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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
The Panama Canal has been on my bucket list for over 30 years. Before I proceed, I want to comment that we are experienced cruisers (Celebrity Elite). and this is the 3rd time we have sailed the Infinity. We have delayed because I am not a ... Read More
The Panama Canal has been on my bucket list for over 30 years. Before I proceed, I want to comment that we are experienced cruisers (Celebrity Elite). and this is the 3rd time we have sailed the Infinity. We have delayed because I am not a big fan of the tropics, hate heat and humidity, and memories of Vietnam come creeping back in these environments. Fortunately there were few "critters" flying about. The Cabin: We figured it was now or never and took the cruise. It became, understandably, warmer and warmer as we proceeded. this we expected. Unfortunately our room AC was not up to the task in our Aqua class cabin. 3 complaints, 1 cabin attendant, and 2 to guest relations, failed to resolve the erratic temperatures. Temps cycled from nearly 77 to 68 on an erratic basis that seemed to have no apparent reason. The 77 seemed to be the "norm", which was far too warm for us. The thermostat was left in its lowest setting and never moved up. the 68's while welcomed, came and went. the hallways on deck 9 varied similarly. I suspect the environmental systems people were struggling with keeping the entire ship cool and were cycling the various decks. Changes in deck temps were quite noticeable as you went up and down the decks. Our mini bar never cooled below 55 degrees despite have it changed 3 times. Is this the norm for minibars? We expected it to be cooler. The beer was warm - ugh (If you are wondering where I am getting these temperatures, I carry a small, calibrated, infrared thermometer when we travel.) The ship experienced 3 power failures in 1st 3 days we were aboard. Fortunately all were around noon and were barely noticed unless you had an inside cabin. The first time the Ocean View Cafe and decks 9 and 6 were affected. It was off about 10 minutes, came back on for about the same amount of time, and then went back off for about 5 minutes. There was a harried announcement over the ships intercom from the bridge about issues with "the ships ageing electrical system". Something I certainly would never have said. The last power failure was the following day and lasted only 2 or 3 minutes, again about noon. The elevators all continued working during these events. Our embarkation went perfectly. A very smooth event. On a more positive note, we found the ships WiFi much improved over last year. The tech actually understood android systems also, a great improvement over the "I don't know" of years past. The food was generally very good but we found ourselves eating more and more in the Ocean View Cafe, particularly as the voyage progressed. We missed more and more the small touches that make up our diet. Steak is great but we missed having it flame grilled. A whole different taste. The gravies/sauces tended to be bland. Mexico was about what we expected. We felt Cabo St Lucas was a tacky tourist trap with over priced trinkets and a beautiful harbor. Its mostly fishing based place and most of the harbor area is devoted to this. The Disney Wanderer was there when we arrived and this made for some confusion and crowding. But not for long as many people got off, looked around, and went back to their ship. The harbor views were much better from there. Puerto Vallarta was much better but just not much there of interest once you have taken in the magnificent views around the harbor. We enjoyed the ships tours, The coffee plantation in Costa Rica was most interesting and we really enjoyed it. They spoke not only of coffee but the life cycle of bananas. There were some unexpected insights leading to a far more interesting day than we had expected. The city tour in Guatemala had a long bus ride which was mostly why we took it. The craft brewery portion was just a tasting with some tasty snacks. There was great WiFi also. In Panama the entire 1st day was spent transiting the locks. VERY interesting and the whole point of this adventure. The 2nd day we docked at Colon where we took a Distinctive Voyages tour provided by our travel agent. We really enjoyed this as we again made a long bus ride (we wanted to see the countryside) went to the canal Visitors Center (ok, but we could have passed on it) and then did a walking tour of old Panama. A side note, Colon Panama is a VERY (as in the words of our guide) "rough area" and we were strongly advised not to go there. After driving through it, I can certainly see why. Dirty, crowded, with decaying building propping each other up. Many looked as if they were painted last in the 19th century, if then. The inhabitants scarcely looked better. Ugh The final stop on the cruise was fabled Cartagena, Columbia. The city fabled in tales of the Spanish Main and a jewel of the Caribbean. Our time here was all too short, but then again the heat and humidity were over the top. I was quickly drenched in my own perspiration and my t-shirt took 2 days to moderately dry out. The old colonial areas are being restored and much of the charm of that era still remains. But we were hurried by the short shore time. Dora Tours maximized our time there and we were able to view the city from “La Popa” its highest point. The road up is currently closed to all large tour buses but our mini bus was permitted. The view was magnificent. The port area had the best visitors arrival center of the cruise and an extensive shopping area as well as a large aviary full of parrots and other jungle exotics. Just not enough time to take it all in. The disembarkation in Ft. Lauder Dale was a marathon of endurance. It took over 3 hours to get through customs. 4 agents for 2000 passengers. What a goat rope!!! The Celebrity bus transportation was a confused mess as they were attempting to use the same buses to embark and disembark passengers. The luggage got mixed, people got separated from their luggage (separate buses), and we changed buses 3 times before they got it right. We were not being separated from our luggage. No faith in the process at this point. I am quite sure many people missed their airline connections. Ours were fortunately late in the day at 3:30. We believed that we had plenty of time to kill at the airport. WRONG. We were group 23 of 25 getting off the ship. On arrival at the customs area we were confronted with what appeared to be the entire ships compliment of passengers in 2 massive lines, (please keep it 2 abreast please – no idea why). The lines inched forward interminably. Ugh We finally arrived at airline check in with about 30 minutes to spare. The whole process took almost 5 hours from the time we started down the ships gangway. Not a good final experience. 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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
We have been wanting to do a Panama Canal cruise for a while, we usually sail with RCCL and since they stopped doing it decided to try Celebrity. Best decision ever. Very smooth embarkation, nice touch being greet with a glass of ... Read More
We have been wanting to do a Panama Canal cruise for a while, we usually sail with RCCL and since they stopped doing it decided to try Celebrity. Best decision ever. Very smooth embarkation, nice touch being greet with a glass of champagne. We went for lunch in the Oceanview and was very impressed with the organization and selection of food. When our cabins opened, our luggage was already at our door and Ozy our attendant greeted us, helped carry it in and pointed out room lay out and amenities. Entertainment every night was excellent, enjoyed Luigi (cruise director) and his staff especially Nacho, Dean and Florian. We only booked 2 excursions, we disappointed in 1 of them, buts its a chance we take I guess. Very impressed also with the Officers always being around, day and evening, visiting with everyone. At least once a day we were asked if we were enjoying ourselves and if we needed anything. Paulina, Captains Club hostess was very pleasant and sweet to talk to. Very smooth disembarkation also. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
Okay, lets start. After reading various reviews of this ship and some not very flattering here is my unbiased review. It did not start well with transfer from the Westin Hotel LAX to the ship this was a joke and very poorly organised by ... Read More
