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16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
This was our first cruise, i was a bit sceptic of this experience, as we have always done our own travel arrangements , this trip we could not complain about anything it was excellent. The staff, were first class, the entertainment was ... Read More
This was our first cruise, i was a bit sceptic of this experience, as we have always done our own travel arrangements , this trip we could not complain about anything it was excellent. The staff, were first class, the entertainment was very good. also there was a well equipped gym at the front of the ship with beautiful views whilst you worked off all the wonderful food that served up each & everyday ,also The golf putting championship was well organised The food was 5 star, the variety was amazing, & also the service of the drink waiters. Our cabin was serviced by Dennis who I may say done a wonderful job keeping our cabin clean & tidy. Port & shore excursions , we did do whale watching at Juneau that was very well organised. At Ketchikan we got ripped off, doing a journey by tractor/golf buggy onto a beach to look at some pebbles, then to a local hall for a tribal dance by some teenagers who had no idea what the hell they were supposed to be doing ,which I may say it spoilt our day, But you learn from these experiences. Boarding & Disembarkation is done like a military operation it is quick & easy. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
...at least if you look at the level of service! Need to say that we were first-time cuisers, and after this experience will go again on a cruise and again will choose Celebrity. Also must say that we had a Celebrity suite which goes ... Read More
...at least if you look at the level of service! Need to say that we were first-time cuisers, and after this experience will go again on a cruise and again will choose Celebrity. Also must say that we had a Celebrity suite which goes along with several advantages such as the private Luminae restaurant or the Michaels club. First of all and most impressing I must point out the excellent service on bord. The butler, Ramir, was very helpful and friendly, and so were the 2 stewarts, Bartholomae and Fran! One of the most impressing experiences was dining in the Luminae restaurant: I have been to many excellent restaurants, many of them Michelin-star-rewarded, so I think I know very well what good service is all about...but the guys in the Luminae were outstanding: Rav, Jelena, and all the other peoples were acting constantly perfect! This is a tough job and hard work every day, but they made it look nice&easy! Chapeau!! Food was very good to excellent, still there is a gap between the 4 star food and the 5 star service... Also most other peoples of the crew we met were friendly, smiling and had a gentle word for us. Also would like to mention our Concierge in the Michaels' club Erik and his team for excellent service. Another person to mention is Sara, the cruise director: Very funny and friendly, and you always had the impression that she's loving what she's doing. The ship is not the newest generation but kept in good shape.You could see lots of crew members cleaning all day (and night!) long. Generally we liked the stateroom, but although the stewarts kept it clean the furniture was old and outdated and for sure needs a general makeover. The shows in the theatre were very good and professional - enjoyed it and did not expect such good quality on a cruise ship. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly and fast, and so was the organisation during our port days (except the day with the accident in Ketchikan). Finally the day with the crash at the pier in Ketchikan caused some trouble, but our fishing trip was cancelled anyway due to the bad weather. During this accident we didn't feel unsafe at any time, we always had the impression to be "in good hands" by Captain Bardos and would bord a ship under his command again at any time. As a summary: We enjoyed our stay on the Infinity, and will come back! Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
we feel absolutely cheated out of our holiday money. We are battling farmers who have saved our money for what was to be the holiday of our lifetime. Firstly, there was an 18% service charge on everything we bought, then there was a place ... Read More
we feel absolutely cheated out of our holiday money. We are battling farmers who have saved our money for what was to be the holiday of our lifetime. Firstly, there was an 18% service charge on everything we bought, then there was a place on the invoice for a tip. A few times it was underlined. A cheap bottle of wine we bought in a supermarket in Santiago for $4.50 was on the menu for $35 + 18% etc. They X rayed your bag if you'd been ashore checking that you hadn't bought any alcohol with you. We paid gratuities in package purchase price in Australia, but when aboard, they charged again. When my wife inquired at the information desk she was told that was only for the room boy. Everywhere we went someone was trying to sell us something. It wasn't only us that felt cheated either. There was not even a picture theatre on board, instead you had to sit in the bough of the ship in the open air. The free shows were all second rate. There was a poor old fellow who gave seminars on various topics, he was good, but we got the feeling he was only paid by a free trip. If this is what cruise ship holidays are about, count us out on any more. Last holiday was on a Trafalgar bus tour around Eastern Europe. That was much better value. I wouldn't advise anyone to cruise Celebrity! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
This was our first cruise so we have no other experiences to compare it to. The first thing to say is that the Infinity is not the biggest or newest ship out there. However, we were booking for the destination (Alaska) not the ship ... Read More
This was our first cruise so we have no other experiences to compare it to. The first thing to say is that the Infinity is not the biggest or newest ship out there. However, we were booking for the destination (Alaska) not the ship alone. Vancouver - we found this to be well organised as a port of embarkation. We stayed in a hotel the night before and turned up at about 10:30am on the off chance we could get in (11am is the official time). We were direction to baggage drop immediately and could do part of the process straight away. It isn't immediately clear where to go but there are loads of people around to guide you. We rode the wave so to speak and were on board sipping fizz by 11;10am! We'd read to tip the porters but he seemed surprised! Oh well, it was a few dollars. We also chose to do the 'express disembarkation' at the end which meant you kept hold of your cases and got off at 7:30am. Breakfast opened at 6 or 6:30am so we could get something immediate and them ate ashore. This option suited us because we were going to airport and wanted the cases packed ready for that. A tip - don't pay for a taxi to the airport! We used the rapid transit which is a two minute walk from the cruise ship and it cost CAD$7.25 for all three of us on a Sunday morning!! bargain. A taxi was about $30 pp if booked through the ship I believe. Children - We travelled with our daughter and didn't want to pack her off all day to a kids club so we weren't too worried about kids facilities. There is a daily programme and an area with X Boxes etc. Don't go on this ship if you expect your child to be entertained by someone else all day long though. There were a few too many unattended children too. I rated the children's activities so poorly because we took her along on the first day to say hello and see what was on offer. She didn't get greeted by anyone and immediately said she didn't want to go there as 'it was just all x-boxes'. Day 1 set off - leaving Vancouver was a lovely experience, it was hot, the pool was open and a band was playing cover songs by the pool so there was a real holiday atmosphere. Food - There was a heavy influence of Asian food in the buffet. There was always something nice to eat although I do agree with other reviewers that the buffet could get a bit dull if you have high expectations. We never find it hard to find something we liked. There is also an ice cream counter that has fresh baked cookies so you don't need to pay to use the gelato bar. the Trellis was our main restaurant and we wanted to eat early so had to book well in advance to get a good time slot. The food was always tasty but just too many flavours going on for my simple palette! The staff were very friendly and helpful with a good knowledge of the menu. They always made an effort to say hello and ask how our day ways, talk to our daughter etc. Cesar was our waiter and Alona the assistant and there are both lovely. There are hand sanitizers at all restaurant entrances and at peak times there is a member of staff there too. Drinks package - we made the decision not to buy a drinks package as we aren't heavy drinkers and were happy to pay as you go. As it was, we just didn't feel like alcohol so we were more than happy with what was included within the buffet - orange juice, apple juice, two types of mixed fruit drinks, (real) lemonade, water, ice, coffee, hot chocolate and a variety of teas. You will get asked a lot if you want to buy drinks packages in the first few days but that's fair enough. shore trips - We made the decision to book all our shore trips through the cruise company so we had the insurance that if anything held us up the ship would wait for us - and on two days that strategy paid off for other travellers who did get held up. Celebrity offers a massive programme of tours for all interests and physical abilities. We knew we were paying over the odds and its very easy to book up when you get in to port if you choose to. We enjoyed the shore trips - plane over 5 glaciers (this was the only way my husband saw them as we couldn't actually get close to the Hubbard Glacier on the day it was scheduled for the ship because of fog), Icy Straight Point whale watching - amazing! we saw loads of hump backs and orcas. Dog Sled summer camp - this was for my daughter and she loved petting all the dogs and puppies and learning about sled racing. Ketchikan duck tour - this was a nice simple family activity to see some of the streets of Ketchikan, learn a bit of history and chill before then walking around ourselves to see some of the sites that had been pointed out. Expect loads of rain in this part of Alaska although the temperatures rarely got too low. If we'd forgotten the gloves and hat we wouldn't have suffered (bear in mind this was August though) The ship - It had a recent refit I believe but I think that probably just meant squeezing in the cover charge restaurants and higher end bars. The day to day areas are acceptable but nothing special. The brown décor is dated. The 'art' and 'sculptures' are hideous and by the end of the week it was bugging me to have to pass them thinking that someone gets paid to create it (think a 9 year olds go at sticking clay together). I wasn't disappointed but there wasn't a wow factor. The cabins - detailed in the cabin review. OK, cramped with sofa bed out. lumpy floor! Entertainment - A newspaper came to the room every night for the next day packed with port information, weather, speakers, activities etc etc. Sadly, many people didn't seem to bother reading them! We enjoyed the 'shows' from the naturalist Milos Radakovich about Alaskan wildlife, weather, climate change and the the Universe! There was a lot of information packed in to them but it delivers it with a great sense of humour with tongue firmly in cheek. We also enjoyed the water colour painting classes which were on four mornings. There wasn't a huge level of tuition as such but it was great fun and something we'll continue at home - all abilities welcome from children to those who can already paint. The shows and comedians were good. Light hearted, well done. Your typical kind of holiday entertainment. The itinerary - a good mix of at sea and port days with plenty of time at the ports. One of the at sea days was to visit the Hubbard Glacier but it was too foggy so we couldn't get in close enough. This is important to consider - weather and wildlife are not guaranteed! All in all, a good experience although sadly I did suffer with motion sickness 3/7 days so I didn't get to do anywhere near as much as I wanted. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
this was my first cruise and i can honestly say it was great....the service and staff were great the food in the dining room was always Delicious and our dining room staff at our table were all so polite and courteous....making sure we ... Read More
this was my first cruise and i can honestly say it was great....the service and staff were great the food in the dining room was always Delicious and our dining room staff at our table were all so polite and courteous....making sure we were happy and never had to ask for water and were always there to clear our plates before our next course our room attended in room 2086 always made sure we had clean towels and turned down our beds and our room was always so clean..and always left a chocolate on our pillows..the entertainment on the ship was the best....the performers were outstanding.....a big thank going out to Yohanne our dining room waiter, as well Eliza and all that waited on my family......all in all it was a great cruise to Alaska in Celebrity Infinity on July 19-26 from Vancouver Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2015
