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75 Celebrity Auckland Cruise Reviews

We flew from London to Auckland via Emirates. Everything ran as per schedule and we arrived in New Zealand 3 days prior to the cruise. It took about an hour or so to go through immigration and customs before leaving the airport. However ... Read More
We flew from London to Auckland via Emirates. Everything ran as per schedule and we arrived in New Zealand 3 days prior to the cruise. It took about an hour or so to go through immigration and customs before leaving the airport. However apart from usual bag checks no other checks like temperature monitoring were being carried out at the airport. We were transferred to our central Auckland hotel called Citylife heritage hotel. We were given a one bedroom suite on one of the top floors of this hotel which had beautiful views of the city and harbour. We had breakfast included at the hotel which was great and there were plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby for lunches and dinners. The hotel was in a great location, situated on the main shopping street, Queen street. Sky tower was 5 mins walk away. We spent the next 3 days sightseeing around Auckland. Took hop on hop off bus to tour around Auckland, went up the sky tower for great views of the city, took a ferry to Devonport for views of Auckland from Mount Victoria. Also visited museum and botanic gardens. On our third day, we took a full day excursion to Rotorua to visit Tepuia and Wai-o-tapu geo-thermal sights. Very interesting day visiting these lovely sites and also saw a kiwi bird at Tepuia. On our return back to Auckland there was heavy rainfall which the country desperately needed after a very dry summer. Thankfully this was the only rainfall we saw in our entire trip. The next morning we did a bit of souvenir shopping on queen street before being picked up by our trasnsfer service to be taken to the dock to check in for the solstice New Zealand cruise. We thought it would take a long time to board the cruise as they were going to do extra checks like temperature monitoring etc. However no sooner we got there, our temperatures were promptly recorded and after getting the all clear, we handed our luggage to one of the porters. We proceeded to the check in area where the queue was minimal and were checked in to board the ship in 10mins. This was one of the fastest boarding we have experienced for a cruise. The whole process from arrival to boarding ship took under half an hour! As soon as we entered this beautiful ship, we were given champagne and asked to proceed to buffet as staterooms were going to be ready by 1pm. There was plenty of food choice for lunch from pizzas to sandwiches to Indian, Mexican, Chinese, vegetarian/vegan etc. After we finished lunch, we went to tour the ship which was similar to the Reflection we had been on 6 months prior to this cruise. 2 outdoor and 1 indoor pools, 2 tier theatre, cinema, casino, plenty of bars and cafes, around 4 speciality restaurants, outdoor screen by lawn area etc. Lovely ship and everything seemed nicely maintained despite a refit scheduled in 2021. We were soon asked to proceed to the staterooms soon after 1pm. Our cabin was a balcony cabin on deck 7 on the starboard side of the ship towards the front elevators. Great location for the theatres, Sky bar and cinema. Bit further to walk for dining areas but we got used to it very soon. When we got to our cabin, all the luggage had already arrived which was great! The cabin was once again very similar to our cabin on celebrity Reflection. Lovely bathroom with shower cubicle with glass doors. Good size balcony with 2 retractable chairs and a table. The room had plenty of storage space, a big sofa and a huge flat screen interactive tv. All in all, a very pleasant cabin which was looked after by our cabin steward Joaquín. The master of the ship, captain Alex, was one of the best captain we have ever had on a cruise. He was hilarious and we eagerly looked forward to his daily announcements. More importantly he kept us reassured and worry-free through out the cruise as we were travelling at a time when the whole world seemed to be affected by the coronavirus. Moreover we saw him regularly saw him and his officers throughout the cruise. We departed Auckland after 6pm soon after the safety drill was completed. We had lovely views of the city as we sailed toward Tauranga, our first stop. We docked in Tauranga next day at 10.30am. As we had booked a 'Hobbiton film set' tour for 12.30pm, we went to explore nearby area in the morning. we hiked up Mt. Maunganui in the morning where we got lovely views of the ship and surrounding area. Went back to ship for 12.30 whereby we took a coach to see the lovely film set where some parts of Lord of Rings and Hobbit trilogies were filmed. Spent around 3 hours at this magical place before returning to the ship around 4.30pm. As the ship was not leaving Tauranga till 10pm, we had local Maui performers come and do a traditional show in the theatre and included Haka dance too. We had a sea day in between followed by 3 consecutive stops. The first stop was Picton in South Island which was extremely picturesque. We had a lovely sunny day and we did a Marlborough train tour to Blenheim which was really a scenic journey passing through many vineyards. We got off at Blenheim and had a few hours to spend in this town before taking train back to Picton. Once we got back, we looked around Picton and the beautiful scenery around the area before taking back shuttle to ship. The next day we tendered in Akaroa. However the tendering process was very quick and efficient. We did a tour to Christchurch. It was a lovely picturesque journey to Christchurch and we had an excellent tour guide/driver who was very informative. When we got there we toured the city on the colourful trams and although the city is still rebuilding from the earthquake around 10 years ago, we loved the city for its vibrant atmosphere. We returned back to the ship and sailed towards Dunedin (Port Chalmers). We were advised by the captain that night that NZ prime minister had announced that all cruise ship ports in NZ would be shutting next day and if anyone entered the country from a foreign country including Australia, they would have to self isolate for 14 days. Hence anyone wishing to get off at Dunedin would be allowed to. This was our last NZ port anyway so we didn't miss any of the NZ ports. However due to the self isolation policy, around 180 guests left the ship in Dunedin. In Dunedin, we had a tour booked to see sights of Dunedin and visit Speights brewery. This was an excellent tour as it covered quite a few areas of Dunedin like botanic gardens, the railway station (most photographed building in all of NZ) and also a very informative trip to the brewery. After the tour of brewery we were given lots of good sized samples of various beers to try. Returned back to ship after 4 hours and then went around Port Chalmers Local area to have a look at this lovely small town. The next day we were visiting the national fjordland area (dusky, doubtful and Milford sounds). As we were not docking there, we were allowed to visit this part of New Zealand. It started off a bit overcast when we cruised through dusky sound but weather kept improving through the day and by the time we got to Milford sound, it was very warm and sunny. The captain gave us a surprise by rotating the ship 360 degrees at Milford sound to view one of the gorgeous waterfalls there so every side of the ship could get great views of the falls. We also saw lots of dolphins sailing alongside the ship once again pointed out by the captain and cruise director. During the sail into other sounds, we also saw seals and plenty of different types of birds. Had a great day visiting all the sounds and our trip to NZ wouldn't have been complete without without visiting these sites. We were supposed to have 2 sea days before docking in Eden. However Australia announced they would be closing all ports to cruise ships. Hence we missed Eden but were given onboard credit for missing that stop. So we ended up with 3 sea days. We were slightly concerned whether we would be allowed to disembark in Sydney but we needn't have worried as captain Alex announced that we were given permission to disembark in Sydney and would be arriving there the night before. However wouldn't be allowed to leave the ship until the scheduled day of departure. So apart from missing Eden, we didn't have any other itinerary changes and were very lucky that everything ran smoothly and no one fell ill onboard. The ship staff were always cleaning around the ship and made sure everyone washed their hands and used hand sanitisers regularly. We dined in main dining room on level 4. Although we were on anytime dining, the hostess Carla (who remembered our names daily) always ensured she was gave us table by the window with the same waiter every night. One of the best hostesses we have seen on a ship. Our head waiter Rejoy was excellent and ensured all our needs were promptly met. His assistant Goolfee was great too but was moved to one of the speciality dining rooms later. However his replacement was great too. Wine steward Paul gave us a good selection wines daily. Since we had outstanding service in main dining room, we didn't need to visit any of the speciality restaurants. However those who visited some of them like Murano, had a great time. Food was great and loved all the choices on menu. All the shows in theatre were great. There were some guest presenters like a British magician, Australian singer and a violinist. All were very talented and enjoyed their shows immensely. The production shows were brilliant and loved all 4 of them. They included 'Rock city', 'Broken strings', 'Amade' and 'Euphoria'. The singers and dancers did a great job and we got to see how they work and train on one of the sea days when we were given a complimtary tour of the backstage areas. The cruise director Kelly did and excellent job and together with her assistant Patrick, they ensured everyone was kept entertained during the various parties on the ship. Loved the balloon launch night and st. Patrick's day party. However disappointed that Abba night was not held in foyer as the charm was lost when it was held in sky lounge. There were quite a few talks, trivial, games and shows organised on the sea days to keep us occupied. However apart from one film shown in theatre on first sea day, no other films were shown in theatre during the cruise which was slightly disappointing. Films were shown on the screen by the lawn and at celebrity central but these are not ideal venues for film screening. Hence I would recommend solstice to show more films in theatre like they had done on our previous cruise on Reflection. Disembarkation ran very smoothly and we were off the ship by 8am in Sydney. We were at the airport by 11am and luckily our flight went on time later that day. Sadly lot of flights were cancelled as the world prepared to lock down due to coronavirus. On the whole, I would highly recommend this cruise to anyone who wants to visit and see sites and sounds of NZ in a relaxed way. We were immensely lucky that everything ran smoothly from start to finish and captain Alex and his team did a marvellous job to keep us safe and entertained through out the trip. Hoping the world can get over this virus quickly and cruises and travel can restart soon. Happy cruising! Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We flew from Sydney to Auckland via Air New Zealand and stayed three nights at the Sofitel property Grand Windsor in Queen St. We had breakfast included and there were plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby for lunches and dinners. The ... Read More