Okay, lets start. After reading various reviews of this ship and some not very flattering here is my unbiased review. It did not start well with transfer from the Westin Hotel LAX to the ship this was a joke and very poorly organised by Celebrity, we eventually arrived at the port at about 13:30 and within 20 minutes we were in the bar. The cabin - 9160 C1 concierge, exceptionally clean, great balcony with 2 x sunbeds and 4 chairs, we meet our room attendant (Malcolm) and he explained everything to us. Dining - This was outstanding, we had select dining, the main restaurant was great, service, food, waiters & sommelier we could not fault. we may have had to wait 5 or 10 minutes on the odd occasion but that's select dining. Tuscan Grill was a treat, Quisine was interesting. The smash & grab was busy on the odd occasion, but we always found a table, we thought the food was very good quality and loads of choice. Sundeck - always found a sunbed there's loads and never had any issue in finding a quiet spot, The rooftop terrace was nice. Entertainment - The ships cast were incredible, and probably the best we have ever seen on our many cruises, but please note they all finished their contracts at the end of our cruise, so a new cast will be on-board now. Service - was exceptional, we did 15 nights and they never let a day go by without a smile, a good morning / afternoon or asking if they could do anything for us. The managers of the departments were always on patrol and making sure everything was ship shape and very approachable, always asking if we need anything. A note to finish on, the ship is old (2001) renovated in 2011 and shows signs of a little wear and tear, but it's like your old pair of slippers a bit rough round the edges, but really comfortable to wear. The ship was inspected by US health inspection while in port at LA and scored 100% which is outstanding for the ship & crew. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
I chose this cruise to be with two couples I have known for a long time. It's my only cruise so far; therefore, it's my best cruise and it's also my worst cruise. Service on the Celebrity Infinity was EXCELLENT. ... Read More
I chose this cruise to be with two couples I have known for a long time. It's my only cruise so far; therefore, it's my best cruise and it's also my worst cruise. Service on the Celebrity Infinity was EXCELLENT. Further, every Infinity employee from cleaners to officers always greeted me with 'Good morning, sir!' and a smile! Waiters remembered my preference on beverage. At our reserved table for dinner, waiters remembered my name. No one likes to be ill. Being ill away from home is even worse than just being ill at home. I contacted the Australian strain of influenza on board the ship. I had taken the precaution to have the flu vaccine two weeks before the cruise, but that vaccine doesn't protect against the Australian strain very well. The Infinity medical center ran tests and discovered the influenza. I was transferred to a hospital in Colon, Panama, where we were docked. Before the transfer, I was informed that a Infinity employee translator would stay with me as long as I was in hospital. Additionally, Infinity arranged for someone from the Steamship agency to meet me at the hospital. The agent was to arrange any hotel, transportation to the airport and flights home. The agent did that. Besides translating, the translator went out to purchase bottled water (the hospital would not serve me water until I was admitted, a process that took hours), and just before leaving the hospital the translator picked up my prescriptions at an outside pharmacy. Once at the airport to fly home, the agent arranged for my wheelchair, checking my baggage, being taken through security, submitting the paperwork required for me to be allowed to board a flight and exit the country. The translator and agent services relieved me of a lot of paperwork and hassle. I had not expected either of those services, but they were extremely nice to have! Service OFF the Celebrity Infinity was also EXCELLENT! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
We chose this cruise as first we love Celebrity, and second The Panama Canal was on our bucket lists! The whole cruise was wonderful! Yes, the ship needs some TLC but that didn't take away from the great staff, the incredible food, ... Read More
We chose this cruise as first we love Celebrity, and second The Panama Canal was on our bucket lists! The whole cruise was wonderful! Yes, the ship needs some TLC but that didn't take away from the great staff, the incredible food, the entertainment and atmosphere! We chose Aqua Class as we love the option to eat in the Blu! The food was incredible! The staff along with Marcel, the maitre'd were awesome! Fernando the sommelier hit it out of the park every night! The crossing of the Panama was just what we expected, and loved! We loved all the stops The trip we took in Colon was wonderful. Back to the lake area of the Panama and experiencing the monkeys! We loved it! The only negative comment is from the Fort Lauderdale customs area. The staff were slow, and not very understanding. Took hours to get through. Very hard on a lot of people. Cant wait for my next Celebrity cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
Overall the experience of a lifetime. The Infinity is showing her age a bit but very well maintained. We are not excursion people, nor are we fitness buffs so have nothing to report in these areas. All ship staff we encountered offered a ... Read More
Overall the experience of a lifetime. The Infinity is showing her age a bit but very well maintained. We are not excursion people, nor are we fitness buffs so have nothing to report in these areas. All ship staff we encountered offered a friendly greeting whether they were on task or in passing. Stateroom attendant Chico was outstanding. The buffet offered a wide selection of very good offerings. The MDR was always very good. Delicious food well presented. Waiter Artika and asst waiter Imam very competent and efficient, and a lot of fun. Weather was acceptable most of trip. Could have used a bit more sunshine through the canal, will have to talk to Celebrity about that next time. Entertainment throughout the entire cruise was excellent, whether provided by headliners or staff singers, dancers, or orchestra. My biggest disappointment is with the sound board in the main theatre. Most performances were simply too loud, out of balance, and way too much echo/reverb. Not all programs are Rock concerts! A major rethink on the usage of the sound board is needed. This did not prevent us from seeing all shows, and certainly did not detract from our enjoyment of the entire trip. Hopefully we will be able to do it again! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This “Eastbound Panama Canal” cruise on the “Infinity” beginning on October 8 was our 24th on Celebrity among more than fifty overall for my wife and me. This was the second of our B2B cruise after doing the “Pacific Coastal” ... Read More
This “Eastbound Panama Canal” cruise on the “Infinity” beginning on October 8 was our 24th on Celebrity among more than fifty overall for my wife and me. This was the second of our B2B cruise after doing the “Pacific Coastal” cruise starting on October 1. We've also posted our review for the first one and some of those comments are repeated here. We very much enjoyed this cruise as the very good food and great service from your staff and crew members continues to be top notch. We are also happy to now be “Elite Plus” with the additional perks like the 240 minutes of internet and even more laundry options. We continued our stay in Cabin 3104 which was comfortable and quiet, even though it was very near the Grand Foyer atrium and the Guest Relations desk. Our housekeeper, Edi, did a great job keeping our cabin neat and clean while being “invisible” while we were relaxing there. That approach is perfect for us. The Guest Relations staff members were very professional and helpful. We were pleased to see GR Officer Garmen Zhang whom we met on our B2B2B cruises in Asia a year ago. Melissa was also accommodating. Our OBC from Celebrity and CruCon, our travel agent, was immediately posted on our account which helped us to plan how to spend it. On other cruises, it took four or five days so this was the fastest ever. Cruise Director Luigi and Activities Manager Nacho were OK, but nothing special. After a few nights, we got a little tired of Luigi’s introductions at every show requesting the increasing tens of thousands of “holas”. They seemed more suited to a different cruise line as other CDs and AMs on Celebrity have been classier. Others seemed to like them so it's just a matter of personal taste. We had been in “Select Dining” during the first