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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
This was my first cruise in over 20 years so I count myself as a cruise newbie. My family went on the Celebrity Solstice Alaska cruise as part of a business conference so all of the details were handled by the business group's travel ... Read More
This was my first cruise in over 20 years so I count myself as a cruise newbie. My family went on the Celebrity Solstice Alaska cruise as part of a business conference so all of the details were handled by the business group's travel agent. Our cabin was a Veranda 2B on deck 6 in the middle right side of the ship. We had an unobstructed view but were above an open deck section so we sometimes heard people below us. The cabin was unexpectedly roomy because of its design. The cabin had a comfortable firm king size bed with couch (cushions removed for third bed for my son). There was also a built in with a flat screen TV, around 6 half drawers, counter space, desk, mini fridge and small coffee table. Above the bed was storage (next time I will take CC advice to bring flat folding storage boxes for clothing) and next to each bed were tiny built in night tables (not very useful). There was a large sliding door closet with the safe and lots of hangers (did not need extra wire hangers as per CC advice). Luggage was easily stored under the bed and under the desk. The TV system worked well. There are free movies plus movies for a fee. Your account is posted daily. The bathroom was really well designed with glass front storage and drawers. The glass enclosed shower was very nice. There were three wall hooks for towels. If you are planning to use the pools, I would suggest bringing plastic hangers to hang wet bathing suits. The balcony was the best! The sliding door was easy to unlock and glide open. There was enough space for two comfortable chairs and a table (the chairs and table were weather worn and probably should be replaced). It was a luxury to wake up in the morning and sit on the balcony. It was also incredible to take photos from our balcony when we were in the Inside Passage. Other: For your use during the cruise, there are robes and an umbrella in the room but no binoculars (cabin steward said that binoculars are only in the Aqua class). A free Celebrity tote bag is given to you. In addition to shampoo, bar soap, conditioner and lotion are provided. As per CC advice, I communicated with my cabin steward via post-its on the mirror. As requested, we received extra shampoo, he emptied out the mini bar so we could use the fridge for our own items and provided ice daily. The cabin was quickly made up in the morning and kept clean. Suggestions to Celebrity for cabin improvements: - need more than the 3 outlets on the desk - would be nice if we could access our photos on our room TV - would be nice if we could access the menus for the Grand Epernay on our room TV - this would have helped in deciding whether to have dinner at the Ocean Cafe or try one of the specialty restaurants. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
We chose this cruise because it was going to Alaska and several members of my family wanted to tour that area. The cruise ship was immaterial as we were looking at the criteria that matched our dates and ports of call interests. We got ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was going to Alaska and several members of my family wanted to tour that area. The cruise ship was immaterial as we were looking at the criteria that matched our dates and ports of call interests. We got extremely lucky when we chose this cruise! On our 1st stop at Kitchcan, we had not booked an excursion. We decided to take a sea plane at the last minute and were fortunate enough to get one scheduled directly from the Internet. It was a great decision. After that we walked around the town for a while and enjoy the day. We were lucky and had excellent weather throughout our whole cruise! We got off the ship at the Tacy Arms Fjorge and took the catamaran tour to Juneau. Highly recommend that excursion! At Juneau we ate the obligatory king crab legs and enjoyed the afternoon walking around the town. At Skagway, we took the white pass trail train and were lucky enough to see a black bear. Our last port was Victoria, British Columbia where we toured the Bushart Gardens. It was our least favorite day, but it was still a great excursion. Captain Tasos personally made this the best cruise I have ever had, and I've been on many. Loved the cruise ship, loved the staff and had a great time! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
This was our second cruise with celebrity to Alaska the cruise on the whole was good the ship was fantastic clean easy to get around we had a Aqua class cabin with a balcony which was lovely for sitting outside taking in the beautiful ... Read More
This was our second cruise with celebrity to Alaska the cruise on the whole was good the ship was fantastic clean easy to get around we had a Aqua class cabin with a balcony which was lovely for sitting outside taking in the beautiful scenery dining we only used the Buffett it suited us . The entertainment was terrible out of the 7 nights there was 2 nights of comedian December 62 was another night that was the best thing the other nights where a waste of time the day activities included making a paper plane and throwing it through a hoop really celebrity !!! The staff on the ship were great porters, housekeeping and food and bar service staff but as for the other staff ie cruise director were stuck up we've cruised with Thomson before and all staff were very friendly. The service from housekeeping and bar and food service was excellent made you feel welcome had a great laugh in cafe every night with them . We only did one excursion as we'd done the rest on our first cruise they are quiet expensive . We spent 4 days in Vancover before the cruise that we enjoyed. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Alaska has been our goal for the last 3 years, although it was the most expensive holiday we have ever been on, it was worth the wait! The Virgin flight over to Seattle was really good, good selection of up to date films. Our favourite ... Read More
