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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
We wanted to sail from Venice before the cruise ships were diverted away from Venice's historic sights, and this itinerary looked really good. We had a few days pre-cruise in Venice which gave us plenty time to see the sights. ... Read More
We wanted to sail from Venice before the cruise ships were diverted away from Venice's historic sights, and this itinerary looked really good. We had a few days pre-cruise in Venice which gave us plenty time to see the sights. Boarding the cruise was quick, and very well organised. The ship is a great size with friendly staff. Our room stewards were great, keeping our room in immaculate condition. We did encounter some issues being served at the Martini Bar where the bar staff were only interested in serving big-tipping guests. We pre-pay our tips, but issue out more tips at the end of our holiday if we feel we’ve had great service so this approach just costs the staff tips, and makes for unhappy guests! We had flexible dining times which is not something we’d like to have again. Whilst the restaurant staff try to seat you in the same area, it’s not always possible and you’re unable to build up any rapport with your waiters. However all the staff who served us were friendly and efficient. Wine tops ups can be an issue - this is not down to the sommeliers who never stop but down to the fact that Celebrity have too few of them in the dining room. Entertainment staff worked their socks off too, providing great entertainment. Ports were fantastic. Dubrovnik - lovely place , but quite full on if you take the cable car and climb the city walls. Museum at the top of the cable car was very thought provoking. Chanda, Crete - a little gem Mykonos - lovely and bright with some very nice upmarket shops Athens - we loved it. Beautiful clear day with fantastic things to see. Rhodes Town- full of history Santorini - village at top of cablecar was lovely on the side facing the ship. Over the hill was disappointing. Walked down , very smelly due to donkey dirt. Katakolon - picked up,a cheap bus to Olympia. Great day out. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
I traveled on the August 15 – 25, 2019 roundtrip voyage of the Constellation from Venice with stops in Dubrovnik, Crete, Mykonos, Athens, Rhodes, Santorini, and Katakolon. I was with my wife and 2 teenage sons (14 and 16) in an ... Read More
I traveled on the August 15 – 25, 2019 roundtrip voyage of the Constellation from Venice with stops in Dubrovnik, Crete, Mykonos, Athens, Rhodes, Santorini, and Katakolon. I was with my wife and 2 teenage sons (14 and 16) in an Oceanview cabin (i.e., 7004). This was the 17th cruise for my wife and me, all of them with Celebrity or Royal Caribbean. All of our other trips have been in the Caribbean or to Bermuda, but this very excellent port intensive Greek Islands cruise caught my eye because it went to so many locations in Greece. It was a really great trip overall, and we loved it. We spent almost 3 weeks prior to the cruise traveling around Italy (to Rome, Capri, Pompeii, Tivoli, Tuscany, and Venice) by train and by car. As fun and amazing as that was, we were looking forward to getting on board the ship. THE CABIN We’ve always had balconies before (except for an inside cabin on a last minute trip to Bermuda), but a balcony was going to add $2500 to the total price, and this was already our most expensive cruise and vacation, so we decided to try an Oceanview. While we obviously would have preferred a balcony, I could not justify the price and this worked out fine. This cabin had 2 upper Pullman bunks and was at the very front of the ship. The location was very convenient and the seas were smooth, so it worked out from that perspective. But, we were awoken several mornings at about 5:30 am by sounds of the ship we hadn’t heard in our other cabin locations. One morning, it sounded like an anchor was being lowered (even though I don’t think that’s what it was) and a few other mornings I think it was an outside door just below the bridge that was also accompanied by a warning bell. It wasn’t super major, but getting awoken early like that was annoying enough that I would avoid this cabin and the immediate location in the future. Our cabin attendant kept the cabin fresh and spotless and was helpful when we asked for ice and a corkscrew. THE SHIP The Constellation is a beautiful ship in great shape. I had read a few reviews that suggested there were areas of wear and tear, but the reviewers must have been on a different ship than us. Celebrity does a first rate job keeping their ships in top shape. While the Solstice class is our favorite class, we are happy with the M-class and would definitely sail on the Connie again, particularly if the itinerary were as great as this one. The overall vibe feels classy to us, from the décor, the other passengers, amenities, and the friendliness of the crew. I understand the ship is slated for an upgrade in the spring, although I think it is beautiful as-is. THE X-CLUB The X-Club for teenagers in the Fun Factory was a huge plus for us. Our sons spent a lot of time there and were busy with a variety of offered activities along with a friendly and engaging staff. They also made friends with a nice group of teenage boys from Spain, France, Ireland, and New Jersey who also participated in the X-Club activities. We liked how they were able to meet and become friends with kids from other countries. Their positive experience with the X-Club was a huge boon for my wife and me, because it allowed us to spend time together alone while they were having fun. If you have teens the same age, I would encourage them to go to the meet-and-greet the first night when everyone is new. Even though RCCL is known for being more youth-friendly, my sons have always said that they prefer the X-Club experience to RCCL (which is usually more crowded and more of a factory in their opinion). In fact, they said that if a ship has a Flowrider, they would prefer the ship (i.e., RCCL) hands down on that basis alone. But if there is no Flowrider, they prefer Celebrity hands down. My oldest son turns 17 next year, which is a shame, because he will age out of the X-Club, and we will probably go back to the ships with Flowriders and other similar activities. I really wish there were a way for the X-Club to have activities for the 18 – 21 age set. THE CREW The Crew was universally great and friendly. They all work so hard, many of them are young, and most of them are far from home. I tipped our cabin attendant extra and gave envelopes to some of the staff in the nightly Captain’s Club cocktail party in the Reflections lounge and in the X-Club. We really appreciated the great service all around. THE MAIN DINING ROOM The MDR experience on all of our cruises, whether with Celebrity or RCCL, have gone down in recent years. I’ve read of other people on the boards commenting on the same thing, but the staffing cuts that Celebrity and RCCL have made to MDR staff feel painfully obvious to us. The staff are clearly required to service more passengers than in prior years, which causes dinner to drag out way too long (even though the number of courses have been cut as have showy desserts the waiters would set aflame table-side, like Cherries Jubilee, Baked Alaska and Crepes with Bananas Flambé). On a human level, it also makes me uncomfortable to see human beings pressed to work as hard as they do in the MDR. I don’t fault the MDR staff at all – this is a management issue at the bean counter level. Please increase the MDR staff, Celebrity and RCCL. It used to be a positive experience for us, but has turned into a negative. We chose to eat up in the Oceanview Café for more than half of our dinners (we ate in the MDR only 4 times on the 10 night cruise and it used to be something we looked forward to). THE FOOD Overworked MDR staff notwithstanding, this was some of the best food we have had on any cruise in a number of years. The menus were interesting, the food was fresh, and all of the increased choices up at the Oceanview Café for dinner (they serve Beef Wellington up there the same night it was served in the MDR) really made the food a big plus for us, and I don’t usually get excited about cruise ship food. Loved the omelets in the morning and Indian food choices. We also enjoyed the lunch at the spa café near the Thalassotherapy pool. They had small plates with dishes like salmon salad, tuna salad, cold soba noodles, lentil salad, small spinach salads, etc. I wondered if Celebrity increased the per-passenger food budget because this cruise was so much more expensive than our Caribbean cruises and the passengers seemed to be a bit posher and not overwhelmingly American. Or maybe it was because the ship’s head chef, Singh Deoraj, was so great. Whatever it was, the food was terrific over all. THE PORTS Venice This was my third time to Venice. It was magical when I came in the 80s and then again in the 90s (in the spring). But, I felt it was very, very crowded this time everywhere we walked, on the vaporettos, etc. We spent 3 nights here before the cruise and while it definitely was special for me, the crowds and the heat rubbed the magic off. We ended up going over to Murano, Burano, and Torcello, which I highly recommend if you have the time. They are reachable by vaporetto rides (I think Burano and Torcello were about 45 minutes away by boat). Torcello in particular was small, quaint, charming and had some restaurants that looked very nice albeit a bit pricey. We had the vaporetto pass that was 30 euros per person for 2 days of unlimited use and thought it was a pretty good value if you took more than 2 round trips per day, even if it was rather expensive overall in my opinion. Our hotel was a few blocks to the East of the train station, so it was a pretty easy 15 minute walk to the people mover. I should say it was easy for us – we had to drag our suitcases over rough stones and over a bridge, which would be difficult for some people. If you are staying in Venice either before or after your cruise, you will have to make plans to get your luggage to your hotel, so think about it in advance. The