36 Istanbul Family Cruise Reviews

This was our first European Cruise and we loved it! All ports of call were beautiful and interesting. The Celebrity Equinox is a beautiful ship, great food, restaurants and amenities. Our cabin stewards Danisha & Sachin made us feel ... Read More
This was our first European Cruise and we loved it! All ports of call were beautiful and interesting. The Celebrity Equinox is a beautiful ship, great food, restaurants and amenities. Our cabin stewards Danisha & Sachin made us feel like we were their only customers. The staff in the Silhouette Dining room - Hazel, August, the wine steward and the maître d were all excellent and added a lot of value to our experience. We really enjoyed the 4 Tenors of Rock and most of the nightly entertainment. The 3 sea days were a nice way to enjoy the ship and rest between shore excursions. Plus there was no shortage of things to do after dinner. My wife made regular use of the fitness facility and enjoyed its amenities. Walking the decks at night with a stop at the sunset bar for a nightcap was a wonderful way to cap off a beautiful day in port or a day at sea. We will definitely go again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
The Crew made the difference on this Cruise. Hazel, August and Sundep in the MDR were terrific. This 13 night Cruise out of Athens was a blast. Sister and brother in law from the U.K. flew in and joined us and made it a fun time. The ... Read More
The Crew made the difference on this Cruise. Hazel, August and Sundep in the MDR were terrific. This 13 night Cruise out of Athens was a blast. Sister and brother in law from the U.K. flew in and joined us and made it a fun time. The Equinox was in great shape, the Crew do a really good job in keeping it imaculate. Kudos to Antonio our room attendant, fine job! We were very happy with our Balcony Cabin on eight. We had the Classic package and were pleased with the quality of the wine and other beverages that we had copious amounts of. The food on the whole was very good but they could do with a better selection of desserts at the Lunch Buffet and they should have rolls in the bread baskets at dinner. Minor points to be sure but it was noticed. Service in the Bars was very good over all. We enjoyed the Tenors of Rock. The Comedian and a couple of others. Not so taken withe the Production shows but my wife liked them. Different strokes for different folks. We are do it ourselves type of people regarding Tours. We don't want to spend 8 hours in blistering heat with a bus load of folks paying 100 Euros for that dubious privilage. Instead, for example, we took the local bus from Dubrovnik to Cavtat. I didn't realize we were going along half way up the mountains with a huge drop below. We took a boat back. We took the free Celebrity Shuttle to the local bus to the Train from Liverno to Florence return. In Ville Franche we took the Train to Monaco in the morning and to Nice in the afternoon. A lot of walking for us Seniors but it helped off set the food and booze intake on the Ship. We had a really good time on the Equinox in the Med. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
Hello! We chose this cruise because of the Itinerary, all across the Mediterranean, starting in Istanbul and finishing in Barcelona. However, this changed before departure, given the events in Turkey, Celebrity decided to skip ... Read More
Hello! We chose this cruise because of the Itinerary, all across the Mediterranean, starting in Istanbul and finishing in Barcelona. However, this changed before departure, given the events in Turkey, Celebrity decided to skip Istanbul and we shipped from Piraeus in Athens. The itinerary was still good enough and we kept the plans. No regrets. The overall experience was incredible! Very smooth embarkation process, the ship is beautiful and huge! We were somehow in a budget so we had an inside cabin which was very spacious with lots of room for storing, good shower and restroom. Certainly and accounting on the amount of time you actually spend in the stateroom you do not need more. I would definitely book an inside cabin again to save some good money. Food very good. The main dinner Silhouette is outstanding, you could easily skip the specialty restaurants because of this. Ocean View buffets were always good and fresh. We had the 3 dinner package so: - Tuscan Grill - good dinner but not super special, you can easily skip this with no regrets. - Silk harvest - Pretty dishes and good food. Recommended. - Murano - Great experience! Recommended. The on board entertainment and activities seemed sometimes a little repetitive and I don't want to say dull, but yeah... maybe we being Latin Americans (34 yo Mexican Couple) are more used to other kind of more playful and inclusive fiesta. I would recommend more variety on the music in the pool area and more repertoire of the live music. It was the same music always again and again!! Very odd. In a second thought, maybe the entertainment was not perceived as super good since the demographics of the cruise were +60 yo people and they don't go along very easily. The theatre shows were great, I enjoy every single night of them. The one with the big hat in the scenario is an outstanding-Cirque du Soleil-level act. Great singers! Service was GREAT!!!!.... must of the time. Very smiley and friendly staff. The only place it was not as friendly was at the grill up the pool, where you get hamburgers and hot dogs, staff there was grumpy, but I can see why, it was so hot and standing so much time at the grill doing burgers must be painful!! The Shore excursions we took with Celebrity were good, and very nicely organized. However, I only recommend this for large cities with little time to see all so you will have the tranquility of not being left by the ship if something goes wrong or you're late. Otherwise, there are cheaper and reliable options elsewhere online like Viator. Or go around and explore yourself if the destination is a small town and not difficult to access. We would certainly do it all again with Celebrity and the Equinox! Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This cruise was part of a guided tour with a large international tour company. We started in Istanbul for a few days before joining the cruise when it arrived in Istanbul from Athens. As part of a larger group our on-shore excursions ... Read More
This cruise was part of a guided tour with a large international tour company. We started in Istanbul for a few days before joining the cruise when it arrived in Istanbul from Athens. As part of a larger group our on-shore excursions were organised by our tour director and we had no problems at all. I was pleasantly surprised by the size of our outside cabin with window. It was larger than I had expected and the bathroom was a decent size too. We had plenty of storage in the way of wardrobe and cupboards. The only issue we had was the the bed was too low to store our empty suitcases underneath. We were on deck 5 which has an outside walkway that goes around the entire ship so we did have people walking past our window from early in the morning but the windows are mirrored so the room is still very private with the curtains drawn. There were two choices for eating; the buffet or the dining room. The buffet food was decent and plentiful if you ate early though it was never hot only warm. The al a carte in the restaurant was tasty though there is a limited menu choice. You could have breakfast in either the buffet or restaurant. I didn't attend any of the shows but was told that they were entertaining though not very professional. There are plenty of bar areas to enjoy; around the pool, indoors or at the rear of the ship on deck 5. As a smoker I spent most of my time at the deck 5 bar as it was one of the few places I could drink and smoke. The staff were all absolutely wonderful and very helpful with any requests we had. Our room stewards kept our room clean and neat. As the crew come from all over the world there are many new friends to be made if you enjoy learning about other countries. Watching the ship dock in the early morning was one of my regular highlights and the other was the sunsets. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
My wife and I retired in the summer of 2009, up to that point I had never taken a cruise. My main reason was that I didn’t want to be stuck on a ship with nothing to do. Well I must say, was I ever wrong. We have since taken eight ... Read More
