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67 Scenic Gem Cruise Reviews

We celebrated our wedding anniversary ('Ten on the Seine') with a river cruise. We've done quite a bit of ocean cruising (Regent, Oceania, MSC Yacht Club, NCL Haven) and had previously sailed on the Rhone River with AMA ... Read More
We celebrated our wedding anniversary ('Ten on the Seine') with a river cruise. We've done quite a bit of ocean cruising (Regent, Oceania, MSC Yacht Club, NCL Haven) and had previously sailed on the Rhone River with AMA Waterways. Our overall experience on Scenic was very rewarding. The weakest link was our arrival. Paris was brutally hot when we flew in the morning of the cruise. Scenic met us at CDG and transferred us to the Gem in a private Renault limousine. Of course traffic was impossible but, sadly for we Floridians, the limo's A/C was just about nonexistent. Then, when we finally arrived at around 1 pm, nobody seemed prepared to greet us (including the cruise director who remained seated behind her computer). So we did get started with a thud. After being fortified with a drink and a light lunch, we got our key cards and name tags (used to scan in/out of the ship) and were shown to our cabin, a balcony suite on the middle deck. We sailed out of Paris that evening and left stress behind us, although the hellish heat continued for a couple more days before seasonal temperatures returned. We participated in all the excursions and special events offered and enjoyed them greatly. On the second night, we were invited to the captain's table. The food offerings were consistently excellent with imaginative menus and good choices of French wine. In addition to the main dining room, there were options for casual lunch on the main deck and dinner at the specialty restaurant L'amour. Coffee, tea, cookies and snacks were always available. This cruise was not fully booked, with only 87 passengers instead of the usual complement of 120 or so. We were among only six Americans on board, joining 50-some Aussies, some Brits, a handful of Canadians and one couple from New Zealand. The other passengers were consistently friendly with ages ranging from 40s to 80s. Most of the crew was from Eastern Europe, and we had a German hotel director (Thomas), French cruise director (Valerie), and French captain (Bruno). Everyone, except the captain, was fluent in English, so there was little chance to practice my French on the ship. Service in the restaurant and bar warmed up nicely over the course of the cruise and we felt well taken care of. Some special touches stand out: electric bikes and helmets, lovely evening events (especially the superb dinner at the Palais Benedictine), never any crowding on tour buses, and we had two shore excursions with tiny groups of only five people. The excursions were consistently good and Rouen and Honfleur were especially delightful ports to visit. There were no surprise costs and we enjoyed the benefits of an all-inclusive cruise package. We recommend visiting Normandy and cruising on Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We have been on three prior rivercruises with another cruise line and a bit anxious going with Scenic since we never met anyone who sailed with them. Scenic booked our flight, direct flight Boston to Paris and had someone waiting for us ... Read More
We have been on three prior rivercruises with another cruise line and a bit anxious going with Scenic since we never met anyone who sailed with them. Scenic booked our flight, direct flight Boston to Paris and had someone waiting for us at the airport. Since we were the first to arrive we had a small wait to access our cabin which was a balcony cabin 326 great cabin. The Scenic Gem is a beautiful ship designed for the Seine River. Everyone was welcoming and since we were docked in Paris we were anxious to explore the city. Scenic has wonderful ebikes which makes biking so much easier. The passenger mix was mostly Aussies, followed by British and a few Americans and Canadians. The ship has several dining venues, the Crystal dining , a causal area and two specialty dining experiences, The hours for dining were flexible for breakfast and lunch and dinner was a set time with a two to three hour experience. The food was fresh, varied, with an always available menu. The waiters were personable and attentive, menu geared to the Australian population heavy on pork and lamb. The cheeses were fantastic, the cabin also has a fully stocked minibar. We also had to meals at a French Farmhouse and dinner at Benecdictine Monastry. Full bar service was included. we did have one lunch BBQ which was fantastic. In the am we enjoyed breakfast in our cabin. Other than a daily port talk one musician there was not allot of evening activity, we did have a wonderful infotainment system, with numerous channels and movies. There was a live band on night, the ship was docked in the city so one could go out each night if you wished. Service was outstanding. my husband said they do not know the meaning of "no'", we had an awesome cabin attendant and we noted that everyone worked together ship was spotless.We got one free load of wash which came back the same day. The ports were outstanding. Paris, Rouen, Givency, Les Andres, Honfleur were the highlights, often stayed overnight. Daily we were given three choices of what we wanted to do. There was a gps device which was loaded with features but it was too large to comfortably carrier. The excursions had comfortable busses and guides. Normandy Beaches tour was a highlight of this cruise. Disembarkation was smooth and we were sad to leave. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Excellent 5 star all inclusive cruising Scenic go the full way and look after you very well. All things done a quality and you are made to feel like nothing is too much trouble. This is truly all inclusive, so you can virtually throw ... Read More
