I am penning this overview whilst on my return flight to the U.S., having just spent the beyond weeks (14 nights) aboard the Celebrity Eclipse. Launched in April of 2010, the Eclipse joins Celebrity’s award-winning own family of “Solstice-elegance” ships, which currently includes the Celebrity Solstice, the Equinox and, in 2011, may even include the Silhouette. So, despite the fact that I will try to keep whole objectivity, I must admit that I boarded the Eclipse with very excessive expectancies. Fortunately, with only minor exceptions (as later cited), I turned into now not disillusioned.
When discussing the bodily attributes of a cruise ship (i.E., it’s format and look), enterprise experts frequently check with the deliver’s “hardware”. So, let’s begin there.
At 122,000 heaps (the biggest inside the Celebrity fleet), the Eclipse become notably smooth to get round on and, inspite of a complete capacity of 2,850 passengers (based totally on double occupancy), the ship by no means felt crowded. To be perfectly sincere, my first impact of the indoors décor became that it became a piece “simple” however, as the days onboard handed, I came to realize it more and more. Consistent with Celebrity’s function within the industry as a “premium” cruise line (as outstanding from “mass market” or “luxurious”), the overall look and “sense” of the Eclipse is what I might describe as “subdued beauty”. Unlike the “cheap glitz” or “pretentious opulence” of a few different ships I’ve seen, the interior of the Eclipse regarded to be deliberately understated with the aid of its designers so that guests (myself included) would sense completely secure at the same time as dwelling of their upscale home at sea. Colors within the important lobby vicinity had been smooth and light, at the same time as other public regions and lounges (consisting of Michael’s Club and Cellar Masters) were decorated in deep herbal timber tones with high-priced furniture and lush carpeting.
Hallways and stairways had been sufficiently extensive for side-via-aspect passage of visitors and we rarely had to wait extra than a minute or for an elevator. The public toilets had been immaculate and that they were continually properly-stocked with small unmarried-use cloth towels (as opposed to paper or hot air dryers).
The pool and solarium regions had been spacious enough that locating a relaxed lounge chair became by no means a trouble. However, the running music (or “on foot direction” for the ones of us over the age of 60) went proper via the pool lounging location (so it have become something of an “impediment direction”) and it didn’t pass completely around the whole ship.
Perhaps the most precise function of the deliver’s “hardware” changed into the “Lawn Club”. I have to admit that a negative pre-conceived notion (based totally on photos and outlines that I saw) might also have clouded my expectation. But, after spending just a few mins looking fellow passengers playing croquet or basking inside the sun at the finely manicured natural grass, I found out that the photos of this region in Celebrity’s brochures and television commercials could not capture it is peaceful serenity. I loved it!
Since all restaurants offer a ramification of culinary picks, any evaluation of meals is influenced not handiest by means of personal flavor but additionally by what items are selected from the menu. Nowhere turned into this greater obvious than at the Murano distinctiveness eating place aboard the Eclipse. My wife ordered the filet mignon whilst my cousin, Mike, had the veal chop. Both entrees had been, truthfully, the nice in their type we’ve ever tasted… Everywhere! On the other hand, the fish (Mediterranean sea bass) that my cousin’s lady friend, Janet, and I each ordered was honest at pleasant.
More consistent became the meal we had inside the strong point eating place, Tuscan Grille. Although the filet mignon become quite as desirable (in our opinion) as in Murano (even though the Tuscan Grille touts itself as being “a steak house with an Italian flair”), all of our entrees have been excellent of their very own manner.
At the uniqueness eating place, Quisine, we had a whole lot of laughs sampling a wide sort of unique entrees and side dishes, every described on an I-pod menu.
The principal eating room, Moonlight Sonata, offered a diffusion of dishes every night that ranged from precise to wonderful, with very few disappointments. We in particular appreciated the Select Dining choice which become a pleasing departure from the regimented -seating association on most traditional cruise ships. And, we were usually able to get a table for four by means of the window as we asked.
