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Eclipse disappointing compared to other recent Celebrity sailings


phoenix_dream
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I write this with hesitation, knowing that many will label me a 'negative nelly', someone who is never satisfied, who complains about small things and on and on.  But I am going to give my opinions anyway.  I am, in fact, quite a Celebrity cheerleader.  Just got off the 9 night Coastal Cruise, and it was our 8th Celebrity cruise in the last six months, on several different ships.  Clearly I love Celebrity!  Last year I sailed Eclipse for 28 days (14 night in January, then again in March) and she was FANTASTIC!  No complaints at all.  I was so looking forward to this cruise, as I love the ports and our experience last year was excellent.  I came away quite disappointed.

 

When I describe why I am disappointed, the best way I can describe it is" nibbled to death by ducks", if you are familiar with that expression then you will get my point.  There was no one thing wrong that was awful, or horrendous, or anything like that.  But so much either was wrong, or not up to par, or average at best.  And no, I was NOT looking for things to be wrong - in fact quite the opposite - our other cruises were so great my expectations were high, as they should be with Celebrity.

 

We sailed in Aqua Class and ate all our meals in Blu except for one night in Tuscan.  The food ranged from okay to very good to occasionally awful.  My very favorite appetizer in Blu is the shrimp cocktail and I order it almost every night.  On this cruise, I tried it a couple times and it tasted so awful I gave up.  The cocktail sauce was watery ketchup.  My hubby's two favorites are standards as well - Caesar salad and French onion soup.  They were edible, but good would be an exaggeration.  His favorite breakfast is Greek yogurt - nope, not available on this ship.  Our favorite wine in Blu is Decoy cabernet.  Nope, they took that off the menu.  This left one choice of cabernet - Elegance - which is Classic package level at best. (to be fair, we complained to the wine steward and maître d' about this and they were able to scrounge us a bottle of Decoy twice - but no cruise should have no Premium package cabernet options in their restaurants!).   Service was initially quite bad in Blu, but we discussed it with the maître d' as well and it got better from there.  I should point out, we are NOT ones to generally complain about things onboard.  We just don't.  Believe that or don't but it's true.

 

The food in Tuscan was good, but not very good like it usually is.  Service at first was very bad.  We literally sat there for close to 15 minutes before anyone came to our table at all - not an assistant waiter, waiter, or wine steward.  Once again we had to say something before we could get good service.  Once we said something, service improved quite a bit.  But we shouldn't have to complain to get good service.  It doesn't sound like it when you read this, but I HATE to complain, I really do.  I know the staff works their behinds off and I have made many friends through the years with crew members, several of which I communicate with regularly via Facebook, and on multiple sailings.

 

The internet in our cabin was almost unusable.  We could not even open our emails, let alone stream anything.  After several conversations with Guest Relations and the IT guys, after several days they put some kind of signal booster in our cabin which helped a lot.  

 

The live entertainment was decent, but there were long gaps of time when there was no live music anywhere on the ship pre-dinner (nowhere).  We were spoiled on Reflection where there was always music somewhere.  

 

Service overall on the ship was adequate usually, but overall definitely lacking compared to our other recent cruises.  On all our other cruises this year we wrote thank you cards and tipped extra to a whole bunch of crew members, and always gave extra tips to our bartenders.  On this cruise, we did that to the few crew who went above and beyond, but I came home with a lot of unused thank you cards and tip money.  In fact, on this cruise I actually got so frustrated with a bartender that I called her out on an occasion where she asked me a question and then when I was in the middle of a sentence answering she turned her head away and started talking to someone else.  I was shocked to say the least.  I have NEVER, ever done this before, nor needed to. 

 

The condition of our cabin was ok, but clearly they are not doing much upkeep pre-revolutionizing.  The balcony rail was quite bad, the sliding door had large gaps of paint missing, the chair in the room had a torn cushion, and the curtains had so many pinholes in them that at night when the lights were on outside I told my husband I thought I could see the Milky Way Galaxy in the pattern.  

 

I have never been on a ship running out of so many things.  Besides the yogurt and the wine, they ran out of their most popular light beer (can't recall the name as we don't drink it), were running low on Cointreau (could not keep it at every bar, if you asked for it sometimes they had to run to another bar to get it), if the meal indicated asparagus you got one stalk and none with the eggs as usual, lemons and limes were unavailable in some bars on some days.  I have never seen this happen so much on any other Celebrity ship.  They were blaming the previous sailing around South America, but as we embarked in San Diego I find it hard to believe they could not adequately stock up there.  

