Sail Date: September 2009
We had an enjoyable 14-day New England & Canada cruise on the Celebrity Summit. We've sailed on Celebrity a number of times and are Elite level members of the Captain's Club. We must note that cabin and dining room service ... Read More
We had an enjoyable 14-day New England & Canada cruise on the Celebrity Summit. We've sailed on Celebrity a number of times and are Elite level members of the Captain's Club. We must note that cabin and dining room service was excellent. Our cabin attendant, Sandy, was not only efficient but also friendly and he anticipated our every need. Our dining room waiter, Daniella, was marvelous. She immediately identified all our food idiosyncrasies and remembered them, but also anticipated our desires. She was efficiency incarnate, and witty and friendly too. Our head waiter, Peter, was most accommodating and helped meet all our needs. We had looked forward to the cuisine on board, having been spoiled by it on our previous cruises with Celebrity. What a come down. The food was unimaginative, bland, and pretentious without living up to the billing. It was as pedestrian as on many other cruise lines. For example, orange juice was not even from concentrate. It was juice mixed with corn syrup to enhance sweetness. Menu items were given French titles, but lacked the flavors, the tastes that should have accompanied them. At a number of the ports, the gangways that were extended were steeply inclined. This made it very difficult for us, and especially for the older passengers, to exit or enter the ship. In fact, on our return to Cape Liberty, the gangway leaving from deck 1 was so steep that we were forced to run down the last few feet, in order to keep our balance. On passenger, behind us, fell, and had to be attended to by an ambulance crew. Embarkation at Cape Liberty was lengthy and took an inordinate amount of time. It seemed as if there were not enough agents to handle the crowds and then, one had to take a bus to the area for boarding the ship itself. All in all, Celebrity turned out to be disappointing. We had hoped for much better than we got. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
Why do we cruise? In my experience, we decide where to go and if we have a Cruise Company favorite we try to book with them. Often times we may jump around the industry to find and try a new Company's experience. After that, and aside ... Read More
Why do we cruise? In my experience, we decide where to go and if we have a Cruise Company favorite we try to book with them. Often times we may jump around the industry to find and try a new Company's experience. After that, and aside from the ports, we base our on-board experience upon 3 major items. Our cabin and staff, the entertainment and amenities, and the food. Let's face it, the rule of thirds applies, but I think we weigh heavily on the food. My Wife and I are Foodies. We own and operate a very high-end gourmet food establishment for healthy gourmet and cater some of the most decadent parties involving 5 Star Food. We are predisposed to being hard on chefs, recipes, presentation, and quality. I will never bash a chef for an errant mistake. Kitchen staff are human and we all make mistakes, but there is never an excuse for anything beyond one bad meal. Before I do the 'food' portion of my review, I'd like to start with the Ship, Cabin and Staff.The Celebrity Summit is a nice old ship. I am not a fan of the Oasis or Liberty "city" experience. Having been on the Liberty last New Year's and hating the size and crowds, we opted for a nice romantic getaway to New England and Canada. For us, this time was to be mostly about relaxing and recharging. This aspect of our Cruise experience was a homerun! Our Cabin was a Royal Suite. Plush wood, 2 rooms, and a huge bathroom plus the veranda were delicious! While the furniture was old and the couches could have been updated; the bed being a bit too hard for my taste and pillows that never alleviated a sore neck, I was more than willing to overlook this. Our Butler Rikki, was an extraordinary individual who was always eager to please and seemed to anticipate all of our needs and desires, and this is why he got a great tip on our last day. The ship and noticeable from our veranda has quite a bit of rust. Looking up from our balcony and the underside of railings and rigging revealed a ship in need of a major re-paint and refurb. The wood decking needed sanding and a lot of TLC. The veranda hot-tub was disgusting and uninviting so we declined to use this nice private amenity that could have provided a romantic bonus. The staff tend to clean only what they can see, and many have blinders on. There is a boatload of dust everywhere. In the Waterfall dining area there are several square Plexiglas displays that have paper decoupage' inside them. On the top was a layer of thick dust, and this is in an area where people are eating 4 feet away. I pointed this out the staff and they basically brushed it off almost as business as usual. Again to me, disgusting. So in a nutshell, many areas, the pool, bars, exterior and interior are in need of rehab.The entertainment is not Broadway, but more like a professional summer-stock theater. Not bad! A couple of decent comedians rounded out the mix. The onboard bands we just ok. They were perfect for the older crowd, but not my cup of tea; and I really wasn�t expecting more than what was delivered so I was ok with all of it. I just went with the flow. In all, the onboard experience was perfectly fine. If you wanted to relax, this was ideal. The AquaSpa was terrific as an experience and it attracted the older guests as expected. There are no kids allowed in this pool area so if any parents wanted to retreat for some down-time this was the place to go. The Casino the (Apple) iLounge, and club areas were all great and seemed to be well kept. The food quality in Main Dining Room (MDR) was always poor and in most every case horrible. We dined with two other couples and we were in constant agreement along with other passengers that the food needed a complete overhaul. One of our tablemates is a vegetarian and her food offerings were disgusting. In fact until the third day of the cruise, none of us had any idea that there was indeed a Vegetarian Menu. A rib-eye streak served to us was � inch thick, tough, and overdone. Food was overcooked, and cold. Dishes were inedible and poorly presented, but the promises for improvement never came. Omelets in the Waterfall were loaded with oil and grease. Poached eggs were hardboiled, and scrambled eggs were a mix of real and powdered. Desserts looked great but tasted disgusting. Simply, there is no fineness to any of the food. Nachos at the outdoor grill were stale, and the burgers and hotdogs simply tasteless. The burgers sat in their own grease before serving. I just don�t know where to end this assault on my gastronomic senses. Everything I have learned about food from my mother and in my profession as a gourmet food lover and provider defied logic. Our first night in the Normandy was mostly a good experience. I had Lobster that seemed to be seasoned with 5 Spice powder. Anise and Lobster do not go together, ever! The service and our 3 other visits to the Normandy were excellent, but at the additional $35/pp fee we found this a necessity to actually enjoy any dinner meal. By about the fourth night we totally gave up on the MDR. Overall and with exception to the Normandy, food quality was poor and this represents at least a third of the cruise experience. The food service staff are mostly from India, and struggle with every ability to provide quality. Breakfast buffet meals were never really hot, and the struggle to move through the lines and retain a completely hot meal is a challenge. Celebrity touts their food and in no way did it come up to our expectations, and never did it exceed or excel. I have learned as a professional in the Gourmet Food Industry, NEVER over-promise and under-deliver. Now comes the question you really want answered, �Will I cruise on Celebrity again?� I�m really torn about this. Sure, there will be people who say the food was fantastic, and I respectfully say you are nuts, SORRY! I liked the service staff and most everything not associated with the food but unless there is a major change and a commitment to the menu, I can�t say for sure that I�d return as a Celebrity guest. As of now and because of the serious problem with the food, I do not recommend Celebrity and in particular the Summit with this Executive Chef.   Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
My parents and I have never been to Maine or the Atlantic provinces in Canada. We heard from many that the towns were quaint and the scenery was breathtaking. What better way to be introduced to these regions then to take a cruise on our ... Read More
My parents and I have never been to Maine or the Atlantic provinces in Canada. We heard from many that the towns were quaint and the scenery was breathtaking. What better way to be introduced to these regions then to take a cruise on our favorite line, Celebrity? We booked a little more than two months before on the Summit in concierge class category C2. We are relatively new to cruising as our first cruise was this past April on the Solstice. I had done the research and understood that the Summit is an older ship and not in the Solstice class. I had read the mixed reviews with some critical of the Summit for its aged condition. Knowing all these facts, I lowered my expectations before embarking so there would be no disappointment. What I was really interested in were the ports. To my surprise, my expectations were slightly exceeded. I thought I would be boarding a ship on its last leg and instead, I was pleasantly surprised at its cleanliness and evidence of a good ongoing maintenance program. Once in a while I would see fixtures and blemishes that would need attention, but they were so minor that they were not enough to affect our satisfaction. For example, elevator buttons that had broken off or minor rust. Our concierge class veranda stateroom on deck 8 was in pristine condition after we had two problems fixed by maintenance. The sliding glass veranda door was slightly off track making it very difficult to open. Also, the vertical bar in the shower that holds the removable shower head fell off because the bottom screw had rusted out. We notified our stateroom attendant and he summoned the maintenance team that arrived in a matter of minutes. A new track was installed on the slider and the bar in the shower was secured with a new screw in very short time. Cleanliness was very evident throughout the ship. The key is that if you have a problem with something that doesn't work in your room, do not put it off. Tell the attendant and they will make it right. The quality of food in the Cosmopolitan dining room was excellent. Here you will find the standard Celebrity service with the standard menu on the left and the specialty menu on the right that changes each day. There many five star restaurant quality entrees, soups and appetizers that sets Celebrity apart. I loved the baked Alaska on the second formal night that was brought out in the entertaining parade. The first four nights we were at a table for six but the other three seats were never occupied. We wanted some company. Each of the first four nights, Larry, the assistant maitre d kept calling staterooms that supposedly wanted early dining and wait listed. However, Larry informed us that the passengers were either too busy or were in a party of two and demanded only a table for two because they wanted to be alone. For the last three nights, Larry changed us to a table for twelve that had three empty seats. This made us so happy as we finally had other people to converse with. We had great table mates. Everyone liked each other so much that we all exchanged phone numbers and emails on the last night. Some lived very close to our winter home in Florida and we will probably see them again. The Waterfall Cafeteria was a mob scene after boarding with long lines. But after that, it wasn't too crowded. The quality of the food was average, with standard breakfast, salads and lunch foods. You take a tray and a plate. For the main course sections of the line, you have to request and be served by the employee on the other side. For some salad and dessert items, you serve yourself. It was ok. The entertainment had its strong and weak points. It's really a matter of opinion on what one considers entertaining. Personally, I hated the variety show and Broadway medley show with its ghastly bright fluorescent costumes and terrible acting. They were too loud for my parents and were kind of tacky to me. However, the comedian, acapella group and the Paradise String Quartet were the best I've listened to and seen. They really enhanced the entertainment experience and set a standard for cruise lines. I went to the art auction but didn't participate that much. I was there for the free champagne and the raffle at the end. It was interesting to read all the fine print from Park West, the outside company that does the art auctions for Celebrity. I'm not that educated in art so I would never buy on a cruise ship without first doing research. The casino was very nice to me. I hit two jackpots and left the cruise ahead $500! Being from the Las Vegas area, I would have liked it more if the casino used the E-Z pay system, where you get a ticket upon cash-out instead of waiting for coins to spit out from the machine and grab handfuls to put in a bucket. I used the hand-sanitizer stations a lot there! The slot tournament was fun, but I thought the prize structure would be higher than a first prize of $340 given all of the people that paid $25 to enter. But Celebrity is in it to make money on board and I'm sure Jason, the casino manager is limited in what he can do given the directives he receives from corporate in Miami. I felt good for the person that won. She was sick and had to pay $400 in services to the medical office earlier in the cruise. The win helped to pay her bill. Pool area was well kept and there were plenty of deck chairs when I wanted to be there. My parents loved the saltwater Thalassotherapy pool with its water jets and massaging water that would pour down from above. Embarkation and Disembarkation were a breeze. But the cruise terminal at Cape Liberty is old and ugly. It needs to be bulldozed and rebuilt closer to the ship so you don't have to take a bus to the gangway. We had car services that dropped us off and picked us up right on schedule when we returned. All in all, this was a good cruise with high standards of service that Celebrity is known for. I enjoyed this millennium-class ship sailing.   Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
Background: AR and I are in our late 50's Early 60's and have traveled extensively by cruises and otherwise, in fact, AR has been to over 60 countries. We consider ourselves laid back, relatively easy to please and thankful for ... Read More
