“Celebrity Solstice - Australia / New Zealand December 2012”
Cruise review of Celebrity Solstice

Fairypenguins Celebrity Solstice 5 Celebrity Solstice - Australia / New Zealand December 2012
Fairypenguins
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My wife and I boarded in Sydney, our home town. The embarkation process was simple and didn't take too long. We were greeted on board by very friendly and courteous crew, and a glass of champagne. The ship itself is magnificent with all the facilities of a luxury hotel resort. Our stateroom with verandah was located towards the rear (aft?) of the ship on Level 8. It was quiet and very comfortable, with plenty of clever storage. Our stateroom attendants were exceptionally good. The dining facilities and food quality were excellent. We alternated between the smaller "healthy" cafe at Aqua Spa and the much larger Ocean View for breakfast. The Ocean View is a large, casual, buffet style dining area with a variety of food to cater for all tastes. While it can get a little busy at times, we never had to wait in a queue or wait too long to find a table. Dinner at the Epernay was out of this world: an impressive menu, delicious food and wonderfully professional yet friendly and attentive service. We tried the Bistro on Five for crepes toward the end of the cruise and wished we had tried it earlier - it is a great place for a quiet and more private breakfast lunch or dinner. We also managed to spend a lot of time at El Bacio sipping really good coffee, the most desirable frappes and devouring cakes in probably the most comfortable seats on the ship - or anywhere for that matter. Next to El Bacio, the gelato bar serves the most scrumptious ice creams (although Ocean Vista does as well) and mouth watering cupcakes made on the spot. The entertainment and shows were great, and the Solstice Theatre, where the "big" shows were held is a great venue. The gym could be larger and some of the equipment needed maintenance. Unfortunately I fell ill with some fairly serious vomiting which seemed to result from food poisoning. My wife reported that to the Medical Center and when I was well enough I visited the Medical center to let them know I was OK and to answer questions I expected them to ask, like: what have you eaten, where and when? The senior man in charge was rude, offensive and disinterested in what might have caused my illness. I was more concerned, however, that my illness had not been logged and no attempt made to identify the source or cause. In summary: a beautiful ship, wonderful facilities, plenty of interesting activities, fabulous dining, incredibly professional and nice crew (save for one).
Celebrity Solstice Cruises to Australia & New Zealand
Overall Ratings
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Cabin review: Deluxe Veranda

Port and Shore Excursions

Port
Melbourne has good shopping, great cafes and a very European feel. A great city to explore on foot.
Sydney is my home town. Plenty to do and see in 2 days, and all not far from the ship. Should visit: the Opera House, climb the Harbor Bridge (need to pre-book) walk the Rocks district, shop in the Pitt Street Mall, visit Bondi or Manly Beach.
Published 01/15/13
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