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195 Celebrity Constellation Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

Let me start by saying that we mainly cruise with Celebrity though do other lines as well. Excellent start with quick and easy embarkation in Barcelona. Cabin 8117 a Sky 1 suite was excellent as were our Cabin Attendant Neil and Butler ... Read More
Let me start by saying that we mainly cruise with Celebrity though do other lines as well. Excellent start with quick and easy embarkation in Barcelona. Cabin 8117 a Sky 1 suite was excellent as were our Cabin Attendant Neil and Butler Rolando. Cost is slightly more than Aqua class but in our opinion well worth it. Food and drink, quality and service, was excellent. The staff were their usual friendly self and were happy to do anything to please. The Luminae restaurant was perfect with the option of having anything from other restaurants on the ship if you so wished. If there was any downside for us it would be the loudness of the music but this was got around by moving locations. Michael's club was a oasis on those occasions where 'Nadia' could not do enough for us. The gym was well set out and accessible most times. The Canyon Ranch was it's usual overpriced self (my wife was quoted $120 for soaking off nails and re-gel.) Laundry and Wi-Fi excellent and I did not find the speed slow but I am told that being the owner of a 'Commodore 64' my expectations are not that high. Anyone travelling the med from Barcelona to Venice might be better picking a starboard side cabin as port side was in the main used to dock so lovely views of dock buildings etc. Not the best when you are overnight so there for 36 hrs. Yes, I am sure that if I wanted I could find something to grumble about but there is no point, anything that was a problem was sorted out almost immediately - that in my opinion is a sign of a good ship with a good and happy crew. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Hello interested readers. We did not pick this ship or cruise line since it was purchased by my folks as a family vacation. Having sailed a couple times before on Royal Caribbean (which owns Celebrity), this cruise line and ship were a ... Read More
Hello interested readers. We did not pick this ship or cruise line since it was purchased by my folks as a family vacation. Having sailed a couple times before on Royal Caribbean (which owns Celebrity), this cruise line and ship were a huge step down. This was supposed to be a step up with some sort of "white glove service". Definitely not. It was a once in a lifetime cruise opportunity that was flawed from the beginning. So where to start? How about at the beginning? Embarkation and boarding went just fine - line went quickly from the Rome area embarkation. Getting into our cabin which was a portside window provided a fairly decent view of the outside world so we were happy with that. So while the room was clean and updated, it still felt a little old - for example - there was just TWO U.S. power plugs in the whole room. Are you kidding me? In this day and age of phones and devices, this is totally not acceptable. My back started acting up the night we got there - and it wasn't until we left that i realized that the mattress was at fault. The bed was clean and large but clearly bad support for my back. The attendant did terrific in keeping the room up to snuff. Next lets talk about dining which was what i really looked forward to. It ended up being worst experience ever - amateur hour. Mixed up orders between our table mates SEVERAL times. Service was slow and the Food was sub-par - meat cooked wrong on multiple occasions and sent back. Lobster night was embarrassing as well as the waiter apologized for the size of the lobster tails and had to bring several extras. He rolled his eyes several times as the assistant waiter fouled up orders. We didn't mind too much as they were very nice - but isn't this Celebrity which is supposed to be the best???? Daily menu selections were bleh but we went because the family would all gather there at night. Another example, the Shrimp cocktail were embarrassingly tiny. Sliced scallops looked like the waiter took one scallop and sliced it with a razor blade for the whole dining hall. Go to Oceanside buffet instead. Staff was nice but so SLOW and bumbling into each other. My wife actually had to get up and go to a bar outside the restaurant to get my drink for me as i sat there waiting. My evening coffee i ordered on more than one occasion was so slow that i walked out more than once because it was getting close to either bed time or cocktail hour!. The waiter told me "oh i had to go get it from somewhere else" - whaaat? The Oceanside buffet was far and away better with daily rotating choices - plus you can wear whatever you wanted there. In the dining hall, men had to wear long pants and I got kicked out once because of it. Who brings long pants (besides for formal nite) on a Mediterranean cruise. Breakfast was phenomenal at Oceanside - no complaints at all. Then there were the entertainment activities -wait - there were none. In 9 days of a cruise there were two pool deck activities. I know this because i spent much of my time with my daughter there poolside. My daughter went to the fun factory which is basically for the kids activities and she had fun. But they struggled to get kids to go. 400 kids were on the ship and they barely could wrestle in 10% - their biggest crowd was during talent night on the last day w 40 kids present. Their arcade was absolutely abysmal. Embarrassingly broken down old 20yr old video game units went virtually unused by anyone. We complained and tried to get them serviced for 4 straight days and not one person got back to me. The "casino" guy will take care of it we were told - never heard from this mysterious person. The machines took your money and the game didn't play. Awful experience with an 8yr old - try doing damage control with a young child when that happens!. Then when i got my statement they tried to charge me, to which i finally put my foot down and said NO WAY and nearly made a scene. They did credit my account at the end. They had daily pre-dinner shows which were fine - fine for adults. Boring for me. But I'm not into the arts so I cant really appreciate or provide a fair analysis. Only one in 9 days was of interest to my 8yr old and that was the magician. Fitness and recreation - virtually non existent. While they had a gym with machines, and a spa for my wife -- that was it. There was one basketball court which was poorly maintained. Try using a court in the morning for a workout when there are drink spills from the night before everywhere including the benches were you sit to rest. Ruined one pair of shorts. One ping pong table. Yup one. Are you kidding ? No shuffleboard at all. That's an oxymoron if i ever heard one. How is that even possible? Decks 4 + 5 had plenty of room for it but there were none to be found. During the day those decks were ghost towns. Outdoor movie experience was nice - big screen - plenty of seating consisting of couches and chairs in the middle and long chairs under pergolas in the back. However, pergolas were not covered. How do you watch an outdoor movie at 3pm in the blazing Mediterranean sun without a cover of some sort? Senseless - why offer the movie it if it isn't viewable. We tried. Multiple shore excursions were cancelled and refunded to us. Lack of interest as well as cancellation by the third party provider. Very surprising and so disappointing as a mediterranean cruise doesn't happen every day for us in the US. Truly missed out. . This never happened on our Royal cruises. Friends, this is an outdated old ship for 60+ yr old people who don't want to do anything. There are no signs or directions to find anything anywhere on the ship except the elevator areas. I am 49 and feel like 19 and felt like i was an animal locked in a cage with nothing to do. I will not sail with Celebrity - especially this ship again. Incredible waste of time and a missed experience for my family. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Family cruise with 11 members, this cruise fit the bill for everyone's requirements. Ship is large but not huge. The food was excellent, we ate at the Oceanview Buffet and the San Marco Restaurant only. Didn't feel the need to ... Read More
