Was on the Jan 20th New Zealand Quest sailing. I’m a solo traveler. This was my 4th cruise with Celebrity. 2ndtime on the Solstice. Cruised on this ship about two years ago, and fell madly in love with this ship. I decided to follow this ship to Australia since New Zealand has been on my bucket list for quit some time now.
Spent a few days in Sydney visiting family I have in Bondi before cruise. Highly recommend a few days in this amazing city.
The Solstice is still as gorgeous as ever. Ship was nice and clean everywhere. Great shape. All the venues were well kept.
Had booked the same Aquaclass cabin I had last time. Good location on Deck 11 mid-ship. Rooms were nice and big with loads of storage space. No complaints about the cabin. My Cabin Steward was nice. Wasn’t wowed by him nor was I un-happy with him.
Ate mostly in Blu for Breakfast and dinners. Amazing staff. Always greeted me by name. Dining at Blu was an absolute pleasure every morning and night. The staff at blu made paying for an aqua class cabin worth it. Ate in the MDR once for lunch and it was absolutely disgraceful all the severs were rude and obnoxious. And the food was not good either. Never went back into the dining after that day t. Food was just effortless. In the oceanview café was very basic. Meals just repeated everyday. Nothing new or original. I must say I’m a little bit disappointed in Celebrity when it came to dining.
Ate in all the specialty dining. Silk Harvest twice, Tuscan grill twice and Murano once. I booked the 5 night specialty dining package which is well worth it if you’re planning on dining at each restaurant. All of them were great, service was phenomenal and the food was amazing at all these venues. Seems like Celebrity is trying to get people to pay extra for quality.
The only entertainment worth doing on this ship is the Hot glass show. Entertainment really lacked on this ship.
Ports / Excursion
Every single port was spectacular. Didn’t do any ship excursions did all private tours or travelled around on my own.
Sydney - On my own
Hobart, Tasmania – Great Expeditions (Top 4 Tour)
Dunedin – Awesome Tours
Akaroa – Shamarra Alpaca Farm tour
Wellington – On my own. Ship does offer a $10 shuttle to town but I didn’t take it. It’s about a 20 min walk to the center of town.
Napier – Hawk’s Bay Scenic Tour. Ship also provides a free shuttle into town.
Tauranga – Carlton Tours
Bay of Islands – Gungha 2 sailing . Ship provides a shuttle to Paihia. If you want to goto Russells you’re on your own.
For me personally, this was not the best Celebrity cruise I’ve taken. Entertainment and food (with the exaction of specialty dining) was just average or below average. Not up to the celebrity standards I think most of us are use to. I’ve expected allot more from them. For me this cruise was more about the destination than the cruise itself.