Baltic Cruise is an ACTIVE cruise-wonderful sights to see: Celebrity Eclipse Cruise Review by dahnsc

Celebrity Eclipse 5
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Baltic Cruise is an ACTIVE cruise-wonderful sights to see

Sail Date: July 2011
Destination: Baltic Sea
Embarkation: Southampton
Our two weeks in the Baltic were full of active visits at port. As we sailed on the Equinox last summer, the ship itself did not hold too many surprises. We did enjoy the colorful atrium of the Equinox more than the stately gold and silver of the Eclipse.

We understand that the ship was completely full. We were pleased that the crew and staff were able to manage the load, and we never felt like we were overcrowded.

We had a great room, location wise, except for cleaning up the pool deck over us. Our room steward and his helper were excellent. Questions were answered and concerns dealt with immediately. A suggestion I left was for magnifying mirrors to be attached in the bathroom. (I know Aqua provides one, but it is large, and has to sit on a counter space.) You can get small 10X that have suction cups to attach to the main mirror very inexpensively. We noticed that a lot of the folks on our trip were our age and older; our eyes are not what they once were when it More comes to doing make up, etc. )We did not get to use our veranda as much this trip, with the cooler temps, but it was great when we did.It is great to be able to have room service for breakfast on the mornings you have to leave the ship early.

This was our first time using the main dining room, as we were in Aqua last summer. We were glad we chose Select dining, but wish someone had told us to go ahead and reserve times up front. The flexibility of Select made it possible for our group to grow for dinner, though, which was very nice. Service was good, and they worked to be sure our dish was as we wanted it to be.

The Ocean View Cafe' was ok for quick meals. I like the huge variety so I can have a salad and my husband can try all kinds of foods.

We loved the tour of the galley, plus the Q & A before. The chef should go on tour!

The entertainment was very good. The biggest disappointment was the hypnotist. It just went on too long, as he was "setting" his people up. We especially liked the comedian, who had cruise life down pat! The ship's dancers and singers did a great job! Their energy and talent were evident. While we have been to two actual Cirque programs, and saw the one on Equinox last summer, I must say the theme of this with the droning, loud music was not to our liking.

The deck service around the pool was lacking. I know that there were not as many people using the pool area due to the wind and cooler temperatures. But, we often had to look to find someone to order a drink. We did enjoy using the solarium area, and thanks for the age limit. No screeching kids-bad, sad, or having a good time-to interrupt an afternoon nap!

What can be done about the smoking problem? Having a smoking area in Sky Lounge does not keep the smoke over there. Can you add more ventilation, fans, etc. to keep the smoke with the smokers? Also, if a function has to move inside from the pool deck, the smokers should have to stay behind the curtain, in the smoking area.

Use of the towels in the restrooms is nice. However, I don't care if I have to use paper towel. However, your dispensers were very difficult to use. First, I think they can't be filled as much as they were-no "space" to pick the next one out. Next, since they are recycled fibers, they pull apart too easily-again, if not stuffed in, that would not be as big of a problem.

You need to make your drink packages more detailed. When one reads that a package covers "up to" a certain price, you assume that means it will COVER that much when a drink costs more. There was no mention of that not being the case. We had an episode at the Martini Bar that totally turned us off from there. We have since been told that the Premium package WILL pay for part of a drink, but no other packages are like that. That does not make any sense, and is certainly unfair. The head bar person told us that this was a new policy. If you are going to use this, then it needs to be detailed. Also, you should reconsider.

We are staying with Celebrity for next year. I just wish they could move the great glass shower curtains to their Millenium ships as they "solsticize" them! Less

Published 08/08/11

Cabin review: C22106 Concierge Class

We were in 2106, Concierge room The location was great-just a few steps from the elevator, stairs to the Oceanview Cafe, or out the doors to the pool deck. The balcony is slightly larger, being on the "bump." The balcony did get a bit of water each morning when they hosed off the pool deck. We had some overhead noises from the carts being pushed along the pool deck early in the morning. The closets can't get any larger, unfortunately. It might help to have a shelf above the upper hanging bar. The only space that is wasted for us is the bar. Too bad we can't have that cupboard. We did go ahead and use the cupboards over the bed, which meant the steward had to leave the pillows stacked on the couch. I like all the shelves in the bathroom.

