One of the few luxury lines to incorporate kids' facilities onboard its ships, Crystal does court the family market, particularly during summer and school holiday seasons. It offers shorter-than-usual itineraries, staffs its Junior Activities Program (for those from 3 to 12) and a slightly less active teen club, and creates child-friendly menus. It also has family-friendly staterooms; there are 26 cabins that connect, and 100 have a third berth available, including in the Penthouse category. On our sailing, there were about 30 kids onboard.
Kids ages 3 to 12 hang out in the Surf Runners' group. The dedicated space on Deck 9 is small but well-designed, with kid-sized tables for crafts and beanbag chairs for lounging. In the Teen Scene, across the hall, the space is largely furnished with a big-screen television, Wii, slouchy chairs for lounging and a couple of tables.
On our trip with a pair of pre-teens, it was obvious that younger kids were kept happy and busy through junior activities such as scavenger hunts, crafting friendship bracelets, competing in Wii tournaments and having private viewings of age-appropriate performances such as a magician and a musical.
Our kids weren't interested in the teen program activities and actually preferred to participate in adult activities onboard (one particular hit was the Odyssey@Sea watercolor workshop, where the resident artist was so welcoming they became regulars) and reading poolside. The crew of Crystal Symphony -- from our butler who treated them as young ladies to our lovely pair of waiters, who engaged them each night -- made the experience superb.
One disappointment was the lack of family-oriented shore excursions.