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Bottom line: This was the first cruise on any line where I wanted to hang out on the ship in the evenings instead of hiding in my cabin after dinner. About us: 2 late-40s/early-50s double-income-no-kids. My parents, who I'm sure will write their own review, joined us. Hotel: We stayed at the Hyatt Airport West/Doral. The service was great, the pool and fitness room were clean, there were plenty of restaurants within walking distance. The first room they gave us smelled so bad we couldn't stay in it. The second room smelled funky, but was acceptable. It must be a room-by-room problem because my parents thought the hotel was great. Travel to the embarkation port: We took the hotel shuttle. It was uneventful. Embarkation: Ug! Embarkation was delayed because, in the words of Celebrity "Celebrity Reflection received a security threat that appeared to not be credible due to the nature and content of the threat. In an abundance of caution, Reflection immediately implemented safety response procedures and contacted law enforcement authorities. At 2 p.m., Celebrity Reflection received the "all-clear" and resumed boarding." Translation: some [not-so-nice-person] made a bomb threat. Everyone handled it better than could be expected. Celebrity passed out water, there was a vile but functional restroom in the parking garage across the street, and staff were doing the best they could given the circumstances. I had some breakfast biscuits in my bag, so we weren’t hungry. We passed the time watching the excitement about embarkation unfold on CruiseCritic and singing Christmas carols with a few other people in line. The ship: Reflection is a lovely ship. It’s fun to explore. Check out the Hideaway on deck 7. The hammocks on deck 15 are amazing. The fitness center is huge for a ship this size. It has a great stretching area on the bow of the ship and a yoga room that guests can use when there isn’t a class. The jogging track is 8 laps per mile. We spent an afternoon hanging out with some CruiseCritic friends in their private alcove. It was a nice experience, but the service was spotty (e.g., the attendant brought us bottled drinks but no bottle opener). Drinks and bars: I was disappointed that the Molecular Bar no longer serves liquid nitrogen drinks. It was a nice place to hang out in the evening, as was the wine bar on deck 4. We would have been fine with the classic drink package, but really enjoyed the premium options. I liked being able to get my S. Pellegrino bottled water; BF liked the wider variety of wine choices. I loved the pour-over iced teas from the coffee bar on deck 5. You can get coffee drinks like lattes and café Americanos at the bar in the buffet area. The “fresh squeezed” juices may not have been “freshly squeezed” but they were better than the juice out of the machines in the buffet. Dining: Food was mostly “good” or “very good.” I agree with the others who say the lobster was disappointing. Pay attention to the buffet hours posted in the Celebrity Today. There’s always something to eat, but it might not be what you want when you want it. Music and activities: The music was inoffensive. I was expecting it to be dreadful after reading the reviews on CruiseCritic. I’m not sure if the critics were on the same ship as I was. For example, L.A.X. is a typical cruise ship pool/bar band with a limited repertoire. The DJ wasn’t too overbearing. At the risk of stating the obvious, don’t nap by the pool if you don’t want to be suddenly awakened by pool volleyball and other festivities. The front of the ship on decks 15 and 16 were quiet places to relax. We’ve sailed with cruise director Alexander before. He’s more subdued than the other cruise directors I’ve encountered. I described him as “not annoying.” And I mean that as a compliment :) We attended one show and enjoyed it. I wanted to see one of the Miami-nightclub scene events that people have been panning on the Celebrity board, but 10:30 is “past my bedtime.” Ports and shore excursions: San Juan – we were late arriving in San Juan because of our delayed departure. We decided to stay onboard because we’ve been to San Juan twice before. Everyone we talked to said we made the right choice unless we were into the bar scene. I understand the stores were closed and that there were panhandlers that made cruisers uncomfortable. St. Thomas – we took the Celebrity excursion to Sapphire Beach. It was a great place to spend a few hours if you like to snorkel. In addition to the usual fish and coral, we saw cuttle fish and an eagle ray. In the afternoon, we walked into town and shopped at one of the street markets. St. Maarten – we arranged for an island tour through the St. Maarten cab company. It was a great way to spend the morning! We went back to the ship for lunch, then walked into town. We’re huge Star Wars fans, so we spent a few hours at That Yoda Guy’s store and museum. Incredible! Disembarkation: We used the luggage valet service and had a late flight, so disembarkation was fairly relaxed. If I could do it over, I would have opted for a cab instead of the ship transfer. The ship transfer to the airport was fine, but a cab would have been quicker and probably a little cheaper.

Celebrity won me back, even though many other cruisecritics are jumping ship.

Celebrity Reflection Cruise Review by phdiva

1 person found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: December 2015
  • Destination: Eastern Caribbean
  • Cabin Type: Deluxe Ocean View with Verandah (partially obstructed view)
Bottom line: This was the first cruise on any line where I wanted to hang out on the ship in the evenings instead of hiding in my cabin after dinner.

About us: 2 late-40s/early-50s double-income-no-kids. My parents, who I'm sure will write their own review, joined us.

Hotel: We stayed at the Hyatt Airport West/Doral. The service was great, the pool and fitness room were clean, there were plenty of restaurants within walking distance. The first room they gave us smelled so bad we couldn't stay in it. The second room smelled funky, but was acceptable. It must be a room-by-room problem because my parents thought the hotel was great.