cruise. We appreciate that Celebrity has many tables for two for that option, but most of them are so close together that you might as well be sharing a table. We talk to many other guests during the day and later in the evening, but we prefer to have some “down time” from these conversations at dinner. Also, my wife has trouble hearing which can make these interactions difficult. So, we switched to a table for two at “Early Fixed” at the 6:00 time for this one and our private table worked out much better. The food and service in the “Trellis” MDR continued to be excellent. Our waiter, Mega, and her assistant, Anthony, did a great job quickly taking care of us each and every evening. Our sommelier, Mercy, provided helpful advice for our wine choices. Rodman always had our bottled water ready for us at our table. So, we were very happy to have the same group of servers rather than being at different tables with different servers each night with “Select Dining”. We usually order our favorite dishes from each menu, but we tried some new ones this time and they were also very good. The Oceanview Café provided many options during the day and late into the night. We particularly liked the Indian/Asian selections and fish and chips. We also enjoyed the hot/cold drinks and desserts in Café al Baccio. The bartenders in the lounges were efficient even when they were very busy. DeJean in the Rendez-Vous was particularly helpful and made the best Grasshoppers we’d ever had. Adi Putra and Willie provided excellent service in the casino, Constellation Sky Lounge and other venues. We were pleasantly surprised that the Classic Beverage Package was now allowing up to $9 for beer, wine and liquor drinks. In the past, the beer offerings under $6 were mostly lagers and lighter brews so it was nice to be able to have Guinness, Boddingtons, Sam Adams and other more robust options. The downside was that Bailey’s, Amaretto, Frangelico and most other liquors are now priced at $10 which seemed a little petty. We spoke to the Beverage Manager about that on the first cruise. Sorry I don’t know his name, but it was not Anti from the second cruise who is very personable. He was a bit abrupt when we asked him about that saying “it’s been like that for months”. He didn’t bother to explain that you can now pay the difference if it’s over $9 as we’ve done when we’ve had the Premium Package. We didn’t find that out until much later in the second cruise when one of the servers, Rodman, told us about it. Another odd twist was that you can’t get cans of soda even though some venues open a can in front of you and pour it into a glass. We suspect that it’s a cost-saving measure, but we’re not sure what this change really accomplishes for such an inconvenience to your guests. Unfortunately, this sort of thing contributes to people’s perception that Celebrity is “nickel and diming” them. That’s certainly not the image that they’d like to present so we hope that they reconsider this policy for future cruises. We continue to support “Evening Chic” with my wife in her dresses and me in my suit or tuxedo. We understand that other guests aren’t as interested in doing this as we are, but it’s nice to see some still like it as much as we do. We often joke with other guests who feel the same way that we need to keep “Evening Chic” alive! All three production shows were very good as usual and the singers and dancers were quite talented. We really enjoyed the “Swing@Sky” show in the Constellation Lounge. The entire cast kept up the high level of energy for a very long time, even though the waves were high and the ship was rocking. We saw it during the first cruise and both times it was the very best of that type of event on all of our cruises. This was the final cruise of that cast's contract so they will all be new on the subsequent cruises. The “Duo Destiny” show with the acrobats Goncalo and Kinga was unbelievable. Among the guest entertainers, we particularly liked Hard Day’s Night (Beatles tribute) and Mike Price (“Rock Star Juggler”). We were very lucky on this cruise as both bands were excellent. We saw Take 5 on our B2B2B cruises in Asia a year ago year so we were happy to see them again. They were great then and are even better now that their keyboard player is back with them. The singer and their other members are very friendly and approachable. The Bryan James Band was terrific, especially since they were billed on this cruise as a “dance band” rather than “house band” or “party band”. Bryan has a great sense to humor and his band can play a wide range of music depending on the audience and the venue. Mr. H often played the piano with them on some songs. The last night of the cruise, someone requested that Bryan’s band play “Blurred Lines”. They said that they don’t do that one, but members of Take 5 know it so they joined them on stage and played that song. It was nice to see them and the audience really enjoying their collaboration. We hope that Celebrity keeps both bands under contract for as long as they can. We’ll just miss Take 5 on the “Constellation” by a few weeks as we’re on a B2B2B starting in November and ending just before Christmas while the band will start in January. We asked Bryan if they had booked their next gig with Celebrity and they are very interested in the “Eclipse” next spring in Europe. We are doing a B2B2B2B starting in May so we are really hoped that they can get that itinerary as it would be great to see them there for 42 nights. We hope that Celebrity can keep them both! We always appreciate the live orchestra as that really separates Celebrity from other cruise lines. The solo performers, duos and string players are also a nice change from the usual music on other lines. About the only complaint that we’d have is that DJ Annet always had the volume in the Constellation Lounge cranked up to ‘11’ like “Spinal Tap”. I play my music very loud at home, but we had to leave every time she was there (as did many others). I wished that I had my decibel meter with me to see how earsplitting it was! Since we were visiting countries in Central America, we did ship’s excursions in all of the ports to ensure that we’d make it back onboard on time. In Cabo San Lucas, we did “CSA2: Chileno Bay Deluxe Snorkeling” where we saw a decent amount of fish. In Puerto Vallarta, we did the “PVB4: Half Day Sailing and Sightseeing” cruise which went along the coast the Los Arcos and was very relaxing. We particularly enjoyed the “GQ14: Guatemala Highland, Panajachel and Lake Atitlan” excursion as we were able to see many volcanos and a lot of the countryside. In Puntarenas, Costa Rica, we did the “CR25: Pacific Train, Boat and Bus Adventure” and saw some interesting scenery, but also some desperately poor areas. In Colon, Panama we did “GCM4: Portobelo and Aqua Clara Locks” which gave us more information about the Panama Canal system and allowed us to see the new locks. We also got a glimpse of the very poor areas just beyond our dock. Finally in Columbia, we did the “CA09: Best of Cartagena” which provided a good overview of that city as we visited the Inquisition Palace and Saint Peter Claver’s Sanctuary plus quite a bit of walking through the streets. Even though it was very hot in some locations, these excursions were worth doing despite some discomfort. In our earlier review of the “Pacific Coastal” cruise, we noted that one area which could use some improvement was the B2B process and it’s worth repeating it for this cruise. At other B2B meetings, someone from the MDR was there to allow guests to select their tables for the next cruise, but that didn’t happen. As part of these past meetings, there have been drawings for prizes, offers of complimentary specialty restaurants, discounted excursions and/or coupons with codes for additional internet minutes in order to fill out the survey from the first cruise. The only “perks” this time were a 30% off a restaurant (only on the embarkation evening) and a card to get into the “Trellis” MDR 15 minutes before the newly boarding guests. We were given the impression that this process wouldn’t take too long. We were told to gather at 9:40, but we were not able to disembark until about 10:40 after everyone else was onshore. We then exited the ship and had to wait almost another hour to get back onboard at 11:30. We suspect that due to regulations, there was no chance for anyone to board before that time. It would have been better to know ahead of time that the local authorities require this timing so we could have planned for these delays. We and most of the other guests have done quite a few B2Bs so all of us were surprised that it was much more inconvenient it this time. We also had some difficulty getting extra internet time to do our survey from the first cruise of our B2B. On other Celebrity ships, the IT staff added 30 minutes to our allotment which works well. This time, we had to check with IT and Guest Relations to get a code. After several days, we got the code, but it only worked for one of us. We finally got another code later on, but you couldn’t use it if you had minutes left without having IT disable that session, log back on using the code to use the new minutes and then re-enable the old one. With this approach, there’s a lot of time wasted by Celebrity’s staff and for the B2Bs. Next time, we’re hoping that these things can be dealt with more easily at the B2B meeting. Overall, we always have a great time on Celebrity and encourage our friends to try that line. After this Panama Canal cruise, we have twelve more booked with you in the Mediterranean, Middle East, India, Caribbean, Northern Europe and Transatlantic in the next year. So, we’ll look forward to having 135 more days to enjoy Celebrity's welcoming hospitality and excellent service! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
