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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 12-26-2009, 05:43 AM
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Penny,
Can you tell us more about the Drink Packages and what you meant by "very restrictive" that would be very helpful, thanks.
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Old 12-26-2009, 05:08 PM
 
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Welcome back, Penny! I hope you had a great birthday. Sorry to hear that the crew wasn't up to par. That can make a huge difference in customer satisfaction.

I agree about the shows. In fact, we commented on them in our questionnaire at the end of the cruise.

It sounds to me like the food and crew on the Solstice was a complete opposite from the Equinox. I guess we were pleasantly surprised because the two times we were on the Summit, we felt the food was tasteless (I have heard that there is a different chef on that ship and the food is greatly improved from a few years ago).

At any rate, I'm glad you are back safely and had a fun time on your excursions.

Was your ship decorated beautifully? Ours was absolutely stunning. It added so much to the festive spirit.

Nadine
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Old 12-26-2009, 06:06 PM
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I've never been on a Celebrity Ship and I'm sorry to hear that you found sub-par food, service, and entertainment on the Solstice. I praise Royal Caribbean as much or more than you exalt Princess. A one time Celebrity Cruise Line was considered the best when it came to food and service. I probably would have been complaining to the Hotel Director if I would have been on that cruise with you. It doesn't matter what cruise line you're on...poor quality is unacceptable.


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Old 12-26-2009, 06:35 PM
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I may be one of the few here who have cruised with Celebrity both before and after it's acquisition by RCCL. Under original owner Chandris (hence the "X" logo in a Greek language meaning) the line was truly upscale. Wonderful food and dining room service with staff provided by Apollo Caterers. It was almost a 1:1 ratio between staff and guests. Extra charge venues were few. After RCCL bought Celebrity many of us saw the line lose some of it's luster. Please don't take this as a slam at RCCL, which by the way is not RCI but rather the corporation which owns both lines (plus Azamara Club Cruises). However, RCCL changed things at Celebrity and expanded the line. Celebrity more than doubled in size and as is often the case, when you get bigger you lose quality. Of course, this isn't the only reason but it is a factor.

All that said, I still like Celebrity a great deal. I will also say it is one cruise line that can really be a sharp contrast for some passengers. It is easier to have a love/hate view of Celebrity than it is with many of the big cruise lines.
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Old 12-27-2009, 12:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by janfred:
WOW, I am so sorry to hear this, what a difference a year makes. I am such a foodie, and loved Tuscan Grill and Murano's. What the heck went wrong, that stinks, and the service too... Well, I hope I am not disappointed in Feb on the Mercury...we will see and send a review.
Janfred,
I don't see where Penny mentioned Tuscan Grill and Murano's. I think she was talking about the main dining room. So the reservation restaurants that you loved may not have changed at all. I know I loved the food when I went and it was very good in "Blue".
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Old 12-27-2009, 12:22 PM
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We have a new review posted by someone who was on the same cruise as Penny (they got the date wrong in the review). Anyway, the reviewer had an AquaClass cabin and says they were told on the last night in Blu that it was being changed to an open seating restaurant. I wasn't aware it was assigned seating for the Aqua guests.
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Old 12-28-2009, 05:31 AM
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Hi Dave. I was the one who wrote that review. We were assigned table #381 during that cruise. And I think because the restaurant was half full with the exception of the first formal dinner, they started seating people at different tables. As I said, the food in Blu was not to our liking. The head waiter did tell us that Blu would be open seating in the future.
**By the way, readers/cruisers should be aware that using the ship internet is NOT secure. Two people we know had their credit card info scammed for over $2000-as they have to use their room key (all personal info is on the magnetic strip)to access the internet, there was a "glitch" and someone charged airline tickets to their account. Happy to say that Celebrity Captains Club reps jumped on the case immediately and these people were quickly contacted, and credits issued. This is still being investigated. On a lighter note, they had cooking demonstrations onboard which were excellent! One chef they had is a judge on Chopped and he and his partner gave 3 demonstrations with guest participation which we loved. This would be an awesome thing for them to have steadily. Many guests attended.
I would take this ship again but not in Aqua Class-we really felt ripped off with the Persian Garden and paying for Blu tasteless food.
  #18 (permalink)  
Old 12-28-2009, 07:47 AM
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Quote:
Wonderful food and dining room service with staff provided by Apollo Caterers.
Quote:
Under original owner Chandris (hence the "X" logo in a Greek language meaning) the line was truly upscale. Wonderful food and dining room service with staff provided by Apollo Caterers.
Even more importantly, the head chefs on the Celebrity ships were trained directly by Michel Roux, a French chef whose restaurant in Britain was the first restaurant there to earn three stars from Michelin.

Michel Roux also developed all of Celebrity's dinner menus.

When Royal Caribbean acquired Celebrity, they started cutting back on the amount of money allocated for the food, one of several ways I feel they "Royal Caribbeanized" Celebrity. I still feel Celebrity is a more upscale cruise line than Royal Caribbean, but the differences are fewer than when Celebrity first started.
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Old 12-28-2009, 09:25 AM
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Susan,

Thanks for the review. I've never heard of that card problem happening, but wow!, that is scary. Glad they got the charges reversed.

I was in an AquaClass cabin on the Equinox preview cruise. Perhaps it was the setting (lots of us cruise writers, press, and hangers-on) but I wasn't impressed with Blu on that ship. I liked the main dining room better.
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Old 12-28-2009, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
Even more importantly, the head chefs on the Celebrity ships were trained directly by Michel Roux
Plus, didn't he do periodic inspections of the ships to check on quality?
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