127 Hong Kong Luxury Cruise Reviews

My cousin, Alec Graham, had cruised several times with Silversea, and he asked us to accompany him and his wife on the cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore, which we did. It was a terrific experience, as my cousin and other friends of ... Read More
My cousin, Alec Graham, had cruised several times with Silversea, and he asked us to accompany him and his wife on the cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore, which we did. It was a terrific experience, as my cousin and other friends of ours predicted. The ship was perfect in comfort and seaworthiness, the cabin comfortable and lacking nothing at all, the steward well-trained and very affable, the food very good in all the restaurants. On the sailing and entertainment side, the crew was always accessible and helpful, the entertainment program top quality with crew members doing a super job singing and dancing, and outside talents first rate, and the theater is very good in layout and acoustics. Finally, the shore excursions support group was definitely up to the challenges they faced on a daily basis, transportation vehicles and Immigration paperwork were no problem, and the restaurants chosen were very good as well. We're already looking for another cruise for this year! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We explored our departure and ariival cities on our own. We used some of the ship's excursions and also those provided by Abercrombie & Kent. The ship definitely needs to be ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We explored our departure and ariival cities on our own. We used some of the ship's excursions and also those provided by Abercrombie & Kent. The ship definitely needs to be refurbished - it's old and tired looking. The gym, spa and beauty parlor also needs to be modernized. Our cabin was nice and spacious - just a bit dark and very small veranda that needed to be better maintained. The TV in the room didn't work well and the ship should provide more than 1 hour of wifi service per day. The food and service in Main Dining Room was very good. La Terraza restaurant was OK and the buffets offered during the day were mediocre. Room service was very good!! Our meal in Le Champagne was outstanding! The evening in La Terraza on the 19th featuring the visiting French chef was excellent! The Grill during lunch was OK but the wait staff were frequently overwhelmed with the number of guests to serve. The SilverSea singers were very talented and enjoyable, the pianist, Nataliia was excellent but the guitarist/singer Charlie's repertoire was not current. The girls in the Beauty Parlor should speak better English. Our wait staff were all great as were the butler and his assistant. The Concierges need more training on what if offered in the Ports of call. It's time for the Cruise Director to retire. We would go again perhaps on a newer ship. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Wanted to see Asia for the first time, we were on this phone two months after it was launched in, South America. I can remember the services being some of the best I've ever had told my friends it was just like eating at a fine ... Read More
Wanted to see Asia for the first time, we were on this phone two months after it was launched in, South America. I can remember the services being some of the best I've ever had told my friends it was just like eating at a fine restaurant we're staying at a luxury hotel, those things have change drastically, most restaurants were hard to get into if not impossible, waitstaff varied from being Very good to not knowing what they were doing at all. My wife and I will continue to search for ship that meets our expectations. Suggestions would be that the Service is improved through better training of the people in charge of the guests, you should do away with the reservations on the restaurants, many restaurants were not filled to capacity, and the excuse was we did not have enough waitstaff to appropriately serve the extra tables , therefore we did not Seat them, Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We recently completed a 14 day cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore. The itinerarywas great as it took us to Vietnam, Thailand and terminated in Singapore. Before booking this cruise I specifically asked if the ship had been refurbished ... Read More
We recently completed a 14 day cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore. The itinerarywas great as it took us to Vietnam, Thailand and terminated in Singapore. Before booking this cruise I specifically asked if the ship had been refurbished and was assured that indeed it had been. However, Silversea uses this word differently than most people on our cruise as the dated decor was the common unifying topic amongst the guests. It was extremely disappointing as the interior is in serious need of modernization; the color scheme, the upholstery, the furnishings and the carpet all need work. The attention to detail that used to distinguish Silversea appears to have disappeared. Gone is the champagne waiting in your suite when you arrive, the orchid is left in it's plastic container and stuffed into a too small ceramic pot so balances precariously. The food on board was equivalent to mediocre hotel banquet fare. A number of the included shore excursions were not worth the time. A visit to the Artist Village in Ho Chi Minh City was so bad that one bus load from the ship convinced their tour guide to return them to the ship ahead of schedule, while others from the ship called taxis to take them back to the ship rather than waiting for the tour to be over. I understand the guests who took the Ko Samui Jeep Tour had an equally unsatisfactory experience as well. Not sure I'm going to rush back to Silversea but instead will try some of it's competitors as it appears Silversea has lost it's way. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Choose your cruise mates the way you choose your food. That’s because chances are the people you cruise with will determine the kind of food served on the ship. And, of course, the kind of companionship and conversation you will ... Read More
Choose your cruise mates the way you choose your food. That’s because chances are the people you cruise with will determine the kind of food served on the ship. And, of course, the kind of companionship and conversation you will enjoy. For example, when up-market travel specialists Abercrombie & Kent USA chartered Ponant’s L’Austral for a Ryukyu Islands cruise from Osaka to Taiwan and Hong Kong, most of those A&K passengers came from the U.S. So A&K arranged with the ship to provide menus and food items that would appeal to Americans – even though some people on that cruise came from other countries. If you had been expecting rich French food and strong cheeses, you might have been disappointed with the more U.S. style of food items on offer – though, of course, their quality and quantity were what you would expect on a good cruise ship. Still, most cruise ship kitchens will respond to reasonable special requests if, in the above case, you had asked for more French style food…or for a strong cheese. Presumably that sort of cuisine was regularly served to at least the senior officers. Re-provisioning on this trip took place whenever the opportunity presented itself – taking on local seafood or fruit, for example. So that was always a treat. While the cruise ship provides the base for all the action – both on the water and on land – people who travel with A&K are looking for adventure experiences. This president's cruise (which turned into a chairman's cruise, reflecting former A&K USA president Phil Otterson's promotion to chairman of the board) certainly delivered – and, as a bonus, included a captain who had been captured along with his crew and ship by Somali pirates. But more about that later. This is an ideal expedition style ship, with just 134 passenger cabins yet with all the comforts and extras you come to expect from a luxury small ship. The balconies are actually wide enough to comfortably fit two chairs and an ottoman. Our itinerary took us to many of the little-known, little-visited Ryukyu Islands stretching away from the southwestern end of Japan’s main islands. The docks could accommodate us, so it was easy to embark and disembark to go ashore to explore the countryside on one of the three excursions A&K offered at each stop. As for the Somali pirate incident, that ship-napping took place in 2008 when Somali pirates fired on and then boarded the sailing ship Le Ponant, under the command of Patrick Marchesseau, now L’Austral’s captain. “It was scary when they came shooting at us with their Kalashnikovs but then it turned into more of a business transaction,” says Marchesseau, who managed to bargain the pirates down to USD$2 million from their original USD$3 million demand. His crew of 30, including seven women who had initially hidden below decks, were released; the captain was held hostage until the money had been paid. French navy helicopters then managed to capture some of the pirates, who had scattered on land, and recovered 20 per cent of the ransom. “When I told my three young daughters about what happened, I said it was like Captain Hook and I was Peter Pan,” said Marchesseau, who lives in Edmonton with his Canadian wife. He was awarded France’s Medal of Chevalier of the Legion of Honour and wrote a book about the hijacking. But even if your captain hasn’t been captured by pirates, the bottom line is: think international when you go cruising these days and enjoy more than just your home culture. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
