1. Home
  2. Cruise Lines
  3. Crystal Cruises
  4. Crystal Cruises Cruise Reviews
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
Second time on Symphony and can't wait to get back.  First class service all the time, never a let up. Great ports of call in Beijing and all over Japan.  They took the entire ship to Beijing for a three day, two night ... Read More
Second time on Symphony and can't wait to get back.  First class service all the time, never a let up. Great ports of call in Beijing and all over Japan.  They took the entire ship to Beijing for a three day, two night excursion, all part of the cruise fee, nothing additional.  On top of that, the accommodations and food were first class and the sightseeing just incredible.  We had an amazing tour guide the entire three days, Oscar on Bus #22, and his contributions were essential in making Beijing a memorable stop. Japan is in full bloom with cherry blossoms so every stop was beautiful. All the stops were exciting.  The ship made the decision to miss a port to avoid possibly being stranded in the strait for a couple of days, courageous and correct decision and one that was well communicated to the entire ship. We had one problem on an excursion and Crystal immediately refunded our cost to us. Food was incredible.  Just cruised on Celebrity Solstice around New Zealand two months ago and they are about five levels below Crystal.  Nice having all inclusive cruising as well, even though we don't drink. Nice to be on a smaller ship, much easier to navigate around the place and to get to know other guests. Crystal did a good job filling up our "shared" dining table each night and we got to meet very nice people. The compromise in a smaller ship is the entertainment. While enthusiastic and well prepared, it is not to the level of quality we enjoyed on the Solstice sailing around New Zealand in February. We attended most every one of them, and enjoyed them, but it is a compromise in the more intimate ship size. We loved the destinations, all were up to our expectations and Crystal really know how to treat a guest. The staff are a complete cut above other cruise lines, a real distinction, and delightful to be around. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
chose the tour for Bali and Singapore. The good news: The food was superb, our sommerlier Mladen and Maitre D' Mario made the general seating dining a delight. The entertainment was a little old school but fun. The bars and ... Read More
chose the tour for Bali and Singapore. The good news: The food was superb, our sommerlier Mladen and Maitre D' Mario made the general seating dining a delight. The entertainment was a little old school but fun. The bars and nooks were great. It made us feel that we were frequenting our own little neighbourhood. We stayed in Ubud in Bali doing our own touring with the Safest Driver in Bali's driver. We loved our tour, our dinners, our experiences. We enjoyed Komodo Island. Brunei was a slice of life. Malaysia had an interesting mountain tour. Singapore is dazzling and fun. The bad: The ship boarding process was disappointing. There was no-one at the car park to direct us and welcome us (We've done Oceania in the past and you were passed from one warm greeting to another). Hence a bit of confusion finding our debarkation point. It was a dodgy gangplank. The ship's rooms are small (we had a balcony on the 9th floor just below the penthouse level) and had the whole ambience was 80s nostalgia. We understand at the end of this cruise the entire ship is in for refurbishing. There were 2 designated sittings. This created a sense of chaos of the first night - it wasn't dining, it was feeding. We spoke with Mario and thereafter we ate between the two sittings and it was divine. Our waitors and sommelier Mladen were relaxed and capable and we loved every meal and enjoyed a wonderful wine experience. The gym is too small for classes - I worried that weights being used by individuals may be a threat to class members. The port days needed work: Komodo island could have been tightened up; the snorkeling in the Philippines was dodgy and there were no flippers, the descent off the boat was hampered by lines that could have been unsafe, a lot of unhappy people, but the beach we ultimately ended up at was beautfiul; Rombon is a poor island - thought should be given to working with the community to organize an event that would benefit it and engage the visitors - something with the schools?; Brunei day tour dragged - 1/2 day was sufficient to see the main buildings and then perhaps an experience that deepened the appreciation of the museum. singapore we did our own thing and had some amazing walking tours and experiences. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
My wife, Rosy and I chose this cruise as it guaranteed warm / hot weather and having traveled from Singapore to Hong Kong last year, experiencing cool weather as we moved north, we decided we were more bothered about the weather than the ... Read More
