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24 Celebrity Reflection Cruise Reviews for First-Time Cruisers Cruises to Europe - Eastern Mediterranean

We are a professional couple, no kids, early forties. We had never been on a cruise before and had no experience in this area of Europe so took the advice of friends who had done this exact cruise before and booked in March 2016. We dove ... Read More
We are a professional couple, no kids, early forties. We had never been on a cruise before and had no experience in this area of Europe so took the advice of friends who had done this exact cruise before and booked in March 2016. We dove into research on the countries, ports, languages, attractions, and cruising in general, which made for a fun six-month wait. The anticipation was a big part of this vacation! Rick Steves' books were a staple of our reading and came with us on the trip. We flew from Toronto to Rome, arriving early in the morning on embarkation day. We had seriously considered taking the train from the airport to the port, but decided that it was just too important piece of the trip (i.e. do we risk screwing up the train schedule in a foreign city and missing our ship?) to leave to chance, so we booked NCC shared transfer. They met us in the airport and we were in the van very quickly. As it turned out, Rome airport is HUGE and we had been up for about 36 hours by that time - we were glad to not be trying to sort out the train and our bags at that point. It was about E70 which was money well spent. We got to Civitavecchia in 45 minutes and again were glad of the transfer. The port is also very large, and not pedestrian friendly at all. NCC transfers dropped us off right at the ship at around 1030 in the morning. We got a look at the ship - spectacular! - before heading into the dark and smelly tents that were the Celebrity port terminal. There is nothing nice about the port or the terminal. We showed our printed-off tickets, completed the medical form, and waited in the holding area for about 20 minutes before being waved over to check-in. We were on-board quickly and easily by 1100 hours or so. First impressions were - well - let's just say that the deck 2 loading area is not a nice part of the ship. It's dark and utilitarian with x-ray machines and beeping scanners. But up one flight of stairs we found the Guest Relations area, with a cello/viola duo playing in the lobby. This was very nice. We found our cabin #6221 still being cleaned, but met our room attendant Jose who was very friendly and personable. He let us dump our carry-ons and we headed up to deck 14 to enjoy some fresh air. We found the Sunset Bar staffed with jolly Jamaicans (one wearing a Santa hat and singing bits of Christmas songs....go figure) and settled down with a drink in the sunshine. "The Upselling" - we had read a lot about the upselling racket on this ship. We had the Classic package included but had pretty much decided we would upgrade to the Premium package at some point. There is lots available on the Classic, particularly if you like simple highballs and Budweiser. We really like martinis, good wine, and craft beer, so when the bartender waved a bottle of Dogfish Head 90-Minute IPA at me, I was signing for the Premium package on what was probably that guy's easiest upsell of the week. On the Premium there were lots of excellent wines by the glass, incredible cocktails, but only a few craft beers (the IPA was $11.00 USD so that was the cost of one day of Premium package right there). As you might expect, hot day plus forenoon cocktail plus no sleep plus jet lag equalled fatigue very quickly. We went downstairs to.... The Oceanview Cafe ("The Buffet") - I don't like buffets generally but we were starving and this was the place to grab something fast. There was a large variety, including stations organized by cuisine, such as Mexican, English, Indian, etc. I had some excellent Indian food and my partner found salad and fruit. We ate at the buffet for most breakfasts and the odd afternoon snack and there was nothing bad to be said about it. In the evening it was sad and empty although you could still get a slice of pizza and a few other smaller things until fairly late. The Cabin: 6221 is a veranda cabin, port side on the flat side of the 'hump'. We had a great view from the veranda and only overlooked part of deck 5. The cabin could have accommadated four people as there was a trundle bed under the couch and a berth that could have swung down from the ceiling but I really can't imagine four people in there. It was a decent size for two and I was pleasantly surprised at the bathroom - there was lots of storage in there and a good shower. There was zero room for two so brushing teeth was a 'my turn - your turn' affair. The cabin was very clean and storage was OK, after we got our suitcases under the bed out of the way. Jose brought us extra hangers, a body pillow, and anything else we needed. One night, I asked him for a shoe shine cloth and came back to the room to find he had polished my shoes....wow. This is butler-level service. The cabin was very quiet, even being next to the elevators and the iLounge. We quickly found this cabin was perfect for us as it was steps from the elevators and stairs, one deck from lounges and restaurants, two decks to the Martini bar and shopping, and very close to the Grand Foyer where most of the nighttime activity was. My only complaint was people who insisted on letting their cabin doors slam. They are steel safety doors and if you let them close, they slam with a "thunk", which can be a drag at 0630 hours. CLOSE YOUR DOOR GENTLY, PEOPLE, PLEASE!! Dining: we love to eat and drink. We had bought the five-dinner package beforehand and had to visit a headwaiter to book our dinners once onboard. Overall we were very happy with the dining options: Opus: we had Select dining so on the few nights we ate there, we just showed up. It is a huge room and quite elegant. Once we had to take a pager and go drink another martini while we waited....oh no, how will we cope. The menu at Opus was small but we always had good food. The service was good but almost a little too much at times. When you sat down there'd be probably four people buzzing around filling water, serving bread, making introductions, and so on, but after the initial flurry you might have trouble finding someone available to tell about your chipped wine glass. One night we were seated next to the waiter station, which was loud. We asked to be moved and immediately had a quiet table for two in another area. Very appreciated. We never sat with anyone else but tables for two were about 2" apart so it was much like a table for four. Keeping in mind that the Opus kitchen was turning out three-course meals for hundreds and hundreds of people, the food was very good. There was different house wines featured every night and the somm would be opening bottles constantly. No bag-in-box wine here. Lawn Club: we ate there our first night. On a warm evening it is really nice, next to the (real) lawn and the huge X on the funnel overhead. Somewhat oddly, the "appetizers" were flatbread pizzas.....with the mains a selection of grilled meat. You could cook your own if you wanted to and there was a nice little salad station. The pizza was very good but it was too much for a starter. The grilled items were very good and ranged from skewers to fish fillets to steaks. There were heaters for when the night cooled off, which it did fairly early. It was a fun, casual place for dinner outside. Tuscan: this is an Italian a la carte grille with a panoramic view aft. The pasta was made on-site and was incredible. Steak was probably some of the best I've had anywhere. Service was second to none. Ignatius knew his service and his wines - we let him choose wines for us to suit the courses and they were spot-on. A fabulous experience. So fabulous we bought another night there and had another terrific meal. Murano: French cuisine. You could spend a lot of money here, with wine and food flights, $300 caviar, and so on. It was the most formal of all the venues. The food was extremely good and the service was too. The staff were obviously working very hard to keep a high standard. It was not full either night we were there. Tableside service was a nice touch and they really took pride in their work. My only complaint was with the flambe-ing and such going on, the room got a little stuffy and you would want to be wearing a jacket and tie for this place (although you didn't have to - I think dress code was the same for all venues in the evening). Sushi on Five: I'm not a huge sushi fan but my partner is and she thought it was very good. There were noodle bowls as well, along with gyoza and other items so not just sushi. It was notably empty whenever we walked by. Service was enthusiastic and it was a nice change from the other dining options. Qsine: I didn't expect to like this but I did. It is tapas, with some really inventive presentations and some fabulous food. Very unique and we had a great time here. Martini Bar: our favourite, with a frosted-ice bar top and very skilled bartenders. The martinis are very large and very well-made. There was a second bar, I think called the 'Ice Bar' off to the side, which apparently used to be a bar proper with it's own menu (there were many bottles of vodka sitting in piles of ice) but it appeared to be forgotten about and was just another seating area for the Martini bar. After dinner, they set up a DJ station right next to the bar, which seemed a bit out of place, but later the DJ station disappeared and the live house band started up a deck below. One night I asked for a Courvoisier and got a snifter the size of a basketball with about half a bottle of cognac inside.....fabulous. Ensemble Lounge: another favourite, with live jazz through the evening. Very good table and bar service and a relaxed atmosphere. Tuscan, Qsine, Murano, and Michaels Club were accessed via this lounge. World Class Bar: this used to be a different bar called the Molecular Bar where they made cocktails with liquid nitrogen and so on.....no longer. It is now an ordinary bar with a limited menu of excellent cocktails (if you order an Old Fashioned, they carve a single baseball-size ice cube for you) but they don't serve anything else, so anybody popping by for a gin/tonic had to keep walking. Not sure how successful this model is. Sunset Bar: as mentioned, great if you want to relax up high and watch the ocean recede. It is also a smoking area. We enjoyed walking shoeless on the grass and sipping a frozen drink. Passport Bar: a straightforward bar on deck 3. Cafe El Bacio: a coffee bar with some pastries and cookies. I went here every morning for lattes and brought them up to the cabin. There was also a gelato bar which we never tried. Upselling to specialty restaurants: We didn't mind this as we got some good deals. Tuscan for 40% off? Yes please. One night we looked at the menu for Opus and weren't all that excited about it. Turn around and here's somebody offering a great deal at Murano. Everybody wins. If we weren't interested they took 'no thanks' for an answer, unlike all of Turkey and much of Greece..... Other areas: Casino: appeared to be very under-used. We never spent any time here. Sun decks - we did not enter any of the pools but spent lots of time reading in the sun. I read complaints that there aren't enough sunbeds....well, maybe if you want a sunbed right next to the pool, directly in the sun, there's a limited number. There are tons of sunbeds on two decks. We enjoyed deck 15 which was very quiet (aside from when people were playing basketball). The Mast Grille had hotdogs, hamburgers, and fries, which was perfect for a mid-afternoon snack. Service was limited away from the lido deck but if a server knew you were there, they would come around and keep your glass full. Fitness Centre and Spa: We worked out nearly every day and found the fitness centre surprisingly good. My favourite was stretching out on the outdoor fitness deck, which overlooked the bow of the ship with a great view. There were cold towels and enough good quality equipment to get in a workout and feel like I was earning my next meal. My partner had her nails done in the Spa and was very happy with them - not cheap but high quality work. Solarium: we enjoyed this as kids aren't allowed and you can soak up the sun without the wind. The Aquaspa cafe had some really nice healthy, smaller items, including smoothies. Library: this was disappointing. I had hoped to find books on Europe, our ports of call, the ocean, and sailing, but instead found a bunch of mostly lightweight fiction. Plus there are only books on the first three shelves, then a bunch of empty shelves, then three shelves of fake books at the very top. It was quiet if there was nothing going on in the Grand Atrium. Entertainment: we hadn't expected to care for the shows but some were very good. The theatre was top-notch. The Tenors of Rock were terrific. There were several singing acts, including a Michael Buble - esque guy and a female Motown trio. One night they had thrown together a Broadway revue because the scheduled performer had missed his flight, which was very good. The ship's musicians were really incredible. They were all over the place, playing in the theatre backing up the featured acts, playing everything from top-40 to Beatles in the Grand Atrium, playing jazz in the Ensemble lounge, disco by the pool, strings in the Cafe el Bacio. One night, the bandmaster (Sasha), after leading his group through the show in the theatre, sat down at the piano next to the Passport Bar and effortlessly performed Chopin and Beethoven. Wow. The cruise director Maarten was around for the high-energy stuff and he was hard not to like, although we didn't take part in any of the parlour/pool games. Shopping: we enjoyed browsing in the shops. The second last night was a big sale and you've never seen such a feeding frenzy. I love watches and had a blast browsing the Breitlings and Tag Heuers. Washrooms: spotless and staffed in the evening. Hand sanitizer everywhere. Excellent. Photography: We let them take photographs if there was a good backdrop but wanted nothing to do with the costumed guys off the gangway at the ports....we are in Turkey, so you make some guy (probably a prep cook) wear a turban and a silly sword and want us to pose with him? Give me a break. On the last formal night we asked the photographer for some specific poses as we had gotten engaged that afternoon, and they were very enthusiastic and helpful. We ended up buying three of them as our official engagement photos. Excursions: we didn't take any Celebrity excursions. We researched and booked tours for Athens and Ephesus, and conducted our own sightseeing for the other ports. Generally, getting on and off the ship was painless, with the exception of Santorini where we had to tender in some quite active seas (see port review below). We erred generously on the side of leaving lots of time to get back on the ship and had no problems. We found running the gauntlet of local taxis, tours, hawkers, and so on very tiring but that's not the ship's fault. The information given about the ports in the little daily newsletter was very limited - we were grateful for our Rick Steves guides and prior research. Highs and lows: there's an odd thing that happens when everything is at a high standard. Little things become big things because they are an anomaly. But they are still small things. Here's a few we noticed: High: the ship is beautiful. Low: they used this plastic dark reddish-brown fake wood paneling all over the place. High: there was daily news and port info delivered to your cabin. Low: very little weather forecast information, either for the port or the ocean. High: food was very very good. Low: no bar snacks. After dinner, your only snack option was to see what was left at the buffet. High: bar and wine service was excellent. Low: lack of drink lists. High: the buffet was a great way to have quick breakfast. Low: no tray, so you have your plate in one hand, cutlery in your pocket, juggling everything to get a cup of coffee, and if you wanted a juice or water, you had to dump everything off and go back. High: people dressed up for dinner. Nothing classier than old-timers in tuxes. Low: sweaty guy in flip flops with shirt totally unbuttoned, elbowing past people at the buffet to get more bacon. High: presentations on ports of call and other areas of interest. Low: barely-disguised sales pitches for whatever services or businesses paid Celebrity for the privilege. "You may not be interested in buying a Turkish rug but at least take the time to listen to what they have to say" -Celebrity staff member giving a presentation on what to do in Turkey. Again, give me a break. If you're promoting a business, go ahead, but don't pretend you're giving objective information to people who might be expecting it when you are not. Ship movement: we were concerned about this as my partner gets motion sickness easily. There was one day and night that we could really feel the ship moving (I'm not sure how the performers on stage managed it as I could barely walk to my seat without holding on to something) but ginger gel capsules were the ticket. My partner had all kinds of remedies but nothing beat the ginger. One evening we could feel a fair bit of vibration in the Tuscan, but generally it was a non-issue. Disembarkation: we opted to 'walk off' so kept our luggage and were in an elevator by 0645 and in our NCC transfer by 0700. Nothing to it. Again, we had thought about taking the train but had learned there was a transit (bus and train) strike scheduled for that day. As it turned out, we may have been been able to get from Civitavecchia into Rome, but the strike did in fact happen as scheduled so we were glad to be in a vehicle. The best money we spent were those two transfers. I'm rating four stars but it is a solid four stars. There is probably a nicer ship with better food and service out there but probably not at this price point. Overall we were thrilled with our first cruise and will absolutely do another. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