Excellent 5 star all inclusive cruising Scenic go the full way and look after you very well. All things done a quality and you are made to feel like nothing is too much trouble. This is truly all inclusive, so you can virtually throw your wallet in the safe when you get on as you will only need it if you want to buy things off the ship, everything else is included - meals, all drinks, shore tours, tips - everything. I could not rate these cruises highly enough for what they do. If I had to pick on anything on this cruise (which is hard), I would suggest a little more nightly entertainment - but other than that - excellent - do yourself a favour and just do it - you will not regret it !. They even made sure that when we departed the ship, you had a connection to your next location and were not left to your own devices. This is the second Scenic cruise my wife and I have done and I look forward to the next one we can do - Well Done Scenic ! Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
This river cruise was to celebrate our Golden Wedding , & we wanted to select a cruise that would give us the ideal way to celebrate with all inclusive costs & 5 star perfection in every way. ( this included all drinks as well we ... Read More
This river cruise was to celebrate our Golden Wedding , & we wanted to select a cruise that would give us the ideal way to celebrate with all inclusive costs & 5 star perfection in every way. ( this included all drinks as well we found out after we booked . We selected Paris to Paris ( being the romantic city ) . The all included excursions were very detailed ( maybe at times some guides stay too long on subject about the history of places ) The crew's entertainment night was very enjoyable . The Scenic Gem tour Director ( Ben ) did a professional job in handling all activities that the cruise was involved in , & everything was kept on time . The meals in the Dining Room were 5 star with different varieties on menu each day . The River cafe has a vast array of food where you could also have a 3 course meal . The Portobellos Restaurant with exclusive fine dining (which we will never forget) is where the staff had a surprise for our anniversary which everyone enjoyed . ( even other guest whom were not at our table ). All I can say is well done. Scenic you leave No Stone unturned to satisfy guests 100% of their cruising time on board . Yes if age& health permit us to travel the distance again ( some 21 hours of non stop flying hours to Europe ) we would definitely only travel with Scenic . We have travelled with a variety of River Cruise companies & we are very happy that we made this our second River cruise with Scenic . Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
WE had been on a previous Scenic cruise and decided that we'd enjoy the Scenic Gem cruise in France, along the Seine. We spent two days exploring Paris first of all then Scenic transferred us to the Boat , docked along the river bank. ... Read More
WE had been on a previous Scenic cruise and decided that we'd enjoy the Scenic Gem cruise in France, along the Seine. We spent two days exploring Paris first of all then Scenic transferred us to the Boat , docked along the river bank. Our welcome on board, along with the rose and champagne prepared us for the next eleven nights of Scenic pampering. Our cabin was beautifully prepared and quite roomy and we were delighted with the balcony. The daily excursions were varied and pleasant, especially as the local guides were interesting and knowledgeable. We were impressed with the way that each staff member worked very much as a part of the team. They were well trained, cheerful and always ready to speak, or go out of their way to be helpful. Our housekeeper and our butler were wonderful - our cabin was always beautifully kept, and my morning cup of tea was bliss. The dining room constantly amazed us with the range of magnificent meals created by gifted chefs, but in order to keep our clothes fitting we also enjoyed the River Cafe light lunches. Dining in L'Amour, and enjoying the Palace dinner were special events we shall remember for a long time. Thank you Scenic for another wonderful holiday experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Cruise was faultless with staff being exceptional. We had a fantastic Cruise Director who ensured the trip went without any hassles. He was very friendly and went out of his way to meet people's needs. The cruise stopped at ... Read More
Cruise was faultless with staff being exceptional. We had a fantastic Cruise Director who ensured the trip went without any hassles. He was very friendly and went out of his way to meet people's needs. The cruise stopped at some ports for a couple of days to enable us to take tours to some areas further away. We went to the Somme area, for example, and also the D-Day landing sites. It meant some longish bus trips bit you got to see the countryside. Guides on all of our excursions whether they were the longer trips of just town/city visits were very good. Our guide to the Somme was exceptional and he helped bring the whole story to life. We dodn't do a lot of sailing during daylight hours but just enough to see some of the lovely houses on France along the Seine. Staff, as mentioned, were brilliant. Very friendly and they didn't know the meaning of the word 'no'. Top, top class. Food was also brilliant with lots of choice. Very difficult to fault. We've sailed with Scenic before and will go again in a couple of years. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We chose this cruise after a presentation in Peterborough and it lived up to all expectations. It was our first experience of Scenic but it certainly will not be the last. The whole trip was trouble free and with it being all in we did not ... Read More