Alaska has been our goal for the last 3 years, although it was the most expensive holiday we have ever been on, it was worth the wait! The Virgin flight over to Seattle was really good, good selection of up to date films. Our favourite chill out place was the little cafe, Mike and the staff were really helpful and friendly. Had a bit of hassle with the freestyle dining the first night, being told to stand in different queue then sent back to the back of a much longer first queue! Several others also caught up in the fiasco, however after the first night it settled down ok. The entertainment was not as good as on other cruise lines we have travelled with. Our cabin was excellent, and really kept clean by our cabin boy. The excursions we went on, Whale Watching, Lumberjack show and the Yukon railway were all excellent. The main disapointment was that our favourite machine in the Casino was out of order for the whole trip! Overall a brilliant experience. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Alaska was never a destination I wanted to cruise however my family wanted to. so away we go. This cruise left from Seattle, which was a let down as a city, lots of homeless on the streets, didn't feel safe and very expensive, hotel over ... Read More
Alaska was never a destination I wanted to cruise however my family wanted to. so away we go. This cruise left from Seattle, which was a let down as a city, lots of homeless on the streets, didn't feel safe and very expensive, hotel over $300 a night and we stayed near airport, city hotels much more expensive. embarkation was pretty much a breeze easy on ship. We enjoyed Elite status because of our points with Royal Caribbean which transfer to Celebrity, we also had a concierge room so we walked through embarkation easily. The Solstice is a nice ship with typical Celebrity modern touches. we got into our stateroom at about 1:30. It was a nice room, plenty of storage, slightly larger bathroom than usual. But generally a typical balcony cabin. We stayed in cabin 9563. We had pre selected my time dining and had also pre reserved times. Dining staff had us at the same table nightly which we appreciated. Great service as always from dining and cabin staff. We thought entertainment was a real let down on this cruise. The entertainers were talented but the arrangments/productions themselves seemed poorly thought out. We were not the only ones who thought this, several we talked to had the same remarks. Not the talents problem. Comedian average at best, Musical talent around the ship very good however. Being an Alaska cruise we didn't use the pool, however the hot tubs and spa were used by us daily. Nothing bad to say here, but nothing extraordinary. No mens steam room without paying a fee. Changing rooms very small. Gym well equipped. I thought the food in the main dining room was a little sub-par. We didn't go to any specialty restaurants. The ports were all very clean and nice. Docking went well. Captain and ship officers all very visible and really nice. My biggest reason for average instead of good cruise was the guest services staff, they seemed very incompetent, as did the Concierge. Cruise directors staff seemed overwhelmed a lot of the time. One example: Bingo was held in a room that was never large enough, each session they had to bring in folding chairs, there was no bar staff at bingo and only one helper for the caller. They also were very slow at selling tickets often only having one person selling cards, and often the room was occupied so after you bought cards you had to stand outside and wait before you could enter. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Cruise was part of a Canadian Rockies/Alaska group tour, this cruise being the final 7 nights sailing from Seattle to Skagway return. Have only sailed one cruise prior to this being on the Mediterranean with NCL. Well perhaps I’m ... Read More
Cruise was part of a Canadian Rockies/Alaska group tour, this cruise being the final 7 nights sailing from Seattle to Skagway return. Have only sailed one cruise prior to this being on the Mediterranean with NCL. Well perhaps I’m missing something reading other reviews but we (hubby and I) thoroughly enjoyed it all. The shows were great, the ship was beautiful, rooms spacious and clean (we had a balcony), food delicious and staff friendly and good service. We always ate in the dining rooms for dinner (not specialty restaurants) and buffet for all other meals. Great selection and food always fresh and varied. Have to say Captain Tasos made the trip into something even more enjoyable, he’s not only very talented, knowledgeable and professional but extremely entertaining and simply hilarious, he even upstaged the guest comedian without even trying! Doing 3 donuts in front of the glacier was amazing too! Embankment and disembarkment was quick and simple (we chose self-assist on leaving, was very easy). Just remember, don’t book excursions onboard, way too expensive and crowded. I booked all excursions prior to departing (mainly kayaking) and although there were some 10000 passengers in port (5 ships) we were the only 2 paddling on a beautiful mirror like sea kayaking blue sky day, simply amazing! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Itinerary was the driving force behind selecting this cruise. Secondarily, reconnecting with why we fell in love with cruising in the first place: a relaxing, elegant and delicious departure from everyday life where all the logistical ... Read More
