Azamara and Celebrity

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#1
atlanta
367 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
We are elite captain club members on celebrity and are considering an Azamara cruise. How do they compare and would we elite on board as well? Thanks for any feedback.
Swh
#2
Asheville
17,437 Posts
Joined May 2007
i now prefer A. smal lship. ypu know the captain and all major officers.. several of the crew after a couple of cruises you will be welcome back as they know your face.

food is better and coffee to. yuo can get snack at 12 am in the coffeee bar.

you also get free laundry and more than twice the internet minutes.

i am surei left something out..

see you onboard one day
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Robin
#3
973 Posts
Joined Jun 2006
It's a bit of an apples and oranges comparison - they are competing at two different price points, and a different market. For a mass market line, Celebrity produces (IMO) a wonderful product. Azamara vessels are a smaller more intimate and a more upscale experience. The crew are some of the best around and you will never find a more hands-on complement of officers - very guest oriented.

However, there are some things I take issue with, after five cruises with them. The cabins pale in comparison with the new Solstice vessels for both space and ambience and the bathrooms are pokey compared to almost any new cruise ship. The vessels are much smaller (both pros and cons with this) and the entertainment is also comparatively lower key.

You will find generally the destinations are much more off the beaten track and less repetitive than the bigger ships.

I was seriously impressed with the Equinox when we sailed Transatlantic last fall and it certainly has made us rethink our priorities.
#4
Boca Raton, FL
18,843 Posts
Joined Mar 2002
Originally posted by swh&cv
We are elite captain club members on celebrity and are considering an Azamara cruise. How do they compare and would we elite on board as well? Thanks for any feedback.
Swh
Hi Swh,

You would be at Discoverer Level on Azamara. Here's a list of their benefits :http://browse.azamaraclubcruises.com...its&cS=SIDENAV

We've sailed many times on Celebrity, and on Azamara Journey and Quest. They are all wonderful experiences... but it's important to keep in mind that Azamara's ships are smaller and carry about 690 Guests. It's a very different experience than Celebrity, as their ships are larger. Being on a small ship has it's advantages, as Azamara's Service and Cuisine are outstanding, and you can generally reach ports that the larger ships cannot visit.

If you have further questions, feel free to ask.
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#5
atlanta
367 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
Thanks host Andy ......we are a gay couple in our mid forties. We are low key and enjoy michaels club and retiring early evening! Lame......right!?g. We are looking at the holy land cruise for oct 13.......we love the 2 nights ......3days in Israel.
#6
Ontario Canada
104 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
We haev cruised a handful of times... for us the celebrity Millenium was our favorite for a long time... We even sailed the Seabourne legend, but found it stiff and boring...

Then we Discovered Azamara, and have a new Favorite!!

I think that the way our Travel Agent described it was best ...

He told us:

"The difference between Azamara and Celebrity is like going from Toyota to Lexus..."

The fellow cruisers fit the bill as well - people who appreciate a great product in its own right, but are willing to pay extra for the luxury finishes and a fancier showroom...
#7
Phoenix, Arizona
4,155 Posts
Joined Dec 2008
Hi there ssh&cv. We are a gay couple from Arizona and have been on Celebrity over 15 times and Azamara one 4 times now. Celebrity has newer ships, better entertainment and nicer rooms. Azamara is more intimate, had great food and the employees are even friendlier than Celebrity. I know, that is hard to believe. We love both lines and pick either depending on itinerary. I am sure you would have a great time.
#8
442 Posts
Joined Sep 2011
Originally posted by Phxazzcruisers
Hi there ssh&cv. We are a gay couple from Arizona and have been on Celebrity over 15 times and Azamara one 4 times now. Celebrity has newer ships, better entertainment and nicer rooms. Azamara is more intimate, had great food and the employees are even friendlier than Celebrity. I know, that is hard to believe. We love both lines and pick either depending on itinerary. I am sure you would have a great time.
I wouldn't say that Celebrity has "better" entertainment persay...just more of it, and a larger variety---which I suppose could attribute to it being a better experience for some! They are owned by the same company of course, and for a musician (my boyfriend plays piano on the Journey, and played on the Silhouette recently as well) it is an honor to be placed on azamara because it is a more intimate setting, and guest interaction is so much more familiar...and you really need to know what you are doing