My wife and I retired in the summer of 2009, up to that point I had never taken a cruise. My main reason was that I didn’t want to be stuck on a ship with nothing to do. Well I must say, was I ever wrong. We have since taken eight cruises to date, with more planned in the future. Our first experience with Viking was a City Lights River Cruise, from Paris to Prague. Needless to say it was an amazing trip. The views along the Rivers were spectacular as well as the ports we docked in. When it came time for our excursions, they were extremely well planned. I was impressed by the way the crew members who went on our excursions looked after us and made sure no one got lost. Back on board the food was great as well as the entertainment and sleeping accommodations. I have always wanted to explore the Mediterranean via a cruise ship and when we heard that Viking had just introduced the Viking Star, we booked our cruise a year and half ahead of time. When it came time for our cruise we were once again extremely impressed. Upon our arrival at the Istanbul airport, we were met by Viking representatives and escorted to our bus. From there we were driven to our ship and upon arrival at the terminal were quickly processed and boarded the ship “The Viking Sea”. The system they have for scanning our photographs and activating our room cards was completed in an instant. Once on the ship we were kept informed on all activities via scheduled talks in the theater or simply by utilizing our television in our cabin, were we were able to view events, movies, major network stations, planned excursions, recent presentations and even an up to date breakdown of our account. When it came to our scheduled excursions, once again it was a seamless process. We received cards for our excursions as well as a daily sheet with scheduled events. Once we showed up at our meeting place, we were escorted out within five minutes and taken to our assigned busses for our event. The listening devices that were issued were amazing, allowing us to hear everything from our guide while on our excursion. Speaking of excursions, there were numerous ones to choose from on every port we visited. I was most impressed upon our return to the ship where were greeted by the Viking crew giving out champagne, towels, music, dancing etc. To date the staff of Viking are second to none! At the end of each excursion we were given sheets to rate our excursion, which I know are carefully scrutinized by staff to determine which ones to keep as well as which ones to discard. Our dining experience was pretty much the same as on other cruises however, the free unlimited wine as well as beer served with lunch and dinner made it more special. Our waitress “Maria” was phenomenal, which made our dining experience that much more special. Half way through our twenty-day cruise we were met by six other family members. We requested a table for eight as well as Maria and were granted both. We had such a good time at dinner with Maria that we cancelled some of our request for other restaurants The day our other family members were scheduled to board the ship I advised Mohamad our assigned housekeeping person of their pending arrival. He made of point of getting their cabins ready and they were able to utilize them much earlier than scheduled. We found Mohamed quite expedient in caring for our cabin and was always available to tend to our needs. When it came to doing laundry, we made of point of timing it and never had to wait for a machine to become available. What made it even nicer was the free detergent. The ship is much smaller than a regular cruise ships and when it came to entertainment, it was every bit as good as any larger ship. I was impressed by the digital stage backdrop that constantly changed as each event unfolded. The entertainment staff were extremely talented and after each show were available for greetings and questions. We found ourselves being entertained during lunch, tea time as well in the lobby. It seemed that there was always something going on. We discovered that the passengers were for the most part older with very few young couples. However, it was the right fit for us as it was a more relaxing and subdued. This also was to my advantage when it came time to utilizing the gym. Although there were usually persons there working out, I never had to wait for the equipment. We are looking forward to booking another cruise with Viking in the future. I know that with Vikings continuous strive towards perfection as well as the extremely friendly and professional staff we won’t be disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We have been on numerous cruises on many different lines, and we think Viking tops them all. Embarkation was inviting, efficient, and organized. Tours at every port were on time, well-led by absolutely outstanding tour guides and ... Read More
We have been on numerous cruises on many different lines, and we think Viking tops them all. Embarkation was inviting, efficient, and organized. Tours at every port were on time, well-led by absolutely outstanding tour guides and well-organized. I keep saying organized, but Viking never leaves a passenger wondering or wandering. Guides in the ports are clearly marked. Embarkation and disembarkation features many Viking stafff holding signs "pointing the way" to the 'correct' bus. The Viking Sea is elegant and spotless from stem to stern. No casino was a welcome gift. No photographer in your face every day and selling pictures was another welcome gift. An all-adult cruise line was another welcome gift. We dined in each of the four restaurants during our cruise; the food was superior, and the service was equal. I could go on and on listing individual servers and crew who deserve our highest accolades. They are superbly trained and superbly helpful and generous with their time, service, and interminably kind demeanor. Our Deluxe cabin had a spacious balcony which we enjoyed. The bed was most comfortable, and there was a large wardrobe, and plenty of drawer space. My wife and I are professional musicians, and the entertainment was top drawer. For example, a young tenor singing "Nessun Dorma" is a rarity on a cruise ship, but Constantine 'nailed it' (and I have accompanied many a singer twice or thrice Constantine's age that didn't sing it any better). My wife and I would go on a Viking cruise again in a heartbeat...we're already scheming, in fact, to see if we can manage a trip on Viking's next new ship in 2017 (this was the maiden voyage of the Viking Sea, and we are eager to see the Viking Sky and the Viking Sun, one each in 2017 and 2018). Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This trip on the Viking Star will make it difficult to travel on a megaship cruise again. Three siblings (and our spouses) traveled together for the first time in over 50 years. The ship, food (best of any cruises we've taken), ... Read More
This trip on the Viking Star will make it difficult to travel on a megaship cruise again. Three siblings (and our spouses) traveled together for the first time in over 50 years. The ship, food (best of any cruises we've taken), service, and especially having many included features so that we were not nickel and dimed aboard was appreciated--wifi, coffee/tea in room along with a small stocked minibar, beverages provided--even wine and beer with major meals even though we don't drink much, options for dining (Manfredi's, Chef's Table, pool grill, tea, etc.) with out additional charges, included excursions, enrichment and entertainment, in-cabin entertainment system, tips (with options to adjust), laundry facilities with complimentary detergent on each deck, 24 hour room service, spa (with warm pool with jets, hot tub with jets, "snow" room and saunas available without extra charge, music in venues around the ship. Particularly appreciate was NO HARD SELL--jewelry, paintings, even excursions.... The cabin was wonderful--all had balconies with a small table and two chairs, and king-sized beds, wonderfully laid out and larger than other cruise lines, heated bathroom floor and the stewards who were so wonderful about servicing the cabin. Appreciated the casual dress code--although some did take the opportunity to dress up a bit (but no tuxes or long ballgowns)--made for a very comfortable trip without having to bring lots of luggage. Yes, there were a few problems. Important announcements (like a change of port call) was broadcast in the hallway and public areas (had to open your door to hear) when an in-room speaker was also available which was used in a later announcement. After reading previous reviews about unsatisfactory excursions I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the guides and the itineraries that were offered in the included and optional tours. Our group size with never above 25 which was excellent. Use of room rechargeable amplification systems (QuietVox?) and small binoculars for touring was a surprise and made for an enhanced experience. Especially enjoyed being able to see the locations from the ship--Istanbul, Kotor--and the unexpected docking in Venice a day early (skipped Pula due to weather and sea conditions) resulted in a wonderful sail-through that was glorious even in slightly inclement weather. Entertainment was fun--the young cast was appreciated and Vegas quality was not expected. On an Alaska cruise, entertainment hopped on and off the (big) ship at various ports and provided more of a variety (enrichment lectures were sometimes too academic on this cruise segment, and I would have appreciated some local talent as well as a woman or two.) In-cabin offerings were fine-great selection of movies (if you wanted to spend time doing that) and rebroadcase of lectures was good. Due to time zones, current news was iffy. CNN would be nice. Wifi was fine and there were computers and printers available in the office center. Stability of the ship was good--we had one day (at sea) that was mildly rocky but not a problem for one of our party who tends to get motion sickness. When medical attention in port was needed, Viking had a staff member accompany the patient to the appointment and refused any tip--and charges were much less than what you might encounter back home. Small clinic also had basic medications and a nurse and doctor available a set hours and on call for emergencies. Good to know that they are prepared. Embarkation and disembarkation including transfers went along without a hitch--thank you. Viking Air Service did a good job with our flights. Tour booklet was helpful--might want to include information that detergent for the landerette was not needed as the machines injected a brand that was mild but also probably included a fabric softener since no dryer sheets was needed. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
