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Mid-Cruise Review - Eclipse Westbound Transatlantic


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We spent three days pre-cruise at the Holiday Inn in Southampton. The room was nothing fancy, but clean and suited our needs. The location can’t be beat and the staff was really welcoming and helpful. It’s close to the West Quay shopping mall and the High Street shopping. We spent a couple of evenings with family who live in the area, and saw fantastic fireworks the night before the cruise.

 

Sunday morning we woke up to the Eclipse outside our hotel window. If we hadn’t had so much luggage, we could have walked, but we took a taxi for less than 4 pounds. Embarkation was a breeze (we arrived about 11:45 am). We received an updated itinerary informing us that our first port of call would be Funchal, Madeira on day 4 instead of NYC on day 7. NYC will now be on days 10 and 11 and we will be skipping our planned overnight in Bermuda altogether (more about this later). We stopped for a cappuccino at Café al Bacio, then went up to deck 12 and had a drink by the pool until the cabins were ready at 1:15.

 

Our cabin is a concierge class on the hump with a triple-size balcony on deck 12 – 2109. It’s a great location! It’s just off the pool deck, one deck down from the Oceanview Café (buffet). It’s very quiet, despite being just under the buffet, except for creaking during high seas. The bed is by the bathroom. I would book this cabin again, but perhaps not on a north Atlantic crossing.

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We had our Cruise Critic “Meet & Mingle” on day 2. We had a large and very active Roll Call – over 200 pages! Our original Roll Call leader bowed out as they decided not to take this cruise, so a very able lady named Brenda (“amberben”) took over and did a fabulous job! The Captain, (Dmitrios Manetos), Cruise Director (Sue Denning), and several other officers made an appearance. Brenda organized a gift exchange, in which we did not participate, but those who did thoroughly enjoyed it. After that, several announcements were made re-arranging times for the slot pull, cabin crawl, and other activities arranged by Brenda and other Roll Call members.

 

Captain Manetos made a video, complete with shipping charts and meteorological forecast charts, which explained the reason for the itinerary change that was broadcast on the Cruise Director’s channel for the first several days. There were three major storm systems in the North Atlantic, and our original route would have taken right through them. There were winds of up to 110 miles per hour and 30-foot plus seas. At least one cargo ship had arrived in NYC with two damaged lifeboats the day before our cruise left Southampton, and we would have been sailing through worse conditions. The Captain made the decision to sail along the coasts of France, Spain, and Portugal to Funchal, Madeira, which became our first port on day 4 after two rough and rocky days at sea.

 

We had 6 hours in Funchal. We had never been there and enjoyed the warm weather in a really pretty city. We walked around, stopped at a sidewalk café, and took the cable car up to the top of Monte and back down. From Funchal, our route skirts the storm systems to the south.

 

This means we will arrive in NYC on a Tuesday rather than a Sunday, but we will still have an overnight there. We will miss our overnight stop in Bermuda altogether. Many passengers grumbled about the change, but after a few days of 12-14-foot seas, I am grateful for the Captain’s decision!

Edited by Jazzbo
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It is only because of the rough seas that I would hesitate to book 2109 again. Because it is so high up (Deck 12), and slightly aft (just aft of the aft elevators), the motion and the creaking is worse than it would be on a lower deck in a more midship location. But otherwise, it is a great cabin. It is a Cocierge Class hump location with a triple-size balcony (where I am sitting as I type this). It on the port side, and even though it is only a few cabins down from the smoking area on the pool deck, we never smell smoke on the balcony. It is very convenient for my husband to head up one flight of stairs in the morning to the Ocean View to get our cappuccinos in the morning and in the early evening to get cocktails while we are getting ready for dinner.

 

Our cabin attendant, John, and his assistant, Judas, are phenomenal. In fact, they remind me of earlier Celebrity cruises. They are both so friendly and personable, and Judas seems to magically appear to open the door when we come back to the cabin. They keep our cabin spotless, and we always look forward to seeing them in the corridor. I was so impressed that I requested an Attention to Details card from Guest Relations and turned in our compliments on day 4 or 5. We received a really nice letter back from the Hotel Director, Darren Tiller.

 

We are in late seating in the main dining room, and after some tinkering, we have a nice group of 9 at a table for 8. It’s working out quite well. Some of the food is very good, some is okay, and some is not very good, but we can always find something we like. I think the appetizers are better than the main courses, but that’s personal preference. Escargot is available every night. One night I did not like my entrée at all (it was dry, overcooked cod), and the waiter whisked it away and brought me a delicious serving of braised short ribs. My husband’s sea bass last night was quite good.

 

I arranged dinner at Qsine for a large group (16) of our Roll Call members. We were 10 at one table at 6 at the next table. We all had a wonderful time, and everyone loved the food and the presentation. I would definitely do Qsine again in a group!

