Celebrity Solstice Cruise Review by Grammieof7: Amazing Alaska
Member Since 2013
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This was our 1st cruise with Celebrity and it was a homerun! We booked in AquaClass and have determined that this is the only way to cruise! Blu was truly an amazing treat - it was like eating in a 5 star resturant every night. The cabin was spacious (as cruising goes) and plenty of storage and the bathroom was a dream - no backing up to get into this one.
We upgraded to the premium drink package - 1st time we have ever bought a drink package and for us this was the way to go. No surprises when the bill comes at the end of the cruise. Service was always friendly and never had an issue of trying to get service once they found we had the premium package. We also pre-paid our gratuties and it was nice that was also paid for before our cruise even started. We did slip some extra money to some of the people who took extra care of us at the end.
We feel that everyone should see Alaska once in their lifetime - truly majestic sights! Tracy Arm Fjord is amazing and was my More favorite place. We got up at 5:00 a.m. and ordered in room service and sat on the balcony and watched the beauty pass by.
Even tho the boat had 2960 passengers it never felt crowded except a few times when we tried to catch lunch before our excursions in the OceanView Cafe - so trying to find a table was a bit challenging but just go with the flow.
We only caught a few of the shows and I will say - do not miss Brent Nixon - he is truly entertaining and sucks you into his tales of Alaska and it's wildlife.
As for excursions, In Ketchikan did the Totem Park and walked around the town shopping - could have done not going to the Totem Park! In Juneau we did the Whatle Watching and Mendenhall Glacier. We saw amazing sights with the Whale Watching but was disappointed in the boat as not everyone gets a window seat and being we were the last boat to arrive we could not get a window seat and did not realize we were on a boat with 100 other people. Mendenhall Glacier was cool but after seeing Sawyer Glacier in Tracy Arm Fjord - it just didn't compare. In Skagway we did the White Pass Train and Goldrush Sled Dogs and loved both of them. Amazing sights from the train and loved to hear about the Idiotrod Racing and holding the puppies!
Just note that when you get into the ports there are several cruise ships in the port with you so it is a bit crazy trying to shop in these towns that usually have 3000 people at most that are now inundated with 12,000 tourists. Wanted to explore the town of Skagway but decided we did not want to be in the throngs of all the people.
My last advice is to pay the $20.00 per person to do the luggage valet at the end of the cruise. Once we set our luggage out of our door on the last night we next saw it when we landed in our home airport! They had our boarding passes printed so when we arrived at the Seattle Airport to fly home all we had to do is go thru security - what a great serice! We did not have to wait to get off the boat when our number was called - we could leave at any time!
If you are thinking about Aquaclass definitely do it - it is well worth the upgrade. We are so looking forward to cruising again with Celebrity in Aguaclass! Sorry NCL and Carnival you have just lost 2 customers! Less
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Cabin review: Celebrity Solstice Aqua Class Penthouse Deck (11) 1565
Room 1565 in the middle of the ship on the starboard side. Loved the room - never heard noises other than the ocean as we slept with the door partially open. Bathroom was great and the shower was awesome compared to other cruises of past from different cruise lines! Plenty of storage and room was clean and always tended to.
Port and Shore Excursions
It was beautiful to see, but after seeing Sawyer Glacier in Tracy Arm Fjord just not quite the same.
Saw lots of whales and even some breaching which was cool - but disappointed in the size of the boat. Thought it would be more intimate and everyone would have a window seat or good view - not the case - we were the last bus to arrive so stuck in the middle with not a good view over the other people. Next time I would investigate more and find a smaller more intimate boat setting.
Not a whole lot there to see. Would not recommend this as an excursion.
Loved hearing about the Idiotrod Racing from a real racer and and having interaction with his sled team. The dogs are truly excited to run and then being able to hold the 6 week old puppies was the best! So wanted to sneak one home!
White Pass Scenic Railway
Such beautiful scenery all around and the people on the train telling stories were great and gave such great historical accounts! I was expecting to see more wildlife such as bear, moose or carribou but certainly not the case - so just expect to see spectacular scenery!