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Sail Date: August 2009
As usual Celebrity received their newest ship the Equinox a bit early and was able to do a 7 day cruise prior to the official inaugural cruise. (not that we ever knew we were on an inaugural as their was never anything special mentioned or ... Read More
As usual Celebrity received their newest ship the Equinox a bit early and was able to do a 7 day cruise prior to the official inaugural cruise. (not that we ever knew we were on an inaugural as their was never anything special mentioned or done to indicate such). The embarkation was very well run - Kudos to those port employees in South Hampton who really had it all very well organized. just like that we were whisked on board. The ship is stunning and I must say very much like a high end inner city luxury hotel with it's Martini Bar and wine tasting venues. snazzy nooks and crannies to relax and enjoy. One thing for sure is that you'll notice the furnishings as they are all varied and quiet stunning. A lot of attention to detail on making the ship less "shiplike" and more like a resort. Take the lawn for instance - It's huge and covers 90% of the top aft deck of the ship. It's size alone will make you stop and pay attention to it. Cruisers took full advantage or croquet and bocci ball tournaments and I found myself just taking my shoes off and walking on it. An underused and barely noticed giftshop sells Lawn club merchandise and opposite that is the Hot Glass exhibit. We found that fun to watch for 10 minutes but felt it lost its luster after one viewing. All the way aft is the Sunset Bar and you must spend time there. It's a great place to watch sunset. Several nights we ordered a bottle of wine ( which the staff keep on ice in a bucket next to our chairs). The even have tables that light up in the center and make you feel like you are sitting around a fire pit. Cool! Down one deck is the Oceanview Cafe and this is the new style of buffet dining with stations rather than trays and lines. Always a good selection and of particular note was the incredibly high quality of produce and fruit served here. Huge berries, the freshest ingredients like heirloom tomato salads. Being the ship was in Europe about half the guests were from europe so there was a lot of English dishes on the buffet as well. The traditional pizza taco bar and forward of the cafe is the Burger Bar ( as we called it) with onion rings fries, nachos and the like. We would try to do healthy once or twice during the cruise but the burger bar was a favorite! We were on deck 9 in a Concierge Class cabin. Lovely! Be sure to note the storage ABOVE THE BED (two huge hidden shelves) Had it not been for those I would have been upset about not having enough storage. Closet is good but drawer space is limited. The bathroom is gorgeous and well thought out down to a foot rest in the shower for women to be able to shave their legs. Love the lighting over the artwork - makes for romantic mood lighting. The main dining room was pleasant and you feel like you are in a South Beach restaurant. Very impressed with the service but somewhat underwhelmed by the food itself. Sadly having been on Celebrity years ago I do feel that the main dining room food has dropped a bit. To make matters worse the specialty restaurants are SO good that it pales the main dining room food even further. If you are thinking about skipping the specialty restaurants because of the $20 or $30 service fee (cost depends on restaurant) DON'T!! Each is unique and impressive. A must is Tuscan Grill. Situated on the very aft of the ship it has table to ceiling glass windows looking out over the ocean. The food is impeccable and we left filled to the brim. Silk Harvest is a must and the Sushi alone was worth the cover. Murano, the most expensive and the high end dinner spot on board was good but the other two will wow you for the unique ambiance and food preparation. We've been in a Murano like setting on other ships so didn't find this quiet as novel. Oh yes - Bistro on 5. Amazing crepes and panini's - We ate their only once but loved it ( $5 cover) A couple of negatives- On our Cruise(Aug) kids seemed to take over way to much of the ship. Karaoke turned into a nightmare and the ships staff did nothing. Also the pool is WAY to small for this many passengers. I worry what it will be like when the ship gets to the Caribbean. Wine prices are crazy high and need to be evaluated. We did like that there was a lot of wines available by the glass however. The production shows really are not very good (there were three) Having seen RCCL and Carnival production shows previously these really look amateurish. The production singers really tried and they were great ( good solid voices) it was just that the material and show construction wasn't good- at all! Celebrity needs to invest in this area and should really pull these shows as soon as possible. Ports- Took the bus into Paris from Le Havre. When they say Paris on your own they mean it- The guide on board handed out a map told us where to be at 4pm to load back up and that was it. During the 2 1/2 hour bus trip she didn't say a word. Cherbourg- Stayed