Celebrity Silhouette
February 22nd - March 5th, 2012
AquaClass Cruising, 12 Nights... NJ to the Caribbean and back!
The stately and beautiful, Celebrity Silhouette, at Antigua!

         Celebrity Silhouette is the latest in Celebrity Cruise Line's Solstice class of 122,400 ton luxury cruise ships.  There are now four ships in the Solstice class: Celebrity Solstice, Celebrity Equinox, Celebrity Eclipse and Celebrity Silhouette.  (This year will see the introduction of Celebrity Reflection, the final in the series, and a ship that will have some enhancements over the previous sisters.)  With Silhouette, Celebrity has made some significant changes in the previous Solstice class design.  Having only sailed on her older sister, the Celebrity Solstice, I only have that ship to use as a comparison.  In many ways, the Silhouette outshines her older sister!  Don't get me wrong... we loved Solstice.  But she had feeling of a "work-in-progress" in some respects.  Silhouette, on the other hand, is a much more polished product with only a few tiny bumps that need to be addressed.  Having said that, I would not hesitate to whole-heartedly recommend this gorgeous ship to anyone.  We would cruise on her again in a heartbeat.  We signed up for this cruise during our last cruise aboard Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas.  (It's always a good idea to sign up for a future cruise while aboard a cruise as you can be eligible for onboard credits and reduced deposits when you do this!  If you don't have an immediate cruise in mind, you can make an "open booking" to still take advantage of the savings and benefits.)  Ironically, Serenade was in port right next to us at our St. Martin stop!

        This cruise would be one of many firsts for us!  It was our longest cruise yet at 12 nights (how can we ever go back to a 7 night cruise?).  It was the first in an AquaClass cabin. (More on this below)  It was the first eating at Blu, a restaurant designed exclusively for those booking in an AquaClass cabin.  (how can we ever eat in a ship's main dining room again, after Blu?)  It was our first exposure to the ship's Persian Gardens (free with AquaClass).  It was the first time we took a helicopter ride from one island to another to see the recent ruins caused by a volcano! (Antigua to Montserrat)  It was our first sailing from NJ to the Caribbean and back!  This was a fantastic cruise!

        The ship is gorgeous, the crew the best, and the itinerary was top notch.  Our weather was perfect for every day except the final sea day, which was dreary and rainy.  Even our sail out of NJ on a late February afternoon was perfect weather for February with sunny skies and mild (for February) temps.  (Winter 2012 was probably the mildest in ages... what a perfect time for Silhouette to "winter" here!)  We really couldn't ask for anything else from this cruise.  Celebrity Silhouette far surpassed our expectations on just about every front.

        Presenting Silhouette: Our first encounter with a Solstice-class ship was the Celebrity Solstice herself back in 2009. As I stated in that review, we fell in love with that ship.  We expected déjà vu to occur when stepping onto the Silhouette, and since both are of the same class, there were those instances where we were saying, "I remember this...".  But Silhouette is just a much more polished and prettier ship than Solstice.  That's not just because of her being a new ship... Solstice was still very new when we sailed on her.  There's just a sense that Celebrity has found the right "groove" with this ship.  Places that were plain or dull have been made much more exciting than they were on Solstice.  The Lawn Club no longer sports the Corning Glass Show, but now has a new outdoor specialty restaurant and some fun furniture.  That's a step in the right direction... the glass show was nice to see once, but after that, there was little reason to go back to the Lawn Club on Solstice.  On Silhouette, The Lawn Club also has some rentable Alcoves... another step in the right direction, but there's still some tweaking needed here (which I'll address further along in this review).  Silhouette also ejected the Silk Harvest (which we did not try on Solstice) specialty restaurant and put Qsine in it's place.  We found this restaurant to be disappointing... but more on that below.  The ship has amazing venues and incredible furnishings throughout.  She has the best that Solstice had to offer, plus a whole lot more!

Celebrity Silhouette... 122,000 tons of beautiful ship!

        The Embarkation: There's no denying it: Cape Liberty is just a terrible place to start a cruise.  Upon arrival, there's no concept of traffic control and the entire parking lot-drop off zone is a noisy, illogically laid out, mess.  Once you get past this and get into the building to be security scanned and checked in though, it's a very smooth process getting aboard the ship.  We used a new company called Premiere Parking and parked off site for a much cheaper rate then that charged at Cape Liberty.  This worked well getting us to the ship (they provide a free shuttle... but only one, which is ludicrous when moving so many people to and fro!) but it was a disaster on debarkation... more on this at the end of the review.  Until Premiere Parking improves it's act, I cannot recommend them.  We have had better luck and less hassles by just paying the high fees ($20/day) to park at the port; we generally skip the luggage drop off since it's so poorly planned out and just park and wheel the luggage over to the porters.  Much less aggravation.  This is what we will do with any future cruises from Cape Liberty. (aptly named... you can't wait to be free of this port!)

Staircase between decks...
Views between decks... 

        After getting your card (like most cruises, it's your door key, your charge card, your ID and boarding pass... basically your life aboard) you are sent to one of two waiting areas to get onto buses that shuttle you from the terminal building to the ship.  It's about a 2 minute ride.  The buses drop you off right next to a gangway with a slight incline to a hatch on deck 2.  We would have been on the ship within 15 minutes, but Diane had a pretty bad head cold, and the check in folks thought the ship's medical staff should check her out before allowing her to board (the Silhouette had a small noro-virus break out two cruises before ours so they were being a bit cautious), so this did delay us by about 30 minutes.  Diane was eventually cleared health wise, and we were aboard with welcome champagne in hand in no-time.  As is typical, everyone is invited to the buffet, the Ocean View Cafe (we kept calling it "the Windjammer" due to our Royal Caribbean experiences), while cabins are prepared.  The buffets are always packed on those embarkation days... some said they go to the Bistro on Five (it has a $5 cover charge per person) to avoid this, but we are creatures of habit so we ended up at the buffet.  As was true on Solstice, the food at the Ocean View Cafe was outstanding!

        As you leave Cape Liberty, be sure to look for the 9/11 memorial given to us by the Russian people.  It's about the only thing worth seeing (besides a cruise ship) at Cape Liberty!  (One note: outside and adjacent to the port is a nice little rejuvenated shopping center and fast food area.)

        A highlight of departing Cape Liberty is passing underneath the Verrazano Narrows Bridge!  Always be on the top most deck of whatever ship you are on for this passage; it's usually about a half hour out from Cape Liberty.  During the departure from Cape Liberty, we met up with fellow Cruise Critic Roll Call members at the Sky Lounge... great people!  The Sky Lounge is a superb location for the beginning of a Solstice-class ship voyage. 

