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91 Celebrity Infinity Repositioning Cruise Reviews

We traveled from our home to San Diego by car and flew out to Ft. Lauderdale on Sat. We spent the night in a motel and the next morning we were met by our daughter who lives in West Palm Beach. We spent the morning with her and then ... Read More
We traveled from our home to San Diego by car and flew out to Ft. Lauderdale on Sat. We spent the night in a motel and the next morning we were met by our daughter who lives in West Palm Beach. We spent the morning with her and then shuttled to the ship for boarding. When we got to the Infinity there was a huge line down the street and around the corner of the building. We checked our bags and got in line. After 2 1/2 hours of standing in line and moving at a snails pace we finally boarded the ship. We initially booked a balcony room on the 6th deck but had upgraded to the 9th deck a week before the cruise. We entered our cabin 9197 and were pleasantly surprise as to the large size room we had and huge veranda. The room was the last one on the port side at the rear of the ship. Whatever you do, do not take a room on the 9th deck at the rear of the ship. The deck above us was the restaurant with a wooden deck and from 5AM to 10 PM the noise was terrible from the scraping and banging from the chairs and tables. After complaining for five days they offered us another room next to ours. (Our neighbors next to us also were moved to another room.) This room was much smaller so they finally said we could sleep in the new room and use the big one for day use and the large veranda. This worked out fine. The veranda provided an excellent location for going thru the Panama Canal. Our first port was George Town, Grand Cayman and we took a tour that we booked thru the ship. It was an excellent tour of the Island and we learned a lot of the history of the island. The tour was The Best of the Caymans. The next port was Cartegena, Columbia. We went ashore there and only did a little shopping and was back aboard ship in two hours. I purchased a Panama Hat which I had wanted for some time. From there we headed for the Panama Canal. I had gone thru the canal years ago from the Pacific to the Caribbean so this was the trip in the opposite direction. We spent the whole day on our veranda taking pictures and thoroughly enjoyed the passage in spite of some rain squalls. If you have not been thru the canal before I highly recommend it. It is a fantastic sight and the history is wonderful. On to Puntarenas, Costa Rica. We took an outstanding tour, The Pacific Train, Boat and Bus Adventure. The highlight was a boat ride on a river to see the crocodiles and birds. The train ride was aboard one of the oldest small trains in Costa Rica. It was a noisy bumpy ride but was a lot of fun. We saw the back country and back yards of number of shanties. Huatulco, Mexico was our next port. We went ashore and walked around town . We came across a street restaurant with an open kitchen to the eating area and stopped in. The food was excellent and so was the cerveza! Two more ports, Acapulco and Cabo San Lucas where we went ashore for a little shopping but did not do much. Back to ship. Rating the meals in the main dining room, I can only say fair. Most of our meals were only luke warm and one dinner the fish was half raw. We had lobster one evening where they only gave us 1/2 a tail and some of the lobster at our table was very soft like mush. This was our 8th cruise and we were not happy with the main dining. We did eat twice in the specialty restaurant, S.S. United States. The food there was outstanding along with the personal. The room stewart, waiters and all the people working on the ship were outstanding. I didn't go to any shows but my wife did and she thought they were excellent also. Read Less
Sail Date October 2008
Panama Canal November 2008 Background info - My wife and I are in our mid 50's. We have been on 26 cruises on various lines with most having come on Royal Caribbean. This was our second Celebrity cruise. This was our second full ... Read More
Panama Canal November 2008 Background info - My wife and I are in our mid 50's. We have been on 26 cruises on various lines with most having come on Royal Caribbean. This was our second Celebrity cruise. This was our second full transit of the Canal. We left from DFW on October 31st on American Airlines to San Diego. We were on time leaving and arriving. On thing that was notable to me, on arrival in San Diego our luggage actually beat us to the carousel. Precruise: We stayed in the Holiday Inn on the Bay while in San Diego. We had a room that overlooked the bay and had a good view of the cruise terminal. The staff was some of the best we have ever dealt with, very knowledgeable and helpful. As we had arrived in the early morning our room was not ready the hotel kept our luggage. We found most everything we needed was with in walking distance from the hotel. Our room location afforded great views of the cruise ships sailing out so we had a sail away party each evening. We ate dinner at Anthony's Seafood, which was just across the street from the hotel. It was some of the best seafood I have ever had. On our second day we took the Old Town Trolley tour. We loved it. The drivers were all great and had very good presentations. We chose this tour because you could hop on and off at different places. You really had a good look at what San Diego had to offer. It was a great way to decompress before the cruise. Embarkation: This is an area that really needs some work. It took approximately an hour and a half to get on the ship. We experienced extremely long lines and a very slow line to get on the ship. And this after we had gotten our Sea Pass card! The glass of champagne was of course enjoyed as we came on the ship. Sail away was very enjoyable on this cruise as we had family watching and waving from a neighboring pier. Ports and tours: Cabo San Lucas - This was a tendering port, that of course, makes things interesting at times. Our shore excursion was to Todos Santos. It was a long trip, with the highlight being lunch at the Hotel California. This is the hotel of the Eagles song fame. Had one of the best meals of the entire trip. But, that was not worth the trip. We were late returning so there was no chance for any shopping. Acapulco - This was our second time to be in Acapulco. It will be our last time. We saw the cliff divers and visited a silver shop. This port has lost its charm and IMHO this port needs to be replaced. Huatulco - This was the biggest surprise of the trip. We had no excursion planned and just walked around the port shops. It is a beautiful little town with beautiful beaches. Punta Renas - We love Costa Rica! This was our 4th time to visit this wonderful country. And it didn't disappoint us. We took the Ultimate Costa Rica shore excursion. It was a wonderful tour. The bus driver and guide were the best we have ever had. This was a tour of the Cafe' Britt coffee plantation and roasting facility. The Britt guides were fantastic. We loved their presentation. We had a great lunch and their coffee is great. As we left to return to the ship it began to rain. This was the only time on this cruise we any weather at all. It is an all day excursion but very much worth it. Panama Canal - This was a great day. We spent the day sitting on our balcony and watching. It was beautiful weather for cruising the canal. And it helped that we were on the shaded side of the ship. We were lucky that we had a ship going through the locks at the same time as we were so we were able to see much of the workings of the canal. We had a great narrator as well. We later were told that people were up and sitting in the Constellation Lounge at 4:30 a.m. This was the day that we had the Celebrity Brunch. This is the replacement for the Midnight Buffet, or so I was told. It was a big disappointment. I guess my expectations were set too high as it seemed to be very hard to get around and the food was nothing spectacular. Cartegena Columbia - We did the Best of Cartegena shore excursion. This is a beautiful city, but, not one that I would like to go back to. No matter where you went the street vendors were there in droves. If you made eye contact you couldn't get away. They literally hounded everyone. It was incredibly hot here. We had come prepared with bottled water from the ship, but it was not enough. Take lots of water if you go. Disembarkation: We used the Celebrity Luggage Valet service. This was well worth the price. Total time from the call for us to get off the ship until we were in the bus to the airport was a whopping 20 minutes. Everyone in Ft Lauderdale was on their A game. Very quick and easy. Our flight home to DFW on American Airlines was on time. Overall impression: The Captain ( Capt Demetrius) is fantastic. This was our second time with him and it was great. He has a great sense of humor and it really shows. The crew was great as well. Extremely friendly and very professional. We had a Concierge Class cabin back amongst the big suites. Our room stewardess, Myla, was the best we have ever had. We are not the most demanding people, but we never wanted for anything. She was fantastic. We used Room Service several times. They were very prompt and the food was good. Food in the Oceanview Cafe was varied and very good. No issues at all. However food in the dining room was not quite up to our expectations. Mind you we never went hungry, but, the menu choices left a lot to be desired. Our waiter, Alvin, was very good. But his assistant, Natividad, was not very much help. Ship: We loved the Infinity. This was the last cruise before dry dock. It really needed it. It was showing lots of wear and needs some TLC. Hopefully it will get it. The entertainment was the best we have ever had on a cruise ship. The Celebrity Singers and Dancers were phenomenal. The fly in entertainers were wonderful also. We hated for this cruise to end. It was great. Read Less
Sail Date November 2008
This was our (wife of 40 years!) first Celebrity cruise. We have travelled extensively in the last 30 years. Many river cruises, several transatlantics, a few med. cruises plus SCUBA diving all over the world, Aust. Tahiti, China etc. I ... Read More
This was our (wife of 40 years!) first Celebrity cruise. We have travelled extensively in the last 30 years. Many river cruises, several transatlantics, a few med. cruises plus SCUBA diving all over the world, Aust. Tahiti, China etc. I booked this trip through an agent and paid a lot more than I would have if I had set it up myself. I'm getting lazy I guess. The worst part of the trip was the flights the agency booked. A 6AM from Newark to Miami at double what it should have cost. The flights home started at 9:30 PM. Because the flight started so late (off the ship at 8:30 AM) we booked an excursion at 189 per person, even though we had a transfer included. We then had a 5 hour wait at the airport! for a 8 hour flight to MIAmi. Changed planes AND AIRLINES in Miami, two hour layover, but they lost our bags anyway! I accept that this part was all my fault for trusting and NOT questioning the details from the agency. This agency had over 400 people on the boat! Before I left I checked this message board with the proverbial "can you bring alcohol on board?" Most people said yes, there is a two bottle rule...WRONG.... NO BOOZE is the rule period! But, I put three bottles of wine in my checked luggage and a bottle of booze. They are so busy getting you on the boat, all arrived in good condition. I gave one bottle to my cabin steward. Celebrity is marketed as "upscale". Nope, sorry, same as any other line we have been on. We have been on bigger ships and a few smaller, size does not matter! Dining room food was always good but never GREAT! Same as any up scale restaurant in the states with the exception of a few off the chart Michlin places. On three days there was a special brunch in the dining room (trellis) they were really good with an excellent variety. The deck 10 buffet was typical of most ships. Better than the Costa (2) we were on but not quite better than the Norwegian Jade we did a transatlantic on. Crew, wait staff etc, were all excellent. I've never had a really bad encounter on any ship. Ask and you shall receive. Our staff was perhaps not as experienced as some we have had but all you had to do was hint that something was not right and they tried to fix the problem. The ship had just spent two weeks in dry dock for "sprucing up" actually, I think it was a mechanical problem being fixed. The ship was clean but not spotless. We had no problem but we did hear other passengers complain about towels not being changed, floor dirty etc. WE did not see this but heard about it from unhappy passengers. A few GOOD things: On the last three cruises we were on, we spent $120 on bottled water for the room! On this boat we ordered ice and ice water 3 times a day which Urall brought every day after I asked. No charge! I hate paying for water! The agency we book with had two people on board who were always at their station during appointed hours and did their best to work out any problems. As usual (for us anyway) we found the ships staff anxious to help. The drinks were good, $6-7 for a beer, $ 8-9 for a cocktail. Problems: Several passengers complained that the grout in their bathrooms stuck to their feet and came out of the tiles. We has a little of this in our shower. Several rooms were flooded (deck 7 even side). I never found out why but they were flooded. A few people were upgraded as a result but the ship was fully booked and some had to go back to smelly damp rooms! Very VERY unhappy! NOTE: When the Shaman on the train excursion in Peru does his performance and explains how the white man did an evil thing in making cocaine from the sacred coca leaf, listen! When he passes out a few leaves of coca and tells you it is OK to chew, DON"T LISTEN!! I tried it. It is supposed to be a mild stimulant. It did nothing for me in that regard, however, I think his Llama cleaned his butt with them! I got VERY sick the next day and stayed that way for 4 days! Read Less
