17 Silversea Silver Spirit Cruise Reviews for Luxury Cruises to Mediterranean from Barcelona

We just returned from a Silverseas sailing on Silver Spirit from Barcelona to Rome. It was our first time with Silversea. I would give this cruise a mixed review. Likes: I liked our specious suite and the service was quite ... Read More
We just returned from a Silverseas sailing on Silver Spirit from Barcelona to Rome. It was our first time with Silversea. I would give this cruise a mixed review. Likes: I liked our specious suite and the service was quite good.  Dislikes: The dining options are rather limited. I did not like the fact that dinner started late- 7pm at the earliest.  And, I also thought the dress code on non formal nights was too formal. There was also no casual dining options in the evening except for room service. The shows were also on late - at 10pm. I would prefer the option to eat at 6 and go to a show at 8 or even 9. Also, I got ill- food poisoning. I am pretty sure it was from an oyster in the lunch buffet. I was sick all night, and then quarentined all the next day. After I recovered I was fine the rest of the trip. While I enjoyed luxury crusing, I don't think I would do Silversea again as I would prefer earlier dining options/earlier shows/less formal dining options. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
Chose the cruise for its itinerary to Gibraltar, Morocco, and Lisbon as well as ports in Spain. This was the ships second cruise after lengthening and refit which had a few punch item issues none of which impacted us. The food and wines ... Read More
Chose the cruise for its itinerary to Gibraltar, Morocco, and Lisbon as well as ports in Spain. This was the ships second cruise after lengthening and refit which had a few punch item issues none of which impacted us. The food and wines were top notch and the staff competent and responsive. The ports and excursions were well planned and very good. The only niggle was the self-service laundry which didn't work well and left clothes wet to air dry in the room. I should have listened to myself and sent out the laundry. Otherwise a marvelous experience. The embarkation & disembarkation was the smoothest we have experienced with over 17 cruises. The cabin was large and the bathroom spacious. We never used the tub and the shower was fine. Balcony set up with teak furniture. We never really participated in the entertainment as we were traveling with friends and ended up chatting. The casino was cozy and the staff friendly and helpful. Boarded in Barcelona (a great city to visit) and left in Lisbon (another interesting place). Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
From past experience with Silversea and this was a new itinerary for us. Positives were the usual Silversea attention and courtesy. Food not quite as good as in previous cruises. On shore excursions disappointing excessively lengthy. ... Read More
From past experience with Silversea and this was a new itinerary for us. Positives were the usual Silversea attention and courtesy. Food not quite as good as in previous cruises. On shore excursions disappointing excessively lengthy. Morning excursions sometimes returned to ship too late for lunch except on the pool deck where it was sometimes too cold to ne outside. However deck service was excellent as was service at other restaurants. Transfer from disembarkation to airport in Fiumicino left us with over four hours to wait for flight. Bus dropped us up at far end of terminal three and we had a long walk with luggage back to terminal one, when the driver could have dropped us off at terminal one which we drove right by. We had very long walk to the gate. Airport staff refused to help us. Silversea should tell passengers that there could be a long walk to gate and offer to provide transportation. Breakfast was always prepared too early with the result it was either cold or the butler had to wake us up too early. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Service was beyond expectation and the food in all venues superb. I liked the variety and ability to choose at no extra cost the different varieties of foods. Open dining was always a good choice. My favorite was La Dame even tho there was ... Read More
Service was beyond expectation and the food in all venues superb. I liked the variety and ability to choose at no extra cost the different varieties of foods. Open dining was always a good choice. My favorite was La Dame even tho there was a small charge where the food was comparable to the highest restaurant you would pay 4 times for. Rooms large and bathroom larger than expected loved the sitting area. Our butler and room service provided us with constant attention to our every whim. I am a great fan of smaller ships and silver spirit did not disappoint. The amenities in our room were great. I prefer the all inclusive venue. It makes the trip very enjoyable. The tours were very interesting and easy to pick from the descriptions. My favorite was valdemosa and la granja. I enjoyed all of our ports and even explored a couple on my own. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We chose this cruise because is was rated so well and was a smaller cruise ship. With that we expected more individualized service. We did not find the service or the food to be remarkable in any way. The better meals were at the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because is was rated so well and was a smaller cruise ship. With that we expected more individualized service. We did not find the service or the food to be remarkable in any way. The better meals were at the restaurants that you had to pay extra to dine at. I am a vegetarian and basically survived on French Fries, Salad, and pizza for two weeks. They were not able to meet my vegetarian requirements. For dinner I was actually offered an omelet on several occasions. They didn't even have an omelet station for breakfast in the morning so I ended up with scrambled eggs (they were doused in butter). Nothing was made to order. I could do better in a diner or a fast food restaurant. It was so upsetting. The staff would apologize and vow to make changes but every meal was so stressful and no matter what I ordered they seemed unable or unwilling to prepare it. One night I asked for eggplant parmigiana without the cheese and they would not accommodate me saying it was already prepared. The vegetarian soups were often made with beef or chicken stock so I was not able to eat the soup. Every meal was an ordeal and it was so stressful. We would eat as many meals as we could off ship where we could easily find vegetarian options. We discussed the problem several times with the managers and they would apologize profusely but the same problem would exist at the next meal to the point that I was having anxiety attacks at the thought of going to a meal on the ship. I have been on Disney, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and Carnival cruise and all of these cruise lines were able to accommodate me sufficiently. Why, with 5 star chefs, were they not able to come up with decent vegetarian options is beyond me. I will admit there were several decent meals but it was always stressful and nothing that ever rated 5 star in my mind. My husband who is not a vegetarian thought that the food was good but not outstanding. I was just surprised that they were so unable to meet my dietary restrictions. We did meet wonderful people on the cruise but I did hear other people make statements that the food was not as good as it should have been. We were also disappointment in the excursions. We went on one and then cancelled the others because we were so disappointed. Several of our fellow cruisers walks out of the excursion tour because the tour guide did not speak English well and did not seem to have any real knowledge of the sights he was showing us. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
My last voyage in Silver Winds was eccelent. But in this y had a desilution. Too much difference in all the services. Very good the cabin but a great difference in food specialist in the Terrace my favorite restaurant. A few change of ... Read More
My last voyage in Silver Winds was eccelent. But in this y had a desilution. Too much difference in all the services. Very good the cabin but a great difference in food specialist in the Terrace my favorite restaurant. A few change of dishes always the same. In the grill is imposible take lunch. Horrible. The higienic paper very low quality. The bread low quality and humedity, so always y must required to be toast, the only way for eat it. Very good all the bars. Very good yours hostess. The thatre was a low perfomance. Always the same. Y hope found a better erxpereance in another trip.Sorry of my poor englesh. Y hope to do another voyage with your company perhaps in a small ship an reverse this no agradable experience. Very good atención of Roca tours an Mr. Decimo. My best regards for all of you. Raul Rosental Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We had a fabulous experience in virtually every way two years ago on the Silver Wind so we were really looking forward to another cruise with Silversea. We chose this trip because of it's itinerary, but little did we expect that the ... Read More
We had a fabulous experience in virtually every way two years ago on the Silver Wind so we were really looking forward to another cruise with Silversea. We chose this trip because of it's itinerary, but little did we expect that the excursions would be led by such poor guides and leaving us with a very unsatisfied feeling about the cost vs value received . Realistically, the rest of the cruise could have been perfect but with excursions being so poor and also VERY expensive, it is hard to come away with a good feeling about the TOTAL experience. In fairness: the food was excellent, the ship offered an outstanding sommelier program which was truly a highlight (and FREE), excellent guest speaker from Columbia University, our butlers were fantastic and totally on the ball, the wines served on the cruise were very interesting, often regional according to port and well thought out, dinner at La Dame was amazing and even for a non-sushi lover-the food at Senshei was excellent, entertainment was very good most nights but not as frequent as it could have been in my view, bar service and restaurant was top notch and very accomodating. One last item-the ship is very dated decor wise but we were told it is going to be retrofitted next year. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