As first time cruisers we were not sure what to expect. This was an amazing experience from start to finish. We travelled from Toronto the day before we set sail and were blown away by Vancouver, the airport was extremely user friendly and ... Read More
As first time cruisers we were not sure what to expect. This was an amazing experience from start to finish. We travelled from Toronto the day before we set sail and were blown away by Vancouver, the airport was extremely user friendly and the connection to downtown via the Canada LIne subway was direct, easy, efficient and economical-only $15.00 for two of us! There were plenty of helpful transit/tourism folks around to guide us-what a difference from Toronto! We spent the night at the beautiful Marriott Downtown Pinnacle Hotel which was only a short 15 minute walk from the Waterfront Station. When we arrived at the pier for embarkation we found that there was another ship also preparing to sail that day and were concerned by the number of folks in line for processing-our concerns were unnecessary! From our time of arrival at pier at 11:00 A.M. to getting aboard with a complimentary glass of champagne took less than an hour. The Ocean View Café was open for lunch and our staterooms were available by 1 P.M. The Infinity was immaculate and the crew first rate. We were in Aqua Class (Cabin 9083) and the food and service in our dedicated restaurant BLU were exceptional. Our cabin was spotless and spacious with plenty of storage and with the balcony provided a quiet place to sit and watch the ever changing scenery. Entertainment was top notch with something for everyone-from a quiet corner with a piano player to easy listening duos to full production shows in the theatre there was always something to see and do. A highlight was the Canada Day Celebration in the Grand Foyer-what a treat to sing "O Canada" with our fellow passengers and many of the ship's Officers. The weather co-operated for the most part, our time at the Hubbard Glacier was spectacular, bright sunshine. Captain Michael rotated the ship a full 360 degrees so everyone had view of this magnificent wonder. The rain began as we were beginning our journey to Juneau but did not dampen our spirits as we went ashore for the "Town, Tram, Trek and Tea excursion. Logistics of excursions booked through Celebrity was well done, with priority for leaving the ship via tender at Icy Straight Point or gangway at Juneau and Ketchikan timely and orderly-everyone got where they were going on time. Disembarkation in Vancouver was incredible-we chose the "self checkout" option which allowed us to keep our luggage with us the final night rather than place bags in the hall way the night before. Returning to shore was a snap-we simply walked off the ship at 7:30 in the morning, handed our declaration cards to the CBSA folks and were on our way to the train to the airport (only a 5 minute walk)-no need to even show our passports. When I was at the kiosk to purchase our return transfers from the Waterfront Station to YVR on the Canada Line subway we had one last surprise-the fare was only $4.50 total for the 2 of us. One of the tourism reps told us that all 2 zone fares are only $2.25 on Sundays and they are still good for unlimited travel for a full 90 minutes! This was an incredible journey from start to finish-we are already looking at options for our next voyage-possibly the Pacific Coastal Cruise. Without a doubt it will be on Celebrity Cruise Lines. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2015
Since we had never cruised before we thought it would be nice to try for the best possible first experience and booked a Suite (Celebrity Suite) on the Infinity so maybe our experience, hence review is above average compared to some ... Read More
Since we had never cruised before we thought it would be nice to try for the best possible first experience and booked a Suite (Celebrity Suite) on the Infinity so maybe our experience, hence review is above average compared to some general room reviews. We also want a smaller ship to Alaska as we did not think we would use all of the extra restaurants, lawn club, etc and Infinity was the perfect size ship! Although our boarding process lacked direction and organization and no one greeted us, within about 30 minutes we found Micheal's Concierge Lounge and it was a whole new world. From the time we entered and had champagne to be whisked to the private dining room, Luminae, it was as if we were in a five star resort with nothing to do but eat and drink. We were able to then check into our suite by about 2:00pm. Luminae, the new Suite only restaurant was 5 star dining and Lazar, the MAÎTRE D' said "welcome home" every time we arrived. He and his staff made us feel special and warm and it reminded us that we were on vacation. This is a small restaurant and so again we never had to wait on lines, get shoved around at the buffet, etc. Our suite was wonderful #604. About 460 square feet with a rounded balcony. I picked this particular room not only because it 'juts' out from the boat but it faces forward and so it offers a spectacular view facing forward all the way to the back. It was a perfect location mid-ship, near the stairway and elevator (but not noisy). We had a seperate bedroom with a large closet. Great shower pressure by the way (-: I loved this room! Lenny the concierge could not have worked harder for us with planned excursions, dinners, cocktail parties and even a private tour to the see the bridge. I am home still hoping Lenny is hidden somewhere in my house. Just some additonal notes about the ship: The Constellation Lounge (top floor) was also a spectacular place to sit and view the trip and scenery, Il Bacio had the best Cappuccinos we've ever had, the comedian was hysterical and the naturalist, Milos was intersting and humorous, loved his sessions. There were a ton of various activities all day. I have nothing negative to say but again we were not with the masses of people and so we felt this was more like a small intimate ship and even when we did see people, the ship never seemed crowded. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2015
Everything on the Celebrity Infinity cruise to Alaska was beyond expectations--excellent food, fabulous entertainment, wonderful room with awesome shower and balcony, and terrific staff. The choice of restaurants on board was varied ... Read More
Everything on the Celebrity Infinity cruise to Alaska was beyond expectations--excellent food, fabulous entertainment, wonderful room with awesome shower and balcony, and terrific staff. The choice of restaurants on board was varied offering everything from seafood to prime rib to gourmet Chinese. While we did try all three "extra" restaurants only one outdid the regular open restaurants which were all excellent. We never made dinner reservations and never had to wait more than 10 minutes to get into an open restaurant despite the full ship. I was overwhelmed by the entertainment: The evening musicals with a professional orchestra, talented singers and dancers, and eye popping sets and costumes; a Phillippino band that played by the outdoor pool and other musicians and singers at various venues around the ship. I was disappointed by the shopping on board and at the three ports- Hoona, Juneau and Ketchikan- as almost everything that was reasonable was made in China and not native. The ship was spotless evidenced by the efficient service staff who were everywhere. I liked the fact that the ship's staff were international from every country imaginable. Except for the odd individual they were all polite, friendly and helpful. The cruise director was exceptional with the most incredible personality--she was everywhere and always upbeat. The personal pictures taken on board were very costly. Instead of grudgingly buying 2 for $50 I would happily have bought 10 for $50 and the ship would have made the same money because the 8 I didn't take are just thrown away. I liked the individual room design in the aqua class: roomy, more than sufficient drawer and cupboard space to store clothes so we didn't have to live out of a suitcase. The sliding glass doors to the roomy balcony enabled us to keep the doors open at night to get the cool ocean breeze. The bathroom was a good size with an ultra modern fabulous rain shower complete with levelled jets. I also appreciated fresh fruit each day, a bottle of champaign on embarkation, and of course the nightly chocolate on my pillow. I would have liked one more port, perhaps Sitka which wasn't on this cruise itinerary. I would have preferred it to Hoona in Icy Strait which, other than kayaking didn't offer much. Embarking and disembarking was very smooth except for the Hoona stop where we had to take a tender to shore. The fitness offerings were enormous--indoor and outdoor pools, hot tubs, running/walking track, table tennis,and a fully equipped gym. All in all--value for money, on board activities, entertainment, dining, service and recreational fitness--this ship and cruise rate a 10 out of 10. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2015
Our cabin or state room as they call it, was a pleasant surprise-very clean, large and modern. We had a balcony which was appreciated very much as we were always able to see the ocean and never felt claustrophobic. Our cabin steward, ... Read More
Our cabin or state room as they call it, was a pleasant surprise-very clean, large and modern. We had a balcony which was appreciated very much as we were always able to see the ocean and never felt claustrophobic. Our cabin steward, Imade, was particularly helpful. The food in the Ocean View Café was excellent with lots of variety. The sushi and sashimi at night were particularly popular with my wife and I. My only criticism was the black tea which was too weak for our taste. The coffee on the other hand was way too strong. Eating in the Trellis restaurant made a pleasant change from the café and it was nice to be waited on without any extra charge. I would not waste my money in the specialty restaurants. The entertainment was also varied and of a high standard with singing, dancing, comedy acts and a magician. The lectures given by the Historian, Gary and the Naturalist, Milos, were informative and entertaining. The activities run by Rachel and her offsiders, Aida and Von were a lot of fun and well organised. We particularly enjoyed the Trivia various forms of which were run 2 or 3 times a day while at sea. You were never bored. Shore excursions were OK but rather expensive for what you got. Quite a few passengers did their own thing and organised taxis and guides for less than half the price. The gym was modern and well equipped and the pools were a relaxing way to spend an hour or two. I must admit several passengers got badly sunburnt on the deck and I think the pool staff should carry UV block-out dispensers and warn people of the dangers they face in the tropical sun. Overall a wonderful cruise the highlight being the Panama Canal itself and experiencing the cultures of Central America. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2014
Never been on a cruise before so no preconceptions when we were invited to go with friends. Our only committment was that we would meet for dinner each day so we often went our separate ways for other meals and excursions, this gave us the ... Read More
Never been on a cruise before so no preconceptions when we were invited to go with friends. Our only committment was that we would meet for dinner each day so we often went our separate ways for other meals and excursions, this gave us the opportunity to meet other people on shared tables. I think it was day 2 that experienced cruisers asked our first impressions to which I replied "It's Butlins at sea!". I hope this is not going to be a long review, plenty supply all the details, but more a flavour for others who may be in our position. Overall, given that the cost of a cruise from cheapest to most expensive cabin has a factor about 10 times, Celebrity do a great job of providing something for everyone. The art seems to be to miss out the bits you don't like and concentrate on the things you do like, then you'll have a great time. It only took us about 2 days to figure this out. Personally, the cafe on 10 felt like a motorway service station most of the time and the entertainment(?) in the Constellation lounge during the evening was cringe worthy, but we accept some people like these things so we just avoided them. Theatre entertainment also just needed to be selected. Food in the MDR for b'fast lunch and dinner was of a good standard and that in the speciality restaurants was superb with great service(SSUS) and fun (Qsine). We would rate SSUS up to some Michelin starred restaurants and went twice! Upgraded to the Premium drinks package, a good investment and gives a good opportunity to try new things without worrying about the cost. The bars are fine but Rendez-Vous can become suddenly crowded as the set time dining room empties. Did a couple of Celebrity excursions, reasonable to good overall. Little niggles: Formal nights they still let in those who could only be described as scruffy; enforce the dress code. Service in coffee lounge Al Bacio could be a little tardy, even when it was not busy; motivation issues? The stock of Peroni (my favourite beer) was late ariving and ran out quickly; why advertise it? Tips: Despite all the warnings about the Flam railway being fully booked, it was easy to buy tickets from the station on the day, at about half the cost of the excursion; that's one expensive waffle! Overall: Loved it! Yes there are bits like Butlins (and we went to butlins many years ago when the kids were small) but luckily we shared a table again later with the day 2 people so could update thoughts then. The logistics of the operation are impressive, getting everything and everyone to where they need to be seemed to go like clockwork. Yes, there was a delay on car park entry for embarkation, and I see that other reviews make a big deal of this, but in the scheme of things it is minor, nay negligible; loosen up guys you're on holiday! We expect to go again one day. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2014
