A while ago, I posted questions regarding Princess vs. Millennium. I just returned from a 3/23 E. Caribbean cruise on the Millennium and wanted to let others know of our experience. Overall, we had a good cruise with fabulous weather, good ports (despite negative comments about Dominican Republic - a wonderful country with warm people!), and entertaining table mates. (Neil, we loved the size of our balcony, but wished they maintained it better!!!) However, anyone considering a cruise on the Millennium should be aware of problems facing Celebrity recently. Many passengers on our cruise had similar complaints about the condition of the ship -- it absolutely should be drydocked. While many of the public areas retain their original elegance, including the fabulous Aqua Spa pool, others left much to be desired on a so-called "premium" cruise line. We fully expected a high degree of "wear and tear" after having read posts on this and other web sites. Unfortunately, Celebrity let the 3/23 sailing of the Millennium slip dramatically. While we appreciated the art collection found throughout the ship, we were appalled at the condition and subpar level of service on the ship. When I pay for and stay at a Ritz-Carlton, I expect a different level of service than a Marriott, their "non-premier" brand. So too, did I expect a different level of service from Celebrity than RCI, the parent company. Unfortunately, that was not the case. Our room was shabby, although we expected that based on internet comments. The main public pool had tar grout repairs which rubbed off and ruined many passenger's bathing suits (Due to the reserving of chairs around the pool, many people made the mistake of sitting on the pool deck!) I have never traveled on another ship or stayed in a hotel with a main pool in this condition. The food was average, certainly no better than RCI or Disney and the service was absolutely worse than both. For families looking for a slightly higher-end cruise than others, Celebrity appeared to have this niche. But it seems to be focusing on something other than the Millennium these days (perhaps Solstice or Azamara??). I know Celebrity is not a child-friendly ship, but for Easter week, the only playground on the ship was "closed for repairs" all week --there were no repairs going on however. (The golf simulators were also closed for repairs, as were the hot tubs on one of the "at-sea" days). My husband heard several people refer to the ship as a "dump". While I wouldn't go that far, it is a shame that Celebrity has allowed an 8 year old ship to slip this far! I won't bore you with details, but you should be aware of the fact that the service and condition of this ship must certainly be among the lowest in the industry. This should not be accepted by paying consumers of a so-called "premium" cruise line (as both Celebrity and Conde Nast refer to it). We were by no means expecting luxury (we went to The Breakers the week before in Palm Beach for that), but we certainly expected a higher end cruise than RCI or Disney. It was neither and we're surprised at how Celebrity is able to maintain it's image. Having said that, we had a great time despite all this --- fabulous weather, ports and table mates were the reason, all of which could have been found on any number of other ships.
tracyo, I'm sorry to read such a disappointing review of Millennium, and glad you had a good time despite expections that were not met. Did you outline your concerns on your comment card, or in person with the Purser or Hotel Manager onboard?
It may be a good idea, and helpful to Celebrity, to write them a "review" of your cruise, not asking for anything necessarily, but just so they get some feedback.
Hi Sandy, I did fill out the comments card on the last day and was very impressed that I received a follow up call my first day home. While it was just a customer service telephone representative, I do hope they will take action on some of the issues I (and many other passengers) raised. I believe Celebrity has an obligation to provide it's passengers with the level of service and maintenance they claim to offer. It's frustrating because, as I said to Celebrity in my comments, it could (and should) be such a fabulous ship! Having said that, we thoroughly enjoyed our trip despite the fact that I've never written a letter of complaint before on any cruise or hotel experience.
Tracyo, thank you for taking time to write an honest review. I am very glad that you enjoyed your cruise, but very sorry to hear the ship was in such poor repair. I've sailed on some very old ships in my time, but they've always been in good repair. From the sounds of it, over a year of sailing may be a little to long unless they can do some major work while at sea. I do hope Celebrity will take your comments to heart, and those of others on board with you. Best wishes and hope you select another cruise soon!
Thank you Sandy for finding about about the refurbishment and Penny for your reply! I agree a year is too long, unless they are able to do major work to the staterooms and other areas while at sea?? I believe some people said that when they complained about the condition of certain things (carpeting, railings, etc.) they were replaced during the cruise, but that seems like a very piecemeal approach. More importantly, the service on the ship was not up to even average standards of other cruise lines. That is something that costs nothing but would have made all the difference. We expected a slightly run down ship, but we did think the service would have been better. Thanks for your input and I hope Celebrity is able to improve this for future Millennium passengers.
I missed this thread when it was posted and am sorry I did. Tracyo, I'm am glad you potsed the review and disappointed that Celebrity dropped the ball so badly and in so many ways. I have recieved a few such reports in the past few weeks on Millennium and Galaxy. Perhaps you're onto something with Solstice and Azamara being added to their mix and other points of focus. They still need to be sure their entire fleet is serviced, repaired and maintained to their normally high standards. The most distressing part is your comments about the service onboard. There is no excuse for poor service. I know it happens, even with the best of lines at times. Considering the planning, cost and time involved for each passenger to book a cruise and get to the ship. There is nothing worse than having all that time and money go into something we all look forward to so much and then recieve less than their best effort.
My husband and I returned last week from a 14 day Alaskan cruise on the Millennium. We also were very disappointed in the service on the ship. I will not go into all the details on this post, but I will say maintenance was poor and we were treated disrespectfully on more than one occasion. One example of this was half way through our cruise we sent down a bag of laundry containing one pair of my husband's jeans, two pair of my cords, socks and underwear. A few hours later our room attendant (concierge class) returned our clothing to us unwashed, saying the laundry attendant notified him we sent down stained clothing. It was obvious bleach was spilled on our clothing. We told him the clothing was newly purchased for the trip and we expected reimbursement. They continued to imply they received it this way, we must have got bleach on our clothes. After filling out a loss form and speaking to the hotel manager about this and many other maintenance and service issues, we were offered free laundry service, were given a ship credit for the cost of our clothes and a dinner at the Olympic. We did not trust their laundry service to do any of our laundry, so we made do. Their offer in no way made up for the poor customer service, the accusations that were made, the inconvenience of not having clean laundry and the loss of my Chico's cordouroys, which cannot be replaced. I would be hesitant to ever sail the Millennium again and plan on sending a letter of complaint to Celebrity. This was our third Celebrity cruise within six years and may be our last. We plan on checking out other lines, possibly Princess.