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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Missed a prior cruise. Seabourn was good enough to let me apply that payment to this cruise. The cruise was very relaxing and a nice way to see some towns that would have been hard to fly to or drive to. Seabourn is very good about ... Read More
Missed a prior cruise. Seabourn was good enough to let me apply that payment to this cruise. The cruise was very relaxing and a nice way to see some towns that would have been hard to fly to or drive to. Seabourn is very good about almost always providing you service exactly when you want it. You eat when you feel like it, not at an assigned time, check-in to the ship usually only takes a few minutes. The crew is amazing about remembering your name. This was my first cruise with sea days, two of them out of a ten day cruise. Overall, my wife and I found it very relaxing although I missed the opportunity to go onshore every day. Food options are excellent and portions of most items small which allows for a multi-course meal without getting stuffed. For internet addicts, you will be able to use your phone as a hot spot (if you have the US-Canada plan) during almost the entire trip thru the St. Lawrence Seaway, in all ports, and usually for about an hour or so when leaving or entering ports of the Atlantic. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
Chose this cruise because of the varied small port itinerary. Was not disappointed,all of the ports were good and some such as Kotor and Nafplion were brilliant, The only exception was Venice which with six ships in was a zoo. We ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of the varied small port itinerary. Was not disappointed,all of the ports were good and some such as Kotor and Nafplion were brilliant, The only exception was Venice which with six ships in was a zoo. We have cruised with Seabourn twice before and they were better this time than on the previous two trips.(I also think that they have become a little better than Regent and Silverseas with whom I have also cruised in the last year.) The food was excellant and very varied and the matching wines well chosen. The nightclub on board is good and is something Seabourn do very well. All the staff on board were happy and the service very good all round. I can also recommend cruising out/in from Athens as it’s a lot less manic than Rome Or Barcelona. The clientele on board were generally very pleasant in a fairly low key way. About half were American with then the Brits and Aussies making up a reasonableContingent. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this 7-day Baltic cruise with Seabourn as we liked the itinerary (5 countries in 7 days) and wanted to try a “luxury” cruise line having previously cruised with Celebrity, Cunard and Oceania. We were not ... Read More
We chose this 7-day Baltic cruise with Seabourn as we liked the itinerary (5 countries in 7 days) and wanted to try a “luxury” cruise line having previously cruised with Celebrity, Cunard and Oceania. We were not dis-appointed, Seabourn and their staff ensured everything went extremely smoothly from the very start. Check-in and boarding in Stockholm took 5 minutes, very different from experiences we have had in departure ports like Seattle and Istanbul. Our cabin (Veranda Suite on deck 9) was well equipped, and a little larger than we have experienced on other ships. I would not say the Seabourn Ovation has a great “wow” factor - no large Atriums or glass elevators, BUT the attention to detail from the staff, and the fact the ship is designed to never seem crowded, more than made-up for it.....it very quickly felt like home. The food was excellent in all restaurants. We particularly liked the Sushi restaurant and the excellent waiters/sushi chefs, as well as The Grill (reservation needed, but no extra fee to pay). The Collonade restaurant provides buffet breakfasts and lunch, with a themed menu dinner service. The found the quality of food just as refined as in the ships main restaurant ( called The Restaurant). We noticed two things with the Seabourn staff, that added to our experience; they were happy to engage in conversation with the guests and we particularly had the impression they were proud to work for Seabourn. This pride showed in the way they treated all the guests and took care of every detail. I need to mention two staff by name, Danielle, oiur excellent cabin steward that always seemed to be available right outside our cabin and always with s mile, and Tibor in the Patio Bar, who decided his mission was to introduce my non-alcohol drinking wife to cocktails of her choice. We only used the Seabourn shore excursions in St Petersburg as we did not have independent visas for Russia. All the trips were well organized and not too expensive compared to other cruise lines. We also noticed that Seabourn seemed to ensure each group was quite small, so never any waiting around. Finally dis-embarkation in Copenhagen could not have been easier. No immigration, no queues for luggage or for taxis.....just a smooth as the start of the trip. Insider tip - if you like good croissants for breakfast, go to the coffee shop in the Seabourn Square. They make their own, and they are a little more “French” than in the restaurant. Thank you Seabourn! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Our 7th Seabourn cruse, first on the new Encore-size which carries about 150 more passengers than the previous 'Odyssey' class. We were on for 14 nights, most passengers were on 7 night cruises and the ship was full, so that made it a very ... Read More
