More energetic and with more extra-fee attractions than its three Solstice-class predecessors, the 122,400-ton, 2,995-passenger Celebrity Silhouette debuted in July 2011 as the fourth of five ships in the now-iconic series, and enjoyed a bow-to-stern refurb in 2020, which saw a number of new features added from the line’s new Edge-class ships.
The Solstice signatures a stable of themed dining venues, a public hub that smells of waffles, a strikingly green and grass-covered deck space, the use of glass and marble throughout are all there. Silhouette also reflects a handful of significant modifications to the blueprint. The most visible are found on the Lawn Club, a square of real grass that tops every Solstice-class ship's stern sun deck area.
On Silhouette, the public park has become something of a gated village green, and the space is much more exclusive and expensive to use than those planted on Solstice, Eclipse and Equinox. Gone is the (free) Corning Glass Show, replaced by the breezy Lawn Club Grill, where participants pay for a combination meat fest and cooking class under open skies.
The Porch, a for-fee casual lunch or dinner option modelled after a private deck in the Hamptons, has also been slotted into space previously free to occupy. But the most controversial additions to Silhouette's Lawn Club are the eight alcoves, private cabana rentals that occupy prime real estate in what was a common sunning area on previous lawns. However, the 2020 addition of a giant screen showing movies and games has given this space a more egalitarian feel.
Further exclusivity extends to what was once the basketball court on Deck 16, which has become an exclusive key-card access only sundeck for suite passengers, called the Retreat Deck; while the popular Michael’s Club has become the Retreat Lounge, also for suite passengers only. Both of these new spaces are lifted from the line’s Edge-class ships. Still, despite these distinctions (or perhaps in spite of them, considering the Lawn Club changes), Silhouette is nothing if not quintessential Solstice Class. It's the most sophisticated experience you'll find on a nearly 3,000-passenger ship.
Celebrity does a commendable job of keeping the pretentiousness quota in check by inserting playful touches, like an ice-topped martini bar that features juggling bartenders, the aforementioned cook-your-own steakhouse and another restaurant, Qsine, where passengers watch a fun animation called “Le Petit Chef”. Solstice-class stalwarts won't miss a beat, and for first-timers, Silhouette will showcase why the series has become one of the most acclaimed in modern cruising.
Daytime: Casual, with T-shirts, workout gear and shorts the norm.
Evening: Celebrity passengers tend to dress up for dinner, typically button-down or dressy collared shirts and slacks for men and dresses or smart-casual pants for women. Evening Chic (twice a cruise) equals sport coat and collared shirt, with smart jeans. Women can wear cocktail dresses, sundresses or designer jeans or nice pants. In the buffet, almost any form of dress is allowed except swimwear, flip-flops, spa robes and bare feet.
Not permitted: T-shirts, tank tops and flip-flops are not allowed in the main dining room at any time; shorts are not allowed at dinner (although this rule isn't always enforced).
The Silhouette Theater is situated on Decks 4 and 5 forward. It's a huge space, with plenty of seating and good sight lines. The shows onboard vary depending on where the ship is based. So, while it's in the Caribbean you'll get U.S. comedians or popular Whitney Houston tribute act, Cheaza; when it is U.K.-based, expect a mix of Britain's Got Talent winners and British comedians. Big production shows performed by the onboard entertainment team include Euphoria, a stunning acrobatic show; and Rock Baby Rock, featuring songs from the 50s and 60s. Production values are high with some great choreography and a knockout set, with two shows performed each night.
Daytime entertainment is wide and varied and listed under the "Celebrity Life" activities section of the Daily Program. Options might include cooking demos, wine and food pairing classes (for a fee), port shopping talks, art auctions, bingo, quizzes, game shows, seminars in the iLounge from resident "Apple geniuses”, bridge and whist drives and talks in the gym on acupuncture.
There is a welcome aboard karaoke and dance party in the Sky Lounge on the first night; the rest of the cruise you'll find plenty of live music around the ship, including in the Ensemble Lounge, the main atrium, the Sunset Bar and on the main Pool Deck. Fortunes Casino (Deck 4) takes up a large chunk of space midship and is where you'll find games such as slots, craps, blackjack, roulette and three-card poker. Feature films are shown most nights in Celebrity Central, a secondary theatre venue located on Deck 4.
