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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
Chose this cruise because it was hubby’s bucket list trip to go to Australia and I wanted to go to NZ. Solstice is showing her age a bit...things are just looking a little worn...some holes in our cabin drapes, chairs in the public ... Read More
Chose this cruise because it was hubby’s bucket list trip to go to Australia and I wanted to go to NZ. Solstice is showing her age a bit...things are just looking a little worn...some holes in our cabin drapes, chairs in the public areas are a worn...that type of thing. If you look passed all those types of things then Solstice is still a beautiful ship. Food this time out for me was a bit of a disappointment. Had to send one dinner in the MDR back all together. There was a good mix of choices. They were free with the lobster on the night they served it which hubby was quite happy with. Staff were marvellous, Joaquim our cabin attendant was very good with our request to get the night light in the bathroom fixed and sorting out a different appie plate for us in the afternoon. He was very helpful and pleasant and attentive to all our needs. Martini Bar staff were lovely too. Thank you Alin! MDR staff were wonderful although I gave them such a bad tim*e trying to get them to stop calling me madam...had fun though. Entertainment wasn’t an attraction for us...we previewed the early show after dinner to see if it was something we wanted to see. Over a 16 night sailing I think we only took in maybe 4 shows. There were special ABBA or Queen music nights in Sky Lounge we attended instead. Ports were all good. Excursions for the most part were good. Some narratives were better than others. The Adelaide excursion we went on the commentator sort of stammered and repeated himself. The sound system on the bus wasn’t working right or he wasn’t talking loud enough but half the bus couldn’t hear him. I was quite surprised by the number of people with walking/travelling aides on this cruise. I know I am not a spring chicken but I found it frustrating trying to move freely sometimes because of the number of people with scooters etc. I understand now that the longer the cruise the more chance you have of that happening. So if you are young and want more action.....think on. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
My wife and I have been on 55 cruises, the shortest 11 days, the longest 28 days. We have sailed with NCL, Holland America, Princess, Azamara and Celebrity. On Celebrity we are Elite Plus members with 2000 points. Our most recent cruise ... Read More
My wife and I have been on 55 cruises, the shortest 11 days, the longest 28 days. We have sailed with NCL, Holland America, Princess, Azamara and Celebrity. On Celebrity we are Elite Plus members with 2000 points. Our most recent cruise was a back to back on Celebrity Solstice. Here are the pros and cons.  The pros: Friendly Crew and excellent service though out the ship. Good meals. Nice casino. Wi-Fi is good. The daily get together for Captain's Club members in the Sky Lounge was very enjoyable. The music played at the pool wasn't deafening. The cons: Because the backs lounge chairs in the Solarium can only be raised about 45 degrees and we found them too uncomfortalbe to just sit and read. The ship is starting to get a "tired" look. I noticed a lot of rust. Maybe Celebrity should attend to the fleet before more building new ships. Unrelated pet peeves:: Cruisers who come to breakfast for the gym or track wearing their sweat soaked work out attire. They obviously don't have any respect of their fellow travels. Maybe a security guard should be posted at the entrances and deny them entry. This happens on all the ships. Cruisers who linger chatting or reading after breakfast and lunch while others are searching for a table. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
This was our first time on Celebrity, we are RCCL people, which own celebrity. Embarkation was OK no issue at all, the ship looked good but you can see some areas are tired and in need of some work but that is not a big issue. From ... Read More
This was our first time on Celebrity, we are RCCL people, which own celebrity. Embarkation was OK no issue at all, the ship looked good but you can see some areas are tired and in need of some work but that is not a big issue. From the minute we got on board we were endlessly pounded with first, drinks packages, then were ever we went it was specialty restaurants. I felt they were hiding at every corner, breakfast , lunch before entering dining room and leaving dining room , it just never stopped. Then when going to the gym you had to run the gauntlet of massages etc etc. I want to pass on a tip, you can offer specialty restaurants but when you ask around $40-$50 US, then the food needs to be rather special and sorry, it was not. Drinks on all cruise lines are out of control and crazy expensive, $6US for a ordinary coffee UP to $15 US for a cocktail and $11-15 US for wine really is too much. which includes an 18% gratuity .For