This was our seventh Alaska Cruise, second on Celebrity.
We chose this cruise for a variety of reasons.. 9 nights instead of the usual 7; it visited the Hubbard Glacier and Sitka, where we had never been before; and it coincided with my birthday and our 24th wedding anniversary.
Embarkation at Canada Place was a mess! Three ships in, and not enough staff or Customs people to deal with the crowds efficiently. With 6-7,000 people disembarking and another 6-7,000 embarking, it was 7 pm before we left.. two hours late! We were lucky as we arrived to board early, had priority checkin with Concierge Class, and were ushered to the front of a couple of lines as my husband and I both need canes to walk. We were on board soon after 11:30. Some people spent 5 hours (maybe more) in the check-in process!
The Solstice, itself, is impressive, especially the Grand Foyer. There are lots of public areas for small or large groups to get together, and shops/ boutiques on two levels. The only problem with this is that whenever you walked past them someone was trying to push you to buy something you didnt need, want or could afford! In addition, there was a constant push to buy drinks packages, photo packages etc..
The Main Dining Room is also impressive - particularly the 2 story wine rack! It has to be seen to be believed. Overall the food was good, although some was a little on the bland side.
The buffet had lots of choices, but the scrambled eggs and the oatmeal left alot to be desired - very runny and bland. Other than that, no complaints - good, but not great!
We did not eat at the Specialty Restaurants - very highly priced when you have already paid for meals ..
The Persian Garden Pass for the week was useful, but we did not get our moneys worth as it was always busy.. would not buy the pass again.
Overall, this was a good cruise, in spite of the fact that it rained in Juneau and Skagway.. however, I think we will stick to HAL in the future. I much prefer the mid-sized ships.
Our Stateroom was Concierge Class, on Deck 10 forward. A great location! It was quiet, close to the elevators, and very convenient for the spa, pool etc.
The bathroom was beautiful! Shower Enclosure, instead if a curtain and lots of storage. However - there was no hair dryer either in the bathroom or the room.
General Storage was lacking - a closet and a few drawers. Other ships we have sailed on have had shelves built into the closet.
Our Room Attendant, Michael, was terrific! He kept our room spotless and made sure we had everything we needed. Nothing was too much trouble for him.