Our 7th Seabourn cruse, first on the new Encore-size which carries about 150 more passengers than the previous 'Odyssey' class. We were on for 14 nights, most passengers were on 7 night cruises and the ship was full, so that made it a very busy cruise for the staff. The ship is beautiful as the Odyssey class ships were, very much the same style. The suite was super, everything on the whole ship was clean and maintained and to a very high standard. Public spaces, the pool deck, the main restaurant, the theatre haven't been increased in size as much as the passenger numbers have increased. That led to the pool deck being pretty crowded on an afternoon when people came back from trips. The main dining room doesn't have the same feeling of space on the previous ships, it's ok, but some of the ambience is lost. The second restaurant, "The Colonnade" is much larger and brighter than before which is an improvement. Since now not everyone can fit into the theatre at the same time there are two shows a night instead of one, which does give you some choice. Service has always been key to the whole Seabourn experience and is why we have returned again and again. Overall we received the same excellent Seabourn service from friendly, well-trained staff, there really isn't a bad staff member and many are very good at their job. We did have some lapses, the main dining room did not always work well when it was busy with tables left unattended for longer than you'd expect on a luxury line. There were other issues in other venues with forgotten orders, late room service. There weren't many lapses, but Seabourn usually hits 99% perfect service, here it was perhaps 90%. Food. Everyone cares about food. This cruise it was mostly very good but with, for the first time on Seabourn, a couple of meals which were terrible, badly cooked, bad presentation. The choice was good, there was never a day you couldn't find a venue and menu you were excited about, didn't always deliver however. The ship now has the Thomas Keller Grill for which you can have one reservation per segment, and if you ask nicely and look hungry you might be able to add a second evening. The food there from the fixed menu was excellent. The ship also has a sushi restaurant we tried once, that was also very good indeed. We feel the food on Seabourn is usuall very good with occasional excellent, this cruise was very good with occasional excellent (in Thomas Keller) and a couple of meals which were dire. Entertainment was as good as you can expect from a small cast on a smaller ship. We thought the shows were the best we've had on Seabourn. We were fortunate to have Jeffrey Archer on the ship as a guest lecturer and each of his talks were very well worth attending. Overall it was Seabourn but a bit diluted. Ship is lovely but feels a bit crowded compared to the smaller ships. The staff worked incredibly hard but still the service and the food fell a little short of what we think of as Seabourn standard. We'll definitely continue to sail Seabourn but will favour the Odyssey class ships if we can and if Encore class, try to find cruises which are sailing less than totally full. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
I love approaching the terminal right before embarkation. The anticipation has been building for so long, the ship is finally in sight, and you’re almost there! But here’s a tip: in Barcelona, Seabourn ships may not be docked ... Read More
I love approaching the terminal right before embarkation. The anticipation has been building for so long, the ship is finally in sight, and you’re almost there! But here’s a tip: in Barcelona, Seabourn ships may not be docked with the others. Our taxi driver (who did not speak English… I’m not sure many in Barcelona do) wanted to go where the larger ships usually dock; we had to motion to him to turn around and take us to Terminal S, as in South. First Impressions No doubt about it; the Encore is a beautiful ship. I had watched many videos about it beforehand, but it wasn’t until I was on it that I appreciated its design touches. We’ve only been on one other cruise ship: Celebrity Solstice. There is simply no comparison. I especially love the colored glass accents… the fish in the Observation Lounge, the auburn bottles in the Thomas Keller restaurant, and the chandelier in the main restaurant. These whimsical accents complement the classic, handsome nautical decor throughout the ship. Who can resist sail away from the first port? You’ve finally made it, with nothing else left to do except enjoy your cruise vacation. We loved the Cruise Director, Chris -- a total sweetheart who is enthusiastic without being over-the-top -- and we appreciate the fact that opera is one of his passions (he has a beautiful voice). But to me, sail-away is the time for fun, get-the-crowd-revved-up music. Instead, we heard opera and more opera -- which can really add weight to the mood. Granted, it was a small point in what was otherwise a lovely experience. Our Suite We lucked out being assigned to a suite on Deck 11; I’m grateful to