We have just completed a 12-night cruise of the Mediterranean on the Celebrity Solstice. We enjoyed it enough to sign up for another Celebrity cruise on-board.
The Celebrity Solstice is not the absolute top of the line in cruise ships, but it does provide value for money.
We had a Concierge veranda stateroom. The stateroom was functional, the bathroom was a reasonable size, and the balcony provided room for the two of us to stretch out watch the waves go by. Our attendants were pleasant and helpful, although we didn't require much beyond the standard things. The only criticism I would have is that Celebrity has chosen an Apple network to drive the stateroom TV communications and I am not sure it is up to the task. The signal would tend to freeze up. Not a big deal for us -- we didn't watch it much anyway.
We chose the fixed time dinner option. For us the early sitting suited us well -- we had a number of early start shore excursions and were not interested in partying all night. We were fortunate in our dinner companions, and having dinner with them became a fun part of the cruise. The food in the main dining room was good. The dinner menu had two sides to it. The left side never changed and provided some basic standbys such as NY Strip Steak. The right side was different every evening. I like to try things I have not eaten before, so I almost always ended up choosing from the right side. Things were not always perfect, some folks at our table had trouble getting a steak the way they wanted it and the fish on one occasion was dry. However, the wait staff fell over themselves in getting the problems corrected. We didn't eat at any of the specialty restaurants because we were happy dining in the main dining room.
Breakfast and lunch we took in the cafeteria style Ocean View Cafe. Plenty of good choices to pick from. We never had a problem finding a table either, which can sometimes be a problem in those environments.
We had signed up for Celebrity shore excursions for five of the seven ports we visited. We were happy with all of them. Generally the shore excursions were well organized; you checked in at the main theatre, they gave you a numbered batch and called each excursion by number. The tour guide and the bus displayed the number prominently so even in the mad crush of the Acropolis it was easy to follow.
There was a different show every night. A resident production cast put on three different production shows. There were five guest artists and the remaining four shows were variety shows featuring the production cast and guest artists. The quality was good -- not great -- but certainly enjoyable. The humor would sometimes get a bit edgy. This didn't worry me, but there were some folks at our dinner table that didn't care for it. In addition to the shows there were various musical acts that would perform in different parts of the ship at different times. Most passengers seemed to have at least one they would make a point of listening to -- depending more on style than ability.
There were enough other activities that we never got bored. We only paid extra for one -- a wine tasting. Well, if you discount drinking and gambling. One of the families at our dinner table had a 10 -- year old son. They purposefully chose a cruise with a more limited kids program because they thought that would suit him better. He certainly seemed to enjoy himself.
Formal nights were not super-formal. I had rented a tux because I didn't want to be lugging a tux or suit to Europe with me. Probably about half of the men wore tuxes, close to half wore a suit, and there was a smattering of guys that couldn't be bothered to do either. For our next cruise I will probably take a suit.
I don't know how full the cruise was -- they always seemed to be space, we never felt crowded.
All in all, a good experience and we are ready to do it again.