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Our life on the Edge, 28 April 2019 TA, some photos & video


Silkroad
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As has always been the case on our Celebrity cruises, the crew was great! They were largely friendly and helpful, which contributed to the pleasant atmosphere on board. We thought the people and departments were especially helpful:

 

  • Patricia, at Ft. Lauderdale port check in
  • our wonderful Cabin Attendant, Dony☺️ 
  • the entire Guest Relations staff, simply the best!
  • Maitre D' Hotel Denis Brito, who resolved our pesky Select DIning reservation issue
  • Phyo & Jerome in Il Secondo Bacio, late shift, always a pleasure to see these guys!
  • Hotel Director Niyazi Korkmaz for giving me information about improvements in the works, or under consideration
  • the bartenders and servers in the Martini Bar🍹

We spent many relaxing interludes in Cafe al Bacio, and we found the best cocktails in the Martini Bar and the Casino Bar🍹

 

We enjoyed the pool deck, track, and Roof Top Garden very much. The Rooftop Garden and Sunset Bar would be much more pleasant if they had some shaded areas.

 

 

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Eden is even more beautiful and interesting than I'd imagined. I was fascinated by the way it appeared both spacious & bright, while also being somewhat labyrinthine and mysterious. As I wandered through it, each turn or curve brought something different into view. The liberal use of plants created small semi-private seating areas dotted around the upper level. Organic motifs are repeated throughout the space, all framed by the sea and sky. 

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We dined in the MDRs 10 of our 15  nights. My goal was to try each one at least twice. Here's the breakdown:

 

Cyprus- 3 nights

Cosmopolitan - 2 nights

Normandie - 2 nights

Tuscan - 3 nights

 

In my daily comments, I've already mentioned the few issues we had with seating, ambiance and food. The decor in each restaurant was beautiful. Note: you may notice a discrepancy between this post and what I posted in VT's MDR survey, but her survey didn't allow me to choose a tie. Lacking that constraint here, based on food, decor, ambiance, and seating, Cyprus and Cosmopolitan were a tie for us. That said, they were all very good, and when we return to Edge next May, we intend to try all four again.

 

We didn't take special of the regular dishes in the MDRs, becuause they were similar to the usual MDR menus on the other ships. Instead, we focused on the Exclusives. 

 

Of each restaurant's Exclusives, we tried:

 

Cosmopolitan

  • Seared Scallops
  • Pan Roasted Salmon
  • Manhattan NY Strip

Cyprus

  • Taverna Salad
  • Hot Melted Chees Saganaki
  • Greek Style Grilled Sea Bass
  • Lemon Dill Chicken Souvlaki
  • Lamb Shank Tagine

Normandie

  • Alsatian Potato and Gruyere Tart
  • Beef Tenderloin En Croute
  • Slow Roasted Rack of Pork

Tuscan

  • Tuscan Bean Soup
  • Rosemary Roasted Chicken
  • Slow Roasted Porchetta

 

Everything was very good to excellent, and we'd each of the dishes again. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Silkroad
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The interior of the Ocean View Cafe (the buffet) was spacious, with plenty of natural light. It seemed larger than the S-class, and the seating was comfortable. There was some counter seating (facing the sea) along the windows, along with some higher counter seating in a couple locations. Note: there was also some counter seating in Cafe al Bacio. This counter seating helped when either venue was crowded.

 

Sadly, there was much less seating outside the OVC (aft) and there was very little shade for the tables that were there.

 

The food was very good, as usual. Our cruise was full, but the OVC staff handled the flow very well. We had most of our breakfasts and lunches in the OVC. I love the fresh pineapple and watermelon (sometimes papaya too) at breakfast. Neither of us tried the Pizza or the stir fry station this time. We both had lots of salad and veggies (grilled and steamed) and I spent way too much time at the Indian food station😂 Within a few days, the nice man recognized me, and began suggesting his favorites of the day, which were always great😋  

 

I nearly forgot the hand washing stations. We thought they were great. We used them each time we arrived at the OVC. Having observed all the people who marched past the hand washing stations AND the Purell dispenser, we used the stations again after handling all the serving spoons in the buffet😉 I appreciated the stations because - as everyone knows - proper hand washing is far better than Purell (and easier on our skin). Nothing short of infection control boot camp will change the habits of some who either refuse to wash their hands, or who run their fingertips under water (no soap) dry their hands and smile virtuously as they depart. I'm happy to say we were not alone at the stations, and it seemed as though seeing others at the stations sometimes inspired people to stop to use them. 