 

I could go on and on even further but I'll give it a rest now.  And once again, I know each and every one of these things is little, but they add up to a sub-par sailing.  Did we make the best of it and enjoy ourselves?  Of course we did.  Are we very, very grateful that we can afford to cruise at all, of course we are.  But I will certainly think twice about sailing Eclipse in the near future.  Hopefully things will improve as she was so wonderful last year.  Fingers crossed.

Edited by phoenix_dream
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Such a shame. I have to say your service in Tuscan mirrored our own on the Eclipse three years ago, not good. We also found the food to be average at best outside of Murano which was fantastic. Internet unusable most days although that was three years ago.

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Sorry to read about your experience and disappointment.  You have cruised with Celebrity enough to know what to expect.  Perhaps it is a "one off"?

Edited by mahdnc
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It doesn’t sound like small things, it sounds like real issues. Mediocre dining and service are big issues for me. And I’ve seen your posts before so understand you aren’t a complainer. I’d be upset over the issues you identified also.

 

We tried Blu once and decided the main dining plus a specialty restaurant sufficed so haven’t gone back to Aqua since that initial try. 

 

Den

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44 minutes ago, mahdnc said:

Sorry to read about your experience and disappointment.  You have cruised with Celebrity enough to know what to expect.  Perhaps it is a "one off"?

All of our other 7 cruises since December (and several more earlier last year) were great.  Not always perfect but then what is, but overall great cruises.  I think much of these problems trickles up to management.  Hopefully if they get enough feedback on the issues they will make some changes.  Have sailed enough with Celebrity to have faith in them to fix issues when they are made aware of them. 

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I’m sorry you had a disappointing cruise.  We were on the sailing before yours and and while we had good service in Tuscan the food wasn’t up to par.    Near the end of the cruise we too had problems with the internet .

 

I have to say that we had excellent service on the ship with the exception of the 1 morning we tried Blu for breakfast and it seemed everyone arrived st the same time.

 

There were some wine shortages including some of the higher priced wines ($20+ glass) our sommlier offered good alternatives but I promise we didn’t drink all the Decoy😉.

 

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Can’t imagine taking 7 cruises in 4 months.   I am tired of the ship and food after 

two weeks.    We have noticed a decrease in quality on Celebrity in general and have not booked another.   For the money we have found better choices on the more premium lines although they are hardly fault free.

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Sorry to hear about your trip... Not what you want on vacation. Reading this reminds me of our trip on Equinox last year. Never heard your saying about being nibbled to death by ducks, but what a perfect saying. 

I really hesitated booking my next trip with Celebrity but negative feelings fade it seems until you read a post that remind you again. I suspect that the Celebrity of years past may be gone. Giving it another try and hoping for the best 🤞

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Thanks for posting your experiences - so disappointed to hear that so much was not up to the usual Celebrity standard! I am paying particular attention because we are on the Eclipse going from Hawaii back to Vancouver at the end of this month. And we have two couples joining us, at our suggestion. So I'm feeling a little extra stress now hoping everything will go smoothly. We're all in Aqua and all have cruised before in Aqua. Wonder if a high % of the crew was at the end of their contract or maybe many new hires? Not an excuse, just thinking out loud. Certainly no reason to run out of food and good drink! Again, thanks for sharing and here's to much improved Celebrity cruises in your near future! 

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I can appreciate your experience.  It has also happen to us thru the years.   The survey use to be rated with exceed expectations.  It never did and couldn’t because knew what to expected when we sailed on X as we sailed before.  It rarely met what we expected.

 

one example is the soft shell crab in Blu   I didn’t know what it was and it was excellent the first time I had it.  On our next cruise it was very greasy and smelled bad.  The next cruise it was as if it came from the dregs of a McDonalds deep fried for the French fries.   It was burnt and fried to a crisp.

 

Celebrity has cut out most premium bourbons that they use to offer.  On the Edge last month my wife ordered a Whiskey Milkshake that was on the menu in Cafe al Bacio.  The main whiskey was listed as Woodford Reserve.  She watch the employee use 10 High.  The drink was listed at $14.   My wife question the server and was told that 10 High was more of a premium used it because there was no Woodford but there wouldn’t be a up charge on our premium pack.

 

On the Edge now they only offer 2 flavors of Gelato per day.  We got our free scoop and one scoop of regular ice cream.   I challenge anyone to pick what one was the gelato.  

 

One bottle of water per cruise in AQ.   Seriously?   OK we always get the drink pack but what about those that don’t.   A case of water anywhere costs at most $3.  

 

Plush towels that seen better days that were almost thread bare

 

Dishes and cups that have cracks and chips.  We were always told to throw them out as they aren’t sanitary.  

 

Silverware with food still stuck on it.