us poor Aussies add at least 25%+ to get Aussie pricing We booked a concierge cabin and we thought it was good value with the extras you got. Our cabin was a bit smaller than we were used to, with not as much storage space but a slightly larger bathroom I thought the service on the ship was great however for some reason, the staff do not appear happy. The food in the dining room was mostly good although became repetitive. I thought the Buffet selection was ordinary and not a great variety. Entertainment was generally Ok, I have a thought, do not expect good entertainment and if you get it then it is a great bonus. I was happy with most of the entertainment I did notice there were a lot of bars on board but not much to do like, mini golf etc. If you did not follow the daily activities then there was not much else. The top deck was covered in lawn which was different but frankly, useless and the glass blowing for me was a little boring. The adds say Premium cruising and I did expect to get the wow factor but generally speaking it was very little difference to any other of the 300 nights I have been on ships Cruising has become like " lamb to the slaughter", they just try and extract every dollar possible. I would not personally, go on Celebrity again and I hope other cruise lines are not pounding you with upselling otherwise I will stop going. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
Bucket list to see Australia. Embarkation and disembarking are the worst part of any cruise. This was no different, although clearing the ship of that large a number of passengers and preparing for the arriving passengers in 4 to 5 hours ... Read More
Bucket list to see Australia. Embarkation and disembarking are the worst part of any cruise. This was no different, although clearing the ship of that large a number of passengers and preparing for the arriving passengers in 4 to 5 hours is a difficult task. The crew was fantastic in every department. They actually appeared to be happy to serve you. The food was well prepared but the selection was small. It seems they want you to use the buffet or pay for one of the specialty restaurants. My main complaint is the constant up selling. I researched to find the cruise I wanted along with the type cabin and extra packages. I bought the classic drink package and was constantly receiving emails trying to get me to upgrade. At least twice a day on the cruise I was approached about booking specialty dining. Everything now seems to be geared toward getting you to spend every cent you have in the shops and restaurants. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
For background, we (my wife and I), have been cruising since 2012, our first and third cruises were with Celebrity, and had anyone asked us since that time, we would have recommended them as our favourite cruise line. We have also cruised ... Read More
For background, we (my wife and I), have been cruising since 2012, our first and third cruises were with Celebrity, and had anyone asked us since that time, we would have recommended them as our favourite cruise line. We have also cruised with HAL, RCL, NCL and Princess. Unfortunately, we can no longer say that after our last outing on the Solstice. The Staff The staff are still top notch. Our stateroom attendant was excellent (best to date), the Martini Bar crew are still excellent fun, and the activities staff and main dining room staff were also very good. Nothing to fault here. The Ship The ship is starting to show its age a bit, but it is still pretty good considering its been cruising for over a decade. It could use a freshening up, but it’s still fine. There were noise issues, however, in a number of the cabins. A fellow trivia team mate, and former merchant mariner, suggested air conditioning ducts were probably loosening in their brackets, causing intermittent clanging noises. Presumably this is something that would have to be addressed in dry dock. The balcony door also caused quite a racket when exposed to moderate winds, but leaving it unlocked helped with that issue (at least for us). The Seaview Cafe So many cruise lines focus on getting quantity out there and often the food is cool when it should be hot and/or variety is lacking. The Solstice is still above average on this front, in my opinion. Main Dining Room This is where the Solstice is failing, badly. This is not just our opinion, but something echoed by many other passengers. The issue is not with the staff, however, who were excellent, in our experience, but rather the food variety and quality. Variety was generally lacking as we saw many repeat dishes over the 16 day cruise. In addition, the chefs seemed to have a fixation with cold soups and smothering seafood dishes with tomato-based sauces. We looked forward to the lobster tail on the second last day, but it was basted with an unknown seasoning which completely ruined the dish. Dessert pastries were generally OK, but hardly spectacular. When asked why local fare wasn’t used (Blue mana crabs are in season in Australia), it was suggested such meals would only be in the