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Travelcat2

Can you have a luxury experience by booking a top suite on Celebrity?

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This has nothing to do with anything. Last nights dessert. Dark chocolate mousse with some kind of cake and fruit. The things on top of the mousse are some type of gelatin. Very rich but yummy.

 

 

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Had an interesting morning. Breakfast at Luminae - Dennis got a coffee in Michaels Club after breakfast as he has been hearing me talk about Nespresso machines (favorably mentioned by several European CC members in the past). He made an espresso - will try the coffee tomorrow and he loved it. He doesn’t like the other coffee onboard. Hmmmm, maybe a good Christmas.

 

Enjoying your posts very much as I always do.

 

As for Nespress, we were first fans of it in Europe where for many many years almost all five star hotels had The machines and coffee. When it first came to the US we bought the original model and loved it. We now have the Vertuo machine and everyone we make coffee for loves it as much as we do.This is a machine for European style coffee.

I am sure Dennis will love his gift.

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:D

 

. . . .

Several posts ago Catlover (cannot recall her full CC name) was asking about the Jacuzzi on the balcony. I finally decided to fill it so that I could answer the question. After a lot of rust came out of the taps, I cleared the tub and waited until it filled past the jets. It took a while and the water wasn’t as hot as one would want. Finally it was ready and it would not turn on. So much for that. The Jacuzzi in the bathroom is much better (quite large) with more jets — isn’t rusty and is a much better choice. . . .

.

 

TC, thx for checking out the disappointing balcony Jacuzzi. I would be quite miffed if I paid extra for a suite with a balcony Jacuzzi and the water was not warm enough, much less bubbling. My guess is by the time I would call to fix it and they processed the work order, my cruise would be over, assuming they could even fix it.

 

One nice thing on the luxury lines I like is the excellent maintenance of suite bathroom, electric, phones, and furniture basics ( usually, anyway — I had a howling sliding door on a stormy Crystal cruise). I always carry my own bathtub stopper as most places the one in the tub does not work, unless DH fixes it. Fewpeople take baths when cruising, and even fewer complain, so presumably for most this is unimportant.

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TC, thx for checking out the disappointing balcony Jacuzzi. I would be quite miffed if I paid extra for a suite with a balcony Jacuzzi and the water was not warm enough, much less bubbling. My guess is by the time I would call to fix it and they processed the work order, my cruise would be over, assuming they could even fix it.

 

One nice thing on the luxury lines I like is the excellent maintenance of suite bathroom, electric, phones, and furniture basics ( usually, anyway — I had a howling sliding door on a stormy Crystal cruise). I always carry my own bathtub stopper as most places the one in the tub does not work, unless DH fixes it. Fewpeople take baths when cruising, and even fewer complain, so presumably for most this is unimportant.

 

It's important to me!!! I love taking baths on ships. Something about the wonderful bath products and all that warm water sloshing around!!! Very pleasant!

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Haven't posted much because we keep changing our minds as to what we think of Celebrity and whether or not we would return. At one point I thought that if I heard "washy washy" one more time I would scream (figuratively). When you board the ship, board the tender or go to a non-specialty restaurant, someone is at the door to put a drop of Purell onto your hands and they say "washy washy". This is exactly what was done on NCL and was annoying. Interestingly, when you go Luminae or Michael's Club (both for suite passengers only) there is a Purell "station" and you sanitize your hands without a reminder.

 

Today, in Monterey, we had so much fun walking around. I was looking for a specific Chinese restaurant but on the way, we found two pubs which intrigued both of us. We love British food (not surprising since I'm married to a Brit). After a few discussions, we went to a pub and had a pint and bangers and mash -- probably the best we have had outside of London. My DH cooks for us on Saturdays and I've already requested Shepherds pie next Saturday. IMO, he makes the best!

 

Tonight was the first failure at Luminae. The wedge salad had wilted lettuce, poor blue cheese as well as blue cheese dressing. The risotto was crunchy (undercooked), the lobster was tough and not tasty at all. We had plenty to eat but it was not as good as what we have become accustomed to.

 

It may take a week or so while we digest everything from our cruise before I can really review the cruise. Sometimes we get so caught up in the moment that what we feel a week from now may be different.

 

I also want to mention that this ship (launched in 2001) looks wonderful inside but the outside has been neglected. While we sat on the ugly, worn and deteriorating tender, we noticed things growing on the bottom half of the ship (barnacles, etc.). It appears that this part of the ship hasn't been touched in years.

 

Still, we have had a wonderful cruise an are not sure how we will feel in a week.

 

Maybe more to come - maybe not.

