Celebrity Equinox  Review April 2011 in the Caribbean

Master : Captain Apostolos Bouzakis*

Chief Engineer : Stavroz Zanikos

Hotel Director :Raffaele

Cruise Director : Dru Pavloz

Executive Chef : Ueli Bachofner

 

Captain's Club Hostess was Maria Nunes

 

* The Captain is possibly the youngest we have so far met in our 11 years sailing with Celebrity, he did have a high profile from the time he spent with the guests and their families, which clearly was much appreciated by them

Equinox berthed in Dominica taken from the highest point on the island

Our pre-cruise hotel in Fort Lauderdale  they have all been great hotels but this one was the best ever location so far

Christine enjoying a few quiet moments before we leave to join the ship

So lets start to cruise:

 

The ship was cleared very quickly and we started leaving the hotel before the planned departure given to us be the Celebrity reps in the hotel. Given our location we were there and onboard and the rooms were ready before 1 p.m.

 

Our room was 2101 and this was under the area where sun loungers were but we had

little if any noise.

We did have a few stoways !!!            Carlos & Brian

Both Carlos and Brian were so helpful it was a treat having them look after us, currently Carlos is on a break but will be back to Equinox in a few months time

and not forgetting our extra special security Carlos's dog 

now other parts of the room:

Storage on the left glass panel with shelves and below a cupboard with shelves

The mirror by the door to the balcony

Flowers from the room

Shower with a fixed pivotable head with the foot support for ladies to shave their legs 

Two 115v sockets and One 220v

Unit with drawers/safe and a fridge

The contents of the fridge with bottles/cans and miniatures of Jack Daniels; Gin; Vodka; Sky & Whisky etc

The hair dryer in the drawer of the unit to the right of where the safe is located in the main unit

The retaining clip to hold the balcony panel open has been moved to top right instead of the initial position shown in the photo on the left, as if you do have friends next to you, it is possible to open up the balcony area

like so..........

and now the restaurant:

 

and our other two great assistants Melania [left] & Nela who together with Carlos and Brian made our cruise a very memorable one. My wife unlike the majority dislikes spending time in a restaurant and they certainly did there very best to see that a fast and efficient turn around could be the case

On the first night we received our first ever invitation to dine at the Captains' table as a guest of Chief Engineer Stavros Zanikos, so that really got the cruise off to a great start. Prior to the start of the meal all the guests met in the Cellarmasters before heading along to the main diningroom. When seated a photograph was taken and presented to each guest at the end of the service, this does show all the guests with their names. One of our main favourites is Quail and it was one of the options on the main course, but a thoroughly enjoyable meal with some interesting guests

 

A few days later a follow up to visit the Engine Room Control room, quite a fascinating insite into the operation that keeps Equinox working

 

On bar prices for the first time in two years our two drinks price changed from $14.38 to $13.80

 

A few have asked what are the beer/lager on tap

The photo of the Mast Bar which shows the two on tap Amstel Light and Heinekin both served in a schooner glass at a price of $5 plus 15% service charge and the same pumps can be seen at the Pool bar & Sky lounge etc

Some options are different on a cruise leaving from the UK e.g. Southampton

Some cocktail prices:

Bar prices:

Smoking is only permitted in the following areas:

 

Portside of Sky Lounge Deck 14

Portside Pool Deck 12 on Equinox the area on the left as you exited the Aqua Spa area had been removed as a smoking area although the seats where still the same ones the others further up

Mast bar

Deck 5 Portside, promenade, midship –where chairs, tables and astrays are provided

Sunset Bar Starboard side Deck 15 aft. The is the recommended area for cigar and

Pipe smoking.