speciality dining rooms. Speciality dining We didn’t – the prices are becoming quite ridiculous. Activities Meh best describes this. After having a lot of fun on the Norwegian Breakaway, where we almost had to jog from event to event, 3 hour gaps in the Solstice activities simply don’t cut it. Some nights there were mini game shows, which were reasonably fun, but for the rest it was trivia and name that tune. The activities crew were good, but they were hampered by lack of numbers and props/facilities. The stand out for us was a guest lecturer (Bill Lee) covering theoretical physics. My advice to Celebrity: You were never the go to for bells and whistles activities and entertainment. Get your food sorted out, at the very least, or you’ll find those staterooms progressively harder to fill. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had not been to these destinations before and this cruise offered us just what we wanted. The crew was really friendly and most of them always acknowledged us and many of them entered into ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had not been to these destinations before and this cruise offered us just what we wanted. The crew was really friendly and most of them always acknowledged us and many of them entered into a conversation. The cabin was always cleaned well, but it could do with a little updating, some of the furnishings need replacing. The guest entertainers in the theatre were ok however, the the ships dancers and singers put on very good shows. Some of the entertainment singers or bands around the ship were very good especially a young group, Jeam Beam and two girl violinists. The daily activities could have been better, again not a lot to choose from unlike P&O cruises.The Oceanview Cafe served a very good range of food and we ate there in the evening too, the Maitre D’ Zeljko Cickovic always found time to chat and couldn’t do enough to help. We feel the restaurant didn’t offer enough of a choice for the evening meal although the food was good. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We have chosen this cruise and next cruise from Auckland because of their interesting itinerary. Our opinion about embarkation was very good and very quickly. We expected much more from Premium Class ship it is very much in need of ... Read More
We have chosen this cruise and next cruise from Auckland because of their interesting itinerary. Our opinion about embarkation was very good and very quickly. We expected much more from Premium Class ship it is very much in need of renovation and new furniture all over the ship. The food and presentation of the food at Main Dining Room was not even medium class. We tried buffet few times for lunch that was okay. Big surprise no table served lunch every day, only at days at sea. Room Service at the beginning was out of this world, always something missing or wrong items. For example got coffee not cups got yoghurt but not spoons etc. Only few times at the end of second cruise all was good. We both bought a very expensive drink package compared to other cruise ship we have been cruising before.On this ship the most heard saying at bars was sorry Sir not in this bar maybe that drink is available on some other bar. And we asked only the drinks was on a list we got when we bought packages. Two days after Sydney the ship was out of " Tonic" can you understand that, we don´t. Once I ordered GT and I got Gin and Soda , and that was not told me before I asked what you gave me ? Sorry no tonic I put soda instead was the answer, very nice ! Near the bars the live and other music was too loud to speak to other people, especially when you are not using English as a first language. And finally this disembarkation at Perth was horrible we were out of the ship before our bags came. We were waiting in a very very hot area without cooling, next straight out to burning sun to wait for transport and no shade at all. Even most of the staff was friendly and nice we have to say no more Celebrity Cruises unfortunately ! Ps. At Celebrity the biggest problem is their logistic not staff. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We chose this back to back cruise because of the destinations more than the ship. We were a little uncertain what to expect as it seems aimed at US market. The ship itself it lovely. Clean to a very high standard. The staff are very ... Read More
