We chose a 7 day cruise to see if we would enjoy Seabourn. It had been nearly 30 years since our first and only cruise. What a difference! Seabourn was above and beyond expectations!! The Quest is a gorgeous ship with wonderful amenities and lovely decks and lounges. Upon boarding our lovely stewardess, Monika, greeted us with champagne and canapes. Our suite refrigerator was stocked and the suite had a beautiful veranda where we spent many mornings. I would recommend booking a suite on the land side as we enjoyed beautiful views each morning as we sailed into each port.
The staff on the Quest were young, polished and professional. Standouts include Deon in the Colonnade restaurant, Mark in the Observation Bar, Chris at the coffee bar, Maritza as the maitre d' and all of the Restaurant staff. The staff are predominantly from South Africa, Netherlands, Europe. They are all friendly and charming, wonderful to chat with. The cruise director, Handre is impeccable and More
friendly. There is so much to take advantage of: a nice pool deck, a beautiful main lounge with newspapers, books, a cafe. Multiple decks, two Jacuzzis, a sophisticated spa, a gym, fitness classes, a beauty salon. All the food and drink is inclusive unless you want some wine upgrades. The food is very good and there is a variety of dining options. We tried them all. The entertainers are very good and the shows were well done. A pianist and a comedian rounded out the "headliners" on other nights. We never went to the casino but the after-hours bar was always lively and a great spot to meet people.
A few criticisms:
The spa area can only be used for a few hours if you have booked a treatment. You have the option of paying a $300 per couple fee for the duration of the cruise to have unlimited access to the spa deck, warming chairs, sauna, steam room, tropical shower, Kneip bath. It is worth it if you like a quiet, private experience.
The bedding: duvet and sheets, are not very nice quality. They REALLY need to improve that. Duvet was thin and flimsy, only came with the fitted sheet, not a top sheet. Sheet quality was poor.
The "Restaurant 2" which requires a reservation is an intimate, quiet spot but the menu is far too contrived and the service is overbearing, describing each and every course with detail. The main Restaurant is far better with excellent choices and service.
We really had a fantastic experience. Beautiful, modern ship with something for everyone. Less
Seabourn Quest Cruises to the Eastern Mediterranean
Port 5 was Hvar, Croatia. (Also not on port selection) It is GORGEOUS!!! Went on the tour to the monastery, a tiny winery and walked around the marina. If you like to swim, walk along the stone pathways along the water and you will see many steps along the way, carved out of stone that you can go to the water for a swim. The water is crystal clear, beautiful.
Port 6 was Ravenna. Amazing mosaics, nice cafes, shopping.
Dubrovnik is beautiful, many interesting sites- walk the city walls, see the Dominican pharmacy, have some oysters for lunch at one of the many lovely restaurants. Cavtat is like a French riviera port with expensive yachts in the marina, waterfront pathways.
Tour of the Diros caves in boats is reminiscent of "Phantom of the Opera" or "Pirates of the Caribbean". Dramatic stalactites, the caves go on and on! Mind boggling, eerie but beautiful. Also had a tour of a small Greek town with a very pretty stone church. Bus trip to the caves is about 45 minutes but guide was very informative.
Did not go on the Olympia excursion but was told it was nothing special. This port was not very memorable, nothing to check out in the small port town, just a row of souvenir shops.
Port 3, Parga, was FAR better was the next port, Parga. (Parga is not listed as a port selection) A charming hillside town reminiscent of Portofino. Very picturesque, lots of places to walk. We went up to the fortress and down to the beach. Beautiful views and interesting shops and cafes.
I'd rate Parga a 5.
DO NOT MISS sailing into Venice. We arrived early in the morning and it was spectacular to see Venice in the soft morning light. Of course, the boat is too big to enter the Grand Canal but you will see the St. Mark's cathedral, Doge's palace and so many beautiful villas along the water as the boat glides into port. Just breathtaking!