6 Athens (Piraeus) to Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Seabourn Quest Cruise Reviews

Just came back from a 10 day cruise on Quest which left Athens and ended up in Monte Carlo. This was our second Seabourn cruise. Two years ago we cruised on the Legend, one of the smaller ships, and we were concerned we wouldn't be ... Read More
Just came back from a 10 day cruise on Quest which left Athens and ended up in Monte Carlo. This was our second Seabourn cruise. Two years ago we cruised on the Legend, one of the smaller ships, and we were concerned we wouldn't be able to replicate the Legend experience on one of the bigger ships. We arrived in Athens from New York the night before the ship sailed, and visited the Acopolis early the next morning. Not to be missed is the relatively new Parthenon Museum....it has won several architectural awards, and the exhibits are amazing. Boarding the ship was easy.....we arrived dockside at 2:15pm and were the only passengers there. Check in and security took 5 minutes and we walked right on the ship into our suite. Within a couple of minutes our room steward arrived with glasses of champagne and canapes, plus a choice of toiletries and shower soap. Our suite was on deck 4, as we don't see the value in having a balcony. It was near the rear exit to The Restaurant, but still in its own corridor, so noise was never an issue. A quick walk to dinner! We explored the ship before the general muster, and still being a relatively small ship it didn't take long to get around. The ship is still in good condition two years after being launched. There was a crew change in Athens, and in the coming week my wife and I felt that the rejoining crew were a bit rusty.....just little but noticable things that we didn't experience on the Legend. The edge seemed off the service a few times. One day on the pool deck we plainly heard four crew members arguing about something.Of the 450 passengers, Americans were in the majority, followed by Brits then Aussies, the remainder being spread over several countries. Everyone was friendly and we had lots of tableside conversations with an interesting mix of people. It's amazing that so many were onboard for 20 or 30 day cruises. We missed two ports due to the swell making tender operations difficult....the two alternative ports, where the ship could dock, were Cesmay in Turkey and Bastia in Corsica....both were kind of blah we felt and not really worth visiting. The highlight was undoubtedly Kudasi, where we visited the Terraced Houses (a must see) and came back in the evening for the concert. The latter was wonderful, and the crew lined up on the dock to welcome us all back, which was a nice touch. A close second was the tour of Taormina and Mt. Etna, which included a very nice lunch..two kinds of pasta and lots of red wine! We can now cross Santorini off our "must visit" list.....three ships were there, including the Quest, so it was very crowded. We took a local bus to some of the other villages, which were less crowded and more scenic, and to get away from the smell of donkey dung! The food onboard was good, as well as the house ines offered. The Galley lunch was fun and allowed us a glimpse of the kitchens. We had lunch most days outside in the Colonnade restaurant, which was lovely. I enjoyed the meal we had in Restaurant 2 but my wife thought it was too rich. Although I don't mind dressing up on vacation, I though that the dress code was a bit excessive - jackets every evening in the The Restaurant except on the first and last evenings. A jacket free evening in the middle of the cruise would have been welcome. Same as our first cruise, we didn't open the liquor in our suite...I only had 2 beers from the fridge during the 10 days. Entertainment was low key, but we knew to expect that. It was disappointing that there wasn't more dancing after dinner. When we got off the ship in Monte Carlo the captain was at the bottom of the gangplank to wish us farewell...another nice touch. All in all a great cruise, just some minor nitpicks on service. The bigger ship still felt small like the Legend. We put a deposit down for a future Seabourn cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2013
We embarked at Athens and boarding was prompt and efficient commencing at about 12.30pm. The ship is great, spacious and elegant and all we expected. The cabins excellent plenty of drawer space and the walk in wardrobe is excellent. We ... Read More
We embarked at Athens and boarding was prompt and efficient commencing at about 12.30pm. The ship is great, spacious and elegant and all we expected. The cabins excellent plenty of drawer space and the walk in wardrobe is excellent. We had two 10 day cruises back to back and 20 days felt right, much better than 10. We felt 30 days would have been too long for us. The captain (Erik) was excellent and had come out of retirement to help out and do these two cruises and was returning after to Norway. He was areal salesman never missing a chance to plug Seabourn in a nice way. He is very passionate about the company and its ships. Much has been said about the ships and services, we felt they lived up to expectations. One point not covered (at least that I had seen) was the medical centre. Treatment for an infected throat was prompt and efficient with antibiotics dispensed and at a total cost of some $90 which I felt was very reasonable. I also felt laundry charges at some $3.50 for a t-shirt were reasonable and worthwhile. Food and service were excellent and nothing was too much trouble to the staff who always went the extra mile. The passenger make up was quite different for both cruises, of the 450 about 100 American the first and 200 the second Canadian about 25 both, European's much higher first and Sth American much higher second. Many of the Americans in the second were quite demanding and the crew seemed less relaxed the second cruise. I got the impression some passengers were impossible to please, in one case demanding cereal be replaced because too much milk had