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5 Celebrity Infinity Cruise Reviews for Holiday Cruises to Panama Canal & Central America

1. General Comments: A pleasant cruise with good weather; this was our second Panama Canal transit from the Pacific to the Atlantic. We are regular cruisers; this was our first time on Celebrity. We booked an Aqua Class stateroom on ... Read More
1. General Comments: A pleasant cruise with good weather; this was our second Panama Canal transit from the Pacific to the Atlantic. We are regular cruisers; this was our first time on Celebrity. We booked an Aqua Class stateroom on the ninth deck, and this included the Blu dining room. Details below. The cruise had seven sea days that were relaxing. 2. Embarking: We made our own flight arrangements for this cruise, but we did use Celebritys hotel in San Diego, the Sheraton Marina, a nice hotel convenient to both the airport and the port. We were bused to the port around noon. The security line was a bit long, but we were on board by 1PM. Our cabin was ready for us; one suitcase arrived before 2:30 and the second bag arrived at 5:30. We were over 2,000 passengers of all ages, from infants to seniors in electric scooters. Nationalities were across the board: US, British (160), Belgians (over 40), Swiss, Germans, Canadians, Brazilians, etc. As the ship was next headed for Harwich, England, it appeared that some of the Europeans were going to continue on home on board and not fly. 3. The Celebrity Infinity (from perspective of Aqua Class): The cabin is the same size as any other verandah cabin but with nicer amenities. Despite its size, there are adequate storage drawers and closet space for the two weeks. [My wifes contrarian comments: The storage and closet space looks very good before your suitcases arrive. I do agree it was adequate, but only because I had mercilessly edited the clothing I packed down to only those items I absolutely knew I would wear and brought along a Magellans valet travel tray to corral my cosmetics in/on the desk (there are no drawers in the cabins desk, just large open shelves.] There are only two 110v and two 220v outlets in the room. The bathroom is compact but it does have storage shelves under the sink. The shower is a walk-in type with a great multi-nozzle system. Suitcases fit well under the bed. The cabin has a small safe and a small refrigerator (never used it and kept it locked). There is a TV that receives movies, some cable news (depending on reception), shipboard activities, and other channels. You get a daily planner in your cabin the night prior. You need to read it carefully as there are no announcements on the PA system other than the Captains 10 oclock bridge report followed by a very brief summary of the days activities. If you want a newspaper, a four-page news summary (in various languages) is available daily around noon in the Guest Services area. There is a children/teens area and programs for them. I defer to others with children to comment on this part of the ship. Library is very small; bring your own reading. 4. Meals: Food in the Oceanview buffet - which almost everyone uses for breakfast and lunch - is good. There are plenty of choices at both meals, and you can eat as much or as little as you want. It is a bit hurried, though, and not a place for a leisurely meal. As we were Aqua Class, we did not use the main dining room. I dont know if we could if we wanted as our dining tips that had to be prepaid when booking were earmarked for the Blu staff and not the dining room staff. Blu: We stopped by Blu after we boarded. A waiter on duty recommended we do not appear at 7 (our usual dining time), but come earlier or later. The room seats 100, and they have about 200 guests. The waiter was correct in his advice. We found we could get a table no later than 6:30. Arriving later meant that we would have to wait until around 8PM. So much for open dining in Blu. We found service and food in Blu to be excellent. The menu is different from the main dining room. The menu is not twigs and leaves it is well-prepared regular cooking with maybe a bit less starch and a bit more emphasis on vegetables. If you feel calorie deprived, you can easily make up the shortage with their excellent breads, wines, and desserts. Other than a few tables for large parties of six or more, tables are for two with two tables set relatively close together. If you wish to chat with your neighbors, you can, and if you (or they) do not want to, its no problem and no affront. While the dinner service runs fairly well, breakfast service does not. The issue seemed to be that each breakfast order is different and cannot be premade in the kitchen. Thus, breakfast service is slow and does not work when you have an early shore excursion. We avoided trying to do breakfast on these days in the Oceanview buffet due to the crowds there, and we found the AquaSpa Cafe to work for a good and quick breakfast. The above being said, an unhurried breakfast in Blu on sea days was pleasant. We made reservations on-line for both Qsine and the SS United States specialty restaurants. Both, in their respective ways, were excellent. Qsines food is excellent and the presentation is completely unusual. However, it works. The United States copies the first-class dining room of its namesake. This includes something not seen on any ship we have been on: the large amount of space between tables. Those were the good old days. Both restaurants were worth the extra charges. There are other food outlets around the ship as well as a goodly number of bars. We can recommend the Italian gelateria. At dinner one night a couple noted that the Ocean Grille, in the back of the Oceanview Cafe, was a great place for a casual grilled dinner. You cannot go hungry or thirsty on board. 