The Sushi on Five was the best of all! My mom and I ate there 3x. Blu & Qsine came in at a close 2nd and a tie. Luminae came in 3rd and Tuscan Grill was a definite NO! I enjoyed eating at the restaurants one because the Ocean View and ... Read More
The Sushi on Five was the best of all! My mom and I ate there 3x. Blu & Qsine came in at a close 2nd and a tie. Luminae came in 3rd and Tuscan Grill was a definite NO! I enjoyed eating at the restaurants one because the Ocean View and Main Dining were NOT up to par; the choices didn't alter per night and basically we ate the same thing every meal, every day. I do not know if that is a ploy to get you to pay for the extra dining or not... but we did. You REALLY need to improve on the Main Dining and Ocean View! The staterooms were really nice and larger than I every thought!
The Men and Women who worked on the cruise line where the best!!!The exiting process was nightmare'ish to say the least. Celebrity, stop nickel and diming every little thing. Read Less
First the positives.. Ship and cabin were immaculate and the constant cleaning bears that out. The crew is extremely friendly and when they meet your eye they smile and greet you which makes you feel wanted. Embarcation and discharge at ... Read More
First the positives.. Ship and cabin were immaculate and the constant cleaning bears that out. The crew is extremely friendly and when they meet your eye they smile and greet you which makes you feel wanted. Embarcation and discharge at the end of the trip are down to a science and waits are minimul due to fast moving lines and multiple agents. Finally the activities during sea days offer something for all tastes. They have also solved the age old problem of the "chaise hogs" who reserve early in the AM and never show up until late in the day not allowing guest who need the chairs to have access. Crew now removes towels and books if they see that they are unoccupied for several hours.
Now the negatives. We have been sailing regularly with Celebrity since the day they were acquired by Royal and unfortunately have seen a constant drop in food quality. Obviously this is based on economics but now it is becoming obvious to the regular travelers with this cruise line. Number of menu items and choices are far less than in the past, size of portions have decreased. and the quality of the items is not the same. They actually had drumfish (which is a trash fish) as the fish choice one evening-rejected by two table members who tried as foul tasting. The buffet also has obvious cost cutting- the carvery station did not have beef or turkey but pork every day (less expensive) and the cold shrimp which used to be a staple on every lunch is no longer served. They have also eliminated the free sushi and ice cream at 5 pm every day.
Entertainment with the prouction show was really poor, obscure original music with an over production of dance that had no discernable theme and I as well as many others walked out. Why not go back to revolving guest performers who had acts that the guests enjoyed rather than less expensive production shows using taped music background.
Finally we went concierge class which is hardly worth it, except for early boarding. The promised snacks consisted of a lump of cheese, a single shrimp, and similar items that amounted to under three ounces of food. All served with no crackers to put the cheese or spreads on. When asked the steward came back with a package crackers like you get with a bowl of soup. The fresh fruit was two apples., no bananas or oranges or pears-which were available on the buffet so the ship had them. The free wine bottle which used to be in the state room upon arrival now required asking the steward to deliver, which a number of guests were unaware of so they never ordered.
All in all, the cruise was enjoyable but please Celebrity raise your rates for a few bucks and go back to your old standards/ Read Less
We chose this cruise for price (they had a terrific "two for one sale" on Concierge Class) - and for destination of St Kitts and San Juan. We were not very interested in St Thomas or St Martin. We had tow previous Cruises on ... Read More
We chose this cruise for price (they had a terrific "two for one sale" on Concierge Class) - and for destination of St Kitts and San Juan. We were not very interested in St Thomas or St Martin. We had tow previous Cruises on Celebrity (Equinox and Solstice) which we LOVED. ST Kitts is our favorite island and we cant' understand why the ship does not dock until 6:00 p.m. - a 4:30 call is too early.
The public areas including the spa and Solarium blasted loud, cheesy music , and the theme for the crew seemed to be "Sell, Sell, Sell". The dinner menu and cuisine the first six nights was exceedingly lackluster. Then, they pulled out all the stops for their Christmas Eve and Christmas Day menus...offering all of our favorites at once. Why not spread out the appealing items over the 8 nights? To the credit of the very hard working chefs, the buffet on Christmas Day at lunch was spectacular...but the lines were very, very long at the carving station. The desserts were over the top in presentation. The breads at breakfast and lunch were superb- not so much at dinner in the dining room - when the rolls seemed too hard often.