We chose this cruise after a presentation in Peterborough and it lived up to all expectations. It was our first experience of Scenic but it certainly will not be the last. The whole trip was trouble free and with it being all in we did not have to worry about tips, costs of excursions, drinks etc. The whole ship was immaculate from the galley (yes we did have a look around and marvelled how the chefs produced such fantastic food in such a small area) to the cabins. The cabin staff were very efficient making beds and cleaning the bathroom not once but twice after our evening shower leaving a cleverly folded towel on the bed to welcome us back. All the staff from the Captain to cabin staff were friendly and helpful - nothing was too much trouble we just had to ask. The cruise Director was extremely entertaining and other entertainment was good especially the Crew Show. The waiters were always on hand to cater for all our needs and on the day of the barbecue on the sun deck must have walked miles making sure we all had drinks.We were invited to have dinner in L'Amour restaurant which turned out to be a lovely evening with a French menu and a variety of wines to be sampled. Whilst the waiters were all attentive in the Crystal Room they were particularly so in L'Amour making us feel very special. An evening to remember. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We were extremely well looked after on this excellent cruise up and down the Seine. Our cabin was first class and had all the amenities we could wish for, including a small gym which I used several times. The whole ship was spotlessly ... Read More
We were extremely well looked after on this excellent cruise up and down the Seine. Our cabin was first class and had all the amenities we could wish for, including a small gym which I used several times. The whole ship was spotlessly clean and the staff were constantly cleaning. There was an excellent choice of food at all meals and vegetarians were well catered for. If you wanted something not on the menu such as steak, the staff were happy to cook one for you, to order. The trips were very interesting and varied with local guides who were very knowledgeable. The highlights for us were Rouen, Honfleur, the Somme, the Normandy beaches and Versailles. In general the staff could not have been more helpful or friendly including all the senior crew and captain Bruno. This cruise was not cheap but my husband and I think it was good value for money. I would thoroughly recommend this river cruise with Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We chose this cruise to be able to explore the North Western area of France. The range of Free Choice excursions was suitable for those who wished to visit historic war sites, others who would rather sample culinary delights, or those who ... Read More
We chose this cruise to be able to explore the North Western area of France. The range of Free Choice excursions was suitable for those who wished to visit historic war sites, others who would rather sample culinary delights, or those who preferred a combination. A range of restaurants were available on the ship and all meals were well prepared, with excellent service. Staff were very well trained and always helpful. A memorable experience was "Shop with the Chef", accompanying the chef through Paris markets. A range of activities were provided for entertainment while sailing, and musical entertainment was provided after dinner each night. Our cabin was well designed, with many innovative storage ideas, allowing us to store all our luggage comfortably. The balcony windows were excellent for all occasions, whether we were having breakfast, sailing or on the rare occasions when weather conditions were overcast. They were easily operated and provided more space in the cabin area. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
I accompanied an older relative who suggested Scenic, and was happy to do so being an Australian company. The ship was amazing, clean, beautifully turned out, lovely suites, great staff, above average food. What disappointed me was ... Read More
I accompanied an older relative who suggested Scenic, and was happy to do so being an Australian company. The ship was amazing, clean, beautifully turned out, lovely suites, great staff, above average food. What disappointed me was the company that Scenic contract their onshore excursions to. Three (3) places on the itinerary were closed, some of the special attractions were not so special and there was a consistent lack of information as to the capability of travellers to attend these attractions. Yes, we travel knowing our capabilities, but as the average age of the Scenic traveller on this ship was about 70, a lot had walking difficulties. So information about how far, how steep and how long, should be included, rather than, slow, moderate or hard going as a description. Scenic need to 'Mystery Shop" their own cruises to get a better understanding of what is being offered onshore. We had a late flight out at the end of the trip so organised a 'day stay' hotel room to wait our time to depart. We had spoken with Scenic in Australia about this, and basically got the answer, you board at 4pm and depart the ship at 9am. This is NOT so. Passengers were boarding from about 9am and some were not departing until 5:30pm. We could have stayed on board in the lounge until time to depart to the airport instead of spending 250E for a 'day stay' room in a hotel. Would I recommend Scenic, yes I would solely based on the onboard experience, but feel they need to up their game with regards to this particular cruise and its onshore attractions. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
