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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2014
Our first cruise was on the Celebrity Reflection and I loved every second of that so I had high expectations going into this cruise. I was not disappointed. The Silhouette is well maintained and clean. It is identical for the most part to ... Read More
Our first cruise was on the Celebrity Reflection and I loved every second of that so I had high expectations going into this cruise. I was not disappointed. The Silhouette is well maintained and clean. It is identical for the most part to the Reflection. The Silhouette does indeed have a Molecular Bar, they do have the Qasar Nightclub which is not on the Reflection. The Persian Garden is half the size as that on the Reflection, and no cold room. The workout area has a large section for classes and your own use when no classes are being run - I preferred this to the Reflection. There are some other differences but these were the ones that mattered to me. Food: I quite enjoy the food at the spa cafe - I like that it is pre-plated and overall the offerings just appealed to me more. The general buffet wasn't bad, but I just wasn't wowed by the food there. The MDR service and atmosphere was good. I didn't have bad meals, but only a few items were standouts to me - items where I was salivating. Room: oceanview on deck 6 - lifeboat obstruction. I got used to the lifeboat, but I would book early and get a hump cabin, or pay more $$$ to be higher up. Lawn Club: love the lawn club - great place to relax and not super crowded, unlike the pool area. Persian Gardens: ok. loved it on the reflection so much that I bought the 6d pass to start. didn't use it as much as I thought - preferred the lawn club. on the 1st day there was no music playing, on another day the steam room had a nasty smell. just not as heavenly as I remembered/expected. workout room: loved the large space that you cld use when classes not in session. also enjoyed using the balcony to workout. unless you are up early dont use the jogging path on sea days - too many people in the way. I enjoyed using the jogging track on port days. Ports: loved diving in Cozumel and Grand Cayman. Didn't do much in Falmouth. Labadee was nice, of course it isn't the 'real Haiti but a nice beach day. Tendering Process w/o Celebrity excursion: what a cluster tendering was. we arrived late due the azipod issue which was expected, but didn't start getting pp on tenders until an hour later - people were waiting in frustration. As it was I had to line up 1.5 hrs before they distributed general tender tics - I was 1st in line. I just made my 1230 excursion (5min walk from port). Really something to be aware of. Based on research I knew it could be a cluster - just something to be aware of. NYE: spent NYE on board. Joined the dance party on pool deck. unveiled 2015 ice sculpture at midnight. formal night (1 of 2)   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
What a disappointment! I booked with Celebrity due to its reputation as a high-quality, excellent line. My experience, however, was merely average and therefore disappointing. I have sailed twice in the past - the first with NCL Gem and ... Read More
What a disappointment! I booked with Celebrity due to its reputation as a high-quality, excellent line. My experience, however, was merely average and therefore disappointing. I have sailed twice in the past - the first with NCL Gem and the second with Carnival Splendor. Each of the prior cruises had highlights. NCL Gem had excellent food and an engaging cruise director, Sinan Ulucay, and the Carnival Splendor had some of the best stand-up comedian entertainment I've seen with "The Punchliner" series. Each of the above also had a variety of entertainment outside of the main theater. In contrast, there were no highlights on the Celebrity Reflection. Pros: 1. The ship is very clean, and the staterooms are the cleanest we've experienced. 2. The guest entertainers were good. Antonio Salci, Kyle Knight & Mistie, and Claire Vinkestejn (apologies if misspelled) were very talented, professional, and entertaining. As an aside, I often wonder why cruise lines continue to push the pseudo-Broadway experience instead of opting for more instrumental/orchestral music, other non-singing performers etc... 3. The dancers/aerialists were impressively excellent. 4. Everyone who works on the ship clearly works hard, and it shows. Slobodan, the guy who runs the buffet, is a workhorse. Cons: 1. There is very little entertainment on the ship. On other lines, including NCL and Carnival, the daily itinerary is chock full of activities like dancing, games, lectures, etc to the point that one needs to sacrifice certain activities to attend others. For instance, on the NCL Gem, there were something like two trivia games a day and a whole bunch of guest game shows, whereas on Celebrity Reflection there were approximately five trivia games and two game shows the entire cruise. Fun things to do, besides laze by the pool, were few and far between. Which leads me to my second point... 2. The majority of the itinerary consists of either shopping events or pay-to-play activities. Given the relatively high cost of the fare, I had incorrectly assumed that daily entertainment would be largely complementary as it is on other lines. How I was mistaken. Rather, the main focus was on being hocked "low-end high-end" items like Michael Kors bags and Invicta watches and paying $20 to do simple things like paint. For example, the majority public real estate of an entire deck, deck 5, consists of shops and specialty restaurants. Other decks aren't much better. 3. The food in the Main Dining Hall is average, slightly better than Carnival but certainly not worth the extra cost of the fare. It pales in comparison to the food on the NCL Gem. This is supposed to be a higher-end line, so I expected higher-end food as the default. Instead it seems that the food is made to be palatable but not special so that passengers are more likely to spend money on the specialty restaurants. The buffet food left a similar taste in my mouth, pardon the pun. 4. The entertainment is standard cruise fare, with shouting-with-tone Kelly Clarkson-style female singers, hopping agile dancers and poppy tunes. Not really a con, but not a pro. 5. Why is the library overlying the main foyer where the loud music comes from? It defeats the purpose... 6. The destinations, while good, were not timed optimally. Landing in San Juan at 1530 and leaving at 2200 doesn't leave one much time to enjoy non-Celebrity-arranged excursions. 7. The dining halls are closed when at port. I don't remember this happening on the other cruise lines. 8. In the games room on deck 9 there is an abundance of Mahjong sets but no Backgammon, and far too few decks of cards. Overall, my cruise felt like a shopping mall with an exorbitant cover charge rather than a truly entertaining vacation experience. I will not recommend the floating shopping mall, Celebrity Reflection. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
A little about us: This was cruise #21. #7 on Celebrity. This was our first cruise where our 24 yo son came with us, and first time with three in a cabin. We normally book inside or outside cabins. This time, we booked a verandah and ... Read More
A little about us: This was cruise #21. #7 on Celebrity. This was our first cruise where our 24 yo son came with us, and first time with three in a cabin. We normally book inside or outside cabins. This time, we booked a verandah and snagged cabin 6155, with the oversized verandah on the front reverse “Bump.” This was our first “Christmas” cruise. If you just want the summary just scroll down to the end as this is rather long. We flew to Fort Lauderdale the day before the cruise. Southwest was on time with an early arrival. We stayed one night at the Ft Lauderdale/Plantation Hampton Inn. They picked us up at the airport. We traveled with local friends to the cruise port on Sunday morning as in total we were a group of eleven. Despite countless e-mails and text messages from Celebrity with their “Board by decks” and “Delayed boarding” warnings, we arrived at the port around 10:00. Our luggage was taken immediately. Our big “Wait” was waiting for the security screeners to open, which they finally did around 10:45(?). We were promptly processed, given our boarding cards, and directed to a seating area for “Select and Elite” members. At about 11:30 we noticed those in the “Suite” boarding area were being let on the Reflection. Five minutes later we were allowed to board. Immediately upon boarding, we confirmed our dining reservations for a table of eleven in the Opus dining room. Table 325 was confirmed. We also arranged to have dinner the first night in the Tuscan Grille as advance reservations could not help us due to our group being eleven. We enjoyed lunch in the not yet crowded Oceanview café (after the Muster drill it was a zoo!). We explored the ship and before the muster drill our luggage was delivered and we were unpacked. We met our room team and they suggested that they would put the mattress from the overhead bunk onto the couch, to give our son a nice bed. This worked out great and he slept soundly the entire trip. In fact, we were surprised how well the three in the room worked out. We were still able to access the verandah even while he was in his “Bed.” Dinner at 6:00 in the Tuscan Grille was fantastic (as expected). We attended the first night’s show which was a guest entertainer who was quite good as a vocalist and as a pianist, but we enjoyed the vocals more. Sunday morning we used the pools (which were way too cold the entire cruise – what is with the solarium pool being cool?) and hot-tubs early before breakfast. After drying off breakfast in the Oceanview was enjoyed. The ship is very impressive and further, I was surprised to find that at 10:00 not all the pool chairs had been claimed by “Chair hogs.” While we saw some signs of chair-hogging on this trip, it was nowhere near what we experienced on the Summit to Bermuda a few years back. At 10:15 we had our roll call meet and greet. The Captain and many other officers paid a visit. This was a nice gathering and many of us stayed until after 11:00. I attended the first of the “Behind the podium” talks on football and found it interesting. When that was over, I looked around the ship for our group and finally ran into one outside the Opus. I was able to belatedly join half our group in the Opus for lunch. The other half were in the Oceanview. Lunch in the Opus was okay. At this point we were very positively surprised and started to think we were on a five star cruise! We tried to call the dining room to arrange for no added salt meals for two of our party and were rebuffed “Just tell your waiter tonight.” Dinner in the Opus, however, dashed the hopes for a five star cruise. This was the first formal night. First off, our table had ten settings rather than eleven. The maître de insisted on double checking each of our five room’s table assignments, before admitting they had erred. They reset the table. Our waiter appeared and it was obvious he did not want to be there. At the end of the meal we learned he was a “Head waiter” who was filling in for someone who wasn’t feeling well. A “Head waiter” should mean outstanding service, right? NOT. Most everyone’s entrée was edible at best, and the menu sure didn’t reflect a “Formal night” type of menu. The Apple Pie dessert was made from tasteless apples and crust that tasted like cardboard. It was not edible. By now it was 8:15 and the second seating is at 8:30 so we were rushed out. While sitting at Café El Bacio for some good dessert, we realized the two ladies had not ordered (nor seen the menu) for the next night. Back to the dining room where we found one of the assistant managers who we informed about tonight’s meal situation and also took care of the special orders for the next evening. We hoped that would correct our dining disappointment… We attended the show, the first with the production company. After 10 minutes we all walked out. If they are trying to reach a younger audience, they failed. My 24 yo son said “What the h*** was that?” Monday was another bright sunny December day. We had a nice breakfast and enjoyed being around the ship. I attended the second of the “Football” talks. We didn’t arrive in San Juan until 3:30 PM so this was really a sea day. After the ship was cleared, we enjoyed a walk around Old San Juan including along the waterfront which we had not previously done. We were back on board in time for dinner. I admit I was surprised that Reflection did not offer “Open dining” as we were in port during the entire dining hours. In any case, our real waiter was serving us and he is on the ball. Dinner tonight was a winner and enjoyed by all. The special orders for tomorrow evening were taken efficiently. The maître de visited to make sure all was well. Have our dining issues all been resolved? While sitting at Café El Bacio, we saw one of the chefs checking the supply of pastries. A few of us engaged the chef in conversation and it turned out he was the executive pastry chef. Our question was “Why are these treats so good when the desserts in the dining room are subpar?” We gave him examples of that evening’s “Chocolate lava cake” that was the size of a US Quarter (I am NOT kidding) and the prior evening’s “Cardboard Apple pie.” He seemed shocked and told us the Apple Pie is made fresh each day. He picked up his phone and spoke to someone and told them to bring two pieces of pie to the Café. He also told us that if you see “SPE” next to an item, that means it is very small as it meets certain dietary standards – so avoid SPE if you want more than one chew! Well, those two slices of Apple Pie were the opposite of the previous night. The apples were tasty, the crust thin and flaky. At least 4 out of 5 for this pie! We thanked him profusely. These were the only good apple pie slices we had, though. I ordered the pie two other evenings and while not as bad as the first night they were nowhere near what we received from the chef. Monday’s show was a Pianist. He was actually quite good and we stayed for about 30 minutes of his show before fatigue (its tough being on a cruise!) set in. Tuesday morning we docked in St. Thomas. It’s a rare day when you are on board the only ship docking that day in St. Thomas! We had prearranged a private charter for our group to explore the out-islands. Alas, that was not to be. A taxi-van took us all there only to find a captain with a smaller, shade less boat than what we had booked. Alleged “Electrical problems” were keeping our boat from sailing. Okay, so no boat trip today. The taxi took us to Sapphire beach where we had a wonderful morning. The taxi was there at noon when we were ready to head back and we reboarded the Reflection. We tried the grille for lunch and the burgers are passable but nothing special. After the burger we explored the Oceanview for something better. We thought about going out to peruse the shops near the dock but never did make it ashore. We enjoyed the pools while many were still ashore. It’s a great day in the Caribbean sun! The day remained great but the evening not so much. The highly recommended fish dinner in the Opus was served (including the two special orders without salt) and the fish was smelly and tasted like it was spoiled. These were all sent back. I had also ordered the everyday steak which was okay. The two ladies replaced the fish with Salmon but they were both served with raw insides, like they were placed on a grille for 30 seconds on each side and served. By the time they received an edible plate, it was 8:00 and the clock was ticking… After some post-dinner discussion at Café El Bacio (can you tell we like that venue?) the three men went to guest services. We spoke with a very polite representative and made it very clear that we wanted to speak with someone from management about the two dining room disasters we had experienced. We were assured that if we came back after the show we could speak with a guest service manager. We went to the show, a much hyped production “Momentum.” After