This was our first (and no doubt last) cruise with SilverSeas, on the recommendation of 2 friends who were taking the same journey & had sailed with them before. This is a beautiful ship & our Silver Suite was lovely, nice size, ... Read More
This was our first (and no doubt last) cruise with SilverSeas, on the recommendation of 2 friends who were taking the same journey & had sailed with them before. This is a beautiful ship & our Silver Suite was lovely, nice size, separate bedroom with a comfortable huge bed & great amenities. However, the staff are either not trained well and/or no longer care. There were a lot of small problems from each bar and restaurant and then a rather large problem with in suite dining & the movies.
The movies never worked & despite 3 complaints it was never fixed. They would stutter and pixelate about every 2 minutes for 30 seconds to a minute, so you would have to rewind to catch the bits you missed. This didn't occur on the normal television channels so was something to do with their digital streaming on-board. As far as we are concerned it was an advertised service which was not delivered. We know of at least 2 other suites which were having the same problem, so not just us. Most amusing was the reaction from reception when we complained the first time, she said "Oh really? I was able to watch that movie without any problem.". Wow, isn't that nice for her! She didn't seem to have an equally unprofessional response when we told her it was EVERY movie ALL the time. They never worked despite being told that it was fixed.
Observation lounge - the waitress got one out of 4 drinks wrong 3 times in a row. Once ok, but every night for 3 nights in a row? Also they don't bring napkins with finger food (nibbles & canapes), we had to ask for them every evening. Come on folks, this is really basic stuff.
The Restaurant - we were sat at the same table being served by the same waiter 2 nights in a row. Not a flicker of recognition passed his face, no big deal really. Until 5 minutes after telling us his name & that he would be our waiter for the evening, he returned to our table & recited the same script again! So not only could he not remember that he had been our waiter for the previous evening, just 24 hours ago, he couldn't even recall that he had already introduced himself 5 minutes previous. This is not luxury service, but more akin to a fast food restaurant where staff are taught to read from a script. They need to stop looking at those tablet PCs they use & try engaging with the customers in front of them!
Le Champagne - you pay extra for this one. We were left for more than 5 minutes after receiving menus, no offer of a drink or even water. During the meal at one point we resorted to pouring our own wine, so not terribly attentive service & they didn't refold napkins when you left the table. Keeping in mind that this is supposedly "Relais & Châteaux, an association of the world’s finest hoteliers, chefs and restaurateurs that has set the standard for excellence in hospitality". Excellence only if you redefine the word. There was however one waitress that evening who was very pleasant & engaging & have to say the food was good.
Stars - good service, but the best thing I can say about the food is that is was mediocre & utterly forgettable.
La Terrazza - tried to sit outside for breakfast one day, "Certainly", they said. Then marched us around the terrace, pointing at 2 empty tables we couldn't sit at & then back in the other door. "Sorry, you can't sit outside as there are no tables available.". Hmm.... maybe you should have ascertained that before you marched us in one door & out the other, telling us in front of all the other guests where we couldn't sit? Just a thought.
La Terrazza again - tried to go there for dinner on our last night. Maitre'd asked if we had reservations (we didn't) & initially refused us because she was expecting 80 guests in 30 minutes. When I pointed out that I was looking at an empty restaurant with an empty terrace that had much more than 80 covers she then decided that she was, in her words, "willing to accommodate us". We weren't comfortable dining somewhere we were obviously not welcome so declined her "generous" offer.
Here's something good:
Seishin - after we decided not to be "accommodated" at La Terrazza we ended up here (another one you pay extra for), no problem not having a reservation. Best meal, food & service of the trip, so we lucked out on our last night!
In suite dining - we tried, they failed. We had guests for dinner, canapes & champagne on the balcony, followed by a 3 course meal in the suite. The mains arrived & then nothing. 30 minutes after finishing our main courses our guests had to leave because they had an early start (rather embarrassing). Eventually we called room service & said as they clearly weren't going to bring the desserts could they at least come & clear away the dirty dishes? They seemed surprised & had either completely forgotten about us or our Butler didn't pass on the order when he went off shift while we were still having dinner. The next day we did receive an apology from our Butler & his supervisor, but no explanation as to what went wrong. Then later we received a bottle of champagne in our suite.
On their own each of these things would have been just a little hiccup & easily forgiveable, but this many hiccups in 6 days? This was a very expensive one week holiday & we did have high expectations, after all according to them, "And in the ultra-luxury travel market — there’s the polished perfection of Silversea.". Polished perfection? Maybe they need to be clear that they're talking about the woodwork & not the service.
I can only conclude that there is something seriously going wrong with the recruitment & the service management aboard this ship.
Beware - the transportation costs to & from the ship in Venice as arranged by the company take on a whole new level of gouging. Having been to Venice many times we knew the prices being quoted were beyond crazy. For example, we arranged our own car to pick us up at the port & take us to the airport, our cost for a private Mercedes people mover plus luggage - USD 63.00. What they would have charged to make the same arrangements - USD 312.00. Water taxi - their cost USD 410.00, if you made your own arrangements - USD 150.00. Read Less