 

Being served a Martini with Lipstick on the rim.

 

Robes with rips and holes in them

 

The production shows and talent are about the same as any high school or JC.   

 

It may be nit picking but with the prices increasing like they are things should at least stay the same.  

 

It is just little issues but they keep adding up.  

 

Do those issues ruin my cruise?  Not really but eventually it may be something that reaches the breaking point.

 

they are trying to go paperless,   They no longer publish the daily news papers.   Somehow they find paper for all of the art action ads that are delivered every day to our cabin.   

 

happy cruising 🌊🚢🇺🇸🌅

 

 

Edited by miched
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We were on this cruise, and I have to agree with the OP.  We have sailed Celebrity many times and became Elite Plus at the end of this cruise.  Our loyalty has been broken by our experiences on this cruise. Running out of, or never having basic items, bartenders who could not make simple cocktails. And many more duck nipples.

 

Will be canceling our upcoming 15 day R/T LA/Hawaii on Eclipse. And, will have to rethink any future Celebrity cruise. Don't know if it is a money thing, poor management thing, there was a lot of crew replacement on this cruise, but that would be a poor excuse. 

 

We are saddened and sickened, but for the money spent I have to believe there are better choices to be made.

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OMG! We are on this ship B2B starting 4/29 Hawaii/Alaska.  I sure hope they have their act together for our sailings.  This will be our 2nd time on Celebrity, having done our first as a TA last year.  To be honest, we didn't find anything special about Celebrity/Eclipse to make us dedicated to the line.  To late now to back out so, hopefully, things will be alright.  

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We were also on this cruise.  We are Elite and we mainly cruise Celebrity.  On this cruise, we also commented on the little things they ran out of.  We are not big drinkers so we don't pick the drink package as a perk.  I ordered a Mudslide at the Pool Bar and they were out of chocolate syrup!  The bartender made the mudslide and when he handed it to me I asked him why it didn't have chocolate syrup in the glass.  He told me they were out of syrup.  He tried to pass the drink off as properly made but he obviously didn't know I love chocolate!   The next day, at the breakfast buffet, I got some French toast and they were out of syrup.  There were several of us standing in front of the French toast and pancake counter all waiting for syrup.  I was told they were out of it!  Two days later,  I went to try the French toast again and the syrup basket was empty again.  The server behind the counter told me they had to go to the store and buy some!  These things didn't ruin our cruise but it's obvious that celebrity is not the same quality as they use to be.

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The comment about no chocolate syrup and regular syrup reminded me that on the 3/24 sailing they had limited jelly in the OV, you had to ask for it and blueberry seemed to be all they had.

Add to that reports of no smoked salmon in the OV on the Equinox a month or so ago.  Not to mention the frequent shortage of lack of lemons & limes. In the past few months there have been posts of lack of fresh spinach and other veggies at the salad bar in the buffets. Although I don’t believe those were reported from the Eclipse.

 

it is beginning to seem like they may have a supplier or inventory management problem.

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8 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

have never been on a ship running out of so many things.  Besides the yogurt and the wine, they ran out of their most popular light beer (can't recall the name as we don't drink it),

Exactly our experience on Silhouette in June 2018.

Many people who had the premium beverage package complained that they were being served Preseco instead of champagne and some bars ran out of Budweiser. In fact when we didn’t go into St Petersburg due to windy conditions it was impossible to find Budweiser at any bar. It was a relief when we docked in Warnemunde and they were able to stock up.

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Phoenix Dream...you don’t sound like a ‘negative nelly’. You are so right that it is frequently a series of ‘little niggles’ that take the shine off an experience.

 

We were on Eclipse last September. Many staff were leaving her within the month to go to Edge including our room attendant and butler. Our first ever Celebrity cruise on Equinox was quite similar to your experience. We took a few disappointments but then did complain about service in a few venues. We were told many staff had moved to the latest S class ship and they had too many staff who didn’t know the routines...

 

Running short/out of stock on a few ships is a worry....No excuses for not having decent premium wines, beer selection and liqueurs that is something you have already paid for and have every right to expect. 

 

I do hope your cruise was a ‘glitch’ we have cruised Eclipse three times and service and food were really good. The Oceanview selection was outstanding. Oceanview was holding ‘lunchtime specials’ and bringing fresh fish on board...

 

We are cruising Eclipse October 2020, her last cruise before refit...It is a long time away...Rooms should still be kept in a good state...

 

 

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My DH and I were on this cruise also and I will concur with the OP on many points. Several bars were either understocked or understaffed (the worst being the Ocean View bar). Getting "premium" wines became our mission, and Cellar Masters was the go-to place. Thankfully, we had an awesome sommelier in the MDR (Marvin), who quickly recognized that we were serious about our wines (and didn't mind going above the premium package).  The martini bar was fun and crowded, and we enjoyed meeting friends there each night.

