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9 Celebrity Reflection Spa Cruise Reviews

If you've never sailed the Celebrity Solstice class, we suggest you do so. Our favourite is the Reflection. Launched in just 2012, the ship is a dream boat. There are SOOO many things to do and see on the ship that our ports are not ... Read More
If you've never sailed the Celebrity Solstice class, we suggest you do so. Our favourite is the Reflection. Launched in just 2012, the ship is a dream boat. There are SOOO many things to do and see on the ship that our ports are not the driver of our choice. Next January 2016 will be our third cruise on the same ship, same itinerary, why you ask? Because it's so delightful! We cruise Aquaclass so I visit the Persian Gardens daily, and breakfast and dinners in BLU are worth the upgrade. Our fav dining is at QSINE and its so much fun with a group (try the LavaCrab). Join up for a beverage package, and we upgrade to premium so no sticker shock when checking out. I had 3 massages this last cruise and can't say enough about the skilled staff at the Spa. My hubby likes to play poker, so he has fun at the tables, and throw in a few slots too. I like the activities, and there is so much to do it's hard to choose. Night club is good, Sunset Bar entertainment was great. The food at the Buffett and MDR was fabulous. All in all, the Reflection has something for everyone. Can't wait til Jan 2016! Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
This was our 6th cruise and what a difference finding the right cruise line makes. Our previous cruises were 1 Carnival (never again), 3 Royal Caribbean (previous favorite) and 1 NCL (never again). We were looking for an itinerary that ... Read More
This was our 6th cruise and what a difference finding the right cruise line makes. Our previous cruises were 1 Carnival (never again), 3 Royal Caribbean (previous favorite) and 1 NCL (never again). We were looking for an itinerary that marked some destinations off our bucket list, did not cater to children (love them, but wanted a break), an outstanding ship and service as well as fellow cruisers who are able to behave like adults (see Carnival cruise). This trip exceeded all of our expectations on those points. Destinations: All tours we booked were offline. In addition to all that implies (smaller groups, flexibility, personal attention), we wound up having a core group that we toured with. Thank you Cruise Critic and thanks to our companions! What a difference that made to feel like we were traveling with friends! The destinations were all good. Our thinking was we may never pass this way again, so we felt lucky to experience each one, even if we may not want to pass that way again. If we were going to pick favorites, we especially enjoyed Santorini and Naples, specifically Positano. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed Ephesus and the Terrace Houses. We did not have enough time at Pompeii. If that is your interest, then that would take all day, at minimum, to see it all. Would recommend you get a guide at Pompeii as the little recorded gizmos require some divine intervention to operate. Note that this itinerary is very walk intensive. The Acropolis and Pompeii require quite an uphill hike for those of us no longer in peak condition (as if I ever was!). Even Positano was a huff and puff stroll. Lots of opportunity to stop and pretend you are fascinated by shops to catch your wind. Ship: Our last cruise was on the Norwegian Epic. That ship felt like a floating tomb to me. Very dark and closed in. Was so happy to find that the Reflection was light and bright. It was very clean and, to a person, the crew was always smiling and greeted you. Because our ports were quite strenuous, we didn't really explore the ship like we would ordinarily. Frankly, we were tired! Would have like to have had a few more sea days to really enjoy the ship. Service: We had an Aqua Suite which meant we had a butler. His name is Samuel Rodney. He did a fantastic job for us. I'm never really sure what all that is supposed to entail, but we never wanted for anything. He got my card key replaced so I didn't have to go to Guest Relations and helped my husband find his belt even after we had given up the search. Service on the rest of the ship was just fine, no complaints. Dining: While we had access to Blu, we weren't crazy about the menu. TIP: unless you want something to laugh about for the rest of the trip, avoid the lettuce water and yogurt soup. It is as nasty as it sounds. Service was outstanding. That was ok though because there were plenty of other places to eat. We tried Murano and Lawn Club Grill. Would do the Grill again, but would probably choose a different Specialty restaurant next time. Entertainment: we went to one show early on and didn't stay for the whole thing. It wasn't actually bad, but we were so tired that sleep became a bigger priority. We did appreciate that there were only two smoking areas. That made the casino, for example, a nice place to lose your money. Felt like Sky Lounge was under utilized except the one night the 'professional hockey player' (no idea if that was true, but his buddy kept announcing it loudly) and his friends showed up and took over the dance floor and band instruments since no one else was there. And that show wasn't even included in the price of the cruise! Haha. Kinda felt sorry for them because we heard the median age of traveler on the ship was 71. I guess there really wasn't a good place for them to go with all that youthful exuberance. Spa: we were Aqua Suite, but because we were so port intensive and basically exhausted, we really didn't get the bang for the buck on this. Lesson learned, but the cabin was awesome. We've been back almost a week now and we decided that if we could do it all over again, we would in a heartbeat. We are counting the days until our next cruise with Celebrity!   Read Less
Sail Date September 2014
Immediate gratification.  I had previously experienced three other cruises (a new Princess ship in 1992, Carnival in 1992, and Royal Caribbean in 2007...the Royal Caribbean being my favorite) and was excited but honestly a little jaded ... Read More