The infinity is a great ship, very friendly staff, and meals are excellent. We did the Panama Canal from LA to Fort Lauderdale....fantastic. Never been on celebrity before, only cruised with Royal, your status from Royal transferred ... Read More
The infinity is a great ship, very friendly staff, and meals are excellent. We did the Panama Canal from LA to Fort Lauderdale....fantastic. Never been on celebrity before, only cruised with Royal, your status from Royal transferred across and you were treated like you cruised regular with them. All ports were Fantastic and the actual crossing of the Canal was out of this world, the shows in the evening were outstanding and one big plus was the size of the shower, plenty of room to swing a cat in there. If you are thinking of cruising the Panama Canal I highly recommend this cruise, I don’t think you could do better. The only negative I have is that embarkation was a long process in Fort Lauderdale, I think this was mainly to a lot of Europeans on board and everyone went through the same line, US citizens did not have a separate line, which would have speeded up the process. Otherwise no complaints. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
We just got off the Infinity on a 15 night Los Angeles to Ft Lauderdale through the Panama Canal. Going through the canal and seeing how the new Canal works was very interesting as was each of our other ports. Though older this ship is ... Read More
We just got off the Infinity on a 15 night Los Angeles to Ft Lauderdale through the Panama Canal. Going through the canal and seeing how the new Canal works was very interesting as was each of our other ports. Though older this ship is well cared for and lived by its crew. The entertainment was excellent as was the educational lectures. The entertainment staff was visible and lively. Dining room was noisy and dessert selection limited but food was good as compared to other ships. I highly recommend this cruise. Officers are visible, watching over everything happening on board. Our only issue was not with the ship but it took forever to disembark because there were many empty booths where customs agents should have been.This tied up the line to the point we were worried about making our plane. There was nothing Celebrity could have done to get more agents or move the line faster. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
We wanted to experience the Panama Canal on a big ship as the last time we did it was on a much smaller boat. The Canal is amazing and was definitely worth doing again. The Beyond the Podium speakers added so much to the experience. We ... Read More
We wanted to experience the Panama Canal on a big ship as the last time we did it was on a much smaller boat. The Canal is amazing and was definitely worth doing again. The Beyond the Podium speakers added so much to the experience. We loved everything about this cruise. The Infinity is still a beautiful ship. The Captain and many of the senior officers were at the meet and greet. He told us that they had a surprise health department inspection on the day we boarded the ship. He was so proud of his team because they scored 100%. The crew bent over backwards to provide excellent customer service. We were so impressed by how clean the ship is. Our dining and sommelier experience was The best we've had in a long time. We went to more shows than we've ever done before because most of the entertainers were top notch. There were afternoon shows on sea days that we really enjoyed. We are looking forward to being on the Infinity again in March. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
I have always loved cruising with Celebrity, however this cruise was not my favorite. The ship is showing its age and the food was ok. The usual WOW factor was missing this time. The food in the Oceanview Cafe was almost better than what ... Read More
I have always loved cruising with Celebrity, however this cruise was not my favorite. The ship is showing its age and the food was ok. The usual WOW factor was missing this time. The food in the Oceanview Cafe was almost better than what the unimpressive menu in the Trellis Dining Room. They had a wine testing for the Captain Club's people at 11:00 am. Who wants to try wine after breakfast? The ports were not very exciting. The best part of Cabo San Lucas was arriving. Beautiful rock formations, 30 min. tops. Unless you go snorkeling or scuba diving, there is nothing to see or do. Puerto Vallarta was a little better. We took a public bus to The Malecon and walked around. The port in Puerto Quetzal has nothing to offer. It is an industrial zone and we were told it was not safe to go into town, therefore, we did a tour of Antigua, 1 and a half hour bus ride to this colonial town. The town itself was ok and the best alternative to staying on board. The government of Panama should be ashamed of bringing people in to Panama and the first they see is Colon. The town is falling to pieces. We were told they are going to fix it and that it should be read in 5 years.... The best Colon has to offer is its "Zona Franca" or Free Zone. Not that the Celebrity people tell anyone it exists just a few blocks from the ship. Great bargains to be found. The best port by far is Cartagena, Colombia. There are great tours for $20 ea just outside the port Don't pay top dollar on board. To be fair, Celebrity had very good speakers for their Beyond the Podium series with a lot of interesting information regarding the history and building of the Panama Canal. The shows and guest entertainers were also pretty good. Service was very good. The crew works very hard and deserve every penny they get. They are very polite and friendly. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2010
When we flew to LA for our Panama Canal cruise on Infinity we tried not to have really high expectations because our previous cruise [back-to-back Alaska on sister ship Millennium May/June 2010] had been such a wonderful success that we ... Read More
When we flew to LA for our Panama Canal cruise on Infinity we tried not to have really high expectations because our previous cruise [back-to-back Alaska on sister ship Millennium May/June 2010] had been such a wonderful success that we were not convinced this ship could live up to that standard for interest and excitement. In a way things did not start well. When we arrived at San Pedro pier around 11.20am there were hundreds in line, and the side of the check-in area for Suites, Concierge and Elite was not open. But, the line moved quickly and we had checked in shortly afterwards - only to be shown after security, Xrays etc.into a large waiting area, clutching our Group 9 ticket for boarding. After about an hour, with the lounge filling fast and seats at a premium, a Pier Supervisor began to use a loud hailer to call group numbers to the barriers which lead to the ship. Groups were called quite quickly, and by 12.30pm we were on the stairs and escalators and on board - in the line for SeaPass photos. With mimosas in hand, we declined the offer of assistance to find our stateroom because we had the identical one to that on Millennium and knew the way. We toasted Infinity in our room at 1.10pm, dropped our carry-on bags and headed to the Ocean Grille for a light lunch. That day, and over the first days at sea, we heard many complaints about embarkation in LA. However by discrete questioning of staff we discovered a couple of things. Those on the ship have no control over the activities of pier personnel, and the perceived