36 Los Angeles to Hawaii Celebrity Summit Cruise Reviews

This past holiday season my wife and I decided to combine our 40th anniversary, a desire to finally make it to Hawaii and a chance to celebrate Christmas and New Years on the high seas... We have traveled on Celebrity transatlantic and ... Read More
This past holiday season my wife and I decided to combine our 40th anniversary, a desire to finally make it to Hawaii and a chance to celebrate Christmas and New Years on the high seas... We have traveled on Celebrity transatlantic and through the Panama Canal, and it truly was our only choice of a line, after having tasted Holland America and Carnival on other occasions. My son had traveled on one of Celebrity's sister ships to the Summit, and for the last two years extolled the virtues of having booked a Concierge Class room, with the additional service and amenities. We had always booked a balcony room, but this time we were convinced to go all out and book into Concierge Class (CC). .. for which we paid a premium. It ran us nearly $8k for the two of us, without shore excursions. Boarding at LA was a pain... We were told we had priority boarding with CC, and to show up no sooner than 1 PM to board for a 5:00 sailing. We got their about `12:30 and found many lines and much confusion. When I asked about priority, I was told to just get in the line!.. I am on a cane, and standing isn't my strong point, but we managed to get through and then were told to go sit on a bench with the rest of the hundreds. I again asked about priority boarding and was greeted with.. " That was at 11:00 this morning... sit down and wait until your number is called. I asked about my handicap and was asked if I needed a wheelchair. I said no, and was told to have a seat... only there were no available seats. I found a sign marked elevator in the back of the room, and my wife and I worked our way there and up the elevator, where we found a line, about 100yds long leading up to the gangplank! We got up to the ship in about 50 minutes time. It was LA, but windy and cool. Once onboard we were handed a quick champagne and sent to our rooms. Even on the infinity we were offered to be escorted. The whole front lobby was crowded and looked fairly disorganized, We finally made it to the room and found our rooms to be the same size as the balcony rooms we had on the other 2 ships. They were up under the Pool deck so the noise was fairly heavy at all hours, and the overhang of the above deck sheltered the skyline and set us in shade for most of the trip. The cabin staff was great as always on Celebrity... But, the only amenities that Concierge brought us were some stale snacks at 5 (6 each day!) and a bottle of cheap champagne on the first day. There were a lot of kids on this trip, but that is to be expected on all vacation cruises. They over ran the Spa's thermospa pool however and we didn't get a chance to use it. Food at the special restaurant was first class as was the service, I wish I could say the same for the dining room, however. The food was not well prepared, though it looked great, but the service was just fine. Spa Food for lunch was the best! This was the best entertainment we'd seen on a ship, but the shops were full of a lot of touristy junk, unlike the other cruises on Celebrity. The worst part of the cruise was shuttling to shore on the launches. It was totally disorganized and PRIORITY tickets left on our bed in the Evening before were worthless. We waited 3 hours to get into port, one time. Another was 1 ½ hrs. The itinerary was everything we expected and more. I rate this a 3, Could have enjoyed it more by flying out there. And spending the extra $ of great dining Read Less
Sail Date December 2007
Sorry I took so long to post, but I figured better late than never... In June / July of 2007 I took a trip to Alaska on the Celebrity Summit (Southbound from Seward). It was an amazing trip and I was very much impressed with the ship: so ... Read More
Sorry I took so long to post, but I figured better late than never... In June / July of 2007 I took a trip to Alaska on the Celebrity Summit (Southbound from Seward). It was an amazing trip and I was very much impressed with the ship: so much so that I booked another trip on the Summit to Hawaii from LA. This time there were a lot more sea days, but I knew it was a great ship, so I wasn't worried. My parents, my grandparents, myself and my husband went on the trip, so I'm going to include observations from all in my review. I'll start with the ship review / getting on from LA and then get into what I did at each stop. Kona, Hilo, Maui, Oahu, and Escondido will all be included. Flight was non-eventful. We flew in the day before our trip (December 20th). We rented a car through Hertz @ LAX, drove to our hotel (Manhattan Beach Marriott), stayed the night, and then got up early the next morning. DM and DH both forgot things so we stopped quickly at a mall & got the forgotten items. Then we went to breakfast at Uncle Bill's in Redondo Beach. DF talked to some of the locals while we were in the mall and they suggested we go there. At 10am there was about a 20 minute wait, so DH and I walked down to the beach (not far, just all downhill which made coming back a bit of a workout). Then the 4 of us took the car over to the Hollywood sign. DH had never seen it, so we figured he should see Griffith Park. I'm SO glad we decided to do this. I've heard that the best time to do this is right after a huge rain storm and it was pouring the few days before we arrived. We had PERFECT weather. Albeit, a little cold, but it was so clear we could see everything. If you are renting a car in LA, I HIGHLY recommend the navigation upgrade. If we didn't have that, I wouldn't know where we were at all. After we finished with Griffith Park / Hollywood Sign, we started back towards an off airport Hertz location to return the car. (Quite close to the pier) Embarkation: When we arrived at the pier it was a mad house. MUCH more so than Alaska. My grandparents arrived about 15 minutes before us and since my grandma's in a wheelchair; they were whisked away and got on board in about 15 minutes tops. By the time we got there and got on line, my grandfather was in his room and they went to get lunch. After about 45 minutes of waiting on line outside we got into the building. Right before we did though there was SUCH a cute owl we saw napping in the planks above. (had to add that because it brightened my mood on line) Then it was another hour until we got to the front of the line and got our cards to board. Then they gave us a boarding number. By the time they called our number another 30 minutes went by and what we were unaware of is that there was another line after your number called to then get on the ship. That line was another 45 minutes. There was a very nice gentleman in charge of the situation talking to us (wish I could remember his name). He explained that they were only allowed 1 gangplank and that was what the hold up was for. I felt bad for him because so many people felt the need to yell at him for something that wasn't Celebrity's or his fault. The pier really needs to make another gangplank available for ease of checking in. Lesson: If you are leaving out of LA, make sure you don't arrive at the busy times. We wanted to see things before hand, so we got there at prime time which was a mistake. On Board Finally: *sigh* Thank goodness we finally got on board. DH & DF headed straight for the buffet. Even though we were starving, we got a special for the spa for a raffle drawing while we were on-line, so DM and I headed there. Sadly, by the time they got there the raffle was over. I suggested they not hand those specials out for those who wouldn't be able to make the drawing on time and headed to the spa with DM (we were all starving at this point). Great service at the buffet, same as I remembered! After we skarfed down some food, DM and I headed for the Normandie to make reservations for one of the days we were there. DH & DF went to check out the rooms. The ship was as gorgeous as I remembered. DM & I were on our way down to the Normandie, but we saw on the side of the buffet, they had a station setting up reservations. What a great idea! So, we did it right there and then headed back to the spa for one of their spa tours. I was excited to see if the Rasul treatment was open this time. It was and I made 1 appointment for a massage for me, 1 for DH, and the Rasul on a different day for the both of us! (super excitement!) Okay, to the room. This time I didn't have an aft, but the room was still nice. I have to say that my best experience and something that will stay with me forever was our room Steward. His name is Santana and he was AMAZING!!!!!!!! He went OUT of his way to help us whenever and I swear he had GPS on me because every time I went back to the room, he was there to open my door! I hope someone from the cruise line is reading this part because they need to give Santana MAJOR credit for how amazing he is. Something my grandma wants to add: Santana went so far out of his way for us it isn't even funny. We (my grandparents) like to keep the door open to the bathroom at night for a little bit of light. But, they were having issues with the door bouncing open and slamming closed during the night. So, Santana made something to put under the door so it wouldn't slam at night. Really, if that isn't going above and beyond, I don't know what is! The rest of the staff was very friendly and courteous and they also treated us like Celebrities. In particular, I also really liked our wine sommelier, Maggie. She was great! You can still get over-the-counter seasickness meds at customer service or the purser's desk. Free, dispensed a couple of tablets at a time. The sailing from LA to Hawaii was one of the roughest and the crew even said it hadn't been that rough in a long time. PLEASE take precautions. Also, if you see that they are doing a Internet class, you an get free internet for 30 minutes (you just have to sit though the class). I didn't see that happen during this cruise though. Since it's so expensive, this would be worth it. I was depressed I missed the culinary demonstration (was busy with something else DH wanted to do). Again, I say to make sure to go to this. Art Auctions: I go to these each cruise. My first reason is because I like looking at the pieces of art and my next reason is because I am a collector. The last cruise to Alaska I ended up buying 8 pieces. Eik, right! I liked that auctioneer and he was very helpful to me and not pushy. This cruise I did not like the auctioneer and helpers. I found them pushy and rude. Also, because I am younger I felt they did not take me seriously at all. I'm on vacation, so I didn't feel the need to wear a suit to the auction and I felt talked down to. I even ended up not attending the last auction (a first for me). Cova: This time I went to the cova and people watched. It was great! Had coffee (which you pay for), but the pastries are free and yummy! The 6 of us even played some monopoly. (they have boards free for use in the main areas there) Spa Treatments: I had the Ocean Wrap (nice seaweed wrap). It was a nice seaweed wrap (which they let you try on the spa tour). Then afterwards while you relax (basically in a waterbed) while wrapped you get a massage on your hands and feet. Then you shower everything off and get a full body massage. It was very nice and I would do it again. Just so everyone's aware: spa services have the gratuity built in already, but you can add more. DH had a massage and loved it too. Rasul: That's a whole story. First let me explain what it is. You're in an outer area which is free of steam / water and you apply a seaweed wrap. (very nice) Then you go & sit in the steam area which looks like a Turkish bath type of place. After a while it gets pretty hot in there. I enjoyed the hot, but DH didn't enjoy it and just wanted to get out of there. I guess he felt a little claustrophobic. Here's where the fun comes in.....as I'm still enjoying my time in the steam I hear him yelling, so I walked out. We were locked in there! Also, it's a bit far away from everything else, so he was trying to get someone's attention to help get us out. DH is a pretty strong guy and after playing with the lock, he did get the door open. I got dressed quickly and got out of there as well. (I didn't want to be stuck!) We went to the front desk, explained, and one of the ladies went with DH to see the problem. He showed her and they came back. They didn't charge us for the Rasul (I'm glad because we weren't in there long) and that was that. I'm sure they fixed that lock right after we left, but make sure the lock works before you get stuck too! Normandie: The food and experience were spectacular and gourmet, while the people were friendly, pleasant, and we were treated like royalty. A couple of highlights—the Caesar salad is made table-side. DF ordered the steak diane (again—same thing last cruise) which was again made tableside. He couldn't stop raving about this either. I had the Goat Cheese appetizer (again). It was still amazing. For those who are weary on ordering this as I was the first time, please try it. YUM! This time I knew they were bringing a cheese cart after dinner, but I still wasn't prepared. My stomach just doesn't expand like that! Dinner was $30 per person + a 15% tip. We tipped more. Tons of people were waiting on us the entire time. Even though I know this is part of going to this restaurant, we had a great time here. Wine Tastings: I went to 3 events on the ship. The Riedel Glasses Tasting, Wine & Food Pairing, and the Different Regions Wine Tasting. Wine & Food Pairing: I did this last time and I focused on different things, so it was still great! Again, different than Princess though. When I was on Princess, once you were done with your glass, you were done. But, Celebrity is different. When you finish one glass, they will refill it so you can get the most out of the talk. I thought this was very interesting so I started drinking what I wanted to so I could fully experience what was going on. If you ask me, $9.95 for 4 bottomless glasses of wine is a GREAT deal. I drank more than 4 glasses. It was entertaining, interesting, and I learned a lot. I highly recommend going. Regional Wine Tasting: GREAT! I got to try lots of wines I hadn't tried before from different regions. I enjoyed it immensely. Big tip here. PLEEEEEASE come after you eat something. They serve a few things here, but not lunch. You need something in your stomach to counteract all the alcohol you are going to drink! Trust me there! Riedel Glasses Tasting: By far, my favorite event. Before going on this cruise I had never heard of Riedel. It was an experience. They had 4 different Riedel glasses and 1 "joker" glass which I've seen at my restaurants. We drank wine out of glasses they weren't supposed to be in. Ie: Chardonnay out of a Bordeaux glass. Then we transferred them to the joker (the worst of all) and then into their rightful glass. The changes were astounding. I STILL cannot believe the differences and how much better wine tastes in the right glass!!!!!!! I know it's an expensive event, but it comes with the 4 Riedel glasses. Attend if you're a wine lover! Ports: Kona: Here we decided to book a rental car through Thrifty. My main motivation for this was that the rental car area was a walk from the pier and we didn't have to drive anywhere to get here. It was easy to pick up the car and right after we drove up to Hapuna Beach. It was beautiful there and our first experience with Hawaii. We got some chairs, sat, and went into the water for a bit. There were a TON of people there, but we still got a spot and enjoyed ourselves. It was nice and I wish we could have stayed there longer. We decided to leave and go to Greenwell farms to do a coffee tasting. This wasn't as organized as I thought at all. It is a short 10 minute tour of the equipment and then you taste coffees that have been sitting out (in a stay warm container). The coffee tasting was the best part and it was good coffee. We ordered some to ship back. I also wanted to go to the seahorse farm, but we didn't have time to stop this time. So, we headed back to the ship. All in all, it was a great beach, but a little far and a lot of traffic for a 1-day visit. Hilo: We were here from 8-6. Our itinerary was volcano national park and then I wanted to stop and get macadamia nuts. The day before I signed onto the computer and checked the NPS website to see about volcano activity. (http://www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/lava2.htm) All was fine, so our day went on as scheduled. DH, DM, and I (DF decided he wasn't going to come) got off the ship as soon as we were able and got on the Hertz bus that was waiting for us. (we were the first ones there) We left the airport at 8:30 and arrived at VNP around 9:15. I printed out the guide on what to do, but we stopped at the visitors center first. Since people were arriving, we skipped the movie and went straight across the street to Volcano House to see the view out the back. It was amazing. (a tip I got from the board) Please make sure you see that when you are there. Then we got into the car and started on the way. Sadly, it started raining a little and I was glad at this point I brought my waterproof jacket. Since we were ahead of all the groups, we had most of the stops to ourselves. We also brought coolers with us so we had snacks along the way. Some of our stops included Steaming Bluff & Sulphur Bank: Whew—it stunk a little bit here, but the steam vents were really cool to see. Southwest Rift Zone, Halemaumau Crater Overlook (VERY cool), Keanakakoi Crater Overlook, Puu Puai Overlook, Thurston Lava Tube. This was great. DM went and saw the main part, but DH and I took our flashlight and went into the creepy part. It was AMAZING. We couldn't see at all. While scary, it was really fun. Then we drove back around to the main area and out. On the way back we stopped at the Macadamia plantation and bought some things. We even shipped some directly back. YUM! Then back to the ship. All in all, a fun day. Wish it wasn't raining, but it was very cool to see. A day later DM realized she lost something (wallet like thing containing money). She was upset, but didn't let it ruin the trip. When we got home Hertz had sent me a letter noting we left something in the car and to call them. DM had to describe it and it was shipped back to her by Hertz. No questions asked and they even paid for shipping! She was so relieved and I have to say that was very professional and a great Hertz experience. Maui: This was our relaxing island. During the day, we decided to take a shuttle to the Whaler's Village and then stay at Kaanapali Beach. We sat there for about 4 hours. It was beautiful. On the way back to the pier we took a cab to the Japanese Jodo Mission, took pictures for a few, and then took the cab back to the pier to get ready. We had pre-booked a luau called the Feast at Lele. We walked there from the ship. It was gorgeous. Upon arrival we got a lei and a table. Then we sat back and watched the show. The way they handle it is that for each portion of the show, they give you something to represent that region. Some of the food was odd, but it was a great experience. That night was Friday night and Lahaina (where we were docked) hosts an Art Night from 7-10pm. DH and walked through a bunch of them and if nothing else, it was interesting. Very festive. We got back to the ship as soon as we could after that because we had a Bike Trip down Haleakala the next morning. At 1:30 we were out of our rooms and down by the tender. We were nervous about not catching a tender and having to wait more than ½ hour. We actually just ended up catching one, so we were outside the tenders on land at 1:45. Since we had until about 2:45 our pick up time for someone to pick us up, we decided to sit on a curb a little further up in some kind of light because it was a bit dark where we were. We were chased away by cops who told us not to loiter... Then DH decided he had to use the facilities, so we hunted around for a while for one and finally found a public one. At 3am another couple joined the wait (made me wonder what time they had). At 3:30 the van finally showed up. They apologized for the delay and said another couple never showed up at their first pick up. We got into the van and rode to the base. On the way up the mountain DH & I slept on each other. Finally we got to the top and were told we had about 45 minutes until the sun would rise. So, we stayed in the van because it was cold! Outside! Just to give you an idea of our attire: I was wearing a tank top, long sleeves over that, my Columbia lined jacket with fleece liner on top of that. On the bottom I was wearing my super warm pants. Then sneakers, my ear liners, a hat, & my gloves. When it got closer to sunrise DH & I got out of the van to get closer to view the sunrise without buildings / other things blocking the way. It was freezing and rainy. Colder than parts of Alaska! Unfortunately, here's my regret. We saw NOTHING. The people meeting us outside the national park with the bikes further down said they saw an amazing sunrise, but we were stuck in the cloud. It's a shame because the point of the trip for me was to see the sunrise and it never happened. *sigh* Moving onto the bike ride. We took the bus out of the park to where a van with bikes was waiting. We loaded up on gear and formed a line of lightest to heaviest. (per the guides) They instructed us on safety and then started us down. It was amazing. I hadn't bike rode in a while and there was a stretch of about 200 yards which was hard for me. But, otherwise I pushed through and made it from the top to the beach. To look back and see where we came from was just amazing and breathtaking. I would do it again, even without the sunrise. The guides were professional and I can't say enough great things. (I used mountain riders) Oahu: We were here from 7am - 2pm. This was the only stop my grandparents agreed to get off the ship at. So, I decided to hire a limousine to take us around so they wouldn't have to worry about climbing on a bus and the 6 of us could just be together. After a lot of searching on the boards, I found abc limo. They were great. Before I came, they set up everything with me and gave me a cell number to call when we got off the ship because they couldn't park there long. DH & I wanted to go to Pearl Harbor, but the rest of the group already went. So, we got off the ship as early as possible, got in the limo and he took us there. There was a HUGE wait. It was nuts. But, DH wanted to do it, so I stayed with the plan. In the meantime Marvin from ABC went and picked up my grandparents and parents. He gave them a tour and by the time they were done, he picked us up. He took us to the most beautiful places. My favorite was Hanauma Bay. It was gorgeous. (He also took us to a fast-food type place for lunch the locals go too—that was great too!) VERY professional and I HIGHLY recommend you use ABC. Since this was our last stop in Hawaii, I wanted a pretty lei before I got back on the ship. We were told to go to China town, but it was too late. One of the locals said to try to grocery store, so DH & I walked there. It's about 3 blocks from where we were docked. I got a gorgeous lei there for $10. Escondido: My least favorite. I guess they to stop here just to include an international stop. I wish they didn't, but nothing we can do. In retrospect, I wouldn't have even gotten off the ship. Read Less
Sail Date December 2007
This was the best vacation we ever had! We are a couple in our fifties. This was our thirteenth cruise and our second cruise to Hawaii. This was our seventh Celebrity cruise. We have also cruised on Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and Princess. ... Read More
This was the best vacation we ever had! We are a couple in our fifties. This was our thirteenth cruise and our second cruise to Hawaii. This was our seventh Celebrity cruise. We have also cruised on Royal Caribbean, Norwegian and Princess. Luckily for us we did not read the cruise reviews before booking this cruise. We would have missed out on a wonderful cruise experience. When we read the Cruise Critic reviews as we prepared to depart we were dismayed to see comments about worn furnishings, housekeeping problems, poor food, mediocre service and mechanical problems. There were so many negative descriptions of the Summit that we were anxious about what we would find. We are very happy to report the ship is beautiful and in excellent condition. The food was meticulously prepared and presented in every venue including the buffet. The service is exemplary and the staff members in every area were friendly, knowledgeable and committed to anticipating and exceeding customer expectations. The common areas are beautifully appointed and spacious. The ship was spotless. EMBARKATION- We arrived the day before the cruise and spent the night in a hotel (Hyatt Regency Long Beach) arranged through Celebrity. The next morning we opted to take a cab to the ship rather than waiting for the 1:00 pm shuttle provided by the cruise line. We arrived at the pier at a little after 11 am and breezed through security. We had checked out our cabin and were at the buffet by 12 noon. This was one of the quickest embarkations we have ever experienced and certainly the fastest post 9/11. FOOD - From the multiple courses at the Normandie Restaurant to the daily buffets the food on the Summit was wonderful. The buffet area is thoughtfully laid out. There are not only trays for carrying your plates (unlike Princess) but there are linen placemats and napkins. In addition, Celebrity continues the tradition of providing multiple waiters to assist passengers in carrying their trays to a table. The dining area around the buffet is oversized so there is never any difficulty in finding a table in any area you prefer. This is certainly not the case on other, larger, cruise ships especially Princess. There are multiple buffet areas to suit every taste. We particularly enjoyed the pasta station, the sandwich area, the outdoor grill with its daily barbecue specials, the international specials (especially the Asian selections) and the breakfast stations. We loved the waffle/pancake and omelet stations! In the main dining room the food and service were excellent. We especially appreciated our dining room waiter, Andy. He made every meal enjoyable. Our dining guests were two lovely couples from Britain who kept us laughing with their dry humor for two weeks. We also enjoyed the prompt and courteous service of Joseph who worked in a specific dining area in the buffet every morning. This is certainly the first cruise where we've found a favorite buffet waiter! But that is just one small example of the level of service which epitomized the entire Summit experience. This ship is passionately committed to service. LOUNGES - The first night of the cruise we headed to the Cova Cafe for cappuccinos. We had the pleasure to be waited on by Wendy. The very next time we went to the Cova Cafe Wendy remembered our names! We were impressed. She was so friendly and attentive we found ourselves there every night. We also spent some time every evening at the Martini Bar where Maria became our regular server. She also always remembered our names and favorite drinks. Thanks to these two staff members we thoroughly enjoyed the time we spent each evening before our late seating dinner. ENTERTAINMENT – This was our thirteenth cruise so our expectations were not really high as far as entertainment goes. We were happily surprised by the talent of the Celebrity Singers and Dancers who enthusiastically performed ambitious Broadway shows such as Le Mis (complete with a barricade) and Phantom of the Opera. That was only the beginning. A female vocalist (I apologize that I cannot recall her name) was breathtaking. In the evening she performed a selection of Broadway favorites mixed with opera. Then, the next day, a special performance of opera was held in the afternoon. She was wonderful. We also enjoyed the talent of a male vocalist, Darren Williams, who had a beautiful voice. We loved the understated humor of Cruise Director Allan. The ship overflowed with talent. The string quartet, Prelude Strings, should not be missed. Jefferson Ang, a vocalist/guitarist was a favorite as was the classical harpist. There was always something going on, in every area of the ship. ACTIVITIES – The ship is equipped with a beautiful, fully equipped Spa and gym. I did indulge in a “spa day” and, (surprise!) no one tried to sell me anything! It was wonderful. The thallisotherapy pool was peaceful, soothing and free. Most fitness classes were also at no additional charge. It was wonderful to be on a cruise where people weren’t “nickel and diming” you to death. While we were in Hawaii the ship had several cultural advisors on board who held many classes intended to acquaint the guests to the unique history and art which is Hawaii. There were classes in the Hula and in playing the ukulele. There were at least two classes in Hawaiian lei making where mounds of fresh picked, gently fragrant orchids were available to string into beautiful leis. There was a class in making Hawaiian bracelets. These classes as well as the materials were all free. HAWAII – We did manage to tear ourselves from the ship long enough to see Hawaii. On Oahu we went on the “Explore the North Shore” tour which included stops at Turtle Bay Beach where we saw many sea turtles, several prime surfing areas and, most interesting to us, stops at various spots on the island where the television series, Lost, is filmed. At Kona we went on the Zodiac excursion which was great. The snorkeling was wonderful. We saw multiple pods of dolphins. We were overnight in Maui so we went to a restaurant we were familiar with from our previous trip. We enjoyed the evening sail past Mount Kilauea where we saw lava splashing into the ocean creating rising plumes of steam. DISEMBARKATION – It was managed well but we hated to leave. CONCLUSION – This cruise was perfect. We loved every minute of it. We have already booked a cruise to the Mediterranean on the Summit and even booked the same stateroom! Read Less
Sail Date April 2007
Overall - This was our third cruise, but first on Celebrity. Our other two cruises were on Royal Caribbean. We enjoyed our first cruise on X and would recommend it to anyone who wants a relaxed experience and doesn't need to have an ... Read More
Overall - This was our third cruise, but first on Celebrity. Our other two cruises were on Royal Caribbean. We enjoyed our first cruise on X and would recommend it to anyone who wants a relaxed experience and doesn't need to have an exciting nightlife. Even though the passengers on our cruise tended to be older, bringing children on this cruise was not an issue at all - they had plenty of fun. Embarkation - We drove to the pier from our home in Orange County. We arrived about 1:00 pm and found unloading our luggage and parking our vehicle to be very easy. We waited inside for about 15 minutes before boarding the Summit. The entire process was very smooth and easy. So with the exception of not being offered champagne upon boarding, we were quite happy. Public Areas - We found all the public areas to be clean and maintained very well. After taking previous cruises on Royal Caribbean Grandeur and Rhapsody, we found the central area of the ship to be rather disappointing and not very elegant. Wear and tear of the carpets, furniture, etc. were what we would expect given the amount of traffic in these areas and were rather surprised at the number of negative comments in the member reviews regarding this. The pool area was laid out very nice and having the Waterfall Grill at one end of the pool area was very convenient. One complaint that we have concerned the hot tubs on the pool deck - the water temperature was very tepid, even cold sometimes. This problem seemed to go away once we arrived in the warmer climate around the islands, but during the days at sea they were too cold to enjoy. They close at 6 pm, which is too early. The indoor pool and hot tubs were always warm and very comfortable. The gym was excellent. They had very good equipment and lots of it. I had no problem finding a bike and my wife could always find an elliptical to work out on. The weight machines seemed new and were very nice. Everything was extremely clean and didn't notice any locker room smell. Most people were very good at cleaning up the machines after they used them, and I noticed that crew would come by and clean the machines periodically. Room - We were very disappointed in the size of the room. It was smaller than either room we had aboard RC. Granted, the rooms we had on RC both had balconies, so they seemed bigger. On previous cruises we had been on decks 8 and 9, so we were concerned about having a room on such a low deck (deck 2). But it turned out that except for the lack of a balcony there wasn't much of a difference in terms of noise and movement. We booked our Summit cruise late and didn't have much of a choice in rooms that would accommodate five people and frankly, we were very surprised that Celebrity would put five people in a room that small. The furnishings were clean and not very worn; however the decor was done in very unattractive shades of orange and yellow. Yuck. That being said, we did not spend much time in our room and really only found the small size to be a detriment when we were getting ready in the mornings and before dinner. We had no complaints about the comfort of the beds/bunks. The bathroom was small and could accommodate two people only if one of them were in the shower at the time. Service - Overall the service was very good. Our wait staff in the dining room was excellent and very entertaining for our children. They were very good at accommodating our children's food choices - they knew what our children liked to drink with dinner and would have their drinks waiting for them when we arrived at our table. We encouraged our children to try new foods and our waiters were very good about substituting other dishes if they found ones they didn't care for. Our cabin attendant was very attentive and responded to our requests very quickly. It seemed like we always had fresh towels in our bathroom. Even if we took showers during the day, we would have fresh towels in the evening. We usually went to the martini bar in the evenings before dinner, and our waitress would bring us mixed nuts and bread sticks, and even cherries over ice for the children. We were slightly disappointed in the pool deck service and would have liked the attendants to come around more frequently, although the service did seem to improve somewhat later in the cruise. The entire staff was very good at remembering our names and trying to personalize our experience as much as possible, such as remembering our drink preferences and how we liked our food prepared, etc. Food - Reviewing the food is very difficult. We had dinner in the main dining room almost every night. We thoroughly enjoyed our meals, but we don't recall raving over any particular dish. The fish was good, the soups were good, the salads were good, etc. The beef, however, was usually excellent. Desserts were almost always disappointing. Overall, we did not notice a big difference in the quality of the food on the Summit and the food we enjoyed on our previous RC cruises. The Summit fare did tend to be more gourmet, with pate, escargot, frog legs, etc. Perhaps that is why we are not raving about it, as our tastes tend to run more simple. As an aside, the late seating was not a good option for our children, although they handled the late meal very well. Our personal preference is to go to the shows after we eat dinner rather than before, but the show times seemed geared for the early diners. The sommelier in the main dining room was not very good. He offered few suggestions and no descriptions of the wines we were interested in. He clearly had too many other diners to attend to as it usually took him at least ten minutes after we were seated to bring us the wine from the bottle we had not finished the night before. The midnight buffet was amazing to look at, but with our late dinner seating we were not able to sample any of the food since our dinner ended only about an hour and a half before the buffet started. The breakfast food at the Waterfall Cafe was very good. We had freshly made waffles almost every morning, as well as Omelets made to order. We rarely ate there for lunch and never for dinner. There generally seemed to be a lot of different choices such as sushi, stir fry, and always lots of different sandwiches. Many days we would stop by in the afternoon for some ice cream. The hamburgers at the Waterfall Grill were good and the fries were excellent. The light fare in the indoor pool area was delicious. Entertainment – We didn’t see any shows other than the talent show and a movie in the cinema, so we really can’t comment on their quality overall. The lounge band in the Rendezvous was below average, but then again, like most entertainment on the ship seemed geared toward the older crowd. My wife and I are in our late 30’s, so we were a little disappointed in the night life. The “Party Band” was fun, although their selection of tunes was very limited. I hope to never hear YMCA again, but my wife and kids loved it. The crowd in the disco was usually very small and reluctant to get up and dance unless the ship activities staff was there to encourage them. Kids Activities – The kids club was clean and well maintained, with plenty of toys and activities including a ball pit and slide. There were plenty of children ages 3 to 12. Our 6 year old had a fantastic time playing and meeting new friends, as did our 9 year old although she did get bored at times with the “leap frog” games. Overall, they enjoyed the staff and the program and even wanted to stay for the late night session (10:00 pm to 1:00 am). Our 14 year old was concerned about the lack of teenagers upon arrival on the Summit, but soon met some great friends and ended up having an excellent time. He enjoyed playing card games and dancing in the Teen Tower. He also had a great time playing basketball on the sports deck and liked the video arcade. He still maintains contact with a small group of teens he met onboard. Overall, 2 weeks was a little long for our teenager, as he missed his friends, etc. at home. Our younger ones seemed fine with the whole experience and were well entertained. Excursions – Hilo was our least favorite destination. We took the “Best of Hilo” excursion to the Mauna Loa Nut Factory, the gardens and to Akaka Falls. The gardens were beautiful and the falls were a highlight. Other passengers went on volcano excursions and seemed to enjoy them. There did not appear to be much else on that side of the island of interest. The area near the ship was fairly industrial and not conducive to exploring. Most passengers went to either Wal-Mart or Hilo Hatties to shop. Maui was very enjoyable. We loved snorkeling and trying snuba at Molokini Crater. The town of Lahaina is great for shopping and dining. We really enjoyed eating at the Lahaina Fish Company…..great Mai Tai’s! Everyone needs to visit the big Banyan tree. Kona was our favorite excursion! We went on the Zodiac and Snorkel excursion. If you enjoy snorkeling, this is a must. The amount of unique and beautiful sea life in Kealakekua Bay was incredible. And Chad from Captain Zodiac was a riot! After several hours of incredible snorkeling and sightseeing, we had a very good lunch at the Fish Hopper restaurant near the tender dock. In Honolulu we went on the Arizona/Mighty Mo excursion. We thoroughly enjoyed seeing both memorials, although the tour was rather disorganized. We heard of people renting cars or taking taxis and doing the tours themselves, and that seems to be the way to go. We recommend going early as the wait at the Arizona Memorial can be very long. We also did the Paradise Cove Luau later that evening. The activities and dancing were very enjoyable, but very long lines for drinks. The food was okay. Our only other luau experience at the Royal Lahaina Luau was better overall, but Paradise Cove was fun. In closing, even though we experienced some minor disappointments, this cruise is well worth going on and our family had a wonderful time! Read Less
Sail Date March 2007
We have cruised with many different cruise lines, P&O, Princess, RCI, but this was our first time with Celebrity. We chose this cruise because we had always wanted to see Hawaii and this included some relaxing sea days prior to ... Read More