Sail Date December 2008
Veranda Cabin on the 8th deck. Captains Club member There is a problem with the air conditioning on the ship. Either that or they are cutting the AC use to save money. The cabin area hallways are hot. I even thought the AC was shut down in ... Read More
Veranda Cabin on the 8th deck. Captains Club member There is a problem with the air conditioning on the ship. Either that or they are cutting the AC use to save money. The cabin area hallways are hot. I even thought the AC was shut down in the middle of the night. Everyone I spoke to woke up in the night, hot and thirsty. The dining room was hot, the buffet area hot, and most public areas were warm. The hot water is having a problem and according to one of the staff they have no idea what is the problem. Hot water disappears for days and then comes on. Hot in the sink and cold in the shower! Guest relations said they would send a plumber. On deck 2, 3, Constellation Lounge on 11, and the spa area had terrible sewage smells. Bring your own hair dryer if you can't use the vacuum hose type the ship provides. Our preboard package said - boarding at 2pm. We met people in our hotel in Santiago and they said we could get on at 1pm. In fact our van (travelling with another couple) got us to the pier, and we were on the ship at 12:30. We went right over to Guest Relations to ask about upgrade availability. Mr. Gomez - "the ship is full." AT 4:00 my husbands went back to GR to inquire about missing luggage and another GR person was telling another passenger - yes, there are upgrades, but now they are all taken - would you like to be on the wait list? We were #8. The one time , we had a chance because we were early it got screwed up! I wrote a note to the head of GR and never heard back during our entire cruise! You think they care. Cabin is very comfortable - good mattress and nice sheets, duvet and pillows. Our soap and toiletries not replenished automatically. Public address system is not good - I don't know if it is technical problem or person using the system. It is not loud enough. Hard to hear and understand announcements and the lecturer as we were going through the canal. The woman I was standing with as we went through the 1st locks even called the bridge to see if the PA could be made louder. There is lots of space in the public areas, we never felt crowded. Lounges are decorated with artificial flowers, a bit tacky, all our ports had great fresh flowers for sale. One sad sprig of bloom at dinner and it stayed there until it was dead. This is a another way to cut expenses. Another very big concern - the lifeboat drill held just after we sailed was a disaster. We all meet in the Rendez-Vous Lounge - every chair taken and standing room only. The staff split the gathering up and then we filed outside - no order, passengers filling the doorways and not moving, no one really sure if they should go out this or that door - not assigned to a specific numbered life boat, chaos and lots of chatter. I had not confidence is this group running as area. Disembarkation was also a fiasco. We assembled in the theater for 8:30 call. When we finally got off the ship our luggage was all alone, our tag color must have been called before the allotted time. The crew member in charge never reviewed the previously called colors just in case you came late. We were on time and sat until 10:30 - all other tag colors not called. And breakfast on our last morning was terrible - no yogurt, no butter, no fruit , no mugs, paper napkins, little silverware, empty coffee pots......I think someone forgot to order supplies. Breakfast and lunch buffet - No imagination, after the first few days it is same old, same. There are lots to eat, many choices, but there is poor layout and presentation. There is no presentation, just bowls plopped into ice, some Chinese lanterns and other items just in piles. Salad bar has minimal choices and the location is in the middle of hot food. Plates for the salad are hot, in fact some days you can't get a plate, big or small, or even a bowl for soup or cereal. Grab a mug as soon as you see it, they are scarcer than hens teeth. Aqua cafe was a nice change along with the dining room. Cafe was less salty and fresher tasting. Upholstered chairs in the buffet area are dirty and worn. Sitting area is tight and difficult to move around during peak eating hours. Ice cream bar is open all day and is a nice touch. Choices change each day and you can pick toppings and candy. But again, the bowls are hot right from the dishwasher! Dining room - we had the late sitting, and did not realize it was for 8:45. We tried this time for the first week, but changed to the earlier 6:30 seating. If you really like something on the menu, pre-order it for the next evening. You can even get a peak on the next evenings menu. The last formal night, with the seafood medley (tough rock lobster, couple shrimp and scallops) might be as good as it gets. Forget dessert - save the calories - have ice cream. Both waiters and helpers were attentive and remembered our preferences. Food is very salty. Other women I met were complaining about swollen hands, couldn't get there rings off, ankles swollen also. I think this was from the salt. Salads are meager with warm, wilted lettuce. (order a double) most appetizers are small, a bite or two. Rib lamb chops are 3 thin ones, double up on this entree. Steak on the items available every day is a good size, a bit tough. Our waiter told us all meat and fish, in fact every thing is frozen. Fruit, don't think because you are going to places that have great fruit the ship will have it. 14 days of watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupe - some days pineapple and soft grapes. All the berries are stewed, soft overripe whole kiwis and spoiled plums. Never saw a mango or papaya or avocado. Room service - only what is on the television menu. They will not make any concessions. What you see if what is available. One evening I was not feeling 100% so I ordered soup (2 choices - chicken or New England clam chowder) and asked for a roll with the soup. "Rolls are only available at breakfast." The menu is sparse for breakfast. I realize they are feeding 2000 passengers, but the food is not good. If it was a restaurant, we would not go back. Cova Cafe and Tea Room - little snacks at different times - nice idea - not bad little sandwiches, cookies. The have lovely china tea pots and dishes. The pot holds at least 4 cups of tea. The food is free but the drinks are extra. With all this "tea room" setting, why can't they make a proper cup of tea. Waiter brings the teapot filled with water, cup and saucer and then comes back with 1 tea bag for this 4 cup pot. No heating the pot, not steeping the tea, and the pot needs more bags. Same at dinner -water then 5 minutes later the tea bag. There is music in this venue, very nice guitarist or string quartet or trio. It is a nice place to sit and listen to the music, if the other guests would not chatter or the help talking to each other. The staff lacks training - they are only trained to push up the bill. The service is good, efficient; it is just not FINE service. Shopping arcade - Coach store is full price, you only save sales tax. Bijoux Ternier is from airports - costume jewelry and evening bags - if you left someone home you may be able to get it here, not great. Cosmetic store is the same one from the outlets here in the US "The Company Store" again you only save sales tax, no bargains. Liquor is the best buy. I would have liked to have bought "Panama Canal" tee shirts on the ship, but they only had petite and small. Poor planning again. Just before the end of the cruise they had a laundry special, fill the bag for $29. I used the laundry before, and was satisfied. But this bag, said no ironing, I thought it was for dry cleaning, but they mean no ironing for all the laundry and they would not honor the miserable 10% off coupon from the Captains Club, there were no exceptions listed on this offer in the daily newsletter or on the coupon. Thankfully we had a veranda. Every morning, no matter how early I went to pool area, lounges were saved. The staff never enforced the "no saving chairs" policy during the entire cruise. During mealtimes quests put tables together in the seating area to play cards. Men used the dining tables in the whirlpool area (quiet zone) for a dice or tile game - loud cheering, cursing, security was called but nothing was done. Don't get me wrong. The trip was great. The canal was great and the small ports of Manta and Arica were also great. Lectures were good and info about ports was also very good. We met great people from Canada and Florida. Our ship had a large number of Europeans from Germany and some from England who did a back to back. Some of these guests were loud and obnoxious, while others were charming and gracious. TIP: For transfer from the airport to our hotel in Santiago on Friday, and then transfer from hotel to pier on Sunday for 4 people with lots of luggage in an AC van was $221 total - reservations made online with Santiago Adventures - check out website. They were on time and had a bit of a tour while driving to the hotel. TIP: Booked Intercontinental Santiago online - prepaid, guaranteed - $150 a night. Great hotel located in a great area, lots of local restaurants in walking distance and OK Market around the corner for water and snacks. Breakfast at Cafe Melba for great coffee and breakfast (5 minute walk - get address online). We booked this cruise because of the itinerary, dates and the price. I would have to have a very big incentive to cruise on Celebrity again. I do not know how they can keep a rating of 4, this cruise line has lost it glamour, prestige and class. Read Less
Sail Date March 2009
My husband and I love longer cruises with multiple sea days. This year instead of a transatlantic and Europe, we decided to go through the Panama Canal. We booked in February at a friendly rate and sailed April 24th.Boarding was so fast ... Read More
My husband and I love longer cruises with multiple sea days. This year instead of a transatlantic and Europe, we decided to go through the Panama Canal. We booked in February at a friendly rate and sailed April 24th.Boarding was so fast - it took about 15 minutes from taxi to the flute of champagne that Celebrity greets you with. We love Celebrity as a line and it feels like coming home when I board one of their ships. The staff is incredible - they go out of their way to make you happy. We had a cabin with veranda - not exceptionally large, but there was plenty of room (and hangers) for us. The sailing was amazingly smooth. I had never sailed in the Pacific and it actually lived up to its name with this sailing. The weather was great until we left Cabo - the wind was cold and no more time was spent on the veranda!We visited Cartagena, sailed through the Canal, Puntarenas, CR, Acapulco and Cabo San Lucas in Mexico, and San Diego. My favorites were Costa Rica (we sailed the Tarcoles River with the crocodiles - amazing) and Cabo San Lucas (party atmosphere). It was fun sailing into San Diego, having been there many times by land. The Panama Canal was spectacular and the commentators added so much to the experience.The ship had tons of activities available all day, but little to do at night after 10p. Food was excellent. We tried Select dining for the first time. I suggest making reservations if you want to eat at a certain time at a certain size of table. My husband and I loved meeting new people, so we usually were not picky. We met two other couples that we really enjoyed, so we made reservations every few nights to sit together at a 6-top to catch up on all we had done. I will definitely do select dining again.We ate in the specialty restaurant, the USS United State, one night - it was wonderful. Well worth the money - it is beautiful and airy, unlike the dark panelled ones on some of the other ships in its class. The wait staff is incredible - a real treat!This cruise made us Elite with Celebrity, so I am looking forward to many more cruises with them in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2011
This was a great trip! We must add that meeting other Cruise Critic members really "made" the trip. We cannot encourage enough that you should use this service to meet and learn from others. The Infinity was just done over ... Read More
This was a great trip! We must add that meeting other Cruise Critic members really "made" the trip. We cannot encourage enough that you should use this service to meet and learn from others. The Infinity was just done over to bring it in line with the Solstice ships. The updates have certainly helped, but the ship still is not as quite as physically nice the new ones. With that said, this ship offers a wonderful experience to all that cruise on it. The staff is caring, and obviously well trained. Celebrity must treat them very well, as they are, almost to a man (or woman), happy to be working on the ship and for the line. I have on some of the other reviews some negatives about the food compared to the past. In my opinion, lots of folks think everything was better in the past. This ship offered way above average food. Was every meal a five star selection? No, of course not. Nor did we pay for five star food. We didn't see anyone that look emaciated, but rather most were just the opposite. The cruise gave us an opportunity to meet and see interesting places with interesting and nice people. Our cabin (lucky for us was a family room), was well serviced by well trained and super nice guys. The shows on board were fun. The entertainment director was the best we have seen on a cruise. The dining room staff, as well as the specialty restaurants staffs, actually made you feel like you were a guest. For those who enjoy laying out at the pool, there is a problem. The problem is that some guests have no consideration of others, and hog the lounges all day. This is not the ship's fault, and maybe some will learn better manners. Oh, kudos to the guys at the martini bar. Great fun to have them serve the drinks. Some of the boxes that needed to be checked really don't apply to this cruise. We have come as close as we can to answering them. Read Less