went on one last year to Alaska and loved it My husband spoiled us by getting the owner's suite which was really luxurious. However, we were extremely disappointed in how few shows the crew of six performed - why were there two ... Read More
went on one last year to Alaska and loved it My husband spoiled us by getting the owner's suite which was really luxurious. However, we were extremely disappointed in how few shows the crew of six performed - why were there two movie nights and two done by Mr. Moss - one of his would have been more than enough. There must be a better system in getting reservations for La Dame - people should be charged the per person fee if they don't cancel by noon that day - it was a shame that there were empty tables both times that we were there but the food was outstanding. Food was only mediocre in the dining room; far better in La Traviata. The excursion for La Hambre needs to be addressed in order to not have so many people on the waiting list. I also don't understand how a biking tour done thru you could be so much more money than going thru Viator. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
I'm afraid that Silversea has gone downhill since last I sailed with them on the Silver Spirit. There's a sense that someone somewhere high up has enforced cost cutting and that there's a malaise affecting some, many even, ... Read More
I'm afraid that Silversea has gone downhill since last I sailed with them on the Silver Spirit. There's a sense that someone somewhere high up has enforced cost cutting and that there's a malaise affecting some, many even, of the staff. The food has nose dived into novelty crockery as a substitute for really good cooking and consequently majors on elaborate concept and presentation at the expense of quality. We ate at all of the on-baord restaurants and sadly, though Seishin was great and Champagne pretty good (apart from the appallingly slow service) things went downhill from there. The Restaurant was reasonable, the Grill depressing and La Terraza too variable (fair lunches, poor dinner). Worst was Stars which, one night was fair and another was - well, there's no polite way of saying it. Overall they need to go back to basics on food: its ambition should be to taste delicious and if it can then tick the boxes contemporary fancy presentation and theme, that's fine. But at the moment the cart is in front of the horse. It was a relief to eat on shore from time to time - and not at fancy places either. Service was often chaotic and sometimes just bad tempered, though many members of staff were excellent. Don't try getting a coffee at breakfast at La Terraza unless you order it quite a while before you go to get your food. Cabins: really nice, spacious, comfortable, great linens and pillows and beds and toiletries, lovely butler. Overall, the luxury is mostly in the 'lifestyle' marketing. The reality is a bit depressing and literally everyone in our large group agreed with this. It isn't the value it used to be and it needs to drop the gimmicks and focus on getting the key things - service and quality of cuisine - right. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Every couple of years, a group of us (on average 15-20) will take a luxury cruise. It is an opportunity to treat ourselves and to see parts of the world we've never seen. Unfortunately, this year was the year of disappoint for our ... Read More
Every couple of years, a group of us (on average 15-20) will take a luxury cruise. It is an opportunity to treat ourselves and to see parts of the world we've never seen. Unfortunately, this year was the year of disappoint for our cruising experience. Everything was difficult -- booking a tour, trying to get help, trying to make reservations at restaurants. Any time we asked for help, the first response was "That's not possible", instead of "I will look into that and try to help you." We even jokingly started calling certain service personnel "Dr. No" because they kept saying "No" to everything. Separately from the service, with very few exceptions the food was mediocre at best, and generally poor most nights in main dining hall. Unfortunately, all of the smaller restaurants were booked or didn't have the capacity to absorb more than a few dozen people (if that). So, we were not able to make alternate arrangements. I would not recommend this cruise or Silversea to anyone unless they change their attitude, the quality of service, the quality of food and update the ship. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We cruised on Silversea's Spirit from Barcelona to Rome, August 8, 2017 for 9 days. We chose Silversea's because of their sterling reputation for service and they did not let us down, and I commend the Silverseas staff who ... Read More
