12 Top Reasons to Take a Celebrity Cruise
I’ve recently returned from my second Celebrity Cruise, and while on board I was struck by all the little things that Celebrity Cruises does to make your cruise a truly fulfilling vacation. I like to refer to this as Celebrity “Special Touches”, as this really how it feels for me.
Celebrity does the big things well; beautiful ships, excellent food, attentive service. However it was the little things (that really weren’t so little) that just made our cruise vacation experience seamless and utterly enjoyable.
*Updated – We’ve returned from our 3rd Celebrity Cruise on the beautifully Revolutionized Celebrity Summit. If at all possible, the experience sailing with Celebrity simply got even better!
I have sailed on other cruise lines, and in all honesty have had some amazing cruises. While I have been on some cruise lines that have done some of these little things in their own way, the majority of these extra special touches are not the norm on most popular cruise lines. Celebrity Cruises really did leave me with a feeling that was a little bit special.
A short anecdote
My friend messaged me the evening that I came back from my most recent cruise on the Celebrity Summit and asked me “Isn’t it good to be home and sleep in your own bed?”. This was my response, paraphrased. “No it is NOT (lol). I was living the high life for a week in an incredible luxury apartment at sea, where all my meals were prepared for me and almost every wish granted. You should see my home, it comes with everyone else’s laundry and I am the cook!”.
I love my home and life, but when I need a vacation, nothing beats a cruise!
Here are 12 of my TOP Celebrity special touches – which definitely made me love Celebrity!
1.Easy early embarkation
It was such a pleasure embarking on our Celebrity Summit cruise. Check in was easy and efficient and within a short time we were allowed to embark on the ship, and it was early! We were on by about 11:30 am and although not all areas of the ship were accessible yet, early passengers were encouraged to enjoy the ship’s Crush Martini Bar or Cafe Al Bacio. It was a great atmosphere as we started our cruise vacation.
2.Welcome Champagne cocktails
Upon entering the ship, Champagne (ok sparkling wine) cocktails were offered to guests. It was a really special feeling to be able to toast to our cruise with good friends and made a really warm welcome. One of the Celebrity Cruises special touches that just helps to start the cruise off right!
We sat for a little while and had fabulous martinis at the Crush Martini Bar before we headed up to the buffet to have a delicious lunch. A great start to our embarkation day.
3. Dressed pool loungers
What a pleasure to arrive at the spacious and open pool deck in the morning to relax on a lounge chair, and not have to search to find towels or worse yet, to have to lug them up from our cabin! One of my favorite Celebrity special touches for sure. And, I was reminded of this daily as I walked on the pool deck and saw all the welcoming lounge chairs.
It was like my lounge chair was just waiting for me and saying “Come, sit down. Put your feet up. It’s your cruise calling”. Awe. Just amazing!
4. Cafe Al Bacio
This cafe is truly special. It feels very different from some other ship cafes in that it has an atmosphere and menu that feels upscale, gourmet and definitely European inspired. The service was always excellent and the choice of coffee and teas were beyond the imagination. There is a charge for these items, however they are included in the Celebrity Classic Beverage Package Perk, which I highly recommend.
I will be publishing a separate post about all that is available at Cafe Al Bacio, including menus shortly, as there is just too much to include here. Most mornings I would get an Americana to go, and my husband would get a cappuccino. Just look at the presentation!
*update – Celebrity Cruises: 7 Reasons You Will LOVE Cafe Al Bacio is now available.
5. Celebrity Cruises “Welcome Back” on port days
What a way to be welcomed back when returning after a hot day on an excursion, at the beach or exploring. Imagine walking back to your beautiful ship (your home away from home) and being greeted happily and handed a crisp, icy cold towel to refresh. One of Celebrity’s best special touches, 100 percent!
6. Cloth rolled hand towels in the public washroom
I know that this is a little thing, but it feels so nice to be just a little bit pampered, even when using the public washroom. No paper towels all over the floor, or loud noises coming from hand dryers. Plus, they are displayed so delicately. Forgive me for looking like a total nerd taking a photo in the bathroom :-)!
