We arrived after a good flight with Easyjet from Luton and cleared through the modern terminal at Barcelona.
A rapid taxi drive by a relation of Fernando Alonso took us to the harbour terminal in around 20 minutes and relieved me of around 40 euros.
I had not been looking forward to the boarding procedure as a previous cruise on Constellation from Miami had been chaotic in the cruise terminal, however this was not to be the case on this cruise and literally with no queue we were on board within minutes.
Our previous cruise on board this ship had been in the Caribbean a year earlier so we wee keen to see the changes made.
Firstly our cabin where we had travelled Concierge class last time and I thought the difference was hardly worth the excess. We were not disappointed with our 1B balcony cabin. Some of the changes were;-
A flat screen television with sky services and a few other channels was welcome to keep in touch with the world, our bill and where we were.
Some furniture changes and no doubt some of the soft furnishings.
Eating was much the same and the main and self service restaurants are serving the same good quality food with very pleasant waiters but a couple of the speciality restaurants had changed.
We did not visit Tuscan Grill which was new but heard good reports. We had enjoyed Ocean liners on our last cruise and although it was of very high quality it did not quite seem to be as outstanding as my last visit,maybe to be fair it was the lack of novelty to me. We did visit the Crepe Bar which seemed to be very quiet throughout the cruise and it was extremely good. We were served by the most delightful waitress and all the staff were extremely pleasant. We were treated like old friends every time we passed the venue on the rest of the cruise.
One of the biggest changes that we found on this cruise was the entertainment and the shows that were put on by a troupe of dancers and singers were just excellent. A magician was fairly good however a Welsh singer comedienne was hilarious although some of her humour may not of amused our American travellers as much! We also visited Michaels Club were our American cruisers were in hysterics over Perry Grant but I am afraid he failed to tickle my fancy!
Our docking into Villefrance was cancelled due to bad weather and we had to divert to Monte Carlo, everybody say shame! Very much appreciated and quite a tight fit for Constellation on her first visit however the heavens had arranged a constant downpour and we were soaked nearly as much as the elderly lady who fell in the harbour. Next visit to Genoa was poor due to the many lowlife that hang around this harbour. Livorno and Cittevechia were good as was Naples(watch out for pickpockets!) as the sun was shining after all but the Italians have euro signs flashing in their eyeballs as soon as they see a cruise ship.
This ship is still a beautiful cruiser mainly because of the staff who put in heart and soul into their jobs. Well done Celebrity but just keep an eye on the cost of port transfers, excursions and wine. We know you have to make money but don't spoil the ship by overpricing.