We left NE Ohio on Sunday Oct. 24th and arrived in Ft. Lauderdale around noon. A quick taxi ride to the port, an easy and efficient check-in, and we were on the spectacular Solstice by 1:15 pm.
We are in our 50's and this was our 2nd Celebrity cruise, 4th overall cruise. Our expectations were high and we weren't disappointed. The ship is gorgeous, well appointed, and easy to navigate.
This was the first balcony we ever had and LOVED it! Our cabin was very spacious, as was the balcony. Our friends were in the cabin next door and without asking, the steward opened the balcony so we could share the space!
There is plenty of storage space with a large closet, 4 dresser drawers, and an enclosed shelf above the bed, with lots of room! The bathroom was the largest we've ever had on a cruise ship. We were unpacked in no time... as our luggage was waiting for us when we returned from the buffet.
The crowd on the Solstice was a bit older than our last few cruise on RCCL, but not so old that it was granny central! There were very few children on the ship, probably due to school being in session. Overall, it was a very nice mix of people. There's plenty to do and we found that we didn't have to time to do everything that was offered. DO NOT MISS the Glass show on the top deck. Spencer, from NY, is a very, very talented artisan. The glass pieces that were blown onboard were stunning.
There are plenty of nooks and crannies to settle in... uncrowded and relaxing. The library is one, as was the bar on the top deck, aft... The grass is very nice... and to walk barefoot through the grass in the middle of the ocean is an unforgettable experience.
We had the first dinner seating and everything ran like clockwork. The staff is well trained & attentive. Our meals were delicious, with plenty of choices to entice and satisfy everyone's appetite. Head chef, Panos is a master in the kitchen and on the stage. On a sea day we attended the tour of the main kitchen and that was a splendid treat for anyone interested in cooking & eating! DO NOT MISS the rack of lamb on the first formal night. It was the best we've ever eaten. The Tuscan Grill offered us a very special, evening. Just don't ask for a side of anything because they will bring you full portions, making it almost impossible to move after dinner!
Grand Cayman had plenty of excursions and we chose the Jeep adventure. Once it got started we enjoyed driving through the mangroves and along the coast. Please note that they no longer offer the stick shift option for a vehicle.
Our favorite port was Costa Maya, closely followed by Roatan. We booked a Beach Break through costamaycruiseexcursions.com and had the most relaxing day we've ever experienced on a cruise. If you have the chance, go to Nohoch Kay Beach Club. Jaime is the owner and a wonderful host... they treated us like royalty . There were a number of crew members there for the day, relaxing.
In Roatan we booked a private tour through roatancruiseexcursions.com and had a great time. If you can, ask for Syvonnie. She is a great tour guide and makes the tour very personalized. The views from the top of the island was spectacular. We were able to see both sides of the island from that point.
Each time we returned to the ship we were greeted with glassed of ice water and cold, iced towels straight out of the cooler. That might not sound like much, but after a hot, humid excursion, they were most welcome and cooled us off quickly! It's little touches like this that makes a Celebrity passenger feel pampered and special.
The entertainment was enjoyable. The performance by the cast of a cirque-like performance was the most unique show we've seen onboard. They are very talented.
The Captain was very entertaining while delivering his 'reports' and we appreciated that they didn't pipe the announcements into the rooms as we docked. The final sea day, the Captain and officers met in the pool for a grudge volleyball match... alot of fun to watch.
We rate this cruise at the best because the ship was great in every area. Our cabin was clean & spacious. The staff was attentive and friendly. The food was unbelievably good... The pool and hot tubs were great. We LOVED this ship, this cruise.