At what time does Celebrity allow one to embark? This is our first Celebrity cruise (9/23 Constellation) and we are spoiled with early boarding on Princess where we embark at noon and can have lunch. I'm also concerned because we will need to check out of our hotel in Barcelona, I assume by noon or earlier.
It depends upon the particular voyage. Generally around noon or one o'clock pm and I've never seen a Celebrity ship without lunch.
If i were in Barcelona again I'd get on the ship at the last possible instant. What a wonderful city !!! You will have plenty of time aboard and to mill around on a ship when you can enjoy one of Europe's most fascinating cities seems like a crime just so you can have a free lunch.
Let me recommend an excellent restaurant in the Gothic Quarter, 4 Cats. They almost had to drag me out of there last time. There are also some excellent restaurants on the water.
You can check out of the hotel, leave your luggage in a holding room then come back to collect it. If you ask nicely, you can also usually arrange a late check-out but it's more organized to pack up and have your luggage held.
I highly recommend the Lonely Planet guide to Barcelona which you can buy at home or at almost any of the kiosks on La Rambla.
If you're in Barcelona, please try Zarzela de Mariscos, I think one of the finest dishes in all of Spain. Don't get it if you have problems with shellfish. The dish is wonderful. I haven't been in Spain in nearly 40 years but I've never forgottn how good it is. Versions of the same dish in the US just don't measure up. What a great lunch that would be!
Thanks for your advice. We will be spending 2 days in Barcelona prior to boarding and one day following. I always arrive a day or two early for a cruise just in case there are flight delays. I also want time to adjust my body to the time change. I've seen people fly in and go directly to the ship and then miss the first two dinners because they haven't been able to adjust.