5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Chose this cruise as we were constricted by time and wanted to visit Athens. We had been with Marella before and researched the ship before booking so knew what to expect. Luggage was dropped off at Gatwick and didn’t see it again ... Read More
Chose this cruise as we were constricted by time and wanted to visit Athens. We had been with Marella before and researched the ship before booking so knew what to expect. Luggage was dropped off at Gatwick and didn’t see it again until it was delivered to the cabin (the reverse happened on departure). Embarkation was quick but as there were only 1200 passengers there was no Premium boarding. Our cabin was roomy and clean with better decor than Discovery which was very bland. Plenty of storage and hangers. The balcony was adequate with 2 chairs and a side table, some balconies were larger with sun beds but also had less privacy. Navigating around the ship could be a bit confusing as not all lifts went to deck 9, some stairways gave no indication of what deck you were on and some corridors were dead ends. There were more than sufficient sun beds on the decks for the number of guests. Food was excellent although, being a small ship, there was not a massive choice in the buffet. Plenty of seating in the restaurants. We didn’t do any shore excursions but most destinations were interesting, those that weren’t we went to the beach. We knew beforehand about the vibration but didn’t find it a real problem, it was felt more in some places than others. A few children onboard but not a lot of activities, guests mainly middle aged to elderly. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
choose this cruise because we went on a med cruise in the marells discovery and loved it . the carabbian cruse ship celebration wasnt as good as the discovery . food was ok ,much better on the discovery though ..entertainment much better ... Read More
choose this cruise because we went on a med cruise in the marells discovery and loved it . the carabbian cruse ship celebration wasnt as good as the discovery . food was ok ,much better on the discovery though ..entertainment much better on the disvovery too all round the discovery was a much better ship we also did sn excersion called rhino riders we went out on our own little boat and snokerled on the reef had a great day , found that some of the islands were quite expensive , and also had to taxi to quite a few beaches which worked out quite a penny at the end of yhe holiday , one last thing all the staff are excellent on the ships , they are very helpfull polite and friendly they help make your holiday 10 out of 10 to the staff we booked the three special restaurants and found the food to be excellent hot stone wasnt great though Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We did the 7 day cruise 8 years ago as a sampler (our first cruise - Thomson Dreams) along with a 7 day beach stay. Decided on 14 days this time (our 6th cruise) Perfect flight and transfer to liner. Upgraded to deluxe cabin (No.230) ... Read More
We did the 7 day cruise 8 years ago as a sampler (our first cruise - Thomson Dreams) along with a 7 day beach stay. Decided on 14 days this time (our 6th cruise) Perfect flight and transfer to liner. Upgraded to deluxe cabin (No.230) well worth it. Food and service is top class. Anyone who complains is probably a habitual complainer. However, we did take out the All Inclusive drinks package. Unless you drink like a fish, don't take it. The "house" table wine, (served by the glass) was not only the worst I have ever had on A.I. (16 years all around the world) but you'd have a job to buy anything so bad. Very, very cheap Spanish. The remaining A.I. drinks were ok unless you wanted premium shorts cocktails or bottled beers. (Supplements of £2.50 upwards.) Unlike some other cruises we have been on, the overall price of drinks, beer cocktails, shorts and wine, were very reasonable The other issue was Wi-Fi. £49 for 7 days or £95 for the 14 day cruise. Not only was it ridiculously expensive but it didn't work. I eventually got a full refund after 48 hours. Either get a sim with plenty of data allowance or use the Wi-Fi cafes in each port. The only other small gripe was the charge of £25 for the cabin safe. You can buy a fully electronic small safe for £100 so this charge was a complete rip off. Those things apart, we thoroughly enjoyed the whole cruise. The evening stage show was as good as anything you will see anywhere and there were a couple of performers who should be on B.G.T.! We saw every show ( not my personal scene) for all 14 nights - they were that good! Our cabin boy was excellent, he thoroughly deserved the extra tip we gave him. Return to airport and flight back were perfect. So overall, a great cruise, marred only by a couple of issues which Marella should be able to rectify. Would we go again? YES! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