our first cruise and we couldn't have chosen a better ship to experience it. The quality of the staff, the cleanliness which was second to none and the attention to detail onboard was astonishing. We had nothing to compare it to ... Read More
our first cruise and we couldn't have chosen a better ship to experience it. The quality of the staff, the cleanliness which was second to none and the attention to detail onboard was astonishing. We had nothing to compare it to never having sailed before, but have stayed in plenty of high end hotels around the world. This surpassed all of them. We chose a balcony suite on the 9th floor midship which after some research I learned was the best place to be to avoid too much motion. We never experienced anything but a very slight rocking motion when the ship increased speed overnight on one occasion. Hardly worth a mention to be fair. The staff all over the ship are outstanding in every single way. Could only fault one sour faced waitress in the main dining room who was curt and verged on being rude. After a complaint was made about her we never saw her at our table again and were presented with a lovely bottle of wine. They couldn't apologise enough. The food, although not Michelin level, was very nice on all the nights we ate at Opus, the main dining room. A couple of exceptions when it was just ok. We used two speciality restaurants Murano and Lawn Grill. The food and service in Murano is fantastic (maybe a bit too interactive for my liking, but good nonetheless). Fabulous lobster. Lawn Grill had the best fillet steak I have ever eaten. I didn't particularly like drinking my water out of a jam jar but hey ho! I had to ask for a stemmed wine glass when initially my red wine was poured into a tumbler. It's a very laid back environment and I think this diversion from proper drinking glasses was a step too far. However that's my only grumble. The service was excellent and the steaks amazing. We had the classic drinks package and don't let it worry you if you're concerned about what you can drink. If your waiters don't ask you what package you're on when you order (which mostly they do), just ask them what wine, spirits etc your card entitles you to. There was never an issue with us. I don't see the need for the premium package if i'm honest. There is so much choice on the classic. Excursions provided by the ship were very expensive and we only did one to the Godfather village in Sicily but it was excellent. The dress code is very casual and even the classy chic (formal) nights were do what you like style. Some people were dolled up to the nines others not so much, but nobody cared or took any notice of who was wearing what. I like the lack of informality. Security onboard is very strict which was very reassuring. Getting off and on again was very quick, efficient and super secure. Overall this ship is amazing on every level and I simply can't wait to go on it again! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We chose celebrity because my partner who is an elite member with Royal Carribbean had always been given the impression that this sister company offered a higher standard cruise. The ship was very clean and the itinerary was good. ... Read More
We chose celebrity because my partner who is an elite member with Royal Carribbean had always been given the impression that this sister company offered a higher standard cruise. The ship was very clean and the itinerary was good. Embarkation and disembarkation were both easy. These were the positives I am afraid to say other aspects of the cruise were not so good. The food especially for diner was at best average, little actual variety and mostly bland. The starters mainly consisted of soups and salads, and it was amazing how many New York steaks were ordered. I found it very disappointing that when I pointed this out to the executive chef, his only reply was" we have to cater for all tastes" and even when he was shown his own menu denied the starters were mostly soup and salad. I found him to be very arrogant and lazy. My impression was that there was a big drive to sell people the expensive fine dining option. The entertainment was not great either, with the exception of We3. Who ever put the programme together seemed intent on educating us with what I would describe as arty shows. If you are putting on a Broadway show I would expect songs I know and some glamour and glitz, not songs from obscure off Broadway shows and singers glad in black. The pool bars were also disappointing, no music no atmosphere and miserable staff. I have to say one of the barmen on the pool deck is lucky my partner did not complain about the way he just blatantly ignored her and then told another passenger that he didn't smile as he had "a poker face".... Wrong job I think! The Martini bar was the one shining light, the staff were all fantastic,especially I Komang who made the best cosmopolitan ever. All in all this was a nice ship, with many friendly staff and a good itinerary let down by at best, average food, poor entertainment and poor pool side bar staff. We had already booked for a cruise with celebrity through the Suez Canal in November, I hope the experience is much better, but based on this cruise I would not have booked that trip knowing what I know now. I would love celebrity to pull its socks up so I could write them a glowing review next time Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
My partner and I had never thought of a cruise holiday before. We saw an advert in our travel agents window advertising the 11 day cruise on the Celebrity Reflection and chose it because it visited most of the places we had previously been ... Read More
My partner and I had never thought of a cruise holiday before. We saw an advert in our travel agents window advertising the 11 day cruise on the Celebrity Reflection and chose it because it visited most of the places we had previously been on holiday too. We researched the ship through YouTube videos so had a pretty good idea of what the ship was like, including the AquaClass cabin. My partner's niece and her husband has decided to join us. We flew local, from Birmingham to Rome. We were too late to join the optional tour into the city before embarking so transferred straight away. Believe it or not, the only niggle I can mention from the whole holiday, Yep, the whole holiday was the chaos that construed when we tried to hand over our luggage to the Reflection crew at the airport. It was just a free for all and had no organisation whatsever. The transfer into the ship was smooth and fairly quick. It was the most amazing sight to see this magnificent ship close up! We started feeling the first tingle of excitement as we walked up the gangway into the ship. We were able to go straight up to our cabin, 1506 on the starboard side. Our fellow travellers were in 1505 on the port side. After settling in we went on a wander to discover what this magnificent vessel had to offer. Phew! Just getting round the ship was a major fitness session! But plenty of lifts zipped you up and down the decks in no time. Being in AquaClass gave us certain extra perks. Not many but a few. One of them was the dining option. There are several speciality restaurants on the ship. One of which is Blue, which is reserved exclusively for AquaClass passengers. The restaurant looked amazing and the menu looked exciting. First night dining was very good. Second night in Blu was reasonably OK but not great. It is very intimate and I mean intimate. It's small and everyone is sitting next to one another. It wasn't until we decided to try the main restaurant, Opus, that we found the perfect combination of setting, style, perfect food, service and happy staff that we switched to this restaurant for the remainder of the trip.A few nights later, the maitre'd asked us when we arrived for dinner why we were not going to Blu anymore! He was obviously pleased when we told him the reason why. We had our own table reserved every evening on the balcony of the restaurant. With the same team which looked after us who were Marvin, Vanya and Anya. Three delightful people who it was a pleasure to meet. We occasionally used to Ocean View Café but it became a bit too manic for us at times and we just used it for the odd beverage. The ship has various bars, coffee shops etc. The place to be was the Café Al Bacio, a lovely café to have afternoon tea and listen to the live music in the foyer the Ensemble Lounge with some great jazz groups, the Sunset Bar, the AquaSpa cafe which had amazing salads and health food along with a huge range of smoothies and juices and for entertainment the Reflection Theatre which was huge and had some good shows as well as visiting entertainers.There are numerous activities on board. We didn't actually get involved in any of the activities as were too busy doing other things but there is a fair choice. Service. Suffice to say that this ship lives up to all the stories you hear about it. The service is phenomenal. From the cabin staff (and in our particular case we have to mention Sunil who organised our cabin and dealt with our need with perfection) to the cleaning staff who were always out in force and it certainly showed in the standard of cleanliness right throughout the ship to the restaurant staff in Opus to any crew member who happened to be walking about and took time to chat. to the cruise director of entertainment, Richard Starkey who worked tirelessly every day and night to make sure people had a good time. We went on two paid excursion, one to Santorini and the other to Naples/Sorrento/Pompeii. We had been to these places before but our companions hadn't and it was nice to see how impressed they were with the organisation. There was one incident on the trip to Santorini. We had been to Oia and were on our way to a winery for a tasting and food when the bus broke down and no attempt could get it going again. It was an extremely hot day, middle of the afternoon and it looked as though we were stuck for the duration! The guide was brilliant in dealing with his passengers, some, I hasten to add personally and verbally abused him saying it was his fault. It's unbelievable human nature sometimes. One or two stormed off to get a taxi to get back to the cable car. All I can say is that this is where the British patience and good sense prevails. Which is more than can be said for some Americans. The problem was solved shortly after when another tour buss offered us a lift to the cable car. The port visits were brilliant to watch as our cabin was right next to where the captain steered the ship. We'll never forget the sunrise docking at Mykonos at 6am and watching it coming up from our balcony. The ports of call are some of the best. The only time we had to use a tender was at Santorni. Just a tip. If you disembark at Mykonos for a visit on your own, don't bother to join the long queues for the bus. Just hop onto the water taxi next to the bus and you are in the harbour at Mykonos in no time. For just 2 euros return it was really worth it. We all had a fabulous 11 days on this ship and it dispelled all my prejudices about going on a hugh cruise ship. Believe me, sometimes you just don't know you are on one. We were glad that there were at least two formal nights which gave us the chance to wear our dinner suits. There were a predominate number of passengers who made the effort. I would say that the average age of passengers on our trip was between 50 to 70 and it was brilliant to see everybody having a good time. Disembarkation was quick and easy and in time we were at Rome airport and on the way home. Would we go again? We most certainly would! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
First time cruising and hopefully not the last. The ship is magnificent the interior is of five star class as are the cabins and the food is mind blowing in the variety. The entertainment was spectacular and brilliant. Our cabin ... Read More
First time cruising and hopefully not the last. The ship is magnificent the interior is of five star class as are the cabins and the food is mind blowing in the variety. The entertainment was spectacular and brilliant. Our cabin stewards Dominador and Christian were so obliging and friendly. My husband and daughter both celebrated their birthdays whilst on board and Dominador made them both so extra special. The evening dining in the Opus restaurant was wonderful due to the obliging Maitre de Lea who always tried to make sure we had the same table and the food and staff was brilliant. The information of what was going to be on each and every day was in a professional leaflet left in our cabin each evening so we could plan what we would be doing the next day. Although this is a big ship carrying 3000 people we never felt overcrowded. Our cabin had a balcony and I spent some early mornings just watching the smooth flow of the ship on the ocean. We had a drinks package and needless to say I had some exotic cocktails. We had an .exceptional time one that I will remember for ever Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
This was our first cruise. We were somewhat skeptical about the size of the ship and whether service, food and actual space on the ship would be ok with so many passengers. But the ship never felt crowded with the possible exception of the ... Read More
This was our first cruise. We were somewhat skeptical about the size of the ship and whether service, food and actual space on the ship would be ok with so many passengers. But the ship never felt crowded with the possible exception of the pool on sea days. But the top solstice floor was a quiet retreat from the crowds round the pool. The itinerary is fabulous, and it is a dream to wake up in a different port/ country every day. We found the entertainment particularly the live bands really excellent. We like jazz and there were several groups, with excellent singers and instrumentalists. Equally the formal shows were good. The cruise director gave a very funny performance one day of different dancing styles on the boat! Since we were in a suite we ate in the Luminae most days, at least for dinner. The package came with two complimentary dinners so we went to the Tuscan Grill and the Murano. Neither came up to the standard of the Luminae, either in service or in the quality of its menu. I was glad that we hadn't paid for them. Murano in particular seemed like a French restaurant out of the 80s (their cheeses were good though!) We only did one Celebrity excursion. That was at Ephesus, and we took the one that takes you to three different sites and includes lunch. It was really excellent. It gave you a look at the countryside and three different archeological sites, lunch as a delicious buffet in a tourist complex, that was extemely fresh and well serviced. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
This was our first cruise to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. The service and cleanliness of the ship was exemplary. The food excellent. First impression on boarding was a little disappointing. A we walked up the gangway, a ... Read More
