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We love transatlantic cruising. Only having to fly one way is a big plus and cruising this way is usually cheaper than flying. You can't eat, drink and be pampered on an 8 hour flight! We chose this cruise because we wanted to spend some time in southern Italy post cruise. We had previously been on another Celebrity transatlantic 6 months earlier (see my Silhouette review) that was not very good so we did not have high hopes for this one but since we were using the ship primarily as transportation and not as a vacation this was ok. Well we were pleasantly surprised as we had an excellent cruise albeit not without a few issues. Embarkation in Fort Lauderdale was quick and easy surprisingly! Firstly, the food was GREAT. Our last TA it was TERRIBLE. Almost every dinner was excellent. We used room service and did not eat in the MDR. This did not detract from the experience as every day the food was delivered promptly and hot. We ate off the MDR menu. The salads. however were always terrible. The breakfast buffet was good and lunch was hit or miss. The sushi at dinner was the best I have ever seen on a ship. It will be a shame to lose this if Celebrity chooses to convert all the Bistro on 5's to sushi restaurants. The Bistro on this cruise was a disappointment. The menu had changed since our last cruise and ALL our favorites were gone. Entertainment was plentiful but quality-wise was mediocre. BUT that is my taste. The comedian had a good show and bad, the production shows were just ok. There was something going on every night which was a good thing. Despite the bad weather the ship was very smooth even on the day we had 17' waves. The size and layout of the ship are very nice indeed. The crew was mostly happy, helpful and very friendly. It really does start at the top. The captain was nothing but cordial and jovial every time I saw him. I liked the three ports we stopped at. Madeira, Gibraltar and Cartegena. I did not participate in any ship excursion. The issues I had: We had a bad smell in the bathroom and on the floor near us that made my eyes water but it was resolved quickly along with an A/C issue. Our safe broke the first day and it took 3 trips by a mechanic to fix it but in the end it was no big deal. There were no free in room movies like our cruise had - all were $12.95. This was a disappointment. The background music on open decks and in public rooms was the WORST music I have ever heard. Mostly covers performed horribly and WAY TOO LOUD - this was supposed to be background music! Whoever's job it was the pick the music should have been made to walk the plank. It WAS that bad 99% of the time. There were days that the smoking side of deck 4 was closed due to high winds yet the jogging track on the high deck with more wind was open. There was too much maintenance on open decks; keeping them closed at inconvenient times. My pants one day were ruined by a solution that was being used to clean deck chairs. The actual deck and chair became stained as well. I brought this to the attention of guest relations and they actually credited me for most of the cost of the pants without an argument. This was greatly appreciated. It paid to take pictures. The ocean spa cafe charged $6 for a smoothie of mixed fruit that was free to eat. I thought this was absurd. Their breakfast offerings were good though. We liked the Reflection lounge on deck 11 but they closed it an absurd amount of times for private functions. One bad moment we had was when the Captain's club rep knocked my wife down in a rush to get people out of the lounge for one such function. Ultimately he found us, embarrassed; apologized a thousand times, sent us wine, chocolate covered strawberries and a free dinner at the Bistro. I was really angry at first but he did make it right. He was extremely nice to us the remainder of the cruise (as he should have been) There is no excuse for what happened. EVER! Yes this seems like a lot of complaints but all I am trying to do here is give you an idea of what the cruise was like and hopefully someone from Celebrity will take note of the issues we had. We had a great time and this ship and its' crew have restored my faith in Celebrity and we did book another cruise while on board. We now have two future cruises to look forward to. The last thing I would like to talk about is how this ship is extremely UNFRIENDLY to people with mobility issues. Too many raised thresholds and no buttons to push to open doors to the cabin or to get outside. A person with a mobility problem simply cannot take a cruise on this ship alone. This problem really really should be addressed the next time the ship is in dry dock. Disembarkation in CIvitavecchia was excellent although the buses to get to the port exit are also extremely unfriendly to people with mobility issues. This should also be addressed at some point. Again, I loved this cruise. The food and crew far exceeded our expectations. All the issues we had were resolved in a timely manner and in no way detracted from the overall experience.

