We just completed our first ever Celebrity cruise on the Summit Jan. 17th sailing from San Juan.
We have sailed Princess three times (Grand, Caribbean, Crown) and have really become devoted to Princess.
We thought we would try Celebrity as something new and drew the following comparison:
Embarkation/Debarkation- Celebrity was so smooth. Easiest so far. Literally took two minutes to embark and we were off the ship at 7:45 am on debarkation day.
Cabins- Princess wins this. Seemed to be better use of space on Princess although shower was slightly large on Celebrity. Balconies on Summit all the same size (small) and we have become accustomed to the larger balconies on the Carib deck of Princess.
Ship- I think overall, Princess wins this expecially with the aft pool deck which is quite nice and usually quiet. Summit was in need of some TLC and very rusty. Railing needed to be sanded, stained and varnished in a
bad way. Princess just has the edge in appearance although Summit was
easy to get around in.
Main Dining Room Food- Very disappointed in Celebrity main dining room food. Thought Princess was as good or better and if the food is Celebrities big selling point, then they failed. Deserts were very lacking and main courses were just of marginal quality. I will call this a tie between Princess and Celebrity.
Buffet- Princess wins this with just overall better selection and quality. Celebrity serves all buffet food which doesn't give you the choice to get
the exact piece you want.
Upscale Dining Room- Celebrity takes the prize here. The Normandie Restaurant was fantastic and probably the best I have been on in eleven cruises.
Tastings- Celebrity has multiple wine and spirt tastings for just about any taste and do a great job. We did an "walk around the world" wine tasting where you tasted 12 wines from 6 countries, a red and white from each, for $15 per person. Great value!! Celebrity actually has wine sommiliers and Princess does not. Celebrity is very helpful with wine pairings and questions.
Pizza- I know this is a strange category but Princess kicks butt on the pizza although Celebrity's room service pizza was far better than its
pizza station pizza. The room service pizza was individual size pizzas that
seemd to have better crust and more sauce and toppings.
Service- I will say that Celebrity was a cut above. Just little things all week long although our cabin steward was a little lacking.
Overall, I give a very slight nod to Princess although I would not hesitate to do Celebrity again. I just sense a better value with Princess and an overall better experience.