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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
Cruised many times on Celebrity Constellation does not meet the quality of others. Food very average.....Indian food bad..no variety ....service poor.....had to request change of dining room waiter....who said I have only. 2 ... Read More
Cruised many times on Celebrity Constellation does not meet the quality of others. Food very average.....Indian food bad..no variety ....service poor.....had to request change of dining room waiter....who said I have only. 2 hands.....onboard shopping really poor....staff said Constellation does not get the better stuff.....we had difficulty. spending our OBC Best part is the Cafe...delicious coffee......cakes....excellent service Beverage package very enjoyable... Itinerary very good. Most shows were very enjoyable.....specially the vocal ones. Jane. Curry stood out as usual. Both her performances were amazing. Her wonderful voice combined with vitality were indeed remarkable. But the other singers were excellent as well.. did not enjoy the last night comedy show nor the ships crew shows except the acrobats who were very. skilled. The magician was good. Wish they would find. new words. for the Liars Club....every cruise they have the same ones ...so boring as we know all the answers ...so not funny anymore Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
We went on this cruise as part of the Abraham Hicks large group. It is so wonderful to cruise with people of such high vibration. The itinerary and group workshops were wonderful! We were well taken care of by our wonderful cabin ... Read More
We went on this cruise as part of the Abraham Hicks large group. It is so wonderful to cruise with people of such high vibration. The itinerary and group workshops were wonderful! We were well taken care of by our wonderful cabin attendant, Nino. Our cabin was well located aft and midship. We are used to the newer ships with better storage and bathrooms, than the Constellation. It took some getting used to. The water is very heavily chlorinated and I am allergic. I brought my own water filter, but I could still feel my skin burning and itching from the shower. The group had a large section in the main dining room reserved just for us. The wait staff was very good, Jom, the sommelier, was outstanding. We had the classic drink package included.That said, we couldn't get a martini from the Martini Bar with the classic package. As with the other cruises we have been on, we were nickel-ed and dimed to death from the overpriced specialty dinners to the overpriced shore excursions, shuttles and transfers. We didn't have the outrageous and S L O W internet package. I couldn't complete the Celebrity survey for this cruise because we were also on the Sept 28th cruise. I went up 3 times to the ilounge to complete the survey. When the ilounge attendant was finally there, the internet was too slow for my device. They give you 30 minutes to complete the survey which is sent to your email. The attendant said I would need 3 hours to complete the survey. using their speed and my device. My biggest complaint is that they have NOTHING for back to back cruisers as far as excursions in Venice. I didn't book anything before we left home, because we were given no idea about when we would get our new sea pass. The shore excursion desk was absolutely NO HELP at all. This one man in particular was very spiteful. We needed to know the easiest way to get to San Marco (vaporetto at 15 euro roundtrip) and how to get skip the line tickets for the Doges Palace and the Basilica. This man would give me no information.Celebrity should definitely have pre planned excursions for the back to back cruisers. We would have enjoyed ourselves a lot better had we known how and where we were going and not worry about getting back to the ship on time. Getting on the Cruise Critic role call and planning private excursions is definitely the way to go. We were denied a meet and greet party because we did not have the 25 required minimum. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
We choose this cruise to see India. The ship is very tied and rusting , worn carpet , wooden seats in the dinning room with joints coming apart. The crew do try very hard and give u 110% in effort. The entertainment director is getting ... Read More
We choose this cruise to see India. The ship is very tied and rusting , worn carpet , wooden seats in the dinning room with joints coming apart. The crew do try very hard and give u 110% in effort. The entertainment director is getting away with being payed for sitting on his backside all day. the onboard day time entertainment was non exsistant compared to other cruise lines.There was more entertainment to be found in the casino than over the whole of the boat. The nightly shows in the theatre where great if u where in a nursing home and had not seen any entertainment for a while, really who do they think they are giving us a acrobat show which a 11 year old could perform. Every night at dinner it was a toss of a coin to see if ur drink order would arrive in 30 minutes or under or would arrive at all. The cabin steward did a fantastic job and congratulations to him cabin 9131. The food was the same day in and day out, the quality of food okay but not outstanding. When u travel aqua class and have your own designated dinning room u don't expect to have to wait up to 3/4 hour for a table.The cruise would have been excellent if I had traveled in a inside room, but having table for aquas class I was very disappointed and will never cruise with celebrity again. No one even wants to listen on board when u are offering constructive criticism. Felt very let down and ripped off. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
I wanted to see the final race of the f1 season in Abu Dhabi via the Suez canal.Just a couple of things off my bucket list. First night was at a hotel in Athens,because of the bombs in Turkey,so far so good,it seems like I am being ... Read More
I wanted to see the final race of the f1 season in Abu Dhabi via the Suez canal.Just a couple of things off my bucket list. First night was at a hotel in Athens,because of the bombs in Turkey,so far so good,it seems like I am being looked after.taxi outside with my name being held up,I felt a tad important,taxi driver was very polite spoke good English and dropped me at the hotel front door,very impressed and well pleased. After traveling all day a bit of food was called for,now it started to go wrong,1 waiter/barman, tables not cleared and ! choice of food ( cold ) 79 euros for a couple of cold salads. room good, but breakfast not very inspiring,hot food ,but it was cold,never mind soon be on the boat. Taxi on time,( the taxis were provided by my booking co,not Celebrity ) got to port,embarkation was a bit of a queue,but got through eventually. And I am on board,looks good,glass of champers as I board.had to wait to see the cabin (understandable) Had a cup of tea and waited to get called to cabin. Nice cabin,clean if a bit tired,but it is a bit old now, bottles of water and minibar filled. No kettle but it only became a problem when I realised I had to walk the length of the boat for a cup of tea,not good if you like a hot drink to retire with. So I thought I would get a bite to eat,not having much breakfast,so off I go to find the buffet,then the first big problem appeared and continued through the voyage,the food was all lukewarm,now I like for that if it is supposed to be hot is hot not cool,and i had to queue as well. Ok so off we go,boat quiet,stable,loads of information of things to do,it looks good.Evening meal in the restaurant was excellent,once you got used to celebrity trying to sell you posh dinners at silly money,at specialist restaurants on the way into the dining room. Good nights sleep,bed was very comfy and off to breakfast,queue queue and queue again,lukewarm food,no English bacon most of the time,On the two weeks,I had nowhere to sit a couple of times.Don't be late for meals,they shut on time and choices dwindle towards the cut off time. The entertainment consisted mainly of selling things,clothes/perfumes/watches,you name it,they made a venue for it.There was a couple of good shows in the two weeks but if you want to be entertained it's a bit weak.Mr and Mrs and the passengers singing,nice if you are in it or know someone in it,but if not it's poor.The captain gave a couple of good daytime talks as did a racing driver whose name I forget.( sorry ) But this were 1 hour talks in the morning. Watch out for the prices,at 1 of the watch sales,the prices were the same as my local high st ( in England ) so things are not the bargain they seem. Quizes in the rendezvous bar good but again no waiters I barman in a room full of people ?? really not good,and it was the same all through the trip. Suez good, one of the bucket list done then we cleared the canal,into open waters,and the announcement came all outside lights off all curtains closed in case of PIRATES,now I would not have got on the boat after reading about pirates in the press,so for 5 days,not a happy bunny,yes they put guards on,but even though,it was a downer on the trip. Cleared the waters,all good,and landed at Muscat,on a friday which is a holy day it was closed,a waste of a day. Got to Abu Dhabi got my 2 day tickets,at 4pm we landed now that is not a lot of good if you want to watch the f1 that you have bought tickets for,then you have to clear customs,now the practice has bin and gone,too late for that,but the qualifying starts at 5.Celebrity decided at the last minute to put a shuttle bus on,at the last minute only $30 .00 a head. The people in the posh cabins get to get through customs first,and first call on the shuttle bus,made me feel poor that did. But still decided to go for it,cleared passport control,ran ( as best I can at my age ) grabbed another couple going to the race ,and dived in a cab( there were dozens )The cab dropped us at the gate we needed,and charged us $21.00 for the four of us .Celibrity rip off again. Got there to see end of p3 but I still got to see p2 and qualifying. To sum up,it is just not as good as it could be,I was on a Thomson cruise earlier in the year and it was miles better,for food and entertainment.More drink stations,and kettles in the cabins. You get charged a flat rat per day for the tips at the end of the trip,it's supposed to go to the staff,but it is all or nothing you can't pay a percentage of it,if you get bad service from one member of staff.The staff were all good,especially the dining room,but in the buffet they only spoke and got helpful on the last 2 days ( prob for the tips ) Would I go on a cruise again,definitely,would I go Celebrity never again !! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary and enjoyed all of it. I was a solo female and loved having a cabin to myself. The food was good and my cabin was kept clean and tidy. I used room service several times after a day of long ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the itinerary and enjoyed all of it. I was a solo female and loved having a cabin to myself. The food was good and my cabin was kept clean and tidy. I used room service several times after a day of long tours. I enjoyed getting up early and getting coffee and watching the sun rise. The ship was quiet and beautiful in the early morning. The tours offered by Celebrity were nice but I also booked tours through another tour company and went ashore to ports that were close to the ship. Each decision I made turned out great! The variety of choices was why I booked this cruise. I got to know a lot of nice people on my tours which made me feel comfortable. I stayed on 4 extra days in Rome and toured the Vatican, took a day trip to Tuscany, did some wine tasting and did a segway tour of Rome. ALL EXCELLENT! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2016
The entire trip was AWESOME Stayed 3 night at the Hotel Vondel in Amsterdam..Boutique hotel..very small rooms and bathroom tiny..but incredibly clean..wonderful towels..restaurant in hotel..walking distance to canal..Anne Frank house ... Read More
The entire trip was AWESOME Stayed 3 night at the Hotel Vondel in Amsterdam..Boutique hotel..very small rooms and bathroom tiny..but incredibly clean..wonderful towels..restaurant in hotel..walking distance to canal..Anne Frank house Van Gogh museum..Perfect Cruise was great..Amsterdam, Estonia, Germany, overnight in Russia..St Petersburg, Finland Copenhagen and Denmark..not in that order but wonderful..wonderful..wonderful We used Alla tours for Jewish Heritage tour in Germany and Alla Tours for two ..10 hour tours in St Petersburg..Natala was wonderfulStayed overnight at Crown Plaza in Amsterdam before we flew home..Very nice clean hotel..Paid an extra $18.00 pp for breakfast and no one was there to make pancakes or eggs..so it cost 36.00 for cold cereal I would recommend the cruise we went on..It was awesome..Little mermaid..wood shoe factory and of course the TULIPS..that was incredible..also you must be careful of the bike paths..they do not have many cars and all age people even in their 80's are on bikes..Canal boat ride was cool..too much to see and i will never forget it Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We were so excited for our stay on an "upper scale" cruise line! Stayed in Aquaclass. Where were our towel animals? Where was our stateroom attendants? We never set eyes on him until we were leaving! We asked for ice to chill our ... Read More