about 20 minutes we knew it wasn’t getting any better so we left. We went back to guest services and had a very nice meeting with three people. Long story short, they promised our meals would be personally reviewed by the executive chef and that all would be well the remaining three nights. Will they??? Wednesday is Christmas Eve and we are in St. Maarten! We left the ship about 9:00 and were treated to “Snow” on the gangway and pier. Many team members were there in Santa hats wishing everyone a great day. We were docked opposite the Silhouette and it seemed the two ships were competing to see which group was more “Christmassy.” It was fun. We took a taxi into town and walked the main shopping street several times. We also visited the bay-front promenade, but in the bright sun it was quite warm. Our immediate family visited the “Yoda guy” museum. We are Sci-Fi and “Star Wars” fans and this was a fun stop. We purchased a few pieces of his art and toured the excellent museum. We didn’t get out of town this trip and looking back that is one thing we will do on any future visit. After a late lido lunch, we went out to peruse the shops at the port. We returned to Reflection and enjoyed the rest of the afternoon at the pool and for sail-away before getting ready for dinner. Dinner in the dining room was outstanding and the best Opus meal of the cruise. The show was Pianist Antonio Salci. Pianists are not my thing, but he was very good and talented. Thursday was Christmas day. We enjoyed the elite breakfast and then headed poolside to get chairs where we could watch “Santa” come by on his “Sleigh.” His arrival was promised for 10:00 and he was punctual. It was actually a lot of fun watching Santa and his many elves (dancers from the ship’s company?) and a few musicians make their way around the lido with a parade of followers including many families with children, Captain Peppas among them. They eventually headed down to the showroom and we did not follow. Our group had “Christmas lunch” in Murano. This was spectacular with both food and service beyond compare. We were in a private room well-stocked with wine along the walls. Everything was superb and lunch was greatly appreciated. Christmas dinner was the second formal night. We took photos around the ship and enjoyed another excellent Opus dining room meal. The holiday special Turkey was very good. The Scallop appetizer was very tasty. Desserts were the best dining room desserts of the cruise. After dinner the “Guest choir” performed a number of holiday tunes in the grand foyer. They were joined by many of the ship’s officers “Caroling” in the foyer. The snow-maker was in use and it was a bit of a magical moment. The evening show was a “Holiday show spectacular” and it was very enjoyable – especially as you consider this show, put on by the various ship’s performers from every venue on board, do this just once per year. Somewhere along the line I’m sure we were at El Bacio but I don’t recall the details. At the close of the show it was hinted/announced that there would be a special performance in the grand foyer at 10:45. We stayed for this – and still don’t understand what it was all about. The dancers were dressed in “Sci-fi” type of costumes and the male dancers looked like robots. But there was no storyline and it just seemed weird – and we like Sci-fi! Friday was the last day of the cruise heading back to Miami. We again did the elite breakfast, enjoyed relaxing at the outdoor pool where friends joined us to listen to the Xtasea party band at noon. Some of us even did some dancing on the pool deck. We had some lunch in the Oceanview (their large lunch croissants are delicious) and tended to the end-of-cruise packing chores. We also enjoyed live music anywhere we could find it including one last time at the Sunset bar for “Five O’clock Somewhere.” Our final dinner in the Opus dining room was a disappointment however. Perhaps not quite the horrendous meals from early in the cruise but nowhere near the quality of the prior two days. One thing we appreciated is there is no last night “Parade” or rah-rah for the culinary team. On our first few cruises we really enjoyed that but at this point for us that is old and we often avoid the dining room on the last night for this reason. We just don’t understand how “Modern luxury” means that only three out of six dinners in the dining room were enjoyable. After dinner the show was “Reflection – the show.” This was much hyped as the “Highest rated show on any cruise ship.” That is quite a boast when you know the types of shows that are now on the mega-ships, so we certainly went to check it out. It was certainly the best show put on by the production cast this week, we will give them that. Music from the 70’s and 80’s along with a bit of a story line made it interesting, and some of the aerialists are very talented. But the “Best show on any cruise ship?” A number of shows on our last cruise on the HAL Westerdam were better in terms of enjoyment, at least for us. Saturday morning we did the express disembarkation and were impressed that there were many customs inspectors and thus no lines at all. We were off the ship at 7:00 and curbside by 7:10. Conclusion: Well, this is a very hard cruise to rate. The ship? Five stars. Clean and meant to impress. The one thing though that I really disliked about the ship is the “Crow’s nest” area. There is no view whatsoever to the port side due to the high-priced cabins they put into the space. Our cabin? Five stars. We were surprised by two things: One, we did not use the oversized verandah very much at all. Two, we did not feel “Crowded” by having three in the room. Entertainment in the main showroom – Three at best. Entertainment other than the main showroom – 4 ½ stars. Specialty dining? Five stars – but it HAS to be five stars if you are paying $45 per meal over and above your cruise fare! The Oceanview café? For a buffet, it was overall very good – Four stars. The Opus dining room? Two and a half stars. This one really hurts as “Dinner” is a major component on a cruise, especially when traveling with friends. Three great meals were offset by two horrible experiences and one that was mediocre at best. Café El Bacio – Five stars. One of the best features that Celebrity has. On board Customer Service – 4 ½ stars. Everyone we met really tried their best to help with any voiced concerns. Pre-cruise Customer Service and website – 0 stars. “Modern Luxury?” I think not. The pools - COLD! We could use the pools but our friends who live in Florida found the pools were just too cold - even the Solarium pool. What is with that? 2 stars. Overall – Three and a half stars for this Christmas week cruise on Reflection. The concern we have is that the lower rated aspects of the cruise should not have been affected by the fact that this was a holiday cruise. After three “Excellent” cruises this year on HAL, it will be a while before we seriously consider returning to “X,” especially with their current pricing. Paying more while getting less is not how we prefer to spend our vacation dollars. Would we recommend the Reflection? With reservations, yes we would. But we feel there are better choices for a one week Caribbean sailing.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2014
We were on the 7 day Holiday cruise on celebrity Reflection.. As expected the ship went out full so there were lots of family groups, all ages and nationalities. The children were well behaved, there seemed to be lots of activities ... Read More
We were on the 7 day Holiday cruise on celebrity Reflection.. As expected the ship went out full so there were lots of family groups, all ages and nationalities. The children were well behaved, there seemed to be lots of activities organised for them. in general the ship was well prepared for sailing at full capacity. We did not have to queue long at any bar. Since Celebrity no longer have trays in Oceanview cafe buffet, there were not lines either at any food station as you can only fit so much food on one plate! Crew were pleasant and helpful, there was a lovely spirited atmosphere on deck 14 around the pools and the sun beds were quite close to each other. However the pool butlers were doing a good job in removing towels from vacated sun beds and there were plenty of quiet spots on deck 15 away from the loud music and party atmosphere around the 2 pools. Food in Blu was really good and we had an exceptional meal in sine though we were a party of 2. Our choices were scaled down in proportion so we did not overeat and chose 6/7 dishes. We also ate in Murano on a formal night and loved it though we preferred Qsine overall. We did not try Tuscan grille as we'd both indulged enough with the New york Strip in Blu restaurant on a night we didn't fancy any of the Entree options. The gym was overcrowded at peak times, and so were the fitness classes/zumba, but all in all we had a lovely time. 7 days on a crowded boat was enough though, however good it was! We only did the island tour in St Maarten which was very interesting and gave us time to explore the beach and shopping streets on the dutch side when we returned to the ship. Entertainment onboard was varied and quite good. the aerial acrobatics are excellent Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2014
This was our second sailing with Celebrity. We had never cruised over Christmas and thought it might be a new fun way to celebrate the holidays- stress free. We did enjoy our week but if you are thinking of sailing the high seas over a ... Read More
This was our second sailing with Celebrity. We had never cruised over Christmas and thought it might be a new fun way to celebrate the holidays- stress free. We did enjoy our week but if you are thinking of sailing the high seas over a major holiday remember the KIDS will be everywhere. Our last time on Celebrity there were maybe 8 kids on the entire ship. This time we heard there were 700! It felt slightly like children had overtaken the ship and were running amuck. It did not ruin our cruise but it did seem to spread the crew thin and frazzled most guests. The lobby was very festive for Christmas but I would have loved to see one crèche as they did have a menorah. The beautiful lobby common areas were draped in garland with lights and they had a huge gingerbread collection. The Christmas show was just perfect and my favorite of any Celebrity show I have ever seen. The talented and beautiful Claire Vinkesteijn made all of it possible. We had the best massage of our entire lives from Karen. This was our first time experiencing Aqua Class. WOW. BLU is worth Aqua all on its own. yes there is a cool shower head and yes since only two per cabin for aqua class we had peace and quiet near our cabin but BLU was just amazing. The service impeccable. We also loved the foot stool on the balcony and spent many hours enjoying the sea. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2014
Hello, This was our 1st cruise with Celebrity. Overall we thought it was very nice. We opted to only eat in the main dining room. The specialty restaurants were expensive, considering we already paid for all meals. Food and presentation ... Read More
Hello, This was our 1st cruise with Celebrity. Overall we thought it was very nice. We opted to only eat in the main dining room. The specialty restaurants were expensive, considering we already paid for all meals. Food and presentation was very good!! The staff was very attentive and could not be more friendly. This was the highlight of the day for me! We decided to not get the drink package…..too much pressure to drink our moneys worth!!! The alcohol by the glass was expensive, but still less per day than if we bought the drink package. We HAVE to recommend the Molecular Bar!!! The drinks are $13 per glass, and worth it!!! It's kinda cool to have your drink served with liquid nitrogen in it….makes a good show. This bar alone might make the premium drink package worth the money. If we go again, I will buy the package but not wife. (2 drinks and she's done!!) The on board daily planned activity's were pretty boring to us. We are 53/55 yrs old. We did not bother with much except for the nightly show in the Reflection theatre. The entertainment was nice for a cruise ship. We went every night and had a drink during the show. Nice casino but lost money!! :( We enjoyed the experience, but were a little bored at times. On sea days there is not much to do. Eat, fall asleep at the pool, eat, clean up for the nightly show, browse through the already inspected gift shops and repeat. Maybe we are just not cruise people….not sure yet. Need one more trip to Molecular Bar!!!!! We would recommend the Reflection. Nice ship and crew was great!!!!!   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
Celebrity Reflection is a beautiful ship with excellent staff, food, and services. I wanted to comment on the Christmas Cruise we took from Dec. 20 to Dec. 27, 2014. Our Port visits all went well with a short, but pleasant stop in San Juan ... Read More
Celebrity Reflection is a beautiful ship with excellent staff, food, and services. I wanted to comment on the Christmas Cruise we took from Dec. 20 to Dec. 27, 2014. Our Port visits all went well with a short, but pleasant stop in San Juan (where my camera broke) and great snorkel trips on both St. Thomas and St. Maarten. We took the Pirate Ship trip on St. Thomas and found the crew to be fantastic and the rum drinks on the way back to be overflowing. The crew told lots of corny jokes and kept us laughing. Soft drinks and water were provided the whole time. On this trip we saw small turtles and we had plenty of time in the water. On St. Maarten we took a large Catamaran which gave us a smooth ride and a nice ladder to get into the water which was warm and wonderful, but without a whole lot of fish. We swam into shore where the staff was on the beach and gave us some refreshment there. We had plenty of time in the water here too. The staff on this trip was also very accommodating. It was my husband's birthday and after the rum punch service with sandwiches they pulled out champagne and served anyone who wanted it. We were fortunate on both of our trips since neither boat was full and there was plenty of space for everyone. We booked both of these trips through Celebrity. Hint: take the early morning trip as it will probably be less crowded. We also had time for shopping in all of the ports. I used the approved list provided by Celebrity to go to a camera shop on St. Maarten where I was able to buy a new camera at a reasonable price. It was Christmas Eve, after all, and I could not be without a camera! We were booked in Aqua Class so our dinners in the restaurant Blu were all great. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinners were no exception. On Christmas Eve we had a Carol Sing in the main foyer and they created an optical illusion of snow coming down...beautiful!! On Christmas Day the lunchtime food in the Oceanview café included extraordinary desserts and specialties from around the world. The ice sculptures and fruit sculptures were amazing. Santa arrived in the pool area in the morning and rode his sleigh all around with a live band playing songs as he rolled along. It was such great fun! And, of course, there was a nice Christmas Show in the evening. If you are thinking of taking a Christmas Cruise, I would highly recommend this one. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
We sailed on the Celebrity Summit out of San Juan on Thanksgiving week. There were five port-days (St. Croix, St. Kitts, Dominca, Grenada and St. Thomas) and one day at sea. Since it was a holiday week there were more school-age ... Read More