This cruise was the first part of a cruise and stay holiday, and we were a little bit apprehensive about going back to an old ship ( a very old ship) we started our cruising holidays on thomsons and the defunct air tours ships but 48 ... Read More
This cruise was the first part of a cruise and stay holiday, and we were a little bit apprehensive about going back to an old ship ( a very old ship) we started our cruising holidays on thomsons and the defunct air tours ships but 48 cruises later and cruising on all the major cruise lines, it was a step back to the celebration, we paid extra for one of the balcony cabins, and it was well worth the money the room was large and spacious and had a bath with over shower, the balcony had two sun beds and a table and chairs, and the room overhaul was perfect, large comfortable bed, a nice size dressing table and ample storage for a two week cruise, black out curtains, fridge, in fact nothing at all was missing and we were very impressed with the room, the ship is small by modern standards but very friendly and that is down to most of the staff being from the phillipenes who have a very friendly nice aptitude to life, a small casino onboard wth two tables for cards one black jack, the other five card caribean poker, and one roulette table this casino is in Hemingway’s piano bar and is a lovely place for pre dinner drink and after a nice place to retire to bed from, with a singer on keyboard and a singer with guitar performing for you, you don’t have a full theatre on this ship but a nice showbar with adequate shows from the on board entertainers and some guest acts, dress code is poor a lot of people who think dressing up is cut off jeans with at t shirt is formal, but overhaul good value for money with all drinks and tips included in the price. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
This was our second time cruising and we were celebrating my 60th birthday and our silver wedding anniversary. We flew from Manchester to Malaga and once boarded, we decided to stay and explore the ship and rest up. The ship was very ... Read More
This was our second time cruising and we were celebrating my 60th birthday and our silver wedding anniversary. We flew from Manchester to Malaga and once boarded, we decided to stay and explore the ship and rest up. The ship was very clean, our cabins were cleaned twice daily by very friendly cabin staff who made us feel like it was home from home. The food was plentiful and delicious (I'm sure I gained weight) and we made lots of friends. As part of our celebrations, we were invited to dine at the captains table with other guests, a most enjoyable occasion. We paid extra for a photo shoot, a celebration package, which included flowers, Champaign, basket of fruit and of course a cake. A truly memorable occasion I highly recommend the spa treatment, it was fantastic. Everyone on board made you feel special, however, having requested an outside cabin with a queen size bed, we in fact got two single beds at opposite side of the cabin. We are now taking this up with the travel agency who made the booking. in spite of this, we enjoyed our cruise. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Couldn't fault this cruise at all. The staff, food and entertainment was exceptional. Ok, the ship maybe a little old but all areas were clean and comfortable, as for the reviews about the vibration, this is minimal and not even worth ... Read More
Couldn't fault this cruise at all. The staff, food and entertainment was exceptional. Ok, the ship maybe a little old but all areas were clean and comfortable, as for the reviews about the vibration, this is minimal and not even worth mentioning. We were independent travellers, so our embarkation was very smooth, taking our own luggage directly to our cabin, we didn't take any shore excursions as we just did our own thing, so unable to comment on these. Watched a couple of shows, but we preferred to sit in Hemingway's on an evening and listen to the music in there which again was excellent. Daytime entertainment was good which we joined in with, trivia quizzes, darts etc Captain John, kept the passengers up to date regarding the weather, position and facts regarding ports of call. Some previous reviewers seem to moan for moaning sake, we had a great time. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Have been on a few Thomson cruises which we have enjoyed, this was the first time on the Celebration. We had a disabled room , cabin 100, which was a double, we had ordered a twin, so the steward brought us a very low put me up bed which ... Read More
