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6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We have cruised on the Equinox before so we knew it was a beautiful ship, We usually cruise with friends, however, this time it was just me and my husband. Boarding was fast and easy. The ship is beautiful and staff are always ... Read More
We have cruised on the Equinox before so we knew it was a beautiful ship, We usually cruise with friends, however, this time it was just me and my husband. Boarding was fast and easy. The ship is beautiful and staff are always polishing and keeping the ship clean. I also appreciate that they are diligent in making sure passengers use hand sanitizer. We enjoyed the comedians on board. We are not really interested in the dancing shows, although, they were entertaining. We enjoyed the dance parties. They could have started a little earlier. We only ate in the main dinning room. Service was great. We did think the food selection and quality has gone down a bit. They are always trying to sell the specialty restaurants. We signed up for Secret Beach in St. Thomas. It is beautiful. We also signed up for the catamaran snorkeling in St. Kitts, it was a lot of fun. There were a few times when we could not find a seat at the buffet for breakfast and lunch. This was a little annoying. Although, staff were constantly clearing the tables to make room. Overall, we loved the cruise and the crew. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
All in all our overall experience was nearly excellent. We always book aqua class and our stewards (Alan and Nescoe) worked very hard to accommodate every request without hesitation. Our only issue with the cabin was a mattress that is ... Read More
All in all our overall experience was nearly excellent. We always book aqua class and our stewards (Alan and Nescoe) worked very hard to accommodate every request without hesitation. Our only issue with the cabin was a mattress that is really ready for replacement. Our waiters in the Blu restaurant (Ceasar and Nikhil) were flawless and far exceeded our expectations. In fact the entire staff in the Blu were absolutely superb. The cleanliness of the ship was great. Crews constantly cleaning everywhere. If there was one item of concern it was bar service. It was definitely hit and miss with quality of drinks and timeliness of service, nevertheless there were outstanding bar tenders (Mr. Pedja in the passport bar on Deck 3 and Ms. Barbara at the Mast Bar on Deck 15 simply outstanding service and drinks). Our sommelier in the Blu was exceptional. We did not frequent the buffet very often, but when we did the food and service was good and the crew always offered a smile and upbeat attitude. Great Cruise! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We had sailed the Equinox in Europe in 2010 and it was lovely to anticipate being back on the lawn! Embarkation and disembarkation were very good - Celebrity has finally got it right. It used to be a nightmare. Captain Nikolas was ... Read More
We had sailed the Equinox in Europe in 2010 and it was lovely to anticipate being back on the lawn! Embarkation and disembarkation were very good - Celebrity has finally got it right. It used to be a nightmare. Captain Nikolas was wonderful - excellent English, excellent sense of humour and I enjoyed his "Hello its me again" at 10 a.m. The crew was fantastic. Cheerful and perfectly dressed to serve us. CD Alejandro was one of a kind - such enthusiasm and energy. Our cruise was mostly older people and also mostly European - Germans, Brits and French Canadians. He (and his side kick Andreas from Spain) had us all up and dancing. Our cabin was perfect as was our cabin attendant. This ship is immaculate and beautifully decorated. The entertainment was good. The dancers are trying to get out of the cruise mould, and presented shows that were very different. Jayne Curry was sublime - she did three shows, including a matinee at 2 pm on a warm sunny sea day. The theatre was packed. I hope that Celebrity hangs on to her, although this was her last cruise for a while, as she was heading home. The Captains Club hostess was a warm, welcoming beautiful person who made us feel so very special. Thank you Claudia. Now on to the food. We feel that the food in the dining room has definitely deteriorated. We took my time dining for the first time and will not do it again. Roxanne at the desk was so very nice and tried hard to place us. The waiter we had, Val, was very kind and efficient. The atmosphere is not good, because there is constant movement and the staff always trying to clear away and reset tables quickly. They are very efficient but it is not conducive to a relaxing dinner. We went to all three specialty restaurants and had wonderful food. We also ate at the Oceanview Café and found the food for all meals to be very good. It was a wonderful cruise and we would do it again. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
My husband and I sailed on the 11 night Ultimate Exotic Caribbean cruise from February 22 till March 4. This was about our 20th cruise and 7th on Celebrity. We flew into Miami the night before and stayed at the Springhill Suites there ... Read More
My husband and I sailed on the 11 night Ultimate Exotic Caribbean cruise from February 22 till March 4. This was about our 20th cruise and 7th on Celebrity. We flew into Miami the night before and stayed at the Springhill Suites there because our flight didn't get in until about 10 pm. My daughter works for Marriott so we get great deals at their hotels. We decided to Uber to Port Everglades in the morning. It was fabulous. We had never Ubered before so we got a $20 credit with a discount code. The charge was $20.35. Awesome, cost 35 cents. Arrived at the port about 11. Went right through check in and waited to board for about an hour. This was our third Solstice class ship so we knew our way around. Went right up to buffet and had a great lunch. It was a beautiful day. Ate out back at the Sunset bar, one of our favorite spots on the ship. We were blessed with great weather throughout except for rain at our rainforest port, Costa Rica and later in the day in Panama. The entertainment on the ship was hit or miss. The singers in the duet were flat as was the female singer in the house band. The DJ was good. The Equinox orchestra was wonderful. We really enjoyed the production shows, the Flashback Five (or four, can't remember), Leonardo, the pianist, and Jane Curry. We didn't think the comedian was funny. The cruise director, Alejandro, was hilarious, however. Don't miss Liars Club. We loved the three ports we had never visited before--Limon, Costa Rica, Colon, Panama, and Cartegena. The service and food in the main dining room were great. We had any time dining and had great waiters. We had reservations every night and got in within about three minutes of walking up to the hostess. This ship really has their act together in the dining room. Food comes out quickly, hot, and tasty. It was by far and away the best service we have had on a cruise. We got ice tea every night and our empty glasses were replaced everytime they got low. This has never happened before. Don't miss the Hot Glass Show. They give away some of the items they make after the show and I was lucky enough to win one. It is so beautiful and such a great souvenir from such a lovely cruise. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Took the train from Cleveland to Fort Lauderdale in a sleeper. Spend the night at the Ramada Inn at SR84 and I 95. They took to the cruise port the next day. We arrived at 12:45 PM and were checked in within 30 minutes at the Aqua ... Read More
Took the train from Cleveland to Fort Lauderdale in a sleeper. Spend the night at the Ramada Inn at SR84 and I 95. They took to the cruise port the next day. We arrived at 12:45 PM and were checked in within 30 minutes at the Aqua Class desk. Dropped our bags in the room and went up to the Buffet for lunch. We ate breakfast and dinner in Blu on all days but one. We noted that service was spotty in Blu and the menu was not as good as we enjoyed last year on the Constellation. We had my birthday in the Tuscan Grill and enjoyed every bite. We had lunch in the main dining room on sea days and at the buffet when in port. We had drinks at the Ensemble lounge before and after dinner and some drinks during the day at the Mast bar with our drink package. I booked a A2 guarantee and they put us in cabin 1505 which is about as far from Blu and you can get. This was very hard on my wife who has a walking problem. Also the ladies room is quite a hike from Blu which put a damper on my wife's dinner on several nights. I will never again book a guarantee cabin. I bought an I pad mini on board for my birthday and some T shirts for the wife from ports we visited. Enjoyed the ship, but I'm not sure I will book and Aqua class cabin on a Solstice class ship again due to problems we encountered. Disembarkation went well and we were back at the Ramada Inn at SR84 and I 95 around noon. We had lunch and dinner there and Took the train from Fort Lauderdale to Cleveland in a sleeper the next day. We are Elite + members and have to more cruises on Celebrity booked in a suite. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Just back from the 11 Nights Ultimate Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Equinox. Itinerary: Cozumel, Mexico; Puerto Limon, Costa Rica; Colon, Panama; Cartagena, Colombia (over night stay); George Town, Grand Cayman; and back to Fort ... Read More
Just back from the 11 Nights Ultimate Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Equinox. Itinerary: Cozumel, Mexico; Puerto Limon, Costa Rica; Colon, Panama; Cartagena, Colombia (over night stay); George Town, Grand Cayman; and back to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. This review is for the ship only: Celebrity Equinox is a beautiful ship. Next after RCCL Quantum Class comes the Celebrity Solstice class - both classes of ships are build at the same ship yard, Meyer Werft in Germany and quite similar in construction. Equinox was build in 2009 and is still well maintained. Inside it looks more like a resort than a ship. Nice design in neutrals interior with of colored artworks and chairs in the lounges. I didn't feel that the ship was crowded - at peak time for Lunch in Ocean View and early evening in the restaurant. In bars and at the pool deck I always found sufficient space. Embarkation We arrived at the terminal by taxi short after 10 am. It went quickly to deliver the suitcases at the pier, get checked in and through security. We waited about 30 minutes, before we were ready for boarding at 11 am. The boarding process and security went very smooth. We got a class of champagne (or like) when boarding, and went for lunch in the Oceanview Cafe - still not crowded. Just before 1pm we got our cabin - 1162 at deck 10 - Category C1 - Concierge Class Stateroom. We quickly got our suitcases, got un-packed and found room for all the clothes in the closets before the muster drill. Stateroom Our cabin was the Deluxe Ocean View Veranda Stateroom - Category C1 at deck 10 - #1162. Sitting area at the balcony and bed close to toilet. The Cabin has a good size and equipped with two twin beds that can be converted to a queen-sized bed, Acceptable closet space with one big closet. Drawers as well as a storage cabinet above the bed. We did find space for our clothing, and suitcases went easily under the bed. Bathroom is well designed with shower and of a good size. There is a comfortable sitting area with desk, drawer space, and sofa. The cabin is equipped with thermostat controlled air-conditioning, 32 inch interactive LCD television, telephone, hair dryer, mini bar, and safe. There is good access to the wireless internet from the cabin, however the internet is slow and not suitable for voice or FaceTime/Skype. The cabin has floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors to a quite large balcony with two lounge chairs and table. We used the balcony a lot, but some times with direct sun it got too hot and we had to escape to the shady space on the sún deck.. Restaurants The food in the main dining room was good - we did not use speciality restaurants but did eat for dinner in Oceanview cafe for two nights. We found that there was not as many options in the dining room menu as at Royal Caribbean. We did have Select Dining and found the atmosphere in the dining room quite stressed early in the evening while more relaxed after 7:30 pm. The food in the Oceanview Cafe, was also good. Most days we ate breakfast and lunch there and for two evenings we really enjoyed the fresh-made sushi followed by a steak for dinner. They do have an outside sitting are with bar - We really enjoyed sitting outside for all meals in Oceanview Cafe. Pool decks The pool deck is filled with lounge chairs with a navy blue cushions. The solarium had even more lounging options, with nice teak wood lounge chairs And there was plenty of seating in the sun, in the shade, in the quiet area, and in the lively area around the pool. No need to be early in order to get a chair. We were on the sun deck either early in the morning or late afternoon when sun was not too strong or we found a space in the shade. A highlight on the Solstice Class ships is the Lawn where you can relax on a live grass lawn between the ship's funnels on the upper deck. The lawn also include glass-blowing classes/demonstrations. Self-disembarkation Arrived into Port Everglades and experienced with self-disembarkation for a 10 am flight out of FLL the same day. Expected arrival time into port Everglades at 7 am, but ship was docked already at 6 am. We were up at 6 am to pack the last things in the suitcases and at 7 pm, we went down to deck 5, in line to be among the first to go ashore - already a huge queue for self-disembarkation! But already at 7:15 the queue did start to move and 8:45 we were off the ship in line for immigration. Pretty fast and just before 8 am we entered a taxi (no waiting line) for the airport - With United premier access and 'TSA Pre' check-in and security took less that 20 minutes. Well in time for our 10 am departure - ready for the 20 hours journey to Denmark. This was my cruise no. 26. Majority of cruises with Royal Caribbean and 4 with Celebrity. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We hated the port of Cartagena Colombia and were very unhappy when Celebrity changed the itinerary (months after we had booked) to make this a 2-day port with an overnight. This is a frightening, oppressive, hot-as-hell port in a country ... Read More
