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6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Queen Victoria is a wonderful ship offering excellent entertainment options and an amazing dining experience. It does have some problems, as does every ship I've sailed on, but overall I think you'll enjoy your experience. ... Read More
Queen Victoria is a wonderful ship offering excellent entertainment options and an amazing dining experience. It does have some problems, as does every ship I've sailed on, but overall I think you'll enjoy your experience. First of all, it is not a young person's cruise. The average passenger on my cruise was 70+ years old. If you have trouble with elderly people walking very slowly in front of you and stopping suddenly for no apparent reason, you may be frustrated at times. At the height of the summer cruise season for families, there were hardly any children on board. Secondly, It is largely a British clientele, which I found charming. The average cruiser was well educated and well mannered. No line jumpers of chair hogs, which was refreshing. I could strike up a conversation with almost anyone I met and found most of them interesting. However, if you want to shoot the breeze about NASCAR, baseball and the NFL, you may be disappointed. Check-in was smooth on the dock, but scattered and unprofessional on board. No one met us in the lobby. There was no sign telling us where to go. We were boarded on the open deck three and had to find our own way inside. Even inside, no one greeted us or offered to help us find our cabin, lunch, etc.. We had to ask! Talk about a bad first impression. It got better after that. We had a suite and were dining in the Queens Grill. Our butler met us at the door (Suite 7050), took our alcohol orders for the in-room bar, showed us how to work everything in the room and walked us to the elevators to show us how to access the private Queen's Grill dining room. She was amazing throughout the cruise. She set up a cocktail reception in our room for a half dozen guests (the complimentary appetizer platter was huge and delicious). Lourdes took care of last minute laundry requests and kept our suite spotless. She also restocked the bar any time we were running low. The suite has a boxy crowded configuration which made the room seem much smaller than it was. There were plenty of electrical outlets with both American and British sockets. We had no problem keeping two cell phones, two tablets and two fitbits charged. The love seat is fine. There is adequate storage space and the butler stowed our empty luggage so we wouldn't have to worry about it. TIP: Don't remove your stateroom luggage tags. You'll need them to find your luggage at disembarkation! The balcony was large enough for a table and three chairs plus two loungers. The bed was very comfortable, however they do not use typical American sheets, on board, but rather European duvets. Very comfortable, but not what I'm used to. The bathroom was functional, with a private toilet room and a private room for showering and bathing, The tub was jetted and offered a very relaxing bath with bubbles. The towels were not soft at all, The teri cloth material made for the worst towels I've experienced in 25 cruises. The suite's bar was stocked with loads of teas, coffee and cookies. My wife and I each chose a brand of alcohol. I requested Crown Royal, even though it was not on the list offered by Cunard. The butler made it happen! The fridge was stocked with Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, 7-Up, tonic nd soda water, Carlsberg Beer and plenty of water, Again, our butler replenished our bar twice a day! We dined in the Queen's Grill, which is the best dining experience on the seas, in my opinion. The menus are very similar to those in the Princess Grill and Britania Dining Room. The difference is we were invited to order off the menu at every meal, and the dining staff did their best to accommodate us. Among the items I ordered off the menu were: Caviar, shrimp cocktail, Dover sole, chateaubriand, lobster, veal parmasean, fettuccine Alfredo, pistaccio ice cream, french onion soup and several different salads. Basically, the sky's the limit, if they have the ingredients on board, The tables are close together. My wife and I were seated at a table for two, but conversed easily and often with diners at nearby tables. When we wanted privcy, we were left alone. However, we all became instant friends. Here's a tip: Be the first to say hello to someone and do it early in the cruise! Coincidentally, one gentleman, at a six-top next to us, turned out to be a Cruise Critic member I had conversed with on line! He and his wife were positively charming! I found the entertainment on board to be excellent. The big production shows were good, but not amazing, Headliners like the magician and acrobatic dance team were marvelous. And it seemed on any given night there were six or more venues offering music and fun. I've never experienced such a wide variey of musical enterrtainment on any ship I've sailed. It truly was a highlight of th cruise.And it meant fewer crowds. We never had a problem finding a table or a seat in the showroom for the late shows. The only bummer was the Grills Lounge never had live entertainment. The enrichment activities were a disappointment. Cunard offers wine tasting seminars on its web site. High end wine seminars. However, after pre-booking a very expensive tasting, we got on board to learn the wine seminars were canceled. In fact our sommelier