aboard and caught up on sleep Gibraltar- Walked around town- a bit touristy but a nice sunny day Lisbon-Took the ships walking tour guide was good. $47pp was a bit steep for what we got Vigo Spain- Why? Categena Spain- National Holiday - Everything was closed-Why do cruise companies do this? Can someone look at a calendar to determine that maybe it might not be a good day to be in X because of this or that. Barcelona- Sunday and guess what? Everything in Barcelona was closed - we knew it would be so we hopped a train from Sant station and headed to where everyone from Barcelona escapes - "Sitges" A lovely beach town just a 33 min train ride away. Here the stores were open and cafe's were all a buzz. When we got back to Barcelona as expected it was full of tourist meandering around with nothing much open. Rome- Do yourself a favor- Take the port shuttle to the entrance of the port - FREE and walk the 3 blocks to the train station. The train from the port to the airport was less than $20 euros for both of us. The ship wanted $123 USD per person for the same transfer. If you wanted a bus from the ship to the train station they wanted $23 just for that. Crazy! Overall the ship itself gets an "A' the itinerary was not so great but we had a wonderful time and you will too on the Equinox. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2009
We booked this cruise 18 months in advance, knowing it was our anniversary. The itinerary was incredible, and it was a once in a lifetime opportunity.We did it all on line, our only contact with real people was with custom air to finalize ... Read More
We booked this cruise 18 months in advance, knowing it was our anniversary. The itinerary was incredible, and it was a once in a lifetime opportunity.We did it all on line, our only contact with real people was with custom air to finalize our flights to and from Chicago. We believe we did a smart thing in leaving for London a day early. We arrived in London on Friday, after an overnight flight. We stayed at the Hilton Heathrow Airport Hotel, which was walking distance from the airport. By doing this, we were able to recover from the jet lag caused by the flight. On Saturday, we returned to Heathrow, where we were greeted by Celebrity personnel, and had luggage stowed and escorted to a very comfortable bus for the trip to Southampton. Everything was very well organized, and timely. The trip to the port was only about 1 hour, and uneventful. Embarkation was quick and easy since we did all required paperwork on line prior to leaving. It seemed like just minutes before we were walking on to this absolutely gorgeous ship, handed a glass of champagne, and we begun our exploration. This ship is huge, but you had the feeling you were in a five star hotel and not aboard a ship. The dEcor was subtle, but if you paid attention, the detail was amazing. The hotel staff, headed by Captain Simon Wier, was a well oiled, customer service team, doing everything they could to ensure that everyone had the holiday of a lifetime. Activities: If anyone gets bored, it's their own fault. You do not have to hang out at the pool to find something to do. We enjoyed cooking demos, wine tasting, hot glass shows and a fantastic program about music with a visiting professor. We did enjoy the pool on port days when most folks left the ship. Service: This was out of the ballpark. From the pool butlers, to the food servers, to the stateroom attendants, everyone went out of their way to smile and make you feel like you were their only passenger. It was absolutely heartwarming. Shore Excursions: We only did three, and we will give you our opinion of the three. Just a note - you will not need your passports to enjoy the tours, but you will need your ship card and a photo id to return onboard. That will save you a marathon run back to your cabin to pick up your id before you leave the ship. The staging of the tours is in the theater, which is in the bow of the ship (the pointy end). When you have to run back to the stern to get the id, you realize just how big this ship is. 1. Paris and lunch on the Seine: A great trip, but you are on a bus for 2.0 plus hours to get to Paris, and then you stay on the bus and drive past all the historical and tourist sites. Our tour guide was very well versed in French history, and was very informative. Lunch was good, but crowded and rushed to see the sights and get you back to the bus. A stop was made at the Eiffel tower, where you finally got off the bus, this was welcome, however the crowds were shoulder to shoulder, with one hand on your camera and the other on your billfold, watching for pickpockets. Again, it was a full 2 hours back to the ship. We really felt sorry for the folks who flew into England on the day the ship departed. They were shot, and cranky, and did not have a good time. 2. Gibraltar upper walking tour: Very good. A great guide, lots of knowledge of the history of the country, and the fort built inside the rock. Unfortunately for us, it was too windy to use the cable cars to get to the top of the rock. Awesome to see Africa and Spain while standing in English territory. 