5. Dressing for meals: For this two week trip it was three formal, and all the rest casual. A good number - perhaps half - of men at formal nights were in tuxedos or suits; some who did not want to dress up just did not appear for these meals. You get the specific dates for dress (and all time changes) in the initial daily program in your cabin when you board. 6. Shore Excursions: A word of advice: make your shore excursion reservations on-line! Otherwise you will either have to use the not-so-user-friendly on board TV system to make your reservations or stand in line on board at the excursion counter. The on-line billing goes direct on your credit card and not on your shipboard account. If you know the ports of call and want to travel by yourself, then, of course, you dont need the ships tour office. Celebritys tour prices are not cheap; you are paying for the convenience of having the ship organize the tour rather than you doing it after you get ashore. Also, if you obtain your tour through the ships staff, you have support when there is a problem. Concerning tours in Guatemala and Costa Rica: Most tours are long because it is a distance from the port to get up into the mountains. In Guatemala, it was 90 minutes each way for the Antigua tours. In Costa Rica, it was 2 ½ hours each way to get to the Monteverde area. This included around 20 miles of unpaved roads. Also, pay attention to warnings concerning Colon, Panama. Ship tour personnel and tour guides made it quite clear that visitors had no business wandering around in town. Stay in the shopping area pier-side, or take a tour that passes through the town. 7. Shipboard entertainment: The ship has a daily schedule full of activities for all tastes: sports, lectures, bridge, bingo (for serious players!), etc, etc. Two lecturers on board were popular: Al Goldis, a retired general manager and scout, knew everything there was to know about baseball. Martin Harrington Uncle Marty is a citizen of Panama and provided a series on all aspects of that country. He also provided commentary on the PA system as the ship transited the canal. We did not attend any of the shows on board; the bits we saw looked good. The casino payoffs did not seem to be much worse than Las Vegas. There will be plenty of opportunities for you to have your picture taken by the shipâs photographers--pricey, but a good souvenir. There are various venues for night owls. 8. Tipping: Not a problem if you sign up for the recommended amounts (for cabin steward, waiter, asst waiter, and head waiter). The amounts are charged to your shipboard account. As I said earlier, if you are Aqua Class, you pay tips when you book. You only need to tip separately (cash) the person who brings your room service breakfast. Your bar bill automatically adds 15 percent. 9. Settling of Accounts: During your cruise, anything you purchase on board (drinks, souvenirs, tours, duty free items, photos) is punched into a computer; you sign one copy of the ticket and you receive a copy. You can track your account on the ships TV channel. We received a paper copy about the half way point in the cruise; we received a final copy the night before disembarking. However, anything you charge that last night (bar, shopping) will not appear on that copy. Keep your receipts so that you can check the amount you see on your credit card bill at home. 10. Disembarking: We signed up for the ships valet luggage service. Our bags went out of our cabin the night before, and we did not see them until we arrived at our San Antonio airport. The service costs, I believe, $20 per person, plus whatever the airline charges. Celebrity will tell you what restrictions there are concerning airlines and routing. You get different luggage tags the night before as well as your boarding passes for your flight(s) home. Our morning procedure was that we had to be out of our cabin by 8 and in the specified waiting lounge by 8:15. Announcements were only made in the waiting areas. We were called to leave at 8:30, and we arrived at our gate at Fort Lauderdale Airport at 10:30. It took nearly an hour to get through customs/immigration (sequestration shortages), and it took about another half hour to get through TSA security at the airport. 11. Conclusion: We would classify this cruise as very good bordering on excellent. Celebrity advertising does not equal reality. Yes, we would sail with Celebrity again (Aqua Class), if timing and itinerary meet our desires. If anyone has questions, send me an e-mail at LTC519@satx.rr.com. Fred Groth San Antonio, TX Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
