The Celebrity Theater. Great sight-lines in an ugly, uncomfortable venue. The seatbacks are bolt upright, making seating equivalent to sitting with your back against a wall! There is NO going to sleep here! The facility is high tech, a fact the producers won’t let you forget. They use every available bit of gimmickry in their shows, regardless of its suitability. The stage alone has turntables and elevators. Century made it a point of locating the orchestra on the elevator, where they could be raised and lowered several times during each show. Surely they can be put to better use than that??!!
Century’s famous Michael’s Club. The smoking room! The brochure promises cigars rolled right before your eyes in the plush surroundings of a room where cigar smoking is permitted, even encouraged! There was no cigar roller on board during my cruise, and no ashtrays most times of the day. This was also the location the dopes running the ship selected for each days team trivia contests! The smoking room!!
Images, the Century’s “high tech” sports bar. Well, it’s high tech if you consider video monitors and video games to be high tech. Much has been said about the electronic games, set in the table tops of the booths in Images. Well, they were certainly there. But, instructions were lacking and at least one was ruined by a spilled drink having found it’s way beneath the table top. Another promise, unfulfilled!
The Promenade. It’s a nicely done, teak finished deck. Unfortunately, it goes only from the theater, in the front, to the Rendez-Vous Lounge, about two thirds back. If you wish to circle the stern, a steep set of stairs make this possible to do…..but at risk of skinned shins! There is no way to circle the front!
The Caviar Bar. Tucked away and hidden in the farthest reaches of the Crystal Room, it’s rarely, if ever, manned and even less frequently used. Most passengers never even find it. A good thing, since it’s mostly closed anyway!
The multi-level Crystal Room. This is a pretty nice, but underutilized room. Intended for quiet, after dinner dancing and entertainment, the room is divided into sections, some secluded and others quite open. Orignially intended to be named "Bubbles", the entranceway consists of a series of water filled tubes, bubbling away. A nice touch, which would be even nicer if all of the tubes were equally filled with water, as they were designed! Of course, on this ship, they weren’t! No surprise there!
The pool area. Upon arriving early in the morning, this is a lovely, well maintained area. Rolled towels are placed on every chair, awaiting the days occupant. However, that is the last maintenance the area sees until late afternoon! Used towels are never removed, chairs are never straightened. Unless you feel it to be your job to play deck steward and remove other peoples towels, you will never find a vacant chair if you arrive after 11:00. Traversing the deck becomes a chore equivalent to an obstacle course.
A wide view of the pool area. Notice the deck top covering:: near white colored rubber! Our eyes are designed to block bright light coming from above, not that reflected from below. In this instance, on a ship sailing the sunny Caribbean, the deck covering reflects light that is not only uncomfortable, but can actually be the cause of eye damage!
The Jogging Track. Situated around the forward deck, above The Hemisphere Observation Lounge. The deck is surfaced with a covering similar to a jute carpet pad. When wet, it smells like a wet dog! The track is littered with narrow paths, (see top arrow) and rail stanchions (lower arrow), sticking out into the path of runners, creating a trip hazard! Originally, the track was designed around the funnel, with a nicely marked, padded rubber, textured surface. Unfortunately, the designers, being the amateurs they proved themselves to be, failed to notice what was located below…..the Sky SUITES!! It was moved!
The Sky Bar. Almost never open, this bar has all the ambiance of a VFW Club.
The Library. Decorated in the best tradition of an urban public library, it has books, shelves, tables, and upright chairs, PERIOD! No overstuffed, comfortable reading chairs here! The furnishings are reminiscent of Ikea, at it’s finest!
Copyright © 1998 Mel Litzenberger. All Rights Reserved.