We had booked this cruise mainly on the destinations with Istanbul being our number one priority to visit. Unfortunately a couple of weeks prior to sailing the overnight stay in Istanbul was cancelled due to the ongoing troubles in the ... Read More
We had booked this cruise mainly on the destinations with Istanbul being our number one priority to visit. Unfortunately a couple of weeks prior to sailing the overnight stay in Istanbul was cancelled due to the ongoing troubles in the region. I was quite concerned about the cancellation as we were on a Celebrity organised fly cruise which only arrived very late on the day of sailing but was assured that this would not be a problem. We arrived at the ship at approximately 7:30pm with around 60 other passengers but the check in and security clearance still took over two hours to complete. I'm at a loss as to why additional staff could not be available to make this process more efficient. After finally boarding and managing to get a table in the anytime dining section of the MDR we were then informed that we must attend a secondary muster drill 20 minutes later. I absolutely agree that safety is paramount but the so called muster drill was basically a box ticking exercise. Even then it was scant on genuine information and would not have helped in case of a genuine emergency. We then headed back to our stateroom to find that they basically hadn't bothered finishing the setup. We were missing all the usual information including the daily, our Captains Club information and Cruise Critic connections information. This resulted in us missing the get together which was arranged for the morning after. Most disappointingly the waste baskets were still full of the previous guests rubbish. So after a long days travel we decided to get an early night, put the mishaps behind us and start afresh in the morning. Unfortunately at 5am we got woken by what sounded like a hammer being repeatedly stuck against the back wall of the cabin. This only lasted for about a minute, but as it happened almost every day, seriously affected our sleep throughout the voyage. We have sailed on the Constellation twice before and never been disturbed in this way. Avoid the newer cabins on deck 11 aft unless you are a very early riser or sound sleeper. Despite these issues the vast majority of our cruise was very good. The attitude of most of the crew and staff were exceptional. Our waiter and his team in the main dining room probably the best I have ever had in 14 cruises on various line. The dining experience in Ocean Liners is fabulous. Whilst a cover charge of $89 for the five senses menu is steep by speciality restaurant norms the five courses with paired wine should not be missed by any serious food and wine lover. Make sure you go hungry though as unlike a traditional tasting menu with smaller portions this is five full dishes and a generous pour of wine with each. Service in Ocean Liners is on a par or exceeds the best I have experience in any restaurant land or at sea. It's worth taking a cruise on this ship just to experience. The ship itself is in a good condition and the entertainment on board is mostly to a high standard. Whilst we're not really into the theatre shows a family member who travelled with us attended most of the shows on board and was thoroughly impressed. For those not on one of the drinks packages the Rendezvous Lounge have two daily two hour happy hours between 4-6 and 10-12. You can get a very drinkable glass of cabernet sauvignon for $4.5 at these times. The ports we visited were fabulous with my personal favourites being Santorin, Athens and Ephesus. In Athens you get the Hop on Hop off bus in the port for 15 euro which drops you at the acropolis and then use the same ticket to get to all the other major attractions. In Ephesus as you get off the ship there is a shopping complex. On the first floor is a local tour operator that runs much smaller group tours. This covers all the sights and more that the ship organised tours visit and is only 40 euro per person including entrance to Ephesus, House of the Virgin Mary and the English speaking guide. Unfortunately my trip ended with another serious disappointment. Unusually for me I hadn't been keeping track of the account throughout the voyage so when our statement arrived I was shocked to discover that we had been charged the daily service fee. This was despite paying in advance for the service charges at the time we made the booking. I thought this would be easy to resolve so approached guest services to query the situation. To say they were unhelpful is a gross understatement. After checking with head office in Miami they were adamant that we had not prepaid and basically insinuated that I was trying to steal from them. The attempt at an olive branch (entirely as an afterthought) was that maybe my travel agent had made a mistake. Since my return I have queried the matter with my agent and checked my Celebrity invoice which clearly shows the prepaid gratuities. Even if the error were on my side, I sincerely feel that the way I was made to feel is totally unacceptable, for what is essentially a customer service industry. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
We travel with a group of eight, both family, and friends. It was our third time on Riviera, and we requested our butler, Sonu, from the prior cruises. He met us as we boarded, and asked what we would be needing that first day. Great ... Read More
We travel with a group of eight, both family, and friends. It was our third time on Riviera, and we requested our butler, Sonu, from the prior cruises. He met us as we boarded, and asked what we would be needing that first day. Great service from the very start. The ship was pretty full, with groups from Maui Jims, and four university affiliated tour groups. The cruise was shorter than our usual selection, but was destination intensive, a different port or island each day, and ending in Athens. We bought the premium liquor package, as it is a value if you are even a modest consumer of wine, and spirits. Entertainment has been vastly improved by adding the entrainment troupes from their new Norweigen cruise line partner, and we always spent time in our favorite venue, Martini's, listening to the excellent piano player. The food, service, and selection of ports was excellent, and we dined with the Captain one night, and found him to be a delightful dinner companion. We had so much fun, that we booked two more cruises while on board. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
We picked this cruise by price and destinations. We flew to Istanbul on an afternoon flight arriving about 5:30pm; the ship did not leave until 23:00 hrs. Take our advice and try not to travel on a weekend as the traffic is tremendous and ... Read More