told us they han't done the high end wine tastings in six months. Cunard refused to credit the money from my canceled wine tasting to my shipboard account and told me I'd have to try to get refunded when I returned home. VERY POOR CUSTOMER SEVICE on that! Tip: Do NOT PRE-ORDER WINE TASTINGS! There were 3 speakers on board. One was a retired fighter pilot, who offered some fun anecdotes about his flying career. The other two sounded so boring, I cannot even remember them. I believe one woman was discussing the film career of an actor I've never heard of. We did not use Cunard for shore excursions. We booked everything independently. I suggest you consider private independent shore excursions as well. Remember, every group tour moves as fast as its slowest member. Everyone else has to wait on the slow poke. You may only have one shot to visit some of these ports. Do you relly want to wait on that last person? Additionally, Cunard builds profit into its excursions. The independent tours are almost always cheaper. Cruise Critic has an excellent section devoted to independent tours. Disembarkation for this cruise was difficult, because we got off in Kiel. It is an hour+ drive to Hamburg from there. It's pricey and difficult to reach the airport in time to make flights to the USA. Many people opted to spend an extra day in Hamburg. Don't take the negative aspects of my review as an indication I was disappointed. I was not. I will definitely cruise Cunard again if I can find the right itinerary. And I will definitely book Queens Grille for the dining experience. These reviews are supposed to help future cruisers prepare, I hope I have! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Most people on the ship were fairly elderly. I would guess that the average age was 68 and scewed a bit toward the higher side than the lower. I think that it is because of this that my experience was not that great. Don't take ... Read More
Most people on the ship were fairly elderly. I would guess that the average age was 68 and scewed a bit toward the higher side than the lower. I think that it is because of this that my experience was not that great. Don't take this the wrong way, the other guess were quite nice people and I did have some nice conversations with many of them. However, everything is geared toward that age group. Let me give some examples. Please note that I am far from young, 50's. I use the term "elderly folks" only in the most respectful way. Very nice people and, to me, seem like the vast majority were in pretty good shape. I have the feeling that this will come across as pejorative, but I couldn't think of a better term. The Dining: I went absolutely nuts. Every supper is a many course mean that take hours to get through. In my opinion, the food wasn't that great either. I had to wait just for these lengthy ordeals just to be able to get some food. I could order room service, but the there wasn't much of a selection. I could get a burger, but it was awful. It was obviously a frozen patty, overcooked and some nauseating sauce that neither me nor my wife could stomach. The breakfasts buffet was awesome and we ate as much as we could to hold us over. Lunch was also a buffet, but we mostly struggled to find something that appealed to us. They also have two special meals; I skipped the one that was supposed to be a degustation experience. I am glad that I did as I would have probably hated the food and it would have taken even longer to eat. The other was supposed to be an Italian restaurant experience. Well, nothing like an Italian restaurant that I have experienced. I didn't recognize one thing from the menu. What I did order didn't appeal to me. I am not sure that this food is gear toward someone from the US. The dining experience seems to be geared at more elderly folks. The best meals we had were the one German lunch and the couple meals that we had off-ship. The Excursions: I was very happy with the quality of the excursions and the guides pretty good. However, they were extremely short. In the neighborhood of an hour and a half and sometime not even that. I had at least one that was well short of the 1.5 hours it was supposed to take. Although there were multiple excursion choices on any day, you could only pick one. What do you do with the rest of your day? I didn't expect that the excursion would be so short. Sometimes we were able to ad-lib and find something else to do, but it was hard without being prepared for this situation. It would have been nice to be prepared for this so that I could have planned better. I am just guessing, but assume they do this because this is what appeals to the elderly folks. Entertainment: On almost every night there was guy playing the piano. I don't think I heard any song played that was newer than 40 years old. This was mostly the only entertainment on the ship at any time. There is pretty much nothing to do, but sit around. That can be relaxing, but there is only so much of that to one can take. There was a trivia game on one night. Many/most of the questions were geared toward an older generation. I know that a couple of the music answers were Tom Jones and Englebert Humperdink. I don't really know who they are, but know they were someone my mom listened to when she was alive. I was a little uncomfortable in my room. The AC would work sometimes and not others. Unfortunately, it would often not be working in the first part of then night, when I was trying to get to sleep. It would start working again in the early morning hours. It didn't