Celebrity Silhouette has a great selection of bars, with a distinct atmosphere in each. Although it's not necessarily a late-night party ship, there's certainly plenty of places to imbibe till late. Most of the action kicks off inside from 5.30 p.m. or so till 11 p.m., with outside drinking centred around the Sunset Bar during clement weather.
Passport Bar (Deck 3): A good spot for pre-dinner drinks if you are eating in the main dining room; this bar is also ideal for watching the nightly entertainment in the Grand Foyer. Passport Bar has the longest operating hours with service available from 9 a.m. until late.
Craft Social (Deck 4): This is new for the ship following the 2020 makeover and comes straight from Celebrity Apex, replacing Cellar Masters. Craft Social is Celebrity's version of a sports bar, with a huge number of beers on tap, for-fee food such as wings and sliders, flat-screen TVs showing games and matches and a foosball table. Being a Celebrity ship, the vibe is more refined than that you might find on other lines, and it's a great place to hang out during the day and after dinner.
Martini Bar (Deck 4): The ice-topped Martini Bar is a Solstice-class stalwart. Located in a prime spot overlooking the main atrium, it is the place for a pre-or post-dinner drink. It's also a main meeting point for dinner or the theatre.
Quasar (Deck 4): This futuristic (in a kind of retro-futuristic way -- all pods and booths) is the ship's nightclub, which interestingly was phased out on the next Solstice-class ship due to lack of use. It's used intermittently, often for silent discos, with most people heading to the Sky Lounge for late-night dancing. Entertainment Court Bar (Deck 4): Located in a space directly outside Quasar, this bar was installed in 2020 where there was once just a wall. It's similar to the World Class Bar in that the emphasis is on cocktails.
World Class Bar (Deck 5): Named after the bartender competition of the same name, this spot is sponsored by beverage company Diageo and hosts occasional cocktail-making masterclasses. The mixologists make a mean cocktail from a wide and varied range of tipples. It's in a prime spot on a thoroughfare overlooking the main shopping walk and off the main atrium.
Retreat Lounge (Deck 5): Michael's Club is no more, replaced in 2020 by the Retreat Lounge, a space lifted directly from Celebrity's new class of ship, Edge. It's gone from a gentleman's club vibe to the look and feel of a stylish hotel, with elegant creams, beige and grey furniture and fittings. There is a bar and snacks and cold drinks available throughout the day.
Ensemble Lounge (Deck 5): This is a great gathering place for pre-and post-dinner drinks as it's situated just outside Murano and the Retreat Lounge, and a stone's throw from all the speciality restaurants. It's always dark in here (deliberately), so it retains a sultry air day and night. There is plenty of seating in large, comfy chairs, many by the windows, and there is live music every evening.
Pool Bar (Deck 12): Serves wine, beer and cocktails, as well as soft drinks right by the poolside.
Mast Bar (Deck 14): Overlooking the Pool Deck, this is a popular spot, which serves the same as the bar below, but also food from the grill. Smoking is allowed here.
Sky Observation Lounge (Deck 14): This is a huge area right at the top of the ship, with floor-to-ceiling glass windows all round, a large bar, a small dance floor and an enormous amount of seating. During the day, it's a great place to sit and contemplate the ocean or read a book; at night it gets lively after the show ends (around 10 p.m.), with dancing and game-show type competitions. It's likely why Quasar is never full -- everyone is up here.
Sunset Bar (Deck 15): The most popular outdoor bar is in a great spot at the back of the ship with wonderful views of the wake. It's a small bar, but has seating all around including either side (port side smoking is allowed). The menu looks small (mainly focusing on beer and wine), but the bartenders will whip up a selection of cocktails for you.
Silhouette's main outdoor pool area, located midship, has a shallow family pool, a "Sports Pool" and the "Wet Zone," a rectangular rubber deck space that offers randomly firing water jets. There are four hot tubs dotted about. You'll also find cushioned loungers, including the class' signature two-person poolside beds. You can get drinks at the Pool Bar and a bite to eat (burgers, dogs) at the Mast Grill. The adults-only Solarium is on the same deck forward, and is a quiet and peaceful retreat from the main pool, with a fountain, soothing music and impressive art. It features a pool, two hot tubs, loungers with extra-thick cushions and the AquaSpa Cafe serving up salad, chilled soups and pre-plated dishes of grilled chicken and fish.
