My DH and I have an agreement that for our "milestone birthdays" we can celebrate them wherever we want. We are fortunate to be able to do this. My preference is always a cruise, so when I saw the deal for Aqua Class + bev package + prepaid gratuities to the very easy Eastern Caribbean, it was a no brainer for by birthday! We upgraded to premium package, and by the middle of the cruise we were calling our room key the Magical Card. Honestly, it has changed cruising for us, who have found creative ways in the past... we are NCL and HAL folks, but recall our last Celebrity cruise on the Horizon many years ago, and being foodies, we remembered that aspect fondly. That was then and this is now from a foodie perspective, but X still is a mostly elegant and classy cruise line....
I'll get the worst parts of the cruise out of the way first, as they are actually indicative of some of the attention to detail that Celebrity provides/doesn't provide.... 2 very different things: first, we had a rough sea day to start things off on our week, and since some folks do not come prepared for sea-sickness, someone had from the aroma clearly vomited in the hallway on the way to our cabin (no way to avoid it for about 8 cabins). There was nothing visible, but the stench was so bad you literally had to hold your breath from the elevator to the cabin door, and then some. This was not a secret to anyone, trust me. Amazingly, it took THREE DAYS for any marginal resolution to the carpet - - they sprinkled something on it and vacuumed it the next day, but it wasn't enough. Then, what a surprise! They resolved it finally by the 7th day of the cruise.... just in time for disembarkation. Yuck. I know that folks say to advise someone of the issue so it can be resolved in short order, but here it was clearly obvious to stewards, management, anyone who walked that hallway. Use an extraction machine and resolve the issue, X! It may be the reason that this cruise-loving couple does not book another on your cruiseline.
Second, and this is nothing like the above issue at all, but NO towel animals the whole cruise!!? We had a lovely aqua class balcony cabin, but never had a towel animal the whole cruise. This is one aspect I must admit in my many cruises I really enjoy! But I guess X doesn't do this, and the missing whimsy was too bad... can't we be elegant and whimsical?? The artwork around the ship would suggest so.
So if you're still reading, YES there were aspects that were great. I've read here that Reflection is beautiful, and it definitely is a beautiful elegant ship. I loved that we were not barraged with "Bingo!" announcements on the pa multiple times of the ship. In fact, with debark, we had to ask folks around us what numbers had been called because the overhead announcements were so few. That's a plus!!
We love the 'ship-within-a-ship' concept and like to zig when others are zagging, and it was pretty easy on Reflection to do this. Persian Gardens was a lovely and relaxing place, and tho' it was busy a couple of times, I was amazed how many folks do not take advantage of this lovely perk of Aqua Class.
Loved the Sunset Bar most days and the green grass of the Lawn, and enjoyed Blu morning and evening. Waitstaff and sommelier were fantastic. Early on we ordered "bubbles" with our appetizer, each night afterward we were greeted with flutes from him. If anything, I'd request that Celebrity add more of their MDR menu items to the Blu menu, so it wouldn't be so this-or-that with deciding where to dine. We did not do specialty restaurants because we wanted to give Blu a full run for the cruise, and at up to $40 per person at Lawn Club Grill, et al, it seemed excessively costly to try them.
Have I mentioned that the Prem Bev Package was awesome??? It was, totally. We were on this cruise for the relaxation, not the ports of call. But we went to a fabulous perfumery in St. Maarten (actually on the French side) and that was our only time off the ship. Zigging while others zagged, it was really nice to have the quiet ship environment.
Shows that we saw were good, only went to a couple but always saw the hypnotist! Ryan was great and did not disappoint. With the prem bvg package nightcaps, we happily turned in fairly early to our cabin and enjoyed a movie or the other tv entertainment to wind down.
So I ended up turning 50 in my favorite way, on a cruise ship! Everyone stayed healthy and weather was great! While I'd say we may not be sold on X for future cruises, I believe we may be the demographic they're trying to appeal to... everyone has their own style, for sure. Thank you for reading! With any cruise day being a happy day, Happy Cruising to my CC peeps!