seem to be much they could do about it. They gave me a fan. That actually did help a bit to get able to get to sleep. One thing that really irritated me was to rush back to the ship for the last port talk only to discover that the whole talk was just an advertisement we had to sit through for their Scenic ocean ship. I know I have mentioned quite a few negative things. I was very happy to be able to go on this trip. This is an area of the world that I had really wanted to see and am glad I was able to do this with my wife. Although some of the things I mentioned about made me grumpy, at times, the crew on the boat are a 10 out of 10. I really cannot imaging having a nicer crew. If I was every down in my mind about something, just their friendlies would snap me right out of it. Would I do it again, knowing what I know now. Probably not. I very much like the concept. I would probably search a bit more for another line that might address some of the things that I mentioned above. I don't know if that exists. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
This might be a lengthy review, but I feel it needs to be because when booking with Ponant, I found little to no reviews on this company, especially for people who were bringing children. We traveled with our kids 8 and 10 and just got ... Read More
This might be a lengthy review, but I feel it needs to be because when booking with Ponant, I found little to no reviews on this company, especially for people who were bringing children. We traveled with our kids 8 and 10 and just got home from an 8 night Mediterranean cruise onboard the Le Lyrial. We LOVED this ship. The staff were amazing, there was a kids club that I couldn't pull my kids from (more on that), and we were very pleased with the food. Cabins: Cabins are adequate in size. We have been on Royal Caribbean and Disney boats and the Deluxe Balcony stateroom was just as big, with a decent sized balcony. We had cabins 323 and 325, both rooms were perfect for 2 ppl per cabin with plenty of storage. They took out the balcony divider between out staterooms so we could come and go between the cabins. These staterooms do not connect from the inside. Kids Club: There was a kids club on this cruise, which I don't think is offered on all the itineraries. If there's a kids club, it will be listed. My kids loved kids club. The activities they provided for the children were entertaining. No there is not a basketball court, or all the other kids stuff you find on the Disney and RC boats, but my kids never complained about not having that. In fact, they told us this was the best kids club they've been too. Port stops: Because this is a smaller boat, you port in smaller ports and getting off the boat is so much less stressful. Ponant organizes everything to a "T" and we were very impressed with the tours they provided. We generally do not book cruise ship tours, but these tours never had any more than 20 ppl in a group, again a BONUS being on a smaller boat. Food and Dining: Food was great! There are 2 restaurants and we never had a problem getting seating at either of them. I do wish they had a couple more options for the included house wines. With this being a french boat, I was looking forward to tasting some good french wines. They do have them, but they come at a cost. Pool Deck: Never crowed. On a Mediterranean cruise one would have thought you would have problems finding a chair. We never did. Also, ppl do not reserve chairs with towels, which was nice! There were 122 people onboard our ship. Amazing! I can't imagine we will ever be able to go back to a bigger boat after being on the Le Lyrial. I would also like to add that our tour manager, Nina was phenomenal. She organized all our excursions, and they went above and beyond to make sure we had the best experience possible. For example, we booked an excursion that was not offered as an inclusion to the US passengers, and was given only in French. My husband and I knew this going into it. We fully expected that we were going on a French speaking excursion and were OK with that. To our surprise, Nina had organized an English speaking guide to accommodate us that day. It was like we had our on personal guide. We did not expect this at all! But again, this is Ponant, and Nina was just exceptional. All in all we will book again with Ponant. Not having to deal with the crowds on embarking and disembarking is so worth the extra cost! Plus the attention you get on the cruise is priceless. Sail Date: July 2019 Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We had done a river cruise 2 years ago with another company. We were completely disappointed in everything about the cruise, except for the ports of call. The tour director was detached, never around, they said all inclusive, that was ... Read More