We arrived an hour late in San Juan because of rough seas, so the Captain extended the time. Btu is was frustrated to not have daylight for sightseeing in the beautiful Old City.
I got a good bargain on a ring in St Thomas, and we had a lovely cab driver name Jai in St Martin. He took us north up to Loterie Farm where I swam and we enjoyed a delicious lunch.
The cabin was very good with a super-comfy bed. I had to request feather free pillow and our steward gave us lots of extra. The balcony was a good size.There was adequate storage space. My only complaint about the room is that the refrigerator never got cold.
I had two overpriced spa treatments during this cruise and neither masseuse was especially good, and one really bullied me trying to get me to purchase product. I did not give in, thank goodness.
Compared to the other ships, we did not care for the Silhouette and would not book on it again. It seemed several steps down from the Equinox and Solstice in overall quality of service, and friendliness.
We obtained a great sale price for this cruise, so I almost feel that I should not be so critical. But I certainly do not see enough of an advantage for Concierge Class vs. a regular veranda cabin.
P.S. I lost a valuable earring in the Cabin and it was not found, Read Less
Eastern & Western Caribbean (B2B)
As a veteran cruiser, of 22 Cruises total, I must say this cruise (B2B) left me feeling empty. Yes, it beat working or being home in the harsh realities of winter, and any time on ... Read More
Eastern & Western Caribbean (B2B)
As a veteran cruiser, of 22 Cruises total, I must say this cruise (B2B) left me feeling empty. Yes, it beat working or being home in the harsh realities of winter, and any time on a cruise ship is a good time. I can only give the Silhouette Three Stars, and wish I had better researched the ship prior to booking my B2B. But most of my critical thoughts are based around the food or dining options....
Our cabin, 9358 and cabin steward, Marcos, were Excellent! I have nothing but high marks for him. We never wanted for anything. A mere mention of a thought or idea, and it happened! He gave us the space when needed, serviced our room when it worked for us; as it should be. We tipped him accordingly.
Lawn Club Grill, for lunch, #1
We tried it during the first of the B2B and found it to be quite good; $10 per person charge. The Cookie for desert alone was worth it! Great Concept!
We booked a Concierge room and found the cabin space to be less than expected.... not less in square footage, so to speak, but it seemed as if there are less cubby holes or shelf space to stick the little things you need a place for. So as another reviewer had already mentioned, doing a B2B in this cabin was tight & cozy. We made it work, being very disciplined in putting things where they needed to go, etc.
Lawn Club Grill, for lunch, #2
We went there a second time during the first cruise and found it to be quite disorganized. Service was fair at best, but the time for the meal was double of what it should have been. The Chef's / Cooks were even arguing among themselves and the burger took too long.... $10 service charge.
With a hope to repeat our first experience (in the good section, above) we went a third time to the Lawn Club Grill, #3. Made reservations beforehand.
Arrived a few minutes prior to our reserved time. Waited. and waited, behind another couple. The wait for seating, at the entrance was over 8 minutes; for a Specialty Restaurant, with Reservations! Upon being escorted to a table, another wait started. 5-10 minutes before anyone noticed us enough to give us water. Actually, No One had noticed us, and I had managed to flag down the hostess that had escorted us to our table, and pointed out that 10 minutes later, we had not even been acknowledged or offered water. It was clear they were overwhelmed with the crowd. However I dispute that, as when I made my reservation, they said "all we have open is 1:00" which I accepted. So based on reservations, they knew they were going to be busy. Finally, it appeared as if additional staff appeared. A manager looking person saw the look on my face and came over to ask why I was looking so frustrated. I explained what had happened thus far, to which she listened and apologized. Burgers arrived soon afterwards..... and the desert cookie seconds after our burger boards had been cleared. So it seems to have made a difference? Service Charge $15 / per person! Not sure where I missed seeing the increase, but for lunch approaching not worth it.