We have cruised with many different cruise lines, P&O, Princess, RCI, but this was our first time with Celebrity. We chose this cruise because we had always wanted to see Hawaii and this included some relaxing sea days prior to visiting the islands at the time of year we wished to travel. Having travelled from Scotland we spent two days in Long Beach prior to the cruise. This let us get over the jet lag, do some shopping and get into a relaxed mode ready for our cruise. We took a taxi from the hotel to the pier and arrived around 1pm earlier than advised but this was not a problem and indeed we later discovered embarkation had started at 11am. Clearly Celebrity try to stagger arrivals by suggesting times in the pre cruise literature. Checking in was relatively simple and quick although our priority boarding was disappointing as it seemed everyone had some sort of priority. We were greeted with a glass of champagne and were quickly in our cabin and back out again to explore our new home for two weeks. Our initial thoughts were good and everything was easy to find. We even had a snack in the Waterfall Cafe. The choice of food was great just what we needed for a late lunch. We had chosen late sitting dining. We love the restaurant experience and meeting new friends for dinner each evening. Our table was for 10 so we had eight new people to get to know, although after the first evening two did not return. The waiter, Marshall from Turkey, introduced himself and his assistant, Gusti, and explained the menu and what we could expect. The choice was really good and throughout the cruise items were not repeated. There was a regular choice, beef or salmon, in case the main menu did not meet your taste. One small complaint and this is not just Celebrity but the food was never really hot. I believe this is an American trait. One particular policy we liked though was that Marshall waited until everyone had finished their choice for each course before removing plated and bringing the next selection. Overall the service in the Cosmopolitan restaurant was very good, the food excellent and experience most pleasing. We were astonished at the choice of eating places on board the Summit. There was the main restaurant as described but also the Waterfall cafe (24 hours), Sushi bar, sandwich bar, pizza, sandwiches, burgers, light menu and room service and of course there was the speciality restaurant The Normandie. We tried the Normandie one evening having received very good recommendation from other guests on board. At $30 pp extra it was the highest supplement we have paid for this dining choice but I have to say it was well worth the money. The restaurant has Michel Roux name attached. The menu choices were excellent and all entrees are prepared tableside by your waiters. The food was absolutely first class and although the meal took three hours to prepare and eat the time flew by and at the end we were delighted to have visited the restaurant. Make sure you do too. As I have said we found getting around the ship easy. The public rooms were well cared for clean and freshly decorated although being non smokers we did find that the bars designated for smoking very smoky. Time to rethink your smoking policy Celebrity! Our favorite bar was the Martini Bar on deck 5. Perhaps it was the strength of the drinks or the excellent service we received from Virginia but we visited every night. We like a small flutter and enjoyed our time in the casino but again spoilt somewhat by the smoky atmosphere everywhere. We were disappointed with the evening entertainment. Perhaps this was more to do with the different nationality, we did not understand the jokes. Some of the Broadway production shows did have a lack of professionalism but we did discover this was a new team for this cruise. The aerial artistes were excellent. We also spent some time listening to the lecturer on board who spoke in very humorous tones about crossing and cruising, yes there is a big difference. Well finally after four sea days we arrived in Hilo on Hawaii and it was raining which meant out helicopter tour of the volcanoes was cancelled. So we were not happy and unless you see the volcanoes there is nothing else to do in Hilo. Lahaina on the other hand was completely different. Our tour took us whale watching and snorkeling. A great day weather wise and the tour guides were very well informed and knowledgeable and we visited the Banyan tree. Kona was disappointing as a place to visit, just where is the beach? Finally to Honolulu and Waikiki and all that has to offer. We did go to the Paradise Cove luau in the evening. The entertainment was lively and very good although the food was dreadful, no one at our table seemed to eat everything and the queues for drinks were extremely long. Probably not worth the money. We used the spa quite a lot really and this is where we had our main grumble. The prices of course were high but the experience was enjoyable but this was all spoilt by the high pressure selling of products which followed your treatment. And now for the main problem which spoilt the last few hours, tipping. I know there is a cultural difference between the US and UK about tipping but the constant badgering for tips from just about everyone you encounter became a nuisance almost to the point of deliberately not giving recognition for good service. Isn't it about time cruise lines paid their staff a proper salary and stop this begging. Overall we thoroughly enjoyed our holiday aboard the Summit. The Celebrity cruise experience is up there with the best and we will certainly be using the company again. Hope you do too. Read Less
Sail Date March 2007
It is Saturday Afternoon, 03-17-2007, at about 5:00 PM. We got off the Summit this morning and it should be sailing right now from Los Angeles to head back to Hawaii. I wanted to write this article for several reasons. First, it is our ... Read More
It is Saturday Afternoon, 03-17-2007, at about 5:00 PM. We got off the Summit this morning and it should be sailing right now from Los Angeles to head back to Hawaii. I wanted to write this article for several reasons. First, it is our first cruise on Celebrity and the first cruise that we used a lot of the resources on Cruisecritic.com to make our decision on. Because of some of the reviews on the Summit, I strongly considered canceling this cruise and selecting a different one. Today, my wife and I agree that we have never had a better vacation in our 25 years together. Here are our comments based on comments we read from member reviews. Nothing that we write is intended to suggest others are wrong in their comments. We are all different and we all care about different things. I wanted a luxury cruise for my wife for our 25th anniversary (which was a week before the cruise). I also wanted an extended cruise to get away from the busy office for more than a week. We are 45 years of age. Embarkation: We live in the Southern California area and drove to the San Pedro cruise terminal. We arrived at the terminal at 11:45 AM and we were on-board at 12:08 PM. There is something to be said for arriving early. There were no lines. We looked down on the pier and saw a long line to board at 3:55 PM. We were told that our room would be ready at 1:00 PM and were directed to Deck 10 to eat lunch in the buffet area. Our lunch was fine. We saw about 100 people already eating when we got our food. At 1:00 PM we walked to our Celebrity Suite (8106). It was ready and our luggage was not yet there. We prepared to set out to explore the ship. Condition of Our Suite: I read and worried about the comments about the ship being "worn out" and in bad shape. There are many of these comments in the member review area. Upon opening our room, I noticed ware marks on the walls (from luggage, I presume) and the sofa looked very worn. One of the two sinks in our bathroom had a large crack in it that had been filled with putty instead of being replaced. I worried that the comments in the reviews would come to be true. Our butler arrived, introduced himself and pointed out that the sofa was going to be replaced within an hour. When we returned to the room after exploring, a brand new sofa was in the place of the old one. I would think that the sink should be replaced. However, there was nothing present that was any worse that any luxury hotel that we have stayed at. At the end of two weeks, we found ourselves very pleased with our room. In fact, we meet follow travelers at our door and we ended up providing several quick tours of the room. Condition of Our Ship: Like the comments about the rooms, I was worried about comments about the ship. We agree that we found nothing wrong with the ship. The public areas were always clean. This ship is not brand new. It's been used; but, there was nothing that disappointed us with regards to the condition of the ship. We saw people cleaning all the time. Food: We have read that the food is not up to expectations. Gosh, we ate tons of it and loved all of it. We had breakfast in our room every morning. Most morning meals were omelets, breakfast meats, and fresh fruit. We ate lunch on Deck 10 every day. We selected some items from the Spa because they seemed healthy and we were eating all the time. The cheese, bread, and basic salad areas were good. There was nothing very spicy. We always ate lunch on the outdoor aft dining deck. It was great. But, there were some smokers who would not respect the designated smoking areas. One comment to a crew member and they would instantly address the issue professionally with the passengers. During a 14-day cruise you came to realize that it was the same people who disrespected the designations over and over again. This problem was nothing but standard human nature. Desserts rotated. There were about 15 different kinds and appeared on different days. We ate dinner almost ever night in the dining room. We ate a beef dish every night and were very happy with the quality of the food and the excellent service. Our table mates ate a lot of fish dishes and they were not always pleased. We lost a pair of table mates to a serious ankle injury in Honolulu. We knew no one at the table before the trip and we loved eating with our group. Everyone at our table was more experienced at cruising and everyone of them has been on many Celebrity cruises. We were invited to eat at the Captain's table on the final formal "gala" evening. That was a wonderful experience. We ate at the Normandy Restaurant twice. Once while en route to Hawaii and once on the return. The menu was the same; but, we loved it. We will do it again. The cover cost was well worth the attention and courtesy that the waiters afforded my wife. Hawaii - Our Destination: I've lived in Hawaii and my wife wanted to go there since the day we were wed. It took me a while; but, I did get her there. We only did one excursion from the ship. It was nice. We rented a car in Honolulu and drove all around the island and did a lot of shopping at the Dole Pineapple Plantation. We ate on Waikiki Beach the first night. On the second day, we took a taxi to the Arizona Memorial ($15.00) and spend most of the day at this free site before taking a taxi back. We saved a lot of money on this excursion. We should have rented jet-skis in Kona (we will next time). Our Peers: This cruise was filled with a majority of people that I would estimate were over 65 years of age. The ship seemed to go to sleep at 9:30 PM. It was great for those of us that did want to stay out. There were no lines, no crowds, no loud or rude drunk fools. I found that people in electric chairs were often dangerous. Many did not seem to care that they were putting others at risk. Lots of people were very nice and deserved to have a nice quiet ship to enjoy their vacation on. It takes some of these people a lot of time to turn a corner, board or exit a tender or get out of a chair. If you are not prepared to slow down and relax, this little issue will make you appear to be a grouchy ogre. I saw some of them and it was disappointing to have to see people older than me act like children. We specifically picked this cruise knowing this about the travelers and we wanted a slower pace. If we wanted a hopping, dancing, drunken "Fun Ship" we would have gone back to Carnival. Service: This is the item that will bring us back to Celebrity over and over again. We had a top category suite on our last Carnival cruise. We rarely saw our cabin attendant. We saw our butler on this cruise 20 times a day. Service was outstanding. We laughed at the waiters trying to carry trays for everyone. However, I was very pleased to see them take the time to help many elderly people get their food. If I could get my 76 year old mother to travel on a cruise, I would want this kind of extra service for her all the time. Sailing crew helped people with tendering. Everyone said hello. I could go on and on about the excellent service. Entertainment: The shows seemed to be geared towards the majority of our travel mates who were older than us. But, we liked all of the shows and went to almost every one. We were treated to several lectures from naval historian John Maxtone-Graham. He was wonderful. He packed the theater and we made sure that we had front row seats every time he talked. The shipboard television was weak. We watched the same 50's and 60's black-and-white classics over and over. The classics channel was neat; but, its inventory needs to be expanded. The Travel Channel was filled with static. The music channels could have been wonderful if they had come from XM or Sirius. I would have happily paid a premium. Bring some of your favorite CD's and your own DVD's. We both read 3 books. It was great to have time to sit and read. Shipboard Internet is available but it is slow, troublesome, and expensive. I had to complete an assignment for a graduate class that ended on the second day of the cruise. Because it was a final exam, I could not do it in advance. I spent $250.00 on Internet and had terrible connection problems because of the slow speed. We sent a couple emails via the shipboard email because it was cheaper. Avoid the Internet service if at all possible. The web service on Carnival worked much better. General Comments: We loved the service. The food was fine for us. It was nice to see the crew be so helpful to elderly passengers. The pace was slower and entertainment was focused on the generations before ours. The ship was clean and on-time. We would have liked better Internet services We would have liked better in-room musical service. We used the on-board gratuity system and provided personal extras for superb extra service. We are not involved in the travel industry. We have to start a diet in the morning. Read Less
Sail Date March 2007
This was our fifth cruise, and we have sailed with Carnival, Norwegian, Princess and this was our first Celebrity. Pros. Dining room service. The main and assistant waiter have only a few tables to supervise, so they have plenty of ... Read More
This was our fifth cruise, and we have sailed with Carnival, Norwegian, Princess and this was our first Celebrity. Pros. Dining room service. The main and assistant waiter have only a few tables to supervise, so they have plenty of time for each table and they do an excellent job. Our sommelier Stephan was fantastic and very knowledgeable. Once he knew what we like he did a great job with new recommendations, and even warned us against some of our choices (and he was always correct). Disembarkation. Celebrity has introduced a plan that allows you to check your baggage with certain airlines before leaving the ship, as well as receiving boarding passes for $15 per person. We received special tags for our luggage, and we simply left it outside our stateroom. We didn't have to bother with it until we arrived at our final destination, which made leaving the ship extremely easy. Room service food was good and generally on time. They also called 1 minute before they arrived at your door to wake you up and give you time to unlock the door. The library is well run. The casino added its first Texas hold em table. Cons. Dining room food. The general quality and finish of the food is about the same as other big lines, such as Princess. Nothing about the food is special enough to distinguish it from other cruise lines. Three food related items in the dining room became very tiresome. The first is their cheese plate. It consisted of a processed pepper cheese, a cold bree (that was only correctly served room temperature once), and a simple cheddar. This same trio never changed for two weeks, even on days when other nice cheeses happened to make it to the lunch buffet or were parts of other entrees. The second boring element was their bread baskets, which were identical for the full cruise. They consisted of a baguette, breadsticks, a soft rye slice and a country roll. They were prepared correctly, but this quartet of bread was unchanging for the entire two week cruise. Princess, Norwegian and Carnival all vary their breads daily. Breakfast. The third repetitive thing in the dining room is their limited and pedestrian breakfast menu, which is the same everyday. There is not even one special to make breakfast interesting. Finally, there was not a single souffle offered for the entire cruise. The dining room really shows its age, and needs a refurbishment. The chairs are threadbare and missing their darning buttons. Embarkation. The embarkation process is the worst we have ever experienced. It took hours and consisted of standing in line after line because there was insufficient staff at each point in the process. The final disappointment was standing in line for yet another 35 minutes just to board the ship so that each guest can be escorted to their room by someone from the ship. We would have preferred to get out of that line and find our own room. Shore excursions. We booked our shore excursions two months early on line, and had confirmation numbers. But on board, there was no record of our reservation, and the excursions were full. We started to make it clear they needed to fix the problem, and we were rudely questioned regarding how many times we had cruised, the implication being we were at fault. Before we erupted the supervisor came over and intervened. They eventually solved the problem, but they were unprofessional about the whole thing Logistics and Timing. The timing of most aboard ship events was poorly planned. Trivia and other games. They started at unusual times, and sometimes several overlapped. There was clearly no organization or planning about when events were to be held. Evening live music, such as the quartet, started at different times, and didn't correspond with seating in the main dining room. Late night music in the disco was mostly karaoke instead of dancing. The afternoon tea was held at 4 pm, just two hours before dinner. The hot tubs closed early, some at 6 pm and the remainder at 10 pm. Movie times. Movies were not shown in the afternoons, only in the evening. They generally started about 30 minutes before the shows in the main theater. Itinerary. The itinerary was generally good, especially a really long day in Maui, but two changes were made. The first is that that Kuwai was removed and instead we had two full days in Honolulu. The second is that from Kona to Hilo the captain chose to go north around the island so there would be better conditions for his gala party (which was stupid). Instead, he should have gone around the south side to see the lava (which we've done before, and thats fantastic). Bar service. Bar service was generally terrible. Most of the smaller bars had incompetent bar tenders that couldn't even make gin and tonic correctly. There were exceptions, such as the martini bar (but that only opens at 5 pm), and the one bar tender in the waterfall bar at the back of the ship, Binoy. There is no bar service on the upper decks around the pool area in the daytime, only during dinner hours. The lack of bar service was irritating, and the only way to get a drink was to wait in line at the bar. None of the bars offers peanuts or snacks, except those next to the dining room that open at 5 pm. Normandy specialty restaurant. The stemware was beautiful, and a nice change from the main dining room. The service wasn't as good as the main dining room, and the food was exactly the same. For example, we were seated near a corner, and the waiters would annoyingly squeeze behind our chairs instead of just reaching from the other side. The assistant waiter poured half a liter of water in our over sized water glass, which made it almost impossible to drink out of. The food was the same. For example, anywhere on the ship anything involving salmon comes as smoked lox, which is nice, but it might be described on paper in a different way. Our salmon tar-tar was in fact that same smoked lox with mayonnaise. (The steamed fresh salmon in the main dining room was also more of the same smoked lox). We would definitely avoid the Normandy in the future. The stateroom. The stateroom was the smallest we've had anywhere, but the shower was by far the largest shower. There are two problems with the room. The first is that there's no closet light (or closet hallway light), so to see into the closet one must turn all the room lights on full brightness. The second is that there's inadequate places to hang damp clothes, so we ended up draping them over the place, which was ugly. The main theater entertainment. This was fine if your like old show tunes. Only two nights out of two weeks was there a more interesting variety or comedy show offered. Read Less