We flew from Sydney to Auckland via Air New Zealand and stayed three nights at the Sofitel property Grand Windsor in Queen St. We had breakfast included and there were plenty of restaurants and cafes nearby for lunches and dinners. The hotel was in a great location. Highly recommend day trip to Waiheke Island (and we would stay overnight when we visit NZ again). We travelled with another couple who had never cruised. This was our fifth cruise with Celebrity (have not travelled with others as we like Celebrity). Our friends were super impressed with cruise life and would agree with the comments that follow. Cruise embarkation smooth and quick; temperatures were checked upon boarding which gave us confidence they were taking the coronavirus seriously. We thought the ship was well maintained noting it is scheduled for refit in 2021. We were in Aqua Class and like to be aft - we were in room 1653 (rear, port side, bed near bath layout). Really liked the aqua spa shower; good size balcony with 2 chairs, footrests and a table. The room had plenty of storage space, a big sofa and a huge flat screen interactive tv. Surprisingly spacious and our cabin steward Achmad did a great job. Our friends were in 1584 (bed near balcony) and were impressed with the size and layout of room. Tauranga - we booked a Viator tour which took us to Rotorua and Hobbiton. Our guide was Peter who was informative and a good driver. A great day! Rotorua was fascinating and Hobbiton where part of Lord of Rings and Hobbit trilogies were filmed was very interesting. Picton - we did a Viator tour for the Marlborough train tour to Blenheim. Scenic journey passing through vineyards and then stopping at Blenheim for a few hours to spend in this town before taking train back to Picton. We enjoyed the train trip but were a bit lost in Blenheim as it was not the quaint country town we were expecting. In hindsight we should have done a wine tour. Akaroa - tendering process was efficient. We did a Viator tour to Christchurch and our guide was Scotty was great. Had lunch in the Riverside Market and would have been happy to spend more time here. We had a pie from The Butchers Pie Shop which we would recommend trying. We hopped off at the far end of Akaroa and walked back to the tenders. NZ prime minister then announced that all cruise ship ports in NZ would be shutting next day but we were lucky and able to disembark at Dunedin where we joined a Viator tour - sights of Dunedin, Larnach Castle and Speights brewery with Russell. Surreal because this was the last tour for these guys and they were trying to work out what it meant for them. We really enjoyed the short stop at the railway station (most photographed building in all of NZ), Larnach Castle and the very informative tour of the brewery with generous tastings available and the chance to pour your own beer. Fjordland area (Dusky, Doubtful and Milford sounds) - very lucky the sun shone and we had a spectacular day. The captain rotated the ship 360 degrees at Milford sound so every side of the ship could get views of the falls. Lots of dolphins sailing alongside the ship from time to time. We missed Eden due the closure of Australian ports but were given onboard credit for missing that stop and hence the shops were busy. We arrived in Sydney the night before disembarkation which gave us an unexpected and spectacular view of our beautiful harbour and the chance to see it at sunrise. We dined mostly in Blu, Murano, Tuscan Grill, Silk Harvest and Sushi on Five. We avoided the Ocean View Cafe and MDR just because they tend to have people sit closer together and we liked the spaciousness of the other restaurants. We loved all our meals and could not fault the presentation, flavour or choice. And the service of the teams in those restaurants was flawless. We had the premium beverage package which was great. Just surprised the choice in the restaurants was quite limited. But we ended up trying wines we wouldn't normally drink. Enjoyed the theatre shows. We loved the Australian singer and violinist. The production shows were well done 'Rock city', 'Broken strings', and 'Euphoria' (our favourite). Spa - knowing the world was being locked down I had my hair coloured, a massage, facial and legs waxed - now the spa is expensive but I was happy with the service I got and it means I don't have to worry about any personal maintenance for 2 months or so! Disembarkation ran very smoothly and we were off the ship by 8am in Sydney and being local home by 9am to commence our self isolation for 14 days as required by our government. Pleased to say we have now completed it and we have not had a hint of illness. Captain Alex was a bit of a comedian and did a great job with his announcements. Overall we loved our cruise and are especially appreciative of the Celebrity Solstice team that made it safe and special. The crew were always cleaning and made sure everyone used hand sanitisers regularly. Knowing the world would change when we disembarked was surreal. A cruise is a great way to see NZ and we hope to do the trip again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
We have sailed on 4 Celebrity ships all in Aquaclass, and enjoy the access to BLU as well as the Spa amenities. We chose Solstice for the itinerary, as New Zealand was on the bucket list. We stayed in Auckland, on Princes Wharf, so we ... Read More
We have sailed on 4 Celebrity ships all in Aquaclass, and enjoy the access to BLU as well as the Spa amenities. We chose Solstice for the itinerary, as New Zealand was on the bucket list. We stayed in Auckland, on Princes Wharf, so we were able to leave our hotel room, walk to the end of the building, drop our luggage, and enter the cruise port within a few minutes. We were directed to a line for Aqua passengers, and were boarding the ship within 10-15 minutes. Service and food quality in Blu was exceptional. We dined around 7pm most nights, and did not have to wait to be seated. The waiters and assistant waiters worked together as a team, and quickly learned our names and preferences. We found the bartenders and waiters went out of their way to find a selection of wines to match our beverage package. The choices available in the outside bar at Oceanview tend to be narrow, but the inside Oceanview bar always had multiple premium wine choices to pick from. We enjoyed the range of daily activities on the ship for sea days. We only booked one shore excursion through Celebrity, and it was well done. We had 3 tender days, and were very impressed with the speed and efficiency displayed by the captain and crew in handling the tendering process. We also found the Disembarkation to be very smooth. We typically walk off, with our luggage, but as we were staying on in Melbourne, we chose to set out our luggage the night before. We were able to enjoy a last trip to Blu, and were able to relax in a lounge, and our number was called 10 minutes before the assigned time of 9:15 am. Overall the ship was as outlined in great shape, and the staff across the board were excellent. If there is one thing that Celebrity needs to stop, it is the upselling. We always had to bypass 3 photographers getting off of the ship, and then multiple portrait stations in the evening going to dinner and returning, Everyone has an iPhone, if we want our picture taken, we will ask someone to take it. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Just like to start of by saying -Thank you so much for such an amazing experience. Everything from the cabin we had to the atmosphere/entertainment and food, comfort it was all well above excellence. Everything was absolutely above ... Read More
Just like to start of by saying -Thank you so much for such an amazing experience. Everything from the cabin we had to the atmosphere/entertainment and food, comfort it was all well above excellence. Everything was absolutely above expectation and it was my first time on a cruise and it goes beyond words to explain how wonderful it all was. Our cabin was comfortable, spacious, clean and had all the facilities we needed. The services throughout the cruise including all the facilities and cleanliness were excellent. Definitely deserve over 5 stars. Meet amazing people, the atmosphere was wonderful the food and cocktails were divine always! With so much variety to choose from and such great entertainment. A BIG thank you! to Marvin (our waiter) and his team for always providing such a lovely service! Such a friendly, lovely team thank you! Exceptional teams, the services were all excellent. An experience to never forget. Thank you! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose this cruise for its itenenary, and the duration and of course the ship, we loved everything about the cruise, all the staff on board were excellent everywhere we went we encountered helpful, happy staff which added to our ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its itenenary, and the duration and of course the ship, we loved everything about the cruise, all the staff on board were excellent everywhere we went we encountered helpful, happy staff which added to our enjoyment, the stand out staff for us were Edward, Arief, Rakesh, and Monwa in the Main dinning room were very efficient especially Rakesh who was excellent in finding the drinks my husband wanted at dinner time. All the specialty restaurants were great too except when we got the boniest fish Ever served to us in any restaurant ever was in Silk Harvest which was not enjoyable at all and when we brought it to their attention we got told “oh that’s how they serve it the Asian style” I know for sure no one would serve that kind of fish no matter what style. Elton our room person on deck 10 Concierge stateroom was so efficient in keeping our room fully stocked with toiletries and towels twice a day, the girls in Cafe Bacio gave us excellent service too with lovely smiles, we also received excellent service from Errol in the Gift Shop which kept us all coming back to shop. The shows are night were very enjoyable. The cruise director Lewis made sure everyone had something to choose to do everyday, our group of friends had a great time on this cruise. We enjoyed it so much we did a future cruise booking too. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We had this cruise booked almost two years in advance, in order to secure an accessible room. We picked this cruise as we had previously cruised NZ but had a lot of ports cancelled, so we decided to try again as we had heard good things ... Read More