We too received the letter 'suggesting' that for Select we come at this time or that time? What? Isn't the whole concept of Select Dining to come when you want to? Not when it's convenient for the Dining Room? Regardless of when we went to the Dining room, the Select Dining Hostess always seemed overwhelmed. We came one night, she was in panic mode as it was busy; were told it would be 20 minutes, and given a pager to wait. Another night, no line, but she still appeared frazzled and had to find someone to escort us to a table. So after considering most meals to be 'ok' we ended up using the Oceanview Cafe for many meals. Very peaceful and you pretty much had the place to your self.
I spoke to another passenger, that said they had excellent service when they had sailed on the Silhouette over a year ago. But they had noticed a decline in service (and manpower) from a year ago, to this cruise. They were told that the Cabin stewards used to handle 25 cabins, with a helper. Helpers are no more, so the cabin number has been reduced. However as I mentioned above, our Cabin Steward was awesome -- but it cause me to pause: If there really have been staff reductions in Housekeeping, can I assume the same happened in other departments? For example Dining, which could explain some of my thoughts surrounding Select Dining or the Lawn Club Grill?
I found this ship to be beautiful, but not very well run. All the public areas were clean and well maintained; We arrived at each port at exactly or later than the schedule time (don't most RCL ships arrive before the scheduled time?)
Officers are very visible and very approachable!
Also too much energy is spent trying to sell you something / anything while you're on board. Watches, Jewelry, future cruises, etc...
The Shows were good, and we too loved the December63 group (saw them twice); loved all the comedians - Rich and Luigi both did an Excellent job. I also thought Patrick, that ran most of the Games, did a great job. I can easily see him as a Cruise Director someday soon.
Tender service was a pain in Grand Cayman, but what tender process isn't?
Despite everything above, I will most likely book another Celebrity Cruise -- just not on the Silhouette Read Less
I have done this cruise several times over the past five years. I would have always rated this cruise in the A to A+ category - this cruise however merits a B- and I am being generous.
The embarkation process was the worst nightmare I ... Read More
I have done this cruise several times over the past five years. I would have always rated this cruise in the A to A+ category - this cruise however merits a B- and I am being generous.
The embarkation process was the worst nightmare I have ever experienced and I have done over 30 cruises. The terminal was packed, and no one was moving to get on the ship for hours. Announcements in respect of boarding the ship were made, but by a staff member who had a very heavy accent and no one could understand him. I was asked to complete a comment card in the middle of the cruise, and I dealt specifically with this issue, and received no responses whatsoever from Celebrity. Thus, the cruise began badly.
The overall appearance of the ship is beginning to deteriorate. Wear and tear was readily apparent in the pool area and in public large rooms. Both pool floors on the main deck are in great need of painting and look terrible.
Captain Leo, the Master of the Vessel, is outstanding and has a great sense of humour. He is very approachable. Simona is in charge of Guest Relations and I must say that I was really impressed with her and her staff. Very professional and very helpful.
The food in the Buffet on the 14th floor was exceptional. The food in the main dining room was a huge disappointment. I returned 3 meals during the cruise, put up with cold or lukewarm soups/entrees on a number of occasions and often the food was completely tasteless. Huge change from the past. The menu needs a complete overhaul.
Entertainment was also a disappointment. It started off really badly with 3 Canadian singers (I too am Canadian and was embarrassed) and the productions were the same as last year. The casts were changed, and the singers are not nearly as good as they were last year. The magician was a joke, Savannah Smith shouted her performance. On the other hand Lou Gazzara was first class and a real performer, he was absolutely loved by the audience. In addition, he is a super guy and very friendly.
Its always the same re activities on Celebrity - never changes. They need to come up with some new ideas and implement them.
Ports of call were outstanding.
Morale amongst ship staff seems to have also deteriorated. Two members told me this as well and that Celebrity was making efforts to improve it with staff BBQs etc which is good.
I am looking elsewhere now to spend my cruise dollars. Will give Celebrity one more chance to get that A to A+ rating they so much merited in the past... Read Less
Overall, we had an ok cruise.
Our waiters in the main dining room were excellent (Desiderio, Kolkar and Koray). The people at the Martini Bar was also great. Guest relations got a very serviceminded Maddison, who really took ... Read More
Overall, we had an ok cruise.
Our waiters in the main dining room were excellent (Desiderio, Kolkar and Koray). The people at the Martini Bar was also great. Guest relations got a very serviceminded Maddison, who really took action on some of our problems.