We cruised on Silversea's Spirit from Barcelona to Rome, August 8, 2017 for 9 days. We chose Silversea's because of their sterling reputation for service and they did not let us down, and I commend the Silverseas staff who are professional, warm and engaging. They get to know their guest's quickly -however there were other areas that disappointed us greatly. The ship itself was in good to average shape but starting to show some wear and tear and in need of a re freshening. Our veranda cabin was a nice size and comfortable BUT the restroom had a horrible smell that pretty much ruined our cruise from day one. The staff (both housekeeping and engineering) worked diligently to try and find the cause and correct it, but unfortunately they were never able to. I immediately brought this odor issue to the attention of our butler, his supervisor, engineering, the head of housekeeping and guest relations. I honestly believe it was an embarrassment to them and it should be. We were never offered another cabin or any kind of compensation, which I thought was surprising and disappointing. The service at the dining venues was excellent, the food was good, but I felt like the hours of operation of the restaurants were too rigid. I was also disappointed that for the evening meal there was no type of buffet option like on Seabourn or Oceania. In all fairness they offer room service 24 hours, but that is not what I was looking for. I was not very impressed with the excursions. Most of them tended to be longer than necessary and not much in the way of enrichment. Of the 5 excursions we did, only 2 were truly enjoyable and fun. Next time I cruise it will probably be with Seabourn. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This was our 5th cruise with Silver Sea (in 5 years). Our second time on Spirit. The best things about this cruise were the condition and cleanliness of the cabins, our butler and room attendant were so accommodating, friendly and ... Read More
This was our 5th cruise with Silver Sea (in 5 years). Our second time on Spirit. The best things about this cruise were the condition and cleanliness of the cabins, our butler and room attendant were so accommodating, friendly and professional and the Captain letting us stay longer in Elba to experience the holiday's firework display! The Elba experience really was the highlight of the cruise! As far as the dining experience, the wine selection was great as usual. Dining in the Main Restaurant, Seishin, Le Champagne, Stars, La Terrazza and in-suite dining were excellent. Dinner at the Pool Grill was poor and really needs to be addressed. The steaks and shrimp were very disappointing. Nothing impressive! The shore excursions in Palma, Alghero, Elba and Florence were good to excellent. The local tour guides can make or break the tour experience. I think evaluations by customers should be completed and submitted after every tour to provide Silver Sea with feedback. We did have a "tainted" water event, where the water running from the bathroom sink and in the toilet were discolored. We reported the situation and upon return from our excursion, a note was posted on everyone's door about what happened and what was done to correct. It would've been nice if someone personally came by and spoke to us about it. Our Butler checked in with us, but to us, it should've been someone in charge. For whatever reason, we feel that our experiences on the smaller ships (Wind and Whisper) were much better and really exemplified luxury cruising. It felt cozier, friendlier and the quality of service and food was so much better on the smaller ships. We will take this into consideration when planning our next cruise on Silver Sea. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Our first cruise, Silversea was recommended by friends. Liked our cabin #751. Good location, roomier than I expected. Good size balcony. Excellent butler. All staff werevery friendly, helpful. Restaurant staff very attentive and ... Read More
