The question any Celebrity newbie has on their mind: “Is Aqua class worth the price?”
Usually followed with: “What is the difference between Aqua and Concierge class?”
I recently had both of those questions on my mind while booking a 2-week voyage from Tokyo to Vancouver after I noticed a very attractive price on the Aqua class staterooms. I was going to book in the regular veranda class of staterooms, until I did some further digging on what was really included with Aqua.
For anyone who just wants the fast answer to “Is Aqua class worth the price?” I have to be honest and say it depends.
→If Aqua is only a few hundred dollars more than Veranda or Concierge, I say YES.
→If Aqua is $700-$1000 more than Veranda or Concierge, I would say MAYBE.
→And if Aqua is $1500-$2000+ more than Veranda or Concierge, I say NO WAY.
It will ultimately depend on what you like doing during your cruise, where you spend most of your time, and which perks benefit you the most.
To help you decide if Aqua class is worth the extra money I made a detailed list of all the benefits you get from booking that class of stateroom. Including what makes it different from all the other classes, a comparison against Veranda and Concierge class, and why you want want Aqua over both of those.
First let’s go into the perks and benefits when you book Aqua Class.
Here’s What You Get With Aqua Class on Celebrity Cruises
I think hands down Blu Restaurant is the best perk of booking Aqua Class on Celebrity. Even though the main dining rooms on board are fantastic, Blu offers such an intimate environment with enhanced service, familiar faces and great food.
To get such an exclusive dining experience otherwise, you’d either have to:
a) book nothing but speciality dining each night, or b) book a suite class so you can dine in Luminee.
The last cruise I was on with Celebrity, I noticed how envious I was of suite guests for getting to dine in their own private and small dining room (Luminee). I didn’t realize that for usually around half the cost of a suite, Aqua guests also get their own small, private dining room with Blu. I know I can’t always afford a suite class room, but Aqua is usually something I can spring for.
Of course Blu is not as fancy or high end as Luminee, but it’s a VERY close second.
Example of the dinner menu at Blu (it changes every day)
I just did Aqua class on the newly revolutionized Celebrity Millennium in April 2019 and Blu was one of my favorite parts of the entire 2-week voyage.
Every step from start to finish was perfectly executed. The service was spot on from the extremely friendly hostess, to the ulta-accomodating maitre d', down to the memorable wait staff. The menu was ever changing and offered enough variety for any palette.
Blu is open for breakfast and dinner, but not lunch. I usually went to the main dining room for lunch where they serve a 3 course meal, or headed to the buffet for something quick.
I was travelling with my parents (in their 70’s!) who had just flown to Japan from Canada in order to take the sailing with me. Never have I ever been so glad to have a perk like Priority Boarding.
With Aqua Class, we got ushered into the smallest lines and priority based queues and were on the ship in no time. It moved almost as fast as suite-class priority! The normal stateroom boarding lines looked as if they would take about 30-45 minutes, where our line was under 5 minutes.
If it’s usually just my husband and I travelling, I don’t mind waiting in a few lines, but having priority boarding with my parents was a god-send.
Welcome Bottle of Sparkling Wine
What a bonus, especially if you didn’t spring for an alcoholic beverage package! Waiting in our Aqua Class stateroom was a bottle of sparkling wine, 2 champagne glasses and our stateroom attendant letting us know he could fetch an ice-bucket anytime.
I drank this every single day! The room attendant would fill up a carafe of different flavoured iced teas daily. I loved them because they were not sweet and were more watered down than you would imagine ice tea to be. (Yay less calories!)
Think of it as a light and refreshing drink. It really helped keep us hydrated without having to go to the buffet for a drink.
Daily canapes were delivered between 3-4pm each day on the sailing. They usually consisted of 1 dessert, 2 meat based items and 1 salad based item. They changed daily and were a great way to conveniently snack in the late afternoon. There were items like: prosciutto, mini caprese, macarons, sweet potato chips, cous-cous salad, olives, flavoured cheeses, ahi tuna and more. All bite sized and mini versions.
Expanded Room Service Menu
Celebrity already has a stellar room service menu, which not only includes hot items on their breakfast menu, but is also complimentary. (Not all cruise lines have free room service! Some charge for all room service, while others only allow cold/continental food items for breakfast.)
However, the expanded breakfast menu for Aqua Class guests was even better!
It had extra items, especially hot ones, that really covered every breakfast base.
I have to be honest here…. We didn’t have breakfast outside of the room ONCE on the entire 14 day trip. Even though we knew breakfast was fabulous in Blu, the Aqua room service menu was really perfect for what we wanted in the morning.
