Celebrity Zenith 12/28/00-01/08/01 Southern Caribbean Suite 1027 Atlantic Deck
Arrived in Ft Lauderdale the night before the cruise (weather in Pittsburgh is unpredictable this time of year).
Checked in around 1pm. Lines were short and check in was a breeze. We found it odd that we were not asked for our passport or any for of ID.
Were handed a glass of champagne as we came on board but no-ne showed us to our cabin as on other cruises we've taken. We noticed later that people were being escorted to cabins and figured we were just early. Had no problem finding our cabin though. This trip we splurged and booked a suite. We met the cabin attendant and butler (yes, we had a butler!). The suite was great. It had a big window, sitting area, more drawer space than I have at home and a huge bathroom with a whirlpool tub! It also had 2 single beds. We asked that the beds be pushed together and left to explore. I'd been given a spa package as a birthday gift so went there first to check in. I was pleasantly suprised to find that all my treatments were already scheduled and on days we would be at sea. We had decided which shore excursions we wanted to take before leaving home and booked them right away. When we returned to the cabin the beds were together. On our NCL cruise they just pushed the beds together but they were still made separately so that you still couldn't get together. This time they were pushed together and made up as one bed. The padded the division so well I could hardly tell where it was. All of our luggage arrived at the same time soon after our arrival. There was a bottle of champagne on ice and a bowl of fresh fruit that was refilled every time I took anything out of it . Every afternoon the butler brought a cart with tea and goodies. And around 5 he brought hors d'ouvers! The ship: The Zenith is beautiful and although it is bigger than any I'd been on it didn't feel huge. The pool area (my favortie part of a ship) is large and has lots of lounge chairs. However, in spite of numerous requests from the cruise staff NOT to save chairs, if you did not claim one by 10am you were out of luck. I did see the staff removing towels from some chairs one afternoon. The pool staff was not very good. They rarely came around to ask if you wanted anything and seemed to spend a lot of time socializing with each other and ignoring guests. The food: I found the food to be outstanding! We ate breakfast and lunch in the buffet restaurant and the food was good with lots of choices. We ate all but 1 night in the dining room at a table for 2. Our waiter and assistant were fabulous and we enjoyed them so much. Our waiter was funny and perputually happy (singing all the time). The spa: I had lots of interesting wraps, massages, a manicure and facial. The girls in the spa were all extremely nice and efficiant. The girl at the desk had an amazing memory and remebered peoples names after meeting them just once! I knew ahead of time that they would try to sell me their products and each treatment had a line of products (quite pricey). They each gave a sales pitch but were not pushy at all. Entertainment: The shows were good but not great. The cruise director and staff did a good job. The New Year's Eve celebration was at the pool and thankfully it was a nice night although a bit breezy. Ports of Call: We visited St Maarten, St Lucia, Barbados, Antigua, and St Thomas. I could not tell you my favorite as all have their own charms. St Lucia is the greenest and prettiest but I did not like the beaches, they weren't the pretty white I'm use to. We had engine problems (1 of the 4 broke down) and we were late getting Antigua. Then in St Thomas we docked at old submarine base instead of the usual cruise dock. Some were not happy about docking so far from town but it was no problem getting to town.
In conclusion: We would sail with Celebrity again any time. We loved the food and the staff (with the exception of the pool staff). Of course, now I am thouroughly spoiled and will always want a suite with a bulter.