We picked this cruise by price and destinations. We flew to Istanbul on an afternoon flight arriving about 5:30pm; the ship did not leave until 23:00 hrs. Take our advice and try not to travel on a weekend as the traffic is tremendous and it took nearly two hours from airport to the cruise terminal. As we were late we almost walked straight in, and within a few minutes we were in our cabin together with our cases. We had a balcony cabin next to the rear lifts handy for the buffet and the fusion lounge; we did not notice any noise from the lifts. Joel was waiting for us and with a font of knowledge and tips. We soon renewed our layout memories and after a good dinner in the buffet we turned in early. The next day was a ‘sea’ day which enabled us to adjust to the extra two hours time difference, we did all the normal activities run by a brilliant entertainments team – I was glad to see that we were giving jobs to some of the ‘Colonists’ - we were soon caught up in activities like Trivia, taboo and Scattergrams, which may seem boring but when you’ve got passengers from all over the world it became hilarious. In the evenings there were game shows very familiar to the British, copies of mr&mrs, blankity blank and family fortunes. The theatre put on some good and varied shows from Mime, comedian, vocalists and not to mention the princess dancers and singers who put on some Broadway standard shows. The weather was fabulous our complete cruise, the sun beds and pools never seem to empty. They also became handy for watching some of the latest films with free popcorn. Being a couple of pensioners we did not take part in the more vigorous activities. Including learning to dance, ball or line. I’m afraid even a well equipped Gym couldn’t temp us. We tried both types of dining, the main dining room and the buffet. The main dining room was a bit disappointing the menu selection was poor and the alternatives looked good in name but when they arrived they were often only tepid and didn’t look inviting. On formal nights we ate in the buffet on the Lido deck which we found to be hotter, more varied and you can have as much as you liked. For the weight watchers there was a good assortment of salads and loads of fresh fruit daily. On this cruise we found waiting staff to be superb willing to chat (if not busy) and tell you all about the homes, it went to show what can be done we a few friendly words. They were always willing to fetch drinks or help someone with difficulties. Having done quite a few cruises we have managed to visit all the tourist sites in the Med at least once so now we’re happy going for walks around the port area or local town and seeing how the other half lives. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
This was about my 50th cruise 3rd with Celebrity, what a total waste of time and money, all of the content is in my opinion and not aimed to be slanderous in any way, this review is factual and was what experienced by my wife and our three ... Read More
This was about my 50th cruise 3rd with Celebrity, what a total waste of time and money, all of the content is in my opinion and not aimed to be slanderous in any way, this review is factual and was what experienced by my wife and our three children. Firstly our day in Istanbul was cancelled due to security risks!! poppy cock and the incident happened in Izmir some 50 miles away, would Celebrity cancel a cruise from Miami if there was a security scare in Orlando? no compensation offered for this very last minute alteration to the itenery, we were not allowed to go ashore after boarding at 13.00 hrs and sailing at 23.10 hrs. Due to the day in Istanbul being cancelled the first day was spent at sea at a walking pace which was good for Celebrity as the ship became a " Cash Cow " for the cruise line. On boarding the ship it appeared to be filthy and on our balcony there was green mouldy water in the gullies, this remained for 12 days until pointed out to the guest relations. As soon as we emerged in public areas we were hassetled to upgrade the drinks packages and was then left alone once agreed to. This ship had an extremely unhappy crew and good service was the last thing on the majority of the staffs mind, I suppose having over 60 different nationalities is difficult to achieve working harmony. With a novo viorous outbreak on day one later confirmed the ship became very awkward with no books in the library, no self service available in the buffet and no mini snacks in the bars such as nuts and pretzels. To get a decent meal on board along with service you had to pay the surcharge to eat in the specialty venues, the food in the main dinning room was bland uninteresting and often served luke warm and overcooked, tables were no prepared with missing cutlery and crockery all in all food has been better on cross Chanel ferries. Cabin service was OK but when the staff wanted to service they came in and worked around us trying to get changed and pack on the final evening. On one instance we saw a cockroach in the dinning room pointed it out to a member of staff who denied by stating "no bugs on this ship !!" Then a few minutes later returned with a black bottle top saying this was the bug, trying to make light of the situation which I found to be most insulting. In summary this has been by far the worst cruise I have ever taken, bore no resemblance to previous Celebrity cruises and just could not believe how rude and arrogant so many of the staff were. On the plus side the shore excursions were good but vastly overpriced and the entertainment was above average. I am sure the Equniox is just an unhappy filthy ship and the other members of the fleet will be much better, this was the view of other passengers on board some who had taken over 20 Celebrity cruises and vowed it would be their last. Let's hope you are more lucky than us should you choose Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Slightly worried about what to expect on a cruise, will we enjoy it, will we fit in?? No worries! Absolutely loved it! Flew to Turkey on the Thomson Dreamliner,very smooth & quiet. I even got to peek inside the cockpit prior to ... Read More
Slightly worried about what to expect on a cruise, will we enjoy it, will we fit in?? No worries! Absolutely loved it! Flew to Turkey on the Thomson Dreamliner,very smooth & quiet. I even got to peek inside the cockpit prior to flying. The steward could see I was very excited!! my daughter loved the fact she could charge her phone whilst flying at 44000 feet! It was about an hrs transfer to the ship, a bit hot & sticky on the coach but easy transfer from plane to coach to ship. Didn't like being stopped to fill in a survey before embarkation thou, we won't fall for that again. We were quickly shown how to get to our suite (2 adults,1 teenager) it was lovely & roomy. Excellent view. My daughter was able to have some privacy with a curtained section where her bed was with a table & 2 chairs. Bathroom was adequate with Elemis toiletries provided. The room was cleaned twice daily, with fresh towels,chocs on the pillow & towel creations! The ship was lovely, plenty of sun beds, particularly loved the sun deck, quieter than the pool area . Took my daughter there at night to look at the stars. She was amazed! The bar areas were all equally good. Preferred the Horizons bar on deck 9 which my other called renamed the Moonlight Lounge! The trio who sang in there were fantastic. Always acknowledged you even during singing. The shows were extremely professional, went in the lounge every night. All bar/waiting /housekeeping staff were so friendly & welcoming. Remembered your names & drink orders. Loved that the staff were recognised by the officers each week & they had a party for staff every month. Booked a few excursions prior to going. Probably could have done it diy but being all new to us we were glad we did what we did! Loved the Corinth Canal, even better if I'd known about the bungee jumping over it! Santorini was by far my favourite place. Booked the volcano & thermal springs tour. Very good even though the springs were cooler than expected! Would have liked to spend more time on the island but with doing the trip it took up a few hours. Didn't like the use of the donkeys or horses for taking tourists up & down the steep cliff face. Use the cable car people! Same price, smoother, quicker & less smelly! There was no shade or water for the donkeys. Istanbul was too busy. Did our own thing, got ripped off by a "yellow cab" which was not a nice welcome. Preferred Bozcaada, lovely quaint shipping village . Lovely people. Marmaris , beautiful marina! Had a few cocktails there, really good price too! Going home... It was great to stay on the ship until it was time to depart but not having to leave the cabin at 9am! Only downfall was the coach trip back to Dalaman. It was old, tatty & no air con. Extremely hot especially travelling back at midday. All in all, had a great time, so much so we've booked to go on the Thomson Discovery next year! Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
I have just finished reading several disappointing reviews of Celebrity Equinox European cruises. I must respectfully disagree! My family loved this cruise! My family recently took the seven night cruise from Istanbul to Rome and I must ... Read More