We hated the port of Cartagena Colombia and were very unhappy when Celebrity changed the itinerary (months after we had booked) to make this a 2-day port with an overnight. This is a frightening, oppressive, hot-as-hell port in a country that is now on the US State Dept Watch List. Beggars and aggressive vendors are constantly in your face. Dangerous and intimidating place -- not our idea of a vacation destination. We intended to treat the 2nd day in Cartagena as a sea day but it was so hot and humid on the ship while it was in this port, that we had to go into the ship's air conditioning, so we feel we lost a day of vacation. Who wants to sit inside on a cruise?! Had we known it would be this bad, we would have changed to a different cruise. NEVER book any cruise that stops in Cartagena -- it's like voluntarily throwing away part of your expensive vacation. Otherwise, we enjoyed the Equinox cruise. Good entertainment. Pleasant passengers from US, Canada, UK, etc. Good specialty restaurants. Great weather. We were unhappy with some of the Shore Excursions and the general attitude of indifference by the Shore Excursion staff. Ordinarily we'd arrange our own shore activities but for Central America, we felt it was safer to use Celebrity's tours. One tour was over 2 hours late in returning to the ship (in Cozumel) which caused a delay in the ship leaving port, but the tour operator didn't communicate with the ship despite telling the tour group that they had done so. And the ship had no record of which passengers were on which excursion!!! What I found completely frightening is that the Shore Excursion staff are off duty while in port, so I could only go to Guest Relations for help, but they had no information and couldn't get in touch with the Shore Excursion staff. We no longer feel that going on a Celebrity excursion makes us safer. Yes, the ship waited but no one who was on duty on the ship knew who to call on shore to locate the missing 124 passengers!!! In Grand Cayman, we took the Stingray City, Reef Snorkel, & 7-Mile Beach tour. The first two parts, stingrays and snorkel, were wonderful but the part of 7-mile beach where they leave you is called Tikki Beach, which is AWFUL. A small rocky beach with broken shells and seaweed and sharp drop-off and poor snorkeling. We left the beach early to return to the ship. Take the other tour which does Stingray City and Reef Snorkel, but not the beach. Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Just returned from an eleven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean and found the experience to be varied: some parts were great and others not so good. We are not first-times, so I measure this cruise against Royal Caribbean, HAL, Princess, ... Read More
Just returned from an eleven-day cruise to the Western Caribbean and found the experience to be varied: some parts were great and others not so good. We are not first-times, so I measure this cruise against Royal Caribbean, HAL, Princess, NCL, Carnival, and WIndstar. Here are some details by category: Embarkation: All smooth and well-managed. We arrived at the terminal just after it opened and waited registered, receiving our cruise pass/cabin keycard, credit card swipe, etc. All went smoothly and our wait to board was not more than 45 minutes. It was apparent, as we waited to board, that there were many Europeans and many, many Canadians. Bienvenue! Cabin: We had selected a cabin at the back of the ship, Deck 7 (7362). Our habit is to have room service deliver coffee early in the morning and enjoy it while sitting on our veranda and watching the ship's wake. We were disappointed in the size of the cabin - small by our standards and with a tight veranda. The cabins on either side of us were larger, and in the same room class, so we felt a little cramped and unhappy about the comparative tightness. The bathroom was surprisingly ample with a very nice shower and plenty of hot water at all hours. We particularly prefer veranda doors that slide to open, as in this case, rather than those that swing and may take considerably more effort to open. Our cabin attendant, Arun, was very helpful and pleasant and seemed to be on-duty 24x7. One negative: although the TV is a flat screen, it not HD and the channel selection was very limited. MSNBC but no CNN. Surprising and disappointing. Dining: Breakfast - There are two options: if you don't mind hubbub and traffic, the Oceanview Grill on Deck 14 offers a wide selection of breakfast favorites, so there will always be something for you to munch on. There is an omelet station, plenty of cold and hot cereals, fruit, all the Lavazza coffee you care to slurp, and a bar, in case you have a jones for a beer at 7 AM. You can also chow down in the main dining room on Deck 3 and be served by actual friendly people. Again, lots of eggs of all varieties of preparation, sides-a-plenty, non-stop coffee. Lunch - Dining room closed, but the Oceanview Grill has many choices of hot and cold food, all delicious, something for everyone. There are burgers and dogs available from 11:30 on at the grill overlooking the pool. But they frequently run out of clean napkins and the ketchup dispenser is occasionally empty, so beware. You can also get "spa" food at a small eatery by the entrance to the spa, but there is a surcharge for anything with yogurt in it or on it. The downslide is lack of seating in this area. Dinner - we always take any-time dining. You're on vacation, right? So why commit yourself to always having to show up at a specific time? What if you want to dine earlier or later one night? So the first night, we showed up and specified that we wanted a table for two in a quiet area. We were seated at a table by the rail that overlooks the "scheduled" Silhouette dining room on deck 3. It was so noisy that we asked to be seated elsewhere and were moved to a table for two adjacent to a couple who were already seated. This turned out to be one of the best moves we could have made. We rapidly became friendly with the couple, Lars and Lotta, who were interesting, bright, engaging, and funny. They were on the way back to Stockholm after visiting their son and his family in LA. We ended up dining with them most nights. We never saw them during the day, but at dinner each night. In fact, they joined us for my birthday fancy dinner at the Murano restaurant. Bars: There are well-stocked bars everywhere, which tells you that they are a major source of revenue. No problem, but there is no piano bar. Too bad, as this has always been a fun feature on HAL ships. Entertainment: This is always a big part of cruising fun and, in the case of the Equinox, the talent didn't measure up. Although our cruise director, Alejandro, was vastly amusing and quick of repartee, the actual featured acts were mainly lame. Jane Curry, the English singer/entertainer, was clever and accomplished. The house band was competent at reading the charts, was the mostly-female jazz quartet (loved the tenor sax player's chops). The worst of the entertainment was a show called "Secret Vegas." Pitiful. We left after the opening number and others later said that the audience continually skedaddled in stages as the performance went on, and on, and on. Somebody needs to do a better job of booking talent based on the demographic profile of a particular cruise. (I'm available ;->). Facilities: It's important to acknowledge that all modern cruising ships are really big hotels sitting on a self-powered barge. As such, you are generally not even aware that the ship is moving except by seeing the wake. The ship is big and smooth through the water so scopalomine patches really weren't necessary. My wife injured herself slightly while we were on an excursion in Cozumel and needed a visit to the ship's medical center. This was the equivalent of a small hospital, with modern equipment and a good supply of sutures. If you are injured either on the ship itself or on a cruise-sponsored and vetted excursion, there is no fee for service. Don't know if they can do an appendectomy, though, but they seemed well staffed and competent. One of our major issues was the lack of elevators. There are elevators banks toward the bow and mid-ship, but nothing aft. Our cabin was about 100 meters from the mid-ship elevator, so the walk several times a day replaced a formal cardio regimen. Staff: We found the staff friendly and helpful. Captain Costas's daily PA updates on position and weather were always followed by a deadpan "quote of the day." While these were meant to be amusing, they all carried a note of mysogyny, a fact I found a little insensitive. Passenger Profile: The passengers were about 40% Canadian, 30% Euro, and 30% US. This is just a guess from listening to accents, but the cruise line has everyone's passport data and knows to the number. Ages were in general advanced...guessing again, I'd say the average age was 80, so expect your walk down the corridor to be a little impeded. Also, there were lots of electric carts in evidence. This may be due to the length and time of the cruise. Excursions: We had a great time at the Salsa and Salsa activity in Cozumel! Don't miss it... lots of fun. The canal and banana plantation visit in Costa Rica was similarly rewarding with sightings of lots of exotic birds and animals (three-toed sloths). It was interesting to finally see a banana manufacturing plant! Who knew the complications involved in making them? Wrapping the individual raw bananas in those tough green skins is some project! The worst excursion was in Cartagena, Colombia. We chose a day-trip by sea to a so-called luxury resort on the Rosario Islands about 25 miles across open water from Cartagena. It was a disaster and the facilities were not as expected. During the miserable trip back over rough seas at about 45 knots, the cross winds blew the bow spray on everyone...we were all completely soaked. And then the boat broke down, requiring the dispatch of a rescue boat while the sun was going down. Just awful. Clearly, no one from the cruise line had vetted this trip. Warning, do not take. All in all, excepting the Rosario Islands disaster, the cruise was OK - not the worst and not the best. One final suggestion: if you are going to do this trip, we recommend taking the Best of the Best package that includes Premium Beverage Package, All Internet all the Time, and prepaid gratuities. This was a great deal and the Premium Beverage Package went a long way to increasing our enjoyment. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
This was the 11th cruise on a Celebrity ship for my wife and I. We had high expectations, especially since our last 2 cruises were in Aqua class. We were in a Veranda on this cruise. The staff was as usual exceptional. The food was ... Read More