Family cruise with 11 members, this cruise fit the bill for everyone's requirements. Ship is large but not huge. The food was excellent, we ate at the Oceanview Buffet and the San Marco Restaurant only. Didn't feel the need to spend more in the other restaurants. Tried the gym for yoga and Pilates, both good. The ship provided the mats, straps and blocks. Evening entertainment wasn't my thing, but some family members enjoyed it. Since I was up early ended up going to bed early! Took 2 shore excursions, the bike rides in Ibiza and Mallorca. Both good, Ibiza one was pretty active, Mallorca was more informative. Most times we just got off the ship and made our own way to a destination. Most destinations were decent, although Toulon could have been dropped. Not really near anywhere and required a $20 (round trip) boat taxi. Public areas were spotless. Constantly saw staff cleaning. Pool area was decent and could always find a spot to rest, deck 4 had some quieter recliners. One criticism was the constant live bands all over the ship. Had a hard time hearing family when they were playing, and sometimes they weren't that good. Staff on-board were faultless. From the tender service, hand gel staff, housekeepers, restaurant, bar staff, guest services EVERYONE smiled and was courteous. From the moment we got to embarkation everything went smoothly. This was only my 3rd cruise but the best so far. On-board, met with other cruisers who were far more cruise savvy than me, and they loved Celebrity. Very multinational guests. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Our cruise to the Mediterranean on the Constellation was truly amazing. We visited Italy, France and Spain. Cabin 7051 was adequate. Ship has been refurbished, but still shows wear. Although we would sail on it again. TV reception ... Read More
Our cruise to the Mediterranean on the Constellation was truly amazing. We visited Italy, France and Spain. Cabin 7051 was adequate. Ship has been refurbished, but still shows wear. Although we would sail on it again. TV reception was nonexistent. As we like to keep up with world events, it was upsetting. Blackout lasted for five days until they got tired of our complaining and fixed it. Shower in cabin is largest we've ever had!!!! Ports were all beautiful. We formed our own tours in all ports through Cruise Critic participants except for Portofino. We took the ship's tour to Cinque Terre. They did a wonderful job. Since Cinque Terre is far, we were glad to have the reassurance that we would be back on time or the ship would be waiting. We had heard stories of many people nearly missing the boat due to the distance of Cinque Terre away from port and the many means of transport necessary to get there. Bon voyage! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
Chose because of port itinerary. Did a back to back from Venice to Rome and Rome to Barcelona. We always travel Aqua Class and found that this time in our first room which was 9090 and was also the same room for 2nd cruise was VERY ... Read More
Chose because of port itinerary. Did a back to back from Venice to Rome and Rome to Barcelona. We always travel Aqua Class and found that this time in our first room which was 9090 and was also the same room for 2nd cruise was VERY NOISY.... 2nd cruise they moved us (because of noise) to 1120 where it was just as NOISY and we were not the only passengers to complain. I even opened up the door at midnight to find kids running up and down the hallways. We have traveled many times on Celebrity and were very disappointed in this cruise (lack of many items that escalated to the unhappiness) -- the only GREAT experience was that of the BLU DINING STAFF - they were outstanding... never did Q-sine as we didn't like it on Millenium.... have been disappointed with the fact that they changed Bistro on 5 to a Sushi Restaurant, and Tuscan was just OK -- and ..... CELEBRITY charged for a special lunch at TUSCAN (on a sea day); and they started charging for the OUTSIDE grill area ... thus "nickel and diming" you for small things - There were many children on 2nd half of the back 2 back - with no PARENTAL SUPERVISION - and they let their children do whatever they wanted without regard to the time of day and other passengers on the ship! The entertainment was so so, some front staff was exceptional and others were not -- the first leg we had an outbreak of a virus and on the 2nd cruise there were passengers handling the fruit (peaches, plums, etc.) on the buffet looking for ripe ones - who wants to touch the fruit after witnessing this! It would be better if the staff just dished out the food - so those who do not sanitize don't infect the rest of the people. Rest rooms could have been more kept up. Our experience on the Millineum was so much more "homey" ... the Captain (Niklaus) came around and met and greeted as many passengers as he could. He was always accessible ... we didn't even know the Captain on this ship ... he never made many announcements - as Captain Niklaus did - every morning he gave an upbeat good morning etc. World of difference. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
First, it needs to be stressed that the Constellation is well past its prime. A few upgrades can't cover the fact that this ship is 15 years old. And in this case, many of those upgrades benefitted only passengers in suites. Our ... Read More
First, it needs to be stressed that the Constellation is well past its prime. A few upgrades can't cover the fact that this ship is 15 years old. And in this case, many of those upgrades benefitted only passengers in suites. Our Concierge class cabin was, to put it kindly, a bit worn. It didn't help that Celebrity had to chop two days off our Barcelona to Venice cruise because of engine problems, problems which could have been corrected without impacting our cruise had they simply allowed themselves more time for the refitting and testing. And while they did provide passengers with hotel accommodations and decent reimbursement for the lost days and the costs of meals, the communication with passengers was terrible. In our case we were dumped at a Barcelona hotel with no information on how to contact a Celebrity, We were handed a letter with a phone number for a local tour operator who was to set up free tours while we were stuck in port. But the phone number was invalid so we had to fend for ourselves. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This was the first cruise for the Constellation coming out of dry dock. We were supposed to sail Friday morning out of Barcelona. We had been there a few days prior and received an email late Thursday night about the delay. Our hotel ... Read More
This was the first cruise for the Constellation coming out of dry dock. We were supposed to sail Friday morning out of Barcelona. We had been there a few days prior and received an email late Thursday night about the delay. Our hotel did not have any open rooms for the weekend so we went to the pier as instructed Friday morning. We were put into a group of about twenty and sent on a bus to a hotel. Unfortunately our group was dropped off by bus at a hotel that said we did not have rooms there. Many phone calls later by people in our group, no assistance from the hotel, someone in our group got information about hotel #2 from Intercruises (Celebrity partner) and off we went in individual taxi's. We got to hotel #2 and were told the same, no rooms for you. The group of around 20 of us, finally after 6 hours and many phone calls to Celebrity, Intercruises, anyone, we were sent to hotel #3 and finally booked into rooms. We were told someone from Celebrity might meet us at hotel #3 to make sure we got rooms, but never happened. Other groups said they spent Friday and Saturday on tours by Celebrity in Barcelona as they got into their hotels first try on Friday, but not for us. We did hear good and bad stories about people who had Gran Prix tickets, but we didn't have that issue. We went to the pier again on Sunday and embarking went smoothly. The compensation from Celebrity for the missed two days and stay in Barcelona was well handled and did take the negative sting out of everyone. Good public relations job on their part. The pro's: beautiful ship that was refitted and looked good. Nice public areas, well kept. We got laundry service and it was great. Another reviewer said a group disembarked early and this could be why we rarely saw large groups. Food in the Tuscan Grille was amazingly good, as was the service! We ate several meals in Luminae and it was good and service was good. We asked several times in Luminae for the MDR menu, as we read that this was possible since one of us isn't a fish fan. They did this but it was almost like we insulted them by asking. Staying in a suite, we had all inclusive dining and beverage options which was great. This did not include the Burger Bar on deck ten, which