21 cruises and 19 years after we first set sail on Radisson's "Song of Flower", which soon became Ponant's "Le Diamant", we at last experienced L'Austral and French hospitality. In the meantime we have ... Read More
21 cruises and 19 years after we first set sail on Radisson's "Song of Flower", which soon became Ponant's "Le Diamant", we at last experienced L'Austral and French hospitality. In the meantime we have sailed on many Seabourn cruises, some Radisson/Paul Gauguin, several Silversea, and a memorable trans-Atlantic trip on Cunard's QM2. We should have joined Ponant years earlier. As we made our way south along the coast of Vietnam, eventually to reach Brunei and Kota Kinabalu, we were delighted to find we again were back in the golden days of cruising; before the vessels were overrun with some of the grumpy non-travellers who have written some of these reviews. First, we were at last free of the structured, dress coded, regimented approach of Seabourn and (to a lesser extent) Silversea. From captain to repair mechanic, nothing was a problem. The elegant French ladies of reception, the restaurant maitre d's, the superb guest relations staff - all were faultless. Now its true that, with delightful Gallic insouciance, some who thought themselves important and could only converse in demands were put down in that delightful French way - service slowed down for example. With half our passengers French for a start, such delicate responses did not happen to many! The food was exceptional. The chef had the pride and the courage to simply offer his best- none of the "branded" marketing which has in the past been pushed at us that the menu is by some American chef unknown to us but apparently revered in his country. Ponant does not splash out on vast ranges of menu items, but instead provides what you would get in a family hotel in France. Good food, well cooked and presented. The sous chef who spent his night on the baguettes, brioches, pain du chocolate, and croissants made breakfast a delight. For the first time ever, the coffee was always equal to the best in Italy (or New Zealand). The tours were fascinating and left on time. They were excellent value, taking us to parts of Vietnam we could not have experienced by simply going ashore. Disembarkation was the smoothest we have ever experienced. Don't go on Ponant if you want a casino, trivia quiz sessions, or the intrusion on your holiday of attempts at mass jollity. Don't go if you think your cabin should be the size of an American hotel room and you intend to spend your time inside it. The compact cabin suites are, like many European hotel rooms, practical bases from which to have your holiday outside them not in them. Intelligent engaged older children would learn much - on this cruise there were none of any kind. Do go if you want quality entertainment like a ballet group of five, a classical pianist, and a singing duo of ability. A captain and crew tuned to your needs, an entertainment director who is a true professional, and a vision of cruising which seeks to provide what you want, not impose their ideas on your holiday. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We chose the cruise because of a great experience in 2016 Istanbul to Venice aboard Le Lyrial. The ship and crew were excellent.Kamel was full of energy and fun. The food was excellent although some of the menu selections were odd ... Read More
We chose the cruise because of a great experience in 2016 Istanbul to Venice aboard Le Lyrial. The ship and crew were excellent.Kamel was full of energy and fun. The food was excellent although some of the menu selections were odd for an asian cruise. I would like to have been offered some Asian European fusion options. Our prestige stateroom was clean and well appointed but uncomfortably smaller than we had on Le Lyrial. No larger options were available when we booked. The entertainment was very good. Shore excursions were disappointing; millions of busy people on motor bikes are amusing for only so long. Ha Long Bay and Hoi An were the pick of locations visited. The reality does not measure up to the travel brochure pictures and descriptions. Guides were obviosly very knowledgable and proud of their country but commentaries generally too detailed to the extent of being tedious. Better to cover more ground, see more and hear less statistics , data and dates. Embarcation in HK was terrible; mind you the contrast between the clean and welcoming ship and the drab grubby waiting area ashore may have been a cunning ploy. Internet services were poor. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We like Cunard for still keeping the style of cruising. There are some formal nights with formal/cocktail dress ups, but we like it. We like that the company keep the same dress code for dinners at the restaurant. It is classical style. ... Read More
We like Cunard for still keeping the style of cruising. There are some formal nights with formal/cocktail dress ups, but we like it. We like that the company keep the same dress code for dinners at the restaurant. It is classical style. The ship is beautiful, very clean and service is outstanding. Embarkation and disembarkation both were very organized and went so smoothly and quick. Ports of call were new for us, we went out to shore excursions at each port. But we did not buy all shore excursions from the ship, some of them were expensive compare to some on-line companies that offered shore tours. The tours that we bought from the ship were very well organized and very informative too. This ship is not so good for children, there are no children playgrounds and pools are plain, without any slides. There are mostly elderly people on the ship and it did not bother me, but for young people there are not much to do in the evening: bars closed early and dance club is only one for the whole ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This 7 night cruise was our 4th time aboard Mary, and our 5th week in terms of days. We were keen to see the changes made during the refit last year as we had spent 16 nights on her just prior (BNE/HKG) Boarding at HKG was great, we ... Read More
This 7 night cruise was our 4th time aboard Mary, and our 5th week in terms of days. We were keen to see the changes made during the refit last year as we had spent 16 nights on her just prior (BNE/HKG) Boarding at HKG was great, we were in the 4th group called and were on board by 1pm and by 2pm we had squared all our clothes away and were enjoying the complementary sparkling wine on our balcony. Refit Changes - As mentioned by many others, the carpet is a little odd, not the design (I think the starburst design is good) but mainly the faded aspect of one side of the passageways. The Carinthia lounge is much better than the Wintergarden but alas, we liked it before because it was so quiet and now it is very popular, so that is a success for the ship, we still spent a fair bit of time there for lunch. The new deck 13 cabins provided a "deck 14" viewing option which is awesome (see photos), gives a really good aspect without detracting from Mary's overall look.We talked to one lady who was in the new single cabins and she offered us a look, these (as expected) were fantastic, lovely marble bathroom, king single bed and a chaise lounger to look out the large window, the wife and I wish we could book one of these for us as a couple - so roomy! Food possibly was not quite as good as previous voyages, we dined at the Veranda and that was top notch quality, ambiance still poor as there were only a few diners, Cunard need to reduce the price to get more people dining, last year it was USD50 for us both in Todd English, now the V charges USD50 each and I dont think we would go back again unless it was bustling. Smoker's still occupy a small area on the main pool deck 8 as well as deck 7, I think they should be confined to deck 7 as aft as possible. Our cabin being balcony deck 11 was terrific, bed just as relaxing as ever, loved the balcony, hopefully the next refit will see the bathroom improved which is now a little dated, especially seeing the new single stateroom bathrooms. Our only port stop was Laem Chabang and we did not feel like a long bus trip to Bangkok and wanted to maximise our time on the ship.Overall another great trip on Mary, shame it was so short but this was a great value trip for us and looking to book our next trip to continue our round the world trip on her, one sector each year..... Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose this ship for a very special holiday. It was our 55 wedding anniversary and my wife birthday and my 80th. We paid top money for a good kabin.We paid £16.500.00 For the trip. Flying to Hong Kong and sailing back to Southampton.The ... Read More