We chose it through a recommendation of a friend who had done several Scenic cruises. the itinerary was of particular interest, with the WWI and WW2 sites, plus many opportunities to visit sites important for the Impressionist and ... Read More
We chose it through a recommendation of a friend who had done several Scenic cruises. the itinerary was of particular interest, with the WWI and WW2 sites, plus many opportunities to visit sites important for the Impressionist and post-Impressionist painters. We were very impressed by every aspect of the ship, and in particular the outstanding crew and the very tasteful decoration. The guides were mainly outstanding, with the exception of a wise-cracking Dutch guide on the visit to the WW! cemeteries--most inappropriate. In particular we loved the fact that the ship docked so close to the centre of interesting towns and villages, and that we could wander around independently. Our only reservation was that over 90% of the passengers were Australian--as are we--and we would have preferred a wider range of nationalities. Still, that is no criticism of Scenic. We are so impressed by Scenic that we are about to book a passage on the Azure in Portugal next year. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We have traveled with Scenic 3 times before. This was our first trip on a french river. We chose the Paris to Normandy cruise because of the D-Day Landing and Normandy battle sites and the Normandy country side. Due to the recent flooding ... Read More
We have traveled with Scenic 3 times before. This was our first trip on a french river. We chose the Paris to Normandy cruise because of the D-Day Landing and Normandy battle sites and the Normandy country side. Due to the recent flooding of the Seine the ship was not able to leave Paris as planned. Instead we were met at the airport by limousine and driven to our embarkation location 45 minutes from the airport. We were met with a cocktail and quickly shown our cabin. Everything went smoothly from the moment we arrived. Our Butler accompanied us to the cabin and outlined all the features and set up all our electronic devises to receive the free wiifi. The staff are exceptional on Scenic and nothing is too much trouble. From this point on we ate beautiful meals, visited interesting and beautiful places and had a lot of fun. There are two gourmet restaurant exeriences available but every night is a five course meal in the main dining room. Lunch is served in the dining room and in the Riverside Cafe. We had a nice mix of people on the ship and made friends with people from England, Canadia, America, NZ and other Australians. I most enjoy waking each day and opening the curtains onto our balcony to see our new location for the day. The day trips were on quality buses with local guides. The group sizes were very comfortable with at most 20 people to a guide, connected through headsets to hear the commentary. But this "Tailor Made" devise also meant that we could leave the group and still have information available to us about the sites we were seeing. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Firstly River Cruising is my favourite form of travel and cruising. 'Gems of the Seine' on the Scenic Gem from Paris down the Seine River to the Normandy Coast and back is a journey through history and breathtakingly beautiful ... Read More
Firstly River Cruising is my favourite form of travel and cruising. 'Gems of the Seine' on the Scenic Gem from Paris down the Seine River to the Normandy Coast and back is a journey through history and breathtakingly beautiful scenery. The ship is excellent, the staff cannot do enough for you with outstanding service from housekeeping, dining, reception and the lounge/bar, the ship is spotlessly clean. Some of the chairs in the lounge are not very comfortable and difficult for some passengers to get in and out of. The satisfaction with shore excursions is primarily reliant on the guide, we had some excellent enthusiastic passionate guides and some that were very poor. This was my greatest disappointment on this cruise as I love to learn about the places I visit. The Cruise Director also lacked enthusiasm and failed to engage with the passengers which is unusual on river ships as it is a closer relationship with the guests than on larger ships. Embarkation had to be moved from Paris to Poissy due to river heights which required meeting at a hotel in Paris and being bused to Poissy, all went smoothly. Disembarkation was a transfer from the river ship to a number of Paris hotels for passengers staying on in Paris. We thought it expensive, we were told the fare was 60 euro for four of us travelling together, eight were sardined into the van which made it 120 euro, a bit rich for the distance travelled. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
This was a charter cruise with a particular group, and I was a staff member with the group. There were no children aboard this trip. While I didn't explore the departure city before boarding, embarkation and disembarkation were very ... Read More