Good Indian and Oriental food at OceanView.
The performance by Jayne Perry and Sonic View was fantastic. So was Jennifer and Luke, what a duo.
Not so PRO:
Check in went ok, but why shall we stand up for 50 minutes before boarding, not even a chair. (Miami Port) We use to get priority boarding, but not here....
A lot of wrong charges amounts on our account. But my wife is always checking the account. Just wonder if people don't....
We will never use the laundry again. It took 3 days and there were mixup with cloths!
I know cooking to many people can be difficult. But the desserts at OceanView at lunch were very poor and not tasty at all. Seems like they have been in the freezer - tasted very much like water.....
One of our friends had a bad experience with security when getting bad on the ship in one of the ports.
Sunbed Hogs - why cant the ship not do anything about this? Knew it would be a problem...On sea days we saw towels being place on sunbeds at 8-9 AM and not used until 12. Read Less
Getting on the ship was the best ever, no lines, got right on. There was suppose to be special lunch for Concierge class people in the main dining at 11:30, when we when there, we were turned away and said to come back in a hour. Not a ... Read More
Getting on the ship was the best ever, no lines, got right on. There was suppose to be special lunch for Concierge class people in the main dining at 11:30, when we when there, we were turned away and said to come back in a hour. Not a good start.
The small number of children was refreshing, maybe 10 to 20 of the 2800 people on the ship. Five stars.
Our room was okay, smaller then I would have thought for the price.Had a larger room on RCCL (Freedom) at half the cost. Our room stewards were very good and dealt with any request we had.
At dinner our waiters were great, the food on the other hand was okay, sometime very strange.
The entertainment was excellent, one of the high lights of the cruise.
The casino was suppose to be smoke free, but on a number of days you could smell a strong smell of smoke.
The ship ask me when I'd like to disembark, which I ask to be early since I had a 10 hour drive to get home. They misplaced our luggage so instead of being in the first 10%, we ended up being in the last 20% Read Less
First, a little about us. This was my twelfth cruise with Celebrity, and my fourth on Summit. I was travelling with my partner, my seven year old son, my mother, and her husband- all of us have Elite status with Celebrity except my partner ... Read More
First, a little about us. This was my twelfth cruise with Celebrity, and my fourth on Summit. I was travelling with my partner, my seven year old son, my mother, and her husband- all of us have Elite status with Celebrity except my partner who is on his second sailing.
We chose the repo sailing because the airfare is much cheaper for us, and we like the Summit. We booked through a major agency that gave us the Classic drink package, $350 OBC, and prepaid gratuities for 2, on both cabins, and my son was given a classic non alcoholic package and 40 minutes of internet. My partner and I upgraded to the premium package.
We flew down a day in advance on Air Canada and stayed at the Fairfield Inn & Suites by Newark airport on points. They upgraded our family to an executive suite which was a fabulous way to start the trip. My son had his own little room with a pullout sofa to sleep on, and we had a private bedroom. They also include a hot breakfast in the morning.
We had some hiccups here. My son was booked into my mother's cabin since she goes to bed very early and that way my partner and I could go out in the evenings. I had checked my son in on my cabin's Express Pass since we were flying a day early and my mother and her husband were flying day of, and I didn't want there to be any issues. It was frustrating to find out that they got to the port about an hour ahead of us and they told her she had to wait for us to arrive to give us my son's Seapass. I spoke with a supervisor and she told me that my mother had been given incorrect information and they should have just left his Seapass at the desk for us to pick up when we arrived. It was a minor inconvenience but she was annoyed at having to wait for no reason.
Other than that, embarkation went quickly and we were on the ship by noon having lunch at the Oceanview.
We had booked two oceanview GTY cabins and my mother, her husband, and my son received cabin 3000, all the way forward. My partner and I were given cabin 3112, which is the first cabin in the area next to the conference room, midships.
It was SO quiet there, which we really enjoyed. We never heard doors slamming or even a peep from our neighbours the entire trip.
The room was kept clean and was well maintained with the only minor issue being that the ballast was old in our bathroom light, and it would occasionally flicker or turn itself off then back on.