Cruise Critic members who told me, via the boards, that our suite -- the most forward on that deck -- would be quiet. It most certainly was, as the soundproofing was amazing. The suite was comfortable and felt high end. We loved having a walk-in closet. And our cabin stewardess, Patricia, was absolutely lovely and a great representative of the Seabourn brand. She was extremely efficient, a hard worker, warm, and personable. The Food In addition to the suite, I give high marks to the restaurants with wait staff, especially the main dining room. Not one false note the entire time, and we found the cuisine to be inventive and of high quality. We’re American -- and Thomas Keller fans -- so we loved The Grill. I liked Sushi -- service was a bit uneven -- but we only dined there once. The Colonnade Buffet has many fresh and appealing options, but no real exciting/offbeat presentations. If you’ve ever been to the Bacchanal Buffet at Caesar’s in Las Vegas, you know what I mean: gourmet sliders, red velvet mini pancakes, chicken-and-waffles baskets… that kind of thing. I don’t know why I thought I’d see some of that inventive energy on Seabourn, but that wasn’t the case (not even on our final night, when they touted “epicurean delights” on the pool deck). I found the 1 o’clock lunch opening of the Patio Grill to be odd and inconvenient. And there’s really nowhere to get a late-night snack (Seabourn Square’s little cafe shuts down pretty early, and even when it was open, its snack choices to be rather sparse and not terribly appealing, IMO). I realize that for night owls with a grumbling stomach, the expectation is to call room service. But sometimes I don’t want to wait. And sometimes, when one person is asleep and the other is hungry, room service is not practical. But believe me, I did not starve. Booze Flows Freely I’m not a big drinker on land, so while I definitely enjoyed imbibing on the ship, I’m sure I didn’t get my money’s worth… and that suits me just fine. That’s because on Celebrity, even though we sprung for the drink package, there was something rather dispiriting about having to proffer my room key to get any little thing, be it a bottle of water or a mai tai. That’s why I loved Seabourn’s all-inclusive policy: you ask, you receive. Simple as that. Ports My reviews are mixed. I didn’t find Mahón, on the island of Menorca, to be a particularly compelling stop. But the timing of it was good; since it was our first port, I preferred to continue exploring the ship and only walked around outside for about an hour. Corsica was another place that didn’t really hold my interest. Saint-Tropez was much more of a laid-back beach town than I was expecting. It was OK. Monte Carlo, Marseilles, and Portovenere (Italy) were very cool and interesting. I’m glad we got to experience them. Other Things I Loved The Observation Lounge. We began just about every evening there, enjoying the live music, a cocktail or two, and snacks. Relaxing just about everywhere. Except for the main pool, which is fairly high energy, there are many places to get away from it all. I found the forward whirlpool on one of the days we were in a port that didn’t interest me; and I hung out in it, without seeing another soul, the entire morning. I liked that there were only about 600 passengers, but I wouldn’t want to go any smaller. As it was, we started running into the same people, and part of the enjoyment of cruising is seeing new faces. Things I Would Change I wished that the pools were open later into the evening. Seabourn’s performers are talented, but the themes of the shows just didn’t hold my interest. Seabourn Website is old and clunky… could stand an overhaul. We had a wonderful voyage. We would definitely book on Seabourn again, although we’d also like to give Silversea a try. It’s hard to imagine going back to a mass-market line after such a great experience. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
We have just finished a 19 day Seabourn adventure to Alaska and as we anticipated it was what we have come to expect from Seabourn. For both of us it was our second visit to this wonderful state. The first 5 days were a part of the ... Read More
We have just finished a 19 day Seabourn adventure to Alaska and as we anticipated it was what we have come to expect from Seabourn. For both of us it was our second visit to this wonderful state. The first 5 days were a part of the Seabourn expedition program. We were met at the Anchorage airport and then whisked off to the Thomas Cook hotel where we met David the tour guide, coordinator, and all around handy guy. That evening we had a group dinner with 26 cohorts, soon to become friends. The next morning it was off to Denali via an 8 hour train ride through some gorgeous country. Wednesday was a free day for us to rest and take in the lodge. Excursions were available although Dee and I just took the day off. Thursday’s we were off into the park, not just a panoramic view but deep into the park. Where most tours go in about 15 miles our excursion went in about 63 miles. During that wonderful drive we ran into ptarmigans, caribou, grizzly, doll sheep, magpie, and the preverbal snow hare. Every minute of the 8 hours trip was fun and exceptionally interesting. Our guide had been leading these expeditions for 30 years and knew the park like the back of her hand. Our last day was