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Hawaii (11 days)
November 14, 2004
by Cheryl Cipkar
We set sail for a 11-day cruise on board the Infinity. We flew to San Diego. Celebrity had everything well planned and
laid out. Easy to find the representative, plenty of people at the airport to assist and direct you to the bus, where we handed in our tranfers. From San Diego, we had a bus ride to Esenada Mexico, to meet the
ship. Here is our biggest complaint about the whole trip. The bus ride was a hour and forty minutes. When we arrived in Esenada, the bus took
us to a hotel for check in. We had to wait another forty minutes on a bus to unload and go inside the hotel. The check in process was quick but we had to again load on the bus and then drive out to the ship. Then pass through security to get on the ship. The whole process was about 3 hours. Celebrity really needs to clean up this part of
embarkation, especially because most of us were still on Eastern time and had a long flight to get there.
The ship was great. A plain ship, not glamorous or ritzy looking but suited us fine. We had an outside cabin on the lower deck. Spacious enough for two people, with a nice size window. Shelving and a small vanity in the bathroom. Space under the bed for our suitcases and plenty of drawers and closets.
The food on the ship was good. Better than the Royal Caribbean we previously sailed on. The desserts were excellent. The buffet at breakfast and lunch was always hot with many choices. Our biggest complaint was the number of nights you had to dress up for dinner. They need to rethink their alternate dining option. If you did not want to dress up for dinner, you could go to the Oceanview Grill for dinner but you had to make reservations and they seated you and served dinner via a menu like the formal dining room. If you wanted just a quick bite or an opportunity to
wear shorts, there was no place to do this. One night we just ordered room service because we were just tired of hurrying back to the ship and dressing up.
Our compliments on the service. We always were greeted by anyone who worked for the cruise line. They often stopped and took the time to talk to you about your day or where you were from. They always seemed interested in what you had to say. They were quick and efficient on a request or problem. Our cabin steward was super as well as the waiter and his assistant. The ship was clean and well taken care of.
The entertainment was nothing fabulous. I think Celebrity could work a little harder here. They even had a couple of repeat performers who performed more than one night. A little more variety would be good.
The itinerary was excellent. The 11 day cruise is a great way to get to know Hawaii. We were at sea for four days. No ship board
announcements, which was great. Very relaxing, the seas were mostly calm. Great weather, mid 70's while crossing. We arrived on the big island of Hawaii first. We took the ship's planned excursion. Tours on buses is a great way the first time you go but we would
definitely rent a car next time. Bus tours mean that you live on someone's
else's plan, so you cannot stop for long periods of time on your own. It became rather annoying at times when the bus drove past something you wanted to stop and see. They have their own personal schedule. The islands are very easy to drive around. Consider renting a car. Loved Maui the best, again would rent a car next time.
Oahu we did rent a car, the ship arranged this for us, just ask at the desk.
Debarkation was smoothly done. We enjoyed a nice breakfast first, we were not called down to the theatre to wait until 9:00. We left the ship by 9:45. Luggage was easy to find and the buses were waiting to take us to the airport. Smooth process, unfortunately there was a long line at the airport, since several buses were leaving from the peer at the same time.
In retrospect, we would definitely sail with Celebrity again. We had a marvelous time but would fly out the day before we would board the ship. Or book a different tour to avoid the bus ride to Esenada. Once on the
islands, we would definitely arrange our own tours or rent a car to see the islands. The food and service were the best, the entertainment and alternate dining needs changing. We have found a home with Celebrity and look forward to cruising again.