We did have some issues with our stateroom attendant, which while relatively minor, were still a bit disappointing. I asked him to put a copy of the Fun Factory daily program in our cabin when he left the Celebrity Today, and it took three days and letting the Fun Factory know we still hadn't received it before we started to get it. We wanted to make plans about which segment of camp that my son would attend and to see when the family events were planned and this was made more difficult.
We also requested an egg crate mattress pad and the steward ignored the request. I don't know if they ran out or not, but he said yes of course and then it never materialized.
The night before the first port day, we are used to receiving beach towels in our stateroom. At 10pm when we hadn't gotten any I called Guest Relations to ask if there had been a change in policy about the beach towels and I was told that no, I should have received them. I said not to disturb the attendant now, that I'd get them myself in the morning, but I had just wanted to clarify the current policy. We did receive towels for the next port.
We had table 502 for five on deck 5 along the upstairs railing, which gave us a great view of the dining room.
We did encounter a serious issue in the dining room, unfortunately. Three of the people in our group have severe food allergies, and we had this noted on our original booking and contacted Special Needs before the cruise. In addition, we told the waiter on the first night about the allergies.
My partner ate a breadstick from the bread basket and had an allergic reaction to it which while fortunately was not too serious, still necessitated a visit to the medical facility and ruined the rest of his evening.
After this issue, the maitre d' came to our table every evening to help the people with allergies choose their meals for the following evening but not only did he continue to still mix up allergies (attributing one of my son's allergies to my partner), but no customization of meals to remove allergens was allowed. In the past, with 24 hours notice it has been no problem to have items modified to make them safe for our group to eat, but when we asked this time we were told it was not possible. And I'm not talking about very unusual allergies- my son is allergic to peanuts and peas, my partner is allergic to peanuts and tree nuts, and my mother is allergic to almonds and pitted fruit. I don't think it would have been that difficult to have a salad made with no pistachio, for example, but we were told no by the maitre d'.
We also noticed a staffing cutback partway through the cruise- the bar servers were removed from our section. I saw our bar server at Cafe al Bacio later in the cruise and she said they were removing bar servers from the dining room at dinner, and to order drinks from the sommelier or the assistant waiter. I find that disappointing because it's already difficult to get a sommelier's attention given the number of tables they must serve, and the waiter and assistant waiter are so busy already. Again, a minor issue, but it doesn't give one a positive impression to keep seeing these cutbacks.
Our waiter did work very hard to try and keep my son happy, though, and aside from those issues we did enjoy our meals in the dining room. Food quality didn't seem any different from previous sailings and was still reasonably good, and it seemed much quicker to get an extra item than it had in the past. At one point my son asked for more shrimp cocktail in the middle of the meal and the waiter had it for him within 5 minutes.
My partner liked the design of the dining room on this class versus the S class because of the windows.
We also had breakfast here once so that my partner could get his eggs Benedict freshly made, and lunch a few times on sea days. We received good service and hot food, although no special requests could be made (I asked for cheddar cheese instead of blue on a Cobb salad and was told they could remove the blue cheese but not add anything else).
For those who care about the dress code, nothing was enforced even on chic night; we saw passengers wearing T shirts and other very casual attire. My son got lots of compliments on his tuxedo, though!
My partner and my son went to Sushi on Five twice for lunch and they both enjoyed it. My son was given a set of child's chopsticks to use which he got to keep, and he liked that. They tell me that the sushi was excellent and portion sizes were relatively good (I don't like sushi). For the two of them for lunch, it was in the $30-$40 range. The service was attentive and they enjoyed their meals. The restaurant wasn't very busy at either time- perhaps people found the pricing a bit steep?
We also ate at Tuscan Grill one night. Discounts weren't plentiful on this sailing- sea days were full price and 20% reduction on port days. When I went to make a reservation I had my son with me, and I said it would be for just our four adults and my son would go to the kids' club that night but the manager said we would be welcome to bring him and there would be no charge. I was very surprised by this and I asked if he would be eating off the Tuscan menu and they said yes. My son has eaten in nice restaurants before and I thought he'd be able to handle the dining experience, so we took them up on it and booked a table for five at 6pm.
I must admit that I don't care for the new menu as much as the old one, but that's a personal taste issue. I miss my lobster pappardelle! At least the crab cake (my son devoured it) and the calamari are still on the menu, and you can get the antipasti included again instead of paying extra. It's a rather smaller selection of items and didn't include all the previous things though. I am not sure if this is a benefit or not and I suppose it depends on the way you see it.
