My husband and I just returned from a fabulous ten days aboard Celebrity's Summit. It was only the second cruise for this ship but all went very smoothly.
Embarkation and disembarkation were quick and easy. We were on board by 1 PM the day of departure.
Our cabin was quite spacious with plenty of room for everything, including in the bathroom. The cabin also has a vcr, something you don;t see too often. It was well taken care of by our cabin steward.
The food on the ship was great. The menu in the main dining room always had several good choices and the desserts were to die for. One of our tablemates was a vegetarian and she was very pleased with not only her choices but the quality of the food. The buffet was typical of most ships' but I think the food was slightly better. Breakfast had an omelet station available.
Entertainment was quite good. The seven piece band was excellent and sounded like a much larger group. The A capella group, Metro was a total delight. There was no real big name to entertain us but the big performance showswere very good.
There was a very good selection of shore excursions and they were not too pricey.
The only complaint that I have is the internet access on board. I like to keep in touch with friends and family by email and the price on this ship was double on other ships. That could be why the room was often empty. I like to exercise every day and I found the gym on this ship one of the best anywhere. There were very few classes offered and there were some that were an extra charge. I thought that was unnecessary.
All in all, I thought the cruise was great and Celebrity did a great job with this ship. Good enough so that we booked the eleven day for January.
My wife and I cruised on the Celebrity Summit last year on 11/12/01 to celebrate our wedding Anniversary. We traveled in category class 1B. After 9/11/01 the wait to get on and off board was really bad, but some blame must also go to those passengers who don't respond to the repeated Customs Office calls for the embarkation and disembarkation. We are now Captain's Club members grand fathered in as Founders and now can get to be the first to embark and disembark. This is well worth it. Our deluxe stateroom with a veranda was what we thought was the best choice for the money without having to pay the suite price to get a full tub and a VCR. The robe in the room was better quality than that of NCL. We were pleasantly surprised with many things on this ship. Very classy with some modern art thrown in. The food in the main dinning room was great. They even have a small orchestra or pianist while you dine. There were some food items that were average in the main dining, but the red meats and the lobster wasPERFECT! The buffet dinning was ok, but not the same quality as the main dinning or the Normandy. We were worried about the food after reading about the problems written by other cruise reviews about the Millennium, but the Summit's kitchen staff prepared and served the food to perfection.
We also dined in the Normandy for a treat. The only disappointment of that was the food in the main dining room was just as good as the Filet in the Normandy and was no more tender. But it was an event and enjoyable, even for the $25.00 per person. The main lounge featured the musical group Onyx. They were great playing everyone's favorites. They would also play at the pool at times during the day. While we were at the pool listening to Onyx, we had the best ship made pizza at sea. At night, I made my wife go with me to Michael's Cigar Bar. What a nice room. Naturally, I had to have a cigar with my cocktail. We did have a few complaints though. The theater's stage was one of the most advanced we've seen at sea. But the entertainment was one of the worst we've seen at sea. The Cruise Players were "want to be American Idols" and really hard for a man's man to sit through. It was like listening to Armature Night on a first rate Broadway set. The stage with all the lifts, wheels, and lazar lights were something to see. One of the two outside hired entertainers were what they billed as a comedian. Noodles Levingstone (not sure of spelling of last name) was THE WORST COMEDIAN in the world. If you have been under a rock for 20 years, his jokes might be a little funny. He told jokes that I read on the internet 7 years ago and really poor ethnic stereotyping jokes. Really cannot say how disappointed we were with the performances. The other main complaint was the shore excursion desk. One of our many excursions were the river rapids excursion in Costa Rica. Well, the weather was bad and the river was high and fast, which made the rapids at level class 5. They decided that they would put us in the water half way down the river and got to have a couple of class 4 rapids. We requested a partial refund since we only got ½ of what we paid for. The Shore Excursion Manager said she knew nothing about it and would attempt to verify and get back to us. 7 days later on the last day of our cruise, we received a note on our stateroom door from the Shore Excursion Manager giving us a 15% discount on that River Rapid Excursion. We thought we should get more, but at least they acknowledged the problem. Do not visit the Indian Village in Panama for the money they are charging. It was nice, but way over priced. The only other complaint was movies in the stateroom were mainly pay-for-view unless you want to watch the same one movie over and over. I saw "Memento" so many times, I could say the lines with the actors. But we did see The Steelers on Monday Night Football live and both Thanksgiving football games all in our stateroom on the 19" interactive television. Amanda was the ships special event director and a very personable busy person. When she found out we were celebrating our Anniversary, she gave us that special attention we never thought we would get on such a large ship. Our cabin Stewart and our Waiters were first class also. We wished we could take them home with us. Nelson was our waiter (the Best). He would watch for us when we entered the main dinning room which had open seating for breakfast and lunch. He then would give us any of our special preferences such as ice tea and such. He would also advise us of the dinner menu so that we knew when to dine in the Normandy and what was the chiefs specialty on the main dining menu. People like that is what puts this cruise ship and line over the top. Even to overlook the sub-par theater entertainment. My wife and I are scheduled to cruise on the Summit 10/18/02 and are in the exact same stateroom to celebrate our Anniversary again this year. We obviously recommend this ship to all of our friends and they have taken us up on our advise.