We were so excited for our stay on an "upper scale" cruise line! Stayed in Aquaclass. Where were our towel animals? Where was our stateroom attendants? We never set eyes on him until we were leaving! We asked for ice to chill our wine in the bucket provided in our stateroom, and was brought a small cup, so we asked for more, and never received. The one show we did watch was a not-so-funny comedy that was geared toward a very sick sense of sexuality and the gay community. I have to admit, it WAS an adult show but had a lot of room for a little added class. Left early... Our dinner at 8:30 consistently turned into not even being served until 10:00 pm which was why we had to go to the adult show in order to see any... As for sunbathing, every chair on the upper deck against the outer railing remained wired to the rail the complete trip making it impossible to adjust from sitting straight up to a more comfortable position..... Our SWEDISH massages were booked as soon as we stepped on the ship, however had to be changed to an unacceptable time while at port due to a safety drill that would be commencing with buzzers. They explained that it would be impossible for us to relax with all the loud commotion, (recently, both of my parents had passed away within 2 months of each other) we decided to pay more since relaxing was our ultimate goal so we changed it to 7:00 pm in hopes that we could relax, unwind and go to bed feeling refreshed. NOT the case! Our SWEDISH turned out to be deep tissue, to the tunes of Rap and Boom (louder than the spa music that was playing) from whatever was going on above us along with loud crashes comin from right next to us that sounded as if beer kegs were falling from a counter top. Possibly construction? Who knows , but loud enough to shake the tables several times. Anyone that rates this ship a 4 or a 5? Well, it has to have been their 1st time cruising...... Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We recently took the Flower Power Cruise aboard the Celebrity Constellation for 5 days to Cozumel and Key West. The entertainment was great but many of the services aboard the ship were lacking. Though the state rooms were fine, the ... Read More
We recently took the Flower Power Cruise aboard the Celebrity Constellation for 5 days to Cozumel and Key West. The entertainment was great but many of the services aboard the ship were lacking. Though the state rooms were fine, the food quality was inconsistent in the main dining room and terrible all week at the buffet. Most noticeable was the poor service through the entire ship. We have taken several cruises and anything but demanding but the basic quality of the service staff was far below par of any other line we have taken. We don't know if this is because of the "Charter" for the theme cruise but the staff seemed untrained and certainly uninterested in what they were doing. Of course, there were some exceptions but overall they seemed poorly trained and ill equipped to deliver good customer service. They didn't seem to care if you came back or not. Overall it was a great time because of the music and theme but I would never pay for a cruise on a Celebrity ship if for a normal cruise trip. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
We have cruised several cruise lines, (Royal Carribean, Carnival, Norwegian, etc.)by far, this was the worst cruise ever. The service for our cabin was horrible. Had to look for the cabin attendant several times. 1st only gave us 1 ... Read More
We have cruised several cruise lines, (Royal Carribean, Carnival, Norwegian, etc.)by far, this was the worst cruise ever. The service for our cabin was horrible. Had to look for the cabin attendant several times. 1st only gave us 1 washcloth, 2nd replinished towels with a wet one, had to be told twice to replenish the toiletries! Then the toilet would not flush, although it was repaired. The food on the buffet was unseasoned, often cold, and they would run out of items! When we landed on the private island, we were served cold sandwiches (nothing grilled) with smears of tuna salad or two thin slices of turkey on huge buns. Many people took pictures of their sandwiches for complaints. The guests relations persons were rude, on the concert nights, the ushers who were to control entries into the theaters were inadequate. This was a theme cruise (The Soul Train Cruise), and the majority of the passengers were African Americans. I mentioned this, because hopefully, this was not the reason for the horrible service. Most of the ship's personnel were unfriendly, uncaring, and unhelpful. The only two highlights were our two waiters in the main dining room. I prebooked for the next Soul Train cruise, because of the entertainment. If this happens again, I will never cruise celebrity again.! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2015
This was truly a great experience. I enjoyed every moment of this trip. The ship was clean and well appointed. The food was good and the crew was good natured and nice. I especially want to thank our stateroom porters, Budi and Roman. ... Read More
This was truly a great experience. I enjoyed every moment of this trip. The ship was clean and well appointed. The food was good and the crew was good natured and nice. I especially want to thank our stateroom porters, Budi and Roman. These gentlemen learned out names and our likes and dislikes. The room was always cleaned on a timely basis. We always had fresh towels. These gentlemen were top notch in everyway. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2015
My wife Andrea and I were of the opinion that the small cruise lines delivered better service, until we experienced the Celebrity Constellation. Our room attendants, "Ray" and "Igede," our butler Nikola, waiters ... Read More
My wife Andrea and I were of the opinion that the small cruise lines delivered better service, until we experienced the Celebrity Constellation. Our room attendants, "Ray" and "Igede," our butler Nikola, waiters Christian, Mohammed, and Mateja leave us as raving fans of Celebrity and the Constellation. On a slow day in one of the restaurants, we were able to have a meaningful conversation with Mateja, who we later encountered at the gelato bar. My wife remarked that there is a depth to this man and qualities that go well beyond what training can accomplish. I agree. Nikola insisted we call him to set reservations, bring room service, and he cheerfully brought by tea every afternoon around 4. He is pure class and would do well training and mentoring others. The authentic desire to serve makes the staff aboard the Constellation a cut above the 5 other lines we have sailed. Clearly, the people who hire, train, and coach the staff on the Constellation "get it." These 12 days covered some of the most beautiful places we have ever been. Malta and Santorini stand out for us. We had a small suite with a nice deck, and it was perfect. The food was excellent everywhere we went on the ship. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2014
I am a single traveler, 45 years old, male, and usually willing to pay a bit more for superb service. The cruise was great, but there was nothing particularly "superb" about this cruise. My travel group consisted of 26 ... Read More
I am a single traveler, 45 years old, male, and usually willing to pay a bit more for superb service. The cruise was great, but there was nothing particularly "superb" about this cruise. My travel group consisted of 26 acquaintences in 14 cabins, ranging from AquaClass on Deck 9 to Deck 2 with a window. I was in AquaClass, cabin 9100, which was right at the bottom of the stairs, next to the cyber-cafe. Everyone had at least the Classic Beverage Package, and I was on the Premium Beverage Package. The best: The shower tower was wonderful Dinners at Blu were very nice, although not my typical preferred fare The Brunch in San Marcos was very good The worst: Cozumel felt like a depressed third-world country The bar staff was both understaffed and inexperienced The craps table was only open about half the posted casino hours The unexplained: Several AquaClass people didn't have a "pillow menu" in the cabin LGBT meet/greet was removed from the daily schedule and only reappeared when I questioned its disappearance Celebrity literature states that you'll be contacted by your spa concierge when staying in AquaClass. None of us were ever contacted by any spa concierge, in fact I felt like an outsider when I toured the spa on embarkation day. Yes, they asked if I'd be interested in a shave, but then it went downhill from there. I finally turned around and walked out.   Read Less
Sail Date: September 2013
We are elite level Captain's Club, traveling in concierge class with an interesting group. Overall, we found the experience not near what we have previously experienced on Celebrity. This was not a premium cruise, and not close to ... Read More
We are elite level Captain's Club, traveling in concierge class with an interesting group. Overall, we found the experience not near what we have previously experienced on Celebrity. This was not a premium cruise, and not close to luxury. However, this review will show both the unexpected above and beyond responsiveness of the crew to some truly adverse conditions. First, a weird gout-related condition requires that I consume black cherry juice every day, accompanied by another weird combination that required mixing ingredients in our cabin. The staff provided it and delivered everything I needed to my cabin. Yes, it was pre-arranged, but it still stands out and needs to be mentioned because this was above and beyond the call. We had a very few problems in other aspects of the cruise, most of which were easily and promptly resolved. The entertainment was very good to superb, particularly the pianist Brooks Aehron and the string quartet. Superlatives are inadequate, but I recognize that quality classical music is not everyone's taste in entertainment. The stage shows were entertaining, but within the realm of what we have come to expect: very good quality. Unfortunately, our pleasure was impacted by a cruise director who focused on himself, instead of the entertainment of the passengers. There were serious problems, all of which adversely impacted the quality of service and food on-board. First, there was a major outbreak of respiratory ailments, followed by an outbreak of the dreaded noroviris. Thus, Food & Beverage Dept was forced to eliminate self-service in the Oceanview Cafe. Passengers were handed their eating utensils; normal condiments (salt & pepper) were no longer seen; and crew did their very best to control the outbreaks. It was clear that crew were over-stretched trying to sterilize all surfaces while they were being used. The weather did not help. After beautiful skies in the Aegean Sea and Istanbul, we suffered across the Black Sea, again as best that could be done by crew. The itinerary was changed to try to avoid a major storm. In Odessa, all we got was showers and cold. Sevastopol was fine, if a bit cooler than expected. At Yalta, a couple of tenders were able to reach port, before the port master told the ship's captain to cease tender operations because the sea was too rough. Thus, we were forced to wait around until the passengers who were able to get off returned late in the afternoon. Again, crew did their best in an ugly situation, and again, lunch meals were difficult. Substitute entertainment did the best possible, but it just wasn't fun. Due to the weather, external pools were closed. "Solsticization" from my perspective is solely a way to generate more income. It's real world impact: on formal nights we weren't able to use the main dining room; there was little variety in the Oceanview Cafe; and "Bistro on Five was similarly limited. Specialty restaurants were crowded with formal night lovers. A positive note: "anytime dining" works!! It is a choice if you prefer options. In addition, it was a relief to the normal over-burdened eating experiences on the Black Sea. "Enrichment" has been better on almost every cruise; port previews left something to be desired. Very little beyond the Greek ports and Istanbul. In prior cruises, the daily calendar of activities listed all events, including religious services, AA, LGB, etc. This is no longer done; it only lists "officially sponsored" activities. Several friends, all "elite level" experienced travelers, missed events because they were only listed at Guest Relations. It was an unexpected "hiccup" when we were expecting notice of group meetings. Prior boarding for concierge and "elite" level worked very well.   Read Less