Sail Date December 2006
This was our 48th cruise in the past 25 years so this review is written with that in mind. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach for one night prior to departure, and were very satisfied with our accommodations. Took a taxi to San ... Read More
This was our 48th cruise in the past 25 years so this review is written with that in mind. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach for one night prior to departure, and were very satisfied with our accommodations. Took a taxi to San Pedro for embarkation which went very smoothly, arriving onboard at about 1:00. Our cabin was ready at about 2:00, the delay being due to the sanitizing and cleaning that was going on. Have learned since our return that there had been some Norovirus on the previous cruise....none on ours as far as we know. Lots of hand sanitizing and washing, however. We experienced heavy seas on the first night which continued all the next day..lots of rocking and rolling. By the second day, the seas had calmed down and we had glorious weather for the rest of the trip. Because we have become avid readers of the CC website, we were looking for "maintenance and cleanliness" issues on Summit. We found none worth mentioning. A general refurbishment is due soon, but we found no serious wear and tear on a vessel that carries so many passengers day in and day out. Our cabin was in excellent condition and was kept that way throughout our trip by our invisible cabin steward, Sebastian. The service by him and by our butler, Enrickkee was superior. It gave us great pleasure to add some extra to the automatic tips put on our seapass. We did not feel that our service in the dining room was excellent. It was adequate, but not up to our previous experience on X. The food, however, was very good, well prepared and presented. This is such a subjective thing that I hesitate to rave over any special dish but must submit that the prime ribs, rack of lamb, cold soups, and bread sticks were outstanding. We had a congenial table for 8 arranged by the cruiseline...a very good job selecting dinner mates..and wonderful table location on deck 4 at the foot of the stairs. We tend to enjoy the time at sea rather than the ports..and having been to Hawaii many times before..we decided to take the ships tours to places we hadn't been. We took the Valley of the Kings on Hilo, and the botanical garden tram on Maui and enjoyed both of them. Our excursion on Oahu was a not as good. We had selected it especially to visit the Byodu Temple and the driver got lost and we did not see it at all. The shore excursion desk gave us a 33% credit for that and we felt that was adequate compensation. A couple of criticisms: The lovely marble bathtub walls in the Sky Suite do not have any grab-bars. so, taking a shower in rough seas is difficult if not impossible. The addition of a grab-bar would be a big help. Captain Bergos appeared at the required functions but was not a people person apparently as we never saw him mingling with the passengers. By the way, it was interesting to see staff officers assisting people to find seats in the theatre. Very helpful, and a deterrent to seat-saving. Must mention the evenings entertainment...the shows in the theatre were terrific. The best group of Celebrity Singers and Dancers we have seen. The Casino was active with friendly, hospitable staff who were obviously happy with life onboard. Hubby used the fitness center daily and was very impressed with the equipment...good working treadmills..I used the salon once and has been my experience on all my cruises, the salon staff is not up to snuff, and the prices are outrageous compared to land based salons. $18 to change polish color compared to the $12 I pay for an entire manicure at home. This was a terrific cruise experience even disembarkation went smoothly. We had a wonderful time and can't wait for April and November when we will sail again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2006
After slight fog bound delays at London Heathrow we arrived in San Pedro CA for our pre cruise hotel stay.Must state that the Hotel was only average and we could not get any food after 22.00hrs. Next day embarkation was a delight , less ... Read More
After slight fog bound delays at London Heathrow we arrived in San Pedro CA for our pre cruise hotel stay.Must state that the Hotel was only average and we could not get any food after 22.00hrs. Next day embarkation was a delight , less than one hour after leaving the hotel we were in our cabin,8046 which was a CC class.Initially the cabin smelt of stale smoke,after pointing this out to our steward it took them 7 days to rectify the problem after deep cleaning and changing air con filters.The cabin was spacious with plenty of space for a two week cruise.The bathroom was warm in fell and spacious. Everyday small bites were delivered and a bottle of champagne was in the cabin on our arrival. We left San Pedro on time then had three cold days before we were blessed with warm sunshine.On our return it was similar weather with the last day being very rough with 60/70 mph gusts,the Summit was a stable ship and rode the 20 feet swells very well. At this point I must say that the Celebrity standards have gone into freefall since our Mercury cruise in 2000,we were appalled at the way some fellow passengers were allowed to conduct themselves with no consideration for other passengers and no correction from the Officers or crew.About 200 of the 2250 onboard did not adhere to the dress codes and were loud loutish and drunk for the majority of the time, I witnessed substance abuse and when mentioned to the staff they were too afraid to do anything about it !!!!. The food in the main dinning room was bland and had very little taste,most of the time served at luke warm temperatures,the food in the buffet was similar.I do not know how Michael Roux can put his name to this kind of food,if he delivered this in any of eateries he would be out of business. I will be writing to Mr Roux to advise him of the situation on the Summit.Anyway the Normandie restaurant,the food was great although they still let people dine there with lumberjack shirts on,being very loud and slapping " High Fives " over dinner. The decor on the ship was very pleasant with plenty of space although the ship could have been much much cleaner.I think the fall in standards is since the line was taken over by R.C.C.I. Until we can be assured that the standards are vastly improved we will not be taking another Celebrity cruise. We will be now taking our main line cruises on H.A.L. and P & O. Read Less
Sail Date December 2006
Cruise Report  Summit to Hawaii/Dec 9th I wanted to share our experience on this cruise. It was my hubby, and my cousin and her best friend. Our 6th cruise, they're first. Our 2nd Celebrity cruise. In a nutshell, I LOVE Celebrity. ... Read More
Cruise Report  Summit to Hawaii/Dec 9th I wanted to share our experience on this cruise. It was my hubby, and my cousin and her best friend. Our 6th cruise, they're first. Our 2nd Celebrity cruise. In a nutshell, I LOVE Celebrity. The extra touches they bring to their cruises are just wonderful. We've done Royal Caribbean, which we really enjoy also. But Celebrity has a few extra touches that really make a difference. We were in an inside cabin, #7042. Our traveling partners were inside, #8005. Both cabins were comfortable, clean, plenty of storage space, and surprisingly bigger bathrooms than on other ships we've been on. You could even turn around in the shower!! Robes in the cabin, fridge, mini bar be careful of the bottle of wine on your vanity. The card SAYS A bon voyage gift for you, but it's not it'll cost you 24.00. I checked with guest services 2x to be sure, FOOD. Believe it or not, we only ate in the main dining room one time during the entire 14 day cruise. It was pretty good that one night, though my cousin and her friend had the pasta and didn't think it was anything special. The beef I had was great. The rest of the time we ate at the buffet, pasta bar, pizza bar, sushi bar, and room service. It was all delicious. No complaints. Pizza was surprisingly good, and at the pasta bar you could pick your own ingredients and they cook it up for you right there at the buffet. And we are BIG sushi fans, and it was very good, very fresh, and the miso soup was pretty tasty too. Plenty of food was available 24 hours. The only bad thing I agree with that I've seen on the message boards is that eggs from room service are not great. It was the truth for us. When you are in the buffet, there are trays. And the staff offer to carry your tray for you. Neither NCL or RCL provide trays, let alone staff who offer to carry your dishes for you. I just do not understand why they don't have trays. It is difficult enough to juggle everything on a calm day, but when the sea is a little rough..fugget about it! ENTERTAINMENT. First let me say, in our limited cruise experience, I think Royal Caribbean has the best entertainment. Now that is said, on this ship we saw the cirque du soleil show, about 30 minutes long with 3 acts, all of which we thought were pretty good. Saw the comedian for about 5 minutes, and while others we talked to thought he was good, we feel like cruise ships are where older comedians go to retire, and to us, that was the case with this guy. The only other entertainment I saw was the Adult Talent Show, which was fun. There was this older gentleman who played the harmonica along with a pianist he played Crazy and Rhapsody in Blue. He was just great!!!!! STAFF. Staff on every cruise ship we've ever been on are great. They really do make the cruise. Celebrity staff are top notch at what they do. I don't think we passed one staff member who did not say hello. When we got on the ship, they greeted us with champagne or orange juice, all lined up in their white uniforms greeting us. It was very welcoming. This type of welcome doesn't happen on other lines we've been on, either RCL and NCL. SHIP. The entry way is just beautiful on this ship. Marble or stone stairway, lit from below very elegant. I've read on these boards that some people thought the Summit needed work, but as far as we were concerned, it was in great shape. Comfortable, clean, constant maintenance and upkeep by the staff. Our two favorite spots to hang out were the Champagne Bar Renato is the barkeep and he was just wonderful. The other spot is the back deck, outside of the Waterfall Cafe on deck 10. Tables, some cover, some umbrellas. It was extremely comfortable and a great place to just spend some time and goof around with others, and the staff. GETTING AROUND IN HAWAII. Thanks to these boards, I realized before we went on the cruise, that a rental car is the way to make the best of our time. A lot less expensive, less crowded, and more freedom than ship shore excursions. It was a good move for us. We used Thrifty in HILO and Honolulu. Shuttle from the pier to the rental car pick up. Rented a convertible in Honolulu for the 2 days, and it was great. In Lahaina/Maui, we rented from a local rental place since most rental car companies are near the airport, on the other side of the island. We used Island Riders? About $50.00 for the day. This was a long in port day, and even though they closed at 5:00, we were able to just drop the car off and walk back to the pier (or take a $5.00 cab ride). PORTS. HILO. We went to Volcano National Park, it is very different from anything we've ever seen, except that it reminds you a bit of Yellowstone. The lava tube was fascinating. We enjoyed it, and would recommend it. We left VNP and then went to Akaka falls. Beautiful highly recommend this too. No crowds, beautiful, lush pathway to falls. There is another fall in the other direction but we ran out of time and saw just Akaka. Well worth the trip. MAUI/LAHAINA. We drove around and enjoyed the island. We found a beautiful public beach at one of the resorts, and snorkeled right off of the beach. It was fantastic. Beautiful weather, clean uncrowded beach, bathroom. When you get off of the ship, you walk into a touristy but cute little town. The first thing that impresses you is this HUGE Banyan Tree in the park. I'm saying HUGE because I can't think of another more fitting word. It has so many big spreading branches out of it that they are supported with pieces of lumber, and lots of other banyan trees are growing out of it. It's just amazing. And if you go there at dusk, hundreds of minah birds in the tree start their chirping and last until the sun goes down, It was great. HONOLULU. 2 days. This was our least favorite stop, and we were there for 2 days. It was the Los Angeles/New York of Hawaii. Actually, I like New York a lot better, much more interesting. Getting out of the city is important, at least to us it was. The first day we drove up and around North Shore. It was just beautiful. Great little funky surf areas, stores, restaurants. Good places to stop and enjoy the beach along the way. Very colorful. When we got back to the city, the traffic was horrendous, so we got off and followed signs to Chinatown, thinking it would be an interesting stop. Have dinner, a few drinks etc. Wrong!! This is not like Chinatown in Philly, or New York, or San Francisco. This is a seedy and dirty part of town that closes down before dark. We walked around a couple of blocks but didn't want to go in any of the few places that were open. Although, we DID NOTICE that it felt like Chinatown was slowly being rebuilt. We saw a few nice looking shops and clubs in between dirty looking buildings that gave the impression it was in the process of coming back to life. So I wouldn't write this area off just yet. The 2nd day, my hubby and I went to the USS Arizona memorial, and also did the BowFin Submarine tour (since Rich is an ex-submariner). This was very nice, very well done and coordinated. We got up and off the ship early and were at the memorial by 7:15 a.m. There was a very long line of people already. When we got in (free entry), we were tour number 3. My understanding is that if you get there too late, you can have tour number 15 or something like that, and they'll only be up to number 5 you can be there all day waiting for your tour. What I mean by tour is, once they call your number you go into the theater and watch a 20 minute film, which is very good and informative. Then you go onto the shuttle boat out to the memorial, and stay there for about 25 minutes, then they call your number and you go back to the building on shore. There is an audio tour ($5.00) that you can take which is well worth the price. Then we went to the Bowfin Submarine tour which I could have lived without but my husband really enjoyed it. And it was NOT free. You cannot carry any bags, camera bags, handbags, or anything into any of the exhibits. You can check your bags at the Bowfin area for $3.00 if you don't want to leave stuff in your car. We chose to leave everything but our camera in the trunk of our car. KAILU-KONA. Since this was a tender port, AND we were there for such a short time, I booked a Zodiac Rafting/Snorkel trip through the ship. My husband and our fellow travelers booked a deep sea fishing trip which unfortunately got cancelled. Since the seas were so rough this day it was difficult to get the tenders going and by the time they did, there was not enough time for the 5 hour fishing trip. Everyone was reimbursed. In fact it was so rough, they were pretty much telling anyone who had difficulty walking NOT to try and go ashore. The rafting/snorkeling trip was just GREAT!!!! The ride in the zodiac was so much fun, I sat in front, and with the rough seas I really got slammed around. I was a bit sore the next day, but it was worth the fun. We saw a pod of spotted dolphins while we were out in the raft, and they were jumping and surfing the wake of our boat. IT WAS WONDERFUL! We went several miles out to sea and up the coast, then came back into the coast near the Captain Cook monument can't remember the proper spelling of the Bay, but it's a Nature preserve. Snorkeling here was just great, it was a beautiful spot all around. You cannot go ashore here, and it can only be reached by boat. We got back in the Zodiac and rode back along the coast, seeing blowholes, caves, and the captain gave us lots of history along the way. They even hosed you down with fresh water and you climbed back on board, and fresh fruit, chips, water and soda were provided. I would highly recommend this trip, unless you have a bad back. Also, if you don't get around to booking it through the ships, they had a stand set up as soon as you get to the pier where I think you can sign up right there. IN CLOSING we were worried that 14 days would be too long and we would get fidgety about being onboard so many days. But that was not the case, we played games, relaxed, ate, drank and laughed. We actually hesitated about getting off the ship on the second day in Honolulu because we were enjoying being on the ship so much. I would recommend this ship, this cruise, even this itinerary, to anyone. Our fellow cruisers were middle aged, like us, and older, so there wasn't A LOT of crowded nightlife, though we did go out to the clubs a couple nights and danced without bumping into a lot of people. Even got to dance to some big band music which was a lot of fun. I would give the Summit, and Celebrity Cruise Lines a big old THUMBS UP!!!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2006
I participated in the Cruise Critic Roll Call member board for the Dec 9 sailing and got to know some of my fellow passengers before the cruise ever began, so once on board it was as if we were travelling with people we already knew. On ... Read More