We flew directly from Anchorage on Thanksgiving Day, arriving San Diego shortly after 10AM. Celebrity staff at the airport were awesome and we were on our way to the boarding terminal around 11, after the last bus load of disembarking ... Read More
We flew directly from Anchorage on Thanksgiving Day, arriving San Diego shortly after 10AM. Celebrity staff at the airport were awesome and we were on our way to the boarding terminal around 11, after the last bus load of disembarking passengers was delivered. Embarkation went very smoothly and we were on board by noon, and in our room by 1:30. Cabin: This was a tiny flaw in our experience. The guys just never seemed to click as a team and even though we had 6PM dining, we came back to the room after 9PM a couple of times and they hadn't even begun. However when my wife was quarantined, the guys took good care of her. Meals: The Trellis dining room was adequate. Typical cruise food, generally tasty and well presented - nothing to get excited about. The Oceanview Cafe was perfect for breakfasts and the Grill at the back was a great spot for lunch paninis. Also, check out the eggs benedict station and waffle spot for breakfast. Don't try Oceanview for dinner - paltry offerings. The "sushi" was a joke and seemed to be less than freshly made. We had dinner at SS United States twice and Qsine once. We would do US again (a quiet and refined respite from the hurly-burley) but likely not Qsine - the food was outstanding at each place, but Qsine seemed a bit too cutesy and pleased with itself. They tout the iPad ordering, but it's really an electronic menu - the waitstaff take your order in the usual way with paper and pencil. We were invited to the Chef's Table and there are no words to adequately convey that experience. The only thing I would say is if you are offered the opportunity, by all means accept. Aqua Spa Cafe - this deserves special mention and kudos. Breakfast here on sea days was a delight and worth checking out. Many cereals, including oatmeal, along with all manner of fresh fruits. Very personal and available to all regardless of cabin class. Ports of call: Cabo San Lucas, Puerta Vallarta, Puerta Quetzal, Punt Arenas, Colon and Cartegena. Two excursions that stand out are the future canal tour out of Colon, Panama, and the chef's experience in Cartegena, Columbia. Puerta Quetzal is a made up port, sort of like Costa Maya, but probably the best organized as far as souvenirs at the end of the pier is concerned. Enrichment: There were two guest lecturers on board and both were outstanding. Victoria Baker is a retired anthropologist and shared a number of her experiences. Alex Filipenko is astronomer and gave several exciting lectures about the heavens and hosted a well-attended star-gazing evening at sea. Uncle Marty narrated the Canal transit and presented a number of lectures about the Panama Canal history and operation. Entertainment was excellent, especially Kuba. As the title states, a "gastro-intestinal" illness occurred on the ship - I don't think the term Noro-virus was actually uttered by ships personnel. About day 10 we noticed an increase in announcements about washing hands and entry to most dining venues required passage through a gauntlet of personnel squirting Purell or handing out Purell wipes, and even engine room guys were wiping down railings and elevator control panels. By day 13, the ship had gone to Red Alert and no one was allowed to handle anything (foodwise) unless it was handed to you by staff - even coffee was thus protected. My wife had her bout, beginning at 5 AM on day 13, and was released the evening before we docked. Crew: I have seen previous reviews of Infinity where folks have commented on the friendly staff. We concur. Without fail, every crew member we encountered looked us in the eye with appropriate greeting and all seemed genuinely pleased to see us - this applied from the lowest to the folks with the most gold braid. Disembarkation: As Diamond on RCI, we were Elite on Celebrity and were nicely ensconced in our departure lounge while disembarkation proceeded in an orderly fashion. Suddenly, at 9 AM, we were told the lounge was closing and discovered the rest of the passengers on board were all being shuffled off the ship. This put a huge load on the entry to the luggage area and Customs. We stood in line for nearly an hour as we inched our way to freedom. I suspect they wanted to do a deep clean of the ship and the only way to accomplish that was to get everyone off the ship quickly as possible. In summary, we had a great vacation and the Panama Canal is a magnificent marvel of engineering. Everyone should do it at least once in a lifetime. We want to go back on a Solstice class ship after the new locks become operational, just to see the difference. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
Listed below is the good, the bad, and the ugly. Perhaps due to the number of cruises we have taken, it has made us more critical. We are not looking for perfection in a cruise, but we also don't look the other way when things go ... Read More