Myself and my partner are both 30 and have never been on a cruise before. We were assigned stateroom 2155 on deck 2 and enjoyed upgraded stateroom amenities which included champagne on arrival, fruit delivered each day if requested, ... Read More
Myself and my partner are both 30 and have never been on a cruise before. We were assigned stateroom 2155 on deck 2 and enjoyed upgraded stateroom amenities which included champagne on arrival, fruit delivered each day if requested, dressing gowns, binoculars, a tote bag and a golf umbrella to be used onboard. Day 1: We got on at San Diego B Street Cruise Terminal. As soon as we got out of the taxi, a handler came and took our luggage then we headed straight for the check in. We got there around 12:30 and supposedly had missed the peak time. There was a large queue but as expected because the ship accommodates up to 2000 guests. It took us about an hour to get onto the ship. Once on we had no idea what to do and the stateroom was not ready until around 2:30. Lunch was available in the Ocean Cafe which is the buffet on deck 10. We were free to explore the ship. Some people brought there swimwear in their day bags so used the pool/hot tubs while the rest of us looked on enviously! At 16:15 we had an emergency muster to attend so that everyone knew where they should be in case of an emergency. We had lunch and dinner in the buffet and the food was lovely. The service excellent and staff very friendly. We decided we didn't want to head to the main dining room that night as we heard it can be a bit chaotic on the first night due to people wanting to change their allocated time. We made the mistake of eating the first thing we saw at lunchtime so for dinner we walked all around the buffet island and decided on the stirfry which is made from the ingredients you choose for yourself. Day 2 - at sea Day 3: Arrived at Cabon San Lucas, Mexico. We decided not to book an excursion directly through the cruise ship to save a bit of money. I'm glad we did this because there were so many things on offer when we got off. We wanted to go snorkelling and spoke to a guy selling different tours. It cost us $30, I didn't haggle the price because the equivalent trip with Celebrity was $50. We boarded a little glass bottom boat (the glass bottom wasn't anything special) and sailed past lovers beach, divorce beach and shown pelican beach where we would be snorkelling. We also got to see some sea lions lazing on the surrounding rocks. We were dropped off at lovers beach and had to walk across to pelican beach. This took about 10 minutes across the rocks so bring appropriate footwear if you have delicate feet! Beware that locals will help you get off the boat and expect a tip. There was snorkelling gear and life jackets for hire on this beach. I had to hire a life jacket because the water is very choppy and I am not a very confident swimmer. The life jacket cost me $5. We had arranged for our driver to meet us 2 hours later. He arrived to pick us up no problem! I was a little nervous as I had read that some people were left stranded on this beach by their driver. If this does happen to you then you can get a lift back to shore with another boat, it may cost you but at least you'll get back. There are shops where you can buy drinks so it may be worth buying a few and bringing them back on board. I.e. a can of coke cost $1 in the shop compared to $2.50+gratuity on board. Day 4: Arrived at Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. We didn't book an excursion (they offer a trip to swim with dolphins) as we just wanted to explore the area. We were quite surprised at what awaited us when we arrived. There is nothing tourist orientated available when you get there (apart from shopping). There is a shopping mall across the road as well as a Walmart and a "Makro" type store. Everything is in Mexican Pesos, they accept US$ but will give change in Pesos. If you don't enjoy shopping I would recommend arranging an excursion for this stop. Day 5 & 6- at sea. We received a message regarding some passengers becoming ill (norovirus etc ). The ship took immediate preventative action. At the buffet restaurant we were no longer to serve ourselves food/beverages. Cutlery was given out by staff. Anything that could transfer germs was taken away, including the daily newspapers and crosswords/sudoku puzzles on deck 3. I noticed a change in other passengers' attitudes when having to wait a little longer for food etc. But there really is no point in complaining, ultimately the ship is trying to prevent an outbreak so just go with it. Day 7: Arrive at Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala. After our experience at the last port we decided to book a few Celebrity excursions. We know that we are paying extra but it gives peace of mind knowing that we have guaranteed transport there and back. The ship will wait for us if we on a tour booked through them that is running late. So we opted for the self guided tour to Antigua costing $43.75pp. There was a short walk from the ship to our buses, walking through a market place and refreshment stall selling coconuts for $2 (they sold out by the time I wanted one - sad times!). They also have tour kiosks/operators so if you don't book through Celebrity you can easily get on a tour here. We heard that the volcano tour was worth the trip. We had a 90 minute drive to Antigua and given about 5 hours to wander around. We were given a map with points of interest. The drop off/meeting point is at the jade museum - whose staff are very willing to give advice about where to go. They recommended a cafe to stop at for lunch which was right next door to the chocolate museum. The local currency is the quetzal (7.5 quetzals = $1) and it's best to check places accept USD before stopping to eat. What I loved most about Antigua was the bartering with craft makers. There are so many items for sale and so many sellers - you will be spoilt for choice. If you don't buy anything in town you will have a second chance to buy at the port. Day 8 - at sea. On board outbreak prevention still on going. Day 9: Arrived at Puntarenas, Costa Rica. We decided to go on the Poas Volcano tour ($104pp) and unfortunately the weather was not on our side. There was zero visibility of the volcano when we got up to the viewing deck. I guess this is the risk you take.The rest of the tour included a lunch stop on the way back down (food was delicious!!!) and a stop at the oxcart factory - a really pretty family run establishment with lots of different flowers and people painting. They have a gift shop which is more expensive that a market trader but I didn't mind paying a bit extra to support them. We arrived back at the ship with an hour to spare and wandered down to the beach front to browse through the markets. You can try haggling but they're not as flexible as they were in Guatemala! Day 10 - at sea. Day 11 - cruising through Panama Canal. What an EPIC day this was. There were a lot of people at the front of the ship as the Captain had opened up the heliport. Personally I didn't like the view from there. My favourite spot was on deck 4 (right hand side) as you get up close to the action and depending on which lock you were going through the wall would be within touching distance of you. There were good views from the back of the ship on deck 10. We spent most of the day walking around enjoying different perspectives. I particularly enjoyed watching the ship parallel to us because you could really see how the locks were operating. When leaving the canal keep an out for the new gates that will be fitted on the expansion project - they are immense! We had a guest speaker Mike McPheters on board who is a specialist on the Panama Canal and he gave 3 talks prior to this day. I felt that I had a good understanding of the history of the canal which added to the day. Mike is a really great guy too, he is so interesting I could listen to him talk til the cows come home! Day 12: Arrived at Colon, Panama. There is a shopping area a short distance away from the port including a supermarket where we picked up cans of soft drinks for $0.60! We saw A LOT of crew stocking up here. We decided to book onto the Monkey Watch excursion ($89.75). It was around an hour bus ride to back to Gatun Lake. We were taken aboard a 20-seater boat that took us down the lake in search of wildlife. I thought to myself if we didn't see any monkeys I wouldn't mind because the boat ride is good fun in itself and very cooling in the humidity! We saw all sorts of birds including toucans. Caught a glimpse of a crocodile. Came across about 30 baby crocodiles who where so well camouflaged I couldn't believe the driver had spotted them! The best bit was seeing a couple of white faced capuchin monkeys and a family of howler monkeys - these were the only ones we saw but it made my day! We also turtles, lizards and rodents! Our guide did say that it was a good day to spot wildlife because it was cloudy and had been raining heavily so the monkeys in particular wouldn't be hiding from the sunshine. I would consider going on a Celebrity excursion in Colon because I didn't see much being offered on the docks however this may be because our excursion was at a later time than normal. Day 13: Arrived at Cartagena, Colombia. We decided against the hop on hop off tour purely because of the inflated price ($39.75pp). I've been on these red sight seeing buses in many cities and they usually range between £15-£20. There is a short walk to the port exit (free shuttle also offered). Be warned that the port is an industrial one so not a lot to look at! When you get to the exit you go through some sort of wild bird sanctuary. There were geese, flamingoes, parrots, peacocks and a um...rabbit! I had mixed feelings about seeing some of the birds - such beautiful creatures who were allowed to roam around but had obviously had their wings clipped. So you don't see them as nature intended but at least they are being looked after (I hope!). When we got to the exit there were loads of tour operators/taxis vying for your attention. We decided to go with a chap named Francisco Ferero (I think!) or Pancho to his pals. It cost us $20pp and he basically took us on the same route as the hop on hop off tour would go. 1st stop was a photo stop at the fortress. We didn't have time to go in there and you have to pay. Next we went up to la popa monastery. We didn't have much time there and had to pay $5. The views are worth it - they also have washrooms. Outside there are a few market traders where you can pick up souvenirs. Next we were taken to an emerald museum which we had little interest in so ducked out and walked to the beach which was a couple of minutes away. We only wanted to go there to take a picture but kept being bothered by people selling sun cream or a lounger. I'd lost all hope of having a coconut drink but low and behold they were sold at the beach but for $5!!!! I'd like to say it was worth it but $2 would have been better :) we continued our tour with a short stop at some souvenir shops and a stroll through the old city. One thing I wasn't so keen on here was the aggressive sales tactics by many. They shove merchandise in your face, put hats on your head, grab your arms, come up to the bus windows when you're trying to admire the view...basically invade your personal space. Pancho got us back to the boat with an hour to spare so all in all I would say worth the $20. I would say be patient if doing something this. When we agreed to go with him we had to wait about 30mins for him to fill his bus. Day 14 & 15 - at sea. Arrive at Miami port at 07:00. A bit hectic when you get off and it was a bit of a shock because you are treated so well on board but customs don't really care that you're in Miami :D we were selected to have our bags searched which was a little inconvenient but they appreciated out patience implying that they usually get a hard time off people. We booked the airport transfer to MIA costing $16.80pp purely because we had 2 large cases each and it wouldn't have fit into a standard taxi. However when we got out there were bigger taxis available. I would recommend getting a taxi - it isn't a long way