Background: AR and I are in our late 50's Early 60's and have traveled extensively by cruises and otherwise, in fact, AR has been to over 60 countries. We consider ourselves laid back, relatively easy to please and thankful for everything that comes our way. We enjoyed our seven night cruise on the Summit to New England and Canada, but must withhold the rave reviews due to a few disappointments. Embarkation/Debarkation: Since we live about an hour from Bayonne, we drove and parked our car for the week ($133). We arrived at the port at approximately 11:30am which was the height of the influx of travelers. We off loaded our luggage to a porter in an atmosphere best described as "organized chaos". Lemming like we followed the crowd past the obligatory photographers into a large room with three lines. The two shortest lines were for the suite, concierge and elite captain's club members. Since we did not have preferred check in status, we snaked in line for our document check in and although long, it moved steadily. Perhaps a couple more agents for the masses would have been helpful. The temperature hovered near 100 outside and not any cooler inside but everyone with the euphoria of a cruise vacation kept their "cool". We were on board by 12:20, but unable to get to our cabin, so we headed to the Waterfall buffet. Here "ordered chaos" had morphed into just chaos with passengers clutching their carry-ons and commandeering any seats available while trying to enjoy the buffet lunch. AR and I wisely headed forward to the Aqua Spa cafe where we were able to find a table and a perfect spa cuisine lunch. Food is available all day at the waterfall cafe, so don't buck the crowds and wait until the hordes have departed. We were in our cabin by 1:30. Stateroom: We had a balcony stateroom on deck 7. The room was more than adequate for a one week cruise and we were amazed at the use of space and storage opportunities. Derrick our cabin steward kept the room clean (we managed to keep the room disorderly). Anything we requested was taken care of immediately. Service on a cruise is what it is all about. For example, I need a refrigerator for meds, so I called customer relations before sailing to ask that the mini bar fridge be at least partially cleared out for space for the meds. Unfortunately, that had not been done before arrival, but Derrick immediately made the space. By day 2, it was clear that the fridge was broken and didn't keep things cold. One call to Derrick and the fridge was replaced. Hint: before unpacking checkout the storage opportunities. Not until the last day did we realize the closet had two pull down bars to accommodate men's shirts and pants and double the space. Your luggage will fit under the bed and out of the way during the cruise. Finally, AR and the asst steward had a running battle. AR wanted the trash can in the bathroom, so she would put it there each day and when the room was made up the trash can reappeared in the room. It became a game to see who would prevail. The next to last day of the cruise, she discovered that the bathroom had its own trash receptacle which pulled out from under the sink! The disappointment with the room was the balcony. The two plastic chairs were not comfortable and the space itself was not conducive to leisurely sitting for any period of time. The balcony, however, was nice as added space to the room and an opportunity for fresh air and a nice view of the ports of call. Which segues...... Ports: Portland, Maine. It was 100 degrees in Portland, enough said! Having been to Portland and Maine many times in the past, we rented a car which we shared with a family we met on board and drove to Freeport. I dreamed of being an outdoorsman in LL Bean; although the heat and flannel shirts were contraindicated. We shopped at many of the outlet store, bought shoes at JL Coombs and had the quintessential Maine lobster experience at the Harraseeket Lunch and lobster house on the Freeport harbor (Yes, there is a harbor about a mile out of the shopping district) I recommend renting a Hertz (their kiosk is right on the dock as you get off the ship) car in Portland and driving North to Freeport (20 minutes), west to Sebago lake (one hour) or south to Kennebunkport, Ogunquit, York Harbor (45 minutes). Bar Harbor, Maine. The weather here was majestic. 81 degrees with no humidity. Philadelphia made it to 102! The town is beautiful in a touristy way. We took Oli's trolley for the Acadia Park Tour ($28) and got back just in time to grab a lobster roll (what else?) and take the LuLu Lobster Boat tour ($30). We highly recommend this tour (book on line) Captain John is a character and a teacher. WE saw seals sunning and cavorting, a bald eagle perched majestically (it was the 4th of July week) and learned all there is to learn about lobsters and lobstering. Soft drinks and water on board are complimentary, binoculars are provided as are wrist bands for sea sickness (no one succumbed). It was a full and fun day and we still had time for ice cream at Ben and Bills and shopping to help the local economy. St. John NB: Although we heard grumbling on board that some folks didn't like this stop and thought it to be a waste of time, we took the hop on and hop off bus tour ($37) and got an opportunity to see this little port. In truth, I checked the tide tables before leaving home and it was clear that the tides weren't cooperating for a trip to St. Martins or Fundy National Park. We did see the reversing falls (overhyped) and Delilah's bones in the City museum. (A good choice) Delilah was a Right Whale which was killed by being hit by a ship. The young lady at the museum enthusiastically told us all about Delilah and the other whales on exhibit. We visited the City Market and had lunch at Billy's where the PEI mussels and Digby scallops were excellent. We enjoyed St. John. Halifax, NS: We agonized over what to do in Halifax. We certainly wanted to see the obligatory Peggy's Cove and a visit to Fairlawn cemetery for the graves of the 121 Titanic victims. We finally opted for the 10 best of Halifax ship excursion ($72) and it was the best move we made. We saw it all; but.........You MUST try to get on the bus with Ellen as your guide. She is a lovely lady with stories about everything. Her love for her City and Province is infectious. She went out of way to get brochures for all passengers for the places we stopped. We saw the gardens and got to the Citadel in time for the Noonday gun and changing of the guard, lunch on the waterfront, stories of the Titanic, Swissair crash and the Halifax explosion. Yes, Peggy's Cove (would love to visit w/o tourists), Fairlawn (moving with a mental image of Leonardo DiCaprio); and a visit to a maple sugar/syrup factory. Lastly, Ellen's printed recipe for Blueberry Grunt for which she is justly proud. The seven hours flew by. Note: We got back at 5:45 on a formal night which made it difficult for the 6pm dining room seating. You may wish to consider a Normandy reservation for this evening. Which segues....... Food: The highlight and disappointment of this cruise. We ate twice at the Normandy ($35 pp) which is on par with some of the finest restaurants in Phil and NY. The service is impeccable and the presentation photo worthy. The Tournedos Rossini was excellent and the escargot tortellini is recommended. A young couple on their honeymoon enjoyed food and dining. They ate the first night in the MDR and then opted to eat the rest of their dinners in the Normandy. Since the menu remains essentially the same, by Thursday they were asked if there was something else they would like, and the chef made it for them off menu. The buffets were plentiful and varied and for the most part good. There was food available from morning until night. Since we had late seating, we enjoyed a late afternoon snack of sushi/sashimi, India Tandoori, or pizza and, of course, ice cream. Note, on the morning of the Halifax arrival, the ship doesn't dock until 10am. So, everyone seems to sleep late and descend on the breakfast buffet en masse; a good morning to have a "civilized" breakfast in the MDR. This segues to the disappointment of the MDR for dinner. The menus were uninspired, the portions minuscule, no meal or dish was memorable. To be fair, AR believes this criticism is too harsh. She never had difficulty finding something to her liking nor did she ever leave the MDR hungry, so this critique is mine alone. Some of the dishes were inedible. Lobster bisque is a menu staple and available on all nights. The night I ordered it, I sent it back as inedible. It resembled a dark mushroom soup and had no taste. The closest that soup came to a lobster was a perfunctory wave to the lobster tank on its way to the dining room. In exchange I received the salad of the day - a sliver of ice berg lettuce, a thin slice of tomato and a thin slice of Bermuda onion. I've had more with spa cuisine! On the other hand, the escargots, another menu staple were excellent. One night Rib eye steaks were on the menu. Six of eight at our table ordered the steak and all of them were inedible, impossible to cut and tasteless. AR sent her steak back for the sole wrapped around a shrimp quenelle which was good. On the last night, I had the veal cordon bleu which was a paper thin piece of meat (veal?) rolled around an equally thin piece of deli ham and cheese and then fried. It was one of the worst things I have ever eaten. Fortunately, it was minute. To be fair, any complaint was handled immediately and the dish replaced with something else. Celebrity has always been known for their food and dining experience. I went into the cruise with higher expectations than I should have considering my last Celebrity cruise was 10 years ago. Perhaps they should swallow their pride and get Michel Roux back on board. This was a cruise to New England and Canada. How hard would it be to load fresh lobsters in Portland (lobster Newburg, real lobster bisque) or Digby Scallops and mussels in Saint John. In the future (yes, I would travel with Celebrity and Summit again), I would reserve the Normandy for nights 2-7, giving the MDR at least a chance to win me on the first night. Since food is such an integral part of the cruise experience, I fear that more cruises with this level of food in the MDR will relegate Celebrity to a lesser status among cruise lines. Entertainment: The entertainment on board was surprisingly good. The shows got better as the week progressed. The two comedians were terrific and perfect for a cruise of this type [some families with small children (very well behaved!!! Congrats to the parents and a program that kept the kids busy); some teenagers (you didn't know they were on board - congrats again to the parents); but mostly an age demographic of 45-70]. The shows were entertaining. There was music in different venues at all times and would appeal to the above age demographic. Conclusion: A thoroughly enjoyable cruise vacation, but CELEBRITY you have to improve the MDR experience. It needs improvement. Nevertheless, I would recommend this cruise to others and would cruise again with Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
This is my first cruise with Celebrity Cruises and third total (my wife and I have traveled with Princess before). We have only traveled to New England and Alaska. Overall, the cruise was very enjoyable and satisfying. We opted for ... Read More
This is my first cruise with Celebrity Cruises and third total (my wife and I have traveled with Princess before). We have only traveled to New England and Alaska. Overall, the cruise was very enjoyable and satisfying. We opted for Celebrity to try a different line and found some things we liked better than Princess and some not as well. Embarkation: The process was very organized but annoying nevertheless. Much of this seems to be due to the way the port was set up (we drove to Bayonne where we ported out.) It took about 45 minutes from bag-drop off to boarding the ship. Nevertheless, the staff were quite friendly and kept us moving. Stateroom: We had a nice stateroom with a balcony. This was our first with a balcony and I think that will hold a new standard. The balcony was nice but the table was too small. The room space was a bit clumsy and found we liked the separate "hallway" that we noted on both of our Princess ships. However, the bathroom nice; good shower and well utilized space. Our steward was very professional and friendly-always polite when we saw her, which wasn't often. Nevertheless, it was rare that we left our room and didn't have it attended to when we returned. Dining: We chose Freestyle Dining, which worked quite well. The hostess was always professional and friendly. We were given the option to sit with others, which we chose most nights and were never disappointed. The food was not that exciting. We actually preferred our dining on Princess and thought more of the quality and selection (however, was impressed by the sommeliers). The buffet left little to be desired; it was often crowded and seemed to be inconvenient as it was required that you were served in line. The Aquaspa healthy options were terrific; I often opted for fresh cut fruit and yogurt for breakfast. The dining was good. Entertainment and Amenities: This was the best and worst of Celebrity. Some of the offerings were tremendous. We attended all of the wine tastings and were well worth the price. I also had the pleasure of trying some new Irish whiskeys and scotches. The fitness room was decent. It was hard to jog on the jogging track as most people chose to walk. There was always a place to get a deck chair. The comedians were also well worth the while. Sometimes, the ship seemed empty. On the first night, it seemed as though no one attended the public rooms. We went from room to room and it seemed all we found were some cruise staff who would be sitting with each other. Things picked up a bit but entertainment seemed restricted to either the theater or later at their dance club. Ports of Call: Portland: It was extremely hot this day, with the mercury reaching 90 at 8:30 in the morning. My wife and I had visited Portland before so opted to take a small walk around the city and enjoyed the shops and wares; we also took it upon ourselves to tour the Victorian House and the Shipyard brewery before returning. Bar Harbor: This was our third time there and still did not disappoint. We have visited Acadia Park twice and skipped it in lieu of doing some kayaking, which was a lot of fun. We also took in some lunch before returning. Always lots to do here. St. Johns: We have been here before and have seen the Bay of Fundy and other sites. This time, we simply opted to walk around town. It was COLD. We did some shopping but the chillier weather left this day disappointing. Halifax: Beautiful day in Halifax. Lots to see and do at port before going off on a tour of the cemetery where the victims of Titanic are buried and then to Peggy's Cove. Peggy's Cove is gorgeous and well-worth the drive out. Disembarkation: Extremely well done. We were told to arrive in the theater at 8:30 and we were driving away at around 9:20. They had this down to an art. Overall: We enjoyed Celebrity and would probably cruise with them again. Pros for Celebrity included the relaxed atmosphere, professionalism of the staff, unique ideas for lessons with their savor, renew, discover program, and healthy choices. Princess seemed to win with quality of their dining and more activities but was much more crowded and you were more likely to be "nickel and dimed". We're thankful to have had such a nice time. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
Previous postings were very helpful in reducing the surprises onboard the Celebrity Summit. We chose the cruise to Maine & Canada as a destination vacation and hope these comments will help future cruisers: STAFF: everyone worked ... Read More
Previous postings were very helpful in reducing the surprises onboard the Celebrity Summit. We chose the cruise to Maine & Canada as a destination vacation and hope these comments will help future cruisers: STAFF: everyone worked hard to be friendly. Don't know how they manage to be nice to 2000 people every week :o) CLASSES: good floral design talk (how to arrange a rose bouquet); galley tour (interesting to those who hadn't seen a big kitchen operation); ice carving demonstration. Wish they'd had more speakers. FOOD: breakfast - waffles, fold-over cheese pastries (available only one day). lunch - deli turkey and chicken salad sandwiches, orange-creme & chocolate-mousse parfait-type dessert, chocolate dome cake, homemade ice cream & frozen yogurt. dinner - lobster & tiger shrimp, "cigar" dessert, lamb. (also, for some reason they did not offer the casual dining service/menu for supper, just the pasta bar & other buffet items). TOURS: Portland (variety of small gift shops on Exchange St.). Bar Harbor (many shops along Main St., and lunch at West St. Cafe [good blueberry pie & clam chowder, and excellent crab cakes, clams & shrimp cocktail]). St. John NB (horse-drawn trolley moving at a fast clip gave a closeup look at interesting homes & churches, then got off at city market and walked @four blocks [downhill or level] to Steemers restaurant [good fish & chips] near ship dock). Halifax (shortened one-hour stop at lighthouse on Peggy's Cove tour felt rushed; then walked to restaurant along harbor [very long walk, we took a cab back for @$10] aiming for Murphy's but stopped at Waterfront pub/restaurant [excellent but fish & chips for $14] and shopped at Amos Pewter next to Nova Scotia crystal]. SHOWS: illusionist was good fun; nice aerial show. Comedienne used lots of profanity. DEBARKATION: stairs on way to exit not workable for rolling luggage so took elevator going up then riding back down. It was a good vacation and we plan on taking another cruise to New England/Canada in a few years. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2010
This was our first ever cruise. I had no problems with the ship - it was clean although definitely due for its overhaul. The food was pretty average though. The Waterfall Cafe had cafeteria-style food (pasta, so-so pizza, lots of ... Read More