I have just finished reading several disappointing reviews of Celebrity Equinox European cruises. I must respectfully disagree! My family loved this cruise! My family recently took the seven night cruise from Istanbul to Rome and I must say it was fantastic! This was our fourth cruise but the first time with Celebrity. The Equinox was beautiful, impeccably clean, and very comfortable. The crew was generally quite friendly and accommodating. We sailed Aqua class and I believe this was a worthwhile upgrade as we enjoyed the rapid check in, the daily canapés, the access to the spa (where I enjoyed a wonderful massage during the one day at sea), and, especially, the access to Blu where we had dinner every evening. The staff at Blu - particularly Jesue, Sebastiao, and sommelier Nica were wonderful and made us feel like family. I also enjoyed the on-board evening entertainment with my favorites being the shows with the Equinox performers who sang, danced, and entertained like they came straight from Broadway (which I guess they did)! The ports of call on this cruise included Istanbul, Mykonos, Valletta, Catania, and Salerno. They were all wonderful but we particularly enjoyed Mykonos, where we booked a fabulous excursion to the ancient island of Delos (the birthplace of Apollo), and Catania where we visited Mount Etna and quaint Taormina. Our cabins were well appointed and clean. It seemed like every time we left our cabin, not matter for how short a time, the stewards cleaned! The bathroom was fairly spacious for a cruise and the shower was excellent! We also found the staff to be responsive to complaints. We had one small issue with some laundry. Generally, one should try not to do laundry on board a cruise if possible, as it is extremely expensive per item. We did under-pack a little though and had to have some personal item laundered. The clothing did not smell fresh when it was returned and one item was damaged. The staff at the hospitality desk immediately and happily refunded the cost of the laundry and gave additional credit to replace the damaged item. I would certainly expect no less, but it was nice to see that they were completely committed to our satisfaction. If there was any one thing I found a little disappointing, it was the service in the Oceanview Café. The food was OK for a buffet but after the first day (where the wait staff did really push the upgraded beverage package!) we actually had a hard time getting any wait staff to come to our table for beverages. We only used this venue for breakfasts/brunch, so I guess to grab a quick bite before getting off the ship for the day it was OK, but not up to standards Celebrity would probably like to meet. As noted above though, Blu was superb and accounts for my dining rating below! This was the best cruise vacation we have ever taken and I enthusiastically recommend Equinox and this wonderful Mediterranean cruise! Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Our cruise in the Mediterranean was interesting, fun, and relaxing. We were impressed with the sparkling cleanliness of the ship and our cabin. The departure was handled satisfactorily even though there are apparently inevitable waits in ... Read More
Our cruise in the Mediterranean was interesting, fun, and relaxing. We were impressed with the sparkling cleanliness of the ship and our cabin. The departure was handled satisfactorily even though there are apparently inevitable waits in line. (Couldn't check in be done by assigned times to limit the waits?) The meals were quite nice, lots of healthy options. The staff was always friendly and ready to help. We didn't care for the entertainment too much. The music was not to our taste, but lots of people did seem to enjoy it. Cruise music always seems to be trapped in the past. There was a nice jazz combo that played outside. An especially interesting aspect was the glass blowing studio sponsored by Corning glass. Beautiful glass objects were made in demonstration and later sold. The art auctions REALLY should go....the art is not a good buy and the promotions are not believable, in my opinion. The guest services desk staff was very friendly, but there was almost always a frustratingly long wait in line for service. The fitness center was well equipped and the classes were a real workout. Overall, we had a great time, nice port stops, and most all of the activities were well organized. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Just returned from a cruise ,our third and probably our last ,it just continues downmarket The destinations, general condition of the ship was fine but in our cabin the 3rd person, our daughter, was perched on a mattress on the sofa ... Read More
Just returned from a cruise ,our third and probably our last ,it just continues downmarket The destinations, general condition of the ship was fine but in our cabin the 3rd person, our daughter, was perched on a mattress on the sofa and made the cabin look like a teenage sleepover The food, I am happy to accept that breakfast and lunch buffets are mass catering and was fine, but a bit more effort should go into the main dinner dining room ,poor starters lacked taste quality and imagination the menu changed daily but still consisted in the main of tasteless roast beef and roast pork described in glowing terms ,when it was beef on the main menu the always available menu still had two beef options complete with the ever faithful and cheap salmon!, little other decent fish being available ,the sweets were in keeping with the rest of it.They really are cutting corners and the service was poor as well, finally for the first time on five cruises we didn't have a lobster night To add insult to injury the wine was overpriced 36 dollars for the cheapest plus the usual 15 per cent ,a beer 7.5 dollars plus the usual and cocktails at 14 dollars plus, It really seems that this hitherto excellent product is determined to go down the cheap mass market route ,we will have to look elsewhere Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Overall we were very happy with the ship. It was clean, the staff was excellent, the Captain was great. The ship was easy to navigate, the food was very good and in the Windjammer Café they offered a lot of variety. It did not seem ... Read More
Overall we were very happy with the ship. It was clean, the staff was excellent, the Captain was great. The ship was easy to navigate, the food was very good and in the Windjammer Café they offered a lot of variety. It did not seem that there were many activities going on during the day and other than rock climbing, table tennis and shuffle board I do not believe there was anything else for children. Since our itinerary had us in port most days this was not an issue for us. Embarkation was a bit long in Istanbul but after that getting on and off was very efficient. At the ports with tenders they used a number system. Not really a fan of that because you have to get in line to get the number the same morning as the tender but several hours before arrival. If you have an excursion (not thru cruise ship) and need to get off on one of the first boats you need to get in this line at least 30 min before it starts. It seems it would have been easier to just get in line for the tender boat. The kids club did not work out for our daughter age 11. The children that are 3-11 are in one club and 12-17 in another. Because it is a smaller ship they do not have a 3rd area to put the 9-11 year olds. Given she would have been in the area with the small children I did not even register her for the kids club - she had no interest. She would have been more interested in the activities offered to the older group but we were advised that trying to put her with that group would not be wise because there were many teenagers on board. I also do not believe they would have allowed us to switch her - so beware if your child is at the upper range of the young kids. We did not book shore excursions through the cruise line but used roll call to find a group before sailing and booked directly with companies that had received good trip advisor ratings. This worked out very well and we met a great group of people that were sailing with us. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Myself, my wife and 3 year old daughter had a wonderful 12 days on the Rhapsody around Turkey and the Greek Islands. The itinerary was great in that there was a nice place to go to everyday except for two sea days. Istanbul, Chania, ... Read More
Myself, my wife and 3 year old daughter had a wonderful 12 days on the Rhapsody around Turkey and the Greek Islands. The itinerary was great in that there was a nice place to go to everyday except for two sea days. Istanbul, Chania, Mykonos and Santorini are must-see's and we loved these places. We didn't get off at Athens as we had been there before so we had a rare chance to just relax by the pool whilst it was quiet and everyone was in Athens. There was a fight for sun beds on the sea days however but we have had this same thing on our other cruises, it's just one of those things. We felt the ship was in great condition for an 18 year old ship and didn't feel dated. I don't understand those who moan that the ship looks tired, they are very wrong. The entertainment was excellent and far better than what we had experienced on Celebrity or Holland America. The cruise director was great and there was always something going on at any time of the ship. Our daughter loved the kids club for 3 to 5 year olds. She didn't want to spend all her time with us in the end as she loved the kids club so much. The staff there do a great job all day entertaining all the kids from 6 months to 17! Our cabin was on the 8th deck and we felt the air con was very loud and there was no way to turn it down. Our stateroom attendant also wasn't the best and would leave unwanted rubbish in the room instead of removing it. Other than that we loved our cruise, the food was amazing, the service was great, and would definitely book RCI again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
