Embarkation at Southampton was quick & efficient, cabin was fine though a little minimalist in its decor.Our cabin steward, Anand, was excellent and we thanked him very much for his work and his friendliness.
Dining: We generally ate in the MDR as the Oceanview Cafe was like a ferry with good food options but chaos trying to move around the serving isles and finding a table... One fellow passenger referred to the Cafe as "...a bunfight.." The food in the MDR was good overall and our servers - Jobita and Pavel, were very good, friendly and efficient. The Aqua Spa Cafe was a nice touch though it wasn't clear exactly what was included and what we had to pay for, also the staff there were fairly miserable....
We ate in Murano twice and Tuscan Grille once, the food was good BUT not worth the extra $50 per head extra on top of what we'd already paid for the MDR. The menus are limited in each restaurant. I also did a galley tour whilst on a sea day and that was good but ended up as a selling exercise :(
Three sea days on the trot is not much fun when the sea was rough and we couldn't wait to get off at Sao Miguel. All the port days were very enjoyable as were the two excursions we did - Sao Miguel - Crater Lakes and Teide National Park, Tenerife.
In general the crew and especially the officers we saw around the ship were quite offish and made little or no attempt to even say "Hello", this we found very odd and rude and not like other cruise lines we've used; perhaps some customer service training would be a good idea? So they remember why we're all here on the ship.
Other niggles were : $4.50 for a small bottle of water!!! $10 for port shuttle buses and why are coffees/teas not included free with a meal, especially in the speciality dining rooms? We didn't once order a coffee after a meal as we knew we'd have to pay extra for them. This is poor and again unlike other "premium" cruise lines.
Entertainment: OMG, I don't think we managed to last more that 10 minutes at any event we went too, it was somewhat Butlins like and not for us; and judging by the empty seats then not for others either! The cruise director was too loud & over the top with her 10:00 am announcements and general chat so much so that I'd turn our cabin TV up so we'd not have to listen.
So, overall it was a mixed cruise experience and we're unlikely to use Celebrity again. Shame, as we'd heard good things about them. They may think they're a luxury/premium cruise line but the level of service is the first thing you'd notice.
Cabin was roomy but minimalistic; not the best place to be when the sea is rough either :(
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