This cruise was simply an unmitigated disaster. I have been on plenty of cruises to know what good service is and what to expect, and Crystal simply failed. The reviews convinced us to take this cruise, and I hope this review convinces you to PASS on Crystal. I will not take this ship again.
Went smoothly. Bags delivered promptly. We were not offered anything upon our entrance to the ship - no champagne, no guidance, nothing.
We were served by unenthused, curt waiters. Took ten minutes to get a coffee. The waiter became exasperated after we asked him a third time. An early warning sign.
The ship is fairly nice, but somewhat drab. A funeral parlor has more personality than this ship. It sails very smoothly though.
The food in the main dining hall was passable at best. Flavorless and uninteresting, with the next days lunch often incorporating the previous evening's dinner. The maitre d' was fine, but the waiters remained detached and uninterested throughout. Service took forever to get any food. The sommeliers were jokes and had no idea what wine they were even serving. The food in the specialty restaurants was excellent, but reservations were quite difficult to get and impossible to alter if need be. The sushi in Silk Road was outstanding, but the maitre d' was beyond awful. He mindblowingly sent my infirm, 82 year old father back to his stateroom because he didn't have a jacket (despite wearing a button-down shirt and tie and suit pants), causing us to lose our places at the sushi bar, even though we were first in line and had waited half an hour. The all-day food at the Bistro was okay, though it is clear the chefs have no clue what they are doing, as the prosciutto was carved in the wrong direction. The fries by the pool are excellent though.
Excellent linens, clean, nice shower, wonderful housekeeping, but very small rooms. Good cable stations on the tv and nice bathrooms. Good wifi throughout the ship. Our safe broke and we had to ask four times for it to get fixed.
BARS & LOUNGES
Excellent, friendly bartenders, good drinks, passable wine. The "disco" Pulse is the size of an inside stateroom and filled with karaoke.
No offers of water bottles as we departed (unlike Oceania), despite the hot, humid weather. Crystal shuttles were free at some ports, but cost money at others. The crew had no idea where to direct us as we exited the tenders, a huge problem for the mostly elderly clientele.
Despite a few nice features, nothing makes up for the absolutely awful crew and barely passable dining that made this cruise one to forget. SKIP IT.