We went on a cruise to Italy, Israel, Greece and Turkey on the Silhouette at the beginning of Sept 2011. It was a fantastic way to travel and the accommodations were the best we ever had on a Celebrity ship.
To give a run down of individual items:
Restaurants - All of the restaurants we ate at were great and better than any we have been to here in Manhattan. You don't need to eat in the main dining room where it's crowded and can get noisy. The Murano restaurant is pure 5 star dining. We ate there twice during the cruise. The staff is simply amazing and ready to treat all customers like royalty. We both had the lobster tail and it was succulent. And, to top it off, it was cooked by a French chef named Anne. She was great and a pleasure to have at our table. Aqua Blu is also out of this world. We dined at this restaurant about 5 times and each time they have new items on the menu to try. The wait staff was wonderful and it was simply just a joy to dine and have a window table overlooking the Mediterranean. The Tuscan Grill is also fantastic. Great Italian food and service. You will not go wrong dining in this fine venue. Qsine is one of the most unique dining experiences you will ever enjoy. The food was great and the staff of waiters was a lot of fun. Two other places we tried were Bistro on 5 and the Porch. Bistro on 5 is one of the best kept secrets on the ship. They have delicious soups, salads, crepes, and desserts. At the porch you can get a salad and panini. Both of these dining venue's have $5 cover charges, but it's absolutely worth it.
Excursions - Most of excursions we took were informative and fun. The Tzippori Mosaics were not crowded and was interesting to visit in the countryside. Glorious Jerusalem was a long 10 hour day, but our guide was informative and kept the group engaged. Don't bother with the Tel Aviv and Jaffa excursion - it was a waste of time. Our guide was lazy and didn't take us on the itinerary the ship had described. I wish we had gone to the Dead Sea and Masada instead. Ephesus was a wonderful experience. Also, the excursion staff only wants to sell you and really isn't truthful in their explanations. They need to get their facts straight during their presentations and tell people truth. For example, the Via Doloroso is not where Christ did the 12 stations of the cross. It's in the general area, but it's just the route celebrated by Pilgrims. In facts, it's a lot of souvenir ships and places to buy a soda. Also, other facts they mention about Jerusalem, just are not true. Don't bother with a tour on Mykonos, just do it on your own. I like other guests found the $7 shuttle fee another way to nickel and dime guests. In Naples they have a shuttle to the ferrys, but don't charge? Why in one place and not the other? Capri is great to visit on your own. You can get there by taking the ferry and make a day of it yourself by walking around. It's $17 one way. Don't buy a return ticket, unless you feel the time the boat has is good. We went over with one ferry and back on another because we wanted to stay longer. You can get your ticket to come back right when you get over to Capri, to avoid waiting in lines at the end of the day.
Entertainment - The entertainment in the Silhouette Theater was lackluster. One night there was a musical and one minute they were singing Stevie Nicks, and the next minute was Irish step dancing? And, then the comic one night was Rikki something or other. He was not very funny. People were more or less laughing at his stupidity, rather than his jokes. Claire M. was full of herself and self absorbed. Hopefully they improve the entertainment in the theater. The musicians on the ship were great. One night we listed to Jazz on the lawn on the top deck while docked in Ashod. That was one of best events we attended. Celebrity should do this more often.
Bars and Lounges - The Ensemble lounge is a nice place to listen to music. A little dark, but overall the atmosphere is great. The back deck bar was awesome. Rodolfo and crew make for a fun time while pulling away from the ports at night. There are so many bars and lounges to visit on the ship, you never feel crowded. The Wine Cellar was a big hit with my better half. You can sample wines from all over the world. They also have free appetizers for you to snack on while relaxing.
Cabin - We stayed in a Sky Suite. What a great experience. It was roomy with lots of places to store your items. The bathroom was fantastic with a rain head shower and full tub. The accommodations were immaculate and staff great. Arles (our butler) and his staff make you feel at home in 5 star luxury.
Pool area - It was very very crowded with not enough seats on sea days. People were packed in like sardines which doesn't make for a good time. Also, it appeared many people were reserving their chairs with towels. The pool staff should really pay more attention and clear areas if people are not there so other can enjoy the sun.
Getting to the port from Rome was easy. We hired a private driver named Claudio (email@example.com) who took us from Civitavecchia to our hotel in Rome for $120 Euros. Less than what it would be for Celebrity and their bus to dump you off at a central point in Rome, and then have to take a taxi to your hotel. He was very professional and on time. We came off the cruise ship and he was there waiting with a sign for us. I would highly recommend him if you need to book a ride.
Overall the Celebrity trip was fantastic and worth the time and expense. The Silhouette is 5 star luxury and the best ship we have ever sailed on. I look forward to more Solstice cruising if the price is right in the future. Despite the excursion staff everyone on the ship was fantastic to deal with. What a great way to travel and see the ancient wonders of Europe.