One thing to remember here.. prior to Celebrity beginning their initial expansion program with Centry class ships they were not particularily successful financially. They "ran with the pack" toward the economy of scale theory that's led the cruise lines to their current situation.
The fact is it's difficult to make money with 900- 1200 passengers ships, with high levels of food and service without charging luxury level fares, which the majority of even the "premium" market passengers will refuse to pay.. let alone get into the larger "mass market".
Since I began cruising (in 94), and up until recently, when people asked for my choice of my favorite cruise line, I always said I have favorite ships. I felt NONE of the lines I had experienced offer a consistant enough product to warrant the kind of loyalty necessary to chose one particular favorite. I found all the lines I cruised suffered the same inconsitancy.
From what I've seen of Celebrity in the past year I do think they are making a serious run at achieving that consistancy from ship to ship throughout the fleet. Part of the rebranding process they are going through now is behind the scenes, and could be their most significant move to this end; that is the appointment of a training officer onboard each ship in the fleet.
It will take some time to see if this entire "rebranding" is effective in bringing a consistant premium product to the consumer, but I do see Celebrity making much more of an effort than any other of the premium brands it's competing with.
As far as Ben's mentioning of Radisson and Oceana as "premium lines". Firstly we have no idea what final product Oceana is going to offer, but from what I understand Radisson would have to drop a few notches from luxury brand to become a premium brand, and they seem to be one of the few lines I don't see much comment about their product losing anything at present.
I'll find out myself in Aug. when I sail them for the first time in Aug. Looking forward to it!