We tried to take advantage of every opportunity to get out and do things and see places. Overall - Best vacation ever! Trip of a life time. Scenery was breathtaking. The weather was beautiful and it was an amazing experience. There are some opportunities for Celebrity to enhance the customer experience in some of the services and ship activities. We would do another Alaska Cruise in the future but we are still not sure that Celebrity would be our first choice. One final comment. We did not each need to receive a package at every port of call with very expensive printed materials designed to get us into the stores. That was a total waste of money and just served to pollute the streets of the very nice places we visited. Maybe one - less fancy handout to each part that covers all ports of call but certainly not a book to each person at each port of call.
2 out of 5
Everything was going smooth until the computers went down. Apparently, this was experienced in the past. It must have been 1 1/2 hours before we were told what was going on. Initially, we were told the Canadian network went down but later we heard it was the US system. Either way. Communications with the customers could have been better and once on board, the staff in charge should have explained what happened and appologized even if it were customs and not Celebrity's issue. To the customer - it's all the same. Apparently, Customs had a half baked Business Continuity Plan. They came out with USB drives but no one had the password to use them. Maybe Celebrity's Business Continuity folks need to look at the extermal exposures to make sure that those who you rely on have their acto together
Food and Dining
2 out of 5
The dining staff and the service was great, the dinning room was nice and comfortable and the Galley was clean, organized and well run. But food selection was not the greatest. In fact, late night was very limited and most things seemed to have an Asian or Indian spin on them. Things like burgers had a limited time frame to get them and Ice cream was almost always out or closed. There was a crab special upgrade that was being pushed all week but when questioned the staff were unsure or non-specific of what it included and the bottom line was that it was a rip off for the cost. Considering the amount we already pay for the meals, the upgrade just to have crab legs should not cost more than an entire meal anywhere else.
We were disappointed in the drink package. We paid a lot of money for the package and found some standard drinks were considered premium. Also, why does a martini require an additional fee but a double scotch does not? For the outdoor aft bar I requested a particular beer and was handed a bottle of Heiniken instead and told that I can upgreade. In fact, almost anytime I got a drink I was told that I should upgrade to premium. The fact is, we didn't even get our money's worth out of the standard drink package, why should we pay $140 more once on board. My feeling is that this constant nagging to upsell to the customer took away from the experience. I don't think we will ever purchase a drink package again. We could have had top shelf all week and saved a lot of money had we just payed as we went. We have been on other cruise lines and had a better selection of alcohol in the package.
3 out of 5
We participated in the Bingo, all the shows, all of Celia Garland's (On Board Naturalist) presentations, the silent DJ.
As for Bingo - come on - it takes an hour and a half to get your cards and get it started and you only have 3 games. Not sure if we will participate in this in the future. You need to add at least one or two more to make it worth the time.
We were surprised to hear that Celia was a "guest speaker". She was extremely did an amazing job and was extremely knowledgeable. We saw here out on the deck and on excursions doing research for her presentations and she packed out the room every time. Her presentations up in the Cosmos Lounge filled every seat and she did live wale watching from there as well. Her information was invaluable on an Alaska Cruise and my recommendation to Celebrity is to pay her what ever she wants and make her a permanent part of your program.
The silent DJ was different and a lot of fun.
One complaint - Pools and Hot tubs. the indoor pool and hot tub did not stay open late enough considering that you want to be outside on deck during the daytime and there were absolutely NO opportunities to use the hot tubs with all the kids in it. There were signs posted about "Family Time" but this was not clear as to what it meant and certainly no enforcement. It was a free for all with kids. There needs to be adult only time!
4 out of 5
The comedians, the ballet, The Russian Cirque and the Beatles Cover Band were all great. The house song and dance group - the Millenniums were at the level of High School entertainment. The lounge singers and bands and the DJ were all good. It would have been nice to have some Jazz or Blues entertainment.
3 out of 5
We did not use this service but I have a comment. There were speaker presentations taking place in the Cosmos Lounge and during the presentation, children and those overseeing their activities were out in the elevator area making so much noise that the speaker could not be heard. This only happened once that I experienced but staff should be aware of other activities in the area.
Service and Staff
4 out of 5
Staff was great everywhere except for some of the bars where some of the staff were rude and arrogant at times. The Cosmos Lounge was also understaffed. We waited a long time for drinks there. If we have to pay so much for drink packages I would at least like to get one when I want one. On several occasions I walked away without a drink because it was not worth the wait.
Our Cabin Steward (Carlos) was always friendly and helpful.
Steve was the best cruise director of any on any ship that we have sailed on to date. We loved him. He was so informative and entertaining. We also enjoyed his presentation on his own life story. He is an interesting person and very passionate about his job.
4 out of 5
The ship was very clean and well maintained throughout the cruise. For a recently renovated ship we expected more. It was a bit boring for lack of a better term.
The ping pong area needs some walls around it so that the players are not chasing their ball through the seating areas all over the deck.
Cabin / Stateroom
5 out of 5
The bathroom in our cabin always smelled like sewer. The seals on the toilet are probably leaking tank gasses into the cabin. Our Cabin Steward (Carlos) was always friendly and helpful.
Listen to the Cruise director's announcements and watch his show every day. He shares a lot of information about the ship and the activities each day. Steve is GREAT!
We did not spend any time in Seward. Got on a bus and headed north. Anchorage, was a bust. By now, all our T-shirt and souvenir time and money were out. We were dropped in an area that had little to see but just a bunch of cruise ship sponsored gift shops. The best thing there were the street side Reindeer Hot Dogs.
5 out of 5
Very - very organized. We got off and onto our bus and our luggage was taken care of. The process with set times avoided any waiting on lines or crowds.
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