We were delighted to have the opportunity to sail on the all too brief two night Media and Travel Agent Inaugural on board Celebrity's appropriately named Summit. We sailed from Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale in the early evening, Friday, September 28th and returned early Sunday morning.
I can report, first, that security measures at the Port entrance and during embarkation at the pier are stringent… a pronounced increase from the norm, and quite welcomed by most! We were required to prove we had business in the Port before we were permitted to drive in and our luggage was thoroughly checked at the pier. We were asked for our photo identification not less than 3 times from our first entry into the pier until we embarked the Summit. Celebrity has many additional security measures in place and the atmosphere in the pier and on the ship was totally relaxed.
It is not unusual for one ship of a class to stand out from the others… and, in the case of Millennium class vessels, the Summit's the one. She's the culmination of all that was learned in the development of the Millennium and the Infinity.Celebrity has blended tradition and superb ship design advancements to great effect on the Summit. What a special vessel she is!
At first glance, Summit is little different from her two sisters… her basic statistics being virtually identical. She's 91,000 gross registered tons, 965 feet long, 105 feet beam and holds 1,950 passengers… a remarkable space ratio of 46.6; nothing different here. Also, I have always felt that the Millennium class vessels have an ungainly look on the outside… from a distance there is a distinct absence of smooth flowing lines one associates with new passenger vessels. It is curious but from the outside she's almost an ugly duckling. But that's where it ends. Inside, we have an elegant, beautiful Princess!
Staterooms on the Millennium class ships are spacious and well designed, with all the amenities one comes to expect in ships of this caliber. Every cabin has a safe, mini bar (refrigerator), large lavatories with Celebrity's typical large shower area, loads of closet and drawer space. Standard Ocean View and Interior staterooms measure a comfortable 170 square feet. Upwards of 80% of the cabins on Summit are Ocean View and 85% of those have balconies. These cabins range from 170 to 191 square feet with balconies of varying sizes. And, Summit offers no less than 4 categories of suites ranging in size up to 1098 square feet. We had a Category 2C, forward, on the Penthouse Deck and it was delightful. (Secret: Cabins numbered 6016-6046 and 6021-6051 have great oversized balconies that are just delightful! We had 6030.)
The public rooms and facilities on board Summit are chic, elegant, warm and inviting. This is unbridled elegance entwined with superb taste and an eye toward utility. The ship works! Where to begin… well… how about dining venues? The Main Dining Room, the Cosmopolitan is a remarkable two-story restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows and ocean views. The Grand Staircase sweeps majestically down to the main level where one is greeted by the famous statue.
"La Normandie"… from the famous French liner of the thirty's and forty's the Normandie, recently resurrected from an ignominious location in the Fountainbleu Hotel in Miami Beach.
The restaurant is stunning… tables well spaced and a very low noise level. Service in the Cosmopolitan was warm, friendly and efficient… a trait we found everywhere on the Summit.
Speaking of the Normandie, the Summit's Specialty Restaurant is so named… The Normandie Restaurant. The entrance is a repository of memorabilia from the original vessel and is a pure delight. The restaurant itself contains some original wall panels from the Normandie. This is just not to be missed by anyone who loves the sea or the ships that sail on it. Except for a special "invitation only" dinner, the Normandie Restaurant was only open for inspection during this short cruise. Word from folks who have sampled the service and fare in the Specialty Restaurants on board the Millennium and Infinity has been generally excellent. The venue is so stunning that I would be happy to spend a few hours at a table if they were serving bread and water!
The Waterfall Cafe and Grill… Summit's buffet restaurant is beautifully laid out with plenty of bay window tables offering great views of the sea. We found the food here, and in the main restaurant, to be excellent… no surprise on Celebrity!
Other features of the Summit are exactly in line with what you would expect on this class of vessel. A magnificent Aquaspa, huge and beautifully equipped, with loads of indulgences available, none of which I can even come close to pronouncing, is standard issue on Celebrity. Michael's Club is large, warm and inviting. I loved the great Martini Bar (and great Martini's)! Nearby is the Champagne Bar and both venues are extremely popular before dinner.
Cova Cafe Milano offers a great cup of coffee and some exotic desert pastries. And, there is Notes… the great Music Library where you can select and sample music from an extensive collection of CD's; its soaring two deck high ceiling and too comfortable arm chairs make Notes a great place to pass a bit of time with yourself.
I loved the Conservatory. So nice to sit up there… I felt transported back to another era on some of the great liners of the past. It's hard to say what is so attractive up there… just try it… you'll see.
Revelations, Celebrity Theater, Rendez-Vous Lounge, the Card Room, The Tower, The Internet Cafe, Words, Fortunes Casino, Fun Factory, The Emporium… it goes on and on. And, here and there throughout the Summit are great "nooks and crannies"… small spaces in which to nestle, away from the world… adding to the remarkable small ship "feel" of the Summit.
Two nights and three days were hardly enough time on this engaging vessel. She'll be sailing great ten and eleven night itineraries to the Southern Caribbean, followed by a trans-Canal, a fling to Hawaii and Alaska. I would be hard pressed to think of a ship I'd rather be on. Celebrity has gotten it exactly right with the Summit.