Our first cruise, Silversea was recommended by friends. Liked our cabin #751. Good location, roomier than I expected. Good size balcony. Excellent butler. All staff werevery friendly, helpful. Restaurant staff very attentive and accommodating. Excellent breakfast buffet and restaurant menu. Dinner menus monotonous. Should have several daily specials. Room service daily menus should be available all day in all restaurants. After 2:00pm had to order room service if you wanted lunch. Most excursions got back to the ship after 2:00. The entire ship is too air conditioned. I was cold all the time. Broughtclothes for hot Mediterranean weather not cold. Had one sweater with me and wore it all the time. Had to go out on deck or balcony just to get warm. Would like to have a few shows late afternoon or evening, too tired after a full day to stay up until 10:00 for a show, Was looking forward to the casino but there was never anyone there. Don't want to play Blackjack with just the dealer and no one else in the room. There should be more than one washing machine and dryer on each deck. We had to run from one deck to another to do laundry. Fernando, the Cruise Director, was an interesting guy, very friendly, always remembered your name. Thought the train shore excursion on Mallorca was kind of boring. The Old Villages excursion on Ibiza was a waste of money. Total joke. A couple of cafes a bar and a church. Glad we didn't book anything on Sardinia and Elba. Did enjoy the Menorca excursion that excluded cheese tasting. Pisa and Florence excursions very well done. All excursions we took were very organized, guides made sure everyone was accounted for and could find their way back to meeting place at end. The public spaces on ship seemed a little tired and stodgy, need redoing. My husband and I enjoyed most the cruising into and out or ports.Liked sitting on the balcony and watching. For our first cruise I was dissipointed, my husband enjoyed it more than I did. Maybe I'm just not a cruise person. Felt like I was living in a bubble, a safe space. End. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
AFTER 14 years of Mass Market Cruising I was given the opportunity to step out of the box and sail a luxury line. I did a lot of research and found SIlversea and I am so glad It exceeded expectations. Small ship, (500 pax range). Food, ... Read More
AFTER 14 years of Mass Market Cruising I was given the opportunity to step out of the box and sail a luxury line. I did a lot of research and found SIlversea and I am so glad It exceeded expectations. Small ship, (500 pax range). Food, service, entire ambiance is just awesome. Cabins are large and comfortable. BIG Walk In closet and BIG bathroom. Nice size balcony too. Oh, the towels......I LOVE THEM.....BIG BATHSHEETS.....so fluffy! And the toiletries offered are BVGALRI.........outstanding. The food/service were all excellent. Staff is warm and welcoming. Food all very fresh and they will make you whatever you want if you don't find something on the menu that is appealing. Even the buffet is wonderful. Both breakfast and lunch, all so fresh, many choices and everything is always kept clean and spotless and the wait staff willeven carry your plate to your table. They are all always there to help. There are several restaurants on board, I tried 3 of them and was quite impressed. The GRILL.......you cook on a hot stone, a lot of fun. La Terrazza, Italain and STARZ,which was my favorite. It has a tasting menu and there is entertainment too. A singerand piano player who were both very good. The singers and dancers were pretty good too. I went to 3 or 4 shows throughout thecruise.....enjoyed most all of them. I met some lovely folks on board. I sail solo and there were quite a few other single/solo passengers on board. And I met other folks too......most everyone was friendly. You always get the occasional mean spirited guest...that happened too but overall,I found everyone pleasant and friendly. We sailed from Barcelona to Rome and I loved the itinerary. I took all my tours throughthe cruise line and was impressed. My favorite place is FLORENCE and loved it! If you are able to sail luxury, I would highly recommend SILVERSEA. I even gave thema payment for an "open booking"..........now I need to find another cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this cruise for the itinerary but, this specific week, because of the weekend watching the Grand Prix in Monoco. We began in Barcelona, a city we were anxious to see. We enjoyed seeing all the Gaui buildings but La Sagrada ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary but, this specific week, because of the weekend watching the Grand Prix in Monoco. We began in Barcelona, a city we were anxious to see. We enjoyed seeing all the Gaui buildings but La Sagrada Familia was truly a work of art. It is a reason, in itself, to come to Barcelona. Cannes, even with all the crowds for the film festival, is a beautiful city. Monte Carlo (and the Grand Prix) speaks for itself. As does the charming little town of Portofino. It was so pleasant to just stroll around the town. The side excursion to Florence left us breathless and wanting to return. As did our stay in Rome and the sites we saw. Could not have asked for a more perfect itinerary. The ship was very luxurious. Our cabin was quite large and very well appointed. The choices for meals were many. And the menu in each of the restaurants was outstanding, meal after meal. There was enough entertainment to fill the evenings and it was all quite professional and enjoyable. The service by everyone was impeccable. Our personal butler could not do enough for us. Everyone always greeted us with a smile and hello - all the day long. It was obvious that everyone had the same mission - to make our stay aboard the very best. And it was. While you can't take credit for the weather - that too was perfect - the entire trip. All pre and post travel arrangements were very well done and took the stress out of our travels. Thanks SilverSea Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We are in our 70's and this was a cruise with friends, back to back Barcelona/Civitavecchia/Barcelona. Embarkation was smooth but one of our cases got misplaced on debarkation causing a bit of a panic. Service was, for the most ... Read More
