My wife and I just completed a 7 day Silversea cruise aboard the Silver Whisper in March going from Bridgetown Barbados to San Juan, Puerto Rico (4105). In short the experience was fantastic! We had very high expectations for this cruise and I am happy to report that they were all met and often exceeded.
We found the ship to be in very good condition. As A former Coast Guard officer I was very impressed with the paintwork and material conditions. The Silver Whisper would have easily passed any of my inspections. Our stateroom was also to be in excellent condition. It was very clean and everything worked perfectly.
Our butler, Dann, introduced himself when we embarked and provide a very good description of what he would do for us during the voyage. We saw Dann at least once a day (and some days several times) and he did an excellent job responding to all our requests. Our stateroom was kept very clean and we never returned to it without somebody coming in to put things in order.
We also found the food on board to be excellent. Every meal that we were served was of the highest quality. We were particularly impressed with the seafood and beef dishes. We were lucky enough to dine at L'Terreza on three evenings and they were all magic. The pasta was marvelous and my wife commented several times that her main course was some of the best food she had been every served (luckily, she was kind enough to give me a bite). The desserts were also fantastic. We also enjoyed the wide variety and quality of the wines that were included with the meals.
The staff was very good and very attentive, without being overly intrusive. Everyone's English was impeccable and it was a pleasure to interact with everyone from our butler Dann, to the housekeeping staff, to the restaurant and cocktail waiters and sommeliers, to the maitre d's, and the officers. Clearly a few were new and were being trained, but they were well supervised and did not cause us any problems.
We did not take in much of the entertainment, but we did particularly enjoy the duet that performance during the cocktail hour in the Bar. We also did not participate in many of the on shore excursions, but the one we did were well organized and enjoyable. However, we did find ourselves often asking why we left the ship that we enjoyed so much.
My wife and I have not made very many cruises and only one other on a luxury line (Regent). We found Siversea to be the best so far. We were also very impressed with the value of the cruise. Considering the fact that our airfare, transfers, wine, beer, cocktails and gratuities were included we found our total fare to be comparable to similar level staterooms and amenities on much larger lines. The one thing we noticed, and appreciated, was that the Silver Whisper did not have the "shopping mall" at sea atmosphere that we have felt on other larger lines.
I read the review of the same cruise by unitedave and was quite surprised. I am sorry they did not have a good experience, but it seemed that we were on two different ships.
Taking a small ship, luxury, all inclusive cruise was great - we cannot wait for our next one (and very likely to be on Silversea)!