People Mover (i.e., a mono-rail from the edge of Venice to the Cruise Port) was 1.5 euros per person and was pretty easy and convenient to use, though I ended up having to pay twice for one of my tickets and so did a woman who was there at the same time. We had purchased our tickets at the machine, but then the scanner said they were invalid even though her husband’s ticket worked and so did the 3 tickets for the rest of my family. There was no attendant, we just had to buy new ones. It’s possible my ticket was too close to the scanner when I scanned one of the tickets of my family members. A minor annoyance, so just be careful. The sail-away from Venice is a stunning trip down the canal from the cruise port, past Piazza San Marco, the Lido, and out to the Adriatic. Make sure you don’t miss it. It was really spectacular. Dubrovnik We took a taxi from the cruise port to the gates of the walled city. The taxi was 14 euros and was a posted and fixed rate. We arrived in the afternoon and had been concerned the crowds would make the walking of the wall too crowded, but it was really OK. We did that, although I must say you must be very mobile and steady on your feet or else it will be dangerous for you (more on that below). We were interested in going swimming afterwards and wore our swimsuits under our shorts. It turns out there is a rocky outcropping on the outside of the walled gates (just exit near the aquarium and walk around the bend). It wasn’t fancy, but was super convenient and there were showers. I would have lingered and kept jumping in and maybe get a cold beer from a vendor, but, alas, the family had had enough and wanted to go back to the ship. It was a really nice day. Crete We took a taxi from the ship to the center of the old town (I think it was a fixed rate of 10 euros) and walked around the town and the port, which was very pretty and charming. We continued walking about 20 minutes and ended up at a local beach, Nea Chora Beach, which is in a residential neighborhood. At first I didn’t think it was anything special, but we ended up having a really nice time here. It was a friendly, local, low key vibe. 2 chairs and an umbrella (along with use of the bathroom at the restaurant that managed the chairs) was only 6 euros total, for both. The water was warm and the beach sandy. We ordered food from the restaurant, and I was really impressed with how fresh, good, and inexpensive it was. Fresh octopus, fresh sardines (which are normally not appealing to me), calamari, grape leaves, etc. and a cold beer and a carafe of wine all came to 27 euros. As I said, it wasn’t the prettiest beach in my opinion, because it was in a residential neighborhood. But, that said, we had a lot of fun, I liked the food, convenience, price, and the vibe and would go back again. We walked about 20 minutes back to the town and grabbed a cab (which was actually a bit hard to find). Next time, I would ask the restaurant to help call a cab, which I assume would be about 15 euros back to the ship from this distance. Mykonos I wasn’t fully sure what to do here and had been worried about crowds and whether the beaches might be *too* interesting to my teenage sons. We ended up getting a day pass to the St. John Beach Resort (just search for them online and “info@” email address on their website). It was stunning and one of the highlights of the cruise. I highly recommend it, and this might have been our favorite day of the cruise. I had hesitated because it was 100 euros per person, but that included transportation from the ship, a spectacular breakfast buffet (take my word for it – don’t eat breakfast on the ship – eat it here, it was that great), a thick towel, a big lunch (I had grilled calamari that was incredible), and use of the chaise longues by the pool or down by the beach (which was narrow, but had a fun dock you could jump off of). The hotel was so deluxe, I had thought they might treat us differently because we were day passers from a cruise ship, but they could not have been friendlier and we felt very welcome. Even though it was more money than I might have wanted to spend, I thought the value was terrific. The kids stayed on board, and it was a really special day for my wife and me. I would definitely do this again. They only sell 12 day passes. We met 6 other nice people from our ship who were doing the same thing, and I know everyone loved it. Incidentally, this was listed as a tender port, but we docked instead. Athens The last time I was in Athens was in the winter when I was in college with my parents. Going in the summer, with heat in the high 90s, and a lot more tourists, was different, but still great. We hopped in a cab from the port and had him take us to the Acropolis. It was a fixed fare of 25 euros and took about 20 or 25 minutes. It was spectacular, and I loved it, the heat notwithstanding (although the heat was overwhelming to some – more below). After a few hours there, we walked down through the plaka and got some food at an outdoor café, which was a little pricey given it was a touristy neighborhood, but it was pretty and we enjoyed it nonetheless. I wanted to go to the Agora, but everyone else was melting after all of the hours of walking, and we took a taxi back to the ship from the Plaka. Rhodes The ship docked at a pier right next to the walled old town, so it was an easy walk if you are reasonably mobile and steady on your feet. We walked through the old town and went to the castle, which is a Mussolini-era reconstruction that was pretty good. But, after seeing so much history over the previous month in Italy, I wasn’t super impressed walking through a reconstruction. After that, we walked about 30 minutes to Elli Beach, which was a local beach that had chair rentals, some of the clearest water I have seen anywhere, and a large, broad, nice pebbly beach. Yes, it was crowded and there were hotels behind it, but the beach was nice if you got on a decent part of it. We didn’t rent chairs, but if I had to do it all over again, I would have gone to Elli Beach straight away (an easy 15 minute cab ride) and got some decent chairs and an umbrella at one of the establishments that was nicer than the one we plopped our towels in front of. I would spend the morning at the beach before it got too crowded and then walk around the old town and get something to eat there. Santorini We loved, loved Santorini – but with a few important caveats. This was a tender port that was scheduled to have approximately 5 ships in port that day (and none the next day!). The cruise staff implored everyone to get up early and get on the earliest tender you can. We listened to them, and you should, too. We were lucky enough to get on the first tender and in the first cable car up the mountain. Tickets for the cable car were 6 euros each and we were lucky again that there was no line yet and we were up to the top at about 7:30 am (a hard feat for us to corral the whole family to do this!). We had decided to go to Oia on our own and grabbed the first taxi we found, which was easy because none of the swarms had arrived yet. It was 35 euros for an approximately 30 minute cab ride to Oia (which I think we may have been overcharged – I think the official rate, if there is one, is 30 euros, which is what it cost on the way back. I didn’t care – I was just happy to get one.) Incidentally, you can take a donkey ride up for 6 euros per person, but the crew staff advised people not to, both for safety reasons (the donkeys sometimes slip) and for animal cruelty reasons. I, for one, could never do it. Oia was empty when we got there at 8 am and stunningly beautiful. We had it to ourselves for 20 minutes and then the first buses started to arrive and it steadily became more and more crowded. We walked around for 4 hours or so and stopped for some incredible Greek pastries, Greek coffee, and an incredible view at a bakery/café called Skiza that was on the main pedestrian drag. It was a little pricey, partly because Santorini has a 25% city tax, but the view and food was amazing. It was a nice way to get away from the crowds, which had now descended upon Oia, rest our tired feet, and enjoy the view. By now, it was very hot and crowded and the narrow streets were packed. I actually ended up getting separated for a tense 30 minutes from my family after getting stuck behind people taking photographs that I didn’t want to interrupt (but politely would next time). The square was packed, too. There was a woman from the ship who had fallen (a man had stepped on her ankle, I had heard) sitting, injured, on a bench and later was in wheelchair on the ship (more on injuries, below). We walked a few blocks away and tried to get a cab, which was now impossible, so we walked for about 15 minutes to the other side of the town and were able to get a taxi for 30 euros back to Fira. We walked around and took some stunning photographs there, but by now had been off the ship for about 7 hours. We wanted to take the cable car down, but no dice – the line was at least 2 hours long so we opted to walk down. We are fit, so it was doable, but people were slipping (including us) all over the place, because some of the stones are shiny obsidian and there is a lot of donkey dung. It took us 30 minutes and while not difficult for us, I know it was difficult for others and it would be impossible and dangerous if you had any mobility issues. I think some of the ship’s tours that go by bus to Oia go to a different tender stop and then get a bus ride that picks them up right at the water without having to navigate the cable car mess. If you are going to Oia and don’t think you can get off very early like we did and go by cab, I would probably consider that. I know some people who took the public bus were furious that they were so jammed with passengers they felt it was dangerous, so make sure you allow plenty of time for whatever you do. As I said, Oia and Fira and our overall visit to Santorini was a highlight for us, but only because we were up very early and were able to avoid some of the mobs and we were able to walk down the mountain, albeit reluctantly, instead of taking the cable car down. Some people had no choice but to wait in the sun for a couple of hours. One woman