Sail Date: April 2013
Before going on the special Top Chef cruise we read the reviews here to get an idea of what to expect. Almost everything was different on this cruise from what we had expected. It was my first cruise and her second. It's very ... Read More
Before going on the special Top Chef cruise we read the reviews here to get an idea of what to expect. Almost everything was different on this cruise from what we had expected. It was my first cruise and her second. It's very likely that no other Celebrity cruise will be like this, so this is probably a one-off. I'll relate the stuff we liked and didn't like about the experience. Embarkation: Really easy, almost like an airport boarding process. Probably took us 15 - 20 mins to get on the boat. Even though we requested luggage tags they never sent them. Had to fill them in while outside the terminal prior to boarding. Cabin was ready around 1:30 - 2 PM but we never heard any announcement about it. Cabins: Cabin attendants were really nice and incredibly helpful. Anything we asked for they took care of. The way they took care of us was really the best part of the cruise. And they kept the cabin really clean the whole trip. One issue was that they must have deep cleaned the carpet just before we boarded and the rug stayed damp/sticky for days afterwards. Our cabin was clean and never noisy, except when a Carnival ship docked alongside and our entire ship began vibrating from their music. But when loud pool parties happened on our ship there was no noise heard in our cabin. Meals: Because this was a Top Chef themed cruise I think our MDR experience was unlike the normal Celebrity mealtime situation. The MDR menu had a regular section and a special page with Top Chef entrees. We ate at a fixed time but always were shuffled to a different waiter/table. They called this 'Open Seating', which led to some very disorganized meal situations where on one night it took over 2.5 hours to get to the dessert/coffee stage of the meal. We ate in the Aquaspa cafe most lunches and some breakfasts and really enjoyed the food there. The buffet was sort of like ummmm....ok, nothing special about the food. The scrambled eggs were nasty. We didn't eat in any specialty restaurants. We didn't take a drink package but brought a bottle of wine with us. Also we located the 24 hour beverage station by the pool where you can get coffee & juice without having to pay for it like you would when ordering it from a bar. The MDR staff had major problems processing drink orders for our tablemates. Either they got them wrong or failed to bring the drinks at almost every meal. When we ordered wine on the final night I had to remind the waiter at the end that they hadn't asked for our SeaPass cards yet. We did get a very interesting tour of the galleys with the Executive Sous Chef and learned a lot about how food is prepared on Celebrity ships. We were told that after our trip the ship was headed to the Bahamas for 19 days for a retrofit to add the BLU restaurant and a few other amenities. Pool/Spa: The pools are kind of small, so if you are a big pool person then this ship is probably not for you. And no water slide like on the adjacent Carnival ship. I felt sorry for the Carnival staffer who had to supervise from on top of the slide even when their ship was in port and nobody was using the pool. Deck chairs in the pool area were OK with padding, but on the upper deck they were stained and missing slats and generally needed a lot of TLC. Other stuff: The casino was sort of lame, and except when the celebrity chefs were gambling we never saw a lot of people in there. Cell service was very solid on the ship the entire trip. We had heard horror stories about crummy service on other cruise lines. Having a good cell signal was good because I went all over the ship and never found a WiFi signal anywhere on-board. I was picking up WiFi networks from shore when we cruised off the Mexican coast, but never got one on-board. So I ended up checking email through my smartphone using the slow but usable 1xRTT (2G) signal. Because of our trip schedule we had very brief port calls, Key West was only a few hours. Just enough to tour the Hemingway House and have a drink at the Green Parrot. Cozumel was not our favorite. Tip: Don't buy any jewelery from the local shops, it's like negotiating at a used car lot. Disembarkation: Due to late night drinking the night before, many of our fellow passengers could not make it out of their rooms by 8:30 AM, so we had an uncrowded & unhurried trip off the ship and through customs. They warned that federal budget cuts would delay our customs clearance but this didn't seem to be an issue. We would cruise again, just not in this type of situation. A regular cruise with a normal port schedule would probably be better for us. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2013
We are unseasoned at cruising, so consider these comments with that perspective. Our previous cruise experience was limited to a 50-passenger trip though the Greek isles on the Sea Cloud -- a wholly different experience than that offered ... Read More
We are unseasoned at cruising, so consider these comments with that perspective. Our previous cruise experience was limited to a 50-passenger trip though the Greek isles on the Sea Cloud -- a wholly different experience than that offered by a "traditional ocean liner." But we had been looking for the right opportunity to dip our toes in the water of large passenger ship cruising, and the Top Chef theme cruise -- only 4 nights 5 days on a highly regarded "luxury" line-- seemed an attractive introductory experience from which we might forecast our cruising future. Sadly our experience was very mixed. First, the Top Chef themed activities were simply wonderful. Cooking demonstrations, Quickfire "competitions," Q and A's with 10 years of fan favorites and winning "chef-testants," and Tom Collichio playing lead guitar and singing Creedence at the poolside stage-- we could not have enjoyed the themed events more. Bravo to Bravo and Top Chef for a well-planned and well-executed experience. And it bears saying that the Top Chef chefs and staff were all about the ship, interacting with the passengers, spending real time and making real connections. Every single Top Chef person -- and most notably Gail Simmons and Hubert Keller-- was as cordial, gracious, and engaging as one could imagine. A class act by a classy group in every respect. If only the ship and its staff had lived up to the standards of the reality TV folks. I don't want to nitpick, and we are seasoned travelers if not cruisers, so I have no problem rolling with the unexpected, but these seemed to us to be serious lapses in the cruise line's core functions: 1. Our "veranda suite." Oh, please. There is nothing "suite" or sweet about the suites. They are single rooms, with the tiniest bathroom you can imagine. The presence of a small upholstered love-seat in addition to the bed is evidently the defining feature of a "suite" on this line. For shame! We are not price-sensitive when it comes to accommodations and we booked the best available suite months in advance. Even so, one person must sit on the bed to allow the other to move anywhere in the room. The sound of the toilet flushing is enough to wake the dead. The shower delivers nothing warmer than room temperature water (but curiously, the water in the bathroom sink is hot). The veranda is a plastic-enclosed postage-stamp with 2 miserable plastic chairs. The TV cannot be viewed from the seating area, only the bed -- whose genius is behind that failure of space/function? The hallways are endless and narrow and laundry carts and food service carts are left parked permanently in key spots along the way. Suffice it to say that I have stayed in budget-priced Travel Lodges that were better designed and better appointed. The vaunted "Concierge Class" turns out to be three stems of Peruvian lillies (alstomeria) and three pieces of fruit. They were, all six of them, there when we moved in and they were there when we left. Requests for daily ice were hit and miss. 2. The food. Yikes! Awful in the Main Dining Room (San Marcos). The rib-eye was like pot roast; the duck was flabby and fatty and unrecognizable. Everything was unseasoned, overcooked, and bland. The onion soup was fine, and my husband had an appetizer of himachi one evening that was good. But even the vaunted Sunday brunch was cold bacon, toaster waffles served room temperature, and the same canteloupe, watermelon and honeydew that we had seen at every service for four days. Waiter service was fine, but entry and seating service was an ugly and unpleasant frenzy at every meal-- bossy and over-bearing staff, indifferent to guest sensibilities and preferences. The buffet was just dreary. Endless pans of curries and over-baked sludgy pasta casseroles. The rolls and pastries were stale every single day. The pizza was doughy, tough, flavorless, served room temperature. The sushi was unimaginative and unexceptional. The omelets were fine but took forever as that station was never adequately staffed. The hamburgers at the poolside grill were like frisbees in their lack of flavor or other recognizable meat-like qualities. We tried two of the specialty (extra price) food options, with good results. Bistro on Five had very nice panini, if an absurdly limited menu, and the bar across from Bistro on Five served a marvelous 7-item tapas platter for $19.00 that was a tasty and sufficient supper for two one night when the MDR menus was so dreary that we simply got up and left without ordering. The ship makes a big deal of its ice creams and gelatos, but both were sub-par, The ice cream, which I tried 3 different times, was full of ice crystals and inadequately flavored. The gelatos were no better. Pastries at the coffee bar were days past their sell by deadline. Drink service -- wine, cocktails, beer, sodas -- was very strong. No complaints at all although in retrospect the all-inclusive beverage package is over-priced but very convenient. 3. Ship entertainment. Way way way too much thumping pounding "music" -- everywhere, all the time. The passengers are mostly 45+ and even more. Why are we enduring hip hop and rap and disco music constantly? The comedian was unfunny and hostile to the (admittedly sparse) audience. The lectures and programs were almost all sales opportunities. The "art" auction was astonishingly huck-sterish and uninformed. Oh, I could say more, but what is the point? Truth be told by Day 3 we were looking forward to being done with this luxury vacation; by the 4th day we were avid to get off the damn boat; and by the time we docked, I was grateful to the point of tears that it was finally over. Embarkation and disembarkation are very well-organized and we were grateful for the ease of departing. I have tasked myself with the assignment due diligence and investigating whether our experience was typical, or was based on a bad choice of cruise line. If we need to spend more to have a good experience, I'll bite again. If what we had is what you get, then no -- never, never, never again. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2013
I realise that I've written one LONG review, but I've attempted to address some of the topics that I wanted to know more about prior to taking my first cruise. Hope it's helpful to some folks. :) This was my first cruise ... Read More