Listed below is the good, the bad, and the ugly. Perhaps due to the number of cruises we have taken, it has made us more critical. We are not looking for perfection in a cruise, but we also don't look the other way when things go wrong. We enjoyed our cruise, but the below is for the benefit of future cruisers and Celebrity. Sorry, we don't sugar coat our review. Room There was quite a bit of dirt in the corners of the bathroom. There was no cold water. Not enough hangers. Had to argue with steward to remove items from refrigerator. He finally did. HVAC thermostat -â€" The wall thermostat needs to have fan and better temperature controls. The HVAC output vent was right above our bed and many people complained that the constant dry air caused dry mouth and sore neck. It was necessary to turn the thermostat way down to avoid this condition. There needs to be some sort of way to deflect the air. Plug outlets -â€" I'm sure you have heard this before, but there needs to be more plug outlets in the room. Pool Went to outdoor pool towel cabana. Asked clerk inside for a towel as there were none on the window. She said there was some on the other side of her cabana. She didn't want to get up to walk two steps to the other window to give us a towel? We would also like to see longer hours for the hot tub and pool. Even if this meant only leaving open one hot tub or one pool.A midnight swim is very enjoyable for some. Clocks Often the clocks in the pool area and other places on the ship were off by hours. A clock in each room would be a nice touch. Our advice, wear a watch. Dining Room Our table mates told us that their steak was tough one evening. My wife's steak was also tough. They mentioned it to our waiter and even commented that their jaw is sore from chewing and they are having difficulty cutting the meat. Our waiter came back with a sharper knife and said that this should solve the problem. From the dirty look our tablemate gave the waiter, the matre de came over to check and was also shocked that our waiters solution to a tough steak was a sharper knife. He immediately brought a much better steak. Likewise, the Ahi Tuna steak was over cooked and he brought another one that was cooked seared and rare, cooked perfectly. On another night, the key lime dessert was so bad that it could not be eaten. Overall, the food was about equal to 'Golden Corral' restaurants, that being about a 2 to 2.5 star restaurant out of 5. We did not find any of the food spectacular. Perhaps if the head Chef Paskal was not out doing so many cooking demonstrations, the food might have been better? Dress Code -â€" Whereas we did hear many complaints of people who were turned away from the dining room due to improper attire, overall, all agreed that there had to be a line of decorum. That if they allowed one person in not dressed correctly, that it would cause a chain reaction for others. It seems that they were just 'testing the waters' in the restaurant to see if they would really turn them away. Good job MDR!! Staff In wanting to disembark the ship, the TV stated that disembarkment will start at 11AM. Signs around the ship also stated 11AM on deck 1. We went to deck 1 at 11AM and Lindy rudely told us that we are not disembarking at 11AM and to return to our room. We believed her and got back on the elevator and returned to our room. As soon as we got to our room 11:08, they announced on the loud speaker that everyone can now go to deck 1 and disembark. By the time we fought the crowd, we did not get off the ship until almost 11:25. We were only at this port for a short time and had many errands to run. She did not need to send us back to our room and she did not need to be rude about it. All the other staff was exceptionally friendly with smiles from ear to ear. Celebrity Life Activities -â€" The activity leaders (Mike Gibbons and Leuisa Cortez) were both personable and friendly with what they did! Unfortunately, there were not enough activities. For such a long cruise, there should have been continual activities. There should really have been twice as many activities. With as many old people on the ship, where were the talks on various medicines, diabetes, vitamins, exercise, etc. Casino -â€" The slots were too tight. Many casino's advertise that their slots pay out 95%. Every person I spoke with lost lots of money on the slots. We had a group slot pull, putting over $400 in one slot machine. My wife is a CPA and a numbers person and calculated that this machines pay out was closer to 60%. Likewise, many of the old people could not understand all the various slot machines. I would recommend that the casino set up 3 or 4 practice slot machines so that people can learn what it means to play various lines and such. Also, Texas Holdum is a game played with a deck of cards and a dealer, not computers. People who played the computer Texas Holdem and lost were suspicious of the computer being 'fixed'. Many people who normally played Texas Holdem did not play at all, including myself. Room Stewards Our room stewards was always very polite, quick and thorough. They were great. What happened to the towel animals we use to get? Once I returned to my room and my shirts magically were folded and stacked on the bed. Wow! Waiters and staff in MDR (Main Dining Room) Waiters and staff were very polite and remembered the drink we ordered and had it ready for us right after we sat down. Kudos! On the other hand service was slow in bringing us our food and removing our dishes from the table. It was so slow that a few times it caused us to be late for other scheduled ship activities. SHIP APPEARANCE Elevators -â€" either they were not large enough, not fast enough, or not enough elevators. Too often the elevators were full and we had to wait for another one. During disembarking we had to wait for 8 elevators before we could get on. A ship of this size with this many people should have more or faster elevators. 