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Based on a conversation between I had with DH last night, I'd like to add comments to the assessment I posted a couple of days ago.

 

Our assessment of our Infinite Veranda cabin:

 

Pros:  

  • very comfortable mattress, pillows, and linens.
  • as much storage as Solstice class, though arranged differently.
  • lovely bathroom, with plenty of storage and spacious shower (compared to S class).
  • both an exhaust fan AND a light in the shower. Finally, ladies, we can see to shave our legs!
  • infinite veranda is more flexible than traditional veranda, adds space and a table & chairs to the cabin if the window is closed.
  • we heard less noise from the adjacent verandas.

Cons:

  • veranda chairs are too large for the space (and angle of back is uncomfortable IMO).
  • no way to have privacy without using oppressive room-darkening blind.
  • TV across from bed makes already inadequate passage between wall & bed even worse.
  • full length mirror behind "desk" is useless, because there's barely enough counter space with desk fully extended.
  • fixed metal clothing rack in middle of closet renders small closet less useful. Should be collapsible.
  • with bed by bath, it is difficult to access the closet, especially the bottom drawer, and items on the floor.
  • concierge IV shower lacks a rack for razor and other personal items.

We would like to see Celebrity add or change:

  • a full length mirror to the wall across from the bathroom door. It needn't be lighted.
  • an additional rack in the Concierge shower for personal items.
  • a collapsible clothing rack in place of the fixed one in the middle of the closet.
  • move TV to wall across from the sofa/love seat, and add swivel bracket. 

We like to have breakfast on the veranda on occasion, and we do enjoy having wine and cheese on the veranda late in the afternoon. I wake early, and like to slip onto the veranda to view the sea, sky, and shore while DH sleeps. The current IV veranda is inadequate for all these activities. The chairs are too large for the space. It's impossible to reach the control switch for the IV window, or open/close the bifold doors without moving furniture. We didn't bother trying to order room service breakfast because of the tiny table. I couldn't move chairs and open the noisy shade & window without waking DH (though he says this doesn't matter because he usually goes right back to sleep). We both miss the bistro table & decent chairs we've had on both M and S class. We hope the Edge style chairs and tiny table won't appear on those ships.

 

I missed the traditional veranda more than DH did, but I did see the value of the flexibility of the Infinite Veranda. We would not book another Infinite Veranda unless the new veranda chairs (on order) render the veranda easier to use without moving furniture to reach the window controls or open/close the bifold doors. We would also like to see all the bifold doors frosted (some have already been frosted), because that would allow us to have privacy without feeling as though we're in a dark cave. IMO the cabin is too dark and oppressive when the blind is closed completely. Should those issues be resolved, we would consider an Infinite Veranda cabin for some itineraries, but only for the right price. Part of the reason DH valued having the flexibility of using the extra veranda space is that the King bed is too large for the cabin. Though a King bed was pleasant, we would both have preferred one of the Queen beds from S - class in that space. When I asked him if he would always prefer an IV to a traditional veranda (as in choose between a similar Edge or Silhouette itinerary) he asked if the S-class ships would get King beds during the "Revolution". Good question. I don't know the answer, but I guess I'll find out. Also, should we book an IV again, we'd try one with the bed by the veranda.

 

This is the end of my review. I hope it has helped some of you with your own decisions about Edge😊 Next up for us is our very first Caribbean cruise, on Reflection (in our first Sky Suite since the advent of Luminae and Michael's Club). After that, we're back to Edge, in a Sunset Veranda. We wish all of you safe and happy travels😎😎

Edited by Silkroad
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Thanks for the great review, Michelle! It was great to see the Edge evolving and also loved seeing the ports. I think you have inspired me to do a similar TA. My SIL and BIL from New Zealand want to cruise with us again (we took them as cruise virgins on a Reflection Med cruise 1 1/2 yrs ago and had a marvelous time). I think I've talked them into a TA and I would love to share life on the Edge or the Apex with them. Getting SVs with connecting balconies would be cool. Anyway, thanks for the inspiration.

 

I did want to share my favorite picture of Mr Edge, since you are a fan as well. One day I was sitting in the RTG in an area in which I had not previously sat and guess who was keeping an eye on me?