My wife, Rosy and I chose this cruise as it guaranteed warm / hot weather and having traveled from Singapore to Hong Kong last year, experiencing cool weather as we moved north, we decided we were more bothered about the weather than the itinerary. We booked a package through a UK TA, including club class flights on Emirates and hotels / transfers in Singapore and Bali. Emirates offer club class pax free luxury transfers to and from home to LHR and from Singapore to hotel and on return from cruise terminal to airport. We booked one night at the Marina Mandarin, in Singapore and two nights at the Conrad Bali. Our package included a club flight on KLM from Singapore to Bali and transfers. After two nights at the very comfortable Conrad Bali, we were excited to be taking our first Crystal cruise. We took a 'blue' cab to the port, a journey of about 30 minutes costing about £6! This included a toll on the new access road and another to enter the port! On arrival, porters took our luggage for a fee, to the official porters and we entered the terminal building. Check-in soon commenced albeit a tad chaotically and we were soon on board. We were advised that lunch was being served in the dining room, but instead we opted to sit in the sun on deck 11/12. We were impressed by the pool deck, including decent sized pool and very large hot tub. We enjoyed some cool drinks before heading to the Lido Cafe for lunch. This was going to be a real challenge for me, as I had just been diagnosed with diabetes and had to eat and drink in 'moderation'. I was used to eating and drinking in liberation, on cruises. Lunch offered a good selection, but this didn't change much during the cruise, so I was a bit limited in what I could eat on a sugar free diet. Never mind, rather unusually I hardly gained any weight, whereas I usually gain at least a pound a day! The afternoon was spent unpacking, doing the laundry and on orientation. We didn't leave the port until the following morning, so the usual afternoon emergency drill took place just before departure. We had booked dinner in Prego, which was excellent, but it meant we would miss our late seating dinner on a table for eight, not meeting our table-mates until the 2nd evening. Our table seemed to be the place they used for occasional diners, as it was rare for even 6 of us to be there. Two couldn't have liked us, as after two days they switched tables only to return 6 days later. Anyway the 6 of us regulars got on really well. There was a couple from Miami Beach and another English couple from Somerset, very close to our home in Dorset. Thousands of miles from home and we meet near neighbours. Our waiter, from Poland, was a real misery, which was a huge disappointment. He kept recommending unsuitable dishes to me, despite several reminders of my medical condition. We found the evening entertainment a bit mixed, but I was often in bed by 10.30, so wasn't up to much myself. We loved the violinist / pianist duo in the lobby. The enrichment lectures were well attended and loved by Rosy. We both enjoyed the computer lessons and tips for I-phone / Ipad users. I completed an online travel survey and was rewarded with unlimited internet, so my needs were sorted. We were able to Skype family around 8pm, when we guessed most people would either be preparing for dinner or eating it. The dance lessons also seemed extremely popular and singles were well catered for with hosts of both sexes readily available. There were several tender ports and this operation was managed very poorly, with long lines on the staircases, which could be very dangerous. Disembarkation was a breeze, which was a relief after standing for 1-2 hours clearing immigration just to go shopping the previous day. Do Singapore want visitors? Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
Having cruised with Crystal before, we knew what was in store for us as we first cruised in 1995. The ship has aged graciously but there are tell tale signs after 22 years of tiring which is to be expected. The Hull of the ship was the ... Read More
Having cruised with Crystal before, we knew what was in store for us as we first cruised in 1995. The ship has aged graciously but there are tell tale signs after 22 years of tiring which is to be expected. The Hull of the ship was the worst I have seen her. In years gone by, you would have had to strain your eyes to find any rust marks but alas the maintenance in this area seemed lacking. Yes there have been cuts in services since she was first launched. Just small things, probably most noticeable in the Dining room. It does not have the class and grace it once had. Sad but probably a sign of the times. Food portions are much smaller and the service is much more rushed. Not unlike a cafeteria in some respects. Having your plate taken away when not finished for example would never have happened in the past. One thing that remains a standout are the staff. Good work guys and girls. A credit to you all. The dress code has been allowed to slip. Once apon a time it would be unthinkable to wear a singlet around the ship let alone into the breakfast restaurant. If I wanted to see that I would have gone on a Princess Cruise! The occasional vibration that emanates from the stabilizers during certain sea conditions continue to permeate throughout the ship and has done for many years. Maybe at the upcoming dry dock in September this will be addressed finally. Having said all of the above she is still a magnificent vessel and my wife and myself had a truly wonderful time on board. Embarkation was the quickest I have ever experienced. In fact we were the only people there. 