We chose this ship for a very special holiday. It was our 55 wedding anniversary and my wife birthday and my 80th. We paid top money for a good kabin.We paid £16.500.00 For the trip. Flying to Hong Kong and sailing back to Southampton.The facilities on the ship where all overcrowded. The buffet in the day was good that is when you could find a table. The evening meals were very poor. All the excursions where expensive The drinks were.The was an outbreak of the novo virus which I unfortunately court. We also spoke to many other passengers who had paid a lot less than We paid.0verall we did not like this ship at all. We would not recommend this ship to anyone. When we wrote to Cunard they never even had the decency to reply.This was a waste of time and money and we will never use Cunard again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Sydney to Hong Kong 28 days on the ship.First stop Brisbane in a container terminal.shuttle bus into the city, next stop Cairns then PNG then it was good by to sunshine until we reached Hong Kong .We had a lot of See days on this cruise ... Read More
Sydney to Hong Kong 28 days on the ship.First stop Brisbane in a container terminal.shuttle bus into the city, next stop Cairns then PNG then it was good by to sunshine until we reached Hong Kong .We had a lot of See days on this cruise with limited activities due to bad weather.Accommodation and food was good ,free 24 hour room service,or ongoing food in the Lido deck up to 2am each day.This ship has a wonderful theatre with a different show each night that we really enjoyed .The ship has a very good ball room if you like to dance and for any single women wanting to travel they have several dance hosts that will dance every dance.On our cruse they had eight formal nights I found this two many due to the amount of luggage you needed but you have to remember you still have a luggage allowance when you fly home so you need to be creative with your outfits.There are free washing machine and dryers on each floor and washing powder is provided free. Shore days getting of the ship especially if you went by tender could take up to three hours to get of then going through customs in each country also took up a lot of time we were often late getting on our tours so we were often very rushed to get back on time.My favourite place was Japan they made us very welcome I would definitely go back there one day.The culture on the ship was like upstairs downstairs the staff didn't engage in conversation if you asked a question they would answer with no further discussion all the staff did there job well but they didn't look happy.I loved the ship and would love to go on it again in better weather Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
To put this review in perspective, here is some background. We cruise this segment almost every year at the same time for our wedding anniversary, using Royal Caribbean, Crystal and Cunard from Hong Kong back to Singapore. We also love ... Read More
To put this review in perspective, here is some background. We cruise this segment almost every year at the same time for our wedding anniversary, using Royal Caribbean, Crystal and Cunard from Hong Kong back to Singapore. We also love dancing and spend most of each evening on the dance floor. So the starting and ending ports are all that matter and the ports in between, we have been to more times than we care too. We went with pretty high expectations after wonderful experiences on the Queen Victoria and the Queen Mary, we were quite disappointed with the Queen Elizabeth. Embarkation in Hong Kong was a breeze, we arrived a few hours before the sated embarkation time ( at 1pm instead of 3:30pm) and encountered no queues anywhere. Our complaint was that the staff posted around the terminal building to direct people were not very proactive and maybe a bit racist. A couple dragging a carryon bag with Cunard tags and a sheaf of documents would obviously be looking for the Cunard check-in desk, no? They did not smile or point the way out to us but were quick to greet and direct any Caucasian walking past, even if they did not have a suitcase! We were able to go straight to our cabin which was ready, with a bottle of champagne chilling on the table. Our cabin was quite large(see cabin review) and close to all the things we wanted to get to however, very noisy on the last night as it was next to all the crew working areas. We booked early and so had early seating with a quiet table for 2, much in demand I heard, which was set well away from other tables- unlike another cruise where it was separated from the next table by 10cm. Our waiter was the 2nd worst we have had on any cruise. He was unsmiling, distracted and constantly facing away from his tables, fiddling with the silverware over and over instead of looking at his tables to see if we needed anything. He did not try to make any conversation not even to greet us on arrival! He never tried to make any food recommendations, never asked the standard " how is everything?", did not remember simple requests from the previous night (I asked for a slice of lemon in my water, the next night there was a small plate of sliced lemons on his service table but he never brought it to us). We had excellent service from other wait staff at lunch and breakfast so perhaps it was just the one person. Unfortunately the MDR waiter is the person we interact with the most on a cruise and so this gave a poor impression of the service levels. We had informed Cunard that we were celebrating our anniversary. We got a card in the room but not a whisper in the dining room. Food was disappointing but beautifully plated. All the fish was dry and over cooked. The only edible poultry was the duck and even that was just passable. Only the red meats were good. The side dishes did not complement the mains well. We went for the afternoon tea on the first day, white gloved service wasn't too happy we asked for Earl Grey instead of the generic tea they were serving. Sandwiches were dry and fillings were miserly. They only had dry raisin scones that were COLD! Cakes were poor quality ( we later found that they use Cadbury's cooking chocolate now - so brownies and chocolate cake did not taste of chocolate!).We did not bother to make it for subsequent teas. In previous cruises, this was one of the highlights of the afternoons. The best part of the cruise was the dance lessons - Sergey and Olga were amazing. They were able to teach more than 60 people, mostly beginners, in 45 minutes to dance quite complicated steps with good technique. Although we already dance well, we were still able to learn a thing or two from them. We spent most evenings on the dance floor in the Queens Room. It was large and a beautiful space to dance in when there was recorded music. The band spoilt it a little as they were not open to requests and there was a lot of down time between songs. They said they had a set of songs to play ( hence not keen to allow requests and yet did not seem to know which song it was they were going to play next and there was a lot of discussion between members before playing each song). The vocalist really ruined it. Everytime he appeared, you could almost hear the groans from the serious dancers. He was full of himself and used the same lame jokes every night that were very insulting and disrescpectful of his several ex-wives. Lots of talk before each song, called out the wrong dance ( could not tell the difference between a Viennese waltz and a Slow waltz) and switched tempos ( a big no-no in dance music) midway and always ended with a sudden stop which gave no time for any nice end to our dancing. The dance hosts on this cruise were all good dancers and all the single ladies seemed well catered to. We enjoyed having a matinee show in the Royal Theatre called La Danza - put up by the ships singers and dancers. They were not very good but certainly helped pass the time nicely. The magician/comedian on one of the nights was very entertaining. The rest of the programming was quite boring with hardly anything of interest to do in the afternoons. We did not join in the ship excursions as we had already visited both ports ( Nha Trang and Phu My) several times. Instead we took the free shuttle to Cho Dam ( market and bought lots of fish sauce - a specialty of Nha Trang and vietnamese coffee, followed by a very cheap and excellent massage at