 

Electronic Cigarettes - Celebrity advised only to be used in designated areas, just like a normal cigarette

 

I have to say this is for the information for smokers, but I do not smoke but it is part of the infromation for the review of the Equinox

Some photo's from around the ship:

The ship's atrium where there was dancing prior to each sitting for dinner all part of the  Celebrities Life Activities which also inlcuded:

 

Senior Officers' Booce Challenge; 80's Party & Thriller Dance; Celebrity Singing Star; H20 Robotis Water fun; Beyond the Podium talks from Weather Expert Harry Strong and Opera Teacher Helen Sagan; The Liars' Club comedy game; Officer vs Guests Table Tennis Tournament; Dancing Lessons involving Waltz; Cha Cha and Salsa plus many more activities

Celebrity theatre which featured The Broadway Dream; Late night laughs with Dave Burleigh; Gareth Oliver from Britain's Got Talent;  Doug Cameron; The 'Show'; Antonio Salci recording and performance star plus others and not fogetting the Bingo with a $5,000 Mega Jackpot plus the final Jackpot session.

 

plus other entertainment throughout the ship including Top Notch dance band - Manny Kellough Jazz Quartet; Al Ducharme; BSharp Steel Band; Jordan Bennett and Simon Belair Guitar/vocals

 

In the Cinema usaully shown in the mornings and again in the evenings:

 

Night & Day PG-13; Robin Hood PG-13; Winter's Bone Related R; Letters to Juliet PG; Secretariat PG;

 

In the Sky Lounge Deck 14

 

Dancing with stripes we first saw on Millenniumm in 2010; Captains' Club Get Togther; Karaoke competetion etc

 

Deck 15

 

Croquet Competition; Wine & Cheese on the Lawn; Hot Glass Show etc

 

Quasar

 

Guess the Mowtown tunes; Late night dance vibes

 

The IT costs were:

Package Name

Package Price

Rate per minute

Savings

Minutes

As you go

 

 

     $0.65

 

 

 

Occasional

 

 

   $29.95

 

     $0.60

 

     6%

 

     49

 

Standard

 

 

   $49.95

 

     $0.56

 

   14%

 

     89

 

Social

 

 

   $79.95

 

     $0.53

 

   18%

 

   150

 

Power

 

 

   $99.95

 

     $0.42

 

   35%

 

   237

Out and about:

Aqua pooo main chair for the disabled and the smaller version for the whirlpool

Aqua Spa Bar

Eclipse Luxury yacht and yes it is registered to Roman Abramovich, the Russian billionaire, one of many

Coffee dispensers in the Ocean cafe   soft drinks

Ice cream bar, maybe one of my favourites

Ice cream bar display only                      Ice Cream !!!

The grass resting just like the guests  Juice dispenser

One of a few visiting ships                       Quiet by the pool

Bar at Mount Gay distillery

Barbados

Art work that was on Galaxy

Blu restaurant                                           Carnival Victory

Drakes point St. Thomas                        Look out pirate ship

For all those interested in the ships in port when we visited these island and by far was St. Thomas where there were Explorer of the Seas; Carnival Victory; Emerald and Caribbean Princess; Noordam. In St Maarten's Adventure of the Seas and Thomson Destiny. In Barbados were Carnival Victory and a Regatta ship whilst St. Kitts was just Equinox. There were no charges levied for shuttle buses.

 

The Captains' club events covered the Celebration; Backstage tour; Senior Officers' Cocktail Party; Elegant tea and the private departure lounge was Tuscan Grille, but we just arrived when it was time to depart.

 

We are Elite members' and entitled to attend the free drinks which on Eclipse was from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and in the starboard side of the ship whilst other guests could use the port side of the Sky Lounge where it was held. On the Equinox the Sky Lounge was closed from around 4 p.m. to set the room up then 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. for the Elite members. This different arrangement caused the other guests to feel very unhappy and that was quite strongly said by many I spoke with. We rarely attend these events as it is a bit early for us hitting the liquor path, as prefer just to relax somwhere around the ship.

 

The return home was slighlty marred as I managed to lose my watch at the security check at Miami and our Miami to JFK flight left 1 hour 10 mins late and whilst we made the Heathrow flight our luggage didn't, but it arrived 7 hours after we arrived back home.

 

The cruise with the invite to the Captains' table was more memorable than than ever but the staff; food; accommodation and the general atmoshere about the ship added to our enjoyment of the cruise and we look forward to the Constellation cruise in a few months time, to see how the ship has changed following its $100M refit.

 

I may yet find more photo's bits of paper with even more information about the cruise but they will be added as and when.

Other Reviews:     Century 2009    Millennium 2010    Eclipse 2010