This was our first cruise to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. The service and cleanliness of the ship was exemplary. The food excellent. First impression on boarding was a little disappointing. A we walked up the gangway, a complimentary glass of champagne was handed to us, we then had to gulp it down before entering the lift to our cabin. I feel it would have been more impressive to go the the main foyer on deck 3 for the champagne reception. Boarding felt very rushed. We did not take out a drinks package as we found them far too expensive. The main restaurant is excellent, although we found it difficult to get a table between 8 - 8.30 pm, so I would recommend booking your dining times before you cruise. This often meant that we missed some shows (although that was not a bad thing). The only criticism I have is the entertainment. I had always imagined cruise ships to have glitzy showgirls and big shows every evening, including several acts....boy was I wrong. There was a 1 hour, 1 act show at two times during the evening, most of which were pretty poor. Celebrity have there own singers and dance crew who preformed a show 3 nights during the duration of the cruise. They were very good. The cheesy cruise director and his assistant are both British and made the entertainment feel a little like Butlins or Pontins UK holiday camps (party dances, Mr and Mrs competitions etc). There was also music in the main foyer on some nights until 12pm, after this the ship felt a little lifeless, other than the disco in the Sky lounger which went on until around 2am I believe. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
We went as family of four with two girls 14 & 16 on our first cruise with two of us very wheat intolerant. Our travel agent booked our hotel for two days in Rome and transfers. Rome fabulous. Almost happy to go home after that as it ... Read More
We went as family of four with two girls 14 & 16 on our first cruise with two of us very wheat intolerant. Our travel agent booked our hotel for two days in Rome and transfers. Rome fabulous. Almost happy to go home after that as it blew us away. Embarkation was chaotic in the tent as hot, crowded and no instructions and conflicting advice. Once inside the hall it was quick in the suite queue. From then on found everything to be organised and immaculate, with helpful and attentive staff everywhere. FOOD Only used MDU on formal nights and found the food to be so so, tables packed in and noisy. It was a huge shame that people didn't make more of an effort for formal nights and were allowed to rock up in very casual wear. Next time we won't bother attending. Luminae. We loved it as it was quiet, light decor, a view, better food and the staff, once they got to know us, really looked after us, discretely helping us to make suitable decisions re our classic alcohol beverage package. We used it for most dinners and breakfast. Ocean View. Loved this also, especially the girls because of the choice. We lived on made to order stir fries, curry, salads, carvery and sushi . The only problem was crowds, especially on sea days or time pressured days. Appreciated 24h drinks stations everywhere. Tuscan grill. Perfectly cooked meats. Had the most helpful staff re food. Great aft view for sailaways. QSine. Food average but served in quirky ways. Fun evening, especially our waitress but we all had indigestion that night. Murano. Hated it. Oppressive dining room, no view, hit by smell of old fish on walking in. Wine list had only one choice in classic package when other places had a range. Flambé at the table is v 70's and just made the dining room stink which was off putting when eating desert. Food seemed old hat and not the treat we were expecting. Too much pomp for what it was. Beverage package was classic non alcohol for girls and classic alcohol for us. Perfectly adequate as we have one or two glasses with a meal or an occasional beer and that's it. We don't bother with cocktails or spirits. This is probably why we didn't get any embarrassing moments with bar staff that others report. First few days of hard sell for premium package was annoying but it stopped. Teenage activities. Our girls avoided the X Club like the plague, put off by the teenage specimens on ship, who roamed in packs and seemed immature and only interested in romances. The nightly card with various activities with titles meant to appeal to youths, just made them wince. So, it meant we had a good family time rather than us time for the parents. Entertainment. The shows, which are not my cup of tea, were actually very good. The comedy juggler ok. If you are not an early or very late eater then you'll miss the big stuff. The singers in the central areas ranged from ok to terrible. The male jazz singer/guitarist was good. The dance competition was hilarious, the guests really made it. The trouble with acts being in the central area is that one could not get a good view due to lack of seating or even standing room. It also meant the library and hideaway were very noisy, often needlessly due to over amplified sound. Too tired for the late late shows. Too busy for other offerings. Public areas. The staff did a sterling job keeping everything clear of rubbish and towels left on loungers for too long. The open pools were small and packed, so v early or v late the best times. Night time hot tubs are great. The indoor pool was cold and unfortunately my 14 year old who dislikes crowds was too young to use it and staff really policed it. So we used the beds to read and enjoy the ambient music instead. To get an outdoor lounger on the pool deck meant setting up camp around 9am. We loved 10pm use of the running track, normally cluttered with sunbathers by day, for our daily girls walk. Shopping area not useful and amusing the first time round. Terrible art. Do they really make enough $$ to have these shops instead of useful or good value items? Gym. Happy memories of being on the treadmill looking out over shipping lanes, but that's just me. Needs more treadmills to cope with crowds. You either have to be flexible with timing or learn guests' patterns quickly which for us meant quiet times at 11am or 2pm on sea days. This is where port days came in handy. Service. Brilliant. We didn't see our butler much, but we didn't ask for much. Loved the afternoon cakes and canapés in suite. The ship's tailor altered a suit bought in Rome beautifully with a hour's notice for whatever we wanted to pay. Our cabin attendants were lovely, always enquiring of our adventures and giving advice from cold remedies to ports. Ports/Excursions. Do your homework on general port info as little comes from the ship. Everywhere was hot, around 35C. Being newbies we didn't have the courage to do our own thing on shore every time and mainly went for Celebrity excursions for the security of getting on ship on time. We also went for half days due to the heat. Ephesus was transfer only and was very enjoyable apart from the obligatory carpet making demo. Even hot and crowded with a million selfie sticks its majesty was apparent. Athens was easy to get to on the X80 bus within sight of the ship. It took 20 mins there but much longer back due to traffic so beware. Acropolis not as good as Ephesus as much scaffolding and you can't get close to the marble. Fab views and lovely trees. Get there early due to crowds. Istanbul's tram is easy to use but packed and tickets are bought from machines at the stops. First trip in we walked and it was a hot slog through not much. Nearly didn't go due to UK gov website carrying terrorism warnings, but decided to play the odds. Armed police everywhere in the tourist areas. Aya Sofya v interesting, glad we had an official guide albeit reluctantly after he hounded us. He was mad but brought it to life and pointed things out that we would have missed, for 20TL per person and he beat back the crowds. Friday being prayer day meant restricted access but after Aya Sofya and the faff of getting in was a bit underwhelming. Never forget opening our cabin curtains to the sight of the mosques poking out of the skyline at dawn and the sound of the call to prayer echoing around the city. Santorini. Hot and horrible due to sheer amount of people. We were last off the coach and our tour guide had disappeared into the numerous other groups. Wasted time trying to find our group. Only time to snap the blue domes and get back down. The stop off at the winery was unexpectedly the best bit. No queue for the cable car down at 5pm. Mykonos. Celebrity lay on a free shuttle bus to the 'town'. More pleasant than Santorini but again, very crowded and hot. Lovely windmills at the other end of the bay within easy walking distance. Some fantastic art shops. Pompeii and Vesuvius. Vesuvius was great as we had a clear day and it was blissfully cool. Waste of money for Pompeii. So hot and crowded and the guide seemed to go on and on such that most people were flagging and fed up. It wasn't until we got home that we realised she had bypassed the main display of the the bodies which is unbelievable. We loved what we called the Celebrity Salvation Tent at the end of each trip. Smiling people handing out cold towels and iced drinks on the pier, saying "welcome back". Disembarkation. We're grateful for the suite option of getting off any time, so had a leisurely breakfast in Luminae before walking off at 8:30 straight to our cases as most had gone already. We had a wonderful time and would certainly cruise Celebrity again. We are not crowd lovers but never felt we were sharing the ship with 3000 others. The staff and cleanliness make it a delight. 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Sail Date August 2015
This was a dream cruise that we had booked for my mother's 70th birthday. It was our first trip to Rome and we were looking forward to the adventure. We knew that booking at this time of year was going to be extremely hot, but it fit ... Read More
This was a dream cruise that we had booked for my mother's 70th birthday. It was our first trip to Rome and we were looking forward to the adventure. We knew that booking at this time of year was going to be extremely hot, but it fit with our schedules. Our arrival in Rome was great. Everything worked out. We used Rome Chauffeur for our ground transportation and I would highly recommend them. Cost is comparable to other limo/taxi companies. Caesar was our driver and he was very pleasant and spoke good English. We stayed in Rome for two days and did the hop on/hop off bus tour (highly recommend these tours in any city that offers them) and we visited the Vatican. Everything was great but the weather was quite unbearable. We would like to go back in the Spring or early Fall. We arrived at the port by midday on the day we were sailing and everything went smoothly. No long line ups to drop off bags or check in. It was one of the best embarkations we have experienced. The Reflection is a gorgeous, newer ship. Everything is completely updated and very fresh. We had Stateroom 6291, mid ship. It was a great location but I would recommend if you are looking for a balcony mid ship that you go one or two floors higher as the life boats did block our view and was not the nicest to look at daily. If you do choose the 6th floor try to get something aft or forward past the life boats and you will be fine. Our Stateroom was gorgeous and quite spacious for three people. The bathrooms are the nicest we have had on a cruise by far and quite spacious considering. The 14 floor dining buffet was okay but a little compact. It would have been better if they had spread the buffet throughout the entire space and had more choices. It was pretty standard cruise fare every day but all was very nice and tasty. They feature full American and English style breakfast which was a nice treat since we are British background. The main dining restaurant was amazing every night. We had anytime dining and didn't wait once for a table. All the staff were very personable, a lot of fun and polite. The food was first class which we have come to expect with Celebrity. This was our third cruise with this cruise line and they always do a fantastic job! The ports were amazing! We missed out on Mykonos because the water was too choppy for us to tender. Instead we went on to Kusadaci and stayed overnight. We didn't get out at Santorini either because we were scared off by the tendering and the the chair lift or stairs up to the island. It was too hot in all of these places to be standing around and we were also told that there were four other ships that would be in port that day. All good, we had a relaxing time on the ship. Recommendations for the ports, do not miss Toarmina in Sicily, Ephesus near Kusadaci, The Acropolis and Parthenon in Athens (take the hop on/hop off bus that has a stop right in the port parking lot - more bang for your buck) and Pompeii near Naples. On the last morning we had a pick up scheduled for 08:00am by Rome Chauffeur and we were able to just walk off the ship and grab our bags, with no issues. Again the quickest and easiest disembarkation we have experienced. We were at the Rome Airport by 08:40am which was surprising. I do think that the fare was a little pricey considering it is half the distance than going all the way into Rome. We will know better next time and there are other options. All in all it was a great trip, one that we will never forget and Celebrity was a huge part of that experience. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
For our golden wedding we chose to take our wonderful family on a cruise. after much research we chose Celebrity Reflection for a 10 night mediterranean cruise. The family of 15 and of varying ages from 8 to 72, all thoroughly enjoyed ... Read More
For our golden wedding we chose to take our wonderful family on a cruise. after much research we chose Celebrity Reflection for a 10 night mediterranean cruise. The family of 15 and of varying ages from 8 to 72, all thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of the cruise from the moment we stepped on board. we were on deck 8 the cabins were adjoining, of which we had 8 cabins, also we adjoined the balconies, which was a great way to keep in touch with everyone. each of us did our own thing and met up for sail away, and for dinner. Celebrity staff were amazing nothing was to much trouble, which made for a memorable celebration. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
We went with our 17 yr old daughter. We shared a balcony room. The master bed was wonderful, the extra bed /couch was a bit stiff but she didn't care because she had the best trip of her life. She met tons of teens from all over the ... Read More
We went with our 17 yr old daughter. We shared a balcony room. The master bed was wonderful, the extra bed /couch was a bit stiff but she didn't care because she had the best trip of her life. She met tons of teens from all over the US and the world .Stayed out socializing , hanging out and dancing long after we went to bed. Ahhhh to be 17 again! The room was clean and tight. We were only there for sleeping . The bathroom was nice and better than we expected. The closet space needs an overhaul with shelves,better hangers, etc. The storage above the bed was super clever . Really no need for a refrigerator with liqueur and soda if your cruising. A bit of wasted space The ship was sleep and modern just the way I like things. The most stunning and esthetically lovely atrium , solarium, restaurants, elevators ..The spa was terrific we bought a 10 pass to use all the saunas, cold room and to relax. we were in there literally every day after excursions to chill out before dinner. Were not huge eaters so the Oceaniew café was fine. We watch what we eat a lot so salads for lunch and dinner with grilled chicken and eggs and toast for breakfast are okay with us and only went to 2 restaurants Qsine and Tuscan Grill Both were delicious . The regular coffee needs improvement . It was soooo very bitter so it needed an enormous amount of sugar and creamer to make it drinkable. A new coffee vendor is needed for sure The cappuccinos and lattes were very lovely , We never felt pressured to buy more . That's the ships job to make sure your have dinner plans if you want them . We always felt welcomed back from a big day sightseeing. The cold towels and waters were wonderful after a long hot day. The Gym was great and we used it 3-4 times on the 10 day cruise. The cabin hallway leading onto the gym has a slight odor but I wasn't on that level sleeping The pools were crowed but if you expect to be handed a seat when you walk out you will be surprised. We sat out on the top level and found plenty of seats you have to look a bit. The solarium is where it was at. A little Jacuzzi and a cold dip and a nap , reading and cocktail and a late dinner /snack was all I needed on the days at sea. Excursions were great . Esephus, Delos and Pompeii were amazing! I am moving to either Capri, Santorini and Mykonis Disembarking was easy . No issues whatsoever Overall a super cruise Cant wait to cruise with celebrity again Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
My husband and I were first time cruisers so didn't really know what to expect however we weren't disappointed with the ship, its lovely crew members and the destinations we visited. Real positives: The embarkation ... Read More
