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This was my birthday cruise for turning 65. We had planned to do a European River Cruise this year but life got in the way and on the spur of the moment we decided to try something close by - Charleston, SC for a quick 5 day break to the Bahamas. Our cruise booking firm did a very nice job helping us out with the arrangements. However, one thing you need to keep in mind is that when you get a special rate (senior rate for a guaranteed outside ocean view stateroom) you are not going to be on the upper deck. We were just above the waterline. Just means you have an elevator trip to everything. Fortunately, we were near the elevator that went to the food and bar section of the ship so it could have been worse. Just saying, pay the extra $100 and pick your cabin! Charleston is not a busy port and if you are used to Florida ports you will be a little disappointed. Lots of walking to get to the beginning of a series of lines to get on the ship. Here's where being old helps - the cruise people keep moving you to the shortest lines! Nice! However, there are a bunch of them. First to check in. Then to go thru security. Then to get your cabin assignment. Then you walk up a multi-level gangway to get on the ship after running a gauntlet of photographers. And then you find out you are way down in the bottom of the ship! Ecstasy is an older boat and its smaller than the new ones and it doesn't have all the cool stuff the new ones have - but I suspect that's why it is in Charleston! The crew was very nice and the cruise director was a riot. Our cabin boss was great. Even the bed was comfortable so no complaints there other than its a really small cabin! Here are the gripes. When we went to Freeport (not a nice port of call BTW) the people the cruise line had contracted with to bus us and several hundred other people to the beach were not prepared. They did not have enough buses and absolutely no communication skills. We literally had no idea what was going on and try as we might, could not find out. Eventually a crew member came out and offered refunds so we took that and went back on board. Second gripe was the food in the dining room (dinner your way - Windstar) and to a lesser extent the buffet. The food was unremarkable and the portions were pretty small. Exception: For $20 extra you can order off the Steakhouse Menu (there's no steakhouse, just the menu). I had filet and Lobster twice and both times they were very good. Desert was uniformly not good anywhere on board with the possible exception of the molten chocolate cake. Alcohol was okay but when you ordered wine by the glass you never really knew if you were getting Kendall Jackson or a cheap substitute because they don't show you the bottle unless you buy the bottle. I also ordered Crown and coke a few times and I'm not sure I was getting Crown Royal - again you don't see the bottle. Half Moon Cay was very nice. Wish we had more time there but neither of us were feeling well that day and the water was a little cold - certainly not the fault of the cruise line! The entertainment was mixed. I liked the comedy shows (except the last one we saw which was PG rated and it was clear the guy struggles with PG). The welcome show was very nice. The farewell show - not so much. We did a few other things like the Gender Fight or whatever it was which was funny. And we saw a fabulous moonrise one night. They have a very nice fitness center with lots of equipment and the spa was okay although I think they ripped off my wife. So, we've been on a number of cruises. This was our first on Celebration. We might do it again just for a quick getaway but if we have enough time I think we'll head to Florida and more choices.

High Hopes Unfulfilled

Carnival Ecstasy Cruise Review by bcardos

11 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: March 2017
  • Destination: Bahamas
  • Cabin Type: Ocean View
This was my birthday cruise for turning 65. We had planned to do a European River Cruise this year but life got in the way and on the spur of the moment we decided to try something close by - Charleston, SC for a quick 5 day break to the Bahamas.

Our cruise booking firm did a very nice job helping us out with the arrangements. However, one thing you need to keep in mind is that when you get a special rate (senior rate for a guaranteed outside ocean view stateroom) you are not going to be on the upper deck. We were just above the waterline. Just means you have an elevator trip to everything. Fortunately, we were near the elevator that went to the food and bar section of the ship so it could have been worse. Just saying, pay the extra $100 and pick your cabin!

Charleston is not a busy port and if you are used to Florida ports you will be a little disappointed. Lots of walking to get to the beginning of a series of lines to get on the ship. Here's where being old helps - the cruise people keep moving you to the shortest lines! Nice! However, there are a bunch of them. First to check in. Then to go thru security. Then to get your cabin assignment. Then you walk up a multi-level gangway to get on the ship after running a gauntlet of photographers. And then you find out you are way down in the bottom of the ship!

Ecstasy is an older boat and its smaller than the new ones and it doesn't have all the cool stuff the new ones have - but I suspect that's why it is in Charleston! The crew was very nice and the cruise director was a riot. Our cabin boss was great. Even the bed was comfortable so no complaints there other than its a really small cabin!

Here are the gripes. When we went to Freeport (not a nice port of call BTW) the people the cruise line had contracted with to bus us and several hundred other people to the beach were not prepared. They did not have enough buses and absolutely no communication skills. We literally had no idea what was going on and try as we might, could not find out. Eventually a crew member came out and offered refunds so we took that and went back on board.

Second gripe was the food in the dining room (dinner your way - Windstar) and to a lesser extent the buffet. The food was unremarkable and the portions were pretty small. Exception: For $20 extra you can order off the Steakhouse Menu (there's no steakhouse, just the menu). I had filet and Lobster twice and both times they were very good. Desert was uniformly not good anywhere on board with the possible exception of the molten chocolate cake. Alcohol was okay but when you ordered wine by the glass you never really knew if you were getting Kendall Jackson or a cheap substitute because they don't show you the bottle unless you buy the bottle. I also ordered Crown and coke a few times and I'm not sure I was getting Crown Royal - again you don't see the bottle.

Half Moon Cay was very nice. Wish we had more time there but neither of us were feeling well that day and the water was a little cold - certainly not the fault of the cruise line!

The entertainment was mixed. I liked the comedy shows (except the last one we saw which was PG rated and it was clear the guy struggles with PG). The welcome show was very nice. The farewell show - not so much. We did a few other things like the Gender Fight or whatever it was which was funny. And we saw a fabulous moonrise one night.

They have a very nice fitness center with lots of equipment and the spa was okay although I think they ripped off my wife.

So, we've been on a number of cruises. This was our first on Celebration. We might do it again just for a quick getaway but if we have enough time I think we'll head to Florida and more choices.
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Cabin Review

Ocean View
Cabin 6A R181
Like I said, its small, it was down in the bowels of the ship, but the cabin attendant kept it clean, he was always there when we needed him and the bed was comfy. I will say on the last night it was really cold and I had no idea how to make the air warm other than turning off the blower. I'm not sure there is heat!
Riviera Deck Inside Cabins, Outside Cabins