We sailed on the Celebrity Summit out of San Juan on Thanksgiving week. There were five port-days (St. Croix, St. Kitts, Dominca, Grenada and St. Thomas) and one day at sea. Since it was a holiday week there were more school-age passengers than you normally see in November. Since we sailed from San Juan many passengers were Puerto Rican, so Celebrity provided strong Spanish services and the entertainment had a Latin flavor. I wouldn’t call this a “Party Cruise” (like a Carnival ship sailing out of Miami.) But there was festive, cordial vibe. There was also a lot of spirited dancing by people of all ages. The only other time I remember such a diversity of passengers was on a cruise out of NYC. The Summit is not massive or very new, but it’s tastefully appointed. You won’t find a waterslide, bowling alley or rock-climbing wall. But there are a variety of bars and restaurants. The library is on two decks. There’s no smoking in the casino! There’s large fitness center, a jogging track and pool deck. We had all of our suppers in the main dining room. The selection was interesting and the food was very good. The service was prompt and professional. The wine list was better than most cruise ships. Any other time we were hungry the buffet on Deck 10 was more than adequate, although at non-meal times you might find you are limited to pizza, pasta, grill and salad stations. The entertainment was well above average with a wide variety of outstanding musicians and a number of very funny comedy acts (including the cruise director and the ship’s captain.) Standouts were a very tight a cappella quintet and a Russian acrobatic duo with Cirque de Soleil skills. The variety troupe was consistently strong as dancers but only seemed to connect as singers on certain songs. I’d question their repertoire before calling down their talent. With five stops in the Lesser Antilles, two of them U.S.V.I.’s and all of them English-speaking islands, this is an itinerary that guarantees beaches, rain forests and rum. But each island has a distinct character and there’s far more to explore than your limited time ashore allows. Anyway, if you are concerned that a couple of the ports are light on cultural and historical attractions, don’t forget the cruise starts and ends in the amazing city of San Juan. It seems like people either rate the Summit as excellent or not so good at all. My theory is that if you have pre-conceived ideals, this ship may not check a lot of your boxes. But if you are the type of person who takes things as they come, you will have a wonderful experience. I certainly did.   Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
Unpacked, final load of laundry drying, so time to write the review. Overall a great Thanksgiving week in the Eastern Caribbean. I have written this based on my opinions and comments made by my wife and two others traveling in our party. ... Read More
Unpacked, final load of laundry drying, so time to write the review. Overall a great Thanksgiving week in the Eastern Caribbean. I have written this based on my opinions and comments made by my wife and two others traveling in our party. This was our 6th Thanksgiving Cruise the four of us have taken together, previous five on Carnival, so our first with Celebrity. We flew into Ft. Lauderdale on Saturday and spent the day seeing family and just relaxing. Since we a had a rental car I returned it on Sunday morning and took the free shuttle to the port. That was a mistake. The bus was really full, we dropped off after the Allure and had to pick up people getting off the Allure and going to the airport. The shuttle to almost an hour for a 10 minute ride. Next time 10 bucks and straight to the ship. Lots of construction in the port area so give yourself plenty of time. Embarkation: A breeze for us. My wife had brought the luggage to the ship (road with family and new grandbaby) and the luggage was unloaded from the car and she never saw the bags again until they arrived in our room around 230 that afternoon. I arrived a little later and at approx. 12:35 we entered the bldg to start the process and by 12:45 we were on the ship upgrading our drink packages. No problems, no issues, friendly staff members, a great way to start the vacation. The Ship: The ship is beautiful, that sums it up. We walked around and got our bearings and waited for our room to be ready. They said 1 and at 1:02 the doors opened and we were inside our room and standing on the balcony. Our room attendant introduced himself and his assistant and we could not have been happier. All week, everything we asked for was delivered by the room staff. From there we met family in the buffet dining room for a quick snack. The food was plentiful and very good. I made my wife a cheese and cracker tray and she raved about the cheese and how peaceful everything was. We were not seated with our two family members at the early dining so I made a trip to see the dining room staff. We were placed together immediately and given a very nice table for 4. Leaving port is always exciting, and this time was as well. Someone got proposed to in large letters being held up at a condo as we left port and the vacation had begun. Dining: We had early dining and ate in the main dining room 6 out of 7 nights. We were very happy with the food, service, and the overall dining experience. My brother in law has diet restrictions and they filled his every wish to include low carb cheesecake every night. The glasses stayed full of wine and bottled water and just a very pleasant experience. We ate in the same dining room most breakfasts and lunches. Also very good and very relaxing. Monday and Friday were formal nights and we just did Friday. Monday night we ate in the Tuscun Italian Grill. Can not say enough great things about the Tuscun. Great food and the service was wonderful. Everyone felt the 45 dollars was a fair price and much better than the fine dining on Carnival for 35. The spa dining (smoothies and healthy foods) was very good and as named, located just outside the spa. We had breakfast there a few times and it was very good. The burger and dog grill was excellent. You have to be a little patient, but worth the wait. The hot dogs are delicious and the service was very good. It is located right above the main pool and it does get a little busy around noon so you must be a little patient or wait until the line goes down before heading that way. The only time we ate in the buffet was shortly after getting on the ship and I had lunch there on Saturday at the Grand Buffet with the ice carvings and huge food and desserts selections. The dessert section looked like some of the crimes scenes that I have investigated. People, not worth the verbal assaults and rudeness over cheesecake. Saw several examples of the "Angry American" in this area. Somewhat disturbing but sadly to say, not shocking. Bars and Package: We upgraded our including drink package to the premium package. Best decision made all week. The free bottled water and the smoothies easily paid for the upgrade. Unlimited Evian waters and sparkling water at dinner was nice. I spent every afternoon at the Sunset Bar (cigar smoker). The bar was very nice and the drinks and service was very good. The wind really blows in the area on sea days and you had to pick your cigar spot carefully. No issues, all great. The martini bar was also a great experience. Good drinks, fun bartenders, and one of the dance and party crowd gathering points during the cruise. My evening home was the Molecular Bar. Heaven on the ship. I can not say enough about the three working behind the bar and how wonderful they truly were. All the drinks are included in the upgraded package or I would giving plasma today to pay my bar bill. A must visit for those who enjoy a wonderful cocktail and loads of fun. Entertainment: We did several shows and they were very good. I did not make the late night comedian act but was told by cigars buddies that it was very good. Seemed to always be a band playing or a game around the pool going on. Enjoy what you want and walk by what you don't, you're on vacation. Pool and Spa: I enjoyed the pool area and my wife really enjoyed her two spa treatments. The indoor adult pool was very nice and very relaxing. The main pool was more alive with kids and louder music and was also enjoyed. Never felt overcrowded and chairs were plentiful and while a few were saved it was not a problem like it was on Carnival. Missing San Juan: This was our first disappointment of the cruise. The Captain came on the PA around 10 on Monday and stated that we were going to be a little late getting into San Juan but he would not commit to a time. He stated this was due to unexpected strong headwinds. I told my wife that since we were going 17 knots and from what we had left to get to San Juan, it just wasn't happening. The Capt came on around 1 and stated that he had made the decision to bypass San Juan and head straight to St. Kitts. While I understand the strong winds (they were strong) I also blame the propulsion problems that this ship is having and will continue to have until Jan when it gets dry docked for repairs. When I first read about these problems several months ago I called my TA to discuss cancelling this cruise. She called the Celebrity rep who emphatically stated this was a known problem and in no way would effect the cruise or the ports visited. Well IT did. Strong winds, full power and we enjoy a evening in Old San Juan. Strong winds, less power to one engine, no Old Town. Sad but dealing with Celebrity on this now. Doggie Lunch: This was a first and somewhat troubling in a few regards. There were two service dogs on the cruise and were very well behaved. One of the dogs was a small dog that was pushed around all week inside a stroller and wore diamond studded collars and hair bows. On Friday afternoon as we entered the main dining room for lunch we observed the dog's owner, could not miss very very large red hat, sitting at her table and next to her, in a chair was the dog. I thought WOW, a dog in the dining room, in a person chair, at the table having lunch. In front of the dog on the table was a large silver doggie water dish in which the dog seemed to be having a post lunch drink. I know dogs are a clean animal and I understand the ADA laws but come on Celebrity, you squirted my hands three times a day before dining with hand sanitizer but yet you let a dog eat and drink from a a dining room table while sitting in a chair. The next a we asked the Maitre D about he dog and he stated he saw nothing and it would not have occurred if he had seen it. Well he was lying, he walked by the table several times and did nothing. Very sad. We Are Out of That: Also disturbing was the amount of times in which we were told the ship was out of items. Towards the end of the week there was no cream cheese, milk for morning for morning cereal, many mixes for the drinks, certain sodas, and other items. This should not happen and the staff seemed somewhat embarrassed to have to tell the customers they could not get what they ordered or wanted. Debarkation: What a mess. You would think this was the very first time they ever did this. We self carried off the ship from the 10th deck. After a 15 minute wait and no elevators, at the time we were told to use the elevators (7-7:30), we just humped the six bags down the stairs. Once off the ship it is a long walk to customs and while we are not in great shape, I am sure others had a difficult time on the walk to customs. Customs went great. Follow directions, have your paperwork out and don't be funny. They have a serious job and lots of folks to get through. Overall: We had a great time. Sorry for such a long post but I know I read several post before cruising and I hope it helps someone like others helped me. This is not a Carnival cruise. The age and demeanor of the passengers was much more in-lined with what we were looking for and for that reason we will be back on Celebrity. I wish everyone a wonderful Holiday Season, God Bless, and Safe Travels. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
This was my first cruise; however, my two step kids and husband had been on Royal Carribean 12 plus times. So our rating will be based on these experiences. We did the all inclusive upgraded beverage package and based on the amount of ... Read More
This was my first cruise; however, my two step kids and husband had been on Royal Carribean 12 plus times. So our rating will be based on these experiences. We did the all inclusive upgraded beverage package and based on the amount of high quality bar experiences on the ship, I would suggest this option. There were many unique bars with amazing mixologist. The food was great in the cafe, many options for all three meals and snacking. There was the opus main dining room which was hit or miss. A definitive miss for breakfast. Two of the four nights were outstanding, one was horrible food and service. Our room was beautiful, spacious and the service was outstanding. There was a lot to do on this cruise. The shows were outstanding. The fitness and spa are top quality. While there were children of all ages on the ship, I think this was likely due to the US Thanksgiving. This ship definitely appears to be more geared to adults, ship slows down a bit after midnight.   Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
About us This was our first X cruise. We've sailed RCL, DCL, HAL, and Princess. Let me just say that the verdict is and we are converted to loyal X cruisers. DH and I are in our mid-40s. We have an 8 year old daughter and a 7 year ... Read More
About us This was our first X cruise. We've sailed RCL, DCL, HAL, and Princess. Let me just say that the verdict is and we are converted to loyal X cruisers. DH and I are in our mid-40s. We have an 8 year old daughter and a 7 year old son. Getting to the Port We had a morning flight out of Pearson Airport. I’m not sure I ever want to fly Air Canada again. The check-in process took FOREVER and was so disorganized. Even with nexus cards and priority screening, we barely made our flight. The cab ride from MIA to the port was a fixed rate $24.00 for four of us. Embarkation The “process” at the port was really silly. Rather the first in line being the next to be served they seem to queue people so that they have a second mini line forming behind each agent. As luck would have it, we ended up behind someone who had EVERY problem in the word. We were there for about 20 minutes while we saw lines on either side of us get quickly processed and people who were well behind us in the first line were processed and boarding the ship ahead of us. We went back to the front of the main line and said we wanted to wait for a new agent. We got processed and that family ahead of us was still getting all their issues sorted out. They really need to fix this and just send the front of the line over to the first available agent. All in all it moved pretty quickly. We arrived at MIA at 11:09 and we were seated at the Oceanview Cafe by 1pm. Our embarkation lunch was excellent, best of any sailing, even MDR lunch for HAL. Select Dining I made reservations online prior to sailing. We arrived for 7pm on the first night. Our wait team was Art and Alexyus. My husband was worried that with select dining, we would not get the best service since gratuities were prepaid. At the end of the first night. We had both agreed that service was even better than the gold standard service we had received on HAL. We lucked out and received this awesome service team every night of our cruise. I made my reservations on line before going. I tried to book 7PM every night, but some nights had to take 6:45 and other nights had to take 7:30. I tried switching on board but they would not/could not give me 7PM every night. We were able to secure our same waiter every night. The service was so awesome that we wanted to have him every night, and he suggested that I tell the hostess that because of my son’s allergies, we wanted to stay with him. We had not trouble being accommodated. Allergies My son has peanut allergies. I had emailed X prior to our sailing to advise them of this. After we had our embarkation lunch at Oceanview, I went up to the dessert section, and asked the attendant which items contained nuts. He said, “Madam, we cannot control cross-contamination, let me call a manager for you”. I nearly fainted – the word cross-contamination was used! Within minutes a manager had found me and brought me a plate of nut-free desserts direct from the kitchen. He asked our room number and said that every day at lunch a dessert plate would be waiting for us, I just had to ask. At dinner in the Opus dining room, our server Art, greeted us to assure us that he would take care of our son and he did not disappoint. Every night, he brought my son a special bread basket certain to be nut-free. Art was always familiar with the next night’s menu so we could pre-order all of my son’s meals for the next night. On other ships, the buffet has been a huge cause for concern with servers not having any sense of awareness of the severity of food allergies. On Carnival Dream, I asked an attendant which desserts contained nuts and was told “no nuts” while I could clearly see nuts in many of the desserts. On X, any mention of food allergies to a buffet attendant would result in "hold on madam, let me call a manager" who made sure to take care of us. One particular manager who was the Maitre D for Murano would seek me out in the morning to say he had a plate of chocolate croissant reserved for my son. How awesome is that??? I would recommend X to anyone who is nut allergic. MDR and Buffet (Breakfast) We preferred the buffet breakfast to the MDR and this is coming from someone who HATES buffet. The only exception was the scrambled eggs. I’m not an egg eater myself so I never tried them, but my who is a scrambled egg aficionado did not like the eggs at all. I’m not sure what the issue was but the eggs were almost too creamy or something. We tried a MDR breakfast to see if the eggs were better, but they were the same. My daughter’s favourite breakfast is a soft-boiled egg. We asked for one at the first breakfast but they were not familiar with this. They asked how long to cook it for. I suggested 3 minutes. I cook for 3 minutes in boiling water, but they cooked for 3 minutes in simmering water. The egg was still raw.  