Celebrity Solstice rooms are pleasant but not necessarily the most up-to-date in the fleet. The biggest issues are the lack of outlets and USB ports by the bed, something that is now almost considered mandatory in any kind of room, be it a hotel or a cruise ship.
What Celebrity does provide is a raft of options within its rooms. Inside, oceanview and balcony are all available, as are various tiers of rooms that come with their own perks and dining rooms (Aqua and Suite class). This variety is one reason that this ship is a good choice for people traveling together on different budgets; just keep in mind that some dining rooms are restricted to those booked within a special class, and guests will pay a fee to dine with friends or family there if they are in a regular cabin.
All rooms on Celebrity Solstice, regardless of category come with the following: a queen bed that can be separated into two twins; a sofa bed; a cupboard with a for-fee minibar; a desk with a chair and a wardrobe that also has a safe. Suitcases can fit under the bed.
The cabins also all have an interactive flat-screen TV, where you can also book reservations, services and excursions; examine your account; check menus; and watch on-demand entertainment. The channel line-up includes everything from cartoons to classic TV to movies; cable travel, sports and news channels; ship information channels; and music channels.
The standard inside cabins start at 174 square feet. The oceanview cabins are just a tad larger at 175 square feet. Tip: If you're looking for more storage, check the cabinets above the beds in some rooms. While some might contain extra bedding, there is also room to store some bulkier items, such as your Alaska outerwear.
Of the 1,279 cabins with ocean views (including suites), 1,205 have balconies -- this is 85 percent of total inventory. At 194 square feet, these cabins are similar in size to those inside but come with a 54-square-foot balcony with a table and two chairs. A partition on the balcony can be opened to create a larger shared space for those traveling with family or friends in adjoining cabins.
Families can take advantage of 121 connecting staterooms and four Family Ocean View Staterooms with verandas. These rooms measure a generous 575 square feet with one master bedroom plus a second bedroom (with a single twin bed) and sitting area with a sofa (convertible to trundle bed).
Passengers booking one of Solstice's 277 Concierge Class rooms will get balcony cabins -- with some sweeteners, including more premium locations on the ship (higher up and aft-facing), sparkling wine upon request (as a welcome gift), nightly canapes and restaurant seating time preferences. Other benefits include an exclusive welcome aboard lunch in the main dining room, dedicated concierge desk and in-room enhancements such as a King size bed and a pillow menu. Shoeshine service is complimentary, as is use of a golf umbrella and binoculars. The cabins are 192 square feet with a 54 square foot balcony.
These 130 cabins are essentially standard balcony cabins with prime locations and additional spa-themed perks, including access to Blu, the ship's "spa cuisine" restaurant. Fitness is also central to the experience here, with an in-room menu of amenities that include a mediation kit with weighted blanket; a yoga kit; a strength and conditioning kit and a recovery kit. All fitness classes onboard are also complimentary.
In the cabin, you'll have an aromatherapy diffuser, which subtly adds scent throughout the room, and a super five-head Hansgrohe shower panel in the bathroom, which makes showering on a cruise ship a surprising joy. You'll also get daily teas; two bottles of water a day; a welcome bottle of sparkling wine on embarkation day; a personal concierge to arrange spa treatments and -- our personal favorite perk of this class -- free access to the Persian Garden and Relaxation Room. There's even an expanded room service menu at breakfast (although you might still have to pay the $9.95 service charge plus gratuity).
In general, Celebrity's suite perks are among the best on mainstream cruise ships. That being said, Solstice is one ship in the fleet that does not have the special Retreat sundeck that you find on some other vessels.
Suite fares now include a premium drink package, a premium unlimited Wi-Fi package; gratuities and onboard credit bundled into the fare. (Note: If you move into a suite through the Celebrity Move-Up bid program, you won't receive these perks).
Branded as The Retreat, all suites include personal butlers; breakfast, lunch and dinner service; afternoon tea; daily evening hors d'oeuvres; and espresso and cappuccino -- all ensuite -- plus a range of other perks including use of the exclusive suite-only restaurant, Luminae, which includes a menu with items from celebrity chef Daniel Boulud.