My husband and I were first time cruisers so didn't really know what to expect however we weren't disappointed with the ship, its lovely crew members and the destinations we visited. Real positives: The embarkation process was slick and straightforward and the glass on champagne on arrival was very welcome although you don't get much time to drink it before making your way to your cabin. The ship is truly amazing, very clean and the stateroom attendants were immediately on hand to provide any support required. They worked tirelessly throughout the cruise to ensure the room was kept in tip top condition and there was always ice in the ice bucket, day and night. There are a huge array of activities to get involved in onboard if you want to of course or you can spend time sunbathing on deck. We never had an issue looking for sunbeds, even on the sea days. The Opus dining room is lovely and the food delicious and varied. Service was, in the main, excellent. The Ocean View Cafe provides a huge variety of food, salads, carvery, mexican, indian etc but can sometimes get rather busy. We found that towards the end of the cruise there were less and less staff around so felt the service here suffered. The entertainment on board seemed to be at odd times which clashed with the dining times so we only managed to see 2 of the shows. The majority of the entertainment however took place in the central area so there was always live music of some kind but it did feel a bit repetitive at times. The staff in the passport bar were exceptional and provided excellent service throughout the whole cruise. We enjoyed 2 of the shore excursions provided by celebrity. Santorini - Volcano hike and hot springs swim. This was excellent, the guide was brilliant and the swim into the hot springs was lovely. Be aware that the mud in the springs discolours your swimwear and seems to stay on your skin for days, so don't wear new swimwear! The other excursion was a trip to Pompeii which was amazing to see and again the guide was really informative. In all ports however, you can make your own way around using local transport at a much reduced price so it all depends on how confident you are in doing this as to whether you feel the celebrity excursions are value for money. We loved the Captains updates and the friendliness of the officers. Disembarkation was also slick and easy with our suitcases waiting for us to collect when we left the ship. Slight negatives - Our cabin had a stale stagnant smell which lasted for 3 days but which did go after the stateroom attendant worked hard to remove. Not sure if this is the same on all cruise ships (or just American ones) but there seemed to be lots of hard selling for other activities/dining options/photos/upgrade to premium drinks package. There are many restaurants on board however if you want to eat in any of those not part of the standard dining package, you need to pay anything from $25 to $50 per head extra. The prices can be negotiable on board too. So if you do think you want to experience all the restaurants, it might be worth purchasing one of the speciality dining packages. Overall we really enjoyed our cruise and would not hesitate to go on this lovely ship again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
The ship is wonderful. It is everything you would expect of a 5 star hotel with pieces of interesting artwork everywhere you wander, so much so it is easy to miss! We booked early to ensure we got what we wanted which was a 1A Stateroom ... Read More
The ship is wonderful. It is everything you would expect of a 5 star hotel with pieces of interesting artwork everywhere you wander, so much so it is easy to miss! We booked early to ensure we got what we wanted which was a 1A Stateroom on the bump, port side. The room was larger than expected spotless and well cared for and the bump gives the balcony just a little bit of extra space for an angled view forward. We took 3 large cases and still did not fill all of the storage space. Food on board was to die for (I put on 6lbs). We did breakfast and light lunch in the Ocean view Café where choice, taste and temperature were all good. Choice in the MDR Opus was more selective and close to fine dining. We had opted for anytime dining and reserved a table for each evening the day before. Getting the time we wanted was difficult but we just ignored what we had booked and turned up when we wanted 15-30 mins either side. We were never turned away and had a table for 2 each night except the first and stunning views from our table on both formal nights. People without reservations always had to queue. We only went to the 3 main shows in the theatre which were about an hour long and spectacular. Other people told us that we missed out on other good performances. Entertainment on board was a little hit and miss, the grand foyer and Martini Bar providing the best which can be heard and seen in the central areas around and above the foyer. Lower key was in Ensemble. We did not visit either the club music after 11.30pm in Sky Lounge or the strange events in the Cellar Masters and tried had to ignore the noise around the pool bar. Good tip if you want good service and peace and quiet for a conversation is in Sky Lounge between dinner and disco! We were surprised by the comparatively young (average 40 years old) of passengers from what we expected. The 'pop up' performances in the Celebrity sales literature simply do not happen, everything is as in the daily news. This arrives each night with the turndown service and funny towel statues so it is easy to plan your next day. Room tip for this cruise is to go Starboard Cabin. I listened to my wife's friend against my better judgement on where the sun and best views were to be had and ended up with scruffy portside views. Overall, if you like cruising or just fancy the destinations look no further than this. If I cruise again it will be on a ship like this but purely for the destinations as my personal space is important to me! Other niggles. Not enough attention paid to inform first time cruisers (eg embark/disembark). Trying to get drinks table service anywhere. We bought a classic package and it took 2 days and 2 visits to guest services to get a drinks list. In Ocean View forget any service. In MDR you struggle to get a second glass of wine and you only get service at the table in main bars when nothing is going on. Don't expect a smile from any bartender on the bathing decks unless you are an attractive female! Shore Excursions Santorini. We went ashore but did not take a ship excursion. We have been flying to the Greek Islands for the last 5 years so just walked around the harbour as queues for cable car were so long in the sun. Went back to the ship and watched lovely sunset. Istanbul. We booked a one day tour with Viator who use a local agent (Neon). Saw all of the main sights in a 20 seater aircon bus with light lunch and only 10 other people on tour. Great value at less than half the ship price. Tip, obviously the main sights but when you go to the obligatory carpet making demo go into the basement instead and see part of the old cistern water system with a CGI video of how the Hippodrome was used then keep this in mind as you walk thru it! Kusadasi. Booked a trip to Ephesus with Ephesus Shuttle. Again a bus this time with only 8 of us! Great guide and amazing ruins. Tip, beware there is no shade. Mykonos. No trip, just went ashore and wandered the town. Great shopping and lovely sardines by the seafront! Athens. Reflection docks furthest away from the station but we took the bus X80 from the stop opposite the dock and for 4 euros for a daily ticket did our own tour. Visited main sights and took little green train around for 5 euros to avoid heat. Tip, when you get off bus at Plaka/Acropolis walk up to get tickets for all sights from the Temple of Zeus (no queues) and jump the line at Acropolis (back down road, cross road thru Plaka district and up pedestrianized slope past National Museum to Acropolis. Naples. The star of the show for us. We took the trip from the ship, Amalfi Coast by motor launch, Amalfi and Pompeii. Coach to Salerno, 45 mins on launch along the truly beautiful coastline, stop Amalfi and wander for coffee back on the launch for return. Coach to Pompeii for a lovely lunch and wine before walking it off around what you have time to see in the ruins. Expensive but this time worth. Tip, guides accent is more pronounced thru headsets so stick close and listen to him without. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
My wife and I just returned from the 11-day E. Mediterranean cruise from June 8-19. This was the first cruise for both of us, although we are very experienced travelers (early-40s). Since this forum was very helpful in planning our ... Read More
My wife and I just returned from the 11-day E. Mediterranean cruise from June 8-19. This was the first cruise for both of us, although we are very experienced travelers (early-40s). Since this forum was very helpful in planning our cruise, I am going to share some insights that will hopefully be of help. * Embarkation: well organized and took only 10-15 mins until we were on board. We took a private car service from our hotel in Rome; it was 140 Euro's vs the train at 10 E, but it was worth it to me to not have to drag our luggage through the train station and deal with getting on the right trains, etc. * Food: we signed up for Celebrity Select dining option so we wouldn't be tied to a specific dinner time each night, and this ended up not being very helpful. We could never get our requested time (it fills up very fast), so we ended up typically waiting for a table in the MDR. Overall the food and service was very nice in the MDR. We also signed up for the 4-night Specialty Restaurant dining pkg, and we really enjoyed it. The food at Murano's, Tuscan Grill, Qsine, and the Lawn Club was outstanding, as well as the service - highly recommend! * Excursions: Tip - if you are in a port that has a tender, then sign up for a Celebrity-sponsored excursion. You'll be the first off the ship; our friends did their own and ended up waiting 2.5 hrs to get off the boat. Overall the excursions sponsored by Celebrity were good; we had one bad one but they were well organized and priced reasonably. * Room: our room itself exceeded our expectations - nice balcony; queen sized bed with a couch, and a bathroom big enough for both of us. Only issue was the noise - we were located near a service door which made an incredibly loud noise every time the door was slammed - woke us up several times every night (stateroom 6136). * Ship: the actual ship is beautiful - very new, clean, and well laid-out. There are people constantly cleaning (the public bathrooms always have someone in them cleaning up and are spotless). * Service: overall the staff is very responsive and the quality of service is very good. Our daily room service of breakfast came within 1-2 mins of the scheduled time, and service in the MDR and other restaurants was very good. Most of the staff are friendly and always willing to help; you'll definitely come across people who don't want to help but it's a rarity. * Overall: I highly recommend the Celebrity Reflection and the 11-day E. Mediterranean cruise - it exceeded our expectations and we likely will be traveling w/Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This is our second cruise on the beautiful Reflection. The newest ship of Celebrity's. We have travelled on her sister ship the Silhouette twice and the Equinox for a 10 days Caribbean last year with our whole family. This time we ... Read More
This is our second cruise on the beautiful Reflection. The newest ship of Celebrity's. We have travelled on her sister ship the Silhouette twice and the Equinox for a 10 days Caribbean last year with our whole family. This time we took 3 other couples whom had never travelled to Italy or Greece before. The service on these ships is always exceptional. The staff gets to know your names and preferences whenever you congregate in the same bars etc. and really steps up the service then. We travelled from a Villa in Tuscany that we had stayed at and the port was very easy to find via the highways and with the car rental places in town they were close to a shuttle stop that would take you directly to the ship. Beware if you return a car to Civitavecchia that parking is very difficult to find and the AVIS office impossible. Europcar Car Rental and Hertz look like much better options. Our Cabins were all Concierge level mid-ship and we were able to open all the connecting balconies to enjoy each others company outside while on the ship. The cabins are new spacious with lots of storage. The canapés delivered each afternoon were a treat. We found on many of our stops that public transportation was very easy. Istanbul was a 10 minute walk to the trams and the machines had english language instructions. The tram line from the port included stops at the Sultanahmet area you could pretty much walk to all the venues. The Grand Bazaar and Spice Bazaar were also on the same route. Cost was 4 Turkish lira so $2. Kusadasi is the knock off capital for shopping. Beautiful leather and good quality fake watches are to be had. All right of the ship within easy walking. Our friends took a private tour to Ephesus and the House of the Virgin Mary and were there long before the bus tours arrived saving hours. They used Ephesus Shuttle and had just the 6 of them private for $55 per person. Athens is an easy bus ride from the port to the metro to the Acropolis. Or they now have an express bus X80 that takes you right pass the Acropolis stop. For a cost of 4 Euros for 24 hours of any transit in Athens and back to Port it was a great deal. They also arrived before many buses from the ship. Ask the main desk or the if in Concierge class of cabins your personal Concierge whom told us about it and even printed of the route and where the stop was right outside the ship. Mykonos is lovely and a beautiful walk around. Enjoyed a fabulous lunch at Raya and if you like calamari then we were told their grilled was the best on the island. They were correct. The restaurant sits right on the water in town. It was so huge my husband could not eat it all. An appetizer told to try was the fried cheese with pine nuts and honey. I could have just had that and nothing else...... Naples is the gateway to the Almalfi Coast and Positano. If you have never taken that drive then you should definitely go. Italy Limousine out of Naples has private cars and vans with drivers for day trips. Have done this twice in the last few years and friends and family always say that this is one of the highlights of our trip. Santorini is still my most favorite place in the world although some of our friends liked Mykonos better. A tour of the island or just enjoying the view from the top is all you need. If you take a tour and head over to Oia make sure you take the little side detour to Ammounde. A little seaside town right at the waters edge below Oia. You can walk down to it but it is some 200 steps or so. Dining was easy as we booked the same circular table for 8 each night in the Celebrity Select portion of the dining room for 7 pm each evening. This allowed us to become familiar with our waiters and wine steward. I only had one meal in which I was not excited about and it was changed immediately. Took with 2-4 minutes, now that is great service. Overall so pleased with Celebrity and they have become our go to cruise company. I would of course always stay with the newer ships as I think they are in better shape and get the best staff. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This was our first ever cruise and at the end of a very long and tiring European trip. I was a little apprehensive about the quality of customer service on board as dealing with Celebrity prior to embarkation had been a nightmare. We live ... Read More