We did get excellent service and enjoyed our meals. The limoncello cheesecake was out of this world! They also served a complimentary glass of limoncello before dessert and brought my son some lemon soda.
We didn't visit Qsine on this sailing.
The T pools on the M class ships are awesome. It was actually a lot of fun when the ship was in rocky seas because the T pool was rocking, too! They closed the pools early on some days likely as a result of this.
I was surprised and pleased that children are allowed in the regular pool deck hot tubs when supervised. The temperature is more warm than hot, so it's not a safety issue. My son had a great time hot tubbing with us.
Oceanview Café/Poolside Grill:
As usual, we enjoyed the offerings at the poolside grill. Maybe it's just my memory, but the burger patties seemed thicker and larger than before. I did notice that there was no longer a daily special but what was there was yummy.
We had a few meals in the oceanview cafe, and it was a good place for a late night snack (open until 1am). I wasn't all that impressed with most of the hot entrees because I found by the time I brought them back to my table that they were cold. I did enjoy the fresh made to order meats at the back of the ship, and the fresh sandwich grill.
I noticed that afternoon tea has been cut back quite a bit as well. Maybe there has been a lot of food wastage? I remember on my last sailing they still had those little sandwiches and lots of selection and this cruise there were only two options. I also noticed that the scones were more like hockey pucks which was a little disappointing. Again, this isn't a major issue, but it was definitely something I enjoyed on previous sailings and missed it this time.
They had a daily offering in the evening over the dinner hour for a different type of cuisine made fresh in the buffet, and we did enjoy these when we had room for them! It was from 5:30-9:30pm and varied from Mexican to shawarma to kebabs to Japanese etc. Anything that was made fresh was delicious.
One thing I really miss about the S class ships is the Molecular Bar (now World Class). It's probably one of my favourite evening hangouts since it's so centrally located and I like the drinks. On this sailing, we wound up spending most of our time up at the Sunset bar on deck 11. We aren't martini drinkers so didn't want to go to the Martini Bar, and the Rendez-vous was generally quite loud with karaoke in the evenings so we had to find a new watering hole to relax at. There was live music some evenings at the Sunset bar which was nice and not too loud.
If you see Ketut there from Indonesia (or in the Rendez-vous), he is a fabulous bartender. I wish we'd met him before the last two days of the trip. He could even make a mocktail for my son into a work of art! He also gave us some great mixology information and showed us some neat tricks on keeping a drink balanced. We didn't even order specific drinks from him- he just started making us new and interesting things based on our preferences that he'd learned, and they were all different and fabulous.
We were a little surprised that there was no deck party this sailing. It's always fun to dance up on deck or to sit in the hot tub and listen to the music. There was live music in the evenings but sporadically. There was a piano player in the evenings at Cafe al Bacio, and there was a guitar player sometimes in the Rendez-vous. He and a singer also played at the Sunset bar some evenings.
We didn't go to any of the production shows. We did attend the late night comedy and it was funny and enjoyable- definitely worth going to.
There were two speakers onboard who did various enrichment lectures. My only thought is that not many people wanted to get up at 9:15am on a sea day to listen! We enjoyed the lecture about rum, though, since it was held a little later. Also, the talk at the Tuscan Grill about how to cook the perfect steak was interesting, except that no steak was cooked!
We didn't attend any trivia, but it was offered several days. My mother played Bingo but she didn't win. It's $59 to play now, which seems a little steep to me, but the lines were long so I assume this amount works for other people.
There were only 20 children on this sailing, but we weren't expecting many. It was lucky for my son that most of them were also in the 6-8 age range so there was a Cadets group. There were lots of activities that he enjoyed, including Family Bingo where he won a backpack and a water bottle. He also liked that he could have more time on the Xbox since there were fewer children. What he didn't enjoy was that the schedule was a bit less flexible this time- if he didn't like the scheduled programming, he wasn't allowed to do anything else. As a result, we checked the daily program in advance (when I finally received it!) to make sure the activities for each segment would be something he enjoyed. They held to the same schedule of 9-12, 2-5, and 7-10, with a 10-1 pajama party. My son only went to the morning segment and occasionally the afternoon; he preferred to eat with us in the dining room and not with the kids club. He went to bed too early to participate in the later night sessions.