and it would be quicker. We had to wait around 30 minutes for the bus to make its way back from MIA. General comments: - restrictions due to outbreak prevention lasted for the rest of our trip. We had heard that the ship had to have a 48 hour period with no one reporting an illness before things could go back to normal. - Staterooms include a hairdryer, towels & beach towels, plenty of storage, cotton balls & cotton buds and tissues. -You chosen credit card will be linked to a "sea pass" account which is used for any transaction on board. You can also settle your account in cash. -You can change currency on board at guest relations. -There are lots of activities on board to keep you occupied whilst at sea. -The library is open 24/7 but collection is a bit dire. It was closed as soon as outbreak prevention was issued. -Internet is available and they charge per minute or you can buy a package. Be advised that it is a very slow connection and sometimes is not available. -There is also a casino and spa (at an additional cost). -The gym is free to use and is well equipped. It is very busy in the mornings and very quiet in the evenings. They also provide gym towels and water. -The pools are much smaller than I expected. -There is a laundry service available but is charged per item! -The stateroom attendants will come in the morning and then in the evening. -You do not have to dress up if you do not want to. This really isn't our type of thing so on formal nights we ate in the buffet restaurant on deck 10 where the dress code is always casual! -Most passengers were aged around 60/70. There was a spattering of younger couples and about 30 children in total. -We didn't visit the Main Dining Room once because we really enjoyed eating at the buffet. Most evenings were spent at the sushi/stir fry part. The cook Chandra from Indonesia was a highlight of the trip. He could be found on one of the omelette stations in the morning and the stir fry in the evening. He was never without a smile and would often break out into a song. Such an infectious character! -Food really is a personal preference - aside from the MDR there were also 2 other restaurants that you could pay extra for. My main point regarding food is that the buffet is not as bad as some reviewers have made out. -We had a wonderful time and have so many amazing memories of the places we visited. We would definitely consider another cruise with Celebrity in the future! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2013
My wife and I traveled with another couple on the Celebrity Infinity Nov 7-22 on the route through the Panama Canal. Prior to departing, we read the posts on Cruise Critic, to understand how to spend our limited time and money to best ... Read More
My wife and I traveled with another couple on the Celebrity Infinity Nov 7-22 on the route through the Panama Canal. Prior to departing, we read the posts on Cruise Critic, to understand how to spend our limited time and money to best advantage. Now that we have completed the cruise, we hope our comments below help you plan for and have the best cruise experience: 1. 15 days is a long time for a working guy like me to take away from the office - the Officers and Crew of the Infinity made it a very enjoyable experience and worth the time and money we spent. I would do it again. 2. We had ports of call in Cartagena, Columbia, Colon, Panama, Panama Canal Transit, Puerto Quetzal, Guatemala, Puntarenas, Costa Rica, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. We specifically chose not to take the Shore Excursions, intending instead to explore at our leisure. We grabbed a cab and had the taxi driver take us to well known tourist sites, monuments, downtown shopping and entertainment areas, etc. This worked well in Cartagena, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo, as they are all bigger cities. Puerto Quetzal, Puntarenas and Colon are pretty run down port only cities with very little to offer. The Shore Excursions take you far from these ports to tourist sites. While having the ship's passengers take Shore Excursions results in a nice revenue stream and low cost of mooring for the Cruise company, for people like us who preferred to explore on our own, staying on the ship for those ports of call was our choice. Staying on a 5 star resort ship with pools, restaurants, entertainment and unlimited food is a great thing if there is nothing more interesting ashore. 3. Shore Excursions - as I said above, we did not take any ship sponsored Shore Excursions. That is not to say that we did not inquire. The thing that impressed me the most about the Shore Excursion representatives is that they were accurate about describing the tours, enabling us to make decisions which were best for our vacation. I encourage you to take Shore Excursions if that is your interest; they looked great. 4. Beverage Package - this is a lively topic on Cruise Critic. After reading the posts, my wife and I decided we don't drink that much and if we wanted a beer, specialty coffee, glass of wine or mixed drink, we would buy it by it the glass. It worked out well for us. We were quoted about $1600 for the premium beverage package; after reviewing our bill, we spent about $600 on beverages, thus saving $1,000. While on board, we met couples with and without the Premium Beverage package. The thing I found a little cumbersome was that, even the cruisers with the Premium beverage package still had to hand over their Sea Pass card to "pay" for their drinks and go through the charge card signature process for a $0 charge. The water on board the ship is purified. We drank tap water at the dining table and in our room; the tap water on board tastes great. 5. Celebrity Select Dining Package - We got this package and are glad we did. We especially liked the SS United States restaurant. The Qsine Restaurant food is excellent although the "culinary journey" is a little bumpy. Try it for yourself! Sommeliers - the wine stewards are excellent, especially in the SS United States Restaurant and Cellar Masters. Take their advice! Set a pace for yourself to use Celebrity Select Dining credits evenly throughout the cruise to ensure you aren't rushing to book Select Dining reservations on the last night of the cruise. 6. Don't overpack. There is a convenient laundry service on board. The prices are reasonable; about 30% higher than what I pay at my local dry cleaner/laundry. I was happy to pay for the convenience of having my clothes picked up, laundered and returned to my stateroom. 7. Negotiate/Maximize Shipboard Credits with Celebrity or your travel agent. We got $200 which was not enough. I would have loved to have had $600-$700 of Shipboard Credits to use on spa services, shopping, drinks, etc. 8. Bring Cash! I used it for taxis, tips, drinks, food while off the ship and to pay duty on my purchases. (more below) 9. Bring a check book! Duties, Customs and Immigration. If you buy +$800 per person on board (I bought two expensive watches in the ship's retail store), you will be flagged and asked to meet the Customs and Immigration officer on debarkation day to pay your duty in cash or check only. The first $800 ($1600 per couple) is exempt; the next $2000 is assessed at 3% ($60) and anything above that is assessed at 5.5%. You are on your honor to put the accurate amount of your purchases on the US customs and immigration declaration form. 10. Expensive purchases in the ship's retail shop - if you make an expensive purchase in the ship's retail shops (Columbian emeralds, luxury watches, topaz jewelry and the like) you can negotiate some freebees with your purchase - comped dinner at a Celebrity Select Dining restaurant, tour of the ship's bridge, dinner in the galley cooked by ship's chef d'cuisine, wine and cheese pairing tour, drinks in the lounge with one of the ship's officers, etc. are some ideas. This is great fun and makes your significant purchase more meaningful and memorable. 11. Tipping - I wish I had some cash left over to tip personally those crew members who make my cruise so enjoyable. Near the end of the cruise, there is an opportunity to tip those crew members by filling out a form. 12. Research the ship before you cruise - the Celebrity web pages are full of information; you'll have to poke around a bit to find what's available. Here's a challenge - without using the search bar, find the Premium Romance Package. 13. Research your ports of call before the cruise - up to you, but if you know a little about where you are visiting, that might make it more meaningful, interesting and fun. 14. Most of the shows were fantastic. Jeremy Oren at Café Al Bacio is fantastic!   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2013
A review of the Celebrity Infinity by a first time cruiser As a first time cruiser who was on the Celebrity Infinity doing the Iceland and Norway cruise last week I felt compelled to write a review to clarify a few of the myths I had ... Read More
A review of the Celebrity Infinity by a first time cruiser As a first time cruiser who was on the Celebrity Infinity doing the Iceland and Norway cruise last week I felt compelled to write a review to clarify a few of the myths I had gleaned in the run up to the cruise. So this review is from the perspective of someone who is new to cruising yet has high standards and high expectations (especially of food). Like many, half the excitement of the cruise was discovering Cruise Critic. I learned a lot reading the forums and roll call every week and it certainly set my expectations - but they also mislead me a little. So here is my balanced review. So firstly, I have discovered there are 2 types of cruisers (& 2 types of cruise critic reviewers), those that are balanced and fair, with reasonable expectations and those who are going to look for fault no matter what. We met some of these one day at lunch in the Main Dining Room (MDR). We had excellent lunch of Teriyaki duck and lentils. Our neighbouring table got chatting with us and the first thing they told us was how limited the menu was for lunch, we disagreed and stated that there were so many choices for lunch at different locations throughout the ship that you were spoilt for choice. We came across this couple a number of times during the trip and they always looked unhappy or had a negative comment to make! Some other observations: The average age of our fellow travellers was quite a lot older than we expected (something I got from reading CC). We are in our 40s and were definitely some of the youngest on board. I found a number other passengers quite rude and few of them acknowledged us or said "good morning". And there was a general sense of "entitlement" that meant people didn't say 'please' and 'thank you' and found it acceptable to push and shove, which we found very rude. Also I never really understood why people felt in a rush to get somewhere. What was extremely impressive about the Infinity was that although the ship was full, it rarely felt crowded and we almost never had to queue longer than 5 minutes to get a coffee or get a table for 2 in the main dining room. Embarkation So back to day 1: we had a nightmare of a journey to get to Harwich - a 2 hour journey that took 4 hours and was very stressful- not the start to our holiday that we had hoped. Having finally got out of one traffic queue, we joined another and queued to get into the car park. After about 30 minutes we were unloading our luggage and then proceeded to park the car and get on a bus that took us to the terminal to check in. Another 20 minutes queuing and we were checking in and got our sea passes. Then through security and finally we were on the ship. Since we were on board 2 hours later than we had planned, we could go straight to our rooms. Again from reading CC, I got the impression that this process would be quicker, but not today (not that it was any worse than the typical airport checking process). The room We had 6048, a 2b class balcony cabin on deck 6 mid ship towards the front. This room had an extra spacious triangular shaped balcony. Which, whilst very nice we soon learned wasn't really necessary. We did use the balcony a lot but only had 2 chairs and a small table and a regular sized balcony would have been spacious enough (this cruise wasn't a hot weather cruise so no chance to lie out on your balcony). You did get to look into your neighbours balcony, so felt a little intrusive at times. The room itself exceeded my expectations based on my reading cruise critic. There was a lot of storage space as well as under the bed space for luggage. The bathroom is small but fortunately we are both slim so it was adequate! The "peg on the shower curtain" advice from CC prevented the shower curtain closing in the already small shower room space. The room was clean fresh and space enough for 2 and our attendant was great -invisible but always seemed to know when we were out to clean or do turn down. The ship I couldn't fault the ship and facilities (more on those below). It looked pristine, clean and well taken care of. Since its the only cruise I have been on, I have nothing t compare it to but it was similar to a good standard 5* hotel . The food Reading CC I got the impression that the food in the MDR was a little hit or miss so based on this we booked the 5 speciality restaurant deal in advance of the cruise. However, the food in MDR