This was our first ever cruise. I had no problems with the ship - it was clean although definitely due for its overhaul. The food was pretty average though. The Waterfall Cafe had cafeteria-style food (pasta, so-so pizza, lots of casserole type dishes) although the sushi bar was absolutely excellent (why wasn't this available at lunch time?). The kids enjoyed the food but my husband and I ate our lunches at the Spa - tiny serves but at least it was fresh and tasty. The Cosmopolitan food was very ordinary. Our waiter was hysterical - gave us very detailed descriptions each night (I actually do know what a 'jus' is!) but pronounced all the French words phonetically. I didn't have the heart to correct him but perhaps waiter training could include pronunciation? Here's a hint too - if you order breakfast room service in Concierge class, freshly squeezed orange juice is free but you have to pay $2.50 on deck! We ordered orange juice in our cabins and then took it to breakfast with us! We had dinner at the Normandie one night - nice food but not good enough to justify an extra $35 a head. The ports were great (except Portland - boring!!) and we really enjoyed ourselves on port days. But where were all the activities during the 'at sea' days? I was expecting lectures on the history of the places we were going (there was one very boring lectures on lighthouses and that was it!) and lots of free, educational stuff. Instead, we were offered the chance to pay lots of money for whiskey tastings - sorry, not interested. The shows varied a lot. One comedian should have been put out to pasture years ago - i cringed at his show and even his target audience (ladies of 80+) didn't enjoy it. Troy was very funny though. The sing and dance shows were terrible but the cappella group was very good. Overall - my kids (aged 19 and 15) had a ball hanging out with the other kids on the cruise and would do it again but my husband and I wouldn't bother again with a cruise unless it was down a river and there was a port day EVERY day. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
Embarkation was smooth and easy. Our daughter dropped us off at 11:15 and we were enjoying lunch by noon on the aft deck. Then, it was up on deck to wave good-bye to Staten Island and pass under the Verrazano. We often watched the cruise ... Read More
Embarkation was smooth and easy. Our daughter dropped us off at 11:15 and we were enjoying lunch by noon on the aft deck. Then, it was up on deck to wave good-bye to Staten Island and pass under the Verrazano. We often watched the cruise ships from shore pass through the narrows and it was exciting to be on the other side. The Summit is a beautiful, sophisticated lady who does have her flaws. I kept hearing about chipped paint and rust and yes there is some wear on outside rails or underneath pool ledges. The Summit is not pristine out-of-the-box brand new, but it is a large ship with an intimate feel. Though the cruise was filled, we never felt congested. Our stateroom was clean, comfortable, and well-attended by cabin steward. It was freshened twice a day. The food was delicious, fresh, and of course, plentiful. Sometimes it wasn't hot, though that's a personal preference not necessarily a problem. Sometimes it was too salty. I didn't try eating in the dining room for breakfast as my husband prefers the buffet, but I wish I did. Food service was slow and I grew tired of sitting each night. Perhaps, if I was with friends, I wouldn't have noticed. Our tablemates were pleasant and we enjoyed their company. My favorite meal was the lobster risotto and though I was offered more I didn't have room. My favorite desert was apple pie ala mode in the main dining room and the fabulous Grand Marnier Souffle in Normandie. Also, I loved the French service in Normandie and the Sole Veronique prepared table side. I enjoyed the salads at the Agua Spa cafe which were fresh and not too heavy with just right portions. My favorite desert there was a low-fat yogurt panna cotta. We relaxed in the Cova Cafe almost every night before dinner enjoying wine and tapas while listening to a variety of music. We enjoyed the entertainment and were surprised at the crew show by a waiter with an incredible voice who wowed the crowd with an inspirational rendition of the "you'll never walk alone" and a bar tender turned magician. We took advantage of many of the activities the ship had to offer, but skipped many in favor of relaxing by the pool. You don't have to drag a book with you; there are plenty of good reads in Words, the library which you can take and put back whenever you want. In Portland we booked a food tour through Zerve. We loved it! They offer a walking tour which we did and a trolley tour. We booked Oli's Trolley in Bar Harbor. The 2 1/2 tour was too much driving and not enough time to enjoy the few stops. I would do the hour tour and then return on the free bus to walk the trail or the beach. Our St. John's tour to St. Martin was cancelled. It was so foggy in St. John that it was a favor. We took the public bus to Reversing Falls because the Harbor Passage Walk was closed for construction. We went back to the ship early. In Halifax, we went to the Maritime Museum right on the dock and took the FRED (Free Rides for Everyone Downtown) 40 minute loop which stops at Citadel, Public Garden and back to Immigrant museum next to dock. The boat had mostly older people even older than us (mid 50's) some families with babies, children, and teens. The kids always seemed to be at the outdoor pool and the staff was always involved with them, dancing, games, etc. It made me nostalgic for the time when my children were young and enjoyed these activities. NOT! I'm kidding. I am looking forward to grandchildren soon on the horizon. Overlooking minor problems and disappointments, we really loved our trip and the Summit and booked a trip to Bermuda, (same ship, same week) next year. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
Before booking this cruise, We read all the reviews and scoured these boards for comments. The consensus was that The Summit was an older ship and beginning to show its age. The food was good but not up to most peoples expectations and not ... Read More
Before booking this cruise, We read all the reviews and scoured these boards for comments. The consensus was that The Summit was an older ship and beginning to show its age. The food was good but not up to most peoples expectations and not what it used to be. We chose this cruise over a similar one on the Caribbean Princess even though the princess cruise was a few hundred dollars cheaper. We have cruised Celebrity before on the Century back when it was new. We have very little recollection of the cruise. We have also sailed on all of the major lines but or most recent cruises were on NCL which we did not like at all. Since we have been to all the ports from Canada to the Caribbean, and my wife has mobility issues, we were not really interested in the ports, the ship was to be our destination. We do not care for balcony cabins and see no reason to pay so much extra money for something we probably will never use. We usually book inside cabins, not necessarily for price but because we like the sleeping conditions and spend very little time in the cabin. We do like the shows and activities, especially trivia and we especially like to eat.. Embarkation: We arrived a Port Liberty at around Noon. It was starting to get crowded and we saw some long lines. My wife, however needed a wheelchair to board the ship but is able to get around with a cane while on board the ship. She had reserved a chair and was quickly assigned one with an attendant. Once she sat down in the chair we went to the head of every line and we were through in less than 10 minuets. We boarded the bus for the 2 minute ride to the ship. Once at the ship, another attendant was waiting with another chair and he brought us directly to the Waterfall Cafe for lunch, since the cabins were not ready. A note on the buses. These are not yellow school buses. They are full sized transit type buses. They belong to Rutgers University and seem to be on loan to the port on the weekends. Cabin: As previously noted, we book inside cabins..This cabin, however was a surprise. It was the smallest inside cabin we have ever seen in 18 cruises. Without the narrow hall, the room measured 8X10. With one double bed, a Loveseat. Desk and little table (which we had removed) we had about 20 square feet of floor. The bathroom was equally tiny. The cabin was a bit dated with the arm rests of the Loveseat quite frayed. This is not a complaint as much as an observation. We were a bit cramped, but we survived since we spent very little time in the cabin. The ship: We both felt that the ship was beautiful. Elegant and very well maintained.. The public rooms were all inviting with a touch of class. There were always people cleaning, vacuuming, dusting. The bathrooms were also kept spotless. Everywhere I went I saw cleaning carts in front of the bathrooms. I didn't make a rust inspection, bud did glance around when I was on deck. Maybe a spot here and there, but certainly not enough to mention or to impact negatively on our vacation. I don't really understand why I saw so many reviews suggesting the Summit go into Dry Dock ASAP? In our opinion, it certainly can use some updating, but it's not in need of resuscitation at the moment. Service: The service was exemplary....Everybody (except for one head waiter) went out of their way to be accommodating.. Always a greeting and a positive word. Our waiter Luis and Asst. Waiter Oscar were among the best servers we have ever had on a cruise. Louis was funny, and professional at the same time. He made the meal more fun. Our cabin steward was also excellent. The only exception was Selvyn. He was a head waiter in the Buffet area. He never smiled or greeted us or anybody else that I saw. On two separate occasions he publicly reprimanded kitchen staff and was quite derogatory in his remarks. We witnessed no guest being rude to any staff member as had been reported in some previous posts. Entertainment: We found the entertainment to be excellent. The Summit Singers and Dancers were "entertaining". They had two shows that were very enjoyable. That being said, they were not any better or worse than the house entertainers on most of out other cruises..There were exceptional moments like a river dance number that was really good, but for the most part not exceptional. Sean O'Shea singer impressionist etc. was very good and seemed to be very popular with the guests. The magician/illusionist, Adam Trent, was good. The usual girl disappearing tricks, but his card tricks were very entertaining. We found the comedian, Jim McDonald, to be very funny and his humor to be very topical and intelligent. There was Aerial Artists, Marsha and Dominique that were also excellent. The Neptunes, an Acapela group, were also very well received. In all, the entertainment was very good. Cruise Director Bob Wheatley and his staff were adequate. Activities: As I mentioned, we like trivia and was quite excited to see numerous trivia contests on the first day. Trivia, however, dwindled to one or maybe 2 a day. It seemed that they ran out of pens.. the activities for the week were minimal at best. I realize that on port days there are less people on board and they feel that there is less need for activities. I found most of the activities that were available to be boring and of little interest to me. Most of the lectures were done by staff that were trying to sell something (spa treatments, acupuncture etc.). I miss things like ice carving, Sushi making, towel and napkin folding etc. there were plenty of Art Auctions and shopping specials. Clearly these are my observations. There were many people reading and just relaxing. Personally I do not choose to read on a cruise. I expect to be entertained.. Food: We make no excuses food is the most important part of the cruise for us. We enjoy good food and typically judge a cruise, for the most part, on its food. I read, on these boards, that some felt that the food quality had deteriorated, while others felt that it was among the best food in the industry. I can't speak to deteriorated because the last Celebrity cruise I was on was 10 or so years ago, but I am sure it can't be the best in the industry or I certainly hope not. Buffets: In general. I know its hard to produce a quality buffet for thousands of people, but I'm sure it could have be better. The breakfast buffet, was far superior to the lunch. Overlooking the disorganization and crowds the occasional running out of croissants, cups and coffee, the selection and preparation were acceptable with a few exceptions. I like Smoked Salmon (Lox) which was only available twice on the buffet. They did have the capers, onion, tomato, bagels and cream cheese every day. We had never seen a breakfast buffet without Smoked salmon every morning. When I asked, I was told to ask each day and it would be brought to me, which was true.. I also do not like a buffet where you cannot take your own food. Just about everything is served to you (probably a money savings measure or maybe for sanitary reasons.) They had hand sanitizer everywhere but nobody enforced its use (which was the case on our last NCL cruise) Lunch was another matter, the selections, for the most part, were terrible (to our taste). Either to salty/spicy or too bland. I was not able to enjoy the hot selections, except for some of the carving station items. We usually ate a sandwich and or Pizza (which we liked since it tasted much like Pizza Hut which we like.) The fresh made ice cream, yogurt and sherbert were great each day. The dinning room lunch we found to be much better, but the Dinning Room was closed on every port day (4), which only left two lunches. Oh yes, the great Dinning Room Buffet that was raved about on these boards did NOT happen. I asked why and was told that they sometimes do not have it and that it was a corporate decision. Dining room: We had read the menus before the cruise and expected some problems, but not as many problems as we experienced. Without going into each meal and each dish, I can just say the the food was uninspired and bland. The choices were, for the most part, bad..when meatballs are the chefs suggestion, you know you have a problem. There were only 2-3 dishes all week that I considered to be very good (Rack of lamb, Short Ribs, Chilean Sea Bass). There was one night that one of our table mates ate a baked potato and string beans as her main dish. I had Escargot (which I enjoyed) or Shrimp Cocktail almost every night. We ordered a soup every day and were not able to finish any. The half Lobster Tail over Risotto with a Shrimp and a Scallop was not great. The deserts, however, were OK. This was the most disappointing part of the cruise. We expected a superior dinning experience and received one that was most disappointing. Even though some of the reviews were very negative about the food, I guess I chose to embrace the positive comments and went in with unrealistically high expectations. Normandie: After seeing the menus, I made reservations at the Normandie. I must say that I am glad I did. It was, by far, the best mean of the cruise. The goat cheese souffle is a must and the Surf and Turf, thermador style was the best I have ever eaten. (The lobster tail with the steak is the same size as the lobster tail alone). The service was also fabulous. I still believe, however, that I shouldn't have to pay extra to get a better meal. Seventy dollars plus extra tip, if deemed appropriate, is a bit high.. It's like paying twice for dinner. Disembarkation: Again we requested a wheelchair. We were advised to go to a specific area at a specific time depending on our section. From the time my wife sat down in the chair we were off the ship through customs and out of the building in 12 minutes. We did not have to wait in lines, but there were lines to get through customs. The pick-up area is a bit chaotic, but there are people trying to direct traffic. Conclusion: I hope that this reviews doesn't come off as a list of complaints from a malcontent. I tried to be honest and express my feelings. I'm disappointed, but not sorry I went on the cruise. Remember, the worst cruise is better than the best day at the office. The piece of chicken breast with string beans I had for dinner on the night we returned had me longing for anything that was on the Summit menu. You do, however, expect more on cruise vacation (especially Celebrity). Celebrity has much to offer. The shows were excellent. The service was without equal. The Summit is a class ship. The smoking policy is almost enough to make me return. For us it was much less than the vacation we anticipated. For us the ship is the destination and there just wasn't enough to do. For us the food is very important and the food was the biggest disappointment of all. Since we are limited, by choice, to the NYC/NJ area departure, our choices are restricted. I am not saying that we will never cruise Celebrity again, but if we do, it would have to be well after we try all of the other options. Thank you for reading my review..... Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
My husband and I sailed on the Summit to NE and Canada the first week in August. We are in our mid to late 40's. and were below the median age of the passengers. For the most part this didn't have an impact on the trip. ... Read More