delay in the start of boarding was due to the slow processing of disembarking passengers because of the US Customs and Immigration staff on shore being very thorough with those arriving on the previous cruise [there were still 200 passengers left to disembark at 11.30am]. We found it strange that there were so many complaints when embarkation did start before the scheduled [and publicized in our e-docs] 1pm start time - if you arrive early expect to wait? We have sailed with Celebrity many times and their style of cruising suits us. We have found ways to enjoy the on-board dining by being careful with where and what we choose to eat. Breakfast in Michael's Club or Spa Cafe, lunch in Spa Cafe, dinner in a rotation of SS US (twice), the main dining room and the Ocean Grille. In the Trellis Dining Room we had opted to try Select Dining for the first time - it worked for us. We had made reservations on-line for preferred times before the cruise and soon found that Asst. Maitre D.' Ruby and the hostess Khadine at the door recognized us, remembered our names and our preference for a table for two. After two nights in two different sections we expressed a preference for Waiter Saul and Assistant Ardi, and Khadine placed us in this section [with Sommelier Ayhan] each night when we returned. Their service, advice, timing and friendliness made the dinners there very enjoyable. I consider the appetizers to be amongst the best dishes on the menu so I succumbed and ordered two quite often - we usually have soup and salad for lunch at Spa Cafe so we both skipped that course on most nights. Main dishes ranged from satisfactory to excellent - we found the pasta dishes with meat or seafood toppings to be overwhelming in terms of the toppings because we prefer our pasta with light sauces not a whole chicken breast or sliced sirloin. Some of the main courses were outstanding - the BBQ Sea Bass, Veal Cordon Blue Our Way, Coconut Thai Prawns and Veal Osso Buco and a couple of vegetarian dishes had us sending compliments to the chef. On the nights in the Ocean Grille we explored alternatives - pizza, sushi, stir fry, Indian foods - and the antipasto and salad bars - all worked well. Our dinners there were more like home cooking for us and very relaxing. However we must mention the fine service there from waiters who, when told we had some wine in the main dining room, managed to arrange to have the unfinished bottle brought up to the Ocean Grille without complaint or delay. We also appreciated the visits from the Head Waiter Joseph and Restaurant Manager Danuta. In passing through the Ocean Grille on their rounds of all dining areas they stopped by for a chat and offered to assist. Our experiences in the SS US were highlights of the cruise for us. Maitre D.' Oswald and his staff were attentive to every detail and both evenings the pacing was excellent, the presentation of dishes was camera-worthy and the flavours were intense. We appreciated the size of the dishes and managed to order five courses without feeling overwhelmed by the end of each meal [we chose just one cheese from the trolley though despite temptation]. Special mention must be made of the efforts of Sommelier Evgeny who kept track of the various wines we ordered for specific courses, and arranged to send some of the unfinished bottles to the Trellis for other nights and some to our stateroom for use on other occasions. We did some comparisons on this cruise with the back-to-back on Millennium in May/June. We were pleasantly surprised to find the outer decks and public rooms on Infinity even cleaner - we found the guest musicians On Tap (A Cappella quartet) and guitarist Anton to be more entertaining and more popular than their equivalents on Millie. We are not fans of the dumbed-down style or amplification of the entertainment in the Celebrity Theatre, so we either do not attend, or we go for a number or two and then retreat to the smaller lounges for more polished and quieter offerings. We did enjoy hearing soloists or small groups of the Celebrity Orchestra when they performed outside the Theater - some wonderful musicians! We attended lectures on board. We soon found that Mike Vecchionne appealed us, and his marine biology themed material was well presented with his slides. We found the other lecturer to be too 'once over lightly' and more focused on his take on ports than history and so we cherry-picked his material when re-played on TV in the stateroom. I attended some of the Oceans Ahead series - each one conducted by an officer and featuring aspects of cruise ships; navigation, environmental issues, propulsion etc. While some officers read their PowerPoint slides unnecessarily, the material was informative. We met some of the Senior Officers at various events and discovered a very interesting teamwork approach led by Hotel Director Leonie. She seemed to have a 'walk the talk' approach which meant she was very visible and her fellow officers all seemed always to have a smile, be quick to solve any issue we mentioned either in person or on an "attention to detail" sheet. I dropped off one of these sheets at Guest Relations early one morning to alert them to a slow draining basin and shower and then I went to the Gym. When I returned to the stateroom after a work-out, I discovered that the plumber had been, fixed the problem and left before I had a chance to warn my wife of the potential visit of a plumber! The piping in of a barrel of Beaujolais Nouveau and subsequent tasting was a bonus - and we enjoyed the different format of the Heartbeat of the Operation events which featured the very personable Master Chef Gerard and his staff - great demos and informative Q&A sessions. Was everything perfect? No. We experienced some annoying times on a Celebrity booked shore excursion to Pura Vida Gardens in Costa Rica because some other passengers had not brought rain gear or had not read the description and were too large or too out of shape to handle the stairs and paths in the hillside gardens. When it rained - and most of us pulled out ponchos and umbrellas - the unprepared guests wanted to cut the walk short and go back to the cafe. Our guide was torn between continuing the tour and being with the unprepared and unfit ones for safety reasons - we felt somewhat short-changed that Celebrity Shore Excursion staff had not warned ticket buyers of the weather and terrain. Our other shore excursion - horse drawn carriage ride in Cartagena featured an excellent guide on the bus to and from the ride, and some wonderfully relaxing time which produced some excellent pictures too. We found the piped music in the Ocean Grille and lounges generally and in the Theatre before events to be too loud and up-beat for two people trying to slow down and relax. This music mean we also found it difficult to find a quiet place to sit and read or write. Being a long distance walker - and avoiding the direct sunlight - I was annoyed at the frequent roping off of sections in the middle of both sides of the Promenade Deck which meant I had to walk up and back in handkerchief sized parts of the deck..... one side at a time would have been more to my liking. The transit of the Panama Canal was, of course, a highlight. Some reviewers have previously commented on stateroom selection - it is important. We had a forward-facing oceanview with a window. When the tropical rainstorm arrived as we headed under the Bridge of the Americas in Panama City and pointed at the first two locks this rainfall kept passengers indoors scrambling for viewing places. We had room-service breakfast, made our own mimosas and watched the passage through the first two locks while wearing our robes, and I have some great photos to prove it. When the rain stopped after the first two locks we ventured out on deck and enjoyed the views from upper decks, from the side and aft. We really appreciated the stateroom TV bridge-cam and the commentary from the Panama Canal Commission commentator which went with it. Fortunately the rain stopped before the Pedro Miguel lock and held off for the balance of the transit. The work being done on the duplication and widening of the canal is stunning to see. Disembarkation in Miami was remarkably quick and easy. We were directed from our lounge exactly at the time specified in the disembarkation letter, through Customs and Immigration to luggage [wonderful new carousels since our last landing here] to taxi in less than 25 minutes from the time we said goodbye to Tanushka [Captain's Club hostess] in Michael's Club. Maybe our enjoyment of cruising with Celebrity is enhanced by our positive attitude to travel - I know that being in an upper level of the Captain's Club provides some benefits which we really appreciate [after many years of complaining]. We enjoyed ourselves and Celebrity so much we headed to the Sales Office during the cruise and booked two more - for 2012. We are looking forward to our two cruises on Century in 2011. For photos see www.gallery.me.com/morefromles1 - more albums still to come. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2010
