HAD A GREAT CRUISE ON THE SEPT. 5, 2011 SOLSTICE CRUISE ROUND TRIP FROM BARCELONA TO FRANCE, ITALY, CROATIA AND MONTENEGRO. THE SHIP IS BEAUTIFUL AND EVEN THOUGH IT IS THE LARGEST (PASS. CAPACITY) WE HAVE SAILED ON, IT NEVER SEEMED CROWDED. ALWAYS FOUND A SEAT BY THE POOL. THE LOUNGES AND DINING VENUES WERE NEVER CROWDED.
Ports of call were very nice but as with any famous toursit venue, you need more time. one day is not enough time to see Rome esp. when there is a 90 minute ride to the city. Barcelona is a beautiful city. will go back there again. Emebarkation and Disembarkation was smooth and very efficient. The ship was clean and ready and the crew was very friendly and attentive. Officers were very evident throughout the cruise and we saw several pick up pieces of garbage or a dirty plate or cup while walking though various areas. Cabin was very nicely appointed and comfortable. Main dining room was very nice and food was good but not great, especially the desserts. Desserts in the Oceanview Cafe were better. Oceanview Cafe was the best casual dining venue of all ships we have been on. Service in all dining rooms was excellent.
Drink prices were very reasonable and the Martini bar was excellent. The gym was great. Entertainment was good but not great. a few of the entertainers were excellent, others were mediocre. Cruise Director was never seen around the ship, only on stage at the shows. Overall an excellent cruise on the Solstice. However, as with anything, there were a few negatives. Celebrity charges for certain tender or shuttles to certain City Centers. Ths shore excursions were very expensive. Try to do your own city tours and transfers. There are some fees for certain gym classes. The free classes were merely a come-on to some sales proposal and most of all the surcharge restaurants are getting out of hand. We did not go to any surcharge restaurant and will not in the future. The cruise lines want to entice more and more people to cruise so they can't nickel and dime people once they get on board. It leaves a bad taste and ruins an otherwise excellent experience. This was our 21st cruise and will not be our last in spite of the nickel and diming.