we tried and thought it was okay but probably not worth the extra cost since we could eat anywhere else included. Cafe al Bacio had excellent cappucino/espresso etc but we could not get it to go in our room as advertised. The staff in Michael's Club were very helpful and I'm sure had their hands full with all the rebooking. We tried Qsine at a dinner with the Captain and it was great. The entertainment was good and varied but no staff for drink service. The theater never seemed full but again, it could be a large group disembarked early. I can't imagine why, but the lack of crowds everywhere was nice. The con's: the crew did not have guests for two weeks prior and appeared new to their jobs. Our bathroom toiletries were never replenished and we had to ask every day; we allegedly were to get afternoon snacks because of being in a suite and after asking for some pretzels or any snack, the last day we got little sandwiches; there is no pillow menu as some people have said and again after asking for an extra pillow, it may or may not show up and disappear; our room would sometimes get serviced each day even though we took Celebrity shore excursions so they would have known when we were gone; had to ask for mini bar replacements (diet Coke not alcohol) several times; several times there was no one in Michael's Club even though we were there at advertised times; the buffet did not have stations set up at advertised times. It just seemed like we were training a new crew. I hope the next sailing benefited from our repeated reminders. We didn't find a lot of activities on board but it could be that they were orientated towards the pool, which we didn't spend much time at. The security procedures on/off the ship were good and we always felt safe. If a large group disembarked early as we heard, we chuckled that the crew members assigned to them, left as well. The Captain did a good job with some onboard emergency while we were at port in Civitavecchia, causing several hours delay in leaving. He sounded some emergency code several times for the crew (code bravo, bravo, bravo) and they remained calm and reassuring. The shore excursion in Croatia was a bus tour and the countryside was beautiful. We were somewhat perplexed that they gave us an hour free time at a bus stop, then rushed us around the city walk through Zadar. Montenegro was amazing and not to be missed. We enjoyed all the stops in Italy and having been there before were about to pick and choose different tours. We enjoyed the pesto tasting in Genoa. We have sailed with different companies and still think Celebrity is the way to go. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We have cruised many times and are always looking for something new to see. Sadly, what was new was the lack of service and the lack of required knowledge demonstrated by the Shore Excursions ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We have cruised many times and are always looking for something new to see. Sadly, what was new was the lack of service and the lack of required knowledge demonstrated by the Shore Excursions department and just about anything from the pier on. Customarily, we will visit ports independently and we are more and more becoming fans of hiring local taxi drivers/guides because of the great service and local knowledge they provide. In two ports, it was impossible to book an independent tour and it was reported that taxis were scarce. We booked two tours through the ShoreEx desk and they were both a waste of money. In another instance, the desk told us that it was not possible for my mobility challenged wife to visit Pompeii on her travel scooter. The taxi driver we later hired saved the day and took us to a less popular entrance to the site that led right to the ever improving and expanding accessible route through the ruins. (Check Sage Travelling or a similar resource for more information). I will NEVER use a ship's Shore Excursions desk again. Taxi fares are sometimes regulated by government, or simply by competition. The ship was heading for dry dock following our cruise, so one might reasonably expect to see some "deferred maintenance" about the vessel, but unreliable and sometimes inoperable elevators (in which some guests, including this writer, were briefly trapped between floors) is unacceptable and inexcusable. The remainder of the Staff onboard treated us as well as we expected. We do not look upon the ship as a destination, so specialty restaurants, wine cellars and the like are not an attraction to us on any ship. The dining we did partake of, mostly the cafe because of our penchant to spend as much time touring ashore as possible and regarding food as a necessity not an event, was quite good. Friendly, attentive staff and as much variety of menu as one should expect. Breakfast each morning was delivered on time, fresh and friendly. The entertainment was a pleasant surprise. Last year, we were on the Silhouette and it was so bad that we walked out of every show. On the Constellation, we looked forward to each evening's offering and were mostly entertained. Strangely enough, the Cruise Director on both cruises was Rich Clesen. (Obviously influences above his pay grade.) Overall, THE SHIP was as we expected and we were pleased. Disembarkation in Barcelona was a disaster. The baggage hall is not laid out as usual: a serpentine belt (like an OLD airport system) is used in place of the floor groupings expected. Luggage gets separated, many disembark group's bags are travelling endlessly on the conveyor belt together and the carefully timed group disembark falls apart waiting for your bags to appear. The bus bays are a cattle stampede. No matter how you are departing, there is a confusing, disorganized wait for your conveyance. The port disembarkation staff are untrained. I could have sworn it was their first week on the job, but our porter's roll of the eyes told us it was a common occurrence. There wasn't enough wrong that spoiled our holiday, but it seemed that every time we stepped ashore, they screwed something up. Pardon my bluntness. Will I travel Celebrity again? With the right itinerary: yes. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
The embarkation went without any issues. The ship itself was clean and tidy, well equipped with good bars and restaurants although a refurb in certain areas would benefit the ship. The food selection was good and food quality excellent and ... Read More
The embarkation went without any issues. The ship itself was clean and tidy, well equipped with good bars and restaurants although a refurb in certain areas would benefit the ship. The food selection was good and food quality excellent and if you did not like your selection there was no problem in changing it. We had the Classic drinks package for free but would probably look at upgrading to the premium package which allows better choice and the full selection at the Martini Bar. Our cabin (8036) was in an excellent location right near the lift. We thought it would be noisy but this was not the case. The shower area was better than any other cabin shower we have had in the past, much bigger. Service was very good although they could do with a few extra staff at busy times in certain areas of the ship. The entertainment was excellent and a great variety. Celebrity stills remains our firm favourite a grade above the rest, having travelled with four other companies, with staff leading the way. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
The crew could not have done more. I cruise a lot and have rarely seen a crew so nice and accommodating. The boat is old but kept in excellent condition and clean. I do not suggest you stay on the second floor. We had room 2000. ... Read More
