Number of Cruises: 12+
Cruise Line: Celebrity
Sailing Date: NOT FOUND
Itinerary: Panama Canal
Cruise Line: Celebrity
Sailing Date: December 8th, 2002
I think I owe it to future travelers to write a review of the cruise we recently took on Celebrity Infinity. We left San Diego on December 8th, went through the Panama Canal and ended in Ft Lauderdale, Florida on December 22nd. Before we left I read some of the reviews and it was amazing how nit-picking people can be. We had a glorious trip and if there was anything to complain about.
I would say the card room facilities were inadequate (there were too many people wanting to play bridge!) but the staff tried to correct it by added card games in the tea room. Everything about the Infinity was wonderful but the public rooms could be cold -- especially the Emporium. Don’t be turned off by all the scare tactics. My wife and I, senior citizens, went by ourselves and it was delightful. We met many people and could socialize if we wanted or could be by ourselves which was my choice a lot of the time. I loved sitting on a lounge chair on the fourth deck where it was quiet and peaceful. My wife liked the action and activities of the pool deck. Some of the people went up early and put their belongings on a deck chair to save them. That seemed unfair but there was space to be found someplace.
The main dining room and the buffet were both very good. The food was better than adequate – certainly there were enough choices so no one had to complain (although people did) . We celebrated my wife’s birthday aboard and opted to have dinner in the “specialty restaurant – The United States room for an additional cost of $25 each. It was the best $50 I ever spent – what an experience of gourmet food, superb service and elegant surroundings. Try it!
The ship is beautiful. We had an outside cabin with a verandah on the 6th level – port (left) side. Our travel agent suggested that location and it was fantastic as we traveled through the Panama Canal and watched the progress. It was our second trip through the canal and it was just as interesting the second time. The Infinity is so big there was only six inches clearance on each side going through. It was amazing!
We opted to take a tour of Panama City which was never offered before. Unfortunately the tender to pick us up at the second lock was over an hour late which delayed the entire tour and caused problems. When the staff heard how disappointed the passengers were we found a refund for the full amount of the tour credited to our account. That was a “class-act” decision and shows how Celebrity treats their passengers. (There were 3 bus loads on the tour and we all got our money back!) Cabin service was great, too. Our room steward took care of us in a quiet way and kept our room clean, well supplied with towels etc. and was available if we ever needed anything (an extra blanket).
We enjoyed the entertainment – the singers and dancers were fantastic – as professional as any show in Las Vegas – and can you imagine the stage has drop-down panels that raise and lower for effects. Most of the specialty acts were good too. I could go on and on but you get the idea. Have a positive attitude and just enjoy. Don’t expect any more (even though you get it) than you would if you went on any special vacation. We were so lucky to be seated with two other couples at the late seating who were interesting and friendly. Even though they knew each other and came together they made us feel part of their group. Our dinners were always something to look forward to. We did share a table at lunch with other people and had the misfortune of sitting with an older woman who complained about everything. When her Caesar’s salad was served to her with an anchovy on top she reacted as a child would getting castor oil. It was embarrassing to witness but made us realize how lucky we were. I hope this helps anyone planning on cruising. My wife was apprehensive before we left about all the negative stories – but wash your hands often -- and enjoy!