We are long time Windstar cruisers. We have been on 15 plus cruises over 25 years. We have been through several owners and have been on almost all the ships. The quality of everything ebbs and flows but the consistently fabulous, warm and friendly crew keeps us coming back. This particular cruise was a standout. So many things have improved....the food was better than usual and in some cases outstanding. The tours and itinerary were really exceptional. We really enjoyed the Concierge tours. They were well worth the slightly higher fee. We also enjoyed the lecturer they had on board. This was a first for us on Windstar and we really liked this extra information about the world we were visiting. I expected St Petersburg to be the highlight of our trip. I loved our days there. We hired a private driver and tour guide which we did independently but the other ports were equally if not more interesting. We had a professor in Poland, a diplomat in Estonia and a former British attaché in Lithuania for tour guides.....all excellent tours arranged by Windstar.
Getting on and off is a cinch with only 220 people on board. The ports where a tender are needed can be tricky if you are unsteady on your feet. Never waited in line for anything nor did we have to time our meals to avoid a crowd. We always use the on board laundry service. Even if not included in your package it is well worth the money not to have to bring tons of clothes and they do a beautiful job. We travel with carry ons. The cruise director was terrific and the hotel manager was everywhere making sure all the service was perfect. The Captain was also very personable as was his wife who was traveling with him. As usual, we met some very nice people, saw crew members we met from other trips and even were able to spend time and a few dinners with a couple we had traveled with a few years ago. We are very partial to the motor yachts. The large rooms and French balcony are now a must....the sailing ship rooms are considerably smaller. The Star Pride is a little tired and needs an uplift. We are excited about the planned upgrades for all the motor yachts. We were worried about having more people aboard but after seeing the plans we think the new scheme will enhance our future experience. If you like night life, shows, working out and dressing up, this is not the cruise for you. If you like visiting new places, meeting nice people and relaxing with a drink with new friends, the Star Pride is the ticket! Your fellow travelers will be well traveled, relaxed, interesting and friendly. You can be social or not.....whatever you want to be as everyone is respectful of your space and you never have to eat with a stranger.....unless you want to. The crew is always there to get you anything you want and even things you did not know you wanted! Never little kids, which we like and encourage Windstar not to encourage. Spa is small but I always get a better than average massage. Can’t wait for the next trip.....thinking Australia!
Very comfortable. Love the balcony and worth the extra money. Looking forward to the upgrade - cabin was a little tired but clean and comfy.
Had been here before. Just an ok city...stayed one night before cruise. We never stay at the cruise line designated hotels. Too many people!
Learned so much....wonderful people and very interesting history.