My daughter stuck to a sunny side up egg after that. Lunch The buffet lunch was also very good although on day 6 we opted for the MDR. It was good but not noticeably better than the buffet. On day 7 I had my top chef class so hubby took the kids to the buffet. We had lunch one day at the mast grill. I insisted on this after reading so many reviews here about the awesome hamburgers. Hubby and my son liked them – very good for a cruiseship burger. I thought they were just okay, on par with a Costco roadhouse burger. Dinner at OPUS Our wait team of Art and Alexyus – were SUPERB. My son called Alexyus "the Chocolate milk ninja" because every time he turned around there was a new glass of chocolate milk waiting for him. Note to families: the chocolate milk is white milk with Chocolate syrup decoratively squirted on the glass - not premade. I thought the food was on par with HAL and the service was just as good. My daughter enjoyed the everyday sirloin steak probably 5 out of 7 nights, the other nights having the prime rib and the beef tenderloin : ) She’s a meat-eater and had no complaints! My son ordered the chicken nuggets of the kids menu and they were horrible and dry. After that he alternated between the cheese burger or the steak. Hubby and I enjoyed the food – the only disaster(?) being the Top Chef night. More on that later : ) Entertainment On my cruises, I'm all about the shows, but on this cruise I opted for the casino. The description of the shows in the daily did not thrill me, however, we made it to Momentum. It was okay. Not the best show I've seen at sea but not the worst either. I definitely give Royal the edge on entertainment – but I don’t pick my cruises for the entertainment. Living near Toronto, we have access to awesome broadway shows, so our standards are high. It was better to skip the show than to take time out of our evening and sit through something we wouldn’t’ love. Casino We had access to $10 tables every night. On day 6 they had $5 tables but I could never stay at one because the world's worst gambler at sea would sit down. Note to self: if the day comes that I sit down at a table and everyone else gets up, it's time to stop gambling. Overall the dealers were awesome. We enjoyed playing with Mercedesz from Hungary and Iva from Croatia. Even Renzo was great. Carlos was a bit of a grump at first but he warmed up over the week. I enjoy a happy and personable dealer .... Don't quite mind losing my money so much if the dealer is friendly! Tips were always acknowledged and appreciated. Overall Lady Luck was good to me. Had some awesome gambling mates. Shout-out to my new Cuban Cousins from Miami – you ladies were awesome and I enjoyed gambling with you! Sin City Comedy show As far as cruise ship comedy shows go, this host was just okay, but as we know, comedy is very subjective. The headliner, Kathleen, was freakin hilarious. Neither my hubby nor I were a fan of the burlesque dancer. The show started with the dancer, then the host, then the dancer again followed by the headliner. For comedy shows, I give the edge to Carnival. Fun Factory The Fun Factory was a HUGE hit – my kids loved it! I think my guys at 7 and 8 were the oldest there, but they did not seem to mind. They really enjoyed the Fun Factory. On sea days they would visit after breakfast, lunch and dinner. On port days, it was mostly just at night. However, in St. Thomas, they asked if they could stay on the ship so we let them. If any of you were debarking with us and saw a little boy in tears, that was my son. He wanted to go back to the Fun Factory just one more time : ) Cruise Critic Meet We received our invitations to the Meet & Mingle party. It was on the second sea day (I think). I really don’t get this, because they scheduled it at the EXACT same time as the first Top Chef event which also coincided with the galley tour (or so I thought). My son wanted to go to the kid’s club, so DH took him there. My daughter wanted to go to the Top Chef event so she came with me. Hubby and I were both signed up for the slot pull. When hubby took my son off to the kid’s club, I somehow ended up with both room keys. We went off to the Top Chef event. DH came to the meet&greet, but we were gone by then. So he went on to the TOP Chef event, but it was over by then, so he went to the galley tour to look for us (he wanted his room card so he could get a drink!), but I took my daughter to the kid’s club and then came back to the slot pull. Comedy of errors, but we ended up meeting up at the slot pull. Unfortunately, we all walked away empty handed Top Chef If you are a Top Chef Fan – you MUST do a Top Chef sailing. What an awesome experience. On embarkation day, I almost walked right into Tiffany Derry at the Oceanview. I recognized her almost immediately, and quite honestly, I was a bit star struck. She was her absolutely charming-self. I rushed back to the table and told my daughter who could not believe that I spoke to Tiffany. She says, “I wonder if we will see Shirley Chung”, and just as she says that, guess who walks right by our table? My daughter started shaking and tears were streaming down her face (she LOVES Shirley!) As I mentioned above, the first Top Chef event coincided with the Cruise Critic meet. Because we attended the meet&greet first, by the time we got to Opus for the Top Chef event, all the seats were taken. But this ended up not really being a “top chef event”, it was just to introduce the top chefs. They each said a few words, and that was it. My daughter and I were disappointed and we walked out. While we did want to do the galley tour, I had committed to the slot pull so thought I may as well return to the cruise critic meet. Leaving was the best thing we could have done!!!! We walked out of Opus and straight into Tiffany Derry, Casey Thompson and Shirley Chung. OMG, I cannot tell you how awesome these ladies were. They took the time to give my daughter autographs (and wrote very sweet messages). They took the time to talk to her about being a chef and took pictures as well. She even got hugs from all of the Chefs. She was in 7th Heaven!!! Next up was Tiffany Derry’s cooking demonstration, which I believe was on the Monday. She is so personable. Her demonstration was great and she fielded lots of questions from the audience. 2nd Demo was Hosea’s. The third top chef event was the Quick fire challenge, and I thought Celebrity handled it will by giving out raffle tickets to those who wanted to be on the stage. I seemed to always be one or two numbers off the winning ticket. It seemed so rushed at the end and on the Friday (last sea day) – Casey Thompson and Shirley Chung both had their demo’s. I also had my private cooking classes. I had to leave Casey’s demo early to go to the cooking class, and then we missed the start of Shirley’s demo because of the cooking class. There were photo ops after every Top Chef event. We “met” the chefs on the first day (running into them outside the Opus dining room). When we stood in line for Pictures with Tiffany the next day, she greeted my daughter by name, how cool was that? When we did our photo with all 4 chefs, Shirley greeted my daughter by name. One day, while at the kid’s club, they took the kids to the Oceanview for ice cream, but travelled through the adult pool to get there. Tiffany was lounging in that area, and called out to my daughter and waved at her. My daughter felt like a million bucks. By midweek, we felt like we were BFF’s with Tiffany. There were two Top Chef dinners in the main dining room. The first night was the “standard” Top Chef night that I believe they have on EVERY cruise. All the Top Chef’s circulated through the dining room, and as lucky would have it, Tiffany was in our area, so we got another photo. The second Top Chef dinner, featured courses from each chef; each chef put forward a recipe for an appetizer, main and dessert. I wasn’t’ a huge fan of Shirley’s congee dish with the shirred egg. It was okay, but nothing earth shattering. I loved everything that Tiffany made. Hosea’s shrimp dish was great, and I loved this stout cake. Tiffany’s sweet potato crème brulee was divine. One of the appetizers that was recommended by our server was Casey’s mushroom dish. The description in the menu did not sound that great, but since it was recommend I ordered it too. I took a huge bite of it and OMG it was the MOST disgusting thing I had ever tasted. We were in a crowded dining room and I had nowhere to spit it out. I sat there with it in my mouth for forever until I could sip enough water to wash it down. I later learned at the Quick Fire challenge that many of the recipes were taken from the top chef cook-book and not exactly as described on the menu. Casey Thompson was asked about the livers in her mushroom (lightbulb – I HATE liver!). Apparently, when she first conceived the recipe it had livers in it, but when she made it on the show it did not have livers in – but the liver version is what was printed in the top chef cookbook and that is what was made by X even though they did not add “liver” to the description on the menu. The cooking class with Tiffany was wonderful! WE had a great group and I think everyone had fun. As per my other experiences, Tiffany was wonderful and charming. I had heard that some of the other chefs had been quite disappointing in the amount of fan interaction. On an earlier sailing, Nina Compton for example taught her class and then left immediately. Tiffany taught her class, and then sat and dined with us and had lunch with us. Our lesson went over by about half an hour as we all chatted and drank wine and took more photos. The package also included lunch from Murano and we had the option of sea basset or tenderloin. Wireless at Sea Only bad service I found on reflection was the guy that runs the ilounge. I'm sure he's quite helpful if you get your email through AOL, but he is completely useless when it comes to helping someone who uses POP or IMAP mail being pulled to their phone. Fine, if you can’t help someone, but I found him to be quite rude and condescending. I get my email pulled to my phone through my own Microsoft exchange mail server. As long as I have connectivity through wifi, email should come through. I used about 20 minutes of my package waiting for emails to through, but nothing. His solution was that I needed to login through my AOL account. I had alerted my staff to email me through my personal email account because I get far less personal emails, and it would be easier to sort through. My personal domain is managed through godaddy. I also could not get my godaddy email to pull through to my phone. I tried logging on through godaddy webmail. I kept getting kicked out from godaddy due to "inactivity". I sat in the ilounge for over 20 minutes and could not open a single email that I could "see" on the godaddy site. The ilounge guy insisted that the speed issue was with godaddy and not Celebrity. At least if he had owned the fact that wifi at sea is slow, I could have lived with, but his insistence the speed issue was the fault of godaddy was maddening. I complained about him to guest services because I really was insulted by the way he spoke to me. She asked who he was and the way she acknowledged my complaint told me that I wasn’t the first person to complain about how he spoke to me. I normally buy a data package from my cell provider, but having just changed cell providers, my new provider classified the islands differently, forcing me to buy 2 separate data packages, totalling about $50.00 and with only 3 ports all mid-week, I didn’t’ see the point of the data packages and thought I would try the ship’s wifi package. Next time, I will stick with the data package from my cell provider. Photos I had meant to buy the digital photo package before leaving. If memory serves it was $220. The package only came available within a week of our sail date, but it closed if you were within 1 day of your sail date and by Friday morning I had missed out. There was a ship promotion that I was able to get onboard which was $250 for digital plus paper; so you got all the prints plus all digital images. We made sure to get our photos done at every port, in the MDR, and each night. And the photographers were falling over themselves taking pictures of my kids, so I definitely got my money’s worth. Note to anyone who buys a package, you should be checking the pictures on your stateroom tv to makes sure that all your pictures show up. Otherwise, you take the print to them and they will add it to your package. I should have been doing this all along. On the last day, I went by to collect my prints, and amidst the crowds I was told to take my prints back to the stateroom and check the TV. But when I got to the stateroom, the pictures were no longer available. So I had to rush back to the photo area and use a kiosk to match up a few hundred pictures to my disk. I ended up finding a few that were missing, one of which was my Top Chef picture, so they took the print number and added it to my package. Then by the magic of photo recognition, all the TOP chef pictures appeared on my account – and by all, I mean every picture that Tiffany, Casey, Shirley and Hosea had posed for including every person who had their pictures taken with the chefs. I pushed it back on the photo team to get those deleted. I still ended up with a few of Shirley Chung’s personal photos of her and her hubby on my disk. Hmmmmm ….anyone know the number for the Enquirer Overall, I thought the photo package was great value and I was very pleased with my pictures Drink Packages We had booked the classic alcohol drink package as a perk with our cruise. Overall we were quite happy with the classic package. DH had a nice select of domestic beers to drink. I found the wine selection kind of lacking. For example, there is no cabernet available on the classic package. I contemplated upgrading but then found a shiraz that wasn’t awesome but it was drinkable. I found the mixed drinks at the pool – hit or miss – based on who made them. I enjoyed a delicious banana daiquiri on the first day but could not seem to get a second one that ever matched the first. Bottled water as a plenty and was always being brought to us even without asking. Most often, we would end up with “large bottles” which were not technically part of our package. I was drinking the double-espresso like it was coffee (wasn’t a huge fan of the coffee). Unfortunately, it was the very last day before we discovered the Igloo. Those will definitely be a favourite at Bacio from now on. And the fresh squeezed orange juice was divine, although it seemed to vary quality/consistency throughout the week. Onboard Booking Bonus We loved our cruise so much, we booked another one. We are booked on Silhouette November 15, 2015. We received $250 OBC for our existing cruise, plus $300 OBC for our next cruise, free grats for PAX 1 and 2, Free classic alcohol for PAX 1 and 2, Free Classic for PAX 3 and 4 plus free internet packages for PAX 3 and 4. Our CVP seemed to have a lot of difficulty with our reservation. She for some reason had trouble booking our kids so the booking confirmation as delivered to our cabin a day later. I called on Black Friday to see if there were any special deals. I was told about the Cyber Monday deal, but then the CVP said, I have good news, I can apply a the 123 promo for you, listing off all the perks I already thought I had, and she said there was absolutely no promo associated with our account. I was not impressed. Oh, and the first CVP booked hubby and I on select dining and booked our kids on late seating! Oh well, it’s all sorted out now, but I don’t have a whole lot of faith in the onboard CVPs; they of all people should be good at this. Disembarkation Went smoothly! Smoother than any other we've walked off. We self-disembarked. We went to the Oceanview for a quick breakfast then back to the cabin to grab our bags. I think we were off the ship by 7:30. the wait for customs was processed exactly the same way that boarding was with agents queuing up lines behind each agent. Our luck, we ended up behind talkers. We had to wait about 10 minutes to see our agent, but we patiently waited as this was not the place to be huffing and puffing. We got a cab quickly and were at the airport in no time. We flew home with air Canada, and it was a ghost town. There are no self-help kiosks there, so you have to see a ticket agent for your boarding pass. We went to the security area, and there were no line ups. I commend to the agent that I expected the airport to be a zoo with all the cruiseline pax. He said other areas like AA are busier. We cleared security in minutes and all was good except we had about 4 hours to wait for our flight to leave   Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