This was our first ever cruise and at the end of a very long and tiring European trip. I was a little apprehensive about the quality of customer service on board as dealing with Celebrity prior to embarkation had been a nightmare. We live in NZ and trying to contact anybody at Celebrity by telephone or email proved to be impossible. Embarkation was relitively easy except that the camera was not working and after waiting half and hour for it to be repaired, they gave up and let us on board. The Oceanview cafe was not too crowded when we arrived about 12.30pm and it only seemed a short time before our cabin was available. We were staying in cabin 9292 which is Deck 9 just on the hump. We thought the location was perfect as we were close to the elevators and stairs but far enough away that the music from the atrium did not disturb us. The balcony was huge which allowed us to move the chairs and table to either catch the sun or dodge the wind as we pleased. The bed was located near the balcony which I preferred. Our stateroom attendant introduced himself shortly after our luggage arrived and made sure that everything was satisfactory. One of the wardrobe doors was not moving freely so he arranged for someone to come later that day and fix it. I requested that the fridge be emptied which puzzled him a little but he obliged. We dined in Qsine the first night as it was my birthday. The food and service was outstanding. The method of ordering was explained clearly and we waited with baited breath for our first course. As a vegetarian, options can sometime be limited but I was not disappointed. If anything, there was so much food that we could not do it justice. We were unable to eat dessert but our waiter insisted on bringing some 'birthday cake' and the staff sang Happy Birthday. We dined in the MDR one night but didn't feel the desire to return. The options were limited and I thought the standard of the food was ho hum. Plus our table was located way, way back near the kitchen and we didn't see the appeal. We were more than satisfied with dining in the Oceanview Cafe and were happy with the variety of food available. Staff were very proactive with offering hand sanitiser and it was disappointing that lots of guests chose not the clean their hands before entering. We personally didn't strike any gastric issues but spoke with a couple who had been laid low for a couple of days. We didn't partake in many activities as our intention was to relax after travelling for so long. There was always somewhere for us to enjoy some peace and quiet outside of the cabin. The ports of call were all fantastic. Bad weather required a change in order but it turned out to be favourable in terms of docking rather than tender in one port. The one port we did tender at worked like clockwork. No lengthy queues or waiting time. This was the one ship excursion we did. I didn't really enjoy it as it was pretty much like herding cattle. Too little time spent in places and too many people to move around. Our private excursions were much more enjoyable. Overall, we were very impressed with Reflection and are nowi kicking ourselves that we did not book our next cruise while on board. It would have been a much better deal and without the problems experience with the website and customer service. Read Less
Sail Date September 2014
My wife and I travelled with friends who were celebrating and important wedding anniversary, we are in our late 50's early 60's and whilst we are well travelled our friends are not. None of our party had been on a cruise before ... Read More
My wife and I travelled with friends who were celebrating and important wedding anniversary, we are in our late 50's early 60's and whilst we are well travelled our friends are not. None of our party had been on a cruise before which made booking quite daunting. It was vital we chose the right cruise line, ship and itinerary as a wrong choice could put us off cruising for good. We booked through Thomas Cook and thought their help, advice personal touch was exactly what we required. I am not good on a boat and my greatest fear was to be ill during the holiday especially as it was costing a fair amount of money. We wanted a balcony room and were advised to go mid ship, deck 9 and port side - this we did and it was sound advice. I think we were lucky with the weather and sea conditions but I can honestly say I never once felt uncomfortable and would not even know I was on a ship. The journey was really good, flight bang on time and comfortable, transfers were well organised and getting on board was really quite simple. By midday we were having lunch still gob smacked by the size and beauty of the ship. We went to our room and part of out luggage was already outside the door, the rest followed after about an hour which we all thought was more than acceptable. Really, really impressed with the room - more space than I was expecting and in pristine condition. The bathroom was well designed, lots of room and storage along with a shower that gave you excellent pressure and hot water immediately, every time. Have to say the bed was the most comfortable I have ever slept in and really wanted to take it home with me, slept very well every night. Our room was kept very clean and our only moan was there was no shower gel given only soap - we mentioned this and the problem was sorted immediately. The ship itself is magnificent - obviously being new helps but you can see all the staff are very proud of their work place and everyone treated it with respect and was constantly being cleaned by the friendly staff. The lifts can sometimes be an issue but is having to wait a few moments longer a really big problem?- no. Our worst fear was this could be 'Butlins' on Sea (no disrespect to Butlins) but it really was not, there are plenty of different bars you can visit which suit all types of people. We felt you could make of the holiday whatever you wanted it to be - we enjoyed the quiz's (did not do very well) and the music every night on deck 3. Thought the band was excellent with good variety. In other bars there was classical or disco's - it was your choice. It took us a few days to get ourselves organised and think once we did we enjoyed what the ship had to offer even more. The entertainment was on the whole very good - obviously some shows were better than others but that is personal choice. We enjoyed the Elton John show and the final show of the trip which included some very interesting acts. Two other things we really liked - there was a wide range of different nationalities on board and we spoke to Australians, Americans, Canadians along with many others from Europe and New Zealand - all were very friendly and in the main were very happy to spend a bit of time sharing their life experiences. All staff members wear name badges along with the country they come from - think it is about 60 different ones in total and apart from two or three they were all wonderful and did their best to make you welcome and ensure you were happy. We had select dining in the Opus restaurant and have to say the food and service really was first class. There were two formal evenings and on the first evening we ate at the Tuscan Grill (paid extra) - it was very, very good. The food and service was exceptional but far to much to eat for us. The second formal evening we ate in the buffet - again the food was really good and the presentation and attention to detail was fantastic. When you understand how many meals they prepare during the course of the day to the standards they set themselves is is mind boggling!! We all felt the quality of the food throughout the trip was excellent - even the burgers at the pool bar were exceptional!! The itinerary was a big reason for selecting this cruise and on balance we made exactly the right choice. Prior to travelling a lot of research was carried out and we chose to go with private tours rather than use the ones on offer from Celebrity. Have to say we made the right choice - lets be fair we were lucky there was four of us to share the cost but the flexibility and personal attention was most welcome. We were not waiting around because one or two people were late returning to the tour and were able to see places that the bigger tours/coaches could not reach. Sicily - booked through Sicily Limousine Service. Excellent guide, nice clean comfortable vehicle and we thought excellent value for money. Athens - took the open top bus from the port. Not impressed with Athens, traffic a real problem and would not rush back. Ephesus - have to be honest and say I was worried about this trip. Lots of different reviews about not feeling safe etc. We booked though Osman Tourism and have to say this was one of the best trips. Really good driver and guide, included lunch away from the crowds and such history quite stunning. Rhodes - should have spent more time in the old town. Did an open top bus trip and not the best I have ever been on but still quite nice. Our fault about the old town - felt we missed out. Santorini - Our Guide was Martin - really great laid back guy who clearly loves the island (don't blame him) and we really enjoyed the trip. Stunning views and the only negative was the wait (about an hour) to get back to the dock using the cable car service. Mykonos - we booked a day at the Saint John Hotel - 70 Euro to include breakfast and a massage. Spent the day by the pool and relaxed. Well worth the money - collected and took you back to the ship. Naples - Booked with Italy Limousine - went to Positano, Amalfi etc. Crowded places but stunning. Celebrity's attention to detail is well worth mentioning - a nice welcome back to the ship after each trip, cold towels and drink along with a nice smile. Chocolate on pillow each evening and staff who are friendly and approachable at all levels. Had our photo taken with the Captain and we had chosen not to dress formally for dinner - I explained to him that was not really what we wanted to do and I was only dressed in shorts. He said to me it was our cruise, our choice and he would be very happy to have his photo taken with us - nice touch. When booking we thought this was an expensive holiday but when you break down the cost per person, per day for what you get it is not expensive at all - in my opinion the complete opposite. We had the Premium drinks package and thought we got very good value for money - the drinks on board are not cheap especially if you want the nicer wines, cocktails and spirits. To sum up we are glad we chose Celebrity and Reflection as our first cruise, we had a great holiday and although we will not go on a cruise for every holiday in the future there is no doubt we will do so again in the future.   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
This was a 1st cruise for my Mom and I and we couldn't have had a better experience. We stayed 3 days in Rome at Peace of Rome and thought that may be the highlight of our whole trip but little did we know what was waiting for us! We ... Read More
This was a 1st cruise for my Mom and I and we couldn't have had a better experience. We stayed 3 days in Rome at Peace of Rome and thought that may be the highlight of our whole trip but little did we know what was waiting for us! We booked a private car through Rome Cabs to the port with 2 other couples we "met" on the roll call boards and had a seamless 1hr drive to Civitavecchia. The boarding process was smooth and took less than 20 minutes. The ship itself was wonderful with amazing artwork and tons of fun areas to explore. My personal favorite was the Library. The crew is super friendly and very eager to help in anyway they can. With over 70 nationalities on board it was wonderful to chat with everyone and hear about their homes and families. Meeting so many interesting other cruisers and crew was a definite highlight of the trip. We boarded around lunch time and enjoyed the wonderful food at Bistro on 5 while waiting for our staterooms to become available. We enjoyed it so much we went once more near the end of the cruise. Frankly, all the food was amazing. We had select dining and never had a problem with seating and will definitely choose it again in the future. We found that 6:15 was too early and 8:45 too late. We generally went to the dining room around 7-7:30 and found that was perfect. Our first dinner was an experience as we sat at a sharing table but did not realize that the meal was 4 courses and only selected 3 so had to sit through a course that everyone else had but us. The courses are great sizes though so 4 never made me feel overly full. Unlike Qsine which was so amazing, I almost had to be rolled out. In fact, after Qsine, I didn't eat until a late lunch the next day....so plan accordingly. Our stateroom was much larger than we were expecting and the bathroom was actually larger than the one on our Rome hotel which was a happy surprise. We loved having a balcony and will never go with an inside stateroom. I loved waking up each morning and opening the curtains to see what fantastic view we had today. We spent quite a bit of time reading and drinking tea on the balcony so well worth the extra cost for us. Next time, I would like a stateroom higher up or further away from the Grand Foyer as it was quite loud with the entertainment nightly. All the ports were great: Santorini - we docked at 2 and then tendered to the Island., This was the port with the most issues. You need a tender ticket which were available starting at 9am the day before. I headed down around 8 and got into a line already 20+ people deep. By 9, the line was huge. I ended up with in tender group 9 which would some of the first off the ship. The tender ticket process was ok but the actually process of calling the tender groups was chaos. There has to be a better way. The pushing and shoving was shocking. I can definitely see why people take the cruise tour here simply to skip this process. Anyway, we were on the Island by 2:30 and grabbed the speedboat (actually just a regular tender boat) to Oia for 15E. Great deal as it included a bus ride back to Fira and the port. Santorini is pretty and as touristy as they come. Basically and island of great views and shops. Istanbul - This was the port I was most looking forward to. In the end I was disappointed but acknowledge that only more time would allow you to really get a sense of the city. We spent our day and half hitting all the key tourist spots (Hagia Sophia, Blue Mosque, Topaki Palace, Underground Cistern etc) which are all on the smaller part of the city. If I had the chance I would have liked to visit the Asia side and see the real Istanbul. The real challenge here is the traffic. We grabbed the Cruise transfer to the Grand Bazar on the 1/2 day and it took over 1hr to get there. In comparison it took 15 minutes on the return trip. If I had to do it again, the tram, is faster and cheaper. Buyer beware in the Spice Market and Grand Bazar as I found the vendors tend to jump between currencies and it can be quite confusing. It is OK to take a minute of ask to use their calculator to work everything out in your head. I also recommend having a set price in your head for any items prior to start bargaining. We used Private Ephesus Tours for both Istanbul and Ephesus and could not have been happier. Ephesus - This was my favorite port as I found the ruins of Ephesus to be some of the best we saw. The extra fee for the Terrace Houses is well worth it as the mosaics are beautiful and comparable to Pompeii. this was also the nicest port we were at with tons of shops before returning to the ship. My only complaint is the gauntlet of vendors to need to run exiting Ephesus. They were the most aggressive we encountered. Mykonos - Another beautiful island. We were supposed to tender here but instead go to dock which was sooo much better. This was a great island to simply wander again great views and shops. Athens - Another good port. We spent the morning touring the city - Acropolis, Parliament (must see the changing of the guards if possible) etc. before heading out along the coast to Cape Sounion and the Temple of Poseidon. We used Private Greece Tours and they were fabulous. Naples - We had booked a private tour with 3 couples but 2 cancelled due to illness so we switched to the cruise tour that best matched what we had planned before; a visit to Sorrento and Amalfi. This drive was breathtaking and should only be taken with an experienced driver. I still can't believe that a huge bus made it. In the end, I would have preferred the smaller tour but the cruise tour was ok. Sea days - As this was our first cruise, we had no idea what to expect on Sea Days and were amazed by the sheer amount of things to do. I though I reviewed the guide closely but I still missed things. My favorite was the Iron Chef style cooking competition. The gym on sea days is packed so I recommend after lunch as the best time to go. We also purchased passes to the Persian Gardens (included with AquaClass) and really enjoyed this area, although it would have been nice to know the cold room was broken beforehand. Still the saunas and steam room were fantastic and you can't beat those heated beds after a long days at port. I only went to 2 shows as they really weren't up my alley but my mother went to more and enjoyed them a great deal. We self-disembarked and it was quick and easy. Overall, we had an amazing time and are thrilled with Celebrity and the Reflection!   Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
First time cruisers I am usually an avid trip advisor detailed reviewer so this forum is a little new to me. When originally planning our trip to Greece I wanted to check out all my options and came across Cruise Critic. I was always ... Read More