My biggest complaint (and I voiced it to several managers and guest relations), was the unending, obnoxiously loud, canned music. It was sooo annoying!  The demographics on this sailing was MUCH older than I've seen, and blasting Donna Summers was not appreciated.  We enjoyed several shows, but couldn't get through "Rock".  

Our cabin was on the forward hump near the card room on deck 9.  It was quiet and convenient, and our steward was good.  (The card room was always full, btw). We've done AQ in the past, but I do not like their location on higher decks. This sailing was somewhat rough, and the higher decks were really rocking.

We dined in the MDR most nights (select seating), and had great service.  We were impressed with several meals.  I had several lovely white fish (can't pronounce either) that were outstanding.  DH had escargot each night, and most appetizers were tasty and plated well.  The prime rib was quite good, and all meals arrived hot, which isn't easy to do.

I do agree that while we really enjoyed many things, this cruise felt "off" for us.  We are booked on Solstice in Sept (YVR to Hawaii), and are now reconsidering that trip. Perhaps it's just the weariness from this cruise setting in, but I'm not sure we'll be sailing with Celebrity as much.  

 

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13 hours ago, phoenix_dream said:

I write this with hesitation, knowing that many will label me a 'negative nelly', someone who is never satisfied, who complains about small things and on and on.  But I am going to give my opinions anyway.  I am, in fact, quite a Celebrity cheerleader.  Just got off the 9 night Coastal Cruise, and it was our 8th Celebrity cruise in the last six months, on several different ships.  Clearly I love Celebrity!  Last year I sailed Eclipse for 28 days (14 night in January, then again in March) and she was FANTASTIC!  No complaints at all.  I was so looking forward to this cruise, as I love the ports and our experience last year was excellent.  I came away quite disappointed.

 

When I describe why I am disappointed, the best way I can describe it is" nibbled to death by ducks", if you are familiar with that expression then you will get my point.  There was no one thing wrong that was awful, or horrendous, or anything like that.  But so much either was wrong, or not up to par, or average at best.  And no, I was NOT looking for things to be wrong - in fact quite the opposite - our other cruises were so great my expectations were high, as they should be with Celebrity.

 

We sailed in Aqua Class and ate all our meals in Blu except for one night in Tuscan.  The food ranged from okay to very good to occasionally awful.  My very favorite appetizer in Blu is the shrimp cocktail and I order it almost every night.  On this cruise, I tried it a couple times and it tasted so awful I gave up.  The cocktail sauce was watery ketchup.  My hubby's two favorites are standards as well - Caesar salad and French onion soup.  They were edible, but good would be an exaggeration.  His favorite breakfast is Greek yogurt - nope, not available on this ship.  Our favorite wine in Blu is Decoy cabernet.  Nope, they took that off the menu.  This left one choice of cabernet - Elegance - which is Classic package level at best. (to be fair, we complained to the wine steward and maître d' about this and they were able to scrounge us a bottle of Decoy twice - but no cruise should have no Premium package cabernet options in their restaurants!).   Service was initially quite bad in Blu, but we discussed it with the maître d' as well and it got better from there.  I should point out, we are NOT ones to generally complain about things onboard.  We just don't.  Believe that or don't but it's true.

 

The food in Tuscan was good, but not very good like it usually is.  Service at first was very bad.  We literally sat there for close to 15 minutes before anyone came to our table at all - not an assistant waiter, waiter, or wine steward.  Once again we had to say something before we could get good service.  Once we said something, service improved quite a bit.  But we shouldn't have to complain to get good service.  It doesn't sound like it when you read this, but I HATE to complain, I really do.  I know the staff works their behinds off and I have made many friends through the years with crew members, several of which I communicate with regularly via Facebook, and on multiple sailings.

 

The internet in our cabin was almost unusable.  We could not even open our emails, let alone stream anything.  After several conversations with Guest Relations and the IT guys, after several days they put some kind of signal booster in our cabin which helped a lot.  

 

The live entertainment was decent, but there were long gaps of time when there was no live music anywhere on the ship pre-dinner (nowhere).  We were spoiled on Reflection where there was always music somewhere.  

 

Service overall on the ship was adequate usually, but overall definitely lacking compared to our other recent cruises.  On all our other cruises this year we wrote thank you cards and tipped extra to a whole bunch of crew members, and always gave extra tips to our bartenders.  On this cruise, we did that to the few crew who went above and beyond, but I came home with a lot of unused thank you cards and tip money.  In fact, on this cruise I actually got so frustrated with a bartender that I called her out on an occasion where she asked me a question and then when I was in the middle of a sentence answering she turned her head away and started talking to someone else.  I was shocked to say the least.  I have NEVER, ever done this before, nor needed to. 