Faith Restored in Celebrity

Celebrity Constellation Cruise Review by twin123185

5 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We love transatlantic cruising. Only having to fly one way is a big plus and cruising this way is usually cheaper than flying. You can't eat, drink and be pampered on an 8 hour flight! We chose this cruise because we wanted to spend some time in southern Italy post cruise. We had previously been on another Celebrity transatlantic 6 months earlier (see my Silhouette review) that was not very good so we did not have high hopes for this one but since we were using the ship primarily as transportation and not as a vacation this was ok. Well we were pleasantly surprised as we had an excellent cruise albeit not without a few issues. Embarkation in Fort Lauderdale was quick and easy surprisingly!

Firstly, the food was GREAT. Our last TA it was TERRIBLE. Almost every dinner was excellent. We used room service and did not eat in the MDR. This did not detract from the experience as every day the food was delivered promptly and hot. We ate off the MDR menu. The salads. however were always terrible. The breakfast buffet was good and lunch was hit or miss. The sushi at dinner was the best I have ever seen on a ship. It will be a shame to lose this if Celebrity chooses to convert all the Bistro on 5's to sushi restaurants. The Bistro on this cruise was a disappointment. The menu had changed since our last cruise and ALL our favorites were gone.

Entertainment was plentiful but quality-wise was mediocre. BUT that is my taste. The comedian had a good show and bad, the production shows were just ok. There was something going on every night which was a good thing. Despite the bad weather the ship was very smooth even on the day we had 17' waves. The size and layout of the ship are very nice indeed. The crew was mostly happy, helpful and very friendly. It really does start at the top. The captain was nothing but cordial and jovial every time I saw him. I liked the three ports we stopped at. Madeira, Gibraltar and Cartegena. I did not participate in any ship excursion.

The issues I had:

We had a bad smell in the bathroom and on the floor near us that made my eyes water but it was resolved quickly along with an A/C issue. Our safe broke the first day and it took 3 trips by a mechanic to fix it but in the end it was no big deal. There were no free in room movies like our cruise had - all were $12.95. This was a disappointment.

The background music on open decks and in public rooms was the WORST music I have ever heard. Mostly covers performed horribly and WAY TOO LOUD - this was supposed to be background music! Whoever's job it was the pick the music should have been made to walk the plank. It WAS that bad 99% of the time.

There were days that the smoking side of deck 4 was closed due to high winds yet the jogging track on the high deck with more wind was open. There was too much maintenance on open decks; keeping them closed at inconvenient times.

My pants one day were ruined by a solution that was being used to clean deck chairs. The actual deck and chair became stained as well. I brought this to the attention of guest relations and they actually credited me for most of the cost of the pants without an argument. This was greatly appreciated. It paid to take pictures.

The ocean spa cafe charged $6 for a smoothie of mixed fruit that was free to eat. I thought this was absurd. Their breakfast offerings were good though.

We liked the Reflection lounge on deck 11 but they closed it an absurd amount of times for private functions. One bad moment we had was when the Captain's club rep knocked my wife down in a rush to get people out of the lounge for one such function. Ultimately he found us, embarrassed; apologized a thousand times, sent us wine, chocolate covered strawberries and a free dinner at the Bistro. I was really angry at first but he did make it right. He was extremely nice to us the remainder of the cruise (as he should have been) There is no excuse for what happened. EVER!

Yes this seems like a lot of complaints but all I am trying to do here is give you an idea of what the cruise was like and hopefully someone from Celebrity will take note of the issues we had. We had a great time and this ship and its' crew have restored my faith in Celebrity and we did book another cruise while on board. We now have two future cruises to look forward to.

The last thing I would like to talk about is how this ship is extremely UNFRIENDLY to people with mobility issues. Too many raised thresholds and no buttons to push to open doors to the cabin or to get outside. A person with a mobility problem simply cannot take a cruise on this ship alone. This problem really really should be addressed the next time the ship is in dry dock.

Disembarkation in CIvitavecchia was excellent although the buses to get to the port exit are also extremely unfriendly to people with mobility issues. This should also be addressed at some point.

Again, I loved this cruise. The food and crew far exceeded our expectations. All the issues we had were resolved in a timely manner and in no way detracted from the overall experience.
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