This was our 14th cruise and our 5th Celebrity cruise and our first Thanksgiving cruise. We enjoyed this cruise even more that the others. The Aqua Class cabin #1524 was beautiful. It was well designed, clean and quiet. During the entire ... Read More
This was our 14th cruise and our 5th Celebrity cruise and our first Thanksgiving cruise. We enjoyed this cruise even more that the others. The Aqua Class cabin #1524 was beautiful. It was well designed, clean and quiet. During the entire cruise we didn't hear our neighbors once. Our cabin attendants Kate and Ramon were absolutely wonderful. We couldn't have asked for better service. The cabin had a large balcony with two lounge chairs. This was our second cruise in Aqua Class and we are hooked. In fact while onboard we booked a 16 day transatlantic cruise from Miami to Rome on the Reflection in the same cabin. We liked it that much. The ship is beautiful. We had no problems with the seating at the shows or at the bars. We had dinner every night in Blu which was excellent. The food was absolutely delicious. Keith our waiter and Oom his assistant were terrific. With these two gentlemen it was fine dining every evening. We usually visit the specialty restaurant at least twice a cruise but the meals and the service in Blu were so good that that we enjoyed dining there each night. On three occasions we had breakfast in Blue which was also excellent. The one drawback that I observed was the buffet. We had breakfast and lunch there several times and found the food on the buffet to be overdone, burnt and cold. For breakfast we learned to order omelets and other made to order items. We thought the Reflection was a wonderful ship. The entertainment was excellent especially the house bank Soul Provider. All of the staff members that we came in contact with were great. I could not say one negative thing about any of them. I would highly recommend the Reflection to anyone planning a cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2014
We recently went on a 14 day cruise in East Asia - it was OK but overall we were somewhat disappointed. Our cabin was good, the cabin attendant, and the dining room waiter were good, and the itinerary was good. But we did not find the ... Read More
We recently went on a 14 day cruise in East Asia - it was OK but overall we were somewhat disappointed. Our cabin was good, the cabin attendant, and the dining room waiter were good, and the itinerary was good. But we did not find the actual cruise as enjoyable as a previous one we had done on the Celebrity Infinity along the Inland Passage in Alaska. Although the on board facilities were pretty much the same, but in general we did not get the same degree of enjoyment or satisfaction as the earlier cruise - in particular we thought the quality and standard of food in the cafe and main dining room was generally poor and below the standard of the previous cruise. We took shore excursions at every Port - which were rather tiring, because they left early in the morning and you didn't have time at each place to really absorb the place and to do it at your own pace. That was a lesson we learnt, and no fault of the cruise. We were also concerned about safety drill on board, and how successful an evacuation of the ship would be int the event of such an occurrence - certainly getting passengers getting ashore for excursions, did not always go smoothly, and this should have been routine practice. Except for the food, i could not recommend against Celebrity Millennium, but we would certainly think carefully before going on another such cruise. Two Grey Gypsies. P.S. My opinion was not helped, because I lost my digital camera on board, it must have been found by another passenger or crew member, and they never handed it into the lost property office, but I guess that reflects modern society   Read Less
Sail Date: September 2014
A REVIEW FOR 'CELEBRITY SUMMIT' TO NEW ENGLAND AND CANADA: (Read all the way to the end for my 'Highlights and Lowlights'!) This was my 8th cruise, although FIRST with Celebrity. We'd heard so much about it being ... Read More
A REVIEW FOR 'CELEBRITY SUMMIT' TO NEW ENGLAND AND CANADA: (Read all the way to the end for my 'Highlights and Lowlights'!) This was my 8th cruise, although FIRST with Celebrity. We'd heard so much about it being 'all that', but we came away feeling that it was just like all the others. (Namely Holland America and Princess). That's not a bad thing, it just didn't feel like anything 'extra special'. Having said that, other passengers that had previously sailed with Celebrity told us to try the 'S' class of ships which is supposed to be a cut above. (Summit is an 'M' class). PRE-CRUISE: We stayed at the Doubletree in Jersey City. It was cheaper than Manhattan, but it was easy to get to Manhattan via the PATH train. (About $2.50 each way/pp). Jersey City also offers terrific views of the NYC skyline. The cab ride from Newark airport to the hotel was $50, as was the cab from the hotel to Bayonne cruise terminal. (We started to joke that wherever you went, it was $50!) EMBARKATION: They ran out of numbers to give people, so after a while, people just started getting in line and getting on the shuttles. It wasn't too crazy, but could have been a little better. Some previous Celebrity cruisers complained that it was one of the worst they'd experienced, but for us, (on our 8th cruise) it was about average. DEMOGRAPHIC: I would not recommend taking this cruise to New England/Canada unless you're OVER 55. I'm not sure if it was the time of year (Sept/Oct) or the choice of destination, but the demographic was an older-than- usual cruise crowd. We are ages 41 and 42 and people in their mid-sixties asked us several times if we thought the passengers seemed unusually old. (!) (They were referring to the very immobile 70-85 crowd). We were definitely one of the youngest couples on the ship and everything was very geared toward a much older set. (The music and entertainment, for example). Having said that, we are kind of old souls ourselves and enjoyed meeting and chatting with lots of very nice people. :) ITINERARY: Unfortunately, we missed one port (Sydney) due to a technical difficulty with the ship, but they did give us a partial refund due to the issue. Compared to other cruises I've taken, this New England/Canada itinerary is a little boring due to the fact there aren't any water activities or really thrilling things to visit, but we made the best of it and generally enjoyed it. We only took one Celebrity tour, which was excellent. (Peggy's Cove/Titanic grave yard in Halifax, NS) and relied on private tours for the rest or did our own thing. FOOD: For us the food was hit and miss. Some good, some average. According to my husband the lobster wasn't very good. (I don't eat it). The afternoon tea was disappointing in that it was not a formal setting, rather a walk-up self-serve counter next to the pool. I missed the white glove service and string quartet! Dining service was also hit and miss, just OK. We did the 'anytime dining' and often had to wait for half an hour with a buzzer, which we'd never experienced before on other cruise ships. They offer the usual 'higher level' extra fee restaurants which we tried at lunch time, but way overstuffed ourselves because we knew we were paying more. I know...I know... ENTERTAINMENT: I liked the cruise director and the fact they offered 'after-the-show' entertainment at 10:30pm in the Reflections lounge (night club). This would vary from things like comedians to theme night dancing, dance-off competitions and burlesque shows. I found the trivia a little too speedy/not relaxing. The one port lecture talk we went to was awful. The main entertainment shows were of general good quality, although it was often hard to get seated in the show-lounge, which was disappointing. DISEMBARKATION: It went pretty smoothly and we paid for a shuttle through Celebrity to take us to Newark airport, which we're glad we did. HIGHS AND LOWS: Love, love, loved the Thalassotherapy pool and sauna which are both free to use. (As of Fall 2014). The Thalassotherapy (or T-pool) is near the spa and is a warm salty mineral pool that is just delightful to sit in. WARNING: Don't wear silver jewelry in it -- I did and it either broke or tarnished! The sauna is in the locker room and offers a huge round window view of the view outside -- the best sauna I've experienced on a cruise ship! The workout room was also very state-of-the art and spoiled me compared to my gym at home! Loved the boozy bar on the back of the ship and the coffee bar with complimentary cookies/cakes and musical entertainment. (Coffees are an extra fee). There is also a gelato bar for an extra fee. General cleanliness was excellent Everything on-board seemed more expensive than other cruises we've taken. Hence, we didn't participate in many things with a fee. (eg. massages, i-lounge, acupuncture). In general it seemed extremely obvious like everything was about making money -- even the kitchen tour ended in a promo for the fee-based restaurants. It just gets a bit tiring. They take WAAAAYYYY too many photos of you during the cruise. When you disembark in each port they want to take your photo 3 (THREE!) times -- you know, one with a life buoy, one with a dolphin, one with a pirate, etc. etc. TOO MUCH! They also snap them at some dinners. We purchased one photo of a formal night. Overall, we had a nice time and would try Celebrity again, perhaps 'S' class next time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2013
We chose this cruise because of the ports of call and wanted to try our luck with Celebrity. Plus we liked that the ship stayed in ports for multiple days. This was our 7th cruise (first with Celebrity) and we have traveled extensively. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the ports of call and wanted to try our luck with Celebrity. Plus we liked that the ship stayed in ports for multiple days. This was our 7th cruise (first with Celebrity) and we have traveled extensively. Staff on the ship was friendly, courteous and very attentive! Our state room attendant Schubert and his assistant were excellent and seemed like genuinely good guys! Embarkation and disembarkation was a breeze. This was a Christmas cruise and the ship did a very good job providing for the kids. Both our Kids 5 and 9 years old had a fun vacation. Ship layout was easy to navigate and possessed the usual cruise ship flair. The ship is bit old and shows its age. Our room was 9156, a family veranda with an extended balcony. It was spacious with a separate sleeping area for our 2 children which included an extra television. We would have been quite happy. However, the room was infested with bed bugs. Many of them were mature and we were all badly bitten. We were immediately removed from the room. All of our luggage and clothing was put in plastic and taken away to be cleaned. We were moved to a much smaller room. We were told our original room would be ready in a few hours. A day later, our clothes were delivered to the smaller room without an explanation. After several calls to guest services, we were informed our room would not be ready. Then only after complaining, we were offered 2 rooms side by side but not connecting. I would have preferred that our family be together in the same room but at least we were comfortable. The new rooms were clean and serviceable. Our new rooms were 6027 & 6029. 9156 was offered back to us after a few days but we elected to stay as packing up again didn't appeal to us. We essentially missed a day and a half. The ports of call were amazing cities! We had prepared for the long distance 2 - 3 hours bus or car rides each way but many were complaining. More time to compensate could have solved the problem. The ship was in port overnight on many of these occasions. We spent 2 nights in a private hotel in Bangkok. We wished we had done the same thing in Saigon. Hanoi needs an extra day. We missed the port at Da Nang because of inclement weather. The food at the restaurant was generally OK. There were some disappointments. The food at the buffet was not good. Snack food was terrible. Everyone at our dinner table liked our head waiter Alberto. His assistant Nadan was also extremely nice and should be recognized for giving outstanding service! We didn't eat at any of the specialty restaurants. The shows and entertainment are exactly what you should expect on a cruise ship. The lounge acts were marginal at best with the exception of the one man guitarist/singer who plays in the main foyer. He was exceptional! We had our issues. None which we didn't overcome. We met some very nice people and had a nice time. Somehow we expected more...   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2013
Celebrity Millennium – Holiday Cruise- Dec 21, 2013- Hong Kong- Singapore (SE Asia) I wanted to share our experiences on the Celebrity Millennium Dec 21- Hong Kong- Singapore Holiday cruise. This is an honest assessment; the good, the ... Read More