We are in our 70's and this was a cruise with friends, back to back Barcelona/Civitavecchia/Barcelona. Embarkation was smooth but one of our cases got misplaced on debarkation causing a bit of a panic. Service was, for the most part outstanding, including cabin steward, butler, maitre d's, waiters, bar staff, room service. All excellent. The food however was a big disappointment in the main dining room sometimes cold, not very tasty, tough meats. Pasta was usually good but over salted. Seishin (extra cost) was particularly poor, and the Italian restaurant was average. Champagne restaurant was outstanding both times we went. but you have to pay extra for that. Many people we talked to commented on the poor food and particularly Seishin. Wines were average at best, the wine we kept going back to was a Bogle Chardonnay that is about $8 in the grocery stores. One could of course pay extra for wine, but on a cruise costing $1000 per day one expects better. Wifi was abysmally slow. The decor on the ship is looking very tired and dark. Our cabin furniture was showing signs of wear and dents. Silversea is, I believe, in a cost cutting mode in an attempt to improve profitability. Good Luck with that approach. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We have only done a few ultraluxury cruises before, including with Silversea, so we are not as experienced as many on these boards and perhaps my expectations were too high. Overall we had a very nice time, with a few annoyances and ... Read More
We have only done a few ultraluxury cruises before, including with Silversea, so we are not as experienced as many on these boards and perhaps my expectations were too high. Overall we had a very nice time, with a few annoyances and disappointments. This was an anniversary cruise for us, focussed on the Monaco Grand Prix, as we are big Formula One fans (we DVR and watch all the F1 races at home) We booked 8 months ahead of time to assure we would get space and tickets to the race that were being organized by Silversea, so we would not have to worry about the hassle of getting to/from seats at the track or having to fend for ourselves at what we expected to be a very crowded event with potential for disorganization and "mob scene" we wished to avoid. We had made our own arrangement in Barcelona for four night before the cruise, as I could not get timely pre-cruise hotel information from the Silversea booking agent despite several attempts. Barcelona is awesome, we plan to go back for more days. EMBARCATION: flawless, no lines even though it was just 1.5 hours before latest check-in time, painless passport check, pleasant and welcoming staff starting right at the port when the cab dropped us. SHIP: The Spirit was clean, smooth and comfortable everywhere and everything seemed to work. Public areas were uncrowded and low stress. The African themed art hanging in some of the hallways was, to me, pretty ugly and uninspired, but other than that the decor was tasteful and elegant. I have a back and muscle problem so the soft and comfortable dining chairs in all the indoor and outdoor venues were especially appreciated. SUITE and SUITE SERVICE: Our 365 sq-ft (counting veranda) V5 suite was and remained immaculate through the cruise. Our butler Jerry and his cleaning helper Larry (really) introduced themselves almost immediately, and they efficiently filled and refilled our unusual mini-fridge stocking requests. My towel gluttony request for always having six bath towels on hand was honored. The bed was nice and soft, the bathtub and separate shower and bath toiletries (there is a choice, I chose Bulgari) were perfect. The retractable clothesline over the tub was welcome for small items, though we also used daily laundry service regularly and our clothes were only lost (and then quickly found) once. The veranda lounge chairs were ergonomically just right for positioning my difficult back and legs. We used room service for appetizers a few times and it was prompt, food was tasty. In addition, after a particularly long excursion, the butler surprized us with an unexpected array of appetizers as well, anticipating we'd be tired and hungry. Internet wi-fi was slow and expensive as it always is on cruises, but way better than on our last SS cruises (Alaska, South America). For $250 we got the 1000 minute package and the speed was fast enough to get a reasonable amount of work and communication