Crystal sparkles - not 6 star though: Crystal Serenity Cruise Review by Fandango1
Overall Member Rating
Crystal sparkles - not 6 star though
Facilities are first class. A happy and rewarding experience we would recommend highly to anyone.
Cabins are tiny, and need getting used to.
Its not however 6* plus as Crystal and other probably paid reports state. Commonly high end market regular cruisers quote Seabourns product to set the standard for comparison. Seabourn's small ships are superior in food quality, choice, service and presentation. Also cabins are larger.
Food in dining rooms is excellent, adequately varied and very good quality.
Nobu is excellent in both food quality & presentation, although late dining is a rushed experience always reminiscent of an early closing restaurant in a major city, where waiters want to rush off home. An ill placed experience on a cruise ship.
Prego Italian is sadly well below the general standard of the ship. The menu, presentation and taste More can be found in most average mid market city restaurants, and certainly could be bettered by thousands of them. The decor is massively superior to the food offering. Menu is boring, poorly constructed. Ingredient quality is low. Specifically :- steak is tough and tasteless, Pasta is passable. Gnocchi a pitiable excuse. The Rissotto is the worst Ive ever tasted, made from the wrong type of rice, undercooked and tasteless. The Osso Buco was veal lacking in both taste and flavor. Tagliatale was good, as was the simple but notably farmed sea bass. 8 diners ate there twice and sent most food back uneaten. The management don't care, for other pax informed us its unchanged for at least a year. The service however is fantastic.
Room service is appallingly slow, being badly managed for Crystal uniquely don't have dedicated staff, instead they use the already occupied room stewards who have to drop their prime cleaning task to obtain it from the galley and serve. Ridiculously unworkable.
Entertainment is good, pianists, quartet all except the main show which is severely lacking in polish resembling a high school effort.
The waiters although very efficient, rather obviously seem to operate on the previous tip culture, so much so that everyone around were discussing how much to pay them towards the end of the cruise, which sadly created a tense finale.
The burning question is " Would we choose Crystal again?" The answer is "Most certainly yes and we look forward to cruising with them again soon". Theres so much excellent food and entertainment, lectures, and assorted lessons available all over the ship, its simply a matter of ignoring the Prego & main show embarrassments. Less
Cabin review: AA8014
Tiny but just adequate, a large balcony is a must to avoid claustrophobia.