Immediate gratification.  I had previously experienced three other cruises (a new Princess ship in 1992, Carnival in 1992, and Royal Caribbean in 2007...the Royal Caribbean being my favorite) and was excited but honestly a little jaded about this trip. I was not a newbie, not easily impressed. Wrong. The Celebrity Reflection blew every expectation I had about cruising out of the water. You need to also know that I live in a world of luxury: Beverly Hills. I have been in the finest establishments with impeccable service and lifestyle, and unbelievable un-real beauty. regularly attend five-star events and go to the best shows, with world-class shopping right in my backyard. This cruise experience was above par in every aspect mentioned above. We never felt crowded...always found a seat where we wanted to sit at any show...and let me tell you the production and talent of every show was outstanding. We never lacked for company...met some of the nicest people in the world; talked to everyone. New friends! We never missed a meal...scrumptious servings at every seating (and never got around to the Specialty Restaurants for dinner; didn't feel the need!) We never had to ask twice...every want was filled in an enthusiastic, friendly way. Made us feel like family. We always had a fantastic time, notable for: THE SPA with the heated tile loungers in the Persian Garden (actually fell asleep there) and the spa services DID NOT over-sell product during treatments (I actually got to relax!) THE SOLARIUM with a perfect temperature pool and two jacuzzis not overcrowded any time! THE ART STUDIO where I got to paint to my pleasure (favorite activity onboard, trumping trivia!) THE ENSEMBLE LOUNGE where the waitress was a delight and the music was again perfect THE LIBRARY where my love wanted to just relax but I kept dragging him away THE CELEBRITY THEATER where we enjoyed movies, Apple classes, Bingo, COMEDY(!) and more OUR CRUISE DIRECTOR IAN who we wanted to take home with us (you too Micky) OUR CRUISE STAFF (oh James Taylor you are so sweet)...I call shenanigans! We didn't even need to get off at the ports which were fun (although we loved the excursion to St. John,) found the shopping on the islands ridiculous (no charm, just shoved diamonds & tacky trinkets in our faces) but the beauty of the beaches was shore-worthy. Happiest on the Reflection. Sea days were by effortlessly, with loads of fun things to do, people to enjoy, and again, great food. That the James Beard people oversee the menus just made it that much more impressive. As for our accommodations, we booked an Interior Cabin (as my love tends to get queasy when he sees the motion of the ocean...no window for us.) We booked our vacation via Costco Travel; inadvertently booked a handicap stateroom. Warned later by the line that if someone who needed those facilities made a reservation, we would be moved to a like-level room, we were fortunate that our room stayed in our booking. WOW~245 square feet of luxury; a gi-normous room with ample walking area, and the bathroom, oh the bathroom, tremendous! The oversized shower had a fold down seat inside; great bath products are always appreciated! FYI, the room itself was far larger than what we have in our Beverly Hills apartment. The most comfortable of beds (though pushed together to make a king, we did not notice any cavern between the mattresses!) and the bedding itself was very luxurious; soft. Our steward was on top of things instantly. We would leave the room for a couple of minutes sometimes, and as if a genie had appeared, when we would return everything would be spiffy. Great flat screen TV as well; we didn't even realize that there were actual channels available until our fourth night. So impressive! There is usually at least one bad thing about any experience; the only lackluster annoyance was the opening comedian for the Sin City Comedy Show. Painfully unfunny...and the burlesque aspect was completely out of place, not well done, and bothersome (all of our fellow passengers who we discussed the show with felt the same way; here-say, yes, but true.) LOVED our experience, we are now completely captivated by Celebrity and plan to cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
Over the last four years my wife has gotten me into cursing and now I'm hooked. To date, we have sailed on the following liners: Crown Princess, HAL Oosterdam, Norwegian Epic, Carnival Magic & Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas. ... Read More
Over the last four years my wife has gotten me into cursing and now I'm hooked. To date, we have sailed on the following liners: Crown Princess, HAL Oosterdam, Norwegian Epic, Carnival Magic & Royal Caribbean Allure of the Seas. Our goal was to sail all the major lines prior to choosing a particular company. Once we made the decision which cruise company best served our needs we would then enrolled into cruise rewards program to earn elite status points. We chose Celebrity because of the high culinary and service marks. The Good: The embarkation process was smooth and efficient. We were directed into a line for elite members, and on board within about 10 minutes of arriving the terminal. The ship is stunning, well maintained and kept in perfect condition. The catering on board ranged from good to excellent. Starting with the Oceanview cafe (buffet-style dining), we would rate it 3 1/2 stars because the overall slections of foods was limited at times. BTW.. calling what they serve as Sushi is a disgrace to the cuisine. The Opus dining room experience was good with a reasonably extensive menu and well-prepared dishes. Service was good. We found Blu to be a great option for Aqua Class guests to avoid the lines at the breakfast buffet during port days. Of the specialty dining rooms, we ate at Qsine and Murano. We thoroughly enjoyed Qsine with its innovative cuisine. Some of the dishes were superb and the service outstanding. The Murano restaurant was absolutely amazing, a 5 star plus experience. They cooked several of the dishes right at the table, the servers were attentive and personable. It is worth the extra $45.00 p/p. We discovered the Bistro on the last day and had the best $5 meal ever. My crepe was delicious! I love the fact that Celebrity doesn't broadcast PA announcements every 5 minutes like some of their competitors. Yes, you all have Bingo on your ships.. Great! You heard the captains daily update at 10:00AM and that's about it. Perfect! The Bad: Avoid the Canyon Ranch Spa. We chose to pay top dollar for the Aqua Class Suite accommodation because it included complimentary access to the Persian Garden and Relaxation Room. The week of our cruise Celebrity announced a partnership