done and still have leftover minutes. DINING: surprizingly, a mixed bag. Our favorite was the Stars Supper Club, where we ate on formal night (you can be informal there) and were pleasantly surprized with sequential tasty small bites and a sultry singer. La Terrazza outdoor deck dining on the buffet food was efficient, uncrowded and reasonably tasty for breakfast and lunch, and dinner the first night was exquisite, though table service (coffee) was spotty in the mornings. The 3 dinners and 1 breakfast we had in the dining room were mostly just good enough, nothing wow like we'd had on the Silver Cloud. The gratis white and red wines poured were mostly the Silversea label which I did not care for, so we just ordered and paid extra off the Connoisseur menu. Seishin was interesting, tasty sashimi, though the waitress struggled for several minutes with the mechanics of how to open a bottle of special wine we'd ordered (after having first brought the wrong bottle). But she also noticed I was using my hand fan, because the room was hot, and immediately set off to get the AC turned up. Breakfast in the room always arrived on time and with what we ordered, though the offerings of European style "lunch meats" that were there and all over the ship were tasteless. SERVICE: Mostly good, though there was one lady at reception who did not seem to like her job and who had some attitude problems, and some of the (mostly Filipino, not uncommonly talking Tagalog to each other in public areas) wait and cleaning staff seemed tired, especially towards the end of the cruise. One annoying episode was where we'd ordered a Connoisseur wine we did not finish that we wanted to take back to our suite to store for the next day (we always bring the air removal pumping devices for this purpose). The waiter insisted on sending someone to bring the wine to our suite, rather than letting us just carry it ourselves (it really isn't that heavy!). We waited a half hour in our suite, putting off going to sleep as we anticipated a door knock, and the wine did not appear, so I got redressed and set out to track it down. No one seemed to know where it was, until finally, it appeared, late (the next night we knew better, and just carried the wine back ourselves :) ENTERTAINMENT: the only show other than in Stars we went to was opera night, where a mezzo named Victoria Morgan moved me to tears with the beauty of her voice singing Carmen, but one of the male singers was just so-so. PORT AND SHORE EXCURSIONS: -- some guides were great, some not so good, all excursions we did (except for the separately organized F1 race) were good and worth the price, with clean buses and functioning AC, and though the toilets on the buses were routinely locked, the bus driver on one excursion stopped and opened up the toilet for a desparate passenger, which was nice. SETE: all-day excursion to Carcassonne, interesting. About a one hour drive in a comfortable bus with AC, then you see a charming hillside medieval walled town. The local guide who gave a brief tour was terrible (heavy accent, plus the heavy wind this area is known for did not help), though he tried. There was time for a leisurely early lunch of cassoulet (we chose Le Jardin De Templier near the Basilica). It was nice we had enough time for a local lunch, as opposed to just a stroll to buy souvenirs, and time to tour the fortress. A Russian Orthodox choral group happened to be performing in the Basilica, lovely. CANNES: two days -- wonderful. One day we did an excursion to St. Paul de Vence and Chateau de Saint-Martin for wine tasting . Though St. Paul was cute (warning -- steep walking!), the trip to the beautiful Relais and Chateaux location of Saint-Martin alone, where excellent wines and appetizers were served on a gorgeous view patio, was worth the excursion fee. No herding, no mad rush. The only disappointment was that we could not buy the wines we'd just tasted on site. The next day we went on the Nice and Perfumerie Fragonard excursion. This was well-organized but it is a long drive, lots of traffic (included time to buy wholesale quality perfume after a tour of the production facilities). When we stopped in Nice, after some traffic, a guest asked the local guide about toilets and the guide said there were none other than going into a cafe to buy a coffee , "that is just the way things are done here." After we'd wandered around a couple minutes we found immaculate, staffed public pay toilets at the nearby Seven Continents Square (hard to miss), so I mentioned this when we got back on the bus, for the guide's future reference for guests. She defensively said, "Yes, they are there, but I did not mention this because you have to pay 50 cents!" Perhaps local excursion guides should be advised that it is likely Silversea pax would not mind paying 50 cents for a clean toilet?? :) AJACCIO: On embarkation, we were told the Clos Capitoro Wine Tasting excursion out of Ajaccio was cancelled, so we rebooked into the Walking Tour and Fesch Museum option. Then