a busy one as well. The alarm jolted us awake at 6:00 AM, we put our bags out, got breakfast then, on the bus for a three hours drive to Talketna. There our intrepid group boarded three planes to fly to Anchorage. The reason for the plane ride was to give us the opportunity to see the Alaskan back country and get a great view of a number of glaciers. We were taken aback by the beauty of the mountains and glaciers from a birds eye view. After an hour and a half of flying we landed in Anchorage and it was off to lunch, then on to the ship. In short the expedition was more than we expected in terms of quality, and the wonderful companion ship of our travel mates. It was truly a Seabourn experience. There is a lot to be said about knowing a group of people before you get on the ship. The companionship of the expedition group continued on into the cruise. If you are visiting Alaska via Seabourn and they offer this pre cruise adventure, take it. We have been on the Sojourn before, and like its sister ship the Quest it was a great cruise experience. Once on board we saw cruise members we had sailed with before and believe it or not they remembered us. Like previous trips the crew was very attentive and after a short period of time knew our names and our preferences. One of the surprises on this trip was the fact that our suite was upgraded from a veranda suite to a penthouse suite. Our joke was that it was so large that Dee and I had to carry gps devices to find each other. In truth the suite was fantastic. It had a separate bedroom, living area, a dining area, a two room bathroom, and a huge veranda. The itinerary was excellent as we were able to go places larger ships could only dream of. Add to that the off ship excursions via kayak and/or zodiac really made these excursions up close and personal. The picture opportunities were plentiful including glaciers, whales using bubble netting to get their lunch and a female grizzly with her two cubs just to name a few of the opportunities. The food, as in the past, was excellent. We are Colonnade people as we like the more casual dining experience. Our one complaint is that consuming this food seems to shrink our clothes. . As is our way we continued our “May We Join You” philosophy. We share a table every night with different people. On this trip we met lawyers, entrepreneurs, a gentleman and his wife who lived in South Africa, New Zealanders, Australians, and Germans. The most impressive couple however was the couple who exuded tremendous courage and strength in the face of health issue. As we have written before and will again, Seabourn knows how to make a cruise special. We love cruising with Seabourn so much that in 2019 we will be returning to the Quest to venture to Antarctica and the Amazon. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
As we booked our flights with Seabourn we were met at Athens airport and taken directly to the port to board the ship. We were on the ship within minutes of arriving at the terminal-no lines, no waiting like other cruise lines! We have ... Read More
As we booked our flights with Seabourn we were met at Athens airport and taken directly to the port to board the ship. We were on the ship within minutes of arriving at the terminal-no lines, no waiting like other cruise lines! We have taken many cruises on other lines and this was our 5th cruise on Seabourn and our 4th on Odyssey and we were not disappointed. Our lovely cool suite had plenty of storage space and was well-serviced twice daily. The fridge is stocked with the wines, etc that you have requested pre-cruise. As we sailed out of port, the singers and the band were playing on deck and drinks were being offered....it's all-inclusive on Seabourn, so no bar bills! Throughout the cruise we enjoyed great food in the Colonnade as well as a lobster dinner in the Grill By Thomas Keller. I also enjoyed a Pisco Sour off the cocktail list before my dinner in the Grill. The service on board is great with many staff remembering how you like your coffee, which wine you prefer, etc. etc. There is a lot of space per passenger so it never feels crowded and there are minimal announcements. We have already booked again for next year. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
The lead of this story is that Seabourn is back!!!! As frequent Seabourn travelers the past 5 years on over a dozen voyages on all three of the Odyssey class 450 passenger ships, my wife and I saw some noticeable slippage on our last ... Read More
The lead of this story is that Seabourn is back!!!! As frequent Seabourn travelers the past 5 years on over a dozen voyages on all three of the Odyssey class 450 passenger ships, my wife and I saw some noticeable slippage on our last few cruises in 2017. Service, food and overall Seabourn standards in a number of areas had taken a few steps backwards as the result of the 2016 Encore introduction and the consequent unfortunate compromising of the traditional Seabourn standards for passengers on the rest of the fleet. Many old hands saw the same thing and complained among ourselves on board, as passengers frequently compare notes, and to management. And complaints were documented on the pages of CruiseCritic by other old Seabourn hands, who noticed the same thing, and reported their own unhappy experiences. We were concerned since we had made several