I realise that I've written one LONG review, but I've attempted to address some of the topics that I wanted to know more about prior to taking my first cruise. Hope it's helpful to some folks. :) This was my first cruise ever and it was a great way to start! I've traveled on ferries and smaller boats/ships overnight, but never a real cruise ship. I'd read some negative reviews prior to my cruise, so I was a tad apprehensive. However I didn't think that the Turner Classic Movie Channel would risk its reputation by offering this rather pricey cruise, attended by many famous people, on anything less than a stellar cruise ship, and it seems that I was right! My experience with Celebrity and the Constellation put any worries that I might have had to rest! (This cruise centered around the showing and appreciation of classic movies. TCM TV hosts Robert Osborne and Ben Mankiewicz were on board, as were celebrities such as Mickey Rooney, Debbie Reynolds, Arlene Dahl, Sally Ann Howes, Norman Lloyd, Rich Little, and Alex Trebek.) Booking was easy through "Sixthman", on-line. All information and directions were very timely, thorough, and helpful. Our hotel shuttle dropped us at the Celebrity (Constellation) pier. Our checked luggage had the correct Celebrity specific tags on it and it was swiftly handled by the cruise line's staff from that point on, without any problems. We made our way into the building which seemed like a proper, permanent structure to me; clean and well decorated, and there were many well groomed and polite staff members available to direct us, and to answer questions. We got through security swiftly, and then went on to "check in". This process seemed to go quickly in general for most folks from what I could see at the time, but we were especially lucky in that we were permitted to board right away as we had "priority embarkation"; a perk from booking a "Sky Suite" (S1). We had no waiting to speak of. At this same desk we could see some staff members in funny hats who would entertain folks by singing Happy Birthday to anyone whose birthday it happened to be. :) The line of guests walking toward the doors of the ship moved along very quickly and with no waiting that we could see. There were crew members smiling and greeting us at every turn. Once on board we were given champagne, mimosas, or juice. We walked aft and were free to do what we wished as we waited for our room to become ready. We chose to sit in the peaceful 5th floor bar "Cafe al Bacio" and enjoy more champagne, and some yummy pastries. We both had obtained the Premium Beverage Package during booking our cruise, and this package is definitely a good idea if you enjoy a drink with meals, in between meals, and in the evening. An overhead announcement stated that all staterooms were ready after we had waited for approx. an hour, maybe less. We easily found our stateroom and our luggage arrived very shortly after. Our butler Alfred (what a dear!) and our two room stewards Luis and Boris, introduced themselves in turn and explained the daily routine. The butler provided us with two methods of contacting him, and he reminded us often to contact him if we needed anything at all. He answered very promptly whenever we did call for him. There was champagne and fresh flowers and fruit waiting for us. We had flowers, fruit, and a never ending supply of canapes and desserts showing up in our room several times daily, as if by magic. The stewards kept the room very clean and would supply towels, beach towels (excursions), and change the sheets whenever asked. The three of these fellows worked hard to quickly fulfill any and all requests. They all seemed very well trained, polite, friendly, and impeccably groomed. I did notice that all of the staff on the Connie smelled similar, and they all smelled great. Maybe they have rules about which scents they may or may not use? They didn't discuss the "Pillow Menu" as such, but in our room, we seemed to have every type of pillow they had available. We both seemed to find our favourite. The room had a safe, a small fridge, and lots of storage for the two of us. The room was tastefully decorated and very quiet. The carpet looked quite new. We couldn't hear any noise from the hall or from the next door rooms, other than perhaps a little bit while we were in the bathroom. But you couldn't hear this "noise" from the bedroom. We couldn't hear any noise from the public space under our room (the dining room), nor from the staterooms above us. The beds were surprisingly comfortable, and the sheets of good quality. The closet was quiet large and even large enough to be used as a tight changing room if you're shy. :) The TV was of quite a large size. The balcony was heaven! 6127 has a nice balcony. The HVAC system would make a gentle hum at certain settings, but it was not too loud; in fact I found it rather soothing. We had enough hangers, but we could easily have obtained more if we had requested. The drapes were heavy enough to block light quite well. There was a night light in the bathroom that could be unplugged. The hairdryer was not great, but certainly adequate. We did not dine in the specialty dining rooms but I only heard good things from the few folks I heard speaking about their experiences with them. Well, we did have crepes at the Bistro on Five which were wonderful. All of the crepes are five dollars and they are very good. This Bistro has great hours, and the decor and staff are lovely. The food that we had at the main dining room, the Aqua Spa Buffet, the Sunset Bar, and the many other venues around the ship that we visited, was all very good! There was a pool side grill where hot dogs, hamburgers, and the like were made to order. Generally I found the food on the ship to be of a chef level quality, well presented, and professionally served. Most of the food seemed to be of gourmet level to me. The buffet choices were vast and there were food selections from around the world. I enjoyed the Indian food. Even the buffet pasta was great; not overcooked at all which is a feat when it comes to buffets. We enjoyed the "Crush" ice bar and martini bar on the fourth deck. It was a great place to meet folks, and enjoy the very good martinis. We didn't have to endure much waiting at all on the Constellation, despite the ship being at full capacity (the cruise was "sold out"). We had no waiting at the dining room, buffets, or other food venues. There were only the occasional very short waits for the elevators, if any at all. We never had to wait for a poolside deck chair. There were always seats available at the theater which is saying something on a cruise such as ours. There were popcorn and drinks available when entering the theater where the staff would welcome you with a smile, and waitstaff would also bring drinks to your seats. The screen was surprisingly large, and the sound system was great. I found the seats comfortable, and there are little tables between the seats on which you can place drinks. Being at the front of the ship, we'd sometimes feel the roll of the ship while in the theater, but it was not bad at all. The seats were placed at such an angle that even short persons such as myself were able to see the stage and screen. The regular outdoor pool area was a nice spot to read, relax in the sun, or meet folks. There were two pools in that area and the water was not too cold. They are not deep enough for the water to be over an average sized adult's head, but certainly deep enough for swimming. There are four, fairly large hot tubs surrounding these pools. The deck chairs around these pools were cushioned and some were out in the open beside the pools, while others were sheltered from the sun by a mezzanine that hung above the periphery of the pool area. These sheltered chairs were still definitely "outdoors", but you could still enjoy the pool area if the weather got bad, or if you had too much sun. The glass walls (windows) around these chairs slid open to allow the sea air in, if you're so inclined. There were always lots of clean towels available and the staff kept the pool area well picked up and tidy. Waitstaff circled the area often and took drink orders. I noticed the waitstaff bringing food and other items to some of the quests who were resting on their deckchairs. The salt water spa pool "Aqua Spa" was located beyond (forward of) the outdoor pools and it was very nice. The water was lovely and very warm, but not hot tub warm. There were two hot tubs on either side of the main spa pool. One nice touch was that there was a lift chair to aid those folks with mobility issues in and out of the hot tubs (but maybe not the spa pool itself? - I couldn't quite tell for sure). Another nice touch, was that this spa tub and area was designated as being an "adults only" (16 years and older) area, making it an even more peaceful retreat. There was a sign or two that gently reminded folks to please keep the area serene, as "spa treatments are in progress". Many folks rested on the old fashioned, wooden deck chairs and read. It was one of my favourite places on the ship. There were four huge, high taps on all corners of this spa pool that dropped water straight down with some force, and they provided quite a good neck and back massage. There were fabulous "bubble chairs" built into the two sides of the pool where you could recline on smooth, stainless steel bars, and the warm water would bubble up around you. This area was quiet and the noise of the water drowns out (pardon the pun) any voices or other poolside noise that might occur. This area was covered by a transparent roof, so the sun was always visible. It was a very nice place to relax, especially if the weather was poor. There were showers, saunas, and a spa treatment area beyond this spa pool. The sauna had a large window that overlooked the ocean. Guests were able to use these facilities without any fuss, and we were able to walk right in, no waiting, no extra fee (other than for the spa treatments themselves). These full shower/bathroom facilities could be used by quests who had crowded cabins as a secondary bathroom, as long as they didn't linger too long. There was quite a mix of folks on our cruise, but it seemed to me that most folks were middle aged or older. But there were also many young couples. I only saw one child embarking, but never saw him again during the cruise. The folks on this cruise were all interested in the theme which was classic movies, so maybe we all got along better than the average crowd? But I don't really know as this was my first cruise. Some folks seemed to go to bed early, and others never seemed to sleep at all. But there were many public places where the night owls could meet without bothering those who were trying to sleep. I truly cannot think of a thing to complain about regarding this cruise. If I was totally unreasonable and nitpicky, I might be able to think of something. But in all reality, things went very well indeed. Especially when I consider that there were a couple of thousand of strangers gathered together in a new and strange environment, out in the middle of the Caribbean. I must admit that I did hear several folks complaining about little things. Frankly it seemed to me that these folks just loved to complain in general, and would complain no matter how well things were going. Jeepers, some of them were just awful. I don't know how the staff endured folks such as these, but they would just keep on smiling and acting in a professional and respectful manner. I know that things must go wrong on cruises at times, and that they do need to be addressed. But from what I observed, the nonsense about which most of these folks were complaining was either nonexistent, or not important in the least. During all of our comings and goings from our stateroom, the staff managed to clean it twice a day, deliver our daily goodies, and perform our nightly turn down service without detection. Their timing was magical, and we never saw them unless you wanted to. Our butler was very helpful organising one of our shore excursions, along with our other extra requests. We were supplied with fabulous, fresh beach towels for both of our excursions, along with a very good quality tote bag/wallet for off shore exploring; it appeared to be very water resistant. Getting on and off of the ship for our excursions went quickly and smoothly (waves permitting), and the staff wished that we "have a great day", and "welcome back" as we came and went. The staff were very attentive to anyone needing aid, and they seemed focused on safety. We enjoyed Celebrity's famous chilled towels and champagne upon our return to the ship. Also, antibacterial soap was dispensed by a couple of crew members at the door, if you were so inclined. Leaving the ship also went very smoothly. We had our luggage tags delivered to our room by our butler the night before, and he explained the process. We packed, put our tags on our luggage and placed it in the hall before going out for the evening. We didn't realise that we couldn't get our room service coffee on the day of disembarkation (silly first timers), but when our butler heard us asking our steward about this, he said not to worry and took the time to deliver it himself! What a great guy. We were allowed to leave the ship whenever we wanted to due to our "priority disembarkation" perk from booking the "Sky Suite" (S1), so we wandered over to the bar on the 5th floor where we had first started our cruise five days before. We relaxed and enjoyed some mimosas while our Beverage Cards still remained activated! We only had to line up for a small amount of time in order to leave the ship, and we easily found our luggage and got though customs. The staff was helpful as we lined up to leave the ship, ensuring that we had our customs cards filled out, and answering questions. We took the Celebrity shuttle to the airport. We had no tickets for this shuttle (our fault) but the driver saw our Celebrity lanyard ID's and let us on the bus anyway. Nice guy. :) If anyone has any specific questions for me, please feel free to ask. :) I grew rather fond of "Connie" during my five days on board. I would definitely book a cruise with Celebrity again, and would certainly take the opportunity to enjoy more time on board the Constellation. :) Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Celebrity Constellation Immersive Wine Cruise November 2012 Check-in was very fast and without incident. On this occasion there was a 'fast channel' for Elite and Concierge passengers though it was not marked as such. ... Read More