This was the 11th cruise on a Celebrity ship for my wife and I. We had high expectations, especially since our last 2 cruises were in Aqua class. We were in a Veranda on this cruise. The staff was as usual exceptional. The food was better that I remembered (and this was in the main dining room). Deserts and pastries were fantastic! Since we had visited many of the ports, we didn't take tours in all of the ports, but with the overnight in Cartegna, we were able to take the carriage ride in the old city at night. It was wonderful. We didn't realize that Equinox has a team from the Corning Glass Museum and they were creating pieces on board. A truly wonderful experience. The only negative was the entertainment in the theater. My expectations were very high from previous Celebrity cruises, but I was disappointed. As hard as the singers and dancers tried, they just didn't have the materiel. So we went to the glass blowing on 2 nights (GREAT) and found other things to do on others. All in all, we had a great time. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We just finished our 11th cruise and can say this was the best on the Equinox. We drove from Orlando on a 3 day pre cruise climate adjustment to the port for a 11:00 am docking. Dropped off the car and was on the boat in 20 minutes. love ... Read More
We just finished our 11th cruise and can say this was the best on the Equinox. We drove from Orlando on a 3 day pre cruise climate adjustment to the port for a 11:00 am docking. Dropped off the car and was on the boat in 20 minutes. love terminal 18 with the abundance of room to board. first time in concierge and was set into our own area so did get that advantage. The ship is very well maintained and you could see the pride that the staff have with their boat. We went up to the top to explore the ship and was surprised by the number of chairs to sunbath or stay out of the sun. We went to eat in the ocean café and before we knew it they called the staterooms ready for all to use. We were in 1178 (got our wine on arrival and daily canopes) and met with our cabin attendant Simms and asked for a few things to make our cruise that much better. The room seemed to be larger that most balcony rooms we have been on in the past. The only issue was that the space for clothes seems to be tighter but from using the cruise critic reviews that that a folded box was needed to put you socks and other items above the bed works well. We also had the bar emptied to allow for our water and sodas needed late in the night. The balcony was a treat with the foot stool as a added bonus. The food far exceeded our expectations and this is the first time that we ate all our meals in the dining room. Sonner and his assistant Florence were great. They went out of their way to make the experience the best we have ever seen. We were able to get a first class meal every night. The sommelier never let a glass empty before he was asking us if we needed more. They did seem to have more tables to maintain but were very capable. It was tough to get a lounger on sea days if you showed up after 9:30am but the pool attendants would move items off chairs if people were not using them after 30 minutes. (loved it) The entertainment was good. The band and dance crew were very strong. Jayne Curry and the Billy Joel impersonator were fantastic, the woman comic and Leonardo not so much. The bands that played throughout the ships were entertaining but missed a calypso band. The cruise director Alejandro was the by far the best on the circuit. Don't lose this guy Celebrity you have Gem even though he is from Argentina (LOL) This ship is very well proportioned and easy to get around able to find things without getting lost. The stops were hit and miss. Cozumel was a private beach, Costa Rica went on a great train ride, boat ride and bus tour with the ship, Panama was a waste of time, Columbia did the hop and go and found the old city unique. We got a taxi to find a beach bar with loungers on seven mile beach. The best sand I have ever seen and water crystal clear. The only downer on this whole cruise was getting off the ship during early walk off and all the disorganization of the staff trying to get people off in an orderly fashion. needs work. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2016
We booked this cruise by happenstance and so glad we did. The actual date we left may be incorrect but the rest of the review is spot on! We have cruised many times and this was a completely stressless pampering experience from the moment ... Read More
We booked this cruise by happenstance and so glad we did. The actual date we left may be incorrect but the rest of the review is spot on! We have cruised many times and this was a completely stressless pampering experience from the moment we stepped foot on the Equinox to the organized disembarkation. The ports were interesting and we had enough time at each stop to enjoy the ambiance. Few tendors required. Our verandah cabin was clean and comfy with lots of storage options. The entertainment was top notch. The enrichment activities were fun and varied. The food was tasty and plentiful. The ship was spotless. They readily accommodated our request for gluten free selections. The adults only pool and spa area appreciated. Our fellow passengers pleasant and happy to share their travel experiences. The captain and senior crew were visible and approachable (nice change) and the hard working front line staff excellent. Our booking through Costco.ca included a beverage package which we highly recommend. Not only for alcohol but for the other specialty treats like specialty coffees. We have only been on the one Celebrity Cruise but they certainly are maintaining quality standards while some others are blatantly reducing theirs. Highly recommended! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Just returned from the 10 day S.Carribbean trip on Equinox and had a wonderful time. stayed at the Marriott Renaissance near the port , and it is perfect for a one night stay and close to both airport and port. Check in was a breeze the ... Read More
Just returned from the 10 day S.Carribbean trip on Equinox and had a wonderful time. stayed at the Marriott Renaissance near the port , and it is perfect for a one night stay and close to both airport and port. Check in was a breeze the next morning about 1115 with few there,and we sat, assuming we would be on shortly. Shortly turned in to a 3 hour delay. While there were a number of reasons why, all of which could have been valid, the problem was not the delay, but the lack of communications between the port and the pax as to what was going on and what the current status was. The longer we waited, the more cranky people became, and the more they turned to uncivil behavior. There were not nearly enough staff to communicate and control lines and the potential for people to get hurt became real. We noticed the same lack of adequately trained personnel on disembarkation which was also poorly run. Port Everglades, as the operator should address this asap. That said, and with tempers running hot, we finally got on board and with that little glass of Champagne X hands you as you step aboard, we literally entered a different world. We had a great trip on this ship! 13th cruise, 30 years USN/R, I have never seen a cleaner ship with higher crew morale. When the young man folding towels in one of the spotless men's heads perfectly day after day tells you he he only happy if the guests are happy, that tells you that the crew is focused on mission. I saw this repeatedly on this ship. Food and wine service was excellent, and at times seemed almost effortless, speaking highly of training and again morale. Show quality seemed a little off, mostly because of the material, I think, but the performers were uniformly working hard. I felt the amount and types of music were very good, particularly the outdoor concert on the lawn which was fun. This cruise, 10 days over Presidents week is a little longer than most families can do, and it reflected in few children aboard and an older demographic, but a great time on a great ship. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
This was the third cruise on Celebrity for me and my partner. We booked through a G&L agency that places small groups of G&L cruisers on larger ships. More on that later. We booked about three months before sailing, and the ... Read More
This was the third cruise on Celebrity for me and my partner. We booked through a G&L agency that places small groups of G&L cruisers on larger ships. More on that later. We booked about three months before sailing, and the agency was able to get us ($1829/each) for a C2 class Concierge class room; the price on Celebrity's site for the same room at that time was in the $2400/each range. I stayed at the Renaissance Cruise Port hotel (my partner met me at the ship - was with family); nothing wrong with this hotel, great location, good rooms; a bit pricey ($240 w tax) but I have Marriott Gold status, so the evening snacks and breakfast are free. I think the Embassy Suites has a slightly better location, and drinks/breakfast are free there. $14 taxi ride to the hotel and a $6 shuttle van to the port in the morning. The worst part of the cruise, bar none, was the embarkation. Apparently there was a combination of a crew customs check and some technical problems with the card scanners - but I have never waited so long to get on board. We were at the pier at 11:30, and seated by 11:45. We did not BOARD until 2:15. It was a very disorganized process, with people cutting the lines, other guests telling them to sit back down, etc. I suppose the only good part was that the rooms were ready when we got on board. The cruise itself was excellent. We ate every dinner in the MDR. I would say 1 dinner was a miss, two were OK, and the rest were excellent. Our waiter was a bit obsequious, you were often afraid to say everything was not perfect, as it seemed he would get everyone up to the chef out to make it right. There was never a problem getting the wine steward; the assistant waiter was excellent. The highlight was the guys at our table; the G&L group we were traveling with placed us at an 8-top with a really nice group of men. It makes a real difference to look forward to your dinner companions. The excursions were good. The train ride around St. Kitts was interesting, but perhaps not worth the $100+ per person; the Henderson's Cave in Barbados was excellent. We did beach trips on our own on St Thomas and St Maarten; very enjoyable. Equinox has an excellent gym; I used it daily. The gym staff was rather distant and uninterested. But I didn't need their help. The agency that we booked thru was great. They planned several parties during the cruise, as well as group excursions, and tours of the ship (galley, bridge). Disembarkation was fine. One of my pieces of luggage was missing, but it was found quickly in the "no tag" area. Next time I'll make sure the tag is better attached. I think we left the ship around 9:15 and were at our taxi at 10AM. Note - in Ft Lauderdale taxis are much cheaper than any transfer. Celebrity offered transfers to FLL at $14/person; at the dock shared vans were $11/person. The taxi for two of us, with tip, was $15. And it was private. Overall we had a great time. Of all the Celebrity ships we have been on, the Equinox seems to have the most friendly crew; there was no "decay" in staff friendliness from day one to day 10. We've cruised out of FLL twice and once out of Puerto Rico. I would note that FLL tends to have older, more sedentary cruise passengers, and PR had a younger, more diverse international passenger makeup. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
My husband and I sailed on the Equinox from Feb. 7 to Feb. 21. We are fairly experienced cruisers, having been on probably 11 cruises since 2006. We drove to the Red Roof Inn near the airport, and left the car there since it was the most ... Read More