I participated in the Cruise Critic Roll Call member board for the Dec 9 sailing and got to know some of my fellow passengers before the cruise ever began, so once on board it was as if we were travelling with people we already knew. On the Roll Call I linked up with another couple from our area and we car pooled down to the port from our hometown 90 miles away and split the $12 per day cost of parking, which was a good way to start the cruise. We timed our arrival at the port so we'd get there at 3 o'clock and miss the early boarding crush. As a result, we took about twenty minutes to get from the car to our stateroom, saving us a lot of aggravation and waiting around. We had been on the Summit last May for a 13 day repo cruise LA-Alaska and so we had fairly fresh memories of the ship and staff for comparison. Overall, we again had an enjoyable cruise, but noticed some decline in public area cleanliness. Tables were not bussed and wiped, ashtrays were left overflowing, etc. We also were struck with the attitude of staff - indifferent and inattentive. unless it was your own waiter or cabin steward. This cruise had a vast majority of passengers over 60 with a wide spectrum of physical ability. In May, the staff were quick to hold open a door and lend a steadying hand to aid any passenger in need. On this cruise, staff more often than not, stood by and watched. It was up to the fellow passengers to look after and assist those in need. For coffee and tea drinkers, only one station out of eight on deck 10 was operating except during mealtimes, and it always seemed to be the station farthest from where you wanted to be. One station midship and one aft would have worked far better for the passengers, serving both the pool/Aqua Spa (midship) and rear deck/Waterfall Cafe (aft). The Cosmopolitan Restaurant(deck 4 & 5) continued serving high quality meals with wonderful wait staff in attendance. This is one area where there was no decline between May and December. All of our dinner choices were exceptional in their taste and presentation. There was no decline in service provided by the cabin steward, either. She was thorough, efficient and unobtrusive. We enjoyed the entertainment offered in the Celebrity theatre and found it a cut above that offered on HAL, Princess, and RCCL. In addition to the usual crew production numbers, we saw Scott Record (a singing comic impressionist), Lorraine Brown (a soul and blues singer from Britain), Brooks Aehron (a very entertaining classical and pop pianist), and "A Taste of Cirque Du Soleil". The lounge acts ranged from a string quartet at the Cova Cafe to the Diamonds in the Rendez Vous (Their spelling). Michaels Club had a pianist and the Waterfall Cafe had a rock guitarist accompanied by canned back up who could play just about anything requested from the 50's thru the 90's. Besides the casino (where you could easily rack up huge losses), there was a fair variety of daytime activities to occupy our 9 sea days. The enrichment series offered every afternoon in the Celebrity Theatre was both educational and entertaining, and there were the trivia games scattered throughout the day that you'd find on any cruise. This is a good cruise for people who like a more sedate pace and enjoy sea days and the onboard experience. There were 68 children on this cruise out of 1950 passengers. As the days wore on, the kids seemed to become more restless. Celebrity makes a token effort to provide children and teenagers with something to do, but like HAL and Princess, Celebrity is more focused on a mature and seasoned traveller. Perhaps Disney, Carnival or NCL would be more appropriate for kids as they seemed focused on a younger clientele. Read Less
Sail Date December 2006
We are two early 50 year old professionals who travel as much as we can: this was our 7th cruise with Celebrity and our 2nd this year - we also have 2 more booked with them so we are regular and loyal customers to date. We travelled from ... Read More
We are two early 50 year old professionals who travel as much as we can: this was our 7th cruise with Celebrity and our 2nd this year - we also have 2 more booked with them so we are regular and loyal customers to date. We travelled from the UK having made our own flight arrangements with BA two days before sailing and stayed at the Westin Downtown LA. Not a lot to do around there, but it fitted our needs of being a good base from which we easily arranged a day trip round LA and the homes of the stars with Guidline tours - we booked this on arrival at the Hotel, did not seem to need any advanced booking which was good as we were unsure whether we would get flight delays etc. Arranged to go down to San Pedro using Prime Time shuttle - perhaps a mistake as although it was not overly expensive we did go via LAX and did several circuits there as the driver looked for more fares Embarkation was a little chaotic as the ship had been several hours late in due to bad weather. We were asked to wait at the Catiline Ferry Terminal where free sandwiches and drinks were provided. We were bussed over to the ship around 2pm where it seemed others had fared much worse with confusion and long lines, consequently on boarding the ship we were surrounded by some very unhappy people which put a damper on our high spirits. Service We have sailed on Summit before and found her to be in good shape - yes there were scratched chairs in our room and the jacuzzi was temperamental but no worse than we have had in many 5 star hotels. We did have to make comment to the Assistant Chief Housekeeper about the standard of cleaning in our room, particularly the bathroom, but this was dealt with perfectly and we would put it down to an oversight by the Stateroom Attendant who was very sweet, but as her contract was ending that week, she was less attentive than others we have had. Our butler was not as good as others we have had and seemed rather remote, never around or opening doors however, if you had never had a butler, you might have though him to be good. One thing if you are in a suite, insist they give you the Concierge Class menu. Our butler declined at first but got the message I wanted it and I did order from it (though one day he did blame our late breakfast on the fact I had done so and that meant he had to go to 2 places, so if you do, ask for the breakfast a little ahead of when you need it if you are time critical for an excursion. We did see our Assistant Housekeeper Suardi regularly - an excellent person well worthy of his tip The dining room staff were first class, in particular Marco the Assistant maitre D who visited very table every night - we were on Level 4. Ali and Ketuk were a great waiting team and they coped well with the requests from our table. On the first night the menu of items that you can have very night (escargot, Caesar salad, chicken or steak etc) is printed on the menu but it does not appear on other nights. Do nt be afraid to ask for a reminder of what it contained, likewise 2 people on our table (my husband being one) had food allergies and Marco was excellent at checking things, even doing so very discreetly the night we dined with the Hotel Director. Food We found the food very much to our liking and had no issues with it. We would recommend visiting the Aqua Spa, not only for lunch as others suggest but have one or two breakfasts there - the bread is coming straight from the oven and the Chef d Range from the Speciality Restaurant makes the best hot toast over! There were theme buffets most lunchtimes as well as the usual buffet, pasta, pizza, salad bar, sandwiches, outside burger bar, main dining room etc etc - would defy someone not to find something they like. Would suggest if they have an Oriental Buffet check out to see if they have the chap making the stir fries fresh for you - he was opposite the ice cream bar on our trip mmmmmmmm On board activities Good mix, with 8 at sea days it could have become repetitive if you had not got a good book with you. The average age of passengers on the ship was one of the highest seen according to the crew so some events (quizzes etc) were very well attended, evening activities less so and as such there was little atmosphere after 1030pm - but you got great very personal attention in the Martini Bar!! Shows were varied and in particular Brooks Aehron who did 3 concerts was an exceptional pianist. We were on board for Halloween and this was marked by many people dressing up and lots of halloween activities. They did a new thing - we all gave good feedback so hope future cruisers get it - on the third at sea day the helideck was opened for an hour and the Hawaiian musician on board (Henry Allen) played music to get us in the mood as we met and mingled with senior officers (this was an open event to anyone) It was a lovely relaxed hour and very good fun Shore Excursions We booked our excursions through the cruise line with the exception of an all day drive around Oahu which we did with a private driver arranged through Caseys Limos. The Circles of Fire and Water helicopter trip was dogged by mist, but we did get off unlike other groups, however the water element is one waterfall in the distance. We did buy the DVD of our trip ($25) and would say it was a very good buy as the quality is good and it is a nice reminder as it has shots in the cabin as well. Our trip to Lanai through X was cancelled at the last minute because of "difficulties with the operator" but we managed to pick up a local guide who drove us up to the Iao Needle and around the north of the island. In the evening we had booked the old Lahanian Luau direct with them on recommendations through these boards and would thoroughly recommend this. It is a very easy taxi ride from the tender dock and back and is a smaller personal experience than the ships own excursions - good food was enjoyed! Our Oahu Big Circle drive through Careys was excellent. Next day in Honolulu we went on the ships trip to the Arizona and Mighty Mo but this was a mistake. Because you are in a big group we had to wait for everyone to get off the bus, go to restrooms before you join the ticket line, by which time over 200 others had joined the line so what should have been a 5 hour trip was heading to turn into a 7 hour trip, not helped by poor timekeepers in the group. As a result, as we wanted to have a drink at Waikiki Beach before the ship sailed at 1800 we invested $20 to get our own cab back thereby saving an hour or so and in hindsight should have just done the trip ourselves, it was easy enough to get cabs at the dock and at the Memorial. At that stage we probably would have said we will never do another ships excursion when in Kona we had the best one ever - a Cloud Botanical walk in a private nature reserve with an excellent guide followed by a lovely visit to Mountain Thunder Coffee farm - and excellent small award winning organic farm not frequented by large coaches. At each port there are long lines to clear port security (not sure why as you still have the ship security) but credit has to be given to the tender team who were absolutely first class even when there was a swell and to "Happy Happy" whose welcome back on board was so infectious you forgot about the line you had been in Disembarkation This was first class - we were the second time they had used a coding system for immigration as well as disembarkation and it worked like a dream. There estimated times were spot on and it was so relaxed. Summary A great trip, lovely people - it was however what we made it to be. When we had our one issue, we raised it, it did not "fester" it was dealt with and everyone moved on. We went to enjoy ourselves and we did!! Read Less
Sail Date October 2006
We sailed on the Summit September 30th to October 14th, this being our 11th cruise, and the third with Celebrity. The ship left Los Angeles, cruised the Hawaiian Islands, and returned to Los Angeles. Embarkation could not have been any ... Read More
We sailed on the Summit September 30th to October 14th, this being our 11th cruise, and the third with Celebrity. The ship left Los Angeles, cruised the Hawaiian Islands, and returned to Los Angeles. Embarkation could not have been any smoother. We took the time to fill out our boarding papers on the computer prior to boarding, so we literally were aboard the ship within 10 minutes. I wish all embarkations were this easy. If you drive to the port, parking is right next to the ship, but unfortunately uncovered. Parking for the duration of the cruise was $165. Our room (9161) was a standard balcony room, with a decent layout and enough nooks & crannies to put everything away. The only negative feelings we had about the cabin was the bed and the location; the bed was lumpy and in need of a new mattress. As to the location, it was on the 9th deck located on the port side. This is significant in that smoking is permitted on the port side of the pool area (one deck up) and many of the port side rooms are smoking. When you sit on the balcony, the smell of cigarette smoke is sometimes quite strong, depending in the direction of the wind. Our room steward, Glory, did a fine job in keeping the room in order, and was usually found hovering somewhere in the hall waiting to get you something. Service is one of the main areas where Celebrity excels, and this cruise was no exception. The bathroom is a bit cramped, but hey, you are on a ship, so it is no big deal. My only complaint about the bathroom is that is doesn't have a decent 110 outlet that will handle a hair dryer (forget the built in one). My wife had to do her hair in the cabin, which can be somewhat annoying. No big deal, but still worth noting. The food in the main dining room was very good, but most cruise lines seem to get that right. The buffet food was just your average buffet food, but further down the line, the pasta bar was very good. They had five different sauces to choose from, along with three different pastas, and an assortment of items to add; they were very willing to make a plate in any manner that you requested. At the back of the ship was a fresh sandwich bar making Panini style sandwiches everyday, which were usually very good. We ate every night in the main dining room at the second seating, and the service was outstanding. As I said before, the food was very good, but the waiter will make or break the meal, and we had a great one. The waiter and busboy (Sol & Raymond) were on top of everything, and Marco, the Maitre'D stopped by our table every night at least once to make sure things were going right. If you eat at second seating, sometimes the shows are scheduled before dinner, which is annoying. One other annoying thing was the number of formal nights we had. This line tends to be a little more traditional in dressing for dinner, which we like, but they perhaps carried it a little too far. They define casual as slacks (no shorts) & sport shirts for men, informal as a suit/sport jacket & tie, and formal as a tuxedo or dark suit. On this cruise, there are seven causal nights, four informal, and three formal. Dressing up half the time for a Hawaiian cruise got to be a little too much; two formal nights and the rest casual would have been better for the tropics. Near the end, many of the men started skipping the jacket & tie on informal nights. The bar and pool staff do a very good job, remaining cheerful in the face of some pretty rude passengers. Hats off to them for performing a difficult job. The condition of the ship was very good with cleanliness being a priority. One exception to this being the Thaalostherapy Pool; we did not use it as there was usually a dirty scum on it. I do not know what the problem was with the filtering. Entertainment on board was generally very good. The pool band was a little weak, and the guy in the piano bar was like bad karaoke, but everything else was very good to great. The shows we attended were excellent, and quite varied. The shows we missed were enjoyed by all we talked to. The music in the bars (with the exception of the aforementioned piano bar) was very good, with a nice variety. You can't ask for much more than that. Celebrity has a good handle on the tipping. Near the end of the cruise, they give you a short form to fill out if you want them to deduct your tips from a credit card. If you do, they then give you an envelope with a slip to give to your waiter, etc. If you don't want automatic tipping, simply do not turn in the form and use the envelopes provided by your room steward. It is nice to have a couple of options, unlike a couple of other cruise lines we have sailed with. The photo staff is just average, and almost everything they print out is an 8 by 10. Who wants that many large prints? More 4 by 6 prints would have resulted in more purchases by us. One night the photographer came to our dinner table, and I asked her to take a group shot. She told me that the group shots would be on the last formal night only, and instead took individual pictures of each of us. Just what I have always wanted: a picture of myself sitting alone in front of a plate of food. It amazed everyone at our table. The port stop at Maui was way too short, arriving at 7 AM and we had to be back on board by 2:30 PM, as the ship sailed for Los Angeles at 3:00 PM; combine that with having to use a tender to get ashore, and you will not see much of the island. Poor scheduling that needs to be corrected. Debarkation was as terrible as embarkation was smooth. The line to get your customs pass was confusing and long, and exiting the ship even worse. You always want to end on a high note, and here Celebrity fell short. Overall, I would recommend this cruise and especially this line to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date September 2006
My husband and I recently returned from our 14 night cruise to Hawaii which departed from the port of San Pedro. We had made hotel arrangements prior to our sailing at the Crowne Plaza located quite near the pier (actually within walking ... Read More
My husband and I recently returned from our 14 night cruise to Hawaii which departed from the port of San Pedro. We had made hotel arrangements prior to our sailing at the Crowne Plaza located quite near the pier (actually within walking distance.) As we had driven from Oregon we got the park and sail package which I would highly recommend. Our room was very nice, the package included a bottle of wine and breakfast, as well as a shuttle to and from the pier. We boarded the Summit around 11:30 a.m. The embarkation process went much smoother than we have experienced in the past, as well as the disembarkation. There is always a line and somewhat of a wait when leaving the ship, but this went well and was organized. We had an inside room, lower level. It was a bit smaller than other lines, but adequate considering the short amount of time one spends there. We were very pleased with the cleanliness of the entire ship. Yes it had some wear and tear but as I have read in several posts...if your home was visited on the average of every 7 days by approx. 2000 visitors...I dare say it would show some wear and tear. We have sailed with RCC, Princess, Carnival and Norwegian in the past, but had always heard that Celebrity was a step above all. Well, we are pleased to inform all that this is indeed the case. First we were greeted with champagne upon arrival. Our room steward greeted us early and asked if we needed anything then gave us directions to the buffet and suggested we go up and enjoy a leisure lunch and explore the ship prior to leaving. The dining room staff was the best we have ever encountered! We had main seating, table 459 with John as our head waiter and Ivan as assistant waiter. We had a table of six with two couples from Florida that we made instant friends with, very delightful people that we looked forward to spending our evenings with. The staff on this ship, not only the ones that we knew i.e., wait staff or room staff, were all very friendly and I don't mean for show...I mean really very pleasant people. All taking time to stop and ask about your day, your meals, etc. The entertainment was very good, especially the comedians. There were two, one a musical comedian and the other a ventriloquist...the last absolutely not to be missed! The other evenings were a violinist, dulcimer (ist?), and the Celebrity Show Dancers and Singers. All quite good. We were uncertain about this cruise due to the 4 days at sea going and the 4 sea days coming back. But there were plenty of activities to keep one busy, or like myself...lying by the pool was wonderful. Each day at 2 p.m. they had "Sorbet on Parade"...a sound of trumpets and the waiters in their finest carrying silver trays would come from all directions and hand out cups of sorbet. How could it get better...well, in the heat of the afternoon, they would bring out cool towels to refresh those of us, burning up! Now that is going the extra mile! We, having been to Hawaii before did not partake of the shore excursions but instead enjoyed planning our days at port ourselves. The two days in Honolulu were great. The first day we took the city bus and rode it all around the island, seeing small communities that the ordinary tourist doesn't get to see. Well worth the 3 hours. The second day we spent walking around Waikiki and found ourselves at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel having Mai Tais and watching the sunset! Hilo, a small port on the big island did not have a lot to offer, but certainly glad we were able to see it. Spent the day in old town, at the market place...never have seen such huge avocados! Lovely little village. Kona on the other hand was a favorite. Superb shopping and sightseeing. Maui was also a great place, but unfortunately was the shortest of all our ports. Seems that most all the passengers would have preferred to have skipped Hilo and spent more time in Maui. Perhaps the ship will take this into consideration and change their itinerary in the future. This cruise had very few children, I believe at one time I might have seen a dozen that were with a crew member for the day. This was definitely a cruise that seemed to have a majority of travelers over the age of 60. I'm not sure if that is the norm or it was the time of year. None the less, it was a happy crew and happy passengers all the way around! I would highly recommend Celebrity Summit and the 14 day cruise to Hawaii to anyone interested in a clean ship, a friendly crew, great food and entertainment and lovely ports of call. Read Less