We had this cruise booked almost two years in advance, in order to secure an accessible room. We picked this cruise as we had previously cruised NZ but had a lot of ports cancelled, so we decided to try again as we had heard good things about Solstice. We had a fantastic time. It is the best cruise we have ever done. Embarkation - we stayed at the Quest on Queen in Auckland (very nice hotel, very handy to the port if you are just wanting to wheel your luggage down to the wharf). We had to book a taxi to take us to the ship and when the taxi arrived at the pier, he spoke to one of the baggage handlers who called for some assistance, and our bags were taken directly from the taxi to be loaded onto the ship. We were then directed inside to the wheelchair assistance area, and we then had a man push the wheelchair all the way past the lines of people right to the front of the queue. From there it was only a few minutes until we were on the ship. Our cabin was Aqua class stateroom 1526 on deck 11 and it was the best accessible cabin we have had on a ship to date. There is an automatic door so once you insert your card it swings open to allow the wheelchair to enter. There is a large entryway and enough room in the cabin for a wheelchair to pass between the desk and the beds to the balcony. There is a ramp from the cabin onto the balcony. The bathroom is huge with a shower chair and bars around the toilet. The only things we might criticise is that the toilet is not raised and the bed is almost a little too high to transfer in and out of the chair, but other than those two minor things which we worked around, the cabin was excellent. As to the state of the cabin itself, I thought it was in good condition. The beds were very comfortable (they have a squishy topper on the mattress). The wooden railing on the balcony was a bit rattly but you couldn't hear it with the door closed inside the cabin. The bathroom was in good condition as well but because there is nothing to stop the water, when the ship is rolling I did have to put down a towel around the shower so I didn't flood the bathroom with water. Our room steward was excellent, although we did keep surprising him by turning up when he was trying to clean, but he was very nice about it. As we were Aqua class we dined in Blu. The food was very good but the service was excellent. I was a little concerned that Blu might be too fancy for us but we found something to our tastes every night, and if we didn't, they had a back-up or two in the kitchen that they could bring out. Our waiters were hilarious and they greeted us like friends every night which made the whole restaurant experience that much more enjoyable. We had breakfast in the buffet only a few times because it was so hard to find somewhere to sit and it was just so crowded. On port days we had breakfast in our cabin so we could get an early start (there is no charge for room service on Celebrity). We had breakfast in Blu and it was very good as well. We had lunch in the buffet most days. If you arrived at the wrong time (i.e. between 12 and 1.30pm) it was almost impossible to find somewhere to sit. Thankfully they have helpers in the buffet who were able to take control of the wheelchair and find a seat for us. I thought the food in the buffet was the best I have had at a buffet at sea - every day there was something different to try. I especially loved the ice cream and the pasta station. We would often go in the afternoon and get ice cream or sorbet to take back to the room, it was delicious. We tried all three specialty restaurants (except the sushi place). Of the three Tuscan Grille was our favourite. The lobster rigatoni alfredo was to die for. We had dinner there the night we left Milford Sound and it was a very special experience to watch New Zealand grow smaller and smaller behind us. We tried the seafood fiesta at Silk Harvest which was good (but costs extra, and you can only book once on board). We tried the lobster at Murano and it was delicious. I don't have any complaints about the specialty restaurants. I had read bad reviews about them but we thought they were excellent. Next time I would wait until I was on board before booking, as you could get the restaurants cheaper on board, and they were always trying to offer us deals. Re the drinks packages - we had onboard credit (about $350AUD worth) so we didn't bother buying drinks packages, as neither of us drink alcohol. The non-alcoholic package is $22 a day per person. It averaged out that we would not have spent enough on board to warrant buying the drinks package (we averaged about $15 per day each, on port days we might've only spent about $8 each, some days we spent nothing). In saying that, we are booked again on Solstice in 2021 and we received two perks with our booking, so we are both getting a drinks package. Why? Because the amount of times I was asked why I didn't have a drinks package, how it will work out better for me if I have one, and the amount of huffing and puffing from the bartenders was so unbelievably frustrating that it is just easier to have a damn drinks package. I don't know how many times, and to how many different people, I explained that we are not spending enough per day to warrant it - they just don't understand. I know they are meant to push it on you but it was really annoying. Honestly, my biggest overall complaint is that I found the bar service at every single bar I went to absolutely terrible. Maybe they care if you're buying cocktails and you've got a drinks package, but other than that, they just want you gone. And just trying to get noticed to place an order was an ordeal in itself, especially at the pool bar. I didn't have any problems with the table service at the Sky Lounge - that was excellent. Other people may have had an easier time but by the end I was dreading having to order anything at a bar. The other thing we didn't buy that I wished we had bought was an internet package, but it was just so expensive that I didn't really think I could justify having it. Thankfully it is our second perk for our 2021 cruise, so I won't have to worry about it next time. We didn't see all of the shows. We saw the Buddy Holly show, Nikki Bennett (awful, just awful), the Motown tribute show and then a few of the Celebrity productions. I didn't really enjoy the shows but it seemed like I was in the minority there, as there were a lot of standing ovations. We went to Captain Tasos' talk about the building of Solstice and it was standing room only for good reason - it was absolutely fantastic and a highlight of the trip. I wondered what all the fuss about Captain Tasos was until I got on board - the hype is worth it. He is hilarious. I participated almost exclusively in trivia and had a great time doing so. The entertainment staff were very friendly and it was a lot of fun. I spent a lot of time in the Sky Lounge; it was my favourite part of the ship. We never did make it up to watch the glass blowing - it was too cold to be out on deck most of the time, but I will definitely go for a look when we're back on in 2021. We also didn't make it to any movies - they play the movies up on the grassed area but again it was too cold and I wasn't really interested. For the most part (bar service aside), I found the service on the ship to be above and beyond what we were expecting. The staff were unbelievably helpful, attentive and friendly. We had assistance every single time we were getting on or off the ship - usually an army of men to help push the wheelchair up and down the ramp. If there was a long walk (for example in Tauranga and Dunedin), one would often walk the wheelchair about half of the distance for me. The wheelchair was a fast pass in itself - we bypassed the queues getting off the ship in Tasmania, were straight off and through customs before the rest of the passengers had even gotten off the ship. In Akaroa they have a stair-lift to carry the wheelchair down to the tender boat, and they helped us on and off the boat. The staff were really wonderful and they are a big reason why we decided to book again for 2021. We booked this cruise for the itinerary and unlike the last time we cruised NZ, we were able to make it into every single port. I love Auckland and I think it's a beautiful city. In Tauranga we rented a car through Rite Price Rentals (highly recommend them) and drove ourselves to Rotorua and Waiotapou, and the next day up north to a small town on the coast called Bowentown. In Wellington we booked a private tour with a driver who took us all around the city; it was fantastic. In Akaroa we simply went ashore and did some shopping. In Dunedin we booked another private tour with Good Company Tours, did a city tour, a tour of Olveston House and then a train ride (some disappointment there for us as it turned out the train wasn't wheelchair accessible and we couldn't go, but other than that the tour was very good). In Hobart we met a friend and wandered around the city and in Melbourne I got off the ship for a few hours to do some shopping. The highlight of the ports were the sounds - we had unbelievable weather, blue skies and sunshine. I was able to stand out on the helipad for our entrance into Dusky Sound in the early morning which was wonderful. We saw dolphins in Doubtful Sound and seals in Dusky Sound. In Milford Sound the captain took us right up to the big waterfall and did a 360 turn - it was spectacular. Other thoughts on the ship: It really does cater to an older crowd which suits me just fine, even though I'm only in my 30s. There were a lot more Americans than I was expecting. There were hardly any kids - I think I saw less than 20 the entire time, which again, suits me just fine. I was a lot more comfortable on this ship with an older crowd than I was on Explorer of the Seas with a much younger crowd. As such the entertainment, activities and trivia are all geared towards an older crowd, which might bother some people but it didn't really worry me. I think the ship itself is really nice - very clean. The bathrooms have attendants so they are kept really neat and tidy. I didn't get sick on board but my mother picked up a cough in the last couple of days. I didn't hear about anyone getting gastro or anything like that. I usually pick up a cold but thankfully I managed to avoid it this time. There are probably a few things that need doing up but honestly, it's the second best ship I've ever been on and I really don't have any complaints about the ship itself. We got roped into "lunch with the captain" which was actually $90 to sit with a bunch of people we didn't know and make awkward conversation, and meet the Captain for two minutes at the start. So that was disappointing, but even though we didn't complain about it to anyone, we ended up getting a second free lunch at Tuscan Grille for the last day. And the hostess from Blu was really apologetic about it, but we definitely didn't complain so I have no idea why they thought we were upset. Anyway, the free lunch was really good. I think the shops are a bit... ridiculous, but I guess it's a fancy ship so they sell fancy things. We went to a couple of the sales and bought some cheap jewellery, and I did get some cheap t-shirts for my friends back home. We didn't bother with the art auction as they are a waste of time. We also didn't bother with bingo as it seemed really expensive. If I had known when we were on board that we were going to book again a few days after we got off I would've booked through Future Cruises, but I guess I will next time. This two week cruise with Celebrity has turned me into a convert - I think this may be my favourite cruise line now. Honestly, I may have some complaints about the bar service but overall this was the best cruise we have ever done, hands down, and I can't wait to sail on Solstice again in 2021. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
INTRO My wife and I went on a 16-night cruise aboard the Celebrity Solstice out of Auckland, NZ with ports of call in New Zealand (Tauranga, Napier, Picton, Wellington) and Australia (Sydney, Hobart, Adelaide and Perth). We spent three ... Read More