10th Floor Buffet -â€" I could not understand why some salad bars on one end of the buffet were different than the other salad bar. It became necessary to walk around the WHOLE buffet to see exactly what was served and what differences there were in the buffet. The buffet was not explained when we got on the boat. The Sushi buffet was great, except the hours. Opening the Sushi buffet from 5:30 PM to 9PM creates a big problem if you have early dinner. How can you enjoy dinner at 6PM if you just filled up on Sushi at 5:30? We switched to late dinner (9PM) so that we could enjoy the sushi. Signs -â€" There needs to be better signs for when people get off the elevators. Instead of FORWARD and AFT, better would be like what hotels have. Rooms 7501 and greater LEFT. Rooms 7500 and less RIGHT. Or something similar. Even after 17 days in the same ship, the older people were still wondering around looking for their room. RECOMMENDATIONS There needs to be (on the TV) the various bars, grills, buffets, small sandwich shops, and other places to eat. It should also include the daily menu for the MDR so that it is not necessary to go to deck 4 to check to see what is being served each day. It should not really be difficult to add a food channel to the current list of TV channels that would only be for the various food issues around the boat. FOOD -â€" The food (on the average) was only mediocre. Some nights were very good and some nights were very bad. There was not enough variety of foods. Why was there no Trout, Halibut, Sea Bass, Orange Roughy, and others. Many of the menu items were just simply repeated over and over again. SHOWERS -â€" There needs to be cold water and better water temperature regulation in the shower and sink. Most hotels are going to a circular shower curtain rod. This would be a great idea for these small bathrooms as they would give more elbow room and would also prevent the shower curtain from blowing inward into the shower and sticking to you. It would be a cheap update and should give the shower about 4 cubic feet of more space. CAPTAIN & STAFF It would be nice if tables had the option of having a guest staff person join their table for a night. INTERNET The Internet is too expensive on the boat. We purchased 2 hours on the first day for $99. The ship should be encouraging people to bring their lap tops and doing work and other things. Perhaps even arranging multi player on line games. Not only would people (and especially children) specifically want to cruise with a line that has this, but it would cause people to stay in their rooms more and this can cut down on staff requirements. Second problem is that on this cruise, the average age per person had to be around 65 years old or older. This range of people are usually not computer literate. I had numerous people tell me that when they were not able to connect their laptop, the Internet store wanted $75 per hour to diagnosis and hook them back up. I suggested to one person to find any teenager and they should be able to easily get you back on line. That person took my advice and got back on line and bought the kid some Cokes for 5 minutes of work. Requiring a special 'log out' when done surfing the net is also ridiculous. If you don't use their special log out, the minutes that you bought kept ticking away. One time I quickly shut down forgetting to use their special log out and lost a half hour of minutes. CELL PHONES It's known that cruise ships have their own cell towers on the boats. Either free cell phone usage should be given or a MUCH reduced rate. The first cruise line who does this will quickly grab a larger cruiser audience. In this world of communications, cell phones are a necessity, not a luxerry. There needs to be a cheaper alternative. Once more: The wife and I waited 2 years for this cruise. We DID enjoy it. We DID have a good time. We DID come back 7 pounds overweight. We DID meet many new friends. We WILL return to Celebrity again to take another cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
This review comes with a huge caveat--if you were age 55-85 and a member of the Captain's Club Elite, this was a completely different cruise for you than it was for me. The itinerary of this cruise was designed for people 55-85, and ... Read More