We had done a river cruise 2 years ago with another company. We were completely disappointed in everything about the cruise, except for the ports of call. The tour director was detached, never around, they said all inclusive, that was the biggest lie ever. After that experience we were very reluctant to do another river cruise again. I had voiced my concerns with friends in Perth Australia, they said try Scenic, they had tried it and loved it. So here we were ready to get on board, nervous, a little weary and very anxious Getting picked up at the airport in a private transfer was excellent. No waiting, no fuss. The driver was friendly and helpful. Arriving at the ship, well, let;s just say we gave a sigh of relief. They actually had security, the other ship did not. We were greeted at the desk like we were old friends. The desk staff, kind courteous and efficient.. The tour director, Darinka, she is awesome, I would cruise with scenic just to have her on board again! We were told go have a snack and a drink and they will collect us and bring us to our cabin shortly. Indeed shortly was correct! Our cabin #316, was excellent, loads of storage space, huge adjustable bed, sofa, chairs, a full bathroom with a bathtub and a balcony. A chilled bottle of Champagne awaiting our arrival, fresh fruit and a wonderful butler. Our butler gave us a run down of everything in the room, how to lower the window... The cabin,clean, a mini bar well stocked and we could order room service anytime. Every day there was a daily briefing on the next port of call, dinner, drinks and any info you needed. The dining was excellent, as professionals that we are we always like to dine alone since we see so many people in everyday , here we could. It was so nice to be able to do that. The food was excellent, great choices for vegetarians, great quality, great wine choices. Every evening there was some entertainment, we danced the night away a few evenings. The excursions well planned and executed, the welcome back home with a cool towel is always welcoming. Overall, we were very happy with Scenic, we will book another cruise for 2021 with them without hesitation. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise because of our previous experience with the luxury of Scenic cruises and because it fit very well the busy schedules of six adults. We could not have been more pleased with our cruise. The ship and the cruise exceeded ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of our previous experience with the luxury of Scenic cruises and because it fit very well the busy schedules of six adults. We could not have been more pleased with our cruise. The ship and the cruise exceeded our expectations in every respect from the quality of the ship to the service, dining, and activities. The service could not have been better, as good as our last cruise with Scenic two years ago, and better than any other we have experienced on 6 cruises to date. Our adult children (51 and 49) and their spouses experienced their first cruise and were completely in awe of the experience. There was a wide variety of activities and entertainment. The availability of the e-bikes was a special treat of which we all took advantage. The ports along the Saone and Rhone Rivers offer much to see and experience. We felt that we got the luxury promised and outstanding value for the money expended. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
The ship was beautiful, clean and staff / crew were wonderful. Our cabin was large and we were on deck 5 which has smaller cabins than the other decks. It was roomy and laid out well. We were in 514 and it was noisy when they dropped the ... Read More
The ship was beautiful, clean and staff / crew were wonderful. Our cabin was large and we were on deck 5 which has smaller cabins than the other decks. It was roomy and laid out well. We were in 514 and it was noisy when they dropped the anchor. Actually the whole room vibrated. Entertainment was fair. Lectures were very good. Excursions were great, but pricey. The food was a bit of a disappointment, and we were hoping for better. Alaska was beautiful but there were quite a number of older people on board and they had a difficult time getting on and off the ship for excursions. In Alaska you need to do the excursions to get the full picture. I would recommend this cruise. The Sojourn is really the perfect size ship. Not too big and not typo small. It. Was easy to get around the ship because of its size. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this ship & cruise because of the great reviews & port locations. Originally we were scheduled to visit St. Kitts, St. Thomas, & Bahamas. Two months before our trip we were notified that one of the ships propulsion ... Read More
We chose this ship & cruise because of the great reviews & port locations. Originally we were scheduled to visit St. Kitts, St. Thomas, & Bahamas. Two months before our trip we were notified that one of the ships propulsion units was impaired and therefore the itinerary was changed. Instead of St Thomas, Puerto Rico. In addition, only 4 hours in Puerto Rico. And our day in the Bahamas was cut short to half a day as well. This was a huge hit, especially considering we paid over $11k ticket for the suite - to now find out we could make no changes and were stuck. Ugh!! SERVICE - not impressed. Aside from the suite lounge servers, this entire experience felt as though we were being shuttled like cattle. Most disappointing was the spa. On my birthday we scheduled couples massages - showed up and were shuttled into a “relaxation room” with 25 other people and no place to sit. We left immediately and cancelled our services, only to get a rude response from the desk attendant about why it was so crowded. In addition we were upsold constantly, phone calls about dinner packages, peddling in the shopping areas about drink packages. We received emails from our suite concierge ahead of our trip stating she could make reservations for us at restaurants or excursions. We asked ahead to schedule reservations on my birthday and never received a response from the concierge nor did our reservation get scheduled. ROOM- loved the room. Suite attendant was excellent. Plenty of space. Needs some updating though. SHIP- again, disappointment is the word. Although there’s a TON to do and my kids really enjoyed the activities, everything felt very enclosed and compartmentalized. We felt the ship rock through the entire trip even though the weather was perfect. Not sure if it’s because of the size? It was so crowded everywhere. The restaurants were insane. EXCURSIONS- good question. We didn’t book 6 months ahead and by 3 months out everything was sold out. We figured when we got on board more would open up... not the case. Again, major disappointment!! All in all, this is most likely our last RC cruise we will embark on. What a big ticket that was NOT worth the value. Celebrity hands down exceeds RC in every aspect. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