First time cruisers I am usually an avid trip advisor detailed reviewer so this forum is a little new to me. When originally planning our trip to Greece I wanted to check out all my options and came across Cruise Critic. I was always looking forward to reading the reviews and getting as much information as I could from experienced cruisers. I was a little disappointed that there were not as many reviewers like I found on Trip Advisor so I hope this review helps for the first time cruisers. When we travel we usually like to spend at least 2 to 3 days in each city to get to see as much as we can but with most cruises I found out it is one day in each port. When checking our options to go to the Greek Islands we had a choice of ferry, smaller ship or the luxury cruise lines. I found a very interesting 10 day itinerary with Celebrity Reflection which covered most of where I wanted to go in Greece and had also Italy and Turkey included. We thought why not let's do this in luxury and avoid the unpacking and packing in each Hotel Port. We started our trip with 2 days on our own in Rome. Ideally we needed 3 days to see all the highlights. We chose UNA Hotel Roma which is a block away from Termini Station. An ideal location as we originally planned to take the train from the Fiumicino Airport to UNA Hotel and take the train on August 30th from the Hotel to Civitavecchia Port to start our cruise on Celebrity Reflection. After all it is only 14 Euros one way versus Airport transfer 50 Euro or Port transfer 130 Euros. Well worth it if you can manage your luggage up and down stairs and avoid pick pockets. But we reconsidered this after we packed our suitcases and they weighed a TON!! We decided to reserve all our transfer services with Rome Cabs which is highly recommended on Trip Advisor. We joined the Roll Call on Cruise Critic hoping we could share our transfers with other cruisers but there were no takers as I guess our schedule did not coincide with others. In Rome on our first day we met up with this New Rome Free Tours at the Spanish Steps at 5:30pm. A great way to see some highlights of Rome on our first day and the guide was excellent. On the 2nd day we reserved in advance the pm VIP Colosseum Underground Arena & Forum tour with Walks of Italy. I highly recommend this tour company. The tour guide David was excellent. We arrived for embarkation at 1:30 pm and it was well organized and we were on the Reflection in a short time. I can't say the same thing about Disembarkation. We took the Extend Your Stay option which allows you on disembarkation day to be able to stay on the ship until 3:30pm. When we left at 1:30pm and went to guest relations to pick up our carryon luggage (checked luggage had to be outside our cabin the night before no later than 11pm) we asked where we pick up our passport (we had to give the passport in at Guest Relations by 9am that morning in order to have an Extend your Stay day pass) we were told that on Deck 2 when leaving the ship you receive it there. Well what confusion! At this time passengers are arriving on the ship for embarkation and going through the security check so they are saying wait to the side. Then they say go to the other side entrance. When we went to the other side they about to tell us to go back to the original side we went to. Finally we got our passports. We asked where we go to pick up our luggage. They just point saying towards the terminal. We went to the terminal and asked many Celebrity Reps and nobody knows where we find our luggage. We were by this time frantic since we were having a transfer pickup to the airport and it was almost the pickup time. Finally a Celebrity employee offered to call somewhere to see where the checked baggage was located for the Extend Your Stay passengers. It was only next door to the terminal where they store all the luggage in different sections. This scenario was all so unnecessary if they would be clear on their directions for passengers. I found being new to this I would of liked when first on the ship there would be someone who could direct us to venues or given a tour of the ship but instead you are given a map with your Seapass Card and left to find your own way. We decided to check out our cabin and there we were welcomed by Gina our room attendant. We told her this was our 1st cruise and asked her some questions about ship schedules and locations. We were very impressed with our cabin. I did not expect it to be so spacious. We brought a lot of clothes and there was enough storage to fit everything. The closet was a regular size and there was an enclosed shelf above the bed. There were also 3 deep drawers under the counter top beside the desk that also had a safe and a fridge. There were 2 small night tables with 2 shelves beside the bed. We were able to fit our very large now empty suitcases under the bed. The bathroom had plenty of small deep shelves to store our toiletries and also a small cabinet with more small shelves inside. The bathroom was a good size with a nice sized glass door shower. The bed was large for a Queen size and very comfortable for a good night sleep. I must say our cabin was lovely and was very quiet. We had a balcony Starboard and enjoyed the view coming into port early morning. We also had the sun and usually got to see the sunset from our balcony. I think I made the right choice of cabin for location in regards to the Port itinerary. Better than having a view of another ship or the Port docks (which usually is an ugly view of buildings). Since we did not know if we would experience any seasickness I chose a lower deck mid ship. We were fine. In regards to our room attendants they were always friendly and wishing us a good day when passing them in the corridors. They came twice a day to clean the room and did a good job. I found though they tried not to overextend themselves. For instance the 1st time I tried to plug in the hairdryer it seemed to not fit in the socket. I went down the hall to find our attendant who was cleaning one of the cabins and told her my dilemma. She told me just push it in hard. I told her I tried all the sockets and it just doesn't fit can she come to my cabin and show me. She did come but I just felt that on a few occasions there was a little attitude or laziness. The Reflection is a beautiful ship. Loved taking the glass elevators to the different decks with the view of the Library, The Hideaway and Grand Foyer. It is also very convenient that the stairs are nearby so when the elevators are busy the stairs are another alternative. We enjoyed having Breakfast and on Sea Days Lunch at the OCEANVIEW CAFE on Deck 14. Sometimes we sat outside on the deck which is just lovely. There are tables in the sun and also in the shade. At the Port of Mykonos we decided that we were not taking any excursions so we could start our day later and have lunch at the Oceanview Cafe. We wanted one last chance to try their amazing buffet. There is so much choice and the food was excellent. The Indian food is very good. What I found disappointing is that their lunch finishes at 2pm. On our 1st day on the ship I ate this delicious herbed chicken and when I went for seconds they were already clearing up the trays of food. I also realized when we came back from most of our Celebrity Shore Excursions around 3:30pm I missed out on eating lunch and had to wait for the 4 o'clock tea time for their tasty party sandwiches. They always have pizza, spaghetti, salads and sweets available at any time. I feel we are paying so much money for this cruise and being so port intensive we were not able to take advantage of the meals that were included. I find that when we are on vacation lunch can run quite late in the afternoon and Celebrity should not have time restrictions for lunch and have a full buffet available till late afternoon. When we were on excursions and there was free time available we wanted to eat in the restaurants at that particular port to try their cuisine speciality but there were times that the excursion did not have that available free time for lunch. The other service we could not take advantage of when we really needed it was Room Service for Breakfast. Room Service is 24 hours but not really. One Port we had an excursion for 7 am and wanted room service breakfast before 6am. Well, Breakfast room service only starts at 6 or 6:30am. The Oceanview Cafe only starts their Breakfast at 6am. Of course you can always get a beverage and muffin before 6am but NO TOAST? One day coming back from a late excursion I wanted to try the MAST GRILL on Deck 15 for a hamburger and fries. Very good and a nice change from all these meals. They are open from 11:30am to 6pm. They have burgers, veggie burgers, hot dogs and fries. On our Extend Your Stay the BISTRO ON FIVE was included for Lunch. I enjoyed the steak crepe and my husband liked the veggi crepe but you must try the Nutella dessert crepe. Was that delish! Nutella, banana and walnuts. During the cruise if you eat here it costs $5.00. They also have soups and salads. Another must try is the CAFE AL BACIO on Deck 5. They have all kinds of specialty coffees and teas for a charge. BUT their French pastries, cakes and cookies are no charge. You can eat them there or they can bag it for takeout. The chocolate brownies and the miniature strawberry, blackberry custard tarts are to die for. The carrot cake is also good. Now for the OPUS RESTAURANT... we had pre fixed seating for 8:45pm. at a table of ten. There were 2 couples from the US, 2 couples from the UK and us 1 couple from Toronto Ontario. We found the time much to late for dinner especially we would finish around 10:45 pm and the entertainment started at 11:00pm. Then try getting up in the morning for the early shore excursions! We found 6:30 pm to be to early for dinner when we were eating lunch so late and getting back from some excursions late afternoon. Our travel agent suggested sitting at a table for 10 as we wanted to meet other cruisers and that is really why we stuck with the 8:45 seating. Otherwise there is the choice of Select Dining between 6pm to 9:30pm but I don't think you have the opportunity to sit with other people. The restaurant is beautiful. The service is very good. Our waitress Nela was amazing. She was delightful full of humour, efficient and always wanting to please us. The food on the whole was ok. There were some dishes that I ordered that were better that just o.k., and very good. These included the escargot, French onion soup, ham & pea soup, pear & Gorgonzola salad, Kale salad with walnuts, lamb brochette, duck l'orange on 2nd formal night (better than the lobster tail that was chewy), osco buco on the last night, cr'me brule, baked Alaska on 2nd formal night. For the bars on the ship they are very nice. The Martini Bar is really nice with the ice counter and sometimes the Bartenders put on a show while pouring the drinks. It is a photo op. These drinks are $11.00 and are not covered in the Classic Beverage Package. I don't like Martini's but they had 2 kinds made with Gin so I tried the one called Saphire London Club. It was good!! There is also the Molecular Bar where the drinks are $12.00 each also not included in the Classic Beverage Package. I mentioned to the bartender I like sweet drinks like Pina Coladas and also Gin & Tonic. She said that Gin is not a good combination for their drinks but the Tanned Russian would be nice for someone that likes sweet. It was good!! We had the classic beverage package which we had included with the promotion 123 go. We are not big drinkers so I don't think we really took full advantage. But it did come in handy. While I like sweet drinks like Pina Coladas (very good at the Opus Restaurant) and Daquiris (did not like how they were made at pool bar) and wine at dinner we were able to have a good selection of these beverages under $8.00 included in our package. Beers under $5.00 are included. All sodas, juices and bottled water are included. Note at the Opus restaurant you are entitled to bottled water not the tap water. Only stipulation is you can order only 1 beverage at a time. If the beverage is worth more than allowed you can't pay the difference you pay the full amount. Also a good tip in trying new drinks is to look at the daily newsletter left in your cabin in the evening for the daily Cocktail or Non-Alcoholic special of the day. I was a regular in ordering at the Oceanview Cafe bar the Strawberry Banana Soda. It was so refreshing. The Peach Sangria (non-alcoholic) was also very good. I really liked the Bali Hi and the Fresh Cucumber Gimlet for the Cocktail Special of the day. For the entertainment and activities on the Reflection I am sorry we were unable to take full advantage of everything there is to offer. The problem was this was such a port intensive cruise that it was exhausting and it has been a week since we got back home and we are still recuperating from this trip. The problem was that since we had the late seating for dining at 8:45pm we had to go to the 11pm show in the Reflection Theatre. For the 6:30pm dining they went to the 9pm show. I don't understand why there wasn't an earlier show like 7pm for the late seating diners. It would have made more sense as the 11 pm show was poorly attended. I also like to dance and only a few times I was able to go dancing after the show finished at midnight or sometimes before dinner if I opted out of a predinner cocktail at the bar. Dancing in the Grand Foyer was great whether it was a DJ or a band. But it caught up to me and there were times I was so exhausted I had to miss even the show. I think Celebrity should rethink their scheduling of events for the cruises that are port intensive to make it more appealing to their guests to participate in their activities. For the shows in the Reflection Theatre that we did see they were entertaining and quite good. One group that stands out was "These Guys" A Cappella group. They were excellent. Another show which was by pool side in the afternoon just before sail away in Kusadasi Turkey was a Folkloric Dance Group. The Entertainment Director who was always very energetic and upbeat brought on board this fantastic group of dancers. It was one of the best memorable entertainment on the cruise. The other events that I attended was the Art Auction. It was suppose to be 90 minutes long. I ended up sitting in there for 2 ' hours. Too long. I could of walked out earlier but I was never at an auction and wanted to see what it was like. It was quite interesting and the auctioneer was entertaining PLUS at the end there is a catch. They raffle off a painting and when you leave you get a print. Not worth it to waste precious time (for a print). The other gimmick is their advertising of one hour sales of this one time offer. They had watches one day for $19.99 regular $99.00. Another day there was Bella Perlina bracelets ranging from $14.95, $29.95 and $39.95. They have countdown days till the sale. These items are not available for sale before the specific day and time of the one hour sale. They get you hyped up before the sale by giving you a ticket for the chance to win one just before the sale starts. You have to be present to win. Then they do the countdown where the items are on a long table cordoned off by a rope. Mobs of guests are all around waiting in position for the countdown when they drop the rope. And then when that happens, it's a stampede. Like vultures, grabbing as many items as they can. I can't understand the logic of this process even though I was in on the action also. I had been admiring these Bella Perlina bracelets for 5 days in the display case and I really wanted to buy them. They are very pretty. After continuously hearing them say there is only 45 minutes, 30 minutes, 20 minutes left to take advantage of these prices I saw these same items, for the same price for sale on tables outside the shops on deck 4 Shops on the Boulevard the next day. The duty free shops on the Reflection are nice and you will find lots of nice things to buy at all price ranges especially if you are looking where to spend your onboard credits. We were quite surprised that after trying our luck at the casino slot machines and putting in only $5.00 we won $50.00. I guess we got lucky! Another nice area is to be able to walk on Deck 15 all around the ship. A good way to burn off some calories from all the food and drinks. Now for our shore excursions. I did a lot of research before our trip on what to see. Since it is our 1st cruise I was worried about doing tours on our own or getting together with other cruisers on roll call just for the fact that if something happens and you don't get back on time to the ship they leave without you. Afterall anything could happen even in our own city where you can get delayed if there is an accident on the highway or a car breaks down. I just didn't want that stress on vacation. If I had to do it all over again I would definitely try sharing an excursion with others on roll call or go on my own for only the ports where the city is close by and is a half day excursion. This way if there are any problems that arise there is plenty time to get back to the ship. For the excursions that are further away like an hour drive I would stick with the Celebrity shore excursions. Overall my opinion of Celebrity Shore Excursions are that they are very expensive, there is not enough time for enjoying the sites (very rushed). We did have a few excursions that were amazing with fantastic tour guides that were very interesting and would highly recommend. Messina Italy: Tour: Lovely Taromina Our guide Martina Bus#17 When we arrived in Taromina (1 hr. bus ride) and got off the bus we were led from one end of the main street to the other end which was the location of the Greek Theatre. During this time of being led through the crowds people were getting left behind. The tour of the Greek Theatre was interesting and our guide Martina made sure to continuously let us know that she is the only guide that takes you around on top. Then we were free to check out the bottom of the theatre and we had one hour to explore on our own the main street of shops and restaurants before meeting back at the bus. In my opinion you don't need a guide to lead you from one end of a street to the other end and the Greek Theatre entrance is only 8 euro and you are very capable of walking on top and below the theatre on your own as long as you don't have mobility issues. Then you will have plenty of time to enjoy strolling along the shops or stopping for a canolli or gelato (recommend Etna Pasticceria for canolli $2.50E). Either take the Celebrity tour Taromina on your own or share a private tour by van with other cruisers. Athens Greece: Tour: Taste of Athens Our Guide Natasha Bus#30 We had 1 hour at the Acropolis. It was a little disappointing. There was alot of scaffolding. The stones on the pathway were very slippery. Saw people falling. You have to be very careful while walking looking at the ground and walking very slowly. We then had a short city tour, stopped for photos at the Olympic Site and was dropped off at the Plaka for 3 hours free time. We were given coupons for entrances to 5 sites by the guide but really no idea of where the sites were. When I questioned the guide of where the Temple of Zeus was she showed us that it was just across the street from the Plaka where we were to meet the bus. This is something to see. Amazing. I liked it better than the Acropolis. I really liked Athens but if you can do this tour on your own for cheaper I would suggest it. The Acropolis entrance is 12 Euro. Kusadasi Turkey: Tour: Ultimate Ephesus Our guide ?