INTRO My wife and I went on a 16-night cruise aboard the Celebrity Solstice out of Auckland, NZ with ports of call in New Zealand (Tauranga, Napier, Picton, Wellington) and Australia (Sydney, Hobart, Adelaide and Perth). We spent three days in Auckland before boarding the ship. One funny thing happened while we were in Auckland. The first day we had lunch at the Harbourside Ocean Bar and Grill in the old ferry building – a great place for lunch BTW. We had some questions about the menu, and at one point the waiter asked me if I liked oysters. I was tired from the flight from the States; my hearing isn’t what it used to be; and I had not had a chance to acclimate myself to the Kiwi accent; because I would have sworn he asked me if I liked horses! Sigh. REVIEW Ship I am not going to say much about the Solstice because it has been reviewed so many times before. Furthermore, the Solstice has consistently won Cruiser’s Choice Awards year after year, with Cruisers and Cruise Critic Editors each rating the Solstice 5.0 on a 5.0 scale. What I will say is that ship was large, but it still had a very intimate feel, which is probably due to the outstanding crew on the Solstice. Everyone was incredibly friendly and hospitable. We found that the crew would go out of their way to take care of whatever requests or needs we had, some before we even voiced them. One of the things we really enjoyed was the Hollywood Hot Glass’ workshops on the Lawn Deck (Deck 15) where you can create a glass piece of your own coloring and choosing. There are a number of different things you can make, e.g., a flower, heart, vase, tumbler, ruffle bowl and ornament). I would have preferred to make a ruffle bowl, but we didn’t have enough room in our suitcase or any way to protect the glass. So we made really cool paperweights. Smile. I highly recommend taking a glassblowing class (or two), but plan ahead by bringing some bubble wrap and leaving a little extra room on your suitcase. The other thing I really enjoyed was looking at the fine art on the Solstice (owned by Celebrity, not the auction). I noticed some of the artwork in pictures of the Edge, so I paid particular attention to the paintings and sculptures on the Solstice. It really enhanced my appreciation of the ship. Dining The food onboard the Solstice was excellent. The main dining room for suite-class passengers is Luminae. The food there was excellent and the service was second to none. The Maître D' in Luminae (Dimitri) set the tone for Luminae. He always greeted us as though we were long lost friends he was happy to see again. He made us feel welcomed and right at home every time we entered the restaurant. Our waiter (Chitra) paid attention to our likes and dislikes, and made it a point to recommend things that we would like. I didn’t particularly care for the sausages they served there. I preferred the sausages in the Oceanview Café, so Chitra made sure Luminae had the sausages I liked for breakfast every day. One evening, Chitra served a special dessert. It was a chocolate sphere. She poured a flaming hot liquor over the top of the sphere that melted the chocolate revealing some vanilla ice cream. I asked if they could make that dessert another evening so I could take a video of the presentation. Chitra and the chef were more than happy to make that happen. The assistant waiter (Natalie) couldn’t have been friendlier. We always enjoyed talking to her. The wine steward (Juris) made great selections for us. In the one or two instances we didn’t particularly care for the wine he selected, he made some alternate suggestions, which were excellent. We also ate at several specialty restaurants Murano, the Tuscan Grille and Sushi on Five. I loved them all, but Sushi on Five was my favorite. Kudos to the F&B director (Mihai) and restaurant manager (Mazy) for their outstanding work in creating a five-star experience in every venue on the Solstice. Entertainment I have to give a shout out to the cruise director (Lewis). The entertainment aboard the Solstice was outstanding. It included acts such as Peter Cousins, an actor who performed in such musicals as Phantom of the Opera and Les Misérables; Keith Scott, an outstanding voice actor, impressionist and comedian; and, Matt Mcgurk, an award-winning magician and illusionist. Two of our favorite acts were (1) the Beatnix, a Beatles tribute band, and (2) the Lighthouse String Duo (with Lia on the electric violin and Alina on the electric cello). Both acts connected well with audiences. If you are interested in checking out the latter act, which was pretty unique, you can visit their Facebook page at .) We looked for performances throughout the cruise and were never disappointed. Another great show was the aerial acrobatic show entitled “Euphoria” by the French Cirque Les Farfadais & Co. that Celebrity saved until the end of the cruise. Euphoria was a combination of acrobatics, silk dance and aerial rings that rivaled Cirque du Soleil in every way and left us amazed and awed by their skills. We would be thrilled to see any of these acts again on future Celebrity cruises. Service From the moment we checked in and all throughout the service onboard the was exceptional. This was the first time we had a butler. I wasn’t sure why I needed a butler, but I quickly found out how valuable he was. We were invited to dinner one evening, and I needed a shirt pressed right away. Our butler (Anu) took care of that and had the shirt back to me within the hour. We also had a bottle of champagne that I wanted sent to the dining room to be chilled for dinner, and Anu took care of that as well. It was a nice luxury to be able to enjoy the cruise and not take the time to work on the logistics of something like that. We also found the Michael’s Club Concierge (Olga) extremely professional, competent and helpful. I asked Olga if I could get a list of lectures and shows for the cruise (so I could better plan our evenings). She would have had the list back to me the next day, but it was not to her liking because It only listed the names of each act. She sent the list back and asked that they add a description of each act. I also asked if Olga could arrange for someone from future cruises to meet me in Michael’s Club to book a future cruise, which she did. Even if there was a lot going on in Michael’s Club, Olga never appeared distracted as she welcomed guests and answered questions. The suite manager (Anastasia) was fantastic. You could tell that she was all about providing the best guest service possible in the way she regularly checked in with us and the way related to others on her team. She really looked after us. PORTS & SHORE EXCURSIONS We enjoyed all of the ports-of-call, but I will only highlight four: two in New Zealand and two in Australia. Tauranga, NZ Our first stop was Tauranga, NZ where we visited the Māori (pron MOU•ree, not may•OR•ee) village of Whakarewarewa in Rotorua, which was a lot of fun. (The Māori are the indigenous Polynesian people of New Zealand.) After touring the village, the Māori served lunch and put on a show. The Māori villagers like to have fun with you by presenting the name of their village as one word: Tewhakarewarewatangaoteopetauaawahiao. It seems overwhelming, right? It really isn’t. If you break that word down into its component parts, it is actually “Te Whakarewarewa Tanga, O Te Ope Taua A Wahiao,” which means “gathering place for the war parties of the Wahiao.” If you want to have a little fun with the Māori, you can learn how to pronounce the name of the village before you go. When they ask if anyone can pronounce the name of their village, you can surprise them by sounding like the Māori. They will definitely not expect it. Here is how the Māori pronounce the name of their village: http://alturl.com/abr3f. Napier, NZ We were lucky to be in Napier (pron NAY•pee•er) during the weekend of the year they held their Hot Rod & Classic Car Festival, one of several Art Deco Festivals held every year celebrating the classic Art Deco period of the 1920’ and 30’s. (For more about the festival and events throughout the year see their website at . Much of Napier was destroyed by an earthquake in 1931 and many of the buildings were rebuilt in the (Art Deco) style of that period. It was fun to walk around the town and to see many of the locals (flappers and dappers) dressing in period garb for the occasion. If you want to join in the fun, stop by Napier Antiques and Jewelry store at 65 Tennyson St. in Napier. They had a wide variety of styles for men and women from which to choose. People there also displayed beautifully restored antique cars and old motorcycles. A band played music in the square. Several dance troupes performed in the town square. All in all it was a lot of fun. Sydney, AUS Bridge climb or Pylon? A number of passengers on the cruise opted to climb the “coat hanger (Sydney Harbour Bridge). The cost is AUD $263 – $403 per person (USD $186 - $285 per person). That’s USD $372 - $570 per couple! The climb takes 3 ½ hours and you have to wear a suit that others have worn before. (I have no idea how often the clean the suits, but it didn’t appeal to me one way or the other.) We spent a fraction of that and chose to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge Pylon. The cost of climbing the Pylon is AUD $15 per person (USD $10.63pp). That’s only $22 per couple! There is an interesting historical exhibit on the climb up, and we had virtually the same view of famous Sydney Harbour Opera House as those who spent a whole lot more money and time. That left us plenty of free time to grab lunch at the Sydney Cove Oyster Bar, which was located at 1 East Circular Quay just down from the Opera House across the way from the Circular Quay and Overseas Passenger Terminal. It had a great view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour. The food was excellent. I ordered BBQ’d shrimp (what else?) and my wife ordered seafood linguini. We also had a surprise visit by some parakeets. We mentioned that to the waiter, and he said they loved the sugar. Who doesn’t? Adelaide, AUS We visited the Cleland Wildlife Conservation Park in Adelaide where we saw a Tasmanian devil, kangaroos, koalas, emus, geese, various birds and more. It was too hot that day to hold a koala, but we were able to pet a couple of kangaroos. My one regret is that we did not purchase food to feed the animals, primarily because I didn’t want to throw food at the animals, but what I didn’t know is that some of the animals, like the kangaroos, and I am guessing the koalas as well, would eat out of your hand. It might have been fun. CONCLUSION Pros Celebrity’s Solstice is a beautiful ship. Great food, service, and entertainment. An outgoing and professional staff who genuinely cared about you and who went out of their way to make sure you wanted for nothing. Cons I really don’t have any cons other than recommending those with mobility issues booking rooms closer to the elevators, which are located amidship. Value The value for what we received was excellent. I heartedly recommend Celebrity Cruise Line and the Solstice. You will not be disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary which was great. We had never been to this part of the world or had been on a Celebrity ship. The cabin was clean and pretty spacious but it did need a bit of a refurb especially the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary which was great. We had never been to this part of the world or had been on a Celebrity ship. The cabin was clean and pretty spacious but it did need a bit of a refurb especially the curtains.The food in the Oceanview Cafe was great and there was a wide choice to choose from. Zeljko Cickovic the Maitre D’ in the cafe was so friendly and always stopped to chat with us. However, in the restaurant the food was good but we felt there wasn’t much of a choice. The entertainment was ok however, the show put on by the Celebrity dancers and singers were very good. The daily activities was ok, not as good as P&O cruises. The crew were very friendly and some would always chat to us when we saw them. One of the Officers Stelios always made time to chat to us , he seemed a lovely genuine man. Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