My husband and I sailed on the Equinox from Feb. 7 to Feb. 21. We are fairly experienced cruisers, having been on probably 11 cruises since 2006. We drove to the Red Roof Inn near the airport, and left the car there since it was the most price-effective place to leave the car. The hotel transported us to the cruise port. We were in cabin 6121 with a balcony, but not in the Blu level. The good - Embarking was efficient and our room was waiting for us at 2:00. The ship is immaculate and pretty, with everything clean and sparkling. The cabin is well appointed - plenty of storage space including under and over the bed. Employees are outstanding. Cabin steward was efficient and available, without being intrusive. Some of the food was good. I especial like the escargot. The lobster was good. We took no excursions, preferring to disembark at the various ports and walk around. Disembarkation on Feb.21 was efficient; we self-carried luggage and took a taxi back to our car for $25.00. My husband loved the fitness facility; it, too, was sparkling, with many machines. The not-so-good Food - Since 2006, we have seen food in the Main dining Room consistently decline in quality on Royal Caribbean and Celebrity ships. The company has added "specialty restaurants" at an extra charge. If they want guests to patronize the "for charge" restaurants, why make the MDR great? Thus, on 2 of the last days, the menu offered Pot Pie (only pastry with no filling), meatloaf and pork and beans. Really? On an up-scale cruise line? The beef was not-so-great. It tended to be dry. One day we had brisket; the next day a return of the brisket in a different form. The daily steak was a cut I am not familiar with. There were long waits between courses, so dinner took about 2 hours. The Ocean View Cafe food was OK, but not spectacular. Breakfast was the same. Order fresh-made scrambled eggs at the omelette bar. The prepared eggs are soupy and not good. If you don't eat bread, carbs and pasta, there is not much for you to eat in the Ocean View Cafe. I ate fruits for breakfast and a Caesar salad for lunch. Shows - we left the first three. The comedian was not funny and used a lot of profanity. Next 2 shows (Rock) had music that was loud but did not interest us. After that, we left early dinner and stopped by shows to see if they looked good. We did not attend further shows. Shopping - I was interested in pair of "Dancing Diamond" earrings that I had seen in 2015. I compared prices at all the ports and on the ship. The ship prices were 30% higher. On the last sea day, the shops advertised a sale. The sales lady quoted me the same price the ship shop had given me on the 3rd day. When I mentioned that, she dropped the price 10%. You will NOT find the "best prices" on the ship. All the above said, it was certainly better to spend 2 weeks on the Equinox than in the Northeast. I would return to Celebrity in a heartbeat! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We stayed overnight at the Pier 66 Hyatt Regency as we had flown in from the UK. Got to the port around noon and didn't take long to check-in and arrive on board. First thing we did was upgrade our drinks package to Premium at the ... Read More
We stayed overnight at the Pier 66 Hyatt Regency as we had flown in from the UK. Got to the port around noon and didn't take long to check-in and arrive on board. First thing we did was upgrade our drinks package to Premium at the Martini Bar as we had done this previously and found the extra choice brilliant and well worth the $10 a day. Overall the service of the Captain, Crew & Entertainments staff were the best we had experienced having chosen this cruise due to a discount voucher from a disappointing cruise on Celebrity Millennium. Captain Leo was the most visible Captain on any cruise we have been on and I think this was reflected in the excellent service we received from all levels of crew. The activities team led by Alejandra were also excellent and very visible around the ship and my new saying is "super awesome" which the whole cruise was. The evening shows were brilliant, Jane Curry, Jason Bishop, Tenors of Rock, Jesse Hamilton and the shows Elysium, Life, etc. Best entertainers and shows we have seen on any of the cruise ships we have been on (not many compared to some) We particularly enjoyed the Hot Glass Show and I do hope Celebrity continue to support this fantastic show which is so different and enjoyable to see glass makers in action. Hernando, Michael & Rafael our waiters & sommelier in the MDR were just outstanding and it was a pleasure to eat there. We ate in the Murano one night and the food was outstanding (service a little slow but this was addressed). Bistro5 was also excellent and we had a few lunches there which for $10 was good value for money. Martini Bar & the Gastropub were our favourites particularly Tamara in the Gastropub who was really entertaining and such a good waitress. We had a balcony cabin 7133 which was in a good position and good size with everything you need. Cozumel - walked from the International Port into Cozumel but mainly shopping and didn't fancy an excursion just visited the Hard Rock Cafe for the inevitable Tshirt. Puerto Limon - took a tour with Syl Tours (Evelyn Sinclair) on the canal, banana plantation & general area - really enjoyed this and Evelyn was excellent and showed us many plants and creatures, including a large spider, which she found as we travelled to the plantation. Colon - took a tour with others from the Roll Call on Cruise Critic with Almiza tours, our tour guide Rey was brilliant very knowledgeable and excellent tour of the existing, new and old cutting with loads of information about these and Panama in general - especially interesting were the benefits to pensioners in Panama. Cartagena - took another tour with others from the Roll Call on Cruise Critic with Dora and our tour guide was Alvarito - not a good guide but I believe other tours organised with Dora were excellent. Our bus was not air conditioned and of very poor quality which at 35 degrees is not ideal. George Town - had to dock in Spots Bay rather than George Town due to weather and our "Super Captain Leo" managed to get one of only three out of 8 ships to do this so well done. We took a tour with Cayman Eco Adventures to Stingray Bay and snorkelling on the reef. Celebrity were really accommodating in allowing us to telephone the tour company to sort out picking us up (above and beyond). Kevin & Tristan gave us an unforgettable experientce in swimming with the stingrays - never having done this before. Fort Lauderdale - we took a trip with Celebrity to visit the Everglades and drop off in Miami Int airport - our guide was pretty useless. The airboat ride of the Everglades with Captain Chuck was outstanding and we at least saw some alligators, the tour of the predator animal park was extremely interesting and I still cannot understand why someone would want a bobcat or night burrowing fox for a pet only for it to end up in a sanctuary like this. Disembarkation was a nightmare as the whole crew had to get off at the same time and there were only 2 or 3 immigration officials so our tour bus actually left about an hour later than scheduled which didn't help Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Our first ever Celebrity cruise was in january of 2011. We have been on 11 cruises with Celebrity since then, all on Solstice Class ships. But Equinox was the first in 2011 and this ship is still special to us. We stayed at the Hilton ... Read More
Our first ever Celebrity cruise was in january of 2011. We have been on 11 cruises with Celebrity since then, all on Solstice Class ships. But Equinox was the first in 2011 and this ship is still special to us. We stayed at the Hilton Marina hotel, which we had done before. Pricy, but the location makes up for so much in our opinion. We booked a transfer from the airport to the hotel and from the hotel to the ship through QLS, which we can also recommend. As Equinox was the only ship in port on embarkation day, getting into the port was not as crazy as we have seen it during weekend, when 7 of 8 ships can be in port at the same time. Our last time on Equinox was in 2012...we did notice some wear and tear; some worn furniture in public lounges and restaurants (Sky Lounge, Tuscan Grille) and in our stateroom (leaking pipes on our balcony, lots or rust showing). The stateroom itself was very good once again. On previous occassions we chose Aqua Class. This time we were travelling with family and couldn't find a good enough deal, so opted for a 1A Deluxe Balcony cabin on deck 9 (stateroom 9145). This proved to be a great room and we really didn't miss any of the AQ amenities. Forward elevators are fairly close to this room, but we never heard a sound. Couch in this room is near the balcony, with the bed on the bathroom side of the room. We loved the food a lot, both in the dining room and in all the specialty restaurants: Tuscan Grille, Silk Harvest, Murano and Bistro on Five. Especially Bistro on Five is a hidden gem. We are very pleased it remains 'undiscovered' by many, as it is always fairly quiet there. We don't object! This time was the first time we used Select dining. There was a bit of a wait sometimes, but we were fine with that. Never took us more than 10 minutes wait, except for the last night when we waited for 45 minutes, but that was because we had a very specific request for a table. Dining room hostess Gorica was a treasure though, taking very good care of us, made us feel as if we were the only guests on the ship. New to us on the ship was the gastrobar. We didn't use it this cruise, but we are glad the old Cellar masters, which was a fairly closed off place, is now a more open and accessible venue on the ship. Entertainment was good. We especially loved Jayne Curry. She was very engaging, funny, a great singer with an impressive variety in her repertoire. Would love to see her on one of our future cruises again. We opted for the late shows and couldn't find seats for the first three nights, arriving about 15 minutes before showtime. We had never seen this, a full theatre, on any of our 11 cruises so far. We gave the Tenors of Rock a miss, had seen them before, not our taste. Jason Bishop, the illussionist, was very funny. We had been at all the ports on this itinerary before, so we were not to bothered with excursions for us. But since we were with family members, who had never been to any of the ports, we went on an excursion in all the ports. In Mexico we did the Mayan ruins, island tour and beach excursion. Our guide, Edwin, was the best guide during this cruise. In Puerto Limon we did the bus/boat/train adventure and got to see some amazing wildlife, like sloths, caymans, howler monkeys. Colon has the panama canal locks and Gatun lake as a must see for first timers. We went on an eco-cruise, watching wildlife and then an amazing stop at the old Gatun locks, while we passed the new locks on the way. In Cartagena we did a tour in the city itself, visiting the fort and the old city. In Grand Cayman we spent the morning swimming with dolphins...as amazing as we imagined! Remarkable as always was the entire crew. From the top, captain Leo Palaiokrassas, down to all the waiting staff, stateroomattendants, there seemed to be a great atmosphere and impeccable service all around, which is what amazes us most every time. 10 out of 10 for all staff members surely! We will be back but in the meanwhile couldn't recommend Equinox highly enough! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We have been on quite a few cruises in the past but this was the first in almost 7 years. We have cruised on several different lines but have always preferred Celebrity. Although we are retired, my husband has several part time positions ... Read More
We have been on quite a few cruises in the past but this was the first in almost 7 years. We have cruised on several different lines but have always preferred Celebrity. Although we are retired, my husband has several part time positions so we are a bit limited as to when we can get away. We chose this particular one because it was at the right time and going to ports we had not visited before with the exception of Grand Cayman. We arrived at the port via hotel shuttle at about 10:55 and we were on board by 11:15! We were in a sky suite and were able to walk right up to the agents/staff for the boarding process and then directly onto the ship. We were greeted with champagne and were able to "tour" the ship practically by ourselves. We went to the Excursion Desk and booked our excursions with no wait and checked out the specialty restaurants and made some reservations. We had lunch at the Ocean View Cafe and got into our room around 2:00. Our room was wonderful. We were in 1250 and had tons of living space as well as storage. We loved the bathroom with the rain shower (we have one at home but we liked this one better!) We had a tub and the bathroom was very good size, beautifully decorated and again a lot of storage space. We had a large balcony with two chairs with stools and nice table. Our butler Robert was great. He delivered canapés, fruit, pastries and shrimp cocktail every afternoon as well as fresh squeezed orange juice. Our room was always serviced by the maid and her assistant at our convenience. We have never been thrilled with the main dining rooms on any line and we were so pleased with the Luminae which is a restaurant for just suite passengers. You never needed a reservation so you didn't have to plan your day around dinner. We ate there every night except two nights at Silk Harvest, one night at Murano and one night at the Tuscan Grille. The specialty restaurants were very good, there is an extra charge, but we were just