on our return tender had waited for 1.5 hours in line and finally gave up and walked down, and was very hot and unhappy. We also so people arguing about others cutting in line. When there are this many cruise ships in port at once, I really think a better system would be ideal for everyone, both from safety and efficiency perspectives. While this was a really great day for us overall, I can see how this stop could easily be a bad one for some people, so please plan ahead. Katakolon (Olympia) This was our last stop, and we were feeling a little sad by now. There is a small train that runs from Katakolon to Olympia every 2 hours or so for 10 euros per person roundtrip. I knew my kids would think the train was fun, which was one of the reasons we chose it. It was also a pretty 45 minute ride through the countryside. We were off the ship at 9:00 and the train left at 10, so there was a little bit of a wait. You can search for information online about it – it is easy to find. After you arrive in Olympia, it is an easy 10 minute walk from the train station are the remains of ancient Olympia, which we really enjoyed walking around even though it was nearly 100 degrees. In fact, it was so hot that the Hellenic Red Cross very generously was handing out free bottles of water. I would have liked to have stayed a little longer, but we needed to get on the 1:10 train back because the next one was not until 3:30, which was cutting it too close. There are a number of waterfront cafes on the way back to the pier. I would have liked to have stopped for a bit for a cold beer or glass of wine and Greek seafood like we had in Crete, but we ended up getting back on board to have lunch. Incidentally, it was a VERY long walk from the ship to where the buses, taxi, and town were. If walking is an issue for you, please check into it in advance. If I had to do this stop all over, I might have gone by bus or taxi to Olympia, which probably would have given us an hour head start over the train even though the train was a nice way to travel and the kids liked it. If we had done that, it think it would have given us enough time to swim at a local beach for an hour or 2, which I would have liked to have done and it would have given some more time in Olympia (I could have used another hour there at least). I had my eye on Agios Andreas, a nearby beach as a possibility that I believe was accessible by a little trolley bus, but it wasn’t meant to be. Sea Day The last day of the trip was a sea day, and we spent most of it on lounge chairs by the Thalassotherapy pool. We had had trouble getting seats there on other parts of the trip, so we were happy finally to spend some time there. DISEMBARKATION Our flight back to New York left at 11:05, which had me a little nervous. We did the baggage walk-off, which was scheduled for 7:40 am. They actually started letting people off at 7:20 a.m. We were out of the customs building by about 7:30 and grabbed a taxi right away. It was 45 euros and we were at the airport in less than 20 minutes. We checked in and were through check-in and customs by 8:20, which gave us plenty of time. You would think we would have eaten enough by now after a vacation in Italy and a cruise, but there was a café near the gate that sold really nice sandwiches for about 5 or 6 euros each and cappuccinos. I couldn’t pass up the cappuccino, but wished I had bought sandwiches for us. The flight was 9 hours and they didn’t serve lunch until 1:00 or so and then there was only a greasy warm sandwich served an hour before landing. I would have preferred the nice sandwich from the airport J SOME GENERAL TIPS It can be hard to find free bathrooms, so make sure you have a handful of euro coins in case you need to go. I googled “bathrooms near me” on my phone, which was very helpful in terms of guiding us to the nearest one on several occasions. If you have a child under 18, many (but not all) venues are free, so make sure you ask, because it is not always posted. Importantly, many of the places require photo ID, so we had our passports with us when we got off. If you are between 18 and 25, there are usually heavily discounted rates, but you need to have proof of age and your school ID. Italy and Greece use the Euro, which was convenient for us. We used credit cards mostly, but had some cash for taxis, bathrooms, and bottles of water. In Dubrovnik, we used Euros for the taxi, but I don’t believe the Euro is taken everywhere in Croatia. *SAFETY* *Please* be careful on this itinerary in the summer if you have any mobility issues at all (or even if you don’t). I’m not trying to be melodramatic, but I have never seen more people injured on a vacation ever. At the Colosseum in Rome before the trip, a woman collapsed in the heat and fell to the floor while in the ticket line. Another woman fell down some stairs and cut her knee pretty bad. A lot of roads and walkways in the old towns are paved with small rocks that are uneven and slippery. We saw a woman from the ship who tripped and fell in Rhodes and her face was black and blue days later (and her glasses broken). An older woman passed out and was getting medical attention by paramedics at the Acropolis. There was the woman who had her ankle stepped on in Santorini and ended up in a wheelchair. We saw a woman on our flight home from the cruise who was in a wheelchair and her leg in a fresh cast, so we assumed she had fallen somewhere. We saw at least 5 or 6 people fall on the steps down the hill in Santorini when they couldn’t get a cable car and had to walk down. I’m not saying don’t go – but please be VERY careful! Also, make sure you drink a lot of water! This was a trip of a lifetime for us, and we really loved it! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
First of all, we had a wonderful experience on the Celebrity Constellation when we sailed August 6, 2019 for a 9 night Greek Cruise, EXCEPT using Flights by Celebrity. I booked 2 Aqua Class rooms for friends and 1 Royal Suite for myself ... Read More
First of all, we had a wonderful experience on the Celebrity Constellation when we sailed August 6, 2019 for a 9 night Greek Cruise, EXCEPT using Flights by Celebrity. I booked 2 Aqua Class rooms for friends and 1 Royal Suite for myself and my friend for a special 50th birthday celebration. We booked this in February 2019. I can not say enough about the Royal suite and our Butler, Ali. We had suite 6133 and he and the stateroom attendant are top notch!! Also a shout out to Joyce in the coffee bar/Michaels club. She’s an absolute delight. Now the issue...I booked this direct with Celebrity for the rooms and the airfare for the Royal Suite and 1 Aqua class room and paid in full in May, when full payment was due. I first found out several weeks before the trip my 1 hr 10 min layover in Chicago to Venice had been reduced to 35 min to change gates and get my luggage aboard. When I called Celebrity they informed me that the change to 35 minutes was an “acceptable” amount of time to find the connecting gate and have my luggage transferred. Since we were meeting friends in Venice for a day and half before the cruise, I was very concerned about the layover time. I called back again to Celebrity to be told I would have to pay Celebrity several hundred dollars to take a flight 2 hours earlier from Charlotte to Chicago through American Airlines. Frustrated, I called American Airlines directly and they changed my flight to the earlier flight with no issue and no charge. Then a couple weeks before leaving I realized Celebrity had me on the very last seat on the plane on one side window, and my friend on the very back of the plane on the opposite side of the plane window to Venice. I booked this in February...I finally called and paid American Airlines direct to change our seats to be together. Then came check in with American Airlines 24 hours in advance. I could only check into Chicago, but not all the way to Venice. We spent over an hour waiting in line at American Airlines ticket counter as we could not do curbside checkin all the way to Venice...The final straw was trying to check in back to Charlotte from Venice 24 hours before the flight. When I could not check in but my friend who did check in with no issue, since he booked his flight directly with American Airlines, he informed me they had 8 first class upgrades available for $500 each. I went to our private concierge agent in Michael’s lounge (since we had the Royal Suite) for assistance sInce I wanted the first class upgrade deal. I was worried by the time we went to check into the airport 3 hours before flight the upgrade offer would be sold out. (No surprise it was sold out). She did everything possible to check us in but could not check us OR previous clients using Flights by Celebrity in when check in was available August 14th. Let me say she went out of her way to help, but when she finally called Flights by Celebrity they told her I could upgrade to first class for over $4,000 one way. She was just as amazed as I was with the response from Flights by Celebrity and mentioned she would email corporate to inform them of the situation, even thought nothing could be done. I paid $1,800 to Celebrity for my round trip flight each person, which I am sure I could have done direct with American Airlines and never had these issues. I wasted 3 hours of our last cruise day dealing with this. We used the spa services, several specialty restaurants for all 7 of us, gambled every night but one, closing down the casino each night and tipping the staff very well during the cruise on top of the prepaid tip package. We also bought a great deal of high end wine as this was a once in a lifetime trip for a few of the 7 that traveled together. The service from Flights by Celebrity was a slap in the face considering the amount of money I spent on that trip for all of us. Oh, by the way, on our return flight from Philly to Charlotte Flights by Celebrity had us both on the last back seats on the plane, but at least this time we were side by side. Never again will I book my flights through this company. I will go directly to the airline for my flights to save all the wasted time, frustration and money. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