3. Barcelona - Tapa tasting: Again, another great tour. It was not advertised as a short city tour, but we did end up with a short history of Barcelona, with a stop at great tourist sites. The restaurants were prepared for us. We received three Tapas, and a glass of wine each at each of the three different restaurants, which gave a great idea of what Tapas and life is Spain is all about. Stateroom: We were able to book a room on the stern of the ship (the round end, not the pointy one). The view was incredible, quiet and an easy walk to everything. Bernadeth was our stateroom attendant, and she was just incredible. We were Concierge class, and the amenities are worth the extra cost. It made the stay in your cabin extra special and more enjoyable. We are also members of the Captain's Club, which also is well worth joining. The extras perks from them add to an overall incredible experience. This was our sixth Celebrity cruise, and we felt this was the warmest and most enjoyable of them all. In your stateroom, there is a mini fridge, which you can ask your attendant to empty out, leaving a fridge for your own personal use. There is room service menu in the room, but your attendant can provide you with that night's menu from the main dining room, and you can call room service and have that nights dinner brought to your room to enjoy on your veranda. We did this one night, and it was just so special. We always give an additional tip to the person that delivers the meal to our room. The flat screen TV is really a computer, so when you turn it on, count to 10, and then see what happens. It is not instantaneous like your TV at home. Be sure to let them take your photo as your board the ship - you will have a surprise on your TV set in the room. The rooms are well laid out, with lots of storage. Do not overlook the bins above the bed. The safe has been moved out of the closet (like it was on the Solstice that took so much room) to above the fridge, which works very well. The bathroom is large, lots of storage, and the shower is very roomy, even for a 6 foot 200lb plus guy. Amenities in the bathroom are great, and the fresh rose on the counter every day is a very nice touch. Having a bottle of champagne for Concierge class was a nice welcoming touch. Bed was very comfortable, as you would not realize it was two twin bed put together to make a queen size bed. Linens were always fresh, well ironed, and the room was kept immaculate. Dining: We had a great table for two in the main dining room. Celebrity has rearranged the table from the Solstice, and the Maitre was very happy about this. On the Solstice, he looked suicidal with people trying to get better seating assignments. Our waiter and assistant waiter were great, again, always smiling and want you to have the time of your life. The food was very good, considering they were feeding probably half the passengers at one time. We had early seating, and never felt rushed. The wine list is extensive, especially as you look at the two story wine tower, and bit pricey. However, you can order a bottle of wine for dinner, have two glasses, which is half a bottle, and the wine steward will recork your bottle and serve it to you the next day. This really helps to keep costs down. It makes it much more cost effective than buying it by the glass. For those who have not been on a Celebrity ship, if the choices do not appeal to you, they do have a menu of items that are always available, which includes shrimp cocktail, salads, steaks and assorted desserts. Ocean view Cafe: Always an unbelievable array of choices. The food "pods" work great, and the lack of trays does cut down on the gluttony factor of many of the passengers. Remember, you can always go back for more. Specialty restaurants: Do not miss out on these. The Murano is extra ordinary. We enjoyed the pairings menu the night we went. You have five courses to choose from, and each course is paired with the wine that goes specifically with that food. As foodies, we enjoyed having two different items on each course, and trying the different wines, and actually seeing that the pairings does make a difference. Truly a memorable meal. Again, it is an extra cost, but the taste experience and the atmosphere makes it all worthwhile. The Tuscan Grill is just great. We enjoyed this on the Solstice, and chose this for our anniversary dinner. We are from Chicago, which is famous for the stockyards and steak houses, and we cannot find a better steak in town that we can there. The Filet is great, and the rib eye was over the top. Caesar Salad prepared tableside, and a great view off the stern of the ship. It was incredible to watch sunset over Sardina and Corsica as we ate. Let the wait staff take care of you, and you will have a dinner that you will never forget. We enjoyed the Silk Harvest on the Solstice. As a frequent traveler to Southeast Asia, we had some trepidation about the meal. Our waiter took full control of ordering for us, and there is no food in Bangkok or Ho Chi Min City that is any more authentic than this. If you are not a frequent traveler, trust the wait staff, they will take care of you. As a side note, when talking with the staff of the specialty restaurants, we found out that the management of