This was our first cruise to South America. Crossing the Equator to the southern hemisphere is a unique experience. The 16 night itinerary from Barcelona to Buenos Aires included several ports of call we’ve never visited, and the cost was reasonable. We’ve sailed on the Eclipse several times, and were not concerned with getting bored on many days at sea.
We arrived in Barcelona after a 2 night stay in Lisbon. We used the convenient Aerobus from the airport to Placa Catalunya and walked from there to Hotel Andante. We met cruisemates from the roll call for a pre-cruise dinner and afterwards still managed to squeeze a visit to the Picasso Museum on a free evening. Next morning we had a 10 minute walk to board the T3 Port Shuttle (€3 each) for the short ride to Terminal “C”. We arrived around noon, hoping to attend the Concierge lunch in the Dining room. However, the embarkation process was a total disaster with long lines and short on processing staff. The “priority line” for Concierge Class took us 2 hours, moving at a snails’ pace because it was merged with all the other passengers at the finish line. So we missed the Concierge lunch, and it’s the first time our luggage arrived at our cabin before us. Not a promising start, topped by an automated phone message in our cabin from the Concierge welcoming us aboard and trusting we experienced smooth embarkation.
Since there were so many Spanish-speaking guests, all announcements were also made in Spanish and Portuguese. Our cruise director Alejandro from Argentina also repeated every phrase in Spanish, but he is such a fun guy that we didn’t mind at all. Most of the crew members were eager to please.
Our C2 Concierge balcony cabin #1062 was great. Mid-ship, well insulated from noise in adjoining cabins. Bed by the bath, and no inside cabins across the corridor. No ship vibrations like others have reported elsewhere on the ship. We were told the company will undertake a costly repair job in the coming year to reduce and hopefully eliminate the vibration issue for good. The TV in the cabin no longer provides vital information such as outside temperature and wind speed. Our cabin steward Arnold did an excellent job and was always nearby making sure we were happy. We requested additional hangers, wine glasses, ice and cheese platter instead of the daily afternoon canapés.
we walked to the beach promenade and did some shopping on the way back through town
Picasso museum and shopping on Las Ramblas group dinner pre-cruise. You can buy wine to bring on board right in the cruise terminal after passing security.
lots of “Black Friday”sales on the main pedestrian street. Then visited the Maritime Museum and the Archeology Museum where the focus was on the underwater aspects of the digging
there’s nothing around the port, so we took the Celebrity shuttle bus ($15/person) to the city and went shopping and walked along the beachfront promenade