My husband and I sailed on the Summit to NE and Canada the first week in August. We are in our mid to late 40's. and were below the median age of the passengers. For the most part this didn't have an impact on the trip. Embarkation: Went very smoothly. We arrived at the pier at around 10:45 (after hitting a major rainstorm). There were still cruisers from the previous trip waiting to be picked up and getting off the ship, so there was slight chaos in getting to the unloading spot and then backing out. We pulled into the parking lot, got a close spot and while we were walking back to the loading area, one of the shuttle vans pulled over and offered us a lift. Since we were there early the lines were not too long and we did not have long to wait to register. We were in shuttle 2 over to the boat. The shuttle buses are on loan from Rutgers and are similar to city busses. Crew: Captain Pappas, Chief Engineer: K. Petrakis, Hotel Director: J. Brackenbury, Cruise Director: Rob Wheatley, Executive Chef: Denton Laing. First day: After swiping our boarding pass and having our picture taken, we grabbed a Mimosa. There were choices of Mimosa, Orange Juice or straight Champagne. There was a long line to get to the elevators to take us to the Waterfall Cafe, but Carla, the asst. Hotel director, was directing people to go up the stairs. When I asked where they were, she said she would lead us. We went up the steps to a different bank of elevators and zipped up to the 10th fall and the Waterfall Cafe for lunch. There was a large selection to choose from: pizza, pasta station, salads, desserts and many other goodies. The lines were short and we quickly collected our food and found a table with a window overlooking gloomy Bayonne pier. Only in looking for issues, did I notice some of the chairs looked a little worn. The aqua spa cafe also had offerings for lunch, which are lighter fare, but we saw this after we had already eaten. At 1pm our room was ready. We had in inside stateroom, in good condition, nothing ripped or torn. We had the twin beds pushed together, two night tables with two draws each, a desk with a chair (some storage in the desk), two chairs and a glass table. The room was tight and the bathroom even tighter. Overall storage wasn't too bad a problem and all our stuff eventually found a place. Our luggage took a long time to arrive, as did several other passengers. We didn't receive it until almost 6pm and we had early dinner. Lifeboat drill was a little after 3. You are assigned a location, no life vests needed. We were fortunate to be assigned the theater. Sailaway was at 4pm. We enjoyed watching the boat sail under the bridge. There were activities being held including Martini Mixology, and aquaspa raffle and others. The show that night was the introduction to the talent on the ship. It was the usual dancing and singing talent, though we did enjoy the A Capella group, the Neptunes. After the show we headed to Revelations for the dance party. The band was Magnitude. We actually enjoyed the DJ's music better. Day 2: Sea Day: We ate in the MDR so we could meet other people. The breakfast menu stayed the same all week and included smoked salmon, bagel and capers. (I know this because everytime we ate in the MDR for breakfast, this is what my husband had.) There was also an assortment of omelots, fruit, eggs, pancakes, french toast, meats, etc. There were a lot of interesting activities this day, however it was sunny and beautiful and we spent a good deal of the time sitting in the sun. No problem getting chairs. The ones by the pool have a very comfy cushion on them. 10am was the Celebrity Connections party. Not everyone came, but those who did met some of the staff. Lunch was at the buffet. I wasn't as crazy about the food in the buffet. It was ok, but I wouldn't rave about it. I got a Panini and my husband some Chinese. He didn't care for the Chinese food. After I ate I remembered the aqua spa cafe, they had some great lunch offerings. The activities personnel were friendly and courteous and went out of their way to be sure you had a good time. Also that afternoon was one of the Savor series of events. Four different members of the kitchen staff demonstrated how to make different dishes: Sushi, Crepes, Tiramisu and a fish dish. There was also trivia in the afternoon, lots of renew activities, bingo, seminars, casino games, etc. Dinner that night was the first formal. There were men in tuxes, but most men wore suits. We did also see those that were more casually dressed in the dining room and in the theater that night. The Maitre d' was very courteous. We were able to get a table change and he came by to check on the status. This night we went to watch the Neptunes perform in the Cova Cafe before that night's theater performance. The show that night was one with the celebrity dancers and singers. It was ok, standard cruise fare in our opinion. There was also Karaoke after the show, as well as a formal night dance party in the lounge. Day 3: Portland: The ship docked in Portland early, but since our tour wasn't until later we ate in the MDR. We went on a Foodie walking tour of Portland. We enjoyed this tour which gave us some of the highlights about Portland and the places we were passing, with the opportunity to taste samples of different delicacies, including Lobster, smoked Trout, Whoopie Pie, Truffles, Cheese, Blueberry preserves and scones and local brewed beer. We headed back to the ship after for a quick bite at the grill for hamburgers (which were very good) and some trivia contests. Every afternoon while we were in port they had a fun in the sun general trivia and an hour later music trivia. (while in port there were various activities: shuffleboard, movies, trivia, etc.) After dinner my husband went to a jameson Whiskey Tasting. (there is a small charge for this and the other liquor tastings. ) The show that night was an impersonator/comedian, Sean O'Shea. My husband didn't care for him, I thought he was ok. This night was the 50's and 60's dance in Revelations. The Celebrity dancers put on a little routine and then danced with the guests until around 11:30. Day 4: Bar Harbor: We watched the ship pull into Bar Harbor. It was a very foggy morning and we were worried about our trip to Cadillac Mountain. Since we had to get our tour tickets at 9:30 we need to be on a tender by 9. We ate at the buffet on deck 10. There was a huge assortment of items for breakfast, from the homemade waffles (two stations), omelot stations, assorted meats, etc. We got to the theater around 8:15 to get our tickets for the tender. We were on a tender and in Bar Harbor by 8:45. We took Oli's Trolley to Acadia National Park. They had three trolleys running the 2 ½ hour tour. We were on the second trolley. We enjoyed the tour of the park and the view from Cadillac Mountain was amazing. We were lucky because our tour guide changed the order of the trip so went up the mountain after the fog had lifted. One of the trolley drivers did not, so those individuals missed out on the scenic view. After the tour, we went to the West St. Cafe for lunch. My husband had a steamed lobster and I got a lobster roll. Both of us enjoyed our meal immensely. Entertainment tonight was a magician, Adam Trent. We enjoyed his show, especially his close-up magic (card tricks, etc). At this point we realized many people were changing after dinner into more casual clothes. After the show was the Newlywed Game, which was hilarious, as always. My husband enjoys dancing and likes a night life. This ship was a little weak in this area. We would go to the dance club, Revelations, every night, but it wasn't ever really crowded, except on the nights they had special dances. Even then by midnight it was emptied out of all but the regulars. Tonight was Spaghetti Western party, we got there after that because we decided to gamble. Day 5: St. John, N.B : This was not one of our favorite ports. It was very foggy and cold. We decided to do the hop on, hop off pink bus in case it rained. We headed out immediately to the Reversing Falls and saw it at high tide. We couldn't make out much through the fog, so opted to watch the movie. It was very interesting and gave us an understanding of what the falls really are. We went on all three tours that were offered and then went back to the Reversing Falls at low tide. We could see even less then. Our highlight was stopping for coffee at Tim Horton. Great iced coffee and donut. The show this night was a comedian, Jeff McDonald. We enjoyed him a lot, especially his slide show comparing Celebrity to Carnival. tonight was the Sizzle party, but because of the cold and fog, it was moved inside to Revelations. Day 6: Halifax: We watched the ship pull into Halifax. The day was going to be a sunny and hot one. We just took a self-guided walking tour. We made stops at the Maritime Museum (enjoyed the exhibit on Titanic, and Halifax explosion), Citadel, Public Gardens and finished our tour at Alexander Heath's brewery for a beer. This was the second formal night, so while the ship was in port until 7pm, we went back to the ship at 4pm to get ready for dinner. The second formal night there were less tuxes (my husband was one who switched to a suit.) tonight the waiters did the walk with the baked Alaska. Dinner tonight had the choice of lobster tails and other stuff. Everyone who ordered lobster at our table asked for two tails. Two of us got the Tornados of Beef which was excellent. The best meal I had all week (and I did enjoy most meals.) For the show that night, we got to see the Celebrity Dances and Singers in "Encore". We really found this show amateurish. However tonight was the chocolate buffet. Here were all the ice sculptures people are missing since there are no longer the midnight buffets. Day 7: At Sea: Today was the last relaxing day before our vacation ended. We started the day with the breakfast buffet and then went to one of the last Trivia games of the day. At 10 was the Chef showdown, followed by the staff talent show. They had a couple of singers and a magician. We really enjoyed this show, as did most who watched. My husband scheduled a Ping Pong rematch with the crew member for the afternoon, but in the morning participated in a Ping Pong tournament.During the day today we relaxed in the sun (never had a problem finding chairs, the chair hogs this trip were at a minimum), played trivia, watched ice sculpting, shopped and played Bingo. There were plenty of activities to choose from. Some of our tablemates went to a lecture on the Titanic and they really enjoyed it. I had read many reviews that dinner on the last night was not good. Two of our tablemates got the steak and found it tough, another had the best steak he had ever had. My husband enjoyed the Veal Cordon Bleu, while I enjoyed the Tom Turkey. The entertainment tonight was an encore of the past weeks performances. We enjoyed Adam Trent even more tonight, but really did not like Sean's encore performance. Debarkation: We were assigned an 8:20 meeting time in the lounge. After meeting our dinner table mates for a last meal (breakfast in the MDR), we headed over. Our group was called at around 8:25 (we were the third or fourth group). We breezed through customs, walked to our car with our luggage and were home by 9:45. (We live around 45 minutes from the pier.) Food and Drinks: We did not get the beverage package and for us that was a smart decision. While we did have a drink or two most nights and a couple of specialty coffees, we spent way less than a single package price. We ate all our dinners in the MDR. We enjoyed most meals in the MDR, both breakfast and dinner. We would rate the food between 3 and 4 stars, depending upon the meal and dish. I liked the Mushroom Capuccino soup and Strawberry soup, but did not care for the cold pumpkin soup. The one night I had salmon it was ok, but nothing special. My husband enjoyed his lamb shank one night. I also enjoyed most of the appetizers I ordered and everyone had shrimp cocktail many times. There were some meals I ordered more than one appetizer because I couldn't choose. Most of the desserts were good, though I really enjoyed the blueberry topped cheesecake in the Cova Cafe area. No one from our table left hungry. While the portions appear small, they are actually just the right size (I think we Americans are so used to supersize, we forget what normal portions are.) The Cova Cafe is available for specialty coffees, which were very good. The is also a pastry area (opposite the bar). All afternoon and evening there were pastries, however during lunchtime and other times they also had little sandwiches. I had a really good sandwich one afternoon for a late lunch. The aqua spa food was good. Lite and healthy breakfast and lunch options. We did not eat in Normandy, as we were enjoying talking to our tablemates in the evening. I only heard rave reviews about the food. Other: Everything in our cabin worked fine. We had some issues towards the end of a trip with a slow drain and blinking light. We left an attention to detail with the concierge desk on our last day. While it didn't bother us, the next guest may feel differently and he was appreciative we brought it to his attention. We also were double billed on the scotch tasting my husband attended. He went to customer relations to get it fixed. The next day while redeeming raffle tickets, he checked and it still wasn't corrected and he also explained to the person that he wasn't happy with the way the tasting was run. That night we received a bottle of wine in our cabin thanking us for our patience, etc. We felt we were treated well on the trip and did not experience any rude staff. Actually just the opposite, everyone said hello who we passed, from the housekeeper to the Captain of the ship. (And we did see him out and about a few times.) The cleaning and maintenance staff were constantly cleaning and touching up. All the public bathrooms were clean and in good shape (and I used them frequently.) Overall we really enjoyed our trip and would sail Celebrity again without any hesitation. We met some great people, some from CC, some not. We felt the ship was a good size and even though it sailed full (2300 passengers plus crew), it never felt crowded. We would even sail the Summit again. While there are some issues on the ship, nothing detracted from our experience (I know some others weren't so fortunate.) Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
We sailed August 1 through August 8, Celebrity Summit to Maine & Canada. We were DW, DD (17) & DS (15). We are in our late forties. We met up with Sister and Brother in Law and they had two children nearly the same age as our kids. ... Read More
