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This was our first cruise to Alaska after a number of Caribbean, Bahamas, Med, etc . This has been on our bucket list for quite some time so we finally went for it! We booked this about a year ago, and maybe 60 days prior to the sailing upgraded from a standard balcony room to Aqua class. We landed in Seattle the day before the cruise and took the Link Light Rail to the Westlake station. We stayed the night before at the Mayflower Inn. The location was outstanding and the hotel was quite nice. We were upgraded for free to a corner suite. We did some sightseeing the day before and the morning of. We decided to try Uber to the port. Mistake number 1. Uber and other private drivers are taken to a staging area, while taxis are sent right up to the port. So much for Seattle being an Uber friendly city. We had our driver leave us and we walked about 2/3 mile by my guess to the terminal. The embarkation process was the worst. San Juan, Barcelona, Bayonne - all smooth and easy compared to Seattle. The lines were horrendous and slow moving. It took us the better part of an hour to get on the ship, and as noted we were in Aqua (and are Elite). This was probably the biggest complaint but by the time we got on the ship, to our room and up to lunch it was all a memory. The cruise itself was amazing. First off, Celebrity had both a Naturalist and a Cultural Historian as guest speakers. They were both excellent - entertaining AND informative. The guest entertainers, especially A Hard Day's Night (Beatle's Tribute band as you have probably guessed). The production shows were hit and miss. The Rock and Roll show was pretty good. The others were a bit bizarre. And Liar's Club as always didn't disappoint. Dining was good. We were well taken care of in Blu for our dinners. The service was efficient mostly but not as personable as we had come to expect. Our biggest complaint was that two of the days breakfast service was really slow. I mean slower than dinner. But the food in general was good in Blue. Oceanview Cafe was hit and miss as always. Mast Grill was quite good. We didn't do specialty restaurants. We really didn't do many of the other activities. Between the ports, the lecturers and entertainers and also relaxing (we are in the process of moving and this came at a really busy time for us!) we just wanted to enjoy the trip. More on the ports will come below. Disembarkation was not too bad. We went through customs quickly. The line for a taxi was pretty long. Both ships in port that day fed one taxi line. But we were at our hotel in Pioneer Square by 9 am.

A great cruise with some minor issues

Celebrity Solstice Cruise Review by sonvoltken6

17 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2017
  • Destination: Alaska
  • Cabin Type: AquaClass
This was our first cruise to Alaska after a number of Caribbean, Bahamas, Med, etc . This has been on our bucket list for quite some time so we finally went for it! We booked this about a year ago, and maybe 60 days prior to the sailing upgraded from a standard balcony room to Aqua class.

We landed in Seattle the day before the cruise and took the Link Light Rail to the Westlake station. We stayed the night before at the Mayflower Inn. The location was outstanding and the hotel was quite nice. We were upgraded for free to a corner suite. We did some sightseeing the day before and the morning of. We decided to try Uber to the port. Mistake number 1. Uber and other private drivers are taken to a staging area, while taxis are sent right up to the port. So much for Seattle being an Uber friendly city. We had our driver leave us and we walked about 2/3 mile by my guess to the terminal.

The embarkation process was the worst. San Juan, Barcelona, Bayonne - all smooth and easy compared to Seattle. The lines were horrendous and slow moving. It took us the better part of an hour to get on the ship, and as noted we were in Aqua (and are Elite). This was probably the biggest complaint but by the time we got on the ship, to our room and up to lunch it was all a memory.

The cruise itself was amazing. First off, Celebrity had both a Naturalist and a Cultural Historian as guest speakers. They were both excellent - entertaining AND informative. The guest entertainers, especially A Hard Day's Night (Beatle's Tribute band as you have probably guessed). The production shows were hit and miss. The Rock and Roll show was pretty good. The others were a bit bizarre. And Liar's Club as always didn't disappoint.

Dining was good. We were well taken care of in Blu for our dinners. The service was efficient mostly but not as personable as we had come to expect. Our biggest complaint was that two of the days breakfast service was really slow. I mean slower than dinner. But the food in general was good in Blue. Oceanview Cafe was hit and miss as always. Mast Grill was quite good. We didn't do specialty restaurants.

We really didn't do many of the other activities. Between the ports, the lecturers and entertainers and also relaxing (we are in the process of moving and this came at a really busy time for us!) we just wanted to enjoy the trip. More on the ports will come below.

Disembarkation was not too bad. We went through customs quickly. The line for a taxi was pretty long. Both ships in port that day fed one taxi line. But we were at our hotel in Pioneer Square by 9 am.
sonvoltken6’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

AquaClass
Cabin A1 1595
This was a great cabin - location near the mid ship elevators. The couch is by the sliding door, not the bed.
Penthouse Deck Inside Cabins, Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Whale Watching
    This was our favorite tour by far. We did Mendenhall Glacier and Whale Watching. The glacier was cool and we had just the right amount of time at the visitor's center. We got some cool pictures. But the whale watching - phenomenal. We saw humpback, seals and a pod of Orca. We watched the Orca for perhaps 30 minutes, as they were spy hopping and showing off for us maybe 50 years off the boat. And the weather was also outstanding there. It was sunny and 70 plus. We returned from Whale Watching at 8:30 and were too exhausted to visit town, since we were up early that day for the Fjord cruising.
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  • Lumberjack Show
    The Lumberjack show was kitschy but fun. We were fortunate that the weather was incredible while we were there - sunny and low 70's. We loved the feel of the town. Creek street was overrated.
    View All 298 Lumberjack Show Reviews
  • Seattle
    Seattle has a lot of cool stuff to offer. We toured on our own both before and after the cruise. We visited the Aquarium (excellent), science center, space needle, MoPop (don't waste your time), Pikes Place and did a harbor cruise. We took the Light Rail in and out of town from the airport. It was all great, except that in the Pioneer Square terminal we felt quite uncomfortable. The urine stench was overwhelming.
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    View Cruise Critic's Seattle Cruise Port Review
  • White Pass Scenic Railway
    This was another outstanding tour. We did the railway with the sled dog adventure. The sled dog thing was up first. The little area where they had it was sort of a tourist trap. However, it was pretty cool to interact with the dogs and to hear from an Iditerod racer. The train was cool. We got the recommendation to sit on the right side of the car if you are riding down the mountain and the views were spectacular. Other than a large group in our car who were being loud while the narration was going on, it was a great train trip.
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  • Craigdarroch Castle
    We are not flower people so we did the castle instead. It was pretty cool. Of course after you have been to Hearst Castle and Biltmore, it wasn't quite as exciting! We enjoyed our tour. Since this is a late port and the next morning was disembarkation we decided not to go into town.
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