This was our sixth cruise with Celebrity but the first time on a Millennium class of ship. All our previous five cruises have been on the Solstice class.
For embarkation the drive into Bayonne, NJ is not exactly the most inviting of cruise terminal arrivals. We also had issues coming from our Manhattan hotel and not realising the majority of NYC yellow cabs would not cross the Hudson to go to NJ. So our hotel booked us a car. Traffic at Bayonne was queuing and slow and we waited about 30 minutes before our driver could drop us off. It wasn’t organised very well by the port authority. There was space to park but not being utilised by the port staff. But once into the terminal and onto the ship was very easy and quick. One of the best ever. Having previously uploaded our photos and getting Captain’s Club priority helped. We were on board by about 12.45pm. Going straight to your room door to pick up the cards is slick as well.
This was also our first time in an Aqua room. We only booked it as a treat for our 40th wedding anniversary. Okay so we know for Concierge class you can go to the main dining room on arrival for lunch. But there is no explanation for Aqua guests, so checking with Guest Relations, yes you can go in the MDR. So we got there about 1.15pm to be told, sorry lunch closed at 1pm. So why didn’t Guest Relations say this and why did Celebrity in their e-mail tell us to embark between 1 and 1.30pm? So up to Oceanview cafe on Deck 10 and join the mad rush! The Oceanview cafe seating was generally good with additional stools and tables against the windows but when the weather is bad there is no overflow capacity outside by the Sunset bar, so everyone is inside! And it is cramped and can be difficult to find seating at the peak lunch time period.