with the Canyon Ranch Spa to transition services to Canyon Spa. Therefore, the spa was CLOSED for the first two sea days because of this transition. Nothing like paying for an amenity that you're not receiving. The spa did have a table down at guest services to book spa services. My wife booked a 9:00am appointment for a pedicure on day #3. She proceeded to the spa at 9:00 and ended up waiting 90 mins!! During her pedicure the staff member only applied (1) top coat of polish and my wife asked if she could apply two.. answer No. At the end of the service the staff crew up charged my sift an additional $70.00 for a service she did not even order. The total price for the 20 minute pedicure was $80.00 and the coat of polish didn't even last 24 hours. The next day whiling checking into the spa my wife asked the front desk attendant if they could go ahead and just remove the remaining polish and she would just repaint herself. The staff member say yes for an additional charge for $25.00!! So disappointed, my wife politely declines and walks into the women's locker room to charge and notices that the same lady who performed her pedicure the day before was projectile vomiting all over the place. Apparently this staff member had one to many to drinks during the grand opening party. The staff at the Canyon Ranch Spa are incredibly rude!!!! Never a smile and constantly complaining to guests that the staff wasn't even trained on Canyon Ranch Spa services prior to the transition. After day #4 my wife and I just stopped going to the spa which is extremely disappointing since we paid for the spa experience.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
This was our 36th wedding anniversary and my birthday cruise combined, so we wanted to do something special. I am more than thrilled with our choice to again sail with Celebrity. We were thinking of choosing the Oceania Riviera, but found ... Read More
This was our 36th wedding anniversary and my birthday cruise combined, so we wanted to do something special. I am more than thrilled with our choice to again sail with Celebrity. We were thinking of choosing the Oceania Riviera, but found the ship to be over priced considering that gratuities and alcoholic beverages were not included in the fare. We took advantage of the 123 go promotion that was currently running with Celebrity at the time of our booking and chose the beverage package as our perk. With just a small upgrade to the premium package at $161 per couple we were able to enjoy all the fine wines, martini's and gourmet coffee's any time in any area of the ship with the exception of our stateroom. This was our first time sailing on a solstice class ship. My Husband, who much rather sail on smaller ships was truly won over by the intimate feel of the Reflection. There is no shortage of intimate and cozy areas to have a drink, read a book or just relax and listed to music. If your looking for flashy and loud this ship is not for you! I can't say enough about the genuine warmth of the crew our captain and senior officers who went to great lengths to be seen and interact with the passengers. In fact, when I mentioned to a ships officer that I was disappointed to have missed a bridge tour, he took note of our cabin number and a personal invitation was in our cabin by dinner to visit the bridge the next morning at 11am. With the money we saved on Oceania, my husband I took advantage of all the speciality restaurants with the exception of the Lawn Club Grill @ $45 per person, the Bistro on 5, and the Porch restaurant. These 3 venues are over priced for food that can be had in the ocean view cafe. I don't feel there should be an up charge for crepes and panini's. And this was most evident with my fellow passengers as there were no people at any of these restaurants through out our cruise, especially on sea days. Our experience in the Blu restaurant was wonderful. Everything was prepared to perfection, and although the menu was quite small it was inventive and well thought ou. * Note, these really are spa portions, so if you are a big eater make sure to oder more or ask for a larger plate of what you enjoy. We found by the second night at sea that everything centers around the main atrium. Great music and a fantastic Martini Bar. The mood is festive, the band played older to classic dance favorite and the bartenders at the Martin Bar were showmen in themselves. They even remembered what My husband and I like to drink. The only design flaw with the Reflection is the size of the pool area. It is way too small to accomodate 3000 passengers. There was never a lounge chair available anywhere near the pool and the enforcement of reserving deck chairs for the day was not enforced. This was a big problem especially on sea days. Our voyage was not completely booked. wonder what they do on full sailings and Holidays. In all this was a wonderful anniversary cruise and we look forward to our next cruise on Reflection with our entire family next January. Read Less
Sail Date February 2014
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've been on more than 10 cruises, but didn't bother to count back when I started cruising 20 years ago. In that 2 decades, I've grown out of the party-party-party mood of the Carnival line, and enjoy the little things much ... Read More
I've been on more than 10 cruises, but didn't bother to count back when I started cruising 20 years ago. In that 2 decades, I've grown out of the party-party-party mood of the Carnival line, and enjoy the little things much more fully. The spa experience is amazing. Aqua class gives the cruisers access to a special dining room where the cuisine is so good, I can't figure out why anyone would bother to pay to go to the other specialty restaurants. Of course, it LOOKS cool to go to Qsine and get some molecular gastronomic delights, but not on a day when they're serving carpaccio in Blu... or lamb... or steak... or... well, just about anything. I'd not miss the Blu experience! We also took advantage of the 1-2-3 Go offer to have a drink package and upgraded to premium, which means we could drink nearly anything we wanted, including specialty coffees, fresh squeezed juice, bottled water, and premium cocktails cooked up by the experimental bartenders or martini bartenders... we had the good wine with dinner, and the sommallier remembered our favorites, which feels amazingly luxurious... no thinking twice about ordering a drink, no