Sophistication and innovation are the defining characteristics of the Solstice class, which raised the bar for mega-cruise ships several years back. As well as new features that would become signatures of the line, like the Lawn Club on the top deck, the cruise line experimented with some features that would be phased out relatively quickly—and they continue to try new things, especially within both daytime and evening entertainment. Turns out, a significant percentage of cruisers prefer Bravo-branded entertainment to bellyflop competitions, and that contingent is very happy to sail with Celebrity.
There are several classes of suite and balcony cabin, and those offer not only more sumptuous accommodations but also access to better restaurants and relaxation facilities.
Dining is a highlight on Celebrity Solstice: The culinary spectrum includes Italian flair, French gastronomy, and the line's signature "clean cuisine.” This ship also has Silk Harvest, a pan-Asian concept proudly billed as first in fleet. Other high-end alternative restaurants include Murano and the Italian steakhouse Tuscan Grille. Casual for-fee options are great if you’re in a café mindset and want an espresso drink (Café al Bacio) or a crepe (Bistro on Five).
Far fewer dining options are included in the cruise fare—just the main restaurant, which is glossy-pearl splendorous like a giant pearl necklace, and large enough to accommodate traditional seatings as well as flexible dining for dinner. For a casual alternative, it’s either the buffet or pool grill. Some additional dining choices are offered to people in more luxe stateroom classes.
Bars & Lounges
Of the various places to get a libation, this ship’s pride is Cellar Masters, the 24-hour enomatic wine bar concept that was subsequently carried over to other ships in the Solstice class. The ship also has Sunset Bar on the Lawn Club deck. Other concepts are consistent with the fleet: Martini Bar & Crush, Passport Bar off the main foyer, Slush poolside and Ensemble Lounge for pre-dinner cocktails.
Celebrity’s approach to entertainment on Solstice is epitomized in The Hot Glass Show presented at the Lawn Club. It’s attached to a known brand (Corning, in this case), grownup but not stodgy, and a glossy update on classic cruise entertainment. Other offerings by day exist under the CelebrityLife umbrella, and include the Top Chef Quickfire Challenges, Riedel wine tasting, and the Beyond the Podium enrichment series.
Nighttime entertainment is at its ultimate in the Solstice Theater, where the programs switch between typical cruise Broadway-pop soundtracked revues, fantasy circus theater, and an illusions show. Smaller performances take place all around the ship. Aside from fashion-themed Reigning Rocks, the rest of the entertainment is live music in typical cruise-friendly genres: classical, jazz, Motown, soft rock, and DJ-spun fun late at night.
For those who do enjoy late-night hijinks, the venues most likely to serve it are Quasar nightclub, the Solarium, and the main pool deck. And of course, there’s always the casino—small, but acceptable if you want to play a hand of poker or put a few twenties into the slots.
The Lawn Club was first-in-fleet and is definitely a great hangout spot, with its ample relaxation space and convenient snacking/drinking venues. However, this ship also has the Solarium with two pools and shell-shaped lounges perfect for unwinding and dozing off to the sound of a waterfall cascading nearby. This is for-fee if you’re in one of the basic staterooms, included if you’re staying in AquaClass or above. The main pool, divided into three areas, is for families and activities. Four whirlpools are also on the main pool deck.
One of Celebrity’s huge draw is designer shopping from a veritable luxury mall of boutiques located midship.
The spa services are CanyonRanch, with a balance between the wellness-focused and cosmetic enhancement services that famous name brings.
Kids’ clubs and all kid-friendly offerings are mainly offered around the outdoor activity spaces at the front of the ship. The arcade is also in this area.
- There isn’t a lot of space devoted to the children’s clubs, especially for a ship so spacious.
- Only a few restaurants and public spaces are included in the cruise fare. Most dining experiences and ship access require a surcharge or a premium cabin booking.
- It isn’t clear what the dining surcharges are for each experience, and they add up fast.