The crew could not have done more. I cruise a lot and have rarely seen a crew so nice and accommodating. The boat is old but kept in excellent condition and clean. I do not suggest you stay on the second floor. We had room 2000. The door to the crew was right next to us. We nicknamed it the crew highway. There was constant ongoing maintenance going on and at one point they were emptying a cabin which had flooded. We have never seen so much repairing going on. None of this effected us though. We were the last sailing before the 2 week dry dock to give the ship a facelift. I am hoping the give the crew a boat worthy of their excellence. The food and drink was good. Best sugar-free desserts. The buffet restaurant actually had fantastic food. Entertainment varied, some shows were excellent, some of the other entertainment was OK and did not stand out. The on and off boarding during every port was excellent. We never waited to get off. The greeting upon returning was fantastic. In fact, we never waited in line for anything. Even the elevator came quickly. The ports were great - no tendering. We did Italy, Malta and Spain. The daily things to do was lacking. It was either geared to selling something or there wasn't that much of it that interested us anyway. Also, the TV was not good. They charge for movies which was disappointing. I think this boat is geared to 50's and up. I had a massage and it was very good. It was on the expensive side and they never really went on sale though. Also, the day you stuff all you can into a bag for the laundry did not happen either. No washer/dryer on the ship so we wound up washing things in the sink and hanging them. Overall, I would take the cruise again. It is a good value for the money. There are a few things I would do differently such as downloading movies before I go, bringing more books, etc. This cruise was relaxing and low key. The only reason I did not give it 5 stars is because the boat is in need of an facelift. If this happens it will make a wonderful 5 star vacation. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose this cruise mainly for the destinations, secondly for the dates, thirdly for the duration. We cannot fault the service given throughout the cruise from all the staff we encountered, waiters, cabin staff, bar staff were all a ... Read More
We chose this cruise mainly for the destinations, secondly for the dates, thirdly for the duration. We cannot fault the service given throughout the cruise from all the staff we encountered, waiters, cabin staff, bar staff were all a joy to speak to, they couldn't be more helpful, and in many cases they were funny and amusing, a great credit to the ship and the cruise company they work for. The entertainment was not to be missed, it was brilliant, the resident ships entertainers were producing productions close to West end standards, the individual guest entertainers were also excellent, they had us in stitches. Embarkation and disembarking procedures couldn't be faulted in both cases. The ship as a whole is in good condition, a little tired here and there but not worth making a statement about. Cleanliness throughout couldn't be faulted, food exceeded all expectations, nothing was too much trouble for any of the waiters. Now the bad bits for us, from the moment we stepped on board we were attacked with offers for drink packages, it was hard sell! We are not teetotallers but just occasional drinkers, the odd glass of wine or beer in the evening even a glass of spirit if it took our fancy. The cheapest package for drinks per person worked out at 45 dollars plus 18% service charge per day, over the 10 day period that would have been 531 dollars per person, equating to approximately £415 each or £830 per couple. We didn’t feel that was an option we wanted to follow, we decided to buy drinks as and when desired, just a few examples a small baileys would come to 10 dollars (£7.81) each and a small wine approx $8.5 (£6.64) both of these items had 18% service charge added additionally, now making the bailey’s £9.22 and the wine £7.83. Having cruised with Thompson and P&O we have always found that the drinks on both these cruise lines were very reasonably priced, maybe this factor should be considered when booking another cruise? Our next little gripe is the excursion prices, unfortunately this is not indigenous to Celebrity cruises, as everyone knows this is widespread throughout the cruising industry, maybe if the trips were more reasonable more people would use them and thus probably make more profit for the cruise companies in the long run, on the other hand maybe the cruise companies are themselves being ripped off by the tour excursion operators and they should themselves make a stand to reduce prices, who knows, but what is known is that the majority of people can afford the cruises but then adding on the excursions takes it to another level. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
I loved the ship, the crew and the many activities. However, I do have to mention that the shore excursion with Celebrity on to Sicily- Taormina, Lava River, Wine tasting and Jewels was very disappointing. We booked thru the ship for ... Read More
I loved the ship, the crew and the many activities. However, I do have to mention that the shore excursion with Celebrity on to Sicily- Taormina, Lava River, Wine tasting and Jewels was very disappointing. We booked thru the ship for 159.00. The bus going up and down to Taormina was ridiculous. Over a hour and half either in bus going up or waiting for bus to go down. We barely had an hour in Taormina. We had to cancel the Lava river and rushed through the ladt to things and got back to ship at 7:00 instead of 5:00. Wasted day all the way around. You refunded 27.50 which is a joke. It should have been the entire fee. I have sailed Celebrity before to Alaska and it was awesome. The second disappointment was the entree"s at Blu restaurant. Both Jo and I had steak first night and it was all grissel and we could not eat it. The next night I had the duck and it was horrible. It looked like a piece of raw tongue-they took it away. Jo had lamb which was OK. We did not go back for dinner after that. Breakfast was always good. The crew, entertainment, Adhy our personal assistant, and everything else was wonderful. We booked 3 more excursions (one with ship ) and rest with shore excursions..I hope this helps for future travelers. Thank You Mary Lemmer . Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
It was with trepidation after reading all the negative reviews about this ship, that we embarked in Rome. Whether we were just very lucky I don't know but I could not fault the food (and we do like good food) the staff were all ... Read More
It was with trepidation after reading all the negative reviews about this ship, that we embarked in Rome. Whether we were just very lucky I don't know but I could not fault the food (and we do like good food) the staff were all polite and helpful. Our Stateroom Attendant Mario (7049) was the best we have ever had on 13 cruises. Joseph and Sue in the Dining Room amazing and also the Restaurant Manager. The cabin was fine - bathroom nice size - ok maybe the soft furnishings could do with replacing and whether this happens while it is in dry dock at the moment I am not sure. Tuscan Grille was ok with amazing steaks. Not as friendly as the main dining room and our lovely Team. It is sad to think Oceanliners restaurant is going and to be replaced by Quisine which we have never really liked on the other Celebrity ships. We had lunch in Oceanliners and it is a beautiful dining room. All in all this was a lovely cruise. Many parts of the ship were lovely and again maybe some areas could do with a little upgrade. The sun beds are very basic - Azamara are probably the best we have ever had. Please don't be put off by some of the really dreadful reviews. They are simply not true or some people go out just to find fault. Our last day in Barcelona was a nightmare due to noise in the port from a ship opposite which was a cargo ship of some sort and the noise from 5 a.m. in the morning for 24 hours terrible. Not Celebrity's fault I suppose but maybe they should look into this before docking. It was quite unacceptable and spoilt the last day. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose this particular cruise due to the itinerary. I knew the Constellation would be undergoing a refurbishment immediately following this cruise and it does need a facelift. We were on Deck 8 in cabin 8072. This was my second ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise due to the itinerary. I knew the Constellation would be undergoing a refurbishment immediately following this cruise and it does need a facelift. We were on Deck 8 in cabin 8072. This was my second Celebrity cruise in 6 years, have sailed on Carnival and Princess during the six years. I sailed on Celebrity Solstice 6 years ago and expected some differences due to the different class of ship, but there was a vast difference. We had some unexpected poor weather which brought everyone indoors so there was not enough interior space for everyone. Also, I felt the food was not very good, even in Ocean Liners. I wanted to try a Ocean Liners since it was being removed and I had heard great things about it. Maybe because it was the last night it was open, but there was only one dish served that I thought was good. I can't even remember what I had to eat there. We did eat at Tuscan Grill and service and food was so much better. I'm not sure I will choose Celebrity again. I am going on a Panama Canal cruise in 8 months and will be cruising on Princess. I did like the lunch in the main dining room the day of departure. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly. My room steward was great. Some of the servers; I.e. in Cafe El Bacio, should have stayed home....they weren't rude but not friendly, one in particular. We had select dining and every server we had was good. I did my own shore excursions but did one excursion through the ship, it was fine but the excursion leaders need to be reviewed since I think they could have been better. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Great value for the money and the ports of call were what I was interested in. Service was excellent and all the crew exceptionally friendly. The galley tour was interesting,except you couldn't hear the chef leading the tour as he had ... Read More