Sail Date September 2006
Bio: 54 married female, retired and I cruise two or three times a year for the last 10 years. I was very disappointed with this cruise. I had many issues but I will only cover a few. Embarkation was disorganized. The line for elite and ... Read More
Bio: 54 married female, retired and I cruise two or three times a year for the last 10 years. I was very disappointed with this cruise. I had many issues but I will only cover a few. Embarkation was disorganized. The line for elite and select guests was moving slower than regular lines since the persons advancing people to the check in desk was just letting anyone go ahead. Very confusing. The Summit is need of a major dry dock visit. Our cabin carpet had major stains on it and was dirty. The cloth sofa also had stains on it. The sheets and pillow cases were worn (thin with tears)and the pillows were thin foam. After complaining at guest relations, our steward took the cushions from the sofa out and had them cleaned but the stains were still there. We were given some feather pillows which were much better. The feather pillows are normally only for higher category cabins. I paid $6,300 for two persons in a FV cabin. I booked 30 days out and this was the only balcony cabin available. We meet a couple who were in a suite with a butler for two persons with much better accommodations and I think that they paid $4,300.000 but they booked early. I realize that FV is a family view cabin with families with children staying in it but Celebrity should take this into consideration and give it extra attention with upkeep. I had asked in advanced for for extra padding be placed on the bed which made it comfortable. The room was quite. We did not feel much movement. The balcony is hugh with great views aft and to the side but again the cushions on the chaise lounges were very worn and stained. Our cabin steward Sandy was great but again he can only work with what Celebrity provides for him. My biggest disappoint was dining choices and the food. Unless you want to make reservations, pay $30.00 per person additional money, order room service or eat pasta very night the only choice that you have for dinner dining is greeting dressed and eating in the formal dining room. There is only a pasta bar with salad at night where the buffet is during the day. The alternate dining on this deck is with reservations only with at limited menu and $4.00 per person tip. There was never a posted menu for the alternate dining at night on the lido deck. I was told that you would have a choice of a chicken, fish or meat dish with salad but you never had a menu to look at. The dining room had one posted in front of the dining room. I have been on cruises where the menu was posted on the TV so you did not have to go to the dining room to read it. We got tired of getting dressed every night to go eat in the formal dining room where the food did not meet my expectations for a Celebrity cruise. I have had better food on the Carnival Conquest. Again the dining room chairs and very worn and strained. The dining room staff was great. I will be a long time before I select Celebrity for a cruise. I might try on of their new ships when it comes out. Dining choices would have to be better. The only saving grace for this 14 day cruise was the service from the staff. Celebrity beats others cruise lines hands down in this department. Guest services was the only disappoint in the service area. Cabin steward and dining staff were excellent. Read Less
Sail Date September 2006
PlWe arrived at LAX to be transferred to the ship. A representative of Celebrity was present and gathered us into an area to await a bus. After she made repeated calls for a bus, no one came. We were stranded at the terminal for about an ... Read More
PlWe arrived at LAX to be transferred to the ship. A representative of Celebrity was present and gathered us into an area to await a bus. After she made repeated calls for a bus, no one came. We were stranded at the terminal for about an hour and a half before a bus finally arrived. We were greeted at the ship by the staff and escorted to our cabin a veranda cabin which we found nice enough. We have sailed approx. 14 times so we are not new to cruising. The ship is in generally good repair, our cabin could use some updating (bedspread etc.) Our cabin stewardess was friendly and mostly efficient. The staff was extraordinary, you could not pass a crew member who didn't acknowledge you in a friendly manner. The minus side: Food, the dining was extremely regimented. The main seating was at 6:30 PM. If you chose to go to the informal dining area (the buffet area) you had a choice of three entrees and you MUST make reservations in advance. The buffets left something to be desired. Dinner in the dining room was without taste, no seasoning AT ALL. The two safe choices were steak and lobster, besides that dinner was less than a good experience. For a cruise line that advertises their food, they should drag Chef Roux behind the ship. Very poor. We sailed on the Horizon, many years ago and were unhappy, we tried it again under new management, also unhappy, will not sail Celebrity again, RCL and Princess have it all over Celebrity. The port side of the ship was smoking, I am a former smoker and I vowed that I would never become one of those who preached and I will not, but it was so thick on the port side that even I didn't want to walk through it. In all we enjoyed Hawaii, we would have liked more time in Maui, The Captain was all over the ship, very accessible and friendly, shows were good. Generally older crowd, many in wheelchairs and using oxygen. It is good that they are able to travel and enjoy their older years God bless them. Next winter we will cruise again but not with Celebrity at any cost. Read Less
Sail Date September 2006
THE SUMMIT.  Hawaii Circle Cruise  9th  23rd April 2006. It has been over 25 years, since we last visited The Hawaiian Islands; so for something different, we chose a 14-night roundtrip cruise from Los Angeles with Celebrity Cruises ... Read More
THE SUMMIT.  Hawaii Circle Cruise  9th  23rd April 2006. It has been over 25 years, since we last visited The Hawaiian Islands; so for something different, we chose a 14-night roundtrip cruise from Los Angeles with Celebrity Cruises on their ship  The Summit. We chose the air/sea programme from the United Kingdom. Travel documentation arrived well ahead of departure. The information supplied was relevant and ticketing was correct. There was no shore excursion information, but details of these were found on the Celebrity web site. On arrival at Los Angeles International Airport, we were met and welcomed by a Celebrity Representative, immediately having cleared the Customs area. This rep was extremely professional and advised us as to the best places to eat and visit in San Pedro where our overnight accommodation was located. She escorted us to the Super Shuttle pick up point and remained with us until the arrival of the shuttle  gone are the days where guests travelling with Celebrity are transferred to their hotel by limousine, taxi or private coach. After two or three circles of the entire airport terminals and the many drop-offs in San Pedro, we eventually arrived at our hotel, a distance of 25 miles from the airport, some 90 minutes later. On arrival at the hotel, there was a letter from Celebrity advising us as to departure arrangements the next morning to join the ship. Luggage was collected from our rooms at the indicated times and the coach departed on schedule at 1.30pm for the short ride of about five minutes to the terminal building. On arrival at the pier side, the first thing that one noticed was the massive queue, which snaked in many directions. We were advised that this was the queue or line for security. Some 125 minutes later we eventually reached the security control and were quite surprised that only two facilities were open for the search of some 1950 guests and their hand baggage. It is obvious that Celebrity are only too well aware of such delays, as, whilst waiting in the queue, sandwiches, savories and drinks were provided to waiting passengers. Fortunately, the weather was fine. Whilst one fully appreciates the need for meaningful security in this day and age, consideration should be given to providing additional search facilities and that Celebrity transfer guests overnighting on their air/sea package at an earlier time to the terminal, prior to the inbound departure day flight passengers arriving at pier side directly from the airport, bearing in mind that check-in and boarding commence much earlier. After clearing security, check-in was swift and professional and a short time later we boarded the ship. The Summit, a Millennium Class ship, of some 91,000 tons entered service in October 2001. For this cruise, we had chosen Concierge Class accommodation. Our cabin, or stateroom was located on deck 9. On entering the vessel, we were given a luke warm half glass of champagne and we were offered the opportunity to be escorted to our cabin. Initial observations were that the cabin was clean, spacious and comfortable. Not having travelled in this class of cabin before, we were not fully aware of what benefits this entailed so sought guidance from the Concierge in this regard. We were advised that these included - Stateroom Amenities Welcome Champagne. Fresh Flowers Selection of Fruit. Afternoon canapEs Leather key holder Binoculars for use on board. Personalized stationery. Oversized tote bag Umbrella to use throughout the cruise Tensions-absorbing pillow-top mattresses Plush duvets Designed room service breakfast menu Bathroom amenities: Plush bath rugs Oversized Egyptian cotton towels Double-thick Frette bathrobes Two hairdryers A Hansgrohe showerhead Selection of fine shampoos, body lotions, soaps, shower cap, breath mints and sewing kit. A Menu of Pillows Sofa Pillows. Priority Services Express Luggage Delivery Laundry and Pressing Service Shoe Shine Service. Extended Room Service Dining and seating preferences VIP invitation to events Preference on Shore Excursions Early Embarkation and disembarkation Priority Tendering. Most of the above were available, others we had to ask for. It took six hours from our arrival at the pier until our luggage appeared at our stateroom  you could hardly call this express service! After having settled in the stateroom and on closer examination, we saw that there was dust everywhere  on shelves, on ledges, in cupboards, on the pictures. A Gideons Bible was on top of the bedside unit  I was able to run my finger along it a leave a trace. In the wardrobes, there were plastic bags and other items obviously having been discarded by previous guests. Under the bed there were crumbs, and empty biscuit packagings, whilst on the balcony there were empty cardboard coffee cups and discarded cocktails sticks. Not the standard that one expects from Celebrity, and being perfectly honest, this was the first time in over a dozen cruises that I have ever encountered a problem of this nature onboard any of the Celebrity fleet. Another most noticeable thing was in respect of the balcony. Owing to the design of deck 10, (the deck above ours)  an open deck - this deck extends well over the sides of the ship, thus preventing the sun nearly all of the time from actually reaching the balcony areas  not much use to those who want to spend time sunning themselves in the privacy of their own balcony. Incidentally, very few of the balcony cabins on this ship have total privacy; most can be seen in one way or another from other decks/balconies. Beware too of cabins with connecting doors - This decreases the insulation levels thus noise travels and one can hear your neighbours conversation even if they chat in low voices  also if your neighbours are smokers  the smoke can magically make its way into the adjoining cabin. We spoke with the Steward who apologised and explained that on turnaround days things are hectic and he did not have the time to pay attention to the smaller details as indicated by myself. I queried if such an amount of dust could gather within 24 hours? In fairness to him, while at dinner, he did clean the areas identified, but others not mentioned remained untouched. We also had to request simple items, like, a do not disturb sign, note paper, laundry lists  things that should automatically be checked prior to any new occupation of staterooms. We then went to the show and our first dinner on board. Previously the entertainment offered on Celebrity ships was good but nothing to write home about. However on this cruise, the entertainment on board this cruise was excellent. There was something for everyone. Special mention must be afforded to The Celebrity Singers and Dancers, the Celebrity Orchestra and those who presented the Cirque du Soleil and the Master Ventriloquist whose performances and presentations were outstanding. Music provided by other groups/solo acts in the various lounges throughout the ships was acceptable  though more variation would have been welcomed  3 `strings` groups  a Harpist, a Guitarist and a String Quartet, is a wee bit of an over kill. On many of the evenings, life on the Summit appeared to die at around 10.30pm  we found too many pre-dinner shows for 2nd seating guests. Unlike other ships where something major is happening in each lounge offering guests a choice, this just did not happen on the Summit. The `featured` entertainment programme although excellent was indeed limited. Timing of events in particular was badly planned  the Chocoholics Buffet and the Hawaiian Fruit Deck buffet were scheduled for 10.15pm, a time when guests on second seating were still at dinner. The Entertainments Staff were highly visible throughout the ship. The Programme of events for the following day  Celebrity Today was delivered to the cabins each evening. This was informative, but unfortunately did not appear to be checked for omissions or errors. On Easter Day, the biggest day in the Christian Calendar, the notification of the time and location of the Catholic Mass was omitted  this caused many who missed this most holiest of celebrations a lot of personal distress. Omissions such as this and other minor matters gave an overall impression that there was a `lack of attention to detail` in many aspects on this cruise. Others being, that whilst the ship is spotlessly clean, `streak` marks could be clearly seen on glass, dark wood, and mirrored surfaces and especially on stainless steel surfaces in and around the elevators. Though when this was pointed out to staff, they indicated this was due to the materials being used to prevent gastro infections and these could not be wiped off for some 48 hours after application. Ashtrays remained un-emptied and litter bins the same. Clocks not advanced after time changes etc. Chairs are badly soiled and showing signs or wear and tear especially in the Rendez-Vous Lounge. Meals served from the main menu in the Cosmopolitan Restaurant, were again excellent  well presented, well prepared and expertly served by a most professional waiter and assistant waiter who quickly learned and always remembered our likes and dislikes. At each meal, they welcomed us with a smile and took a genuine interest as to how our day had been etc. However if one chose have as an alternative of steak, chicken or salmon for their main course, (these items are always available) - this was very much a hit and miss affair. On a number of occasions, we were unable to eat our steaks as they were either too tuff, fatty and/or tasteless. The Assistant Maitre d' for our sector in the dining room did visit the table each evening and gave a well-rehearsed spiel. If you did ask him a question about something not included in this spiel, or complained about the meal, this caused him complete confusion, panic and seemed to send him into a thither, which caused him to disappear from the main dining room floor until the next evening. There are a number of tables for two. Chairs throughout the restaurant do not have armrests. It amazes me that when booking a cruise, passengers are always asked as to what size of a table they wish to be seated at for dinner?  Why?  Very seldom does anyone take any notice of this. On this particular cruise this was plainly obvious with many guests playing musical chairs for the first week of the cruise. Other single guests found themselves alone at tables as other table companions who had asked for large tables, as had the single guests, demanded and were moved, but the solo guests request was like a cry in the wilderness. This was indeed bad restaurant management. Incidentally some guests had to ask if there was actually a Maitre d'Hotel/Restaurant Manager on board and in charge of the Dining Room. We never saw him on the ground floor level of the restaurant at any time, nor did he visit either our or any tables in our immediate vicinity throughout the cruise. One thing that really sticks out on the Summit, is the immaculate dress and turnout of all staff from the cleaners right through to the senior officers on board and the friendliness of all the staff. In saying that it was only on a very rare occasion that you saw any of the senior officers other than the Captain and Staff Captain around the ship. I endeavoured to arrange a meeting with the Hotel Director on at least two occasions to discuss, what I considered to be fairly important matters, but he declined to meet with me. So now for our first nights sleep on board. As previously mentioned, deck 10 is an open deck and each time anyone even walked or worse, ran along this deck, - boom  boom boom  the noise  when deck loungers were being moved early in the morning  most probably for cleaning purposes  the clatter and the bang that these movements made was unbelievable  them seemed to echo and probably with the stillness of the night the noise was magnified, but enough to keep us from sleeping. The next morning, I mentioned this to the Concierge that I was unhappy with our cabin and outlined to her some of the difficulties to date. Later that afternoon, there was a message from the front desk offering us an alternative cabin on a lower deck. This cabin was far more suitable and much more quiet. Full marks to Celebrity. Periodically for the remainder of the cruise, Guest Relations checked to see that `everything was in order` and could they do anything in addition to assist in making our cruise more enjoyable. Unfortunately, we weather on the voyage out to Hawaii, was not kind to us. It was cold, wet and windy. There was noticeable movement throughout the ship and lots of empty places each evening in the Dining Room - this voyage did route us right across to Pacific Ocean One has to remember that The Summit is a flat bottomed boat and not a ship especially designed for oceanic crossings, thus increased movement can be expected. The weather did improve when we reached the islands, and on the return voyage. There is a vast wine list on board, with reasonable prices. Well-stocked bars and lounges are dotted throughout the ship. A Vodka and Coco-cola was $6.33 including gratuities, somewhat more expensive than on other cruise lines, especially British Ships, but in saying that, you could really taste or should I say feel the alcohol in the drink. Throughout the cruise it was pleasing to note that none of the staff, either in the bars or the photographers were aggressive in their approach  unlike so many other ships. At each Port of Call, there were many organised tours, offered by the Shore Excursion Staff  these represented value for money, were good in content and operated on time. There are a number of alternative options for dining, from Room Service which is available 24 hours a day, to the more casual Waterfall Cafe, A Hamburger Station, Pizza, Pasta and Salad Bar, a Sushi Cafe and of course the Aqua Spa Cafe for healthy choice all day dining. Each of these serveries offered the same type of fayre to be found on other cruise ships of similar ratings. The one main noticeable difference between other lines and Celebrity is that there is an abundance of staff available to assist in the carrying of trays to seating areas not only on the Summit, but also on all Celebrity Ships. The operation of the Waterfall Cafe is well executed, however food each day became repetitive and after a time all began to taste the same. The selection of fruit on this cruise was disappointing, just the basic melons, pineapples, grapes and oranges as core fruits. These on the whole were not ripe and were tasteless. Bring back the days when guests were offered as the norm, papaya, mango, kiwi fruit and the like. There seemed to be great use of canned and frozen fruits. The selection of breads and cheese was reasonable. However to make up for these `weaknesses` the range of deserts available was outstanding. For that Special Occasion  the Normandie Restaurant for A La Carte Dining is open each evening, a cover service of USD$30.00 per person is added to each guests account who visit this restaurant. We did not eat in the Normandie, but reports from those who did were encouraging. There is no 24-hour dining in any of the restaurants on board, though coffee, tea and juices are available 24 hours a day from the Waterfall Cafe. There are no Midnight Buffets, but waiters roaming the various lounges each evening serving `Gourmet Bites` On a ship of this size, there is the usual range of facilities available  an Aqua Spa, a Casino, Childrens Facilities, Shops, an Acupuncture at Sea Clinic, an Art Gallery and an Internet Cafe and Computer Centre. Though do be aware that Internet access is charged at $0.75. Per minute  though packages can be bought to reduce this cost down to about $0.50. Per minute - not cheap at all. Being an inquisitive sort of a guy, having learned about Concierge Class, curiosity got the better of me and I just had to find out what extras, other than space, you received if you booked a Suite on a Celebrity ship  hereunder are the amenities provided for suite guests Welcome Champagne. Butler Assistance with packing and unpacking. Platinum Cards. Personalised stationary and cards. Butler Service. Dining room seating preference. Fresh fruit each day. Fresh Flowers (1) for Penthouse suite only. CanapEs at 5.00pm or 7.00pm each day  according to dining seating. Complimentary cappuccino and espresso, only inside the suite. Complimentary use of bathrobes. Celebrity Suite tote bag. Delivery of requested board games, videos, CDs from your Butler. Full breakfast, lunch and dinner service in suite. In suite afternoon tea, coffee with cookies and cake service at 4.00pm. Newspaper delivery. Opportunity to book in suite massage for $149.00 plus 10% tip. Priority embarkation and disembarkation. Express Luggage delivery. Private Portrait sitting  not complimentary. Priority tendering tickets. Shoeshine service from your Butler. 