been added, another case huge complaints about the way eggs were cooked and the amount of milk in a coffee, seriously? There were also a lot of children on both cruises something others found very surprising. Our room stewardess put a note in our cabin thanking us for being kind which I felt was interesting. Similarly a letter we sent mid cruise thanking some of the staff was responded to with a call thanking us and several of the staff mentioned specifically thanked us for the comments, so they were obviously mentioned. I think some genuine kindness goes along way and is small way of boosting staff's morale. Ports we felt were good, we especially enjoyed the smaller ones. Some passengers complained they were chosen as they were cheaper and the company was saving money, I felt for us they were just right and I loved Ponza Island and Mennorca and would travel to both again. The weather was hot, 30 degrees plus every day. We rose early and went ashore early, often we were the only ones in the first tender or first ashore. Ports were less crowded early and less hot, we spent most afternoons at the pool. Negatives two come to mind. The smoking policy was a surprise. It never occurred to me smoking would be allowed, it seems out of step with the world today. Especially as its allowed in every cabin and balcony. We had no smokers around us the first 10 days the second we did and on one evening the stench throughout our cabin (the aircon must recirculate) was horrific. The policy would be the most likely reason I would decide not to travel Seabourn again despite all the good things. It seems too risky to leave to chance. I would prefer they allocated just some cabins to smokers if they must. likewise with the observatory lounge having one side smoking and one not was not practical, when smokers lit up we had to leave. The other thing I found tedious was the dress code. Whilst there was only one formal optional night per cruise (good) the requirement to wear a jacket at all restaurants on 5 consecutive nights was a pain to me. I don't want to have to play dress up on a cruise in peak summer. I don't mind occasionally but it was excessive to me. I understand some people like to play dress ups on holiday, I would have thought sections of the restaurants could be set aside for those who want to dress formally and those who would prefer relaxed smart casual. Lesser gripes the shore excursion prices seem like all cruise lines extortionate and far higher than local tours. Cinque Terre I think the ship supplied ferry was $139 the local Ferry (same sort of boat from the same company same route etc) was Euro 17 about $20. There was a guest speaker on board, conversations, we attended one and it was truly appalling. A series of home snaps and a rambling disjointed narrative with little care or effort made. The presenter seemed far happier enjoying the ships facilities, once was more than enough. On the other hand the shore excursion manager went out of his way to give helpful local advice to us doing our own thing ashore and many of the local cafes etc he recommended were excellent. Overall I would give Seabourn a 9/10. Many positives and just two negatives of any note. It certainly met my expectations that were high. Would I travel again on Seabourn, I'm not sure. If they modified the smoking policy and dress code the answer would be an emphatic yes, as it stands a definite maybe.   Read Less
Sail Date July 2013
We booked the Seabourn Quest, Greek Islands and Turkish Delight, sailing from Athens and disembarking in Istanbul. We were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary, where we recruited another couple to go with us on a 2 week European ... Read More
We booked the Seabourn Quest, Greek Islands and Turkish Delight, sailing from Athens and disembarking in Istanbul. We were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary, where we recruited another couple to go with us on a 2 week European vacation that included 2 days in Athens, Greece at the beginning, then another couple days in Istanbul and 3 days in Paris before heading back to the USA. The ship was absolutely spectacular in every way! When we arrived in our stateroom there was a bottle of champagne on ice waiting for us. On days where we needed to be up early, we arranged for breakfast to be served on our balcony. The staff gave us a special treat on the last night, where we celebrated our anniversary. Every need was met without even asking. While there were 450 people on board, the ship never seemed crowded, nor did we have to wait for seating at meals. There are a number of places where you can feel like you have the ship to yourself, such as the forward deck on the 6th Level, where there is a hot tub and sun deck during the day, and a quite spot to be with that someone special at night. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
SEABOURN QUEST CRUISE ATHENS TO VENICE 21ST AUGUST, 2011 This was our second cruise on Seabourn, our first was on the sister ship Seabourn Sojourn, part of the World Cruise in April of this year. We flew to Athens to join the ... Read More
SEABOURN QUEST CRUISE ATHENS TO VENICE 21ST AUGUST, 2011 This was our second cruise on Seabourn, our first was on the sister ship Seabourn Sojourn, part of the World Cruise in April of this year. We flew to Athens to join the ship, our transfer from the airport to the ship we had arranged ourselves. We were met at the port by the usual smiling staff of the Quest, soon we were whisked off to our suite which was ready at 1pm. We arrived to the usual bottle of champagne and canapEs, and not long after our stewardess, Jackie, arrived to wish us a pleasant cruise. The itinerary for this cruise was, Athens, Santorini, Katakolon, Corfu, Kotor, Dubrovnik, Tri Luke Bay, and ended in Venice. Well what can I say about the Seabourn experience, but a big WOW!! Again it did not disappoint, nearly as good as the Sojourn but not on one or two counts. The entertainment, we felt, was not as good as the Sojourn, they only did two production shows and