One of the small, but very appreciated special touches I enjoyed about my Celebrity Cruise!
7. Citrus infused water
I have to say that this was one of the “little things” that totally sold me on Celebrity Cruises when I cruised on Celebrity for the first time about a year ago. When waiting for a tender on a hot day with lots of walking in Newport, R.I., under a Celebrity Cruises branded canopy were beautiful carafes of refreshing citrus infused water. It was such a nice special touch. Having my grapefruit water I felt instantly hydrated and well, just a little bit “fancy”. I’m cruising and I like that ;-)!
So, on the ship citrus infused water was available on the pool deck, and my favorite, at the fitness center!
8. Crush Martini Bar
If you’ve sailed, or even if you haven’t sailed with Celebrity Cruises, you’ve probably heard of Crush Martini Bar. This is a fabulous place to get martinis (and other drinks) and also be thoroughly entertained by friendly and skilled bartenders. My two favorite martinis were the Fresca Martini and the Decadence Express Martini (with Triple Espresso Vodka, Kahlua, Baileys and espresso) and my husband just loved the Lemon Drop Martini. So many choices, and all looked fabulous and some totally decadent!
9. Savory dips and spreads served pre-dinner
Once again this is a “little thing”, but what I really consider one of Celebrity Cruises special touches. Each night when we sat at our table in the main dining room, our friendly and uber-attentive waiter would bring us an assortment of delicious homemade breads and bread sticks (my fave) along with dips and spreads that changed nightly. It was like a little surprise waiting for us each evening.
This photo shows a whipped butter which was always presented in the middle, with a hummus and tzaziki spread on either side. So delish and indulgent.
10. Healthy Indulgences at the Aqua Spa Cafe
I love that you can pick up such pretty and healthy food choices right at the Solarium Aqua Spa cafe. Fresh fruit plates were available along with a variety of healthy options for every diet; low carb, high protein, organic, keto, gluten free, weight watchers friendly, you name it. Some delicious options I tried included a lovely caprese salad and a delicious salmon tartar.
Something that was truly special was the fruit smoothie bar with amazing choices of fresh fruits, spinach and kale, and a variety of healthy seeds. There was a charge for this, but if you had the Celebrity Cruise Premium Beverage Package or the Premium Non-Alcoholic Beverage Package these were included.
11. Good self-service coffee
So I LOVE the fancier coffees at Cafe Al Bacio, whether it was an Americana, an ice-coffee, an affogato (if you’re wondering what that is check out my Cafe Al Bacio post). However, sometimes it was just convenient to grab a coffee in the buffet or at the Aqua Spa Cafe on the pool deck. You know what? It was the best self-serve drip style coffee I have ever had on a cruise. Just sayin’.
12. Free Room Service
When we first started cruising, room service was always included. Then over the years, we saw that some cruise lines added a nominal charge after a certain hour (which there is on Celebrity Cruises). However, in recent years, some cruise lines have done away with free room service altogether are charging a lot for this indulgence.
For me, it’s always felt special to be able to order room service on a cruise, because it is totally outside of our regular routine at home, or even at a hotel, for that matter. I would let my kids order cookies and milk at night and as they got older even a burger and fries. On a cruise, I could feel like super mom!
Well, on a sleepy morning when we were heading out on a somewhat early excursion, my teen son ordered his breakfast in bed. What a treat! Thanks Celebrity Cruises for keeping this truly special touch and nice cruise extra!
Bonus Video: Here’s a look at the Celebrity Summit – updated and “revolutionized” – It’s gorgeous!!!
Recap: Top reasons Celebrity Cruises – Special Touches
I hope this list of 12 special touches that I personally loved on Celebrity Cruises has been helpful. Thank you to David Perrien, amazing Captain’s Club Host and Dan France, amusing and super energetic Cruise Director for a memorable cruise and for your assistance with my list of Celebrity Cruise Special Touches.