as pleased with the Luminae. It is very upscale but not stuffy at all. We ate breakfast at the Ocean View Cafe and most lunches there also. We enjoyed the variety and quality. It is a bit difficult to get a table sometimes but I preferred it over the Luminae for breakfast and lunch because I like buffets! There are many choices for food, we would have to go on a 20 day cruise to try then all! We signed up for the premium beverage package, unlimited internet and pre-paid gratuities. We are not big drinkers but do enjoy wine with dinner and they were constantly asking to re-fill our glasses. Any drink is included that is priced $13 or less and you just pay the difference if you choose a more expensive drink. Most cocktails were under the $13. We thought the entertainment was very good. We enjoyed some more than others but we didn't feel that they skimped in anyway. Our excursions were very good. We chose a bit different than previous cruises due to the Zika scare. We did one rain forest but skipped a few excursions that would have exposed us to mosquitoes. We enjoyed the Old City tour in Cartagena, watching the locks in Panama (We would recommend the tour that takes you to view the locks rather than going through them on a boat. We took a boat ride on the lake and then watched the freighters go through the locks. If you take the boat ride through them, it is a very long day in our opinion and not that exciting.) We had to repeat our swim with the sting rays in Grand Cayman which we hadn't done in many years. We prefer to take excursions through Celebrity rather than taking our chances with local companies. We put our luggage out in the hallway at 11:00pm the last night and didn't see it until we picked it up at luggage in Newark, NJ. As a suite passenger, there was no cost but it would have been worth the minimal charge regardless. We were permitted to leave the ship anytime from 8-10am at our convenience. Disembarking was not a problem except that for some reason customs decided to be short-handed and there was about a 45 minute wait there. Overall, we felt that the ship was beautiful, the staff very friendly and helpful, the food exceptional and we would highly recommend this ship. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
This was our second cruise on the Equinox in two years, and was one of the best cruises, in our opinion, that we have ever taken. The food was the best we have ever had on any cruise, and we have been on over 35 cruises. We were only ... Read More
This was our second cruise on the Equinox in two years, and was one of the best cruises, in our opinion, that we have ever taken. The food was the best we have ever had on any cruise, and we have been on over 35 cruises. We were only Concierge level since Aqua and Suites were sold out, but the food in the main dining room was fantastic. We prefer a table for two, and on S class ships, most of the tables for two are very close together. We were fortunate that we were able to get a table for two (#141, I think), that was at least 4-5 feet away from the next table, instead of being 1-2 feet apart. The good news was that we met this great couple from Canada, Jim and Joan, who were sitting at the adjacent table, and we had great conversations at dinner. Since we live in Tampa, we drove to Fort Lauderdale the day before and stayed at the Rodeway Inn on Highway 84. We have stayed there many times before, and Izzy, the manager, and his crew do a great job. They take you to the port, and come get you when you return, and you can leave your car in their parking lot during the cruise. We were taken to the port about 9 am on the day of the cruise, and had to wait until almost 10 am before Celebrity opened the doors to the terminal. There was a lot of confusion about where to go to check in. We have Elite status and were Concierge level guests, so we asked which was the best place to wait before we boarded. We were told to go to the Elite area, which should have had priority over Concierge, but they actually boarded Concierge first; it seemed that the agents had no clue as to what they should do. We got onboard about 11 AM, and went to the Oceanview Cafe (the buffet) for lunch. The nice thing about Celebrity is that they give you a glass of champagne when you board. The food was very good at the buffet, and remained so for the rest of the cruise. Since this was an eleven day cruise, we decided to get the three specialty restaurant deal for $99 each, and we had enough onboard credit to pay for it. We had dinner at Murano (our favorite), Silk Harvest (our least favorite), and Tuscan Grill, on three nights. However, the food in the main dining room was fantastic. I won't bore you with all of the details, but will tell you about some of experiences we had. In Cozumel, we took the Mayan Ruins and Island Tour, and it was fairly good, but rather expensive a $69 per person. It was supposed to take 3 hours, but actually took about 4 hours. We went to a Mayan ruin site, which was OK, but nothing like Chichen Itza or Tulum, but it was a lot closer. The tour also took you to the Mayan Cacao Company, and they demonstrated how the Mayans made chocolate; spent way too much time here. At the pier where we docked, there are dozens of shops, many more than when we were here 5 years ago. Unfortunately the tour took so long that we did not have an opportunity to shop here. A great female singer, Jayne Curry, performed in main theater, and she was fantastic; do not miss her if she is on your cruise. We had seen her before, and would always go back to see her again. In Costa Rica we opted not to take a tour since most of the non-beach tours took you to the banana plantation and we had done that before. At the end of the pier area there is a few shops, which the ship tells you nothing about; the shops provide a free bus ride from the ship to the shops and back. In Panama, we took the Gatun Locks and Ft. Forenza tour. We had taken this tour several years ago and decided to take it again since you now get to see part of the new Panama Canal. Unfortunately Panama has let the roads really go to pot (literally dozens of huge pot holes--some over 1 foot deep). The tour took about 45 minutes longer than advertised. Although the bus was OK, it bounced your butt up and down for a very long time. If you have back or neck problems, do not take this tour. The tour takes you to the fort first, and the canal later. A word of advice: don't drink liquids before you go because there is only one place to use the bathroom on the way to the fort, and no facilities at the fort. For the men, it is like an outhouse, but there is an inside facility for the women (but still a one-hole toilet). So you can imagine how long it took for 30 people. The next day we arrived at Cartagena, Columbia, and spent 1.5 days here. It was our first time in this city, and it was amazing how many high rise buildings there were--looked like you were sailing into Miami, but I think Cartagena has more high risers. There is absolutely nothing to do at the pier area, so you have to take a taxi downtown, or take a tour. We opted for the Panoramic Drive tour, and it was interesting, but took longer than advertised, probably because of the heavy traffic. The tour took you to the Fort, and the Navy museum. We did not have time to explore the Fort (that is a separate tour), but we did get to see a local show of dancers at the Navy museum. The next day was a sea day, and we went to a presentation called "How our ships move". It was given by the 2nd engineer, and it was interesting, but rather boring because the officer was not very proficient in English and difficult to understand. We went to the wine tasting for Select and Elite Captains Club members, and it was good as always. After lunch we went to a matinee show, "Broadway in Love" ; the 6 singers were fantastic, as was the Celebrity orchestra. At dinner we had lobster and beef wellington--both were excellent. The comedian, Pat Godwin, was very funny. Our next port of call was Grand Cayman, but the seas were so rough the port was closed. You always anchor here because of the shallow water. The Captain sailed us to the other side of the island where the ship was more wind protected. There was only room for 3 ships here, so the other 4 ships that were supposed to be here had to leave. A tender transported passengers from the ship to shore, and then they had to board busses to go to the shopping area of Grand Cayman. There were major delays, as you might expect, if you chose to go ashore, you had only limited time; we opted to stay on the ship rather than put up with the hassle. On our last day at sea we went to a presentation by Captain Leo, and he was great--told you about himself as well as how the ship navigates. That evening we went to the talent show put on by crew members, and a couple of the guests; don't miss it if they have this on your cruise. We arrived back in Fort Lauderdale about 6:30 am or so, had time for a quick breakfast, and then stood in line for the early debarkation where you roll your own luggage off. I will never understand why Celebrity makes this so difficult; at least it was better than the debarkation on the Silhouette in January. The scanning machines are on deck 5 midship (where you boarded), so that is where everyone lined up. However you could not get off there; you had to go forward to the next exit, then come back to midship to go through the scanners. A lot of extra walking rolling your luggage. After that going thru customs was pretty easy. Overall it was a fantastic cruise, with a great Captain, crew and staff. The food was exceptional, both in the Oceanview Cafe and in the main dining room. We are looking forward to our next cruise to the Eastern Caribbean in March on the Equinox and hope it will be as good. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
Celebrity Equinox Review My husband and I sailed on the February 1, 2016, cruise aboard the Equinox which made port at Cozumel, Limon, Colon, Cartagena, and Grand Cayman. We took the same cruise aboard the Equinox in 2009 and have ... Read More
Celebrity Equinox Review My husband and I sailed on the February 1, 2016, cruise aboard the Equinox which made port at Cozumel, Limon, Colon, Cartagena, and Grand Cayman. We took the same cruise aboard the Equinox in 2009 and have taken another 30 on NCL, Disney, Princess, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, and two aboard (insert a shudder) Carnival. So we are experienced cruisers. Much has been written about this ship, and I don’t see much reason to repeat it all. We had balcony cabin 6115 only because we booked at the last minute. I would not choose it unless I had to. Believe me, it is a long way to Tipperary from that cabin. Over 500 steps to breakfast...and 500 back. We heard music during the shows at night– without benefit of being in the theater– as this cabin is just above the theater. It was not a problem and I rather enjoyed the reprise of Tenors or Rock. The cabin was fine except I hated the lack of drawer space. I don’t like leaning over at a 45 degree angle to get to my underwear from over the bed. Nor do I want to have to rappel back to the floor after having climbed up on the bed to get it. I also didn’t like the very hard pillows on the bed. I had a neck ache very morning. The bathroom, however, I did like. I think it is the best laid out of any we’ve had other than the main bathroom of the Owner’s Suite on the NCL Jade, but that’s another story involving an upsell fairy. Plenty of storage in the bathroom. I hated the narrow slabs that served as night tables. They couldn't hold anything much more than the phone. Our room steward, Sury, was great. He managed to get inside our cabin and clean when we were at breakfast and dinner which was very nice indeed. I always appreciate that. We found the crew to be unfailingly attentive and friendly. Food was fine though I mourn the wonderful cakes they used to have on Celebrity years ago. We had no difficulty in getting into the restaurant as we made a 6:15 reservation for every night. We had the same waiters every night as well, so that went well. Entertainment was a mixed bag. Jane Curry (vocalist), Stephen Kane (pianist), Tenors of Rock, were all great. My eyes did roll back in my head every time performers let it leak that they had a CD for sale after the show and they all did. The production shows “Set” and “Elysium” were just plain dreadful. It was not the fault of the talented performers. They did their best. But the concepts were so far out there as to be incomprehensible. And as this was an old folks cruise with the average age of the sailors about 73, these “modern” shows played especially poorly. I am trying hard to think of an audience to whom they would appeal. If I think of any, I will add an