Celebrity Cruise Lines - Cruisemates Reader's Cruise Reviews
Celebrity Cruises

by Sonny & Bev Parker
Vancouver to Hawaii
Sept. 13, 2002

This was our fourth cruise but our first with Celebrity, having cruised on Princess and Royal Caribbean cruise lines in Alaska and the Caribbean respectively. This was by far the best cruise experience we've had.

We arrived at the Canada Place in Vancouver at 11:30am for an official boarding time of 2:00pm. The process was the most disorganized event we experienced throughout the eleven-night cruise. Incorrect information from the supervisors and staff was rampant and the entire embarkation process gave the impression that this was the first time they had gone through this seemingly routine procedure. This caused a great deal of frustration and frayed tempers among the waiting passengers. It was close to 2:00pm when we finally boarded the ship and from that point on it became a vacation that exceeded our expectations. Getting on and off the ship from that time on was a breeze. Even with the heightened security measures put in place the process was seamless.

The first impression upon boarding is of understated beauty. There is no stunning seven plus level atrium however the 3 level Grand Foyer leaves the impression of a classy entrance for the first time cruiser of a Celebrity Millennium class ship. The Plaza deck has the first level of the Grand Foyer, fabulous Normandie Restaurant (more on that later), movie theatre and conference centers.
The Promenade Deck has a small scale Bellagio-like casino, the Rendezvous Lounge for pre and après dinner dancing, (if you're into swing/ballroom dancing) and the first level of the memorable Cosmopolitan Restaurant.
The other main activity decks Entertainment, Resort and Sunrise all exude quality. The many lounges are tasteful and comfortable. With 1800 fellow passengers this ship did not appear congested.
The Revelations disco is a very attractive venue. You have a long wait for the modern music to be played which doesn't begin until the wee hours.

Virtually ever meal in the Cosmopolitan Restaurant was superb with excellent service from our Waiter (Croatian), Assistant-waiter (Indian) and Headwaiter (Croatian). . Nothing was too much bother, right down to the extra Brie on our cheese plate every night. We didn't have to ask for this, our waiter noticed the Brie was always eaten up and offered.

As so many others have mentioned the specialty restaurant, the Normandie, stands alone for any meal we've had at sea. In fact, the Chateaubriand was unequivocally the best we have ever had.
Other standouts were breakfast at the Aqua Spa and lunch at the Waterfall Café where the food quality matched that of the Cosmopolitan Restaurant. There was also a pasta station where the sauce was tossed in with the pasta while you wait.
There was simply not enough time to enjoy everything offered as we missed out on most of the high teas and the freshly baked croissants from the Cova Café Milano.
Recommendation - upon embarkation be at least 5 pounds under your normal weight if you prefer your current wardrobe!

The Broadway-type shows put on by the Celebrity Dancers were impressive in their colorful costumes and lively performances but as would be expected, lacked the refinement of Broadway. Also, the volume was far too loud.
The comedian, Noodles, was one of the funniest we'd seen. He had everyone in stitches.
The overall job done by Cruise Director Simon Weir was excellent and he particularly outdid himself on the final night of entertainment. His endless energy and genuine enthusiasm added to the overall success of this cruise.

We had lots of fun playing basketball, table tennis and shuffleboard and were surprised that these were available almost every time we decided to play.
The Gym was spacious with plenty of equipment available. Only complaint here would be the lack of laundry facilities. We do realize that laundry service is available for a fee. We were thinking that it would be great if workout shorts and tops would be provided at the gym, use them once and pick up fresh ones the next time you go for a workout. We would be happy to pay either a one time charge or daily fee for this.
We also thoroughly enjoyed the variety of pools and particularly the Thalassotherapy pool/Jacuzzi.

The Celebrity Summit is a classy vessel. We found it spotless. The crew and staff were all extremely friendly and greeted us with warm smiles and conversation. At eleven days, this was the longest cruise we've been on and found it perfect in length. We are already scouring through brochures to see where we'll go on our next Celebrity cruise. Needless to say, we highly recommend!