10mins and we were in our Cabin. As was the disembarkation. No complaints here. Our Cabin attendant was without peer. The entertainment to be honest was noticeably below par from previous experiences with a few notable exceptions. Activities were good as were a few of the Lecturers. Couldn't really fault the service. Only did one shore excursion. It was on the dune buggies. These were very old and not safe. That bad in fact, we received a 50% refund from Crystal. I am assuming that the person who was responsible for reconnaissance for this trip is no longer in the employ of Cruise Line. Nothing much wrong with the Food but the sliding decline of authentic deserts is very evident despite their impeccable presentation. Breakfast was always of a high standard.The Trident deck food was excellent and casual as well as the ever effervescent attitude of the Ice cream Bar attendant. The Palm Court without doubt has its own special aura which has to be experienced. Silk Road stands out above the rest for both its excellent service and Food. At one stop the Ship allowed family members of some of the crew who obviously had not seen each other for a long period of time to come aboard. Seeing these families walking around the ship, impeccably dressed and with behaviour to match was wonderful to see. Would my wife and I cruise Crystal again? Absolutely. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2017
chose this cruise for destinations and inclusive options, we were not disappointed with either, my wife and I loved the ship staff, dining and itinerary, honestly can not fault the perfect cruise, magic castle at sea was such a treat as ... Read More
chose this cruise for destinations and inclusive options, we were not disappointed with either, my wife and I loved the ship staff, dining and itinerary, honestly can not fault the perfect cruise, magic castle at sea was such a treat as were the lectures, especially DR Laurence Blair, even on a sea day their were plenty of sunbeds to choose from and always a good conversation with mostly the nicest passengers we have had the pleasure to sail with, of course there's always going to be the odd exception, always a pleasure at the main restaurant, evening entertainment somewhat mixed, but loved the professional ballroom and Latin dancers on board, my wife made the most of the excellent ambassador hosts, and since returning home we are both having private dance classes as a result, of course when tender ports are involved there are always going to be issues but nothing to be worried about, all our tours were enjoyable, and cabin comfortable, we have since booked a cruise on the serenity. only negative is my wife usually has gym classes but deemed as previous passage mentioned area and size of gym not suitable, which is a shame. embarkation and disembarkation was seamless. Read Less
35 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
After reading so many positive CC reviews on the Crystal experience my wife and I decided to book a world cruise segment Shanghai to Japan nearly a year in advance.Expectations were running extremely high and remained so until a month ... Read More
After reading so many positive CC reviews on the Crystal experience my wife and I decided to book a world cruise segment Shanghai to Japan nearly a year in advance.Expectations were running extremely high and remained so until a month before sailing until we were told that due to Chinese regulations a day had be shaved off of our stay in Shanghai.I contacted Crystal asking if they would pay for my independently arranged flights to be changed at there expense they agreed then revoked on there agreement, hence we now lost a day in this fantastic city, our first time visit, once on board the CEO asks for initial feedback, I fed this back seen by the Hotel Director who advised it was being looked into, it was offered to have the flight changes refunded, as the flights had not been changed suggested equivalent cruise credits and was told 23rd April 2016 this would not happen, in summary offer/refused, offer/refused, not what I expected from a premium luxury cruise brand. Not onto the cruise experience, Embarkation was a breeze well handled and luggage in cabin prior to us arriving. Cabin was tiny really tiny for a luxury ship difficult to access wardrobes as they were extremely close to one side of a bed, toiletries were extremely basic for a luxury cruise brand, it was keep clean apart from one evening we returned to the cabin with a service tray ( not ours ) stating "" DO NOT TOUCH "" on it , called housekeeping and they could/would not give reasons as to why! Ship was beautiful kept really clean ( must have been as a result of the recent low CDC score ) and the public areas were generally good although showing signs of wear especially in the spa where there were stools with holes in etc. Now onto the food, this was not really up to standard maybe we was just unlucky but in 14 days only had one reasonable meal at the beginning of the voyage .The tastes were bland, unseasoned and often was delivered luke warm, we were told that on world cruises