Equinox does it again!: Celebrity Equinox Cruise Review by 24butterfly

Celebrity Equinox 5
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Equinox does it again!

Sail Date: July 2012
Destination: Europe - Western Mediterranean
Embarkation: Other
Background Information: We just love the Mediterranean. We don't look to find fault with any of the cruises, however X has spoiled us for life. We have upwards of 30 cruises---the Equinox is the absolute best we have been on, and my husband, who is plain and simple, really loved the ship and the amenities.

Hotel Info: We arrived 2 and a half days prior to cruise, using X's Choice Air, b/c, believe it or not, it was the cheapest we could fine (and I look!) We always stay at the Hotel Quirinale, and the Concierge remembered us from previous stays. It's located near the Republica stop and Termini, the 170 bus and a few others pass right in front of the hotel. A few doors down is a small church (St. Paul within the Walls) which we bought tix to an opera that night, and a good restaurant located around the block. There's a small gourmet food store located a few hundred yards from the Hotel. Love the Old World decor (no, don't read it as "run down"), but it's a European More style hotel with a great elevator (wrought iron) that I absolutely adore--think "Thoroughly Modern Millie"--I usually do every time I get into that elevator. Cute and quaint. Their customer service is excellent, as I had a problem with the plumbing and they changed the room. Unfortunately, I had to give up a footed tub....

Ship Info: It's the Equinox. Need I say more? Beautiful decor, loved the ship, layout, everything. First time I booked the same cruise for the next year.

Activities: Lots of 'em. Too many. Did go to Bingo one time, though...Missed the Captain's thing, too busy doing nothing. They also had Turkish entertainment one day by the pool. They do keep you entertained! Good poolside music.

Service: Excellent in the Dining Room. Cabin was always clean, Butler tidied up everything....He never threw anything out, which was great.

Port & Shore Excursions: Took 1 shore excursion, as we are DIY'rs. Great excursion to the Dolmabahce Palace (Istanbul)--got us there, bypassed the long line 1st thing in the morning, good tour guide, air-cond. bus--and a tour of the part of the city we were in, info about the city, as we had finished b4 the scheduled time. Sometimes, ya just gotta let them take care of you. Well worth the price...

Travel To Port of Embarkation: Used Romeshuttlelimosine.com as we have used them b4. On time, clean van, air conditioned, and also shared the ride to port with 3 other CC'rs. This Board is GREAT.

Stateroom: Sky Suite. Cabin 2148. While the extra room was nice, I was really happy with the Concierge Class Cabin we had last year. The cabin was not decorated in anything luxurious, we just had extra room and a large balcony. Could have done the same on a regular balcony....The Butler was nice, but he was kind of hit and miss. Room Service will do the same for you, and the Butler didn't even ask to assist with the packing/unpacking. He just wheeled in the luggage, and I had to put it on the bed.

Dining: We had Select dining for the 1st time, Natalie was great. I did have reservations for each night...My husband does not do "Adventures In Dining", so he nixed Blu for dinner. We breakfasted in Blu--very good, and quiet. Boy, do they treat you well on that ship! Frankly, dinner in the MDR was excellent. I had escargot (yes, it's back!)--I thought the food was excellent, and I'm a foodie. Anything I ordered medium rare came out that way, as did rare. The first night, though, for dinner, we had trouble being in the mood for something, so we ordered the poached salmon. Excellent. I didn't think the desserts were anything special (good--saves calories), the ice-cream was just ok I thought, but the Spa Cuisine at the inside pool (why did I 4get the name??) was just enough. The fruits marinated in those spice/herb baths were excellent beyond anything else.

Children's Clubs: n/a

Entertainment: Went to most of the shows---.....Hate to say this, but Carnival has the absolute best Broadway/Las Vegas style productions. The performers were extremely talented (I think they took dancing lessons while still in the womb)--but the productions were kind of sedate....

