Just took the Celebrity Millenium cruise to Alaska, but just returned from our vacation – in total we were gone over 2 weeks (and one week was the cruise). We like cruising Alaska, so when some we were with our friends last July 2022, we said ‘what should we do in 2023?’ The answer that hot July was go somewhere not so hot! The cruise, which left from Vancouver and ended in Seward, was more than acceptable. The scenery is amazing and the ship is very stable, the ports stopped at are interesting and engaging. We were on the 8th floor veranda midship, starboard side and going from Vancouver-Seward, that is the side that sees most land. Although a lot of times, you are in passages surrounded by mountains and shores. We were traveling with others, who had rooms next to us. We didn’t realize that the inside rooms faced the port side and not starboard. We assumed that our others would be across the hall, and they weren’t. It doesn’t show that on the deck map when you book.
The cruise was packed with a lot of families! Which was a surprise to me for a luxury cruise, but that was nice to see. It never felt crazy busy. The staff was super, our servers at dinner were very helpful often going the extra mile! The room attendant was excellent. The management staff was always around checking to make sure that we were getting drinks, directions, whatever… Our tour came with the Classic Drink package, which was perfect for us, because it covered the standard glass of wine or cocktail at dinner, all of which were decent labels. We’d have an occasional pina colada, beer, or drink for the bar and they were free. The bartender checks on what our beverage package was by scanning the Seapass card, and the charge for the drinks appeared on our account as $0. Because we were Concierge class, there were some extra amenities in our room including a tea-time snack. We had continental breakfast delivered for free to the room. The pre-paid gratuities package was also a nice addition. We paid extra ahead of the departure for a dinner at the Tuscan Grill (excellent) and the Q-SINE (very clever!). These upgrade restaurants were fun and worth the $$. The Main dining room had adequate menus and portions were small, but the friendly servers would bring out seconds. It wasn’t gourmet, but it was often tasty. We went to the Oceanview Buffet, which was often packed at breakfast and lunch. These were the same quality as college dining halls. Salad, charcuterrie, pasta, panini… mexican, asian, indian,… Strangely enough, they never served any Alaskan Seafood!! They had salmon but it was never listed as Alaskan Salmon. No halibut, cod, king crab, mussels, … When we went on shore, it was specifically to find Alaskan seafood.
We saw three of the featured shows and liked them a lot; the casts were very talented. The naturalist, Celia Gardner, was excellent. She gave 4 talks on the natural wonders of Alaska in the ship Theater. Topics included 1) Whales, 2) Bears, 3) Seals and Otters, 4) Bald Eagles. Although it was often foggy, we saw a lot of Alaska from the ship. We spent too many hours at various ‘trivia’ and ‘game’ programs (lots of fun here). We listened to a duo who we thought were excellent and another band that covered a lot of popular tunes (e.g., Beatles.)
The cabin was very nice although it would have been nice if the walls between balconies were removable like on Princess. Our traveling companions were next door. There was plenty of room for our stuff and we were able to organize things efficiently. Shower was hot and had good pressure. The Room Steward was wonderful (but they all are, aren't they!!). Room service was prompt and the coffee arrived hot!
This really isn't a port, but is the highlight of the cruise. The Hubbard glacier is massive and the Captain of the Millenium got us within a few miles (maybe 2?) of the front. He 'spun' the boat so both sides of the ship could see the glacier up close.