The Sojourn is an excellent ship. Almost everything is inclusive. Thomas Keller aka “The French Laundry and Per Se Signature restaurant “. You can only reserve it once on the cruise. Do not fret over it. The main dining room and ... Read More
The Sojourn is an excellent ship. Almost everything is inclusive. Thomas Keller aka “The French Laundry and Per Se Signature restaurant “. You can only reserve it once on the cruise. Do not fret over it. The main dining room and the second restaurant have daily menus on Thomas Keller inspired cuisine. I will post copies of it later. Service on the ship was impeccable. One morning the executive was and the Food and Beverage manager was making eggs Benedict for guest directly in the open dining room. Very rarely see this type of service in other high end ships. The free flowing wine, champagne and spirits was great and top shelf items. Imagine having Nicholas Ferrilaut champagnes constantly being poured for guests. Now I know the taste of great caviar. On the first full day I told the wait staff at the restaurant that I prefer a low sodium diet due to hypertension That was noted and in all my meals. Seabourn is quite a bit more than most of the others but it is well worth the price. In other cruises they push for the wine package , other paid extra restaurants but on Seabourn there is no premium $$$ restaurant. Every meal is like you are going to a specialty restaurant. There is no extra cost unless you want the super rare wine. Seabourn has their own expedition crew on board. This is a major difference than others. On most excursions these crew are experts and knowledge of the event. They are naturalist and have done these expeditions themselves The Seabourn Venture group on board is great. Overall I give the Seabourn Sojourn crew ten plus stars. Extra kudos to the Food and Beverage manager and his excellent team. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Two thumbs up. Five stars. Off-the-chart in customer service from the time we landed in Ho Chin Min City to the time we were dropped off at the Seam Reap Airport by the Scenic staff. This was my first time in Asia so I was in culture ... Read More
Two thumbs up. Five stars. Off-the-chart in customer service from the time we landed in Ho Chin Min City to the time we were dropped off at the Seam Reap Airport by the Scenic staff. This was my first time in Asia so I was in culture shock. The Mekong River cruise was a combination of cultural immersion during excursions to being treated like royalty aboard the five star vessel. The staff could not be any more accommodating. I was a single traveler in room 208. I was upgraded to this level because the ship was not completely full. The rooms are huge compared to other ocean and river cruise lines. There is a walk-in closet with drawers, a shoe storage area, a safe, ample space for your hanging clothes, and a minibar that is restocked daily with whatever you want. That's right. Drinks are all inclusive and my drink of choice is Pinot Grigio. There was never a time after my person found that out that my mini bar was without a bottle. There is a sitting area with a sofa, chair, and small round table. There is a balcony that only becomes your balcony when you open the electric balcony window. On the balcony breakfast type table was a live iris that was so beautiful it didn't appear to be real. Next to the bedroom area. There is plenty of space to walk around each side of the king-sized bed. There is a built-in night stand on each side also. The bed can be adjusted to your needs. I could raise the head or elevate my feet as needed. The bed was amazing! Usually, nothing feels as nice as your own bed but this was not the case on the Scenic Spirit. To the right of the bed was the bathroom. It was perfectly laid out. There was a make-up light mounted near the main mirror. The water was always hot with good water pressure. The glass shower had plenty of room. Each room comes with what is referred to as your butler. Honestly, they anticipate your needs and fall over themselves to accommodate you. I have never been treated like such queen in all my life. One of the greatest things about Scenic Spirit is that there are 24 hour washing machines and dryers available, WITH DETERGENT! I only washed three small loads throughout the cruise but how nice not to have to drag dirty laundry home. There is a spa with very reasonably priced services. I had a deep tissue massage on board and it costs about half of what I would pay at home. There is a daily early-morning (light) exercise class that was held in the top deck. They provide fruit infused water after each session. The excursions are so culturally immersive. The excursions were moving, humbling, and educational. Scenic does an awesome job with five