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About misterkevin

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    Cool Cruiser

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    Pembroke Welsh Corgis, fitness & teaching spin classes, traveling, live music
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  1. A good butler will do anything possible that you ask. Last cruise, our butler arranged a small get together in our suite for a few people with champagne, cheese, and crackers. We didn't pay extra for this. However, the suite perks extend far beyond just the butler. You get priority embarkation in a separate smaller lounge with refreshments before you board the ship. You also have priority debarkation. Upon arriving in a tender port, you can skip the lines for the tender boats off the ship. The concierges in the Retreat lounge (formerly Michael's) will solve any problem you have so
  2. I was also driven to look to other lines when I saw how much Celebrity fares have risen disproportionately to competitors. Over the years of cruising with Celebrity, we have moved from Aqua to Suite class because of the experience and amenities. It's always been fabulous. Even entry level suites are now priced up to 30% more than luxury competitors. As such, we've booked a southern caribbean 7-day out of Barbados on Seabourn in March of 2022 for 30% less than a Sky Suite on Celebrity. Some, but not all, of the difference in price will be absorbed by the added airfare and cost of Wi
  3. There's too much at stake to get things wrong from the start and take any chances. Look what's already happened in Europe and Alaska on Hurtigruten, TUI's Mein Schiff, and Un-Cruise last month. Even at reduced capacity and only local cruisers, these first few cruises were cancelled due to COVID-19 outbreaks. They will go slow at first with a few ships at a reduced capacity to test new protocols. Add in waiting for local ordinances to allow cruising, port restrictions, health screenings, public confidence, and getting the crew back to the ships, and all of this adds up to the fact
  4. My background is in statistics. While I personally appreciate the subjective nature of comparing Luxury vs Premium lines most of this thread has highlighted: service, food, and included amenities, there are some obvious quantitative differences differentiating luxury lines, premium plus lines, and the rest. No luxury lines have ships with over 1200 passengers. Crystal has relatively larger passenger capacities at 848 and 950, while most of the others have 650 or fewer. However, when you look more closely at the Space to Passenger ratios and Passenger to Crew Ratios, all of the lines this threa
  5. Younger people in their twenties cannot generally afford luxury cruise lines. The age demographic of most ultra luxury lines hover at a median age of 60+. If age of other cruisers is important to you but you're still craving luxury, try an upper level suite on a 7-day or shorter Caribbean cruise in the Haven on NCL or in an suite on Celebrity. You'll have a much better all-inclusive experience with a butler, but a higher probability of the opportunity to engage with people your own age. This article has some interesting statistics regarding age demographics for cruise lines.
  6. There is a great misconception here that Luminae food is sauce-heavy not as clean as compared to Blu. In fact, if you compare the two sets of 14 day menus from Luminae and Blu, you won't find any remarkable differences between the two in terms of which is "cleaner." They're both pretty fancy. The real difference in the two dining rooms is volume of diners, space between tables, server to diner ratios, willingness to cook off menu, and extra courses in Luminae, which always has an amuse bouche and will have an extra dessert course on elegant nights with a cart of mignardises. The food in Lumina
  7. I think we forget on these boards is that unless we're being trolled, everything that's posted is anecdotal, from one person's perspective, on up to a few recent cruises, on a few ships, at certain times of year, with some specific set of crew. Food preference is also subjective. Everyone wants to believe that their experience is the most common, or most representative, or even most liked to feel validated. I'm highly dubious about 1/3 of suite guests dining in Blu on anything other than random chance. Maybe that was an off comment by an overworked Blu maître 'd. Perhaps they are d
  8. You can pretty much request anything in Luminae if you are nice about it and give the kitchen at least one day advance notice. If you want chicken prepared different ways every night, tell them. They will do their best to accommodate you. Some people just want a filet and a baked potato every night, and that's what they can order. Others have reported having the Luminae chefs prepare a complete Indian feast of the chef's whim which certainly wasn't on the menu. The motto in suites from a service standpoint is always say yes. As long as the requests aren't demands nor outlandish, you should be
  9. While there's no question that suite prices have risen at a pace far higher than other cabin classes, and you have certainly been cruising on Celebrity long enough to see how perks and offerings have degraded over time, Celebrity suite perks are still among best in class for any mass market cruise line. I suspect rather than laughing all the way to the bank, the line is shaving costs in ways it can to provoke customers the least while sinking every single extra cent of profit into the Revolution of the existing fleet at $400M and the 2 new Edge Class vessels which cost another $1B each. In no
  10. I think our experience with crowding and waits for dining will vary by ship, time of year which impacts the percent of cabins with triple/quadruple occupancy, and Maitre 'D at Blu. I've only cruised Aqua and Suite class on Celebrity and only had to wait once or twice for dining in Blu with a pager. I've never waited to dine in Luminae. There are basically 4 classes of ships for Celebrity: M-Class, S-Class, Reflection (Modified S), and Edge. The percent of Aqua and Suite cabins available vary by these types: INFINITY/M EQUINOX/S REFLECT
  11. I haven't cruised on the Edge, but I found a post discussing your question. Unlike the M & S class ships, the Edge martini bar is in the center of the ship. It seems that the menu is the same. On other ships, most martinis will be covered up to $15 with the premium beverage package. The Edge has 3 sizes of martinis: regular, large, and extra large. The regular and large martinis should be covered with your package. Here's the link.
  12. I'm a big fan of the martini bar. I loved the Fresca martini with watermelon, mint, lime, & vodka. The dessert martinis are delicious for after-dinner drinks as well. I have two favorites there: the Espresso martini and the Black Forest martini-- they're decadent!
  13. It depends on what you expect from a cruise. I had only booked aqua class cabins on Celebrity since 2018 when we started cruising with them and immediately became a fan. On my last cruise in July on the Equinox, which was our third Celebrity cruise, we upgraded to a Sky Suite because I was concerned that there would be more children on board and more crowding around the pool. I put in a modest MoveUp bid after final payment and was upgraded once again to a Celebrity Suite. From my experience, the suite life changed the entire cruising experience in a very good way for us. I have another cruise
  14. I'm surprised that you did have so many things to appreciate about your experience on Celebrity: excellent cabin attendants who fix virtually anything from your shirt button to your daily Riedel stemware to the beds, head, and telephone. accommodating managers who meet with you to address your concerns as you discover them a nearly universal desire to please across the spectrum of service What also surprised me was how specific your requests around dining were given that you were just in a standard veranda 2C. While I don't have 20 years of experience with Celebrity to s
  15. His carrot soup with prawns is also delicious. I liked it so much, I ordered for two meals.
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