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Thank you for your coverage! A couple more nagging questions if you have time:

 

1. Did you have priority embarkation and disembarkation at both tender and non-tender ports after Vancouver?

If not, how long did it take to get on, and off?

 

2. Did you mingle with any non-suite pax?

 

3. Were there opportunities to join a table with others you did not know?

 

4. Last but not least, was there in-room coffee? If not, where and how early could you get ship’s coffee, or through room service, and was it drinkable?

 

5. Did they do afternoon tea and cakes? Was the tea in bags, or loose leaf?

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I also want to mention that this ship (launched in 2001) looks wonderful inside but the outside has been neglected. While we sat on the ugly, worn and deteriorating tender, we noticed things growing on the bottom half of the ship (barnacles, etc.). It appears that this part of the ship hasn't been touched in years.

 

Maybe more to come - maybe not.

 

The under water portion can normally only be maintained in dry-dock, which is every 5 years. However, if they have extensive growth on the hull they would normally bring in divers, due to additional fuel costs.

 

She would have dry-docked in 2016 and her next docking is not scheduled until 2021.

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Travelcat2,

 

Shepherds Pie.

 

Followed by Bread & Butter Pudding and Custard????

 

My DH makes the best Shepherds Pie that I’ve ever had so we don’t order it anywhere. On the other hand, finding good bangers is not an easy thing for us (no British or Irish pubs within 50 miles of our home).

 

Have not had Bread & Butter Pudding and Custard but it sounds good (love custard).

 

Heidi13 - thank you for the information regarding maintenance of the bottom of the ship. Unfortunately this ship looks pretty cruddy (for lack of a better word) - the tenders are splattered with dried paint and the tenders are worn and dirty.

 

Catlover54. They do gave priority boarding for the ship and tenders and priority disembarkation and tender boarding as well. We used the special tender boarding this morning. We were escorted by the Concierge in Michael’s Club to the first tender and had to wait for the rest of the tender to fill (maybe 10 minutes - they wern’t very efficient)

 

The issue is getting back on the tender. Long lines and no priority for the line. It was an hour and a half prior to the ship departure so tenders were going back and forth quickly. Again, the wait may have been 10-15 minutes - not what we are used to but pretty good for a ship of this size.

 

I cannot think of any opportunities to dine at a table with others but we have not dined in the sit-down restaurant that has both open seating and set seating. I suppose you could make a dining reservation for 4-6 people. The Little Chef has a huge table that likely seats 12 but the majority of the tables in the specialty restaurants are for 2 or 4.

 

Yes - we have mingled with non-suite guests and have actually found many of the friendlier than on luxury cruise lines which we found surprising. We tend to sit at the bar in order to watch and interact with the bartenders. This is also a great way to meet people. On this ship the Martini Bar is usually full but we got a seat last night and met a lovely couple that sat next to us.

 

No in-suite coffee (very surprising). For suite guests, Michael’s Club is open 24/7 and they have a Nespresso machine. Sorry but I don’t know what non-suite guests do. There is a coffee place that charges for coffee (no charge for suite guests) but there must be something better than that.

 

Back to packing. Really miss our kitties and are so looking forward to cuddling with them tomorrow night:-)

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Thanks again for taking the time to post! Last spring, when my wife and I were on our South American cruise, there was a Regent ship that followed us down the coast, stopping with us the same day at all the ports heading south to Ushuaia. I don’t remember what it was, but your comments about the ship’s hull reminded me of an overwhelming amount of rust stains I noticed on the Regent ship’s hull. At the time, I remember thinking that it certainly wasn’t conveying the impression of a beautifully maintained ship.

 

Knowing that both ships are in actuality well maintained, that each one represents an investment of hundreds of millions of dollars, which both lines want to keep sea worthy for as long as possible, I’m inclined to think that there might be issues we don’t know about concerning how and when hulls are cleaned. That said, those rust stains should have been relatively easy to paint out.

 

 

 

 

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At the airport in San Diego waiting to board. When I have time to reflect on the cruise, I’l do a review on this thread.

 

I neglected to answer the question about tea and cakes in the afternoon. No, Celebrity does not have it. The only tea I saw was in Michael’s Club (likely much better than than other places on the ship) and it was teabags (good ones - I’m forgetting the brand at the minute but the string has a leaf attached at the end).

 

Paul, you likely saw the Navigator on your South American cruise. We see people painting the side of the ship in many ports so they usually look pretty good. I did find it interesting that the interior of the Infinity was kept up better than on Voyager (for instance). Carpets were immaculate and the furniture was in pretty good condition. As mentioned earlier, every inch of the bathrooms have been refurbished which I believe that Regent needs to do with their three older ships.