Celebrity was not endeared to the idea of these spots. As it turns out, these restaurants are full every night, and obviously very successful. Do enjoy them - it is worth the extra cost. If there is a special occasion, book these restaurants on line four weeks out prior to your departure. It ensures that you have a table and makes the special occasion perfect. Children's programs - did not use. Entertainment: Anyone that has seen a Circe de Soleil show will appreciate the performance called Exocudus . To have these performers flying over the audience's head was truly phenomenal. These young people work so very hard in rehearsal to put on these performances, and then you will find them giving dance lessons or helping with tour departures during the day. Thank God they are young - they are the only age that has that kind of energy. The four man singing group was great. They performed at night, and also had shows throughout the ship which were very enjoyable. Again, a very hard working quartet of young men. Disembarkation: We have been on so many cruises and this in the thing that spoils the cruise. This was so different, and such a welcome relief. Before getting to port, we filled out paperwork about our post cruise plans, and we were delivered luggage tags with numbers and a letter as to where to wait. As it turns out, we went to our departure area, and things were moving ahead of schedule. Each number was assigned to a bus that was going to either the airport, Rome central, or the hotels associated with the post cruise packages. All luggage was orderly arranged, pickup was easy and on to the bus we went. No fist fights like we have seen in the past and absolutely no stress associated with getting off the ship. Thank you so much Celebrity. It was so bad in the past. Summary: With so many of the Solstice personnel transferring to this ship, the maiden cruise was flawless. Simple mistakes were more of a funny than an irritant. The people that work on this ship are the most dedicated to making the experience for their passengers the ultimate cruise experience. They work very hard, and deserver the gratuities that we give them. Our compliments to the officers and crew of the Celebrity Equinox You rock! Hey Simon - say hi to Nick for us. We miss you both. We will be sailing with you again in Aug 2011, with the 11 night in the Caribbean. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2009
My partner and I were invited onboard Equinox for a one night cruise to nowhere so our time onboard was limited but had a lasting impression!Although I'm not a seasoned cruiser I have been onboard numerous other ships for similar ... Read More
My partner and I were invited onboard Equinox for a one night cruise to nowhere so our time onboard was limited but had a lasting impression!Although I'm not a seasoned cruiser I have been onboard numerous other ships for similar events and this is the first time I've walked away with such a strong opinion on a ship of this scale.This ship has such elegancy and class throughout that I was quite stunned.We had an Ocean View Stateroom, which was neat and compact with plenty of storage. The colour scheme and design was very calming and it really felt like somewhere you could relax for weeks at sea.The bathrooms also have ample storage, which has always been rare in my experience.We only had time for a few drinks in Cellars and then we ate in the Silk Harvest, which is their Asian Fusion restaurant. The food and service was superb and would fit in well in any trendy European City.The whole Promenade Deck is extremely classy, with a fabulous Martini bar.Even though I had a very limited view this really felt like a ship Celebrity can be proud of and a huge pat on the back for the designers! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2009
Don't be fooled, Southampton is an hour and a half from London but well served by the transfers provided. As we stepped on boards four giant words in twinkling colored jewels greeted us in the huge atrium - Here comes the sun. ... Read More
Don't be fooled, Southampton is an hour and a half from London but well served by the transfers provided. As we stepped on boards four giant words in twinkling colored jewels greeted us in the huge atrium - Here comes the sun. Yes this is the song of the Equinox and we were so lucky to be on board for the Inaugural Naming Cruise. Having not sailed on a Solstice class ship we were immediately lost, no problem! The floor guide who was to meet us outside the elevator on Deck 7 did not materialized but we thought lets go and find our cabin - oh but wait, what an amazing globe and table by the elevators *makes mental note to consider how it could become part of my carry offs* We found our room very easily and after a push me pull you effort that was to typify the next two days we did eventually open the door. Its no problem, we just needed reprogramming. We are used to suites but as we were allocated rooms and guessed we would be low in the pecking order we had a 2a. Now this is where Celebrity may have shot themselves in the foot - the room was far bigger than we imagined, we loved the comfy sofa by the window and we thought the layout of