911 Memorial... a gift to America from Russia
The Verrazano Bridge and NYC fall behind us as we head out to sea! (Looking aft over the Solarium)
People in silhouette... On Silhouette! (Heading out to sea)

        The Ship: Like the others in the Solstice class, the ship has two major elevator shafts: one forward, and the other, more or less midship.  There are no elevators or steps aft, so if you have an aft cabin, be prepared to do some walking.  Theaters are located forward, the bulk of restaurants (Grand Cuvee, Blu, Tuscan Grill, Murano, Qsine,  Lawn Club Grill, The Porch) are directly aft at different levels.  Bars are scattered about ship... the notable ones are The Martini Bar, the Sunset Bar, the Casino Bar and the Molecular Bar and the Ensemble Bar.  There is a nightclub called "Quasar" and an excellent venue called the Sky Lounge forward and topside with sweeping views of the sea and amazing furniture.  Restrooms aboard are beautiful!  The sinks are all glass in a water fall shape, and feature touchless water faucets.  There are small rolled up cloth towelettes next to each sink to use to dry your hands.  All restroom doors feature a button used to open them that is wheel chair friendly.  Seats throughout the ship are of just about any kind imaginable.  Some are straight out of Alice in Wonderland, while others are very conservative.  There are lounging couches on decks and beds at pool side (as we first saw on Solstice).  The colors in the ship are reds and browns... warm colors that are soothing to the eye.

Celebrity Silhouette... our deck!

        The AquaClass Cabin Experience:  Our cabin, 1550, is one of the cabins designated as AquaClass.  We didn't do AquaClass on Solstice, but having done this on Silhouette, we'll always try to be in AquaClass whenever this class is available.  (All Solstice class ships have these and now the older Millenium class ships are being upgraded to have them as well!)  What's the difference between an AquaClass and any of the other balcony cabins on Silhouette?  From a size perspective, it's virtually identical.  Some amenities are even shared with the Concierge Class balcony cabins (which are the next step down from AquaClass).  But the AquaClass improves on the others in many very important ways.  First up, location.  All of the AquaClass are located on deck 11, with the vast majority near the Aqua Spa facilities.  AquaClass guests aren't assigned a table at the Grand Cuvee main dining room.  Instead, you are given open seating at the best specialty restaurant on the ship... a place called Blu.  Blu has everything from exotic to ordinary meals, but all prepared freshly and with healthier ingredients.  It's a much more serene and intimate environment than the hustle bustle of the Grand Cuvee main dining room.  Blu alone, is worth the additional charge for an AquaClass cabin.


Aqua Class Cabin 1550

        AquaClass cabin passengers also have unlimited use of the Relaxation room, and more importantly, the Persian Gardens (available to most other guests for a fee).  The Persian Gardens area has 9 heated tile beds with a sweeping view of the ocean.  There are also two steam rooms in the Persian Gardens (one an aroma therapy steam room) and also two massive showers.  We used the Persian Gardens for at least 40 minutes every day!  In the cabin itself, you have aroma oils on the desk, fresh flowers, daily canape deliveries, a much nicer couch (not that white leather love seat on Solstice!), a choice of pillows (although we never saw a "pillow menu", our cabin steward, Cyril, got us wonderful contour foam pillows on request), and different daily teas.  Free bottled water was placed in our room daily as well.  In addition, there are plush (really plush) robes and slippers (with loofah soles!) and mini binoculars and umbrellas in the cabin.  There's also an expanded room service menu.  (Room service was always prompt on Silhouette!) The bathroom features an incredible "shower panel" which consists of a large overhead rain shower head and below that, five angle changeable jets!  Showering is a whole new experience in an Aqua Class cabin's shower!  (yes, two adults can fit in this shower...)  Bathrooms in Solstice class cabins are rather large and very well laid out with plenty of storage.  I especially like the cabinet-based swivel out trash can right next to the toilet.  When you turn out the light in the bathroom, it goes into a perfect night light mode for those overnight visits to the commode. (this was true in our standard cabin on Solstice as well) 

AquaClass bathroom... note the shower jets panel in the shower!  Overhead (out of picture) is a large shower head.

        The cabin features an extra deep safe which is otherwise typical of safes in ship cabins.  (I was able to fit my large 25 x 10 astronomy binoculars, Diane's iPad, and all the other stuff you usually put in a room safe with room to spare!)  There's also a stocked (items for fee, of course) refrigerator.  The Aqua Class also gives you access to a personal spa concierge if needed.  The cabin also features a beautiful 32" Samsung HD TV with Apple powered menus (I'm a PC guy, but these menus were MUCH faster and snappier than any I've experienced before).  The TV selections were adequate with all the news junky channels and some typical cable/satellite channels.  There were also free and fee based On Demand movies.  The free movies featured some relatively new movies, too.  I watched "Super 8" one night. AquaClass cabins are about as good as it gets without being in a large suite... and the large suites don't get free, guaranteed access to Blu.  So in most respects, the AquaClass is the best cabin class all-around, in our opinion.  There was plenty of space for our two extremely large (Revo brand) 29" suitcases and two 21" carry-on suitcases to be placed underneath the bed.  The closet has more than enough storage as well.  There are also cabinets above the bed.

AquaClass Cabin 1550 (note Welcome Aboard Champagne!)
32" Samsung TV/Media Center, Daily Tea, Bottled Water, Mini Binoculars (in case up top)

The Dining Experiences: All of our dining experiences aboard Celebrity Silhouette were outstanding except for one place, Qsine. (see below for details)  Here are my thoughts on each restaurant that we used:

The Oceanview Cafe: As we discovered on Solstice, the Oceanview Cafe buffet food was superb!  Best buffet on any ship we've sailed on.  They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as snacks and pizza and pasta till 1am.  There's also sushi around 5:30pm each day!  It's really a great place for a quick bite or a full meal.  There's ample seating within and outside aft.  Like all ship buffets, this place can become densely crowded on at sea days, and at peak breakfast and lunch hours.  It's often a good idea for someone in your group to grab a table while the others make up their plates.  (Note to buffet patrons on every cruise ship in the world: when you are done eating PLEASE GET UP and move on so that your fellow guests can find a spot to eat.  Also, don't sit at a table for six if you are eating solo... and if you do, at least invite others to join you.)  There was always someone available to clean up a table, or get you a soft drink or bar drink.  At one point, an Ocean View Cafe manager actually helped my father by volunteering to carry his tray to a table for him!  Excellent service in the ship's buffet.

The Ocean View Cafe (the Silhouette's Buffet) which serves all sorts of things from about 6am till 1am!

