We boarded the Shadow Early in Lauderdale around 1PM. Were directed to the Terazza for buffet lunch, it was easy quiet and very well organized. We had lunch and the cabins were ready. Luggage was already there (yes in one hour) and the butler was knocking on our door soon thereafter.
Cabin was in good shape, a few dings and dents but overall still in shape and we always enjoy the two sinks that the smaller ships lack and the separate shower. The butler helped us unpack and brought us hangers and met all our needs with shampoo choices, shoe shining and even brought glass polishing clothes for us and polished our dirty Sunglasses etc....really excellent cabin attendants throughout our cruise. Laundry service which we used often, was flawless and happily free as we had over 100 nights on the line. Great perk.
Food onboard was delicious and the quality of fish and meats was excellent. If we did not like something we always ordered something else. Sometimes off the menu and sometimes on the menu...whatever we asked they did and made as long as we gave 12 hours notice. Get creative, their kitchen was working amazingly well and ate some excellent food. On Deck buffet night was fun with much eating and drinking, grilled lobster tails and claws shrimp as far as the eye could see and ribs and a huge paella...deserts were also fabulous. As you can tell, we LOVED the food and we are are tough judges.
Entertainment was the weak spot as the shows are all the same. The entertainers themselves were OK...but these are the same shows we saw last year at this time and again in August and October everything is the same. They need to end this and go back to cabaret performers. We once had Emma Sinclair onboard years ago and she was fabulous....she could sing every night as far as we were concerned. She had a beautiful voice. That said we last saw her on Regent so who knows whats going on with Silverseas entertainment. We were unimpressed and the last 2 years have not changed our feelings about this.
Activities onboard were many. The New Cruise director, a lady who was English, name escapes me...was excellent. She had lots of energy and bring much to the ship. Activities were language lessons, cooking and wine pairings, ice carving, water volleyball, dance lessons and a speaker. The speaker and X CIA operative was true to his bio however his speeches we felt were a bit boring....he was chatting in a bit of a monotone and was very relaxed which put us to sleep. And the people next to us.
They now have Phillip onboard hired by Diamonds International, Colombian Emeralds and Tanzanite international (same owners ultimately I think) to sell their jewelry...he gives talks and is big on "upgrading your diamonds"...friendly fellow. We also had artwork onboard and it was all for sale and you could meet with them to "learn about art" at many times during the day. We were not in love with either of these changes....however if it keeps Silversea as good as it has been we can put up with it. It is an additional revenue stream which costs us nothing. That said....buyer beware.. and there were lots of people buying.
Ports were nice, and weather was lovely, little cold out of Lauderdale. Ignazio Tatulli is the Captain and he is excellent and we have sailed with him before. We always feel in capable hands with him. Other captains hardly talk or just smile a lot or can barely speak English....Tatulli really seems to care and we understand him on the loudspeaker.
Overall the Shadow was fantastic for us. Levels of service both at the bars and restaurants were great. Gille the wine steward, Gilbert the maitre D, Antin in la Terazza handled the 350 us like guests and not passengers....it was spoiling and much enjoyed. The crew really seemed to work together as a team and it was nice to see.
Are we going back for more? YES. Wishing you a wonderful journey and may yours be as nice as ours on the Shadow!