star transfer service to and from the airport. Also, the hotels before and after the cruise are high end. Scenic Spirit, with Toby's supervision, ran like a well-oiled machine! Our guides, Duc and Dara, were class acts. Scenic is very blessed to have them. I will forever cherish the memories of my Mekong River Cruise with Scenic. I will never forget Duc or Dara. I will never forget Seyla. I will never forget the children in the villages and so much more. Thank you, Scenic for showing me the Mekong Delta in such a way that had me in tears as I boarded the bus for Seap Reap. The only negative I can offer was with the Scenic USA booking process, namely the flights. There was only one person in this office dealing with flights and she did not respond to emails well, or at all. She also booked an impossible schedule for our return flight which made us miss one of our flights (of 3) on the way home. Just make sure you review your flight situation well before accepting the itinerary. The cruise experience was so great that I won't hold a grudge against Scenic for the flights being poorly planned but the customer service from that area is something they could work on. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We celebrated my moms 80th bday on the break away. We took this cruise because of the offers. I never sailed the western carribean before . The unlimited drinks, great entertainement . Speciality dining was awesome. The variety of food ... Read More
We celebrated my moms 80th bday on the break away. We took this cruise because of the offers. I never sailed the western carribean before . The unlimited drinks, great entertainement . Speciality dining was awesome. The variety of food choices superb. Catered to all ages and the staff at the customer service desk was amazing. Some more than others especially since i was going there all the time to correct an issue. Special kudos to Pamela , at the desk. Strong who cleaned my moms rm. The restaurant manager at Savor Alan. Overall all the staff qas above and beyond. The ship was clean and the staff was working akways. I was dissapointed that i did not get a rm i requested for my mlom a special disabilty rm. Eventually they moved her to accomodate her by moving her to another rm. It still was not what we requested. . Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Family vacation with our two teen sons. Firstly we booked a 15 night cruise with Regent at no time did they tell us that the cruise was two bolted together. Beware this seems perfectly normal and somewhat shady. The net effect is that ... Read More
Family vacation with our two teen sons. Firstly we booked a 15 night cruise with Regent at no time did they tell us that the cruise was two bolted together. Beware this seems perfectly normal and somewhat shady. The net effect is that entertainment and menus repeat for both weeks... I think this is very unfair and should be addressed and I would advise people to check prior to booking unless you dont mind having a mirror image of the first part of the cruise in your second week. Ship: First time on Seven Seas and was bursting with excitement. I found the ship to be boring to be honest lacking the distinction and a personality I was expecting from Regent. Everything seems underwhelming not pretty and basic fit out Cabin: Best part of the ship nicely appointed decent size room and bathroom, balcony was a bit cramped to move around on but useable. Bed was very comfy. Staff: Very mixed firstly on the pool deck their never seemed enough of them but given the drinks were included one cant help but think this was deliberate. As a result the staff at the pool bar were unwelcoming and stressed certainly no service. The staff in the buffet were mixed in respect to attitude, one felt that the training was lacking with a number of staff many seeming distant and uninterested. The supervisor in Prime 7 was damn right rude I think he felt he owned the place! Prime 7 was okay but we didn't have a compulsion to go back. I have dined in far better on more traditional steak restaurants on cruise ships Prime 7 was average at best. Shore excursions: well a mixed bag supposedly all inclusive despite anything decent being charged for. The chargeable ones were good albeit out trip to the Ferrari museum 1.5 hour drive each way ended up leaving us just 45 mins to get round before being hearded back onto the bus. In the event they refunded just $30. Sums up Regent in my opinion...Cheap! I have been on Silverseas and Seaborne and have seen reviews that Regent are better. In my opinion they are in a different class. Both the aforementioned are far beyond Regent in every way for example both offer cold towels round the pool Regent does not, both offer fresh fruit kebabs at the pool Regent does not. Both offer deck dining quality at night Regent offers burgers. All very low end with high end pricing. In the end its everyone's choice but for me this was an excellent itinerary and we as a family had the trip of a lifetime, Regent had every opportunity to win our business in the future and simply failed to achieve the high standard they advertise themselves to be. We wont be back!! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
I am so happy that my Travel Agent selected the Avalon Waterways. This was my first trip to Europe and I can honestly say I was treated like Royalty. Not only were the accommodations excellent, also were the staff. Never have I seen staff ... Read More