I appreciate that some people like the massive cruise ships that are on offer, especially as all seem to be vying for your trade with on board credit, free drinks (very limited), massive facilities, lots of entertainment; the truth is ... Read More
I appreciate that some people like the massive cruise ships that are on offer, especially as all seem to be vying for your trade with on board credit, free drinks (very limited), massive facilities, lots of entertainment; the truth is I'm done with them. Having sailed Holland America in Sept 2014 for two weeks (too long), I found it too much of a hassle each time you had to disembark and the general kerfuffle in boarding such a large ship, lets face it the days of cruising being exclusive had now turned into cruising for the masses, hence our short trip in the Silver Wind. Yes, it is probably the oldest ship in the fleet, yes it is expensive compared to the leviathans on the sea that you can sail, yes you have to be prepared to forgo the various entertainments that accompany those ships, but what you get is cruising as it should be. Excellent facilities, service reserved for a five star hotel, food and drink of the highest quality and dare we say it? The crowds that often make the whole holiday experience tiring. I like the fact that you berth in ports too small for most cruise liners, trips where there will be a maximum of 15 to 20 people mean more of a personal experience, no hustling to get big groups back on the coaches, take your time (within reason) and enjoy what you came to see. As for the age of the ship I found that you could probably see where it would need an upgrade or two, especially the bath panel being loose, the toilet being a bit inconsistent, paint on the windows giving away it's age, but for me small things that don't detract from the fact that you are treated as an actual valued guest. Big ships? nah not for me, short cruises in luxury surroundings, now that's more like it. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
It's really all about what kind of traveler you are and what your expectations are for a good trip. In May we took a 7 night Western Med Cruise (our third with Princess) from Istanbul to Rome. Our ports of call were Mykonos, ... Read More
It's really all about what kind of traveler you are and what your expectations are for a good trip. In May we took a 7 night Western Med Cruise (our third with Princess) from Istanbul to Rome. Our ports of call were Mykonos, Valletta, Messina and Salerno. Embarkation: was a bit of a bummer. We got an email the day before saying that due to a lot of cruise ships in port and Turkey's lengthy immigration clearance procedures, they needed to stagger passengers and asked us not to come until 4PM. When we got there, we were the only passengers there! The terminal was empty except for us and the ship's reps! Pretty annoying to get on the ship that late and go straight to muster. Cabin: Our Penthouse, R412, on the Riviera Deck, was larger than our last PH on the Ruby Princess but standard other than the general wear and tear others have noted. I liked the spaciousness and the layout of the bathroom. But as others have noted here, we heard the scraping of deck chairs on the Lido deck early in the morning. Overall it was fine and didn't disturb us too much. A fun quirk was the Love Boat A Thon running on television. A bummer was the lack of slippers (our attendant said they didn't have any) and the cheap recycled bag (three years ago we got a nice canvas tote). Also, Princess eliminated free internet for PH suite passengers, replacing it instead with complimentary specialty dining on embarkation night. I preferred the free internet. And this is the second time we've used their complimentary dry cleaning service where a garment was damaged when it was returned. Dining: We had late seating in the Botticelli dining room and both our head waitress and her assistant were terrific, friendly and on the ball. The maitre d' was also lovely. Food overall on this cruise was better than what we experienced on the Island Princess during our Alaska Cruise or the Ruby Princess, which we sailed three years ago. That being said, beef of any kind in the main dining room is poor. Even when they recommend it -- don't do it! We had the toughest prime rib of our lives on the first night, after waitress' enthusiastic recommendation. They did serve both lobster and escargots on this cruise on our second formal night, and it was delicious. Really surprising how good the lobster was on a mainstream cruise line. I can't comment on desert other than the fresh fruit, which I always ordered -- cold and refreshing. As usual, coffee is weak and you must buy a coffee card if you want a decent brew or an espresso drink. Overall, the food and variety/options on the Emerald Princess were better than either of the past two trips I've taken on Princess. I always like the Sabatini breakfast, un-rushed, serene and cooked to order. On mornings we had super early excursions, we got takeaway from the international cafe: egg mcmuffin sandwiches! Horizon court had enough fresh fruits and simply cooked vegetables for me to enjoy healthy dinners when we opted out of main dining, but the entrees were always the weakest link (poor protein quality, lots of sauces and cheese) in the buffet. Crown Grill: I wish the filet mignon had been better, but they served us a huge plate of complimentary lobster tails, which were sensational. Still, both previous Crown Grill experiences on Princess were better in terms of the quality of the beef served. Information: The Princess Patter is very comprehensive. I didn't care for the morning show because, to be honest, I didn't care for the cruise director or her deputy and their banter. It's a matter of personal preference and I'm sure she was great at her job but I would have preferred a smarter morning show led by grown ups (and ship's officers in addition to the cruise directors). Activities: Dance lessons were a lot of fun. My partner and his daughter played bingo and had a ball. I think cruise ship activities are a hallmark of the cruise tradition and even when I don't participate, I love reading about them or hearing about others' experiences. I never go to the shows since I live in NY and see a lot of Broadway theater. My partner went to one comic's performance and reported that the poor guy was a nervous wreck. Service: Most people were friendly and helpful, particularly in dining venues. I did feel like the level of interaction with customers was on the cutesy and overly familiar side, but appreciated their general warmth. Customer service desk was uneven; the reps were either harried and inexperienced or cold and put out. The guy at the internet cafe was the coldest, most unhelpful guy on the ship. Good thing I'm pretty tech savvy and my dealings with him were a minimum! One more thing I noticed was the general lack of visibility of crew officers throughout the ship. Except for the welcome evening, I never saw the Commodore. Interestingly, he'd also been our Captain on our Ruby Princess cruise 3 years ago and on that voyage he was always on the gangway greeting guests as they came 'home.' Up-selling: I have to make a note of this here because all of the flyers for art auctions, gold by the yard, watches, Greek gods popping out of the gangway door imploring you to take a picture with them, bric a brac specials, spa specials, hard sell for wine tastings, etc, etc, is wearying. Moreover, it cheapens the experience. End of my rant on that topic... Port Excursions: All of the port excursions we booked through Princess were good except the Valletta excursion. A guide can make or break the visit and our guide in Malta simply wasn't up to par. Moreover, the meal included there was bottom of the barrel dreadful (as it was on our Amalfi Coast excursion, too). Disembarkation was smooth and painless. In summary, while I think the Princess experience is solid and we enjoyed ourselves, I think we want to try a more upscale line for our next cruise. Princess doesn't line up with how we otherwise live and travel and that is probably why I take issue with uneven or overly familiar service, boisterous cruise directors, and hordes of people milling around tables of watches and costume jewelry. While I have a certain level of comfort in knowing what to expect with a Princess cruise, there are too many variables from ship to ship, too much cost cutting and too much up-selling, and I'm ready to branch out and see what line(s) might be a better fit for us. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Unless you reserve in the two highest categories, you are treated very poorly. Dinner ereservatiiobns are not a priority unless you are in the top 2 categories, embarking early reserved for special class & expensive tours. Not at all ... Read More