Blu: A specialty restaurant with open seating exclusively for AquaClass guests (Suite guests can eat here when space is available.  I would recommend coming here after 8:30pm if you are a suite guest).  This restaurant's bulk seating is set up for intimate dining for two as AquaClass cabins only allow two people to a room.  But there are also six-top (seats up to 6 guests) tables for larger groups, and Blu's managers (Slobodan is fantastic!) will squeeze two 2 person tables together to make a four-top in a pinch.  Open seating is the norm after the first night.  We loved this!  When dining on other cruise ships, we always take the 8:30pm traditional dinner seating as the 6pm seating is too early for us.  But the 8:30pm is always a tad too late, too.  So, with open seating, we always arrived around 8pm at Blu, which was a fantastic time to have dinner on a cruise.  We never waited more then five minutes to be seated.  Food at Blu is prepared using "healthful" ingredients.  Now note: we are by no means, health nuts when it comes to dieting.  I have been known to polish off an entire box of Girl Scout cookies in one sitting on many an occasion.  But we found all of the meals at Blu to be absolutely filling, and delicious.  In fact, I doubt I'd ever have known there was a healthful preparation involved if I hadn't been informed up front.  Lamb shank, strip steaks, chicken, filet mignon... all the standards you expect in the main dining room are here, but just better tasting and masterfully presented.  In addition, some not so typical choices can be found at Blu: quail and pheasant, for instance, are on the menu.  I had both for the first time (delicious).  There are also vegetarian selections.  There are soups (warm or cold) and salads and of course, excellent desserts.  The caramel flavored ice cream was awesome!  All of the meals here are artistically presented as well: the lump crab in the mini-martini glass was so cool!   Blu serves dinner and breakfast, but not lunch.  Breakfast (again, only for AquaClass guests) is prepared to order and is so much better than breakfast anywhere else on the ship!  Generally speaking, I am not a fan of breakfast foods, but I loved breakfasts at Blu!  If you are lucky enough to eat here, ask for a waitress from Turkey named, Beliz.  She is absolutely charming and so funny.  We asked for her and got her every night!  (She said she will be aboard Silhouette till June '12)

Blu's Entrance...
Diane and Kim and the iconic White Rose wall at Blu!
French toast ala Blu!  Best breakfast aboard!
Lump Crab Martini appetizer... I am about to devour it!
Beliz at Blu... best waitress aboard! (Although we hear that they're all great at Blu... we just kept asking for Beliz!)

The Grand Cuvee Dining Room: Because we were in an AquaClass cabin, we weren't assigned a dinner table here.  And eating at the serene and fantastic Blu, we never thought of even trying the Grand Cuvee (which I think we could have done in open seating mode, but I'm not sure) for dinner.  So, we only ate two meals here: one lunch and one sumptuous major brunch!   The lunch we had here was delicious and served promptly at the height of a busy sea day.  The Grand Cuvee is a beautiful room, and pretty much a carbon copy of the Grand Epernay on the Solstice.  The only real odd thing here were the extremely heavy, but very comfortable chairs at each table.  It was a real struggle to move them about.  The Brunch in the Grand Cuvee was served once on one of the final at sea days.  Don't miss this!  It harkens back to the days of the tremendous midnight buffets... but at the far more sensible brunch-time, when people actually have an appetite.  Take your camera!  The Brunch is similar to the one on Solstice back in '09, but much bigger in proportion!  We loved it.  Again, don't miss this!

Grand Cuvee (Main Dining Room) on brunch day!
Grab a bunch of desserts... or dunk your head in the chocolate fountain at right... or both!  (Grand Cuvee brunch)
Sushi at the Grand Cuvee brunch!!!  I love that sushi is popping up everywhere... now that I am obsessed with it!

Bistro on Five: (fee based) This is the excellent little crepe place I described in my Solstice review a few years back.  For a mere five dollars, you can have any (and as many) crepes as you want to try.  There are also wonderful desserts.  I love this place... my only regret was that even with 12 cruise days, we only got here once! 

Cafe Al Baccio and Gelateria are on the opposite side of the ship from Bistro on Five.  Once again, I managed to spend an entire cruise without sampling the delicious looking snacks at Cafe Al Baccio!  But, we did get some incredible gelatos at the Gelateria (fee based)... in fact, I had two throughout the cruise!  Try the rum raisin and the banana!

Midship, Gelataria for the best gelato! (minor fee)

Tuscan Grill: (fee based) Hands down, the best specialty restaurant on Silhouette after Blu.  Diane and I had a date night (just the two of us) dinner here.  This is an Italian steak house in the finest tradition!  The onion soup and the filet mignon are not to be missed!  Our waitress, Nadia, was fantastic!  This restaurant has commanding views of the ocean aft and the ship's engine's wake!  Only dinner is served here, but lunch is available at least once or twice per cruise.  I'm sad that we missed lunch here, too.  The receding ocean views here must be breath-taking by day!  Our waitress, Beliz from Blu (right next to Tuscan Grill), actually ran over to say "Hi" during dinner and she made her own recommendations on the menu (and she delivered a funny message from Dad and Kim and Steve!).  Our next cruise on a Solstice-class ship will definitely have two meals scheduled here!

The magnificent Tuscan Grill entrance!
Sumptuous Filet Mignon at Tuscan Grill!

Qsine: (fee based) This restaurant, sad to say, was a major disappointment.  It was one I was really looking forward to doing, especially after all the positive buzz I'd read on it.  It's really cool inside with lamps hanging upside down from the ceiling and enormous white chairs, and menus on iPads.  The waiters in here are supposedly trained to make everything a "fun" presentation.  Unfortunately, none of it works the way it should.  The iPads, for instance, are underutilized.  They don't present you with a view of what you are ordering (which would have been a BIG help here) nor any real info about what you are ordering.  What each person does is makes selections (without any help from the staff) on an iPad of what they think they want (from poorly designed icons and dopey cartoons) and then the waiter collects each iPad and writes down what each person wants (so really, what's the point of the iPads?) and tries to turn it into an eating free-for-all.  This fell flat as some at our table had no interest in what I ordered and others just the opposite.  In fact, the waiter's best advice was to try everything until we were full.  This turned out to be terrible advice as we filled up on endless appetizers (some excellent, some awful- the sushi lollipops were excellent but the Mediterranean appetizers were bland) and were too full for the main course entrees.  The waiters seemed vexed and their over-the-top "ta-das" when presenting each course felt forced and fake.  What's sad is that with a little tweaking, this place could be exactly what it should be.  It could be easily transformed into the "Don't Miss It" specialty restaurant on board!  Instead it was a bust.  Until Qsine changes it's operational model, I can't recommend it.  If you feel you MUST eat here, then choose one appetizer and one or two entrees for yourself and have your waiter serve you in the traditional manner. (you can always share with someone else at your table if you want to.)  The build your own cup cake dessert was fun.  By the way, the music in here is pure torture.  Elevator music would be a better solution!