The Celebrity Constellation delivered an excellent cruise experience in the honored tradition of ancient Greek voyages of exploration. This marvelous and memorable Greek Isles cruise featured some of the most fascinating and historical ... Read More
The Celebrity Constellation delivered an excellent cruise experience in the honored tradition of ancient Greek voyages of exploration. This marvelous and memorable Greek Isles cruise featured some of the most fascinating and historical sites on the earth to visit--Athens with the stunning Acropolis, Rhodes with the solemn Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights, Santorini with rediscovered ancient Akritori (Atlantis?), Delos with the majestic Terrace of Lions, and Olympia with the remains of the massive temple of Zeus. And the cherry on the top was starting the cruise in romantic, serene, mesmerizing Venice! Yes, this cruise was selected mainly for this wonderful itinerary, but Celebrity cruise line always delivers with excellent service, comprehensive activities, and tasty meals. As we were on a shore excursion every day (and yes, I always book the cruise line excursions to be first off and to have guaranteed returns), we had an inside cabin which was very quiet and relaxing after long, busy tours. We also prefer traditional main room dining at a set time so we can have a regular dining time and engage more personally with our servers. Our room attendant and wait staff were very friendly and provided outstanding service. The main dining room food variety was very good and usually quite tasty. Lobster, baked Alaska, filet mignon and cherries jubilee were all on our menu. We also preferred going to the dining room on sea days for breakfast and lunch, or the relaxing and lovely spa. The Ocean View cafe was convenient and quick, but usually crowded and a bit hectic. We enjoyed dressing up for formal nights and taking photos, and made it to the fun Rock and Roll show, Broadway show and the Latino dance party. The two pools and the sun deck areas were always popular and very enjoyable. Shopping was plentiful but the added VAT tax made purchases more onerous. The library was a nice spot and the many children on the cruise seemed well taken care of and entertained in the children's clubs. Our cruise director was quite funny and great. The captain and officers were very courteous and visible throughout the voyage. The passengers were an international mix and many were seasoned travelers. This was a cruise of a lifetime and Celebrity made the experience a wonderful dream come true! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Having met two couples in June 2018 on the Baltic cruise on the Eclipse we decided to cruise again this year on Constellation for the Dalmatian coast cruise. Having read numerous reviews my expectation was of an older ship and I did ... Read More
Having met two couples in June 2018 on the Baltic cruise on the Eclipse we decided to cruise again this year on Constellation for the Dalmatian coast cruise. Having read numerous reviews my expectation was of an older ship and I did not expect to experience the excellence of our previous cruise. We booked early and chose Aqua class and had rooms on deck 9 I had heard poor reviews as pool deck was above us but can honestly say that other than sun beds being stored in the evening did not notice anything else. The room was spacious well designed and although old was very comfortable and our cabin attendant was superb. The Blu restaurant staff from front of house to the waiters were excellent, the sommelier terrific and the choice of wines could not be faulted and it’s a long time since I had enjoyed Port after dinner. The Spa was good and the gym always had available equipment. We went to a couple of shows and enjoyed the Cabaret night especially the Les Miserables compilation. The Frankie Valli tribute act again were very good. All in all a very good cruise and an enjoyable holiday. Highs and lows below Highs All transfers early and very good vehicles for 6 people Restaurant/ bar and cabin staff could not be faulted The ship exceeded expectation Quality of food was exceptional although restrictive for one vegetarian member. Lows Pre booking seating for flights complicated and given wrong info Check in at Venice why put trainee staff on Aqua class ? Delayed by 10 minutes on priority boarding Hard sell of packages days 1-3 it was endless Drinks packages not added to room card refer to check in Bad experience at Bocia coffee lounge where staff chose to ignore us at the front of the queue and served others resulting in leaving without a drink. We did not do any excursions with Celebrity. Re the ports of call Rijeka and Sicily did not match the rest of the locations. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Just returned from a first cruise on Constellation . Was a bit worried as some of the reviews mentioned wear and tear and dated ship. Worry not! The ship looks great, immaculately clean, a lovely stateroom, (maybe not the most modern of ... Read More
Just returned from a first cruise on Constellation . Was a bit worried as some of the reviews mentioned wear and tear and dated ship. Worry not! The ship looks great, immaculately clean, a lovely stateroom, (maybe not the most modern of colours) and beautiful communal areas. But what made this trip so good were the staff, right through from the stateroom attendant to the restaurant and the entertainment team, everyone was welcoming and attentive. Somehow they managed to combine friendliness, fun and fantastic service. Food was excellent wherever we ate, entertainment was varied and fun. Live music in bars was relaxing and not too loud. We had Free Dining and were prepared to share a table. As such, whatever time we arrived for our evening meal, we were seated immefiately. We did afternoon quizzes, fun but testing, watched football on the top deck big screen, went to the theatre each evening. The Cruise Director is a sheer delight and his sense of fun is infectious. We travelled around the Adriatic from Venice to Rome and the ports varied from the beautiful Dubrovnik to the vibrant Naples, quaint Kotor, stunning Valetta and chaotic Catania. For us the variation added interest and charm. The only thing I would pull Celebrity up on was embarkation, which was somewhat chaotic, although, that could have been due to Venice port authorities. Disembarkation was excellent. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
First time in a Millennium class ship, not overtly impressed. Needed a refurb and the layout of some areas like the buffet, elevators, main parlor were small and odd. I'll definitely make sure I'm on a solstice or edge class ... Read More
First time in a Millennium class ship, not overtly impressed. Needed a refurb and the layout of some areas like the buffet, elevators, main parlor were small and odd. I'll definitely make sure I'm on a solstice or edge class next. I enjoyed Blue as we usually do concierge class. The wine selection by the glass even for premium is seriously lacking...the wines were poor and cheap. I missed Murano. I also found the constant upsell annoying and constant. I found the guest services staff a bit rude at times. I enjoyed the change in aqua class but I'm not sure it's worth the extra money, but it was nice to try. I really enjoyed the staff at Blu and the itinerary was good with only one sea day. I would recommend the cruise maybe just not the ship itself. We didn't do any celebrity cruises excursions but booked many good ones on our own. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We hadn't planned to book Aqua Class but ended up doing so, made little use of spa but cabin was very nice well looked after by Lester. Restaurant was main benefit and it was excellent, food very good and portions small enough to eat ... Read More
We hadn't planned to book Aqua Class but ended up doing so, made little use of spa but cabin was very nice well looked after by Lester. Restaurant was main benefit and it was excellent, food very good and portions small enough to eat three courses. Front of restaurant team were outstanding and Frederick serving a delight. Somellier Enrique a star and chose great wines for us. Ports / excursions were good and we loved most, as people have said Santorini was beautiful but overun. Entertainment was better than we expected and casino staff good, had a great time with some regulars on blackjack table. Even though ship was quite full we found it easy to find quiet spots if you wanted them. Whether you can justify extra cost just for Blu is difficult but on balance we think so. Loved our first trip on Celebrity and looking at our next. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
This was my first cruise in a very long time. We spent 2 days in Venice our departure city which unfortunately was unseasonably rainy and very crowded but interesting nonetheless. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly ... Read More
