The Celebrity Solstice was the first of Celebrity Cruise’ Solstice Class ships. She debuted in 2008 with a completely new design, layout, and size compared to her older fleet mates. She was built in Papenburg, Germany by Meyer Werft. The Celebrity Solstice can accommodate up to 2,850 guests, has a GRT of 122,000, has a length of 1,041 feet, and can cruise at a brisk 24 knots. The Celebrity Solstice introduced many first for Celebrity and paved the way for a large expansion for Celebrity with the introduction of 4 more Solstice Class ships.
Featuring 8 different restaurants, the Celebrity Solstice offers guests a wide variety of dining options with tastes from around the world. In the ships main dining room, the Grand Epernay Restaurant, guests can enjoy delectable dishes from around the world, served with Celebrity’s traditional European service.
For a nominal per person fee, guests can enjoy a dinner in one of the Solstice’s three specialty restaurants – Silk Harvest, Tuscan Grille, and Murano. At Silk Harvest, guests can enjoy dishes found from the Orient, featuring traditional and modern dished from Vietnam, Thailand, Japan, China and India. Tuscan Grille combines the experience of a fine steakhouse and a top rated Italian restaurant. At Tuscan Grille, guests can enjoy a delectable variety of choices including fresh pastas, seafood dishes, and fine steaks. Murano provides for perhaps the most indulging dining experience aboard, serving guests many classic and modern dishes from around the world. The Murano experience is made even more special by the outstanding service from her wait staff.
For guests who have booked Aqua Class staterooms, an extra specialty restaurant is offered – Blu. Blu is included in the price of a Aqua Class stateroom. Guests can enjoy a variety of modern and contemporary dishes that are simply less fussy, but still finely prepared and full of flavor.
Throughout the day, guests can enjoy breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks in the ship’s casual restaurant, Oceanview Cafe. The Oceanview Cafe is set up an “island” format, with various style and types of cuisine at each station. This not only improves the traffic flow in the restaurant, but it provides for a more “upscale” buffet experience. Also found in the Oceanview Cafe is the ice cream bar, which offers guests a great choice of unique ice cream flavors and toppings. Seating is available throughout the entire restaurant and in an outdoor aft seating section.
Lower on the promenade, guests can also pick up freshly made ala carte items and gelato from Bistro On Five and Cafe al Bacio & Gelateria. Galleria Tastings offers guests a unique dining experience. Here guests can sample various food and wine pairings while also taking place in art and fashion shows throughout the cruise.
Restaurants and dining experiences aren’t in short supply on the Celebrity Solstice and each provides one with a unique and memorable experience.
Lounges & Bars
Similar to the restaurants onboard the Celebrity Solstice, lounges and bars aren’t in short supply.
The main lounges and bars found aboard are located on the ship’s main promenade deck. Here guests can find Cellar Masters, a cozy Napa valley themed wine bar; the Ensemble Lounge, a classy piano lounge; Michael’s Club, an exclusive and elegant jazz lounge, and the famous Martini Bar. Not only does the Martini Bar have a countertop made of ice, but also features bartenders flipping, tossing, and tumbling drinks across the bar. The bar usually attracts a large crowd at peak times of “bar dancing,” so make sure to find a spot before the show begins.
At the top of the Celebrity Solstice is one of the most “panoramic” lounges found on a cruise ship. The Sky Lounge features oversized floor to ceiling glass windows that provide some of the most stunning panoramas regardless of where you sail.
In addition to the Solstice’s special lounges and bars, the Solstice also features smaller bars throughout the ship.
Onboard the Celebrity Solstice, odds are you won’t endure a dull moment. The Entertainment Court serves as the ship’s main focal point for entertainment and nightly activities. Forward of The Entertainment Court is the Solstice Theater, where guests will experience great production shows, classic musical acts, hilarious comedians, and other great performers. To the starboard side of The Entertainment Court is Celebrity Central. Outfitted with theater style seating, Celebrity Central serves as the ship’s intimate movie theater and secondary lounge for comedians and other performers. Moving to the port side, guests can find Quasar, the ship’s modern sounding, futuristic looking nightclub. Here guests can get down and dance the night away to their favorite songs. To the aft of The Entertainment Court is one of the true staples of cruising – the casino. The Fortunes Casino features 16 gaming tables, hundreds of slot machines, and plenty of other games of chance. If you find yourself making a fortune, keep in mind that the Shops On The Boulevard is located right next to the casino.
Resort Deck & Lawn Club
The Celebrity Solstice’s Resort Deck is home to the Solstice’s three main pools. Two main pools are located outside and are even accompanied by deck fountains. The outside pool also features plenty of shaded and unshaded loungers, plus the rare hammock.
The indoor solarium pool, designated for adults only, allows guests to enjoy a warm, tropical environment for swimming and lounging. The relaxing and tranquil environment of the solarium is made even more relaxing with the sounds of the multi deck waterfall and the shady plants throughout the lounge areas.
Unique to the Solstice Class of ships is the Lawn Club. The Lawn Club, located between the two funnels, features an acre of real grass, spread out underneath two shady canopies. The real grass provides for a very unique cruising experience, allowing guests to lay out on the grass on a towel or even challenge a fellow cruiser to a game of Bocce Ball. Located just off of the Lawn Club is the Hot Glass Studio, where professional glass blowers craft fine pieces of glass art in a theater style setup. The Lawn Club definitely creates for an unparalleled cruise experience.
In short, the Celebrity Solstice is truly an incredible ship. The Celebrity Solstice was designed as a new take on cruising and she definitely meets that idea. From her contemporary colors and designs throughout her interior areas or to her creative, new spaces – she is a ship with a vision of the future for the cruise industry.
I particularly enjoyed her interior design and her use of light colors in many of her public rooms. The ship also features an expansive amount of open space, which allows the ship to feel much larger and roomy than many other ships in the industry. One of my favorite touches was the ceiling height of the promenades, which allowed for windows to be installed high above. This unique window angle allowed sunlight to enter the ship’s promenade through slat shades from the deck above. The natural sunlight and the airiness it created was something truly spectacular.
It seems that this ship as well as her sisters were designed to not only redefine cruising, but to redefine the way we think of cruising. Many people complain about how small and cramped cruise ships feel, but the Celebrity Solstice puts that worry to rest. In addition to her modern design, innovative spaces, wide array of restaurants, and overall enthusiastic vibe, the Celebrity Solstice is truly an extraordinary ship.