I suspect he would have had a better time on one of the Royal Caribbean megaships with more children and more activities and things to do, but he certainly did well enough with Fun Factory.
The Studio had been added to Summit, which we hadn't noticed on our last sailing in 2013 (if it was there then). We didn't use it this time because of the cost, but we got great photos there on Eclipse last year.
This time we used our Elite discount coupon to get six photos for $100. The signage was a little misleading, though. It read that with all packages you get a CD and photo editing software, and they told us that was only if you elected to take digital prints instead of paper ones. While it's not really a big deal, I think if a sign says ALL packages, that they should honour this.
The other minor issue is that they sell packages for six photos, for ten photos, or unlimited. We wanted to purchase seven and they told us that the package is for six and the seventh would be at full cost ($29.95). Since their signage says to bring the photos you want and inquire about a package, that also felt a bit misleading because I assumed that meant they would work with you on pricing for the number of photos you wanted. We decided to purchase only six photos as a result.
We had a serious incident on this cruise and as a result got to know the security team better than we would have liked to. My son's Nintendo DS and bag of games was stolen from a tied shut and buckled canvas knapsack from the pool area partway through the cruise, and the theft was flagrant as the thief left behind the single game they didn't want! We reported the theft to Guest Relations and escalated by asking to see the Hotel Director.
We were taken to meet Matti, the security chief. We filled out paperwork and described the incident in detail, and then went up to deck 10 to point out the exact location where the bag had been and at what time, so they could check security tapes.
We were assured that they were taking the theft very seriously. We were not given any information about action taken or the person who took our items, but we weren't interested in anything but getting our items returned, honestly.
I posted about the incident here on Cruise Critic and I think the community helped because the Celebrity Cruises social media representative contacted Summit on our behalf (thanks so much!) and my son's items were recovered. We were so happy to receive a positive resolution because we were worried the Nintendo was gone forever. So a big thank you to Celebrity and to the Cruise Critic community for helping us end the cruise on a very positive note.
The medical staff were professional, courteous, and friendly. They took good care of my partner after his allergic reaction and responded quickly. He wasn't charged for this visit.
I am not sure if there was a large number of Elite members on this sailing, but we never really saw or spoke to the Captain's Club hostess. We did eat breakfast several mornings at the Tuscan Grill which was enjoyable, and the service was excellent. Although it's only a cold breakfast, there was a large selection of baked goods, fresh fruit, smoked salmon, cold cuts, and cheeses. If you do not have a drink package, there are complimentary beverages served as well. I had a Bellini with breakfast most days It's vacation, right?
Ports of Call:
We visited St Maarten and St Thomas en route from Cape Liberty to San Juan. Since we had my son with us, we went to the St Maarten zoo, which I would highly recommend if you have children. It's $10 for adults and $5 for children, and there were lots of interesting animals there that you can learn about and feed. The zoo recently got a new sponsor so it's been totally redone and looks great. (https://www.facebook.com/stmaartenzoo/)
We took a cab to Magen's Bay in St Thomas, which lives up to the hype. No need to book an excursion, it was $10pp each direction plus a $5pp entry fee. Make sure you have cash if you want to rent floating mats or lawn chairs or snorkel equipment- they also charge a refundable deposit for each item you rent so you need a lot of money up front.
Quick and easy. We had a very early flight (American had changed times) so we needed to get off the ship ASAP. Americans could walk off at 7am but international guests needed to wait until 8am for immigration agents to arrive. But even with the agricultural bag check we were sitting at our gate nearly 45 minutes early for our 10:35am flight. Smooth and easy way to end the cruise.
Many people have posted comments about maintenance issues. We looked, and in our opinion Summit looks pretty good for a 16 year old ship. There was only one serious issue that should be taken care of immediately and that was in the men's change room. The floor is a wooden grate and it was missing one of the supporting pieces. If something went wrong, a person could put their foot right through the flooring and potentially get injured. I would say that is maintenance that needs to be done immediately. Other than that, Summit looked to be in great shape and I'd happily sail her again if finances and time permitted.