This review comes with a huge caveat--if you were age 55-85 and a member of the Captain's Club Elite, this was a completely different cruise for you than it was for me. The itinerary of this cruise was designed for people 55-85, and that is exactly the age range of most passengers. BACKGROUND: This was our 4th cruise, first on Celebrity. We are in our forties. I am using the review format of another fellow cruiser who already posted his review. EMBARKATION: Took about an hour to get through terminal, all of it was spent standing in line. Many people arrived about an hour earlier than the scheduled time. STATEROOM: We had an inside room on deck 8, mid-ship, and had no problems. Beds are designed so that you can fit all your luggage bags under the bed. The refrigerator is locked up on the last night after the steward does inventory. Make sure you bring a travel clock since there is no clock in the room(except on the tv screen) and bring a flashlight for when you get up at night since the main room light is extremely bright. Be aware if you book a room on deck 9, you will most likely have a noise problem coming from all the traffic on deck 10. SHIP: This ship is very clean and the only problems I saw were some water leaks on the hallway carpets. Side stabilizers worked very well to limit rocking. The only real noise that occured was the banging on the hull when large waves hit the ship from the side. ANNOUNCEMENTS: The loudspeaker was out in the hallway, so not intrusive. Announcements were in English then Spanish, and sometimes French and German as well. TV: There was English, Spanish, French, and German programing. TV was old style CRT, not flat-screen. There was no tv schedule, so it was hard to know what was showing. Room service on-screen menu system locked up on me(I only used it because the room service phone had a busy signal). DINING: Food and service were excellent. Open seating breakfast is not well attended since the food selection is less than what the buffet offers, and it takes much longer to get your food. Did Select dining for dinner and had great time with excellent group of waiters. One issue--they need to add more diabetic options on menu, not just no-sugar-added options. Interesting note: instead of a mid-night buffet, they have two brunches(lunch and breakfast buffet items combined) and one dessert extraviganza at 10:30pm (overcrowded because it was in the Constellation lounge) You will get asked if you want to buy a drink any time you sit down in the dining area or in a lounge. ACTIVITIES: Ken Williams gave interesting presentations, but they were scheduled at the same time as a lot of other activities(and they failed to rebroadcast the presentation before we reached ports). Celebrity needs to improve their t.v. channel for shore excursion/ship activity presentations(plus reduce the number of Spa advertisements), and make shore t.v presentations available several times during the day and night before we reach port. ENTERTAINMENT: First class production shows, especially on formal nights. They did not, however, record and rebroadcast the shows on the t.v. like other cruise lines. PORT & SHORE EXCURSIONS: Only took the end of cruise tour to Winery and Coastal cities. Beware, the Winery lunch is overbooked, so you will have 17 tour buses of people trying to have lunch at the same time--which means waiting in lines for food and drink. You only get one glass of wine free, the next costs $5. DISEMBARKATION: Organized, but when we arrived at the airport the luggage was all mixed-up. The signs did not match luggage tags. Make sure you attach something colorful to your luggage so you can find it amoung the hundreds of other luggage items. Santiago Airport does not have free wifi, but they do allow you to bring water bottles through security and onto the airplane (but not if you are flying to the U.S). Also, keep in mind that Chile has food sniffing dogs at the cruise terminal, so don't try to take any food off the ship(one woman was fined $300 for this) unless it is in your porter carried luggage. LIKES: Easy to avoid smoking--it is limited to the open air dining at the stern and the port side of deck 10. Free popcorn in the movie theatre. Gym hours are posted as 6am-11pm, but you can still go in and workout from 11pm to 6am if you want to(doors are left unlocked and lights are kept on) DISLIKES: 1)The long muster call for us was in Photo lounge with no chairs and was very hot and stuffy. I am suprised no one passed out. 2)Gym has halogen lamps, so it is hot day and night. There are no fans in the gym at all, even though previous cruisers have requested fans since 2008! 3) Not enough gym classes. There are 3 classes(on sea days) you can pay $12 dollars a day to take: spinning, yoga, and pilates. The free classes(only on port days) consist of a 30 minute stretching class, and a 30 minute core/ab express workout. They need to add body pump and maybe a kickboxing or beginner bootcamp class. You will start sweating as soon as you begin your workout due to the halogen lamps and no fans. 4) No self-laundry and the very slow internet (dialup speed) is expensive($.65 per minute) If you are an Elite member, you get both laundry and Internet (90min) free. 5) No ballroom dancing at all. They have a ballroom dance class on sea days in the Constellation lounge, but the small round dance floor is metal with a groove pattern in the middle. This means you have no room to move around, and women might lose a heel in one of the grooves. They need to have the class either in the gym wooden floor area, or on the stage with the curtains pulled back. They also did not have any ballroom dances at night--it was disco dancing every night in every lounge. SUMMARY: Celebrity treats its Captain's Club Elite members very well. If you were age 55-85 and you are a member of Captain's Club Elite(requires 10 tier points) you probably had a 5 star cruise experience. If I had to do it over again, I would pay $500 more and go on a different cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