We sailed August 1 through August 8, Celebrity Summit to Maine & Canada. We were DW, DD (17) & DS (15). We are in our late forties. We met up with Sister and Brother in Law and they had two children nearly the same age as our kids. We sat together for dinners in MDR at one table of eight. Embarkation - First time leaving from Bayonne. We left our home around 9:45am and arrived at the Port Rd in about 45 minutes. I was surprised we could not see the ship until we made it all the way to the end of the port road. Arrival at the port looked a bit chaotic as the last of the departing passengers were still there. There were folks directing traffic and we followed directions and pulled into a spot and dropped our luggage with a porter. We then parked the car and from that point on things went smoothly. We were on one of the first busses to the ship. It would be nicer if somehow we didn't need the busses. We were in Waterfall Cafe before noon and the place was nearly empty. We had a nice lunch and our first glass of wine using our premium alcohol package. We liked the package, it was convenient, and I'm fairly certain we received more than our monies worth from the package. We'd get at least a large Evian Water and a couple cans of soda each day, plus the drinks later on in the afternoon through the evening. Our two children 17 & 15 had the premium non alcohol package and that worked out well for them too. My family had two connecting CC rooms on deck 8 (8145 & 8147). The rooms were nice size. Heaven forbid - I did see a couple spots of rust on the balcony AND they didn't bother me one bit! Our room attendant, Christopher, was fantastic. The room was always well kept and he somehow always knew when we had stepped out. The entire staff on the ship was friendly and attentive. Very professional and looked as though they really enjoyed their jobs. Most times I never had to ask for something, I think they would read my puzzled face and figure out what I was looking for. In addition to our room attendant, special recognition goes to Dr Feel Good and the staff at the Mast Bar. We'd visit there (or the pool bar) every day for cocktails in the late afternoon. We had fun joking and laughing with them. By the way Dr Feel Good leaves for his 2 month vacation next week. Meals were ok. The Waterfall Cafe breakfast and lunch buffets were fine, sometimes I'd need to search for something that I would like. But always found something satisfying. Breakfast was the usual. Lunch was ok. The afternoon Sushi was one of my favorite parts of the trip. At least three of the four of us would bring a dish back to the rooms each evening for a light snack before getting ready for dinner. Our first three dinners in the MDR (8:30 seating) were disappointing. The portions were small. A few of our group (we arranged a table of eight with my sister her husband and their two children like ages as our kids) had the steak the first night and they seemed pretty disgusted with the dinner. Our servers were professional, although they never went out of their way. My daughter is a vegetarian, one night she did not care for what was on the menu, asked for something simple and our head waiter said no. I don't recall the details, but was surprised at the lack of effort. Not very friendly, but they did their job. It was actually our assistant servers first week. He made some mistakes, but really tried hard. Our dinner at Normandie was fabulous. Wish we went more than once! Service was top notch as was the food. We had room service breakfast a few mornings. We'd tell them the time we wanted delivery the night before and they would call when they were on their way with breakfast. I enjoyed breakfast on the balcony. Entertainment - We saw Sean O'Shea, not sure what he was, his show was disappointing. Jim MacDonald the real comedian had a very funny and entertaining show! Also, the illusionist was very good. We did not do any of the typical broadway style entertainment, mainly from reading reviews of the shows on these boards. We'd just prefer to take it slow before dinner and not rush for mediocre entertainment. We enjoyed spending some time at Michaels Club a few evenings. Bartender Eleana was always a pleasure to talk with. The piano player was a bit stuffy - we actually got a kick out of listening to the guy talk to the customers like we were little children and he was the teacher. He was a bit condescending. The ports were good. It was our first time ever to Portland, ME. DW and DD enjoyed shopping we all went to Gilberts for lunch. Had their chowder and it was very good. Bar Harbor was our favorite port. We did the free Island Explorer, left from the village green which is about a five minute walk up the street from the port. We off and spent some time at Sandy Beach. It was breath taking. The entire Acadia Park is beautiful. Beware the busses and park itself were crowded. St. John was a quaint port. It was very foggy that day. We walked through the mall and started on the path to the reversing falls before learning a) The walkway further down was closed due to construction and b) due to the tides there really wasn't much to see at the falls. We then spent some time at a delightful Irish Pub (O'Leary's on Prince St about two blocks from port). Say hello to Dave the bartender if you get the chance to stop by. Friendly and informative - a life long St John resident. Halifax was a clean metropolitan city. Being the middle of summer Friday it was crowded along the water front. A few shows going on, lots of people enjoying the beautiful day. We walked up to the Citadel (big hills to climb to get there). It was interesting to see. The casino was fun and generous. My daughter and wife were two of three winners in jackpot bingo and walked away with a nice pot. The gym was a bit small and crowded the few days I was there to workout. I suppose if I woke up earlier, I could have avoided such crowds. There was always a cardio machine available, although the treadmills were all taken most of the time. Disembarkation was efficient. Being CC they asked during the week what time we'd prefer to leave and we were assigned that time. 9am we went to the Cinema for disembarkation and we were in our car heading out of the port by 9:45am. Overall we had a great time. We loved the ship and the staff. We'd sail again on the Summit in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
I have been on one cruise last year on the Norwegian Dawn (amazing cruise!), so this was my second. As I said, I have never cruised with Celebrity so I did not know what to expect. I read from reviews that the food was excellent on this ... Read More
I have been on one cruise last year on the Norwegian Dawn (amazing cruise!), so this was my second. As I said, I have never cruised with Celebrity so I did not know what to expect. I read from reviews that the food was excellent on this ship, so I took that into consideration before hand. Here is my opinion of the Celebrity Summit. Dining- Every night my family and I ate in the Cosmopolitan Dining Room. We were a group of sixteen so we sat in two tables of eight. We had to reserve the tables before we boarded the Summit. That personally made me happy, as I would rather just sit with my family instead of strangers. The food was good. One side of the menu changes and the other stays the same for the entire week. There is a kids menu. However, the portions given are small on both the kids menu and the adult menu. As always,though, you can just ask for more and they will bring it to you. Our waiter was Brian, and the assistant waiter was Robert. They were both fantastic and informative. They would kindly answer questions and actually genuinely talk to you. You could eat at the Normandie, a high-class specialty restaurant, but we never got around to it. The buffet was pretty good; the food was great, but sometimes you would have to wait in long lines just to get a waffle. I think it should be more organized, but it still was nice. I loved the pasta bar. You pick which kind of noodle you want, what sauce, and if you want any extra thing in it (penne,Alfredo,chicken). It takes about three minutes for them to make it, but it is worth the wait. Also has a nice pizza station. The pool-side grill was nice. It had Nachos, Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Turkey&Veggie burgers,etc. Just all grill foods. There was also always a tray of cookies there that you can freely take. Overall, the food and dining was pretty good. Very few flaws, in my opinion. Definitely good food. Entertainment- The entertainment was alright. I saw the comedian, the first welcome aboard show, and the illusionist. The comedian was alright; some things will crack you up and others just make you board. I didn't really like the illusionist. He did too much dances and songs. All I wanted to see was tricks and magic, not singing and dancing. The welcome aboard show was nice. There you met the cruise director, Kirsti. She was absolutely horrible. You never heard from her, at all, unless you went to see a show. She never, ever made any announcements. She never showed up at any events or parties. She did not do what a cruise director was supposed to do. You never saw her. I mean, how much paperwork does she have that she won't even ever show her face or make a couple of announcements??? Sometimes I would want to go to Bingo, but then I would forget what time it was at. Usually, they were make a reminder announcement. I mean, that's how the ship makes its money. But, nope; nothing. And that is her jobs, so a big thumbs down on her. Not good, at all. Embarkation/Disembarkation- Embarkation took a while but once you were off the bus to take you to the ship you got on right away. Disembarkation was about 30 minutes behind. We actually got off the ship today. We had to wait in the Champagne/Martini Bar, which was crowded but you (or the crew) couldn't do nothing about it. We were supposed to be off at 9:20, but we really got off at about 10am. We waited a while, but once you were off, you were off. Children- The boat wasn't ideal for children, but there was stuff to do. None of the kids are into the camp programs that Celebrity has to offer, so they made do with the ship as much as the could. The kids loved the grill and buffet. I would suggest that if you want a family cruise, don't do Celebrity. Norwegian Dawn was a good family one, if that's what you are interested in. Staterooms- We had an inside stateroom on deck 2. Antonio was our stateroom attendant. He was fabulous. Every time you'd ask for extra pillows or whatever else, he would bring them there ASAP. The staterooms were always clean, with two twin beds that could be put into one and a sofa bed. Nice size. Clubs- We often sat in Rendezvous after dinner and listened to the trio, Elk Island, play. They were a very good band who actually just got on ship the week our cruise started. Their nice an approachable. My sister actually got a picture with him because my brother asked for her. They seem like nice people. Revelations is the 'night club' of the Summit. Saturday night they had a farewell party there and literally on my family and 10 other kids were their; it was supposed to be a big thing, but I guess not. Michael's Club is a piano bar that is more of an adult atmosphere. That is located right next to the photo gallery. The pools were also nice, with a band playing there during the day time. Overall, the Celebrity Summit was a nice cruise. I wouldn't recommend it for those who are going to cruise with young children, but it still was nice. The service was great, as was the bands. I will add in here fast that sometimes it was so hard to find a place to listen to music. Anyways, the food was excellent and the entertainment was OK. The cruise director, Kirsti, was horrible, but that didn't ruin my vacation. I don't know if we will be cruising again with Celebrity anytime soon, but it is still an option. Bonn Voyage!!! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
Great Cruise - I have read the other reviews and believe that they are to the point. Embarkation - We arrived around 12:30 and it took around 1 hour to get through. We could get into the room after 1:00. So we bypassed the elevators right ... Read More
Great Cruise - I have read the other reviews and believe that they are to the point. Embarkation - We arrived around 12:30 and it took around 1 hour to get through. We could get into the room after 1:00. So we bypassed the elevators right as you embark and walked to the back of the ship and the elevators were available and no long wait. Our room was typical for Celebrity, we choose the back of the ship and had a large balcony. No problem with the motion of the ship. FOOD: Breakfast and lunch were basically the same everyday but always ample choices. No complaints. Sometimes the area was very crowded but it all depends on the time you go. Main Dining Room : we choose Select Dining since we were traveling with a one year old. I had made reservations before we left for 7:00, (since we were 7 people dining ) No problem but on Monday when I tried for the rest of the week I could only get 8:15. Which is too late. Russell was very accommodating with trying to fit us in according to the baby's schedule. I was told that Celebrity had an overwhelming demand for Select Dining on this cruise. Which was obvious, the area was overcrowded, the servers weren't able to handle the crowds, and when people left the tables weren't clean - so when we went at 8:15 we had to look at dirty tables. I would never do Select Dining again. Hopefully, Celebrity will get it worked out. The food in MDR was the weakest part of the cruise. When I go on vacation I enjoy good food - I think my cooking is better and I am not a gourmet cook. On the other hand, the NORMANDIE was EXCELLENT with a great wait staff. Ports: I did a lot of research before the cruise for shore excursions. When you are traveling with 7, the ship's excursions are pricey and I didn't want the baby to bother anyone else. PORTLAND: MAINE FOODIE TOUR - Culinary Trolley - Wonderful, Randy was a great host with lots of info on the area and food. BAR HARBOUR - I booked with At Your Service Taxi. We were met as we got off the ship, Mary O was our driver. She was a wealth of info - and showed us all the highlights of the area. My husband loves photography and she stopped wherever he wanted. ST. JOHN'S BAY - Roy Flowers, Roy was a great tour guide, showed us some places off the beaten path. Having a private tour we actually got to see both stages of the Reversing Falls. BAR HARBOUR - Greg - Kiwikaboodle. This was the most enjoyable day Greg was very easy to relate to and knew the area very well. We did downtown Halifax then out to Peggy's Cove. I would highly recommend Greg. All of the tours can be found on the web. Disembarkation - Our travel agent told us to have a car pick us up at 10:00. I found this to be late but it worked out. Celebrity goal was to have everyone off by 9:30, so we were the last to depart and there was a backup in customs. Departure took about 1 1/2 hours. I used Black Car Transportation to get to and from the port. Very Accommodating. We all enjoyed the cruise - and we would do Celebrity again!!!   Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
This was our 10th cruise and 3rd with Celebrity and the "oldest" ship we were on. We have come to expect a norm when cruising and unfortunately this ship was FAR from the norm we have experienced in the past. The dining room and ... Read More
This was our 10th cruise and 3rd with Celebrity and the "oldest" ship we were on. We have come to expect a norm when cruising and unfortunately this ship was FAR from the norm we have experienced in the past. The dining room and theater are beautiful. There are some parts of the ship that need work. The adult pool had rust in areas and railings on balconies and around ship need to be fixed as well. We had a large rusty piece of equipment outside our balcony that should be painted. Dining.. We were very disappointed with the food both in the buffet and the main dining room. The portions were small and many of the meals were not up to par and inedible. Stay away from the steak! Our waiter never went out of his way and couldn't care less whether we enjoyed the food or not. The brunch was very nice, but service was poor. We had plates piled up and never cleared. When I asked for ice in my water, I was told that the water was already cold. The peas were hard as rocks and we were surprised they would even serve it that way. The poached egg area at the buffet was excellent and we enjoyed that a great deal, however on the last day they closed that station along with french toast, waffles and pancakes. Not quite sure why they did that since guests payed for 7 nights and days! Service We found the crew to be somewhat uncaring and lazy, although there were some exceptions of people that were kind to guests. We are accustomed to being greeted with a "Good Morning" or "Have a nice day" and VERY often, crew walked right past you as if you were invisible. The pool area was okay. WE placed towels on the chairs and there is 30 minute rule if you are not there which is understandable. However, I placed my towels on the chairs and went to the bathroom returning in 10 minutes to find my belongings gone. This surprised me because it was 9AM and most of the chairs were still unoccupied. Our stateroom was fine with good storage areas. The room was always clean and supplied with clean towels, soaps etc. However, on the last day my husband's insulin was taken out of the refrigerator and it was locked because Celebrity was afraid we might steal a soda can or liquor from the refrigerator on the last day. Also, my husband bought me flowers, and when we returned from dinner on the final night, the flowers were removed from the room. We complained saying that while we are still occupying the room the flowers should NOT have been removed. Again, a disregard to the guest. The ports were very nice except St John and the Bay of Fundy which was a waste of time and money. Do NOT take the tour Fundy by Land and Sea. It was a waste of the day and we saw nothing worth writing about. Acadia National Park was excellent and Bar Harbor was great! We enjoyed Portland and the Kennebunkport was beautiful. The shows were entertaining and the singers and dancers were excellent! There were activities throughout the ship and there was something for everyone. The piano lounge with Tom playing was disappointing. He refused to play certain classic songs saying he didn't like those songs or played them earlier in the evening. We heard several requests being made and he did not honor any of them. When we got up to leave, he gave us a sarcastic good night which was uncalled for. We never returned to hear him again. WE had a great time because we were with great friends, but I would NOT recommend this ship and will think twice about sailing with Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
ALL ABOARD THE CELEBRITY SUMMIT. Embarkation: We sailed out of Bayonne, New Jersey. Cape Liberty is OLD. Personally, I prefer sailing out of New York. It goes much smoother and faster. The lines were pretty long and became tedious. Some ... Read More