addendum to this review. Very rough crossing to Playa Del Carmen for our shore excursion to Xcaret from Cozumel. We were literally lifted out of our chairs and plopped back down into them every few seconds. You know it is going to be rough when people are stationed in the front of the boat with rolls of barf bags. Plenty bags were pealed off those rolls and the sounds revolving around their use were everywhere. We did not participate. Xcaret was a beautiful place and we enjoyed it despite the Disney-like food prices. We hired Roger, one of Oscar Brown’s cousins, to be our guide in Limon. We had already done the beaches/banana plantation thing and this round just went to places like the local market and cathedral, beautiful overlooks and a grocery store and such but enjoyed ourselves very much. I especially liked it when a lady selling red peppers at the market almost died laughing when I told her a single red pepper cost nearly $3 at Wal-mart. I tried a water apple which proved to taste very much like a pear. Also was introduced to a spice “bomb” by Roger and bought some to season our chicken at home. Also picked up cinnamon bark for next to nothing. At a small fruit market out in the boonies we had some of those marvelous tiny sugar bananas and watched a girl take corn on the cob out of a big pan of water, roll it in butter, and serve it up in clean husks. Looked tasty, but I doubt it could have matched Indiana sweet corn. Plenty of local shopping right at the port and best prices on the trip. Molas, puzzle boxes, wooden items, tee shirts, and the usual. Across the street is a cheap internet place and not far off is the grocery store. Everyone was friendly, and we did not feel unsafe at all. We took an excursion in Colon to Old Panama City and Reproso as we had already done the Embera Indian-canal-Gatun Lake route on our last visit and were looking to do something different. Nothing earthshaking but quite pleasant. We took our lunch break at a local grocery store with an inexpensive cafeteria attached. Lunch for the two of us (salad, fruit bowl, empanada, and drinks ran us $8. Most people spent a half hour running around the grocery store gathering up cheap coke and chips and coffee. I was surprised at how nice Panama City is. This tour is labeled inaccessible. Believe them. You can’t take a wheelchair down paths full of large gravel or across grass. At Reproso there is no elevator so you have to climb about 25 steps in all and walk a narrow way over the work area. Cartagena was lovely as last time. The terminal has to be the nicest anywhere and has been improved and enlarged since 2009. Nice store, nice garden restaurant, Juan Valdez, beautiful birds. What a pleasant spot! We took a tour of Popa Hill, Las Bovedas, the city, the naval museum, and saw a brief folk dancing show at the latter. Although this tour is listed as accessible, this tour was totally unsuitable for wheelchairs. First of all, we had to walk up a hill at a 45 degree angle for about 1/4 of a mile, then climb about 15 stairs, then climb more hill. You could not take a wheelchair down the narrow congested walk at Las Bovedas nor the crowded, narrow sidewalks along the way the guide took us in Cartagena. Be aware of these things. We had a whole 15 minutes at Las Bovedas which was ridiculous. The guide told us to go into #2 which either is owned by her friends or gives her kickbacks. On our second day in Cartagena we just wandered on our own and that was great. I don’t care for Grand Cayman and it is a mystery to me why so many ships stop there. The stores are full of junk and the island is not attractive. A beach? Big deal. Snorkeling? Big deal. There are better places for both. On this day the it was too windy to go to the main port and we were diverted to the South Side. That change was handled quite efficiently but lines were fairly long, waits were fairly short. Best part was the free wi-fi in the pass through near Margaritasville. Easy embark and disembark. Efficient bus transportation to the airport. We were at the airport at 9 for our 12:45 flight. Pleasant cruise! Nice ship, though I don’t get why Celebrity thinks it is such a big deal to have grass at sea. Seems like a total waste of deck to me. I wonder where that person is who has always had a yearning to play bocce afloat! Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
This was our first visit to the Caribbean and our second trip with Celebrity. It will probably prove to be our last trip to this part of the world and the second of a number with this cruise line. Why no plans to return? Manchester/New ... Read More
This was our first visit to the Caribbean and our second trip with Celebrity. It will probably prove to be our last trip to this part of the world and the second of a number with this cruise line. Why no plans to return? Manchester/New York/Miami/Fort Lauderdale was a real pain before we even saw the ship, although overnight at the Novotel in FL was fine, while the return trip via a single stop in Zurich was better, but still tiring. The itinerary, which I concede we chose, was disappointing. None of the ports was really aesthetically pleasing, with Fort Lauderdale's huge commercial operation setting the palm/beach free standard and with four days at sea the concept of seascapes to die for was hardly fulfilled. I now know much more about cranes than palms. Perhaps we should have chosen the Eastern Caribbean Islands cruise which followed our and might well have coloured our thinking more favourably. Ironically, the high winds on our trip to Grand Cayman, blew us into a part of the island we were not scheduled to visit and we were doubly indebted to Celebrity's office staff and Captain Leo for securing an attractive, alternative mooring. With only a handful of fellow Brits, the ship was dominated by third-age clients from the USA and Canada. 'Dominated' is the only word and while I am in that category age-wise, I would warn new and younger cruisers to consider the implications of being at sea with 2,000 pensioners. It is a hazard of all cruises, but this was a real test. The 'I'll wear what I want' attitude from some was probably an inevitable outcome of the more relaxed dress code and I can live with that now I know just how scruffy people are prepared to be when they go for dinner. That said, a man in a hoodie in the Silhouette Restaurant must have been doing it for a bet! So what might tempt me back? A wonderful ship with a magnificent crew. Exceptional in every respect, with the captain and his social lieutenent Alejandro setting a terrific lead and the crew - especially the entertainers - delivering an exemplory cruising experience. Good food on a daily basis, with a treat at the Murano Restaurant the highlight. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
• Arrived at car rental (US1 Airport Parking). Their vehicle appeared to have been dispatched before the customer had their luggage and another couple and ourselves had to wait over 30 minutes for the van. The experienced staff member ... Read More
• Arrived at car rental (US1 Airport Parking). Their vehicle appeared to have been dispatched before the customer had their luggage and another couple and ourselves had to wait over 30 minutes for the van. The experienced staff member offered no apology, just "he's still at the airport" and then she went to lunch leaving us with a new employee who seemed to have had no training in dealing with this. When the driver came back his only comment was that there was a "major" traffic backup - we saw no evidence of this. We had a much better experience with a similar company across the street so even if this is the low price, it is doubtful we will be back. • Arrived at dock a little before 2pm - 75% of workers appeared to have left but we were able to walk through the process quickly. • Cabin 9334 - I believe this is a C2 or C3 cabin. Furnishings are a little worn but acceptable. Room steward introduced himself and remembered our names. He is polite and keeps the fruit tray full and brings the afternoon canapes (even if we aren't in the room at the time). Room lighting could be better for night use - i.e. if one person gets up to read the lights are too bright and there is no light on the balcony. We've had intermittent problems with the toilet not flushing (we had this two months ago on the Reflection as well). • Main Dining Hall 8:30 seating - 621. The first night we saw our head waiter but hardly saw her assistant or the Wine Steward. But they both improved later in the week. Our tablemates were not a good match to us but it turned out that two couples who were traveling together switched to early because at least one of them was diabetic. This part of the dining room is very noisy. Lights above us were not working the first night, but we mentioned it to the matre' d and it was fixed by the second night. The table change was awkward on a few accounts - the couples could have told us, the matre'd could have told us and the waiters. So meanwhile we weren't sure "what we did wrong" until we bumped into them and asked. • The first nights show was very good. Very good musicians although I don't like how Alejandro and Jane both were negative on themselves. Trivia was good but staff seemed to have an attitude that it was more of a chore than something they enjoyed Some unique opportunities onboard: • Wine glass seminar. Very well run - includes a four glass package but require shipping is extra (I would have preferred a higher price and shipping included). Very light attendance which was disappointing. Nice addition to the cruise • Free tasting in Whisky lounge - another new and nice addition. They were very knowledgeable, they didn't push sales but on the other hand a printed description/price sheet would have been good. It would have been nice to have some plain crackers or bread sticks for people who couldn't eat some of the served foods. • Hot Glass Show - involved youth in making a piece from one of the children's drawings We utilized the new Celebrity Destinations private tour service in Cartegana. It went very well and we would use this service again. Disembarking: • All flyers said that waiting areas would be monitored to make sure you were in the correct one. They didn't and this led to some confusion. They appeared to do a good job timing departures but there was still a lot of people bumping the line, etc. It appeared that there were only 2-3 inspectors for US citizens. It took us almost an hour from the time we left the boat 8:05 to the time we got to our car 9:00. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2016
We stayed the night before at the Renaissance which is directly across the street from the port and we could actually see the ship from our room. Very nice hotel full of mostly cruisers. We drove right into the port the next morning and ... Read More
We stayed the night before at the Renaissance which is directly across the street from the port and we could actually see the ship from our room. Very nice hotel full of mostly cruisers. We drove right into the port the next morning and parked in a lot adjacent to the terminal. Just FYI, there is another lot which is closer, but is reserved exclusively for Allure and Oasis and the lot was not even half full but we still were not allowed to park there. It is $15 USD to park in the lot per day. Pier service was excellent. We arrived at 10:30 and were checked in in less than 5 minutes. Boarded the ship at 11:30 and because we were staying in a Suite we were able to go to the Luminae restaurant where we were able to have snacks and lunch until our cabin was ready. We stayed in a Sky Suite (S1) room 9374 in the back of the ship on the straboard (right ) side. The sky suites are very nice. Plenty of room, butler service, upgraded bath amenities (Bulgari), etc. It is extremely quiet as very few guests are walking by and we like that. The balcony is large, and probably the only drawback to it is some soot from the smokestack will get on there each day but they do clean it (albeit not perfectly). The attendants did a nice job of keeping everything clean and tidy although they seem to not want to give out additional soaps, shampoos, etc. We had to ask twice but it may be because the Bulgari items are expensive. This was our second time on this itinerary and let me start by saying that this was probably the best overall staff we have ever experienced on ANY cruise ship. The Captain, Leo (who is leaving halfway through the next cruise) was by far and away the most interactive Captain we have ever experienced. You would see him everywhere around the ship and he was as approachable as any member of the crew. Just an all around fantastic guy. Alejandro the Cruise Director (and Linde the Activities manager) and his entire staff were also excellent. As