You either love cruising or you hate it, and we are one of those couples who absolutely love it! You unpack once and if you find a place you really like, you can come back to it later. We try to take at least one cruise every year. The ... Read More
You either love cruising or you hate it, and we are one of those couples who absolutely love it! You unpack once and if you find a place you really like, you can come back to it later. We try to take at least one cruise every year. The New Zealand cruise we booked two years out while on board the Celebrity Eclipse (a sister ship) for two weeks in the Caribbean. We decided it was time to go check out what everyone had been raving about. The itinerary was fantastic, 14 nights Auckland to Sydney on our favorite class of ship. We'd been through the Panama Canal, Canada, Alaska, Iceland, Europe, and so on. Being from California we were really dreading the long flight to Auckland, and we wavered back and forth the entire two years. Oh my gosh...we are so glad we forged ahead! We flew direct from LAX to Auckland, and then after spending time in Australia, flew direct from Sydney to LAX. The flight really is not all that bad. I started my research about New Zealand about nine months out, and while researching I fell in love before we even got there. To top it off, we got super lucky. Our Cruise Critic thread was quite active, and we had a really great couple who set up an offsite page we could all access for an abundance of information. We could add private tour info to this, and also post info along the way as needed (before, along the cruise, and after the cruise). They kept it (and all of us) organized. A big shout out of thanks to Tom & Barbara! We arrived in New Zealand a day ahead (not early enough in my opinion). At least two days would have been better. After researching Taxis vs. Uber vs SuperShuttle, I opted for prearranging the SuperShuttle to take us from the airport to our hotel. It could not have been easier! Prepaid conversion cost us $36.40 US from airport to Hilton Hotel. Yes, it might have taken us ten minutes longer than Uber, but the upside was seeing a couple hotels along the way and meeting others who would be on the ship with us. We are social (heck, you have to be a bit social to cruise, right?), so we didn't feel the need for a private taxi or Uber. We stayed at the Hilton Auckland Princess Wharf for its location and membership in their loyalty program. We could walk along the waterfront, to shops and the sky tower. Since we only had the one day in Auckland, we chose to ride the Hop On Hop Off to get an overview of the area. There are two companies that do this, so check them both out. I researched them ahead of time, and my preference was the "Auckland Explorer Bus" as they had better reviews, and the ferry trip to Devonport was included. I can't give the Hilton Hotel enough Kudos! The location is awesome; rooms were modern; staff was friendly; restaurant and bar on site was good. It is literally right where the ship docks, and in the morning when it is time to turn your luggage over to the porters and check in for the cruise, you only have to walk out of the lobby and turn left, walk about fifty feet and you are there! January 17, 2019 - The day is finally here! We had a nice leisurely breakfast, walked around the corner to a couple of shops to pick up a couple of gifts. Grabbed our bags from the hotel, dropped the luggage to the porters at 11:30 and got in line. Check in for the Celebrity Solstice went smooth. It seemed the lines were moving along fairly fast. We only waited about ten minutes. Once we boarded, we did not want to disembark. We had a full day ahead of us. We had opted for a Sky Suite (Aft 2155) celebrating our 38th Anniversary and wanted to meet up with the Michael's Club Concierge, our Butler, dine for lunch in Luminae, unpack, check out the ship, muster drill, and get ready for our Cruise Critic group Sail away. For us the Solstice class is the perfect size ship. It has a nice selection of restaurants, bars, and quiet space to just hang out and read a book if you so choose. The spa is a nice size, and if you choose to go to the gym it is located in the front of the ship with plenty of windows to look out and enjoy the scenery. Some ships can be so dreary, and Celebrity does a fantastic job at bringing the light in. The artwork throughout the ship is always interesting and fun to look at. We’ve tried all the different staterooms along the way. It just depends on budget and needs. We tend to opt for balconies, and since Celebrity introduced the Aqua Class, we have been quite happy with that. Splurging for the Suite was a real treat. We were spoiled with our Butler bringing us our morning Lattes, tea and scones in the afternoon, escorting us to our show seats on formal evenings, etc. etc. etc. Michaels Lounge was an extra special enhancement. I won’t even go in to detail on that, but one huge perk is tendering days, the concierge escorted us to the front of the line for disembarking. Luminae’s dining experience was superb. By far the best meals, and the best service we’ve had on Celebrity. Our favorite spots to hang out on the ship are Café Al Bacio, the Martini Bar, Grand Foyer for Entertainment, Sunset Bar and Lawn Club, Solarium, Sky Observation Lounge, and if we are looking for something light to eat, we love the Spa Café. A couple of times we grabbed a burger and fries on the upper deck by the pool and just enjoyed some sunshine and people watching. The entertainment was especially good this cruise with the Celebrity Singer & Dancers, and variety of entertainers on board. We were really excited to see the daily entertainment throughout the ship included two girls Alina & Lia, known as the “Lighthouse String Duo” (one plays the violin, the other the cello). We had seen them before on a New Years Eve Cruise. They are talented musicians who play classical and popular music on their electric strings. Their energy is captivating! January 18 - Oh my gosh. The weather is fantastic! Our arrival into the Bay of Islands brought us calm waters and blue skies with beautiful poofy clouds. I don’t think I’ve seen such beautiful green rolling hills and valleys. Beautiful blue water. The coastline is dotted with islands .... wow ! Everything is spotless!!! Cute rural towns. I’m in love! I’m dying to put my feet in the water to check the temperature! Today’s excursion was a ship excursion “Glow Worm Caves & Te Waimate” We went to see the glow worms at the Kawiti Cavern, along with an afternoon tea at Te Waimate Mission House. Unfortunate that we are unable to take photographs of the glow worms, as they do not allow it. But .... wow it was super cool! A must do if in the area. The aft stateroom is paying off right now as we pull out. Today, February 19 had to be one of our best excursions ever! We arrived in Tauranga, NZ at 8:00 AM and joined the tour arranged by a fellow Cruise Critic member with Carolyn & Terry (husband/wife team) of Custom Day Tours. Our van had five couples from Cruise Critic. Terry (our guide) stopped along the way for us to watch the river rafters coming down Kaituna River. Then we were off to Rotarua. We see an active geothermal area (Te Puia) which includes 2 of 8 spontaneous geysers in the world, bubbling mud pools, a Maori welcome, and lunch & much more!!!! Then we were on our way to the Redwood Forest and a Kiwi fruit orchard for tasting. Pictures can’t even tell the story. What a fantastic day. Back to our stateroom to enjoy the sail away jet skiis were riding the wake as we left port. Glory our Butler had delivered a beautiful platter of cheeses and prosciutto along with a bottle of wine on ice. Nice! Our first Sea Day was busy starting with the Cruise Critic get together in Cellar Masters. One of the best groups we’ve connected with over the years. We attended a private glass blowing show for Suite guests by the new company Celebrity has onboard (they took over Corning’s spot). Tonight is our first of three Evening Chic nights. In Wellington I arranged a small group tour for 13 of us. It was a six hour driving tour with Michelle that would have many stops and photo ops along the way, including lunch at a funky very busy whimsical restaurant along the waterfront. We rode the famous cable car, went up to Mount Victoria for stunning views, saw the Parliament building, Weta Cave - Home of Lord of the Rings, Art Deco Roxy, Old St Paul’s Cathedral, and the incredible Te Papa Museum! Yes, Wellington topped Tauranga!!!! Wow! As we pulled in to the Port of Picton we were treated to the beautiful scenery and waters of Queen Charlotte Sound. Our excursion was a ship tour “Explore Marlborough Wineries by Bike’. Great exercise and visited three wineries. The last one Mahi being the best! We had a fabulous lunch of baked salmon, warm potato salad, and a cold corn salad served by their chef Marcia. Yum! The Sauvignon Blancs and Chardonnays of this Marlborough region are so flavorful. Mahi even had a fantastic Pinot Noir. This was such the great day! Akaroa! What can I say? It just kept getting better and better. We love the Countryside of New Zealand. The Akaroa hills remind us a lot of the rolling hillsides as you drive through Cambria to the coast in the spring time, or Santa Ynez if the hills were green all year and dotted with pine trees here and there. The homes along the coast are modern architecture, and the homes walking up into the neighborhoods are a bit more modest but modern wooden with metal roofs. Flowers are incredible!!! The trees and flowers are what we have in Santa Barbara, but more vibrant in color and healthier!!!! It’s peaceful. The climate is dryer than ours which surprised us. Used more lotion. Great for the hair ...... lol. In all of our travels we think this is that special spot! Wish it wasn’t so far from family. Could we bring a piece of New Zealand home with us? Including their government! Safest Country in the World!! Today we were doing our own thing. We walked along the seashore to the Light House (something we have a thing for), and then weaved our way through the neighborhoods up to the Giants House. Oh my gosh. We highly recommend “The Giants House”! It is not anything like it sounds. Be sure to look it up online. It is something you can do on your own, and we highly recommend you do so you are not rushed for time. We shared a light lunch up there (egg salad sandwich, crust was cut off cut in quarters and delicious fresh lemonade). Afterwards we walked back down the hill to town and did some shopping along the waterfront before returning to the ship by tender. Dunedin - Really a beautiful arrival into the channel. We chose the ship tour “Scottish Experience, Castle & Brewery”. The unexpected bonus to this tour was stopping at the famous Dunedin Rail Station on the way to the Brewery for a photo op. We toured the 141 year old Speight’s Brewery and tasted fabulous beer! Toured New Zealand’s only Castle, the Larnach Castle. Along the way our guide pointed out many highlights and shared many interesting historical facts about Dunedin. Beautiful countryside again!! Great tour, but really wish we had more time at the Castle. Too much time was spent on lunch at the Castle, and not enough time to explore the beautiful gardens! Cruising the Fjords – Wow….what a day! Our arrival to Dusky Sound was a welcome sight off our aft balcony. Then on to Doubtful Sound. The best of all was Milford Sound. It was stunning! We were invited to the Heliport for this portion of cruising