The nicest recreational area is the Lawn Club, although space here has been severely curtailed due to the installation of eight Alcoves that cut into the open grass area. You can still sunbathe here or play bocce, but you're overlooked by the fee-paying Alcove dwellers. (Alcove hire is $99 on port days and a $249 on sea days, which includes water, some food and alcohol.) However, the installation of a large-screen T.V. against the funnel has made this space popular in the evenings. There are also two giant chairs, which make for fun photos. Where once the Lawn Club extended either side of the main grass area, this has was turned into two large seating areas either side of the Sunset Bar in the 2020 refurb. Opposite the elevators on the starboard side of the ship on Deck 12 you will find table tennis.
The main pool deck is surrounded by cushioned loungers, as well as the two-person poolside beds that are a signature of all Solstice-class ships.. You can also grab a towel and relax on the Lawn Club's lawn at the other end of the ship. The Retreat is a new suites-only, keycard access sun deck space on Decks 15 and 16 forward, where you'll find plenty of unused sunloungers, two double alcoves, a bar and a hot tub.
In addition to being elegant, Silhouette is effortlessly organized. Deck 3's marble-washed Grand Foyer is the ship's entry point. Passengers will find the guest relations and shore excursions desks there, along with the Passport Bar. Decks 4 and 5 make up the ship's main hub and are the location of Silhouette's entertainment venues, casino, shopping venues, art gallery, dining rooms and most alternative restaurants, as well as numerous bars.
Midship are some 20 boutiques and shops. Running parallel to the casino on Deck 4 are the shops on the Boulevard, showcasing a mix of jewellery, watches, handbags, clothing and duty-free goods. If that's not enough, the Galleria Boutiques, which include the first dedicated Bulgari boutique at sea, are a deck above. You'll also find a small Apple store here with eight computers for use (for a charge, see below); and various Apple and associated products such as JBL speakers.
Internet fees: There are two different packages, one surf and one stream, which vary in price depending on what you want to do. The surf package (which allows you to send emails and read web pages) starts from $27.99/hour; $55/day or for a week starts from $115. You can get a full stream package which allows you to watch Netflix and send large attachments and use social media for $415 for a week.
The ship has two lovely spots for relaxing and grabbing a coffee -- the "Hideaway" lounge on Deck 6, a two-deck venue with a coffee station and a pair of overhanging second-floor seating arrangements that look like dangling wicker cages; and the Library on Deck 10, which features a decent selection of books and oversized chairs. Both are popular during the day. Each venue abuts a towering vertical corridor flanked by glass elevators and flooded with light from above in which a massive potted tree appears suspended in mid-air.
The ship does not feature self-service laundry facilities. A bag will cost you $49.95; or you can get individual items laundered.
Silhouette's spa, run by the famed destination retreat Canyon Ranch, offers a dizzying array of spa treatments, including full body wraps and scrubs, a variety of massages from traditional to special sports massages, and couples' treatments. As on all cruise lines, treatments do not come cheap (and do not forget the obligatory 18 percent service charge), but look out for special offers, such as when the ship is in port. A signature 50-minute massage will cost you $145, while a speciality massage such as hot stone will set you back $215. The spa also offers teeth-whitening services, acupuncture and reflexology. Canyon Ranch operates a hair salon and a barbershop, too; a shampoo starts at $53, while a beard trim is $47. The Persian Garden is the line's thermal suite, which is free to AquaClass passengers; for everyone else, passes cost $25 for one day or $99 a week ($169 on a 14-night cruise). The space includes a mixed sauna and steam room, tropical rain shower and heated relaxation chairs with ocean views, but oddly no spa pool.
The Solstice-class of ships, and Silhouette is no exception, has one of the finest gyms onboard any ship of this size, occupying the whole of the forward section on Deck 12. It's well thought out (in that you do not have to walk through the spa to get there, as on many ships), and is in a prime spot at the top of the ship with floor-to-ceiling windows affording stunning views. The fitness centre features modern equipment, including treadmills, stationary bikes and elliptical trainers, as well as resistance equipment and a solid selection of dumbbells. Classes include yoga, Zumba and boot camp, and a new-to-the-fleet option: TRX suspension training. Fees are reasonable ($11 for 50 minutes) and classes fill up quickly, so if you have your heart set on a particular workout, sign up as soon as you get onboard. In addition, there are a number of free classes including stretching, core strength and dancercise. There is also a separate weights area and a spot for classes such as yoga and Pilates (for a fee). The jogging track (eight laps to the mile) is one deck up from the gym.