Sen Spa. We took a small group tour ( just 4 of us) with " Best Tours in Vung Tau" to visit the Long Phouc tunnels, local market and a fruit farm with an excellent home cooked lunch and accompanied by a very hospitable guide-owner. Both activities are highly recommended for people who have already done the usual tours in the 2 ports. Nha Trang was a tender port and it was a nightmare. While I totally understand the extra caution that QE was taking ( after the tragic incident they had on the same sector 2 years ago). Only 3 tenders were running and the waiting time to board one was almost 2 hours. We witnessed a poor family of 8 given tickets for tender number 22 who were told to go away for a coffee and come back in 45 minutes as the Queens Room was too full ( we were told the same thing as we were behind them and given the a number for 2 boats later). We remained in the Queens Room. No annoucements were made in the ship when the tender numbers were called, only in the Queens Room. When that family came back 35 minutes later, they were told they had missed their boat and given new tickets for 32! which meant another 1 and a half hour wait. Amazingly they remained cool! Perhaps there were safety constraints that prevented putting on more tenders so the wait may have been unavoidable BUT there were many ways they could have improved the experience like providing pastries and coffee while people waited, making ship wide annoucements if tender numbers came up before the expected time etc which they did not do. I was not impressed. As Gold members we had 2 hours of free internet each which was a nice perk. The connection was slow but good enough for confirming tours and quick checkins home. Part of the thing about cruising is getting away from computers anyway. It was the shortest cruise we had on Cunard ( previous ones were 8 and 9 days) but we were actually quite glad to get home in Singapore as the overall experience was not great. We did self help disembarkation in Singapore at 7am and it was quick and efficient as usual. There was a little glitch at immigration as they had not put up the guide ropes to allow Singaporean passengers to use the automated passports gates, soon rectified. Lots of taxis were waiting so we did not have to use Uber. We will probably cruise Cunard again but we will take the Queen Mary and never Queen Elizabeth. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
My first cruise as a solo traveller but part of an escorted tour. As a result, I cannot compare with other cruises. However, I am a seasoned luxury solo traveller (mainly SE Asia). I have to say that QE generally does not compare with ... Read More
My first cruise as a solo traveller but part of an escorted tour. As a result, I cannot compare with other cruises. However, I am a seasoned luxury solo traveller (mainly SE Asia). I have to say that QE generally does not compare with the 5 star hotels I have stayed in. It was more 4 star. Everything you need but not "plush". Embarkation was initially a bit of a disappointment after walking up the gang way and greeting by a empty deck, with no directions as to where to go. However, one passing staff member felt sorry for us and pointed us in the right direction. Not a great start. Once we were greeted you were pretty much left to your own devices. I wasn't sure what to do but I headed to my cabin (more on the cabin later). I am very independent but as it was my first cruise, Cunard should have had someone proactively greeting and helping passengers. There were a lot of crew there mainly promoting the spa and beauty services. This promoting continued through the cruise every time I entered the Lido deck and go very annoying after a while. I was very interested to do some enrichment lectures and selected a session in Acupunture. A complete waste of time because it was another promotion where the practitioner wouldn't answer questions without you making an appointment. Truly awful! After that I didn't attempt anymore enrichment. I liked the shows on board a comedian and a group of guy singers from the UK. Both very good, though the shows were short. The singers seemed to have a limited rehearsed list of songs as some were repeated the second time I saw them. In saying this I think the entertainment was pretty good. Food was generally good in the Brittania restaurant but lunch there on one day was lacklustre. The pub was fun for a meal. I did not like The Lido at all. I don't like buffets and I don't like the lack of hygiene factor. Cunard really try but so many passengers are not conscious of practising good hygiene. Consequently, people got sick and then there was some kind of red alert resulting in cling film being plastered over the serving areas and staff serving resulting in big queues. Looked like a large cafeteria in a 1960's department store. I was advised before boarding that we had to buy our drinking water on board. That is so not ok with me...this is Cunard, this was water (a basic to live) it should be free of at least very inexpensive. It was not! Wine was obscenely expensive. I bought two bottles of wine and they were $90 Aud each. I am not a cheapskate but I am not wealthy and I think that was an absolute rip-off. I paid it because I like a glass of wine with dinner but I detest being ripped off. I may be painting a bleaker picture than the reality, it was a good cruise and I really enjoyed myself but I guess I had loftier expectations than the actual reality. I have found a new interest in cruising and would still consider Cunard except they are not going to the destinations I am considering for my next trip. I think I am going to try Crystal next time as it might suit me more and they are going where I am interested. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
I had always heard that Seaborne was the top of the heap. Let me break down my experience The ship The bedroom furniture was chipped and worn. This may be expected and really didn't effect anything The staff is wonderful and ... Read More
I had always heard that Seaborne was the top of the heap. Let me break down my experience The ship The bedroom furniture was chipped and worn. This may be expected and really didn't effect anything The staff is wonderful and helpful The food was less than we expected for we always heard how great their food was. Very little deviation from Resturant to Resturant . The wine that is offered is very low quality. The alcohol is high quality offering many top brands The internet. They charge you by the minute for internet usage. Now this cruise line is the most expensive cruise line out there and then they want to charge you outraging prices to connect to the internet. The internet is slower than the old dial up. Really? The modern tech allows for high speed connections so this is pure and simple a way to drag more revenue from its passengers. The pool had the normal trolls who come out at daylight and put their stuff on chairs around pool leave and the pool staff did nothing. When I pointed out that the daily program told of the ships policy that chairs could only be left for no more than 30 minutes unattended they demurred and did nothing. The off shore excursions were absolutely terrible. For instance in Bangkok the ship ported 2.5 hours from Bangkok. 2.5 hour. There is a port closer to the city but they chose this one. Semi reap. This is for the 3 day 2 night trip to Angkor Wat. The first day was comprised of a day in Sinnaokville. This included a tour of a private residence , a school and a market. Total waste of time. Everybody's was disappointed Then we boarded a plane for Seim Reap. We were housed in a fine hotel. We were told that dinner was in a buffet and we were allowed 1 beer of 2 sodas. This is after we left a ship, which we paid for unlimited drinking privileges no credit given for those privileges. So we paid for drinks rooms and food on a ship and were given no such credit many of us ran our own hotel bar and Resturant tabs .The second day was great followed by a dinner program which was fun. We flew back to Saigon the next morning Next we took a day trip in haLong bay. This was a kayak excursion. Well we were put in a boat for the 1.5 hour ride to the kayak base. For the entire ride over we were subjected to,non stop soliciting by the boat operators to buy their stuff. We were captive. Then when we arrived at the kayak base we were offered equipment that was not safe. The life jackets were moldy the kayaks were trash paddles junk.They has holes in the hulls and loading was very difficult. There is a speed boat base very near the kayak base. Every minute there would be a speed boat with 24 happy asians flying by the kayaks. The waves were plentyful and large.It is a wonder that nobody flipped. In addition the guide was the last person so there was no leader. One of our party had the paddle break in mid trip and the guild had no substitute. The paddles were taped up with rusty nails exposed. There was no