Celebrity Constellation Immersive Wine Cruise November 2012 Check-in was very fast and without incident. On this occasion there was a 'fast channel' for Elite and Concierge passengers though it was not marked as such. However embarkation was being delayed as the ship was undergoing a deep clean. The facilities at the berth in Southampton are not the best so a couple of thousand people milling around made the place uncomfortable. When we were allowed on board, it was only to "enjoy the facilities" of the ship but with no access to the cabins until later. Seeing the ship under this stress in terms of density of people showed how well it absorbed them with no feeling of being crowded whatsoever. There are lots of little places to hide and sit everywhere. I was on this cruise 'for the ship' and not the itinerary -- I had always wanted to try a Millennium class ship and, after an accident in the gym, was temporarily not as mobile as usual and had to curtail my excursion activity. When I got to my cabin I had to investigate. There was good cupboard and drawer space -- and I found something I had been looking for for years on the Eclipse -- the second hairdryer. It then came to me that the person writing the cruise line's brochures had not kept up with the design of the ships. This Concierge cabin's bathroom had a hairdryer as part of the fixture with a second hand-held one in a cupboard whereas the Solstice class ship's bathrooms do not have such a fixture. [By the same token, RCI brochures advertise "360 degree views" from the Viking Crown Lounge. Hmm? I don't think so. From the old Sovereign Class maybe, but from the Freedom Class? I think if I were to be hanged by my ankles from the windows at the extremes of the Viking Crown Lounge of the Independence I wouldn't get much more than 270 degrees.] The cabin was not 'finished' in terms of putting out the extras (kettle, wine, robe etc) but I was not complaining as the staff were obviously very busy with the extra cleaning. They were making some mistakes as I had the paperwork (invitations etc) of four other cabins -- two were close so I posted them myself and the others I handed to my steward. The balcony was clean enough but the metalwork was showing signs of age, ie a fair amount of rust through the paintwork. The bathroom and shower especially were a fair size with enough storage but the shower had difficulty maintaining consistent water temperature on occasions. Next day, all my missing extras arrived. Because of the heightened sanitising regime, there was almost nothing outside of one's cabin anyone could touch apart from the fabric of the ship -- the only exceptions being the menus in the dining rooms. Newspapers handed to you by Guest relations, salt, pepper, butter and preserves were all off-table and served (sometimes using tongs) by the waiters. I think all the waiting staff performed wonderfully and to a level few other cruise lines could achieve. Sadly not all of the passengers performed as well. It was patently obvious what was going on but there were those who thought the regime did not apply to them and tried to flout it by helping themselves to things obviously behind a barrier. I saw this most often, sadly, in the Elite breakfast area in Ocean Liners. But I got the impression that not all members were 'dealing from a full deck' and wouldn't have noticed anything short of a slap with a wet fish. To dinner -- and a very nice table right at the stern of the lower level of the MDR. Service on the first night was at funereal pace but the Assistant Maitre d' explained it was down to new crew, new systems and the extra cleaning. And indeed it was a one-off as every night thereafter the service was at a regular pace. As I said above, I think the waiters, assistant waiters and wine waiters all performed very well with all the extra serving they had to perform as the table was completely barren of everything apart from individuals' place settings. I knew I was going to be looked after when I asked for my roast beef to be well-done and was offered the outside or end cut -- wonderful. If I have any complaint about the MDR, it was that we had the standard (though always good) Celebrity menu and I would have liked to see some attempt at regional dishes relevant to our ports of call without having to go ashore for them. Captain's Club Elite Members' breakfast in Ocean Liners was a most relaxing and civilised way to start the day. Charming and polite young men or ladies served you on a plate what you asked of them in a cafeteria type fashion and another team circulated taking orders and delivery specialty coffee and teas once you were seated. I would make one observation, not a complaint, but something to think about. The serving people all wore gloves as a protection against transmitting anything when handling food. However, when taking toast to passengers' tables, they would straighten vacated chairs with the same gloves on and not change them when they got back to serving the food. The rule should be to change gloves often and always when leaving the serving area. With the best will in the world, I think the construction of the Seaside Cafe defies understanding - there's a length of servery, an anonymous length of ship, more servery, more ship and eventually a servery at the stern. There must be a reason for it but I cannot understand it. There also doesn't appear to be enough inside seating. Now for American readers, this is the story of the English and Salads. Whether it's because of the war I don't know, but the English serve more vegetables with their main course than Americans so we do not have a salad course. When we do have a salad it usually replaces the main course and, unless you are a vegetarian, it includes something along the lines of cooked meats or fish and often termed 'cold cuts'. Why am I labouring this? Well the Independence has it sorted but not the Constellation: The vegetable elements for a salad and the main meat element could not have been further apart without being on different ships. And the people serving the cold meats did not understand that I did not want a sandwich but the cold meat on the plate with my 'greens'. It should be noted that the heightened sanitising regime meant that there was no 'self-serve' of anything in the cafe -- everything was served to you by a member of staff - something few other lines could have coped with. The Captains Club Elite Members pre-dinner drinks was well organised and the drinks service excellent. It was nice to have numerous of the ship's officers circulate and make small talk, something I have yet to see in Diamond Class on RCI where you might get one at most and certainly not every night. One of the many things removed from public mauling were the 'menus' from Cafe al Bacio. I would have thought it was quite simple to have printed a large menu (in large type) of the available coffees and teas available and fix it to the cafe wall (but obviously not). We had to reply on the memory of the waitress to answer your "what have you got" question and you didn't always get a comprehensive answer. And so to Ocean Liners for dinner. In summary it was excellent, faultless in every respect. It is not crowded at all as there is much space between tables and was tastefully decorated. Service was courteous and the food was perfect. I indulged not only in the food but the spectacle of a flambe at my table. It is a tough call to arbitrate between Ocean Liners and Murano on Eclipse -- I think I'd need to go round again. I was due to go on an early excursion one day so put out my Concierge Room Service the afternoon before. Nothing came so 15 minutes after the expiry of the allotted time I called room service. 20 minutes later someone arrived to say they could not understand it as they did not have my order. I said I'll go to the cafe as I was short of time, "No" he said, "it will only take five minutes". I gave him my order but it took another 20 minutes to arrive so I left a large part of it as I need to meet the excursion. Now I think it would be a simple thing to add the Concierge Breakfast menu to the interactive TV as the system knows your room number and so could differentiate between Concierge and Standard cabins and their menus. I cannot remember which ship I was on, but you collected your excursion number sticker from the entrance to the theatre and then took a seat. Normally this does not concern me but with my recent damaged knee, on this occasion the trek down to, and up onto, the stage (and back again) to collect my sticker was something I could have done without. Perhaps Celebrity can think of another way? The Cruise Critic meet was well organised. For the first time for me on a Celebrity or RCI ship, the CC meet was fronted by the Cruise Director who introduced the senior officers to us and there was coffee, tea and pastries. I was on one Independence cruise when a young girl from the entertainments team came to give a (very) short talk and absolutely nothing was out in terms of refreshments. Another Formal night and to Tuscan Grille - this is obviously a conversion from something, friends say it was a flower shop/sitting area. The decor very much reminds me of a 1970's Berni Inn (I know well of what I speak). It was quite dark, some might say 'intimate' -- I would say I wouldn't want to get intimate with anyone so ugly I didn't want to be able to see them over dinner. The service was again courteous and unhurried. However the food was a completely different story to Ocean Liners. I don't know if the conversion of the space added a kitchen or if the food came from the cafe below but in every case it only just crossed the line to make it only just warm enough to start eating it, meaning it soon became cold before being consumed completely. I thought it very sad and was a great disappointment. Another negative is that the space in its former life was a public thoroughfare. That thoroughfare still exists as there is only a partial screen between the dining room and the egress to the open deck from the lifts. This means the calm of the dining room was broken by the noise of squealing brats being hauled from the lifts to the deck (hopefully to be thrown overboard) and added to that is the draft that circulated the dining room as the deck doors were opened turned it into quite a cold venue. It's a shame that today also had the Champagne High Tea event that I enjoyed so much on Eclipse but decided to pass as I was eating in Tuscan Grille that night -- easy to be wise after the event but I wish I had gone. I think there needs to be some better staff training on what can, and cannot, be brought on board. Some people came back with a variety of drink without let or hindrance whereas others with the same goods had it confiscated by security either at a different deck or on a different day. This did not affect me as I have easy access to rare vintages and, as I said, I was on board for the ship and not the itinerary. The last night is always a mystery to me. On some ships your cabin is stripped of everything that isn't screwed down (including minibar), on others everything stays 'as is' and on yet others you get (or rather lose) something in between. This was an 'in-between' as all my minibar drink stayed out in the open but my kettle was taken away and my glasses/cups replaced by paper ones. I'm not complaining (apart from the loss of the kettle) but I would like to know the rationale as to what goes and what stays to see if I can follow the logic. As to the conclusion and would I sail on Constellation again. Though I received truly excellent service throughout, I would still like to sample it again when not under the pressure the heightened sanitising regime was bringing as I would expect it to 'flow' in a more relaxed manner. What would stop me coming back though is the noise of the ship. I am not used to the creaks and groans from the ship as it flexes at sea, as the Independence and Eclipse are quite a bit newer than the Constellation. Added to that, one of the drawers in the wardrobe would slide out at night and bang against the inside of the wardrobe door (later fixed) -- for the first time I resorted to using ear plugs at night. If those things could be sorted then I'd be back (if it sailed out of the UK). Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
1. not friendly welcome - other cruises a big party, this... you're here, and so what 2. Food served only by staff. a. First day virtually all servers not friendly improved over cruise, but not all happy to be serving. b. Really ... Read More