This was my first cruise in a very long time. We spent 2 days in Venice our departure city which unfortunately was unseasonably rainy and very crowded but interesting nonetheless. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly despite the volume of people. The ship was lovely however our Concierge Class cabin which was reasonably spacious was looking a bit tired and we heard the ship was off to be refurbished after our cruise. Concierge Class included some nibble mid-afternoon, most of which we never touched as they were not to our liking and we finally asked for cheese and crackers daily instead which were provided. MMy friend had arranged for us to dine with a couple and their family group (11 of us in total) and although the travel agent knew we were all traveling together and we had all booked through him, somehow the arrangement didn’t happen and everyone was dining separately (apparently tables are assigned when the booking is made and everyone booked individually). The dining room host could not rearrange a table for us at our preferred sitting so we were offered a reserved table in the lower dining room where those who did not have a fixed dining time were seated. This worked out well. We also dined a few times with friends of mine who were also on the cruise and this was not a problem. The selection of food was good and mostly well executed however, as this was a cruise of the Greek Islands, I expected to eat some Greek food on-board and was told by customer service staff when I enquired pre-cruise, that fresh food is purchased from local suppliers, implying local cuisine. Apparently daily Greek specials were offered at lunch while most people were off on shore excursions! Lobster night was disappointing as the lobster tails were tiny. The food in the café where we ate breakfast was good with a large selection of “ethnic” cuisines geared to many tastes however the “Asian” food was limited to Indian. There were a number of places to have a beverage and the Martini Bar was an interesting place with a frozen surface on which to place your drink. Mostly the beverages were excellent and the advice from a wine sommelier each night was most appreciated however the lady who mixed and served our drinks was unable to make a blended margarita, even after 3 tries. We were so busy with shore excursions that we didn’t partake in any entertainment but I did use the spa for a gel manicure (which lasted a long time) and a deep tissue massage which was very good. While these were more expensive than at home, they were well done by competent staff. The service overall was very good. All staff were unfailingly pleasant, friendly and fun and went out of their way to correct anything that was not right. Shore excursions were great, thoroughly enjoyed them however as there were few sailing days, it was an extremely busy cruise. I would like to experience other cruise lines so I’m not sure I’d travel with Celebrity again, particularly after a friend told me they are the “Walmart of cruise lines”! Holland America has been highly recommended to me as well as Viking (for smaller ships). Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
It was our third cruise on X and 7th cruise overall. My wife and I in our mid 50s, loved our experience on Constellation. We had no issues with the embarkation and debarkation processes. Loved our stateroom, its location and perks ... Read More
It was our third cruise on X and 7th cruise overall. My wife and I in our mid 50s, loved our experience on Constellation. We had no issues with the embarkation and debarkation processes. Loved our stateroom, its location and perks associated with Concierge Class! Excellent and dedicated staff, have provided us with an outstanding service quality! We loved the food in the San Marco Dining Room and Oceanview Cafe. The Cruise Director and his staff welcomed us to participate in activities such as safe archery, bean toss, trivia games, bingo, Minute to win it, Deal or no Deal, Silent Disco, Karaoke/Bandeoke in addition to the traditional evening shows. We really had a good time! We used Celebrity Excursions in Dubrovnik, Chania (Souda) Crete, Athens, Mykonos, Santorini, Rhodes and Katakolon. All offered comfortable buses, very qualified guides able to explain the history behind the vestiges and for the most part, were very well organized! Santorini with 4 cruise ships in port, was a bit of a let down for us and most of the cruisers we met on our ship: The main reason is the bottle neck created in Fira, requiring all passengers to return to their ship via this single exit « door ». Passengers had to use one of the following 3 options: Cable car ( 30-45 minute chaotic line up,) Descend the 600 steps on the back of a donkey or on foot, on the path used by the donkeys, which was slippery, smelly and involved having to pass directly and unsafely close behind « parked » donkeys. This said, Santorini is and remains a very beautiful island, In short, we enjoyed a beautiful experience and this trip will remain part of our lifetime memories. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and the fact that because the Constellation is a smaller ship we could begin our cruise from Venice. Boarding was easy and within 30 minutes of arriving at the terminal we were on board. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary and the fact that because the Constellation is a smaller ship we could begin our cruise from Venice. Boarding was easy and within 30 minutes of arriving at the terminal we were on board. Throughout the cruise we found the staff to be among the most service oriented and friendliest of any of our 34 cruises. The main dining room food was excellent, although it’s obvious they have pared down the menu choices somewhat. We also ate in Sushi on 5 and Qsine and found the food and service in both to be outstanding. We took 2 ship excursions and they were excellent - one in Rhodes and one in Olympia. Tendering was handled very efficiently in Santorini - but the situation with the long wait for the on-shore gondola is ridiculous - not Celebrity’s fault though. At the rest of the ports we took private shore excursions. Entertainment on board was excellent. We enjoyed each of the production shows and the 2 guest musicians; the magician was so-so. We especially enjoyed the “extra” show of Broadway show tunes that the production cast put on on our last sea day. We always found a place to sit and relax. The trivia sessions were pure fun - no fierce competition - just a good time. Bar service was prompt and the drinks were well prepared. Our ocean view stateroom on Deck 2 was room, and our cabin attendant kept it in spotless condition. If there is one thing we would want to change it would be to add another sea day in the middle of the cruise - the pace was pretty grueling if you took advantage of truly seeing each of the ports - and we did. The ship is a little worn, but the crew works hard to keep everything running well. We like the size and layout of the ship - we never felt crowded and getting around was very easy. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2019
Solid Celebrity cruise with clean ship, great food and wonderful staff. I was a bit concerned that the ship might appear worn since it’s close to its refurbishment time, but it still looked nice. I appreciate that little things, such as ... Read More
Solid Celebrity cruise with clean ship, great food and wonderful staff. I was a bit concerned that the ship might appear worn since it’s close to its refurbishment time, but it still looked nice. I appreciate that little things, such as the art work, is kept current. Our balcony cabin was wonderful due to the expanded space. The cabin itself was clean & everything worked. (See further description under cabin) Loved our steward. Our last Celebrity cruise was on the concierge class and I missed our little appetizer plate in the late afternoon! We were 3 couples traveling together and all of us found activities to our liking. The musical performers around the ship were excellent. The shows in the main showroom were okay. They had some fun & different late night activities in a lounge. One of our group really enjoyed the apple class he took on board. We will book Celebrity again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Wonderful cruise with a great itinerary.. The service was incredible and the food was great. Traveled with a group of 14 people. No complaints from anyone. None of us had a bad meal on the cruise. Every crew member that we encountered ... Read More
Wonderful cruise with a great itinerary.. The service was incredible and the food was great. Traveled with a group of 14 people. No complaints from anyone. None of us had a bad meal on the cruise. Every crew member that we encountered bent over backwards to make sure we were happy. Loved the ports we visited. Drubrovnik and Santorini were our favorite stops. We used ship excursions in Athens and Santorini. Both excursions were as advertised. On both excursions the guide was very informative and helpful. In Santorini, the only issue was the long line to use the cable car to get back down to the ship. Very crowded due to 4 cruise ships in port. I wish the coach could have taken us back to the port where they picked us up as an option other than the cable car or walking down over 500 steps. Other excursions apparently did that. Our cabin was very clean and the attendant was responsive when we needed him but left us alone when we didn’t. Overall the ship was very clean and comfortable. We went to the outdoor terrace several times and used a free cabana to watch movies. Movies show multiple times per day. Our group dined in the Tuscan grill one night. The food and service was truly fantastic. For a $45 additional charge per person we thought it was a great deal. I didn’t use the fitness facility but the activities on the ship were plentiful and the few that we went to were fun. The “silent disco” was a blast. We also watched a couple of game show like entertainment activities and they were fun. The shows were very good but not all great as compared to other cruises. Live music around the ship was very good. Each day there were musicians and singers performing in various areas. I really enjoyed them. Reading some of the criticism here on the website made me wonder if we were doing the right thing by taking this cruise. I found everything to be great. Sure, if you look hard enough, you can find a rust spot. I think the ship is in great shape. We really like this size of ship and the reviews that I had read criticizing the ship are too harsh. Nothing wrong at all with this ship in my opinion. In our view when the ships get so big and carry 4-5 thousand passengers, the amenities get harder to access. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I was disappointed in this cruise, and I don't think I will sail with Celebrity again. The food was nothing special at all; and we didn't think it was any better in the 2 specialty restaurants we tried. The cafe desserts ... Read More
