Mercury – A Disappointment
We sailed aboard Mercury’s 15-Day Cruise from San Diego to Hawaii (March 15th Sailing). This cruise was not what it was marketed to be. Luxury and Opulence - NOT. The ship itself (we later found out is being sold in a couple of years) was in a state of neglect. Rust abounds on the hull of the ship. I stopped counting how many burned out lights I found on the ship. Twelve alone on the major wall of the Champagne/Martini Bars (the entire décor effect of both areas depends on this one wall). Public decks are terrible and much neglected. The pools were dingy and green. The entire inventory of lounge chairs on the decks is dirty, grimy and worn and need to be replaced. The entire ship is vastly outdated. We have sailed on 2 ships the same age on RCL and we found both had been updated and kept relevant. Mercury, however, is a sad and outdated ship that has not been kept up. No matter how great the ports of call this ship’s state of disrepair brings everything down.
When we arrived in San Diego we boarded the bus to go to the ship. The bus passed the ship with no explanation and next thing you know we ended up at the Convention Center. There we learned that on the last sailing the ship had 200+ people come down with the Noro Virus. So this meant that we were sailing on a sick ship. While the entire F&B Team were under a code RED Protocol, I witnessed so many violations of basic Health Codes. Double and Triple contaminations happening right in front of the guests at the omelet stations are just one example.
Our Stateroom Attendant: Shubert was incredible. He was without a doubt the very best stateroom attendant we have ever had. With the Health problems the ship had it took housekeeping until day 2 to get back up to basic standards. The entire ship was obviously so far behind the eight ball on our departure day that they just did the bare minimum to get us on our way. For example our Royal Suite was stocked with only 2 towels, 2 hand towels, and 2 washcloths. When I asked if this was standard par for a Royal Suite I was told that they would bring more towels immediately (which they did at once).
Our Butler was inconsistent and paled in comparison to our Stateroom Attendant.
The Dining Room Experience was great not necessarily because of the service or food quality but had more to do with our dining companions. Our waiter and back waiter were very competent but never went above and beyond. On previous cruises on RCL we’ve had wait staff that bent over backwards on silly things that literally made the trips. Again Celebrity is supposed to be a step above RCL but sadly again this line or this ship fell behind.
The menus were unimaginative, dull, and boring. They even repeated the same menu from Day One to Day Fifteen - I guess 15 separate menus are too much to ask on a 15 day cruise. The food quality was the definition of mediocrity. Certainly other reviews of Mercury’s Food Quality slipping were our experience. I do have to say that the wine program was great.
The Spa - I had a hot stone massage and I ended up with 3 burns on my back and one burn on my chest from the "hot" stones. So I think that's enough said for my spa experience.
Bottom line - this cruise was not worth the price paid. The ship itself and a total of 10 days at sea brought down the entire cruise experience. I love sea days but sea days trapped on a rusting poorly maintained ship is certainly no fun. My thoughts are that no cruise on this ship in a Royal Suite would be worth the price paid.