 

More in a day or so.

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We did have an afternoon tea in Michael's Club but the quality of the items wasn't very good. We gave up after trying pretty much everything they offered on two different days. Cheap creams, way to sweet, basically what you can buy in any supermarket.

The premium (pay for) tea bags were okay. I don't remember whether you got them for free in Michael's.

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We did have an afternoon tea in Michael's Club but the quality of the items wasn't very good. We gave up after trying pretty much everything they offered on two different days. Cheap creams, way to sweet, basically what you can buy in any supermarket.

The premium (pay for) tea bags were okay. I don't remember whether you got them for free in Michael's.

 

Thanks for that information. I read that we were "entitled to" one tea and champagne event in Michael's but never heard more about it. The premium tea bags had no cost at Michael's.

 

Just got home - more tomorrow.

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It's important to me!!! I love taking baths on ships. Something about the wonderful bath products and all that warm water sloshing around!!! Very pleasant!

 

Hmmmmm you know, I have never used the bath on a ship! Well for one, I’m a shower person. But on NCL we usually cruise in a Haven 2br 2ba with that lovely huge (relatively speaking) jetted tub with the large window which makes my first statement stranger still! Every time I tell myself that I must, I should... but the bath salts go untouched by the end of the cruise. I think it is due to the fact we are usually in quite late and it seems more a task than enjoyable at that point. But the next time we are there, at the first of the coming year, I will definitely try the bath on the high seas on your recommendation! :D

 

Lynn

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Not sure where to begin on the review without making it too long and convoluted. I'll try my best.......

 

What we really enjoyed:

 

1. Luminae - the restaurant for suite guests and top level loyalty guests. Excellent food and service.

 

2. Michael's Club - the lounge for suite guests, etc. The Concierge in Michael's is a superstar. She is happy to escort guests to the gangway (for priority tendering) or to a restaurant when you don't know where it is. The servers/bartenders are also excellent - friendly and accommodating. IMO, crew members in either of these venues could easily work on a luxury cruise line.

 

3. Enjoyed two of the three specialty restaurants - Sushi on 5 and Qsine's Little Chef. While quirky and funny, this animated dinner is actually quite good. I could eat the sushi forever - the best sushi that we have had at sea.

 

4. Other passengers - very friendly and do not have the attitude that they paid for the cruise and therefore do not care what others think.

 

5. Customer service from corporate. Such a surprise. Our contact person at Celebrity was only a email or phone call away. He was wonderful answering questions for this newbie. Two weeks prior to the cruise we received a phone call from a Concierge at corporate checking to see how we want the suite made up (bed(s), alcohol, pillow, etc.). Two days before we left she send us photos of where we should be when we arrive at the terminal in Vancouver. The photos really helped for this very busy port.

 

6. Great promotion! While suite guests can dine in specialty restaurants at no cost (a savings of between $35 and $55/person each time you visit a specialty restaurant). Suite guests also receive included internet for two people (one log on each) and the premium beverage package for two (normally $69/day/person) The promotion gave us included tips and $300 OBC (and the prices of some of their "gift" type things are really inexpensive).

 

Things that are fine - not ultra good or super bad

 

1. The suite - we were in a Royal Suite that has a large balcony (as shown in an earlier photo). The layout was different and it had loads of cabinets that were useless (you open them up and they have no depth to them -- more like a bookcase). The bed was okay - miss the beds on Regent and Oceania. You can order two bottles of alcohol for the suite but mixers were not offered (on the other hand, I didn't ask so it probably is not fair to criticize).

 

2. Interior of the ship maintained really well. The ship was built in 2001 and hasn't had a refurbishment in a while and the next one isn't due until 2020. Carpets in good shape, furniture is pretty good shape - bathrooms completely refurbished and in very good shape).

 

3. Our room steward did a good job - said hi when he saw us in the hall and he set up our room correctly. We are just used to more interaction with our steward.

 

4. While not exactly a negative for everyone, the fact that the suites tend to have children in them was not a great thing. Since school had just begun, there were mostly children under the age of 5 onboard. We could not hear them from our suite unless they were running up or down the hall but when we passed the other suites/staterooms we could hear crying babies.

 

The not so good.....

 

1. No coffee maker in the suite - the best place to get coffee is in Michael's Club.

 

2. Buffet food is like a fast food restaurant - quality is simply not there.

 

3. Pool deck grill - hamburger was sitting there for a long time (they took it out of a pan that had been in a reheating unit). It was tasteless and stale.

 

4. The last two comments is why our biggest complaint was that there was no where to sit down and have a meal on most port days (see note below). After having one breakfast and one lunch at the buffet, we did not eat there again. Instead we went ashore for some great food (clam chowder in a sourdough loaf in San Francisco, bangers and mash at a pub in Monterey and Chinese food in Santa Barbara).