Itinerary was the driving force behind selecting this cruise. Secondarily, reconnecting with why we fell in love with cruising in the first place: a relaxing, elegant and delicious departure from everyday life where all the logistical stresses of planning and travel are taken care of for you. And considering those driving factors, Celebrity Cruises, and more specifically, the Celebrity Solstice delivered all these, in spades! Having taken 13 previous cruises (with Holland America, Royal Caribbean and Disney), I can say with ease that this was, by far, the best overall cruising experience we've ever had. It was simply stellar from beginning to end. About us: we are a couple in our late 30s with two children. Our children did not sail with us (they had a fabulous two weeks with grandparents). We have taken 13 total cruises prior to this one on a variety of different cruise lines, this one being the first with Celebrity Cruises. We sailed in an Aqua Class stateroom with the Classic Beverage Package. Our last few cruises have been on Oasis class ships (Oasis & Allure) with Royal Caribbean. As we've witnessed a significant downturn in experience aboard Royal Caribbean, along with an increase in the Theme-Park-ish feel (along with the hard-sell at every turn), we were very excited to board a smaller ship, with fewer people and fewer "WOW" features. Celebrity Solstice was exactly what we were looking for. The ship - beautiful and well maintained at every turn - never felt crowded, never felt hurried and never felt stressed. This had a fundamental impact on our entire experience, and one that we greatly appreciated. Pool side loungers were always available. A table within the Oceanview Cafe (buffet) was always available. A great seat within the main show theater was always available. And - a bartender was always available. Overall, the Solstice is just large enough to contain a larger amount of offerings, while not losing the intimacy of a smaller ship. We sailed in an Aqua Class cabin on deck 11. It's tough to compete with the Disney Fantasy on stateroom, especially when traveling with children/families. Although not the size of a Disney stateroom, the Celebrity Solstice staterooms are well appointed, and featured many elegant touches which increase the feeling of modern luxury. For example, the shower featured a spa type, rain forest style shower head with optional side jets. The shower was also the only one aboard any cruise ship I've ever sailed which was tall enough to fit my 6'8" frame, without the need to duck my head the entire time. Another elegant touch - the bathroom mirror was gently heated from behind to prevent fogging. Chairs on the balcony included foot stools, which made for a slightly more relaxing time of enjoying the Alaskan wilderness pass by. The stateroom featured plush bath robes and slippers, along with binoculars and two umbrellas. The scented reed diffuser was a nice touch which I wasn't expecting to enjoy as much as I did. Outside of this, the rest of the stateroom was exactly what you would expect out of any modern cruise ship. The spa was a nice addition to our experience. Also something I wasn't expecting to enjoy as much as I did. As a member of the Aqua Class, you have access to the Parisian Garden section of the Spa, which is essentially 3 main rooms: A large room containing heated loungers (with a fantastic view out of the port side), a heated and scented lounging room (great for opening up the sinuses) and a steam room. We normally spend a significant amount of time on cruises by the pool. Either in the main pools or hot tubs. We found that a few minutes in the Parisian Garden satisfied our desire to relax in the water. After 10 minutes in the steam room we were as relaxed as we've ever felt and ready to move on about our day. All of this to say, the Spa perk was not the one that drew me to the Aqua Class upgrade. However, after experiencing it and being so pleasantly surprised, it would now firmly be a part of what brings me back to Aqua Class. Dining is where the Solstice far outpaces the competition. The food on board this ship was simply phenomenal. Every single dining experience far exceeded our expectations, even by day 7. Sailing Aqua Class, we fully leveraged our opportunity to dine in Blu. Blu is, in my opinion, the equivalent of dining in a specialty restaurant. In fact, we dined one evening in Murano, and while absolutely delicious, it caused us to fully realize just how amazing the dining experience is at Blu. It is my opinion, that the opportunity to dine in Blu, in and of itself is worth the upgrade price we paid to sail in Aqua Class. Stepping outside of our Aqua Class perks, even dining in the main dining (which we twice did for lunch) far exceeded any other main dining room lunch we've experienced. This, coupled with incredible food served in the Oceanview cafe, there's simply no comparing the dining to any other ship we've sailed on. Celebrity Solstice was the best. Entertainment was good on Celebrity Solstice, there was certainly nothing that left me yawning and/or wondering "what's next". The shows featuring the main cast are very similar to other cruise ship shows you've seen (mainly an excuse to place a bunch of songs you already know into a medley with an artsy theme weaving them together). The main difference on board the Solstice was the talent of the main-stage singers - they were very, very good. The smaller ensembles performing in the various nooks and crannies of the ship were all good as well. With that said, I think the best entertainer on board the Solstice is the captain: Captain Tasos. He. Is. Hilarious. By far the most personable and entertaining captain we've ever sailed with. Every announcement, every presentation, every