We chose this back to back cruise because of the destinations more than the ship. We were a little uncertain what to expect as it seems aimed at US market. The ship itself it lovely. Clean to a very high standard. The staff are very accommodating and helpful always. The spaces on the ship are weirdly set out. There are few quiet indoor areas! The library is over looking the Atrium and Open to the ensuing noise. As is the card/game room. The stupidest place for these public areas. The Atrium itself hosts all sorts of inane activities as well as live music. There is a tree suspended in midair for no apparent reason? There are many bars. Some are nice but the drinks are ridiculously expensive. The drinks packages are ridiculously expensive too unless you can down 9-10 alcoholic drinks a day every day ( there are a lot is shore days on this cruise) . We rarely drink during the day and maybe a couple in the evening with dinner or at a show. We were harangued on day 1 to get a package ! It was uncomfortable and we were told we could have 1 package if we wanted whereas we read you MUST have 2 of the same! At $70 a day each $140 x 28 is a lot of dollars!! ( nearly $4000!) our spend was less than $ 700 and we had bottles of wine regularly. The food was very underwhelming. Nothing looked particularly pretty there was a distinct lack of vegetables choice in the restaurant. The buffet desserts were literally CAKE. Red green blue orange cake. Proper puddings as I would describe there were 2 and only served at lunch and tea time. Not in the evening. There was ice cream too. And MELON. Always Melon . Fruit variety was also very lacking. Melon pineapple and apple. Bananas cut up for breakfast. There were lots of choices for breakfast and lunch in the buffet. It was nice enough but nothing wowed me food wise anywhere. Even speciality dining which again we were harassed on a daily basis to book ( we ‘d prebooked anyway for one meal in Asian Fusion restaurant for valentines evening) it was really nothing special and certainly not worth paying extra for. We tried the Tuscan grill and again not impressed. I had to send my steak back as it was so salty I couldn’t eat it. All dining staff however are wonderful. In Epinay we were freedom dining but when we eat there we always tried to be in the same dining area where Chris and Custodio looked after us. Shore excursion were very pricey and not particularly good. Everything seemed rushed. We booked several of our own tours before we came and found them far more fun informative and 5x cheaper! We will never book ship excursions again unless there is no choice. This is a big ship with not too many passengers which we liked. No fighting for sun beds etc. The entertainment in theatre was ok. I have definitely seen a lot better. Some of the acts were poor and some good but never dazzling! Our favourite individual artist was a hoolahoop act! Yes exactly! Whoever edits the daily news sheet can’t spell or use correct grammar.This did make us laugh. The spa was nice . I like saunas and steam but you have to pay for steam and hot beds. Again very expensive $59 per day! I did manage to broker a deal near the end of the holiday as I knew there were a few sea days. Photography! OMG ! We were dumbfounded by photographers on board. Dressing up in costumes and accosting you to have a photo! Why would I have a photo of me with a stranger in a costume ( which generally had little relevance to where we were- a frog? A cheeky sailor in an unconvincing costume! A back drop of The titanic staircase?? Why? Maybe it’s just us but we found this flabbergasting tbh. If it were aimed at children I could understand. I am sure on a Disney ship this would be acceptable. The photos themselves were not particularly good quality and yet again Expensive! In conclusion we liked the ship the crew and the destinations. We would not rush back to book celebrity but neither would we not travel with them again if the itinerary was right. There was a lot of outward fakery based on the size of your wallet rather than true quality. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
This was our first cruise on a large ship and the Celebrity Solstice was recommended to us by friends. We were very happy and impressed with the level of service and the overall quality of the food. The ship is lovely with plenty of ... Read More
This was our first cruise on a large ship and the Celebrity Solstice was recommended to us by friends. We were very happy and impressed with the level of service and the overall quality of the food. The ship is lovely with plenty of places to go and be entertained or you can also find several quiet spots too. The nightly shows were all very good. We were particularly impressed with the amazing service from Minguel, Anna, Alex and Raj in the main dining room and also Rhonda our cabin steward was excellent. The quality of food in both the main dining room and the Oceanview Cafe was very good. The only negatives on the cruise were a long delay with disembarking by tender one morning and we would not recommend Murano Restaurant with both the food and service being disappointing. Overall, the cruise was fantastic and we have booked two more cruises with Celebrity. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
First cruise with Celebrity, had previously done 2 Alaskan cruises with HAL. We prefer a more sedate and classy vibe, but the reviews for the analogous HAL cruise ship were poor in comparison. In general I think this cruise is targeted ... Read More