the Sounds. The Captain pulled up close to waterfalls, and later did a 360 degree turn on the cruise out of the fjord. For that portion we went back to our stateroom to enjoy the waterfalls super up close!! Photos….photos….photos! Sea Day was a Lazy Day We took a Backstage tour of the Production shows put on by four of the cast members. Attended a fabulous concert by the two girls Alina and Lia. Another Sea Day – this one was fun and a bit busy. We attended a fabulous talk about the Antarctic, then a Bridge Tour so different than what we experienced before. The afternoon the Solstice theatre was standing room only for an impressionist from Australia. He was so da## funny. Later we went again to listen to our favorite girls on the strings!!”Lighthouse String Duo”. For those of you who like “duelling banjos” or “duelling pianos” these two girls take it to a whole new level !!!!!! Day 1 in Hobart Tasmania Australia we first went through Immigration process prior to exploring the city. Even though the line for immigration was very long and we were standing outside for a good portion of the time (wear a jacket, as it is cold!!!), the process was fairly quick. We decided to do the Hop On Hop Off Bus for a 90 minute narrated tour of the highlights but did get off at the botanical gardens. The Japanese Gardens were absolutely beautiful. The botanical gardens are free and it was a holiday so there were many families with children having picnics throughout the park areas. The Hop On Hop Off is just a short walk from where the ship docks. Easy to do on your own. In the evening we had a ship excursion called “An Evening With the Devils”. It was an after hours tour of Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary. We were able to feed the kangaroos and pet a Koala, and see all sorts of other animals. We also got to see the Tasmanian Devil!!!! Day 2 in Hobart we got up early. Glory, our Butler delivered breakfast to our stateroom as we had an early excursion to Port Arthur, one of Australia’s most notorious penal colonies developed in the 1830’s. I’d say this is a must do in Hobart, especially if you have an overnight. We chose to do this as a ship excursion on the second day as we knew we’d have to be back on board early and figured “let them be responsible for getting us back on time”. Worked out perfectly. We packed in a lot while in Hobart. January 30 - Last Day at Sea – Lots to do on the daily schedule. Lots of goodbyes to be said. My hubby attended a cooking class where one of the chef’s prepared alligator and kangaroo in the fry pan using butter, olive oil and lemon. We met with a Cruise Vacations Associate, and booked two more cruises. We will miss tossing our towels on the floor morning and night; having our bed made for us daily with chocolates on our pillow every night; scrumptious meals served to us with smiles; nonstop entertainment......but when we wake tomorrow we shall be sailing into the magnificent Sydney Harbour and setting our sights on the world famous Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge! According to Captain Tasos, we should be arriving into port about 5:15am. January 31 - We’ve arrived in Sydney. Set our alarm for 5:00 am so we’d be up and dressed for the arrival into the magnificent Sydney Harbour. Wow! What a sight it was. The skyline is spectacular. Like no other. Disembarkation went off without a hitch. Our bags were easily spotted. The lines to exit went fast. The only hiccup we had was at the very end after disembarkation. We needed a taxi to take us to our hotel in Sydney. There were no taxis, and there was a long line waiting for one. When we asked for help, we were directed to walk straight up the street and cross the street to where there would be another taxi pick up area. We were wheeling two bags each. This was not an easy task. We could not find the spot she told us to go, and it turned into a total fiasco. We walked for blocks. We should have stayed in the taxi line at the port (or, in hind sight I should have prearranged transportation). I had no idea it was going to be that difficult to get to the hotel that was only one mile away. We have never had a problem getting a taxi in a port on departure. But, best cruise ever!!!!!!! Ship was beautiful, and clean. Captain, and all the staff were friendly, helpful and fun. The entertainment was fantastic! The dining was fabulous. We tried them all, except Silk Harvest. Murano was very good, Luminae the favorite of course. Ports of Call were absolutely the best. As said.....Perfect Destination, Exceeded our Expectations! Thank you Celebrity. We love New Zealand! This is definitely a place we would like to go back to and spend more time. Note: Since we’ve been home, he’s been preparing most of our fish, chicken and steak over a propane flame like the chef (but outside) instead of our barbecue. Oh my gosh, its so much more flavorful, and moist! Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
going around new zealand was wonderful watching as depart was so cool! we enjoyed ourselves so much, we got spoiled rotten by the staff ,the Elton jack show was amazing , Picton and Akaroa are gorgeous, the food was Excellent not to ... Read More
going around new zealand was wonderful watching as depart was so cool! we enjoyed ourselves so much, we got spoiled rotten by the staff ,the Elton jack show was amazing , Picton and Akaroa are gorgeous, the food was Excellent not to forget the amazing, Joseph, Jay Jay, Thia and Victoria the made our experience triple! the last night was tough, the whole ride was very smooth, except for some bumps every now and then. the cabin was very nice with an amazing view everyday, the creme brûlées were spectacular, just everything was bliss, many thanks to all the amazing staff that made the cruise AMAZING! and of course to the amazing, hilarious captain that made me and my family laugh, i am just so grateful for the experience and i wish it never ended. D: The James Family #2 sorry for any constant words this was written by an eleven year old that just woke up. :) Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We booked this cruise to unwind from a busy and stressful year, and tied it in to allow us to see friends and family in NZ. The package included Classic beverage, which we upgraded to Premium before we departed, and also included some ... Read More
We booked this cruise to unwind from a busy and stressful year, and tied it in to allow us to see friends and family in NZ. The package included Classic beverage, which we upgraded to Premium before we departed, and also included some dinners and a lunch at the premium restaurants. This was our first Celebrity cruise, having previously cruised with P&O (past that now) and Norwegian (comparable), and we have definitely decided to add them to our "will return" list with the Norwegian Jewel. Pros - Well equipped and maintained ship; Absolutely awesome crew; Great food and drink options. Cons - Show venue is more of a Cabaret than a Theater so the shows weren't as spectacular; Karaoke venue a bit naff and not nightly. Our favorite aspects of the ship were: The main dining room, where there was a definite attempt to place you in a consistent part of the room, even with "non-booked" times, and where the staff were friendly and knowledgeable; Cafe al Bacio, where we spent most post-dinners and were well looked after by the crew there; World Class Cocktail Bar, where we ended up after coffee and whiled the evening away! The verandah cabin was well maintained and easy to get around with a good bathroom. For future cruises in NZ, we'll note some gotcha's, like the paid transport from the dock to the city in Tauranga and Dunedin, but for the most part, the off-shore access was well organised and easy to work with. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
just wanted to provide some feed back from my perspective. The first cruise we did was on P&O and we were thrilled to be going on our first ever totally child free holiday. After having 7 children now all grown up it was so nice ... Read More
just wanted to provide some feed back from my perspective. The first cruise we did was on P&O and we were thrilled to be going on our first ever totally child free holiday. After having 7 children now all grown up it was so nice to be away just the two of us. The ship was ok but the air con in the room did not work and was not fixed. It was so bad the pillow chocolates melted. It was only a 4 night cruise and we were never moved. (I felt sorry for the honeymoon couple next door who also had no air con) We were also in a cabin with no balcony. The entertainment was a bit thin and the food was ok, the ship seemed to feel every wave though and even though I was not sick I was looking for a sun lounge at the back of the ship to combat the feeling. The staff were really nice. Next cruise was so different, We went on Royal's Ovation of the seas . It was a four night cruise to Hobart and back. We had a balcony. a beautiful room, we loved exploring the ship. The shows were great , food amazing, always something to do and not over crowded at all. It was so big and clean and and friendly. Smooth sailing just a few bumps on the bass but did not affect us at all. Staff were so helpful and so nice, I dont know how they remember you no matter where on that huge whip you are. Everything is charged in US dollars on the ship and that was probs the only thing that was a bit of a pain but you get use to it. We bought the drinks package so there were no surprises and it all went smoothly. Honestly had no complaints at all. Next cruise and everyone since has been on celebrity solstice , Why we keep going back (though we are itching to try Edge:)) Still all in USD The ship is big but not too big, It has plenty of places to drink. to chill, to listen to music, to take part in Trivia and other activities, The shows are really good and the food is amazing even in the grand dining room. The demographics are a bit different too certainly not a BOOZE cruise. You have a real good mix of ages and there is a really nice team there to look after the Camp at Sea kids (the kids club is never overcrowded and they really look after them) I do prefer the solarium on Ovation but the solarium on Solstice is still really nice and has the pool and whirl pools and lots of lounges. It also has an amazing Aqua Cafe there for a healthy snack. I love catching a movie on the real grass be it day or under the stars of a night. Mast Grill is a must for burgers and hotdogs. The tenders works well and the destinations are fab We have stayed in Suite at the Aft and enjoyed that so much, Butler, dedicated Suite only lounge where all the drinks are free, dedicated suite only dining where the food and staff are amazing. Reserved seating for the shows, no tender queues . We have stayed on concierge at the Aft again brilliant and the Aft for me is the best place to be. We have stayed in a royal suite AMAZING no extras at all fully stocked fridge with what ever you want in it. Free internet washing drinks, everything. Even a bath on the balcony not to mention the two bathrooms and walk in wardrobe and afternoon tea severed for you and any guests by your butler. We have stayed in a balcony and done the main hall dining and again amazing. A really good vibe in there and staff will do everything they can to help. People complain about staff trying to up sell the other dining (in Royal suite its all included BTW) .. I dont have an issue with that I just say no thank you . The buffet is great and you can go grab something from there and enjoy the food out on the deck if you want. The ship tour is also amazing. The guests are friendly and like I said mixed age. You can dance with the younger ones or sit by the pool taking to the older ones. The lifts even become a social trip where you can say hi to new people. If you smoke there are areas dedicated for that an people meet up there for a drink and a chat. The full moon party is always great and the silent disco is something you have to try even just watching that is fun. They gym on board is good (not that we did anything other than walk through it) and the pamper spa is great. We could always find an area to just chill where sometime there would be no one else around. There is a games area/lounge where you can play cards or board games and a lounge with a library feel where you can just sit and relax or read. There is always trivia going on but we get so busy we miss it most the time :) But its fun to do and again you meet other people. There are ship activities to join in. There is always something to do or you can do nothing . thing is on Celebrity your on a beautiful ship that caters for everyone. Your holiday is what you want it to be ...relaxing..or full on it's up to you. The destinations are great and the tours offered are varied. If you have never been on a cruise and are looking to do one. I would say go with Celebrity it's our favorite. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We had always wanted to visit New Zealand and this cruise allowed us to sample this amazing country. The whole experience that The Solstice offered was first class. We stayed on deck 9 mid ships in a good sized balcony cabin. Great bed and ... Read More