Sail Date March 2012
We have sailed mostly on Royal Caribbean and have always heard that Celebrity was an upgrade to RCCL. All in all the cruise was good but we were really not overwhelmed by Celebrity. For the money we plan to remain with RCCL.The balcony ... Read More
We have sailed mostly on Royal Caribbean and have always heard that Celebrity was an upgrade to RCCL. All in all the cruise was good but we were really not overwhelmed by Celebrity. For the money we plan to remain with RCCL.The balcony (veranda) really need a paint job. The conduit for the lighting fixture was rusted.The entertainment was great and we enjoyed the shows we could make. Unfortunately because of the slowness of being served for late dining, we missed a couple. Several members of the staff seemed to ignore you. One instance two staff were having an argument (or discussion) by a bulkhead. I had to go around them to squeeze by. As I did the ship hit a wave which caused me to twist my knee and send a shot of pain up the knee. Fortunately it was nothing serious. They advertised having caffeine free diet cola, so I bought the soft drink package. Unfortunately there was only one place I could get it.I've already mentioned the slow service. The other problem was the dining room food. We had to send our meals back 3 times between us and could have sent back more except we finally gave up. The plus side was the sushi at about 3 PM.I have to give a plus to the cabin attendants. They were friendly, prompt, but still unobtrusive. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
My husband and I took the Infinity transatlantic with the express purpose to relax after a stressful work year. it worked! I loved the days at sea, and was almost sad to see land. I am pleased with Celebrity, and very much enjoyed ... Read More
My husband and I took the Infinity transatlantic with the express purpose to relax after a stressful work year. it worked! I loved the days at sea, and was almost sad to see land. I am pleased with Celebrity, and very much enjoyed the low-key nature of the boat. No loud announcements, no overly pushy sales pitches. Food was good, not great, service was excellent (and unobtrusive at the pool while always being available if interested). I was surprised by the reasonable price of the drinks. The most outrageous prices were on the martinis, but even those were pretty comparable to the prices in local clubs. Wine was pretty expensive - perhaps a few dollars more a bottle than a local fine restaurant. Entertainment was a little too "Branson" for me, but well done for those that like big production shows and glitzy singers/musicians. Activities were great- lots of trivia, zumba class, other dance classes, lectures, culinary demonstrations, silly crew/guest game shows, etc. always something going on. Cabin was excellent - super quiet, lovely little balcony for a sea breeze and sit, clean, plenty of storage, and well designed to not feel cramped. I think deck 7 is pretty ideal - 3 floors up to the pool, aquaspa, solarium, and buffet, 3 floors above the main dining room. can walk to either, but also was not a long wait for the elevators at any time. TV was pretty awful - very few channels coming through, and would go out a lot. one free movie a day on the tv; otherwise pay movies. Would have liked a movie theater (they eliminated in the renovation of the ship). My only other complaint (and it's not unique) is the pricing of the shore excursions, and the lack of information about doing a port by yourself. My particular complaint is that they did not tell us that there is a shuttle bus at the Zeebruge port which brings you to the closest train station into Bruges, and picks up you from it, for 16 euros round trip. This I'm sure is because they want you to take their 'Bruges on your own" trip for something like $54/person, but it's pretty weasly to not provide you with any information about alternate transportation. Same with options at Ft. Lauderdale and Harwich, England. We will definitely cruise again, and would not hesitate to take Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
What shocked me the most was the lack of basic politeness from guests. No please and thank you, barking orders at staff. I don't care how many times you have travelled and what class of stateroom you are in...there is no need for ... Read More
What shocked me the most was the lack of basic politeness from guests. No please and thank you, barking orders at staff. I don't care how many times you have travelled and what class of stateroom you are in...there is no need for rudeness in this world. The employees are not slaves and they deserve to be treated with the respect and consideration. My husband and I are in our mid 50's, so we were surprised that the average age onboard was at least 70. I suppose Transatlantic cruises appeal to the older crowd. Now on to why I think that Aqua Class is not worth the extra money. They claim that you will receive "express luggage delivery" with Aqua Class - we received our luggage 3.5 hours after we boarded. The Persian Garden was tiny and very dark. I was under the impression that there would be ceramic loungers in a solarium type environment, maybe available on a Solstice class ship but not on the ship we were on, which was a Millennium class that had been solsticized. The thalasso pool was tired and worn looking and the showers didn't work properly. The food at Blu restaurant was OK and guests in Aqua Class supposedly have seating priority. Beware when you write your comments on a guest comment card, they are not kept confidential. We questioned the seating arrangement in Blu and the Maitre D. Razvan Popa, confronted us. My husband handled the awkward situation very diplomatically. And I quote Mr. Popa: "You don't know nothing" (meaning we knew nothing about how he managed the seating arrangement) "And there is no monkey business going around" (meaning that he didn't accept tips from other class stateroom guests). He is an obnoxious man who bullied his less experienced waiters. We did enjoy the originality of Qsine. The Trellis restaurant was too noisy for us. We ate most of our meals at the Oceanview Cafe which was in my opinion varied and very good. On another note, our stateroom attendant Rhemmar met all of our expectations. Also, worthy of mention, the Cruise Director, Alejandro. Although we didn't participate in any of the daily activities, we enjoyed some of the nightly shows. All in all, would we cruise again? Maybe. Would we take another Celebrity cruise? Maybe. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
Background & pre cruise: We’re 60 year old Australians with 14 previous cruises on different ships (and many different cruise lines) with which to compare. This was a B2B to a Panama Canal transit which was our first cruise with ... Read More
Background & pre cruise: We’re 60 year old Australians with 14 previous cruises on different ships (and many different cruise lines) with which to compare. This was a B2B to a Panama Canal transit which was our first cruise with Celebrity. Embarkation: As we were doing the B2B in a different cabin, we could not find information about when to shift. Finally after some confusion, both the old & the new cabin stewards assisted us. After we packed our luggage that was in the drawers, we realized that our numerous hanging clothes could not be hung on a rack for transportation as they had secure coat hangers – these had to be awkwardly carried by the cabin stewards. Although we were staying on-board for the Transatlantic, we had to go ashore and join the long line to satisfy US customs. After this lengthy process, we found free internet & supplies across the road from the port at a shop for ship’s crew. The Ship: Built in 2001 and refurbished in 2011, the Celebrity Infinity was in a good condition. Cabin: Our balcony cabin had a reasonably comfortable bed under which the suitcases fitted. A night light in the ensuite was handy for middle of the night visits; but, having all the cabin ceiling lights on one switch made night time difficult when one partner retires before the other. The space between the wardrobes and the ensuite could have been wider as the wardrobe doors could not be open when using the ensuite – we prefer the open style walk-in type robe. We had no problem getting the contents removed from the small fridge supplied which kept our drinks just cool. Our cabin steward was very friendly and seemed efficient at his job. Food & drinks: Fixed-time dining enabled us to get to know other couples, one of which we sat with on the last cruise. While we found the standard of food in the main dining room to be excellent we had a waiter who was new to the ship and apparently it was his first time as the main waiter. To make it even worse, he didn’t have an assistant the first night! We felt sorry for him as he tried hard; but he struggled to cope for the whole cruise. The lobster on the formal nights was very enjoyable. Wine choices and price were similar to other cruise lines. For breakfast & lunch, we used both the MDR and the Buffet. The freshly made waffles at the rear of the buffet were great for breakfast. We felt that the buffet was not as well laid out as RCI and often involved a lot of walking to find the food. The AquaSpa Cafe was a suitable alternative for a quick breakfast. The free ice-cream (not soft serve) in the buffet was very enjoyable. The one off Grand Brunch in the MDR was a good idea but needed to be advertised better. Although we didn't use Qsine and the SS United States specialty restaurants due to the excessive costs, we received negative comments from CC members who did. Staff and service on board: Although we signed up for the Captain’s Club on-board, we did not receive an invitation to the celebration. The ship has a full daily schedule of activities and a good selection of guest lecturers (much better than RCI on a later cruise). Through the roll call, we organised cards for every afternoon at sea. The rear port side of the Oceanview Café was available for card playing and cards were available if required from the Guest Relations desk. The gym was well equipped. A 4 page daily newspaper printed for Australia as well as other nationalities was popular and much appreciated. The availability of having your account on the TV in the cabin was handy. There are no coin operated launderettes on board and unfortunately the $20 laundry bag special is only available to Select & Elite passengers. Entertainment: On cruises we enjoy the shows in the evening. The singers & dancers did a superb job – especially impressed with their Irish dancing in the final show, “Celebrate the World”. The guest entertainers were also good. The little revolving tables between every second seat were handy for drinks. Alejandro from Argentina, the cruise director was a real character and one of the best we've ever had. Shore Excursions & Destinations: We normally try to avoid shore excursions organised by ships as we feel that they were too expensive. The 3 private Cruise Critic tours that we joined were great; at Ponta Delgada (mini bus tour of Azores), Cherbourg (mini bus tour to Utah Beach), and Zeebrugge (shared taxi to Bruges). Disembarkation: Everything went smoothly at Harwich with us leaving the ship on time and taking our booked taxi to Ipswich. Conclusion: Overall we enjoyed this cruise and found all areas to be above average. As we had problems with this company during the booking process of our first cruise (refer to our review of our Celebrity Infinity Panama Canal & Central America cruise), we are unsure if we would cruise with Celebrity in the future.   Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
I flew from Atlanta to Ft. Lauderdale the day before the cruise and stayed at the Rodeway Inn ($62.50), had dinner at the hotel's restaurant, and had the best prime rib I've had in a long time. The hotel was a perfectly nice ... Read More
