We chose this cruse to revisit Greek islands and ports on the Dalmatian coast.
I rated this cruise average, but that is being generous. Poor is too harsh, but.....
Every time we board a Celebrity cruise ship these days we feel as if everything is being dumbed down an cheapened. You get hassled for upgrades to the drink package and to buy specialty dining packages.
You cannot enjoy a classic drink package martini at the martini bar any longer. They will only serve a classic drink package martini at the martini bar in a whiskey glass. Either this is to embarrass you to upgrade your drink package or they want you to just go to another bar to make space for people on the upgraded package or cash customers. It was very annoying. Seems everyone is on a drink package these days so its no longer considered a perk. A heads up about this change by email would have been appreciated as it put a bad taste in our mouths as we began our cruise and it was embarrassing as if we were inferior guests only on a classic drink package.
Sushi is no longer served in the cafe at 6 PM. They opened a sushi restaurant on deck 5, but no one was ever seen in there. You can't charge today for something that was free yesterday.
Concierge canapes were just broken crackers and a dip every afternoon. Perhaps one afternoon we got some olives also.
Food in the main dining room has gone further down hill. Entrees of duck breast were fine but those of half roast duck and lamb shank were over cooked to the point of shredded pork bbq. There are now Roladen with so called crispy crust which turned out to be recycled shredded lamb or chicken with a soggy wrapping that was supposed to be the crispy crust. Everything was over salted especially the escargot, soups were watery and salty. One evening the New England clam chowder had no clams or potatoes, I must say the onion soup passed muster as a reliable choice every evening.
If Celebrity wants to spend less for food per passenger, serve smaller entrees of higher quality, size doesn't matter, quality does. One evening I had a square cube so called steak. I could not cut through with a steak knife. They are always quick to take it away and get another or something else. Make it right the first time is also a money saver. Again, quality not quantity please!
I worry that next time we board a Celebrity cruise ship we will pass under the golden arches as we board, but that's not fair to McDonalds as even the hamburgers and fries at the pool bar were cold when served. Just awful. Too much cooked ahead and then left to cool for the next sucker.
Ports were fine, but ship sponsored tours were not up to par. Worst was in Zadar Croatia. We enjoy Croatia when we can visit Ston, Split and Dubrovnik as we did on Celebrity in 2013. This was our first and last visit to Zadar. Nothing to do there except walk around "old town" after paying about $12.50 for a ship shuttle. We took a ship sponsored tour named Tastes of the Dalmatian Coast. It was an hour an a half bus ride with a toilet stop only to view a church and short walk through the old part of a village, a refreshment stop at a highway rest area restaurant then a long ride back to Zadar for a 30 minute walk through its old town, 30 minutes of free time before returning to the ship. Not worth getting off the ship for. By the way, the toilet stop required Croatian kuna coins that no one had. The ship didn't have an Croatian kuna to exchange for euros. Please, give the tour guide enough kuna coins for everyone the bus and add it to the cost of the tour.
The Koper, Slovenia tour was nice. Its a locally run hop off and taste tour of several interesting coastal villages around Koper. At each village you got to taste different snacks. One stop was cake, another was gelato, a third was wine and cheese, espresso at another. You had at least one hour at each location to walk around at your own pace and you could stay longer at any stop. Buses came by every hour and you could hop on to the next village or return to one you liked. This tour is available off the ship or can be purchased through Celebrity at an additional cost, but you get the first bus of the day at 10 AM.
Lastly, if anyone sees someone in Michael's club which is still exclusive for suites guests please post it. That was one of the most enjoyable bars on Celebrity.
We have a Celebrity cruise booked in February 2017. We are rethinking our plans.
Deck 9 on a Millennium class Celebrity ship isn't the best location. The expanded deck 10 above over hangs your veranda and gives you a closed in feeling on your veranda. Choose deck 7 or 8 if possible. Otherwise the cabin was fine. As usual not enough hangers for ladies. Our assistant cabin steward was more responsive and visible than the steward.
We actually docked in Salerno, but its not listed. Herculaneum is more interesting and easier to walk through than Pompeii.View All 79 Herculaneum Reviews
This is a Hop On - Hop Off tour of the port of Piraeus and Athens. You have to change buses at the Acropolis. Once you get past the best tourist places in Athens the remaining part of the route isn't worth it. Transfer back to the Piraeus bus at the Acropolis to return to the ship was problematic due to everyone wanting to return at the same time. However, it was orderly and well managed by the Hop Off - Hop On people and all was well in the end.View All 164 City Tour Reviews
The Alrontiri village part was great. I give it a 4.5 out of 5. The crowds in Ola were terrible and things got dangerous in narrow streets we had to pass through. Things got worse when we had to return to the ship from Fira by cable car. We were taken to Santorini by launch from the ship to the port of Santorini where we met the bus. But we were not returned to the port. We had to wait 90 minutes in the hot sun for our turn to take the cable car down from Fira to the catch a launch to the ship. This spoiled the entire day for us and others. F- to Celebrity for this.View All 119 Island Tour Reviews
Again we were let down by Celebrity. They had a free shuttle bus to Mykonos village, but it didn't take us all the way. We ended up having to walk about a kilometer to the center of the village. Little did we know there is a water shuttle at the port that cost only 2 euros each way to the village center. people on ships port that couldn't dock were bettor off as their launchs took them directly to the village center. Mykonos has an interesting small village to walk about, shop and have lunch.
90 minutes in a bus to visit a church, have a snack at a highway rest area restaurant and then a return to Zadar for a 30 minute walk about in the old village with an additional 30 minutes free time. Not worth getting off the ship for.
Bus takes you to different villages where you can spend one hour or more with coupons for snacks. Walk about at your own pace, have lunch, etc and then reboard a bus for the next village. Buses run every hour.
Hotel San Giorgio offers a free shuttle to the cruise port and shuttle from Rome airport for a fee.