they have to not season food as the average age of clients is much higher and they prefer bland basic food, as compensation I was offered chilli flakes and Tabasco sauce, nice touch.The Buffet and deck grill were probably the best food offerings on our cruise, we also tried Prego, Silk Road and Tastes as alternative dinning all just average. The best aspect of the cruise were the staff, most appeared happy in there work and engaged with you and served well, some commented on cut backs since new ownership as when I asked for a Peronni or Moretti Italian beer was told used to offer but has been deleted due to it being a couple of cents more per bottle. Excursions , not very well organised and extremely expensive, for example over $400 USD per person for a 3 hour one stop visit to a tea ceremony, bonsai museum .There seemed to be poor organisation in clearing immigration in ports visited sometimes waiting in line for over an hour.The overland 3 day tour to Bejing was excellent and well organised this was included in the cruise fare. Whilst on the cruise Edie the CEO gave a lecture of the very ambitious expansion plans that she is heading up with the new owners, exciting as they are I couldn't help feeling that Crystal may be heading down the Renasance route. On speaking with many loyal Crystal Cruise clients they were really up set as to how the standards are falling so very quickly, they remain loyal as to the offers they get on future cruises make it difficult to divorce Crystal, the main issue was the cost cutting along with the sub standard food offered, they all blamed the new parent company. Would I book another Crystal Cruise ? No not unless there would be a guarantee of much better food , shore excursion and land base divisions keeping to there word. I have taken over 55 cruises probably 10 on premium lines and I am really sorry to say my Crystal experience did not come any where remotely close to meeting expectations, I feel duty bound to post ( in my opinion ) my experiences as I would not wish other potential first time Crystal cruise clients to experience what I did.This review is not intended to offend but is actual findings as reported on the post cruise questionnaire and directly to Crystal. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
Hi everyone: First let me say that I have no "axe to grind" with Crystal. I have cruised with them once previously, and did not have a negative experience, as I did this time. Secondly, when I let our Crystal cruise consultant ... Read More
Hi everyone: First let me say that I have no "axe to grind" with Crystal. I have cruised with them once previously, and did not have a negative experience, as I did this time. Secondly, when I let our Crystal cruise consultant know how disappointed we were about a number of items, she had the staff on the ship meet with me immediately. INTERNET Look, it may sound silly to complain about slow internet on a cruise, but hear me out, please. Yes, unless the weather is absolutely atrocious, you have no business streaming videos while on a luxury cruise on the other side of the world. But, it's not unreasonable to check emails--especially in this day and age. On the Serenity, it often would take minutes--yes minutes--for an email to open, or a simple web page (like CNN) to load. This is in contrast to Royal Caribbean: their internet is as fast as what I have at my home: you can stream videos on it no problem. This issue has to be addressed. FOOD Definitely acceptable, but very disappointing for the price you are paying. I am comparing the food on Crystal to that on Oceania and Seabourn. On this cruise it was a distant third. STAFF Very friendly and attentive. While they couldn't do anything about the slow internet and my disappointment in the lack of dessert variety, they were very attentive in listening to my complaints. ROOM Very nice. No issues. MISC. Maybe it was my fault for not realizing, or maybe it was not advertised--I don't remember--but the ten day cruise I was on was a portion of a "round the world," 90 day cruise. This meant a much older crowd than I would have preferred. These passengers were quite cliquish: if you weren't on the 90 day cruise, you weren't anybody. This isn't Crystal's fault, but I felt they should have advertised the longer cruise. Very poor television selection. Adequate DVD rentals available for your room, however. Entertainment: I prefer magic and comedians, both of which were absent, but other guests no doubt enjoyed the musicals and shows. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2015
We just spent 10 nights aboard the Crystal Symphony. We have traveled on Disney, Celebrity, Princess, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian so we have a lot to compare Crystal to. After experiencing the high level of service and great food it will ... Read More