I flew from Atlanta to Ft. Lauderdale the day before the cruise and stayed at the Rodeway Inn ($62.50), had dinner at the hotel's restaurant, and had the best prime rib I've had in a long time. The hotel was a perfectly nice place to stay and was chock full of people waiting to board the Infinity and a Holland American ship departing the same day. After the complimentary continental breakfast, Rodeway personnel urged us to take the early (9:30) shuttle to the Port despite notification from Celebrity that because of the budget sequestration, there would be delays in disembarkation, and therefore embarkation, so we should not show up for boarding until 12:30 rather than 10:30, the time originally scheduled. The Rodeway guys told us that the cruise lines always said that, but that unless the lines notified the hotels to the contrary, we would save a lot of time and tribulation by showing up at the originally appointed hour, especially in light of the fact that four thousand or more people would be boarding the two ships that day. About 20 of us took Rodeway's advice, got to the Port at about 9:45 and waited for 45 minutes until the doors opened precisely on time and as (originally) scheduled. Because of Rodeway's good advice, embarkation went smoothly. Once past security, which was pleasant compared to what must be endured before boarding a plane, we were guided by Celebrity to the appropriate sections of the waiting area. Boarding started shortly after 11:00. Suite passengers boarded first, then Aqua Class, then Concierge class. I was in a Concierge class cabin and boarded at about 11:15, so don't know the remaining order of boarding. Because our cabins weren't quite ready, I wandered around the ship to get my bearings and have lunch. After lunch, the cabins were ready for occupancy, and fairly soon after I got there my luggage arrived. Once I unpacked, I opened up my laptop to record my initial impressions, opened the welcoming bottle of sparkling wine----and promptly spilled the glass of wine onto the laptop, putting it out of commission until I could get it repaired after returning home. THE ROOM: I was in 8126, a little aft of midships. Because of the location, such pitch as there was (and there was very little) was barely noticeable. The room was about what I would expect in any veranda cabin, except for the closets and drawers, which were much more spacious than on other ships, and I could easily store my bags, unpacked clothes, and of course the laptop which was now hors de combat. There was a connecting door to 8128, but either the passengers in that cabin were quiet or I made more noise than they did because I was not in any way annoyed or distracted by such muffled sounds as occasionally did come through the door. But Celebrity might consider some way to enhance the muffling. THE PERKS OF CONCIERGE CLASS: As I said, boarding was smooth and seamless, at least for us early birds, and Concierge class passengers did have priority boarding after the suite holders and aqua class passengers. Whether that was a significant advantage will have to be determined by reviews penned by passengers lower in the boarding priorities. Concierge class passengers found a welcoming iced bottle of complimentary sparkling wine in their cabins upon arrival. And--as noted--this was a mixed blessing in my case. The third perk was a small vase containing 5 or 6 flowers, changed daily, which was nice little--very little--touch. Finally, Concierge class cabins received at about 4 each afternoon, a plate of six tiny canapes, with two each of three varieties each day. Think of thin slices of cucumber with squirts of velveeta, or small strips of Italian cured meat curled around a small melon ball. Again, a nice little--very little--touch. THE FOOD: Contrary to the mixed reviews I had read before embarking, I thought the food, and the service, was wonderful. The 10th Deck Oceanview cafeteria had pastas, curries, stir fry cuisine, a carving station, fruit--just about everything one could imagine or want. The only exception was the cheese selections, which were few and bland in the Oceanview, but somewhat better in the Trellis, the main dining room, although lacking in "strong" cheeses that I like. e.g., Limburger or Stinking Bishop, but which SWAMBO refuses to have in the house I ate in the Trellis, the main restaurant, about half the time and the Oceanview the other half. The only specialty restaurant I tried was the United States on the last night of the cruise, and it was excellent. The food was beautifully prepared and the wine pairings were perfect. When one finished one course, and only when one finished the course, another was promptly served, but one did not get the sense that the were hurrying you, but simply pacing the service. The tables were far enough apart that one did not hear the conversations at the other tables. All in all, the ambiance--and as a recovering lawyer I have been called an ambiance chaser--was excellent. THE CREW: My cabin cleaners, Joy and Lu, were excellent. My cabin was always cleaned by the time I returned from breakfast, and the bed was turned down with the chocolate on the pillow when I returned from dinner. Again contrary to some reviews I had read, all the crew seemed cheerful and happy to be there. Celebrity apparently treats its employees well, for several of the crew members I spoke to had more more than four or five contracts under their belts, and one waiter was on his thirteenth. THE ENTERTAINMENT: I can't comment on the entertainment because I did not go to any of the programs or watch reruns thereof on the shipboard channel devoted thereto. However, other passengers told me that they enjoyed all the entertainment programs. I also missed the a cappella and string quartet performances and various times and places throughout the voyage, largely because each performance was listed on the daily programs as lasting only about 45 minutes and that just didn't seem to justify tracking the performance down. THE PASSENGERS: The passengers were, as one might expect, a well-travelled lot, many of them having taken two or three cruises a year for many years. WIth some exceptions, they were also younger and healthier than I had expected, again contrary to some reviews. I liked everyone I met, even the lady who took such umbrage at comments concerning a certain politician and that politician's supporters that she abruptly left the table, and the steak that had just been delivered to her, expressing an unwillingness to listen to any more seditious conversation. So we never did get around to religion or sex. Also as one might expect on a cruise with so many sea days, there were lot of bridge players aboard, most of whom were high intermediate, or very advanced, players. The difficulty was in learning where bridge games were to be held on any given day at any given time. THE EXERCISE FACILITIES: The gym was as well equipped, or better equipped than most commercial or country club facilities. The only thing this one lacked was a roman chair THE EXCURSIONS: I did not take any of Celebrity's excursions, contenting myself with a brief walk around Ponta DelGada, and a longer walk to the closest cafe in Cherbourg, La Regence, for some wine and cheese. In Zeebrugge, 8 of us had gotten together on Cruise Critic after one couple had contracted a taxi company and engaged a van to drive us to Bruges and return. Once we discovered (on our own, because nobody in the crew had bothered to tell us) that there was a bus that would drive us to the gate to meet our taxi, there was short ride to the main square where I took a canal tour, then a city bus tour, had a late lunch and returned to the ship. DISEMBARKATION: UK Immigration came aboard in Ponta Del Gada and stamped our passports on the ship, so there was no delay or difficulty in leaving the ship. I carried my own bags to the terminal, and found a porter who took them the rest of the way to the train station across the street, for a 07:50 direct train to Cambridge. THE (MINOR) QUIBBLES: In no particular order, these are the very few things that might be improved: 1. As noted, Celebrity could at very little cost or rearrangement of space, put a roman chair somewhere in the gym. 2. Also as noted, Celebrity really ought to provide some information to passengers visiting ports on their own, e.g., where one can find a cab or van, how long the walk to town is, whether there are shuttles to the main gate, etc. 3. Although the daily scheduled was delivered to one's cabin, one had to go down to the third deck to the Guest Services area to find the various national news summaries. Other lines deliver them to the cabins and make them available in the main cafeteria. 4. As noted, there is a connecting door between cabin 8126 and 8128, and conversations and coughs (and, I suppose, television--but although I watched my television I don't think the people in 8128 watched theirs) in one room can be heard in the other. Since I was by myself, I didn't worry about my privacy, but I am afraid that the people in the other room were worried about theirs. Celebrity really ought to figure out some way to soundproof the doors. 5. Finally, and also as noted, Celebrity really ought to make some sort of effort to set aside one area for bridge. As it was, most days we had to go to Qsine in the morning between 10 and 12 (one day Qsine was booked for a private lunch, so we played in the United States), and then the port side, aft, area of the Oceanview Cafe between 3 and 5 after lunch service was over. SUMMARY: But all in all, I loved the trip. The weather was great for the first 8 days, the deck officers apparently steering us around occasional squalls, and sitting on the aft deck, I never saw a pitch of more than about a foot or so. . Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
Our Transatlantic to the British Isles May 2013  The lands of our ancestors and moreWe avoided flying to England for our British Isles cruise by booking a transatlantic cruise on Celebrity Infinity from Ft. Lauderdale. It is called ... Read More
Our Transatlantic to the British Isles May 2013  The lands of our ancestors and moreWe avoided flying to England for our British Isles cruise by booking a transatlantic cruise on Celebrity Infinity from Ft. Lauderdale. It is called sailing back to back cruises(B2B). The transatlantic cruise started on May 1 and was 12 days with three ports, the Azores, Cherbourg, France and Brugges, Belgium, ending in Harwich, England. The British Isles cruise was 11 more days, starting from Harwich on May 13. We visited Le Harve, France; St. Peter’s Port, Guernsey; Cobh (Cork) and Dublin, Ireland; Liverpool, England; Belfast, N. Ireland; Greenook (near Glasgow) and Invergordon (near Inverness), Scotland, ending at Harwich. After the cruises, we had three days in England, before returning home on May 27.We drove to Ft. Lauderdale from St. Simons, Island, Georgia. The trip is almost entirely on I-95 and about 420 miles, taking a little over six hours. We drove down on April 30 in order to arrive on time for embarkation the next day. We stayed at the Fairfield Inn & Suites/Ft. Lauderdale Airport/Cruise Port, which had a deal allowing 30 days of parking if you spend one night at the hotel. The price for the inclusive parking package is about $30 more than if you book a room separately. We had used the hotel before on a cruise. They also provide free shuttle service to the cruise ship.Embarkation was painless. We arrived about 12:20 and were on the ship eating lunch in Bistro on Five by 1 pm. Bistro on Five is a specialty restaurant on deck five that specializes in crepes and paninis. It is great and only costs $5 per person. Few people use the restaurant, so it is generally quiet. Our cabins were ready before we finished lunch. We had a cabin on deck six, somewhat forward, which is the deck right above the lifeboats. This was not a problem for us. We had originally booked a balcony cabin on deck seven, but took the veranda (balcony) guarantee offer saving almost $900 on the fare. Our transatlantic cruise did not cost us much more than what the airfare would have cost. Dinner was in the main dining room (MDR) at 6pm every evening with the same passengers. Fortunately, we had great table mates at table #325. Jan and Fred were at our table. We had met Jan and Fred on our cruise through the Panama Canal to Chile in 2011 and arranged to dine with them. We were joined by Franklin, Sandi, Mel and Grace. They were all great dinner companions. The dining was excellent, as we have always found on Celebrity. Our waiters and wine steward provided excellent service, so we looked forward to dining every evening. After all, eating on a cruise is like a cow grazing in thick grass, sometimes it seems that you are eating almost constantly. The buffet was not bad, just the configuration on the Millennium class ships slows down the acquisition of food. DW stopped going to breakfast, so I would take her coffee, fruit and yogurt after I went to the fitness center in the morning. Generally, I wake up earlier than DW, so going to the gym worked out well for both of us. The Infinity fitness center was very crowded on the first days of the transatlantic but started to thin out after about four days at sea. I had no major complaints about the fitness center, except that it only had about half a dozen cycle machines and one was broken during the transatlantic.Also, I purchased a five bottle wine package, which provided a modest discount, but facilitates the ordering of wine for dinner.Since I am preparing to submit this story of our trip as a review on cruise critic, I will discuss the usual issues that such a review provides, as well as providing a somewhat separate story for each cruise. The main purpose of the story is to inform family and friends of our travel experiences.The entertainment on the Infinity’s transatlantic was excellent. Our cruise director was Alejandro, from Argentina. He proved to be entertaining on his own and seemed to provide a spark for encouraging us not to miss the shows. We did not miss any shows on the transatlantic. The Infinity singers and dancers were excellent and participated in four of the shows during the 12 nights of the cruise. We has seen the shows before on other Celebrity cruises, but still enjoyed them again. The main shows were,” iBroadway,” “Boggie Wonderland,” and “Celebrate the World.” We especially like “Celebrate the World” with its lively music from around the World. When the go to Russia, we almost sing along with them (Kalinka). I don’t know how frequently Celebrity changes its shows, but on our next cruise in September, we will likely skip “iBroadway”and “Boggie Wonderland,” after seeing it about four times. We did skip them on the British Isles cruise.The shows included, Antonio Salci (pianist and singer) Don Gavin (comedy), Jack Walker, Matthew McGurk (magician), Pete Matthews (comedy juggler), Craig Halliday (violinist), and Jacqui Scott (pianist and