Celebrity's heavy focus on dining -- the line tries to hit the trends that you find in restaurants on land -- means that there's an abundance of restaurant options. The problem is you have to pay for many of them. If you're in a standard cabin, the only Celebrity Equinox restaurants without fees are the Silhouette main dining room, the Oceanview Cafe buffet, some items at the AquaSpa Cafe and the Mast Grill.
Blu and Luminae are only for AquaClass and suite passengers, respectively. Specialty restaurants on Celebrity Equinox are popular, and packages are available. Among these extra-fee options, the Italian steakhouse Tuscan Grille earns raves, as do the a la carte choices of Sushi on Five. You'll want reservations for specialty dining.
Silhouette Dining Room (Decks 3 & 4)
Meals: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Dinner (D): As Celebrity Equinox’s main dining room, Silhouette – with lofty ceilings and numerous table configurations – offers passengers a choice of two set meal times: early or late. Those who prefer flexibility can opt for Celebrity Select Dining, which lets them dine any time during the dinner service. Passengers choosing the flex dining option can pre-reserve space online or onboard or walk in during the allotted hours and wait for a space to open up (rarely more than a few minutes).
Breakfast is open seating daily with standard items served. Lunch takes place here on port days only, with soups, salads, hot entrees and grilled items.
Dinner menus are arranged in the traditional manner: appetizers, soups and salads followed by entrees and then desserts and cheese. Quality ingredients cooked and presented well make the main dining room experience consistently enjoyable. Expect a varied menu that changes regularly with the basics -- red meat, poultry, seafood and vegetarian dishes -- covered. If nothing on the rotating menu suffices, there are "always available" choices.
Different wines are featured on the menu each day, and a sommelier will make his or her way around to take drink orders or make recommendations.
Luminae (Deck 3)
Meals: B, L, D Exclusively for suite passengers, Luminae is an open-seating, modern dining room serving dishes made from only the best ingredients onboard -- think dashes of truffle and a dedicated dessert cart. The restaurant also offers a three-course menu by celebrity chef Daniel Boulud nightly, in addition to the regular menu. Lunch is only served on sea days.
Blu (Deck 5)
Meals: B, D Featuring seasonal fare in a soothing venue, Blu is the dedicated open-seating restaurant for AquaClass passengers. It serves dishes that focus on fresh, regional ingredients like local catches and seasonal vegetables.
The Spa Café (Deck 12)
Meals: B, L The Spa Cafe, in the adults-only Solarium, serves healthier fare (think small salads) for breakfast and lunch. The cafe also offers Greek yogurt parfaits, although those cost extra.
Oceanview Café (Deck 14)
Meals: B, L, D The Celebrity Equinox buffet, Oceanview Café, serves food until the wee hours. It functions as a multistation buffet for breakfast and lunch, and an open-seating, casual buffet alternative to the main dining room for dinner. Oceanview gives passengers the option to plate up hot entrees, pizza and pasta (including gluten-free), sushi, Indian curries, sandwiches, extensive salad offerings, ice cream and late-night snacks, all without additional charge. The choice makes it one of the best in big-ship cruising that we've encountered.
In the morning, you'll find made-to-order omelets and eggs Benedict, yogurt, fresh fruit and pastries among the offerings. Lunch is a mix of hot items, a full salad bar, sandwiches, cold cuts and vegetables. Dinner includes themed entrees, along with a carving station and plenty of vegetarian dishes, plus desserts and ice cream. The best feature, by far, is the sunny, open-air deck situated at the aft section of the restaurant.
Mast Grill (Deck 14)
Meals: L This casual grill has hamburgers, veggie burgers, turkey burgers, hot dogs and fries, free of charge. The food is mediocre, but it's good for a quick lunch or snack in between meals.
Murano (Deck 5); prix fixe
Meals: L, D The elegant French-Continental Murano serves luxuries like lobster cooked tableside, chateaubriand for two or a traditional French cheese plate and a custom wine menu; it's a romantic spot for special occasions. Vegetarian options like porcini and morel risotto are available. A lunch is available on a sea day once per cruise with a scaled-down version of the dinner menu.
Tuscan Grille (Deck 5); prix fixe
Meals: L, D
Tuscan Grille offers a range of steaks as well as Italian dishes and pastas, along with a nice wine menu and selection of Italian cocktails. The antipasti, which serves two to four people, is not to be missed. Ask to be seated by the windows when you make your reservation; the spectacular views of the wake make the meal all the more special. Tuscan Grille hosts lunch at least once per cruise, on a sea day, with a menu that is a scaled-down version of the dinner menu.
Le Petit Chef (Deck 5); prix fixe
Meals: D Le Petit Chef is an immersive dining experience rather than a restaurant. It blends gourmet food with entertainment and storytelling that includes 3D projections and elaborate table settings. This is one of the most unique dining options on Celebrity Equinox and caters to adults and children alike.
Sushi on Five (Deck 5); a la carte
Meals: L, D One of the best-kept secrets onboard, Sushi on Five has an excellent selection of hot pots, noodles and sushi at reasonable prices. A fun bonus is that Sushi on Five provides to-go lunch boxes for, say, a picnic on the lawn, or delivery right to your stateroom. We regularly saw 20 percent off total bill promotions.
Café al Bacio & Gelateria (Deck 5); a la carte
Meals: Snacks Cafe al Bacio is the place to see and be seen during the day. Patrons sip for-fee espresso drinks and pots of specialty teas with their complimentary pastries from gorgeous yellow high-back armchairs. The desserts here are seriously good with offerings like berry tarts, German chocolate cake, Nutella croissants and even sugar-free and gluten-free cookies. The Gelateria charges just a few dollars for gelato in a waffle cup. There's also a menu of spiked coffees and for-fee dessert items like a gelato sandwich or sundae.
Craft Social (Deck 4), a la carte
Meals: L, D Located right off the midship elevators on Deck 4, Craft Social is the ship's home for craft beer and comfort food. A la carte small and large plates dish up elevated pub food like truffle fries or pork buns, plus flatbreads. Craft Social opens in the afternoon on most days but is open for lunch on sea days. On those days, it's a casual place to grab a burger and a beer and watch the afternoon game.
Chef's Table (Deck 5); prix fixe
Meals: D Held in Murano once per cruise, Chef's Table is a multicourse culinary experience, paired with wine, guest starring the head chef onboard.
Room Service Room service is available 24/7. Continental breakfast is free and can be ordered via a door-hung card put out the night before. All other orders have a hefty $9.95 per order charge, plus an 18% gratuity.
* May require additional fees