1. not friendly welcome - other cruises a big party, this... you're here, and so what 2. Food served only by staff. a. First day virtually all servers not friendly improved over cruise, but not all happy to be serving. b. Really slowed meal times large lines by stations at busy times c. Servers hard to find at some stations non-busy times d. Tables had signs "This table has been sanitized" and, had in fact, been wiped down with a disinfectant. The problem was that, in many cases, they were moving mud around the table. The table was sanitized, but not clean. 3. Are they watching food temperature? I had Shellfish Bisque that was barely warm. Could lead to food poisoning. It made me wonder how carefully they were testing food temp on the line. I was about to comment that I'm sure they are watching temperature in the kitchen, but is an assumption on my part. 4. The overall attitude of the crew is, in my opinion, a direct result of managements attitude. 5. Ship has maintenance issues, lights not working, rust, equipment in some facilities, the carpets in the buffet are filthy in some areas. 6. Our cabin was the largest veranda cabin I've ever had and was very well appointed. 7. Our cabin team was excellent - I can't recommend them more.Very friendly and accommodating and kept the room in tip-top shape. 8. My friend took a wine tour based on ONE of the wineries that was listed on the tour. The Winery has a world class reputation and hasn't done public tours in years. The tour stopped outside the gate of the winery and they could shoot photos of the winery through the fence. The tour cost $300 and was a rip off. It appears that the cruise line deliberately misled people in their description of the tour. The other participants were quite angry with this apparent deception. 9. One thing I found curious as I'm writing this at 3 in the morning. One of the staff is sweeping the carpet in the buffet area with a broom and dustpan. Wouldn't a vacuum cleaner be more effective at actually getting dirt out of the carpet? 10. The port in Bilbao had free WIFI, but one couldn't get logged on. The staff at the port commented that the cruise ship was blocking the signal. Apparently, an attempt by Celebrity to keep the everyone paying the cruise ships outrageous rates for Internet time. 11. The Ocean Liner restaurant - an extra fee restaurant - was world class. The service and food were wonderful. Had dinner there twice and would recommend it to anyone. 12. The service and the food in the main dining room was very good. 13. My friend was attempting to get a cup of coffee. After picking up 3 cups from the "clean" tray and finding them dirty she mentioned it to a ships officer that happened to be close by about the situation.His comment was "just use a paper cup!" in an exasperated tone of voice. 14. This cruise was a "wine immersion" cruise. We didn't hear of any wine seminars of any kind until 2 days before the end of the cruise from a fellow passenger. There was a list of seminars that we were told they couldn't put on tables because of the sanitary problems the ship was undergoing. 15. After we saw the list of seminars we discovered that they were all rather expensive... Riedel Glass seminar $87 - promoting Riedel glasses. A wine and food seminar at $95. The least expensive one was a wine and cheese tasting for $35. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
My wife and I booked this cruise on Constellation as an escape from a very dreary summer. We had an ocean view cabin and considered it to be one of the best cruises we had taken. Embarkation was swift and we felt very welcome. Our cabin ... Read More
My wife and I booked this cruise on Constellation as an escape from a very dreary summer. We had an ocean view cabin and considered it to be one of the best cruises we had taken. Embarkation was swift and we felt very welcome. Our cabin was a good size and well positioned. We dined second sitting in the main dining room and did not feel tempted to try any of the other options the food was of a very high standard We took breakfast in the cafeteria and their was always a good choice. A particular favourite was the roast joint of ham or pork which was presented daily The entertainment was varied and of a high standard. A bonus was the nightly performance of Perry Grant in his lounge. This was the first time we had come across Perry and we hope it will not be the last. The fact that 3 times we stayed overnight in port proved to be a bonus as it gave us more time to do as we pleased We found the staff and crew were very pleasant and helpful. We can only say that the Celebrity experience is one that we would like to sample yet again they certainly set a high benchmark for the rest of the cruise community Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
Upon arrival to the ship, all went like clockwork until we got to the buffet line. Then, it was like 1000 people hadn't eaten for a month! There was pushing, almost shoving to get to the buffet line. Welcome to your cruise! Having ... Read More
Upon arrival to the ship, all went like clockwork until we got to the buffet line. Then, it was like 1000 people hadn't eaten for a month! There was pushing, almost shoving to get to the buffet line. Welcome to your cruise! Having a walking disability, made it difficult to maneuver. Why Celebrity didn't have the restaurant open, when they knew the number of passengers boarding (at the same time)? Le Havre, Bordeaux, Bilbao our first three port's were interesting, most chose tours due to these being primarily shipping ports. (Except Bilbao) Tours were very expensive. More definition is needed for tours! Many tours were marked "moderate" were more strenuous! Who defines these? Obviously NOT a disabled person! Vigo Spain: Enjoyable tour of town. Fatima Portugal: Best deal of our cruise (although 5 hour bus ride to Fatima and back). Thoroughly enjoyed this tour, although our guide was lost for lunch. Had dinner at the Tuscan Grille (awesome). I wish I could say the same for the food at the San Marco dining room. Average at best. Loved the Poolside grill. This was a "Wine Immmersive" Cruise in yet the corkage charge was applied. Why? We purchased wine during our vineyard tours then had to open our bottle in our cabin as to not incur this obscene charge! Why wouldn't Celebrity have given a discount on corkage fee? Especially when you pay up to $199 for a wine tour. Seems like a small thing, but a liquor bill can add up very quickly. Room Steward (Matt) was terrific! I only wish maintenance would have waited to work on the hand rail on the deck. They decided to paint and stain our deck rail and left a terrible mess, but Matt was on-the-spot cleaning up their mess. This was our 3rd Celebrity Cruise was somewhat disappointed with this ship and personnel. This ship (although somewhat refurbed) is in dire need of a thorough updating (not just painting here and there, during a cruise). Personnel not very helpful with tours/handicap accessibility. Considering the average age of this cruise had to be mid to high 60's! Tried to go to one of the shows, unfortunately there were no places to sit. Spent days at sea (at night) in the casino. Casino very fun (during sea nights). Loved "Happy Hour" specials. Overall, loved this itinerary, tours cost much more than anticipated, but this trip was terrific. Glad we came in early and did Paris before the cruise. Wouldn't have had time to see Paris AND Normandy. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2012
This is a fairly new concept for Celebrity, and overall I am very happy with our cruise. We began by spending three nights in London, staying at the Judd Hotel. The location was fantastic, being near subways, rail, and many sites we wanted ... Read More
This is a fairly new concept for Celebrity, and overall I am very happy with our cruise. We began by spending three nights in London, staying at the Judd Hotel. The location was fantastic, being near subways, rail, and many sites we wanted to visit. Also, many pubs and restaurants in the area. On the 19th, we traveled to Southhampton and boarded the Constellation, which has been "Solsticized." While it was updated and overall very lovely, I would go for the true Solstice ships the next time. Our stateroom was plenty large, tho the balcony was very small. As the weather was cool, it did not become a problem as we spent little time on it. The Wine Cellar had self-service wine stations, which were convenient, but I had expected they would change the wines frequently so that we could try many different labels. That did not happen. The itinerary was what drew us to this cruise, and it did not disappoint. We first had a sea day, which was welcome as we had been on the go nonstop in London. Our first port was Vigo, of which we got to see little (our own choice). We were picked up at the pier by Brendan of Guided Galicia and left for Santiago de Compostela. Our tour there was very enjoyable...Brendan was an excellent guide and we learned and saw so much. After touring the cathedral, the office for the pilgrim certification and some little shops we got back in the van and saw more of the countryside. We visited Lagar de Costa winery and met with Sophia, part of the family, and tasted several of their wines. Very good!! After buying some of the wine we headed out and saw more beautiful scenery. We then went to Cambarro, a harbor town that was very picturesque and had a delicious seafood and omelette luncheon (with local wine of course). Next was Oporto, Portugal, another beautiful hilly town. We toured the Cathedral, then went to the Calem Cave to learn about and taste port. From there we boarded a boat to take us for a tour on the Douro River. We saw very interesting architecture and also saw a bridge designed by Gustav Eiffel. I really fell in love with Porto. Back to Spain, Bilbao this time, we took a tour of the Basque country visiting a small fishing town plus the city of Guernika. Our guide was steeped in Basque culture and educated us in the importance of this area to democracy. That afternoon, upon returning to ship, we walked about 45 minutes along the harbor get to the shopping area in Gekxo. The next day we took the shuttle into Bilbao, another beautiful and progressive city. I could easily go back and spend a week there. We visited the Guggenheim Museum and loved walking in the city and just observing the buildings. Quite an impressive area! That night we ran into some heavy seas in the Bay of Biscay...I'm not a good sailor and the Constellation's movement ended my evening very early. The next day was much better and we were sailing to France. Our first port was Bordeaux. Actually the port is in Le Verdon, quite a ways out from anything, so we spent our two days here doing alot of bus riding. The first day we went to St. Emilion, a Medieval town with steep winding streets surrounded by acres of lush vineyards. On the way we passed many chateaux and vineyards. We did alot of walking in St. E, took a ton of pictures. I loved seeing the town and the surrounding area, but I think our guide was new. She didn't seem real comfortable with her English and was a little stand-offish.We reboarded the bus and drove a short way to a chateau and wine cave for a very lovely and delicious luncheon and wine tasting. It was a buffet with roasted meats, wonderful salads, cheeses, desserts and two or three bottles of wine. Made the long drive back to the ship very good for napping! The next morning we took the "Bordeaux on Your Own" excursion and had cafe and croissants on the square near the Grand Theatre. We walked about quite and bit before meeting our guide, Patricia, from Bordeaux Walking Tours. She is American but has lived several years in France. She studied architecture and her enthusiasm for that subject is contagious! We learned (and saw) so much with her. She also educated us on the city's mayor who has pulled Bordeaux into a thriving city with modern transportation and regulations for keeping the city's historical buildings restored and cleaned so that everything is a treat for the eyes. The riverfront that he developed is filled with gardens and an amazing reflection/bathing pond. I would love to go back to Bordeaux also and spend much more time! We sailed that afternoon for Le Havre. We had our last sea day and last formal night before reaching port. We never did see much of Le Havre, because we left the next morning for an excursion to Giverney and to Rouen. Giverney is home to Claude Monet's home/museum and gardens. We spent a couple hours here just soaking in the beautiful flower and water gardens. Sooooo gorgeous!! After, we drove a short distance to a restaurant in the countryside. It had been a millhouse and still had the water wheel working. We had a very lovely 3 course meal here with wine. We were impressed both with the beauty of the setting and the food served. Leaving here we drove to Rouen and saw where Joan of Arc was tried and burned at the stake, where the Black Plague victims were buried (80% of the population was wiped out in less than a week), a modern church dedicated to St. Joan. It is a city with both midieval buildings and new. The cathedral is impressive as are the city's many bridges. Leaving here we had another hour or so drive to return to the ship. The next morning we packed up and left the ship by taxi for the train station in Le Havre. (The ship would sail back to Southhamption the next day.) We traveled into Paris and checked into our hotel, Le Petit Paris in the Latin Quarter. We spent 4 nights there and loved this chic little boutique hotel. Our rooms were small but efficient and very comfortable. After four days of non-stop walking and tour (and eating and drinking) we finally left for Charles De Gaulle and flew home. We have fond memories of our time on ship. While I still prefer the larger Solstice ships I cannot fault any of the service or food we received on the Constellation. Our cabin attendant, Mathys, was very helpful and kept our room spotless. Our dining room servers, Moses and Olga, were fantastic. I feel the meals served on this cruise were some of the best we've ever had on ship. All in all, I highly recommend this cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2012