the bathroom was far better than some of the suites. Loved the design in the room and found good storage, so maybe we need to think, why have a suite. Anyway small amount of unpacking done we ventured to find the Buffet - great at last a buffet that does not resemble the school dinner lunch queue. Beautiful crockery and a lovely selection of food. We were on board for the naming celebration so we were in evening gear by 1600 listening to the band of RAF Halton on the lawn. Yes the lawn which I thought would be naff, no its great and there are big sofas up there and a lovely bar at the back of the ship, somewhere I would certainly use again for pre dinner drinks. The naming ceremony was pure theatre and the godmother was inspirational. Pre dinner, the Martini Bar was mobbed (probably because it was free) but we found Mark who had looked after us on Century was running the Ensemble Bar beside the special restaurants and we decided this is where we will drink! Silhouettes is a stylish restaurant and the food and service we enjoyed each night was excellent, well cooked and beautifully presented. On this trip it was open seating so we could not build up a longer term relationship with staff but each server was friendly and attentive. After the show (the theatre clearly is technically far superior to any of the other Celebrity ships and I think some great show designs will result) we went wandering around the ship to find so much beautiful art. Loved also the layout with the disco, small theatre and large theatre all together. Loved also you could move around the ship without having to walk through the casino. Made for much better traffic flow. Having been rocked gently to sleep, next morning the sun shone over the English Channel and we made way to breakfast (no room service on this trip) and again a great range of buffet items and more lovely crockery. After a morning curled up on one of the sofas by the lawn with a book we ventured to Bistro on 5 for lunch. Other half is so reluctant, he does not like crepes he announces. Cowboy crepe later he declares that maybe he has never had crepes before or if he had they were bad ones and this was fabulous. I have to agree, that plus a bowl of gelato and I was well set up for the most lovely afternoon back at the lawn. The other half clearly thought he had challenged his waistline too much so he went to the gym which he commended as being very well set up with good kit and a separate area for classes and spin bikes. In two days we did not have enough time to try everything, all the speciality restaurants offered mini tastings and inspired us for visits in the future, the cellar masters with the little dollar shot tasting card looked good and the library was in a lovely open place and had a very good range of books to borrow There were no on board quiz or entertainment activities other than the 2 shows but it was clear there was a lot of potential for great experiences, the Accapela group and poolbands only did short stints but they were good. So it was a two day trip to nowhere, the sun did come out, but even if we could not sing Here Comes the Sun every day, this is a great ship to cruise on Read Less
Sail Date: July 2009
For the first time ever, I have felt compelled to write a review within the first hour of returning from a cruise (albeit short). This was a mini cruise but with maximum impact. What an extraordinarily beautiful and classy ship this is. Oh ... Read More
For the first time ever, I have felt compelled to write a review within the first hour of returning from a cruise (albeit short). This was a mini cruise but with maximum impact. What an extraordinarily beautiful and classy ship this is. Oh yes, from the outside it does look like a 'block of flats' but once inside it is full of intimate spaces, soaring light filled atrium and a warm and welcoming atmosphere. Rarely have I been astonished by 'modern' design as I am a traditional Gal at heart and my home is Edwardian comfort. However,  everywhere you look is a feast of inspired detail where no expense has been spared in the materials used, from the various marbles to the ice blue textured curtain fabric in the 'ice topped' Martini bar. We spent a good few hours exploring the ship.  The marathon was made long because we had to try out/sit in/lay on every chair/seating unit/couch! You probably think I am mad, but if you want to see the best and most interesting collection of 'designer' seating then forget shops and book a cruise on Equinox. Talking of shops, to be honest I am not a great lover of cruise ship shops.  But these give you the feel of being in the Burlington Arcade in London with their 'shop windows' and their elegant spaces. I understand that Equinox is sister to the Solstice but the decor is warmer in tone and colour. I liked the 'Entertainment Court' idea. The nightclub Quasar and the Equinox Theatre, as well as a smaller cabaret space, is there on Decks 4 & 5. The theatre has a large stage with a semi circular apron and three tiers. Sight lines are excellent and the seating appears to curve around the stage. It seats around 1200 and there is lots of leg room. No need to stand up to let people through! Wide walkways and at the back of each tier there are long curving marble bars with bar stools. I have only once come across this type of 'arrangement' in a theatre and that was on Ocean Village 1 ! It works very well.  