Great value for the money and the ports of call were what I was interested in. Service was excellent and all the crew exceptionally friendly. The galley tour was interesting,except you couldn't hear the chef leading the tour as he had no microphone and the kitchen is of course very loud. All the specialty restaurants were excellent, which included Tuscan Grill, Oceananic, and Sushi. There could have been more activities on the at sea days, not alot to do, especially when weather not conducive to pool time. Don't know why ships continue to have art auctions, but I guess some people like them. The ports of call were exceptionally beautiful and disembarkation easy and organized. Shore excursion on Cartagena with the Flamenco show was a complete waste of time and money. And the shuttle bus in Valencia was needed, but the driver left us off in the middle of a street and no one even knew which way to turn to get into town. It was ridiculous. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Excellent service, excellent entertainment but the ship is old and tired She was headed to Marseille France for a two week overhaul. Let's hope they redo the seat cushions in the oceanview café-terribly soiled and stained .Activities ... Read More
Excellent service, excellent entertainment but the ship is old and tired She was headed to Marseille France for a two week overhaul. Let's hope they redo the seat cushions in the oceanview café-terribly soiled and stained .Activities were fun-lots of trivia.Great ports, very interesting. Easy embarkation, easy disembarking also. Very friendly and professional staff. Cabin steward was excellent, friendly and very efficient. Can't say enough about the staff and their desire to go above and beyond. I wouldn't fault the staff for the wear and tear of the ship. The Solarium pool is in desperate need of a makeover. We were told it would be taken care of while in dry dock. I would sail on this ship again as long as they have taken care of the update and overhaul. Celebrity does a great job with the onboard entertainment. Jayne Curry was funny and very talented. Gareth Oliver was hysterical! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose this cruise specifically because it was going to Israel. We had been to most of the other ports. The crew and service was excellent. I would like to suggest that they use less salt however, in their food. Our cabin was a ... Read More
We chose this cruise specifically because it was going to Israel. We had been to most of the other ports. The crew and service was excellent. I would like to suggest that they use less salt however, in their food. Our cabin was a Comcierge class balcony on deck 8, midship. It was so stable, most of the time we had no idea we were moving. The cabin was a little smaller than I thought it would be, but it was just enough space. I think that the cabin decor could have used a good update to make it more luxurious. We just about never used the balcony since we were out and about the ship or touring during the day and at night we were sailing and it was too windy. We only saw a couple of the shows since we were so exhausted after touring all day that we mostly just went to bed. This was not a relaxing cruise, it was very "port intensive". I am still recovering from it as I type. I felt that there could have been more activities on sea days. There is only so much shopping and eating you can do. We only used the cruise line for one of the tours we took and I'm sorry to say that the private tours were far better than the cruise line offerings. It was worth all the homework and research our group had to do. I will say that the embarkation and debarkation procedures were excellent. I just wish that the cruise lines would stop pushing their alternative dining venues just to boost their bottom line. There is only ONE kitchen so you folks that fall for their "special dining" are fools. I will NEVER give a cruise line one penny extra for food that is already included. They nickel and dime the passengers enough. If it is not the ART AUCTION, it's the BOOK ONBOARD, JEWELRY SHOWS, etc. It gets old really quickly. Certainly, Celebrity is not the only cruise line to do this. They all do. Would I go again? I would surely go to Israel but I think I have been to the Mediterranean a sufficient number of times. Read Less
Sail Date November 2016
This has been our fourth cruise with celebrity. We have booked the concierge class on all of the cruises. On each cruise, we have noticed a decline in quality. The service we receive is exceptional but the food an amenities that are ... Read More
This has been our fourth cruise with celebrity. We have booked the concierge class on all of the cruises. On each cruise, we have noticed a decline in quality. The service we receive is exceptional but the food an amenities that are being offered are declining. One of the perks of Concierge class is having hors d'oeuvres delivered to your room each evening. On our first cruise these were interesting little taste treats. It now consists of getting a plate with four sections. In two of the four sections, there are crackers. The crackers are about the size of an oyster cracker and about the same flavor profile. The third quadrant is olives. They put four olives in this quadrant two black and two green. The fourth is some sauce or hummus for dipping the crackers. We ended up going to the Oceanview Cafe and bringing down a plate of olives, bread, cheese, and garlic bread to enjoy with our wine on our balcony. If you are considering elevating to concierge class, don't do it because of the hors d'oeuvres. We were also supposed to get a pillow menu, but we saw no evidence of how this featured worked. The priority check-in and disembarkation was done well. The dinner in the main dinning room was only average. The first night my wife ordered a NY strip steak. It was thin and over cooked. I had other dishes where the quality was lacking. The portion size is also small. They also start you with a bread basket and three dipping sauces one of which is butter. These sauces are quickly consumed at the wait staff does not want to bring you more. Only once did a waiter volunteer to bring more dipping sauces. We had dinner one night at the Tuscan Grille. The food and service in this specialty restaurant was exceptional. My other experiences on the ship were more positive. We enjoy dancing, so most of our evenings were spent in the Rendezvous lounge. The bands played enough of a variety to satisfy our dancing needs. We also enjoyed the Reflections lounge were they had bands or a DJ providing music. We had a classic drink package that was part of the "1,2,3, Go " promotion. Once the wait staff knew you had the package, they would routinely bring doubles. The workout facilities are well equipped. I work with a trainer that incorporates swiss balls and bosu balls into my weight training program, and they had a wide variety of balls available plus free weights and machines. One feature that may not be well known is that the Men's changing room for the fitness area has a dry sauna. It is not part of the Aqua Spa, so there is no additional charge to use the sauna. When I returned from shore excursions a would have a sauna and shower before dinner. My only complaint about the cruise itinerary was that we only spent one day in Barcelona. We could have missed some of the other ports to gain an extra day in Barcelona. Barcelona is a city with a lot to offer and I would think the Celebrity could have and more excursions over a two day period. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We had sailed on Connies inaugural cruise and had the most fabulous time. There was no fault with the food, accommodations, shore excursions, nightlife....the decor was a breath of fresh air in comparison to the other lines. So, with such ... Read More