We had always wanted to visit New Zealand and this cruise allowed us to sample this amazing country. The whole experience that The Solstice offered was first class. We stayed on deck 9 mid ships in a good sized balcony cabin. Great bed and storeage facilities along with a large and well appointed shower room. As soon as we got on board the quality of service was evident. Staff at all levels were only too happy to help. The quality of food and bar service was amazing. We took the premium drinks package and this allowed us to get all of our favourite wines,spirits,beers and cocktails with no concerns about running up a large bar bill.Add to this premium coffees from the cafe and we were very happy. The pool arreas are excellent and there were ample sun beds ensuring we always achieved a good spot to enjoy the great weather that we had. We sampled all of the restaurants and the quality of food and service was first class. The speciality restaurants are excellent but we would have been more than happy to dine each night in the main dining room where the menus are varied and service very friendly and efficient. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We chose this cruise because we had read good reviews of the Solstice and we liked the itinerary. We were not disappointed. We took an independent shore excursion in Napier and chose city highlights tours in both Hobart & Adelaide. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had read good reviews of the Solstice and we liked the itinerary. We were not disappointed. We took an independent shore excursion in Napier and chose city highlights tours in both Hobart & Adelaide. The Shore Excursion Management were very apologetic when a couple of activities were missed from that itinerary and rang us to say they were appplying a refund as the tour was not as advertised. We were impressed by that level of service and attention to detail. The service from Melvin and Marvin in the Grande Epernay dining room was outstanding. We had chosen Celebrity Select Dining and they kept our preferred table, greeting us each night like old friends, Our stateroom steward, Parag, kept everything spotless, always greeting us by our names. The cleanliness and and attention to detail throughout the ship very obvious everywhere we went. Loved the shows and had a ball signing in the Celebrity Pop Choir led by Isaac, Sam and Georgia. We enjoyed our experience on this ship so much that we booked another cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
To begin let me say we are primarily loyal to Celebrity. Have been on a few others but keep returning to Celenrity and our 4th time on our favorite class of ships all 4 Solstice class. We booked this cruise almost 2 years in advance ... Read More
To begin let me say we are primarily loyal to Celebrity. Have been on a few others but keep returning to Celenrity and our 4th time on our favorite class of ships all 4 Solstice class. We booked this cruise almost 2 years in advance because we knew it was a very popular cruise. The worst part was the 15 hour flight from L.A. to Sydney. If you go amd you are tall like I am pay the little extra for an extra leg room seat and get support socks. We stayed several days In Sydney and loved exploring Sydney harbor and all it has to offer. Boarding was a breeze and before we knew it we were sitting near the pool with drink in hand. The ship was spotless throughout and we were surprised to be able to enter our room around 1PM. We prefer Aqua class balcony rooms primarily because of BLU restaurant and the availability of their Persian Gardens rooms included. We were very fortunate to be able to visit all destinations and the various Sounds, unlike the previous cruise that experienced very rough weather. Our entire time the weather was near perfect as was the Tasmanian Sea that can be quite choppy. Clearly our favorite was New Zealand and biggest surprise Hobart Tasmania. Both just fabulous and so were the people living there. So very gracious and friendly. I thought the menu and food in BLU had gone down a notch. Example we had pheasant offered once a week amd some more common ones like pork chops were never offered. The waiters however were superb Shore excursions - we had more fun traveling on our own and the ship’s were expensive. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We live in Auckland,so we did back to back cruises AK to Perth back to Sydney & flew home.One thing about Celebrity Is when you board there is a glass of champagne to welcome you,which really means you are on a holiday.On this 32 days ... Read More
We live in Auckland,so we did back to back cruises AK to Perth back to Sydney & flew home.One thing about Celebrity Is when you board there is a glass of champagne to welcome you,which really means you are on a holiday.On this 32 days of cruising we met a lot of really nice Americans [not often we can say that,they have mellowed,must be the Trump factor that they all apologised for] & some great Aussies & Canadians & the odd Pom. The big factor in giving the cruise a 5 is the crew,they were really,really great,you could not walk past a cleaner without them saying hello & are you enjoying your cruise.The cabins are large as are the bathrooms [they leave Princess for dead,& we are elite with that mob].The food was what you expect from a ship,it was great,but after 32 days you are ready for home cooked meals. Some of the entertainment was really good,some was average,but the acrobats were incrediable.Boarding & disembarkation was good,some of the port disembarkations were a bit slow,but the ports were great.[Highly recommend the port of Picton in NZ,especially a tour to the Spy Valley winery [good wine,cheap on board tour & you will love the dog that vets you into the winery]. This ship is not really for kids,there is not much to do,but enough for us oldies who like a laid back cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
16 months in the planning of this trip. To be disappointed by the weather but at the end of the day no one can pre plan this aspect. We started our adventure by flying to hong Kong then flying to Auckland to join the ship. embarkation 10 ... Read More
16 months in the planning of this trip. To be disappointed by the weather but at the end of the day no one can pre plan this aspect. We started our adventure by flying to hong Kong then flying to Auckland to join the ship. embarkation 10 out of 10 Once on-board enjoyed superb lunch compliments of concierge class. Shown to our cabin biggest we have had so far. We have always chosen balcony but this was bigger than most. From then on could not fault anything. All the staff whom we met were so helpful and friendly at the same time being courteous and polite. The food was excellent in our opinion. The service in the restaurant was second to none. We went to 3 of the speciality restaurants of which silk was the best offering different food to the main dining room. If there was a niggle it would be the way they push these restaurants form day one only to find the price reduced a day or two later. I'd recommend that the other two restaurants serve the same food as in the main dining room but it is service you are paying extra for, therefore people should make their own decision when booking. We dined at the elements dining room most nights and all staff very polite and would like to thank camilo, dewi ne, Agnelo,and the other lady sommelier, sorry forgotten your name. Just a little footnote this wasn't the first time we have cruised with celebrity. We cruised last year on the millennium which was by far inferior to this one. Thank you millennium you have restored our faith in celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We chose the Celebrity Solstice for this first leg of our back to back cruise Auckland to Perth because we have previously sailed on the Celebrity Solstice and knew what to expect. We are giving this five star rating mainly because of the ... Read More
We chose the Celebrity Solstice for this first leg of our back to back cruise Auckland to Perth because we have previously sailed on the Celebrity Solstice and knew what to expect. We are giving this five star rating mainly because of the excellent service that was afforded to us by our room attendant, Raymundo, and the service staff in the specialty restaurant for Aqua Class guests, Blu, maitre'd Zeljko, and assistant maitre'd, Nena. Also, In our service section in this leg of the cruise we were attended to in a first class manner by Ernest, Arland, and sommelier, Ben. But we also should mention all staff members other than those mentioned above who attended to our needs were very attentive and friendly. We found the entertainment in the theatre that was provided from the Celebrity show staff and also the individual entertainers who boarded the ship, in most cases to be entertaining and enjoyable. Starting off in Auckland, we found embarkation to be nearly stress free except for the dropping off of your luggage which was a bit chaotic. Our first port of call was Tauranga. Here we did a Celebrity tour of a kiwi fruit farm. This we found interesting giving details of the growing and the various health components of the green and gold kiwi fruit. After the tour of the farm, we had a refreshment break in a local community hall which included samples of various kiwi fruit products and items for sale. We would recommend this tour. Our next port was Napier. This is a nice art deco town with many interesting sights and tours available. Our next port was Wellington. Shuttle bus takes you into town for all the sights and attractions. Next port of call was Picton. This is a nice seaside village where we did a Celebrity Tour called Marlborough Panorama which lasted three hours which was mainly spent on the bus. The main attraction of this tour was a visit to a local tourist facility which included mostly shops and a wine tasting exhibition. We would not recommend this tour. The next stop was Sydney. This was tender stop this day as there was already a large cruise ship docked at Circular Quay. We found the tendering by catamarans to be professionally attended to. The next stop was Hobart. The ship docks near the main business district of Hobart near many sights including the great Hobart Museum. The only concern here to us was the stay was not a full day's stay, which was disappointing. The next port day was Adelaide. The disembarkation here was a bit chaotic with only one gangway in operation, which caused very long delays for guests travelling to Adelaide which is by train which takes approximately 45 minutes from Port Adelaide to the city of Adelaide. Most guests did not arrive until after midday on this day, which was disappointing. (We must point out that this hiccup was adjusted on the return cruise to Adelaide with two gangways in operation). The final stop on the 16 day cruise was Fremantle. The ship docked close to the city of Fremantle, an easy walk into Fremantle to visit the Fremantle markets etc. All in all, we had a very enjoyable 16 day cruise on this first leg of our journey and as stated previously, the reason for our five star rating is the very attentive and excellent service we received from staff members of the Celebrity Solstice. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Never been to New Zealand or Australia, so this was a great introduction. We have been on Celebrity before but never aqua class which we really liked, especially the Blu restaurant. We usually do shore excursions on our own. My favorite ... Read More
