We did a 14 day cruise on the Eclipse out of Fort Lauderdale starting on Feb 22nd. Our boarding was delayed a bit as the ship was being thoroughly cleaned due to some passengers contacting norovirus on the previous cruise. We were given access to the public areas of the ship about 12:30 and then to our staterooms around 3:00. The ship sailed on time at 5:00.
The first two days were at sea which gave us time to relax in the sun, read, cool off in the pool and enjoy the ship. We spent most of our time beside the pools, one of which is inside a glassed in solarium and is for adults only. This wasn’t really an issue though as we guessed that there were probably only about 2 dozen kids on the entire ship. In fact, my wife and I estimated what we thought the average passenger age on the ship was. I guessed 72 and she said 68. We’re both in our 60’s.
You can relax and do nothing on the ship if you want or participate in any one of the many ongoing activities. Pool games, Zumba, the Corning glass blowing show, nightly shows in the theater and lounges, seminars in the smaller theater, the ship’s library & card room, the casino, shops and an art gallery and many others. We actually only went to one show in the main theater for about 5 minutes. Also stopped into one of the lounges one evening and caught 5 minutes of Perry Grant. Wow …. Talk about the quintessential lounge lizard!
There are several dining options on the ship, ranging from the large buffet on deck 14 to the hamburger bar beside the pool, 4 specialty restaurants, several smaller coffee bars and the main dining room on decks 3 & 4. We pre purchased a package of 3 cover charges for the specialty restaurants and also bought the premium wine package which gave us bottle of wine for dinner on 7 nights. We found both of these to be a good buy. We have no complaint whatsoever about the food in any of the venues. If I had to pick a favourite, it would be the Tuscan Grill.
I also bought the $99 internet package on the first day at sea, which gave me a 25% time bonus giving me a total of 250 internet minutes for the cruise. Wireless connections are available in the staterooms. We were in room 8146 on deck 8 and found in to be just the amount of room we needed. Lots of storage, a king size bed, decent storage and a nice deck to relax on for our daily Scrabble game. Hi def TV is also available. There are 25 channels, but 10 of them are various celebrity advertising channels, a few news channels and 4 or 5 entertainment and movie channels.
This cruise stopped at 8 islands and we booked shore excursions on 7 of them as we find this a great way to get out and see the people, villages, beaches and countryside. In Charlotte Amalie on St. Thomas we just walked around the shops, which are at least 80% jewellery stores. There are a wide variety of stops on the cruise, ranging from 3rd worldish Grenada to dripping with money St. Maarten/St. Martin.
We had to make use of the ship’s medical services one morning as my wife game down with a sinus problem and a bit of a throat infection. The service was quick and thorough and the doctor provided her with the appropriate meds. The cost of seeing the doctor and meds was $172 USD.
So all in all we found it to be an enjoyable cruise on a very clean and well managed ship and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to others.