Celebrity Millennium – Holiday Cruise- Dec 21, 2013- Hong Kong- Singapore (SE Asia) I wanted to share our experiences on the Celebrity Millennium Dec 21- Hong Kong- Singapore Holiday cruise. This is an honest assessment; the good, the bad and the ugly. This was my second Celebrity Cruise after sailing on Celeb Reflections this past summer on a Med Cruise. After our Reflections sailing, we felt we had finally found our cruise line and booked this cruise along with another Celeb Med cruise in June 2014. Our port was the new Kai Tak cruise terminal in Hong Kong. It’s brand new and they don’t have their operations down yet. Suffice it to say we did not get our luggage until nearly 10pm. By which time, we were too tired to do anything but eat at buffet and go to bed. Not off to a good start and Celebrity seriously needs to get with port authorities to figure out how to expedite luggage to the cabins. Many fellow pax groused about the same thing so already they got off on the wrong foot with their customers. If you sail in our out of this port, be advised there are not many taxis around. Try to pre-arrange if possible. I found a great online private transfer service- www.blacklane.com who specializes in Asia. They act as a broker with private drivers in many, many cities. I booked them for Hong Kong airport pickup to Kai Tak port while at my airline club in Shanghai waiting to board fight to HKK and 3 hrs later when I landed, I had a text that my driver was waiting. They were flawless and prices very competitive. For example, a 9 pax van from Singapore port to airport was $45; ship quoted me $160. First impressions when walking on board, the ship was definitely showing its age but the public places were still clean, if dated. Cabin- Our cabin 1140, an Aqua Class on Deck 11 was small but had an awesome balcony. It was an aft cabin with by far the largest balcony of the Aqua Class cabins. I highly recommend this cabin if you sail her and balcony size is important. It was right over the deck 10 aft bar (never did find out its name- we called it the Sad Café), but we were never bothered by noise. Probably because the staff at that bar was so disinterested, that no one really cared to sit out there for any length of time other than smokers. More on this later. Cabin was small and unlike Reflections which has overhead storage over bed, this cabin was egregiously lacking in storage. You have to bring a lot of clothes on a 15 day cruise; not sure where we’re supposed to put them. Bad layout to say the least. Not sure when these cabins last had a makeover but if it was recently, they did a lousy job. Our cabin steward was nice and perfectly competent and unobtrusive. As someone else also mentioned in their review, the thermostat never really worked properly in our cabin either. Dining- We obviously were entitled to eat at Blu and did so only 3 nights for a variety of reasons. Some days we got back from tours so tired and late, that we didn’t have it in us to clean up in a hurry and those days we ate at buffet. Other days we spent off the ship (total 4 nights overnighting in Bangkok, HCMC and Halong) The food at Blu while good, was not up to the standards that had been set on Reflections. It was good, not great and IMHO, certainly not worth the extra charges for an Aqua Class cabin. The service was awfully sloooow. Again, an entirely different experience than the one I had on Reflections. Maitre’ D was very nice as were all staff. It just took forever to get service and once we placed our orders, the dishes were brought at record speed so that you could finish your meal in less than 30 min. Just in time for that glass of wine you ordered an hr earlier. ‘Nuff said. QSine and Olympic however were stellar. QSine’s staff was phenomenal and service excellent. Sommelier was great. Food was very good, not quite up to Reflections, but very good nonetheless. We ate here twice Olympic- Food was phenomenal and service was STELLAR. What you would expect in a 2 star Michelin restaurant in Paris. Whoever trained that staff needs to be walked around the ship and give refresher courses to staff at other dining venues. We ate here twice. Il Bacio Coffee Bar- great coffees and excellent service. I think barista’s name was Annie, make sure SHE makes your coffee concoction. Service phenomenal here as well. Buffet- Food selection was fantastic and for most part, all dishes were excellent and very tasty. Best pizza I’ve ever had on a cruise ship. Great omelets as well. Good choices of salads and sides, gourmet sandwiches…etc. No complaints here. Great alternative to formal sit-down dining. Entertainment- Didn’t go to a single show but was told by other cruisers the entertainment was very good. Can’t help you here. Bars and Lounges- Generally speaking, most bars seemed understaffed or they just weren’t making an effort to ask pax if they wanted to place a beverage/drink order. Many pax I spoke to felt that was because so many of us were on Bev packs, that Celeb may have issued an edict not to offer up drinks to pax that have bev pckgs and to let us work for them. We were all just scratching our heads because it certainly was a recurring theme in most bars/lounges and egregious at the Deck 10 Sad Café. Cellar Masters, their wine bar was our meeting place for pre-dinner drinks. Service was good when you mosey up to bar and ordered a drink, otherwise pretty nonexistent if sitting at a table. We learned quickly that we needed to go to bar to place orders and then, they would bring drinks to table. Wine choices were terrible. Just really pedestrian wine at inflated prices but we made do. Reflections had a much more extensive and robust wines-by-the-glass list. Michael’s Pub- Supposedly a “craft beer” bar. Pretty pedestrian choices here as well, but since I’m not much of a beer drinker, it didn’t really matter. Sad Café- Deck 10 Aft- And then there was this bar. Don’t even know where to begin but this bar needs an overhaul. Most days you could find the staff joking amongst themselves while their pax died of thirst and neglect. Not sure what the problem is here but if there was one thing that turned off almost every single fellow pax I spoke to, was the absolute lack of service and overall staff demeanor at this bar. Dirty dishes would sit on tables for hrs at a time, no one would pick them up, things would get blown around and I would see the same French fry for 3 days on the deck. One day it was raining and dirty breakfast dishes were overflowing with toast, egg yolks, pancakes- you name it- on to the tables and eventually the deck. And those dishes sat there accumulating rain for HOURS. It was disgusting and provided a hell of a view from my cabin directly overhead. This is one major reason why I will rethink future Celebrity bookings. I expect that of maybe an MSC, but certainly not a line that prides itself on being a “premiere” liner. I can’t quite figure out if it was just a poorly run ship, if this is standard for Celebrity, or if Reflections was just an exceptionally run ship. Guest Services- Staff was very congenial and professional but seemed incapable of responding to major issues. More on that later. I do want to recognize Raul and Sandra who were both very responsive to any of my needs or inquiries. Itinerary- PERFECT!!!!!!!! I cannot say enough about what an ideal itinerary it was. It was the perfect amount of time in port for a “taster” of that given city. We booked an overnight junk through a private operator in Halong Bay and it was the highlight of our trip. Fellow pax that went to Hanoi regretted it because roads were so bad and trip took too long. We had an amazing overnight cruise on the Victory Star, which I highly recommend. Our ship skipped Chan May Port (Hue/Danang/HoiAn) because of weather and we ended up spending 2.5 days in HCMC/Saigon. We had originally planned on a 1.5 day overnight in Saigon and used the extra day to go to Vung Tua which was a great little beach city about an hr from Phu My port. Bangkok we overnighted 2 nights (NYE/NYD) and that was a treat. Laem Chabang is 2.5 hrs from Bangkok so make sure you arrange your tours before you arrive. I cannot tell you how many pax were stranded on the ship because the ship’s tours were sold out and all private tours were sold out. We used Oriental Escape (www.orientalescape.com) for our transfers and arranged private tours with them and could not have been happier with their services. Anyone on future sailings that has private tour questions, feel free to PM me. Happy to help. I am hooked on sailing and exploring this part of the world. I would actually take this cruise again in Dec 2014 were it not for the ship. I won’t sail Millennium again. Too bad Celebrity can’t substitute a different ship for this itinerary. You can do this sailing 4 years in a row and always have new things to do. If you’re contemplating a SE Asia trip, don’t think it through any more, just do it; you’ll be thrilled beyond your wildest dreams. Lastly, I do want to warn anyone sailing on this ship in a balcony veranda cabin, that my friend traveling as a single in a dbl occupancy cabin on Deck 7, got locked out of her balcony at night when the ship was swaying in rough seas. The sliding glass door slid shut and the handle popped into the locked position leaving her stranded on her balcony for 30 minutes until her cries for help were eventually heard by the people in the cabin next door. We reenacted the situation several times and each time the balcony door would pop into the locked position. Although she made Celebrity aware of the issue, they seemingly downplayed it. A warning should be on each and every door that the handle needs to be in the down position if you step outside. The response from Celebrity was simply unacceptable. My friend was traumatized. She asked to speak to the Hotel Mngr who never called, asked to get a copy of the incident report- nope- Celebrity wouldn’t do it. Just deplorable customer care. Her hand was swollen to three times the size because she banged on the door so hard trying to be heard. She eventually went to get acupuncture onboard and asked Celebrity to at least pay for that. Nope. Not even a future cruise credit for her nightmare. Shame on Celebrity. Parents and fellow travelers consider yourselves warned... In closing, I boarded this ship as a Celebrity loyalist with intentions of sailing Celebrity whenever possible. I leave still in search of a cruise line I can call my own.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
My DH and I took our first cruise on board the Celebrity Summit over the week of Christmas. We have cruised on several other lines before, this was our first time on Celebrity. We flew into San Juan on Friday and stayed overnight at ... Read More
My DH and I took our first cruise on board the Celebrity Summit over the week of Christmas. We have cruised on several other lines before, this was our first time on Celebrity. We flew into San Juan on Friday and stayed overnight at LaConcha resort in Condado. It was a lovely resort with plenty to do, infinity pools, beach front, and in a safe area of San Juan. We enjoyed our stay. We took a cab over to the port around noon on Saturday and boarding was the easiest I have ever experienced. We walked right through everything and were on board in less than 15 minutes sipping our champagne. We had a number of excellent upgrades this trip including pre-paid gratuities, premium beverage package, and concierge class balcony stateroom. We never had any trouble using the beverage package, everyone was very helpful and we never had to wait or try to flag down a waiter. I think we received better service from most of the bar staff because we had the package. They knew who we were by the 2nd day and they were always quick to wait on us. The stateroom was very nice with a decent size bathroom. DH appreciated the slightly larger shower that allowed him enough room to wash his hair without damaging his elbows. We enjoyed our balcony a number of times to just sit and read or observe an island before or after going onshore. The beds were clean and comfortable and stateroom stewards Makir and Jonathon were very helpful. They delivered fresh ice daily, our afternoon canapes, and were always smiling and happy when we saw them in the hall. Michaels pub was our favorite place on board, being rather picky about craft beer, it was nice to have a varied selection. Iwan and Julio were fabulous as bartenders in the pub. The elite reception was held in Michaels most afternoons so it didnt' open to other customers until 7pm. We enjoyed early access at 5pm each night. We would often stop in here for a drink or two before dinner. Dinner was always good, with some dishes being exceptionally good and other just good. We ate in the main dining room every night for dinner. We ate breakfast at the buffet most days, lunch was on shore since we had so many ports. The buffet breakfast was always good and they had sushi and snacks available every time we went by. The hamburger grill was good, the pizza station was excellent and always crowded, we enjoyed the build your own panini station a couple of times as well. The omelettes were very good at breakfast as was the benedict station. The overall appearance of the ship was very good with only a few places showing wear and tear. There was always someone cleaning and painting and repairing as you went around the ship. Everyone was always very friendly and smiling. The shows were very good, the aerialists really stole the show each night. We had all the regular shows and then a special Christmas Eve show after the last show that was very good. It was standing room only for the Christmas show but all the other shows had plenty of seating. The only time we waited in line for anything was the Christmas Day buffet brunch. It was good and there were tons of stations and lots of food but I don't think it was that much different from the regular buffet. They also had Christmas Carolling, Christmas Trivia, and Christmas music playing in most of the public areas. St Croix, We got off the ship and wandered around Frederickstead for a little while then got one of the cheap taxi shuttles over to Christianstead where we explored the fort, town, and boardwalk. We stopped at tle local brew-pub but they were out of their local beer so we drank Carib and had a bite to eat. The fort here was beautiful and very peaceful. It was Sunday so there were no rangers to give tours but it was great to just wander and read the signs. St Kitts, We had been here before so we arranged a private tour that included Brimstone Hill, Caribelle Batik, Romney Manor, and time on South Friar Beach. The tour was excellent, we had a lovely time. I highly recommend seeing Brimstone Fort, it was amazing. Dominica, Almost all of the tours and excursions were cancelled due to heavy rain the night before. We couldn't get to the gorge or any of the waterfalls. Roseau was a dirty town with tons of solicitors, the people were rude and dirty. I didn't feel comfortable walking around, we had two different men follow us trying to get money and then yell at us when we wouldn't give it to them. We got back on the ship and wrote that island off. Tortola, We arrived on Boxing Day which is a local holiday. This made it a wonderful day to wander the island with no one hassling you to buy things or give them money. We enjoyed a leisurely walk and visit to Pussers pub. St. Thomas, We'd been there many times so we just hopped a cab over to main street and walked around to do a little shopping. Had bushwackers at the bar on the 99 steps then lunch and local beer at Jen's cafe near downtown. We walked back to the ship along the water, it was a very relaxing day. Overall, we really enjoyed our trip on the Celebrity Summit. We had received a lot of upgrades and perks which made it very easy to enjoy our trip. The weather was good, the services was great, and the islands were beautiful. I would travel with Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
We were pleasantly impressed with our cruise on the Celebrity Summit, sailing Christmas week, 2013. This was our first cruise with Celebrity, having sailed many times with Princess, NCL and Royal Caribbean and it surely will not be our ... Read More
