Celebrity’s Solstice: Best Of The Big-Ship Class In The Caribbean?

In the video, Celebrity Silhouette’s 1,291-square-foot Penthouse Suites, which feature an enormous living room, wrap-around balcony with whirlpool tub, and palatial marble bathroom.

This winter, Celebrity Cruises has sent not one but all four Solstice-class ships to the Caribbean, offering sailings from Fort Lauderdale, Florida aboard Celebrity Solstice and Celebrity Equinox; Miami aboard Celebrity Eclipse; and departures from Cape Liberty (Bayonne), New Jersey aboard the new Celebrity Silhouette.

Celebrity’s Solstice-class vessels are truly remarkable ships, and we feel they are some of the best ships afloat for cruising any destination. More than 85 percent of all accommodations feature private balconies, but Solstice-class goes so much further.

The big newsmaker though was the addition of The Lawn Club; a half-acre of real, honest-to-God grass growing on the surface of Deck 14. Guests can sit and enjoy a picnic on the grass, or just enjoy the novelty of feeling it tickle their toes as their ship sails toward its next destination.

Have you cruised Celebrity’s Solstice Class? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below or on Avid Cruiser’s Facebook page.

The Solstice-class ships also feature more dedicated deck and pool space than their predecessors. The completely redesigned main pool area offers up a compelling mix of sun and shade, and everywhere you look, glass windows, walls and railings surround this ship, ensuring you never miss a minute of the Caribbean.

Celebrity Silhouette takes things one step further by offering up some enticing new features not found on her predecessors. Instead of the glass blowing demonstrations found on her two sisters, the popular Lawn Club was expanded to include the Lawn Club Grill.

Real grass! The most ballyhooed feature, of course, was the Lawn Club, with real grass. I thought it was a joke when Celebrity first announced the half-acre grassy area on the top deck of the ship, but it simply works as a place to relax, play croquet, putt, picnic, practice bocce or wiggle your toes in the cool blades of real grass.

Located right off the grass itself, the Lawn Club Grill is a dedicated specialty restaurant serving up barbecued pizza, grilled steak, garden fresh vegetables and more, all accompanied by a refreshing glass of sangria, beer or wine.

Celebrity Silhouette has other noteworthy changes: The Lawn Club boasts private cabanas known as The Alcoves. On days at sea, these relaxing perches are the perfect antidote to the daily stresses of modern life.

Departing roundtrip from Cape Liberty in Bayonne, New Jersey, Silhouette offers 12-night Southern and Eastern Caribbean voyages that are easily accessible for those living in the Northeast, and to cruisers arriving by air, thanks to the proximity of Newark Liberty International Airport, just a short drive away.

With ports of call like Philipsburg, Saint Maarten; Castries, St. Lucia, St. Croix, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Celebrity’s own slice of paradise at Labadee, it’s tough to imagine a better winter get-away.

The inviting pool area aboard Celebrity's Solstice-class ships. Photo courtesy of Celebrity Cruises

Aboard Celebrity Solstice and Celebrity Equinox, guests can enjoy the convenience of leaving from Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Celebrity Solstice operates a series of alternating weeklong Western and Eastern Caribbean itineraries.  While in the Western Caribbean, guests can look forward to calling on Georgetown, Grand Cayman; Cozumel, Mexico; Roatan, Honduras, and Costa Maya, Mexico. On the Eastern front, Solstice stops in the popular ports of San Juan, Puerto Rico; Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, and Philipsburg, Saint Maarten, complemented by three days at sea to enjoy time at the pool or the ship itself.

Also departing roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, Celebrity Equinox operates a series of 11-night “Ultimate Caribbean” sailings that explore the Western Caribbean, mixing popular ports like Georgetown, Grand Cayman with more off-the-beaten path calls to places like Puerto Limon, Costa Rica and Colon, Panama.

Miami-based cruisers need not feel left out: Celebrity Eclipse offers a variety of weeklong “Eastern Caribbean” departures leaving roundtrip from the “Magic City” that are sure to satisfy that ‘sun-and-sand’ craving!

If you’re planning for next year instead of this year, you may want to see what Celebrity Reflection brings when it debuts in 2012.

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