Our first Celebrity cruise and we were delighted because we got such a great deal on the cruise itself and the airfare. So it was a no-brainer when we decided to visit beautiful Hawaii and check it off the old bucket list. We flew from New York the day of the boarding (it was a good flight but long) we finally arrived at the port around 4:00 in the afternoon and we were aware of the issues the Solstice was having with NoroVirus (as they had sent us an email advising the boarding would be delayed until 2:00 so that they could sanitize the ship) We appreciated that and understood because let's face it no one wants to get the Norovirus. HOWEVER the check in was a mess, very unorganized it was almost like they had never used the Honolulu port before and you would think that they should know that most of the people boarding there had traveled a long way so they really should have provided a rest area and some light refreshments. There was nothing! We finally boarded around 4:30ish and our rooms were ready around 6:00.
The ship was beautiful and we were very happy to see that the inside cabin we had booked was roomy and very comfortable (we have never stayed in an inside cabin before) and based on this experience I would definitely consider staying in an inside room again. Because of the virus everything was "served" by the crew for the first 7 days or so. This was necessary I am sure but really clogged up the buffet particularly at the coffee stations in the morning at breakfast. The food at the buffet was varied and plentiful but the scrambled eggs they served were most definitely of the powdered variety. Breakfast in the dining room was delicious though. The main dining room was very elegant and by and large the food was very good there but I did get a lobster tail that was most definitely "spoiled" it was rectified immediately when I brought it to the attention of the waiter.
Our fellow passengers were decidedly much older I would say age 70 plus but we would much rather travel with older folks than kids. The shore excursions were great except when we tried to book Pearl Harbor pre cruise we were told there was only one ticket left on line and that we should just book that one ticket and MAYBE we would get another when we got on board the ship. Twice I called Celebrity customer service with questions pre cruise I must say for a cruise line that prides itself in being more upscale they were not very helpful or friendly (this after I held for a good 1/2 hour).
The entertainment was excellent I particularly enjoyed Greg Bonham, David Klinkenberg, Kuba and the Cirque du Soleil type show called "SOLSTICE" was outstanding. The sea days were very relaxing that is of course until we got to Ensenada. We were assured that our luggage would travel on the same bus as us. It of course was not (actually 3 buses behind ours) fortunately we had a later flight so when it turned up we were relieved and had plenty of time to calm down we were not the only people missing luggage there were several people one poor woman was fairly certain she was going to miss her flight. Not very organized Celebrity. We did enjoy the ship and would consider cruising with Celebrity again but it would have to be a good deal because I didn't find it to be superior to any other cruise line we have sailed with.