Princess. That certainly wasn’t the case on this cruise, as there were only 15 teens in the 15-17 age group. There were simply very few younger people (or young adults) on our cruise, and one couple told us that a staff member told them it was the “oldest” cruise he could remember. We booked the trip because it was discounted, as all European cruises seem to be this summer. I originally booked an inside stateroom for a total cost of about $1,850 for the two of us. After a day I upgraded to Aqua Class, which cost $3,600 total, but also included the drink package and prepaid gratuities. Given that the value of the free amenities was worth about $1,200 and our travel agent gave us a $100 credit, we ended up paying about $450 more for a balcony and the right to eat at Blu. We weren’t interested in the spa, but I had heard good things about Blu. I’m going to list some things I didn’t like, but before I do, let me share the things we did like. And I will makes comparisons to Princess, since that is my point of reference. CONDITION OF SHIP: I have read a few reviews critical of the condition of the ship. I didn’t see it. I thought the ship was in great shape and well maintained. Overall the ship was very elegant, and I couldn’t have asked for more. SERVICE: I found the overall level of service to be much higher throughout the ship than what I’ve generally had on Princess. I found the employees to be friendly and outgoing, and with a few exceptions I found bar service to be quick. CASINO: The casino was not all that busy much of the time, and I don’t think I ever saw a blackjack game with more than a $5 limit, save perhaps on a single-deck game with a $10 limit. The two six-deck games were H17, das, rsa, 3-2 on natural. The single-deck game was a 6-5 game, so it is not playable. My memory has failed me, because I can’t remember whether the dealer dealt and checked a hole card; my recollection is that they did not. This can be important for doubling and such. These are not the greatest rules, but they are about as good or better than any low-limit game in Vegas these days, and I enjoyed not having to play with a csm. There was a plentitude of “penny” slots, as well as a small number of traditional reel machines. Oddly enough, the casino did not have “bartop” video poker machines, so I didn’t play any video poker. The VP payouts were terrible. I think JOB was set on a 6-5 payout, which gives the house a five percent edge against “perfect” play, and a 10-15 percent edge against average play. I was up about $1,400 for the trip but had two terrible nights and ended up the trip up about $200. Still had fun, and I give the casino a fairly high rating. “BLU” RESTAURANT: I paid the small upcharge for an Aqua Class room purely for the right to eat at Blu. We did not use the spa. Overall I would rate the Blu dining experience very highly. We really enjoyed the staff at Blu, including maitre d David. The staff remembered us, and after ordering a bottle of sparkling water on the first night they had a large bottle of San Pelligrino delivered to the table almost as soon as we were seated. I had to repeatedly ask for ice for it, though. Refills on wine were offered and provided painlessly, with any signing of a bill done at the end of the night. On Princess, ordering wine takes a lot longer and is more of a hassle, and even if one is on a drink package there is a big production of signing for drinks in triplicate. Refills are never provided without a big hassle on Princess. A couple of shortcomings of Blu were that a wine list was never provided when we sat down. I noticed a few people had wine delivered as soon as they sat down. Clearly they just had a standing order for a particular first glass of wine, and I strongly recommend this. Second, many of the hot dishes simply were not hot enough. The first night we ordered escargot it had been allowed to cool quite a bit; I later specified that we wanted it HOT. But there was a general lack of “hot”-ness to many of our entrees. And third, I found the desserts to be uninspired and unexciting, and I do mean REALLY uninspired and unexciting. I ordered a cheese plate one night and found it to be mediocre. I believe BLU can do better here, and they should have a proper cheese course available every night, appearing on the menu, with the names of the cheeses listed. The cheese should be cut by hand and not sliced with a machine, and having the cheeses NAMED is really important. We never tried the regular main dining room, but I suspect we might have been a bit disappointed in comparison to the service we received from Blu. Despite the above criticisms, we really enjoyed Blu and its staff. Overall the food was quite good. BUFFET: Overall I found the quality of the buffet to be fair to poor. I just didn’t care for the offerings most of the time, and it was not equal to the Princess buffet. It was just something to eat. My one big gripe against Princess and Celebrity is the lack of a proper cheese course. Well, they really did have proper cheeses being served from time to time at the buffet, hand cut, with nuts, honey, and all of that. I really couldn't believe it! But I want such cheese after a meal, so I never availed myself, but if they can offer that at the buffet, why can’t they offer it at Blu? They did have an ice cream station at the buffet, and it was for true, dipped ice cream, with eight or 10 flavors. The quality was good. Over on the Princess boards there are people who squeal like stuck hogs because lousy soft-serve ice cream isn’t served 24 hours a day. So I think it’s impressive to have real ice cream