Perhaps the most special touch of all is a warm and friendly staff, that seem to go above and beyond to make your cruise special! Thanks to all the staff and crew on Celebrity Summit for, well, just everything!
Since this cruise and original “review” Celebrity Summit has been updated and Revolutionized. Take a look at the ship and our recent review here: Celebrity Summit Cruise Review: Post Revolutionized (with photos)
Other Celebrity Cruises blog posts:
Celebrity Cruises: 7 Reasons You Will LOVE Cafe Al Bacio (with menus)
The Ultimate Celebrity Cruises Tuscan Grille Review (with menus)
How to Stay Fit and Healthy on a Celebrity Cruise Vacation
Our first cruise with Celebrity: Celebrity Summit Bermuda, Boston and Newport Cruise Review.
Best Things To Do in Boston on a Cruise (Celebrity Summit Cruise Port Review)
Have you cruised with Celebrity or are you considering it? Please share what you enjoy most in know in the comments below.
P.S. If you’ve enjoyed this, please don’t keep it to yourself ;-)! Please share it on Facebook or save for later on Pinterest. Thanks so much!
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I’ve had a very stressful few months and I persuaded my husband to book a last minute Celebrity cruise on the Summit to Bermuda. Your review of the special touches brought tears to my eyes as I eagerly await our 12th Celebrity cruise August 26. All you wrote is so true
Awe, I am so glad! This is the sweetest comment, thanks so much! Definitely a Celebrity Cruise is what’s needed after difficult and stressful times. Have a great time on the Summit!
We will be on that cruise too! So excited!
That’s great Faith! It was a great one for us! Did you check out the post about Cafe Al Bacio? Amazing place!!
Enjoy your cruise and thanks so much for taking the time to comment 🙂
My better half and I will be on the August 26th Summit cruise also. So excited, its my first cruise.
Thanks for taking the time to comment. I am so excited for you!! Wishing you the most wonderful cruise!!
I have ordered the special drink package so far!
Thanks so much for this. We will be trying Celebrity (and the Summit) for the first time in January. NOW I’m really excited and all because of this blog – finally special things bringing back the magic of cruising. Thank you!
Thanks Lana for your comment. I agree completely about the “magic of cruising”. Our first couple of cruises had more of this, but with changes over the last few years…well we missed the magic too! Definitely we found it with Celebrity. Have a wonderful time!
I love Celebrity. I am a travel agent and hope you don’t mind, I shared your blog with my clients. Thank you, Already Gone Travel
Hi Deborah, thanks for your comment! It means a lot to me, especially coming from a Travel Agent. I’m thrilled if you share :-)!!
What a great article!! my husband and I will be sailing with the Equinox on Oct 15 to celebrate his 60th birthday!! We have sailed Norwegian twice before. So first time for Celebrity and we are so looking forward to this trip.
How wonderful! What a nice way to celebrate!! I’ve sailed Norwegian too and do like them, but really appreciate the Celebrity ships with non-crowded pool decks, great service and dining of course. Enjoy your cruise and thanks for taking the time to comment.
You will love celebrity. We have sailed both and celebrity comes out on top everytime 😎😍
I am going on the Equinox on Oct. 23! It’s my first time cruising! I can’t wait!
Lucky you! You are really starting off with one of the very best cruise lines! If you haven’t yet, I suggest taking a look at the Top 15 Embarkation Day Tips so you’ll be well prepared for that wonderful first day.
That’s wonderful. I hope that you really enjoy it! Feel free to come back and let us know your impressions. I still have some amazing memories of my first cruise :-)!
Awesome blog. We are cruising on Celebrity Equinox in November for the first time and her sister sounds awesome. Do you have a YouTube channel with cruising videos?
Thanks Jodie for your awesome comments!! I don’t have a youtube channel, yet. I do have some videos I plan to edit and upload in the next few weeks though, so it should be coming soon. I do have a FB page and group, Life Well Cruised (page) and Life Well Cruised Community Group where I share lots of fun cruising content (and some videos). Please come and join :-). I also have IG if you are on that.
