Given the slams at RSSC and Navigator, I was concerned about my Black Sea (Istanbul-Athens) cruise.
I have cruised extensively on Silversea, Seabourn, and RSSC; however, I have not been at sea for several years. This was my third cruise on Navigator.
I do not understand previous complaints. Navigator is a wonderful ship, and I will return in a heartbeat.
Yes, the ship is a tad thread-worn: Chairs in some lounges are a bit threadbare. Areas of carpet have been replaced. The bed was a bit lumpy. But I know that the ship will be going into dry dock in a couple of months, and I understand that these minor deficiencies will be corrected.
The service was fine (not overwhelming or suffocating, but as needed above and beyond the call.) I had a minor accident (fall) on a tour: The attendant was ready with disinfectant, bandage, etc. A couple of days later he inquired as to how I was doing.
The food was generally quite good -- occasionally exceptionally good. Service was prompt in Compass Rose.
Wi-Fi worked well, and the RSSC Seven Seas Society benefits (e.g. free internet at Silver) are very nice.
I did notice one area of cut-back from my previous experience. It's a detail. But it grated.
Previously, menus for the following day were distributed the previous night along with Passages. I understand why this practice was abandoned: It was costly in paper and toner, and it was definitely not "green."
My understanding was that menus were available on interactive TV. That seemed a fair work-around. However, menus were not on the TV. If one wanted to see the menu one had to go to a bar or the restaurant itself. This is really not very satisfactory if one is back from a tour, has showered, is in a bathrobe, and wants dinner served in the suite, and doesn't know what's on offer. Is Room Service to read the entire menu on the phone?
This was my major disappointment with my Navigator cruise. If that's the greatest disappointment, the conclusion must be that it was a fine cruise. It was.