future bookings. Whereas before Seabourn never got bad reviews, now some were appearing. We were concerned that taking another Seabourn voyage would be a big disappointment. Yet we could not easily leave to go to another luxury competitor, because our loyalty and hopes were still with Seabourn and its product after all these years and money spent. Plus, we had left Silversea 8 or 9 years ago when things really took a sharp downturn with their brand. And shortly after we discovered Seabourn, and then loved it. Crystal too big. Totally, we have been on a great many ocean cruises over the past 25 years, mostly on the so called luxury branded ships, but more on Seabourn than any of the others we have sailed, including Oceania, Crystal, Regent and Cunard. So..... we have been around. We have seen a few things. Well, we are very happy to report that the slippage of the past is gone. The concerns we had are now over. I am here to tell all readers, based on our recent August Odyssey voyage in the Eastern Med, that Seabourn has regained, in our estimation, the top luxury cruise status and ratings it once enjoyed. The corporate effort to MSGA has worked!! Seabourn is back, and my wife and I are very happy about this. Seabourn's introduction of Ovation into the fleet this past May has been much more successful in terms of any adverse impact on the rest of the fleet and its passengers than had happened with Encore. And this is the reason Seabourn is back. On this August Odyssey cruise just completed, we did not see or experience any diminution of Seabourn's previously high standards in any functional area of the ship. Training of new crew I am guessing was highly intensified as the result of Encore. We saw evidence of that training effort on board, with a new training officer. The Odyssey staff throughout could not have been any better trained and experienced. For instance, the food coming out of the kitchens under Head Chef Lindsay is back to its former high quality, variety, innovation, plated appearance and tastiness. Service, and courteous, competent service at that, is first rate throughout the various dining and bar venues. Our individual waiting team in the Restaurant lead by Phillipe was just glorious, and managed well by Oskars the excellent Restaurant manager. The same high level of competence was true of the other areas of the ship like Guest Relations and Destinations, plus housekeeping. Our housekeeper was excellent. Overall, we could not have been any happier. And it must be mentioned that the personalized service and passenger interaction/ recognition emphasis throughout the 450 passenger ship that is so critical to a successful cruise experience was first rate. It is a hallmark of a Seabourn voyage experience from the beginning thirty years ago. Odysseys' staff is given the names and I think the photos of all passengers at boarding. They are told to learn and be able to identify and address people by name. After a few days, or less, one is greeted by name pretty much on a regular basis by many of the crew. Perhaps for us as frequent Seabourn sailors, it was a bit easier, and crew members from prior cruises frequently came up to us and greeted us by name and welcomed us back on board. But we always go out of our way to talk to the crew, as passengers must if they want a special experience. RESTAURANTS I am going to start with the caviar, which admittedly is not everyone's taste. It is an excellent, high end sturgeon variety from California waters, and this was a pleasant surprise. Always available, Seabourn is the last of the luxury cruise lines that offers caviar to its passengers without any premium. Any problems of the past with the quality of the caviar have been properly and well addressed by Seabourn management. Bravo Seabourn. We prefer the main Restaurant. Its menus are always varied, considerably better than in the recent past, and always classic Seabourn dishes like salmon, steak and lamb chops are available to order if the night's dinner menu offerings are not sufficient for one's taste. In fourteen days, there was no menu repetition. Nice dishes, creative, well prepared and tasty. Excellent quality of the products themselves, although more local products would have been appreciated. The Restaurant is also open for quiet breakfast and lunch, which we prefer rather than the busy buffet offerings elsewhere. Highly trained and knowledgable waiting staff. Very friendly and pleasant. The food coming-out to the kitchen is very good, and attractively plated, like it was in the past. Portion size is very adequate, and second offerings are always available. And the service is quick, especially if one gets to the Restaurant shortly after it opens at 7p. The head Chef Lindsay makes quite a difference. He is not one who hides in the kitchen, coming out each night to talk to his guests about the meals, taking comments and special requests. The dress code for men in the Restaurant has become more informal than I prefer, but I wear a sports jacket nevertheless at dinner and most men on board for this cruise did not. One unsatisfactory change from our 2015 beginnings. Two formal nights, with mixed formal attire. Despite what was erroneously reported by one CruiseCritic reviewer, Seabourn HAS NOT gotten rid of its wine sommeliers. They are well trained and free wines flow freely. The complimentary