Qsine- such a cool concept, but a major disappointment in actual execution...

The Porch: (fee based) This pretty little restaurant is tucked near the elevator shaft, just forward of the Lawn Club on the starboard side, topside.  It's protected by wind deflecting glass all around.  It serves delicious paninis and it's location allows for beautiful views of the ocean or port you are visiting.  I'd read negative comments about this place before our cruise (mostly to do with the $5 cover), but we loved it.  I had the Philly panini which was a bit spicy but very good.  I would go back here again.  Places like this and Bistro on Five, with their paltry $5 fees, are refreshing changes from the constant traffic at the Ocean View Cafe or the Grand Cuvee dining rooms.  Give yourself a treat and try these two restaurants at least once.

The Porch ($5pp fee) - Excellent location for lunch!

Mast Grill: As I said on my Solstice review, this is a quickie hamburger, hot dog place that also serves ice cream and other snacks.  It's location is above the pool deck and it's convenient to the Solarium and Main Pool for those that don't feel like going far from their perfect lounger to eat.  It's Silhouette's outside BBQ.

Mast Grill... Silhouette's Poolside (up a level) BBQ!

Aqua Spa Cafe: This little place is actually in the Solarium on the port side of the ship.  They serve healthy light breakfasts (think yogurt, grain buns, etc) and lunches (think salads and fruit and salmon) in a sort of mini buffet arrangement.  There are also a few tables scattered here, but most people walked their choices back to their solarium loungers.  In any case, you are still in the Solarium... not a separate room.  I got a few things here, but I wasn't overly impressed.  What's odd, too, is that one of the staff here sternly asked me to put a shirt on even though my Solarium lounger was only a few steps away.  I don't remember any signs saying that proper attire was needed for this literally pool and hot tub adjacent mini-buffet, and I would have certainly put a shirt on if I'd seen such a sign.  It was the one and only place where I thought a Silhouette staff member was actually rude.  I'm not a "get their name" and report them kind of guy (at least not for something like this), and maybe there was a sign with a dress code hidden behind another guest or a potted plant, so I shrugged at her and walked away with my plate (as I intended to do anyway).  So be forewarned gentlemen: put on a shirt (I wonder if a tank top would do?) before mulling over the slim (lol) pickings at the Aqua Spa Cafe!

The Silhouette Nightclubs and Bars and Casino:  Silhouette's bars and clubs are gorgeous!  There are specialty bars, but they can almost all serve you any kind of drink you would like.  Keep your eyes open for 2 for one drink hours during your cruise.  I don't know if this is a Celebrity constant, but on our cruise it was from 4 to 5pm and 11pm to midnight each day, I think.

The Sunset Bar: Our very favorite bar aboard!  This is located topside directly aft with commanding views of the ocean, the islands and the ship's wake!  This was THE place to be for all island departures.  Get here about an hour before departure from any port to secure a spot in one of the cushioned seats or at the bar.  I love this place.  Our favorite waiter here was Ansel Williams from Jamaica.  I named him "Doctor" on the first day, and he always ran over to us with a "the doctor is in!".

The Sunset Bar... Outstanding!
Comfy Chairs at The Sunset Bar!  "Hey!  Where's Patty and Mac?!" (private family joke...)

Martini Bar:  Just like on Solstice, this one on Silhouette is still the coolest bar aboard.  Literally so as there's an iced surface to keep your drinks cold!  My favorite martinis are usually of the sweet variety... I always love a chocolate martini.  But on Silhouette, my favorite was the Almond Joy martini. (yes, it tastes just like one)  Watching the preparation of multiple martinis here is a show unto itself!

It's not just the martini... it's the prep, too!
Martini Bar anterooms...

Casino Bar: This is a beautiful bar located in the casino but facing the shopping area.  Very nice place to stop after winning or losing money in the Casino!

Beautiful Bar at the Casino

The Quasar disco was state of the art, and in an excellent step up from the Quasar disco on Solstice, it stayed open beyond 1am.  The first night we danced there, the place was hopping with top 40 dance hits.  We were so happy!  But then the DJ decided every subsequent night to mostly play boring salsa music after midnight.  We asked for something else (since his choices literally emptied the club every night) but to no avail.  This is terrible.  Why even have a DJ if he isn't going to take requests?  Again, great club, losing money.

Quasar Dance Floor
Quasar anteroom...  Cool furnishings!

Sky Observation Lounge: Topside, inside and directly forward with amazing sea vistas, the Sky Lounge is another fantastic location.  An enormous venue all the way forward with all sorts of furniture and a dance floor and bar.  It's a great location for parties and events (and used by the ship to the hilt for this)... especially as a private club for Elite cruisers with free drinks and hors devours during certain early evening hours.  (Sort of like an impromptu Concierge Lounge from Royal Caribbean)  We were here often over the 12 days!

Skylounge looking towards the dance floor!
Skylounge, starboard, looking towards the bar
Our own little living room, Skylounge starboard.  Our group sat here for the sail-away party!!!

Michael's Club:  I am not a beer drinker, but this is now a beer and sports bar, and beer lovers would love this bar.  I never went back here over the cruise, but I always intended to... it's a beautiful setting.

Michael's Club... superior to the one on Solstice!

Cellar Masters:  This is the same wine tasting and wine dispensing location as the one found on Solstice.  We brought wine aboard (Celebrity allows two bottles of wine per cabin!  Awesome!) and I planned to compare our wine with some of the selections aboard, but I never got around to it.  Yes, even 12 night cruises can still leave you with too little time to get to every bar!  There are cool wine dispensers that (for a fee) allow you to sample various wines.

Cellar Masters... one of the wine dispensers is at right.

The Molecular Bar: We never did get a drink here, but mainly because when we did have time to stop by, it was closed.  It looks like this place makes peculiar and expensive drinks.  I will have to make a mental note to grab a drink here on my next Solstice-class ship.  (But with the Martini and Sunset Bars always beckoning, that's kind of tough...)  This is a gorgeous location, and a beautiful bar!

The Molecular Bar

The Silhouette Pools and Solarium:  Again, just like on Solstice, the pool area and the adults only Solarium are beautiful, and comfortable with ample towels available.  One very happy note is that Celebrity now keeps the pools open till 11pm!  That was a complaint of mine in my review of Solstice where all the pools closed at 8pm!  So, they are getting better.  But I still wish they would adopt sister company Royal Caribbean's policy of always leaving at least one pool and one hot tub open 24 hours.  I really love going in a pool or hot tub "somewhere in the Caribbean" after a night of partying around the ship.