has been fantastic and as I alluded to in the introduction, I am a fussy eater. We had Select Dining and I would recommend making a reservation, even in peak time we only waited 5 minutes for a table for 2, whereas the line for those who had not made a reservation was considerably longer. Having said that, towards the end of the cruise we stopped making reservations and instead ate later. You are advised to avoid peak time between 6.30-8.00. Most nights we ate at 8 or later. The service in MDR has been very good and the wait staff are very attentive. They work very hard but somehow make it work. I do agree with CC that when on a drinks package and buying wine by the glass, it can be a challenge to get the attention of the sommelier but it seems that they have too many tables to cover but no problem, we just asked our waiter and soon had a refill. The food itself has been great and the portion sizes are just right and not too big (last night I had the sirloin steak and roast potatoes- the waiter told us that someone had ordered 3 portions for himself-amazing!!). On our final sea day we went to brunch. The presentation and the food was fantastic - only slightly spoilt by the feeling we were at "feeding time at the zoo" and we got the impression some people hadn't eaten for several days! Our 5 x speciality meal package meant we could eat in Qsine twice and SS Unites States 3 times but we changed this without hassle (at guest services) because we much preferred Qsine. Qsine was fantastic and some of the most enjoyable food I have had in a long time - the sushi lollipops are delicious and not to be missed. The staff were fun and looked like they enjoyed their jobs. SS United States was very spacious with great staff who were playful. I had the lobster which was cooked table side and delicious. The nights I have eaten there I have struggled to get through the dessert course-probably because I had already eaten too much! Only criticism is that the menu didn't change throughout the voyage. Drinks We have read many threads about the drinks packages but in the end decided against it since we had read the classic package didn't include fresh juice and premium coffees and we would have to drink an awful lot of alcohol to equate to $62/ day!! However on day 2 we succumbed to the allure of the classic package ($50/ day including tax) partly because we wouldn't have to worry about what we drunk and also because we found out that the classic packages does in fact include fresh juice and all the premium coffees from Cafe al Bacio- is this new or just different policies from ship to ship? I don't know but that is how it is on the Infinity. Also at the Martini bar we were able to get smaller martinis on the classic package. I know there has been much debate about this, so there is the answer- at least on this trip. I asked the waiter and he informed me that i could order a martini, appletini or Cosmo. This area became our location of choice for pre and post dinner drinks and was very sociable and fun. I kept a rough count and we were drinking around about $50 a day (thats 2 lattes, orange juice, tea, 2 glasses of wine and 2 G&Ts). I have to say that I am sure I have drunk more just because I have the package. It can be a challenge to drink $50 a day and I would think twice next time but its nice to know what our final bill will be (although its easy to check your bill daily). The staff In general I can't say enough positive things about the staff. They go out of their way to make your trip positive and seem happy to serve. There were a few exceptions but they were few and far between. As the trip went on, staff began to get to know you and your preferences and I thought they were outstanding. The entertainment I had some preconceptions about cruise entertainment and by and large that has proved to be accurate and the little we have seen has been slightly underwhelming but maybe we are the wrong demographic? At least we could make our escape from the (impressive) theatre quite easily! I would recommend the iBroadway show which was very good and the most "professional" of the shows we did see. The singers and dancers work incredibly hard. Excursions We avoided all the cruise's excursions and organised our own at much cheaper rates. There is a feeling of "sell sell sell"on the ship. Maybe they have targets to hit? Anyway, Faroe Isles was small enough to walk around and it was good to burn off some of the calories we have put on so far! A very pretty capital city. We walked for maybe 3-4miles and pretty much saw all the sites. Reykjavik Reykjavik was a tale of 2 halves. The countryside was stunning- (we organised our own excursion to blue lagoon and the golden circle tour) the waterfall, geysers and blue lagoon something very unique to Iceland - would highly recommend a dip in the blue lagoon!.... yet the town itself was rather disappointing and a little 'tired'. Akureyri My favourite stop on the journey and I wished we had more time here (arrived at 8am and left by 2pm). The weather was chilly but blue skies and sunny and still snow on the mountain peaks (which we learned was unusual for this time of year but due to a harsh winter). We took a bus excursion that we arranged ourselves, that took us to Godafoss waterfall and an old northern icelandic town. Just enough time to see both. You could get 'up close and personal' to the waterfall which was stunning and worth the 30 minute drive. Geiranger A beautiful fjord village but completely overrun with tourists and complete chaos! There were 4 cruise ships in so a population of appx 6000 in a village usually accommodating 250...... Must be lovely when everyone leaves! Bergen We took the funicular to the top of the city and walked back down mount Floyen. Incredible views from the top. It was a rainy day so not much fun wandering around the shops. We couldn't believe how expensive it was (£8 for a coffee!) So one observation at this point. Every time we got off the bus and were given a time to be back, someone would always be late, leaving the rest of us hanging around. Clearly they felt their time was more precious than ours! The facilities We are gym goers and made sure we used the gym pretty much every day. Helped us feel slightly less guilty about the food and drink we consumed! It was often busy but never too packed. Similarly most other locations were often busy but you never get a sense that 2000+ people were on the ship. A good tip is try and do things a little differently to others. Most mornings we had a light breakfast at the Aqua cafe (avoiding the Oceanview buffet) and like I mentioned earlier, we tried to eat later than most. We also visited Bistro on 5 a few times for lunch. Nice food and worth the $5 cover charge for the peaceful environment alone! Disembarkation We went to theCelebrity theatre for our allotted time of 8.30am and were in our car by8.50am. Very quick and painless. Sad to be back home but at,east the sun is shinning! My conclusions An excellent adventure that took us to locations I have never visited (and may never visit again) and a cruise was a great way to see them. The ship was surprisingly good as was the service, food and staff. I will probably do a cruise again but it will definitely not be the only kind of vacation I take (I know there were a number of travellers we spoke with who only do cruises). I think Celebrity do a great job at making the experience a positive one. They upsell a little too much but maybe that comes with the territory. Read cruise critic to learn about the ships, tips, roll call etc but realise we are all unique so when someone tells you the MDR food is terrible and someone else says its great, you just need to make your own mind up!! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2013
My husband and I took the Infinity transatlantic with the express purpose to relax after a stressful work year. it worked! I loved the days at sea, and was almost sad to see land. I am pleased with Celebrity, and very much enjoyed ... Read More
My husband and I took the Infinity transatlantic with the express purpose to relax after a stressful work year. it worked! I loved the days at sea, and was almost sad to see land. I am pleased with Celebrity, and very much enjoyed the low-key nature of the boat. No loud announcements, no overly pushy sales pitches. Food was good, not great, service was excellent (and unobtrusive at the pool while always being available if interested). I was surprised by the reasonable price of the drinks. The most outrageous prices were on the martinis, but even those were pretty comparable to the prices in local clubs. Wine was pretty expensive - perhaps a few dollars more a bottle than a local fine restaurant. Entertainment was a little too "Branson" for me, but well done for those that like big production shows and glitzy singers/musicians. Activities were great- lots of trivia, zumba class, other dance classes, lectures, culinary demonstrations, silly crew/guest game shows, etc. always something going on. Cabin was excellent - super quiet, lovely little balcony for a sea breeze and sit, clean, plenty of storage, and well designed to not feel cramped. I think deck 7 is pretty ideal - 3 floors up to the pool, aquaspa, solarium, and buffet, 3 floors above the main dining room. can walk to either, but also was not a long wait for the elevators at any time. TV was pretty awful - very few channels coming through, and would go out a lot. one free movie a day on the tv; otherwise pay movies. Would have liked a movie theater (they eliminated in the renovation of the ship). My only other complaint (and it's not unique) is the pricing of the shore excursions, and the lack of information about doing a port by yourself. My particular complaint is that they did not tell us that there is a shuttle bus at the Zeebruge port which brings you to the closest train station into Bruges, and picks up you from it, for 16 euros round trip. This I'm sure is because they want you to take their 'Bruges on your own" trip for something like $54/person, but it's pretty weasly to not provide you with any information about alternate transportation. Same with options at Ft. Lauderdale and Harwich, England. We will definitely cruise again, and would not hesitate to take Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2013
We and many others on the March 3 2013 Buenos Aires to Valpariso cruise were disappointed. I notice the price has gone up substantially for 2014. The good: great weather and smooth sailing (not always the case), good attendants for ... Read More
We and many others on the March 3 2013 Buenos Aires to Valpariso cruise were disappointed. I notice the price has gone up substantially for 2014. The good: great weather and smooth sailing (not always the case), good attendants for cleaning the room, ports unique, scenery unique. The bad: Difficulty coordinating with airfare-cost 8 wasted hours each way due to incorrect Celebrity publication about not taking Valpariso city tour requirement about outbound flight must leave after 9:00 pm on day of departure. This forced us into connecting flights both ways. Fact: Tour arrived at airport at 4:00 pm, could not begin to check bags until 6:00 pm, could easily have taken direct flight leaving between 8:00 pm and 9:00 pm. Neither Celebrity nor Choice Air was of any assistance on this. Choice Air suggested we book a hotel and go the next day-totally useless help. Portions small/frequently service hard to find /drinks out at various stations often at their buffet restaurant. Entertainment-very disappointing-we usually left very quickly. Entertainment around the ship was fairly good-but got old after a few days, much less 14 days. One of the game show employees really liked to hear himself talk-almost made us miss Cape Horn-we just had to leave game show so we didn't miss it. Got our bags around 5:00 pm after being on the ship for several hours. Missed our first afternoon excursion due to delays getting from airport with Celebrity. Were not properly informed about "reciprocity fee" that had to be paid to Argentina. To supposedly be a highly rated cruise line, we were greatly disappointed. We could not recommend this cruise on this ship to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2013
We reserved this cruise about a year and half before departure, and paid full price for it. Yet we were assigned a noisy room that I'm sure they are aware should only be used for storage! While at cruising speed there is a constant ... Read More
We reserved this cruise about a year and half before departure, and paid full price for it. Yet we were assigned a noisy room that I'm sure they are aware should only be used for storage! While at cruising speed there is a constant on and off sound that prevents one from getting a good nights sleep or even being able to retreat to the room during the day. We had to live with this for 14 days! The noise (buzz, or distance horn like sound) varied in length but is generally about 10-12 second on and maybe 5 second off. Several crew members came and heard the sound but did not identify its source and could not reduce it. I suspect it is related to the ship's stabilization system; and as I told the crew members it is loudest at the head of the bed which is against the outside wall - I noticed nearby staterooms were arranged with the head of the bed against the side wall . . By the way I'm very hard of hearing, wear two hearing aids when with other people, yet this noise kept me awake at night! We heard from other passengers - Captains's club members - who were upgraded from inside cabin to Verandas . . . while we paid for an upgraded outside view cabin that was nearly uninhabitable. Shame on Celebrity for treating first time cruisers to such bad conditions. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