We were pleasantly impressed with our cruise on the Celebrity Summit, sailing Christmas week, 2013. This was our first cruise with Celebrity, having sailed many times with Princess, NCL and Royal Caribbean and it surely will not be our last. There was something different about Celebrity. The entire staff was not only efficient and friendly, but they all had very positive attitudes. This is something we had not seen before on other ships. Also, the ship did not abuse their announcements. Twice per day we heard that we were in port and then later we heard from the captain that we were ready to sail and what the distance to the next port and the expected seas. There was no announcement for "Bingo Bingo Bingo" or "Art Auction begins in 5 Minutes", like we have had on other ships. Even the disembarkation ran without announcements. Passengers left their rooms on time, had a delicious full breakfast and met at their various destination points on their own. Leaving the ship was quite smooth. We were traveling with a family of ten: my parents (73, 75) and my sisters family (48,45,19,17) and my family (52, 49, 21, 19) in a total of five rooms. Four were outside cabins on Deck 2 and my parents stayed on Deck 6 with a balcony. Our rooms were practically the same size as my parents room minus the balcony. There was ample closet/drawer space and our luggage fit nicely under our beds. Nice flat screen tv with good channel selection. Bathroom was fine, shower was good. Window was a very large circle. We had no problem with staying on Deck 2. We had read about a slight smoke smell in the Deck 2 hallway and we noticed it ourselves. It did not effect our stay but we did write about it on the comment card before we left the ship. The food exceeded our expectations. We had breakfast in the Oceanview Restaurant on Deck 10 every morning. There were so many stations that there were no lines. There were at least a dozen omelet stations. Many, many items to choose from. There also were waiters coming around with coffee/tea refills and fresh pastries. We were usually off the ship at lunch time, but visited the Oceanview in the late afternoon for a snack. Many flavors of ice cream both soft serve and hard were available with candy toppings if desired. We also loved the fresh tossed Caesar salad, the fresh grilled pizza and the pasta and salad bar. Also, water, iced tea, lemonade, coffee and tea are available all day long. We appreciated this! Dinner we had select dining and had reservations for 6:45pm on Deck 5 of the Cosmopolitan. Our waiters were fantastic and really made our dining experience so pleasant. My daughter has food allergies to soy, vegetable oil, shellfish and tree nuts. We had filled out a special needs form on Celebrity's website before the trip and once onboard we met personally with the assistant maître 'd. We cannot fully express how wonderful her allergies were addressed. She pre-ordered her dinner for the next night each night before with the asst maître 'd. He let her know which foods she could have and she did not have one allergic reaction the entire week. We were very impressed and thankful to Celebrity!! We did not pay extra for the specialty restaurants. $45 per person is not necessary to us. The food choices in the main dining room were original and creative and delicious. Don't miss the crème brulee. The shows on the ship were great! The stage in the theatre had a multiple hydraulic system. Parts of the stage went up and down. The cruise singers and dancers were very good and we enjoyed their productions. We especially liked the performance of the "cirque acrobats". We also saw Comedian, Buzz Sutherland and really loved our Finalists@Sea performers: Melinda Doolittle, American Idol finalist from Season 6 and Matt Giraud, American Idol finalist from Season 8. We also enjoyed the Motown band. During our Sea day, we watched the Chef competition which was like Iron Chef. So much fun. We also had a wonderful discussion about food on the ship and then toured the gigantic galley. Because this was Christmas Day we were lucky to have an elaborate Christmas Brunch in the main dining room. On Christmas Eve in the same room we were treated to an elaborate dessert reception. Yellow beach towels were left fresh in our room each night and blue pool towels were available at the pool. This was a nice touch. In addition to the main pool and hot tubs, we enjoyed the salt water Thalassotherapy Pool, but remember to take off your sterling silver jewelry before entering, as it can tarnish. The fitness center has newer equipment and a nice variety. There is a beautiful two story library located mid ship. We enjoyed relaxing in the late afternoon on Deck 4 in very comfortable lounge chairs. Here is where we watched the best sunsets. We had five ports of call: St Croix, St Kitts, Dominica, Tortola and St Thomas. Our favorite beach was Garden Cane Bay in Tortola and our best shopping was in St Thomas. Dominica is a volcanic island with beautiful flowers, plants and trees. We did not book excursions through the ship. We negotiated for island tours and beach afternoons with cab drivers in each location. Prices varied from $100 for all ten of us to $200 for all ten of us, depending upon the island. We rented chairs at the various beaches from $3 to $10 each chair depending upon island. Our cruise on the Celebrity Summit was just wonderful. We loved the level of service on this ship. The ship itself is not so huge so you do not get lost. Its rather classy. The staff was polite and friendly, especially the guest relations staff. There are just the right amount of games and activities! All ten of us had a fantastic vacation! We will definitely cruise with Celebrity again.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
So, my 5-day Christmas cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Key West and Cozumel was a nice alternative to spending the holiday covered in ice. The weather in FL and Mexico was really nice; not too steamy (while here in New England we were ... Read More
So, my 5-day Christmas cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Key West and Cozumel was a nice alternative to spending the holiday covered in ice. The weather in FL and Mexico was really nice; not too steamy (while here in New England we were having another lovely power-outage-inducing ice storm). This was my first trip with Celebrity. The ship was the Constellation, an older ship that has been updated. First, I have to say that I was disappointed in that Celebrity touts itself as a "luxury" cruise line. It was nice, yes, but considering the cost/quality ratio, it did not live up to my expectations of a "luxury" cruise. I had a concierge-level cabin, which means that I had fresh flowers and a bottle of bubbly waiting in my room, a nice robe to wear, decent bath amenities, and a bit more space in which to flop. The cabin was 9193, which was not too far from an elevator/stairway, and just one level below the buffet. It was the last cabin before the aft-facing cabins and was very private and quiet. Right up my alley. That being said, here are my pros and cons. Pros: The ship staff - From my steward, Jaime (sp?), to the main and buffet dining staff, to the gentleman who ran the iLounge, they were professional and friendly and made me feel cared for. Well done. The martini bar - The bartenders were, bar none (pun intended), the best flair bartenders I've encountered on any cruise. They were amazing at their craft and a joy to spend time with. The ice-topped bar was pretty neat, too. The captain's daily announcements - Probably the youngest ship's master in commercial cruising, he was humorous and charming, and I understand that he isn't so lofty that he doesn't spend time with the crew. I like that in a person of higher responsibility. Main dining room food - Pretty damned good. The food was prepared perfectly and the Maitre d' (sommelier?) was very engaged and responsive. Specialty restaurant food - Having grown up eating venison, I was floored by the venison I had at Ocean Liners. Perfection! The crepes in Bistro on 5 were exceptional (and it was open 24/7, so yay!). And the food in the Tuscan Grille, especially the beef Carpaccio, was skillfully prepared. Embarkation/debarkation - I don't know whether to credit Port Everglades or the ship or a combination of both, but this was the easiest, breeziest on/off process I've ever experienced. Cons: Entertainment - One word... abysmal. It was terribly outdated and as for quality, I'd prefer to have gone to a high school play (at least I would have had the emotional investment to have been able to forgive the lameness). When other cruise lines are providing shows like Blue Man Group and Cirque, you had better up your game and get away from the dated, cheesy, low-quality fare that was offered on this cruise. I certainly hope that other Celebrity ships provide better. Activities - Uh... what activities? When more than half of your daily newsletter is advertising for the shops, spa, and art gallery, your activity offerings are sorely, sorely lacking. I saw the largest crowds ever attending the trivia games. Why? Because there was nothing else for them to do! Oh, they could have attended the scrapbooking class... uh... really? I heard several families complain that there were not enough activities for their kids to participate in, and this was over a school vacation period, so it's not like they weren't expected. Granted, Santa showed up on Christmas and all of that was nicely handled, but (I hope Celebrity reads these posts) the cruise-going demographic is changing. More families are sailing and more solos are sailing, too. Long gone are the days when only retirees and the well-off are opting to spend their vacation dollars at sea. Celebrity had better get with the program or they will be going the way of the dodo. Invisible officers - I never saw any officers except on TV. Personally, I like to see that they are out there making sure everything is shipshape. Specialty restaurants - Although the food, for the most part, was noteworthy, the staff really needs some dance lessons. They seemed to be walking all over each other. I never knew who to defer to, and I felt that the entire experience in both Ocean Liners and the Tuscan Grille was like watching an episode of Keystone cops. They truly need a lesson in calming down and presenting a more seamless, professional, cohesive front. Final verdict: I will go on another Celebrity cruise. I can't make a judgment based on one 5-day experience on an older ship. I am hopeful that when I next choose to live on a Celebrity ship for any amount of time they will have upped their game a bit.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
This was a repeat cruise for us. We enjoyed the Christmas cruise on Celebrity Equinox so much in 2012 we did it again in 2013 and we have already booked in 2014. The 2014 cruise on Equinox will span 11 days, span Christmas and New Years ... Read More
This was a repeat cruise for us. We enjoyed the Christmas cruise on Celebrity Equinox so much in 2012 we did it again in 2013 and we have already booked in 2014. The 2014 cruise on Equinox will span 11 days, span Christmas and New Years and go to the Western Caribbean instead of the Southern. So to say we are biased very positively toward this ship is an understatement. That is not to say we did not learn a few new things this year. (Note: I just read a review here from a fellow passenger who was on this same cruise with us this year and I can hardly believe we were on the same ship. We encountered nothing that would confirm their negative comments.) We are an American couple in our sixties who rise and retire early. Boring, maybe, but we love the Celebrity Equinox because it seems to be bustling at most any hour you want to bustle. Booking was Concierge C3 on deck 12. This room is on the part that juts out, on the angle, just aft of center on the port (left) side. The angle pretty much doubled our veranda size from last year. This is nice. Check it out. Here are my comments. Entertainment - it’s fine, but we don’t really use it. Too late for us. Gambling - maybe $20 total. Not a necessity for us. Shops - Fun to look. Bought some souvenirs. Specialty dining - We have tried them all. if you like culinary theater with your food it is a good deal. The price differential is not worth it for us versus the main dining room, but if you want to dress up and pretend, it can work. For sure there will never be crumbs on your tablecloth or empty water glasses. Food is more varied, but on par with standard venues (in my opinion). Main dining (Sillouette)- pay your gratuities up front and get the select dining. You can pretty much always eat when you want. We always did “table sharing” and met some really nice and interesting people. The maitre d’ often would seat us with folks from the previous night since she keeps that info. Food is good to excellent. Service is intense and professional. Portions are small allowing you to try several. Order a day ahead and you can get a specialty meal. Ocean View Cafeteria - huge choices and good food considering how many different nationalities needed pleasing. If there is a leaning toward one food nationality or the other, it is not American. There are many countries to sample. Cafe al Bacio - for coffee and tea concoctions plus sweets. it is great. Very relaxing. Drink package - GET IT. Book early enough and it is free, but by all means get it. It makes the cruise all inclusive with no hassles and nothing to sign. Room - very nice and clean. Nice bathroom, TV, bed, sofa, everything. Some complain it is too small and not enough storage. Recommendation is take fewer clothes and be thankful for what you are getting for a very reasonable price. The room attendant was ubiquitous, but not intrusive. If you needed something, you got it and he kept the room in perfect shape (except for our junk) and replenished. We never ate in our room because we never got into the habit of dining in our bedroom at home. Excursions - we did one ship sponsored excursion in St. Marten. It was a catamaran trip to snorkel. With about 12 guests, the motor powered catamaran took everyone snorkeling and then on an hour cruise of the island with rum drinks. We got way more entertainment than we paid for. Great time. Bars - we especially liked the Sunset Bar for sailing out of each port a 5pm daily. The Pool and Mast bars are convenient. The Molecular Bar is a treat. Pools - The “everyone pool” is vibrant, adult only pool is indoors and quiet. How considerate is that? Some folks don’t like the smell of chlorine. The alternative is not pretty. Internet and other Communications - It’s there. It’s rather costly. It’s not easy to use. It needs an overhaul. Customers should be able to sign up and get credentialed online far in advance of the cruise. Overall - this ship is big, bold and beautiful. At the end of the day, you are proud to board it. It is not trendy, gimmicky, nor does it create an adrenaline rush with zip lines and the thrill d’jour. For that we are grateful. If you are considering bringing more than one tuxedo, choose another cruise line. It offers everything to us and all in moderation, but in a clean, orderly and first class manner. Staff are its greatest asset. Our brief experience with Celebrity and the Equinox class has been extremely positive. Celebrity is a first class operation that has proven a good investment for us to ensure a relaxing, engaging and rewarding vacation. You will not be disappointed with this line if your expectations are reasonable. Disclaimer: I have no association with Celebrity or any cruise line or any travel business. We are just plain customers who have had consistently good experiences with Celebrity. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2013
This is our second cruise with Celebrity after cruising with them to Alaska on Century in 2012, although we are established cruisers with other cruise lines over the past 18 years. We very much enjoyed the cruise aboard this modern ship ... Read More
This is our second cruise with Celebrity after cruising with them to Alaska on Century in 2012, although we are established cruisers with other cruise lines over the past 18 years. We very much enjoyed the cruise aboard this modern ship stopping at some interesting islands including St Kitts, where we took the Sugar Train excursion around this scenic coastline.Sadly it rained heavily on Christmas Day when we arrived at Barbados preventing us heading for the beach that day. Although the ship was decorated beautifully for our Christmas cruise, disappointingly, Christmas Day was a little flat with no festive Christmas entertainment like a panto. In common with our previous cruises, we expected a small gift from the cruise line and at least a decorated dining room table with crackers etc but to no avail. However, the kids were looked after on their special day. We had an excellent balcony stateroom which accommodated a comfortable sofa bed for our teenage daughter. Could have done with more drawer space as we had to rely on the overhead lockers. Our cabin steward served us well keeping the stateroom clean and hygienic. Great not to be overlooked on the balcony. Food in both the main dining room and buffet was of excellent quality and selection. Breakfast service in the dining room was slow, so we kept to the buffet where tables were always available. When ordering medium cooked meat dishes in the dining room, they always presented it rare which is not to everyone's taste.The same problem occurred in the Murano speciality dining option when we could not even slice our duck that was tough and chewy and disappointingly had to be sent back, causing knock on service delays at the table. The catering staff presented a wonderful brunch on Christmas Day with great choices including chocolate fountains to indulge!   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2013