 

The condition of our cabin was ok, but clearly they are not doing much upkeep pre-revolutionizing.  The balcony rail was quite bad, the sliding door had large gaps of paint missing, the chair in the room had a torn cushion, and the curtains had so many pinholes in them that at night when the lights were on outside I told my husband I thought I could see the Milky Way Galaxy in the pattern.  

 

I have never been on a ship running out of so many things.  Besides the yogurt and the wine, they ran out of their most popular light beer (can't recall the name as we don't drink it), were running low on Cointreau (could not keep it at every bar, if you asked for it sometimes they had to run to another bar to get it), if the meal indicated asparagus you got one stalk and none with the eggs as usual, lemons and limes were unavailable in some bars on some days.  I have never seen this happen so much on any other Celebrity ship.  They were blaming the previous sailing around South America, but as we embarked in San Diego I find it hard to believe they could not adequately stock up there.  

 

I could go on and on even further but I'll give it a rest now.  And once again, I know each and every one of these things is little, but they add up to a sub-par sailing.  Did we make the best of it and enjoy ourselves?  Of course we did.  Are we very, very grateful that we can afford to cruise at all, of course we are.  But I will certainly think twice about sailing Eclipse in the near future.  Hopefully things will improve as she was so wonderful last year.  Fingers crossed.

We were in a balcony for the Chile to San Diego cruise.  It was our second cruise on Eclipse.  Eclipse is our favorite X ship.  We had no issue with the quality of the food, however I hate how much they downsized the wonderful crepe suzette.  What you get now is about 10% the size of what it once was.

 

Still, we find that Celebrity's weakness compared to other mainstream cruise lines is entertainment.  The Rock show was mediocre, since most of the songs were third rate.  The Argentine show was great, as were a couple of the comedians.

We like how Celebrity relaxed the rules on where you can enjoy happy hour.  X is getting closer to the way Royal handles the Diamond happy hour.

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Thank you OP and others for your comments.

 

OP, evaluate and criticize and praise all you want. Do not apologize. Ignore the cheerleaders and their censoring attempts..

 

Reading the Celebrity CC reviews and comments in many threads - there is a systematic downgrading going on combined with price increases. That is an anti consumer benefit trend.

 

Like many others, I ended my patronage of Celebrity two years ago for this reason. 

 

Celebrity is just another mass cruise line, the days of Celebrity being the highest quality of the mass lines is gone.

 

But, do not think this downgrading is only the mass lines, my last Oceania cruise was a disgrace of lowered quality in every element of the voyage. My friends just returned from Marina and were deeply disappointed in the lowered quality and they have cruised many times on Oceania.

 

I believe the cruise industry is united in downgrading the product and raising the price because they believe we are lemmings who will repeatedly book over and over - their massive ship expansion demonstrates this.

 

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12 hours ago, twodjs said:

Thanks for posting your experiences - so disappointed to hear that so much was not up to the usual Celebrity standard! I am paying particular attention because we are on the Eclipse going from Hawaii back to Vancouver at the end of this month. And we have two couples joining us, at our suggestion. So I'm feeling a little extra stress now hoping everything will go smoothly. We're all in Aqua and all have cruised before in Aqua. Wonder if a high % of the crew was at the end of their contract or maybe many new hires? Not an excuse, just thinking out loud. Certainly no reason to run out of food and good drink! Again, thanks for sharing and here's to much improved Celebrity cruises in your near future! 

I'm betting we are on the same sailing (8 days!!!).  We are also in AQ(perhaps you are our neighbors), but I've been pretty worried.  If you read the reviews on CC about the last 2 or 3 cruises on the eclipse, they are scathing.  Still hoping for the best!

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Just recently returned from an Eclipse sailing to South America.  I cannot comment on any "sytematic downgrading" because our cruise was very enjoyable.  We had excellent dining room service in every venue we used.  In terms of being a "mass" cruise line I know there are a LOT of people on board and their expectations are truly massive.

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11 hours ago, miched said:

 

 

On the Edge now they only offer 2 flavors of Gelato per day.  We got our free scoop and one scoop of regular ice cream.   I challenge anyone to pick what one was the gelato.  

 

they are trying to go paperless,   They no longer publish the daily news papers.   Somehow they find paper for all of the art action ads that are delivered every day to our cabin.   

 

I picked out two of your points that I particularly agree with!

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