Culinary Cruise on board the Celebrity Eclipse – Savor Your Destination – Part 1
We are always looking for the finest in food, wine and travel to bring to our readers. Several weeks ago we set sail aboard the beautiful Celebrity Eclipse from Miami to the Caribbean for one of their food and wine specialty cruises, Savor Your Destination. These culinary cruises take place several times a year on board select ships and include a cruise full of cooking classes, wine dinners and other special events like the Star Chefs Cooking Competition (think Iron Chef). Celebrity Cruises are known for their “Modern Luxury” and I would say that is what we experienced while on board this ship.
I will be writing several articles over the next few weeks about this trip which include interviews with the ship’s Executive Chef German Rio and guest chef Dena Marino. I will also be sharing photographs from the beautiful ports of call we visited and some recipes for dishes from the trip.
There is something special about a cruise. No matter how many times you board a ship and get ready to sail away, there is always a sense of excitement. Standing on the deck of the ship, pulling out of port and watching land fade into the distance is exhilarating.
Maybe it’s the thrill of the vacation that you are about to embark on, or perhaps the wonderment of places you are about to go and the new adventures that you will experience. There is also something about being at sea. It is calming and mysterious at the same time.
This ship, the Celebrity Eclipse, one of the Soltice Class ships, was launched in 2010 and is truly stunning. With 2850 passengers, 1041 feet in length (just over 3 football fields) and 15 stories (decks) high, it is the largest ship we have been on. On past cruises, we really enjoyed the smaller ships. They ranged in size from as small as 187 passengers to as large as 1350 passengers. I did not know what to expect from a cruise with this many passengers. However, once on board, you would never have the sense that so many people are traveling with you as they quickly spread throughout the ship, finding their own sense of space and interests.
The advantage of a ship this size is there are so many beautiful public areas to relax in, pools to enjoy, a spa, jogging track, Casino, library, Lawn Club, boutiques, seminars, restaurants, bars, nightlife and entertainment, all known as Celebrity Life activities. We found more to do and participate in than we had time for.
In the evenings, we found that our favorite part of the ship was where the premium specialty restaurants and several quieter lounges were located. On a ship this size, passengers tend to gravitate to those activities that they enjoy most. This was certainly the case in this specialty area. We encountered people with similar tastes to ours.