This is the Aqua Class expanded breakfast room service door hanger. Such good stuff on here!
Lounge Seating on Veranda
I think the chairs on the balcony are somehow different in Aqua Class? (Could be wrong on this!) All I could really notice is they had a head/neck pillow on them. There may be an additional difference on different class of ship, but on the Millennium this is all we noticed.
Upgraded Bath Products
Aqua Class now gets you upgraded amenities with items from Bigelow. Expect to see Bigelow shampoo, conditioner, body wash, bar soap, body lotion, lip balm and shower cap.
Two Bottles of Water
2 bottles of water were waiting for us on embarkation day, now made out of tin canisters instead of single use plastic. These are not restocked each day, but is a nice welcome amenity.
There is always SO much to see outside the window, so these binoculars were very handy to have, especially when we passed by remote islands.
Umbrella in the closet, but thankfully we didn’t need it!
Celebrity Tote Bag
Medium sized grey tote that made it easy to bring items to the pool or around the ship. I have NO idea if I was supposed to take it home or not, but I totally did! Now it’s a grocery tote!
Each stateroom has 4 pillows, but you can have them changed out to be more firm or more soft depending on what you like. They are both crazy comfortable either way!
Shoe Shine Service
Did not need it on our last trip, but it’s also good to know it’s there!
Spa Based Perks
Getting an Aqua Class room also mean you have a lot of benefits that revolve around the spa. Even if you intend on getting treatments or not, some of these are incredibly beneficial, like the Persian Gardens.
Here are the spa perks Aqua class gets you:
- Location near the spa
- Unlimited access to Persian Gardens (Solstice and Millennium class) and SEA Thermal (Edge)
- Spa concierge
- VIP tour of SPA on embarkation day
- 10% off spa treatments
Extra Captain's Club Points
It’s worth noting that you get 5 Captain’s Club points per night by sailing Aqua class. This helps you climb the loyalty tiers faster than lower class rooms. Inside & Ocean View rooms only award 2 points/n, while standard Veranda rooms only award 3 points/n.
Aqua Class Room Tour Video
Here is a short video tour of our Aqua Class stateroom on the newly renovated Celebrity Millennium ship in May 2019:
What's the Difference between Aqua Class and Concierge Class?
There are a few small differences between Aqua Class and Concierge Class, with Aqua Class being the more attractive version for most cruisers.
The ROOM itself however is the same between the two classes.
Concierge Class benefits that Aqua Class does not have:
• Celebrity embossed key holder
• Personalized concierge service
• Exclusive destination seminar
• Main and speciality restaurants seating time preferences
• Embarkation day lunch
• Rooms usually found near mid ship or in highly coveted spots around the ship
Aqua Class benefits that Concierge Class does not have:
• Blu Restaurant for breakfast and dinner
• Welcome cans of water (2)
• Daily flavoured ice tea in carafe
• Location near the spa
• Unlimited access to Persian Gardens (Soltice and Millennium class) and SEA Thermal (Edge)
• Spa concierge
• VIP tour of SPA on embarkation day
• 10% off spa treatments
• Rooms usually found near spa, pools and gym
Concierge Class and Aqua Class both share these benefits:
• Daily Canapes
• Expanded room service menu
• Welcome sparkling wine
• Complimentary shoe shine
• Umbrella and binoculars
To sum up why most people choose one over the other:
Aqua over Concierge – Getting to dine at Blu
Concierge over Aqua – Getting a room in a (usually) more desirable location
What is standard in every class of room?
If you have never cruised with Celebrity before, you might wonder what comes STANDARD in all of their rooms to begin with. No matter what level of class you book, all rooms will have:
- Bathrobes and slippers
- 4 pillows in every stateroom
- Premium eXhale bedding
- Interactive TV
- Hair Dryer
- Twice daily housekeeping
- Room service 24/7
- Fresh ice upon request
- If ship is renovated, these great back-lit mirrors!
That list is what all staterooms come standard with, including Inside, Outside, Veranda, and of course Aqua.
So, is Aqua Class Worth It?
Personally, I think Aqua class is worth the price, as long as it still fits into your cruise budget.
Now that I have cruised Aqua, I can't imagine not having access to Blu, daily canapes, daily iced-tea, and the priority boarding. It really made the trip seem even more luxurious than it already was, plus it saved me money in extras!
I think if the cost for Aqua is at par or even up to $800-ish more to Veranda or Concierge, I would always choose to book it.
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