seaborn rep with our tour. We were served lunch on the boat which was cooked in the back of this boat. Again we were offered 1 beer. If we wanted more than one we to purchase for $4.00. Was it too much to ask for seaborn to throw on a case of beer? I guess so.we then went to visit the caves. Pretty awesome. It should be noted that this excursion requires a 250 step uphill climb to the cave entrance. While we had no problem others could not make it and had to remain on the junk. They said the program was not clear on the details required and they certainly would not have signed up if they had known of the climb The return to the ship. Again 1.5 hours of nonstop badgering by the staff to buy their junk. We went to complain about the whole mess to the tour director and she sat there stonefaced ,she did take ones The on board entertainment was very good and a joy to watch. Very professional After hoping for a great experience we walked away feeeling slightly fleeced but happy we safe after the treacherous kayaking mess. We were anticipating a first class adventure and ended up feeling like this was a budget job taking our money for slow speed internet and poor off ship excursions.which were not cheap. We were ready ,prior to the cruise , to sign up for an Antarctic cruise but there is no way we would trust Seaborne to deliver. They would more than likely charge up by the minute for jackets but offer the ice for free! We asked for a Seaborne rep to call but we exp Ct that will not happen l we have heard that since they sold out to whomever the service has declined. We talked with more than one other on the cruise that also was disappointed. One of those had Ben on 9 Seaborne cruises and said that this was their last. Too bad Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
I've taken over 20 cruises usually of 21 night duration on Cunard, Celebrity, MSC, Holland America, Carnival and Royal Caribbean.Solo (single) traveller thus usually paying a 75-100% surcharge. For what it's worth I'm a gold ... Read More
I've taken over 20 cruises usually of 21 night duration on Cunard, Celebrity, MSC, Holland America, Carnival and Royal Caribbean.Solo (single) traveller thus usually paying a 75-100% surcharge. For what it's worth I'm a gold level Cunard Club member. I returned on 09 April 2017 from an unpleasant and unenjoyable 3 weeks on Queen Mary 2 - Hong Kong to Singapore sector of the QM2 world voyage. I confidently booked this cruise having been delighted last year by a 21 night cruise on Queen Victoria from Cape Town to Southampton. The QV was sophisticated, gracious with passable food (buffet always better than dining room food), excellent speakers and entertainment and a stable compliment of sophisticated fellow passengers. Along with most cruise enthusiasts I was exposed over recent years to Cunard's “hype” and “propaganda” about the QM2. Thus I was looking forward to cruising on QM2. However, my experiences on QM2 sadly did not come close to my expectations. In fact I was bitterly disappointed and disillusioned. I found the ship poorly designed as a cruise ship with limited available deck space (especially in wet weather), public rooms inconveniently located, cramped and relatively small library (quite unlike the double storey, gracious QV library/internet cafe), uncomfortable theatre seating (were those Ikea discount barrel chairs and sofas designed to slip one on to the floor?) and endless narrow corridors and difficult layout especially forward on decks 2 and 3. The unattractively decorated Queens Room is tucked behind the Britannia Dining Room down a corridor which doubles as an "art" gallery. Some public rooms are tucked away inaccessibly and for the size of the ship they were small. The decor has suffered the unstylish, minimalist approach of tasteless designers leaving many spaces feeling more like a shopping mall than a supposed luxurious cruise/liner. As usual on cruise ships the food looks good but is usually tasteless and poor quality. Consequence of mass production? The QM2 Britannia Restaurant food was mostly unappetising/tasteless requiring a visit to the Kings Court buffet directly afterwards. Usually buffet food is more tasty and varied than dining room food. However, on QM2 the food seemed equally tasteless, lacking flavour and the salad selection worse than on any other ship on which I've travelled. The Kings Court Buffet must be one of the worst designed buffets afloat. I renamed it the Rabbit Warren due to the numerous narrow corridor seating areas, small inaccessible alcoves with often no table availability at peak eating times. The food display area was sterile, unattractive looking and user unfriendly. Food variety was very limited and ever changing in location resulting in passengers milling around looking for their food choices. The customer service from the Purser's Office was usually inefficient, non personalised and sometimes rude. The experience of the constantly changing passenger complement was akin to a mass transit ferry, rather than an elegant cruise liner. Furthermore the ship’s decor suffered from her recent refit looking more like a semi modern shopping mall than an elegant ship. “Liner” versus “cruise ship” propaganda from Cunard?! The Chart Room, Corinthia Lounge and Illuminations Cinema/Planetarium/Lecture Hall were however redeeming features of the ship. The itinerary was tedious and ports of call not conducive to independent sightseeing. This was exacerbated by miserable weather for 18 of the 21 days. Singapore, the port of disembarkation, was a notable exception with easy access along a 600m covered walkway to the MRT (underground) station. Transfer to/from Changi Airport is an easy 45 min ride in air-conditioned comfort costing S$2.50 each way. Access to sites such as the Botanic Gardens easy using the MRT Matters aboard were made worse by my 6th deck balcony cabin (6251) being relentlessly noisy from the promenade deck above and the laundrette across the corridor. Slamming deck, balcony and passenger doors ruined any chance of peace in my cabin or on the awful balcony. The sheltered balcony was so unpleasant with a 1,2m high balustrade and noisy that it was unusable other than letting fresh air into my cabin in-between noises from above and around my cabin. There was no view of the sea from inside the cabin. Rectification of some of the causes of my complaints took 2 weeks. Noises continued for the duration of the cruise. The Maitre ‘d took the liberty of moving a group of 5 friends (2 couples and their solo friend) on to my under sized table for 6 where two of us solo travellers were already seated. Thus 7 of us were cramped around a table. I thus withdrew from the table only after objecting to the unilateral, high handed attitude of the maitre 'd and happily sat alone at a table squeezed between several other tables for two. We may all just as well have sat at a large table as there was no privacy between tables for two guests! As it happens I spent little time in the Britannia dining room because within minutes of most meals I realised I’d need to retreat to the Kings Court “rabbit warren” to try to find a meal that had taste. For the first time in over 20 cruises, I instructed the QM2 Purser’s Office to remove all pre-paid gratuities from my on board account due to the tardy service and disappointments on QM2. My other woes were added to as the Finance Manager on board, sent three letters to me in the first week of the cruise instructing me to provide my credit card for on board payments. Of course presentation of my credit card and “reserving” funds on my credit card were done in the embarkation process in the Hong Kong Terminal but apparently had not correctly reflected on the ship’s system. However, charges reflected immediately on embarkation on my credit card and was advised me via SMS on my iPhone. This indicated poor and un-coordinated admin and non personalised service for which an apology was never forthcoming. Furthermore repeated account statements appeared OUTSIDE my cabin door ( for all passing passengers to view) for the duration of the cruise. The deck and balcony noise as well as slamming doors continued for the duration of the three week cruise. The quality of entertainment was disappointing. “Sing along” and audience participation sometimes started within minutes of a show commencing. Awful. Decent speakers and quality performers not needing “audience participation” appeared once we sailed from Hong Kong for the third week of the cruise. However, soloists such as Lara the Harpist and the pianists were excellent as were the string quartet, duo performers on stage and the speakers after the second Hong Kong call. The Theatre productions were mostly average to poor. "Class" distinctions on the QM2 have increased with the advent of Britannia Club. Amusingly, Queens and Princess Grill guests are delightfully "on view" through picture windows into their dining rooms and private lounge while us other guests are promenading on deck Embarkation in Hong Kong was chaos between 11:00 to 14:00 with almost unheard announcements, poor queue management and a very lengthy wait of three hours from time of transfer drop off at the terminal to boarding the ship. Ports of call, excluding only Singapore and Nagasaki, were mostly inaccessible for easy independent sightseeing or they required 1-2 hours in shuttle buses to get from the berth to centres for sight seeing. As usual Cunard Shore Excursions are over priced and often tedious. Clearly Cunard used the itinerary to promote QM2 to as many Oriental guests as possible for short duration cruises hence the shifting population of guests for the three weeks of my cruise. I shall never return to QM2 and may even revisit my previously held positive view of Cunard following my superb experience on Queen Victoria I had last year on the 3 week, last sector of the world cruise, between Cape Town and Southampton. I feel that I wasted my time and money on the QM2. I have cancelled a booking I had for a long cruise in September 2017 on QM2 from Southampton to Quebec/St Lawrence disembarking in NYC. I am now a disgruntled GOLD level Cunard guest. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We always heard great things about regent so we decided to take a chance and do a cruise with them. The service was pitiful. The waiters at the restaurants seemed to be all very overworked and it took a long time to get noticed and to have ... Read More
We always heard great things about regent so we decided to take a chance and do a cruise with them. The service was pitiful. The waiters at the restaurants seemed to be all very overworked and it took a long time to get noticed and to have someone take your order (not even going to mention the time it took for food to arrive). Food was ok. but not Great. Some items tended to end during the buffet lunch and breakfast and not get refilled (had to ask more than once if there was anymore of this or that available to have it replaced). Complained about this issues with the General Manager personally and didn't get any kind of feedback. Also, horrible pre-cruise experience in my country, their office have an extremely unpolite and unhelpful team . Their website doesn't work for specialty restaurants or shore excursion reservation. Had to do everything through the travel agent which was a hassle. The gym is very small and they don't enforce the maximum time for the aerobics. It was always crowded and it always had a long wait to use treadmill or bicycle. All in all I don't recommend it.. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We have previously traveled on Oceania. Nautica is an ancient ship that should be retired. Bathrooms are horrific. Food and service were poor. Room service served rotten bananas, brown lettuce. Dress code not enforced in main ... Read More
We have previously traveled on Oceania. Nautica is an ancient ship that should be retired. Bathrooms are horrific. Food and service were poor. Room service served rotten bananas, brown lettuce. Dress code not enforced in main dinning room. Folks wore flip flops, torn/dirty sweatshirts. Dining room drapes were wrinkled and dusty.Mold on shower curtain in bathroom. Staff appeared to be poorly trained as compared to previous cruises with Oceania, bu tried very hard to be helpful. When a crew member was asked about staffing he commented that Oceania had "moved crew members around to newer and bigger ships." Spoke with high level management person, while on ship, and he agreed with me, regarding problems, and we did receive a credit of thousands of dollars toward next cruise. That demonstrates, to me, that management is acutely aware of the problems. Why else would the company compensate me for my observations? Oceania management either does not want to or cannot improve the situation. Our belief is that since being bought by NCL that the organization is "milking the cash cow." That is to say that management has cut back on services, quality of food, and ship maintenance, in terms of quality and comfort for passengers, Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
This cruise and Seabourn especially was chosen based on recommendations from friends who were spot on. The ship, the food and drinks, the cabin and the entertainment were all top class. The female cruise director must be a gem for this ... Read More
This cruise and Seabourn especially was chosen based on recommendations from friends who were spot on. The ship, the food and drinks, the cabin and the entertainment were all top class. The female cruise director must be a gem for this cruise line. We started our cruise in Hong Kong and visited Xiamen, China, several ports in the Philipines including Manila. Thereafter Borneo, Singapore, Bangkok and several other ports in Thailand, Kambodia and Vietnam before leaving the ship in Hong Kong.Four weeks of top class cruising. The highlight of this trip was Vietnam were Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City, which it is now called, was a big and positive surprise. The communists seem to have found the perfect blend of communism and capitalism; more or less like China. The food on the Seabourn Sojourn was excellent and varied. The top chef Henning made a very good impression, and we were lucky to be able to go with him when he went shopping for the freshest produce both in Saigon and in the Bangkok area. We are experienced cruisers and have tried 7-8 different ones. So far Seabourn are at the top of our priority list. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Now that I got my land legs back and over a chest cold,I will tell you about my or our experience ,Hong Kong to Singapore .the ports we a visited where a grad experience ,the cruise line Seabourn left a lot to be desired ,we had a cabin ... Read More
Now that I got my land legs back and over a chest cold,I will tell you about my or our experience ,Hong Kong to Singapore .the ports we a visited where a grad experience ,the cruise line Seabourn left a lot to be desired ,we had a cabin for disabled on deck nine,the bathroom which is very important for a disabled person was very functional ,the front door dit not stay open by it self,you need to put a wedge under the door to get in and out,,needs to be looked at,the cabin itself very plain,but again functional . the ship itself lacks warmth and class,the staff are passionate and very obliging ,but again there all talk like a Seabourn manua ,not natu ,the goog,glorious food,,in the main dining room we found had never had the wow effect,and the menus kept repeating it self,the wines served at dinner were far to young and need to be stored a few more years ,the dining room in it self is a no event,very boring,again nothing special,we liked the way ladies were escorted to there tables by staff,mabe even officers,we arrived in a wheelchair and no one gave us a second look,much less show as to our table ,,nice one Seabourn , the pool deck is fare to small for all the people,that brings me to the Seabourn Square,which is a reception ,a library ,and a meeting place plus a coffe shop,it looks like a business class lounge in an airport,,very boring,we had pre dinner drinks in the piano bar,again staff were excellent ,the piano player,played the same tunes night afer night ,and had a break every thirty minutes,looking back which I don't like to do,I just like to forget about is overrated cruise line,I wound go on Seabourn if they paid me. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was our fourth cruise on Seabourn and we're planning our fifth for Alaska, so I think you can tell we are sold on the company. More on that later. This cruise starts in Hong Kong, touches china at Xiamen, goes down through the ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise on Seabourn and we're planning our fifth for Alaska, so I think you can tell we are sold on the company. More on that later. This cruise starts in Hong Kong, touches china at Xiamen, goes down through the Phillipines, Malaysia in Borneo, Turns at Singapore, Up to Thailand, Cambodia, then up through Vietnam including Halong Bay and then back to Hong Kong. As many people do, we got off in Sihanoukville to fly to Angkor Wat for two nights before rejoining the ship in Ho Chi Mihn City. Because my wife has substantial difficulty with stairs, we arranged private excursions for many of the ports and had our own guide and driver for Angkor Wat. So this time around, I have experience with only a few of the shore excursions. The Phillipine stops were largely Phillipine tourist locations. Hundred Islands is interesting geography with lousy snorkeling, Coron on the other hand was brilliant snorkeling, some of the best coral ever, not to be missed. Boracay was very touristed because of Chinese New Year, but pleasant if crowded. Singapore is a delightful stop and would have made a good place to start or stop. Cooking class in Hoi An (Danang) was excellent. Photos