The Main Pool: The main pool does not have the dancing waters fountain which gave Silhouette a bit more space around the pool then what we had on Solstice.  The "A" frame beds are still there and still incredible.  There is plenty of shade and plenty of spots in the Sun at the main pool area.  There are two adjacent pools, one shallow and one in the 6' deep range or so.  There's also an array of four hot tubs here.  The bar waiters are plentiful, but not overly annoying, which is refreshing.  There are many activities here, so it can be noisy at times.  The seats are cushioned and comfortable.  There are also plenty of seats around the top tier and many of these are shaded as well.

Main Pool area... out in the sun or in the shade, a great place!
Dad in one of the Main Pool shaded areas!
Main Pool area view from a hot tub at dusk!
Me on one of the "A" frame beds at the Main Pool... these are free to use, first come, first serve basis...

The Solarium:  (adults only) Just as beautiful as the one we saw on Solstice, but with warmer colors.  The Solarium is the perfect escape for adults wanting to get away from kids (although there were hardly any on this cruise) and the noise of the main pool area.  The fountain here was entertaining with it's lit up dancing waters, although I remember the same fountain arrangement on Solstice being a little more active.  (indeed, it seemed like there was a row of jets out, but I'm not positive about this.)  The ever changing light show on the waterfall wall is beautiful.  The loungers are incredibly comfortable and again, there are plenty of towels available (and without the annoying need to sign for them ala Royal Caribbean).  The Solarium pool has an easily accessible stairway into it.  The white clam shell couches we loved on Solstice are here as well as many different seating options.  Again, there is direct sun and complete shade areas in the Solarium.  The sunny areas never get too much sun though as the glass roof is artistically adorned with solar power cell grids... so I'm guessing there's a certain amount of SPF for this reason, just due to the design?  There are also two hot tubs at the port and starboard windows.  The Solarium is completely enclosed against the elements.  We spent most of our pool time here rather than the main pool.  There are a few very dedicated "Pool Butlers" that make sure there's no holding of seats; if a chair is empty for more than 30 to 60 minutes, the Pool Butler swoops in and removes the towels. (Which is how it should be; there is a special ring in hell for those throw a towel or a book on a chair and then cavort around the ship and never use the chair they are holding.)  On our first day at sea heading south, the seas were a bit rocky in the morning (but just until the afternoon), and it became quite entertaining to see the Solarium pool water throwing waves crashing against the Solarium's aft and forward bulkheads!

The beautiful, adults only, Solarium!

        Unique to Silhouette:  As on Solstice, it has to be The Lawn Club, but mostly because of the changes made over the one presented first on Solstice.  Here, we still have the very pampered, but problematical lawns.  They are apparently very sensitive to salt air according to crew we talked to about this.  Just like on Solstice, very few people seemed inclined to "walk barefoot" in the grass.  Again, I say, pull out the grass and astroturf it instead. Gone is the Corning Glass Show (which was fun to see once, then a waste of prime real estate after) but in it's place is the Lawn Club Grill where you can cook up your own dinner with Celebrity chefs for a surcharge.  We weren't interested in this, but many rave about it.  In retrospect, I wish we'd tried this instead of the awful Qsine. 

        But what was really a great idea gone bad was the addition of the Alcoves.  These are private cabanas that are gorgeously adorned and outfitted with an iPad for your use.  I was really excited about this until I heard two things before the cruise: the price is outrageous to rent these ($99 for the day in port; $199 for the day at sea!) and the cabanas, located on the ship's highest outdoor deck aft where the views of the sea should be spectacular... all face inward, away from the sea!  What airhead thought this would be a great idea?  Why would I want a private (and expensive) cabana that had only views of the cabanas opposite?  I believe this great concept could (just like Qsine) be fixed with some tweaking.  First, turn the cabanas around to face the sea; reroute the pathway that goes behind them now so that people aren't walking in front of the sea views all the time (or leave those paths and gate them to be accessible only to cabana renters).  Second, reduce by half, the daily charges, and throw in a lunch basket with something simple like sandwiches for free. (Yes, you have to pay for a lunch basket in the current setup!)  The Alcoves were almost always empty the entire 12 days... even efforts to rent them for a few hours a day at $39 (but only on port days!) seemed a failure as far as I can tell.  So, once again, a brilliant concept that's failing... but easily rectified.  It would also be nice if there was another reason to come up here... like maybe another hot tub or two.  The giant chairs are cool!  This whole area is just a pretty place that's mostly unused.

Empty Alcoves with spectacular views of the seas... if they were turned around!  (The sea view behind is actually walled off!)
The fun super sized chairs at the Lawn Club and the hammocks...
The rarely used bocci ball area (instructions on how to play would be nice)...
Your view from inside an Alcove...
Lawn club at dusk...

        Celebrity Silhouette has some really cool and some offbeat locations.  There's an Apple iStore aboard, staffed with experts in all things Apple (although they will also help you get your PC laptop online as well).   There's the Hideaway, a really cool place to read a book.  I wish we'd gotten here more often.  And there's the genial spot called The Patio... another place to curl up with a book and watch the ocean pass by.

The Hideaway with it's unique tree houses!
The inviting Patio...

        The Spa Experience:  The workout room has fantastic state-of-the-art equipment.  Body builders and those just wanting a light work out will be very impressed with the gym.  What blew us away though, was the Persian Gardens.  This area is usually only available on a fee basis to cruise guests, but one of the perks to those in AquaClass cabins is the free and unlimited use of the Persian Gardens.  This area is a luxurious place with 9 heated tile beds (ahh...) and two aromatherapy steam rooms and two very large showers each featuring a choice of either a tropical jungle spray with red lighting and thunderous hot water showering down... or a blue lit rain forest of cool refreshing mist.  Quiet reflection and serenity is the goal of the Persian Gardens, and it accomplishes this fantastically.  Getting an AquaClass cabin is worth it for this or for dining at Blu alone... but to have BOTH is incredible!  There are also men's and women's locker rooms each featuring their own saunas and showers and robes and towels.  The Silhouette spa experience is top notch all around.  (They also feature all the other stuff found in spas: massage, hair salons, wellness classes, etc.)  If you aren't staying in an AquaClass cabin, definitely spend the money for a trip into the Persian Gardens at least once on your cruise!  Another great spot is the Relaxation Room... this is largely a holding area for those getting spa treatments, but it's open to anyone wanting a quiet spot with great views forward of the sea.

Diane and I in the lap of luxury Persian Gardens... (heated tile beds are the BEST)!
The Relaxation Room... directly forward.