 

I may add more to this as we go, but for now we are both very happy we booked this Transatlantic. The ship is beautiful; the staff is professional, friendly, and accommodating, and we have met really delightful fellow cruisers on board.

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Jazzbo, we were on the Eclipse in the Med 3 weeks before your TA. How I would have loved to have been on her , to come back across the Atlantic. We have done 2 TA' s and are booked for next April for our 3 rd.

So looking forward to your review , and thank you for it. I never write reviews, but am so glad to read those that do. I feel mine would bring on a lot of yawning. Thanks again for your time......Joan.

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Thank you for posting. We have been wondering what it was like on Eclipse. Sorry you missed Bermuda, but glad you are all safe. Silhouette has been smooth sailing all the way and a wonderful cruise. We disembark tomorrow.

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Hi JAZZBO,

 

I LOVE Cruise Reviews / Trip Reports...

 

More so when they are LIVE

 

And in this case on a ship many of us have been watching on Maritime Traffic & tuning in on the weather forecast as well

 

Sounds like despite all the "quirks" on this TA you are managing quite well and having some good times

 

Here is hoping that all the bad stuff is behold you... And smother waters await you

 

Cheers!

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Thank you for your live report from the Eclipse. Those of us on the November 23rd Eclipse cruise read with interest because we board after your cruise. The link to your thread is posted on our rollcall so that it is easily accessed. We know at least several members from our November 23rd rollcall are on your TA including Brenda (amberben) & her dh. I wish you an enjoyable time and smooth seas the rest of the way across the Atlantic along with an on-time arrival in Miami (so that we can board on time :) ).

 

Kathy

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Hi! Wonder if you could tell me if Bruce is the current Captains Club host. Will be sailing in January and would love to see him!

 

Enjoying your Live review! Doing a TA is on my bucket list!

Edited by va_wine_lover
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It is only because of the rough seas that I would hesitate to book 2109 again. Because it is so high up (Deck 12), and slightly aft (just aft of the aft elevators), the motion and the creaking is worse than it would be on a lower deck in a more midship location. But otherwise, it is a great cabin. It is a Cocierge Class hump location with a triple-size balcony (where I am sitting as I type this). It on the port side, and even though it is only a few cabins down from the smoking area on the pool deck, we never smell smoke on the balcony. It is very convenient for my husband to head up one flight of stairs in the morning to the Ocean View to get our cappuccinos in the morning and in the early evening to get cocktails while we are getting ready for dinner.

 

Our cabin attendant, John, and his assistant, Judas, are phenomenal. In fact, they remind me of earlier Celebrity cruises. They are both so friendly and personable, and Judas seems to magically appear to open the door when we come back to the cabin. They keep our cabin spotless, and we always look forward to seeing them in the corridor. I was so impressed that I requested an Attention to Details card from Guest Relations and turned in our compliments on day 4 or 5. We received a really nice letter back from the Hotel Director, Darren Tiller.

 

We are in late seating in the main dining room, and after some tinkering, we have a nice group of 9 at a table for 8. It’s working out quite well. Some of the food is very good, some is okay, and some is not very good, but we can always find something we like. I think the appetizers are better than the main courses, but that’s personal preference. Escargot is available every night. One night I did not like my entrée at all (it was dry, overcooked cod), and the waiter whisked it away and brought me a delicious serving of braised short ribs. My husband’s sea bass last night was quite good.

 

I arranged dinner at Qsine for a large group (16) of our Roll Call members. We were 10 at one table at 6 at the next table. We all had a wonderful time, and everyone loved the food and the presentation. I would definitely do Qsine again in a group!

 

I may add more to this as we go, but for now we are both very happy we booked this Transatlantic. The ship is beautiful; the staff is professional, friendly, and accommodating, and we have met really delightful fellow cruisers on board.

 

Thanks for the update Jazzbo...interesting reading. Sorry you have had a rocky ride over. We had a similar experience on an Eastbound TA last year and had to change course too.

We are joining on 23rd so will no doubt hear all about your trip from Brenda and the others who will be doing the B2B with us. Hope you enjoyed NYC. Love it there myself!!

Chrissie (Crysalys22)

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We docked in NYC about 2 hours ago on a brilliant but very cold morning. We are still waiting for immigration. It has started but is proceeding sooooooo slowly.

 

We sailed through a storm last night. We were right in the middle of it and 14-foot seas during the Senior Officer's Captain's Club Cocktail Party for Select and above in the Sky Lounge. Needless to say, Captain Manetas and his Chief Engineer were on the bridge instead of our party.

 

For those of you who mentioned Brenda, she is delightful, as is her husband, and all of the other members of our Roll Call we have met. You will enjoy Brenda and Bill immensely!

 

Off to one of the public areas to see how immigration is progressing.

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