This was a repositioning cruise (Ft Lauderdale to Santiago transiting the Panama Canal). Our cruise was quite heavily discounted on account of the costs of one way fares back to the US from Santiago. We had a Veranda cabin but I seem to ... Read More
This was a repositioning cruise (Ft Lauderdale to Santiago transiting the Panama Canal). Our cruise was quite heavily discounted on account of the costs of one way fares back to the US from Santiago. We had a Veranda cabin but I seem to recall that inside cabins were selling for as little as USD600 per person for the two week cruise in the month or so before we departed. This was our first Celebrity cruise, but will definitely not be our last. With the cruise being so heavily discounted, I fully expected that Celebrity would need to cut some corners somewhere along the line, however this was NOT our experience and it was very much a four plus star cruise experience across the board. In no particular order Pre - Cruise Hotel to Avoid America's Best Inns Ft Lauderdale Sth. A nightmare and with any luck will have been closed down by the time this goes to print. Check out the reviews on Trip Advisor for the gory details. Embarkation and disembarkation smooth and well organized on both ends. Appreciated the nice touches such as ice cold faceclothes, bottled water, etc while we waited to embark. Lots of staff around to assist and a very warm welcome. Fellow Passengers Primarily from North America and generally in the 70+ age range. We met several lovely passengers who were well into their 80's as well. Entertainment Was very much tailored to the age profile above, particularly the singers/vocal entertainment. Was not that great from our perspective, but the oldies seemed to really enjoy it! Cabin Verandah cabin was well appointed and spacious. Only complaint is that the layout is such that you can't access the closet if someone is in/needs to use the bathroom, as the doors sort of open into each other. Just a bit annoying, that's all. Got used to it by day 13! Cabin Steward Excellent and unobtrusive service. Gym Much of the equipment was not in good working order approx 1/4 of the machines with "out of order" notices on them at any given time and a bit too much mirror gazing by some of the staff, when they were there. The lack of staff presence was also a problem when the air conditioning went off unexpectedly (as it was prone to do) however the Spa ladies were always helpful in tracking down someone to fix it. Shore excursions we didn't do any personally as we were travelling with our own group, however the other passengers seemed to speak quite highly of the ones they'd done. The prices as well we found were much more reasonable than what we'd become accustomed to paying on Princess. Internet Bought a package at the usual shipboard rates and was pleasantly surprised with how well it all worked. Found both the internet cafe and wireless connections to be reasonably good esp compared to the connections on Princess. THe chap in the Internet Cafe was excellent and very helpful and patient to those who were not quite comfortable with the technology. A credit to Celebrity, this guy would stay on well past his official leaving time to help others out. Activities a wide range of things to do if you were so inclined, and a great Cruise Director/activities team, with heaps of energy and enthusiasm and a real "can do" attitude. Food Quality was generally excellent, esp AquaSpa Cafe, which is the best kept secret on the boat with its heathy eating menu and beautifully presented meals. The buffet was okay but not adequately staffed (you could not help yourself as there were staff "servers" on all but the salad bar) ie the pasta bar had only one server and so even if you just wanted a bowl of plain spaghetti, you had to wait behind all those in front of you who were ordering customized pasta toppings etc. We tended to avoid the buffet for that reason, although as mentioned above the food was generally excellent with great variety. On the positive side, they did have waiters come and take your full tray from you and carry it to your table for you, which was a nice touch. There were some problems in the Main Dining Room on a couple of nights, which seemed to be management issues rather than issues with individual staff. There was apparently a "change of senior staff" early on in the cruise and things got a bit better after that. Kids Club There were only nineteen kids on this cruise and in one word, FABULOUS! A highlight of our experience with Celebrity. Truly wonderful staff who clearly loved their jobs and made sure our kids had a great time despite the small numbers. I can't speak highly enough of the Kids Club team on our cruise and hope that Celebrity realizes what a great group of people they have there. Read Less
Sail Date December 2008
Celebrity Infinity Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 3.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.0 3.7
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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