We choose Celebrity for our first cruise because we wanted to experience better than average for a cruise line. Celebrity did not disappoint us. Boarding in San Diego was fast. We were traveling with another couple. He needed a scooter ... Read More
We choose Celebrity for our first cruise because we wanted to experience better than average for a cruise line. Celebrity did not disappoint us. Boarding in San Diego was fast. We were traveling with another couple. He needed a scooter to be mobile. I think that helped us get through the process quicker. We got in line at 11:30 and were on board just after 12 noon. Stateroom were available about 2pm so we spent the first couple of hours exploring the ship. Our balcony stateroom was perfect for us on Deck 7. The lifeboats below you are forward of you, so you can look right down to the water from our balcony. This is great when you are in port and can look right down on the pier to see what is going on. We were close to both glass elevators and forward elevators and we never heard any noise other than hearing the water rolling by outside. If I am ever on Infinity again, I would look for this cabin again in a flash. Food was excellent and variety was way over our expectations. We were offered a 2 for 1 in SS United States on day 6 of cruise and took them up on it. One word. WOW!! Do try the lobster cooked table-side. Buffet--You will not starve here. There is everything here. Breakfast, lunch, Dinner, it don't matter. It is all there. Even Ice cream by dish or cone. Now some of the bad. The ship shore excursions are way over priced and quality of some of the tours left a lot to be desired. Talking with other passengers, I got the impression that going ashore and getting your own was not only a lot cheaper, but quality was better. We were really disappointed in Colon with the railway/bus tour along the canal. There were only a few places along the track that you get a great view of Gaton Lake and the cut. The Internet is a total waste of money. Keep it in your wallet. Service was spotty at best and we heard lots of complaining about being ripped off and no refunds. We kept ours in the wallet. If you want American cash onboard, do not rely on their ATM machines. I swear they keep them down to force you to go to Casino and get cash off your credit card. They charge 5% of amount for this. Atm was only working after our last port call, so was available only last 3 days of cruise. These were not cruise breakers though. The following was. Now the UGLY. As I stated we were traveling with another older couple. He is unable to walk and needs a scooter. The only way they can travel, was for us to take them along and watch over them. Not an issue for us. What was an issue was after he got ill onboard. He was complaining about headaches and unable to move his left leg. We thought he was having a stroke. He had one 8 years ago. We had just arrived in Cartagena Columbia. We took him to the ships Dr. They did some tests and sent them to the hospital. My wife and I were told that we would be kept informed as to his status whether they were coming back to the ship or not, and about his health either way. We heard nothing all day. The ship sailed at 4pm, and my wife and I stood on the back rail on deck 10 watching the pier to no avail. We felt awful. We felt like we deserted them. The last 3 days of the cruise was ruined for us by stress and worry. We never once heard one word about our friends. I was able finally in Ft. Lauderdale to text back to Canada to a relative who let us know they were fine. He spent 4 days in hospital and she was put up in an American home. They have nothing about praise of their treatment from both Celebrity and their ships Agent in Cartagena. They are home safe now and thank god for travel insurance. We are not complainers, but we felt Celebrity let us down. By not even giving us a simple message to let us know our friends were looked after they ruined our last 4 days of this cruise. We were all set to sign up for future cruise credit with them so my wife could get her Hawaii cruise. We didn't. I just booked Princess for Hawaii. We might cruise with them in future, but we need some healing before that will happen if ever. Please don't take our experience as a everyday occurrence as I know Celebrity just dropped the ball here. Other than that it was over all a nice cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2012
Our first cruise, we did everything backwards but don't regret our experience. We booked based on our availability of vacation time off from work and how exotic/different the destination would be. So over 1 day, we picked this ... Read More
Our first cruise, we did everything backwards but don't regret our experience. We booked based on our availability of vacation time off from work and how exotic/different the destination would be. So over 1 day, we picked this cruise line/destination without doing any research about 7 weeks before the sail date from Ft. Lauderdale (we did plenty of research after booking). My review will cover our departure from California and the first day impressions on the ship, followed by a quick wrap up of the overall trip. We booked flights independently through American Airlines to fly into Ft. Lauderdale the day prior. Quick review is that this was horrible through AA! We initially had a non-stop flight that landed at 5:00 p.m. local time, AA cancelled this flight 5 days prior to us leaving over what we saw on the news as seats coming apart on their own. We were now seated separately and leaving at 12:10 a.m. that morning, they offered to sit us together if we paid an additional $35 fee per person. To be fair, they offered a full refund but booking new fares would cost us $150+ from what we originally paid. So after changing our departure plans and not getting any sleep, we arrived at Ft. Lauderdale. We stayed at the Sheraton a few minutes away from the cruise port. We called them ahead of time and asked if they offered airport pick up, the answer was no so we ended up taking a cab. Only to arrive and see that there was an airport shuttle dropping off other passengers. This was the only set back at the Sheraton, the rest was pure accommodation and I would recommend them. We were allowed to check in at 9:00 a.m. (check in is normally 3:00 p.m.) and they allowed us to check out at 2:00 p.m. the next day (normal check out is at noon). We booked a shuttle through Sheraton to the cruise port for $10 and they handled the luggage, couldn't be more than happy. Arrived at the cruise port and what a mess! Huge line to get in, there was staff outside apologizing and handling out a form saying there was a full customs check from the previous cruise that has delayed boarding the ship. Although plenty of people were saying it was due to some outbreak where they had to clean the ship?? not sure and honestly didn't care but we had to wait forever to get on. After about over an hour of standing and seeing aqua class ticket holders skip to the front of the line, we finally get checked in. Only to take a long walk around a corridor to find out there's another 30 minute line before you can board! Finally on board and we're on the same floor as our stateroom. We find our room and are quiet happy with the room itself and the huge window. If I had to be picky, it would be the set of 6 small drawers with a height clearance of a few inches and our window view had a huge mildew/orange stain that appeared to be within the glass (took pictures, don't see an area here to post that in review). We don't drink alcohol and based on advice we got here on cruise critic, we had our stateroom attendant to clear out the mini bar fridge and put in our 24 pack of diet pepsi which we purchased in Ft. Lauderdale. Our first dining was going straight to the buffet and trying all kinds of snacks before having our first dinner on the ship. We were both happy with the food and there honestly was no lines, this trend continued until it became a zoo on port of call mornings (which I expected). We never had an issue finding a seat to sit down an eat on any day. We briefly returned to the stateroom to find our luggage delivered, we then spent the next hour settling in and emptying out our luggage. We had 3 carry-on's and 2 big briefcases which all fit snugly under our beds. The few hours before dinner we toured the ship and took some photos. Dinner time! we got dressed and were very happy with the receptionist and initial waiters. We selected open dining to come and go when it was convenient to us. Our first night didn't go very smoothly, there was a wait time of about 20 minutes between a soup and a salad, followed by 25 minutes before our main course, then another 20 before having our dessert. We were offered wine, but never any soft drinks. We looked around and spotted a diet coke at another table and finally inquired during our main course. This lead to disappointment as we were brought two room temperature sodas with no ice, poured into glass. Sad to say, we didn't order soft drinks the rest of the cruise. Regarding the wait time, we didn't feel like complaining since it was our first night and we weren't sure if this was normal or expected (read later). The food itself was great! Back to the stateroom and our first look at the turn down service, everything was nice and neat, had some chocolates and the attendant made an elephant out of towels on the bed. First impressions are mostly done, following is a quick wrap up. Service overall was great, with only a few exceptions and we took the time to identify the staff members that stood out to us. Port of Call tours were organized with high attention so that people wouldn't get lost and I thought it went smoothly. Some of the best nights on open dining was asking to sit with other guests, we met very interesting people from around the world and had a great laugh. They also shared their knowledge on what to expect on other cruise lines compared to celebrity and were what made the cruise overall great. Entertainment was great, there was maybe one or two acts where we left early but otherwise I thought it was worth attending (they had broadway shows, musicians, magic, comedy, singers, etc, different every night). Fitness center was a mess every morning and jogging on the deck was not an option since many people walk and basically block any kind of jogging rythym (a small circle, where 6 laps = 1 km). We had to deal with this until we found out that going at 6 p.m. meant you can finally use the equipment about half way through the cruise. We participated in trivia on sea days and played bingo a few times, the night life was mostly geared towards older folks (we're in our 30's) but overall we still found something to do. Deembarkation I was not to happy about, we filled out a questionaire where we basically stated that we lived in california and were renting a car back home. This meant you're last to leave the ship! We arrived at port at 7:00 a.m. and got kicked out of our stateroom at 9:20 a.m., we headed to the buffet only to find out it was closed. Apparently the hours were stated on the newsletter but we werent aware and the cruise director didnt mention this on the previous nights show. So we were hungry and were stuck sitting at the buffet for the next 2 and half hours until it was our time to leave the ship. They should at least have some kind of entertainment or activity, instead of having guests feel stuck on the ship. Briefly, there is a port not selectable within port reviews, which was Puerto Quetzal in Guatemala and we took the self-guided tour in Antigua. About a 90 minute bus ride and we had an entertaining tour guide for ride, many people took this excursion and the city itself and the views before getting there were spectaculor with the volcano backdrops. I would recommend this tour to anyone who is considering it. I would cruise again through Celebrity, but I'm interested in a few other cruise lines which I won't mention that were recommended by onboard guests. I didn't like that laundry was close to $40 for one bag (thank god for clothes line in shower), we packed enough and stored our worm clothes under the bed. Water I felt like I was being nickled and dime for $2.50 + gratiuity for such a small water bottle. The overall experience was positive, but not perfection. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2012
First time Cruiser here, so nothing to compare it to but OMG did this exceed any and all my expectations. After reading all the nightmares we arrived at the terminal at 1230 worried about what we would be doing until the 2pm boarding ... Read More