100% cotton oversized towels. As can be seen, there are not too many differences between Concierge Class and Suite Class, other than the size of stateroom and the price. I also understand the in-suite breakfast menu in Concierge Class has a wider choice than the breakfast menu offered to guests in suites. One thing missing though in both Concierge and Suite Class is that guests are not provided with slippers. On other 5* lines, even guests in the cheapest of cabins are provided with these. Also guests who I spoke with who were occupying suites which were equipped with baths, indicated that bath oils or some type of water softener to be added to the water would have been welcome. Celebrity Cruises, like most other cruise lines offer a loyalty club. With Celebrity its called The Captains Club. There are three levels  Classic (1  5 cruises)  Select (6 10 cruises) and Elite (11+ cruises). Even as `elite` members, we were not offered all of the benefits that we were entitled to. When we enquired as to why these were not offered, we were rudely advised by the Hostess - `subject to availability`. The benefits at all levels are basic compared to other programmes offered by other cruise lines. This is an area, which needs to be seriously looked at and revaluated. Like most other people in this age of increased competition, natural instincts direct most of us to go where we get the best value for our money and currently with Celebrity, this is one of their weakest areas of operation. If people thought that embarkation arrangements were bad, disembarkation was a total fiasco. Unorganized, chaotic and lack of any officer to make decisions or to take command and control of the situation. It did not help that the ship was late arriving in Los Angeles. 1950 passengers had to pass through US Immigration  all queuing at the same time thus resulting in snake like lines all around deck 4. Then a short time after the Immigration Inspection commenced, Celebrity announced the commencement of disembarkation whilst many of the guests being called to disembark still hadnt passed through Immigration. Utter confusion reigned and not an officer in sight to take charge or make decisions. This was the worst disembarkation at any port in all of my cruising career. Having sailed with Celebrity many times, some areas of this cruise caused disappointment but not to such an extent to ruin the overall cruise experience. Once in a while someone is disappointed and on this occasion it was us. The weaknesses identified are not typical of the usually excellent Celebrity standards and product. Knowing Celebrity management and their policies to provide excellence in all aspects of cruising for guests, appropriate action will no doubt be taken to avoid repetition. In summary, a reasonably good cruise experience but lacking in attention to detail in some areas. Read Less
Sail Date April 2006
This was our 6th cruise. We have cruised with Royal Caribbean 4 times and we decided to cruise on the Parent company line, so we booked with Celebrity. What a disappointing experience this was. We did the online check in and express and ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise. We have cruised with Royal Caribbean 4 times and we decided to cruise on the Parent company line, so we booked with Celebrity. What a disappointing experience this was. We did the online check in and express and we still waited outside in the sun for 2 hours. Our room was fine, but you can see the wear and tear on the couch, curtains, and spread. Our room steward was great, our room was always clean and everything we wanted was taken care of. Our Dinning experience was fine. Nothing special to write home about. Our wait personnel were great, there just was not the atmosphere we were accustom to on Royal. There were not special nights for dinner, no parade except on Baked Alaska night. Activities were not sufficient just a lot of lectures. The entertainment was adequate. No big entertainer as we were accustom on our other cruises. The public restroom were awful, cleanliness and adequate supplies were lacking. This was in all public areas not just main floors. The public areas show a lot of wear as well, stains on carpets and chairs. They ran out of coffee and we served instant. We had an excursion to Pearl Harbor and not enough time was given to see the museum and other outside exhibits before we were herded to our bus for a city tour. We will have to think long and hard before cruising with Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2006
After many cruises on Celebrity, we looked forward to this Hawaii cruise per usual. What we experienced, was by far less than the Celebrity Experience We flew in the day before, and arrived in San Pedro about noon. The line was long ... Read More
After many cruises on Celebrity, we looked forward to this Hawaii cruise per usual. What we experienced, was by far less than the Celebrity Experience We flew in the day before, and arrived in San Pedro about noon. The line was long and seemed somewhat disorganized. However, the weather was nice, and although it took us more than one hour to get to the area for check in, I had read where this was a problem on other cruises leaving there, so we just waited our turn and visited with other people in line. Finally we arrived at check in, and since we were in a Celebrity Suite, 9096 were able to board quickly. Needless to say the ship did not look well cared for. It was shabby to say the least, and when we arrived at our suite, I was appalled at the condition of the room. The furniture was faded, dirty, and worn. It looked like they were trying to use this ship up until the last minute before spending a dime on repairs. The bathroom had mold in the corners and in the tub. We had plastic flowers that were glued down in a vase on the counter and tables. Very tacky and dusty I might add. After three days I ask our cabin steward to run the vacuum as it had not been done. That was the only time the carpet was cleaned in two weeks. The carpet had holes in it, stains, and the toss pillows on the sofa were so dirty that they should have been thrown away. The CS has a very nice layout, but this was not up to standards, and was shocking to see on Celebrity. We had a butler who was very poor by comparison to others. He did nothing, complained about the location of his station when I mentioned having dinner in our room. Obviously he did not want to be bothered, so we did not ask. I must mention, that 9096 has a major noise problem. It starts about 9pm and goes on all night. We contacted guest relations, and they said there was nothing they could do about it, as it was coming from a pantry that was being restocked. However, there was nothing above us that was open. The room steward did say that he had been on that ship for 8 months, and there had always been a problem. It was the sound of running, stamping feet, carts rolling and slamming. Needless to say it was impossible to get a decent nights sleep.. Everyone wants to know about the food. It was fair, and that was the best I could say. If they would turn the catering over to Applebees it would have been much better. We did enjoy the specialty restaurant and found it to be absolutely perfect. On the 14 night cruise we had dinner there two nights and enjoyed their outstanding food and service. Activities--Well, Celebrity has really started the nickel and time routine. My husband likes to work about for two hours every morning. Much to his surprise, there were no seats on the spin cycles&&guess what $10 charge to use them. Just a year ago, there was no charge. The bikes, $10, a yoga class $10, and so on. This was a very bad move on the part of the cruise line, and when my husband complained, there was no response from the guest services for the two weeks. This was a very poor experience, and will be our last Celebrity cruise. The whole attitude was not to care about anything, and you could tell by the worn furniture all over the ship, and general attitude of the staff. After 25 cruises, this will be the last one for a long time, and never again on Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date April 2006
We traveled with three other couples and all of us had a great time. Embarkation was slow and there were long lines, but Celebrity personal explained the reasons. We live in a post 911 world, pluses the bird flu scare and Norwalk Virus. ... Read More
We traveled with three other couples and all of us had a great time. Embarkation was slow and there were long lines, but Celebrity personal explained the reasons. We live in a post 911 world, pluses the bird flu scare and Norwalk Virus. Celebrity takes the necessary precautions that we understand, and it was worth the wait. The ship was clean and the crew magnificent. The dinning experience is something to remember. Julio our waiter was a genuine person who took pride in the job he did, he made this a memorable vacation. The presentation and quality of food was excellent. We have been on many cruises, but can not rave enough about this dinning experience. We enjoyed the four day trip on the open seas to Hawaii. The weather was nice, the cruise director John did a great job on deck each afternoon. The captain would come on the PA system each day and explain the weather conditions, distanced traveled, etc. What a professional the captain was, and very reassuring. You would see the captain and staff captain around the ship each day, having sailed on Celebrity before we knew we were in safe hands - these officer's are the best. We did not go to the Celebrity theater, but the entertainment around the ship was very good. The vocalist and band at the Rendezvous Lounge made every night pleasurable - Frank Sinatra has returned. Our first stop was at the big island "Hilo" Here we did an excursion, and the bus driver was worth the price of admission. We went to Mauna Loa Macadamia Nut Factory and Nami Maui Gardens, and the Akaka Falls. This excursion gave us a good taste of "Hilo." Our second stop was also on the big island "Kona." The ship docked, it was a hot and beautiful day. Everything was in walking distance, we shopped and enjoyed the sights for an enjoyable day. Our third stop was "Kauai." We did an excursion to the Fern Grotto and in the afternoon we had a luncheon Luau. Everyone who goes to Hawaii should do a Luau, don't miss this. Our fourth stop was "Honolulu." We were there from 7am to 11pm. We did a morning excursion to Pearl Harbour and the Mighty MO, please don't miss this it's something we will never forget. In the afternoon we went to Wauiki Beach - shopping, walking the beach and enjoying the beautiful city. This was a day to remember and it was capped of on the deck of the ship when we were leaving at 11pm with Hawaii night. We want to thank John the cruise director for this special evening. Our last stop "Maui was just too short. We were there from &am to 3pm, but by the time we tendered this left us only a few hours to shop and look around on this gorgeous day. Coming home was a good time to wind down. The service and entertainment were at peak performance and we enjoyed the trip. For some reason we were an hour and half late coming into port at LA, however everything went well and we had plenty of time to catch our flight to Boston that left LAX at 12:55pm. We can't wait to sail Celebrity again, I don't believe any cruise line can beat them for the value. Read Less
Sail Date April 2006
This was our sixth cruise on Celebrity, our first on Summit, and it very well may be our last on Celebrity. As a 14 night cruise roundtrip from Los Angles to Hawaii, it disappointed in almost all respects. The Summit shows severe wear, ... Read More
This was our sixth cruise on Celebrity, our first on Summit, and it very well may be our last on Celebrity. As a 14 night cruise roundtrip from Los Angles to Hawaii, it disappointed in almost all respects. The Summit shows severe wear, long overdue for refurbishing. Fabric was worn throughout the public areas. The 11th deck, with a large pleasant public lounge by daytime and bar by night, has been converted into a tastelessly crude "Bar at the Edge of the Earth" where waiters harass customers to buy drinks. This hard sell in pushing drink sales is prevalent throughout the ship. And the hard sell carries over into many other areas of the ship, the Spa in particular. Many cruise companions told horror stories of paying for a Spa treatment and then being bombarded by a masseuse or trainer on their paid time with hard sell pitches to buy further Spa treatments and products. Although the waiters and assistants provided excellent, cordial service, most meals were a far distance from fine dining. Fresh vegetables and fruits were scarce, a real disappointment in view of the abundant supply which could have been found at this time of year. And beginning on the next to last day, there was not even brewed coffee. Large bowls of instant coffee were substituted when the coffee supply ran out. Entertainment during the 14 days was very uneven; there were 2 finely talented aerobic dancers and an excellent concert pianist, but the company of singers and dancers performed at the level of a junior high school talent show. The cruise director was pompous and endlessly in love with his own voice; during disembarkation, his longwinded hype actually brought forth several rounds of loud, sustained booing from hundreds of cruise guests who had been too polite to vent their real feelings up until the last dreadful moment. Read Less
Sail Date April 2006
The ship is beautiful. As this was our first cruise we did not have any expectations. The crew was very courteous and anxious to please. We were so fortunate to have a superb waiter and assistant waiter in the dining room. Erbay and Ali ... Read More
The ship is beautiful. As this was our first cruise we did not have any expectations. The crew was very courteous and anxious to please. We were so fortunate to have a superb waiter and assistant waiter in the dining room. Erbay and Ali could not do enough to make sure that we were satisfied with our meals. They seemed to anticipate our every request. A major improvement would be to review the ports and length of stay. When we were tendered, a long process, we did not have enough time ashore. We took two excursions offered by Celebrity and were satisfied with them. We did notice that some areas of the ship need refurbishing. The stuffed chairs in one of the lounges were worn and needs to be replaced. The bedspreads in our cabin showed signs of wear. The commode needs to be replaced. The hose on the hair dryer was repaired after a wait of three days. The buffet was OK. They seemed to recycle some of the entrees from the previous night's dinner. Rack of lamb became lamb stew, etc. The passengers were predominately seniors. Entertainment was varied and good. All in all, this was a good experience for us and look forward to another Celebrity cruise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2006
In March of 2006 we left LA to cruise to Hawaii on the Celebrity Summit. We are seasoned cruisers and heard a lot about Celebrity. So we tried it. The cabin was like most ships and the service was good. The people friendly and did their ... Read More
In March of 2006 we left LA to cruise to Hawaii on the Celebrity Summit. We are seasoned cruisers and heard a lot about Celebrity. So we tried it. The cabin was like most ships and the service was good. The people friendly and did their jobs well. The food was not great. Dinner the selection was fair, they could not even make onion soup. Breakfast was average and more could have been offered. Lunch buffet was not great. You felt like you were eating leftovers, the selection was poor, the food tasteless, and there were fruit flies flying around. The sandwich bar couldn't make a sandwich. They had some specialty lunches, again unappealing and tasteless. We did a carnival Mexican last year at the urging of our agent and the food was by far so much better. Hard to believe. The pools you couldn't get into for the 2 weeks they were so cold. The hot tubs weren't hot, and it is hard to get 2000 people into 1 indoor pool where no one under 18 is allowed. For the most part the entertainment was good. As usual the Casino is in the middle of the floor and for those with breathing problem you had to go to dinner either by the floor above or the floor below. Smoking in all the lounges made sitting around and talking or listening to entertainment very uncomfortable. DO NOT rent a car from the ship by Hertz. They were just awful or didn't show at all and we had to use alternate rental agencies. The port calls were not planned well and because of bad weather previous to our stay, they should have made alternate plans. They knew what was going on in these ports and could change as other cruise lines do, they had plenty of warning. Then on the best island of Maui they told us if we were not on a tour we couldn't get off until 10- 10:30 and had to be back by 2. We just got off at 8 AM., but we knew they couldn't stop us, but for others is was not a good stop. They took us to ports where you could do nothing but shop, you couldn't rent a car, all excursions were cancelled and you couldn't go swimming because of polluted water. We went to the Polynesian Cultural Center where we expected to spend the day. Left at 9 AM stopped at a lookout point, at the bus drivers friend's store. Got to the center at noon had lunch and ended up with 2 1/2 hours of the center that needed at least 6. The bus driver had to stall time going. We had to leave at 3 and then stopped at a beach and the Dole factory and back at the boat at 5:30. This was an expensive trip. Go on your own and rent a car and spend the evening there which is a much better take. The buses do not have lifts and it made it difficult for people with special needs and also took a great deal of time boarding. The art auctioneer was very boring and long winded. Sitting through it was torcher. The crew did everything possible to make our stay pleasant but they were not responsible for the problems. They took us to 5 ports in 5 days, not well planned. There were a lot of complaints from other people on board. Unless you do not care to get off the ship and really see the island I would not recommend this kind of a cruise. Try to plan one that gives you an overnight in a few ports, or go to an island like Maui a few days early and then a cruise and maybe stay on an island after the cruise. They now have inter island ferries. We have future cruises planned for Australia, Alaska and the Mediterranean, I can't say that I won't go on Celebrity again, but I will investigate my choices very carefully. Happy cruising. Read Less