 

1456502736_MrEdgepeekingxx.thumb.jpg.c0b4c021fe8377730d45cf87a61bf651.jpg

 

 

Edited by vtcruising
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On 5/28/2019 at 10:42 PM, Silkroad said:

Eden is even more beautiful and interesting than I'd imagined. I was fascinated by the way it appeared both spacious & bright, while also being somewhat labyrinthine and mysterious. As I wandered through it, each turn or curve brought something different into view. The liberal use of plants created small semi-private seating areas dotted around the upper level. Organic motifs are repeated throughout the space, all framed by the sea and sky. 

Very poetic - you express things in such a beautiful way....

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On 5/29/2019 at 10:37 AM, Silkroad said:

We dined in the MDRs 10 of our 15  nights. My goal was to try each one at least twice. Here's the breakdown:

 

Cyprus- 3 nights

Cosmopolitan - 2 nights

Normandie - 2 nights

Tuscan - 3 nights

 

In my daily comments, I've already mentioned the few issues we had with seating, ambiance and food. The decor in each restaurant was beautiful. Note: you may notice a discrepancy between this post and what I posted in VT's MDR survey, but her survey didn't allow me to choose a tie. Lacking that constraint here, based on food, decor, ambiance, and seating, Cyprus and Cosmopolitan were a tie for us. That said, they were all very good, and when we return to Edge next May, we intend to try all four again.

 

We didn't take special of the regular dishes in the MDRs, becuause they were similar to the usual MDR menus on the other ships. Instead, we focused on the Exclusives. 

 

Of each restaurant's Exclusives, we tried:

 

Cosmopolitan

  • Seared Scallops
  • Pan Roasted Salmon
  • Manhattan NY Strip

Cyprus

  • Taverna Salad
  • Hot Melted Chees Saganaki
  • Greek Style Grilled Sea Bass
  • Lemon Dill Chicken Souvlaki
  • Lamb Shank Tagine

Normandie

  • Alsatian Potato and Gruyere Tart
  • Beef Tenderloin En Croute
  • Slow Roasted Rack of Pork

Tuscan

  • Tuscan Bean Soup
  • Rosemary Roasted Chicken
  • Slow Roasted Porchetta

 

Everything was very good to excellent, and we'd each of the dishes again. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Michelle, which restaurant had the best exclusives, in your opinion (taking out the ambiance, seating, decor)? 

 

Was the beef good quality in these restaurants? I have felt that the beef on Celebrity is not quite as good quality as it used to be, except in the specialties (and others have noticed it too). I thought the food was better on the Edge than other ships in general, but ate at the specialties and Luminae a lot. I like your idea of sticking mostly to the exclusives in each of the 4 MDRs.

 

Which restaurant had the best ambiance, in your opinion?

 

Thanks!

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On 5/28/2019 at 9:36 PM, Silkroad said:

We spent many relaxing interludes in Cafe al Bacio, and we found the best cocktails in the Martini Bar and the Casino Bar🍹

I think the Casino was the one bar where I didn't sit down and have a drink. I did have the more mediocre "free" drinks while playing the slots. Will have to visit it next year (for research purposes). 😉

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On 5/28/2019 at 6:25 PM, Silkroad said:

Overall, I found the live music enjoyable, but not compelling. 

They really lucked out with the Reckless Charms, Michael Reddon, Impulse and Dos Duo for the first Carib season. I realize that they are catering to a different audience in Europe so have different types of entertainment, but hope the music is again top notch in the Carib next year. I saw that Damian just left and Eddy Jenkins started on the Edge. We like Eddy too - I hope he is up to the challenge like Damian was - we felt that he turned the entertainment around dramatically on the Edge (and was a class act). He made the entertainment fit the ship layout, instead of the other way around. I really hope he will return after his vacation!

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On 5/27/2019 at 2:28 PM, Silkroad said:

We found the white "charging box" more useful than we had imagined, both because of the USB ports, and because DH had the brilliant idea to leave our most frequently used charging cables stored inside the box when not in use. You can see our (unplugged) Samsung & Fitbit cables in one of the photos. 

20190508_103249.jpg

20190508_103219.jpg

I tucked my cords into "Kelly's Box" too. I  thought that was the idea, but maybe it was just your DH and I who had the brilliant idea. 😉  I thought the box was butt ugly and took up too much room, but worked very well for us.