We had sailed on Connies inaugural cruise and had the most fabulous time. There was no fault with the food, accommodations, shore excursions, nightlife....the decor was a breath of fresh air in comparison to the other lines. So, with such great memories we had no hesitations and booked a family cruise. Embarkation disorganized, port staff very unhelpful and rude. Despite my pleas that I was travelling with my elderly disabled mother, we were forced to line up with the rest of the passengers even though I am a "elite" traveller. No help upon arrival, much different from the inaugural cruise where a cruise member escorted us to our cabins, we were left to our own devices to locate our cabin! The quality of food has gone down hill when even compared to our previous cruise of 2013. The variety quality left much to be desired. Celebrity was known for the quality of their food, sadly this is no longer true. The cabin was dated, bathroom in need of an update, even though the brochure said that it was "refurbished " mold, peeling paint, balcony door locks sticking, poorly flushing toilets.... To add insult, there was garbage left in our cabin that the room attendants failed to notice and remove. I would question how actually "clean" is my cabin. I wiped down all surfaces with my Lysol wipes! If possible, book your own shore excursions. The one offered by celebrity is $$$$$$and not worth the $. I don't mind paying extra if the quality was there. The guide in Barcelona sat at the front of the bus and read out loud the script on his phone. I was seated at the front with my mother and witnessed it! He would stop at a sight, told us to come back to the bus after we "make pictures!" To make matters worse, on the return trip, he was walking so fast, he left my entire family stranded at the Sagrada familia!? The ship's staff said they would investigate and all she said was that we all returned safely to the ship! Oh, and they refunded us our cab fare only". This is surely not the "beyond our expectations?!". The entertainment catered to the UK crowded and far below previous experiences. It might have well been the crew members who put on the show! Amateurs! The dining room was crowded, and the noise level was deafening. It was difficult to carry on any dinner conversation! The table next to us was so loud, we asked for a table change, they were unable to accommodate because the dining room was full, yet they were able to accommodate the dining your way passengers. It would have to be a very good deal for this loyal cruiser to sail with celebrity anytime soon. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We chose this cruise for our group of 8 primarily for the itinerary. We have sailed with Celebrity a few other times and have had a good experience. We were reluctant to book on the Constellation based on other reviews, but all in all we ... Read More
We chose this cruise for our group of 8 primarily for the itinerary. We have sailed with Celebrity a few other times and have had a good experience. We were reluctant to book on the Constellation based on other reviews, but all in all we had a very good experience. We had one concierge room (8092) and three inside state rooms. The Concierge room was in a great location near the elevators and close to the Concierge desk. Embarkation was relatively smooth. We kept a couple of carry-on's and once on board, changed clothes and headed for the pool. We were able to grab a snack at the buffet and have drinks by the pool before the crowds arrived. On our first night we opted to eat at the Tuscan Grill since they were offering dinner at a 20% discount on the first night. The food was good and the service (with Angel) was fantastic. Several people have complained about the need for updating and we found most of the comments to be relatively accurate. However our room was clean as were the public areas, so that didn't impact us. Many others complained about poor service. Most of the crew was friendly any time we saw them. We had an excellent room attendant (Frederick) and our head waiter (Willy) was top notch. The concierge on deck 8 was a huge help to us on several occasions. Catarina in the coffee bar was very attentive and the staff in general was very pleasant. We did notice that in the main dining room the lady (don't remember her name) who took cocktail drink orders wasn't pleasant. We had a classic beverage package that was a "free perk" when we booked. That package was fine but didn't include many of the drinks I wanted to try. We ended up upgrading the package to a premium one (an extra $10 a day) and found it to be well worth the extra money. Interestingly enough, once we upgraded our package we noticed she became much more friendly. The food in the main dining room was relatively good. We had experienced much better food on the Equinox and on our Princess cruises, but the food was still pretty good this time. The portions were smaller than previous times, but we found them to be more than enough for us. There seemed to be fewer choices this time on the menu, but Willy did a great job with his recommendations. For three of the ports (Rome, Amalfi Coast and Venice) we booked a private tour through Shore Trips. I highly recommend them. It isn't cheap (but neither is Celebrity) but for a group of 8, we were able to do so much more than we would have had we spent our money through Celebrity. We also used Viator for a tour in Venice. We did book two Celebrity excursions. Kotor, was a nice experience. We did the three hour kayaking trip in the bay. We tendered at this port and then walked to the kayaks once on shore. We had ample time to kayak with a break for swimming and a snack. It's a beautiful port and one of our favorite places. Our other Celebrity excursion was in Zadar Croatia. We had booked a canoe trip down the river. However it was a 2 person kayak. The description that Celebrity gave for this excursion was not what we experienced. This kayak trip included a large waterfall where we had to abandon our kayak for it to be hurled over the waterfall while we climbed up a slippery hill and climbed back down again. One lady slipped and sprained her ankle. On another occasion we had to have one person get out of the kayak and carry the igloo of dry goods with a paddle along another slipped cliff while the other person went down a waterfall. It wasn't safe for both to go down that waterfall. We were rushed throughout this excursion and had no time to take a break for water, swimming or even enjoying the scenery. I definitely would not book that excursion again. As soon as we returned to the ship two different couples went immediately to medical. We over heard that we were dropped off in a location that they don't normally use, but whether or not that is true, Celebrity should update the description of that excursion. Entertainment was pretty good on board. We enjoyed the live music with the string duo and the house band. We also enjoyed DJ Lenny for the dance parties. We played trivia every day that we were back on time. The theater performances were fair although the comic was rude. We didn't care for that show at all. The casino was the same as it is on most cruise ships. The shopping onboard was disappointing. I didn't feel they had many choices as far as items like hairspray, dental floss, etc. Disembarkation was smooth and all in all, it was a very good experience. We look forward to sailing on this ship after it has gone through a refurbishment. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
The ship was an exact replica of the Summit so we knew exactly where everything was. It is a nice ship but nothing new. The food was spectacular, as always. There was no need to go to one of their gourmet restaurants when you have 5 ... Read More
The ship was an exact replica of the Summit so we knew exactly where everything was. It is a nice ship but nothing new. The food was spectacular, as always. There was no need to go to one of their gourmet restaurants when you have 5 start food and service in the regular dinning. I have never been a big fan of their entertainment, mainly because they mostly cater to an older age group. The service was outstanding. The restaurant staff, bartenders, and stateroom staff were fantastic. We went on the 8 night Adriatic and Mediterranean cruise which had great ports. I would recommend this cruise to anyone. We stopped in Cannes France, Rome, Salerno, Kotor Montenegro, Zadar Croatia, Ravenna, and Venice Italy. They were all lovely ports and Celebrity had numerous excursions with very different activities for everyone to be able to choose the activities they wished to partake in. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
