Celebrity Solstice Cruise Review by phantomjww
- Sail Date: November 2009
- Destination: Eastern Mediterranean
We arrived in Rome a couple of days early and stayed at the Atlante Star Hotel. It was a nice hotel with free shuttle from the airport. Neither of us ever sleep on the plane so it was nice to be picked up by the hotel. The only problem was we had to wait about an hour for the shuttle bus. Hotel was nice, close to the Vatican and the breakfast buffet was excellent. We travel often and always carry on so we walked on cruise day across St. Peters Square and took the train from Roma St. Pietro Station to the port. It was probably a mile or so walk from the hotel to the train station.
We followed the instructions from CC and after leaving the Civit. Station walked about ¾ mile to the Port. (Thank you to all the CC contributors for directions) It was a very easy journey and the cost of the train trip was about 8 euros each. A bus picks you up at the port entrance and transfers you to the ship. We arrived at the port at 1:15 boarded about 1:30 and upon entering the ship they announced the cabins were ready. Nice surprise!
Our cabin was 1603 (Aqua Spa) and had a bump out cabin that was nice. It made the deck a little larger because of the angle and we could see forward all the way to the bridge. It was a nice view looking forward as we had breakfast in the morning.
We ate breakfast every day on our veranda, which was nice. You can also order off the main dining room menu at night if you ask your room attendant for a copy of the evening's menu. They bring it to your room when it is available and then after 6:30 pm we called Room Service and placed the order. The meal usually arrived about 7:30 pm brought to you by the room steward.
Other nights we ate in BLU. This is the Aqua Spa level dining room. It probably holds about 120 people; on most nights there were more empty seats than full ones. It was pleasant and had good food in slightly smaller portions. Also, there was not the meat and potatoes kind of meals and not extravagant desserts. On a couple of occasions the waiters dropped off an extra entrEe for us to share. For example, one night I had a steak, my wife a pasta dinner and they came by and dropped off lamb chops for us to share. We never asked for this, but we saw them do it quite a bit at other tables as well. It was a nice touch and gave us the chance to sample more kinds of meals. They also surprised us with a nice Happy Honeymoon Chocolate Cake which was a pleasant surprise.
The 10-day Eastern Med. Cruise is port intensive and gives you plenty of opportunity to see many fine ports. We especially loved Santorini, Pompeii and Ephesus. We had been to Mykonos and Athens before but walked different directions to see different things. The ports included: Messina, Ephesus, Naples/Pompeii, Mykonos, Athens, Rhodes, and Santorini.
The ship is beautiful; the service was great for us. We enjoyed the meals, did not stay for long at the shows, and played a long time in the casino for about $20 each. We never won any big slot machine jackpots, but were able to play for a long time on a little money when the mood hit us. The machines kept us playing even if we did not win anything major. We also really enjoyed the glass show and won a beautiful bowl in their raffle.
After the cruise we went back to the port and took the train. Departing at Roma St. Pietro we were able to miss all the chaos at the Termini Station. We stayed at the Starhotels Michelangelo, which is only about 500 yards from the station. This was a good location for us because we wanted to focus our visit at the Vatican and the hotel is only a couple of blocks away.
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