singer). All were excellent, with Jack Walker singing popular and opera; Antonio Salci singing and on the piano; Craig Halliday with his electric violin and Jacqui Scott singing and playing the piano. As far is as I am concerned this is as good as it gets with entertainment on a cruise ship.This was my first transatlantic (DW did it twice as a child going to England with her Father, who was stationed there in the Air Force in the 50s). Of the 12 day cruise, we had 8 sea days, which gave us plenty of time on the ship. The weather was warm until we arrived at the Azores and we could wear shorts and short sleeve shirts until them. The rest of the way to England it was in the 60s and most of the BI cruise temperatures ranged from high 40s to low 70s. The pool area was used by many until the chilly weather.We took several books to read, primarily because of the transatlantic sea days. Still, with working out in the morning, occasionally going to presentations or wine tasting, we enjoyed our transatlantic cruise. We did four wine tastings on the transatlantic, which cost from $15 to $20 per person. We enjoyed them all, especially the one for port wine. One of the wine tastings was practically an all the wine you could drink, which was nice, unless you partake a bit much. We did well, however, that night we did the all you could drink, we did not order wine with dinner. Considering that we generally drink more than normal on a cruise, we did fine, only consuming our five bottles on the wine package, as well as an occasional beer or martini during the 12 days.The cruise critic meeting organized by Celebrity drew the largest crowd that I have ever seen on any cruise. There must have been 250-300 persons at the meeting. Many organized private tours or arranged for slot pulls, card games and other activities on board.One day in the middle of the Atlantic, I saw a two-masted sailing ship (not very large) nearby. We learned later that Infinity responded to a distress call. However, the sailing ship was not the ship in distress (apparently, we never saw the ship in distress). Infinity did provide some small aid to the sail boat, but it continued on across the ocean. The seas were generally calm until we approached Cherbourg, France.Our first port was Ponta Delgada, Azores. We arrived the morning of day 8 of the cruise. The Azores are a part of Portugal, and the island of São Miguel. The island is volcanic and with its green hills, scenic cliffs, volcanic calderas and lush vegetation is very attractive. We very much enjoyed our visit to the island.We took a Celebrity excursion there, which was excellent and described as follows:Furnas Valley (PG03) Ponta Delgada, AzoresAt the East of the island is an enormous crater and luxuriant garden in an extravagant atmosphere where the colour of the flowers mixes with the exuberant vegetation originating from diverse continents. In the picturesque village of Furnas, the Terra Nostra Park, this was planted by Thomas Hickling in the 18th century. Pico do Ferro is surrounded by exuberant vegetation and traversed by waterfalls. This belvedere gives a dazzling panorama over the Furnas Valley. Furnas Hot Springs is an area of diverse volcanic activity where water and mud geysers spout and boil. The tour exceeded our expectations. The guide was excellent and provided us much history and understanding of the local conditions and culture. The Azores have a huge milk industry. We saw milk cows everywhere. Apparently, the Azores have 3% of the population of Portugal, but provide 40 % of the country’s milk. The tour took us across the middle of the island, from the port in the South. We were taken to a high point so we could see three volcanic calderas, which included lakes. Also, we could see the village of Furnas. Later, we visited Furnas and the botanical gardens planted by Thomas Hickling, an American that came to the Azores in the late 18th Century. The Furnas Hot Springs were interesting, with several hot springs with geysers constantly spouting. We learned that at one time a tourist got too close to one of the geysers to take a photo and fell into the geyser and died later from her burns. I highly recommend this excursion. I understand that other excursions go to the Western portion of the island, which also has attractive scenery. After two more sea days, (three days later) we arrived in Cherbourg. We only had from 1pm until 7pm at Cherbourg. We took a Celebrity excursion described as follows:Panoramic Cherbourg FC14 Cherbourg, FranceDiscover Cherbourg, the Port, the Old Town, its rich history and the major monuments. On the way, we will also see the Abbaye du Voeu (1145) and the military naval base reminding us the important part played by Napoleon the Ist in Cherbourg's History, and most recently, that of the town after the D-Day. The tour took us to see the harbor that was fortified to prevent British naval incursions during the Napoleonic period. The harbor was quite large and had extensive sea barriers to protect ships. We visited a castle Chateau of Ravalet ou Tourlaville. It was a medieval castle that had been improved in later centuries. It was once owned by Alexis de Tocqueville’s father. The castle was not occupied or open to the public. The grounds had English and French gardens. A French garden is more symmetrical and orderly, while English garden is more in tune with nature. We found our way to downtown Cherbourg and some of us visited the cathedral dating from the 12th Century. Our guide explained that Normandy contained many of the oldest cathedrals in France. William the Conqueror was flush with cash after his conquest of England and he and his nobles build many cathedrals and churches. We also, saw the awesome Bayeux Cathedral on the British Isles cruise. I almost forgot to mention that the Infinity had our brunch in the MDR on our last sea day before Cherbourg. The brunch fills up the MDR with breakfast and lunch dishes as well as ice sculptures. I particularly enjoyed the shrimp stations.Our next port was Brugges, Belgium (actually the port of Zeebrugge some miles from Brugge). Brugges is a beautiful, well preserved medieval city with canals, old guild houses and a huge bell tower. I had been to Brugges in 1982 and done the bell tower, however we did not have enough time to climb the tower, since the queue was long. We took the Celebrity excursion described as follows: Ghent & Bruges: Flemish Art Jewels BU13 Bruges,(Zeebrugge),BelgiumOVERVIEW: Enjoy a visit to two of Flanders' best preserved medieval cities, Ghent and Bruges. You'll also enjoy lunch at a typical Bruges restaurant as well as free time to shop and explore at your own pace. HIGHLIGHTS: Enjoy an inside visit of St. Bavo's Cathedral in Ghent and see the famous painting of "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb." Capture the highlights of Bruges on a guided walking tour including the Market Square, the Belfry Tower and Burg Square. Enjoy lunch at a typical Bruges restaurant and free time to shop for souvenirs. NOTES: Guests must be able to walk approximately 3 miles. No photography or filming is permitted of the painting in St. Bavo's Cathedral.The tour was expensive, $144 each, but it was a full day tour that included lunch. The tour was excellent. Our guide was excellent and the lunch was very good, with two glasses of wine or beer. We learned much of the history of Brugges and Gent. Brugges was once one of the major trading cities of Europe. It prospered until its port silted up and trade routes changed and other cities took over the trade. It became a kind of backwater city, not so rich, which saved its historical buildings from destruction. Also, during World War II it did not suffer significant damage as other cities in the area like Antwerp. The city revived in the 19th Century. Canal tours by boat were available, but since it was chilly that morning we declined. By the time we departed Brugges the sun came out and the temperature went up into the high 60s. We had a little rain early, but not enough to constrain our touring. Brugges is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Gent was another beautiful Flemish city, it appeared to be a larger city than Brugges, but still had much of that same medieval charm. We visited the St. Bavo's Cathedral in Ghent and see the famous painting of "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb." The excursion was worth the price, although we probably could have saved some money by arranging for transport to Brugges by taxi with others, however doing Gent and Brugges on your own would not have been an option.The next day we docked at Harwich, England ending our transatlantic cruise. Celebrity offered a couple of excursions for back to back cruisers (B2B). We took the one to Cambridge, while our cabin attendant moved our luggage to our new cabin. Originally, we had the same cabin on both cruises, but we saved on the transatlantic going for the balcony guarantee and got a free upgrade to Aqua class for the British Isles. We had to pack our clothes and valuables, attach our new luggage tags for the attendant. We had received our new key cards the night before at a meeting for Back to Backers.The excursion to Cambridge was good, as we traveled through the beautiful English countryside of East Anglia (East of London) and visited the beautiful and historical University town of Cambridge. Our tour was good, but did not include going inside any of the colleges. Most of the colleges were closed, so our tour only included a walking tour. Lunch was on our own. We did see the quadrangle in Trinity College from the movie “Chariots of Fire,” buy peering through the open gate of the college only. The movie was about the 1924 Summer Olympics. The college was closed due to examinations. The tour was not terribly expensive and would do it again. DW learned that Lakenheath, England (where she lived as a child in the 50s) was only about 20 miles Northeast of Cambridge, so we planned to visit there after the British Isles cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
Celebrity is at the top of our list for overall experience and value. Dining is great - didn't need to go to any special restaurants to get excellent food. we had lobster, prime rib, steaks, shrimp, ect. and food is very well ... Read More
Celebrity is at the top of our list for overall experience and value. Dining is great - didn't need to go to any special restaurants to get excellent food. we had lobster, prime rib, steaks, shrimp, ect. and food is very well prepared. Compared to bigger ships, our food was actually hot when it was served!On the transatlantic part of the cruise we stopped in the Azores, Le Havre, Cherbourgh and Bruges (Bruges is a MUST if you like beautiful architecture. This time we took a bus tour to GHENT and got on the canal boats there and saw everything from the boat. No walking required! Lovely, lovely town.On the British Isles cruise we were in port every day except one (puff, puff). We hit England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. My only complaint is that it is cold and rainy (compared to Florida). Lots of trees and flowers in bloom. Really pretty and much cheaper than doing England on your own (with the pound 1.5 times the dollar it is SO expensive for Americans). Wales and Scotland had my favorite scenery. Mostly we toured on our own via train and bus but we did take an excursion to Wales (gorgeous) and one in Inverness Scotland (Loch Ness). On one excursion the heat on the bus would not turn off, but they replaced it with a different bus while we were visiting a castle.Celebrity Infinity is not as fancy as other cruise ships. If you want lots of glitz go on Royal Caribbean. we are 'Elite' members on both lines and the extra benefits are FABULOUS. We had free drinks before dinner every night and free internet and laundry service. Since we were gone for over 3 weeks that is a BIG savings. Read Less
Sail Date May 2013
This was my 25th cruise. My 2nd on Celebrity. This repositioning cruise was an excellent value and wonderful crossing to Miami. The ports of call, La Rochelle, Vigo, Gijon & Lisbon were okay. I would not recommend any of them as there ... Read More
This was my 25th cruise. My 2nd on Celebrity. This repositioning cruise was an excellent value and wonderful crossing to Miami. The ports of call, La Rochelle, Vigo, Gijon & Lisbon were okay. I would not recommend any of them as there are more exciting ports of call to travel in Europe. The staff on Celebrity could not have been nicer. We were constantly greeted by staff and officers through out the trip. For an older ship the Infinity was in good shape and very clean. Our cabin was kept immaculate. The entertainment was second rate but one has to put all that in perspective as we paid less thent $100.0 a day for food, lodging and entertainment. The food was good. You would have a problem not being able to find something to eat, as the choices were varied and the selection large. Altough by the second week everything started looking and tasting the same. Most of my travels have been with Princess, NCL and Holland America. I had always heard that Celebrity was higher class of cruise line. Unfortunately that is no longer the case. They are basically a mass marketed cruise line competeing with the rest. With that said, I still would travel on Celebrity but would not expect anything special. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
In my opinion Holland America sets the standards for cruising, and I rate it a 5* out of 5*. Infinity I rate a 4*. The ship's management and staff were all first class. The entertainment guest selection was outstanding, as well as ... Read More
