“It wouldn’t surprise me if the terrific ideas found in Silhouette make their way back to the other Solstice-class ships,” said Celebrity Cruises president and CEO Dan Hanrahan, referring to the just-launched ship’s grass-covered Lawn Club. Whether Silhouette’s Lawn Club is an improvement on one of cruising’s most novel spaces is debatable, but one thing is not: This newest grass-cover iteration is much more exclusive — and expensive — than the now-iconic versions planted on Silhouette’s three older sisters.
The Lawn Club Grill is one part churasscaria — choose as many lamb chops, filets, rib eyes and chicken kebobs as you can stomach — and one part cooking class. Not everyone gets to cook, however, and there’s a bit at stake (sorry) for the two grill masters. They’re at least partially responsible for the final flatbread pizza and filet. (I ordered a steak kabob medium rare; it came out still breathing.) Orders are taken, and the grill master begins the quest with the ceremonially washing of the hands (pictured). He then kneads dough or selects the meats, adds toppings or dry rubs and cooks to spec, all under the tutelage of Celebrity’s resident grill men. While they wait, diners head to the salad bar, and pre-cooked sides (baked potato, lobster mac ‘n’ cheese) arrive with dinner.
The Porch. With just 48 seats and a Lawn Club view, it’s understandable that Silhouette’s new breakfast and lunch restaurant couldn’t stay “free” for long. According to PR folk, waiters and executives, the venue will adopt a $5-per-person cover charge. After a first meal (an egg, Swiss and tomato panini), the cover is clearly more about service, location and crowd control than gourmet dining experience. Don’t misunderstand: The sandwich was sufficiently crusty, but paying $5 on Silhouette for a somewhat limited menu of panini, parfaits and pastries has a taste of exclusivity. And, yes, specialty coffees are extra.
Wondering about other parts of the ship? Check out our live reports from the ship’s launching, including dispatches on Silhouette’s beer-packed brewpub and our reporter’s first impressions.
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