They restroom towels are a nice touch and more environmentally friendly. The ship uses waste heat from the engines to desalinate and heat water.
Very good point! I`m glad to have learned something new :-)! Thanks for taking the time to read and comment.
Hi thank you for reiterating all of thought on Celebtrity!
Take the”Behind the scenes “ tour.
A lot of info was given during this bottom to top-of the ship
Thanks for the comments and recommendation – I think I just might on my next cruise!
I have unfortunately only cruised with Celebrity twice, once on the Infinity and Reflection but have to say they were two of the best cruises we’ve been on. The Infinity cruised from Harwich which was fantastic for us as only 40 mins away. We were on a table of 8 whom we have made lifelong friends with and cruise with them still 2-3 times a year. Service and food were second to none. The Martini Ice Bar was fabulous and we spent most of our evenings there after watching the great shows. We have tried a few other cruise lines since, all of which are good but will definitely be cruising on another Celebrity in the not too distant future. Great blog by the way, says it all!
So nice that you have such great memories of your Celebrity Cruises. I agree that once you sail Celebrity, others cruises pale just a little bit. Thanks for taking the time to comment and for your kind words about my blog. Much appreciated 🙂
Ilana thank you so much I have sailed with NCL 17 times and I was a bit concerned if Celebrity would live up to NCL. Your blog has put my mind at ease. Your blog tells me celebrity will be a step above all the cruises I have taken with NCL. I will be sailing on 8-5. Thank you very much.
I’m so glad that this helped put your mind at ease. I think you’ll be really pleased with Clebrity! From my experience on both cruise lines, I will say the ”vibe” is somewhat quieter on Celebrity and people don’t stay up as much late into the night, however still lots of fun. Dining, drinks, service though – top notch! Enjoy your cruise and thanks so much for taking the time to comment 🙂
Ilana, thank you for the review. It was nice meeting you on the Summit.
Thanks so much for checking out my blog and for taking the time to comment. I really appreciate it :-)! It was great meeting you and your husband as well!! Who knows, maybe we will meet again on another Celebrity cruise.
If you have Facebook and you’re interested, please come and check out my FB page @lifewellcruised. I find facebook is a good way to keep in touch.
All the best,
My husband and I took our very first cruise on the July 15th, 2018 sailing of the Celebrity Summit! My travel agent told us that we are spoiled now..I am guessing all the little touches you just mentioned may not be on other cruise lines. I would say our travel agent must be correct! We loved our time on the Summit. Thank you for sharing so that others may want to go experience it for themselves.
Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I’m really glad that you enjoyed your first cruise. You were on just after us :-)! Your TA is right that Celebrity is one of the very best.
Wishing you lots of cruises ahead,
Just got home from the Equinox ship cruise. Fantastic!
Going on The Edge in December for Holiday Cruise.
I go on Celebrity 2 to 3 times a year as I am addicted!!!
I completely get how addictive it is, but it’s the best of all vices, right? I am totally jealous that you are cruising on the Edge!! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment :-)!
We will be cruising on Celebrity for the first time in Jul 19, having cruised three times with P & O and I’’m reassured and excited after reading this. Thank you so much.
How exciting! I’ve never cruised on P & O, so I can’t compare, but I think you’ll enjoy. Let me know when you come back :-).
My wife and I have been on eight Cruises. This was our first time on Celebrity. We took the 7 day cruise to Bermuda the end off July this year. We left our house at 10:15am and were on the ship by 11:30. I agree with everything you said. We booked a future cruise the first day we were on board. I would recommend Celebrity to anyone.
Wow, that’s amazing that you booked the first day on board. Celebrity certainly seems to make a great impression :-)!
Thanks Armand for taking the time to comment!
Oh, we love The Summit! After every comment I was looking for the lIKE button😻
Thank you for this wonderful review of the ship and Cafe Bacio which is one of our favorite places to sit and “people watch”. And have a Affogotto!