available for a good part of the day. I enjoyed getting a couple of scoops to go with my desserts at lunch. THE ALCOHOL PACKAGE: I had originally booked an inside stateroom, but realized that I could upgrade to a balcony for less than the cost of the alcohol package and the gratuities. So I did so. I really don’t know how to feel about the alcohol package. I love to drink as much as the next guy, but there is no question that the package pushes me to drink a bit more to get my money’s worth. Is this healthy? Personally I would rather see reasonable drink prices without the package, but of course that goes into how the cruises are being marketed. Also, the menus at Blu had wine pairings listed that weren’t available. Was this due to the alcohol package and everyone drinking like fish? ALSO: One odd complaint: Celebrity never makes announcements in the staterooms. This sounds great, but when they are doing a fire drill, they ring the fire alarm in the stateroom. They ought to go ahead and make the announcement 10 minutes before that it’s only a drill, as well as a few other announcements. No, I didn’t come running from the room, because I suspected it was only a drill, but still. ENTERTAINMENT AND NIGHT LIFE: I did not attend any of the ship’s shows. This was in part because I was with my daughter who did not want to attend, but another factor was that the “Celebrity Today” newsletter was inferior to the “Princess Patter,” which gives a little more information about various events. Princess has some venues like the Explorers Lounge that might feature a comedian or singer, and Celebrity seemed to have less of this. Many people rave about the Martini Bar, but I just didn’t love it, and I also didn’t care for the 11th floor Reflections Lounge. Sometimes portions of it were reserved for other groups when I visited, and I just felt uncomfortable, and it just wasn’t a great place for me. For some reason, it was very important to close the pools and hot tubs as early as possibly, lest someone actually enjoy themselves. I think all pools and hot tubs were shut down by 9:30 every night. How weird! And the top deck bars tended to be dead and closed early. On Princess the pools stayed open much later, as did the bars. On Princess the top deck is always very active, and the top deck bar is always a great place to get a beer a strike up a conversation. Not so on Celebrity. I did not understand this, and it really detracted from the cruise. PORTS OF CALL: I never take ship’s tours, and usually just debark and look around. This was especially important when traveling with my daughter, who is not a very motivated traveler. I don’t plan to give much of a review at all, but our ports of call were: KOPER, SLOVENIA: Liked it, great placed to walk around ZADAR, CROATIA: Liked it, great placed to walk around SPLIT, CROATIA: We did not care for Split, althouth it was interesting to see the magnitude of Diocletian’s palace. DUBROVNIK, CROATIA: The walled city is amazing. Want to go back for a week. KOTOR, MONTENEGRO: Another great place to visit. Would be a wonderful place to spend a week. NAPLES, ITALY: We visited on a Sunday, and Naples was an absolute bust for us. We’ve been several times before. It’s a terrible city, worse on Sunday. CATANIA,SICILY,ITALY: My daughter did not get off the ship. I enjoyed my walk around, but nothing special here, really. BOLOGNA (RAVENNA), ITALY: We really enjoyed visiting the various churches with the mosiacs. I wish we had perhaps done a little more homework. CONCLUSION: Although we had a reasonably good time, this cruise really didn’t work for us. The unusual ports of call attracted an exceptionally older crowd. I had thought about taking an NCL cruise with a few of these port calls and could have done so for substantially less money. I wish I had. If my wife had been with me I think my views might be different. From my experience, I would say a Celebrity Europe cruise is not suitable for teens or single adults. Your milage may vary. My brother loves Celebrity, but of course he always cruises with his wife and not one of his children, and I suspect that makes a difference. I’m not sure I’ll cruise on Celebrity again, but the staff and service was outstanding. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We sailed on Celebrity Constellation's Eastern Mediterranean cruise from Venice. The airport is poor and under construction. Getting to the coach was difficult. Once in the cruise terminal building our embarkation was very smooth - ... Read More
We sailed on Celebrity Constellation's Eastern Mediterranean cruise from Venice. The airport is poor and under construction. Getting to the coach was difficult. Once in the cruise terminal building our embarkation was very smooth - but we were concierge class. The cabin was well appointed and our steward's were great. We found the facilities on the ship were very good. It's much smaller than Reflection, but we found that all the staff were very helpful and we loved the Sunset bar. We were part of a party of 8 and we all had a great time.The entertainment staff and musicians with only one exception were fantastic. The restaurants were good and as I got food poisoning in Montenegro, I found out that the on board medical staff were excellent. Our travel arrangements were ruined by the French industrial action but Celebrity got us there and back again. Having said that, if we ever see the inside of Marco Polo airport again, it will be too soon. The itinerary for this cruise is particularly good. Split was the highlight and should not be missed, but Slovenia is a gem and the Postonya caves were beautiful. The scenery in Montenegro is astonishing, but the roads are not for the faint hearted. We would recommend this cruise to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We had booked this cruise mainly on the destinations with Istanbul being our number one priority to visit. Unfortunately a couple of weeks prior to sailing the overnight stay in Istanbul was cancelled due to the ongoing troubles in the ... Read More