Sailing with a child was much easier this time around since he could go to the kids' club and we had time to relax. Also, he didn't need to go to bed quite as early now that he was older, he could sit through a full meal in the dining room and behave and enjoy himself. It was much better than the sailings at 14 months or 4 years old.
While the cutbacks continue to be a bit of a disappointment, I still think that every line has cut back similarly, and since I enjoy the Celebrity product I will continue to sail with them until I feel that I'm not getting value for my money. I do wish they would bring back some of the touches that made their cruises really feel like a premium product, though.
I'd love to give this cruise 4 stars, but I have to deduct a point because the allergy issues could have been far worse, and I think Celebrity should handle that better. I am still thrilled at the recovery of my son's Nintendo system and games though- thank you so much, Celebrity! Read Less
My husband and I booked this last minute trip for rest relaxation and delicious food. With three sea days we certainly got the rest! Our cabin was just fine, nothing special but the bed was comfortable and we had no external noises to ... Read More
My husband and I booked this last minute trip for rest relaxation and delicious food. With three sea days we certainly got the rest! Our cabin was just fine, nothing special but the bed was comfortable and we had no external noises to keep us up.
What we did NOT do was eat well!
We are first time Celebrity cruisers who chose this ship based on reviews of the dining experience. I don't know if the quality was different due to this being a re-positioning cruise, or if you need to do specialty dining to have a good meal ,but aside from some crispy bacon and one great chocolate cookie the rest of the food was so-so to downright inedible. We gave up on the MDR after day 2. Too long to wait for lukewarm, under seasoned food. The Buffet was full of gray gloppy entrees or ethnic specialties that tasted nothing like the originals. Everything was cold before we got to our table. Poached eggs in the morning? COLD. Butter Chicken over rice? COLD. The one exception was the grill to order station in the aft where I had an excellent tuna steak one night. The baked potato? COLD. My husbands favorite part of any meal is dessert, and their displays were gorgeous, but none of them had flavor. It was like there was gelatin in everything and it was all dry. We know cus we kept trying hoping to find that magic slice of cake or pie...NOPE.
I wanted to love this ship. The size was great. My two previous cruises were on ships with over 5000 passengers and twenty minute walks to venues. I had hoped to have found my new favorite line but we can't, or shouldn't, be expected to pay over $150 to $200 dollars a day at specialty restaurants for a DECENT dining experience. Read Less
It was the third cruise out od dry dock for the Summit so, for the most part the ship was on excellent shape. Particularly noteworthy was the addition of the "Terrace" and big screen TV on top deck at back of ship. This brought ... Read More
It was the third cruise out od dry dock for the Summit so, for the most part the ship was on excellent shape. Particularly noteworthy was the addition of the "Terrace" and big screen TV on top deck at back of ship. This brought the Summit up to what appears to be the a new standard feature for cruise ships, but rather than in a large public area Celebrity has a more intimate setting. Unfortunately, the bright and shiney ship doesn't guarantee an excellent cruise experience.
Pros: The Solarium was a pure delight, a refuge in which to achieve what we were after, relaxation. Spa services, while a bit pricey were excellent and delivered in a highly professional manner. The lack of in your face attempts to attrack additional money from cruisers (think overpromotion of Bingo, pull tabs, onboard/shore shopping, etc) was a welcome relief. Officers were very visible and approachable throughout the cruise. Finally, the beverage card was an absolute must as it relieved us from signing for beverages each time we used it. Note, our key purchases were not alcohol but bottled water and specialty coffees (coffee bar had better breakfast pastries than othe locations).
Cons: Service ranged from very good to indifferent. Cruise director and his sidekick came across as buffoons. While the headline acts were very good to excellent, the production shows were disjointed and in a word dreadful. The dancers were OK but the singers could only manage to sing in one style so virtually every song sounded the same. The bright spot were the acrobats, but their talent was misused (there should have been a show built around them). With some exceptions the other musical talent on board were postal, they just mailed their performances in.
Other comments: Food, in general, was good to very good but not exceptional. Spa Café a nice addition with light, healthy meals. Pan American dock in Puerto Rico a little out of way and very congested. On Dominica docked at the out of the way commercial dock, not an attractive entry point to island. Onboard activities/games were basically standard for cruise ships although, as noted earlier, higher involvement of ships officers. Ship rarely felt crowded despite being in peak travel period. Read Less