The show was also surprisingly similar to Ocean Village's Planet show on their top deck rigging over the pools, with the same 'out of this world' music. It was also very like the show on P&O's Ventura.  Here they use backing track for the singers to sing to and the singers barely moved, in fact when they did it was on little platforms which slide across the stage by remote control. It took a while to realise that the singers were singing as it sounded pre recorded. However that is more a salute to their talent than anything else.  The costumes were stunning but the choreography was lacking.  Even the best dancers look ridiculous with bad choreography. The acrobats though were extraordinary.  Some even 'flew' above the audience as they performed with their 'silks' and rings.  For me, the balancing act and the contortionist were highlights.In a similar way to the entertainment court there is a 'court' of restaurants. We ate in the Italian- themed Tuscan Grille. This is one of 5 speciality 'extra charge' restaurants and the Tournedo Rossini melted in the mouth. The standard of food was sublime and the setting, across the back of the ship with a deep expanse of glass, was lovely. Each restaurant was beautifully designed but my favorite has to be (remember I'm traditional) Murano, with its private dining area off the main restaurant. Opulent. The main restaurant, Silhouette, is dazzling with its white and stainless steel. It is two tiers high and I understand the food was excellent. I did wonder why there was no Alcohol Gel anywhere on the ship for ones hands but I asked and was told, not only that I was the first to ask! but that it is normal to have the dispensers throughout the ship but the dispensers had not arrived yet. They will be in situ before the inaugural cruise. Finally, the main 24hr Buffet eatery called Oceanview Cafe was very well laid out with lots of space between each 'island' style serving station. There was plenty of room in the seating areas (one outside) with a variety of table sizes. I was very impressed. It is similar to the layout in Grand Princess but the seating area is more spacious. Again, P&O should see how it should be done and sort out Ventura!Music varied from classical to Jazz and we were treated to a superb performance by 'All Angels' on the pool deck as we sailed away from Southampton in blazing sunshine. There was a Big Band performance in the ten story high sunlit atrium and in the Sky Observation lounge, there was a dance band in the evening. This enormous lounge, during the day, has wonderful 180 degree views over the front of the ship.  It is also the only indoor space where smoking is allowed (port side).  For the smokers among you (or for those who wish to avoid) smoking is only allowed in 5 areas, 1 inside and 4 outside. No smoking is allowed in the cabins or on balconies. Now to the cabins.  We had a balcony cabin on deck 9. My husband was impressed that the TV was wall hung, flat screen and fully interactive with the keyboard for the Internet combined with the TV controls. Oh, he also was very pleased with the number of power sockets (American) and that the 'Ethernet Port' was in a very convenient place!  The doors to the cabin are recessed. Why? The cabin doors (and indeed the loo doors in the public toilets) all open outwards into the corridor.  Although this makes for more space in the cabin, it would cause problems to those with wheelchairs, walking aids and pushchairs as one would have to block the corridor to get into the cabin and there will be no keeping of wheelchairs etc. outside your cabin door anymore!  That makes the lack of width in the cabin critical. I could barely get past the curved end of the bed. The decor is soft with a cream leather sofa. The dressing table is the smallest I have ever come across, approx 2' wide, with a well lit mirror. The wardrobe is small with sliding doors barely 18" from the edge of the bed but the hangers 'hook' onto the rail - hooray. There is a very high sill AND change of floor level into the shower room. It is very small but with a reasonable corner entry shower area, with GLASS doors. The sink is an oval basin on top of the work surface.  A clever way of using the narrow space it sits on, however, not child friendly. Nor is there any indent in the work surface to put your wet, slippery soap. Although there are little drawers and a tall slim, glass fronted cabinet, one is struggling for space to lay out make up etc.  In the main cabin there is a decided lack of drawer space and the bedside 'tables' were mentioned by many as looking out of place (dark wood) and useless as they were basically three small shelves without sides to them, so things just fell off. The top shelf did have a 'lip' though. The balcony furniture was the same as Ventura but with a much better round teak topped table. P&O take note ! My conclusion was that the cabin was adequate.  