Celebrity Solstice Cruise Review by Vol fan: Solstice is Stupendous!
Overall Member Rating
Solstice is Stupendous!
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Embarkation: Fort Lauderdale (Port Everglades)
We sailed on the Solstice March 21-28 on the Eastern Caribbean route. We were a bit hesitant as we were on the Millie a few years ago and did not enjoy that cruise as much as previous cruises on NCL and RCCL.
Not to worry, though. The Solstice is a beautiful ship, very well appointed and very well run. I felt like I was at a 5 star resort all week long.
We flew into Fort Lauderdale on March 21st, arriving at 12:36. Baggage was quick to arrive and we took a cab, stopping on the way to pick up some wine for the stateroom. We arrived at the dock about 1:15 or so. We checked in and were on the ship within 10 or 15 minutes. Our stateroom was already ready, so we dropped off the bags and went up to the OceanView Cafe for a late lunch, with the selections offered exceeding our expectations. (this was true all week long for the OceanView Cafe.)
We walked around the ship to familiarize ourselves with the layout and we were very impressed with the More decor/artwork/dark wood/bar areas/theater...everything! Our cabin was 9149, a 1B balcony cabin. It was roomier than some balcony cabins we have had on NCL and the balcony was deeper and furnished with lovely reclining chairs and a good sized table. The closet was plenty big enough for our clothes and the bags fit under the bed for storage. The bathroom, with the glass door enclosed shower and vessel sink, was bigger than some we have had and had plenty of storage for all or my toiletries and my husband's as well. I used the tray provided for all of my cosmetics and moved it out to the vanity in the cabin for convenience.
The placement of the cabin is far forward port side, just where the forward elevators are. This was perfect for us. We never heard the elevators in our cabin and we could just step out the door and onto the elevators and off we would go to wherever we wanted.
We always attend the shows every night on our cruises and we were again pleasantly surprised by the quality of the shows. (with the exception of the magician, who was a bit strange.) Karen Grainger, a female vocalist who did impersonations of many female singers, was top notch. She really has a great set of pipes!
The dancing/musical show numbers were also very good and a treat to see the costuming for the Cirque-type shows. Good vocalists and dancers. We enjoyed every show.
A word about our cruise director, John Grantham...by far the best we have had on any of our 11 cruises. We loved him!!! He left the ship as we did for his vacation/furlough, so he won't be on future sailings for a while, but he was terrific.
Also, don't miss the Hot Glass Show on the Lawn Deck. It is fascinating and don't let the length of the show (2 1/2 hours) keep you from attending. You will be hooked from the first and the time flies. Don't leave early as they do a raffle for a piece of glass blown on-board at the end of the shows.
We loved this ship and everything about it. We will be back on a Solstice class ship in the future. Less
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Port and Shore Excursions
We also walked through Old San Juan, mainly to go to The Butterfly People. A friend of my husband's wanted us to buy a butterfly display for him and have it shipped so we did. The owner of the shop is a very friendly young woman and was very helpful. If you haven't been to this shop, check it out when you are in San Juan. The butterflies are beautiful. Here is a link to their website: http://www.butterflypeople.com/
We stopped by Senor Frogs for a quick drink and headed back aboard for the show and dinner.
Back on board, we had a lovely dinner and another great show.
About the food... we were very pleased with the quality of the food and service in the Epernay Dining Room. We ate their every night as a part of the Select Dining choice. We just showed up whenever we wanted and were seated within 5 minutes every night. Sometimes we at a table for two, sometimes four or six. We had an enjoyable meal with lovely table mates when we dined with others and enjoyed a table just for us two on three occasions. The food, for the most part, was excellent. A cut above NCL and RCCL. The service was attentive, but not cloying. Timely, but not rushed.
The OceanView Cafe was a pleasant surprise as well. There were many selections of several different country's cuisines. A great pasta bar with many sauce and ingredient selections, conveniently located next to the ice cream bar, which offered a great selection of ice creams, sorbets and sherbets all day. Sushi was put out about 5:30 each day and was quite delicious.
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