We'd venture to say that Celebrity Silhouette's dining is among the best you'll find on any mainstream ship afloat. A bold claim, perhaps, but the attention to detail, the obsession with "a la minute" (cooked to order), the sheer variety and the emphasis on fresh and unusual dishes, puts this ship a league above others -- both its sister ships in the Solstice Class and the wider mainstream cruise sector. And this is not just confined to speciality restaurants -- some of the best meals we had onboard were in Grand Cuvee, the Main Dining Room. There are many places to grab a bite to eat, including the open-all-hours Oceanview Cafe, Grand Cuvee, the Spa Cafe and the Mast Grill. Special dietary needs are well catered for, with the menus marked to denote vegetarian, vegan- and gluten-free items. The line will also prepare halal and kosher meals if you ask before sailing.
Grand Cuvee (Decks 3 and 4): Silhouette's banquet hall is the Grand Cuvee Dining Room, a double-height space that features flying buttresses, a room-filling chandelier resembling an iridescent jellyfish and a shimmering glass and metal wine tower occupied by 2,500 bottles. The lower section is reached by a sweeping staircase and the tables above look out over the sides to the main area below. Credit designer Adam Tihany, the man behind New York City's Per Se, Vegas' Seablue and the cruise ship Seabourn Ovation, with creating one of the most striking main dining rooms afloat.
Breakfast is served on Deck 3 from 7:30 to 9 a.m. Classic dishes like eggs Benedict and made-to-order omelets are served for breakfast, as well as fruit, cereal, yogurt, pastries, toast, bacon and sausages, and a selection of tea and coffee.
Lunch is served on sea days only on Deck 4 from noon to 1:30 p.m. The menu offers soups (including a chilled soup), salads and hot entrees. Passengers can also order items such as burgers and hot dogs from the grill.
For dinner, passengers can opt for early (6 p.m.) or late (8:30 p.m.) set seating on Deck 3; or go with "Celebrity Select Dining," which offers open dining between 6 and 9:30 p.m. on the deck above. Passengers choosing the flex-dining option can pre-reserve space (online up to four days before sail date or while onboard) or walk in at any time during the allotted hours but be warned, you might have to wait (you get a little buzzer), at peak times.
Menus consist of appetizers, soups and salads, entrees, and desserts. Not all breads (including breadsticks and speciality), pastries, desserts and pasta (on the Evening Chic night), are made fresh onboard -- and you can tell. In our view, this is among the best food you're likely to taste in a main dining room at sea. Everything is cooked fresh (or "a la minute"), so there's no food hanging around or pre-prepared and chilled for hours previously. It's also likely to be the most unusual selection of menu items you're to experience on a mainstream cruise ship -- crispy frog legs, salmon tartare or escargots a la bourguignon anyone?
More classics apps might include a (piping hot) French onion soup, chicken liver tartare and various salad variations. For the entrees, there are the "standards" such as roasted leg of lamb and beef tournedos, but for every one of those you'll find a grilled cobia (kind of like swordfish) or seared duck. The lamb was tender, tasty and a generous portion. The seared duck was outstanding, four strips, perfectly cooked with gravy rice and spinach; delicious and light. For the less adventurous, there are the "always available" items: grilled New York striploin, broiled salmon and grilled chicken breast.
All the food is presented with a flourish, rather than dumped on the plate, with literal swirls and spirals on your plate. Service is exemplary -- knowledgeable, friendly and extremely helpful. Menus are marked to show gluten-free, lactose-free and vegetarian dishes. For vegetarians, there are always meat-free options like eggplant napoleon, stuffed portabella mushroom or veggie paella.
Celebrity is known for its wine selection and all the sommeliers and helpful and knowledgeable, guiding and suggesting. Silhouette boasts as many as 50,000 bottles and 300 labels -- a tiny portion of which are on display in the wine tower (the rest are in a cellar in the hold). The good news: If you have a beverage package you will be able to snag a good wine for $9, and get 20 percent off a bottle. (Tip: Ask the sommelier for a wider selection.) The heftiest weighs in at $4,000 for a Screaming Eagle from Napa Valley (the head sommelier rings the head office in Miami when one of these is sold). Passengers can bring their own wine onboard, but there's a $25-per-bottle corkage fee to drink it in the dining room.