Unless you reserve in the two highest categories, you are treated very poorly. Dinner ereservatiiobns are not a priority unless you are in the top 2 categories, embarking early reserved for special class & expensive tours. Not at all what we expected. Middle &uppe r maNAgement very impressed with themselves and not helpful. One notable excxception is genertal manager Guiseepe. Reception & Assistant purser/concierge have no peopkle skills Service kline & assistanec after tyiou have paid is just as bad or not worse with their Miami office. Tourtes as luxury cruise, NOT Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We were a group of 10 family and friends. 7adults and 3children(9 and 2x7yrs) - Cruise dates were 8Oct - 15Oct. Good : 1) Very large ship.New . Beautiful public areas - restaurants, coffee shops and bars. 2)Cabins are quite spacious and ... Read More
We were a group of 10 family and friends. 7adults and 3children(9 and 2x7yrs) - Cruise dates were 8Oct - 15Oct. Good : 1) Very large ship.New . Beautiful public areas - restaurants, coffee shops and bars. 2)Cabins are quite spacious and well decorated & equipped. We were 2 adults and 2 kids in an Ocean view cabin. 2 Lower and 2 upper berth beds. The balcony cabin equally spacious. - these have a double bed and sleeper couch.Bathrooms are decent size with room to move around. 3)Restaurants/bars are plentiful - quality of food is good. Inca/Maya is the main buffet restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Informal so you dont have to dress up. Good variety every day. Could do with a few more vegetarian options. Food at main dining restaurants(Golden Lobster was good - though limited to 3 choices of main) we only ate here once as preferred more variety. Good idea is to purchase a drinks package at embarkation.There is definitely a good saving as opposed to purchasing from the bar. 4) Entertainment goes on throughout the day so you have the option of participating if you choose. 5) Plenty of space to swim in all the pools - water is salted and chlorinated so take along your goggles for swimming. Jacuzzis are always a bit on the full side with people sitting for hours!! n o shortage of recliners on the pool deck. 6) Amazing daily evening show - not to be missed.Yes the presenter does go on for too long in various languages but understandable since there is such a wide spectrum of passengers on board. 7)Embarkation was easy and fast - no hassle. Opt to settle your onboard account by cash..DO NOT take the credit card deposit option!! Bad : 1) Housekeeping - shocking!!!! The only thing that was ever done in our cabin was that the bed was made and the used towels cleared. The floors were never vacuumed. The table tops never wiped down. The bathroom shower leaked an endless stream of water from the bottom so was constantly flooded whenever it was used.We were 4 people in the cabin and every day only 3 towels were replaced. On one day we only received 2 towels and the shower/bath wash had run out and was not refilled. I called guest services at 8am and at 8pm still had not received the towels or shower gel. Eventually, 6calls and 2 trips to reception later i eventually received the towels/shower gel at about 9pm!!! 2) Only 1 english news channel on television - not a single movie/tv show channel. The rest is Italian, german, chinese. None of these even offer english subtitles. 3) No ship services book in cabin. I generally prefer a hardcopy that details all services. The other cabins in our party had this - just not ours!! 4) Shortage of pool deck waiters/cleaning staff - you could never find anyone so had to constantly get up and go down to the bar to order drinks. Glasses/plates/rubbish was left lying around deck chairs the entire day and only cleared in the evenings when everyone had retired. 5) You would think/assume that the cruise would know you were travelling with children and give you relevant information pertaining to kids activities, services,etc. NOTHING is provided - you need to figure it out yourself or make your way to the kids club and collect a daily kids programme. 6) Dont waste your time buying the Fantastica cruise package - there is absolutely NO difference in services between Bella and Fantastica except the price. 7) Disembarkation at ports of call is manic with people pushing and shoving to get to the exit to get off. Rather wait an extra half hour to disembark in order to avoid the rush to the exits. Breakfast also gets very busy on these days so maybe get there later or earlier if possible.8) A service charge of EUR7 per person per day is added onto your cabin bill which you need to be aware of. You do have the option to remove this charge but you need to be very firm about not paying it. Ugly: 1) Guest service staff could do with a lesson in politeness. Some of the staff are extremely nice whilst others have a terrible dont care attitude. 2)On one of the days at port of call, i left my twin 7year old sons at the kids club and left a room key card with them in the event they were tired and wanted to go back to the room. The kids club took the kids to the 4D theater for a show and happened to be passing through the onboard kids game room which had about 10machines varying in price between EUR1 - EUR4 per game.On the way out my boys decided they did not want to go back to the kids club and chose to stay in the games room and play...this went unnoticed by the kids-club staff.on our return to the ship we collected the boys and heard about what an awesome day they had and they even played games.After some enquiring they told us they decided not to go to kids club after the movie and stayed and played a few games.We were a bit concerned about their definition of a few so went down to reception and got a print out of our bill and to our horror - they had amassed a bill of EUR730 on said arcade games.(yes i almost fainted and hoped the ship would sink at that point).Only at that stage (6th day on the cruise) when the bill was given to us and we asked how is that possible, were we told that we should have "blocked" the childrens cards for purchases...Yes they have that facility but we need to ask for it to be done and NO, they do not provide that information in advance that this can be done. So my 7 year old has the ability to go into any one of the wonderful boutiques on board and purchase endless amount of jewels, gifts, watches and sundry and we would be liable for these purchases. We were also told it is our responsibility to oversee charges on the cabin cards irrespective if my children were in the care of their kids-club.After pleading with the guest services agent on the fact that we were not given any information about having the cards blocked, and on the basis of my kids ages, we were offered a rebate of EUR50 per child on these games. I can understand if my kids had consumed something or made use of a service to that value but surely some sort of further concession could have been made in this regard as these arcade games are purely extra profit and not an actual service. Nevertheless we were made to pay the balance of EUR630 which completely bust the budget for the rest of our trip.But we learn in the process - this is how money is made - through profiteering on unsuspecting people and children. other than the above - it was a wonderful relaxing cruise. The ports of call are varied and interesting. The scheduled tours are great if you are travelling in a couple or single. If you are a group - take the taxi tours that are offered at disembarkation points. Read Less
Sail Date October 2014
With my wife and daughter (15) we tried our first cruise with Celebrity in the Eastern Med. We all had different objectives - I wanted to see ancient Greece and Italy, my daughter wanted to shop and my wife just wanted a quiet life. None ... Read More