I am so happy that my Travel Agent selected the Avalon Waterways. This was my first trip to Europe and I can honestly say I was treated like Royalty. Not only were the accommodations excellent, also were the staff. Never have I seen staff so committed to their job. The atmosphere was like family and we had so much fun with everyone from the Captain Ronald to Director Tony. There was never a dull moment with so many options for excursions offered. The best part is that many of the excursions offered were included with additional excursions offered at a very reasonable price. Let me also mention the food...delicious! All meals offered fresh food options as well as many non-meat options for those vegetarians. Included was a lounge that offered non-alcohol drinks, cookies and pastries at all times! The rooms were always attended to and the finishes were lovely. I can't wait to return!! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We chose this cruise, first, for the destination. We have always wanted to visit the British Isles. This cruise allowed us to get a taste of several countries, and multiple cities all in one vacation. We chose Viking because they offered ... Read More
We chose this cruise, first, for the destination. We have always wanted to visit the British Isles. This cruise allowed us to get a taste of several countries, and multiple cities all in one vacation. We chose Viking because they offered this trip, it also because the value of the cruise was well worth it. It is not the least expensive one out there, but we agree that it is of the best value. Some of the reasons to travel Viking are: no kids under 18, no casinos, no umbrella drinks, no upselling of products in the spa, no additional charges for excursions, no additional charges for specialty restaurants, no nickel and diming with pictures of you with the captain etc. This is an ADULT cruise for those who want to LEARN. Of course we also had a ton of fun, but this is not a party cruise. The ship itself was a floating palace. Beautiful, clean, simple Scandinavian decor, lovely colors mixed with creams, and the lighting was spectacular. Destination artwork and pictures decked the walls and seating areas. Food was amazing. Cleanest public restrooms I’ve ever seen! The entire ship was immaculate. They worked so hard at keeping things clean! Daily tea was served in the Wintergarden complete with loose leaf tea in pots, delicious scones and finger sandwiches. We took advantage of that as much as we could. Service was outstanding. We simply could not have asked for better. Anything we needed or wanted was ours. The destinations were incredible. Excursions were good. Most tour guides were very knowledgeable and helpful, with a few exceptions, but those guides didn’t work directly for Viking, and the ones we were disappointed in, we let Viking know. In addition, there were port talks given in advance to inform you about the port, and any last minute changes that were taking place. And the lectures by the resident historians were not only informative, but entertaining as well! Embarkation and Disembarkation went very smoothly. No troubles at all. I just can’t recommend Viking enough. You will NOT be disappointed! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We enjoyed Oceania on past cruises, especially the specialty restaurants, the smaller ship sizes and the service. Other cruise lines are cheaper, but the crowds are larger and the food is not as good as Oceania. Our cruise was 19 days ... Read More
We enjoyed Oceania on past cruises, especially the specialty restaurants, the smaller ship sizes and the service. Other cruise lines are cheaper, but the crowds are larger and the food is not as good as Oceania. Our cruise was 19 days and covered a number of ports we had previously been to, but we wished to visit Turkey, Israel and Cyprus. Embarkation at Port Piraeus, Athens ran smoothly. It took less than 30 minutes and we were on the ship. We find the ship is always clean in the public areas, the staff are extremely helpful and pleasant and enjoy a bit of banter. We found this time there were a number of passengers travelling with children. Sadly they are unsupervised around the dining areas and like to run up and down the halls during the day. I realise it is not the staffs responsibility to control them, but this can ruin it for others. We used the ship's excursions a couple of times which were quite good. I think next time we will organise our own excursions. It is most frustrating when people wonder off and forget the time, whilst everyone else is waiting at the bus. The onboard entertainment is not something we go to see. The band at the pool were playing a couple of times, and I thought they were pretty useless. Would have been better with just come music playing rather than a band. Disembarkation at Barcelona, Spain was super easy. We walked off the ship and all the bag were waiting downstairs. Plenty of taxis waiting to take departing passengers to hotels, airports etc. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
After 26 cruises this was our first on Viking; surely, not our last. I'll get over our one gripe first and move on to the positives. On the evening sail from Bergen, we visited the ship's apparel shop in search Viking's red ... Read More