Oceanview Cafe (Deck 14): Celebrity's buffet, featuring an excellent range of international cuisine and standards, is one of the best in big-ship cruising. It features various "action stations" positioned along the loop -- pizza, pasta and stir-fry bars, which you can customize to your taste with sauce selections (marinara, Alfredo, garlic/butter) or select meats, spices and veggie mix-ins for the stir-fries. There are also Asian dishes on offer (Chinese, Thai and Indian) and British comfort food (fish 'n' chips, shepherd's pie when the ship is based in the U.K.), as well as sandwiches and a build-a-salad bar.
Breakfast includes a wide variety of cereals, yoghurts, fresh fruit, pastries, toast, bacon (English, Canadian and American!), waffles, scrambled eggs and an omelette station. There is also an Asian section with breakfast dishes such as congee, a type of porridge. Lunch features one changing "Chef's Choice" station (primarily a carving station for ham, leg of lamb, beef, etc.) in addition to tacos, pastas, stir-fry, sandwiches, soups, salads and other speciality stops.
Every night is a theme night, usually reflecting the port of call. Expect an Indian theme night once a cruise when the ship is Southampton-based. It's tough to find a spot to sit near the serving area at peak times, but there are corridors on either side with plenty more seats, leading to a lovely outdoor area. The buffet is open 24 hours for hot drinks and snacks.
Mast Grill (Deck 14): Overlooking the pool, this outlet is great for a quick snack, serving burgers, hot dogs and fries from 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Luminae (Deck 3): Although free, Luminae is open to suite passengers only. It's open for breakfast and dinner every day and lunch on sea days only, and has its own galley. Luminae has a contemporary look, with lots of light, chrome and glass; white and yellow furnishings reflect the meaning of its name (light). It's divided into two separate spaces, which give it an even more intimate feel. Menus change once a cruise and all the dishes are freshly prepared , often with produce sourced from the port visited that day.
The menu is deliberately limited to ensure the selections are always fresh (however, you can always order from the MDR menu if there is nothing you fancy). Breakfast includes cereals, omelettes and pancakes, as well as bacon and eggs and various pastries. Lunch includes a choice of three appetizers, sandwiches and entrees and two desserts. There are just two lunch menus which alternate each sea day.
Dinner features four appetizers, five mains and three desserts. Meals begin with an amuse-bouche followed by the selection of appetizers. These may include a creamy truffle risotto, beef tartar and smoked trout with hearts of palm or Maine Lobster salad, Jerusalem artichoke soup and roasted squab. Mains might be buttered poached lobster, ricotta cavatelli with duck Bolognese and venison ragout or Alaskan halibut, veal loin, cote de boeuf and cauliflower steak with curried yoghurt. Serving sizes are sensible to allow room for delicious desserts such as mascarpone cheesecake, coconut tapioca and chocolate mousse with cherry marshmallows, or chocolate palet or buttermilk panna cotta. Celebrity has a partnership with acclaimed U.S. chef Daniel Boulud, and three of his dishes also feature on the menu every night.
Blu (Deck 5): Although free, Blu is open to AquaClass and suite passengers only. The focus here is on lighter fare (or as Celebrity calls it "clean" cuisine -- i.e., lower carbs and fewer heavy sauces). For breakfast, expect a variety of healthy starters including a yoghurt parfait with granola and blueberry compote, muesli and smoothies. Hot dishes might include French toast or smoked salmon and asparagus frittata. In the evening, the focus shifts to Mediterranean cuisine and lighter fare (think ahi tuna, grilled chicken without heavy sauces), than you might find elsewhere. A quick scan of the menu reveals that the majority of the dishes are variations on those you will find in the MDR that evening, the difference however is the presentation and the service is calmer and more refined. Blu is really a place for passengers to get away from the crowds in the MDR. Open for breakfast 7:30 to 9 a.m. and dinner from 6 to 9:30 p.m.
AquaSpa Cafe (Deck 12): This is a great spot to grab breakfast if you want somewhere away from the Oceanview Cafe and are happy with a smaller selection of items. The emphasis is on healthier options, so don't expect bacon or sausages. Instead, you'll find interesting wraps such as turkey or bruschetta with eggs; a small selection of cereals, fruits and multigrain bread and tea and coffee. You can also order fresh-pressed juices ($5) or a selection of smoothies ($6). It also serves a light lunch including salad, chilled soups and pre-plated dishes of grilled chicken and fish.