fussing about the fact that this coffee was not what I had hoped for or that glass of wine was under-poured. No worrying about calculating the tip or collecting receipts and adding them all up on the last night when they give your final bill to you... Even if we did not drink enough to justify the price of the package, the peace of mind involved in not having to even think about it, was worth it. And then there is the spa. Aqua class guests get access to their thermal suite, which is an amazing experience. We've been in these suites before back when they just started to become popular, in Holland, and I was not aware that other ships were following suit. The idea is that they've got this quiet room where there are heated lounge chairs... all in ceramic tile... it's comfortable, I PROMISE... you grab a bunch of towels and use a roll to prop behind your neck, you put another under you, and these days, with everyone bringing in their Nooks, it's easy to fall asleep. If you get too hot, there are showers, steam rooms, a dry sauna, and an icy cold room to spend a few moments in. And then back to your lounge chair. Oh yeah, and the aromatherapy room. With all of this at your fingertips for free, it's almost a shame to go up to the pool, but you really can't go on a cruise and come back without a tan, can you? In addition to the wonderful people in Blu, were the amazing waitstaff in the coffee shop, the molecular bar and the Martini bar. All three were attentive when appropriate, and gave us our privacy when appropriate. They were willing to be experimental and give us a few options that were off the menu, and they provided the service that I expect from a high end venue. The accomodations, seats, lounges, tables, etc... were all as I would expect from a nicer class of ship, with just a few exceptions. There were some weird issues with booking. To start, they never sent the luggage tags that had been promised, and they made several mistakes with upgrading our drink package. At one point, they upgraded 4 packages for the two of us. WE had to have them delete it all and start from scratch, and I got an e-mail confirming that it was done. And the luggage tags arrived the week after I called to ask about them. The girl was SURE they had been sent out, but then she was also sure that our drink package was handled correctly. I had to make several calls about these issues, and had spent so much time on hold with them that I was actually hitting my limit of minutes on my phone that month (a RARE circumstance). Eventually, it looked like everything was resolved. We had luggage tags, were able to print out our boarding information, and we were told there would be a person at the airport in Miami with our transfers to the pier. BUT on the day of our arrival, it did not work as smoothly as this. We had booked our flights through the cruiseline. Or some partner... I don't know, it was the same phone number, but somehow the cruiseline said it was some "partner", and not them. Anyways, we arrived in Miami and were told to look for the person from Celebrity at baggage claim. We did, and there was no one there. I wandered up & down, leaving my husband to snag the bags off the carousel. NO one had a celebrity sign. After I had taken 2 walks through all the baggage claim areas, my husband called me, he had found a woman who had a sign with Celebrity on it. We caught up with each other. She had not been holding the sign up when I walked by her twice before, and had been chatting with people who had signs from other cruise lines. I remember looking right at her and thinking she must be from the other cruise line since they were all together. NO, she was with Celebrity, and she just "forgot" to come check our baggage claim at the appropriate time. We waited while she checked in all the people on the flight near the carousel where she WAS standing, and when she got to us, all she did was tell us to go to the end of the terminal. We could have done that from the start. Oh well. Once we were on the bus from the airport, all went smoothly with embarkation... well, except for that upgraded drink package. Even after all I'd gone through to make sure I didn't have to THINK once we got on board, (honestly, all I wanted to think about was how to find the spa and which drink with an umbrella in it did I want for the sailaway party that several people at the roll call were meeting at)... Celebrity had not properly upgraded it to premium, and no one on shore was apparently authorized to fix it. (Their policy... they don't make changes within XX days of the start of the cruise... well, I GET that... but that doesn't explain why all my phone calls the MONTH before did not resolve the issue). Apparently they had this problem all the time, people who had upgraded to the premium drink package and who had to go through this, because they have a whole process for explaining it, and they were not ruffled at all by the fact that they had taken an order from me over the phone ordering system, and it had not been properly credited to us. So we spent the first half hour on board looking for the drink table to get them to upgrade us. Ultimately, it was a relatively easy thing to resolve, but since this was my first experience with Celebrity and they messed up both this AND the luggage tags AND greeter at the airport who was supposed to have our airport to port transfers with her... i was worried. BUT as I already said... the rest of the cruise was a joy... I could spend my life going from Blu to the spa to the coffee shop and then the pool/whirlpool, and back again... ahhh... Oh yeah, and the room. Comfortable, quiet, compact (as most ship rooms are)... but the balcony was unexpectedly spacious. Big enough for 2 chairs, 2 footrests, a little table, and even a little room to maneuver between them. With all this comfort on the balcony, I had no interest in sitting on the little sofa in our stateroom. Ice, fruit, and flavored icewater showed up in the room every day. And as compact as it was, there was plenty of space for us to unpack all our stuff (I always pack twice as much as I need when I'm going on a cruise, I can't help it... something about needing a bathing suit and a formal outfit in the same day seems to make me feel the need for extra options)... and the bathroom had more than enough cubbyholes to keep all our toiletries in easy access. There is plenty of place beneath the bed to store even large suitcases. One caveat: we're tall people, so this was not a problem for us, but a significant amount of the storage is in a cabinet over the head of the bed. Even as tall as we are, it was sometimes a stretch to get at the shorts or t-shirts that had migrated towards the center of this cabinet over the center of the bed. Shorter people might find themselves standing on the bed to get at items stored up there. It's worth thinking through ahead of time so you don't store your everyday stuff in that particular cabinet. But I should probably mention a few things. These particular things did not alter MY feeling about the cruise one bit. I was not there for the shows, though the two shows I saw were pretty darned good. The venues where the shows are held, however, left something to be desired. The seating in the main theater is SMALL. There is not much leg room between rows, and the seats sit low to the ground. There are bar-height seats at the very back of the back row, and after checking a few different locations and finding all the seats to be relatively similar as far as size, my husband and I happily settled into the bar seats. Not everyone wants to sit at the far back row, and there were some people who were having trouble climbing over each other into their rows and folding/unfolding themselves from their seats. Worse was the lack of any place to put a drink. Except those of us who were seated at the bar in the back, no one had a place to set down a drink that they had brought into the auditorium with them. The same is true of the smaller venue where the late night comedy show was held. I suppose the wait staff in both venues were laboring under the deficit of maneuvering space. The couldn't walk between rows to serve the customers, and were passing things up & down the rows. When we sat down at the comedy club venue, in the back row at the bar, the bar was sticky. Someone had obviously spilled a drink and no one had wiped it up after the last show before we got there. So I asked several staff members if they had a wet towel to wipe it up with. I asked one staff person and he said it was not his area, but he would get someone to take care of it (he did not, he kept standing in the same location and talking to the same other staff member he had been talking to). I asked a second person and they nodded and walked away... to be fair, he had asked me if I wanted a drink and I said, "not yet, I need a wet towel or something to wipe this table off with", and his job was to take drink orders before the show, so my request for a towel was not part of that job. The third person I asked, nodded and disappeared, then returned with a stack of about 20 napkins, put it down on the table next to me, and walked away. Whoops... if I wanted to order a drink, I guess I needed to go outside to the nearest bar, because it really wasn't going to happen here.. . the staff were just not very ... hmmm... they weren't used to a lot of drink orders, I guess. It makes sense, because there isn't a lot of space for people to hold their drinks, and so it's either your lap or put it on the floor next to you (except of course, at the bar at the back of the room, as I said)... I suspect that when the location is as poorly planned as that, it's harder to achieve efficient service. In other ships I've been on, there has been a variety of seating at the show venues... booths in a semi-circle around a low table... benches with little tables in front of them and plenty of leg room for wait staff to maneuver between the rows... chairs with cup holders, and of course, the bars in the back of the room. It never occurred to me that a newer, high end ship would configure it's theater to feel so much like an old fashioned, low end movie house. I'd rather have to arrive earlier and work harder to find a good seat, but have a chance at getting a GOOD seat and be comfortable, than to be packing myself into a small-ish, old fashioned theater seat. But that's me. Luckily, we weren't there for the shows. One other thing I was surprised about, that was an odd, "miss"... the wait staff in the pool area is sparse. It starts with the issue of people saving lounges for friends who aren't scheduled to show up for hours (and in those hours, why can't someone else use the lounges?... why doesn't everyone get it that if everyone wants 2 hours in the sun, and if no one monopolized all the lounges when they were not IN them, that no one would have a problem finding a lounge chair? The problem arises JUST because of the people who are so worried about the problem that they monopolize the chairs and create the problems). Apparently, this problem is for the pool butlers to solve. I never saw one of them step in to remove someone's stuff from a chair that had been unoccupied for an hour... or more... but then again, there's just not a whole lot of pool butlers or wait staff. I don't expect someone to dance around with a tray of drinks on their head, but they they DO bring the drink of the day around, ask if I would like one, and when I ask, "no, I'd like a mimosa please", they tell me to wait and they'll send someone... and after an hour, no one comes... well... I start to get the feeling that they really don't want to serve drinks around the pool area. No big deal. I can go into the bar in the cafe and order a bottle of water or an adult beverage if I choose, but that requires standing up, putting on a coverup over the bathing suit, and shoes... yeah... shoes. Awful... if this were my biggest problem in life, I'd be a very happy woman. And I don't go on cruises to find something to whine about, so I learn to work with their staffing issues. I organize myself to pick up a drink for sipping on my pool lounge chair before I go out to the pool... or I grab a coffee or martini from one of the other venues before I go into the show and I know to sit in the back row where there is a comfortably tall chair as well as a table to set my drink on... BUT... if I were there to spend 4 hours in the sun every afternoon,, burn myself to a crisp, and have someone bring mimosas to me rather than me have to get up to go get them... if my vision of the perfect cruise were 7 evenings filled with a comfortable lounge to watch Vegas-style shows in... I might have been disappointed. There was a time in my life when those were my goals on a cruise... but that's not my thing any more. As it is, these things are not my reason for cruising, and the things I am there for are SO filled with