wines range from decent to good if not great, and very nice white Pinots Grigios like Santa Margharita and very good French Nicholas Feuillatte champagne always available. Of course one can always pay extra for more select wines if one chooses to do so. But we never felt the need, and we are knowledgeable wine people with a collection at home. Always a sufficient choice capable of being found, with the help of the sommelier, something very decent. Alcohol drinks also available throughout the ship at all times at all bars. And cabins stocked with alcohol of one's choice. The Patio restaurant at poolside is very convenient and serves at lunch basic patio type, well prepared grilled foods like burgers, fish and chicken, and salads plus some nice pizzas each day. At night Seabourn is trying a new concept of dining here. We did not try it, but others did and liked it very much. The Colonade is the buffet breakfast and lunch restaurant. Food is varied and very good. Also open for more casual dinner with waiter service. Varied cuisines each night. The Thomas Keller Grill speciality restaurant is, for us, just OK. Some nice dishes, like the steak and the grilled Dover sole that are very good. And deserts. People on board are of mixed feelings about the value of having the Grill. Some like it a lot, others don't, although very few have ever heard of chef Thomas Keller. On the other hand, some of the Keller inspired dishes in the Restaurant every other night proved a quite nice addition to the traditional menu choices. STATEROOMS Still very nice and comfortable, and well maintained after nine years of service. Odyssey we heard is scheduled to go into dry dock in early 2019 for a retrofit and bit of update. Decor of staterooms could use a little bit of sprucing up. At 365 sq feet with veranda, the basic cabin is very good sized indeed. Double sinked bathrooms and both shower and tub, which tub in nearly 30 years of sailing we have not used on any of the forty cruises we have been on across all cruise lines. It is very good however to store cans and bottles of cold beer on ice for the length of the voyage. Nice walk in closet with safe and plenty of storage space in the cabin. Very quiet between cabins walls. Nice sized, teak deck verandas. Stocked refrigerators with choice of alcoholic beverages. The ship itself sails very smoothly, with the captain engaging the stabilizers to keep the ship sailing the best it can when the August Greek waters got a little too rough. Never a rough night affecting sleep. Tendering operations daily, though, sometimes a little difficult with the winds of the Islands waters. At 450 passengers, the physical footprint and size of this ship are just right for us. Not interested in any larger body count vessels. Public rooms and areas very comfortable. Pool deck comfortable and not crowded. The Captain and his chief executive staff are excellent. Very approachable and friendly. A hallmark of Seabourn. Hotel Director Stratos Mylokos - the man in charge of all F&B and most other ship functions except the navigation - is among the best we have ever experienced at sea. Very knowledgeable, hands-on, effective, pleasant and sociable in his dealings with passengers. ENTERTAINMENT Ship has some very good, talented performers among the ship's regular cast, in search though of better production material. Four singers and two very talented dancers. But I have to say the Tim Rice special is overhyped and is getting a little long of tooth for us frequent Seabourners. Time to say goodbye to Tim. Some of the other production show material could stand with a little updating and variation to make the production numbers more interesting, as we recall they once were. The ad hoc comedians and magicians and other assorted artists and guest lecturers brought on board are ok representatives as members of their professions one always finds on board cruise ships. The Cruise Director Chelsea is a real gem. Not only is she a very talented singer, who performs from time to time, classically trained in opera, and having performed on the opera stage in many venues, she is very passenger friendly, highly organized, energized and effective. PORTS The Greek Islands all very interesting. Such beautiful blue waters. Personally, we could do without Mykonos and Santorini, because they are too crowded and too touristy, but the smaller islands we visited are very interesting, particularly when your ship is the only ship in the harbor or anchored. Authentic Greece. Without the ten thousand or more other ship passengers that descend on some of the islands - Caribbean style. Greek Taverna food at family run restaurants so good at these ports for lunch. We could eat a real greek salad and fresh, grilled fish or squid every day in these ports. EXCURSIONS The same we have experienced before on Seabourn and every other cruise line. Largely overpriced but of interest to visitors never expecting to return to these places. Thank God for well air conditioned busses. The full day excursion to the ruins of Crete and very good local lunch with authentic Greek dancing especially noteworthy. CONCLUSION Seabourn has regained for us the status and quality we once experienced. Its small size and personalized service make it stand out. It listens to its passengers comments and is constantly striving to be the best there is. From our point of view, it is the leader in its class. We look forward to the future bookings we have made. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We choose this cruise because we only planned ahead by 2 months and this cruise worked for our schedule. Awful from the start. Unorganized staff made it a nuisance to make anything happen. Food has been absolutely terrible. We’ve ... Read More