the rest were guest entertainers, which were not as good this cruise. The other thing we felt was that they have certainly downgraded the wines that they pour for lunch and dinner. On Sojourn we always had more than one red and one white to choose from, but on Quest they only offered one Red and one White with no other choice, only if you insisted you were not keen on the wine, would they go and try to get something else, this never happened on our first cruise with Seabourn. Overall the food was good to very good, one thing that I felt was better on this cruise was the fact that main course meal, in the Main Dining Room, were hot, which is something that I like. The Colonnade Restaurant was also very good. We had very good waiters and assistant waiters throughout the cruise, and a special mention should go to , Deon, Yorik, and Belindah. The one good thing about this cruise was that we have never experienced a Marina Day and we had this on Quest, our last day in Tri Luke Bay. They drop anchor and then the Marina comes out of the back of the ship. They have a swimming pool, which looks like a shark's cage, this is lowered into the sea and you can swim around in it. They then have such things as Kayaks', Banana Boat rides, Sail Boats, Speed boats etc. It really was a great day. Of the ports that we visited the highlight was Kotor in Montenegro, which was like sailing into the Norwegian Fjords, a beautiful sail in and the town was very interesting indeed. Again a first class cruise and now we looked forward to our next one on Odyssey. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We departed from Athens and disembarked in Istanbul on this small ship with 462 passengers. It was a pleasure trip which was put together to reunite a group of 15 couples, many of whom had attended a semester in college in Athens several ... Read More
We departed from Athens and disembarked in Istanbul on this small ship with 462 passengers. It was a pleasure trip which was put together to reunite a group of 15 couples, many of whom had attended a semester in college in Athens several years ago. The service and food were superior throughout the voyage. The ship is beautiful and the amenities on-board are first-class. This is one of the rare instances in which the advertising accurately depicts the product. The staff was uniformly attentive. The all-inclusive aspect eliminated the complication of straightening out complicated bar bills and dinner wine tabs with a group of people. We were given a tour of the bridge by the First Officer and the Executive Chef gave us a tour of the kitchen operation. There was a formal night in which most of the passengers participated in formal attire. The ports of call were the Greek Islands of Milos, Patmos, Mykonos, Rhodes and Lesvos and the Turkish cities of Kusadasi and Istanbul. The port excursions were well-considered and there were several options from which to choose. A Seabourn evening of classical music in the ruins of Ephesus outside of Kusadasi, Turkey was spectacular. The moon came up over the coliseum on cue and the candle lit tables, wine and music were perfect. All in, an exceptional trip and delightful crew which I highly recommended. The accommodations and public rooms were beautifully appointed and the small size of the ship provided intimacy and space. There is a small casino, four dining areas, a library, coffee bar, multiple cocktail bars, 2 pools, several hot tubs and outdoor sunbathing areas. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
I debated about writing this review as a part of me wanted to keep it a secret just how good this cruise line is. We had high hopes as you do when reading the marketing of any Company but always that has to translate through the ... Read More
I debated about writing this review as a part of me wanted to keep it a secret just how good this cruise line is. We had high hopes as you do when reading the marketing of any Company but always that has to translate through the delivery by staff. This Company live by what they say they will deliver. I don't know if it is the Company training or the Captain who set the standards but whoever they got it just right. Firstly the ship, we were a bit concerned it would be too small. this was not the case. the suites are spacious, bathrooms are the best of any ship we have been on. Beds and pillows really comfortable. The public areas were never crowded. this could in part be down to a different port daily but even when sailing it never felt crowded. I can't comment on the quality of the shows as I never made any of them! nearly always last out of dinner. Food first class, good choice. The Restaurant is fine dining service impeccable without being fake. Colonade for breakfast and theme dinners was less formal but still equal to a good city restaurant. Best bits for us were the whole atmosphere, no announcements, don't book this ship if you have children. this is not the market they cater for. If you want to be entertained there may not be enough to do, in fact there is little formal entertaining. That said I took a book and read the same page at least 2 dozen times and either fell asleep or had somewhere to go. The ports we called at had enough for the allocated time. Only niggles. The balcony door opens rather than slide but I suppose that is more economical for the air conditioning. I really could go on for ages about all the positives so why did I almost cry? On leaving the ship the captain and staff had lined up to say goodbye to every passenger. I did not want to leave anyway but this just topped it for me. Well done to every member of the crew for a job well done. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Seabourn Quest Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.6
Dining 4.5 4.3
Entertainment 3.5 3.9
Public Rooms 5.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 3.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 3.5 4.0
Service 4.5 4.5
Value For Money 4.5 4.0
Rates 5.0 4.3

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