show which he was a part of was immediately elevated due to his presence and comedic timing. It feels odd to say the captain had such a large impact on the entertainment aspect of the cruise, but if I'm being honest, he was a large part of it. It's worth noting how much fun the Silent Disco event was. This was held in the Martini Bar and surrounding area. It is three different DJs, all broadcasting their own mix of music, which you then enjoy within the comfort of your own set of wireless headphones. You can switch between DJs utilizing the channel button on your headphones, as well as control your own personal volume. The lights on the outside of your headphones (either red, green or blue) display to everyone, including the DJs, which channel your listening to. While the music is thumping through your headphones, outside the headphones there is no music (hence the "Silent" part of the disco). Everyone has great fun in finding the channel that's playing something enjoyable, and the DJs have fun in competing for your listening ears. One can also have great fun in taking their headphones off and listening to passengers attempt to sing along to what sounds like no music. This was a truly unique event which I haven't seen on other cruise lines, and one that I thoroughly enjoyed. Service is another aspect where I feel Celebrity Solstice outshines the competition (including Disney). Every single crew member was outstanding. There was not one single dark spot in the service we received. Every one we met put forth an elegant, luxurious feel to the service, along with a willingness to bend over backwards to accommodate every request. Even more incredible: as we arrived at different times to Blu every evening, we were placed in different service sections (experiencing three different service teams throughout the sailing). All of which, I simply can't say enough good things about. They were polite, personable, and willing to deliver recommendations, offering their honest opinion in a truly friendly and elegant way. To add to this, the bar/lounge staff were also a delightful surprise. We opted for the classic beverage package on this sailing (one of the perks included in our Aqua Class upgrade). While I was excited to utilize the package, I was also hesitant as I've seen how difficult other cruise lines (specifically Royal Caribbean) make it to use. I was half-expecting that every beverage would be met with long lines at the bar, or difficulty in getting bar-tenders attention, or met with the need to sign for every drink with pressure to provide more in gratuities, or even worse, eye rolls from the bar staff when presenting our beverage package (all of which we have witnessed on other cruise lines in the past). I'm thrilled to report that Celebrity Solstice had none of this. Our beverage package was incredibly easy to use (too easy almost). No receipt signing, no additional gratuity pressure, no eye rolling. It was simply: 1) Present Room Key 2) Receive Beverage. It was that easy, everywhere. We found every crew member to be knowledgeable in how the package worked, and all were willing to provide incredible service, even once they found out we were on the package. The package includes specialty coffees, bottled water, and alcoholic beverages up to $9. Want a beverage that's more than $9? Simply pay the difference (between $9 and the cost of your beverage). Given the ease of using the beverage perks, and the amount of beverages it includes, I feel we more than made up for the cost. Lastly, I mentioned at the beginning that itinerary was the driving force behind choosing this sailing. We had never been on an Alaskan itinerary prior to this one. With that said, we didn't elect for any cruise ship sponsored shore excursions. And with that said, we loved every minute of being in port. We ventured out on our own at every stop, hiking halfway up Deer Mountain in Ketchikan, taking a cab ride to Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau, and walking to the Gold Rush Cemetery and Reid Falls just outside of Skagway. At every port we felt we were able to see the city on our own terms and escape the crowds. While all of our activities could be viewed as on the adventurous side, we are certainly not thrill seekers, nor are we avid mountain hikers. We simply wanted to capture the essence of every port town as a local might witness it. We were not disappointed. All of this to say, I felt the Celebrity excursions were a bit on the pricey side and primarily "touristy" in nature. Which is why we opted to explore on our own. I heard no complaints from passengers on board regarding the logistics or organization of excursions, leading me to believe they were enjoyable and well organized. However, I have no firsthand knowledge. To summarize, we absolutely, without reservations, would sail on Celebrity Cruises and the Celebrity Solstice again. Celebrity Cruises has reconnected us with why we fell in love with cruising in the first place. The "WOW" features of the larger ships are fun for a time, but incredible seas, incredible sights, incredible food and incredible service are why we come back to cruising again and again - and Celebrity Solstice, I feel, is doing this better than anyone. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
My grand-daughter choose the cruise as she wanted to see Alaska. The Travel agent recommended this one. It was our first cruise so we had nothing to compare with. We found our stateroom rather crammed as we were 3 adults the third bed was ... Read More