        Entertainment on Silhouette: On this 12 night voyage there were three production shows and a few others.  There was a comedian as well.  The production shows were entertaining, but the one that had the performers flying was excellent!  The shows on Solstice were a bit more advanced, but I loved these shows never the less.  The comedian was actually very funny, but the audience was a bit tough... he didn't get a very good response from the bulk of them.  The smaller venue, Celebrity Central, was underused on the Silhouette.  Mostly it was used for movies and they did show the Academy Awards live in there on that night.  (we skipped this)

The main theater where all of the productions shows are staged...

        Our Itinerary: Twelve nights from Cape Liberty, Bayonne, NJ to the best of the Caribbean islands and back was a dream come true for us!  The best part was no airfare!  It's always great to park and sail... but NJ to the Caribbean is the best.  A twelve night cruise is perfect, too, on such a great ship and in AquaClass!  Here's our day-by-day itinerary:       

Day One: At Sea...  The rough seas (but not a big deal) made interesting splashing waves in the Solarium.  But temps were already climbing and by afternoon, it was shorts weather!  This was otherwise a typical "at sea" day for us with our first encounters with the heated tile beds in the Persian Gardens (excellent) and Diane and Dad had their first breakfast in Blu (which they raved about).  Later, Diane and Dad and I had lunch in the Grand Cuvee (the main dining room... or "MDR" in cruise-speak).  Lunch was delicious, and service was very prompt.  After lunch, the three of us went exploring and then we hung out on the always empty promenade deck chairs and watched the (now) serene Atlantic whisk by us.  Later, Diane won $100 playing roulette at the casino.  We ran into Steve (his birthday) and bought him a drink at the Martini Bar (best martinis... best martini prep shows!).  After this, Diane decided to take a nap before dinner, so Steve and I visited the Sunset Bar then a light workout in the gym then we headed back to the Ocean View Cafe for sushi.  Tonight was a formal night, so we all headed to Blu for an excellent meal... and Beliz (our extraordinary Blu waitress!) arranged a birthday surprise for Steve with many of the servers in Blu coming over to sing Happy Birthday to him!  (All we did was mention it was his birthday in passing, and Beliz did the rest!)  After dinner, we went to the broadway review show in the main theater which was good. (Yes, I've seen better... especially on Oasis... but this was still fun)  After the show, Dad retired for the night, and Diane and Steve and Kim and I went to the Quasar disco where some excellent dance music was playing.  We danced for a while then retired as well.

Day Two: At Sea...  The Atlantic ocean was now as smooth as could be and the temps decidedly tropical.  Diane and Dad and I ate breakfast in Blu... this was the best place aboard for breakfast.  After breakfast, we all took some loungers out of the sun at the Main Pool.  That night was the horrible Qsine restaurant experience.  Didn't matter, as Blu made up for it all the rest of the time!

Our little section of Paradise... somewhere in the Atlantic and heading south on Feb 24th!

Day Three: Labadee, Haiti...  This is always a favorite spot for us as Royal Caribbean has really turned this private location on the north side of Haiti into a really great spot.  Thanks to Oasis, Royal Caribbean has also finally installed a dock for all Royal Caribbean and Celebrity ships to use!  No more of the annoying tendering back and forth.  We did have a pretty long walk to the beach where you can watch the Dragon's Breath zipliners fly over head (I've done this on several other cruises, so we skipped it this time... but try it if you haven't done this before.  It's great!).  The beach is gorgeous, but there is a lot of coral and rock out in the water, so water shoes are a great idea here.  A little further up the beach is pure sand down in the water, too, so go here if you are up for the walk.  We found this location ideal for the bar, and the BBQ lunch (which we ate at one of the tiny tables at the bar rather than at the congested lunch tables).  We got ourselves a little blue clamshell tent to keep the Sun at bay down on the beach (see picture below).  These are free (but tip the guy setting it up), so there's really no reason not to get one.  The weather was gorgeous here (happily, a pattern repeated at all of our ports).  I talked to our lifeguard about the earth quake of a few years back, and he told me that even Labadee got some quakes, but nothing compared to the south at Port-Au-Prince.  (The lifeguard also told me that his father was killed in the quake... so sad)

Gorgeous Labadee, Royal Caribbean & Celebrity's Private Resort!
Yes, life is very good...
Booze before noon... Ahh, the Caribbean!
Not Hawaii... Haiti!  Labadee is gorgeous! (who needs Hawaii?)

Day Four: San Juan, Puerto Rico...  Diane and I have been to San Juan so many times, that we turn this into our day on an empty ship day.  This is always glorious, having the entire ship to yourselves (relatively speaking).  We had a great day around the ship.  We left late at night and watched the city lights recede.  Celebrity did provide the Oscars (we didn't bother) in the small theater that night... cool for those who are obsessed with watching the Oscars.

Pulling into Old San Juan, Puerto Rico!
The venerable Royal Caribbean Adventure of the Seas (Voyager class).  Got to sail on her one of these days...
An empty ship... hooray!  Diane and Dad at the Sunset Bar...
Yes, the Oscars were screened in the smaller theater... with snacks to boot!

Day Five: St. Martin...  As usual, Kim and Steve and Diane and I got up and off the ship and got a cab up to Orient Bay (a vast horseshoe shaped arc of individually named beaches on the French side).  St. Martin (or where the ship docks, Sint Maarten) has the most organized way to get to the beaches or towns you want to visit on either the Dutch or French sides.  When you get off the ship, head to the big yellow building (pictured below) and through this to the cab/van stands.  Here, each location pickup is sub-divided.  Just head to the one marked Orient Bay, and tell the driver which beach you want there.  My sister warned us that La Playa Beach (our former haunt at Orient Bay) was under new management with some ongoing construction (it is mostly complete now), so we decided to opt for a beach that Steve & Kim discovered last year at Orient Bay called Kakao Beach.  This was an excellent location with chair and umbrella rentals (total of $20) and an excellent and very prompt restaurant with great food. (Island food prices are much higher than back home.  Expect a fifty dollar lunch for a couple of burgers with fries and sodas...)  Orient Bay is on the French side, but everyone speaks English there.  Note: Club Orient is at one end of Orient Bay... this is a naturist (nudist) resort where mostly really out of shape people walk around in their birthday suits (only a small percentage will make you say, "Wow!").  All of the beaches are more or less clothing optional (generally meaning topless women) at Orient Bay, so if this sort of thing bothers you, I recommend you stay away.  But you are denying yourself one of the best beach areas in the Caribbean (only Trunk Bay on St. John in the US Virgin Islands rates higher in my book) if you do.  Orient Bay and Kakao Beach are the perfect destination.  (Next time, I want to give Waikiki Beach at Orient Bay a try... that place looks great, too)

Up the steps here and through to the van/taxis to all of St. Martin's beaches and towns...
It's just so much easier in St. Martin!
Our new favorite beach (thanks Steve and Kim).  Kakao Beach, Orient Bay.  Pronounced KAH-cow... not like Cocoa!
Make sure the taxi driver knows where to go... or you might end up at Coco Beach.  Not the same!
Drinking Kakao's version of a Bushwacker... great, but not as good as Paradise Point's in St. Thomas!
Inside Kakao's beach restaurant... excellent, but island-typical pricey lunch!
Serenade and Silhouette, side by side. Ironically, we signed up for the Silhouette cruise on Serenade the year before!
Dad waves to us from his balcony.  He is in cabin 1540.  We are in cabin 1550, five cabins to his left.
Steve and Kim are between us in cabin 1546 (two cabins to the right of ours).  Cabins are evenly numbered.
In our favorite departure spot... the Sunset Bar!  Getting ready to leave St. Martin!
Our view of St. Martin from the Sunset Bar!  "Don't worry... about a t'ing... Every little t'ing, is gonna be alright..."
Diane at Blu awaiting another excellent meal!