First time Cruiser here, so nothing to compare it to but OMG did this exceed any and all my expectations. After reading all the nightmares we arrived at the terminal at 1230 worried about what we would be doing until the 2pm boarding time. We arrived to find over a 1000 other guests there already and with a sigh we settled in for the long wait. To my wonder and pleasure within 10 minutes we were through the line, with our ID cards and were sitting waiting for the gangway to open. At 1pm they opened the gangway and allowed us to board. While the staterooms were not ready, they allowed us on-board and free access to all the common rooms, pool deck bars etc. We wandered around in amazement sipping on some rum drink in a take home souvenir glass. We sat on the pool deck and took photos of so many beautiful and wonderful things. Soon they announced the staterooms were ready and my wife and i went to our room. We entered the room and held each other staring at the gorgeous room, the balcony, the couch, two tables, fruit bowl a bottle of champagne in our room. The attention to details just so amazing. The stateroom exceeded all my hopes and expectations. They included, umbrellas, wine glasses, binoculars, thick comfortable terry cloth robes. (OK pet peeve here. Don't come to breakfast in your flannel PJS, robe and slippers. Give me a break will you.) We found the buffet to be amazing, wide variety and very attractive. We only used the reserved dining once and decided we like the low key dinging atmosphere better. Each day we had canapes delivered to our room. We had purchased a soda package and a mini bar, the mini bar was to me way overpriced. $79 for a bottle of Jack Daniel and 6 cans of coke seemed expensive. Drinks were $5 for Bud and $6 for bourbon and coke. Wine per glass seemed high running mostly in the $6-$8 range. On board life was full, activities for everyone including out 16 year old grand daughter. They put on shows in the theater, magicians, comedies, crew performances that just kept you laughing. There were so many amazing musicians playing, i could and did sit for hours listening to the acoustic guitar and voices. We were a bit adventurous in our excursions, doing a long horseback ride from Skagway that i would highly recommend as it probably will give me more memories than everything else we did. Riding through the rain forest, listening to the stories of the gold rush and histories was awesome. We did whale watching in Juneau and did a 3-4 mile hike to the Mendenhall Glacier. I am sure i am boring everyone by now, but this to me,was a dream come true. I right now cannot imagine a better experience Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2012
Overall, I'd say we had a wonderful cruise but there is a lot of room for improvement. Positives: Room with veranda was great with adequate storage and great views. Cabin attendants came when we were gone every time. Towels, robes, ... Read More
Overall, I'd say we had a wonderful cruise but there is a lot of room for improvement. Positives: Room with veranda was great with adequate storage and great views. Cabin attendants came when we were gone every time. Towels, robes, etc were appropriate. Food was excellent and plentiful. Entertainment was surprisingly good. Brent Nixon was entertaining and a talented educator. I was interested in things I'm not usually interested in and learned a good deal. Lots of things to be involved in. Scenery was beautiful and no picture can capture it for you. You only have to unpack once and not check in and out and there is no way to see all of the places we saw otherwise. Negatives: Communication was poor. No information about boarding was given, not even the location of the ship. I found that on the Internet. We were told to be there by 3 when I called, but the ship was taking on passengers at noon when we got there. They served lunch at 1:00. We never got a map of the ship to review so we could find things. Internet was very expensive and slow. The selling never stopped. Why would you go to Alaska to buy jewelry? Children were unattended and running around. Service was slow in the main dining room. We were given wrong information from guest services after being on hold for 15 minutes.Written communication came every night but so much more needed to be there. Maybe if you've done this several times, it's not needed but we weren't the only first timers. We talked to people who missed the Brunch because they didn't know what it was (excessive amount of food). Things happened in the dining room downstairs and we could here it, but not see it. Strange. Shades were closed in the dining room on formal nights. Why would we not want to see the sights as we went by if we were near enough to a window? Looking for luggage and getting a bus to the airport was awful. The bus driver for Gray Lines was good (Chuck). We got a tour on the way to the airport. It would have been nice to know that the tendering to Juneau would take almost 2 hours. We gave up and didn't get off the ship. We were told 3PM but our number was called at 4. And knowing about tendering in advance would have been a great idea. The 545 Express singers and the illusionist on board need to learn some manners. Talented yes, but insulting people is not a talent. Making fun of people is not a talent and if they want to know why people didn't applaud, they need to review the tape. TV was never explained so we discovered that lots of information was there on our own. We will cruise again, but with more information.   Read Less
Sail Date: July 2012
We had a wonderful vacation on the Infinity. Ian the Cruise Director was beyond excellent. The staff were all friendly and helpful. The ship officers were involved in many activities, which was nice. For instance, a couple of them ... Read More
We had a wonderful vacation on the Infinity. Ian the Cruise Director was beyond excellent. The staff were all friendly and helpful. The ship officers were involved in many activities, which was nice. For instance, a couple of them compete against guests in games like trivia and dancing with the stripes. Bridge officers also give talks on various ship operations. As many others have mentioned, the naturalist Brent Nixon was incredible. The #1 reason I'd recommend this Alaskan cruise. His passion is infectious, even for people who are not usually interested in nature talks. His wife, Miss Amanda, does historical talks, which were also good (and nice to get info about the ports you're about to stop at). The Infinity was perfect for cruising through Alaska because it had so many areas to view the beautiful landscapes. Almost all of the eating and lounge areas had either floor to ceiling windows or big port holes giving you an unobstructed view of out the front, back, and sides of the ship. And there was plenty of deck space without glass to give you an open air view. The deck above the pool gives you nearly a 360 view. The captain also opened up the heliport at the front of the ship for cruising into Tracy Arm Fjord. Those views are spectacular though the downside is you can't hear Brent's narration from there. Our veranda room had a decent amount of storage space. I appreciated the ample space to hang up clothes in the closet. There are only plugs by the balcony door (plus I'm guessing there was one in the bathroom, but I don't remember), so if you want to use the plug by the beds, bring an extension cord. Bathroom was kept clean, but it seemed more like what I'd expect from a Day's Inn (this was my first cruise so I have nothing to compare it to). No body wash, so if you prefer to use liquid soap over bar soap, bring your own. There was a laundry line in the shower, which was really convenient. It detactched from the wall, so I often strung it through the bathing suits to dry since I didn't bring clothes pins. Food in the Trellis dining room was good. Buffet food was average. The grand buffet was nice, but not as spectacular as people made it seem, mostly the same good we'd been having all week. As others have mentioned, it's not well advertised, only included in the dining hours. Ours was on the second sea day. Just a couple things that could be improved (but none were deal breakers for me): - I agree with others it would be nice to have the option to get announcements in the staterooms. We ended up propping our door open for gangway announcements, etc. - Not many late night food options (with the exception of pizza, which is served until 1am). The biggest thing for me is no ice cream after 10pm (10:30pm on some late port days). 11pm or 12am seems like a normal time to want ice cream, especially on a cruise. - Pool is only open til 10pm. At least let us have access to the indoor hot tubs and salt water pool until 11pm! After a long port day, I'd love to be able to eat dinner, see the entertainment show, and then relax in the hot tub before bed. - Too many constant sales pitches. It's funny that Celebrity talks so much about being environmentally friendly when they send a constant stream of paper advertisements for the on-board stores and shopping events. Spa was ridiculous too. I didn't mind the option for add-on treatments when I signed in for my massage (just a small paper attached to your sign-in sheet), but the sales talk at the end was so unnecessary. After my massage, the masseuse wrote up a postcard with $150 of recommended products and proceeded to give me a sales talk about why I should buy them. That's not how I want to end a relaxing massage that I already paid a good amount of money for!!! - Game prizes. I don't expect any prize for winning a game, but I was surprised to see childrens size t-shirts (with the kids club logo on them!) given out as prizes for an adult only game. I saw these t-shirts being given out as prizes for multiple adults only events. A big oversight considering everything else about Celebrity LIfe Activities was so well thought out. I wouldn't hesitate to cruise on the Infinity again. If only they traveled to Glacier Bay and College Fjord, I'd definitely do Alaska again with Celebrity. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2012
Embarkations-Very smooth!! They know what they are doing. Everyone was eager to answer any questions we had, and make sure we were comfortable. Cabin-9067-Concierge Class A+-Great room. Lots of storage space!! Our room attendant was ... Read More
Embarkations-Very smooth!! They know what they are doing. Everyone was eager to answer any questions we had, and make sure we were comfortable. Cabin-9067-Concierge Class A+-Great room. Lots of storage space!! Our room attendant was wonderful! HE made sure we had what we needed and had great customer service! We loved sitting out on our balcony everyday! So Relaxing!! We ordered room service several times, and the room attendant brought it right up. We have fruit daily, tea and appetisers every night in our room waiting for us when we returned. I was so happy we upgraded to Aqua-class. There was so much that came with our package. The spa was wonderful!! We tried to take advantage of everyone pampering us! We were so happy to get the The Celebrity Today newsletter daily so we knew what to expect daily and what was going on. That was our lifeline to the ship!! and much appreciated to have the information. Food-We loved all the food. There were so many choices and locations to choose from. We ate dinner at the Blu restaurant-fantastic! Customer service was awesome!! They made recommendations that suited your taste. Our server got to know us and made all the right choice to make our dining experience one to look forward to daily! We didn't eat anything on the ship that was not wonderful! Loved the fresh fruit in the Ocean view! Cheeseburgers were mouth watering! Entertainment- was excellent! Loved the Broadway style shows! We planned our day out the night before and tried to make the most of our time on the ship! We never had a dull moment. Even when we chose to go to the spa and relax in the hot tub afterwards. We were happy there was a heated pool/hot tubs for adults only. It was nice to relax and enjoy some quiet time, and also not have kids splashing us or being loud. Service-was excellent! We did not have one bad experience. This was our first cruise. Seemed like there were staff everywhere we went to wait on us. Lines were great coming and going. There were lines, but that's part of getting hundreds of people off at one time. We never waited longer than 20 minutes coming and going at each port! Excursions-we had several wonderful trips at each port! I booked them all online ahead of time. It was perfect, because I paid for them as I booked them and didn't have to pay for them all at one time. We felt like we got to see Alaska and have life experiences at each port. Disembarkation- was very well organized. We received a letter a few days before, so we knew exactly what we needed to do. We never felt like we couldn't ask questions if we didn't know something or go to customer service to inquire about changes we needed made. They jumped to make it happen!! Over all this was a wonderful experience! We will definitely cruise with Celebrity again and again!! Cant wait to start planning our next trip! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2012
We sailed out of Seattle on June 22, 2012 on Celebrity Infinity, on a 7 night cruise to Alaska with 4 port stopovers. It was our 40 th anniversary gift to ourselves, an " out of the box " adventure for 2 experienced city kids. ... Read More
