Just got off Celebrity's Summit three days ago. What a disappointment! The good, first: the ship is spotless and the cabin steward was the best in the business. They should make him director of customer relations...he really "gets" it. I responded to a blast email that was waiting for me when I got home offering the director of something with RCI the chance to call me to discuss the issues I had with the ship before posting anything...no response.
Now the not so good: I'm a "Captain's Club" member for what that was worth on this cruise. The desk was seldom open and the person staffing it was of no help. The concierge was usless. Example: while the ship was docked in Venice I wanted to make a local call. He refused to do it saying I could do so from my cabin. Hah! This cost $7.95 per minute. My cell phone did finally work on land but what a joke. EVERYTHING that was not included in the cruise price was prohibitably expensive: shore excursions, bottled water ($2.50 for 10 ounces), wine, wine tastings, vodka, vodka tastings, jewelry, tee shirts, mixed drinks, etc. One shore excursion was great, the other very expensive for a short period of time. Furthermore, while in Venice and having paid for a shore excursion, the staff refused to allow us to board a shuttle boat because we had not paid for that particular service. In previous ports, that was not a problem. There's little time for shopping in museum book stores because they want to take to other retail sources with whom they have an interest (glass blowing factory in Venice vs the book shop at St. Mark's). Booked a private driver for three cities through Internet website for 1,200 Euros. Inquired about this from Celebrity before sailing...their price $5,300 (yes, $5,300). Spa treatments were about the same as at home but the "relaxing" music was not quiet Asian sounds but the ship's "radio" with among other "pieces", rap music. I just loved listening to that during a masaage. Hard sell for acupuncture and their products.
The food on this ship is mediocre compared to previous Celebrity cruises. Of course, the night the comment cards appeared in the cabins was the night of lobster and filet. Celebrity must feel that familiarity breeds friendship because most employees who were much, much younger than I felt quite comfortable calling me by my first name. At almost 60 I've lived long enough to determine who I want to be on a first name basis with. Even my 30 year-old son's friends are not that presumptuous despite having known them most of their lives. The staff assumed we were life-long friends. Celebrity needs to instruct staff that all older women are not flattered by that. And speaking of the dining room, "formal" night is a joke. Despite saying on the website and in printed materials about certain expectations regarding dress codes, ANYTHING goes...shorts, jeans, tee shirts, whatever passengers feeling like throwing on is permitted in the dining room. The staff has been instructed to let it slide.
The "security" staff is positively obsessive about passengers bringing back alcohol. Never did, never tried but every single day they went through my camera bag thinking that a long lens was a bottle. This group of cracker jack security officers insisted one day on x-raying my film camera even after I asked them to hand inspect it, telling me that the film would be safe. I travel with a lead-lined bag to protect my film and asked them to hand inspect the camera because I hadn't placed it in that bag. They refused and proceeded to patronizing tell me everything was safe. What was frightening is that they NEVER looked inside the lead-lined bag. I could have had booze, guns, or explosives but their main priority was the alcohol that might slip on board.
The photographers are aggressive every time you get off the ship and you need to be down right rude to get them to leave you alone. Again, $20 for one digital photo on formal night. Who are they kidding?
Will I book with Celebrity again? Probably not. As much as I love to travel and to cruise, I will go longer between trips and go for a shorter time with a high-end line like Sea Dream Yacht Club. Celebrity had a good product at one time and they've let it become run-of-the-mill service with an expensive price tag.
Deck nine, concierge class, enough room, great room service.
Spent four days there before sailing...wonderful city.
Great shore excursion, great guide.
Used a private driver, not one from Celebrity...great experience.
Used a private driver, not one from Celebrity. Went to the Amalfi Coast.
Did everything on our own. Most beautiful island in the world.