Travel to the embarkation port: We took the hotel shuttle. It was uneventful.

Embarkation: Ug! Embarkation was delayed because, in the words of Celebrity "Celebrity Reflection received a security threat that appeared to not be credible due to the nature and content of the threat. In an abundance of caution, Reflection immediately implemented safety response procedures and contacted law enforcement authorities. At 2 p.m., Celebrity Reflection received the "all-clear" and resumed boarding." Translation: some [not-so-nice-person] made a bomb threat. Everyone handled it better than could be expected. Celebrity passed out water, there was a vile but functional restroom in the parking garage across the street, and staff were doing the best they could given the circumstances. I had some breakfast biscuits in my bag, so we weren’t hungry. We passed the time watching the excitement about embarkation unfold on CruiseCritic and singing Christmas carols with a few other people in line.

The ship: Reflection is a lovely ship. It’s fun to explore. Check out the Hideaway on deck 7. The hammocks on deck 15 are amazing. The fitness center is huge for a ship this size. It has a great stretching area on the bow of the ship and a yoga room that guests can use when there isn’t a class. The jogging track is 8 laps per mile.

We spent an afternoon hanging out with some CruiseCritic friends in their private alcove. It was a nice experience, but the service was spotty (e.g., the attendant brought us bottled drinks but no bottle opener).

Drinks and bars: I was disappointed that the Molecular Bar no longer serves liquid nitrogen drinks. It was a nice place to hang out in the evening, as was the wine bar on deck 4.

We would have been fine with the classic drink package, but really enjoyed the premium options. I liked being able to get my S. Pellegrino bottled water; BF liked the wider variety of wine choices. I loved the pour-over iced teas from the coffee bar on deck 5. You can get coffee drinks like lattes and café Americanos at the bar in the buffet area. The “fresh squeezed” juices may not have been “freshly squeezed” but they were better than the juice out of the machines in the buffet.

Dining: Food was mostly “good” or “very good.” I agree with the others who say the lobster was disappointing. Pay attention to the buffet hours posted in the Celebrity Today. There’s always something to eat, but it might not be what you want when you want it.

Music and activities: The music was inoffensive. I was expecting it to be dreadful after reading the reviews on CruiseCritic. I’m not sure if the critics were on the same ship as I was. For example, L.A.X. is a typical cruise ship pool/bar band with a limited repertoire. The DJ wasn’t too overbearing. At the risk of stating the obvious, don’t nap by the pool if you don’t want to be suddenly awakened by pool volleyball and other festivities. The front of the ship on decks 15 and 16 were quiet places to relax.

We’ve sailed with cruise director Alexander before. He’s more subdued than the other cruise directors I’ve encountered. I described him as “not annoying.” And I mean that as a compliment :)

We attended one show and enjoyed it. I wanted to see one of the Miami-nightclub scene events that people have been panning on the Celebrity board, but 10:30 is “past my bedtime.”

Ports and shore excursions:

San Juan – we were late arriving in San Juan because of our delayed departure. We decided to stay onboard because we’ve been to San Juan twice before. Everyone we talked to said we made the right choice unless we were into the bar scene. I understand the stores were closed and that there were panhandlers that made cruisers uncomfortable.

St. Thomas – we took the Celebrity excursion to Sapphire Beach. It was a great place to spend a few hours if you like to snorkel. In addition to the usual fish and coral, we saw cuttle fish and an eagle ray. In the afternoon, we walked into town and shopped at one of the street markets.

St. Maarten – we arranged for an island tour through the St. Maarten cab company. It was a great way to spend the morning! We went back to the ship for lunch, then walked into town. We’re huge Star Wars fans, so we spent a few hours at That Yoda Guy’s store and museum. Incredible!

Disembarkation: We used the luggage valet service and had a late flight, so disembarkation was fairly relaxed. If I could do it over, I would have opted for a cab instead of the ship transfer. The ship transfer to the airport was fine, but a cab would have been quicker and probably a little cheaper.
phdiva’s Full Rating Summary
Value For Money
Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
Cabin
Fitness & Recreation
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Cabin Review

Deluxe Ocean View with Verandah (partially obstructed view)
Cabin 2C 6156
Great location! No noise from the elevators. It's one of the angled balconies and could fit four chairs. It was nicely sheltered from the wind while the ship was moving but didn't feel stuffy while we were docked. The tender is directly below the balcony but didn't noticably impair our view.
Continental Deck Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Island Tour
    We arranged for an island tour through the St. Maarten cab company. It was a great way to spend the morning! We went back to the ship for lunch, then walked into town. We’re huge Star Wars fans, so we spent a few hours at That Yoda Guy’s store and museum. Incredible!
    View All 384 Island Tour Reviews
  • Snorkeling
    We took the Celebrity excursion to Sapphire Beach. It was a great place to spend a few hours if you like to snorkel. In addition to the usual fish and coral, we saw cuttle fish and an eagle ray. In the afternoon, we walked into town and shopped at one of the street markets.
    View All 331 Snorkeling Reviews