I would like to first state this is my first time and my wife's second cruise.
We have nothing but good things to say about our experience on the Eclipse. Yes, it what one might consider "Next Level" according to my research and limited experience. I/ we picked this line due to the fact they did not review as "kid friendly" as some other lines. It was spring break time and I wanted to minimize the screaming and running around that I have experienced on other spring break vacations. My wife and I have 4 children, all are in collage and we have "Done our time" and did not want that atmosphere at this point in our lives (post kid and pre grand kid). Upon talking to ship staff, I learned there were over 400 passengers under the age of 16 on this trip. The staff commented on the high number was due to spring break. This info was unsolicited. You could have fooled me as I never saw more than 15 or 20 the whole trip! Most were well behaved and only one set of brothers were bickering at regular intervals. The crew of the ship has lots of activities for kids and the location of said activities seemed to keep them separated from others. Yes this was important to us and no we were not disappointed. AND... I do not think the kids were disappointed from the ones we spoke with.
Yes, Celebrity seems to be for the older demographic. From the shows to the dEcor, things lend themselves to the late 40 +, successful, educated crowd. I want to be the first to point out that the staff was never pretentious or snobbish in any way. The ship had an air of luxury and refinement, almost like what one would find in a country club. My wife said the main difference in the look of this ship compared to her Carnival trip was Carnival had neon and bright colors or a "party" look and Eclipse has finely finished wood, marble and glass. I must confess, I was a good fit with Celebrity.
We had an unbelievably good time. I truly miss my time and staff on the boat. I have never experienced anything like it. The only thing I can compare it to would be having a wild fling with a lovely woman for the week and then feeling the "withdrawals" or emptiness after parting ways. I know it sounds almost corny, but it is an apt description. I told this to my wife and she felt the same way, albeit a different depiction would have been used. Lol. We are not unworldly travelers or over educated academics. We have attended black tie events, opening night plays and drank cold beer in country bars with the best of them. This ship has something for everyone as long as all night parties are not on your "to do list".
Please give Celebrity a try........ you will not be disappointed.