I agree with the "apples and oranges" comparison, they are both great, IMHO.
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#9
Phoenix, Arizona
4,155 Posts
Joined Dec 2008
Originally posted by dpryo319
I wouldn't say that Celebrity has "better" entertainment persay...just more of it, and a larger variety---which I suppose could attribute to it being a better experience for some! They are owned by the same company of course, and for a musician (my boyfriend plays piano on the Journey, and played on the Silhouette recently as well) it is an honor to be placed on azamara because it is a more intimate setting, and guest interaction is so much more familiar...and you really need to know what you are doing

I agree with the "apples and oranges" comparison, they are both great, IMHO.
Sorry, I may have worded it incorrectly. By entertainment I meant large show productions. I completely agree that the smaller intimate performers are incredible on both ships.
#11
Harpenden, UK
14,797 Posts
Joined Nov 2002
Originally posted by swh&cv
does anyone have any info on whats going to be done during the refurb next year?
swh
Response from an officer onboard Quest when asked this question "I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you". It's all a big secret at the moment, but the usual replacement/upgrade of carpets and soft furnishings are sure to be done. Depends how far the budget will go, but I heard there will be a wow factor to it also.

Phil
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#12
Harpenden, UK
14,797 Posts
Joined Nov 2002
Originally posted by dpryo319
I wouldn't say that Celebrity has "better" entertainment persay...just more of it, and a larger variety---which I suppose could attribute to it being a better experience for some! They are owned by the same company of course, and for a musician (my boyfriend plays piano on the Journey, and played on the Silhouette recently as well) it is an honor to be placed on azamara because it is a more intimate setting, and guest interaction is so much more familiar...and you really need to know what you are doing

I agree with the "apples and oranges" comparison, they are both great, IMHO.
I was very impressed with the quality of the entertainment earlier this month on Quest. It's never going to be the same as one of the larger Celebrity theatres and site line to the floor for those acts that are nearer to it is always going to be an issue unless that is one of the things they address in the refurb, but for intimacy and quality of acts I really enjoyed it (from someone who doesn't usually go to the shows I went to just about every one).