ALL ABOARD THE CELEBRITY SUMMIT. Embarkation: We sailed out of Bayonne, New Jersey. Cape Liberty is OLD. Personally, I prefer sailing out of New York. It goes much smoother and faster. The lines were pretty long and became tedious. Some people think its ohkay to cut other people in line. That was ANNOYING. However, once on the boat, paradise begins(: Where to begin....where to begin? Let's start with the one and only, our cruise director, Kirsti. Boy, did she need some spunk. BORING. Honestly, I can't remember a time where she announced happenings around the ship. She only talked on the loudspeaker about.. hmmmm... maybe 2 times..? And that was just hello and goodbye. Actually, she never even said goodbye to us. Her 'partner-in-crime', Katie, did that job for her. I must say, I only saw Kirsti and Katie about 3 times around the ship, not including the shows they were at. Some advice for Kirsti: WE LIKE ANNOUNCEMENTS. Most people like to be informed about the happenings around the ship. For example: The last night of our cruise, there was a farewell party in Revelations. LEGIT NO ONE SHOWED UP; well except for my family and part of the kid/teen clubs. Now, I'm 14 and my partner-in-crime is 12. We absolutely loved having the dance floor to ourselves. But it would've been nice to have an audience. Kirsti, ADVERTISE PLEASE. Now let's move on to.... the FOOD. YUM. The buffet was deliciouso. MMMMMM(: The dining room was beautiful. It was quite elegant. The service was top of the line. Shoutout to my man Brian. And also assistant waiter Robert. They definitely were a wonderful part of my cruise. We got to know them really well and it was a fabulous experience. I must say that the chocolate buffet was gorgeous. Ice sculptures and all. The poolside grill had amazing burgers and fries. And they also had fantastic cookies. YUM. If you're looking for a cruise with excellent food, the Celebrity Summit is for you! Alright let's talk about the entertainment. All I have to say is ELK ISLAND IS MY LIFE. Yes. Elk Island is a courtet, well it was a trio when we went on because the bass player did not make it on the ship. But anywayz, they were AMAZINGLY AWESOME AND FABULOUS. The singer and acoustic guitar player, Justin, was super talented. I would not want to miss any of their shows. PLEASE GO SEE THEM. I'm telling you, they are a MUST-SEE show! He sings like an angel. They play your "all time favorites", and he didn't tell them to put that. He dedicated a song to me(: I am proud to say that I am Elk Island's BIGGEST FAN. The pool was beautiful and I enjoyed laying out. There was always a lounge chair available. The music at the pool was pretty fabulous. And there were great dance parties and entertainment. Shoutout to James. He brings the fun everywhere. Oh yeah, some good advice: DO NOT LOSE YOUR CARD. I lost mine and it took forever to get a new one because the guest relations line was so long. So hold onto your card for dear life. Kay, so I'd like to finish up by saying PARADISE. Yeup. This cruise was so much fun and I wish I was still there now. We danced and partied every night. All in all, we rocked it til we docked it. Enough said(: Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
We booked this cruise with our friends to experience Celebrity. We have already experienced all of the other popular cruise lines. We were expected that the food would be at least as good as any of the other cruises that we've been ... Read More
We booked this cruise with our friends to experience Celebrity. We have already experienced all of the other popular cruise lines. We were expected that the food would be at least as good as any of the other cruises that we've been on. On the good side were the shows. Our room Stewart was very good and our dining room waiter was also very good and very funny. The ship is okay but does show it's age and need to be refurbished. As for the food. The quality was low and the portions were small. The dining room seemed disorganized. We usually never return food but we needed to do that a couple of times. The Buffet was particularly disappointing. The food quality got worse as the week progressed to the point where we only ate hamburgers for the last few days. There is food available up until 11:00 PM and only pizza after that. The was never fruit or melon at the late evening buffet. Also, the juice machines had a note on them stating that sugar is added to the juice. Fresh juice was only available for an extra cost. The servers at the buffet seemed to never understand what you wanted and we needed to do a lot of repeating and pointing. We spoke to the dinning staff about the sugared juice and lack of fruit at night and they stated that they are using a new food service and this was what they got. We were told that if we wanted fruit we can order it through room service but we don't like to have foods in our room and we prefer it at the buffet itself. The famous Celebrity waffles are very good and was the one thing that we looked forward to at the buffet. We feel that the food is one of the reasons that most people take a cruise and that this experience did not make us a fan of Celebrity. I did email them about my food issues and have not heard back from them to date. We spoke to many people that told us that other Celebrity cruises are much better but we feel that it is not a good idea to sail a cruise under the Celebrity name with low quality food. Last year we took a Carnival cruise with a family group and that cruise, which also left from New York, was better in almost every respect to the Summit. This really surprised us. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
This was the first time on a Celebrity cruise for my DH and me. We have taken many Princess cruises and always been happy, but we decided to branch out for a change. Upon arrival we were met at the airport by a Celebrity representative. ... Read More
This was the first time on a Celebrity cruise for my DH and me. We have taken many Princess cruises and always been happy, but we decided to branch out for a change. Upon arrival we were met at the airport by a Celebrity representative. A short ride later we were deposited at the Cape Liberty port at about 11:45 a.m.. The lines were very long. We were checked in and on the ship at 1:00 p.m. A sign said the stateroom would be available at 1:00 so we took the elevator up to deck 7. About 15 people were waiting by the stairs for the doors to be opened. At 1:20 we were allowed to proceed to our stateroom, an inside room on the Vista deck. We probably should have tried one of the newer Celebrity ships to introduce ourselves to the line. The Summit is older and in many ways it shows. Our stateroom was probably the best example. The shower and floor tile in the bathroom was black in many areas and the toilet seat looked very old. We did have a very nice, firm mattress, but the bedding had stains on it. The rest of the ship was hit or miss. The MDR and Celebrity Theatre were beautiful. Following the advice on a cruise critic review, we avoided the buffet and headed straight to the Aqua Spa cafe for a healthy lunch. This turned out to be our favorite eating option on the cruise. Breakfast offerings were oatmeal, toast, cold cereal, yogurt parfaits, fresh fruits and delicious popovers. Lunch offerings were cold soup, salad, fish, bread, fruit and dessert. There was always plenty of tables available and none of the usual buffet chaos. After a quick trip around the ship our luggage had arrived at our room. We unpacked, went to the muster drill and then to deck 10 for a margarita and the sail away. Although it was not a clear day, we were still able to get photos of the Statue of Liberty. Next we decided to try the Thalassotherapy pool and whirlpools. This adult only area was great and we visited it each day of the cruise. Time was slipping away, so we went to the buffet for a quick dinner. For dinner the buffet features pizza, salad bar, sushi, Indian food and cook-to-order pasta and stir fry. These are all good. They also offer a few standard items such as meat, potatoes and vegetables. Theses are sitting in warming pans and they seem to sit a long time and are not very good. For dessert there is ice cream and a large tray with various cakes. We ended our first evening at the Celebrity Theatre Welcome Aboard show. The Theatre is large and comfortable and the entertainment was enjoyable. Day two was at sea. We used the jogging track, whirlpools and gym and wandered through the shops and library. We went to a talk on baseball, but the presenter was very low key and read off notes on his slide presentation. After a restful day we went to the MDR right at 6:00 p.m. for a try at select dining. We were seated with six other guests. The food and service were very good and we enjoyed our companions. The evening show features Aerial Artists Dominique and Marsha. They put on a fascinating performance. Day three was Portland, Maine. The port town is not very picturesque or interesting. We did walk to the Shipyard Brewing Company for a beer tasting and tour. Next was a ship tour to Kennebunkport. This town was jammed with tourists, all trying to go to the same restaurants. We walked a few blocks to The Landing for a half and half roll. This was a roll with half crab meat and half lobster. It came with potato chips, slaw and a pickle and was a bit pricey at $19.95, but it was delicious! The evening's entertainment was Adam Trent, an illusionist that put on a fun show. We also discovered the Elk Island Trio in the Rendez-Vous lounge for some favorite tunes. Day four was Bar Harbor where we had made reservations with Oli's Trolley for a 3 hour tour of Acadia National Park. This was an informative and active tour with stops at Cadillac Mountain and Thunder Hole. Afterwards we walked to Chowdah's for clam chowder, blueberry ale and blueberry pie. To relieve our after lunch discomfort we walked along the shore trail for about a mile and back. The featured act in the theater that night was a hilarious comedian, Steven Scott. Day five was Saint John, New Brunswick. We took the ship's St. Martin's and the Bay of Fundy tour. It was 5 hours and included lunch. The tour guide was engaging and made our numerous stops, including the Reversing Falls, very nice. That evening we tried the MDR again. Celebrity is still working out the kinks for select dining. We asked for a table for two. After waiting for 45 minutes at the Martini Bar, we inquired again and were seated. Our waiter had about 5 tables and was keeping us in sync. So if one table ordered soup, all tables would wait so the entrees were served at the same time. We only ordered an appetizer and entrEe, but dinner took almost two hours. The food was quite good, except steaks. The steaks ordered medium but came well done. The ventriloquist Michael Minor was the headliner that evening. He is a great singer as well as ventriloquist and we loved his show. Day six was Halifax, Nova Scotia. We walked to the Citadel, but discovered the entrance fee was $12. We only had a hour to spare, so we instead enjoyed the return walk along the shore. Halifax was by far the most lively and beautiful port on the itinerary. We took the ship Historical Pubs and Seaside Ceildh tour. What a blast! We traveled from pub to pub with a Scottish band and had a sing-a-long. That evening's entertainment was a variety show and was very good. Day seven was at sea. We finished our books, relaxed and visited the gym. While on the treadmill I heard the detox seminar. The ending was a pitch for a detox program for $616. Unbelievable! Our final evening included a Farewell variety show featuring a fantastic a cappella group, the Neptunes, who were phenomenal. The disembarkation was from the Celebrity Theatre and was well organized. It was a nice ending to an enjoyable week. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
This is our 8th cruise, 2nd on Celebrity. We had a great vacation but this trip doesn't begin to compare with one we took on Constellation several years ago! Service was the poorest we have experienced on any cruise we have taken. ... Read More
This is our 8th cruise, 2nd on Celebrity. We had a great vacation but this trip doesn't begin to compare with one we took on Constellation several years ago! Service was the poorest we have experienced on any cruise we have taken. It's so different it doesn't seem to be the same cruise line. I use reviews when I plan my vacations, so I need to post my thoughts on this, for others to consider. I do not consider the higher price for this line to represent good value for the money spent. We booked a precruise package from Celebrity prior to the cruise. The hotel room we received was dirty and needed servicing. Our (prepaid) transfer to the pier stood us up. The luggage handlers at the pier were rude-all but putting their hand in my purse to snatch out a tip!! Once in line for the preboarding ritual, we waited almost an hour. Water and punch were offered by the ship staff. Onship there was no welcome aboard, no help in finding your stateroom, no welcome drink, no offer of a photograph. The arrival buffet in the buffet was chaos and there are several descriptions of it on other reviews and they are accurate. Meals in the buffet were generally the same each day and the style of service doesn't make for a quick stop to pick up food, coupled with the lack of staff, so the process takes a while. I enjoyed the ethnic cuisines, including breakfasts of dim sun and other Asian specialties. Most of the food was good. Wait staff service at the buffet was poor. One morning there was no coffee available (they had not made enough). In 7 breakfasts, I was offered a refill on my coffee only one time; and the sweet rolls which were passed each morning on the Constellation were organized and out for the service staff but I never once saw them offered to anyone. Keeping your silverware clean was an issue. The tables were wiped between uses, but bare, so once your unwrapped your silverware you almost had to it balance on your plates to avoid putting it down on a table that didn't impress you as being especially clean. One AM staff person cleaned away an entire uneaten breakfast that was put onto a table while the owner went searching for coffee. And, clearing of tables that were (really) finished was slow. We found the evening food to be very good, however, with the exception of the last evening, when the veal/ham entree was inedible. At nite, the assigned service staff was all personality and great fun. Service was slow, sometimes taking more than 2 hours for our table of 9!We really enjoyed the ship cast, ships' orchestra, and Neptune, but the other acts were not very good. There were few opportunities to dance, and a band one evening that got up for a 10 minute break had not returned after 45 minutes, at which point we got up and left. Our last evening in the theater, the small table next to us was completely loaded down with dirty glasses from an earlier performance, which were not removed, nor the table cleaned, at any time. In retrospect, it is easy to see why the norovirus that lurks on any ship takes over from time to time on this one. One public restroom was so filthy I left and searched for staff to request that it be serviced; at times there was no toilet tissue nor hand towels. We did not use the outdoor pool but the indoor salt water pool was fine and very comfortable. Our stateroom was OK, service good but rarely visible. We had plenty of room. Used the ship laundry without any problems. We were invited to and attended several Captain's Club events and enjoyed socializing with the officers. We ended up purchasing ship tours and found them overall to be good; we enjoyed Maine and the ports in Canada. The crew talent show was awesome!! I cannot "put my finger" on what made this ship's overall service to be so dispirited-a stressed or overworked staff or perhaps inattentive management. But, although we had a very nice vacation, and will consider returning to Celebrity, it certainly will not rank in our minds as offering a better experience than less costly competitors. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
Celebrity Summit, Aug. 29 to Sept. 5, 2010, Embarkation went smoothly. There was some miss direction on where we were to sit before boarding. As soon as we were given our key card we should have been sent to the "concierge ... Read More