This was a charter cruise with a particular group, and I was a staff member with the group. There were no children aboard this trip. While I didn't explore the departure city before boarding, embarkation and disembarkation were very well organized and went smoothly. The ship staff did a marvelous job adapting the schedule to things beyond their control, such as the river flooding in some areas and the lock workers striking one day. The food was always excellent, and the service was exemplary. Really, I can't say enough about how professional, welcoming, efficient, and friendly the staff were. I enjoyed the excursions - walking or biking tours, and multiple choices per day. The group itself provided most of the on-board entertainment and events. While I was not one of them, others greatly enjoyed the late-night music and dancing! The boat itself was luxurious, and always well maintained. I would definitely go again! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
Wanted to see Giverny (Monet's garden). Enjoyed the garden but the walk from the bus was very tiring. Floods on the Seine meant that we had to be taken by bus to do the tours, but that wasn't a problem. We were very well looked ... Read More
Wanted to see Giverny (Monet's garden). Enjoyed the garden but the walk from the bus was very tiring. Floods on the Seine meant that we had to be taken by bus to do the tours, but that wasn't a problem. We were very well looked after by the crew and loved the trip through Normandy and the WWII landing sites. It was very crowded at most of the sites we visited. We spent 2 days in Paris before we left on Scenic Gem and loved the Hotel Scribe. Enjoyed moving at our own pace in Paris and often felt that there were too many tours on the Scenic Gem. The ship was very comfortable and the cabin small but functional. The balcony was lovely, especially in the beginning of the trip when it wasn't raining. Food was wonderful and most of the people on the cruise were very nice. I walk with a cane, so couldn't deal with cobblestones etc. on many of the excursions, but was able to deal with most of the places my husband and I visited. We really enjoyed this trip but because of my limitations, I wouldn't be able to do it again. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
the staff is exceptional..there is no request denied and they integrated with the passengers on a personal yet professional level...the airport arrival and departure was torture free. food was elegant and the bar service was ... Read More
the staff is exceptional..there is no request denied and they integrated with the passengers on a personal yet professional level...the airport arrival and departure was torture free. food was elegant and the bar service was superb..snacks, drinks and exotic teas available continually...the cruise director tended to all details thoroughly..passengers were a nice mix of countries and sedate..all were well traveled..cleanlines of the ship was top notch.. tours that were all inclusive were good variety with excellent english speaking guides..slightly more pricey than other lines but well worth it..wines and liqueurs were top shelf and the ship condition and appearance as well as butler service with all tipping included was well worth the value..they even included laundry and pressing service which on a nine day cruise is very helpful...tv,and movies in room were an adequate selection..would have preferred better wifi service but this was not fault of the cruise line but rather the areas through which we traveled Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
We spotted an exceptionally good price on a 6 day, 5 night cruise from Paris to the English Channel and jumped as fast as we could. The cruise was a charter by Legendary Journeys and, with the exception of initial problems in receiving ... Read More
We spotted an exceptionally good price on a 6 day, 5 night cruise from Paris to the English Channel and jumped as fast as we could. The cruise was a charter by Legendary Journeys and, with the exception of initial problems in receiving information because of a computer issue, the trip was a real joy and we regret not also taking the "return trip" to Paris The Scenic Gem is a new design for cabins. Comments are below. Our desire on the trip was to relax and enjoy walking around small French towns at a comfortable rate, The trip worked perfectly for that and we were able to enjoy the company of good friends we met on the trip. The food was very good and the Chef was available for special requests. We totally enjoyed the dining experience from Breakfast to late night snacks. The entertainment was limited to a single musician playing the piano and guitar, as well as singing. Sounds concerning, but this guy was both experienced and talented and worked the room with skill. Service was excellent. Benjamin was the Legendary Cruise Director and spent a lot of time helping us contact embassy (my wife's purse with passport and green card were stolen in Paris before the cruise) and we really appreciated his efforts. All other staff were very friendly and worked hard to ensure you enjoyed your cruise. I was impressed to the point that I want to take the same ship next year? Visits to towns along the river ere a joy to stroll around and we would enjoy visiting each one again so I would rate them 5 Stars. Overall the cruise was fun of good food, great new friends and excellent service. Strongly recommended, Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
Scenic Gem Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 5.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 4.5
Entertainment 3.0 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.7
Fitness & Recreation 3.0 N/A
Family 0.0 4.1
Shore Excursions 5.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 3.5 N/A
Service 5.0 4.8
Value for Money 4.5 N/A

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