Day Six: Antigua (ahn-TEE-gah... never ann-TEEG-wah!) and Montserrat...  Our arrival at Antigua was right after a passing storm that gave us a gorgeous rainbow as we approached the port.  This was the most adventurous island stop we've ever had: Diane, Dad, Steve and I took a helicopter ride from Antigua to neighboring Montserrat to see the devastation caused by the 1995 and 2010 eruptions of the Soufriere Hills volcano (thought to be dormant before hand).  The 1995 eruption wiped out the island's capital called Plymouth and it's airport.  The destruction is mind numbing in it's extent.  Our helicopter ride flew us right up to the steaming vents at the top of the volcano and then down to the remains of Plymouth and the boulder fields (most of the boulders are larger than a single family home) composed of enormous rocks thrown from the volcano.  The pyroclastic flows buried huge swaths of land from the volcano down to the sea turning once lush real estate into dead moonscapes.  This entire area is now called the "Exclusion Zone" and no one is allowed to live there.  At the top of the volcano, you could smell the rotten egg smell of the sulfur dioxide coming from the volcano (yes, we saw and smelled a volcano!).  This volcano isn't done yet... it's building up for another eruption.  This was an incredible trip and worth every penny.  I will never forget it.  When we returned to the dock after the helicopter ride, we walked about the little shopping area and I took some great shots of Silhouette.

A double rainbow welcomes us to beautiful Antigua!
Our helicopter ride over the sea to Montserrat cometh!
Montserrat: Our first view of the pyroclastic (lava) flow path... the volcano is off to the right shrouded in steamy clouds!
Flying to the volcano! (off to the left top... caldera in the clouds)
As close as we could get to the caldera due to the clouds... that's steam coming out at dead center!
Looking back to the sea at the flow... Montserrat's capital is mostly under the lava flows!
Abandoned homes in the "Exclusion Zone"... too dangerous to live this close to the still active volcano! (in the background)
Amazing devastation in the Exclusion Zone!  Lava flow to the upper right.
Most of the surrounding city is buried... this house must have been high up. 
All of the boulders in this picture were hurled up and out of the volcano!  Many are house sized.
Flying back to the gorgeous island of Antigua!
Celebrity Silhouette, Antigua... a view from our helicopter!
Dad as he departs the helicopter... what an amazing adventure!
Shops at the port in Antigua... Diane bought a handmade necklace from the lady in blue!
Departing Antigua... we were docked next to the giant sailboat at right.

Day Seven: St. Croix...  Having never visited this US Virgin island (we've been to St Thomas and St John on many occasions) we wanted to do a bus tour of the island.  So Dad, Diane and Steve and Kim and I took a ship sponsored tour that drove us all over the island with a nice stop at Christensted for shopping about mid way through the tour.  The driver was extremely well-versed on the features of his home island and very funny.  We had a great time!  When we got back to the lovely port, we walked amongst the very polite street vendors, and took a short walk on the adjacent beach (this location was an easy walk from the ship).  We also bought a Cruzan Confusion drink... a concoction of several Cruzan (St. Croix is the home of Cruzan rum) rums that leaves you feeling happily dazed.  Of course, at the time of departure, we were back at our favorite bar, the Sunset Bar, to watch the departure.  This was sort of funny as the distance from St. Croix to St. Thomas (our next destination) is negligible in cruise ship terms... I think they practically pulled in the lines, and gave a few short bursts on the engines and let us coast all the way to St. Thomas!  (No, really, we were moving just barely fast enough to raise a wake...)

Out on the road, exploring St. Croix on a Celebrity sponsored tour...
Dad and I, somewhere on the road, St. Croix...
More views of St. Croix... beautiful!
Little resort island off Christiansted, St. Croix... so close, you could easily swim out to it! 
Home of Hotel on the Cay (note: one of the Celebrity excursions will take you here for the day)
Shops in Christiansted, St. Croix
Nice little beach within easy walking distance of the ship.  Frederiksted, St. Croix
Diane and I on that beach with Celebrity Silhouette in the background.  Frederiksted, St. Croix
Beautiful grounds around port, Frederiksted, St. Croix
Leaving lovely St. Croix... well, crawling away anyway!  View from the Sunset Bar!

Day Eight: St. Thomas...  The past several times we visited St. Thomas, we took the tour over to St. John's (the neighboring island) to visit the best beach in the world (so far) at Trunk Bay.  If you've never been to Trunk Bay, it's a must see.  But getting there and back means a short stay on that beach (60 to 90 minutes) so, this trip, we decided to return to our other favorite beach, Magen's Bay.  Magen's Bay is always gorgeous and there's a nice little restaurant here and facilities for chair rentals.  There are plenty of shady spots as well.  Cabs run back and forth between the beach and the ship, so travel is no problem.  Kim and Steve and Diane and I had a great day here in a shady spot from about 11am till 2pm.  On our Serenade trip in 2011, we took the Skyride up to Paradise Point and discovered our new favorite drink, the awesome Bailey's Bushwacker.  This drink has about 8 ingredients and it will totally floor you.  (I recommended this to our Cruise Critic roll call members and they apparently went there in some pretty big numbers... unfortunately, we missed them being about a half hour late for the designated meeting time...)  So, all four of us headed up there for spectacular views and incredible bushwacking drinks (Kim didn't like hers, so I gladly polished that one off, too!).  After, Steve and I, still spinning, walked (and stumbled) with the girls back to the ship but Steve and I ran (literally) over to Senor Frogs for a quick shot of something powerful with the bartender there.  Steve also made a quick dip in the pool at Senor Frogs.  We both then somehow got back to Silhouette before the gangway was pulled up.  Great time!