Never been to New Zealand or Australia, so this was a great introduction. We have been on Celebrity before but never aqua class which we really liked, especially the Blu restaurant. We usually do shore excursions on our own. My favorite port was Tauranga, NZ, where I spent all day hiking the beautiful trails on Mt Maunganui (easy walk from the ship). They also have lovely beaches there. One of the best things on the cruise was Captain Tasos’ talk about the building of the Solstice. It was hysterical. Don’t miss it. Only went to a couple of the big shows and they were OK but I’m not much for the entertainment. However they did have several small venues of musicians in the bars which were quite excellent. Also have to give a shout out to the bar staff who went out of their way to make a special cocktail for me that wasn’t on the menu. My only complaint was the cost of the premium beverage package. It was nice for the convenience to get whatever you wanted but you had to drink a lot to justify the cost. Overall excellent cruise which I highly recommend and will certainly sail on celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
My wife and I loved the November 11th sailing on the Celebrity Solstice. There was a norovirus out break on the prior sailing and the crew handled is exceptionally well in our opinion. The ports were all unique and amazing. I have ... Read More
My wife and I loved the November 11th sailing on the Celebrity Solstice. There was a norovirus out break on the prior sailing and the crew handled is exceptionally well in our opinion. The ports were all unique and amazing. I have linked a video that capture our highlights. Video summary: https://youtu.be/N-S8Nl6BbjI High points: - Rotorua Rafting!!!! Unforgettable time - Akora Black Cat Cruise - swim with dolphins - Eating calamari everywhere - Aqua class/Blu/Banana Pancake room service - Milford sound....charge your camera batteries! Low Points: - Melbourne pier - just take an uber (walk off the pier and call for a car!) - On board entertainment - just wasn't for us. Too much of the same thing (singers three night in a row) - Wine selection - with most having a drink package, the service (especially people with wine knowledge) seemed to be lacking - we somehow survived :) Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Picked this cruise as we have been to NZ before and many times to Sydney in Australia and have seen the cruise ships docked at the Rocks and thought wow to sail in would be an amazing thing (and it was) the whole cruise was fantastic we ... Read More
Picked this cruise as we have been to NZ before and many times to Sydney in Australia and have seen the cruise ships docked at the Rocks and thought wow to sail in would be an amazing thing (and it was) the whole cruise was fantastic we had a A1 class cabin on level 8 port side it was very clean and had everything we needed. We had most of our meals in the café but did buy the 3 meal package and also had open dining for the main dining room but to be honest we liked the café food better lots of choice. When on holiday we like to do our own thing so did not take part in any activities but there was plenty to do if that's your thing. All the staff were polite and very friendly the service was wonderful, the only downside was embarkation due to the cleaning of the ship so did not get on till about 5.30pm and our cabin was still not ready, when we did get to the cabin our luggage was waiting outside. All the ports of call were fabulous but we only took one excursion in Melbourne as we had been to some before so we took advantage of the empty ships pool and hot tubs. The sounds were stunning and the weather was awesome on that day not a cloud in the sky along with the sunrise as we sailed into Sydney I would say the best part of the cruise. The whole cruise was everything we expected saddest part was having to leave but we will do Celebrity again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We were fortunate enough to get Royal Suite which was very comfortable with great butler. This was a great way to see New Zealand especially the day spent in and out of Fjord Land. Milford Sound Dusky Sound and Doubtful Sound just ... Read More
We were fortunate enough to get Royal Suite which was very comfortable with great butler. This was a great way to see New Zealand especially the day spent in and out of Fjord Land. Milford Sound Dusky Sound and Doubtful Sound just beautiful. Dunedin was great took taxi around and had him show us all the sights best $60.00 spent, bargain. Akaroa, Wellington Tauranaki Bay of Island and Auckland all typically beautiful New Zealand country and the friendliness of the Kiwis made it very special. The ship and crew were all fantastic. Being in suite we dined in Luminea Restaurant, again the whole team just fabulous and food was exceptional. The only downside to the cruise was the weather. If you are planning on doing this cruise I would recommend December January as it is so far south (same parallel as Hobart Tasmania) it was chilly the whole time. We would definitely sail with Celebrity again Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We wanted to visit New Zealand but not any particular place just a taste of it all and did we get that yes we did, a fabulous itinery and in a luxurious way. embarkation was stressful as everyone couldn't wait to get on but once on ... Read More
We wanted to visit New Zealand but not any particular place just a taste of it all and did we get that yes we did, a fabulous itinery and in a luxurious way. embarkation was stressful as everyone couldn't wait to get on but once on it was just very relaxed, for such a big ship it never felt crowded. We paid for our drinks package before we left home with gratuities but found that most people had already had one in their package and didn't pay gratuities so we felt a bit miffed about that as our holiday was in excess of our budget you have to have a drinks package as the drinks are very expensive and it would spoil the holiday if you were constantly worried about the cost. The tours were quite expensive for what you got but there was so much scenery e very day where you got to a destination for the day you didn't need them really unless you wanted nature tours which we didn't. It's a long way from England so if you choose to go choose celebrity but add on to your holiday and spend at least 5 weeks there to get the benefit. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
This cruise delivered everything we expected. It was a way to experience various destininations whilst travelling in comfort. We spent a couple of days exploring Auckland before joining the Celebrity Solstice. Embarkation was well ... Read More
This cruise delivered everything we expected. It was a way to experience various destininations whilst travelling in comfort. We spent a couple of days exploring Auckland before joining the Celebrity Solstice. Embarkation was well organised and within an hour of dropping off our luggage, we were welcomed on board. We were immediately able to enjoy lunch in the Ocean view cafe before making our way to our cabin. It wasn't long before our cases were delivered and our lovely room steward Edwin, had introduced himself. We were very happy with our cabin which had a veranda and everything we needed. It was clean and well maintained throughout our stay. The bed was very comfortable as were the pillows. The cabin was generally quiet and we rarely heard any outside noise. We found the ship to be spacious with lots of different areas to sit and relax, inside and out. Staff were always cleaning and maintaining the ship to a high standard and were friendly and helpful at all times. The pools were frequently cleaned and had plenty of sunbeds with lots of towels always available. Great drinks service as well. We didn't try any of the alternative restaurants as we found the main dining room for breakfast and dinner,offered a great choice and standard of food every day, which we enjoyed. During the day the food offered in the ocean view cafe was excellent, varied and plentiful. We especially enjoyed afternoon tea. Service was fantastic, especially our waiter Reuben and his assistant Busaya. All the ports visited were varied and we always found lots to do, preferring to sightsee independently and to take local buses. We found some great hikes with a bit of a challenge, which suited us. We didn't take any of the ships excursions as we thought them overpriced. The cast shows and guest artists were mostly excellent and we watched a different show every evening. There was something for everyone. As there was in various bars. This was our second cruise and we would certainly cruise again with celebrity. Disembarkation went smoothly and we spent a couple of days in Sydney before returning home, having had a wonderful time. We would certainly recommend this trip. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We chose this ship because we wanted a modern ship which was large enough to not be too rocky in heavy seas as my husband is prone to motion sickness. We had a delightful 12 night cruise where we would often wake up to a new vista each ... Read More
We chose this ship because we wanted a modern ship which was large enough to not be too rocky in heavy seas as my husband is prone to motion sickness. We had a delightful 12 night cruise where we would often wake up to a new vista each morning when we docked at a new port. Everything about this ship is first rate where you always feel your satisfaction and enjoyment onboard is the priority of the staff across the entire ship. The meals at the specialty restaurants were amazing. The meals though in the main dining room was a bit hit and miss. So was the nightly entertainment in the Solstice Theatre. Some of the acts were amazing. Some not so good. Overall, we had a wonderful time. The highlight for us was travelling through the wondrous New Zealand Sounds. Up close and personal, it was truly a humbling experience. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
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