a suite guest we were able to dine in the Luminae restaurant which was exquisite - we would say that the food was as good if not better than the specialty restaurants. Plus, if you like something on the menu from the main dining room they will prepare it for you. They have breakfast and dinner every day and lunch on at sea days. You can eat on the Bistro at five on port days (they waive the fee) as well as a suite guest. We attended the entertainment shows each night and some of the late night entertainment shows and overall they were excellent. We think Celebrity has definitely improved in this area. We ate breakfast and lunch mostly in the buffet and it has improved greatly over last year, but we think it could still use some improvement. For example, if you go in towards the end, many times the carving station will have been shut down and they seem more focused on getting ready for the next meal service than finishing the existing meal service. The quality of the food is good, but not excellent - keeping in mind it is very difficult to prepare excellent quality food in a buffet setting. The service was excellent and attentive though and they are eager to please. The ship is very clean - we love the fact that they have hand towels in the restrooms as opposed to air dryers and paper towels. The public areas were always attended to and they even had bathroom attendants in the public restrooms during busy times (shows, dinners, etc.) which we thought was a nice touch. The ports of call were a nice change from your typical Caribbean cruise. We overnighted in Cartegena, Columbia which was very nice (and warm!). We did not participate in any shore excursions as we did them last year, but we would strongly recommend seeing the rainforest in Costa Rica and the Panama Canal up close in action. I will say that we tried to use the "destination concierge" to book a private tour and had a misunderstanding so our advice would be to be sure you are VERY SPECIFIC about what you want. You will pay a hefty premium for this type of excursion, but it can be tailored to just about whatever you want. Again, a nice touch as Celebrity really tries to cater to the needs of their guests. We spent a great deal of time in the Casino and like most ships, it has the usual games. Table minimums are fair, and they do have a European Roulette wheel which is somewhat rare. Overall nice dealers, host, and managers. Shopping onboard is nice - they do have a Michael Kors boutique and some upscale shops on deck 5. Deck 4 has the usual suspects.. Our favorite venue was the World Class Bar on deck 5. The bartenders were truly masters of their craft and all of the drinks were unique and delicious. The hot glass show on deck 15 is not to be missed as well. The future cruise office is now a pretty impressive operation. They have anywhere from 4-6 agents working at any one time and it is BUSY! They had some great promos going so we actually booked four more cruises through Sept 2018. Book early as a ton of stuff was already sold out. Debarkation was as good as could be, but as most cruisers know, it is never fun. Celebrity does it as well as anybody. A few last random thoughts.. -This is really not an ideal ship for kids -Sky suite guests can now use Michael's Club - this is a change -Suite guests no longer get complimentary nights in specialty restaurants - this is a change - If you enjoy drinking, upgrade to the premium beverage package - you will not be disappointed. We would strongly recommend this cruise - great ship, great staff, good length (11 days is about perfect), and good ports of call. Celebrity constantly gets ranked highest in luxury cruising and we would definitely agree. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2016
We were really looking forward to this cruise because we had not been on one in 2015 and really missed cruising that winter. Our last cruise was on the Equinox in 2014 with family and friends and had a great time. This time it was just ... Read More
We were really looking forward to this cruise because we had not been on one in 2015 and really missed cruising that winter. Our last cruise was on the Equinox in 2014 with family and friends and had a great time. This time it was just the two of us. We always try to fly in two days ahead of the cruise just in case there is bad weather in our home city. We stayed the two nights at the Doubletree Galleria Mall. We have stayed there many times before and really like the location. There is a Publix that is a 5+ minute walk and the Galleria Mall has a food court plus three or four lovely restaurants. Starbucks is right near Publix. Embarkation was a breeze. We arrived at the port at 11:25 and were onboard by 11:45. The only lineup was for scanning our carry-ons and us. We went directly to the dining room to make a reservation for dinner for 6:00 or 6:30 but they were all full up and we would just have to show up and wait for an available table. We were quite surprised. I'm guessing we missed the opportunity to make a dinner reservation on-line from home before we left. Not sure. We enjoyed lunch upstairs at the buffet and sat with a lovely couple - Owen and Kim - and chatted quite a while before going to our rooms, which were ready at 1:10 pm. We enjoyed our cabin which had an extra large balcony - 8162. There were just enough coat hangers, but we travel fairly light. Our cabin steward, Asis, kept everything clean and tidy and usually ready to go when we came back from breakfast. We had been to Cozumel, Panama, Cartagena and Grand Cayman before so we only booked one tour through the ship and that was in Costa Rica. It was very enjoyable. We went on a boat ride through a canal, sort of a walk through a rainforest and visited a banana plantation. It was all very nice but I really enjoyed the visit to the banana plantation. It was a Friday so it was in full operation while we were there. On the way back to the ship the driver stopped and our tour guide purchased some lady finger bananas for each of us and they were lovely and sweet. It was a nice treat. In Cartagena we booked a tour through Dora (www.cartagenatour.com) and really enjoyed our time. We booked just a couple of weeks prior to sailing and so we were in group 6 and there were only 4 of us so that in itself was a real treat. The other couple were from Germany and probably in their late 20's and we enjoyed their company. We had an older gentleman for our guide and we saw lots with him. Let me just say that Cartagena is a very hot city - it was 90 degrees before we got off the ship at 10:00 a.m. It was a Sunday and the beach, which is very long, was crowded. We had two days in Cartagena so we just stayed on board the second day, as well as Cozumel and Panama. It was lovely around the pool with so few passengers and quiet music even at the main pool. Very relaxing. Grand Cayman - Seven Mile Beach is about a 30 minute walk from the tender drop off. We walked along the main road until we came to the Comfort Suites where there is a road with beach access. There were a lot of people on the beach for a little ways but once you get past them there is plenty of room to lay your towel out and relax, swim and enjoy the gorgeous beach. I was really looking forward to the food on Equinox. I don't know if I had my hopes up too high or what but sometimes I was disappointed. That's not to say there isn't a lot of variety but it seemed that at the buffet it was almost the same thing every day at lunch, except for maybe a different roast. They have definitely dropped some things from the variety from two years ago. Having said that the Indian food was always very tasty and I really like their chicken salad and they make caesar salads to order with chicken one day and salmon the next. They have also dropped the fancy brunch on the last sea day. Instead they added fish & chips, roast turkey and had one ice sculpture. Very disappointing. The first few nights at dinner there was a huge lineup for dining at Select Dining. We managed to get a reservation for two evenings only, but eventually things seemed to smooth out and there was no lineup at all. Maybe people gave up and ate at the buffet? We don't know what happened but one evening at dinner someone came to our table and apologized for the situation. We never heard what the problem was. Some items at dinner were very good and some were just good. I love escargot and sometimes they were very hot and sometimes just lukewarm. I must say my lobster was lovely and so was the jerk chicken. It melted in my mouth and was full of flavour. We found that the kitchen serves their prime rib and steaks underdone to what you ask for. Just a heads up. I like medium rare and both times it came rare. The Entertainment: Let's just say that we too got up and walked out of one of the production numbers. We sat through the first production number and didn't enjoy it at all. It was all black and white costumes - very simple - and 2/3 the way through there were different coloured t-shirts/tank tops (blue, yellow, green, red etc). We didn't know any of the music. So we decided that if we weren't enjoying the second show we would leave. We left about 10 minutes into the second production show. Again the costumes were all black and white. More of the same music. The third show was a little better. We sort of recognized some of the music and there was more colour but it still wasn't our taste. Celebrity might know who they WANT to be their clientele, but judging by this cruise that is not who is sailing with them. This cruise was probably 80% people over 70 years of age. We are in our 60's and we felt pretty young. We enjoyed their production numbers in 2014 but not in 2016. This was the first time we have ever walked out of a show in all our 30 years of cruising. The other shows were, for the most part, most enjoyable. We loved all three of the singers, especially Jayne Curry from England. She was fabulous and she also did an extra show one afternoon which we attended. The comedian was OK - we didn't find him all that funny and the show dragged a bit, (almost like he didn't have enough material) and the magician was good. I am always amazed at what magicians can do. One night as we were waiting for the show to start, we and another couple had wine spilled on us from the balcony above. The other lady quickly went to tell someone (not sure who) and I must say it was handled VERY well, right at the time and again the next evening when a bottle of champagne and plate of chocolate covered strawberries were left in our room. We were more than impressed and we called to thank them. We found the service to be very good and the only time it was slow was when we were seated at a table for 10 which only happened two evenings. We ate breakfast in the dining room all but two times and really enjoyed visiting with other guests. We loved the cruise director, Alejandro. He was hilarious and did his job very well. He and the captain both played pool volleyball on the last afternoon at sea and it was a lot of fun to watch. I'm pretty sure they lost. Disembarkation took us about 45 minutes. Fortunately for us they started allowing passengers with Canadian passports to go through a new line just as we got near the front of the line and we got to by-pass other 'foreigners'. It was pouring rain but there were lots of taxis available to take us to our hotel. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Luckily for us (but not for the Northeast) we were on the Equinox, in the Caribbean, during the January 2016 blizzard. Our home city got 28 inches! We were delighted that we chose this date and did not have to deal with the storm. We ... Read More
Luckily for us (but not for the Northeast) we were on the Equinox, in the Caribbean, during the January 2016 blizzard. Our home city got 28 inches! We were delighted that we chose this date and did not have to deal with the storm. We have been on the sister ship, so we were familiar with the layout. At the last minute, we had the option to upgrade to a Sky Suite (this was not free, but definitely worth the extra price). Having a Sky Suite (in addition to being "Elite" level) entitled us to the most wonderful perks - breakfast, lunch & dinner in Luminae (a fairly new venue, only for suites) (delicious food & service), drinks in Michael's pub (which used to be for Elite/I think), choice of dinner in 2 of the specialty restaurants. Now Elite and above have cocktail hours almost daily in the sky lounge (another lovely perk). Our suite was wonderful - large, comfortable, great balcony, appetizers every day, and, oh yes, a butler! What a treat! In addition to these lovely amenities, we loved the adult solarium pool. It was just delightful, relaxing, and a great place to relax. The shows - well, we weren't as delighted with the production shows that we have seen in the past. One show had to be cancelled due to illness of the star singer (in the future they assured us this won't happen). One of the shows was a bit disappointing - a bit too 'modern' for us. The headliners were pretty good and enjoyable. As far as the ports go, honestly we weren't on this cruise to see the Caribbean - we wanted some nice, warm weather/sun and lovely scenery, which is exactly what we got! We returned home yesterday, sad that this wonderful trip was over. We found the Equinox to be a bit different from the other Celebrity ships we have been on - very warm and friendly crew, including the Captain, who is very visible. Everyone is very helpful and will do whatever they can to make you comfortable and happy. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