Room Service: Room service is available 24 hours a day with a choice of sandwiches, pizzas, salads and desserts. A free breakfast is served from 6 to 9:30 a.m. and includes fruit, pastries, toast, cereals, scrambled eggs and bacon, sausage, potatoes and hash browns as well as tea, coffee and juices. There is a charge for additional breakfast items such as omelettes, steaks or smoothies. ## Fee Dining Specialty dining onboard Silhouette is also outstanding, ranging from high-end fancy French food, to excellent Italian fare to a sushi and noodles restaurant to a DIY grill restaurant. Each one is a pretty good value (starting at $35 per person), and worth a splurge one night on a weeklong cruise. All get booked up so make sure you make a reservation.
Qsine (Deck 5); $55: There was a time when Qsine seemed the most crazy and innovative restaurant at sea -- iPad menus! Upside-down lampshades! Sushi lollipops! And to be fair, when this restaurant first appeared on Celebrity Solstice, it really was groundbreaking. However, Qsine in its original form is no more to be replaced by an animated dinner called "Le Petit Chef", which debuted on Celebrity Edge.
The premise is simple and fun – four little chefs – one from Italy, one from France, one from Spain and one from Japan – "compete" to produce your favourite dish. It works like this: you all sit at the same time (there are two seatings; 5:45 p.m. and 8:15 p.m.), the lights dim and the show begins on your plate and your table, with vivid colours and a soundtrack. It's incredibly detailed, with the chefs rolling pasta, chasing after pigs and chopping up ingredients, climbing up on your plate and being squashed by food.
There are two shows per cruise – one is just Le Petit Chef; the other is "…and friends". And there are two menus, one of which corresponds to the animation, the other for those with food allergies etc. We felt it would be great fun for kids as there are so many clever details and so much colour. As for the food, it's O.K., not the greatest we have tasted, but you're paying for the animation, which would cost you three times more in Vegas. Of the dishes, we felt the ravioli (cooked by the Italian chef) was the standout; with the steak cooked by the French chef fine, but not as good as anything you'd get in Tuscan Grille. The match-flavoured dessert is an acquired taste.
Tuscan Grille (Deck 5); $45: This is a northern Italian steakhouse set in a lovely setting right at the back of the ship with gorgeous wake views (sunset here, with its floor-to-ceiling windows, is hard to beat). You enter through a "wine cave"-like archway past a table groaning with fresh produce. The grilled meats (including the best steaks onboard) and seafood can't be beat, and pasta-lovers have plenty of options too, with ravioli, lasagne, spaghetti Bolognese and lobster linguine Alfredo all on the menu. Other signature touches are an antipasti bar and Caesar salad prepared tableside. There is also the opportunity to pay extra for upcharge items (steaks) like $15 for a bone-in New York strip.
Murano (Deck 5); $50: Murano is Silhouette's high-end French restaurant, featuring traditional French dishes such as foie gras, creamy bisques and a cheese course. The main event is a six-course tasting menu, featuring an appetizer, soup, salad, fish course, sorbet, meat course and dessert; all of the dishes, except the sorbet, come from the a la carte menu and can be ordered individually for no extra charge (except the caviar) if you don't want the tasting menu. There are two choices for each course on the tasting menu, and there's an option of a wine paired with each (which raises the surcharge to $89). If you like this style of cooking then this is some of the best you'll find at sea; if you don't, we suggest you spend your money next door at Tuscan Grille.
Sushi on 5 (Deck 5); a la carte: Sushi on 5 replaced Bistro on 5, which served crepes, in mid-2016\. It's a welcome addition: The very reasonably priced a la carte menu offers sushi, sashimi, rolls, miso soup and noodle dishes at lunch and in the evening. It's just off a main thoroughfare and the main atrium, but never gets noisy or feels too crowded. The decor is subtle tones of red and black, with Asian touches like latticed dividers. It seats 50 people, in tables of two or four, with a sushi counter at one end. The menu offers hot and cold dishes, at reasonable prices: a bowl of miso will set you back just $3 and edamame $4\. Individual nigiri (salmon, shrimp, eel) is $4 and sashimi, which comes with a choice of four is priced at $8\. Hot dishes include bowls of steaming noodles ($9 to $13) with shrimp tempura and ramen dishes with lobster or pork. It's worth noting that portions are generous. Expect to pay around $50 for two without wine.