(male) Bus#19 This tour was amazing and the tour guide was excellent and made it very interesting. Sorry I couldn't remember his name. I highly recommend this tour through Celebrity. We were told that in order to be a tour guide in Turkey they are required to go to University for 4 years and then they have to pass an exam to get their licence. Our guide was an historian and we were also so lucky to have an archeologist take us through the Terrace Houses. A lot of people are not aware of the Terrace Houses and miss out on seeing a very important part of Ephesus. I can't emphasis enough that seeing Ephesus requires a good tour guide. The tour guide we had was exceptional. He made the history of Ephesus very interesting and easy to understand even if you are not a history buff. We also went to a carpet factory demonstration which I have read that a lot of cruisers want to skip. I thought it was so interesting to see the process from the beginning (cocoon of a silk worm) to the end on making a silk carpet. They also offer a beverage and this is where I tried the delicious cold drink Apple Tea. When the demonstration was over we were not hassled into buying a carpet when we politely said we were not interested. I was very impressed with Kusadasi. The city is so clean and I found the people so nice. Even walking through the market just across from the Port I was not harassed like I have read in other reviews. Yes they ask you to come see their shop as you pass but politely I said later or if I did enter the shop I would just say I am only looking and they left me alone. Be careful when you buy Turkish Delight. The one that they give you to try and is delicious might not be the same quality that you are buying in the enclosed box. I didn't take a chance and I bought it at the Port duty free for 6 Euro (make Hazer Baba) when they were selling another brand name at shops for 2 euro's. Also I bought the Apple Tea (make Ephesus ) at a shop recommended by the tour guide which sells the same tea that I tasted at the Carpet Factory. Rhodes Greece: Tour: Journey to Lindos Tour Guide?(female) Bus#4 When we got off the bus we were led by the tour guide from one end of the main street to the other end to where the entrance to the Acropolis is. Be warned the main narrow street is packed with tourists and is difficult to pass through. Then at the entrance to the Acropolis it is an upward steep pathway with a long line of people slowing following each other to reach the entrance. It is so dangerous as this narrow pathway is also the same pathway where the people that are leaving the Acropolis are taking. It is also very windy here. The Acropolis stones are very slippery. It is a magnificent site to see but I found it very dangerous and very crowded. I feel it should be better organized with all these tour groups. The guide leaves you at this point to observe the Acropolis on your own. The guide was very good in speaking very clearly with good instructions in keeping the group together and emphasising to always look down when you are walking to keep safe as you're walking on slippery windy path. I would not recommend this tour if you have problems with mobility. Also it comes back to Rhodes a little late as we had an unexpected stop at a pottery shop which takes away from spending time in this medieval city. There are 3 entrances to Medieval Rhodes directly across from the port. We were limited for time but we did have time to see the Jewish Synagogue which was very close to entering the 1st entrance. Walk a short distance to your right and then a left at the next street. We were lucky to find it right away as I went into a jewelry store close to the 1st entrance and the lady said you are close by but hurry as they close at 3pm. There is no entrance fee but there is a donation box where a man makes sure to point it out to you. It is very beautiful inside and there is also a museum. You are allowed to take photos without flash. We wanted to go to the Palace of the Grand Master but it closes at 3pm. Santorini Greece: Tour: Village of Oia & Santorini Island Tour guide? (female) Bus #6 This was a tender but we were taken to a different location to meet our bus tour. We were taken on a scenic bus ride to Oia while our tour guide spoke in a sweet soothing voice. We had only 1 hour to explore Oia which ended up being 45 minutes if you had to use the washroom. What a letdown. We were told start by going to the right on the main street and then come back to the square and if there is time go to the left. What can I say is do this on your own. Take the bus or boat to Oia. Others have done it and had no problems with transportation. You need minimum 2 hours in Oia to enjoy the beauty it has. We were then taken to Santo Winery. We did not have a winery tour but were given a choice of red, white or sweet wine for tasting. I really liked the sweet wine. You could go back as many times as you wanted for wine tasting. Then they had on a table of Mezes which consisted of bread, cheese, olives and tomatoes. Very nice. And there is also a magnificent view while enjoying your wine on the patio. There is a shop where you can buy their products which I was sorry I didn't. The sweet wine is called Vinsanto and was quite expensive cost of 16 Euro. In the town of Fira shops were selling it for 19 Euros. We were then taken by bus back to Fira and were given our cable car tickets for when we were ready to go back to the tender. We were told to give ourselves 45 minutes to have enough time to get back to the tender. We had so much time in Fira to browse in the shops (because really that's all there is) that I don't understand the logic in the schedule of the tour excursions. More time should be allotted to visiting Oia and less time in Fira. Some recommendations for Fira...the best chicken souvlaki pita I tried in all of Greece. It is called Lucky's Souvlaki. Only $2.50 Euro. It is located across the street from the bus stop. If you are interested in buying white cotton dresses or shirts they are cheaper in Fira at $20 Euro. Luckily I bought them there because in Mykonos everything is more expensive and the same dress was $29 Euro. Mykonos Greece was suppose to be a tender but we docked. We paid Celebrity $8.00 US each for an all day Shuttle to the main town. We walked around the town. If you follow the shoreline you will pass the Church of Paraportiani a beautiful white structure along the way to Little Venice where the Windmills are. Never saw the Pelican. Lots of restaurants and shops. Naples Italy: Tour: Almalfi Drive & Pompeii Tour Guide Rosana Bus#1 This tour was amazing and the tour guide was wonderful and she made it so interesting with her passionate commentary. I highly recommend this tour through Celebrity but of course the tour guide added such so much to this excursion with all her passion. Don't forget to sit on the right side of the bus to get a magnificent view of the Almalfi Coast. The scenic drive was amazing and the bus driver Alexandra manoeuvred those narrow winding roads alongside the cliffs with ease. We passed on the way the beautiful scenic Positano and Sorento. We stopped for lunch at Best Western Hotel Marmorata in Ravello. When Rosana was talking about our delicious lunch we were to have and describing the menu I couldn't wait. Especially cannelloni which I love and is usually not on the menu in Italian restaurants. She talked about the mozzarella known for in this area. So soft and delicious. Well I was quite disappointed in the food. The cannelloni was just ok. The bread roll was tasteless. The chicken parmesan was so tiny and bland. Dessert was cake nothing special. Included was a glass of sparkling wine, bottle of wine , water tea or coffee. After the restaurant we continued on to Almalfi for some free time. We went to this church in the beginning of the square. Very beautiful inside. If your looking for a washroom ask at the church museum for the key. The next part of the tour was seeing Pompeii near Naples. I enjoyed Pompeii as much or even more than Ephesus. It is amazingly so well persevered and Rosana our tour guide really brought it to life with her commentary and passion. I can't emphasis enough that seeing Pompeii requires a good tour guide.   Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
Where do I start ? First cruise, plenty of research beforehand and high expectations mixed with apprehension. Well, the research paid dividends, the apprehensions proved unfounded and the expectations were exceeded ! Welcome to the ... Read More
Where do I start ? First cruise, plenty of research beforehand and high expectations mixed with apprehension. Well, the research paid dividends, the apprehensions proved unfounded and the expectations were exceeded ! Welcome to the Celebrity Reflection. Usual story. 25th Wedding Anniversary, something special needed to celebrate the occasion. . To all you cruise veterans out there this might seem like " old hat " but to us cruise virgins, the Reflection and the whole experience proved to be something special indeed. Not only were we ensconsed in a floating, luxury hotel for ten days, we were blessed with glorious sunshine, hot temperatures and great ports of call. Our Aqua Class cabin was well appointed with a great shower and washroom, a comfortable, large bed and adequate storage space. Nice balcony for feet up, supping a cool beer and delving into a plateful of gastronomic delights from the Ocean View Cafe as the sun set on the Western horizon. The cabin was kept clean and tidy by our ever smiling attendant...in fact, all the crew were forever smiling and genuinely wishing us well at all times of day. That was one of the many things that stood out on this ship. Nothing was ever too much trouble. Our assigned restaurant was Blu. Excellent food and attentative waiters with a nice relaxed atmosphere. The tables were close together which proved to be a great idea as you were able to meet new people from all walks of life and different countries every night if you so wished. If not, just ask for a quiet table for two ! We also dined in Quisine...a completely different experience altogether. Entirely new concept which everybody should try if given the chance. The Ocean View Cafe provided a huge buffet catering for all tastes, and with such a variety on offer, sometimes it was difficult to know where to start and when to finish ! There were plenty of drinking spots offering every sort of wine, martini or beer. The atmosphere was one of cool, sophistication but friendly at the same time. There was music every night in the main Atrium and also in Michael's Bar to accompany the alcohol intake. Jazz to soul, disco to rhythm and blues...music for every taste. If you don't like music there were plenty of quiet places to enjoy the evening and relax. The large theatre provided entertainment every night with a very enthusiastic entertainment Director proving a great Master of Ceremonies. We went to three shows and thoroughly enjoyed them but as we all know, it's all subjective and I suppose there were some people who thought otherwise. There were plenty of other things happening to keep you amused if the theatre wasn't for you. In fact, there was so much happening in the day and the night that you would be hard pressed to tick all boxes during the 10 days onboard. As stated before, if all you want is a peaceful time there are plenty of quiet areas and no obligation to partake in anything. This is your cruise ! The outdoor wet area with its two swimming pools and several whirlpools was the scene for many activities during the day, especially on sea days. However, there was plenty of space around the decks if that wasn't your thing. Sunloungers and comfy sunbeds for peaceful reading / sunbathing, were in abundance. The indoor pool provided an area for relaxing, warm swimming and the Persian Gardens was a haven of tranquillity where you could lie on the heated, tiled beds after a lovely, refreshing visit to the steam room, sauna and tropical showers. Ten days shot by in a whirlwind of onboard activities, shore visits to fantastic ports, eating and drinking to fulfilment, making new friends, gradually emptying the suncream bottles and actually finding time to finish reading a book for a change. When we joined the ship, embarkation was very fast and then leaving, disembarkation was equally as fast and efficient. Time to say goodbye to our very comfortable, classy, Celebrity, Cruise ship. Would we cruise again ?....yes. Would we cruise with Celebrity ?....yes. Would we rejoin the Celebrity Reflection?...Definitely Yes !   Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
First time cruise for my 40th birthday. Me and mum. Concierge cabin 1186, deck 10, starboard aft. My mum was really apprehensive about cruising but she was the one who decided we were going to book another one! Our stateroom attendant, ... Read More