Have been on a few Thomson cruises which we have enjoyed, this was the first time on the Celebration. We had a disabled room , cabin 100, which was a double, we had ordered a twin, so the steward brought us a very low put me up bed which neither of could use so in the end shared the double, the disabled wet room was very good. We enjoyed the food in the Meridian most evenings meeting some lovely people to chat to, however the Lido buffet resembled a factory canteen with not much main course choice. The food in the Lido on formal night was very poor, surely the menu should be the same in both restaurants whether you want to dress up or not.. The entertainment was ok, nowhere near as good as the Dream last Summer, the show team were often out of tune and appeared to struggle. Enjoyed Dubai and Abu Dhabi, not keen on the other stops, Muscat was a no no with many people we spoke to. So all in all, it was ok, could have been better. The staff, as on all Thomsons ships were brilliant but as someone else said, its time this vibrating old ship got replaced. I believe the Discovery is wonderful, so the sooner they get the other Discoveries, the better. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
We have been on this ship 5 times, we tried one of there sister ships, although it was very nice, the celebration more than any thing was amazing. With the most helpful staff and with all the amount of customer's they have each ... Read More
We have been on this ship 5 times, we tried one of there sister ships, although it was very nice, the celebration more than any thing was amazing. With the most helpful staff and with all the amount of customer's they have each year still knew what drinks we had and made a fuss of us, which made us both fill special. The cabins are great and cleaned every day and every 2nd day all linen is changed, towels are changed daily. The restaurant are great, if you want fine dining there is 3 to be visited all food is fantastic. The buffet style restaurant is great along with the burger bar at the rear of the ship. Entertainment is second to none with it's great dancing and singing acts and as there are two sessions you will be able to see some great shows. Ports are great to explore different countries we have been ashore a few times on our own and felt really safe,but if you go on any excursions make sure you have comfy shoes on as some have a lot of walking. Above all we were all inclusive which meant we did not have a bill at the end of trip to pay I would advise any one to go all inclusive as drinks can be quite pricey. I hope anyone who goes with Thomson's enjoys the holiday as much as we did. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2015
We have just returned from a lovely holiday in the Caribbean aboard Thomson Celebration. We flew out on the Dreamliner and enjoyed the flight. The extra legroom and wider seats really make a difference, after a long flight we still felt ... Read More
We have just returned from a lovely holiday in the Caribbean aboard Thomson Celebration. We flew out on the Dreamliner and enjoyed the flight. The extra legroom and wider seats really make a difference, after a long flight we still felt quite perky after an eight hour flight. Yes the Celebration is an old ship, she cannot match up to the newer more modern ships, but you are not paying their prices. We have sailed on Celebration several times and this cruise we thought that Thomson had upped there game. You could not fault the cleanliness of the ship in all areas, the public areas and cabins were spotless. The staff are wonderful they always have a smile for you and leave you feeling that nothing is to much trouble. We were on deck 6 and did not experience any cabin noise or any nagging electrical faults. The food this cruise was very good both in the Meridian restaurant and the Lido self service restaurant there was plenty of choice to suit all tastes. The entertainment team did a good job and Ben Moss the very talented singer in Hemingways was excellent. We booked two trips with Thomsons and they may be a bit over priced but we did our own thing and saved money on other days. Transfers to and from the port were excellent with no delays. We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2015
Our biggest complaint was with reference to the food onboard. This is the only ship amongst a number of cruises we have taken where we have not wanted to eat! We are not fussy eaters but we really DID NOT enjoy the food offered on this ... Read More