of Halong Bay is the way I finally convinced my wife of this cruise. It is beautiful, but all the tourist boats go (with some 6,000 people per day) to the same locations, so it's also a little packed. If you can afford Seabourn, you should. I can't actually speak to the peer cruise lines, since we chose Seabourn at the start and never left. But this one is great. Tips are "neither necessary or expected", but this is a staff that operates like one working for tips. They are constantly friendly, helpful, and engaging. We enjoy cruising in part because of the social aspect. It pays to be a little bit forward and not shy in introducing yourself to others, but we've always found it easy. With 450 passengers, we keep running into the people we've met, but we also arrange to meet folks for drinks and dinner. At dinner in the main restaurant you can ask to be seated with others and you will be put at a table for six, which makes for pretty good conversation. There are no assigned seats or times, just show up when you want between 7:00 and 9:00. We are quite found of Restaurant 2, which provides a fixed tasting menu each night. Some feel it's a little pretentious, but I think it's just pretentious enough. No extra charge, but you do need reservations and it tends to be fully booked by the middle of a cruise. So reserve early. We have room service breakfast each morning, in part to avoid the calorie menace of a breakfast buffet. Ordered the night before, it is almost always delivered right at the start of their 15 minute window. of 26 breakfasts, one was late, causing us to gulp it down in order to make our excursion. That evening, there was a plate of chocolate truffles and two glasses of champagne along with a nice note of apology for our inconvenience. The food on Seabourn is outstanding. We met friends on this cruise who are vegan, they felt very well served. Each night they discussed the menu for the next day with the staff and they got generally excellent meals. If you can make good food for vegans, how much better for we sensible carnivores. The house wines are good with alternative wines both for white and red. The only problem is the magic Seabourn wine glass which is always full. The demographic on Seabourn is American/British/Australian with a smattering of others. The ship runs in English, with a crew drawn from across the world. The passengers are older, the majority retired. On this cruise the age range included some middle aged folks, matching some of the photos in the brochures. There were no children, and this would not be the cruise for them. The bottom of the age range is about 40. One of the things we love about the Seabourn ships are the suite layouts. Large with both a tub and shower (didn't use the tub this time), two sinks, and a walk-in closet. We've always had a Veranda and appreciated it. The entertainment is solid. We like the staff singers and dancers. Seabourn has often brought a local group on board to perform, those are some of the best. The lectures on this cruise (Seabourn calls them "conversations" but they are lectures) were from good to great. Hong Kong is a fine place to start and end a cruise. We had 2 nights before the cruise and 4 after. If you're there, go to Sam's Tailor for a custom suit. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
I am 25 yr old, traveling alone, and on my first ever cruise. Couldn't have been more impressed with the Azamara Journey. There isn't one single category (crew, amenities, food, security, rooms, atmosphere, activities, land ... Read More
I am 25 yr old, traveling alone, and on my first ever cruise. Couldn't have been more impressed with the Azamara Journey. There isn't one single category (crew, amenities, food, security, rooms, atmosphere, activities, land excursions, etc.) that I can criticize. I was the youngest solo traveler on the ship but was far from forgotten! The crew took time to get to know me and it wasn't long before I was being called by name everywhere I went and they had my food/drink preferences down. There was a large variety of land excursions at each port, and a lot of activities put together by Taylor (activities manager) for those remaining on the ship. Entertainment on the ship was excellent! Eric (cruise director) is VERY GOOD at what he does. The ship's officers, including Captain Johannes, were out and about getting to know the guests which, to me, is very important. The food was outstanding on all levels, from snacks in the cafes, the buffet, and all the way up to fine dining in Prime C and Aqualina. Cleanliness and presentation of the facilities and staterooms was excellent. All in all, Azamara blew me away. I did zero research on the ship before booking this cruise, but from here on out Azamara is the only ship I will choose. Every guest I met on the ship were all experienced cruisers and said Azamara is by far the best. Already booked my next cruise for November on Azamara Journey! Cheers! :) Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Azamara Journey – Of Wet bottoms and other Adventures By Glyn May Five minutes after embarkation I'm squeezed into a tight space on the floor of Azamara Journey's stateroom 6052 trying to open the jammed safe which has ... Read More
Azamara Journey – Of Wet bottoms and other Adventures By Glyn May Five minutes after embarkation I'm squeezed into a tight space on the floor of Azamara Journey's stateroom 6052 trying to open the jammed safe which has instructions so small I can’t read them. After five attempts I give up and reach for the adjoining mini bar. I don't need to untangle myself. Inside, there's a lone can of Heineken, but it's warm. I figure the fridge hasn't been turned on. The TV is babbling Spanish, a luggage handler is at the door loudly insisting that a suitcase clearly tagged for two decks below, is mine. The room steward arrives and apologises for being late. A technician in white overalls, summoned to fix a thirsty Australian's potentially catastrophic refrigeration problem, joins the party. He makes a token inspection then, with a big toothy grin, confesses that there are no motors in any of the ship’s mini bars, only cool blowers. He agrees that he wouldn't drink warm beer if he was shipwrecked on a desert island, and kindly offers the use of a " real fridge" in a nearby pantry. The first visit to the bathroom is a culture shock -- a basin, shower and toilet crammed into two square metres. There’s not much room for dancing. Drop the soap in the shower, and I imagine that a wet bottom wrapped in a plastic shower curtain would protrude alarmingly – and I’m only referring to the (increasingly rare) standard variety rear end. Drop a face washer in the shower and you have wall-to-wall carpet. In the afternoon, we are encouraged by Captain Johannes Tysse's announcement over the public address system that the deck 9 evening buffet is …"the best place to eat tonight…..chef tells me he is cooking some of his grandmother's most wonderful recipes ". Captain Tysse didn't show up at dinner which is just as well, as there may have been a gentleman in a big white hat walking the plank next morning. At night, our beds (singles joined together as in most ships) split apart. It doesn’t really matter because a piercing blue light on the air-conditioning control makes sleep impossible. The next day a steward ties the bed together and covers the offending blue light with a piece of scrap paper and lots of sticky tape. The light is hidden, but the control knob is stuck on near freezing. The ship’s advertised “free” liquor (priced into the fare) included rough red wines from Chile, Argentina and California and an appalling O’Doul’s American beer guaranteed to choke a thirsty sheep dog. Welcome to Azamara Journey, trumpeted as “a boutique luxury hotel at sea”, on a 13-night cruise from Hong Kong to Singapore in January/February 2017. In the bright light of our first sea day, we grumble about the size of the balcony and its rusty door track, and note the stained and ripped fabric sun lounges on deck 11. We’re qualified to find fault -- this is our 40th cruise on 10 different ships (our first on Azamara) and we’re paying $1000 a night. However, strolling around the 690-passenger ship, built in 2003 as one of eight world-acclaimed five-star Renaissance ships, we're impressed -- rich wood paneling, fine art work, deep carpets, elegant bars and immaculate public areas. There is a lot to commend the Azamara Journey – world-class entertainers, the multi-talented Cruise Director Eric De Gray (easily the best we have encountered) splendid restaurants (save for pathetic attempts at Asian cooking) a generally friendly crew, and a captain with the salesmanship of Dale Carnegie and eloquence of Bill Clinton. As the days pass and we soak up the ambience and efficiency of a well-run ship, there was reason to ponder why, up there in the ivory towers of Azamara Club Cruises in Miami, they forgot that first impressions count. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We had a wonderful cruise again. we embarked in Hong Kong jan 19th and were a bit anxious about the weather enroute. We had heard that the previous cruise was hit by lots of bad weather coming up from Singapore to Hong Kong. First we ... Read More