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Port and Shore Excursions

Thank goodness we were back to the line up on stage for tickets. We opted not to spend six hours in the bus to go to Berlin. Instead, we did Rostok. Our guide was pleasant, but again, we needed to stay NEAR to hear what was being said-difficult to do in such large groups. It was a lovely area, and we enjoyed seeing the old facades and the inside of the church. I think we would have missed some stories here, had we done our own walk.

Read 152 Berlin Reviews

When I have not been to a city, I opt for a tour, to HEAR about the city, not just walk by the buildings on my own. Part of the problem with Brugge was the mass confusion leaving the ship. We expected the organized, line up across the stage for tickets. Instead, they did tables on one side of the theater-but no signs showing entrance and exit. So, before we left the ship, we were already frustrated. The weather was dreary, raining on and off, which makes walking on the uneven cobblestones much more difficult. For what we heard-when are they all going to headphones?-we could have walked it by ourselves. Our guide had a lot to say, but her master of English was not good, and she had to stop often to "search" for the words she wanted to use. I would say everyone should take a canal boat ride, though.

Another ship's excursion. Our guide must have been in training for a marathon or some such; we had a forced march past all the sights. We had headphones, but they were the one ear type, and they did not work well unless you were very near to the guide. Our ship's "helper" was too busy taking pictures, so did not stay behind the group, to be sure everyone was together. We had to holler ahead a few times to get the guide to stop so folks could catch up, or get across the street after a red light. Twice she said we were "early," so she took us some extra places. That was nice, but it is also nice to be able to take your pictures after hearing about a place. Again,a boat ride was part of our trip, and it was great.

We did a private tour in Helsinki, using Spb. We could not easily find the guide, as they were not allowed in side the gate. The company said they would be sure to tell future travelers that.We were surprised to find we had been placed in a larger group, but it was manageable. My husband had been there before, so he had seen all the sights. The rock church is interesting, but does not take long to see. We saw some other lovely sights, but the trip was soon over.

Read 614 Helsinki Reviews

We opted for a private tour here, using Spb. We had all heard horror stories of the problems getting off the ship in Russia for private tours. Enough people went to talk to the excursion folks, and the ship worked out a great system for us. Of course, they could not do a thing about the sour faced Russian immigration folks. Be advised-if in a group, go through immigration one at a time. They are not polite about couples entering the area together. Also, be sure to have a TICKET from your private tour, not just a verification from the company. What a marvelous, busy, two days. Our guide was fantastic; his English was very good; the headphones allowed us to move with him at our own rate, except at the end of the second day when the master went out. We had selected the Deluxe tour, which was PACKED with stops! We were exhausted at the end of the first day, partly from the schedule and partly from the heat. It was in the high 80's, and most of the places had no AC. We had the "pies" for lunch the first day which were great; the meal the second day was so so-I think they need to pick another place. OUr group of 16 rated the guide and driver very high. Again, we had a boat ride included. What a great way to get off the feet, and see another aspect of the city. I know they have many guides, but I think we got the best. I think the St. Petersburg stop could be three days, and you still would not see everything that is there.

Back to the ship's excursions. What an amazing view of the city from the ship! Truly a city of spires! The Vasa is probably the most impressive thing to see. I did have to ask the guide to face us when talking, as we did not have headphones. Especially at the Vasa, she wanted to face the ship as she pointed out things. The room is immense so sound is lost, plus there are so many other groups with guides, it would help to have headphones, or for them to be sure to turn around facing the group.

Another private tour with Spb. She was very informative and answered our questions. Tallin is a delightful city, just like a story book village. While the cobble stones were again sometimes hard to walk on, we got to see a great deal of the village.

Read 697 Tallinn Reviews

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