We just spent 10 nights aboard the Crystal Symphony. We have traveled on Disney, Celebrity, Princess, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian so we have a lot to compare Crystal to. After experiencing the high level of service and great food it will be hard to go back to any other line. It started at check in, swift, easy and no line, NO HASSLES. The Symphony strikes a nice balance between size and intimacy, just right, with immaculate public areas and nice lounges. Our balcony room was as expected size wise with a WAY above average sized balcony. Food was 5 star, I do not equate a lot with great, just because you can eat all day does't make it great, Crystal's food was great. Only little complaints were I would have liked to see consistent items on the appetizer menu, like shrimp cocktail. The buffet hours were somewhat constrained, IE lunch from 12-2. Service was OUTSTANDING, servers asked your name on the first day and remembered them, not just some servers, MOST servers did! They couldn't help enough. It is so nice being all inclusive and not having to dig out your cruise card every time you want something. Yes you do pay for it up front as Crystal is not cheap, but you definitely get what you pay for. Crystal is not for kids as the ships have kids rooms but I doubt would have enough to keep most kids happy, if you want a rock wall better look elsewhere. Great experience overall!! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2015
First Crystal cruise. Relevant previous cruises 21 days on Regent. Beijing to Hong Kong. This might be my favorite cruise. Never a wait for anything on board. OK, Regent cabins are 300sf and Crystal Sympony 200 sf, both plus balcony, ... Read More
First Crystal cruise. Relevant previous cruises 21 days on Regent. Beijing to Hong Kong. This might be my favorite cruise. Never a wait for anything on board. OK, Regent cabins are 300sf and Crystal Sympony 200 sf, both plus balcony, but otherwise Crystal gets the nod, for service, especially drink service, and a bit better food. Service great for both. I really prefered the main dining room, no advantage to the (fake) Italian restaurant, Prego. Waiter mispronounced "limone." Regarding food, seafood on board arrives frozen, like on all ships. Salmon and lobster tails survive freezing well. Whole lobster, and crab legs, not so much, IMHO. Entertainment was pretty good. Nice that the lead singer/dancer was seasoned and not just another kid. So cabin was bit cramped but the ship was first class in great shape, and we would cruise on Crystal (which recently changed hands) again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
This was my sixth Crystal cruise and my fifth on Crystal Symphony. It really is a beautiful ship and the money they have spent on her over the last few years really shows. Palm Court is the most beautiful room on the ship but all the ... Read More
This was my sixth Crystal cruise and my fifth on Crystal Symphony. It really is a beautiful ship and the money they have spent on her over the last few years really shows. Palm Court is the most beautiful room on the ship but all the public areas are large, elegant and impeccably maintained. There are so many spaces, large and small, on the ship that you will always find the perfect spot for what you are in the mood for. If anything I think the service just keeps getting better, the staff get to know you on the first day and I am well remembered by those who worked on previous cruises. I like never having to queue for anything, all the small details are sorted out. I do find the reception staff quite frosty and not very helpful however. I usually book a room with a balcony but on Crystal you pay a big premium for the privilege. On this cruise I took a room on Deck 5 with just a picture window and no balcony and didn't really miss it. Every stateroom other than on the penthouse floor is absolutely identical in terms of size and appointments so think twice about paying the extra. The rooms are relatively small compared to many other luxury ships today but I don't find that an issue, depends how much time you like to spend in your room I guess. Sea days on Crystal are full of activities and there is plenty to choose from, their nightly entertainment is first rate and, even though I have seen most of the shows before, I still go along each night as the standard is so high. Having a catholic priest on board and being able to go to mass daily is also a big plus for me. The food in the specialty restaurants is fantastic, in the main dining room it isn't quite as good, the ship wasn't full by any means on this cruise but the main dining still seemed like being in a railway station, with harried staff rushing past all the time. It pays to know that you can select beverages and food items not on the menu - it's just a matter of asking but Crystal certainly doesn't let on that there are alternatives. The standard sauvignon blanc they had most nights was terrible but all I had to do was ask and they happily supplied something else. One night our table had a fabulous dessert which one of the table had ordered for us the night before and I heard of another table who ordered rack of lamb for their whole table even though it wasn't on the menu - you need to do this the prior day of course. I have been spoiled by Crystal and have no interest in evenly trying any other cruse line, I am already booked for my next cruise with them. Some may say I'm missing out on trying other experiences but I'm happy with what Crystal provide so why risk getting a lesser experience on another line? Read Less
Already Booked?

Get to know who you’ll be sailing with

Find a Cruise