We had a wonderful cruise again. we embarked in Hong Kong jan 19th and were a bit anxious about the weather enroute. We had heard that the previous cruise was hit by lots of bad weather coming up from Singapore to Hong Kong. First we were pleasantly surprised by Hong Kong. A lovely place and we got around a lot during our two days pre-cruise. Weather was at it's best for january and we had temperatures around 20 degrees which is very acceptable. Embarkation at 11.30 was quick, and we got our stateroom (8010 within a few hours First leg to Halong Bay was calm and we even had a fair amount of sun. In Halong Bay we had a private tour to Bai Tu Long Bay with small junk for six people. It was an 8 hour cruise to a very calm and not-so-touristy area of Halong Bay. Next stop in Danang we did a ship's excursion and was very pleased with that. Moving on to Saigon we only had 8 hours in port and we just did a private tour with Zoom in the city itself. No time for anything more. We wish we could have stayed overnight in Saigon, and maybe Azamara should just do this itinerary a 14 days to accomplish that. Bangkok was a nice stay with two nights and almost three days in port. Azamazing evening was on the arrival day and was, as always, a spectacular experience. Sadly we missed the White Night on the next day.- Many people chose not to be on the ship that evening. When in Bangkok we want to see Bangkok, so IMHO this White Night should be moved to another evening. Koh Samui is just a short stop. We did no Land Discoveries and just had a short trip ashore. We tendered to Nathon on the west coast . Just a small town with a few shops. We thought it was obvious to tender into Bophut or Bangrak on the north shore as this is a more touristy area with lot of resorts and plenty of things to do shoreside. This is, however, probably a decision that lies with local port authoroties. Singapore was our last port and we bought a Land discovery with hotel drop-off. Perfect for us this time, as we got a nice sightseeing and got dropped off on the doorstep to the hotel afterwards. On board experience: We love it. The crew is fantastic and the food was fabulous in all venues. We bought the four table tour for Speciality restaurants and was more than content with that. We also had a fantastic Rijstaffel,- all set up un Sunset Bar. We didn't go to all the shows as we tend to dine late and stay long. We did see a few and the cast is really good. Max played in the casino Bar so we had most evenings there. Lectures were intersting and a lot of activities during the day. Being from near the north pole we chose to stay in the pool area when we could, and the weather was very nice,- almost all of time. Some chilly hours in Halong Bay, and a few showers one afternoon. Apart from that we had mostly sun, interupted by some high clouds. We were lucky compared to the previous cruise. We are always happy to come "home" on Azamara. The officers and crew of the Journey are always top notch. I cannot point out anything negative with this ship. Would we choose this cruise again? YES. We would do it tomorrow. We had a fantastic cruise. just give us a night in Saigon as well. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
We are seasoned cruisers and after an extraordinary Silverseas Cruise to the Galapagos in March we wanted to try their more mainstream cruise style. CHECK-IN The check in was seamless, there were more than enough staff to process ... Read More
We are seasoned cruisers and after an extraordinary Silverseas Cruise to the Galapagos in March we wanted to try their more mainstream cruise style. CHECK-IN The check in was seamless, there were more than enough staff to process everyone without delay. A great opening memory. BUTLER Since we had bulters on other cruises (Oceania) we were prepared on how to use their services and Albert lived up to our expectations. He was available within minutes of our request for service. He exceeded delivery for room service, made and cancelled reservations without hesitation and kept the refrigerator and ice bucket filled. It felt like he was our own private butler even though we knew that he served more than our suite. DINING The Restaurant (yes, that's the name of the main dining room is called the restaurant) delivered impeccable service. The menu selection was robust and regardless of breakfast, lunch or dinner the service levels remained high. FORMAL NIGHTS There were 2 formal nights during our trip and those of us who did not want to dress up had little choices as to where we could go and eat/drink. This was probably one of the negatives of Silversea. In addition to 2 formal nights, all but 2 evenings informal meaning that jackets were required for men and dresses/pantsuits for women. The average temperature in Asia was 90 degrees so dressing up seemed overkill and antiquated. This was a disappointment of the trip. LA TERRAZZA This venue was used during the day for lunch and breakfast with outside seating available BUT in the evening they shut off the outside deck, pulled the blinds and transformed the restaurant into an Italian Restaurant. I would have preferred to have the option to eat on the outside deck. Oceania Cruises does have that option which is a plus for Oceania. SHORE EXCURSIONS Many of the shore excursions were part of the price of the cruise. However, there were two paid evening excursions that included local entertainment and dinner. THEY WERE SPECTACULAR! LOGO WEAR A major disappointment was the lack of anything with a Silversea logo on it. No shirt, no baseball cap, no water bottles, nothing. When asked, we were told that others have also requested it but "Corporate didn't believe in it." To bad, a great marketing opportunity that they chose not to use. WOULD WE GO AGAIN? Possibly...I liked the small ship, the service but formal nights and no baseball cap has us looking at other options too. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
I would never have submitted this critique, but after writing a letter to Mark Conroy, Director of America's, and receiving no reply, I decided to write an online review. Let me begin by saying that my husband and I travel ... Read More
I would never have submitted this critique, but after writing a letter to Mark Conroy, Director of America's, and receiving no reply, I decided to write an online review. Let me begin by saying that my husband and I travel extensively both independently and with private guides. We have also enjoyed many cruises (Regency, Oceania, Holland, Princess) and have always returned home happy and looking forward to our next adventure. This trip to Southeast Asia was our first experience with Silversea, and we specifically chose the cruise for two reasons. First, the itinerary was appealing and fit our interests, and second, we wanted a luxury line with whom we could begin to establish a loyalty program. Based on our experience, it is highly unlikely that we will be doing so with Silversea. The cruise was average and surpising for a luxury cruise line. The absolute plus was the service we received from our butler, Mark, our cabin steward, Jesus, and one of the waiters in The Restaurant, Jessie. They could not have been more pleasant, professional and helpful. However, for such a small ship, the service from the rest of the staff could only be described as dysfunctional at best. Pool side service was non-existent. There were plenty of wait staff around, but it was beyond difficult to receive any type of service from them. One afternoon my husband asked for a glass of water twice, and he never received it. On a few other occasions, I tried to get the waiter’s attention to place a simple drink order, and until I stood up and waived, or called out, I was ignored. I observed other guests in the same situation. Our one and only meal at the Grill was so frustrating that we never went back. The wine steward informed us that she was completely out of white wine. It took the persistence of our waiter, and forty plus minutes before I was able to enjoy a glass of wine. Our entire experience on the ship felt like there was a complete disconnect in the overall service quality. Let me end by saying that the sites we visited along the way were incredible. The guests we met on board, and the people we met in the countries we visited were lovely. The food on the ship was good, the portions the perfect size. And again, we cannot say enough about the wonderful service and attention we received from Mark, Jesus, and Jessie. Other than that, there was a huge gap in service and attention to detail. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017

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