Cafe al Bacio (Deck 5); a la carte: This speciality coffee shop offers lattes and cappuccinos for $4.50 and gelateria at a couple of dollars a scoop; it also serves up freshly baked cakes and cookies free of charge. Certainly one of the best located spots on the ship, it has lovely views over the atrium and out to the Promenade Deck.
The Porch (Deck 15); $35: To describe this restaurant at the side of the Lawn Club Grill as "modelled on a deck in the Hamptons", as Celebrity Cruises does, is pushing it somewhat. Yes, there are lovely views to the sea and across the lawn (though these are partially blocked by the alcoves), and the tables and chairs are elegant, but the space and the food just does not live up to it. It's a raw bar and seafood venue, with a few wraps, and food-wise, it's hit and miss: gambas al pil pil (prawns in garlic), came in an almost sweet tomato sauce, rather than sizzling oil and chili; the hibachi ceviche was tasteless and the branzino (sea bass), was just that: one tiny fillet, no sides. However, the lobster bisque was delicious and the seafood platter is outstanding. The meal was redeemed by the desserts: a vanilla cheesecake served in a glass, which was delicious. Both lunch and dinner are served.
The Lawn Club Grill (Deck 15); ($45): Located where the Corning Glass Show is on older Solstice Class ships, its aspect looking out across the expanse of lawn is hard to beat. It's got a limited dinner menu -- flatbreads to start, cuts of meat (mainly steak, but also lamb and chicken skewers), fish and a salad bar. That's it, but the twist is you can -- if you choose -- cook it yourself (which obviously removes any potential complaints about the cooking). Under the guidance of a very patient chef you first make your flatbread (basically a thin pizza) before choosing your topping. For the mains, you season your meat or fish before throwing it on the grill. All this in front of a curious audience. We loved it, and there's no obligation to DIY.
Silhouette has 1,449 cabins in 12 main categories, ranging from comfortably sized insides to the two 1,291-square-foot Penthouse Suites. Solstice-class cabins are around 15 percent larger than the rest of the Celebrity fleet, with correspondingly larger balconies. Of the 1,279 cabins with ocean views (including suites), 1,205 have balconies -- 85 percent of all cabins -- a huge amount for a large ship.
Standard insides, balconies and ocean views feature gently undulating light-brown walls; two twin beds that can be made into a queen and two bedside tables. Note the beds are high, with plenty of space for suitcase storage (the life vests are also under the beds); expect hotel-style white bedding with red and cream trim; a desk and chair; a safe; a mini-bar; and framed pieces of modern art for some colour.
Most cabins also include a sofa bed. Wardrobes are filled with wooden hangers, but oddly have no drawers inside -- for those, check the desk. You'll also find two deep cubbies above the bed. Flat-screen televisions are not interactive -- you can't make restaurant and shore excursion reservations, but you can check onboard accounts and watch movies (for a fee). Channels include a range of news, sports and cruise line advertising. Each cabin has a hairdryer -- but you may want to bring your own if you require something with a little pep.
Shower-only bathrooms are standard across cabins. They have a modern look and feel, in wood and chrome. The shower stalls feature curved sliding doors, a footrest for shaving and a fixed shower. A nice touch: Cabins feature Gilchrist & Soames products, rather than a generic fixed dispenser. There are all sorts of drawers and shelves dotted around for storage.
Interior: There are 144 inside cabins, which come in at a slightly larger-than-industry-standard of 183 to 200 square feet. There are two twins that can be converted to a queen bed plus a sofa bed, a small coffee table, cupboard, wardrobe and a fixed desk with a chair. There are also three new (in 2020) single inside cabins, on Decks 7, 8 and 9, which feature modern fixtures and fittings including USB ports by the fixed desk, a flat-screen TV and modern bathrooms with large basins and a glass shower door.
Ocean View: There are just 72 outside cabins, which have the same furniture as inside cabins with the bed beside the window; they also include a large oblong-shaped picture window. They are a little smaller than the inside cabins at 177 square feet.