If you’re anxious about taking a cruise, don’t be. Our first time cruise surpassed all of our expectations and we will definitely cruise again! We chose this cruise because we had specific time periods we could travel and it offered ... Read More
If you’re anxious about taking a cruise, don’t be. Our first time cruise surpassed all of our expectations and we will definitely cruise again! We chose this cruise because we had specific time periods we could travel and it offered the ports we wanted at a price we could afford. In addition, the cruise line had been recommended to us by trusted friends and experienced cruisers. We liked the idea of the Aqua Class cabins with exclusive Blu dining, and the Persian Garden. This cruise line and these cabins in particular were recommended to us by our travel agent. We had not traveled outside of North America and only speak English. We thought that a cruise would be a good way to see many different European cities through day time excursions while having the comfort of knowing where we would sleep each night. The more we travel, the more adventurous we might become! And now...the gory details! Airline: Air Transat We booked through our travel agent and followed all of her recommendations (cruise line, airline, etc.). After speaking with several guests who were veteran cruisers, I would do some serious package comparisons with other companies (Costco travel online – who knew – and other agencies that specialize in cruises). There seemed to be vast differences in ‘perks’ that were included. At the time of booking our cruise, we were offered 2 free perks – we chose the classic beverage package and the $300 onboard credit to be used for excursions, spa treatments, shopping, etc. FLIGHT: We had a direct flight from Toronto (7.5 hours). The flight was on time and good, but if I were to do it again, I would break it up. We flew economy and it was quite uncomfortable for 7.5 hours. It was also freezing cold which we didn’t anticipate. We had put a few extra things in our carry on, but despite having used my carry on suit case many, many times with Air Canada and WestJet, the counter agent checking our bags made me use the sizer and it was too long with the wheels so I had to check the bag and our extra clothes along with it. Other passengers were getting through with larger bags but it’s the luck of the draw sometimes. Blankets were sold in a $9 package (pillow/blanket) if you really wanted it. Food service was included in the flight. In-flight entertainment was available through the Air Transat app. We paid extra $$ to select our seats for the trip home as there are some rows with only two seats instead of three across. However, the only ones left were the very last row and you hear constant noise as the attendants get food and drink and passengers use the washrooms. You should get perks for sitting in these seats, not pay extra. Airport transfers were included by Air Transat who also guaranteed we would make our cruise in time. We arrived in Barcelona at 1:30 p.m. and the ship did not leave until 5:00 p.m. – lots of time for unexpected delays or issues (and we had none). NEXT TIME: We will bring back packs for our carry on. We could have used backpacks on our shore excursions. I would definitely recommend that you add a day or two on the front end so that you have time to see Barcelona before boarding the ship. We heard over and over and over again how beautiful it was. Embarkation: Having the transfer included made embarkation seamless. There was a taxi waiting for us upon our arrival in Barcelona and we were at the cruise terminal in 20 minutes. We completed the full, online check in weeks prior to our arrival and it made embarkation a breeze. You can print your luggage tags at home and attach them. The entire check in process at the terminal took about 5 minutes. Your luggage is taken prior to you boarding and arrives at your room before you leave the port. All we had to do was walk on board and grab our mimosas! Clothes: We did not pack enough clothes for a cruise. Your clothes on excursion days are done and you need to be dressed fairly nicely every night for dinner. You can get clothes laundered for a fee but we both had 10 pounds free in each suitcase and could have easily packed more clothes. Dining: The Aqua class cabins give you exclusive access to Blu dining. It’s open for breakfast and dinner and there are no set eating times. You simply walk in when you want – we NEVER had to wait for a table. The food was AMAZING! We never had a bad meal and the service was exceptional. Everyone – the hostess Maria, the Maitre d’ David, our servers Jerry and Anna, and our sommelier Zeljko – was friendly, engaging, and eager to make your experience the best that it could be. There were always healthy choices on the menu and while it changed every day for dinner, there were some standards that you could always get if you wanted them (e.g. steak, chicken, salmon). If you didn’t like what you ordered, you simply ordered something else. The other thing we liked about Blu was the seating. Tables of two were positioned relatively close together which allowed you to meet other guests – we met some amazing couples on board and everyone was always eager to share their cruise knowledge and experience. If you wanted to keep to yourself, it was easy enough to do. When we saw the lineups at the San Marco restaurant each evening, we were really pleased to be able to walk right into Blu! We typically ate lunch at the Ocean Café buffet if we were on the ship (rarely) and there was always lots to choose from for all different appetites and diets. One night, we tried specialty dining, the Tuscan Grill. For us, the cover charge was $45 USD/per person (not cheap); however, when we booked and completed the online check-in, we noted that we were celebrating our anniversary and to our surprise, a voucher for complimentary speciality dining appeared in our room on day 2! In chatting with others, we discovered that complimentary speciality dining was included with their cruise booking which is why I would really recommend shopping around. The Tuscan Grill is an Italian restaurant and the food was…no surprise…spectacular. Our server, Sheyla, made the whole dining experience great fun for us. She was very engaging. We did not try Ocean Liners, the upscale French cuisine restaurant. Entertainment: Each evening, a newsletter is delivered to your room to outline all of the activities on board the next day (there are lots) and to describe the port that you will be in. It also contains all of the dining options with hours of operation. This was an invaluable piece of communication. We did not go to the casino but others we met did and they enjoyed it (as compared to other cruise casinos they had experienced). We attended a few of the evening shows in the theatre. Some were quite good and others were a little lacklustre but all in all, they were okay. We rarely took advantage of other on-board activities as we went on many excursions and were tired by the time we got back to the boat. Shore Excursions: We were really torn about what to do in terms of excursions. The cruise ones seemed quite expensive but they guaranteed you would be back to the ship on time and I hated the thought of risking a bad experience. At the end of the day, we booked three excursions with Celebrity and we weren’t disappointed. All of the tour guides were excellent – friendly and knowledgeable and the bus drivers were all miracle workers in my opinion given the insanity of the local drivers and the tight roads they had to manage. Rome: It was expensive, but worth it. We saw the Colosseum, St. Peter’s, Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. The Colosseum tour included the underground and it was excellent. We didn’t wait in line and had access to areas that general admission guests did not have. It is a 10-hour day as Rome is about 1.5 hours from the pier. Wear comfortable shoes! It was very, very, hot. Be sure to read all tour requirements. There are clothing requirements for St. Peter’s and there are no exceptions. I forgot to bring a scarf, but thankfully another tour guest had a scarf I could use (to cover my shoulders). There was some free time to wander and shop but you MUST be back at the meeting point on time – the tour continues with or without you. One guest on another tour in Rome got separated from his group and lost the emergency number everyone gets…just in case. It cost him $200 Euro to get back to the ship via taxi as he did not know how to access the public transportation (train) system that was much cheaper. We did not find this excursion overly taxing in terms of physical exertion (we are both 50 and in relatively good shape). We had plenty of time at all locations to take photos. Amalfi Coast: We took the motor launch tour of the coast that also included Pompeii. Seeing the coast from the water was great. We docked and had about 90 minutes to tour the town and shop. Then it was off to lunch before heading to Pompeii. Again, the heat was quite intense while touring Pompeii but it’s one of those things you have to see to believe. There are public water fountains everywhere so be sure to pack a refillable water bottle for all of your excursions. In general, I find that the tour guides sometimes forget that tourists need bathroom breaks. You have to speak up and ask or they just keep moving – at the end of the day, they have a schedule to keep and have to get you back before the ship sails. We never felt rushed on any of our excursions. There was ample time to look around, take pictures, shop, etc. Zadar, Croatia: Our final excursion was a river kayak tour of the Zrmanja river. This was by far our favourite. There were about 27 people in our group and we had 5 guides who were all knowledgeable, helpful and fun. This excursion was more physically demanding than the others but well worth it. You paddle for 3 straight hours, relatively easy paddling (no real breaks). There is one point where you have to exit the kayak because the waterfalls are too high to go over. While the guides shoot the kayaks over the falls, you have to walk over fairly rocky terrain to get down to the bottom of the falls and back into the kayaks. Way too many people had flip flops on (bad idea) and had difficulty managing the rocks and getting in and out of the kayaks. The scenery is breathtaking throughout the entire tour. They tell you the water is clean enough to drink (and the guides frequently drink it) but I stuck to my water bottle – why take the unnecessary risk? At the end of the tour, there is a great BBQ awaiting you (chicken, pork, rice, salad, bread...and a cold beer if you want one!). I would recommend making sure you have some sort of snack to take with you and consume on the bus before the excursion (the bus ride is one hour from port) or during the excursion. We were really hungry by the time we got to the end of the paddling. Though they say there will be time for swimming, there wasn’t. I think they promoted it as a small group excursion (max 12…honestly can’t remember the number) but there were 27 in our group. Thankfully, everyone was able to paddle half decently so there were no major issues with the group size. Other Ports: We made our way around Cannes, Kotor, Ravenna and Venice on our own with relatively little trouble. The streets can be very confusing at times but if you are in the main tourist areas, there are lots of people to ask and tourist centres with staff. We tended to get off the ship early on these days, see the area before it got too hot and then head back to the ship for a late lunch. No matter how beautiful everything was, eventually, the heat got to us. We heard from people who went on the Monte Carlo excursion in Cannes and loved it and the National park tour in Zadar and didn’t like it (it was Croatia’s largest national holiday that day and the park was very, very crowded according to other guests). We heard from many seasoned cruisers who booked their own excursions using local, reputable tour operators. They tended to pay a lot less, have far less people in their group (often it was a private tour just for their group), and they had great service and tour guides. Debarkation & Venice: These were the only things that I would have to say could have been improved upon. Part of the challenges we faced were a result of us being first time cruisers and part of the challenges are just poor organization and planning at the port in Venice. Our cruise was supposed to overnight in Venice and it didn’t – it stopped in Ravenna (not originally on the itinerary) prior to Venice. I didn’t realize this until I received my itinerary two weeks prior to the cruise and I didn’t really think anything of it until the day before debarkation. We realized that our airport transfer (included with our package) was for 10:00 a.m. and our flight was for 7:00 p.m. That would mean we would see none of Venice – only the inside of the airport. This was a big letdown for us. We tried to get information online but the internet wasn’t working. We tried to get help from the Shore Excursions desk but they had limited hours and there were no staff – we hoped to grab a last minute excursion as they typically end with the bus taking everyone and their luggage to the airport but they were sold out and couldn’t help us. We tried to get help from guest services and they didn’t really have any concrete information. They just assured us it would all be obvious and easy when we got off the ship…it was anything but! There are thousands of tourists exiting cruise ships and one little kiosk selling water bus tickets. There were virtually no other people outside the terminal to help people sort out where to go and what to do unless people had pre-paid for transfers/tours. There were a lot of frustrated tourists at the cruise terminal. In the end, we decided to ditch our airport transfer, store our luggage in the cruise terminal for $5 Euro per bag and at least see St. Mark’s Square before making our own way to the airport. As soon as we docked in the morning and had internet, we found information on water buses. As you get off the ship, there is an Alilaguana kiosk selling tickets for water buses ($15 Euro per person round trip). The water bus to St. Mark’s square was 15 minutes. We had tons of time to see the square, wander around the central tourist area, grab a bite to eat and then try to find the airport. The woman at the waterbus kiosk recommended we take a city bus to the airport as it would take 40 minutes versus the 100 minutes it would take if we took a waterbus. In the end, that was a very bad decision for us as we had plenty of time to get to the airport and should have taken the waterbus. The city buses are a little confusing and because we had not planned on every riding a city bus, we did not research this part of our trip. The bus ticket to the airport was $8 Euro. The woman selling the tickets told us to take bus #5. The buses are lined up in aisles with large aisle signs and we boarded a bus in aisle 5 instead of bus #5. Forty minutes later, we found ourselves right back where we started. Thankfully, the bus driver walked us over to where we needed to be and we had left tons of time to get to the airport. When you get on a bus, you have to scan your ticket. No one advised of this, it is written in tiny print on your ticket and there are only scanners at the front and back of the bus…but doors also open in the middle of the bus where there are no signs and scanners. Guess which doors we used to board the bus? We were packed in like sardines – lots of tourists and luggage all headed to the airport – and you couldn’t even see the scanners located at the front and back of the bus it was so crowded. About 200m before the bus stops at the airport, it stops and transit cops board the bus (funny, this did not happen on the local bus we got on by accident the first time). It is obvious that they target the tourists. We were given a $60 Euro fine (x 2 – the equivalent of $180 Cdn.) and it didn’t matter what you said – they didn’t give one hoot. There were many tourists in the same predicament as us. It was a really sour way to end the trip and a pretty shameful practice for the local transit authority. Every other form of transportation we took – water bus, monorail – worked as it should but the buses were a different story. If I had it to do over again and hadn’t been so tired and stressed, I would have delayed payment of the fine (this was an option…a more expensive one) and then simply not paid the fine when I got home. Logically, you have to ask yourself, what power does a city transit authority have once you are home? I don’t ever intend to go back to Venice so I suspect our fines would have been among the many that never get paid. Live and learn. In sum, we had 8 great days and one crappy afternoon so it’s hard to get too worked up about it now that it’s over and in the past. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
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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