We had booked this cruise mainly on the destinations with Istanbul being our number one priority to visit. Unfortunately a couple of weeks prior to sailing the overnight stay in Istanbul was cancelled due to the ongoing troubles in the region. I was quite concerned about the cancellation as we were on a Celebrity organised fly cruise which only arrived very late on the day of sailing but was assured that this would not be a problem. We arrived at the ship at approximately 7:30pm with around 60 other passengers but the check in and security clearance still took over two hours to complete. I'm at a loss as to why additional staff could not be available to make this process more efficient. After finally boarding and managing to get a table in the anytime dining section of the MDR we were then informed that we must attend a secondary muster drill 20 minutes later. I absolutely agree that safety is paramount but the so called muster drill was basically a box ticking exercise. Even then it was scant on genuine information and would not have helped in case of a genuine emergency. We then headed back to our stateroom to find that they basically hadn't bothered finishing the setup. We were missing all the usual information including the daily, our Captains Club information and Cruise Critic connections information. This resulted in us missing the get together which was arranged for the morning after. Most disappointingly the waste baskets were still full of the previous guests rubbish. So after a long days travel we decided to get an early night, put the mishaps behind us and start afresh in the morning. Unfortunately at 5am we got woken by what sounded like a hammer being repeatedly stuck against the back wall of the cabin. This only lasted for about a minute, but as it happened almost every day, seriously affected our sleep throughout the voyage. We have sailed on the Constellation twice before and never been disturbed in this way. Avoid the newer cabins on deck 11 aft unless you are a very early riser or sound sleeper. Despite these issues the vast majority of our cruise was very good. The attitude of most of the crew and staff were exceptional. Our waiter and his team in the main dining room probably the best I have ever had in 14 cruises on various line. The dining experience in Ocean Liners is fabulous. Whilst a cover charge of $89 for the five senses menu is steep by speciality restaurant norms the five courses with paired wine should not be missed by any serious food and wine lover. Make sure you go hungry though as unlike a traditional tasting menu with smaller portions this is five full dishes and a generous pour of wine with each. Service in Ocean Liners is on a par or exceeds the best I have experience in any restaurant land or at sea. It's worth taking a cruise on this ship just to experience. The ship itself is in a good condition and the entertainment on board is mostly to a high standard. Whilst we're not really into the theatre shows a family member who travelled with us attended most of the shows on board and was thoroughly impressed. For those not on one of the drinks packages the Rendezvous Lounge have two daily two hour happy hours between 4-6 and 10-12. You can get a very drinkable glass of cabernet sauvignon for $4.5 at these times. The ports we visited were fabulous with my personal favourites being Santorin, Athens and Ephesus. In Athens you get the Hop on Hop off bus in the port for 15 euro which drops you at the acropolis and then use the same ticket to get to all the other major attractions. In Ephesus as you get off the ship there is a shopping complex. On the first floor is a local tour operator that runs much smaller group tours. This covers all the sights and more that the ship organised tours visit and is only 40 euro per person including entrance to Ephesus, House of the Virgin Mary and the English speaking guide. Unfortunately my trip ended with another serious disappointment. Unusually for me I hadn't been keeping track of the account throughout the voyage so when our statement arrived I was shocked to discover that we had been charged the daily service fee. This was despite paying in advance for the service charges at the time we made the booking. I thought this would be easy to resolve so approached guest services to query the situation. To say they were unhelpful is a gross understatement. After checking with head office in Miami they were adamant that we had not prepaid and basically insinuated that I was trying to steal from them. The attempt at an olive branch (entirely as an afterthought) was that maybe my travel agent had made a mistake. Since my return I have queried the matter with my agent and checked my Celebrity invoice which clearly shows the prepaid gratuities. Even if the error were on my side, I sincerely feel that the way I was made to feel is totally unacceptable, for what is essentially a customer service industry. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
Celebrity Constellation Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 5.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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