Balcony: At 194 square feet, these cabins are roughly the same size as insides but come with a 54-square-foot balcony with a table and two chairs. The bed is beside the glass doors. Sunset Veranda cabins at the aft of the ship are 2 square feet smaller but have stunning views at the back, and so are highly prized. Note that within the balcony category there are other category cabins, including Concierge Class and AquaClass, both of which are exactly the same shape and size as a balcony cabin, but which come with different decor and inclusions.
Concierge Class: The 283 Concierge Class cabins are similar to regular balcony cabins, but they're distinguished by location -- higher up, aft-facing, etc. -- and also have a different decor and design: carpeted in red and gold, with blond teak and walnut panelling and furniture. The couch and chairs are upholstered in cream leather, and the desk is topped with beige marble. Between the two spaces is a teak-topped pedestal table. Passengers staying in these cabins enjoy perks like priority check-in and debarkation, welcome bubbly, fresh fruit and flowers, Frette bathrobes, a pillow menu, massaging showerhead, an expanded room service breakfast menu and an exclusive pre-departure lounge with free coffee and juices.
AquaClass: The 130 AquaClass cabins (also the same size as standard balconies, with the same configuration) give passengers access to the AquaSpa relaxation room, the Persian Garden (spa suite) and Blu restaurant. Special perks include fluffier bathrobes and towels, as well as AquaSpa amenity kits, which includes foot spray, lip balm and relaxation mist. During each cruise, you also get fresh iced tea, canapes on a daily basis, as well as an upgraded (and healthier) room service menu. As well as the aforementioned products, the bathroom shower has a five-head Hansgrohe setup. Note that AquaClass cabins do not have sofa beds as they are only for two passengers.
Suite: Silhouette has four categories of suites, which get a variety of perks including access to the suites-only dining room, Luminae, the Retreat Lounge and the Retreat Deck. All suite passengers also have the following perks: a butler, expanded room service breakfast menu, main and speciality restaurant seating preferences, evening hors d'oeuvres, complimentary in-suite espressos and cappuccinos, welcome bottle of sparkling wine and fresh flowers, priority access embarkation and disembarkation, among other perks. Suite passengers also enjoy fluffier robes and bathroom amenities by Co Bigelow.
Sky Suites: The 44 entry-level Sky Suites are each 300 square feet with a 79-square-foot balcony. In addition to the added space inside and out, the Sky Suites feature larger TVs, mini-fridges and shower-tub combos. These enjoyed a significant refurb in 2020, and all have new carpets, curtains, furniture, large flat-screen TVs and a bedside lamp with USB ports.
Celebrity Suites: Twelve 394-square-foot Celebrity Suites (105-square-foot balconies) add yet more space, a distinct separation between bedroom and living room, and two TVs -- one in the sleeping quarters and a second 52-inch display that's part of a surround-sound entertainment setup in the living area. The living room area is expansive, with an L-shaped sofa, coffee table and chair, sideboard, aforementioned TV and double doors leading out to the balcony. The bathroom is the same as in a Sky Suite.
Royal Suites: There are eight 590-square-foot Royal Suites with 158-square-foot balconies -- complete with hot tub. They have a master bedroom with a large bathroom that has a separate shower and tub; a second half-bath; and a large living room with an L-shaped sofa, coffee table, a wet bar and a dining area that can seat six.
Penthouse Suites: There are just two Penthouse Suites, which have separate living and dining rooms, a baby grand piano, wet bars, a sofa bed, two 52-inch LCD TVs (with surround sound in each living room), two bedrooms with whirlpool tubs, shower stalls with dual shower heads, twin washbasins -- and even 26-inch LCD TVs. Each balcony has a second whirlpool and lounge seating. Families should note there are 121 connecting cabins and four families.
Family Ocean View Staterooms: These rooms measure 575 square feet with one master bedroom, plus a second bedroom (with a single twin bed) and sitting area with a sofa (convertible to trundle bed). They can sleep five, but have no balcony. Celebrity Silhouette has 30 wheelchair-accessible cabins, from inside to Sky Suite. Eighty percent (24) have outside views; of these 20 have balconies. All accessible staterooms have additional square footage over their non-accessible equivalents and have 32-inch-wide automatic doors. Most feature a 5-foot turning radius. Bathrooms have roll-in showers, ramped thresholds and lowered fixtures. A service animal relief box is available on request.