 

Note: Sushi on 5 was open for lunch twice which was good for us but others had to pay their ala carte price (not sure if you pay to get in or not but everything is not included in this dining venue - unless you are in a suite).

 

5. Every place that you turn they are trying to sell you something. We boarded the ship and were enjoying a cocktail in Michael's Club when two people from Canyon Ranch started trying to sell their services. They were really nice when trying to sell but were not so friendly once my DH went for his massage. Note: Rumor from the Celebrity board is that Canyon Ranch spa is changing to another company. It should be noted that the services in the spa are considerably less money than on luxury lines.

 

When we had our first lunch in Luminae, someone stopped by to "sell" a crab dinner for $20/person. We signed up but once we really read about it, cancelled. You get 2 crab legs and a few lesser items. If you want another crab leg it is $15. These sales things really were annoying!

 

6. The exterior of the ship and tender boats are in horrible condition. One tender boat had what looked like dried paint that had been splashed on it. The interior was dirty. Our balcony needed refurbishment badly and the Jacuzzi didn't work at all (we had one inside of the suite that worked fine).

 

7. After 7 nights, when the butler suddenly stopped by (probably for a tip that he didn't get), my DH didn't even know who he was. I did meet the butler on the first day (my DH was in the shower) and once when he was dropping off laundry but my DH did not meet him. He was not visible at all.

 

General Comments:

 

In general, the cruise was interesting and enjoyable. Being used to ships carrying 750 passengers or less, when it became crowded (trying to get back on the tender boat to return to the ship where there is no priority boarding) had lines that were so long that I wondered how everyone would get back to the ship but they obviously did. When they had their shopping deals, it was like being at Macy's on Black Friday!

 

We did not sail on Celebrity with the intention of changing cruise lines. We simply wanted an inexpensive west coast cruise that was not going to Alaska and that is what we got.

 

While I don't like to say "never", it is not likely that we will sail on Celebrity again. I can understand how mainstream cruisers move up to Celebrity and think that it is the best thing ever (we probably would have felt the same if we had not sailed on luxury and premium plus cruise lines). We are both glad that we sailed on Celebrity and now look forward ago our November Regent cruise.

 

Thanks to all that followed this thread!

 

Jackie

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Not sure where to begin on the review without making it too long and convoluted. I'll try my best.......

 

What we really enjoyed:

 

1. Luminae - the restaurant for suite guests and top level loyalty guests. Excellent food and service.

 

2. Michael's Club - the lounge for suite guests, etc. The Concierge in Michael's is a superstar. She is happy to escort guests to the gangway (for priority tendering) or to a restaurant when you don't know where it is. The servers/bartenders are also excellent - friendly and accommodating. IMO, crew members in either of these venues could easily work on a luxury cruise line.

 

3. Enjoyed two of the three specialty restaurants - Sushi on 5 and Qsine's Little Chef. While quirky and funny, this animated dinner is actually quite good. I could eat the sushi forever - the best sushi that we have had at sea.

 

4. Other passengers - very friendly and do not have the attitude that they paid for the cruise and therefore do not care what others think.

 

5. Customer service from corporate. Such a surprise. Our contact person at Celebrity was only a email or phone call away. He was wonderful answering questions for this newbie. Two weeks prior to the cruise we received a phone call from a Concierge at corporate checking to see how we want the suite made up (bed(s), alcohol, pillow, etc.). Two days before we left she send us photos of where we should be when we arrive at the terminal in Vancouver. The photos really helped for this very busy port.

 

6. Great promotion! While suite guests can dine in specialty restaurants at no cost (a savings of between $35 and $55/person each time you visit a specialty restaurant). Suite guests also receive included internet for two people (one log on each) and the premium beverage package for two (normally $69/day/person) The promotion gave us included tips and $300 OBC (and the prices of some of their "gift" type things are really inexpensive).

 

Things that are fine - not ultra good or super bad

 

1. The suite - we were in a Royal Suite that has a large balcony (as shown in an earlier photo). The layout was different and it had loads of cabinets that were useless (you open them up and they have no depth to them -- more like a bookcase). The bed was okay - miss the beds on Regent and Oceania. You can order two bottles of alcohol for the suite but mixers were not offered (on the other hand, I didn't ask so it probably is not fair to criticize).

 

2. Interior of the ship maintained really well. The ship was built in 2001 and hasn't had a refurbishment in a while and the next one isn't due until 2020. Carpets in good shape, furniture is pretty good shape - bathrooms completely refurbished and in very good shape).