Phil
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#14
Home
2,824 Posts
Joined May 2009
I like more the cuisine in Azamara and that it is more port intensive. Itis perfect for the black sea! I enjoy very much Celebrity specially because of the shows. I will sail with both again anytime.
#15
Portland, OR
10 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
We, too, are Elite on Celebrity and have no interest at all in any ship carrying more than the Millenium class 1900+. Just too many people for our taste. So we tried out Azamara Quest in September 2010, Venice to Rome. We were beyond pleased. Everything, as you might expect, was a notch above Millenium class (even the Solsticized ones). Yes, the cabins are not huge but still quite tasteful. Dining was superb. We were invited to all the special officers' events as Elite usually are. The officers and crew were top notch, very friendly while totally professional. A crew member or two accompanied us on every shore excursion. Getting off and on the ship was a breeze. We are over 65 so after a long day ashore, cocktails and a lovely dinner, we almost never looked for entertainment. My husband might spend half an hour in the casino and that's it. The fellow who compared Celebrity vs. Azamara as similar to Toyota vs. Lexus. We've sailed on both and drive one of each so he's right on! And ... we're booked on Quest out of Barcelona in September. It's really just a matter of what you're looking for, but we love Azamara.
#16
NW Indiana USA
170 Posts
Joined Feb 2011
We agree with the apples v oranges or Toyota v Lexus comparisons. We love them both but for different reasons. We have had wonderful cruises on both; Celebrity in Alaska our favorite on that line and Azamara in the Caribbean. We love, love, love the crew on Azamara and love the itineraries because we love "off the beaten path" excursions. It is just a matter of preference and personal taste. (This past month we had to buckle down and do RCCL Liberty of the Seas because it was our 13-year-old son's choice. We, or should I say he, had a great time anyway but again, no way does that compare to the intimacy of Azamara or the "grand package" of Celebrity.)
#17
22 Posts
Joined Oct 2008
azamara wins if you like good food and interaction with officers and fellow passengers. the line also has complimentary wine with meals and shuttles in many ports of call. concierge class on celebrity provides good cabins and attendants. state rooms on azamara are pretty small, showers even smaller, and in some cases time worn. i pay extra for azamara because the food, service, and ambience appeal to me more than the staterooms.
#18
Grand Island, NY
758 Posts
Joined Dec 2002
Originally posted by tomballtoby
azamara wins if you like good food and interaction with officers and fellow passengers. the line also has complimentary wine with meals and shuttles in many ports of call. concierge class on celebrity provides good cabins and attendants. state rooms on azamara are pretty small, showers even smaller, and in some cases time worn. i pay extra for azamara because the food, service, and ambience appeal to me more than the staterooms.
A slightly different view on Azamara food in the MDR based on our recent West Indies cruise on the Journey. It almost seemed like the chef was trying too hard to do unique menus. Most nights, the majority of the entrees had a "different" seasoning or vegetable accompaniment. The net result is that, depending on one's personal tastes, the MDR's on Celebrity and Azamara are pretty much equal. A big plus goes to Azamara for excellent dinner buffets that had different themes each night. The highlight of those was the on deck Caribbean barbecue.

The biggest plus for Azamara dining was the Pool Grill lunches which I have always regarded highly on Celebrity. However, the made to order Azamara burgers were unbelievable. Add in the beef, chicken, pork and salmon skewers, crispy onion rings and some wonderful grilled vegetables and the Azamara Pool Grill was my dining highlight on the ship. As far as lunches go, Azamara does not have an equivalent of the Celebrity AquaSpa grills - not a negative, just a fact.

On a relative basis, the Azamara specialty dining was comparable in food quality and selection to that offered on Celebrity. Rather surprising, but I thought the service in the Azamara specialty restaurants was somewhat less than we have received in the Celebrity specialty restaurants. On average, I would say if one has a favorite Celebrity specialty restaurant (Tuscan Grille in my case), one would be mildly disappointed in the Azamara specialty restaurants. Although for $25 on Azamara rather than $30 or $40 on Celebrity per person cover change, maybe not.

One other thought for those with mobility issues. Perhaps it is related to the fact that we visited a lot of small ports, but we ended up tendering in nearly every port. This caused issues in several ports where the tender was bobbing up and down several feet during transfers to and from the Journey. I know this was the result of water conditions, but it also reflects the fact that Azamara does not always go to ports which have nicely constructed cruise ship piers. However, for someone in a wheel chair, I don't think any amount of assistance from the crew would have made the transfer to/from the tender a safe event those days. Even for a quite agile person as myself, the transfers those days from scary. This certainly is the one area where Azamara's calls on small ports is not as great an advantage as one might think.

Art
#19
Portland, OR
10 Posts
Joined Apr 2002
Totally agree about the tendering in small ports. Still, smaller ports is one of the selling features of smaller ships. We were amazed at the crew's handling of disabled, even wheelchair bound, passengers in the Med.

We, too, have "braved" an RCCL ship (Mariner of the Seas, LA to Mexico) when we took 6 adult children and six grandchildren ranging in age from 7 to 19 along on a cruise. The kids were in heaven with the rock climbing wall, teen nightclub, chocolate chip cookies on request at dinner. We'll stick with Celebrity and Azamara as long as it's just adults, but for the kids it was perfect and a fabulous cruise.