Celebrity Edge NOT a “game changer”
Tony Poulter | January 24, 2018 | Celebrity Cruises | Celebrity Edge
I have recently returned from a 12 day cruise in the Mediterranean on the Celebrity Edge, a new ship touted as a “game-changer”. All the hype certainly got me excited but does the reality match all the fanfares? IMHO, no, it does not. There are plenty of positive things to say about the Edge but these are balanced out by the number of negatives. The cruise was fine and we had an enjoyable holiday, just not the wonderful experience we hoped it would be.
A lot of people seemed impressed by the look of the ship but I found it a little underwhelming. If you want a big ship with long, sleek, graceful lines then look elsewhere. The Edge is rather “stubby” to behold and the “Magic Carpet” (a novelty at best) gives the ship an “industrial” look. It’s big enough of course and is not ugly by any stretch of the imagination but compared to other ships we saw in many ports of call it did tend to be the runt of the litter.
On board there was plenty of artwork and large photographic images around – all very nice if that, er, floats your boat! The rooftop garden was interesting but an extra swimming pool would have been preferable. The one large swimming pool on the resort deck was too busy on ‘sea days’. There was one in the solarium – but who wants to go in there when you’re cruising the Med! There was another pool for the ‘suite people’ but just don’t get me started on that whole ‘two-class’ issue!
Our stateroom (cabin) was excellent with a real balcony rather than one of the new-fangled ‘infinity’ balconies. It was large enough, had plenty of power points and the bathroom was a revelation! It was by far the biggest and best bathroom we have had on any ship (and we’ve been on quite a few). Mind you, toilet tissue was an issue! Poor quality. And toilet paper in the public areas was, well, do you remember IZAL toilet rolls at school in the 60s? Enough said! There was plenty of draw space but the wardrobe could have been bigger and better designed. A more powerful hairdryer would have been appreciated. A coffee machine would also have been a boon – having to go down to the coffee bar, buy two cappuccinos at 6$ a cup and carry them back to the room was an inconvenience we could have done without. We are always impressed by the ship’s atrium but not on this ship. The Grand Plaza (or “Not-So-Grand-Plaza” as we called it!) lacked the cavernous feel and glorious winding marble staircases we are used to seeing, and was too small to be the main meeting place on the ship.
Having four different restaurants (we didn’t bother with speciality eateries – we’re paying enough already!) to choose from was a bonus. All the restaurants were smart, with a good atmosphere, friendly staff and, more importantly, the food was superb (although the desserts were a little disappointing). We ate breakfast and lunch at the Oceanview Cafe and this had improved greatly since our cruise on the Celebrity Solstice a few years ago. Yes, the coffee is still awful but the food is excellent – better yet, you had no trouble finding a place to sit and to eat it!
As stated earlier, there are plenty of good things to say about the Edge. Captain Kate was great! We loved her daily updates and do not blame her at all for the fact that our itinerary had to change. Getting on and off the ship was really slick and well organised. The Celebrity app on my phone was very useful and the silent discos were just fantastic! Who knew wearing headphones and dancing along to a totally different song to most other people could be such fun! You could actually enjoy and shake a leg to songs you’re fond of – unlike some of the stuff they played (loudly) by the pool! Entertainment was typical of cruise ships – variable! We didn’t enjoy the weird modern dancing in Eden but the “Rock On” show in the theatre was to our liking. You have to be careful with your choices.
Overall, however, I could only give the ship 3 stars because those ‘niggles’ add up. This was an expensive cruise and although gratuities were paid up front that didn’t stop Celebrity charging ridiculous gratuities on every drink you bought. Was it value for money? Well, put it this way, we are returning to Princess Cruises next summer. I doubt we’ll ever go back to Celebrity – I think they’ve lost their Edge.
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