First cruise with Celebrity, had previously done 2 Alaskan cruises with HAL. We prefer a more sedate and classy vibe, but the reviews for the analogous HAL cruise ship were poor in comparison. In general I think this cruise is targeted towards the livelier of the older crowd. Itinerary was fine. I would've preferred fewer cities and more nature. It's a bit of a tradeoff, though, since it'd be difficult to get rental cars. Didn't do any excursions, just went touring independently. Good: * Crew is excellent. They work so hard and really aim to please. My impression is that they're asked to do a lot. * Handicap accessibility and assistance. My dad is in a wheelchair, and we found no issues getting around or sitting anywhere. The crew were very accommodating. In particular, they were very helpful whenever we tendered. It can be tricky helping someone who can't really walk to step on and off a rocking tender boat, but the crew kept my dad safe at all times and just did a really commendable job. * Food overall. We didn't do any specialty dining. We did Oceanview Cafe buffet for breakfast and lunch. Excellent variety. Quality was good but I can see room for improvement there (some items were verging on stale). We usually did Grand Epernay for dinner, where the meals were higher quality than the buffet, as expected. We did Grand Epernay for lunch once, and it was quite good. * Entertainment overall. * Live music overall. * Gym was well-maintained. Equipment was abundant and clean. Not great: * The library. Maybe we've been spoiled by HAL, but on the Solstice it's just an extra space that was made into a library. Furnished decently enough, but it's small, and exposed to the atrium, meaning it's potentially noisy and with no outside views. Not a single ottoman here (or anywhere on the ship, for that matter, I don't think). No happily falling asleep on accident as you lean back in a comfy chair, reading a book, with the ocean in the background. * There are no quiet and unexposed public spaces on the ship with a view. * Two of the smoking areas are indoor-ish, on the 12th floor by the pools. * Music is constantly pumped everywhere, so you feel like you're always in a shopping mall. I found this to be less than classy. There are likely some areas where there is no music, but I remember far more places where music seemed inappropriate. For example, I remember being in the Sky Lounge (a confusing space in itself - more on that later) on the morning of entering Milford Sound, before sunrise, and for some reason Eye of the Tiger and some other song with "sex pot" in the lyrics were playing loudly. Just really conflicted with the mood you would expect so early in the morning, which should be serene, peaceful, to be gently introduced to the splendor of nature. * Or maybe it was just the choice of music. In general the music aesthetic was as if you put "Lisa Loeb - Stay" into Pandora. Why not some classical instead? * There are way too many bars on this ship, especially in the nicer parts of the ship. I wonder how the friends of Bill W feel about that. Anyway, if there's a nice space, there's a high probability that there's a bar in it to take it down a few notches. Examples: Sky Lounge and the Lawn Club. This ties back to confusing spaces. Sky Lounge is a potentially relaxing part of the ship, yet there's a bar and dance floor in it, effectively removing the relaxation potential. * Lots of up-selling. It's easy to decline but I found this to be tacky, and felt bad for the crew who have to do it. * Port information is not given along with the daily infosheet. You have to visit Guest Relations to get the port's infosheet. It's too easy to take a cynical view of why this is done. * Very expensive laundry service, whereas it's a non-issue on HAL. What we ended up doing was dropping off our laundry at Mall Drycleaning in Wellington (day 8 or 9 of cruise - we had another destination after the end of the cruise) on Johnston St, then picking it up at the end of the day before boarding. It was about 30 NZD for straight wash-dry-fold of about 4 large reusable shopping bags' worth of clothes. That's compared to 50 USD for one small bag on the Solstice only about 4 or 5 days into the cruise. Quibbles: * Not enough turnover on the pizza in Oceanview Cafe led to oftentimes surprising staleness. * Guest Relations crew should feel more OK to say when they don't know something but that they'll try to find the answer we're looking for. * I think it would be OK to call "music trivia" what it really is, which is "name that tune". * There were oftentimes typos and grammatical errors in the daily infosheet. There were also a lot of fluff sales-y phrases, where simple, accurate descriptions would be better. * There was some issue with linking expense accounts to each person in our party. Online, I had assigned everyone in my family to my credit card, but I still had to go to Guest Relations to swipe my card to associate it to each person. Read Less
Celebrity Solstice Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 0.0
Dining 4.5 0.0
Entertainment 4.5 0.0
Public Rooms 5.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 5.0 0.0
Family 4.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 5.0 0.0
Service 5.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.5 0.0
Rates 4.0 0.0

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