In my opinion Holland America sets the standards for cruising, and I rate it a 5* out of 5*. Infinity I rate a 4*. The ship's management and staff were all first class. The entertainment guest selection was outstanding, as well as the ship's singers and dancers. There were many selections of activities on board to satisfy almost everyone's desires. The 5 ports we visited exceeded our expectations. The food and presentation for breakfast and lunch was very good, but the evening meals were disappointing for the two of who are on restricted diets. The other 6 people sitting at our table were well satisfied with the "meat and potato" selections, but after 3 tries we gave up on the fish presentations consisting of; salmon, Pollock and Flounder. It is difficult to "mess-up" Salmon and Flounder, but the chief found ways to destroy the flavor of each of these fish. The ship's crew needs a little training in the maintenance of the ship. Our veranda had paint smears and drips from previous paintings. Also, about a week out an odor of fresh oil based paint was apparent in the second aft stairwell that was very irritating to me and my companion. May have been a coincidence, but my companions sinus' became inflamed by the next day. The odor persisted for the next 3 days. The aforementioned inconveniences did not materially affect our overall satisfaction with the ship's crew and the cruise. Would definitely cruse with Celebrity again. John G.K. Ferrell jgkferl@bellsouth.net Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
To celebrate our mom's 80th birthday, my sister and brother-in-law's 40th wedding anniversary and me and my husband's 25th anniversary we decided on a cruise. We started in Harwich and were surprised by rough seas on our ... Read More
To celebrate our mom's 80th birthday, my sister and brother-in-law's 40th wedding anniversary and me and my husband's 25th anniversary we decided on a cruise. We started in Harwich and were surprised by rough seas on our first "at sea" day. Our first stop in La Rochelle was great and the weather was better than expected. Our second stop in Gijon, Spain was also delightful. That evening, though, we got caught in what we later found was described as the "storm of the century" in Britain. Walking on board was challenging with the winds estimated at over 82 MPH (hurricane force) and waves from 45-50 feet. The storm went on all night. The Captain later said he had been in some bad weather but this was among them and another officer thought the storm was magnificent. Luckily our family weathered it well but it was quite the experience. Unfortunately we arrived three hours late in Vigo so had to forego seeing Santiago de Compostela which was a big disappointment as that was one of the highlights we wanted to see. I enjoyed the transatlantic and that part of the sailing was much smoother, but I still enjoy itineraries that offer more sightseeing. We are not to the point of wanting quite so many days at sea. We did have some excellent entertainment on board via a test program called Cruising with the Classics. This featured Brooke Aehron and an up and coming flautist. Hopefully this program will continue. All in all we had a wonderful time. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
Summary: First ever Atlantic crossing for us, was serviced well on a nicely appointed ship. Seeing the open ocean (versus Caribbean) from a low deck ocean view cabin was breathtaking. Recommended. Detail: We'd sailed twice before with ... Read More
Summary: First ever Atlantic crossing for us, was serviced well on a nicely appointed ship. Seeing the open ocean (versus Caribbean) from a low deck ocean view cabin was breathtaking. Recommended. Detail: We'd sailed twice before with Celebrity with no disappointment. Although at the end the length became slightly monotonous, we love days at sea (versus in port), so it was fine. The weather was much better than expected for early May (chilly on deck, but the solarium (covered pool) made that nearly irrelevant). On board activities (other than a moderately interesting historical lecture series and a few recent movies) was as tedious as ever, but we seldom pay attention to those things, anyway. Main dining room service was impeccable, meals there and elsewhere on board were good. Price was excellent for the length of cruise, ignoring the need to pay for an air return to the U.S. from the U.K. Only real negative was the constant emphasis on hand sanitation and denial of direct access to beverage stations, forced by an outbreak of novovirus aboard during the prior leg. After a federal inspection, beverage station access was relaxed, however. Loved the ship -- considerably better than for the two Carnival cruises we've taken. The transatlantic itinerary ensured that there were very few children (mostly middle-aged and older couples, with a surprising number of older singles) -- which appealed to us enormously. No water slides or splashing around in the hot tubs. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Celebrity Infinity April 29 - May 12, 2014  TRANSATLANTIC: MIAMI to HARWICH INTRODUCTION Is there such a thing as infectious malaise? The INFINITY had just suffered an outbreak (3% to 5%) on its last cruise. It was super- cleaned and ... Read More
Celebrity Infinity April 29 - May 12, 2014  TRANSATLANTIC: MIAMI to HARWICH INTRODUCTION Is there such a thing as infectious malaise? The INFINITY had just suffered an outbreak (3% to 5%) on its last cruise. It was super- cleaned and departure was delayed. There were at least two inspections in the early days of this cruise. Before the completion of the inspections all food and drink had to be served by gloved staff. To do this must have required extended and double shifts of a staff that typically works 15 hours a day. Perhaps, this explains the poor service we experienced. OVERALL SHIP The ship is not kept as nice as it should be. I have been on many older ships; all of which were maintained better. The public bathrooms were clean and the attendants were very nice. Celebrity used to be known for its customer service and its food. Our cruise lacked both. We have sailed on Celebrity five times before the Infinity: 1. CENTURY, 2005, Amsterdam to St. Petersburg. 2. GALAXY, 2006, Panama Cana. 3. SUMMIT, 2009, San Juan, Southern Caribbean. 4. MERCURY, 2009, Los Angeles, Alaska. 5. SOLSTICE, 2011, Barcelona – Athens. Early Arrival We arrived at the Cruise Terminal after an early flight from Houston. We were not given anything. We were offered a tour of Miami on an open air bus. We declined. A cup of coffee would have been welcomed. I got a wheel chair but no one to push me. The Celebrity attendant just left me. My husband was ahead of me and I was left to wheel myself across multiple lanes of traffic and I feared to be left behind. This was unacceptable. Virus Because of the virus on the ship we were not allowed to board the ship for hours. By then I was tired and my arthritis was flaring up. This bad start continued throughout the cruise. We took this cruise to rest. With no place to rest we just roamed around the ship. We had very little for lunch on the first day. All the areas were overcrowded. We knew dinner would be served soon. The shops were closed as well as the casino because we were still at dock. For your convenience we had a fire drill right shortly after we boarded. At this point what I need was a tall cool drink and my feet propped up. Neither one I got. We attended the fire drill at your convenience not the passengers some of which were still not able to get into their room After a day of travel and just waiting you k now that passenger need to freshen up. Bags We fortunately have a bag we can easily identify. We found one far down the hall from our cabin. Stateroom Of the 1,085 cabins aboard Infinity, roughly 80 percent are oceanviews, while 57 percent of all cabins have balconies. The ship also offers a range of suites, from sprawling penthouses (1,400-plus square feet) to more petite but elegant Sky Suites, as well as 26 accommodations that are fully ADA compliant and wheelchair accessible. Infinity's standard cabins, from the least expensive insides to balcony cabins, are well configured and nicely decorated with soft hues, elegant furnishings, rounded-end beds and comfortable seating options. Standard inside and outside cabins come in at 170 square feet. Balconies add 38 square feet of outdoor space. All standard cabins come equipped with minibar fridges (for-fee), safes, telephones and interactive televisions with excellent programming (including CNN, ESPN, several movie channels, several in-house channels and TNT). THE TV PROGRAMS WERE AS BAD AS I HAVE EVER SEEN ON A CRUSE SHIP. The "interactive" part includes ordering room service, checking your daily bill balance and playing video slots and blackjack (for those who are bored and need to spend money gambling on a television). Our stateroom was not completely ready but we understood about the cleanup. We overlooked many things. It took days before things were in place. An example of this were many (5) ice buckets stored in our stateroom. The small sofa and bed pillows were uncovered. I never did see a bed spread. Our steward put wet sheets on our bed. We called him and he did not say much. I wonder if he would have gotten in trouble if he sent them back. I next called the guest relations desk because 15 or twenty minutes went by and he did not come to the room. The guest relations person sent a supervisor. He came shortly after I called. He brought LEZLY our attendant and it was uncomfortable for Dr. Sodek, my husband, and I to talk to him. The supervisor changed our attendant and sent us a bottle of wine. We had another occasion where I called Lezly about a hair dryer which did not work. I am familiar with this type of dryer and knew how to work it. Lezly was annoyed I called and said he was at lunch or break. I had just washed my hair but I told him it was fine to wait until his break was over. I did not get the dryer until I returned from dinner. I stayed in my stateroom until my hair dried. Lezly had a poor attitude and perhaps was very tired. I asked room service for half and half and got an artificial creamer instead. Lezly offered to get me some cream. He dropped one of the creamers on the floor and he Looked at it and then turned and left the stateroom. I, of course, picked it up and placed it on the desk. We got something in a pitcher because he said there were no more small single containers of half and half. Of course later we got them. A rose given to us by the Captain’s Club remained many days on the desk dead until I finally threw it away. Our stateroom bathroom had a swishy, soft spot as one stepped out of the shower onto the mat. All I could think about was mold underneath where the water collected. Frederick and Kem, our replacement room stewards, were very nice. Dining room Our wait staff, Michael and Juan Carlos, was very, very good. Juan Carlos will make a good waiter and has a very pleasant personality. An attitude problem surfaced in the dining room (lunch) when I asked for yellow mustard. I was told they only had only Grey Poupon. There was certainly yellow mustard at the buffet. I know you have yellow mustard and I was having a Hamburger which to me calls for yellow mustard. When we booked our cruise we asked for early dinner and a table for six to eight guests. The first night we had dinner alone at a table for two. We asked for a change and were told we could request it after dinner. We found no one to help us that night. The next day following instructions on where to go to make a change we found the information to be incorrect and had to search for the place to change. We were not able to be seated at early dinner. We accepted this, but we were put at a table where one other couple was seated. It happened that only one other couple showed up for dinner twice and the other 2 seats remained vacant. We like to meet and talk with other passengers. Fortunately we did enjoy the other couple. They left the cruise early and we had our last dinner by ourselves. Meeting and dinning with other passengers are to us a large part of a cruise. We have been to 75 plus countries and like learning about different cultures. Management should do something to prevent passengers being unable to get a table the size they request. I understand the servers need to get their tips but I need to experience other people and cultures. As I stated this is important to me. When guests do not come to dinner a few nights in a row could you arrange to combine some tables? The striking Trellis Restaurant, Celebrity Infinity's main dining room, offers formal breakfast, lunch (select days only) and dinner. It also offers brunch on one of the sea days. The highlight of the two-tiered restaurant is a huge, paned showcase window that extends from floor to ceiling. Tables are set for combinations of TWO, six, eight and 10. There are two options for dinner in the Trellis Restaurant. Passengers can go with traditional, set seating (at 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.) or opt for the more flexible Celebrity Select dining option. With Celebrity Select, passengers have the option to dine any time between 5:45 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. and to decide whether they want to eat with their own party or at a mixed table with other cruisers. They can also make specific dinner reservations for each day of their cruise online in advance, make reservations onboard or simply show up when ready to eat. The effects of adding cabins and carving Blu out of the Trellis Restaurant during Infinity's revitalization are most felt in the ship's Celebrity Select dining experience. It's the one place where Infinity gets too crowded, especially when the ship is near full capacity and on nights (like formal night OR LOBSTER NIGHT) when more people, AquaClass passengers included, choose to eat there. Nearly everyone shows up during the peak dining hours