Our biggest complaint was with reference to the food onboard. This is the only ship amongst a number of cruises we have taken where we have not wanted to eat! We are not fussy eaters but we really DID NOT enjoy the food offered on this trip. Let’s start with the buffet/Lido restaurant. The breakfasts and afternoon teas were very repetitive and with little variations. The food was often oily, with the eggs being either over or underdone and only luke warm. The bacon and sausages tasted cheap. The cereals were mainly of the cheap sugar laden variety while the fruit was consistently melon and pineapple. Lunchtimes fared little better. The salad was only ever the following:- lettuce, cucumber, radish, grated carrot, sweetcorn, tomatoes, watery silverskin onions (no vinegar) and cheeses with no variations. The salad dressings on offer were poor, heavily oily and poor in variety. The mixed salads on the appetiser counter were laden with mayo or looked revolting. Hasn’t the chef heard of pulses, a variety of salad leaves etc? The main courses were equally bad in their look, smell and taste. So much so lunch often became hot dog and chips from the snack bar by the pool – something we never eat at home or on holiday. The sugar free sweets were also poor in variety, being mainly a creamy mousse or pastry with fruit, not helpful if one doesn’t like creamy mousses and can’t eat pastry! Additionally the sugar free was rarely labelled as such and one had frequently to ask if there were any sugar free. Afternoon tea was the same every day, sausage rolls, small sandwiches, trifle (not sugar free) scones, cake and biscuits (none of which were sugar free). In fact the sandwiches were often the best food of the day. The scones were also acceptable if one ignored the too high bicarbonate taste, but couldn’t cheese scones have been served occasionally too? The biscuits were the worst we have tasted – dry and tasteless regardless of flavour, too much flour and not enough fat to make them flavoursome and ‘short’ in consistency, in other words, they were cheap! Drinks in the Lido – the coffee was dire, bitter and totally unacceptable. I drank only tea for the duration of the cruise whereas my husband doesn't drink tea, coffee, milk or alcohol so his choice was nil for the entire cruise, bar water, since no alternative drink was on offer, unlike other cruises which still offer juice and iced flavoured teas at all meal times. Let’s now look at the food in the Meridian Restaurant. Breakfasts: Firstly, fruit juices served at breakfast were far too sweet. We think that they were fruit concentrates which hadn’t been diluted. We had to dilute it by 1/3 or ½ to make it drinkable. The fish for breakfast was often unrecognisable as such being dry and much over-cooked, so much so we stopped choosing the fish dishes before a few days had passed. The omelette I tried after the fish was almost inedible too, the taste and texture weren’t good. My husband concurred on the only day he chose omelette. The yoghurt with fresh fruit was always sugared therefore problematic for me, also the choice of fruit was always melon unless we stipulated otherwise and when we did ask for alternatives the waiters always looked surprised, although we did get our choices. We asked for water, only wholemeal toast and sugar free conserve each day, yet we always had to ask several times for what we required and sometimes it wasn’t listened too or took far too long to get. Many people gave up without a second tea, coffee or whatever. The staff weren’t particularly helpful or friendly. To be honest, my husband ate Weetabix followed by toast for the majority of the cruise. I, by contrast, resorted to porridge followed by Egg Benedict when available. Note I said egg not eggs Benedict – most ships give two, on this ship only one was ever given. Believe it or not, breakfast was probably our best meal of the day!!!! We didn’t eat in the Meridian for lunch. Dinners: The service was appalling. Several times we waited between 1hr and 1hr 30mins between the starters and the main courses and complained about main dishes being cold on more than one occasion. One day we actually saw the chefs, waiters etc. and baked Alaska presentation TWICE, without receiving our main course! The main course were poor in quality, often way too salty, bloody meats, lacking taste, having a horrible taste etc. etc. I even refused the Spaghetti Bolognaise. It looked like a poor tin or packet mix – short lengths of spaghetti mixed with the ragout sauce, not at all like proper Spaghetti Bolognaise. It tasted like it had lots of chemicals in it – really horrible, it was sent back, I was offered a second choice but by then I didn’t want to wait again and was put off by the first offering. A couple of evenings later we went to the Kora La, hoping for a better experience. I ordered the Beef Rendang and my husband ordered the Stir-fried noodles. Were these any better? Not on your life! Both dishes were so excessively salty we had the head waiter and the chef attend our table. We were offered alternatives but by now we were not in the mood to try yet more, rather we felt ill and disappointed. NEVER have we had such experiences on a ship. Let’s move to our cabin. To be fair our steward, was very friendly and helpful so no complaints here. Yes, the cabin was small but as we booked very late, this did not surprise us. However, what did surprise us was the lack of a refrigerator in the cabin. All of our previous ships have had in-cabin ‘fridges and we didn’t even consider the possibility that there wouldn’t be one. A ‘fridge is important to us since I have medication which needs refrigeration, so