With my wife and daughter (15) we tried our first cruise with Celebrity in the Eastern Med. We all had different objectives - I wanted to see ancient Greece and Italy, my daughter wanted to shop and my wife just wanted a quiet life. None of us were disappointed. The Med cruises sail at night and dock during the day. With only one sea day we based our decisions on the ports and trips available. On the whole the quality was very high, although there are some things to be aware of. The ship was very nice inside. She carried 2,800 passengers at 2 per cabin, but with kids sharing etc there were in fact 3,200 on board. There was always a quiet space somewhere - although not necessarily by the pool. Main dining never felt crowded, but breakfast in the buffet could be quite a bun fight. The only place the queues really struck home were at the lifts - especially coming back from excursions. We opted to keep fit by walking up the 10 odd decks instead. We were suite class which did mean a lot of extras and really made the difference between just a good experience and a great one. We had access to the exclusive Michael's club which was always empty, with free drinks and suitable snacks 24/7. A raft of vouchers for things like laundry, internet etc; even for the gaming tables and slot machines. And an exclusive tour of the bridge which was completely fascinating. Embarkation / disembarkation was quick and easy thanks to the dedicated suite access, priority on tenders etc. But watch out for Rome airport - see below. There were always plenty of seats in the theater - although suite guests have a little priority section if they want it. We didn't think the first show was that great to be honest, but our butler persuaded us to go back on the second formal night and actually it was much better. The food style was - to UK passengers perhaps - a bit old fashioned. Lost of things the restaurant scene here doesn't really do any more. We ate at Muranos one night - definitely a hark back to the 1970's. Very nice food, the table side flambee was very professionally done. But if it hadn't been free as suite guests we probably would have felt it overpriced. We ate in main dining otherwise on the free dining option. Every table request was met and the service was usually great. There were a couple of less helpful waiters - and it took a bit to convince some that we really didn't need the food explaining. The options on the "always available" were definitely less good. Frozen shrimp and tomato ketchup does not make a classic prawn cocktail! But the daily menu was much better. It would have been nice to have local cuisine options rather than international every time. And please Celebrity if you read these - bring back fish knives. Even if you do now only serve fish filleted rather than whole a fish a fish knife is still appreciated! Teen activities were really excellent. We hadn't expected much being still within the UK term time. but there were a number of American kids and teen suitable activities ran pretty much all day. We didn't see much of the kids club for sub teens - but it seemed popular. Certainly even with the number of kids on board they were not a problem. A word of caution about Rome airport. You can't check in until 2 hours before your flight so if you have a flight later that about lunchtime it is really worth making your own transfer arrangements. With all the cruise liners spilling passengers into a very small airport at more or less the same time there was nowhere to sit for our 2 1/2 hour wait to check in. Having business class tickets and access to the air side lounge is useless if you can't check in! We would have been better staying in Michael's Lounge and getting a taxi up later. Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
The stateroom we were in was not large, but was comfortable for 2 people. There was a tiny bit of vibration in our room which was on the 6th deck forward but it was only noticeable if you listened closely. The room was quiet as there were ... Read More
The stateroom we were in was not large, but was comfortable for 2 people. There was a tiny bit of vibration in our room which was on the 6th deck forward but it was only noticeable if you listened closely. The room was quiet as there were no noises or voices from adjoining rooms or hallway. The crew was very good. They all have excellent attitudes and every one of them speaks at least 2 languages. Your choices of 4 entrees in the dining room are tasty and well served from the optional wine to the dessert course. We both enjoyed the evening live entertainment performances in the Muse Lounge. Anything the performers lacked in experience, they made up for in energy and enthusiasm. Listening to the master of ceremonies do introductions in rapid fire English, German, French, Spanish, and Turkish is almost a show in itself. We used Gate I Travel in booking our trip. Their shore excursions were coordinated, got us off the ship, to our destinations, and back to the ship like clockwork. Disembarkation went smoothly and our luggage was waiting for our tour group on the dock when we left the ship. Most passengers are in the 50 plus age group. Dining and shore expeditions give you an opportunity to learn about people from many other parts of the world. We heard Portuguese, Spanish, German, French and Turkish, but almost everyone was able to converse in English. Our only complaint is the outdated television system in the staterooms. Three channels are of the view from the bridge. The only 2 English language channels are BBC News and BBC stocks. More than half of the passengers are from the US, England, Australia, and New Zealand, so I would have expected at least one entertainment channel in English or an English channel carrying DVD movies. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
My husband and I recently enjoyed a 12 night cruise on the Constellation and then stayed on for a 15-night transatlantic back to Fort Lauderdale for a total of 27 nights and we enjoyed it thoroughly. We found the crew to be especially ... Read More
My husband and I recently enjoyed a 12 night cruise on the Constellation and then stayed on for a 15-night transatlantic back to Fort Lauderdale for a total of 27 nights and we enjoyed it thoroughly. We found the crew to be especially helpful, cheerful and as always, very hardworking. We had the best captain - Capt. Taszos! He was very outgoing; very considerate of the passengers, his crew seemed to love him, he was everywhere on the ship. Everyday he gave us a Greek Mythology lesson in his 10 AM update, and he gave several talks on navigational matters as well as how the S-class ships were built. He could not have been better. In fact, many times he would be stopped by a passenger and would actually sit down with them, take a picture with them, etc. and he had a great sense of humor At the same time, he was always professional and valued safety above all. We felt we were in good hands. As for the rest of the staff, we met so many wonderful, hardworking people trying their very best to serve us and always with a smile. Also, we felt the entertainment on Celebrity is some of the best, and we have sailed on 8 different cruise lines! The singers and dancers were the most talented we have seen, even on Celebrity. We are big fans of Celebrity notice a real difference in the level of service we receive when sailing with them. We've just booked a new cruise with them for 2014. Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
Although, I was a little concerned about spending a few days in Istanbul prior to the cruise. I was pleasantly surprised I never felt concerns for safety in this very magical and warm city just the opposite I traveled around like I was ... Read More
Although, I was a little concerned about spending a few days in Istanbul prior to the cruise. I was pleasantly surprised I never felt concerns for safety in this very magical and warm city just the opposite I traveled around like I was home. I didn't chose a hotel suggested by the cruise line, because I felt I could stay at a Hilton type hotel anywhere. I did some research online and found a hotel in the Sultanmet district great idea you are able to walk to many things as well as stay in local surrounding the hotel was perfect. The cruise line was very well organized for getting on the ship, we encountered no wait or missteps. Our first cruise with Celebrity, and I found myself comparing this with Holland our normal choice. The comparision is hard to do since there were pro's and con's for each one. I find them both to be similar in most areas. We were over-all very pleased with the Constellation. Our location on the ship was very convenient, we were at midship and were able to get everywhere we wanted to be easily. This cruise you must have at the very least a good size window in your cabin. Many times during the night I found myself looking out to see villages on hill sides and small lighthouses that along with the beautful stars well wonderful. The crew was very helpful as well as those I reserved our cruise with, since it was our first trip on Celebrity I had to call several times with questions. I enjoyed all the shore excursions we booked with the cruise line. We did a Turkish bath with one excursion, since when else would you do a Turkish bath other than in Turkey. My husband and I are both in our early 70's, and really enjoyed the experience. We did excursions through the ship at every port except Santorini. At Santorini I wanted to do the hike between Fira and Oia after reading about online, and we did I would advise anyone that enjoys beautiful scenery and challenge to do it. I loved every minute of the hike there would be no way to describe how wonderful the scenery was, and the feeling of accomplishment at the end of the hike. We rode the bus back from Oia, and still had time to walk around the shops in Santorini before having to get to the tenders and back to the ship. This cruise covers so much from history to scenery and it is more challenging as far as physical activity than most of our prior cruises, and to me that is what makes this such a wonderful itenerary. Read Less
Sail Date November 2013

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