perfection... I'll go on Celebrity again & again and again... because for what I want, it's wonderful! Oh yeah, the shore excursions. We took one that was supposed to be a catamaran around St. Martin to Phillipsburg, and the boat's engines had a problem that morning, so we were offered the opportunity to go by bus to the same location... a tour bus with a fun guide, yadda, yadda... and they'd refund a part of the ticket price. WE took them up on the offer. I'd not have done it if I were purchasing it from the start... but it was nice to be able to shop in the market on that side of the island. I picked up some handcrafts that were perfect for gifts to everyone when we got back from our vacation, so that was good. And even better to see the refund at the end of the cruise, making the excursion an appropriate price for it's value. We did the bacardi factory tour. That was fun. As many times as I'd been to San Juan, I'd never been to Bacardi, so it was nice to hear about it's history. And I really didn't feel the need to take another city tour or see a dance show in the evening. It was good to have a few minutes to shop in the stores near the port and get back on the ship a little early. In St. Thomas, in honor of my father, whose health prevents him from joining us on our cruises these days, we went on the Kon Tiki excursion. It has been more than a decade since I had done Kon Tiki... my Dad's favorite. And it's changed since he had so much fun snorkeling and dancing in the conga line with the college frat-boy types who semi-adopted him as their mascot... he and my mother really were troopers to even venture onto the Kon Tiki in their 70s, and they really did like the high energy, but the energy level of this excursion did not match what it used to be... for one, the drinks are not included as part of the excursion any more, which is probably a good thing. And there are no snacks (a bad thing). They take you to a cove where there is a snack bar and a pretty nice beach, but it's clear that some people were running back to the boat to get more drinks... by the end of our ride back to port there were two men on our excursion who got so intoxicated, it was scary (one of those men was from another ship in the port). But some of Reflection's entertainment crew were also on our Kon Tiki excursion, and they made the post-beach activities more fun (you've not lived till you've seen a contortionist dance the limbo on a small boat). They also helped with the gentleman from our cruise ship who had gotten himself scary-drunk. I believe they are the ones who ran ahead and got some of the medical staff to come out to collect the man with a wheelchair. It was nice to know that the ship was prepared to handle such emergencies, and nicer to realize that on a Celebrity (unlike Carnival), such emergencies were rare. If you're looking for jewelry or china or liquor to bring back to the States under your duty-free limit, St. Thomas is paradise. And we took advantage of this. I generally like St. Thomas much better, but I think the Kon Tiki is no longer the kind of fun i want. Probably snorkeling in St. John or ... well, it's not too tough to find a taxi to take you over the mountains to the beaches on the other side fo the island, then come back through town on the way back to the ship... Maybe next time. In short (can I BE short?) I will go on this ship again, but I've gotten to a point in my cruising life when I prefer the spa, the amenities, and the smaller venues like the martini bar & Blu restaurant... And I will also go on Celebrity again... coincidentally, in just 2 months. My in-laws decided to book a cruise after hearing our experience, and they asked if we'd go with them. When the 75 year old crowd decides to go on a vacation and asks you along, you don't say "no"... because all too soon, they'll lose that ability, and youll find yourself on a Kon Tiki wishing Dad were there... remembering the good times you had when he was... you don't say "no" to the opportunity to make those good memories. ESPECIALLY not when the opportunity means another cruise on a Celebrity Solstice class ship! Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
The Reflection is a phenomenal ship. It is one of the easiest ships to navigate -- even though is one the largest (about 3100 passengers) that we'd been on. It is simple; the entertainment is in the front of the ship & all the ... Read More
The Reflection is a phenomenal ship. It is one of the easiest ships to navigate -- even though is one the largest (about 3100 passengers) that we'd been on. It is simple; the entertainment is in the front of the ship & all the restaurants are in the back. Bars are everywhere. As I mentioned, the ship is new -- only about 3 months old when we sailed. Naturally, everything was in good condition. It seemed as if the ship was constantly being cleaned, the workers do a great job. Despite the large number of people, there was always a quiet place to hang out. The vocal talent on the ship was fantastic. This refers to the single & group acts that were on stage, in a public area, or in a bar. The shows were mixed. The first production show was OK, the second was horrible, the final show was fantastic. The first comedian (Ryan Hamilton) was very clean & very funny. The magician was good, but card tricks get old -- and that is all he did the entire show. The special acts (contortionist, acrobats, etc.) were awesome. There is a single act, Haley, who is a young acrobat/contortionist that is as good as it gets. The Valentines day brunch (day 5 of the cruise) was spectacular; 12 ice carvings, sushi, ham, prime rib, salmon, and hordes of desserts. Qsine, however, was the eating highlight. This is the "must do" if you're looking for a specialty restaurant. The menu, the service, the presentation, the food, and the ambiance make this a simply unique and wonderful place to eat. The bad: The ride from Miami was rough. The seas were choppy, but it did not seem like there was not enough wind to warrant the swaying. (this was our 4th cruise, so we did know what to expect) This was the case on any deck -- not just the high ones. I'd read about stabilization issues with the Reflection, but apparently, everything was working "OK" on our trip. I don't agree. Blu. A lot of people have raved about Blu. I will not be among those. If Blu was not busy, we'd see our waiter more that once. Usually, we only saw them one time and that was when they