First time cruise for my 40th birthday. Me and mum. Concierge cabin 1186, deck 10, starboard aft. My mum was really apprehensive about cruising but she was the one who decided we were going to book another one! Our stateroom attendant, Juvy, and her assistant were fantastic and a true credit to Celebrity. The vast majority of other staff were lovely. The man who gives out the anti-bac hand gel at Oceanview (I didn't get his name) brings a smile to everyone's face and also the pool butler who is outside the ship on port days to welcome everyone back. Food was generally excellent but service in Opus was slow. Waiters and sommeliers spent too much time chatting with guests rather than taking the orders of others. Once the order was placed, the speed improved. They would also insist on recommending things on the menu even though we had had 15 mins looking at the darn thing! Breakfast service in Opus was appalling, so we changed to the Oceanview every day. We asked the waiter in Opus for milk for our tea, so he brought us cream and then proceeded to pour it into the cups until they were half full! Surely a waiter on a 5 star cruise line has been educated that milk goes in tea and cream goes in coffee?? I'm still waiting for my yoghurt to arrive. Tip for the Brits - the Oceanview has Tetley tea bags in the beverage stations! Oooh, a decent cup of tea! AND Oceanview do petite sandwiches, cookies and mini desserts for afternoon tea. Bliss. Ate in the Oceanview on quite a few evenings, partly as we couldn't always be bothered with the whole waiter thing. Interesting to note that a number of officers eat there about 8.30/9.00pm every evening. We ended up chatting with quite a few - you see, you don't need to be an Elite member to meet officers! AND my mum met the captain as she was walking to the ladies loos!!! Specialty restaurants - Tuscan Grille was amazing - food and service. Murano was good but the service was overbearing. The waiter had been over 5 times before I had even managed to get beyond the starters on the menu. It wasn't his fault (he was actually very good), it was the manager who obviously instructs his waiters to do this. We found a lot of food on board to be quite salty (although not overly so). Initially I thought this was just me as I don't season a lot of food, but then I thought maybe this was Celebrity's way of trying to get guests hydrated via water retention! Bars - the barman in Secondo Bacio in the Oceanview was lovely. We also drank in the Passport bar as there is often a band of some short on in the foyer. Didn't try the martini bar or the molecular bar as one of their drinks would have sent me for a lie down! The Ensemble bar was very dark, so dark you couldn't read the menu and was sometimes reserved for Captain's Club events. Didn't manage to get into Michael's as whenever I tried it was reserved for Captain's Club - made me feel a bit insignificant. The Sky Observation lounge(I think that is what it was called) was great for viewing the scenery go by at sunset. We didn't take a drinks package. Our drinks bill came to about $420 in total (including gratuity) for the 10 day cruise. We were able to order a bottle of wine in our cabin for sailaway and then have another glass of wine or two with dinner and a cocktail or two afterwards. Shore Excursions - took 2. Both well organised, especially the Ancient Ephesus one (excellent tour guide). Concierge cabin benefits - I'm not too sure about these. The canapes were measly portions and we didn't try the room service. The Hans Grohe shower head - seriously? You can get these in Holiday Inn Express in the UK. The bath robes were nice especially when sitting on the balcony (sorry, verandah!) late at night. We didn't get the second hairdryer but there really isn't enough room for two people to dry their hair at once. Didn't use the umbrella, but loved the binoculars. Many happy times on the balcony spotting ships' names and registered ports (made me feel like James Bond!). The sparkling wine was lovely for the first sailaway. Fruit was 3 apples, which changed to 2 apples and 1 orange when an apple went brown. Eventually a pear arrived too! Went to a couple of talks - Panos, one of the navigation officers did a really interesting one. Another man did a series on ancient Athens/Rome (I went to the first) and a women did stuff about the White House, but it was so gushy, and unless you were American it wasn't that interesting (I know some Americans won't like that opinion, but I am an honest person, so there you go). We were the only non-US in there. Also the galley tour was good but short. Also went to a short but sweet cake decorating demo. Didn't go to the shows as they began quite late and we didn't do any of the pool entertainment either. Despite it not being allowed, some people do smoke on their balconies. Also people were smoking around the pool on the one day I went up there. BTW, if you book another cruise whilst on board, you get OBC for your next cruise. We are getting $350 which should pay for 2-3 shore excursions. The only really bad thing was that they give you your disembarkation information 3 days before the cruise ends! Imagine if you were only on a 3 day cruise? You would get your disembarkation info when you embark!! Sour points - on the last night of the cruise, they removed everything from the cabin that could (potentially be stolen). Now, I know that some people will steal anything they can, but not me and not my mum either. We really did not appreciate being painted with the same tar brush. The other thing was some couples arguing over who ran up the big bar bill!! The most unsavoury thing was one woman saying that she didn't want her "US Dollars going to some Fillipino maid or waitress". Not nice to hear. The staff (no matter what their nationality) worked their behinds off to make our cruise amazing. Even though we had already paid all our gratuities, we still gave the cabin stewards something extra, as they were truly fantastic. Okay, I have waffled on enough. I hope this helps some future cruiser! Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
As a first time cruiser, I've got to say, we made the right choice in choosing the Celebrity Reflection and the Eastern Med. Cruise. Lets say I got many bonus points for selecting this cruise for our 20th anniversary. This will be my ... Read More
As a first time cruiser, I've got to say, we made the right choice in choosing the Celebrity Reflection and the Eastern Med. Cruise. Lets say I got many bonus points for selecting this cruise for our 20th anniversary. This will be my step by step attempt to point out some of the key items of our cruising adventure. Arrived in Rome the day before and we chose to use the American Express Travel service in hooking us up with a very posh hotel in Rome. Hotel Caverelli (Waldorf Astoria). What an incredible hotel and the service was AWESOME. If you book it through American Express, the hotel rates are lower, plus you receive an upgraded room. We also booked a night-time Segway tour of the city. That was a great way to get around the city and see many sites. I would say some were not worth seeing... some we were very appreciative to see. It gives you a great way to get around and pick the sites you may want to see the next day. The next morning, we scheduled a breakfast at the Vatican through Trip Advisor. Awesome and completely worth every penny!! We got there about 1-1/2 hours before the Vatican opened, ate breakfast in the Pinecone Courtyard inside the Vatican. Next we did the tour of the Museum and the Sistine Chapel before the rest of the crowd arrived. Breath taking and one of the most enjoyable tours we had. Lets say... everything (artwork, pillars, statues) that was missing out of Rome was found within the Vatican. Trip to Civitavecchia... is about 1 hour way from Rome. So be prepared. The dock is located in a secure area. Most taxi's drop you off at the front gate, so be prepared to huff it to the port, which is quite a walk. We chose to get a cab service from hired personal driver... this guy had the credentials to drop us right off at the luggage drop off area. Way worth the money in my mind. 110 Euros each way. If you are so lucky to have the Aqua Suites... you end up skipping most of the lines inside the terminal, it is mass confusion there. Passports and the travel document from the cruise line is what you will need as well as the credit card you used to book the package. They issue you your onboard access cards and off onto the ship you go. On board the ship.... Eating areas.... Main dinning hall is where you can go to grab a quick bite to eat without having to dress up too much, shorts/flip flops are allowed. The other areas are special dinning areas where the dress code is enforced and you stuff yourself with items from the menus brought to you in courses. Be prepared to gain 1 lb per day on the cruise. Get yourself a drink package. I got the premium non alcoholic drink package. Bought all the lattes I wanted. Plus waters, cokes and non alcoholic colata's. Wife bought the full drink package for $695... I think she used 1/2 of it on drinks to be honest. Lodging... the suite was very nice. The beds and pillows were comfy. If something like the pillows were wrong for you... just ask. They will fix it. The suite was located on Deck 12. I would rethink this since the live music and party was always held on Deck 14 which is right above. Many nights... I listened to kids running up and down the deck. Annoying to say the least. Get you room on Deck 11 and under the spa area if you can, they shut down at 10 PM. Our package included 2 speciality nights at the fine restaurants. I really enjoyed the Qsine. AWESOME experience. Blu was fine for what we got free with the package. The Tuscan and Morano, were so so in my opinion. Get your coffee on deck 5. You will not regret it. The pastries there are also free with the drink package. Excursions... Mixed feelings about this one. Some were great like Santorini's walk to the volcano and swim in the sulfur bath. But be prepared... it is a very demanding walk up the volcano and you need to be able to swim to the sulfur bath area from the ship and back. We were blown away by beauty of Istanbul. That is one thing I completely did not anticipate before visiting the area. The City is beautiful and the people extremely friendly. I have to say, the most friendliest of all of the ports. We got a private tour guide Erkan Karakose. I can not thank him enough for the most breath taking views were have every seen from the top of the grand bazar. Nobody from our ship saw what we experienced that day. His English was very good and his historical knowledge superb. Athens was just OK. I expected more from our visit. Mykonos was off the hook beautiful. Complete day of relaxation at the beach. We arranged a day at the Saint John's resort. Worth every penny. They have a private beach that is AWESOME. Ephesus was one of our most enjoyable port visits... talk about shopping till you drop dead. Knock offs like you can not believe. Loved every minute of the ruins and shopping. Just grab a cap... and don't pay more than 60 euros for the round trip. Our taxi driver was the nicest old man. Gave him a 20 euro tip at the end because he made the trip completely worth it. I think that is about it. Loved every minute of the cruise!!! Thank you Celebrity and my new friends on board the ship! I will be back.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
This was my wifes and mine first cruise and didnt really know what to expect. That being the case I did a lot of research to determine the best Cruise line to fit our lifestyle for our 25th wedding anniversary. What I will say from the ... Read More
This was my wifes and mine first cruise and didnt really know what to expect. That being the case I did a lot of research to determine the best Cruise line to fit our lifestyle for our 25th wedding anniversary. What I will say from the outset is that I normally dont like to go home, but this was the first time in my life I have been mentally satiated from my vacation. Our honeymoon, two weeks in Hawaii has always the trip to beat over the decades, this cruise laid it to waste, metaphorically speaking of course. Basic requirements: Again, because it was our first cruise, we also wanted to try the big cruise ships, not the small river cruise style. Based on my research that may be for more seasoned cruisers, Entertainment, dinning and dress code catering to adults. i.e: no kids running around amuck or drunken, party folks with 1980s shorts and high Adidas sports socks with running shoes in every venue. May sound uppity but, too bad, so sad. Its my money and I choose where and how to spend it right? New and luxurious accommodations, ~10 nights Mediterranean ports of call, 3000 people plus staff) but it was effortless and very professional AND we were provided a special credit card to hold line of credit info, passport info etc. Great idea. Ok, so after a pleasantly quick check-in we head up to our Aqua Class stateroom 1550. I notice on the elevator ride up and walking through the halls the level of workmanship of everything. The walls, the ceilings, the stairs, trim, marble tiles. Everything is top notch and solid, built to last. I felt like I was back at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. I kid you not, this is a very very pretty ship!! Anyway, we make it to our stateroom, and wow, everything is so clean and new with a pleasant fragrance provided by some aroma sticks (for want of the proper terminology). Bathroom was larger than I had anticipated, bed was Queen size, a couch, and yes, the room wide sliding door to the balcony with two reclining chairs and foot rests. Winning!! We met a lot of new people from around the world. That was excellent! We also met another couple that we did the tours with and will hopefully be lifelong friends. Additionally, some we spoke to were seasoned cruisers and indicated that this ship and line were the best theyve ever encountered. Other salient points: Food was plentiful and very well prepared and variable, Service, especially in our specialty restaurant Blu was beyond top notch. Ive never experienced that level of service anywhere. Thats what you get when you have trained adults providing service! The ship is constantly being maintained and cleaned, Everyone that works on the ship seems genuinely happy in their role as they perform their duties as though it was an enjoyment to them. Everyone I dealt with on the ship was pleasant. Not just some or most, but all!! The only thing that is likely constantly overlooked are the support staff. The staff you never see behind the scenes like cooks, chefs, cleaners, laundry, engineering and engineering support etc. So kudos to them as well! Entertainment was great and plentiful. Its literally impossible to be bored on this ship. Lots of food locations and bars, The Aqua Spa is fantastic and the workout areas are state-of-the-art. Wow. Reflection dwarfs the other cruise liners when you arrive at port and you feel really proud pulling up in the state of the art ship. Everyone on the docks and other ships just look in awe. Were telling friends and colleague thinking about taking a cruise to go on the Celebrity Reflection. I dont want to call these final point Cons because, our experience was sublime, but rather points for potential improvement: Stretch resolution on TV? You can't change it or at least I couldnt. This is 2013, I dont like watching stretched video displays, it looks very cheap. Can't connect smart phone to TV due to security concerns. There are much bigger security concerns than worrying about changing settings on TV. Internet setup not intuitive or user friendly. For non-power users it can be very daunting. Scripting is setup to show the user not necessarily the correct information. It needs a complete overhaul. Its not cheap either, although wireless is free which only means you can text people. Although acquisition of bandwidth use and time online is very well recorded. Money in side of the equation is sound, however, the end-user side is full of holes and is relatively immature. It would be good to have a smartphone/tablet app in addition to the daily news/schedule being delivered. Some people don't have smartphone/tablets yes? However, many of us do and we are the current demographic with the money to take these cruises which will keep this industry going!!! Every elevator and various key points along halls on every deck it would be great to provide an info screen like CityPulse and Navigation channel. It doesn't have to be interactive but that could be a second implementation. Nav channel needs to display current time! Need a server or cloud for people to share/upload/store videos, photos etc while on board. Some smartphones can't communicate directly and/or people don't know how to set it up on their device. In closing, my wife and I cant recommend Celebrity Cruise lines enough, especially with the ship Reflection. Im looking forward to going again. Hope this helps someone.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
I have never cruised before, so all my star comparisons are with ground. Public spaces--Functionally they were excellent except pool area was small and extremely crowded on sea days. Decor was modern--Nice finishes and fixtures, but art ... Read More
I have never cruised before, so all my star comparisons are with ground. Public spaces--Functionally they were excellent except pool area was small and extremely crowded on sea days. Decor was modern--Nice finishes and fixtures, but art and "whimsy" often pretty dumb. Main dining room looked like a high school prom with a Jetson's theme, but you got used to it. Overall feeling was closer to a convention hotel than the Broadmoor. Rooms--Small but okay for 2 because of balcony. Had to run extension cord across room to get plug in by bed. Good bed. Slept very well. Service--Great. Only weakness was pool area understaffed. Food--Excellent. Main dining room offered a big variety of 3 and 4 star dishes. Buffet had good selection of more basic items for breakfast, lunch and snacks. Room service breakfast was really convenient. Entertainment---varied in quality from 2 to 4 star. Heavy on music. Lots of nice small music acts performing at various times throughout ship. Shore excursions--did private except for Naples. Had unused credit so took Pompeii On Your Own. Very nice bus. Guide didn't provide much information in bus or handouts. This caused a problem because Pompeii signage is really bad and they don't give you a map. Had to wait 30 minutes in line to get tickets, but amount of time at sight was extended, so somewhat rushed through site. Experience with private tours much better. Particularly recommend Ephesus Shuttle and Sicilylife. Overall--very nice way to see lots of sights. Much more convenient than changing hotels all the time. More restful travel than train or plane, plus some really pretty views from ship. Would do again if I liked itinerary.   Read Less
Sail Date June 2010
Celebrity Reflection Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.6
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 4.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.6
Service 5.0 4.5
Value For Money 5.0 4.1
Rates 4.0 4.1

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