that tour was also cancelled the night before, and none of the remaining tours appealed to us so we set out walking the lovely town on our own (which actually turned out fine). The Fesch Museum is worth a visit, do not miss the Corsican art in the basement which was our favorite. MONACO, 2 days. EXCUSIONS TO NICE AND EZE -- Medieval Eze is beautiful (VERY steep to walk up to!), but unfortunately we were too early in the day, and did not have enough time to have a leisurely lunch in one of the excellent (and expensive) local dining venues. Had just enough time (45 min) for a stroll, drink, and pictures, or a quick purchase. MONACO GRAND PRIX PACKAGE -- Key issue: You will not have VIP seats or service at the race! Two nights before the race we were issued F1 package swag bags which consisted of a cheap mini-backpack with F1 programs, ear plugs, some cheap binoculars, a tiny plastic rain poncho, and our lanyards and tickets. We were given a detailed orientation RE how to get to and from the ship to the track. Access would be only to the races that day (Sunday), not Saturday's qualifying, no pit walk, no special access, just regular grandstand bleacher seats for Sunday, is what we should expect. We were told our seats would be mostly in the K2 section grandstands, "near the checkered flag" (though it turned out we could not see the checkered flag from our seats, as it was up and behind us). We'd been told at booking, and that night, that there would be a "former F1 driver" at the upcoming cocktail party, but we were still not told who it would be until we got the late night newsletter on our bed, where a wiki printout of the bio on Allan McNish awaited us. McNish had started in only 17 F1 races, so technically he was indeed a "former F1 driver" and Silversea did not lie, though his greatest fame was actually that he was a 3-time American Le Mans Series champion. Then the night before the race a special, formal cocktail party in La Terrazza, with excellent canapes and champagne and almost everyone dressed to the nines. A lot of the pax there seemed less interested in F1 than in just being where they thought they should be so they could tell people about it when they got home, but many were hardcore car buffs, and it was nice to meet fellow afficionados. This was followed by an entertaining talk given by McNish, who was a great speaker and we were happy to meet him even though we'd never heard of him RE F1 racing until this trip. Then we had a special dinner with not extra special food at La Terrazza with fellow F1 fans. Then came the actual race on Sunday: we tendered in early to allow time to walk up the hill to the track. The streets were a zoo, full of souvenir shops and tourists as well as high end boutiques, some ladies in outrageously gawdy outfits as you'd expect, but mostly just casual attire like we'd been told to wear. No drivers or celebrities viewed. Our grandstand seating (no backrests), out in the blazing sun was indeed in K2 and, as noted, we could not see the checkered flag. Toilets were few and far away dirty portable units with LONG LINES (3 stalls, one broken, for hundreds of women), so we were afraid to eat or drink anything though the drunken Aussies behind us (not SS pax) kept climbing over us in the bleachers to go get more beer. Overhead announcements were hard to hear and the display board showing driver standings had big delays. As we sat for a few hours, uncomfortable, trying to focus on the race, we longingly gazed at others in town who were luxuriating watching the race from commercial service yachts and hotels, drinking champagne and eating lunch in real chairs, (presumably with access to clean toilets), thinking that if we'd paid a few hundred dollars more (we looked it up), we could have been there instead of suffering on our bleachers. For $1500 per person, we (perhaps unrealistically) expected more, and would not do this again, as we are not interested in bragging rights for just having been there (when we got home, we then watched the race on TV:) PORTOFERRAIO -- we took the tour across the island first, and then toured Napoleon's old villa, nice views and some interesting history. Could have skipped the island tour and just toured the villa on our own. DISEMBARKATION smooth, no problems, took the bus SS had organized to the airport SUMMARY: overall an entertaining cruise, with mostly excellent service on an uncrowded ship, though we probably would have picked a different Silversea cruise (or bought our own GP tickets with better seats) if we'd known the Grand Prix experience was going to be so uncomfortable relative to the price. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Silver Spirit Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 5.0 3.9
Entertainment 4.0 3.5
Public Rooms 5.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.5
Family 2.0 3.5
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.5
Service 5.0 4.3
Value For Money 5.0 3.7
Rates N/A 4.0

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