I can't blame Celebrity, it's agents or representatives as I chose this cruise as it fitted in with my days off work and it was going through the Panama Canal. This trip was awful. The average age of the guests was around ... Read More
I can't blame Celebrity, it's agents or representatives as I chose this cruise as it fitted in with my days off work and it was going through the Panama Canal. This trip was awful. The average age of the guests was around 79 (no, I'm not kidding). In the evenings after the first dinner sitting had finished, everybody went back to their cabins or to bed leaving all five if the main bars virtually empty. I have never seen so many wheel chairs, Zimmer frames and electric scooters in one place at one time. At one stage I thought I was going to be offered some kind of walking aid so I could fit in with the rest of the crowd. This got so bad that if you were waiting for a lift, when the doors opened, you could guarantee that some kind of wheelchair or scooter would come out. Food. The food on offer was of the usual high standard I would expect on a cruise and was quite varied-if you went to the main Trellis Restaurant. The Oceanview Grill buffet was a different matter. Every day the menu for breakfasts, lunch and evening meals was the same. A little variation would have been welcome. I was on the early sitting for the evening meal but after sitting down with several members of the living dead I enquired if I could be moved to a later table. I was invited onto a table for 10 and I found the people to be very interesting. Staff. The cabin staff, waiters and everybody else in the crew were extremely helpful, very polite and very friendly. They couldn't do enough for you. The ship was very tidy and extremely clean-as I would expect on a cruise. Guests. The nationalities on board were mostly American with a few Spanish and quite a lot of Germans. So many Germans that all of the ship announcements had to be in English and German. They also spoke very loudly-so much so that a few of the American passengers were starting to complain about how loud they spoke which I must admit was quite intrusive. Entertainment. I cannot comment on the theatre (which was on three decks) as I didn't go and see a show. The rest of the activities on board seemed to cater for the pensioner-bingo, raffles, card games, trivia quizzes etc...not my cup of tea. There were guest speakers who did give several lectures. One speaker gave several lectures on the history of the Panama Canal (which I came to see) and the other gave talks on American serial killers and terrorist gangs which although sounds a little gruesome were very interesting. Bars and Casino. There are five main bars on board. They were empty virtually all of the time with nobody except a few hardcore drinkers (such as me) who were determined to have a drink even with nobody to talk to. I did get to know a guy called Alvin. He informed me of group called the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) the US equivalent of Saga. He told me that the AARP "block book" cruise ships and sell the cabins to the members at a discount. He said that in his opinion the AARP had got hold of this ship and put all the pensioners on board. I did speak to several of the senior staff (all off the record) and I was told that even the staff had started to complain that there was nothing to do and no-one to serve in the bars. I was also informed that many of the bar staff had requested transfers to other parts of the ship as they were just stood about doing nothing. Even the casino was empty all the time with the casino staff just sat about. Considering that gambling is illegal in virtually every US state, I find this surprising. The crew that spoke to were describing the cruise with phrases like "barge of the dead" and "zombie ship". After just five days of this, I spoke to the hotel manager to enquire if I could "jump ship" and go home. He persuaded me to stick it out and I decided to stay as I wouldn't be able to claim on my travel insurance as "being bored to death" was not a clause on my policy. Excursions. These were quite varied, catered for a wide range of tastes and were at a reasonable price. I booked my trips online before the sailing date. I particularly enjoyed the turtle release program in Acapulco which digs up newly laid turtle eggs and hatches them in a safe and secure environment to stop them ending up being eaten. The charity which does this then lets people let them go into the sea. I also did several other trips which included coastal sailing/bird watching in Mexico and the Spanish Inquisition Palace in Cartegena, Colombia. These trips were sometimes very crowded but enjoyable. Days at sea. These were awful. My days at sea consisted of getting up at about 9 am. for a late breakfast and then going back to my cabin to watch TV as there was nothing to do except eat and drink all day (apart from the lectures which I have mentioned above but they only lasted for about an hour). In conclusion: A very high average guest age, not enough things to do while at sea, food that needed a little variation, no-one in the bars, ship virtually empty at night and no night life-the bars almost always closed an 1 am-this included the night club! I cannot recommend Celebrity at all and I suggest that anybody that is thinking about going on a Celebrity cruise to think again. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2010
I would like to discuss the good and bad points of our cruise. First of all, the entertainment offered was A+. All the performers were extremely professional, the variety of acts offered was excellent and all in all, we could not have ... Read More
I would like to discuss the good and bad points of our cruise. First of all, the entertainment offered was A+. All the performers were extremely professional, the variety of acts offered was excellent and all in all, we could not have asked for more. Our cruise director was very good. The ports of call were what we expected with the exception of Huatalco, Mexico. We were not looking forward to this port and did not expect much other than beaches. The experience we had was far beyond that. Through Cruise Critic, we joined four other cruisers on a river rafting trip that turned out to be one of the highlights of our trip. Huatalco is a modern, lovely port. The only issue we had was in the main dining room for dinner. The food was definitely not up to par. It was inconsistent, where one night we had a very good entree and the next two or three nights they were mediocre with an occasional inedible entree served. This was a major disappointment as we had been led to expect outstanding cuisine on Celebrity (this was our first Celebrity cruise). Overall, a nice cruising experience. Going on Cruise Critic and knowing a group of people when we got on board definitely added to our enjoyment of the trip. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2010
This was our fifth cruise in the past 16 months, and in many ways (not every way) the best. Early 50's couple enjoying time together! Infinity Panama Canal Cruise 10-24-10 Flying from Philadelphia to LAX went without a ... Read More