How sweet! Thanks Carol for your kind words – and I’m glad to hear that you also like the Affogatos. They are amazing!!
The more I read about your experience on the Summit, the more I get excited.
Some of the reviews are so bad that I sometimes regret my choice. I am looking forward to sailing on her October 27th a southern Caribbean cruise.
Thank you so much for this review.
I was just wondering what deck you were on. We booked and oceanview and I am waiting for the email to upgrade. I kind of regret that i did not book a balcony.
we will see.
Don’t let bad reviews get you down. 100% honest, the ship is in overall great condition and the service is really good. It is an older ship though, so there are areas where you can see some wear, but it was kept up and cleaned constantly. We really did have a great experience.
We had an OV cabin on deck 2 and it was comfortable. Last year we were on deck 7 in a balcony and we definitely enjoyed that. Keep an eye on the prices and maybe if it comes down you can upgrade. Btw, you will love the Southern Caribbean! Don’t worry too much… it will be wonderful!
My Wife and me enjoyed our Americano and pastries at Cafe al Bacio each morning, where we were always treated with a friendly smile and conversation and cannot wait for our Millennium cruise, next January, 2019
Thanks for taking the time to comment. It’s amazing how starting the day off with a great coffee and a friendly smile leaves a lasting impression. Have a wonderful cruise!!
Last august we were on the Eclipse.
It was our first cruise with Celebrity and we loved it.
We found the entertainment the best of all the cruise lines.
We loved Al Bacio and enjoyed sitting next to the atrium.
Thanks so much for telling me about your experience. I can see we enjoy the same things 🙂
My husband and I have only done two cruises both with Celebrity, one last year and one this year.Your article sums up why when looking for our next one we can’t bring ourselves to look elsewhere. Thanks for the happy reminders.
I’m so glad it represented your experience! Thanks for taking the time to comment. I so appreciate it!
Thank you so much for putting into words all the nice touches on what makes Celebrity such a special cruise line. I can now explain to my friends that this is why I love Celebrity and they can also feel it once they read it. I have had seven cruises on Celebrity and will have my 8th Cruise in December on the Infinitiy.
I am so glad you liked it – As a long time Celebrity cruiser, your comment means a lot!I’m glad that you’ll be able to share it with friends and certainly appreciate it as well.
Have a great cruise in December!
Wow. Great review. Seriously still considering Celebrity next time. Watched the celebrity Summit sail right by us in Miami. Looked awesome.
Thanks so much Kevin, I am glad you enjoyed it! The Summit is a really nice ship, despite not being the biggest :-). When you try Celebrity, please let me know what you think.
Be interested in your thoughts on the EDGE……
Great question – and thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.
I’m not sure on a personal level. I’ve heard overall really great feedback, with the exception of the infinite veranda which is getting mixed reviews. I hope I’ll be able to cruise on the Edge and see for myself. The main pool looks so spacious… that definitely appeals to me and I heard service is still amazing!
What are you thoughts? Have you been on Edge yet, or are you considering it?
Edge is certainly a different experience to other Celebrity ships. The decor is beautiful, and we actually liked the Infinite Veranda. The layout of the ship is very different to other Celebrity ships, and takes some getting used to, but there are some interesting spaces that are new. The service is excellent and consistent with other Celebrity ships. You must try the Eden restaurant- that experience was worth the cruise. The separated complimentary dining rooms was also a nice concept, and we particularly enjoyed Cyprus restaurant. We were on the third sailing in December 2018, so any small glitches would have been ironed out by now.
We are heading on Millennium in January, so looking forward to the Revolutionised features.
Wow, thanks Ian for the great info about Celebrity Edge. I really hope to try Edge or Apex next year. I think I’d like the infinate veranda as well, so I’m glad to hear your positive comment.
Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment and bon voyage!
The ice towels on return after a port were worth the entire trip!!!!
You’re so right!!! Love that!!