took our order. The poor assistant waiters ran non-stop. Blu simply did not have enough help to give decent service. We ate in the main dining room one time and had better service. This was frustrating since Blu calls itself a "specialty restaurant" and Blu is the place we paid for with our cabin class. We had 4 different waiters during the week & this was the case with all of them. Funny -- the ship had plenty of bar help & someone was always there to get a drink order. So if you wanted alcohol in your drink, you were in luck. If you wanted a coffee refill, or if there was a problem with your meal, you were out of luck. The fitness center is nice, but the instructors "working" there will not talk to you unless you want to purchase a product or take part in a class (which cost money than they should). One of the perks of the Aqua class staterooms is access to the Persian Gardens. First, the room key does not work for Persian Gardens. You have to stand in line; give them your room key to get another key and stand in line again to get your room key back. Since they typically only have 1 person at the counter taking phone calls, etc. this process can take a while. It sounds cool, but twice, during our visit, the alarms went off. It took the staff 5 minutes (each time) to come out to reset them. Not cool to have alarms blaring in a area meant to relax ones soul & mind. The ugly: Aqua class. There is a lot of confusion with what was included with our cabin. For example, guest services told us we received 1 free meal at any specialty restaurant -- the restaurant told us we did not. Upon returning to guest services (and speaking to the same person) we did not get a meal. We did receive priority embarkation in Miami, but did not get the priority embark/debark at any of the ports like we were told. We did not get priority debark upon returning to the United States either. Free yoga is advertised as a perk. What is not told is that it is free on-demand yoga, which means you can watch yoga on TV. (keep in mind there is no room in the staterooms for a couple to do this activity) We were supposed to receive canapes in our room every day, we did not the last 2. We did receive fresh fruit most days, the last day we did not. We had flowers in our room, but they were not replaced during the week. None of these are a big issues alone, but together they paint a picture of a crew that does not have its act together. In summary, Aqua class is a waste of money & Celebrity advertises amenities that are not what one might expect. I wish I'd saved the extra $800 and gone to a specialty restaurant each night. Service on the ship is great in spots, but inconsistent overall. In a visit to guest services later in the week to discuss the above issues, I found a long line. A second visit resulted in the same, so the only place Celebrity will find out about these issues is on the comment card we left or by reading this review. Read Less
Sail Date February 2013
Great First Cruise on Celebrity! Veteran cruiser trying Celebrity Reflection (Feb 16 -- 23) Background to review: With our children grown and no longer cruising with us, we usually book a suite for the extra amenities offered. On ... Read More
Great First Cruise on Celebrity! Veteran cruiser trying Celebrity Reflection (Feb 16 -- 23) Background to review: With our children grown and no longer cruising with us, we usually book a suite for the extra amenities offered. On this cruise, we booked the Aqua Class veranda room, deck 11, 1586. Besides our Hawaii cruise on Pride of America, which was exceptional and our cruise on NCL Pearl to Grand Cayman, this cruise ranks as one of the top three cruises we have experienced. I am not saying that everything on the Celebrity Reflection was the greatest, but the combination of the ship, the crew, the entertainment, the excursions (excluding San Juan), the food, the friends we met, and of course the spa, made for a perfect week. Congratulations to Captain Bouzakis who I met on the first sea day and he asked me to report back at the end of the week.....well Captain, I am impressed!!! Overall Evaluation: (more detail comments appear below) - The Reflection is a great ship for cruising. Easy to navigate, colorful, and well maintained. It should be, it is NEW! Not too big to get lost but large enough to offer a variety of activities. The non-smoking rules are also a benefit for nonsmokers. Just stay away from the Mast Bar. - Our veranda room was very comfortable, had ample storage and a good view from the balcony. - Food quality was good to superb everywhere, not just in the specialty dining areas like on other ships. I will comment on the BLU later in this report for AQUA CLASS diners. - General dining room (Opus Room) offered a good variety, with excellent quality, great service and never a waiting line whenever we went there. - Entertainment was typical for cruise ships. Better than average with some highlights. The last night's duo with the cruise director Paul singing was outstanding. These Guys also were outstanding everywhere they sang. - The Spa was adequate but not as great as may be advertised. I have had better on other ships. This is the one area where I spend a lot of my time. - The staff everywhere was as friendly and helpful as can be. Their attitude of "can't say no" and willingness to go the extra mile to please the customer permeates from Captain Bouzakis throughout the entire staff. This attitude is clearly demonstrated by the visibility of the officers throughout the ship. On the first sea day, the Captain stopped and talked to Wendy and I without knowing us nor that we were not Celebrity Elite status. AQUA CLASS VERANDA and BLU: I booked the AQUA CLASS room to get access to the SPA and also to have the availability to eat in the BLU restaurant for breakfast and dinner. The room was typical for balcony rooms in size but did have adequate storage. The showers in the AQUA class rooms are great with the side jets and overhead shower head. Embarkation for the Aqua Class was a breeze. We arrived at 11:30 and were on the ship within 30 minutes. We were NOT impressed with the breakfast offering in the BLU. In fact, after the first day we ate breakfast in the OPUS and one day we tried the buffet. I like EGGS BENEDICT and other options available in the OPUS. The BLU has a limited menu for both breakfast and dinner. The food quality in the BLU was good, just needs more variety. DINING: Bistro on Five: This