Celebrity Reflection Cruise Review by JayBlack
- Sail Date: December 2012
- Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Took this cruise for relaxation having visited San Juan and St Maarten before. St Kitts was new.
Our previous Celebrity was 11 years ago on the Zenith - NYC to Bermuda.
Several areas that caught my eye. We have a disabled adult daughter who we have cruised with previously and I am always on the lookout for items that will make her trip more enjoyable. This new ship is the BEST I have seen for her needs. The most important item, the cabin, I did not see, but past experience has been good in regards to the handicap cabins.
There are 2 things I want to point out.What was new was the pool. The Reflection had an indoor pool that was accessible without having to climb any steps - my daughter can't do steps. There was a power chair lift for lowering my daughter into the pool. The pool itself had a depth range of 4'3" to 4'9" which makes it usable for my daughter who is barely 5'.It is great therapy for her to walk in the pool. Also, must note that whenever I passed the pool it was being used similarly by able-bodied adults.
The thresholds at the automatic doors were nearly level which is also good. Previously on other ships we have encounter inclined thresholds where the power wheelchair would get hung up unless one had a running start into electric doors that might not open. Also the gangways off the ship had no cross members making pushing a wheelchair up for instance much easier. On this trip we disembarked from Deck 2 so there was little incline.
Several general items of note. My wife and I favor traditional dining which seems to be a thing of the past with anytime dining and specialty restaurants now. We do not usually opt for the extra charge specialty restaurants, but the Reflection has one called Qsine, a tapas style, which seemed to be quite different. Indeed it was. We ate there one night on our own and then encouraged 7 others to join us for a second time. I really can't describe it. The foods representing a variety of countries was very good and uniquely presented. I would strongly encourage you to consider it.
The only major drawback relates to the dining experience. Now with alternatives to traditional dining, the dining room resulted in nights where many tables were either completely empty or only partially filled - 2 at a table of 8 or 12, 3 at a table of 12, etc. The food overall was very good.
I did buy before boarding the expanded non-alcoholic drink plan. It included fresh-squeezed orange juice and specialty teas/coffees along with sodas and bottled water.I am not sure if it saves much, but one bar person told me buying the sodas outright exposes one to a service charge and additional taxes in some ports.I drank hardy to be sure I got my monies worth.
Hopefully, I have give one a slightly different perspective. To sum it up, we choose a Celebrity Soltice class ship again.
Port & Shore Excursion Reviews
San JuanWe have been there before and did not take a tour. We did get of the ship and walked around a while.View All 3,095 San Juan Cruise Port Reviews
View Cruise Critic's San Juan Cruise Port Review
SnorkelingI took a catamarran to the snorkling site. I have snorkled numerous times before and this was one of the better spots.View All 52 Snorkeling Reviews
St. MaartenI did the Sea Trek helmet dive in place of snorkling. It was not bad. Once at the platform we were offered a chance to get our money back as underwater visibility was reduced. One couple took up the offer and returned to the ship.View All 4,132 St. Maarten Cruise Port Reviews
The head man on the platform said that they have had disabled people and have successfully gotten them to do the dive. In my case with my daughter who would love the experience I do not know for certain that it would work since there is a ladder involved. I honestly do not know on this activity or others for that matter that you can really evaluate them before hand. I have called the cr5uise tour desks in advance but they really won't promise results which is frustrating to be sure. The biggest factor overlying any activity with a physically challenged individual is that virtually noone today will help due to the liability if either the guest or employee gets hurt.
View Cruise Critic's St. Maarten Cruise Port Review