Great ship, comfortable rooms, very friendly and acccomodating staff. Celebrity does a tremendous job of keeping all areas of the ship clean at all times. Food was quite good in the main dining as well as the buffet. We enjoyed almost all aspects of the onboard experiences.
As is a struggle with most larger capacity ships, they are understaffed at the popular bars during the busy cocktail hours and while people are waiting to be called for their dinner seating. Some flex help would be appreciated.
The major problem we and others had was with the on shore excursions. They seemed to have changed their approach from the last Celebrity cruise we were on in the Baltic. Their tour group size is now a completely full bus of about 50 people. This makes for some very uncomfortable and even useless touring. Imagine what happens when the guide doesn't provide headphone systems. Taking a reasonable walk of 8-10 blocks and up slight hills for a group of 50 seniors, results in people being stretched out over 2-3 blocks. So those that were able to keep up are left waiting for 5 +/- minutes while the guide gathers the flock. This sort of thing happened on every tour.
Worse than this, when the guide takes you to a museum, less than half of the guests are able to even be in the same room as the guide. So he/she is describing things that are not visible to half of the group. Then, as she moves on to the next room, that left out group is able to peak into the rom they left and try to figure out what she was talking about. And so it goes throughout the remainder of that and other museums. On one occasion, we were not given headphones so the guide was actually yelling every description while competing with her own echo and the echoes of other tourists in the same facility. Think 100% hard surfaces, many tourists and a yelling guide in the room that you can't get into. Miserable!!
After 2 consecutive tours like this that totally wasted our money and were a drudgery to live through, we only took "on your own" shuttles. Going forward, we'll be booking private tours as they are quite a bit cheaper and way more enjoyable, hands down.
We brought this to the attention of the excursion desk and to our Concierge. They "appreciated the comments" but not enough to even attempt to make restitution of any type.
Unfortunately, this process should be an enjoyable experience. I mean this is one of the main reasons for cruising. Sad that Celebrity appears to have chosen to capture revenues at the expense of an enjoyable experience.
Finally, I would have preffered to post this on the Celebrity site but was unable to as their review option expires 7 days after disembarking and we were still traveling in Rome. Seems like a rather short time period to respond. But then, maybe preventing reviews is what they prefer.
We happen to get a handicap cabin and enjoyed the extra space. Room attendants were very good. Room service food was rather poor. Our opinion and that of many that we conversed with.