At first : I'm a German Tour guide, so please excuse my English.. For me , it was the 7. time to go on these islands. For my group it has been first time. Time before we have been sailing with the Millenium of Celebrity Cruise lines. ... Read More
At first : I'm a German Tour guide, so please excuse my English.. For me , it was the 7. time to go on these islands. For my group it has been first time. Time before we have been sailing with the Millenium of Celebrity Cruise lines. So we thought, same company - sister ship - even "Solsticized" , so what ? But, that's what we thought... To make a long thing short: Embarkation was alright, even the extra waiting time for the extra cleaning of the ship, because of norovirus. We understood this. We knew that the luggage will take a time, to be on the cabin. So we went to the buffet at Deck 10, and had some drinks on the after Deck there. This is the best way to spend the time waiting. Others were looking around to discover the ship and it's facillitis. As I mentioned- it was not our first time. We do this professionell. The cabins were, as we expected them, an knew them from sister ship Millenium. With some exceptions.. Some beds seemed not to be freshly made. Things were missing on the cabin..like beach towels, bags. They Cabin Stewards gave us various answers: Only on request..or one night before first Island-tour, or even: there will be none.. ! After talking to guest relations, day by day they arrived in all of our 16 cabins. I was looking for the group coord. manager Cherry, but I only got her on the phone, or someone of the staff was talking to her like " she said I shall tell you.." So, I never saw her, during the first time of my first of 2 sailings with two groups!!! Only on 2. cruise ( I had a back to back ) I told the reception , that have to spek to her - face to face. Then she showed up ! OK..one time..I never saw her again after that. I'm a customer with 3 times Celebrity award of beeing the greatest seller of cruise trips in southern Germany, I think, I should not ask to see her - she should ask to see me ? Action on board: To be true - there was not really an action happening. Not for us. If you like playing bingo or go to the casino, or try to learn how to fix up a table with special napkins a.s.o. The Shows: They have been, as we know it from Celebrity - professionell and nice. Worth to go there. The Music... At first : I worked for radio and TV stations in Germany for 22 years as a on-air personal. The Music from tapes or Cd's running during the days , was almost horrible ! Some kind of chillin-music after having some drugs ? From outa-space! Or some Jazzmusic with people singing or playing a Sax or Trompete, seemed to be in a competition, who can reach the highest tune for the longest time.. Nerv killing! It almost made me and others agressive. That was the reason, why I left some places very early, to get out of reach. After I mentioned that to several people on board - they changed it ..a little! These music tapes and it's kind of music had nothing to do, with the average people being on that ship. Not the kind of people-not the age of them. The Bands: And again, I am used to that, what the Millenium had on Board, and they where excellent. On the constellation, I had the feeling, they ordered them via internet, without listening to them, and looking for the lowest price ! And believe me, that's what they really got. The Reggae Band looked like one, but the never played like one. If i would through some corn on some sheets with music notes on.. a blind chicken would more often pick a corn on the right tune, then this band does ! Awful ! The indonesian "Show-Band" had a quality to play on a beach bar, with no entry fees, but not on any kind of a ship. So, we decided not to listen to them , and leave, when they appear. The accapella Group : After beeing a group in this constellation, for only 5 month.. that was OK ! The repertoire could have been a little bigger, but OK The Guitarrmen and singer on the after deck: Nice to listen to him.. if you prefer not to talk to youre friends at the table. He almost made every job like beeing on a concert. The reason why he was playing there, should have been backround music ? Have a drink, talk with youre friends and guests, have some music in the back. This guy was that loud, that all kind of talking went out to screaming to youre partner on the table. It took some time and some comlaining to change that. Result of music entertainment on Board (except the theater!) : Forget it. Restaurants: The buffet at deck 10 was alright for breakfast. A little strange for us during lunch time! Much too much asian and indian food, where we sometimes where not able to find out, what the hell it is, they are serving there with these indian names. Germans are not that kind of people who load up the plate with "I don't know what it is, If I don't like it - through it away!" But standing in a row for a time, you better take what you know, instead trying all the wrong stuff. The buffet, following after closing time 2:30 afternoon, which started at 6 at night, was pretty poor. Some pastas with different sauces, the asian guy with some asian food , some sweets - thats it ! The sushi at the asian station must have been great, thats what sushi fans always tould me ! All whats left, was a grill and sandwich station at the top of the buffet. The deal here : Sandwiches or.. Chickenbreast - minute Steak - Steak of salm - pork chops. So far - so good ! But.. I'm shure, the staff here got told, how long a chickenbreat or all the other stuff has to be on a grill - thats it. Want some herb-butter on youre steak ? Don't have it ! Want some onions on youre steak ? Don't have it ! (don't even know that option) I asked them to put some fried onions on the steak They offered some raw ones.. No man.. I want you to to put these on the grill for 2 minutes , get them glassy to light brown.. put them on the steak, thats all ! Oh no sir, we can not do that. OK- forget it! The baked potatoe, could you please open it, to put some soure cream in there ? "you want me to.. what ? Ok forget it, put the soure cream on the side- i'm done. Pizza Station: open all day and deep in the night. Different pizza's some sidedishes. OK ! If you order italian food on that pasta station, you'll find a guy ( ok, he's chinese) in an all italian cook outfit. But do not ask him for the italian names of the food like "alio e olio" which is just pasta with garlic and olive oil, or to make it more worst "alio e olio al diavolo" which just means with hot spice, like peppers. He will not even have an idea, what the hell you talk about! OK - it is an american ship, they speak english (some still try to..) but don't you put a guy behind that station in an al italian outfit, that not even knows the basics of the original food names. On all other stations I get served the indian stuff with all indian names, where I dont know, is that the name of the indian cook or his food ? So I have to know - my fault if I don't. All in all the buffet on deck 10 ist good for breakfast, lunch. Poor for the night. San Marco Restaurant: Good Food - up to excellent, and nice waiters and assistance.. if you got the right ones ! Most of them are, some not My one, Helmi and his assitant Dino - they where a top team ! Outstanding ! When I was down there, I really fellt pampered with the best service I could get, and the best Food they had. For 8 people 3 different kind of steaks in 4 different kinds of cooking - rare, medium rare - medium done - well done- and they all came as ordered - always ! Respect ! 5 * for food and service! Extra Fee Restaurants : The "ocean liner" or "the tuscan grill" Some of my people tryed them, because of a special event like 25. anniversry , birthday a.s.o. They all came out happy - even after they paid a little more for drinks , and the extra fee. It's worth it, when you have to celebrate a special day or wnt someting special. The other special restaurants, we did not try - even after they offered them every day again and again... and again. If "solsticizing" means, to put more places with extra fees in there, man - this was the wrong way ! The average amount of people using this ( by having a included excellent food and service at the San Marco! ) was too low to get in the costs of the new buildings- my opinion. The after deck Bar : Nice to sit and meet. Smokers on left - non-smokers right side. Service OK , Music sometimes much too loud. Music from tapes.. 2 times they build up a table , nice decorated with an Ice Sculpture,a winebarrel and some bottles and glasses, and a variety choice of cheese. looked really nice ! Some people made photos of it, but no one really knows, what's it all about... OK ,I'm here to tell you ('cause no one elso will ever do).. You did have the chance to try some different wines (extra price !) by bottle or glass, to find youre favourite one, and have a cheese/crackers snack included ! But... nobody told you ! No waiter - no Winespecialist - no one ! The waiters never took the chance to sell this to you, they just ignored it. After 2 hours of standing there - untouched- they begann to put the cheese on little plates , and serve it to the people as a snack. Then they took the whole thing away again... They even did this, when we had a little storm comming up, and no one - except some smokers for a quick cigarette, was sitting there. Bad joke ? No - the truth ! I think there ar people who are watering the Flowers in a garden - meanwhile a heavy rainshower comes down- because it was on theire daily plan to do so. They left this bar open, even when the wind was that hard, that it blows youre head away, but closed the poolbar inside at same time. No one understood this, but even after we talked to the people in charge therefore.. nothing happend. Its like that - we always did that way - we always do so in the future, why proof it? Result for me and my 2 groups on Board : Celebrity : YES What a difference a ship makes.. Constellation : NO - not again ! The Constellation seems to be for relaxing older people only, who just like to lay on the pool ( some with earplugs, because of the loudness and the quality) and enjoy the food and the weather..play some bingo, name that tune or join the casino. Even a 60 year old woman (in a concierge Cabin) from New York said : This is God's waiting room.. But if so, they should make the cabins smaller, for the result, that the gangways have enough room then, to pass by two wheelchairs. I will not be missunderstood ! I have no problems with people in wheelchairs, while I had a time in one of them too ! But If you construct a ship and it's programm in this direction of users, then please, do it perfect! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2011
Positives were we had fruit baskets refreshed daily & champagne on arrival. But the express embarkation was nonexistent & we waited in line with everyone else. The entire process seemed poorly run. At the end of the cruise ... Read More
Positives were we had fruit baskets refreshed daily & champagne on arrival. But the express embarkation was nonexistent & we waited in line with everyone else. The entire process seemed poorly run. At the end of the cruise disembarkation was very smooth - as promised. Room steward was polite but there was no sense of urgency on getting our room cleaned in the morning. Unfortunately our room was right across the hall from the service entrance & the door slammed all thru the day & up until 10 p.m. We discussed getting it fixed with both our steward & the concierge but to no avail. It was not fixed during our 12 days. The food service was okay & the food was very good overall with the exception of steak & prime rib which both was very disappointing, overcooked & grisley. The phone in our room didn't function correctly. If I wanted a wake up call I had to go down stairs to the desk since they would not pick up any calls. The entertainment was well received & talented singers/dancers. But the management of the ship seemed disjointed. The smells in the casino was so offending (sewage)I would not go to play the machines. The spa was nice - very pricey. We have sailed twice on the Infinity happily, but I would not go back on the Constellation. However, the ports of call were very good. If you choose to stop at St. Petersburg we used www.tour-petersburg.com with wonderful results. Tim was a great guide who I would recommend. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2009