Just returned from a 7 night Eastern Caribbean cruise during the week of Christmas. We have cruised with Celebrity before and because we are Elite members, enjoy some of the perks - like free laundry, dry-cleaning and internet. We also ... Read More
Just returned from a 7 night Eastern Caribbean cruise during the week of Christmas. We have cruised with Celebrity before and because we are Elite members, enjoy some of the perks - like free laundry, dry-cleaning and internet. We also prepaid our drink packages and tips before we left. We stayed the night prior to the cruise at the Embassy Suites in Fort Lauderdale, arriving at the boat by noon - just in time to breeze through security and then onto the lunch buffet. Into our room by 1:30, with luggage arriving before sail away. Safety drill was well organized with everyone very attentive. We had planned this cruise to be away for Christmas - both DH and I were in need of a break and some true rest and relaxation - which is what we got. We didn't do that much on board - no late night activities or partying - just reading, relaxing on deck, a bit of gambling, and the occasional coffee at the cafe. We did find the regular coffee to be terrible this cruise so were grateful for the Cafe Americano at the cafe. DH and I ate in MDR each night but one. Food was excellent, although service was a bit slow at times. Our waiter had many others to serve and seemed to be constantly in motion. One night we ate in Tuscan Grille - food was fantastic and service was wonderful. Not sure though if the extra charges for speciality restaurants are really worth it though. First two days at sea were a bit rough and with an aft cabin, seemed worse. Things improved once we reached San Juan, Puerto Rico - first port of call, where it rained off and on. We didn't leave ship so enjoyed some quiet time. The next day we were in St. Maarten, but as it was Christmas day, most stores on the island were closed but the ones at the pier were open. We ventured off the ship and walked around for a while. The last port of call was Basseterre, on St. Kitts. Went on a excursion - a historic narrow gauge railway that was interesting - a very different view of the island. Made it back to the ship just prior to sail away. With over 600 children on board, staff did an excellent job of keeping them busy. We occasionally saw them (doing scavenger hunts or going off to another activity). Enjoyed the evening shows most nights in the theatre. The usual musical/Broadway show, a magician another night, a cirque like show another, American Idol finalists another. All shows were well attended. The ship was decorated for the holidays with Christmas trees and a display of gingerbread houses in the main atrium. Traditional Christmas dinner was served on Christmas day as well. They had a midnight mass for those who wanted to attend. Disembarkation was smooth as well - off the ship and through customs and at the airport in under an hour. All in all a restful week and a real break.   Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
Traveled on the December 21st Sailing of Celebrity Reflection (Holiday Cruise) out of Miami. Port stops in San Juan in Puerto Rico, Charlotte Amalie in St. Thomas and Phillipsburg in St. Maarten (Dutch Side). We were in an S-1 Sky Suite, ... Read More
Traveled on the December 21st Sailing of Celebrity Reflection (Holiday Cruise) out of Miami. Port stops in San Juan in Puerto Rico, Charlotte Amalie in St. Thomas and Phillipsburg in St. Maarten (Dutch Side). We were in an S-1 Sky Suite, Aft corner cabin (9301). This was a last minute booking a few weeks before travel. Just so you are aware, this review was written based on our expectations and our lifestyle. Married couple in their mid forties, traveling without children who prefer the most luxurious accommodations we can get when booking. Our expectations are high. We are also smokers (i know, boo hiss, blah blah blah). We have taken a number of cruises, always staying in Butler level suites or higher. This cruise we compared to our experiences on NCL's Owners Suite level of accommodations. Embarkation - we arrived around 1:15pm (we live in Miami so the port is a short cab ride). We followed the signs to the "Suite Guests" area. This basically allows you to bypass the much longer standard line. After that, you do have to find the suite guests or aqua guests line and stand in that (20 minute at least). All other cruise lines that we have experienced have provided a separate suite guest check in room, with snacks and personalized service. Once we received our cards and barely a "have an nice cruise" from the disgruntled agent, we were able to follow the signs on which way to get onto the ship - no explanations, no "go that way" - nothing. On our other cruises, we were collected at check in by our butler or concierge and escorted either directly to our room or luncheon, etc. while explained the differing areas of the ship, when our luggage would arrive, etc. Once we received our key cards, we were on our own. Once we got onto the ship and looked at where to go we were able to find our cabin quite easily. No Butler, no room attendant, nothing. No welcoming anything. We wandered around looking for a place to have a quiet drink, etc. and finally discovered that the Sunset Bar would pretty much be our home for the rest of the trip :) A most EXCELLENT staff and they were by far the friendliest most energetic staff on the entire trip. Sergio, Onur, etc - you guys were amazing!!! Sergio never missed a chance to say hi, talk to us about the trip, see how we were doing or refill our drink - by the second day this man knew our names and stateroom number by heart. We hated leaving!! We kept checking on our room, and finally luggage arrived after sail away. FYI - Sail away on the reflection is a much more subdued affair than on any other cruise i have ever been on. Just relaxed and quiet. Totally not complaining :) Better than hearing Gangnam Style 742 times in a week :) We met our butler around 6-ish and he asked if there was anything he could do for us - anything we asked for he could not do - book reservations, get our wine bottles from our package, tell us about the ship and the areas where we could smoke, Gordon was totally useless and moderately rude. I was informed if i wanted any kind of assistance, i had to go to guest services on the 3rd deck. Needless to say, he was no longer our butler after the 2nd day. He did not place timely Cabana or dinner reservations and of course we now had no specialty restaurant reservations for the first night (he was able to secure odd time seating on the 24th for Qsine). Our new Butler (Nalan) was a doll and treated us like we were her only guests (and was well compensated for it buy us) The ship is brand new in the past year. All the bells and whistles you could want - except something that is glaringly obvious - why do we have high tech everywhere, yet to see a daily schedule i still must rely on a printed sheet of paper instead of interactive "whats happening" signage? near the elevator? where there are two separate maps of the ship right next to each other? Def a loss in that category. There are only a few places to smoke on board (shush) - Sunset Bar, Off deck 5 exit from Captains Club, Mast Bar on Deck 15. Thats it. Seriously. That is it. and they are small areas to boot. You also CANNOT SMOKE on your balcony. $250 fine and you can be thrown off the ship. They also don't allow ELECTIONIC Cigarettes (seriously people its WATER VAPOR not SMOKE) because some people do not like you to even LOOK like you are smoking (but they are apparently OK with people who pick their noses and eat their findings while at dinner in a public restaurant LOL). So smokers beware. Kids - ah, my favorite subject. People, this is an "older" person cruise line. There are no rock walls, there are no slides - there are things for kids to do - but seriously people - the elevators are not your built in babysitters. I have three grown children, and the only thing I could NOT find on this ship (other than a good butler) was a place that DID NOT ALLOW KIDS other than the casino. All bars at all times had children screaming, crying, playing on the furniture, knocking over drinks and just being a menace (granted, not the KIDS fault, its the parents fault) but come on - not a single space that was child free on 16 decks that i could just enjoy a good book for 30 minutes without having to sit in my own cabin? Qsine was by far our fav specialty restaurant, followed by Tuscan Grill. We were not that impressed with Murano. The MDR was spotty (some dishes were terrific some where just horrific) service was spotty at best. Okie's section (Table 409) had the best service and Aleks the Sommilier was wonderful. Our favorite indoor spot on the ship was the wine cellar - self service ATM-Like cards (not included in booze package) made it a pleasure - it was often empty and quiet - and the two gentlemen who work there were wonderful to speak to always friendly and def knowledgeable. Arriving in San Juan after 3pm kind of puts a damper on doing anything in town other than walking around. Our other two ports of call - since it was Christmas and Christmas eve - were also mostly closed. Sea days on the ship - they still have not been able to stop the "one person saving 10 deck chairs" or people just leaving towels for hours on end. Could never get a seat anywhere near the pool and the deck chairs on all levels and indoors are packed in like sardines. There were a few nights with a DJ on board and out by the pool - however, it was very poorly attended (especially Sky Lounge). The live band in the lobby is OK, but it was pretty much the same thing every night. The professional portraits are $30 each - and they are no better than the $15 on other cruise lines. All in all we will try celebrity again on a non-holiday week, however, we will stick with NCL when the kiddies are not in school :) Read Less
Sail Date: December 2013
We had a family reunion on this cruise during Christmas week. There were 21 of us, and our family ranges in ages from 7- 86. Embarkation- This was a mess, and probably the worst part of the cruise. The line seemed to never end, and moved ... Read More
We had a family reunion on this cruise during Christmas week. There were 21 of us, and our family ranges in ages from 7- 86. Embarkation- This was a mess, and probably the worst part of the cruise. The line seemed to never end, and moved very slowly when we got there around 2pm. Some of our family arrived earlier around 11:30 am and did not have a problem checking in. Public rooms- All the public spaces on the ship were great! There was usually a wait for the fitness center, especially at sea days, and there was a 20 minute maximum to use some of the machines. Also, it was difficult getting chairs by the pool on sea days as well, but between the pool area and the Solarium (the adult pool), we could usually find seats. Cabin- We were on the 6th floor and had balconies. We were right above the lifeboats, but they did not block our view much. We had 10 rooms all in a row, and they were able to open up the balconies for us so we could walk from one room to another outside. We really enjoyed sitting out on the balcony each night. The room itself was about average size for a cruise. There were not a ton of drawers in the bedroom but the closet was spacious, and there was some drawer space in the bathroom. There was also a cabinet over the bed that we put our clothes in. Activities- Besides all the musical entertainment, there was not a whole ton to do on the ship. We did go a "Dancing with the Stars" type event, as well as a Not-so-Newlyweds game. There was also an adult comedy club which was enjoyable. There wasn't much to do at all during the day while we were at sea, so we hung out by the pool. Entertainment- All the shows each night were great! Because we went during Christmas week, there was a special Christmas show. In addition, we had 2 American Idol finalists perform one of the nights. Everyone was so talented on the ship, and we got to meet them for a Q & A session. In addition to the shows each night, there were 2 matinee shows on the days we were at sea. The bands around the ship were great too. We always tried to see Uncommon Ground, Top Shelf Duo, and the Vibes perform whenever they were scheduled. Uncommon Ground also performed as one of the matinee shows on the ship. Food (Opus)- Opus is the main (free) restaurant on the ship. The food was great, and our waiters were great as well. There are plenty of options for both the adults and kids. Food (Ocean View Cafe)- The food here was mediocre, but we went here often to have breakfast and lunch as well as snacks. The only negative thing was that the only foods available between 3-4 pm were pizza, pasta, and ice cream. Because these were the only lines open, they were extremely long during this time, especially on the days we were on land because people came back to the ship then. San Juan, Puerto Rico- We went on an excursion through Celebrity at this port. We were delayed getting to Puerto Rico, so we ended up being there from 4pm-11pm. Excursions had to meet in the Celebrity theater and it took awhile for us to get off the ship. We did the bus tour excursion, which was just ok. Old San Juan is very nice, but New San Juan is pretty similar to the United States with all the fast food and chain restaurants. St. Thomas- Once we got off the ship, we found a bus tour. The tour took us to some shopping areas, beautiful views from the top of the island, and to a beach. We got to spend some time in each of these places. St. Maarten- We went here on Christmas, so some of the stores were closed. Right outside the cruise ship is an area with shops and a couple places to eat. We took a cab and the driver gave us about a 1 1/2 hour tour of the island, and we then stopped at Orient Bay (a beach area) for about 2 hours. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2013
We arrived in Auckland 3 days early to look around and was not disappointed it is a lovely place, come time to board the ship I was a little disappointed in the time and conditions that it took to get aboard very slow and very hot and ... Read More
We arrived in Auckland 3 days early to look around and was not disappointed it is a lovely place, come time to board the ship I was a little disappointed in the time and conditions that it took to get aboard very slow and very hot and uncomfortable , but once on board things started to change the cabin was great quite roomy and the décor was lovely very quite no noise at all even one rough night of weather and very little wind noise. The staff are fantastic right down to the lads that attend to the toilets they are so happy go lucky they truly enhance the trip our dining staff were so good I had my head waiter choose my meals for me and I was never disappointed. If I have a sour note I felt the entertainment left a bit to be desired the theatre shows were very average compared to other cruises that I have been on I walked out on three shows and I have never done that before, the smaller acts around the ships bars and so forth were quite good it was just the main entertainment. Specialty dinning was lovely Silks was a little spicy for my taste but the two others were great over all yes I would do it again. Read Less
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