Sail Date March 2006
The Basics Itinerary: 14 day Hawaii Circle Cruise from Los Angeles (San Pedro) Departure Date: 03/12/06 Ship: GTS Summit Stateroom: 6116 (Sky Suite) Background -- We are a married couple in our late 30s (ok, one of us turned 40 ... Read More
The Basics Itinerary: 14 day Hawaii Circle Cruise from Los Angeles (San Pedro) Departure Date: 03/12/06 Ship: GTS Summit Stateroom: 6116 (Sky Suite) Background -- We are a married couple in our late 30s (ok, one of us turned 40 somewhere between L.A. and Hilo) and live in the Washington, D.C. suburbs of Northern Virginia. This was our second cruise on Celebrity, third overall. We sailed Infinity to Alaska in May of 2005 and our first cruise was on the SS Atlantic of the now defunct Premier Cruise line way back in 1991. So it is fair to say that our only cruising experience to date has been with Celebrity. We thoroughly enjoyed our Alaska cruise and were looking forward to another great experience going to Hawaii. Pre-Cruise -- We arrived in LA the day prior to the cruise and did a Hollywood walking tour with Red Line Tours. I highly recommend this tour as you get to see a lot of the famous Hollywood landmarks up close and it really doesnt require a lot of walking. We spent the night at the Long Beach Hilton using Hilton HHonors points. Hotel was clean and modern and close to the Queen Mary and waterfront in Long Beach. On the morning of our departure, we took a walk from the hotel to the Queen Mary and back (approx. 3 miles). It was a nice walk, but there really arent any sidewalks or paths out to the Queen Mary, so you have to do some walking on the edge of the highway. Since it was a Sunday morning, we didnt have to contend with a lot of traffic. Our rental car from Hertz had a navigation system in which came in real handy even though I know my way around the area pretty well. It was a big help when we were looking for Trader Joes in Long Beach to stock up on wine prior to the cruise. One note on renting from Hertz  When I initially made my reservation, they had a drop off location in downtown Long Beach with reimbursement on cab fare to the cruise terminals. I found out shortly before our cruise that the downtown location is now closed on Sundays and the nearest drop off is at the Long Beach airport. Not to fear, as the Hertz web site stated that cab fare to the pier would reimbursed up to $25.00 with a receipt. Anticipating difficulty with this, I printed out this information prior to dropping the car off. Sure enough, the agent at LGB had never heard of this policy and would only give me a $10.00 credit on the rental rather than give me a voucher or some other method to get reimbursed. Nevertheless, Hertz had arranged a shuttle from the airport to the piers and we were off within 15 minutes of dropping off the car. Embarkation -- We arrived at the pier in San Pedro at approximately 1:00PM and my best guess is that we were on board in less than an hour. I had heard of some nightmare embarkations in L.A. recently and was anticipating the worst. I was pleasantly surprised as we only had a short wait after we checked in and received our SeaPass cards. Everyone was given a piece of paper with a number and told to wait, as there had been a backup of people getting on board. We sat for a short time until our number was called and before we knew it, we were on board. Summit -- Since we had sailed on Summits sister ship, Infinity, just nine months ago, we found Summit to be very familiar and easy to get around. The only differences I noted were the location of the Computer Lab and Acupuncture at Sea in the across from the midship stairs. On Infinity, they were located near the movie theater. Overall, I found the Summit to be in great condition and there always appeared to be someone cleaning the public areas of the ship. Most notably, there was one member of the housekeeping staff who seemed to be constantly cleaning the railings on the stairs. There were a few areas where I noticed some wear, but it is what I would expect for a ship that had been in pretty much constant use for five years. One noticeable change from Infinity was the presence of hand sanitizing stations near every eating area. With the recent outbreaks of Norovirus, Celebrity certainly wasnt going to take any chances. Stateroom -- Sky Suites are the smallest category of suites on the Millennium class ships and they are really just a little bit bigger than a veranda or Concierge Class cabin (approx. 50 sq. ft. according to Celebritys stats). That being said, we found the extra space came in real handy for our two weeks on board. Compared to the Veranda stateroom we had on Infinity, the Sky Suite had enough extra storage room for us to put two weeks of clothing and belongings away without having to use the couch to permanently store items. While the closet is not a true walk-in, it is pretty large and had plenty of space to hang all of our items. That alone made the cabin seem a lot bigger. The Sky Suite also has a larger television than the standard cabin and ours was equipped with a DVD player, which we never used. The room was in very good condition overall. There were a few minor things like scuffs in the woodwork on the cabinets (probably from all that vacuuming) to tiles in the bathroom that probably could have used some new grout. To us, these were minor things that had no impact on our experience one way or another. Food/Service -- Since food is highly subjective, Ill keep it brief. We thought the food was very good (main dining room, buffet) to great (Normandie). No complaints or returned meals from anyone at our table. One of our tablemates did meet someone on shore in Maui who had a complaint about the food  there wasnt enough! Go figure. Service on board was outstanding. Our butler, room steward, waiter, assistant waiter, and assistant maitred were all great. A special mention goes to our assistant maitred, Danuta. We had the pleasure of meeting her on Infinity last year and were pleasantly surprised to see her again on Summit. She really goes out of her way to take care of people at her table and makes a point to visit each of her tables at every dinner. The cheers she got on the last formal night show just how popular she is with her guests. Of course, you cant talk about the Summit crew without mentioning Happy Happy and Sal who were constantly greeting passengers throughout the cruise. Entertainment -- We did not attend as many shows as we had hoped, but the few we did attend were great. The taste of Cirque de Soleil was exactly that, a taste that left you asking for more. Kind of like the whole trip to Hawaii. We heard good things about both the comedian and ventriloquist. Ports/Shore Excursions -- This being our first time to Hawaii, we decided to stick with the Celebrity shore excursions rather than rent a car and explore on our own. Here is a summary of what we did at each of the island: Hilo  Lava Viewing Hike  This trip required a 45 minute drive to Volcanoes National Park where we made a few stops at some of the scenic areas inside the park such as the Thurston lava tube. We then drove to the end of Chain of Craters road and began the hike at the ranger station which is conveniently built on pallets in the event it has to be moved quickly. The hike on the lava was less than a mile each way, but because of the uneven surface, it seemed a lot longer and was fairly strenuous but well worth it as we got a great view of the lava entry point into the ocean with its huge steam plume. On the ride back to the ship, we made a stop at the Mauna Loa Macadamia nut plantation, which conveniently has a gift store located on site. Note: You can find most of the gifts in this store cheaper at places like Wal-Mart. Some of the macadamia nut items are probably harder to find elsewhere. Grade: A+ Kona  Valley Waterfall Hiking Adventure - We were going to rent a car in Kona, but since we enjoyed the lava hike so much, we decided to try another hike. This one promised a walk along a historic Cliffside trail 1000 feet above the valley floor. Along the way encounter waterfalls and panoramic views. It delivered exactly that, so I cant complain too much. However, this tour required a 1.5 hour drive each way (which we knew about going in) and our guide seemed to be in a hurry to get us back to the ship so we can go shopping. I think he was more interested in attending the UB40 concert that night which created a big traffic jam as we returned to Kona. Grade: B- Kauai  Waimea Canyon Tour  Due to the heavy rains which had fallen before our arrival, numerous roads were closed on the island causing the cancellation of many tours, including ours. We were disappointed, but considering the loss of life and property that had occurred, it seemed like a minor inconvenience. Since the beaches were closed to the threat from bacteria in the water due to runoff, most of the in water excursions were cancelled as well. I did hear that some people were able to get on Helicopter tours in the afternoon once the skies cleared. Most passengers either stayed on board or took one of the local shopping shuttles into town. On our sailaway from Kauai, we got a peek as to the true beauty of this island, well definitely have to come back here. Grade: Incomplete Honolulu  Arizona Memorial and City Sightseeing  We decided to do the Celebrity sponsored tour since we felt it offered us the best chance to get to the USS Arizona memorial early before the crowds got too bad. This strategy worked out pretty well as we had about an wait after getting our tickets. This provided us plenty of time to check out the museum and other exhibits at this much too small facility. We did find out that some people made it to the Arizona Memorial faster by getting off the ship at the first opportunity and grabbing a cab. So you may want to think about that strategy when planning your visit to Pearl Harbor. The rest of the tour was a very good tour via bus through some other scenic and historic parts of Honolulu including Punch Bowl, Pali lookout, and downtown Honolulu with a final stop at Hilo Hatties. We had an excellent guide/bus driver, Sula, who really added a lot of insight and humor to the trip. Grade: A Maui  Whale Watching  We booked this excursion through Celebrity since our time in Maui was so brief (approx. 6 hours) that we didnt want to take any chances. We took our assigned tender to shore only to find out that our excursion had been cancelled. Apparently the tour operators other boat had an emergency of some sort, maybe a fire, and that the boat scheduled to take us was unavailable. Not to worry, as there are plenty of vendors on the shore providing many different types of excursions. We ended up with tour from Pacific Whale Foundation which turned out to be a great excursion  and we saved approximately $10 pp. Grade: A Cruise Critic Events -- We had a very active roll-call thread, which led to several planned activities before and during our cruise that really enhanced the cruise experience for us. In addition, Celebrity threw us not one, but two Cruise Critic parties. The first party was held on our third sea day, not the first one as we had come to expect. We received invitations for a second party on the second Tuesday of our cruise, which coincided with our last port day in Maui. Since our stay in Maui was only six hours, this wasnt a popular choice. Fortunately we received new invitations to a rescheduled party on Wednesday, a sea day, and all was well. In addition to the Celebrity sponsored parties, we had several get-togethers throughout the cruise including a sail away party, cabin crawl and an open house in one of the fabulous Penthouse suites. Also, quite a few of us went to the Luau at the Royal Hawaiian in Honolulu which I enjoyed. No part of it was fantastic and it seemed a little short, but it was a good time and I can now say I went to a Luau. After talking to some of the people who went to the Paradise Cove Luau, it appeared we made the better choice. Disembarkation -- A much smoother process than what we experienced in San Francisco last year. We did have to wait a while in the Celebrity theater as there were only three officials checking peoples docs. They added three more just as we got to the front of the line which sped the process up greatly. Our number was called almost precisely at the time we were expected to disembark. Once off the ship, we found a taxi to take us back to LAX rather than using the Celebrity transfer coach bus. For $45 (a little less since we shared a ride), we were at LAX in less than 45 minutes, plenty of time for our 1:00PM flight home. Conclusion/Summary -- Would we do this cruise again? Definitely. We would probably like to take a land-based trip to the islands to spend more time in Hawaii, but you cant beat this itinerary for the amount of relaxation you get with the sea days combined with all that you see in your all too short stay in Hawaii. If the prospect of four days in a row at sea without seeing land isnt your thing, then you should stay away. However if youre looking for 2 weeks of relaxation and pampering with five great port stops in the middle, then this is the cruise for you. Read Less
Sail Date March 2006
Pre Cruise: Flew into Long Beach airport and stayed at the Guesthouse in Long Beach. Rented a car and left the car in downtown Long Beach the car rental called us a taxi to the port. Had a wonderful day sightseeing and shopping for last ... Read More
Pre Cruise: Flew into Long Beach airport and stayed at the Guesthouse in Long Beach. Rented a car and left the car in downtown Long Beach the car rental called us a taxi to the port. Had a wonderful day sightseeing and shopping for last minute things in Long Beach. Embarkation: Went through the initial line very fast. Then it was hurry up and wait. They started to hand out tickets for entering the ship. I think it was in groups of 100. We were told the staff cannot handle more than that at a time. But at least we waited inside the terminal so not so bad. Wait time: 50 minutes We were the 5th group to board. Ship: Beautiful ship our room was very small but bright. Had plenty of room to store our stuff after we asked our steward to take out the extra blankets and other stuff we didnt want in there. The Champagne bar was gorgeous. The dining room was lovely. I was especially delighted with the ceiling in the dining room! Staff: We had a wonderful staff. Our room steward Felipe and his assistant Sidney were awesome! One thing that bothered me was on the tip envelopes it was the same envelope for both Felipe and Sidney. I did not have a suite just a plain room so I was not aware I had to pay for two room stewards. It was not that big of a problem just hate to be unaware. It was not posted anywhere that we would have two room stewards(even though one was labeled as an assistant on the tip envelope). Wait staff was very good. Our Assist Maitred was Larry and he was very friendly and helped make our dinner very entertaining. Our Waiter Wawan was good but he did have trouble remembering some things. (I do not like fish and I had told him I do not like fish my steak tasted like fish, I had my husband taste it and he said yes tasted like fish. They probably cooked it next to fish. Anyway, I asked for a new steak, our waiter brought me back fish and when I looked at him like it was a joke he said fish is good yes? I said no I do not like fish. At this point everyone was done eating so I told him to never mind. I would go get a slice of pizza or something. Not a good experience. He was extremely friendly and a great guy but you had to tell him a couple times. Our assistant waiter was Joseph and he was a blast to have around. Always remembered ice tea for dinner for some of us. He let my husband clean our table and set up for dessert. We had a hoot that night! Food: Was good the beef was excellent. Lamb was good. Sorry not a seafood person, but everyone else at the table thought the seafood was good. I had heard a lot about the food on Celebrity so I thought it would be spectacular but it wasnt. I would have to say it was good but not star quality. I do have a complaint about the buffet. On Royal Caribbean they have stations set about and that seems to work well. That way no one station is a wait in line for all. On Celebrity I felt like it was a high school cafeteria line I was waiting in. The waiters taking the trays afterwards was nice then they could seat you and you didnt have to wander around wondering where you were going to sit. They communicated with each other and knew where you could sit. Things to do on the Ship: Basically, most cruise lines are the same. But things did seem to die down about 10pm. We are late 40's and I would have to say we were the minority on this cruise, but we were on the cruise to relax and with this cruise that is exactly what you do! Karaoke: ( I know a lot of people dont like this form of entertainment but) My husband and I go to cheer on anyone who is brave enough to go up there. If either one of us had any kind of voice we would be up there. Marriage Game: Seen one you have seen them all. But you always have to love the people braving it to answer the embarrassing questions. Art Auction: umm I will pass on this one my husband spent a ridiculous amount of money there. He loved it! Bingo: was always well attended. We had a Cruise Critic Connections meeting and it was so well attended that the CD stated he wanted us to all get together at the end of the cruise and talk about our experiences. So please sign up for your meet and mingle parties and attend! They do like to see us having a good time! Shore Excursions: I would certainly do the Na Pali Expedition again and again! The scenery is spectacular, along with the whales, dolphins, seal monks, sea turtles, and all the different birds etc you see. Hilo was a big hit with Volcanoes National Park. Kona we wondered ourselves and had a blast talking to all the people. Honolulu was a great tour going to the North Shore and seeing Sunset Beach and Turtle Beach and a wonderful Macadamia Nut Factory. Be sure to try the Cinnamon ones DELICIOUS! Then Maui was suppose to be the Maui Whale Watch but it was canceled due to the boat being on a rescue mission. Which I heard they did a fantastic job saving three people from a burning boat! So we spent the day meandering through town again and spending more money on trinkets! Debarkation: Smooth as silk. They are a little confused though. They state you do not have to bring any of your carry on luggage to the immigrations part but when you get there they are calling out do not go back to your room stay in the public areas so you can hear when your color is called. I think they need to get themselves straight on this. Total impression of the trip: Relaxing trip. The four and one half days to get to Hilo was long. So be prepared to like sea days a lot. But once you get to the islands time seems to speed up and by then you know people better and the four and a half days going home is too short! They had a scavenger hunt which was fun but way too short only 10 items. They need to make it something a little longer. They did enjoy some of the imagination used to get some of the items on the list! We met some very nice people and All in all I would and have recommended this trip. Read Less
Sail Date March 2006
Celebrity Summit Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 4.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.5 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.5 4.1
Family 4.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.5 3.7
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 4.1
Rates 4.0 4.1

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