This was our fifth cruise in the past 16 months, and in many ways (not every way) the best. Early 50's couple enjoying time together! Infinity Panama Canal Cruise 10-24-10 Flying from Philadelphia to LAX went without a hitch on Southwest. Stayed at the Doubletree by the marina in San Pedro, it was a very nice hotel and we actually used the hot tub early in the morning. Watching the Infinity arrive about 6 AM and the sun rise over the water was a nice treat. The hotel shuttled us over to the port at about 10:20. Luggage handling went fine, filled out the health forms, and then found that due to "Delays in disembarkation" they were not yet checking in new passengers. At about 11:00 someone announced that check in would begin and only the Concierge level check in area would be used. It was a mad rush to line up. It seems like Celebrity could have avoided this by issuing numbers for a check in queue without lines as guests arrived. We didn't fare too badly and had our sea pass at about 11:25 and a boarding group 3 pass. By noon boarding had not yet begun and the check in line now exceeded the capacity of the "Back and forth" line queue. In talking on board with other cruise critic members the line apparently moved pretty fast and no one reported a check in wait longer than 45 minutes. Boarding actually began at about 12:15 and we were on board at about 12:30. I will say that any displeasure at the embarkation mess was soon forgotten as everyone on board was extremely welcoming. We walked past the Spa Cafe, the pool grille, the ice cream man "Have dessert first!," and checked out the general buffet. Everyone without exception "Welcome aboard!" We ended up doing a combination of foods including steamship of beef, spa cuisine, and some wings from the grill, and were very pleased across the board. Also, all the pools were open and fully operational, including the T-Pool. Before we had finished our lunch the announcement was made that cabins were ready. After leisurely finishing our lunch, we proceeded to our cabin and were very pleased with cabin 3111, an ocean view on the 3rd deck. We carried our swimsuits on in a bag so we changed into them and headed up to the T-Pool. We lazed away the rest of the afternoon until about 3:15 PM, and headed down to our cabin, "Hoping" our luggage might be there in order to dress for dinner before the muster drill. To our surprise ALL our luggage was waiting for us! We were able to be 90% unpacked and dressed for dinner when called for the muster drill. The drill itself was longer than typical as all instructions were repeated in German. Apparently there is a large group of travelers on board from Germany. After the drill we proceeded to the aft bar on deck 10 where we met many of our fellow cruise critic roll call members. It was a great time meeting many we have been making plans with on-line. We have assigned table 535 in the dining room, a table for 6. One of the other couples was a no show this first evening. The couple that joined us we were amazed at how much we have in common, so we are hoping for many great dinners together! After dinner we listened to the quartet in the Rendezvous lounge for a while but still adjusting to the time change, we did not make the show. The clocks were moved ahead one hour tonight so that will help us with our adjustment! Monday morning sunrise was not until 7:50. We were on deck about 7:10 and the eastern horizon was just showing signs of daylight. Breakfast watching the sun come up was a treat, as was having the T-Pool all to ourselves again for an early morning swim. Afterwards, I strolled the ship taking photos, and we got cleaned up for our cruise critic connections party, at 10:30. Our connections party was well attended and several officers as well as the cruise director visited. They began mingling but cell phones rang and they all excused themselves. Our party was cut short as at 11:00 another private group had the room, speaking only in German! We enjoyed the rest of the day relaxing near the pool and took advantage of a "2 for 1" deal on some beverages. Attended the "Future cruise presentation" but rather than an exciting "This is why you should go on this cruise..." she simply listed all the ships and where they were sailing (something anyone can quickly ascertain from cruise critic or Celebrity's own website). We were going to go to the first Panama Canal lecture but were so relaxed at the pool that we decided to stay poolside! Our first formal night Dinner was good and again our table for 6 only had 4. We enjoyed a little dancing before and after dinner, and actually made it to the production show which was quite enjoyable. I was actually surprised to find that the cast of singers and dancers numbers fifteen! Tuesday morning we were again up early and saw the sunrise. We eagerly watched the approach to Cabo San Lucas, our first port call. Not being on a ship's tour we ended up with tender #13, and waited about 40 minutes in the theater for our number to be called. We had no firm plans for Cabo but brought our snorkeling gear ashore and found a catamaran outing where we had a wonderful time. Back on board about 4:15 and a quick burger and turkey burger for DW at the Breezes grill was needed to hold us over until dinner. I enjoyed the outdoor hot tub while listening to the music of the party band and watching the ship turn and sail away from Cabo. Tuesday night was another time change, so we are now on central time Wednesday morning. This made sunrise at 8:05 so even though we slept later, we still saw the sunrise as we finished breakfast in the spa cafe. We enjoyed the T-pool, for ourselves for a while and then one other couple came in. The T-Pool was warmer today (very nice) while the hot tubs at the T-Pool were cooler. While relaxing poolside we were impressed with the constant maintenance and cleaning going on all around the pool. It's still early in the cruise, but I will say that the Infinity shows greater pride in cleanliness and maintenance than the Summit we sailed to Bermuda in June. The crew of the Infinity certainly seem to enjoy their jobs and have been most accommodating. We did 7 laps around the deck today (about 1.4 miles) and DW really enjoyed the gym as well. I attended a lecture on cruise ship navigation which was very educational. Wednesday is also the first of two main dining room brunches, which we enjoyed at about noon. I attended a class on travel photography in the early afternoon and it was quite good. I made it to the pool deck just in time to see the ice carving demonstration and enjoyed the rest of the afternoon on the pool deck. Running into and chatting with some cruise critic friends made it all the more enjoyable. We were alone tonight at our dining room table, just two at our table of six. We are really getting to like our waiter Martinho from Portugal and his assistant, Andreas from Indonesia. Before and after dinner, and again after the show, we listened and danced to the quartet in the Rendezvous. The show tonight was a singer, Lelani Marrell, and she was very good. Again, this is a matter of taste as we did hear several negative comments about Lalani. Thursday morning we sailed into Acapulco bay before daylight. We docked as the sun came up and 32 from our cruise critic roll call took Rosie's tour. The tour was well worth it and we saw many vantage points to photograph the bay, the Chapel of Peace, and the Cliff Divers. Celebrity brought on a real Manachi band for a "Pre sail away" party poolside. They were excellent and we really enjoyed them. We were back at our dining room table again with our new friends, just the four of us. It appears our fifth and sixth chairs may remain vacant for the duration. Friday we visited Huatulco. Friday morning marked our fifth morning in a row that we watched the sun rise! A record I do not expect to break anytime soon! We did our own thing to go swimming/snorkeling at nearby LaEntranga Bay. Our taxi driver on the way to the bay stopped twice to show us nice vantage points and we appreciated his extra effort. The water was delightful and we truly enjoyed Huatulco. Friday was our second formal night and dinner was excellent. The double-thick sirloin was an excellent steak! Both Thursday and Friday we skipped the show. Thursday was a magician who I heard was very entertaining, while Friday was the Infinity cast in a salute to the 70's. Friday evening the sea really picked up during our first seating dining. At the end of our mealtime many dressed in their finest was carefully swaying their way from the dining room. We witnessed a special Celebrity touch and the Matre'de and a number of the dining room waiters walked the more delicate guests arm in arm out of the dining room. Saturday morning brought a very bright and warm day at sea. We witnessed the first real incident of "Chair hogs" as by 8:30 all the shady pool chairs on the non-smoking side had towels, books, hats, etc all over them, yet the pools were still closed (from yesterday's rough seas?) and maybe 4 people were actually sitting near the pool. The pool deck is nice but there is not much of a breeze there, so we found a couple of deck chairs on deck 4 to relax away a good part of the morning. A full slate of at-sea activities was offered. After enjoying an outdoor lunch on deck 10 aft, we headed to dance lessons. Afterwards, I attended a Panama Canal lecture on the building of the canal during the "American era." It was well done. We finished up the day by spending some time at the pool listening to the party band, getting ready for dinner, and enjoying dinner and some dancing in the Rendezvous. We made the variety show with a comic and the singer from the other night. This was enjoyable but certainly not the strongest show of the cruise! Sunday morning brought an early Sunrise (no, we did not see it!) and sailing into Puntarenas, Costa Rica. We had prearranged with 16 other cruise critic friends to take an extensive tour with Charlie Soto of Okey-Dokey tours. We very much enjoyed our stay in Costa Rica and our tour with Charlie. We made it back to the ship at 6:10 for a 6:45 all aboard. We quickly changed our clothes and made it to dinner! Once again, we were alone at our large table. Dinner service was faster tonight! Monday is a day at sea. We participated in a tour of the galley. The galley tour ended with the SS United States specialty restaurant galley. We were given a small treat and exited into the SS United States, where a cooking demo was being prepared. We stayed for the demo and while somewhat entertaining, it became more of a sales pitch for the specialty venue. I attended the last lecture on the Panama Canal and the expansion project and thought it was excellent. Late in the day (after dinner) a variety show was presented tonight with many of the house performers from all over the ship. It was well worth attending. Tuesday was the Panama Canal crossing, the main event of the cruise and I was sick! I managed to get out on deck for crossing under the bridge of the Americas, but after that spent the rest of the day in the room with a lot of sleeping. My dear wife was charged with taking photos of the crossing and some cruise critic friends helped her out. By late evening I was feeling better. I was able to watch the ship go through the Gatun locks out our window and on the TV monitor. Seeing the sides of the canal about a foot from the window was neat. We did not use room service before today, and won't bother again. Room service gets an F-. Later in the week talked with friends in CC Class cabins and they also said room service is the one area that the Infinity seems unable to get right. Martinho was very concerned when I did not make it to dinner. Wednesday we sailed leisurely (I was told at ~8 nautical MPH) toward Cartagena, Columbia. Used the T-Pool early in the morning and relaxed nearby on loungers. Today is the second "Brunch" of the cruise. We went to the Brunch at noon. The prime rib was a "10!" Cute and delicious desserts & nice ice sculptures completed the excellent presentation. Wednesday afternoon was the captain's club party. This was some event! The packed nightclub had nearly 600 in attendance. The open bar menu had something to please everyone. A large food service was also provided (which we did not use as we had just eaten). They served drinks for over 60 minutes and the event lasted 90, including great live performances. A great white egret has become a stowaway on the Infinity. He or she must think she is flying without effort as she has perched herself directly in front of the nightclub windows. We have to believe she can't see in the windows as a dozen of more were watching and taking photos less than 3 feet from her. Wednesday night the nightclub was again hopping for the Newlywed/not so newlywed game. It sure was entertaining. Two couples finished tied for points and were both given dinners at the SS United States. Thursday morning brought us to Cartagena, Columbia. The sail in to Cartagena is very pretty, the new city sparkles on the water. We had prearranged a tour here with Dora, one of the top rated guides. It was our first time to set foot on another continent and a day we will never forget, but that is a story for the ports of call board! We keep hearing snippets about a hurricane hitting Haiti on Friday. Those poor folks don't get a break. The caused the ship to reroute its course back to Ft Lauderdale to go around the west side of Cuba. That's a bit longer, so we will be moving at near flank speed the next two days. A bunker vessel came alongside to provide additional fuel to ensure we have enough to reach FLL. We again were alone at our romantic large table for two for dinner! Martinho and Andreas honestly seem to "Miss" their guests when they choose another venue for dinner. The ship really started rocking after leaving Cartagena with the bags out by all the elevators. Tonight was the "Celebrity sweep" in the photo area where various departments are offering end of the cruise discounts. We took advantage of a photo offer. A variety show with guest performers was presented followed by the Celebrity 20th anniversary party in the nightclub. The show was good, but not as good as the performers separately. The anniversary party was a lot of fun until we couldn't stay awake - this was two late nights in a row! Friday morning was quite fun! The ship is rocking but the pools are open. We used the T-pool and had it to ourselves. Just floating back and forth with the waves is very relaxing. The hot tubs are REALLY hot today! The T-pool is pleasantly cool. Got cleaned up for the main event - somehow we scored a bridge tour invite! The bridge tour was actually a bit of a disappointment. The bridge itself is very impressive, spacious, and spotlessly clean. They only really show you the Starboard side control area. Two men on our tour dominated the session with endless questions about minutiae that most seemed not very interested in. The junior officer hosting us answered these questions but seemed unable to turn the conversation to items of a more general interest. Back to the pools we went and enjoyed another great sea day! An enjoyable final formal dinner was followed by a production show with the ships cast. This was quite enjoyable. Both before and after the show we were able to get in some dancing to the Baires quartet, performing tonight in the Martini Bar. Tonight was also the dessert extravaganza but as it began at 11:00 we gave it a pass. Saturday brings our final day on the ship. It is noticeably cooler outdoors and the wind is blowing very strong. We take in the crew's talent show, always something not to be missed. Following the show and the crew's "Goodbye wave" from the theater stage, the Celebrity Chef's competition was held. As one of our Cruise Critic group was a guest chef, we decided to stay and cheer them on. She ended up winning! We enjoyed a light lunch and tried to eat outdoors at the Ocean view bar but it was just too windy, so indoors we went. During the afternoon we listened to music, enjoyed a "Dancing with the stars" type of show with audience volunteers, and of course packed away most of our things. During dinner an announcement was made that arrival in Fort Lauderdale would be delayed until approximately 9:00 AM. Some people were extremely upset and I felt bad for the guest services staff. I had suspected arrival would be late as we needed to take the longer route around Western Cuba to avoid a hurricane / tropical storm. I don't understand why the guests were not informed earlier. With a little more notice people would not be as stressed about making changes to air reservations, etc. We were able to dance before and after dinner and bid farewell to our new friends. Due to the change at Ft. Lauderdale, we did not put our bags out and instead managed to handle our five suitcases ourselves. We were off the ship about 9:35 AM and checked in and through security at FLL by 10:30, plenty of time for our 11:50 flight. On Sunday morning we enjoyed breakfast for the first and only time this cruise in the MDR. We suddenly heard the engines throttle down and looked through the windows at the Ft Lauderdale beach. The ship's staff seemed poorly equipped to manage the many passengers who changed to the "Walk off" method of disembarkation. There was one line with 5 or 6 branches from guests waiting for the word in various areas of the ship. Getting through customs was rather fast, and a taxi got us to the airport in just a few minutes. Our flight was right on time and actually arrived about 30 minutes early into Philadelphia. Summary - What really stands out about our cruise on the Infinity is the live music and entertainment. It was much better than our prior Celebrity cruises. Food is subjective but we would say overall it was good, not great. But good is good. We loved the convenient location of our cabin, #3111. Our MDR wait staff was wonderful and we have only good things to say about the Infinity staff. The Infinity is in excellent shape - far superior to the Summit who we sailed in June. We felt like the Summit was certainly due for a refresh while the Infinity did not feel like it needs one. Read Less
Celebrity Infinity Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 4.0 4.2
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 3.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.0 3.8
Service 4.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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