every day I had to go to reception to get and return my medication to them, waiting in sometimes long queues to get and then to return it – what an inconvenience! The television in our cabin was of poor quality, poor reception and a general lack of stations to watch. The safe had to be paid for separately! Never have other ships charged us for in-cabin safes because this is for your benefit as much as our’s – shocking and expensive! The facecloths in particular, were often grey and unhealthy looking. There was no complimentary dressing gowns and an elitist system for beach towels too – pale blue for the cheaper cabins, medium blue as one moves up the decks and royal blue, plush ones, for the better cabins. We were really disgusted at this – deliberately singling out what class of passenger one is – shame on you Thomson! This too NEVER happens on other cruise lines. On the subject of sunbathing, we have a further complaint. The front of the top deck of the ship was often closed off due to ‘high winds’. Frequently this wasn’t the case but still we couldn’t use that area. The middle section was currently being refurbished; I say currently but in fact no work was done on this section all the time we were on board. We were all jammed on a small section, jammed in like sardines on the two sea days, most unpleasant. We heard this section had been shut since the start of the season. Furthermore, there are no toilets in this area. Lastly, the deck hands were regularly clearing away the sunloungers by 5pm even though the sun didn’t go down for another hour to hour and a half. They often asked passengers to get up so they could pack away. How unwelcoming! Of course this also meant there were no seats outside if one wished to sit out and peruse the stars on the warm Caribbean evenings. We’ve not seen the like of this previously either. Our final complaint is in regard to returning to the ship after a day on shore. Actually, the staff on duty at the gangplank both going and coming, were humourless and unresponsive. There was no canopy on the pier, no welcoming drink, indeed no welcome. We were the poor relations of the cruise world as compared to the other ships we were docked alongside. Lastly, the security on board was a laugh, we could have brought all sorts on board. They rarely had the X-ray working. Is this a Platinum Cruise as advertised ? – No way!!!! We consider it to be a poor cast iron level. Would we cruise with Thomson again? A resounding No! We’re so pleased we got a cheap, last minute deal. If we had paid the brochure price we would have been stomping by now and probably we be consulting with a solicitor. A shockingly, bad experience and one never to be repeated. Added to the general insult of actually being on board, on return and wishing to complain we filled in the on-line booking complaints form - it doesn't send and we have tried it on several occasions. A letter of complaint did receive the customary general reply, saying we would hear within a month. It's two months now and still no response and you can't get anyone on the phone either. We read reviews and decided to still give Thomsons a go. Warning, book at your peril - you have been warned. Our advice - try another company, any other company which isn't owned by Thomson. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2013
This ticked a lot of boxes for us. We wanted to see Petra for the first time and go back to see the pyramids and Luxor etc again. My partner is more keen on cruising than me but it suited us fine. We aren't interested in the dressing ... Read More
This ticked a lot of boxes for us. We wanted to see Petra for the first time and go back to see the pyramids and Luxor etc again. My partner is more keen on cruising than me but it suited us fine. We aren't interested in the dressing up in the evening aspect and I see little point in doing it on a Thomson cruise anyway. We had a very basic bottom of the boat inside cabin but it was bigger than the one we had on the Destiny the year before. Apart from no porthole to tell us when it was dawn it was fine. No problems with hot water and the staff kept it spotless with plenty of fresh towels. Lido buffet fine but it could get very busy at times especially with the excursions forcing you to eat at certain times. The all day trips were good and what you expect in Egypt. The half day trip to Hurghada wasn't much cop but you can't win them all. Once you had worked out what entertainment you liked there was enough for everyone. 2 Intense were good in Horizon's and the main lot in the Broadway Lounge had the unenviable job of doing a different show every night. They could not be faulted for effort. Steve Johnson and his 'ciao of now' at the end of every single announcement got on our wick till we made a joke of it but like all the crew they all tried very hard to make our trip very good. They succeeded and we could do the trip again doing a different trip to what we did every day. The captain's Q & A session was very good. Well done every one on the ship. Must get a porthole next time. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2011