I was disappointed in this cruise, and I don't think I will sail with Celebrity again. The food was nothing special at all; and we didn't think it was any better in the 2 specialty restaurants we tried. The cafe desserts never changed and were less than ordinary. We also didn't find the staff to be very friendly. They rarely smiled or tried to be pleasant it seemed. There were some who were great (and our stateroom guy was great) but in general many were mostly disappointing. They nickel and dime you; and won't even print boarding passes for those that don't have an internet package! They charge for ice cream(for some) at the ice cream place across from the cafe! Entertainment was so so. The computer room guys were not helpful or knowledgeable. Many of the staff were on the their phones! always pulling their phones out of their pockets and looking at them. Not enough activities and not varied enough. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
I enjoyed the people I met on the cruise. I found the service from the staff to have been wonderful. The ship is clean and well maintained. Most of the entertainment was good; however, It wasn't horrible; it was just not great. Food ... Read More
I enjoyed the people I met on the cruise. I found the service from the staff to have been wonderful. The ship is clean and well maintained. Most of the entertainment was good; however, It wasn't horrible; it was just not great. Food was good, but to get great food, one has to eat in specialty restaurants. Bottled water, soda, and juice is now an extra, and the constant marketing of restaurants, Internet packages, and drink packages is annoying. In the past, Guest Relations would confirm your return flight. Now, unless you have purchased the Internet package, one must pay $34 for an hour of Internet usage to spend the 5-10 minutes it takes to log on to the airline and reconfirm the flight. I find that kind of nickel and diming annoying. Had I been a first-time cruiser, perhaps I would not feel so strongly, as I would not know any better. As for the ports of call, I enjoyed most, but the level of enjoyment was tempered by the crowding in some ports, especially the beautiful Santorini, where tourism is out of control. And despite the crowds in most ports, our tour guides told us that this is "low season" and the the overcrowding that we experienced was nothing compared to what it will be like over the summer. God help those traveling then. Had a good time and will not travel again with Celebrity, I wish I did not feel as though I constantly had to shake the piggy bank every day for what should be just routine service. Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We are a Canadian couple in our early 50's have done both cruising and all inclusive packages. This was our 20th cruise and 2nd with Celebrity. ( some back ground details so you understand this was not our first experience at ... Read More
We are a Canadian couple in our early 50's have done both cruising and all inclusive packages. This was our 20th cruise and 2nd with Celebrity. ( some back ground details so you understand this was not our first experience at travel.) We had chosen Celebrity as this was our second European journey with Celebrity. Love the size of the ships and the itineraries. We also landed a few perks that were nice incentives as well. Embarkation was smooth and quick in Venice. We did stay at an Airbnb for 3 days prior to tour around. Water taxis are easy to negotiate in Venice. Purchase a multi day pass and explore on and off. We water taxied from the airport to our Airbnb. Easy peasy. Just research in advance. We were on the ship in 20 mins of arrival at the port. Smooth, checked in and eating our lunch on board at 12:30 cabins were ready at 1:30 luggage at room by 2:30pm Muster drill at 3:45ish then off to the races for 10 amazing days. The ship is wonderful. My only complaint. Not even a complaint more of an observation was the main piazza. It really did not exist like in most ships there is a vast opening from the 3rd floor all the way up to the 7th. Seats all around so you can ppl watch and listen to entertainment. As this is an older ship the design, it is quint and areas are choppy. Like I said an observation and unique. Not a disappointment. The staff were friendly and polite at all times. They are hard working people miles away from their families for months on end to ensure that we as passengers have a pleasurable experience. I often get to know our waiters, they have wonderful stories. Food was excellent. Bar service never an issue. The Classic booze package was just perfect. House wines wonderful, from Tuscany, Chili, South Africa to name a few. Did not feel the pressure to upsell at all. Spirits were plentiful and mid range. Really unless you are a alcohol expert Classic is perfect. Cabin was well appointed. Balcony was perfect size, room steward was tentative. Our ports. 1. Koper Slovenia: itself is very small, so an hour or so is likely to be enough time to stroll then head out and explore. Ships dock opposite a lift which takes you up to town level. You can also walk its about 6mins. We took the public from Koper to Piran which is a really pretty town a little along the coast and the drive there and back has some scenery too. Regular city buses and inexpensive. Travel every 30 mins to and from Piran is a must. Go to the info centre and we booked a 7 Euro per person walking tour for 90 mins. It was excellent. Such a beautiful spot and have the narrative along the way was exceptional. Eat at a seaside restaurant. Excellent seafood. 2. Zadar Croatia: Free shuttle from the ship to town. Bus lets you off at the boardwalk first hit the The Sea Organs (http://vinovo.magnify.net/video/ZADAR-Morske-orgulje-Sea-Orga) Then continue on the board walk into old town. Explore I suggest you stay in the old part of the town, sit in a caffees, do some people watching, than change a spot and do the same. The church St. Donat and the treasury chamber are worth the visit inside, other than that Zadar is more an experience of strolling through the streets (like ST. Paul de Vence near Nice or Aix a Provance near Marsellies if you are familiar). 3. Dubrovnik Croatia. Having stayed there 6 yrs ago did not want to visit old town. That is amazing and walk to the bus terminal which is adjacent to the cruise terminal and busses travel to and from old town for cheap. .The ship charges 5 xs the cost for the same thing. We opted to visit sea-side town of Cavtat. Not a long bus ride but what a beautiful town. We just strolled along the waterside that borders the town. Swam in the Adriatic. 5 areas to sun yourself on a pier. rent chairs and relax for a couple of hours. A lot of nice café’s and places to sit as you walk. Hiking / walking paths easily marked worth strolling. What a great day and a must see this town. A ferry ride back to Dubrovnik or the bus. we opted for the bus as it brought us back to the terminal next to the ship. You can take Libertas #10 from the Gruz Harbor directly to Cavtat. Bus cost is 25 Kuna per person, no foreign currency. Take the small boat back to the old town, 4.Kotor Montenegro. Wake up early and watch the sights pulling into the harbor.Bay of Kotor surrounded by steep,mountains lined with historic buildings, churches, towers, docks, and marinas along the shore. It’s onthe list of the 25 most beautiful bays in the world. We tendered and walked the stairs 430 up the side of the mountain. The views amazing. Arrive early and do this. the hike up is aprox 50 mins. Not for the faint of heart. Bring water. The walk down was good but started to get crowed by fellow tourists. Spend the rest of the day in Old town getting lost in the streets and enjoy an Aperol Sprits and seafood. 5. Sea day..need I say more. Sleep in and enjoy the amenities of the ship. Message special at the spa for this day. FYI. Book it the evening before they promo that on the ship. 6 & 7. Malta Valetta. 2 days. purchase the hop on hop off pass for 2 days. 32.00 usa and it is charged to your room by the ship. Excellent cheap way to see the Island. We did the red line one day and the blue line the next. Spent time in the old town. they have 2 for 1 dinks on the main street. 2 aperol spritz for the price of one. Good way to finish an afternoon. We swam in the Mediterranean at the Grotto. 8. Sicily - Sircusa ( did not stop in Catania Italy due to berth availability.) Sircusa was an amazing surprise. Tender to the Island. Walk to the right. find the market what a great experience. The market with the local produce, spices, cheeses and the vibe of the shop keepers. Stoll old town and have a lunch. Walk the marina. Impressive yachts. 9. Naples. Having been before we opted for the Fast ferry to Capri. Beautiful, stunning and totally worth the 40min Ferry ride. Ferry from Naples to Capri departs at 8:35 / 9:10 Purchase at the ferry. Once on Capri immediately purchase ticket for Naples ( fills up fast) Capri harbour a taxi or trolly up to the town for glorious views - especially dizzying vertical views waaaaay down to sea- level from viewpoints on the edge of town. Capri there are a number of little restaurants and shops right by the docks Don't buy the ticket online ahead of time. When you get off the ship just go to the left and you can buy your ticket. Check the schedules though as you may not want a round trip with the ferry company. Some are faster then others. If you aren't going round trip with the same company just buy your ticket in Capri right there when you get there and you are set for your return. Be sure to do the chair lift, the views are amazing!!!!!!. We hiked the Arco Nature walk. totally worth the view. took us 25 mins of meandering through small walk ways with surprising views around each corner. Away from the crowds. It was fabulous. We had a great sea view lunch then back to the ship on the 2:50 Ferry gave us time to relax on the ship. 10. Rome. Having been before. Unfortunately high tailed it to the airport. aprox 50 mins from the port. Pre arrange a driver. Fellow travellers are congested at this port trying to arrange for transportation. If you choose to do Rome for a few days. It is a must. Book and Airbnb. Book tours through Viator. and take in the sights and food you will not be disappointed. This was an amazing journey. My apologies if this seemed long winded. These reviews do help me with journaling my travels. I found these tips to be of help for me while doing my research. I hope this will be of benefit to others. Celebrity will not disappoint. Bon voyage. Ciao Safe travels. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We were pleasantly surprised by the upgrade fairy at check-in moving us from an OV to a Veranda. This was our tenth cruise on an M-class ship and our fourth on Connie. As with most Celebrity crews, the hotel officers were visible and ... Read More