We sailed out of Seattle on June 22, 2012 on Celebrity Infinity, on a 7 night cruise to Alaska with 4 port stopovers. It was our 40 th anniversary gift to ourselves, an " out of the box " adventure for 2 experienced city kids. The ship and cruise line exceeded our expectations in every respect. The ship layout is well defined and organized. The food is excellent and varied from gourmet to burgers and pizza in at least 10 or 12 venues. The entertainment is superior every night . . 3 Broadway quality Productions, Comedy Show, Magician and Illusionist, late night dance parties, 6 to 8 venues with a series of rotating musical groups from guitar to jazz combo to classical trio to acapella groups . . each day and night was full of opportunities. The Service is first class, period, and friendly and eager to please. There is a big outdoor pool and jacuzzi area, and an adjacent indoor one too . . PLUS a great Spa and Persian Gardens area with Saunas, Steam Rooms, and full Spa facilities, workout gym, etc. We booked an Aqua Class Cabin with balcony, well worth it, and our semi-private dining room was Blu . . we loved it ! Cabin was roomy with a LOT of storage ( suitcases and all bags fit under the beds ). Balcony seems like a must . . adds to perceived and real open feeling, and is great to sit outside and relax in comfort. Whale Watching and White Pass Rail Trips were great. Weather wes lousy but who cares, it is ALASKA ! Rugged, wild, expansive, rains a lot, low clouds and foggy . . seemed perfect. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2012
Although my husband and I booked this cruise many months ago through RCI Cruisers, we didn't actually think about or plan for it until the last month or so before departure on May 25. Finding Cruise Critics was a huge help since we ... Read More
Although my husband and I booked this cruise many months ago through RCI Cruisers, we didn't actually think about or plan for it until the last month or so before departure on May 25. Finding Cruise Critics was a huge help since we couldn't find many answers on the Celebrity website. We attended the CC Meet and Greet on our first morning and met several really nice people, and really enjoyed the 'Cabin Crawl' (saw five different types of cabins). We had a stateroom with veranda on Deck 6, very near the forward elevators. Great location! Booking a veranda cabin was one of our best decisions, since we could sit and enjoy a glass of wine or cup of coffee without being amid the throngs of people, constant chatter and music that was present nearly everywhere else on board. There are a few quiet areas tucked away here and there but our veranda served that purpose for us. I do think that maybe Celebrity might consider having more quiet areas with lounge chairs for people who really don't appreciate listening to music all the time. Here are our other pros and cons about this cruise. PROS: 1. Food- We were fortunate to have a wonderful table for 8 in the Trellis Restaurant, very rear (stern end) of the room, window wall across the entire back of the room, and great table-mates. Our service from Edi and Anna was just wonderful, and also Jerry, our sommelier. We ate all dinners at this restaurant- never had a need or desire to go to the restaurants charging extra fees. The food was at least 4 star every night. Breakfast and lunch were at the Oceanview Cafe (buffet) or the little cafe by the Aqua Spa area. These were also good, but not great- typical for buffets. The made to order omelets were nice to have each morning. 2. Beverages- We opted out of buying a beverage package although we seriously considered it right up until departure. We're so glad we didn't! For us, rather than spending $44 a day per person, we ended up with a bar tab of less than $20/day per person. We had wonderful wines with each dinner, a few martinis and were totally satisfied. Being able to bring two bottles of wine on board helped keep costs down. The martini bartenders were worth the cost of the martini sampler ($15 for 6 samples). They have a show going on mixing and pouring these drinks- try it!! 3. -Brent Nixon nature lectures were incredible- we missed only one of the five he did. Definitely a highlight! 4. Other entertainment- The scenery is beautiful! We didn't go to the evening shows (except one- the illusionist who was excellent), mainly because we were tired. We are early risers, and the cruise made us want to get up and out to see the scenery. The cruise down Tracy Arm fjord started before 6 AM and we were up in the Constellation Lounge on Deck 11 by 5:15 to get a chair. It was already pretty crowded. 5. The staff- Very friendly and helpful with only a couple of exceptions. They handled nearly everything promptly and professionally. CONS- I think Celebrity needs to work on their communication system and processes. 1.Captain's announcements are hard to hear. They don't come through into the cabins, so we would have to go in the hallway to hear, and even then the volume was not high enough. 2. Brent Nixon's narrative in Tracy Arm was so interesting, but again, not loud enough. Also, many rude passengers and even staff talked and laughed throughout his mini-lectures. Celebrity captain should request passengers to respect others by being quiet when Brent is talking about the scenery, etc we are passing. 3. Juneau stop was a tendering process, with passengers having to go by tender (lifeboat) into port. This was a fiasco. Celebrity did not provide enough boats to efficiently move all the passengers, so for many it was nearly 2 hrs before we actually stepped foot in Juneau. The Guest Relations desk staff were not prepared to handle all the passengers who finally went to them with questions and complaints. They said they were not even aware that there were such long delays. 4. Getting off in Victoria was nearly as problematic, although we were in dock. Signs on the ship said gangways would be on Decks 2 and 3. We went to Deck 2, where they said we should go to Deck 3. On Deck 3 there were LONG lines going up to Deck 4. Staff said we should go to 4 to line up. We just waited on Deck 3 and finally the lines started to move. Again, the staff didn't seem concerned that the signs were wrong, and that the stairways between 3 and 4 were all blocked with people waiting in line. Really felt disorganized. 4. Information from Celebrity about the ports was exclusively focused on shopping or their shore excursions. Even the maps in the daily newsletter featured only the shopping at the stores in which the cruise lines have an interest- not many points of interest. We did not choose to cruise for shopping, we wanted history, nature and cultural sites. Overall, the cruise was fun and relaxing. Weather was cloudy for the most part, except in Skagway, our favorite part of the trip. The last two days at see were stormy or foggy so we weren't able to see much Inside Passage. Those days were a great time to sit in the spas, read, go to lectures and eat! Read Less
Sail Date: March 2012
This was the first time I had ever cruised and I'm pleased I started with a cruise to Central America and Panama Canal. The experience included some highs and lows but overall it was a great vacation. Given that it was my first ... Read More
This was the first time I had ever cruised and I'm pleased I started with a cruise to Central America and Panama Canal. The experience included some highs and lows but overall it was a great vacation. Given that it was my first cruise, and I can be hard to impress (to say the least), I was hyper-sensitive to everything around me right from the first moment we started this adventure. Embarking was odd -- we were in an Aqua Class stateroom, which has its own "express line" but our line was slower than the general boarding line. Celebrity staff on the ground were clearly disorganized but we tried not to let it bother us - we were happy to be onboard the Infinity...my lady and I went upstairs to shoot hoops on the basketball court before the ship even left because it seemed like about the oddest thing we could do. As a newbie to cruising I couldn't believe that cruise ships don't even take one night between trips to organize, stock up and clean up to ensure they present themselves as the financial juggernauts they are. But only a few hours down-time between each journey -- and this shows to anyone paying attention. When we got on-board everyone seemed to be playing catch up to the people that just boarded, just minutes after saying goodbye to the people from the previous cruise. Odd way of doing things. Our Aqua Class room (#9179) was supposed to be slightly bigger and better (size, tv, fancy face cloths etc) in all aspects than the next step down concierge class but this didn't seem obvious to us. For the first 24-48 hours some things that were promised, simply weren't there but then started appearing magically. And we had to go to guest relations to ask what bonuses and services we were supposed to get with our room...and at that point we could start asking for these things (like special pillows for those that need them). I figure if they're going to charge extra for this class of rooms, it makes sense that they would not only be clear about the services and bonuses you have paid for but they would make it a priority to ensure these things are actually made available to you without you having to do a Sherlock Holmes to figure out what you should be getting. With all this said though, the room was beautiful and a perfect place to call home for Sandy and I for the next two weeks. Our room was about midway, on the left side of the ship, which is the side of the ship that is up against the port when you dock (and lets you wake up to the "Welcome to Guatemala" sign the morning you arrive there). Hmm, maybe that's why they call the left side of the ship "port". As a newcomer to cruising I found the whole experience fascinating. The ability to bask in such comfort and luxury while waking up to a new port in a new country (or entering the Panama Canal) many mornings is simply amazing, and something that I feel truly fortunate to be able to do. And it gives you permission to really leave all your problems behind. There are a few predictable downsides to cruising (like the decadent theatre of eating, eating, eating) but this wasn't going to stop me from enjoying myself thoroughly. At this point I had better just create a couple of lists or this will be too long for anyone to read. The good: Great service and friendly staff. We could see that all staff on the ship are trained to greet you whenever possible and it makes a difference...it makes you feel good. Our room attendant Bertolino was great: He took his job seriously, was always inquiring if we were happy with things, and he helped me pull off a great (but kind of mean) April Fool's joke on Sandy. The ship is a nice size. I know they make them larger but it was big enough for me. Aqua Class turned out to be a huge bonus for us because we got to eat in the new Blu Restaurant (four course fare, a bit lighter and healthier than in the main dining room), which is reserved for people in Aqua, as well as anytime use of the ship's new Persian Garden - a series of saunas and steam-rooms for some quiet time. Perfect. The variety of things to do, nightly entertainment, sun-soaked decks, and great destinations and excursions in central America were all highlights. And thank you Alexa in guest relations for always having a smile and being so patient and helpful. The not-so-good: With service on the ship generally being so excellent, it really stands out when individual staff are not as friendly or professional as the others. The spa seemed new and disorganized, and has some problems to work out - with its services (we had a problem that was never corrected) and staff (some clearly bad attitudes here). I purchased Sandy a gift certificate from the spa for her birthday and found out many days later that they provided her with a different service than the one they sold me, and they charged us extra for it. They never accepted responsibility for this mistake. Another problem area we discovered for the ship on a whole was basic communication for fundamental things -- such as disembarking. In reality, the disembarking process wasn't anything like the process they described in the instructions they gave us the night before. And ship staff chose to not use the PA system as a way to keep people informed early on of what was going on and where people should be. While the food was good, it was not great. A lot of it was relatively bland and flavourless. Increasing the quality control over menu items (does anyone taste the appetizers and entrees before the dining room is thrown open for dinner?) would make a big difference to the cruiser, because eating is such a big part of the experience. But this may just be me...the hard to please guy. Oh, and all the chocolate-type desserts had a similarly odd flavour to them. Odd and similar. But that's nit-picking. The bottom line here is that despite some problems, our time onboard the Infinity was a great experience. A nice ship with excellent staff, keeping us entertained and comfortable, while taking us to great destinations in a blanket of warmth. I would have to be seriously grumpy to not love that. We will consider Celebrity if and when we cruise again. Thanks. 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Celebrity Infinity Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 0.0
Family 3.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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