 

Sorry that I am just getting to all of these posts at once. It's been a rough week and I waited until I could finally sit down and savor the final posts. Sad to see it end...😞   

 

Okay, Presto, hurry up and go on your cruise! 🙂

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I really like this picture that you took - it really captures the feel of the IV because it includes both sides, floor, the bifold doors, the tint when the glass is lowered and puts the large chairs and small table in perspective. It brought back my feel for the IV - overall positive, but with some annoyances. 🙂

 

446911481_IVpicturenicex.jpg.61548030d512a33330056b43f08726f3.jpg

Edited by vtcruising
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2 hours ago, vtcruising said:

They really lucked out with the Reckless Charms, Michael Reddon, Impulse and Dos Duo for the first Carib season. I realize that they are catering to a different audience in Europe so have different types of entertainment, but hope the music is again top notch in the Carib next year. I saw that Damian just left and Eddy Jenkins started on the Edge. We like Eddy too - I hope he is up to the challenge like Damian was - we felt that he turned the entertainment around dramatically on the Edge (and was a class act). He made the entertainment fit the ship layout, instead of the other way around. I really hope he will return after his vacation!

Hope Damian will be there in Nov...but they may send him to APEX to get things off to a great start.  He and his staff really turned things around fit EDGE!

 

The one before him was not a good fit and  apparently was subject to micromanagement from Miami  

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8 minutes ago, hcat said:

Hope Damian will be there in Nov...but they may send him to APEX to get things off to a great start.  He and his staff really turned things around fit EDGE!

 

The one before him was not a good fit and  apparently was subject to micromanagement from Miami  

That's true - I think someone did mention that he might be going to the Apex. Oh well, Eddy was great on one of my cruises and hopefully they will continue on the same track. You should have Captain Kate on your cruise so that will be cool! 🙂

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3 hours ago, vtcruising said:

They really lucked out with the Reckless Charms, Michael Reddon, Impulse and Dos Duo for the first Carib season. I realize that they are catering to a different audience in Europe so have different types of entertainment, but hope the music is again top notch in the Carib next year. I saw that Damian just left and Eddy Jenkins started on the Edge. We like Eddy too - I hope he is up to the challenge like Damian was - we felt that he turned the entertainment around dramatically on the Edge (and was a class act). He made the entertainment fit the ship layout, instead of the other way around. I really hope he will return after his vacation!

While I wish I had been able to see the musicians you referenced, I don't want anyone to think the musicians on my cruise weren't talented. They were very talented. I believe they were catering (with their playlists) to the demographic they expected to be the majority on this transatlantic cruise. I doubt very much that these musicians (or others) would use exactly the same playlists for European cruises. I base this assumption on the live music I enjoyed on my recent European cruise.

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47 minutes ago, hcat said:

The one before him was not a good fit and  apparently was subject to micromanagement from Miami  

I don't know what happened with Maarten on Edge, but he was the CD on our first TA, and the live music on that cruise was great!

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3 hours ago, vtcruising said:

I really like this picture that you took - it really captures the feel of the IV because it includes both sides, floor, the bifold doors, the tint when the glass is lowered and puts the large chairs and small table in perspective. It brought back my feel for the IV - overall positive, but with some annoyances. 🙂

 

Well said. Overall positive, but with some annoyances. My irritation spiked every time I tried to reach the window (by moving a chair, or twisting past them) or sit in the chairs! I loathed those chairs by day three. The seats themselves are comfortable, but the backs are not. They take up far too much space relative to their ability to hold a human in reasonable comfort. I hope the replacement chairs are much better.

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1 hour ago, Silkroad said:

I don't know what happened with Maarten on Edge, but he was the CD on our first TA, and the live music on that cruise was great!

Yes, we had Maarten on a different ship and liked him. There is more to the story than we know, I think. My guess is that there were unrealistic expectations for this ship coming from Miami that they soon realized needed modification. In the meantime, the CD onboard needed to stick with the company mantra about things like having electronic trivia only. That's what I felt was happening in the Retreat (the concierges had to give the company line about not having a bar being a positive thing). the suite manager with discussing the loungers (giving the line that we had the beautiful Retreat Sundeck to lounge in the sun) and GS saying that they didn't have extra dailies - we had our apps. You could tell they didn't necessarily believe it, but needed to stick to the script.

