Why Choose Celebrity Cruises?
Whilst we cannot visit every hotel and Cruise ship in the World, we try to cover as many as possible.
Sue Broad from our Pangbourne branch recently spent some time on-board the Celebrity Constellation and she shares her experiences below.
I was lucky enough to be asked to join thethis December on a journey from Muscat, round the Musandam Peninsula, stopping in Khasab in Oman and finally disembarking in Abu Dhabi.
Constellation is one of Celebrity’s Millennium class ships carrying just over 2,000 passengers. There are a host of lovely specialty restaurants on board serving, amongst others, Italian, Sushi and international cuisines, an extensive enrichment programme offering everything from fitness and health advice, classes for wine tasting and cocktail mixing to lectures geared to destinations visited on the cruise.
There is a 900 seater theatre offering a range of productions to suit all tastes, a choice of bars and lounges often with live music and the lively Martini Bar with its ice counters.
A huge well equipped gym, spa, a Fun Factory for youngsters and an XBox crammed club especially for teens are also on offer. There are two pools and several hot tubs and lots of little eateries round the pool area offering light and healthy snacks, or burgers, chips and ice cream if you prefer!
Staterooms are clean and comfortable and range from Inside up to Penthouse Suites and the popular AquaClass cabins come with a range of exclusive inclusions such as a private restaurant and complimentary entry to the private Persian Garden spa.
Signature, Royal, Penthouse and Reflection suites have access to an exclusive lounge, Michael’s Club, with its own dedicated concierge service.
Muscat is a beautiful city, clean and calm and surrounded by huge, rocky mountains. We had an afternoon free and four of us decided to take a taxi with a driver who took us on a hour’s tour round the old city. We saw the Sultan’s Al Alam Royal Palace, forts, the marina, the luxury 6* Al Bustan Palace hotel which was stunning and ended with the driver dropping us off at the local souk which we wandered around – getting lost – but it was clean, quiet, safe and very well organised compared to some souks I’ve seen!
Our next stop after a night and a day at sea was Khasab which is the capital of the Musandam Peninsula and an area known at the Norway of Arabia for its huge mountains and narrow inlets. We took a traditional wooden Dhow boat for a full day’s sailing in and around the ‘fjords’; the highlight of the day was a huge school of dolphins, including babies, swimming alongside the boat.
We stopped twice for swimming and snorkelling from the boat in crystal clear, emerald green water teeming with brightly coloured fish. Lunch on board was delicious spicy chicken, rice, salad and Arabic bread. A relaxing couple of hours in the sun brought us back to the Constellation.
We left in the early evening for an overnight sailing to Abu Dhabi. After breakfast, we disembarked and had a full day’s tour of the city. We visited the local Iranian markets first of all; traditional and a little haphazard in contrast to the huge gleaming skyscrapers of the modern city behind us.
We saw the Keralan fisherman with their huge, wire crab pots, the fruit and veg markets, the lovely, clean and well stocked fish market and sampled lots of different types of dates. Then it was on to an impromptu stop to have a peek inside the Emirates Hotel; huge and imposing but utterly beautiful, and afterwards we went to the 74th floor viewing area of the Etihad Towers with stunning views over the city; you can also have a high tea up there.
We then had an hour and half’s tour round the Sheikh Zayed Mosque which is the county’s premier place of worship. It is the most beautiful Mosque I have seen in white marble with inlaid flowers of semi precious stones, mother of pearl and crystal. There are four magnificent crystal chandeliers and the world’s largest beautiful woven carpet. The Mosque is big enough to hold 40,000 people.
After our visit we had lunch and a quick site inspection of the Fairmont Bab al Bahr, then visited Yas Island and had a look round the marina and the Formula 1 racetrack before returned to the Fairmont.
It was a really interesting, informative trip and I would thoroughly recommend a visit or even better, a cruise!
A 10 night Arabian Coast Cruise with Celebrity Starts at £649 Per Person based on 2 sharing, Cruise Only.
If you would like more information on Celebrity Cruises, please feel free to contact Sue Broad on 0118 9844166 or her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org