by Sharon Marvin
January 11, 2002
We just returned from our second Celebrity cruise (the first one was on the Century in 1999). We had read some discouraging reviews of the Galaxy between the time we purchased the tickets and departure and were somewhat apprehensive about our choice. As it turned out, we were very happy with the Galaxy.
We took a veranda room on vista deck, midship, port side. The veranda was wonderful. We used it every day and most evenings. The port side proved adantageous too because at dock on this particular itinerary we were usually not facing the dock and not in the blazing sun. The cabin was large enough and they provided two very nice terry robes for use during the trip. Shower was great, lotion and shampoo in dispensers (although I was not fond of the shampoo).
We found the service crew to be excellent. Our cabin was well taken care of. Our waiter was very personable and entertaining. The gym was adequate and the staff there was also very lively and fun to talk with.
The food at dinner ranged from fair to excellent. We tried the salmon several times and it was bone dry on both occasions. Better choices were the rack of lamb, lobster tail and filet mignon. We ate all our lunches at the buffet which was OK. We are not big hot lunch people, so we felt there could have been more cold salads. The fish all week at lunch was not good. We also ate breakfast at the buffet utilizing the aft outside deck to eat and that was lovely most every day. We ate in the dining room one morning and the eggs benedict were excellent. I think we should have tried the dining room more, but we were hooked on eating outside. Considering the price of the cruise, we were generally happy with the food offered.
The ship in general was very clean and well maintained. The decor was orange and blue, but it looked pretty good (believe it or not!) Lots of light wood instead of gold and glitz. More casually elegant than glamorous. Our cruise was fully booked, but we did not feel crowded at any time. We found the ship's layout very easy to get around except for the Library which we stumbled on near the end of the cruise. It is in a fairly untraveled part of the ship, but it was quite nice and stocked with hardcover books. We had brought our own, but it seemed that they had quite a selection to choose from.
We liked the itinerary which changed recently (and preferred it to either the eastern or western caribbean). Favorite ports were Isla Margarita and Aruba. Weather was beautiful the entire time. We hired a tour guide in Isla Margarita on the docks $120.00 (4 people) for 5 hours around the island. The city of Porlamar was very sophisticated and intresting. The beach at Playa El Agua was spectacular. I could have stayed there all day. In Aruba we did use the Celebrity Sail Away Tour of 5 hours of snorkeling, sailing and included lunch. We went on a catamaran called Pelican Two with a salty captain named George and a very entertaining crew. The snorkeling was just ok but the beach stop and the entire day was lots of fun.
Overall we enjoyed the ship, the crew, the itinerary and although I think the food has "slipped" a little since we were on Century it was certainly adequate. We would definitely consider cruising with Celebity again.