 

Either Damian came in with more of a backbone about what needed to be changed or it had already been determined that change was needed. Either way, he did a great job!

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9 hours ago, Silkroad said:

Well said. Overall positive, but with some annoyances. My irritation spiked every time I tried to reach the window (by moving a chair, or twisting past them) or sit in the chairs! I loathed those chairs by day three. The seats themselves are comfortable, but the backs are not. They take up far too much space relative to their ability to hold a human in reasonable comfort. I hope the replacement chairs are much better.

 

Are we getting replacement chairs then? Any idea when and what they are?

If you see a job lot for balcony chairs on E-bay you'll know where they've come from ………….

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9 hours ago, vtcruising said:

Yes, we had Maarten on a different ship and liked him. There is more to the story than we know, I think. My guess is that there were unrealistic expectations for this ship coming from Miami that they soon realized needed modification. In the meantime, the CD onboard needed to stick with the company mantra about things like having electronic trivia only. That's what I felt was happening in the Retreat (the concierges had to give the company line about not having a bar being a positive thing). the suite manager with discussing the loungers (giving the line that we had the beautiful Retreat Sundeck to lounge in the sun) and GS saying that they didn't have extra dailies - we had our apps. You could tell they didn't necessarily believe it, but needed to stick to the script.

 

Either Damian came in with more of a backbone about what needed to be changed or it had already been determined that change was needed. Either way, he did a great job!

Yup....the trivia issue was huge for awhile. It was reported that  at one of the Cruise Critic gatherings before my Jan cruise. Marten  did nothing, started the trivia game and told the CC folks they could go meet over in the corner!  

 

By the time Damian came,..he was  in my opinion, the turnaround expert .  X was getting bad press over trivia, IVs,  EDEN, etc, He's a pro.  He was mentored by DRU Pavlov....the ultimate CD in X for many yrs. The Captain was beaming at the new success at the Sr Officers party.!

Edited by hcat
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20 hours ago, vtcruising said:

Michelle, which restaurant had the best exclusives, in your opinion (taking out the ambiance, seating, decor)? 

 

Was the beef good quality in these restaurants? I have felt that the beef on Celebrity is not quite as good quality as it used to be, except in the specialties (and others have noticed it too). I thought the food was better on the Edge than other ships in general, but ate at the specialties and Luminae a lot. I like your idea of sticking mostly to the exclusives in each of the 4 MDRs.

 

Which restaurant had the best ambiance, in your opinion?

 

Thanks!

You ask questions that are difficult to answer, Marilyn😂 If forced to choose only one, DH would choose Cosmopolitan for the Exclusives (those scallops were divine), and I would choose Cyprus. I loved the Alsatian Tart & the Beef Tenderloin at Normandie, but I didn't have a second exclusive there. Tuscan would be in last place for Exclusives, for both of us. As I said before, we intend to try all the venues again, and hope to try the rest of the Exclusives (if they appeal to us). We found the ambiance equally pleasing in each venue. We enjoyed the design and decoration of each one, and it was nice to have that variety  We did not think the beef quality had declined since our cruise last year.  

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11 minutes ago, Silkroad said:

You ask questions that are difficult to answer, Marilyn😂 If forced to choose only one, DH would choose Cosmopolitan for the Exclusives (those scallops were divine), and I would choose Cyprus. I loved the Alsatian Tart & the Beef Tenderloin at Normandie, but I didn't have a second exclusive there. Tuscan would be in last place for Exclusives, for both of us. As I said before, we intend to try all the venues again, and hope to try the rest of the Exclusives (if they appeal to us). We found the ambiance equally pleasing in each venue. We enjoyed the design and decoration of each one, and it was nice to have that variety  We did not think the beef quality had declined since our cruise last year.  

Perfect! That's what I wanted to know. We only ate in Cyprus and loved it, as well as had the Taste of the Edge with one appetizer or entree sample per restaurant. I love well-prepared scallops but assumed (I guess wrongly) that any MDR scallops would be chewy because of the service time lag. The scallop appetizer in FCSH was superb all 3 times we went and the Luminae scallops were very good - it 's good to know that the Cosmo scallops are good too! Also good to hear about the beef. We found it lacking on the Infinity in Blu (though the LPC steak was wonderful) and there was a thread a few months ago where people thought the beef quality had dropped on X. Maybe they are keeping the food quality high on the Edge so it doesn't give people another thing to complain about.😉

 

 

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