Celebrity Summit, Aug. 29 to Sept. 5, 2010, Embarkation went smoothly. There was some miss direction on where we were to sit before boarding. As soon as we were given our key card we should have been sent to the "concierge area" and all five of us were directed to the general waiting area. After about 30 minutes we were redirected and quickly boarded the ship. Around 1:30 we checked out our room 9160 at the AFT end where our balcony will overlook the ship's wake. We were 2 days into the cruise before I looked up and noticed there was a security latch for the sliding glass door, which at odd moments would open and close. The latch had been damaged sometime in the past and would not close, so using some macrame cord I'd brought for a clothesline I tied the door shut. This proved extremely useful when we bounced through the rough seas of hurricane "Earl" on Saturday Sept. 4, 2010. The cabin seems small for three adults but there was enough space for everyone to unpack and to store our suitcases under the bed except one which was too deep so we stuffed it in the closet. I did have trouble remembering where items were located. Our cabin steward was helpful and kept our room in perfect order with clean towels throughout the day. When we left a note asking for cheese & crackers, we received a nice selection along with the usual appetizer for the rest of the cruise. My friend and I took advantage of the 4 scrapbook workshops offered. It would be nice to have larger tables for these workshops. Originally 3 workshops were planned but because of hurricane Earl we bypassed St. John, New Brunswick to spend an extra day at sea. I thought the "Thalassotherapy seawater bath" was wonderful. After soaking for 20 minutes on the underwater bench I felt totally relaxed and pain free. This is an experience not to be missed. The excursion to Freeport, Maine would have been enjoyable except the extreme temperature made it too hot to shop. The cruise line cannot control the weather. The excursion to Peggy's Cove was beautiful, and it would be great to have time to walk out to the lighthouse when the weather is dry. We enjoyed many of the musical groups and performers throughout the week. My favorite was the Neptunes. The meals were great, and I enjoyed the dining room. I would like to have some type of flavored creamer for my coffee in the buffet area. The coffee was quite strong and I tried several combinations of cream and milk to make it more appetizing. Because of hurricane Earl, our ship docked 5 hours late. The ship's staff worked hard trying to make our delayed disembarkation process as painless as possible, but the process seemed to fall apart and those passengers left waiting were extremely frustrated. Our group of five missed our scheduled flight from the Newark airport. We reschedule our 2:50pm flight for a 5:30pm flight to Charlotte, NC. This made it necessary for the five of us to spend the night in Charlotte for the connecting flight to Charleston, WV. In general the cruise was great. I'm already thinking of my next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2010
Celebrity Summit 7-day cruise to New England/ Canada Departed: Aug. 15, 2010, from Bayonne, NJ We are a family of four: Parents in their early 60s; son and daughter (me) in our mid 30s. This was my parents' 13th cruise, my 5th ... Read More
Celebrity Summit 7-day cruise to New England/ Canada Departed: Aug. 15, 2010, from Bayonne, NJ We are a family of four: Parents in their early 60s; son and daughter (me) in our mid 30s. This was my parents' 13th cruise, my 5th cruise and my brother's 2nd. My parents celebrated their 41st anniversary on the cruise. Overall: The Summit is an aging ship with a few problems. But we enjoyed the Maine/Canada itinerary and had a great trip. Here are a few things I wish I'd known before we left: Check in: Arriving in Bayonne at 11:30 a.m. meant we had to wait more than an hour to check in. Parking was easy, but expensive-- $133 on a credit card as you pulled into the lot for a 7-day stay. We did the online pre-registration, but forgot to print out the confirmation. That meant we had to take an additional 10 minutes to fill out the forms at the check-in desk. Luggage: You check your bags at the Bayonne terminal as you unload them from your car. But make sure you take a well-packed carry-on with you to bring on the ship yourself. Out luggage didn't make it to our room until after dinner the first night-- more than 6 hours after we checked in. So, we had to wear shorts and t-shirts to the dining room. The dining room staff understood-- a sign said shorts and t-shirts were acceptable the first night only-- but we were still reprimanded as we walked into dinner by a crew member who said we couldn't dress like that again the second night. "He doesn't need to yell at me for something I didn't do yet," my brother said later. "I was only wearing shorts because I didn't have my luggage." Not a good first impression for the crew. Dining problems: I wish someone had told me to double check my dining table size and seating time well before the cruise. This needs to be done with your travel agent by phone at least a week before and can't be done on the Celebrity web site during pre-check in. We were given a table for 8 instead of 4. So, as soon as I got on the ship I was told to go to the assistant Maitre D to change it. "Mr. Larry"-- the slightly overwhelmed assistant Maitre D-- sits in one of the lounges as everyone boards and takes requests for dining changes (moving tables, changing seating times, sitting with friends, etc.) On our cruise, more than 200 (mostly annoyed) people asked for changes in the first 24 hours. Mr. Larry makes the changes based on how high you are on the list, so see him as soon as you get on the ship for the best shot. Chances are he won't make your change the first night-- he waits until he has the full list of requests-- so you're stuck with your table the first day. I tracked him down three times before he finally found a table for four at the late seating. Tip: Go back and see Mr. Larry a few times and be nice. Persistence got us the table we wanted. Dining times: Neither the 6 p.m. nor the 8:30 p.m. seating times seemed to be ideal. The 6 p.m. people had trouble making it to dinner on the days we were out on excursions. We chose the 8:30 p.m. seating, but service was pretty slow. Most days we were lucky to have our entree by 10 p.m. Tip: The dining room is two floors-- the 5th floor balcony (table numbers in the 500s) and the 4th floor main level (tables in the 400s). The 4th floor tables got their food faster. Stateroom: We had inside cabins on Deck 3. They were small, but well laid out. Excellent safe in the closet, easy to use. The bathroom was relatively large wit a big shower for a ship. There was a small couch that turns into a third bed. The television has CNN, ESPN, BBC, etc-- but no printed program listings so it's hard to plan when to watch a movie. Tip: You can use your TV and remote control to order room service to your stateroom. Pretty cool. Pool: The indoor pool was the best. It's a large, heated, saltwater pool with two hot tubs inside a glass atrium (for adults only). It's next to the Aqua cafe, which is a self-serve health food buffet for breakfast and lunch. The chaise lounges are cushioned. Our favorite spot. Tip: If the crowds are getting to you, try the lounge chairs at the front of the ship, top deck, accessible only by stairs from the deck below. The chairs were pretty old and weathered, but the area was always deserted and quiet. Exercise: Good gym with a good selection of treadmills, elipticals, weight lifting machines and free weights. But about half of the elipticals and several treadmills were broken. The sauna-- with a window overlooking the sea-- was pretty cool. Tip: If you are a walker of runner, don't bother trying to do laps around the ship on the Promenade deck. Unlike other ships, the Promenade doesn't go all the way around. Stick to the top deck over the pool for multi-mile laps. Other amenities: Celebrity Theaters, where the shows are held, was big and comfortable. But bring in your own drinks. Waiters are scarce here and all over the ship. The movie theater was fun. But it was small and only showed films twice a day. It was empty and unused the rest of the time, oddly. We liked the martini sampling in the Martini bar. You get to try a tray of various flavored martinis in small servings for one price. We also enjoyed the free lectures. On our cruise, they were lectures about tides and whales from a visiting college professor. Tip: There is a nice card room on the ship. But the game selection is showing its age. One of the Scrabble games only had 41 of the original 100 letter tiles! Scrabble players beware. Ship charges: Check your stateroom bill early and often. We had an unusual number of bogus charges, including $40 in wine we never ordered. They were eventually taken off when we questioned them, but it took a few days. The $11.50 per day, per person gratuity is automatically put on your account. If you want to adjust the amount, it is not easy. They can either take it off completely-- so you can tip your waiter, porter, etc. on your own with cash-- or they have to leave it all on. You can't choose your amount, say $10.50. It's all or nothing, unlike other ships. Tip: You can't get your bill on the stateroom TV. In-person print-outs at Guest Relations only. Going home: If you live in the New Jersey-New York area or have a late flight, request a 9:30 a.m. departure when they put the request form in your cabin. That will give you the last departure off the ship in Bayonne. But it's pretty slow. We went to the theater at 9:30 to wait to be called and sat there for ages. When we finally got on the short bus ride from the ship to the terminal, found our luggage, went through immigration and got our car, it was 11:30 a.m. But we were home at our house within the hour. Then we collapsed and started planning our next cruise . . . Read Less
Sail Date: September 2010
EMBARKATION - This was the worst part of the cruise and the worst embarkation experience we have ever had. We arrived at the Cape Liberty terminal at about 12:15, about 45 minutes after embarkation was to begin. Since we arrived early we ... Read More
EMBARKATION - This was the worst part of the cruise and the worst embarkation experience we have ever had. We arrived at the Cape Liberty terminal at about 12:15, about 45 minutes after embarkation was to begin. Since we arrived early we expected a crowd, but we didn't expect that Celebrity would not be able to handle the crowd efficiently. There were four different lines: (1)suites, (2)concierge class, (3)select/elite captain's club members and (4)everyone else. Except for the suites line the others were very long. The problem was that Celebrity didn't have enough agents to handle the crowd well. There didn't appear to be more than two agents handling any of the lines and we saw four or five empty positions where additional agents could have been stationed. This was our first indication that Celebrity might be trying to save money through reduced staffing. Finally, there weren't any chairs in that area. I have a bad back and had nowhere to relieve my pain and discomfort. All the seating was in the large area we were only permitted to enter after checking in. DISEMBARKATION - This was a breeze. Passengers were assigned a number and told to go to one of the public rooms at a specific time. We and other concierge class passengers were assigned to the theater where coffee and pastries were available. When our number (22) was called at precisely the correct time we went to the gangway and into the terminal. Our luggage was easy to find and there were many porters to help us through customs and to the area where we could meet our transportation. CONDITION OF THE SHIP - The Summit is about nine years old, but is still in great shape. We found her to be clean, comfortable and carefully maintained. During the cruise they were even putting down new carpeting in our corridor. The workman told us the carpeting was replaced about every six months. FOOD - The Summit has only one specialty restaurant, the Normandie, but we didn't eat there on this cruise so I can't comment. Others, however, said it was well worth the $35 per person. The dining room menu came in two parts. The left hand side remained unchanged throughout the cruise and, therefore, was available every evening. It had basic things such as steak, chicken, pasta, salads, soups, etc. The steak was only average, but the chicken and onion soup were pretty good. The right side of the menu changed every evening and was a bit more daring. It, too, usually had beef, fowl, pasta and a vegetarian dish. I am a fussy eater and don't usually like seafood, but the Chilean sea bass and the grouper were terrific. We were at a table for eight with six other delightful people - two from Florida and four from the UK. The only disappointment we had (and it was unanimous) was when lobster was on the menu. Many people love the one night lobster tails are served. However, here, the chef decided to offer what he called "lobster melange." It consisted of scallops, shrimp and one half of a lobster tail. I suppose this was another example of Celebrity trying to save money since scallops and shrimp are cheaper than lobster. Several of us asked the waiter to bring us two halves of the lobster tail and skip the shrimp and scallops. Happily he did so. It was delicious. The Waterfall is the buffet restaurant and has the usual selections. We found them to be fine and had lunch there often. I especially liked the sandwich/panini bar at the rear of the room. Finally, the grill near the pool offered burgers, hot dogs, etc. The burgers were among the best I have had on any cruise. STAFF/SERVICE - Celebrity is our favorite cruise line and one of the reasons is that the staff is always smiling, friendly and ready to be of assistance. This cruise was no different. Every encounter we had with the staff was a pleasure. Our cabin steward, Marta, and her assistant Victor, were professional and incredibly competent. Our waiter, Rafael, and his assistant Mani, never missed a beat and anticipated our every need. The wine steward, Gabriel, was quite helpful and the maitre d', Peter, visited our table every night to make sure we were happy and regaled us with stories of his home in Croatia. I celebrated my birthday on this cruise and they sang Happy Birthday and gave our table a small cake with my name on it. ENTERTAINMENT - The singers and dancers on the Summit were great. They did the obligatory shows with Broadway tunes and some rock and roll that all ships offer, but I always enjoy watching and listening to talented performers. Guest entertainers included a female impressionist, a comedian, and a magician. All were entertaining. The Cova Cafe venue offered a guitarist who was pretty good and an acapella group who were great. PORTS/EXCURSIONS - We picked this cruise because of the itinerary. We live on Long Island, NY but had not been to many places in New England, and none in Canada. The ports were Newport, Boston, Portland, Bar Harbor, Halifax, Quebec and Prince Edward Island. We took several tours of the various cities and found them informative, if not exciting. We preferred to do some exploring on our own and had a great time. One tip: if you take the horse drawn trolley tour in Halifax, don't sit in the first few rows right behind the horses. For us it was like a scene out of the Seinfeld TV show. But that was our own fault, not the tour's. We especially like Bar Harbor (a nice little tourist town), Prince Edward Island (the mussels and lobster are great) and Quebec ( a beautiful city with a European feel). SUMARY - As I previously said, Celebrity is our favorite cruise line. This cruise did nothing to change that opinion. Although the embarkation experience was negative, the rest of the two-weeks was wonderful. As a matter of fact, while on board, we booked a Mediterranean cruise next September on the Solstice. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2010
My wife and I are in our early 50's and have sailed 8 times on RC and once on Disney. We wanted to try Celebrity and this itinerary was great because it went to Quebec. We had been to New England and Canada on RC, but they stopped ... Read More