 

3. Our room steward did a good job - said hi when he saw us in the hall and he set up our room correctly. We are just used to more interaction with our steward.

 

4. While not exactly a negative for everyone, the fact that the suites tend to have children in them was not a great thing. Since school had just begun, there were mostly children under the age of 5 onboard. We could not hear them from our suite unless they were running up or down the hall but when we passed the other suites/staterooms we could hear crying babies.

 

The not so good.....

 

1. No coffee maker in the suite - the best place to get coffee is in Michael's Club.

 

2. Buffet food is like a fast food restaurant - quality is simply not there.

 

3. Pool deck grill - hamburger was sitting there for a long time (they took it out of a pan that had been in a reheating unit). It was tasteless and stale.

 

4. The last two comments is why our biggest complaint was that there was no where to sit down and have a meal on most port days (see note below). After having one breakfast and one lunch at the buffet, we did not eat there again. Instead we went ashore for some great food (clam chowder in a sourdough loaf in San Francisco, bangers and mash at a pub in Monterey and Chinese food in Santa Barbara).

 

Note: Sushi on 5 was open for lunch twice which was good for us but others had to pay their ala carte price (not sure if you pay to get in or not but everything is not included in this dining venue - unless you are in a suite).

 

5. Every place that you turn they are trying to sell you something. We boarded the ship and were enjoying a cocktail in Michael's Club when two people from Canyon Ranch started trying to sell their services. They were really nice when trying to sell but were not so friendly once my DH went for his massage. Note: Rumor from the Celebrity board is that Canyon Ranch spa is changing to another company. It should be noted that the services in the spa are considerably less money than on luxury lines.

 

When we had our first lunch in Luminae, someone stopped by to "sell" a crab dinner for $20/person. We signed up but once we really read about it, cancelled. You get 2 crab legs and a few lesser items. If you want another crab leg it is $15. These sales things really were annoying!

 

6. The exterior of the ship and tender boats are in horrible condition. One tender boat had what looked like dried paint that had been splashed on it. The interior was dirty. Our balcony needed refurbishment badly and the Jacuzzi didn't work at all (we had one inside of the suite that worked fine).

 

7. After 7 nights, when the butler suddenly stopped by (probably for a tip that he didn't get), my DH didn't even know who he was. I did meet the butler on the first day (my DH was in the shower) and once when he was dropping off laundry but my DH did not meet him. He was not visible at all.

 

General Comments:

 

In general, the cruise was interesting and enjoyable. Being used to ships carrying 750 passengers or less, when it became crowded (trying to get back on the tender boat to return to the ship where there is no priority boarding) had lines that were so long that I wondered how everyone would get back to the ship but they obviously did. When they had their shopping deals, it was like being at Macy's on Black Friday!

 

We did not sail on Celebrity with the intention of changing cruise lines. We simply wanted an inexpensive west coast cruise that was not going to Alaska and that is what we got.

 

While I don't like to say "never", it is not likely that we will sail on Celebrity again. I can understand how mainstream cruisers move up to Celebrity and think that it is the best thing ever (we probably would have felt the same if we had not sailed on luxury and premium plus cruise lines). We are both glad that we sailed on Celebrity and now look forward ago our November Regent cruise.

 

Thanks to all that followed this thread!

 

Jackie

 

 

 

Oh....forgot to ask one last question. How was the internet, and how did you feel it compared to Regent?

 

 

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Paul - firstly, I was very impressed with all of the Apple computers in the computer room and the expertise of the people that worked there. Sometimes I found the internet very slow and other times quite fast (likely when most passengers were ashore). Overall it was faster than Regent but we have to consider that we were "hugging" the west coast of the U.S. where the internet could be faster than when doing a transatlantic cruise (for instance).

 

Yes - going to do another luxury line next September. For many reasons I don't want to state the cruse line on CC as I'll be hearing comments about it for months (not worried about you but am concerned about some posters).

 

Want to thank you again for the insights into Celebrity. It helped us understand what to expect, etc.

 

Jackie

 

P.S. We really wish that we could sail Oceania as an alternative as we found it quite good. We almost booked an Oceania cruise instead of Celebrity but the airfare was almost as much as the cruise.

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Thanks Jackie for the excellent reveiw. Having been on Celebrity i agree overall with your comments.

 

Glad overall you enjoyed yourselves.

 

I do think that some of the perks you kept referring to as suite perks were NOT in fact suite perks but perks associated with the level of suite you had. Normally lower suite guests DO NOT get unlimited access to specialty restaurants or have liquor put into their suites. You had the additional perks associated with the Royal Suite and other higher level suites.

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