We choose this cruise because we only planned ahead by 2 months and this cruise worked for our schedule. Awful from the start. Unorganized staff made it a nuisance to make anything happen. Food has been absolutely terrible. We’ve never been on a cruise that had such bad food consistently throughout the trip. For the same price as crystal cruises, seabourn offers much less quality of services and amenities. On the first day, the staff was not informed on the emergency drill. They had me and my sister running back and forth needlessly, because several people gave us different information that was all incorrect. Smoking is a pain on this boat. They let people smoke cigarettes many places, but the only place you can smoke a cigar is this tiny back deck area where they don’t offer any drinks or service. Even though they sell expensive cigars. It feels like a punishment. Finding the spot was huge pain because every staff member told us a different location, which again, had us running around the boat needlessly. My friend was looking for an espresso on our first day. Once again, misinformed staff sent us in circles. We finally find the correct spot, and they say they can’t help us because they closed the esspessso machine 2min ago. They said we could get some on the floor underneath. We go there, ask the staff, and they kindly tell us we can get espresso. Then a different staff member aggressively grabs my friends shirt and pulls him back. He tells him, “You can’t be in here. You need to leave now!” My friends tried to explain the situation and he responds “well send you a double espresso to your room” and they sent coffee. Just incredibly agressive and rude. The other staff says “I didn’t know the captain was in the room.” Like that would justify what happened. Rooms are dirty. Fingernail marks in the wall. Stained carpets. Broken toilets. Shower and bath drains don’t work. Scratchy towels. Broken AC. Lights only turn on in your room if you leave your key in the wall, which has been a huge unnecessary nuisance as well. Food has been terrible. The menus are very limited. This Thomas kheller chef forces half the menu to be standardized. So you can’t customize the food to your liking. I’ve never been on cruise with such bad food. That alone is a deal breaker. The service makes it worse. Even dining in “the main restaurant” they don’t refil your drinks unless you ask. They bring the wrong food or forget orders. They use this tablet system that apparently fails all the time, according to a waitress. Today I ordered room service. Waited over an hour. After talking to 3 people, they discovered it went to the wrong room. Excursions have been fun. But we’ve been doing private excursions separate from seabourn. The one excursion we did use through seabourn was wildly mislabeled. A group of 20 people thinking they’re spending a day at the beach with powerboats, instead spend the majority of the day riding in jeeps, WHICH WAS EXACLY WHAT WE DID THE DAY BEFORE. Incredible. Before the cruise, they let you fill out this online form of what drinks you’d prefer stocked in your room. They didn’t put what I requested and just left Myers in my suite. I’ve been on seabourn sojourn, and that experience was 100x better than this. I’ve been on crystal and reagent, and those were even better. If you believe in getting what you pay for, stay away from the seabourn encore. The lady who cleans our room is awesome and so have been some of the service guys. The bartender is really cool and clearly is working very hard. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
New ship is lovely but larger size is a mistake. Addition of Thomas Keller restaurant and 150 additional passengers was a major error. Added square footage was in the wrong place and they could not seat everyone in the main dining room! ... Read More
New ship is lovely but larger size is a mistake. Addition of Thomas Keller restaurant and 150 additional passengers was a major error. Added square footage was in the wrong place and they could not seat everyone in the main dining room! The Thomas Keller was one of the worst restaurants at sea i have experienced. Decor was lovely but the food has been better at Denny's. The additional 150 passengers totally changes the feeling of the ship. This may have also have been impacted by more European passenger makeup but the ship was full of a bunch. of snobs. No sense of comradery. The Japanese Restaurant food was OK but far from good. The Retreat is a joke - expensive and seldom used. In general the crew was good - a great captain, bar tenders and pool side servers were excellent but our cabin stewards was poor at best and the waiters and management ti the main dining room were not ally ways helpful. New tenders ware great - much improved access. The itinerary was great- we attended most of the enrichment lectures and they were lacking. Olive oil lecture was a waste of time. Read Less
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