Flights were on time and trouble free both ways but 5.5 hours into Sharm is a long time, and coming back my knees were touching the seat in front. I wish they would take a few rows of seats out, I wouold be happy to pay a bit more. ... Read More
Flights were on time and trouble free both ways but 5.5 hours into Sharm is a long time, and coming back my knees were touching the seat in front. I wish they would take a few rows of seats out, I wouold be happy to pay a bit more. Can't afford business class though, even if it had been available. Check in at Naples was very slow, they should have opened a few more desks to get us through. Our second cruise (the first was Red Sea Magic Easter 2010 on this same ship). The old ship is still a bit shabby chic - our bathroom had seen much better days - but the public areas are good and the room was always kept clean by the lovely staff. Check-in was pretty good although the queue at Sharm port was longer than I'd have liked - more staff at busy times would be good. Because of the itinerary changes we didn't have time to do any port research, so it became a chillax cruise - we never left the ship in the end. We'd already seen the pyramids and know Barcelona so weren't really bothered, but there were quite a few whingers on board. I reckoned it was a good heads up that cruises don't always go according to plan, and I'll learn from it. February in the med isn't really warm enough for sight-seeing, and the only one we fancied was climbing the volcano. That day it was 10 degrees and windy even at sealevel, so we decided to save the trip for another time (summer preferably!). I curled up in a patch of sun in Hemingways, drank Tom Collins and read a book instead. On the two rough nights I took pills and slept - feel ready for an Atlantic cruise now! Husband first dragged me up to Horizons to see the prow crashing into the waves - somewhat unnerving but quite exciting! Service onboard was nearly as good as last time although hardly any staff were the same, we heard they had all gone to the 'Dream'. Food good. We started with breakfast in Meridian but found it was generally buffet and when it was waiter service it was pretty rushed, as though they couldn't get us out fast enough - not what we experienced last time. We soon decamped to the Lido which was more relaxed although then you have to do your own portion control which husband is pretty bad at! We lunched in Meridian which was much more relaxed, especially on a port day when the ship was pretty quiet. Dinner also mainly in Meridian, mainly excellent. The chefs were especially good with fish and simple meat. Didn't go in the A La Carte restaurant - we did go in last year and found it no better than Meridian - maybe we made poor menu choices? Drink - we chose the AI after some thought but might not next time. It's changed since last year. Draught cider was available this time, but they had taken all fizzy wines and also baileys off the AI which was disappointing (I lived off kir royale and baileys last time). Captains night was a laugh, it's good to see (almost) everyone dressing up. The showlounge entertainment was professional and well done but not really to my taste. Kearney Street were pretty poor except when they were riffing their own stuff. The various quizzes in Liberties were hit and miss. The classical duo were good. The main quiz (held over several days) was a laugh, and we also enjoyed the captains talk and a bridge tour. My husband enjoyed the comedian, I found him a bit Bernard Manning. It must be really hard to find the right entertainment balance tough, so all power to the team for trying. Check out, especially getting on our coach in Naples, was a bit chaotic, you got a sense that we were not interesting any more, just to be got rid of. Shame - Thomson should pay attention to last impressions as much as first. And the less said about the in-flight meals the better. No way will I ever pay Thomson for one of those again. All in all, we had a lovely relaxing cruise. You get what you pay for, and the downside of this less formal cruise is lower spec accommodation. Highlights for me were the suez, and at dinner sipping a glass of wine in the straights of messina while the pilot boat was surging up and down in the spray just outside my window, with the lights of sicily in the distance. Would I cruise on Celebration again? At the right price, unreservedly yes. Read Less
Marella Celebration Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.5 3.8
Dining 4.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.4
Family 3.0 3.4
Shore Excursion 4.5 3.6
Enrichment N/A 3.3
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 4.0 3.7
Rates 4.0 3.9

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