of 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.; passengers with reservations will likely wait 10 or 15 minutes to get through the line, while passengers without reservations can wait a half hour or more for a table. Celebrity is working on getting buzzers for waiting passengers, but with limited dining space, there's just no way to add more tables to the already squashed second floor of Trellis to accommodate flexible diners. Cuisine at The Trellis is generally well received; the menu features a mix of traditional and imaginative fare with vegetarian, gluten-free, dairy-free, no-sugar-added and SPE (healthy yet tasty, as validated by SPE Certified consultants) items noted on the menu. Anytime menu items include escargot and shrimp cocktail starters, French onion soup and Caesar salad, broiled salmon and New York sirloin entrees, sides of roast potatoes and steamed vegetables, and chocolate cake, apple pie and cheesecake for dessert. Our only service complaints were that they could bring bread more quickly to the table (given that many diners had just waited for a table and were hungry) and that the waiters could respect our choice not to eat dessert, and not try to wheedle us into trying the cherries jubilee. The Oceanview Cafe is the ship's buffet restaurant, located aft on the pool deck. Coffee, tea and juices are available 24/7, and food is served from 6:30 a.m. to 1 a.m. The buffet is set up in one long U, but three stations (pasta, pizza, and ?) are hidden way at the back, separate from the main buffet and easy to miss, which is unfortunate; these sections have different offerings from the regular buffet. Room service is available 24/7. Breakfast door cards allow you to check off both cold (cereal, fruit) and hot (eggs) choices and choose a window for delivery times. Throughout the day, passengers can order from a menu of soups, salads, burgers and sandwiches, pizza and dessert, with additional hot items like vegetable lasagna, New York strip steak and avocado-tomato quesadillas. One can order via the phone or the interactive TV. Tipping for room service is customary and greatly appreciated. A new feature (since 2011) on the breakfast room service menu are prices for some items. The all day menu features chicken at $20 and filet mignon at $20. Wine Steward Our wine steward was very aggressive serving wine. She really sneaked up on me and after a couple of times I stopped her and said no at this time to more wine - I would tell her when. This did not stop her from freely pouring my wine. I am sure she sells a lot of wine but she is annoying. All the wines was sold at approximately 500 %(!!!) of the cost. Casino Slots were not familiar. I did not like them. My 46th Cruise We have been on 46 cruises. We have been on Six Celebrity Cruises. This cruise was the worst Celebrity cruise we experienced. There are many small old ships we have been on that were better maintained and where the crew were happy to serve you. I can forgive the tiredness of the crew for the first few days after the cleaning and 2 inspections, but the attitudes did not change. I saw passengers become rude and irritable because so much was wrong. I know you cut down on the activities crew and how much Rachel and her one colleague had to work including carrying heavy objects to set up for the artist and they had to clean up and place chairs in their proper place after some of their events. How many areas did you cut back on personnel? The standards we experienced in the past are gone and you were no better and in some instances; more like Carnival. These transatlantic cruises are a bargain but I did not expect a cruise with lower standards. Entertainment First, we found the cruise director and staff to be outstanding. The only problem is that Rich’s two assistants, Rachel and Shawna, were the only two assistants. Most cruise ships as large as the Infinity have at least five on the cruise director’s staff. This appears to be another Celebrity effort to reduce costs. The entertainment was reduced to single person performers. I always enjoyed the musical productions. We expected to see some musicals preformed. The one musical night was wonderful and we were grateful for it. Entertainment in the theatre was also disappointing. There were one or two nights that it was good, but overall, it was less than enthralling.. Celebrity Life is Celebrity's enrichment and activities program for day and evening fun onboard. Activities mostly follow cruise ship standards (art auctions, bad hair day seminars, cooking demos, wine tastings, bingo and ballroom dance lessons). Some of the more unique (and entertaining) options are interactive events with officers and passengers, including Ping-Pong or water volleyball tournaments, silly game shows and an uproarious Dancing with the Officers "dance" (or is that physical comedy?) contest. Celebrity's nightly theatrical performances, ranging from Broadway compilations (one on this 13 day trip) to piano concertos, take place in the lovely three-deck Celebrity Theater and are generally well regarded. Shows include typical Vegas-style lounge acts. Various presenters of interest lectures were not interesting, an awful level to be provided on a cruise with few landings and on a smaller ship with little else to do. The Captain’s Club reception, for all past passengers, was the best we have attended in our 46 cruises. The food and drink was presented on a menu for each table. Sufficient wait staff served very nicely. The uppermost Captain spent many minutes talking to his guests. Departure I requested help with a wheel chair. I called first and was told to call back 15 minutes before I was ready to leave my stateroom the next day. I did as instructed and was told that was wrong and I needed to go to the excursions area and wait my turn. My husband and did this and if it had not been for the lady officer who did try to control the way passengers were chosen to leave we would have missed help again just like the arrival was for me. Fortunately that Officer got someone to push me and my husband. What was shocking and alarming was that there was no customs procedures or any passport control. Crew members could have walked off the ship and simply disappeared in the UK. Cruising for us is wonderful. I am reluctant to book another cruise because I cannot have a cruise make me more stressed and tired than before I started. I am very sorry I took this cruise. I will have to think hard to try another Celebrity Cruise. In summation, a cruise is a wonderful experience and even a less than wonderful one is a unique experience. Would I recommend Celebrity? "NO" Would I consider another one with Celebrity? Probably not. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
We flew into Fort Lauderdale the night before the cruise and stayed at the Hyatt 17th Street Convention Centre. They provide a free shuttle service from the airport to the hotel in Fort Lauderdale. We took the flight to Fort Lauderdale ... Read More
We flew into Fort Lauderdale the night before the cruise and stayed at the Hyatt 17th Street Convention Centre. They provide a free shuttle service from the airport to the hotel in Fort Lauderdale. We took the flight to Fort Lauderdale because it was a direct flight from Ottawa. We enjoyed the hotel and the spaciousness of the room we had and the excellent buffet breakfast. The next morning we had SAS pick us up to go the ship in Miami. They only charge $15 per person which is a good deal. We had booked a noon departure with SAS but they arrived 35 minutes early. Fortunately, we were ready to go. When we go to the ship in Miami it was chaos. Boarding was delayed because of a virus on the ship and they were sanitizing the whole ship. We had been advised that there would be a delay but it took even longer than expected. We did get on the ship in later afternoon and our room was ready shortly after. We found our cabin stewards very efficient and the food was very good. I think the beef was the best I have had on any ship. Certainly the cuts of prime rib were excellent. The shows in the theatre were varied. We had a magician, a juggler, a singer and one production show. The theatre is very comfortable and one of the best we have had on any cruise ship. We found the daytime offerings were lacking. If you wanted to gamble or shop or do fitness activities there were plenty. Other than that there was not much to do. Finally, they showed movies in the Theatre for 3 days but stopped after that. One of the worst we have had as far as activities go. Would have been nice to have more trivia and name that tune etc. and movies every day. We had five sea days and it seemed longer because it was so boring. All of the staff were very pleasant. Unfortunately we ended up at a table by ourselves in spite of having a table for 6 as we requested. Nobody else every came to our table so we dined alone. After four or five nights they stopped setting the table for 6. We were staying on the ship for another cruise and were promised by the maitre'd that we would have company (which we did have). Overall, we enjoyed Celebrity (this was our first cruise with them). We have cruised with a few of the other lines and like all of them for various reasons. We would not take another transatlantic with Celebrity because there's not enough to do. They need to provide better onboard activities. Read Less
Sail Date April 2014
Reading some reviews of Infinity I was expecting to be a little disappointed but delighted to say that my lowered expectations were well exceeded in most areas. Reaching Harwich was a pain, needing a train and platform change at ... Read More
Reading some reviews of Infinity I was expecting to be a little disappointed but delighted to say that my lowered expectations were well exceeded in most areas. Reaching Harwich was a pain, needing a train and platform change at Manningtree - not fun with luggage and must be awful for anyone with mobility issues. Boarding simple and painless and the cabin was very quickly available. No surprises and everything seemed to be in working order, although the balcony was in need of a good clean and paint job. Deck 9 cabins have a large overhang making the balcony a shady retreat rather than a sun trap. Ideal for very hot cruises but not so great if you are expecting to get a tan! Weather was wet and cool to start, getting worse but only to be expected in October in the Channel and Bay of Biscay. Heavy swell and high winds combined to make the Captain abandon the passage in to Lisbon and divert to Ponta Delgada in the Azores. A treat for some but not for all. Hurricane Gonzalo hit Bermuda and our scheduled stop there was not confirmed for a couple of days. It appears that we were much better off on the Infinity than back at home. We took part in a "Cabin Crawl", enabling us to see all cabin types from an internal all the way up to a rather large suite - very nice but confirmed to us that we had made a good choice for us. Entertainments were a mixed bag: the comedian Fred Klett was one of the funniest blokes I have ever come across and was the stand-out act, whilst the regular stage entertainers were mediocre at best. The day to day activities were well run by the enthusiastic team who all seemed to enjoy what they were doing making it a good experience for us. Guest lecturers were also good providing a variety of of options for daytime activities. The main dining room food was good quality, well prepared and well served but this was in marked contrast to the buffet which was unimaginative, repetitive and boring. We chose not to use any of the speciality restaurants as we were very happy to use the main dining room, not only for dinner but also breakfast and most lunches too. One issue we had with table allocation in the MDR (anytime dining) was a minor blip but this was quickly rectified and never repeated, with the hostess taking special care of us thereafter. We didn't do this cruise for the sightseeing or port stops but wanting a good rest from work which we certainly got. On board shopping was similar to other ships - expensive, held no interest for me. Gigantic casino mostly empty. Very disappointed to find Michael's Club is now a suite-only room, mostly deserted too. However, Celebrity's policy of charging ridiculously high prices for drinks will make me think very carefully before booking any more cruises with them. The package prices are mad but individual drink prices are madder and 15% on top of those too! It was very obvious that fewer diners were ordering wine and the bars were mostly deserted at most times. Time for a rethink Celebrity? Disembarkation at Fort Lauderdale was a lengthy process - 4 immigration/customs officers to service 2100 passengers plus crew seems too few but someone remarked that Celebrity refuse to pay for more staff to be on duty. I have no idea whether this is the case. 90 minutes is a long time but made worse by the sight of previously able-bodied people suddenly needing wheelchair assistance to get to the front of the queue! We noticed little things had been cut back e.g. bedtime chocs absent apart from one choc biscuit on 1st formal night - why bother with this token effort? We had a great cruise, very restful, never boring, not disturbed by heavy seas (others were) and with no booze-induced hangovers. Will we sail again on Infinity? We're booked for March. Will we book future cruises with Celebrity? Maybe but will certainly look closely at other options. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
First of all, for everyone who was on that ship - don't hold the captain or the cruise line responsible for the terrible weather. He made the best of a difficult situation, and cancelled cruise ports, and rainy days in Bermuda are not ... Read More