Disembarkation: Smooth. They have this thing down pat! Took their transpo to the airport...Why couldn't the airport be as smooth? Shuttle to this, bus to that, shuttle to this, bus to that, up stairs, down stairs, plane not attached to gate ramp....Summary: Great cruise, great ports, great ship--LOVE the Equinox--X has earned our loyalty....Just gotta figure out where we're going next!

Thanks for reading! Less

Published 07/31/12

Cabin review: S12148 Sky Suite

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Port and Shore Excursions

Having been there, seen this, done that, we still went in anyway. Took the metro (easy), walked around the CROWDED Plaka, had some Greek food, then took train back and found 2 CC'rs to share cab back to terminal (3 euros). No signs of Greek unrest or turmoil....

Dolmabahce Palace

Love Istanbul. Excursion was great. Perfect timing, as it was on the day we were set to leave...That way, they'd wait if the tour was late. How nice to be taken care of. Also did alot on our own: tram, Cistern, saw the Blue Mosque again--Arasta Bazaar, ferry to Kadikoy, lunch in Kadikoy, dinner at a Turkish restaurant overlooking the Bosphorus with a moon that looked like Jupiter. Very memorable night.

Have been to Ephesus and the Terrace Houses/Sirince beore, so we decided to just explore Kusadasi. Those shopkeepers try and grab hold of you and don't let go! "Where r u from" and u just keep walking away, they come after you! To get 1 jewelry store person off our backs, we saaid we'd be back later. Well, they kept a lookout for us, and nabbed us, as they were the 1st store in the Bazaar. So they ask what kind of jewellery I like, and I say, well, of course, DIAMONDS. So the lady takes out this ring from the window--a 3 carat round, I try it on (no, I am not buying) and now she sicks the big guns on me. Told her that I was looking to upgrade from my stone, etc., asked what the color, clarity, etc. of this stone was --I, VS, and they told me the ring was $18000 !!! Told them I wasn't going to spend that much, and then they said that I could upgrade my original stone and send them the GIA certificate later (yeah, right) Then they asked me how much I wanted to spend--$8000 ? $7000 ? Told them I wasn't really looking to spend anything...To this day, I have my doubts about that stone. Even one of the ship's Officers, whom I had started talking to at lunch one day, said that people got ripped off. Never would I ever buy a stone where I couldn't return it if there was some problem with it.
Read 614 Kusadasi Reviews

3 other ships in port that day, so we opted to stay on the ship....Everyone coming back said how crowded the town was....We have been to Mykonos before. Ship docked outside of town, so if you did want to go, you had to pay for the shuttle. Too far and too hot to walk, also no taxi's waiting at the dock...
Read 840 Mykonos Reviews

We did this one ourselves. Did the Amalfi coast last year. Went to the Pallazo Reale, Capella San Severo, then to Sorbillo for pizza...Teatro San Carlo was not open--would have loved a tour of that! Took 1 day from Rome and took a fast-train to Naples to the Archaeological Museum---well worth it. What a gem! Naples really gets a bad rap--plenty to do and see here. Was looking for the ephiphany after eating the pizza--hate to say it, but we get better p'za here in Los Angeles...This is what they're talking about?? Never felt unsafe in Naples. No trash, no smells. Naples gets a bad rap!
Read 1173 Naples Reviews

Took the cable cars up...When we got to the top, THRONGS of people were up there, and we decided to just go back to the ship. It was also very HOT. Cable car line was loooong, so we found where the donkeys were....Well. This was best e-ticket ride and experience I have ever had! The donkey didn't even know I was on his back! They are well fed, trained, go slow, (and understand Greek as well!) and weren't sweating. Going DOWN 600 steps may not seem a big deal, but you are going STRAIGHT down (small steps), and I have a fear of heights. That, coupled with getting ON the donkey---well, I just kept reminding myself out loud that I was having fun and no, I am not going to die...This donkey ride down is something I will never forget and would do it again in a heartbeat...

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