I sailed with my husband aboard the Equinox on the 10-night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise out of Port Everglades on January 22nd. This was our 15th cruise and our second sailing on the Equinox. We were on board for this same cruise last April. ... Read More
I sailed with my husband aboard the Equinox on the 10-night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise out of Port Everglades on January 22nd. This was our 15th cruise and our second sailing on the Equinox. We were on board for this same cruise last April. We enjoyed it so much that we decided to repeat the cruise. We always fly in a day early and we stayed at the Ramada Airport & Cruise Port, a nice hotel at very reasonable rates. They picked us up at the airport and took us to the ship on their free shuttle. We try to board the ship around 11AM or so. Last year embarkation was a nightmarish process that kept us two hours just in the line to get our ship's card. This time we didn't pause from the time we went through security, right to the window with our documents, and we were on the ship within twenty minutes. Since the cabins are not ready until after 1:30, we went straight to the Sunset Bar on deck 15. This was one of our favorite places on the ship. There is a lush lawn on both sides and a great aft view. One side is the smoking side and the other is non-smoking. Take the stairs aft, one flight down and you are in the Oceanview Cafe. Throughout the cruise, we'd grab an afternoon snack there and take it up to the Sunset Bar. Lawn games are available for those who wish to play. Bar staff throughout the ship was very friendly and accommodating. We found this staff superior on both of our Equinox cruises than on any other cruise ship. Our cabin was located on Deck 6 on the middle of the hump. We love this placement! Our view is completely unimpeded from bow to aft. A ten-day cruise requires a lot of clothes, at least I think so. We had plenty of space for storage. Last year we didn't find the cabinets above the bed until about the third day. The design of the bathrooms are the best I've ever seen on a cruise ship. The shower is a corner configuration and there is plenty of storage. Amenities consist of bar soap, lotion, shampoo and conditioner. There are 2 bathrobes, four bed pillows and comfortable sheets and duvet. The bed was hard, but I am spoiled with a Sleep Number at home. I asked for an egg crate, our room steward, brought one and it was quite thin. Anthony and Victorino were friendly and did an adequate job keeping our room clean. They were good about keeping track of our schedules and magically getting the job done. Outlets are few in a cabin and we brought a hub from home for charging our electronics. The balcony has very comfortable reclining chairs and a wood-top table. I'd have to say the biggest complaint I have about this ship is the dining situation. We had difficulty finding seating at lunch in the Oceanview Cafe. On one day it was after 1:30 PM and there was still no seating, it took us about 20 minutes before we could get a seat. The crew does put notes out asking people to kindly vacate after eating, but we did see people playing cards during the busy time. I'm not sure what the solution to this is unless it may be to extend the Silhouette Dining room times. We did go to the Bistro on Five one day for lunch. There is a $10 fee to eat there, but you can have any and everything on the menu. It appears not to be very busy, but we found the food delicious and the service was fantastic (thanks Rattakan)! Unfortunately, it appears it may not last as one of the reviewers here said this venue would be discontinued. When we booked we asked for late seating and a large table. The first night we were seated with just one other couple. They were also disappointed as they had also asked for a large table. They switched and we were not able to join them. We were reassigned to a table the next night with just 4 other diners, as one of the couples that had been assigned had asked to be moved. After the first night at this table, we learned why—but moving on...... We gave up and decided to do Select Dining which is Celebrity's anytime dining. We thought we went through the correct channels to change our preferences, which apparently didn't work, and a supervisor and my husband got into quite a discussion over it. We found his behavior demeaning and insulting. The end result was a profuse apology and many nights of warm greetings and we feel that issue was resolved satisfactorily. Everyone is entitled to a bad day. We did like the Select Dining. The waiters, asst. waiters and sommelier were very attentive and friendly. We were able to talk to couples at adjoining tables if everyone was interested in doing so. Much better than our second night with—oh yes—we moved on. There seems to be quite a bit of confusion between the types of dining, location of the dining and who can dine there. Of course there are specialty restaurants, but I wonder if it is necessary to have a separation of the classes, or so it seemed. Blu is for Aqua class, Luminae is for Suite class, really? All of the food we consumed on the Equinox was overall very good. A quick port synopsis: St. Thomas: We have been there and done this one so many times. We don't find this a particularly good shopping port. St Maarten is much better. It's nice to get off of the ship, and to be fair we've not scheduled a tour. The little tent marketplace near downtown is pretty interesting. Just off the ship there is a mall area. Right next to the ship is Senor Frog's if you are looking to find Wifi quickly. Be warned, it's pretty loud there. St. Kitts: Our second time there. This trip we did a horseback ride with Trinity Stable. I do not recommend it. I highly recommend Jim and Rose's Taxi and Tours. We had the privilege of booking with Rose last trip and we did a tour of the island. It was lovely, VERY reasonable and Rose was an absolute delight. Contact them and book! Barbados: This is our third trip to Barbados. Barbados is our beach day. When you leave the cruise terminal go left, not right, or you will be literally herded into vans. Then you will wait until it's packed tight. Several stops will possibly be made before you reach your destination. If you go left, and out the yellow security gates, taxi drivers are there and you will get a private drive to your destination and it will probably cost you less! On our previous trips we went to Accra/Rockley beach. Loved it! It was not crowded and we were able to rent chairs under shade trees. Bathrooms and food and beverages were close by. Wifi was available. I'm not sure why we messed with a good thing, as this time we went to Harbor Lights . The beach was packed with side-by-side umbrellas and chairs. Hundreds of people. This was not for us. We walked down the beach about two hundred yards and were able to find some shade trees and a guy to rent us chairs. Better, but not near as nice as Accra Beach. On our way back to the ship, the taxi driver dropped us off at Rolli's Bar, a block away from the yellow gates, a nice place to have a drink and catch up on the internet on their outdoor patio before getting back to the ship. St. Maarten: For the first time, Celebrity stayed overnight in the port. We really liked this experience. We arrived in the afternoon, took a tour into the evening and we had the next day to shop at our leisure. We chose Seagrape Tours for our tour. I can't praise them enough. We booked the Peak, Pond and Snorkel Tour. There are more Seagrape tours to choose from, but this looked very different from the normal island tour and the cost very reasonable. We found this to be the highlight of our cruise. Our guide Ilja, was very personable and knowledgeable. We will tour with them again! Also, St. Maarten is our shopping port. Skip the areas closest to the ship and walk to the other end of downtown and down the alleys. There is where you will find the best prices and friendliest people. Skip the street vendors. On our second day onboard we attended the Cruise Critic Meet and Greet. Cruise Critic members pull a LOT of weight, people! Officers attend these and they want to hear what WE have to say. I get so aggravated when I read these negative reviewers who don't even try to rectify the situation on board, then will complain about it in a review. We have almost always been able to satisfactorily resolve an issue. At the Meet and Greet, the staff welcomes us, then mingles with us, encouraging us to come to them with any concerns. Captain Leo, the BEST captain that we have ever cruised with, attended. He was great the whole cruise. I've never seen a captain as involved with the guests. We met Migle, the guest relations manager. She asked about our cruise and I told her other than some sleep discomfort it was great. After the Meet and Greet we went to our room and our cabin steward was putting on a very nice memory foam. I slept like a baby. We also had another issue that Migle helped us with later in the cruise. This cruise had a lot of great Cruise Critic folks! We enjoyed spending time with them throughout the cruise. Entertainment throughout the ship was plentiful and varied. My favorite was the Beyond the Podium lecture series. We attended several of Dr. Jim Brodman's lectures regarding Europe's influence in the Caribbean. They were very informative and conversational lectures well attended by passengers. It was interesting to know some history regarding the islands we were visiting. I only took in one evening show, the final night's variety show, and it was quite mediocre. The Beatles' cover band was hilariously bad. My husband, a show goer, enjoyed all of the show's that he attended. The acoustic duo, Tea for Two and Southern Blue, the jazz quartet, were very good. The ship's house band, Take Five—who hired them, and what were they thinking? The ship's DJ really needs to consider the demographics of his audience. I don't know that there were a handful of folks younger than 40 on board. There were a lot of negative comments about the hip-hop music that was played. The ship's galley tour was attended by about 400 people in groups and was an excellent presentation on the workings in the ship's galleys. I'd skip the lecture "How Our Ships Move" with the 2nd engineer. I'm confident that he is a better engineer than he is a lecturer. He started off by reading Celebrity's mission statement and then pulled up power point slides and read them word for word down to every techincal specification of the engines. The lecture "How to Cook the Perfect Steak" was excellent, giving tips on how to choose, cook, season and serve steak with samples at the end. "Let's go play the $100 minimum Baccarat table in Fortunes Casino!" —said no one ever on our cruise. Yes, we never saw a player, just bored dealers. In fact, in the busiest times, only half of the casino table games were being played on. My husband, won't play on a cruise ship because the table minimums are so high. Just a thought: Lower the minimums, keep your guest entertained and still make a lot of money. While I play slots a little, I noticed that they weren't played much on this ship either. Perhaps they need to pay out a little more? An irony—In an effort to "Save The Waves" guest surveys will no longer be delivered to staterooms. Guests who have provided email addresses will now receive their survey online and have 8 days to complete it. "Still," my husband points out, "we get a couple of pull-out advertisements inside our Celebrity program every day." On our final day of the cruise we were to fly out late so we stayed with the ship as long as possible. We left our cabin by 8:00 AM, waited comfortably in a common area and sailed off with the last group at about 10:30 and were in a taxi within 30 minutes. We look forward to sailing again aboard the beautiful Celebrity Equinox. 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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