First of all, for everyone who was on that ship - don't hold the captain or the cruise line responsible for the terrible weather. He made the best of a difficult situation, and cancelled cruise ports, and rainy days in Bermuda are not something you can complain about - take it up with the big man upstairs! Cabin; We were fortunate to get an accessible inside stateroom as this was all that was available at the time of booking. Designed for a person with mobility issues, it was huge and very comfortable - but this was a fluke and not something you could guarantee. Spa: The ship has an indoor thalassotherapy pool with side Jacuzzis. The temperature of this was always in the mid 90s, and this is a unique feature of this class of ship. I absolutely loved it, and went in twice a day before a sauna with window and a great sea view. The only down side of the changing rooms was the showers had no water pressure and it was difficult to wash off soap or shampoo with the limited spray. I complained about this and nothing was done about it. The gym area was very good, although the lat pulldown machine and shoulder press machine were very poor with an unnatural range of motion. The free weights had benches and free weight dumbelless up to 50lbs - this was adequate, but I was hoping for 60s or 70s. All in all, a very large and clean gym area and the classes were well attended. Dining Room: We had the early seating and went in about 6.15pm. The tables are on top of each other, and you have little privacy. The food is good quality but the service is slow and fragmented. Nice touches are the basket of bread and table setting. Salads are poor as you have to wait for the staff to come back with dressings etc. The steaks were nice, the roast turkey was very good, the desserts were so-so, soups were two thirds full and not that hot. Lunch service was a little better and a relief not to have to deal with the 10th floor buffet. Ocean View Café: This was the low-light of the ship for me. The layout is a joke as you have no idea where you are supposed to sit in order to access all serving stations. By the time you get back to your table holding a bowl of soup, or hot food with no tray (why no trays?), it is cold. Good luck finding all the cutlery you need, spoons, forks, knives etc, all in the wrong places. The quality of the food is cheaper and inferior to the dining room, and the attempts to serve yourself through very low glass dividers with giant spoons is clumsy and messy. The coffee in the morning was very poor quality and barely drinkable - compared with the Seattle's Best on RCL for example which is excellent. Entertainment: The production shows were OK, with one excellent singer, but a weak supporting crew, and for some reason all very tiny. They were high energy and a lot of well known songs, so easy to follow and enjoy. The guest entertainers were mixed. The comedian, Fred Klett, with his Newhart style deadpan, was very welcome and surprisingly good. The male singers were OK, even if the songs they presented were predictable and stale. I don't care for magicians and I like juggler and ventriloquists even less, so lets not go there. The musical impersonator at the end was very funny with some brilliant jokes and accurate impersonations. Celebrity Activities: The trivias was well run on the whole, especially by Aida and Andres. The progressive trivia hosted by Rachel fell apart when all her answers were wrong and she didn't seem to know how to handle it. Some of the entertainment was embarrassing when you consider the average age was 65, and the games were for 20 somethings or college kids. Overall, the impression was positive, and excellent value for money with some nice touches. However, you probably need to go for the premium drinks package and dining package to upgrade your whole experience. I would chose this ship again for the indoor spa facilities alone, anything else was a bonus. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
Our cruise on the Celebrity Infinity was from Valparaiso cruising Northward seeing South America, Panamagg Canal and ending in Ft Lauderdale. Let me discuss some of the pre-cruise events. Our flight to Santiago was uneventful with the ... Read More
Our cruise on the Celebrity Infinity was from Valparaiso cruising Northward seeing South America, Panamagg Canal and ending in Ft Lauderdale. Let me discuss some of the pre-cruise events. Our flight to Santiago was uneventful with the airport recovering from the 2010 earthquake which significantly damaged the International airport. Our private tour guides, Sergio and Annaliese from Perfect Day tours where perfect hosts and gave us a customized tour of Vineyards, Isla Negra, Vina Del Mar and dropped us off in our Valparaiso B&B called Hostel Morgan. The B&B was reasonable, in a fun area with many food options but a bit noisy at night. Thankfully, we had earplugs! Embarkation was easy and reasonably efficient. The cab was 8,000 pesos which included 2,000 peso tip. While most of the ports of call were arranged using private excursions (all amazing), we did arrange two Celebrity tours with Celebrity. The full day tour to the Altiplano from the port of Arica was amazing with Llamas, Guanacos, Vincunas, Alpakas, and Chilean Flamingos. The guide was informative and fun. The next port excursion with Celebrity from Pisco to the Ballestra Isle which also had great views of bird and sea animals but the trip was delayed with a late arrival of our boat. Leaving less time for wildlife. The Celebrity Infinity staff welcomed us onboard. The crew needed a long time to clean and sanitize any ship based in South American typically struggle to control Noro that's brought in from SA ports. They did keep us comfortable in the buffet until our rooms were ready at 4pm. Our stateroom was clean and in good order except for a broken telephone which we reported to our stewards when they came to meet us. The Celebrity Infinity main dining room service was excellent and the staff was top-notch. Our food was as good or better than other cruise lines we have used (HAL and NCL). The at sea teaching classes were also good providing good information and background on the upcoming ports and culture of the ports/countries that we would visit. However, the entertainment onboard was poor and wasn't appropriate for a South American cruise. Seeing poor Broadway shows and performers from everywhere but South America was disappointing. On other cruise lines, when we would pull into a port, they would have periodically have culturally relevant shows (e.g., in Scotland on a 2013 cruise, we had Scottish Bagpipers and on a trip with a port call in Istanbul, we had a Turkish dancers). The entertainment was unimaginative and inappropriate with some singers who were off-key. I've seen High School musicals which showed more imagination. We used one shore excursion from the ship and it was delayed (with our group losing an hour waiting for a boat and guide). Very upset cruisers who had to stand in the sun for an hour by the pier waiting. My phone voice mail system wasn't operational for the entire cruise which hampered our Cruise Critic groups from getting together or updating tour. We called repeatedly throughout the two-week cruise and finally got a senior staff member who indicated that "it's a French voicemail system and we've been having issues with it". However, I would not that after noting this on a comment card, they gave us some onboard credit (so at least they finally tried to provide restitution for our inconvenience). I'll likely not use Celebrity in the future based on price/ value but did enjoy the South American ports and Panama Canal. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We have waited until now to file our review on the infinity cruise mar 15-29 valpariso to fll. we had hoped our experience was unique to the crew and circumstances we encountered. not so most of reviews to date are not so nice. we ... Read More
We have waited until now to file our review on the infinity cruise mar 15-29 valpariso to fll. we had hoped our experience was unique to the crew and circumstances we encountered. not so most of reviews to date are not so nice. we also waited to see if celebrity would respond to our harsh feedback. nothing. we might as well be first time cruisers. In actuality we are Elite Plus having sailed with Celebrity on over 19 cruises First the positive our 5 day precruise to machu pichu was fantastic, but that was handled by lima tours, the subcontractor. The aqua class food and service has improved from our last aq experience on the reflection. Ships condition was fair considering it is old. Ship’s theatrical productions have suffered with second stringers and lots of recorded music accompaniment, even with musicians at the back of the stage. Ports – given this was a basically a repositioning cruise, the ports were mostly “b minus”. the western coast of south america is barren desert so one starts with this negative. highlights were pisco “naca lines”; cartegena ; panama canal. we were fortunate to do lima on our precruise since the lima port stop callao was cancelled. Lima for us was a wonderful city with lots of gastro food delights and historic sights. Next the NEGATIVE First our background. until the last three cruises, we have been loyal pax and enjoyed the celebrity experience. prior to this cruise we started to see erosion of the celebrity product. on the infiinty we were astounded by the severe drop in service and product. the following is a list of the “issues” we encountered that has us moving on to other cruise lines. item a: as a past officer for a major aerospace company, involved with safety, i was appalled at the lack of interest and spontaneity, that the guest relations staff approached my alert that the bathroom mirror heater was over heating. radiant heat from the heater was heating my hands 15 inches from the mirror ( like a fireplace) this caused the hvac to strain. i was concerned an overheat/fire hazard was very possible so i took three steps 1 told room attendant (result no action overnight) ,2 called guest relations (no action the next day) then3) called again with a threat to get someone fired. after the third harsh telephone conversation (20 hours later), an electrician was dispatched. bottom line i do not feel celebrity gave the attention this event deserved. forget the customer service, maybe a safety issue was worthy of a look? item b: failure of telephone system for several days. No voicemail. Important to us this trip since we were independent tour leaders. item c: failure by celebrity at the port of manta to secure adequate bus transport from ship to outside gate -- only two buses for 400 people and then some of the buses delivered people to the wrong drop off location casuing havoc for me personally. item d: lost laundry it took 3 days to establish 4 pieces of laundry confirmed lost and then i was offered a small portion of the value of the new clothing. item e: at the elite captains club party we were in line for the intro to the captain. all of a sudden, we were scooted out of line with others, basically given the bum's rush. No apology or reason for change. Item f after informed of issues, guest relations made an offer for future cruise funds as compensation, then retracted i!. Anyway woefully small amount. the next level guest relations rep really had no authority to compensate. As other reviewers have stated there was a lot of sickness on the ship, both gastro and upper respiratory. yet oceanview café was still letting pax serve themselves with serving spoons. . Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
The ship is looking a bit tired in parts but it is now 14 years old and celebrity are doing well in keeping it looking good. I just wish they did not try ans squeeze in so many alternative premium dining venues. A lot of the nice ... Read More
The ship is looking a bit tired in parts but it is now 14 years old and celebrity are doing well in keeping it looking good. I just wish they did not try ans squeeze in so many alternative premium dining venues. A lot of the nice touches seem to be disappearing: chocolate on the pillow, nice towels on the con. cabins etc. The entertainment shows I would describe as adequate. The biggest let down on this cruise was the ports. Pisco instead of Lima. Nothing to see in Manta. the weather did nit help but one can not blame Celebrity for that. The cruise was saved by the excellent enrichment speakers especially Milo. Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
This ship is in need of a complete overhaul, it is getting a little tattered and looking old. Shore excursions were not up to snuff, too much political discussions by the guides. When will the cruise lines quit taking bribes from ... Read More
This ship is in need of a complete overhaul, it is getting a little tattered and looking old. Shore excursions were not up to snuff, too much political discussions by the guides. When will the cruise lines quit taking bribes from vendors so that the excursions stop at certain shops. If I want to shop I will pick my own shopping destinations. Food was average, service was very good. Why can't people learn to wash their hands. The captain announces ways to prevent virus transmission every day on the intercom. Their are countless notices everyday in regard to virus prevention. And you still see morons not washing their hands after they go to the bathroom. You still see these same type of people sidestep the hand sanitizers when going to the buffet or restaurant. Stupid is what stupid does I guess. Disembarkment was a bit of a nightmare but things happen and it was handled as well as could be expected. A bit more information would have helped as the delays were extended. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
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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