On Solstice, in absence of a dedicated Retreat lounge, suite passengers enjoy exclusive use of Michael's Club, a clubby bar and lounge that includes perks such as complimentary alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages throughout the day, a personal concierge and a daily breakfast.
The 44 Sky Suites represent the bulk of the suite inventory on Celebrity Solstice. They measure 300 square feet with 79-square-foot verandas accessed through floor-to-ceiling sliding-glass doors, and have two beds convertible to queen-size and bathrooms with a shower/tub combination and sink. The living room has a queen sleeper sofa, vanity and 40-inch LCD TV.
Significantly larger are the two Penthouse Suites, measuring 1,291 square feet with 389-square-foot balconies. These cabins offer floor-to-ceiling sliding-glass doors, separate living room/dining room, baby grand piano, full bar, queen sleeper sofa, two 52-inch LCD TVs (the one in the living room has surround sound) and a master bath with a whirlpool tub, shower stall with dual shower heads, double sinks and even a 26-inch LCD TV. The veranda has a second whirlpool and lounge seating.
Other suite offerings are 12 Celebrity Suites (394 square feet, 105-square-foot balcony) and eight Royal Suites (590 square feet, 158-square-foot balcony). Each Celebrity Suite has a walk-in closet and separate living and sleeping areas, with flat-screen TVs in both the bedroom and living areas. Royal Suites also provide separate living and sleeping areas, and they have separate tubs and showers in the bathrooms, full wet bars and glass-topped dining room tables. Each Royal Suite has a whirlpool on its balcony.
Penthouse Suite and Royal Suite cruisers receive unlimited dining in all specialty restaurants, a complimentary Premium Beverage Package for all, complimentary unlimited internet access and a stateroom setup of one bottle of vodka and one bottle of scotch or gin with mixers, a choice of spirits and wine.
Solstice has 30 state-of-the-art wheelchair-accessible staterooms, covering a wide range of categories from Inside to Sky Suite. Eighty percent (24) are outside, and 20 of the 30 accessible cabins have accessible balconies. All accessible staterooms have additional square footage over their non-accessible counterparts and have 32-inch-wide automatic doors with sitting-level key card slots.
Most accessible staterooms feature 5-foot turning radiuses. Bathrooms have roll-in showers, ramped thresholds and lowered fixtures. Suites feature the services of a butler, who will, among other chores, assist in the moving of heavy luggage as well as packing and unpacking. Facilities are also available for passengers with visual or hearing disabilities. A service animal relief box is available on request.
The standard bathrooms on Celebrity Solstice are a good size for a mainstream cruise line. The shower is a fairly roomy capsule style, with a glass shower door and a footrest for shaving. Dispensers with body gel, shampoo and conditioner are arranged inside.
A cabinet of cubbies along the sink means that you have more storage than you'd expect within the bathroom. The outlets are for shavers only.
As noted above, the bathrooms get much nicer on Celebrity Solstice as you go up in category.
Several balcony cabins on Deck 6 are sold as obstructed view. We had one of these rooms, which featured the lifeboat/tenders front and center. It made getting a picture of the glaciers and shoreline fairly difficult, so we'd recommend avoiding these on an Alaskan cruise. (You could also hear the crew working within them at times, so there's not as much privacy here as you might think).
Alternatively, check out our favorite cabins below.
Budget: The size differential between an inside and an oceanview is negligible, but if you're on the fence, go with the natural light that a large picture window lets into the room.
Splash: Among the entry-level special categories, we pick Aqua Class as giving you a lot more for your money, especially if fitness classes are part of your onboard regimen (and we miss the complimentary Persian Garden access when we're not in Aqua).
Splurge: Sky Suites are our de facto Celebrity pick, although on Solstice, the value here is hampered by the lack of The Retreat. If you're going to splurge, why not go all out with the Penthouse?