Celebrity features a lot of sales of tee shirts, junk merchandise with their logo, a "Russian Bazaar" sale and costume jewelry while the ship is at sea. Celebrity's motivation seems to be one of greed, not one that features ... Read More
Celebrity features a lot of sales of tee shirts, junk merchandise with their logo, a "Russian Bazaar" sale and costume jewelry while the ship is at sea. Celebrity's motivation seems to be one of greed, not one that features the passenger's enjoyment of their ship. Overall I found the ship to have a rather difficult layout. There is no main entrance to the main dining room from the lobby or from the cabins. It is necessary to walk through the casino or shops to get to the dining room. The first few days I was convinced I was headed in the wrong direction because the layout is so illogical. The emphasis is on spending money in the shops or casino. There are no direct through passageways on the cabin decks. The promenade deck does not go completely around the ship. In all I think the ship is awkward and illogical in its layout. The Edge of the Earth lounge, forward on deck 11 would or should present magnificent views of the sea except for the odd curtained cubicles at the center just in front of the windows to the sea. The entire room is draped in what is one would assume to be undersea kelp. It is particularly odd in the daytime and the chiffon netting is torn and worn in many places. I thought perhaps at night this unusual decor would be lit to look like an undersea atmosphere but in fact that is not the case. It is just strange and rather like Halloween decor. Unfortunately the floor is sticky, dirty, covered in black marks and is absolutely revolting. The onboard "expert" on port destinations is very self serving. He is an older man with a remarkable reputation but his lecture was wandering, boring and always reverts to his latest book on South America, a book with no connection to the Baltic even though he tried very hard to make a connection. Sadly the entertainment was extremely poor in quality with the exception of the string quartet, the classical guitarist and the one comedian. The singers in the night lounge and at the pool sang off key and many people covered their ears to keep from cringing when the singers attempted to hit high notes. In the dining room their is scratchy Muzak-type recorded music that only adds to the noise level. We requested that they turn down the audio in the dining room but unfortunately that was not possible. The first cabin in which I sailed was beneath a pantry where the noise from a dishwasher continued until past 1:30 am and started up again very early in the morning. After several nights of not sleeping the guest relations office moved me to another cabin. There was a sewer-like odor that came up the stairwells. Toward the end of the cruise the odor wafted into the Lido Cafe/food court on deck 10. It was a great aid in curbing appetite. The discounting of fares is attracting a group of people who don't care about their fellow passengers. On several occasions, people came into the Lido Cafe to dine while wearing wet swimsuits, sometimes covered by a bathrobe from their cabin, other times just their swimsuits. Equally odd was finding women eating breakfast in their robes with rollers in their hair. Celebrity needs to enforce the dress code. The passengers I refer to as the feral-type allowed their kids to run up and down the hallways outside of cabins until 1:00 a.m. The same kids were seen charging around the ship, through the shops, lounges and Lido Cafe as though they were on a playing field. Obviously the parents were oblivious to their children's behavior. One child brought chicken to her mom in the library where they had a little picnic. Of course they left the chicken bones and dishes in the library after their meal. Celebrity's handling of disembarkation in St. Petersburg was clearly selective in allowing the passenger who had purchased shore excursions from the cruise line to have favorable position in clearing immigration before going to their tour buses. The individuals and groups with shore excursions arranged privately were required to stand in line for more than an hour while the cruise line passenger were processed quickly by 3-4 agents vs. the 1 agent for the private payors. Even though the cabins are all non-smoking, there were still passengers smoking on their balconies. Smoking is allowed in the entertainment theater and in The Edge of the Earth lounge. As a non-smoker I think allowing smoking on one side of a room is a joke! Celebrity needs to confine smoking to outdoor areas only. On the favorable side, the room stewards were courteous, friendly and efficient. Our dining room waiters were superb! The food for the most part in the dining room was quite good. This was my first experience on Celebrity. In comparing Celebrity to Princess, Crystal, Holland America, Cunard, P&O and the now retired Royal Viking Line, I can't say I would rate it the 4 stars that they claim. Would I sail again on Celebrity? Probably not. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2009
THE GOOD: This is a nice ship that is well designed so you are able to find your way around in no time. It is spacious and it never feels crowded in the public areas. The stateroom is nice and bigger than we expected, or maybe it is just ... Read More
THE GOOD: This is a nice ship that is well designed so you are able to find your way around in no time. It is spacious and it never feels crowded in the public areas. The stateroom is nice and bigger than we expected, or maybe it is just that the space is well used. Everything was very clean and the service was meeting our expectations. We also enjoy the breakfast and lunch buffet very much. There was a lot of variety. The omelet station in the morning and the pasta bar the rest of the day are great. The pool area was a nice place to relax. One of the pools was very cold, but the other was nice and the Jacuzzis were set at a nice temperature. We never had any problem to find a chair around the pools. The staff seemed to apply the "no hog chair" policy and most of the passenger did not reserve a chair if they were not there. As for the entertainment, there was an "A Cappella" group (The Naturals) that we really enjoyed thorough the cruise. Those guys were extraordinary and it is a shame that their contract was ending on January 2009 because it will leave a big hole to fill in the schedule. THE BAD: We experienced a lot of disappointments on that cruise... Where to begin? Let's talk about dining. The design of the main restaurant (San Marco) had nothing extraordinary to offer, and the food is disappointing. We had a couple of meal where most of our dinner companions thought the food was bad, but most of the time it was "just OK". The presentation was good, but it definitely lacks flavour. A lot of people were talking about the quality of the food and were surprised that it was not better than that. About the specialty restaurant where you have to pay extra (The Ocean Liner), some really liked it, some said that the service is superior but not the food so it was not worth it. You can order room service using the TV but don't expect this system to be perfect. Two out of three times we used it our order was missing some items when it got to the room. The service was quick, but not having what you ordered was annoying to say the least. The library (called "Words") is a real joke. I went there as soon as I got on board and I could not believe my eyes. Most of the shelves were empty and the few books they had included "AAA travel guide", "Dictionaries" and old publications. I think you could have fit all the books available in two or three carton boxes. Celebrity should definitely buy some books or transform that area to something else because it is just wrong to call that a library. By the way, there was a music room called "Notes" on that ship before but it has been converted to a "massage room", so don't look for "Notes" even if you can still see it on some plans near the elevators! One of the shuffleboard areas was missing one disk and it was never replaced even if we reported it twice in the first two days. We could not get a deck of cards at the guest service even if it says that we can in the reference book in the stateroom. There were missing pieces on the chess boards available in the game room. The entertainment was dreadful. On our previous cruises we had great shows but we could not believe how boring the shows on this ship were. To be fair the acrobats were good and the singers and dancers were "OK", but the "hypnotist" and the "stand-up" were so boring that most of the crowd left before the end of the performance. There were a couple of entertainers that maybe some really old folks could appreciate but there was nothing there to please people who were born after 1950!!! And don't even think that you could at least catch a good movie if there is nothing else to do because the movies that were showed were either old news (2007 movies) or they would bore your brains out. There were some activities that were announced on the bulletin board that did not even occurred and when they did occurred they were not all success. For example there were supposed to be basketball but no one showed up from the staff and we were only two passengers so we had to recruit player ourselves to be sure to have some people the next time. The staff literally had to beg for 15 minutes to get two couples for the "not so newlywed game". The karaoke was going well when it was presented in the "Rendez-vous lounge" but was a flop at the disco. The trivia's seems to be attended only by the same 10 people's days after days. There was some dancing too, but nothing to rave about. The only activities that seem to work well on that ship are the bingos and the casino. I guess it is greatly related to the average age of the crowd which is a really old crowd. Another thing that was strange is that when we cruise the Celebrity Summit about five years ago there was a midnight dessert buffet that was displayed in the main dinning room that was grandiose but this time on the Constellation (which looks a lot like the Summit) there was no such thing. There was a fruit/dessert buffet one night but it was on deck 10 and it was very limited. It was nothing to compare to what we had on the summit. At least the ports were interesting but my advice would be to book your excursions off-ship because they are a lot cheaper for the same experience. The best were Cartagena and Costa Rica. Not much to see in Grand Cayman but still interesting. Not much to do in Cozumel if you are not snorkeling (Tulum is to far). Panama is a dump, take a taxi to go see the nearest locks (Gatun) but don't waste your time with longer excursion, they are definitely not worth it. And about the decoration of the ship... Well let just say that I never saw so much crap displayed as "art". I am not an expert, and that might explain why I did not appreciated the "out of focus" pictures on the wall of deck 5, or the "gorilla with a fish" on deck 11, or the metal sculpture in the Cova Cafe, and all the rest of the bullshit that was proudly displayed all around the ship. The ambiance was nice but the decoration was really awful. THE WORST: Why do they accommodate so much the smoking crowd? There is a complete side of the outside decks that is reserved for those stinking smokers and this is a real annoyance. They should give them a small isolated room in the bottom of the ship where they could kill themselves slowly without bothering everyone around. I was amazed by the number of smoker on that cruise. I guess again that this had something to do with the "age factor" of the passenger. I think younger people have understood that smoking is out. Just walking on the smoking side of the deck to go from one place to another was bothering enough to avoid it at all price. Conclusion: I think this was our last Celebrity cruise, or at least until we feel really really old! The poor quality we experienced on Celebrity this time (food, entertainment, etc) has convinced us that we could do a lot better for this kind of money on other cruise line. Read Less
Celebrity Constellation Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 5.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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