We just finished our 11 day cruise to Mexico, Panama, Columbia and Grand Cayman on the Equinox. The embarkation process was flawless, the ship is gorgeous, and the weather was spectacular. My wife and I had a great time. She is mid fifties and I am mid sixties. This is our sixth cruise and my first review. I am taking the time to post this since I have always found the reviews to be very helpful in my ship selection, and I hope my feedback will be useful to Celebrity.
By way of background we started cruising in 2005 on the Celebrity Zenith, moved to Holland America on the Noordam twice and the Ruby Princess twice before trying Celebrity again. We have enjoyed every ship and cruise we have taken. We are primarily interested in the ship, where it departs from and not the destinations.
While Celebrity is a notch above HAL and Princess in terms of pricing and amenities, we enjoyed both HAL and Princess more do to several missing features on Celebrity.
1. The new Celebrity ships do not have a promenade deck that you can stroll, walk or run around the complete ship which is big missing asset.
2. The new Celebrity ships do not have an adult only pool and bar at the stern of the ship which is our favorite location. They have an all enclosed one in the front which is remittence of the Y.
3. The new Celebrity ships do not have a piano bar cocktail lounge. They have a Michael's Pub which is beautiful, but empty since they have no entertainment. I asked the bartender why there was no one playing the piano and she said they never have anyone there,,, no customers either. Mid cruise some passengers took over the lounge and played the piano and had a sing along that was the highlight of the entertainment. The wine bar was beautiful, but again totally empty every night. I asked the bartender why no entertainment and he said if they had entertainment they would need a second bartender.??????
4. While the entertainers on the ship were ok, there was not anyone who could get a crowd going,,, mostly sounded like elevator music.
5. The two speciality restaurants we attended were a major disappointment and were no even close to the speciality restaurants on the other ships even though they were more expensive. The Tuscan Grill cost $50 so we ordered the filet since the steak in the MDR was just ok. I asked the waiter if it was USDA Angus and he said yes. Both our steaks were awful. They were clearly Australian Rancher,, very gamey. When asked how my meal was, I told him what I thought and he now was not sure if they were USDA. They manager also stopped by and did not know either. Murano was much better, but for $80 was not as special as the HAL or Princess venues. I found this very strange because the MDR food was superior to either HAL or Princess.
6. Spending extra money for a concierge room is a total waste of time. The room is the same and the service is the same. The flower in the bathroom and the fruit on the table are not worth it.
7. While I know the entertainment is the luck of the draw, the key missing design features cannot be fixed, so we are booking our next cruise on HAL. Hope this review is of some value.