The larger suites though are out of this world. Oh, I nearly forgot. No more fiddling with light switches guessing which did what on your way in or out of the cabin - there is one named 'Master' - brilliant! There is so much more that I could wax lyrical on but it is some of the little touches one appreciates the most. The lifts are summoned by pressing the buttons on a 'pod' standing before the lifts. The lift has arrived when the glass ceiling above and in front of the lift, turns from blue to pink (no little arrows here). There is a stand with a perspex 'ship' perched on it in the lift vestibule. This shows where you are in the Equinox and also has a flat 'plan' or map of the deck showing clearly where everything is including walkways and the public toilets. The 'Relaxation Lounge' is next to the two level Library which is a stunning space open to the atrium with its 'hanging tree' (yes it is real). The Aquaspa is gorgeous and has its own cafe and the Sports Court resembles a squash court in that it is sunken with solid walls.  You can really play a game in there ! Nice touch - the Aquaspa shop and the sports shop are next to the spa and the Lawn Club. Ah! The Lawn. I really though this was an idea too far and laughed cynically when I heard about it but - it really does work. It is a HUGE area of the most perfect grass and is a joy to sit on and to relax beside as croquet or bowls are played. Very English. I leave it to you to discover all the rest that this ship has to offer.  Now, just for the record, I have never cruised with Celebrity before and the views expressed are not influenced by anyone or anything, they are genuine. We cruise 2 or 3 times a year, paid for by us and no one else. We were on this event by invitation from our travel company. We have been on various Sun Cruises ships, Island Star, Oriana, Oceana, Arcadia, Aurora, Ventura (09), Ocean Village, Seabourn Legend (09), Voyages of Discovery, Sea Princess, Grand Princess, Star Princess and NCL Jade. Would we cruise with Celebrity ? Yes. Would we cruise on a Solstice Class ship at 122,000 tons with 2850 max passengers? Yes. Never thought we would say that after Seabourn Legend, but Yes. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2009
Dreadful traffic organisation at Southampton meant what should have been a 2-hour drive (with an arrival at 2pm) turned into a 3 and a half hour nightmare, with the last one and a half hours stuck on the dock road, able to see the ship and ... Read More
Dreadful traffic organisation at Southampton meant what should have been a 2-hour drive (with an arrival at 2pm) turned into a 3 and a half hour nightmare, with the last one and a half hours stuck on the dock road, able to see the ship and yet not get to the car park. Apparently it was the fault of all the cruise lines planning to set off the cruises on the same day. Hog wash! If a port's traffic organisation can't cope with their customers then they shouldn't accept the bookings for the berths. FINALLY arrived at check in with minutes to go before the deadline. Hot, flustered and in no mood for a holiday. And from then on Celebrity worked their magic. Efficient security, luggage whisked away, red carpet gangway and onto the ship. Straight into a magnificent atrium with glass-sided lifts, library, bars. Even the inevitable muster stations drill was well arranged to take us into the Tuscan Grill (one of the speciality restaurants) for a video instead of lining us up in ranks on decks a la Royal Caribbean. Cabin was in an excellent position across the stern, meaning great 180 degree views. Downside was that it had little storage space. Fine for a week, but not much drawer space and I guess that for a longer cruise it would have needed you to keep clothes in suitcases under the bed. The run of the mill food was splendid. The standard dining room menu included lobster and fillet steak. Specility restaurants were fabulous. The Murano was very swish, and the wine pairing menu was pricey but worth every penny for a very special treat. Tuscan Grill provided another fabulous steak meal with some very knowledgable wine suggestions. Entertainment first rate - string quartet, a capella singers, great jazz, aeriel artists, singers, and a crazy juggler.Stavager. On a Sunday this is probably the most boring city in Europe. Clear that the money from oil means that no-one has to open up their businesses to obtain tourist dollars. A fairly good museum about drilling for oil in the North Sea, but it was the only joint in town. Won't bother going back.Gerainger. Wow and mega-wow. Tiny 200-people village set at the end of a fjord. Surrounded on 3 sides by 4,000 feet high mountains. You can reach the glacial mountain top via a stomach-churning bus ride and look down to see your ship in the fjord like some model. Souvenir shops selling better quality than most (but still some tourist-tat for those who collect it) Read Less
Celebrity Equinox Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.6
Dining 4.5 4.3
Entertainment 4.0 3.9
Public Rooms 5.0 4.7
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.3
Family 4.0 4.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 4.0 3.9
Service 5.0 4.6
Value For Money 4.5 4.2
Rates 4.0 4.3

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