We were pleasantly surprised by the upgrade fairy at check-in moving us from an OV to a Veranda. This was our tenth cruise on an M-class ship and our fourth on Connie. As with most Celebrity crews, the hotel officers were visible and approachable throughout the ship, particularly in the evenings. The ship itself is in very good condition considering it has been at sea for 17 years. We are looking forward to the Edgification of the M-class ships as some of the furnishings are showing their age. With the exception of our room steward who needed reminders occasionally, we found the remainder of the crew excellent, particularly Santosa and his team in the MDR. We felt the food was very good and delivered hot each and every time. The menu selections were broad and tasty. Embarkation in Venice was a breeze. We disembarked at the older terminal (tent structure) in Civitavecchia and found it sufficient. Porters were readily available. We particular enjoy the entertainment on Celebrity and found both the cast shows and single entertainers very good. (This is one of the reasons we prefer X over HAL.) Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
Visiting Eastern Med coast was our chief aim. We boarded early having booked a taxi from our hotel, the driver came rather sooner than needed but we were welcomed by CC st the port and boarded after a short wait. Our steward, Lourdes, ... Read More
Visiting Eastern Med coast was our chief aim. We boarded early having booked a taxi from our hotel, the driver came rather sooner than needed but we were welcomed by CC st the port and boarded after a short wait. Our steward, Lourdes, welcomed us too and gave very good service. However, she asked that we put our bags out before dinner on the last night as she had to move them all which was surprising. The organisation in MDR was chaotic on the first night and we had to queue for quite a time despite having gone through the tedious process of pre booking on line before we left. It was much better Day 2 onwards. I would like to have had the same waiter every night as one particular team was very good. Our sommelier was excellent. He explained the lack of our usual wine as the container hadn’ t caught up with the ship and wine was being locally sourced. He always came up with something good though. Trying to book shore excursions on line proved frustrating. We particularly wanted to visit a National Park in Croatia. No way say Celebrity! Over 70’s are banned! I am more fit than many of the younger people on that ship but was told it was an insurance issue. Talking to other passengers, one was keen cyclist was banned from a cycle ride and another couple from a wine tasting in botanical gardens for the same reason! Get a grip Celebrity! Azamara and Saga do the same excursions with no age limit. ..... using the common sense approach. In the event, a note on Cruise Critic was answered by a lady who had organised a private tour and asked us to join them. Age range on this group of 7? 19 to 86 and we all managed very well! We booked a trip to Mt Etna from Catania only to wake up in Syracuse! Apparently there wasn’t a berth for us! Really? Were CC gazumped for the space? No explanation was given. This meant an unplanned tendering, late departure of the CC tour and an extra 2 hours travelling. We were offered a discount on excursions, if booked on board, so we made the required appt with the Shore Ex manager and sat there while he told us what he liked about India, what he would do and how we should immerse ourselves in the environment etc. He took no notice of my discomfort in crowds and our desire to see countryside. In the end, we left and made a list and returned with a detailed list leaving no room for discussion. Our first CC tour was excellent. We went to beautiful Lake led, were rowed to the island and had an excellent, infirmative guide. We have cruised with Celebrity quite a few times a enjoy the ships but corners are being cut to the customers detriment which is sad. I am sure savings could be made less conspicuously. Do they really need to change an unmarked tab,e cloth after every customer? Could they leave the bed linen an extra day? More eco friendly, cheaper and less wear on the linen from washing! We have got further cruises booked with CC but it is not the experience we have been used to. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Our recent trip on Celebrity Constellation from Venice to Rome was a disappointment. The number of people, the noisy activities, the lack of basic information and the continual selling of products produced a less desirable atmosphere. ... Read More
Our recent trip on Celebrity Constellation from Venice to Rome was a disappointment. The number of people, the noisy activities, the lack of basic information and the continual selling of products produced a less desirable atmosphere. Also, in many ways it was like going to a private club where one did not know the rules. Throughout the cruise we were finding out how things worked or what was or was not available, such as no access to the Reflections lounge in late afternoon unless you were a frequent passenger of Celebrity. I did not feel welcome. The company failed to provide details such as floor plans in each cabin although there was room for a 48-page catalogue of the art work that could be purchased. Basic information about the ports that we visited was not given to passengers although I discovered partway through the cruise that the concierge had some information. And sometimes there were a few maps etc. available if you knew where to look and got them before they ran out. Celebrity advertises its select Dining program as allowing “guests flexibility with evening dining. Guests select to dine between the hours of 6:00-9:30 each evening, much like a regular restaurant”. But the reality is quite different. On the first day we learned that reservations could only be made before 6 pm or after 8:30 pm and only one day in advance, not for the entire cruise. Partway through the cruise we learned that pagers were available so that you could check in earlier than 8:45 pm (the first available evening reservation) and wait to be called (usually 30-45 minutes). As part of the three-dinner specialty restaurant package, we were assigned on the first evening to the Qsine Restaurant, a restaurant that offers a “unique experience”. Here we sat on mismatched chairs and tried to order from icons on a computer tablet. It was not a relaxing environment, especially when the trendy tubes that doubled as spoons spilled melted ice-cream all over our hands. The Tuscan Restaurant was excellent. We selected this cruise because it was one of the few companies offering two days in Malta, a place with a rich history. However, there were no presentations on Malta but there was time for a talk on gemstones. I was told that it was a corporate decision about when to offer “enrichment” talks. Similarly, it was a corporate decision to put the office of the concierge in the library. Hence, the quiet atmosphere was interrupted by phone calls and visits by passengers seeking information from the concierge. In addition, the open staircase in the library led to the computer room where there were classes and other noisy activities such as selling new tablets. The emphasis on the cruise seemed to be one of selling: either new products (tablets, clothes, watches, art work) or packages for activities during the cruise (internet, beverage, dining etc.). For me, travel is an opportunity to experience new places and learn about their history; clearly, my objectives and those of Celebrity are at variance. My lesson – choose another company. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise (10 night Adriatic) because of the itinerary, Venice, Koper, Zadar, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Valletta, Catania and Rome. This was our first cruise with Celebrity, though not new to cruising, having sailed with several ... Read More
We chose this cruise (10 night Adriatic) because of the itinerary, Venice, Koper, Zadar, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Valletta, Catania and Rome. This was our first cruise with Celebrity, though not new to cruising, having sailed with several cruise lines previously. From start to finish our overall impression was understated excellence, professionalism and service. The Constellation is clearly an old ship, does not have the glitz like other ships but for us this was not an issue, quite the contrary. There was plenty of quality seating, even on the 'sea day' Use of the vast Thalassotherapy pool open to all guests without further cost and despite every cabin being taken there was no feeling of being the vessel being cramped. During the cruise the Master was notified that the Constellation could not berth at Catania, so overnight arrangements were made to tender in Siracusa. Free transport was laid on for those wishing to go to Catania. Having heard the comments from those who visited both it seems that consideration should be given to making Siracusa as the destiny, not Catania. A couple of issues, we chose to arrange flights and hotel stay ourselves, this saved £500 on the Celebrity quote. Celebrity charged $15 per overs on for port to town drop off, all the other cruise lines did this without cost, though charged for other things like premier seating. We found the cost of shore excursions exhorbitive and as such made our own arrangements. Tender to shore arrangements were poor, in Kotor the tender took 30 minutes. Despite somewhat lengthy queues waiting for tenders and preferential tendering for 'preferred guests', no seating was provided for disabled guests. As someone that uses walking aids I found the need for lengthy standing very hard. This was the only blot on what would have been a perfect cruise experience and needs addressing. In short, whilst we still book cruises for the itinerary, if we have the opportunity to sail with Celebrity again we would go without hesitation. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this cruise as it was docking in places we would like to visit. We didnt have chance to actually visit Venice, but sailing out was a sight to remember. The ship, Celebrity Constellation was beautiful, the staff amazing and all ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was docking in places we would like to visit. We didnt have chance to actually visit Venice, but sailing out was a sight to remember. The ship, Celebrity Constellation was beautiful, the staff amazing and all the facilities were more than we expected. Our cabin, with balcony was roomy, plenty of storage and we enjoyed breakfast on the balcony bought to us on mornings we ordered it for-such a luxury. All meals were delicious, from breakfast, lunch at the grill and dinner in the evening with our two amazing waiters Clint and Michael, they were so attentive, even though they looked after several tables. Nothing was any bother and our meals were perfect. All staff were very polite and helpful, Ricia in the coffee lounge, with the amazing array of cakes and variety of coffees- we were very spoilt. The entertainment was first class and we looked forward to this each evening- very professional All staff provide such a wonderful service to all the guests and always have a smile. Docking at the ports and disembarking was straightforward, if you timed it right not long to disembark and embark - we were really grateful for the ice cold flannels on return too. We would definitely love to go again as we are now hooked after our first cruise and are already looking for one that will take in Barcelona for a day or so. We travelled with our friends and had a wonderful 9 days and nights seeing some lovely places and generally enjoying every minute. Thank you all so much . Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Had an excellent cruise on the Constellation. Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, Malta, and Sicily are beautiful. The best scenery ever! So glad we had an outside cabin as we were able to see the wonderful ports as we pulled in and out of ... Read More
Had an excellent cruise on the Constellation. Slovenia, Croatia, Montenegro, Malta, and Sicily are beautiful. The best scenery ever! So glad we had an outside cabin as we were able to see the wonderful ports as we pulled in and out of them, starting with Venice. The most spectacular was Montenegro. Having breakfast on our balcony as we pulled into Kotor-can't beat that experience. We used the ship's shore excursions. We like to get out and see the countryside, so we chose those that go beyond the cities. All were informative, interesting, and well-organized with either a meal or snack and plenty of time on our own. The food was pretty good. I did not go hungry. I actually gained 10 pounds...We ate in the buffet and tried Tuscan Grille the first night at a discount and Qsine. Tuscan was good. Qsine the first time was fabulous. Decided to go again and unfortunately the second time it was not. The waiter makes a huge difference at Qsine. My favorite parts of this cruise were learning the history of the region with local guides, spending two days in Malta and spending quality time with my husband (as always). I can't wait for my next Celebrity cruise. Headed to Australia in 2020. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
For me, the highlights of this cruise were the views sailing in and out of beautiful ports: Venice, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Valletta. Service was great. Our cabin steward was excellent. After day one, he’d identified my favourite teabags ... Read More
For me, the highlights of this cruise were the views sailing in and out of beautiful ports: Venice, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Valletta. Service was great. Our cabin steward was excellent. After day one, he’d identified my favourite teabags and made sure I had plenty of them every day without me having to ask, which made me very happy! Embarkation, disembarkation and shore excursions were all very well organised and punctual. I liked how we would be sent off to start our tours as soon as there were enough people at the meeting point in the theatre for a bus full - meant we didn’t have to wait around for late-comers, and often we got going 10-15 minutes early. We had one tender port (Kotor) and were able to get on a tender without waiting either end. Food in the MDR was a bit hit and miss - some really nice courses, some mediocre. There were queues at 7.00pm for Select Dining on the first two nights and we got sent away with beepers for 20-30 mins. On the first night, when we came out at about 8.30pm, there was a big queue and people looking very fed up. After the first two nights, it settled down and we were able to go straight in. The tables for two are too close to their neighbours. The service was prompt and efficient. I thought the buffet for breakfast and lunch was excellent. There was a really wide range of food options, prompt table service for drinks, helpful and friendly staff. We ate there a couple of evenings but I didn’t like that so much - it was sparsely used, with several closed food stations which made it a bit depressing. We didn’t use the pools much as this was such a port intensive cruise. The pool area was a bit noisy and crowded to relax properly so we tended to sit on our balcony instead. Also really enjoyed the views from the Sky lounge. Sailing out of Kotor in the early evening, sitting by the panoramic windows in the Sky lounge with a glass of wine in my hand, has to be one of those experiences that will stay with me for a long time. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Saw the cruise advertised in the newspaper and it looked very appealing. The cost was just over £5000 but as my wife and I were about to celebrate "special birthdays" and wedding anniversary we thought we would treat ourselves ... Read More
Saw the cruise advertised in the newspaper and it looked very appealing. The cost was just over £5000 but as my wife and I were about to celebrate "special birthdays" and wedding anniversary we thought we would treat ourselves to a "special Holiday". We even upgraded to concierge class for that little bit of extra luxury and service. None of which did we get. Flew to Venice via the private terminal Stanstead. Very nice. On arrival in Venice the fast boarding we had paid extra for in "concierge" just didn't happen. We queued with everybody else. The ship itself turned out to be very disappointing . Very old and held together for the most part by paint. A lot of the internal furnishings had also seen better days. On Entering our cabin we were greeted with a torn valance around the bed, water marks on all the surfaces left by glasses and a large grease mark on the wardrobe door. All of which were still there when we left the ship 10 days later. The balcony had dirty screens and were covered with paint. Obviously the ships painters didn't use Specsavers as this was quite prominent all over the ship. Dining. On our previous cruises we have always had late dining sitting. On this ship, for reasons unknown to ourselves we were given "Select Dining". That in a nutshell is when you stand and wait outside the dining room until there is room for you to eat. Hurried through so as to make room for the people still waiting outside. Awful Entertainment was very good as was the places we visited on the cruise. Tipping. I always have a problem with this on cruises and on this ship I felt it really was in your face. I don't disagree with tipping in the long run but what these shipping lines seem to recommend is rather disgusting. If all the passengers were to abide to their tipping recommendations, this ship would have made just short of a million dollars. Ridiculous. I paid my own tips to the people that I had had dealings with and it obviously was not enough as they never spoke to me again. Disembarkation went very smoothly and to be frank, I was rather looking forward to getting Summary. I don't think that I shall be cruising for a long long time. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We had chosen celebrity as we were under the Impression they had the best most Morden ships that catered towards adults, and a focus on well being etc How wrong we where. Its full of children and the ship is so old and run down it was ... Read More
We had chosen celebrity as we were under the Impression they had the best most Morden ships that catered towards adults, and a focus on well being etc How wrong we where. Its full of children and the ship is so old and run down it was just so naff. You will not get a seat by the pool st any point during your stay and even if you did it will be ruined by screaming children and awful singers and party games. You’ll be charged 18% on every single bill, no matter how long it takes them to bring what ever you’ve asked for, which will most likely come wrong or cold The buffet restaurant is a absolutle zoo, you’ll be lucky to find a table let alone a clean one. The San Marco restaurant is trying to be 5^ food wise but it just isn’t the food is missing something, it’s not that it’s totally bland it just isn’t good enough for the price of the cruise. The ship needs some serious maintenance, paint all over every window in the restaurant and dreadful 80s decor. There’s nothing to do but drink and shop, and at every stage they will try to flog you something, usually a over priced Rolex or a photo package The tours are all over priced by 4x at least. We got a taxi transfer for €15 and celebrity wanted €60 each! You get around 8 hours in port if you get off the boat at 7 and return at the last on board time of 4ish The entertainment is quite good but very cruise ship, think singers who couldn’t make it past the live stages of X factor The other activities are all over priced, £39 to play bingo EACH! Everywhere is full of fat rude Americans which just makes matters worse. Awful holiday and I will never return. Read Less
Celebrity Constellation Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 5.0 4.0
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.5
Enrichment 4.0 3.4
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 4.0 4.1

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