Looking back at Charlotte Amalie and the port.  That's Silhouette to the right. (and Solstice on the left!)
This view is from the mountain top going over to Magen's Bay...
Gorgeous Magen's Bay... always wonderful!
Magen's Bay, gorgeous even away from the beach!
On the Skyride up to Paradise Point... and the ultimate Bailey's Bushwacker drinks!
Silhouette and Solstice as seen from Paradise Point, St. Thomas. 
Both ships are exactly the same size, but Solstice is closer and hence, looks bigger.

Day Nine: At Sea... Gorgeous day!  It was a wonderful day of hanging by the pool and just relaxing and having a great time.  The ocean was very calm.

I never get tired of this...
Always the best way to start the day...
Lunch at the Ocean View Cafe, aft outside...

Day Ten: At Sea... Gorgeous day at sea again!  And again, the seas were as calm as could be.  For part of the afternoon we sat near the Mast Grill and sun bathed, then Diane and I decided to try a new location, so we headed up to the Solstice deck all the way forward and above it all.  Great quiet place to be outside and enjoy a book or just watch the ocean go by.  The crew and officers had their "fierce rivalry" volleyball game hosted by the cruise director.  This was also the day of the incredible brunch (see above) in the main restaurant.  (Not to be missed!)  At night, before dinner, Dad hosted an impromptu wine party in his cabin for all of us!

Officers vs Crew Volleyball game in the main pool...
Me on the Solstice deck...

Day Eleven: At Sea...  Rainy and increasingly colder day, but we began it with a wonderful breakfast in Blu.   Diane and I made use of the Persian Gardens one last time.  We then started the always slow and very sad task of packing for our departure the next day.  We went one more time to dinner at Blu and said our goodbyes to our excellent waitress, Beliz!  Tipping on Celebrity is automatic, but we still tipped a bit extra to those that made a big difference.  Steve and Diane and I made some rounds of the casino and the bar.  Steve and I hit the Martini Bar one last time.  The last night of a cruise always sucks.

Oh, NO!  Almost home!  First signs of Post Cruise Depression (PCD- read my thread on Cruise Critic here) set in...
Steve and I getting our "Drinks On!" one last time... Casino Bar

Day Twelve: Bayonne and home...  Getting off the ship was a smooth endeavor until Diane tripped on a section of unsecured carpet badly hurting her knee and shoulder.  That caused us an added delay as she was taken to the ship's infirmary where she filled out an accident report and was thoroughly examined by the ship's nurse.  By the time we left there (after about 30 minutes?), the carpet was secured with duct tape.  Then to add insult to injury, the parking company we used, Premier Parking, took over an hour to get over and pick us up even though the offsite parking is about three minutes from the port.  Again, I cannot recommend Premier Parking at this time.  Hopefully they will hire some more drivers and get some more vans.  One van doesn't cut it.  Once we got our car, we drove directly from Bayonne to Philly International airport to get Dad on his late afternoon flight back to Florida.  The ride home was uneventful.

        Celebrity Silhouette Art:  I don't usually devote much time to a ship's art, but Silhouette had some interesting pieces.  Here are a few that caught our eye:

Looks like a giant telescope mirror!
Artwork outside of the Specialty Restaurants...
Diane loved this vase...
Electronic birdy... one of four. 

        The Silhouette Debarkation Process: Celebrity has got it down to a science where embarkation and debarkation is concerned... even at Bayonne.  We were off the ship and got our baggage in no time with no hassles.  Even customs was a cinch.  Unfortunately, the debarkation was at Cape Liberty, Bayonne, NJ.  The port facility traffic is a joke... a really terrible joke.  After all these years (nearly a decade!!!), it's inexcusable that Royal Caribbean hasn't worked with the port to improve this.  Bayonne is situated in a location that's convenient for northeast passengers wishing to avoid an airfare on a cruise... but you pay a price in the disaster of Cape Liberty's absolutely terrible layout for dropping off and picking up passengers.  It's truly awful.

        Things Celebrity should do to improve Silhouette:  Keep at least one pool and one hot tub open 24/7 like their sister company, Royal Caribbean, does on all of their ships.  They've improved this over the Solstice back in '09 by keeping a pool open till 11pm, now take it all the way.  Also, turn those gorgeous alcoves around to face the sea, and lower the prices on them.  They will rake in the cash!  Post instructions on how to play bocci ball. (Maybe "everyone" knows how to play it... but we don't).  My father also missed the ability to hear ship announcements in his cabin (our steward claimed that this was to maintain peace and quiet in the AquaClass cabins), so he would like to see this added.  I did not miss this at all as I prefer to read the daily papers they deliver.  Get a decent DJ in the Quasar... one that will take requests... especially when the club is otherwise empty.  Finally, fix Qsine (see my thoughts above)!!!  It's too expensive to be such a bomb.

        Why Celebrity Silhouette should be your next cruise choice: It's the most gorgeous Celebrity ship we've been on to date!  It's crew embodies a new level of professional service that is second to none.  We were impressed by both the big features and the little details!  The art is exquisite aboard.  The public spaces are lavish without being over-the-top.  Even the little touches were amazing: cloth towelettes to dry your hands in the restrooms all over the ship... or the cabin bathroom light that when turned off becomes a nightlight... or really excellent lounge furniture on the balcony... or a TV menu system that is super fast and super efficient (except for the night that the TV in Dad's cabin decided he spoke French... it was fixed the next day)... or the swapping of pillows to your liking... or the clean towels rolled up and waiting for you on your pool chair... most of these things are unheard of on most modern cruise ships.  The balconies have no external lights... you can enjoy the night sky like an astronomer (I am an amateur astronomer, so I know what I'm talking about!)... and being an astronomer, I did!  The ship was steady enough to do serious astronomy with my powerful Celestron binoculars!  (for astronomers out there: Omega Centauri is gorgeous!)

Comfortable furniture in the ship's lobby area!

        We had already fallen in love with the Celebrity when we cruised on the Celebrity Solstice back in '09.  Now, Celebrity Silhouette has cemented that view for us.  It will be difficult (but of course, not impossible) to choose any ship that's not of the Solstice class, and Diane and I are already hoping to be fortunate enough to cruise on the other sisters, Celebrity Eclipse, Celebrity Equinox, and this year's newest (and last Solstice class ship)... the Celebrity Reflection (which will feature AquaClass Suites!!!).  I can't imagine not having an AquaClass cabin... dinner at Blu... and those fantastic heated tile beds on a future cruise!  And how will a seven night cruise ever compare to our 12 night super-cruise on this ship?!?  We'll just have to muddle through... lol! 

        Celebrity Silhouette, whatever her itinerary, should be your next ship choice!


Celebrity Silhouette docked in Labadee, Haiti

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All photography on this page done by Paul and Diane McCullough