My grand-daughter choose the cruise as she wanted to see Alaska. The Travel agent recommended this one. It was our first cruise so we had nothing to compare with. We found our stateroom rather crammed as we were 3 adults the third bed was very narrow and it took too much space if we pulled it out. it was rather a crush to find room for all our clothes. ( 3 women do take a lot of clothes!). We thought that the gratuity system was rather steep $14.50 each every day. I have since found out that other companies do not charge as much. As it was so expensive we cancelled ours and gave to those who gave us good service. We enjoyed all the facilities on the ship and the food was excellent with good service. the excursions were also very good and interesting. Also the commentary from the Captain and other crew members, was entertaining and informative. We also enjoyed the shows at the theater. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Aside from a few hiccups this was a really nice cruise. Embarkation was a breeze. Great excursions. Our cabin was clean and comfortable. Our room steward (Chris) was very nice, personable. The ship is showing its wear in places. Numerous ... Read More
Aside from a few hiccups this was a really nice cruise. Embarkation was a breeze. Great excursions. Our cabin was clean and comfortable. Our room steward (Chris) was very nice, personable. The ship is showing its wear in places. Numerous broken chairs in two theaters, chairs in the main dining room were in need of a good cleaning. Note to Celebrity, 409 is very inexpensive. Bar service was slow in all areas of the ship. Minuscule portion sizes in all restaurants. I understand the need to control costs but in the speciality restaurants where you are paying a cover fee this should not be happening. Food quality was very good. Buffet - Cakes and desserts in the buffet were all basically the same - sponge cake soaked in simple syrup with different fillings daily. Is it really asking THAT much to put out real cake? We noticed some of the desserts from other restaurants/coffee bar around the ship would cycle into the buffet on the days after they “premiered” in the original area. Good selection of quality ice cream/frozen yogurt. Cheese “sauce” on the Mexican part of the buffet was as thin as water and had NO flavor. I would say 90% of the buffet food was very good. We took the galley tour, the one kitchen we got to see was spotless. The fitness center had everything you could hope for and more than enough machines to go around. Again we have a wear issue as 4 of the ellipticals I used were all making a grinding/rubbing sound. Not the end of the world, they functioned fine but again it shows a lack of maintenance and upkeep. Now for the areas of concern. On one night the buffet was featuring fresh fish. Salmon and halibut were placed on ice on the buffet line to help advertise this offering. At one point one of the salmon slid off the ice and was laying on the side of the buffet un-chilled for 30 minutes. This happening despite no less than 20 buffet staff walking past it and doing nothing. I even told the “chef” cooking on this station. He simply looked at me and smiled. Finally after about 30 minutes the “head chef” came and pointed this out, said salmon was put back on ice. One would think this would be left for display only right? No no no. We watched as the “chef” filleted, cooked, and served it. No properly trained let alone self respecting chef would do this as it’s a MAJOR food handling breach. You are just asking for a case of FOOD POISONING. If this is going on in the front of the house, what is going on in the back of the house? We attended a demonstration on how to cook the perfect steak. For this, the “chef” had on display several cuts of raw meat - a standing rib roast, pork loin, and a beef strip loin. The rib roast resting on the pork, the pork was resting on the strip loin above it. The same display also contained raw lamb as well as several other cuts of raw meat all touching one another. If that was not enough the “chef” had no problem picking up the various cuts one right after the other. Again no self respecting properly trained chef would do this as you are just begging to cross contaminate. Again, If this is going on in the front of the house, what is going on in the back of the house? And on a demonstration no less! All in all it was a good cruise, a good value. I question their food handeling practices though. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
Family cruise ( nine adults) two years in the planning. Alaska was a bucket list for us and we carefully selected excursions that fit our family. We were so happy with the intenerary, the ship itself, and the options offered. It was a ... Read More
Family cruise ( nine adults) two years in the planning. Alaska was a bucket list for us and we carefully selected excursions that fit our family. We were so happy with the intenerary, the ship itself, and the options offered. It was a wonderful experience for us all and we would definitely rebook with Celebrity again. One family member had special dietary needs that were well managed and he was thrilled with the options. The balcony rooms for several in our group were beyond breathtaking and added immeasurably to sea days. Our ships captain was entertaining and engaging. The crew made the Fjord section very special by coming very close to the glacier and turning the boat in a 360 circle so that all sides of the ship got a great view. Weather was favorable for us and the ability to spend time together in the various eating areas as a group and then retreat to cabin time made the choice for a large family trip the absolute perfect one. Highly recommend this cruise line and Alaska as a choice! Read Less
Celebrity Solstice Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.5
Dining 4.5 4.2
Entertainment 4.5 3.8
Public Rooms 5.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.1
Family 4.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 5.0 3.9
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.5 4.1
Rates 4.0 4.2

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