My wife and I are in our early 50's and have sailed 8 times on RC and once on Disney. We wanted to try Celebrity and this itinerary was great because it went to Quebec. We had been to New England and Canada on RC, but they stopped going to Quebec about a year before I booked that one. This cruise also did a stop in Newport R.I. and P.E.I. which we didn't get on our earlier trip. As Diamond members with RC we were automatically made Elite members on Celebrity. We got the cheapest suite they offered. Because of this, we bypassed the long check-in line and were directed to a line with only one couple in front of us. According to the greeter "suite trumps everything" and the sky suites are not much more than the balconies. I'll get into other perks later because they are worth noting. Ship: Summit is one of the smaller and older ships we have traveled on but was very nice. I have read a lot of reviews talking about how old it is and showing its age. Because of them I spent a lot of time looking for defects and found problems here and there with cosmetics and deck tables which were in really bad shape. I don't know that I would have noticed or cared if I hadn't been purposely looking for them. I understand the ship is going into dry dock next spring for refurbishing but there was little to detract from our experience as it was. Being a cold cruise the crew repainted the pool, sanded the aft deck and did a lot of re-varnishing since most people didn't use the pool deck much. The only real problem I had is that at 6'6" I had to duck while taking a shower. I couldn't stand in the tub and I doubt the refurbish will correct this. Room: The room was small, about the size a standard balcony is on most ships. Storage was difficult going to a cold climate on a 14 day cruise but we managed. The closet was large but without a lot of hangers and there were only six shallow drawers and a couple small cabinets for folded clothes. I found the window from the living area into the bathtub (with mini-blinds) amusing. Food: I don't know why I have seen so many bad reviews on the food. We ate almost every meal in the Waterfall Cafe. We went once to the MDR on the second formal night and the food was great there as well. We don't like eating in formal settings much and prefer to grab meals whenever we like. Waterfall always had a great selection. There was always a sushi area, stir-fry, pasta and Indian section. They also had American fare which changed every night. There was usually a pizza area and sandwiches. I couldn't believe how good the steak was on the buffet, tender and medium-rare. The only thing I had which was bad was the grilled lamb, over-cooked and tough. But they had Scotch Eggs! The breakfast buffet always had 4-8 egg stations open for whatever you wanted, along with the excellent waffles. If the lines look long, just move toward the back of the Cafe, there are usually stations open with no line. I also have read complaints about how you cannot serve yourself at places on the buffet. This wasn't a problem with me and I think it helps keep the chance of contamination down. Entertainment: Celebrity seems to try to emphasize the music on the ship. The big band group was fantastic, as were the string quartet, Elk Island Quartet and A Capella group. The comedy show was very good. We were not really happy with the cruise director though. He seldom made announcements about events on the ship and just didn't really seem to be trying to make the cruise enjoyable. But his staff was fantastic, we especially like Lori, who did the trivia. Staff: This is where the cruise really shined! Servers in the the Waterfall were singing while they worked. They all seemed happy doing their jobs and some said it was because the managers treated them well and didn't run rough-shod over them. We were always greeted by the staff in a genuine manner and they went out of their way to make sure we had whatever we wanted. I have never been on a ship where all the staff seemed so genuinely pleased with their jobs. And did they have talent? You bet. They did a talent show on the last night which was fantastic. James, from the Philippines blew everyone away. But aside from that, we had some other examples. We spent a lot of time in the disco lounge. It was the only indoor area we disgusting, black-souled cigarette smokers could smoke. Yovani and Winston were a real team up there running the bar. Yovani brought his guitar up and played for us one night. We were usually the only people there between 7-10. He was excellent and a real professional at his job. Winston had a fantastic voice and sang with the band every now and then when they started up at 10:00. There was also a young man who juggled wine bottles when he wasn't busy. Perks: OK, here are all the perks we saw. A glass of champagne when you checked in. We had a bottle of Champagne in our room because of the suite and fresh fruit, canapes and desert tarts every night. When a clerk in the shoppes found out it was my wife's birthday, she got another bottle of champagne. (I think it helped that she bought a diamond ring). We don't drink wine, so we made some other cruisers happy and gave them away. Every single night there was a party for Captains Club members in the disco area and they got free drinks from 5-7. We never went to those, we had purchased drink packages before the cruise and could get whatever we wanted anyway. But I was really impressed that they did this for their members. There were also coupons for free laundry and other things along with a really nice leather-trimmed purse for my wife. Oh, we had a butler along with the normal cabin staff. How cool is that? And he really went out of his way to get us anything we wanted, brought my wife roses for her birthday. This cruise had an older crowd. There were only 3 children on the ship and they were all from the same family. Most of the people were around our age or older, not many younger, mostly older. This made it very relaxing. Lots of people from the U.K. on cruises out of Cape Liberty which is nice. I was impressed with the quality of the cruise line and booked another for next September in Alaska. I'm not going into any reviews of the ports because I wanted to keep this short and have already failed. But I will say Quebec and Bar Harbor should not be missed, absolutely fantastic. And take the horse-drawn ride in Cadillac Mountain in Bar Harbor if you go. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2010
It had been about 4 years since cruising with Celebrity and on this cruise was to be our 11th with them so we were not expecting anything other than the superb service, entertainment and food we have come to expect from Celebrity. Well I ... Read More
It had been about 4 years since cruising with Celebrity and on this cruise was to be our 11th with them so we were not expecting anything other than the superb service, entertainment and food we have come to expect from Celebrity. Well I guess we got 2 out of 3 because the FOOD was the WORST of any cruise or cruise line we had experienced--more later on this. Getting from Newark Airport to the Liberty Cruise Port was easy as pie. We checked the cab cost at the stand out side baggage claim. It was $42 plus tip for the 3 of us. EMBARKATION Went relatively smooth except from the Elite Lounge their was no priority organization to it and it became like a cattle call. Once boarded we had to go to the buffet because the rooms were not to be ready til 1:00PM. We boarded at 11:30 AM. We happened to carry our bag on board but unlike Holland they did not provide a check storage area so the bags went into the buffet with us. CABIN Was fine for the 3 of us-- a little tired and dated but OK. The cabin Stewards Antonio and his Assist. Fitzroy were excellent and took good care of us for the whole cruise. DINING DAILY DINNER MENUS - Were uninspired and lacking the fine things from the past. Gone were the Veal Chops, Beef Wellingtons and Oso Bucco etc OK the economy is tight I felt so long as the food is cooked well all will be well. MENU AVAILABLE EVERYDAY You can choose these as alternates including Escargot, Onion Soup, Steak, etc The problem was the cooking was not done very well and or the ingredients were of poor quality. Cases in point were as follows: MEATS- Beef and lamb were consistently tough HALF LOBSTER- Undercooked -shell was black thus meat hard to remove. Note: I am a born and bred Bostonian and know the difference. COQ AU VIN-- Chicken undercooked in an insipid sauce. VEAL CORDON BLEU-- Was pure salt PORTS BOSTON,MA wonderful to see the old bean town form the sea on arrival. Was able to get a CHARLIE CARD on line which pays for all public transport . There is a bus stop across from the pier that brought us to South Station. Where you connect with the T train two stops to Park St and up to the BOSTON COMMON AND The PUBLIC GARDEN WITH THE SWAN BOATS. At the corner of Park St and Tremont st ( In front of the PARK ST CHURCH) is the start of the red brick trail called the FREEDOM TRAIL. We followed it past the various historic sites including the the Granary Burial Ground, Old State House and it led to the Quincy Market and Faneuil Hall. Kept on the trail to Hanover St to PAUL REVERES HOUSE then on to THE OLD NORTH CHURCH. After this we back tracked down Hanover St to MIKE,s ITALIAN BAKERY. Mmmmmm those rum soaked pastries are too much. We made our way back to a subway stop and got back to South Station --caught the S2 bus going back toward the ship and had the driver let us off in front of THE YANKEE LOBSTER MARKET where we met our friends. This is a little place and not too fancy but the lobsters and clams were just great and at reasonable prices. We just easily walked back to the ship after ward. PORTLAND, MAINE Portland is a nice town to walk about and visited the Brewery and sampled. After shopping about we stopped in at GILBERTS CHOWDER HOUSE. It was a fun place right on the dock with very good seafood at reasonable prices. BAR HARBOR , ME it was raining and cold and we did not feel like tendering in. Missed seeing the pretty village again and eating at the Water St Cafee. HALIFAX , Nova Scotia It was a lovely day so taking a walk along the dock was fun. We then went out to Lower Water St to a bus stop for the FRED BUS. This is a free bus that has a circle route around Halifax including the CITIDAL on top of the hill. Great way to it all and you can get on and off. By the way FRED has its origin at the pier. We rode Fred to the Maritime Museum and after which we went across the street to Mc Kelvies restaurant and had the famous Digby Scallops and they were fantastic. We visited the Old Brewery and then took the FRED back to the ship. QUEBEC first visit here and I was completely impressed. Had the impression I was in Europe--very lovely. We walked about the lower village enjoying the renewed architecture surrounding PLACE ROYAL. Had lunch at Chaude that was great and then we visited the farmers Market. The next day we ventured up the funicular to the magnificent Chateau Frontenac and the fields of Abraham etc. Paid a visit to the Basilica which was wonderful. We made our way back toward the Frontenac and found the 1640 Restaurant for lunch . QUEBEC IS ON MY LIST TO RETURN. DEBARKATION at the cruise port in Bayonne ,NJ was as smooth as silk. We caught a local cab from Archie's cab co. from Bayonne and the 3 of us road back to Newark Airport for $42 plus tip. I must say the young man driving was a jewel as were most of the people we ran into in New Jersey Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2010
We've just returned from this cruise sailing from New York to Quebec via Newport, Boston, Portland, Bar Harbour, Halifax, Quebec and Charlottetown on the Celebrity Summit. It was a real adventure because this was the first time I have ... Read More
We've just returned from this cruise sailing from New York to Quebec via Newport, Boston, Portland, Bar Harbour, Halifax, Quebec and Charlottetown on the Celebrity Summit. It was a real adventure because this was the first time I have visited the U.S. and Canada and the first time on board a Celebrity cruise ship. The ship was impressive with plenty of space inside and out in all areas, which meant the ship never felt crowded. It was immaculately clean, tidy and fresh and had a great atmosphere. I particularly liked Cafe Cova for drinks during the day and the Champagne/Cocktail lounges for evening drinks because they had a wonderful atmosphere and could be relaxing as well as stimulating depending on the time of day. We did not bother with the "crows-nest" bar at the top of the ship as it was either empty or was holding some form of "entertainment" that crowded the place out. All the serving and cabin staff were excellently trained and had slightly more professionalism than those on other cruise lines I have encountered. All food from breakfast to dinner was generally excellent, but avoid "Moroccan Style" dishes because they tasted bland and far from fruity and spicy as you might expect. The entertainment on board was expected to be really good, but for me it failed (apart from the bands). After dinner "shows" were at really stupid times and did not fit the timings for dinner. We were on the 8.30pm sitting and missed the early show (we were dressing for dinner)and the later show (we were eating dinner). Karaoke and quizzes are best left on land! We chose not to do any excursions, which like those offered by other cruise lines lack imagination and quite frankly mean alot of queuing - spending hours on a coach with people pointing out the obvious just to get to a destination where you get ten minutes to take photos (weather permitting) may suit some people, but we prefer to explore the ports of call and get to know the real town. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2010
We sailed on Summit 8 years ago. In most areas, the ship is unchanged. The public areas were clean and in good conditions save for the bathrooms that do need some help. Overall the food was good, but not to the previous standard. The ... Read More
We sailed on Summit 8 years ago. In most areas, the ship is unchanged. The public areas were clean and in good conditions save for the bathrooms that do need some help. Overall the food was good, but not to the previous standard. The cabins are looking pretty dated and the bathroom in ours needed a refurb as did the cabinetry overall. The good: Food -- the buffet had many choices for breakfast and lunch. It got a bit repetitive but it didn't take much effort to come up with a tasty B/L. It does get crowded at peak periods especially on sea days. Main dining was good. Only had one marginal to poor dish though a couple of nights the menus didn't really appeal. You can always go with a basic steak or broiled salmon as a fallback. Service was generally prompt and courteous. Our usual waiter did a good job of steering us to the meals most likely to please. Overall cleanliness was apparent. Only in a few places did Summit look ragged. Mostly in bathrooms. The mediocre -- entertainment during the day was limited. The ladies in our party missed the craft activities they enjoyed on Azamara. Evening entertainment was good with the exception of one comic/impressionist who was just awful. It's difficult to believe anyone on Celeb actually had seen his act. Back to 1940 Joey.... Embarkation was not as smooth as some lines. The lines were long and the staff we dealt with weren't that adept at checking us in. Port Liberty is nothing to write home about. Just a warehouse with shuttle buses and a taxi rank outside. The passengers were very old in general and a large percentage were barely ambulatory. This led to very slow moving lines whenever a show or dinner let out. And as one nice lady said "old people can be among the most rude". There were several hundred on board who seemed to think they were on a private yacht. They'd knock you over to get on or off the elevator regardless of who's turn it was. Wait in line in the buffet? Why when you can just push in front? Stop in the narrowest spot with your walker to decide where to go next or have a conversation? Sure. No one else would like to use the aisles.... Shout into a cell phone instead of going outside? Why not? Wonder if any line has the guts to run "no walkers/scooters" cruises? Probably uneconomic... The bad -- Tendering was a giant cluster ----. We had 2 tendered ports and both times Celebrity ran things poorly. They tried to blame their issues on weather etc, but the glaring problem was incompetent organization. For example, instead of having a check in table at the top of the auditorium where we were sent to wait, they put the table on the stage such that the entire geezer population had to trudge all the way down to the bottom, up on the stage, back down again and then out. They only had one guy directing all this the first day. Couple that with poor English skills and an elderly clientele that can't half hear and it was a nightmare. In the first hour we sat waiting to get off in Bar Harbor, they managed to move just 98 people out of that huge line. Another ship was in port at the same time and their tenders seemed to move twice as fast. Of course, what was really going on was they were getting those with paid excursions off first, but they didn't have the courage to just be honest. Finally they got all the tenders working and got rid of the line by noon -- half the day shot. These 2 experiences lead me to wonder how they can possibly handle 3000 people on the new class of ships... Read Less
Celebrity Summit Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 4.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.5 4.4
Fitness Recreation 4.5 4.1
Family 4.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 3.5 3.7
Service 4.5 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 4.1
Rates 4.0 4.1

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