is a great place that did not seem to be very busy. Upon embarkation, we went to the Bistro on Five so we could have a quiet meal without the crowd at the buffet. There is a $5.00 charge but worth every penny. The crepes are OUTSTANDING. Opus Dining Room: Good variety, excellent quality, and good service. We attended the Special Bruch on Thursday and this was probably the only meal that I would skip when I cruise again. Food was plentiful, great variety, but the organization was lacking and hectic with some people being seated and others just arriving and taking seats. I would rather have gone earlier to another restaurant and has a nice sit down breakfast. Tuscan Grille: OUTSTANDING, OUTSTANDING, OUTSTANDING. I had the filet (huge) and a side dish of the lobster pasta with alfredo sauce (also an entree). Ate too much but totally enjoyed every bite. Oceanview Cafe: Good variety, food was adequate. It is a buffet. They do offer EGGS BENEDICT. AquaSpa Cafe: I ate there every morning after my workout at 7:00. Had cereal and fruit before I picked up my wife for breakfast. Great place to go for an early morning light snack. Never was crowded at 7:00 -- 8:00. BLU: Mentioned before that I enjoyed the quality of food just not the limited menu. I did like the option that the BLU was always available for Aqua Class for dinner between 6 -- 9 pm without a reservation. This option did not force us into a schedule but allowed us the flexibility I enjoy. Mast Grill: Last but certainly NOT the least. Did not find this until the third day and what a mistake. Absolutely the best hamburger anywhere. All you have to do is look at the line that starts at 11:30 when they open and you know something must be good. Don't let the line scare you away....it moves very fast because the staff is very organized. I had read that the coffee on the Reflection was terrible. I concur. I bought the Premium Non-alcohol package and enjoyed the specialty coffees. Another cruiser told me she just dilutes the coffee with hot water. I tried that and it helped. If you like really strong mud, you will like the regular machine coffee. I can summarize our dining experience by saying "The food was excellent." Aqua Spa / Solarium / Exercise Room: This is one area of the ship I go to every day. The exercise room has the typical equipment but has ONLY three recumbent bicycles. I like this equipment and I wish they had more of them. After all, some of us are getting older and those other bikes are difficult to sit on and the treadmills are hard on my knees. I really enjoy the Thermal Spas on the ships I cruise and the Reflection Persian Garden has many features of other ships I have taken but not all inclusive in one area. The Persian Garden is a delight. Heated tile chairs, saunas, and cold room. Problem is, you have to leave the area for any pool or Jacuzzi experience. These items are in the Solarium where it is open to the entire ship and often crowded. It is located on deck 12. The relaxation room you could miss if you don't know where it is. Located on deck 11 with one access down the spiral staircase from the Persian Garden. The room overlooks the front of the ship with several really comfortable cushioned chairs. Only downside is the hostess for the massage treatments often places waiting clients in the room to fill out paper work disturbing the people trying to relax. Men and ladies locker room in the spa are adequate. Not extremely large. ENTERTAINMENT: DO NOT MISS the final Farewell Variety Showtime on the last night. It provides a great emotional high and a fitting tribute to a great cruise. Paul, the cruise director, has an outstanding voice and should consider singing more during the cruise. He was much better than the singer they featured one night. These Guys were great everywhere they sang on the ship. The dance competition with the officers and guests was hilarious. PORTS: San Juan: I could skip this port and NOT miss anything. Like going to an decaying American city in the middle of the Caribbean. We walked to El Murro. Good exercise but did not feel particularly safe. Nice to see the police standing on many of the intersections. The shops along the way reminded me of going to Dollar General or the Dollar store. Cheap merchandise....mostly trinkets. I would recommend booking an excursion if you want something to do in San Juan. I will not be going back there anytime soon. St Maartens: We had booked an excursion through the cruise ship, SMH6 Catamaran Mirabella Beach and Sea excursion. Sailing was great, crew was great, the beach was beautiful, and the snorkeling was fun but not the best in the Caribbean. Water was rough and not much to see. Did not bother me because the entire experience was fun and delightful. Shopping in St Maartens at the shops just off the pier was very good. Many shops, safe area and very clean as opposed to San Juan. St. Kitts: Shopping was very good at the shops just a short walk from the pier. We also booked the bus/train ride around the island: Caribbean Scenic Railway Tour (KT15A). Very informative tour of the entire island. The train ride was very pleasant with drinks offered and entertainment(singers) provided. A great way to experience and see St. Kitts. Not sure how young children would enjoy this excursion but it was great for us mature adults. DISEMBARKATION: Easiest and quickest I have every encountered. We always like to walk off with our luggage. We entered the Ensemble Lounge at 7:15 and we were off the boat within 15 minutes. We were at our gate in the Miami airport by 8:30. Very organized for us. CRUISE CRITIC MEET AND GREET: Celebrity did a fine job of hosting our Meet and Greet in Michael's lounge. The cruise director, Paul, kicked off the meeting and introduced some of the staff in attendance. Refreshments were provided and we got to meet some very nice people who we spent some time with during the rest of the voyage. NEXT CRUISE: We are looking forward to cruising on the NCL Jewel to Alaska this year. About 80% of the experienced cruisers I met on board have cruised in Alaska and loved it. With our great experience from this cruise, we are looking into another Celebrity Reflection cruise possible in Europe. I now have two cruise lines that I really enjoy: NCL and Celebrity. Some others were totally eliminated from our planning. Read Less
Sail Date February 2013
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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