A cruise passenger’s notion of onboard service is so frequently based upon who their stateroom attendant changed into and which waiters / waitresses served their food. So, at high-quality, any assessment of carrier must be taken most effective as a generalization based totally on restrained character stories whilst onboard.
Having prefaced this part of my evaluation (to “cover my tail” in case the reader has a distinctive experience), permit me say that my wife and I located the service to be incredible. Our stateroom attendants (Violetta Rodriguez and David Campbell) have been the best crew we’ve got had on any cruise (and we’ve taken many cruises). The eating staff became in a position and professional in all eating places. In addition, there were a few pleasant little “greater touches”, which include greeting you returned onboard with a complimentary welcome-lower back smooth drink and a “spritz” of cool spray after an extended day of shore tours. However, one of the things that I maximum appreciated turned into the really apt use of public bulletins. Following the captain’s positioning and weather update each morning, the general public address system was definitely silent the remainder of the day. There were no blaring bulletins approximately the following spherical of jackpot bingo or unique “deals” on earrings. If you have been inquisitive about such matters, the time and region of all onboard activities and events had been really shown inside the every day calendar that changed into left within the stateroom the preceding night. Having discovered to read once I become in 1st grade, I failed to pass over the disturbing bulletins one bit.
If there was one region in which my All Round Shipping experience aboard the Celebrity Eclipse upset me (and my visiting partners), it became the leisure. More mainly, the Broadway-fashion manufacturing shows (which I even have visible countless instances earlier than on other cruise ships) had been truthful at pleasant and totally uninspired at worst. That’s now not to say that the individual performers had been no longer proficient (even though I’ve visible better). It’s best to say that I discovered these “song and dance” indicates to be “corny”, repetitive and, in certain respects, barely amateurish. The exception to this changed into the closing show (titled “Eclipse”), which featured a few excellent acrobatic performances and notable units with computer graphics. The range shows (jugglers, magicians, comedians, and so on.) had been typically precise.
The incredibly-promoted glass blowing exhibition changed into, for my part, gradual-shifting and stupid. Although the presenters from the Corning glass museum have been obviously very professional at their craft and dedicated to their work, I simply couldn’t get too enthusiastic about spending nearly an hour watching a glass bowl being made. In truth, at one factor in the course of the exhibition, my wife became to me and said “What am I lacking?”. Ironically, this identical exhibition became tremendously endorsed to us by way of one of our personnel members who saw it at the Solstice. So, do not take my phrase for it. See for your self.
Like every modern-day cruise deliver, the Celebrity Eclipse gives a wide style of inns, ranging from decrease-priced interior cabins (with no window) to huge luxurious suites with non-public butlers. Obviously, a guest staying in one of the huge suites could have a specific stateroom revel in than one staying in a miles smaller interior cabin so, over again, I should preface my stateroom evaluation by using cautioning the reader that it’s far based on my specific experience (which may also or may not hold authentic for other kinds of inns on the Eclipse).
My spouse and I chose (as we most customarily do) a standard mid-priced stateroom with a balcony, which was more than adequate for the 2 folks. The décor became smooth and beautiful. The bedding changed into very comfy and neither of us had any trouble falling asleep. The rest room turned into a pleasing length however the bathe did not have a handheld extension (which intended you needed to flow your body round a bit to get your self all rinsed off). There become fairly much less storage space than we’d have preferred on a 14-night time cruise however, normal, we have been very happy with our fashionable balcony stateroom hotels.
Having taking properly over 30 cruises over the last 15 years that we have been inside the business, my spouse and I are constantly seeking out some thing special when a brand new cruise deliver enters the market. And, this is exactly what we got with the Celebrity Eclipse. On a scale of one to ten (with 10 being the inconceivable widespread of being truely ideal in every recognize), we give this one an normal rating of 8.5 to 9. We can not wait to ebook our cruise at the ultra-modern Celebrity Silhouette (sister deliver of the Eclipse) whilst she begins round-trip sailings to the Caribbean from