After 26 cruises this was our first on Viking; surely, not our last. I'll get over our one gripe first and move on to the positives. On the evening sail from Bergen, we visited the ship's apparel shop in search Viking's red and white signature Dale of Norway sweater. My wife resisted buying other attractive sweaters in Bergen's shops with Viking's signature sweater in mind. The shop had no stock of size medium. The excuse was that they sold out on the last voyage. That is lame excuse since we just sailed from the cruise line's home port and the Dale of Norway production center. The salesman offered no recourse, eg. a special order that could be shipped home, and assumed a rather indignant, huffy attitude. The message. "Clients from the Bergen cruise origin aren't as worthy as those from the Greenwich start of the same cruise itinerary." That said, now to to the cruise. Despite scheduling 13 excursions in 11 ports over 13 days, we felt that this was one of our more relaxing cruises. The casual, unbustled on-board environment undoubtedly contributed to that feeling. We used Viking Air for flight arragements and arrived in Bergen around noon after a short connecting flight from Oslo. There were at least half a dozen Viking representatives at the airport to assist passengers and get us on the way to the ship. This exemplifies a typical pattern that we experienced on the whole cruise. Ample Viking staff are readily available where needed to assist customers. A seamless check-in at the port had us in our stateroom before the scheduled time. Our luggage had already been delivered, a first time experience on any cruise. The Atrium serves as the core public area from deck 1 to 3. Above The Viking Living Room on deck 1 with its nooks of lounge furniture, book collections and artwork, deck 2 has a perimeter balcony with lounge and table game areas and deck 3 features sitting areas along with exhibits of Norwegan traditional ceremonial dress; deck 2 has a nook with Viking cultural artifacts. My wife, a serious fiber spinner, delighted in the spinning artifacts. Stateroom corridors and public areas abound with artwork. Explanatory narratives are available through an on-board dedicated phone app. At the head of the grand staircase in The Atrium is a 2-deck electronic panel with changing images of Norwegan and Viking culture and the voyage's port areas. Beneath the staircase is a garden of multi-colored visual delights. At the deck 1 staricase base performance space features daily soothing classical performances on the Steinway by Olga, resident pianist, and the Viking classsical duo on violin and cello. Other performances included well chosen port-based ensembles providing local cultural programs and the ship's staff who shared diverse talents. Deck 7 offers other retreats at Mamsen's, where light fare is available, and in the Explorer's Lounge with its bow views and bar. A mezanine extension of the Explorer's Lounge on Deck 8 privised additional views and seating nooks. Midship on Deck 7 is The Wintergarden, a quiet retreat where most afternoons feature Afternoon Tea at 4:00 with the accompaniement of the ships classical artists. The pool area expands lounging and eating space, all or part of which can be covered by the retractable roof. Special buffets and entertainment are features. And for the always exposed to the elements, there is the infinity pool on the stern outside The World Cafe. And, back to deck 1 for Torshaven, a cozy club like venue for seminars and evening dancing from 9:00 to Midnight. The Star Theater's informal lounge atmosphere is a relaxing place for tour meet-up and for guest lecturer presentations. Sofa pillows with images of Norwegan performance and artistic celebraties on one side and the autograph on the other typify the Viking touch. Four lecturers on our voyage informed and entertained us. To celebrate the July 20, 1969, moon landing, retired USAF pilot and astronaut Karol Bobko shared experiences and related the technoogy of space exploration. He also gave presentations in the shipboard planetariumn on deck 8. Ship passengers celebrated the moon landing at 8:17pm on July 20th with pastries in the Atrium that included a chocolate replica of Apollo 11. William Thayer's lectures offered insight into the energy production technologies that are active in he North Sea. Other topics included the British pursuit and sinking of the Bismarck in WWII and the "Breaking if the Enigma Machine," a step in the development of today's digital computers. Dr.Michael Fuller combined archaeological artifacts with historical evidence in lectures about Viking and Northern European history. (Without historical documentation, archaelogy is speculation.) Particularly interesting was his presentation on the Hanseatic League. He met with passengers in nooks around the ship to pursue a variety of individual interests. Notable is Russell Lee, who synthasized complex topics from history and current events into connections that are often missed among the detail of events. He was literally up-to-date, including his visuals, with his Brexit presentation on the day that Boris Johnson became the UK's PM. Outstanding was Lee's presentation "Baa, Baa Black Sheep - How Wool Transformed Medieval Europe." He included his wife demonstating a centuries old spindle technique that persists today in spinning yarn. The only tidbit he omitted, according to my wife, was how the word "sabotage" became part of our vocabulary because of the industrialization of weaving. If you miss the lecture theater presentation, it's available 3 hours later on the ship's TV, not just an fuzzy video of the stage presentation, but with the presenter in a quarter panel and sharp graphics taking up the rest of the screen. Great Viking Jupiter production team! While on technology, kudos to the full-time internet service included in the cruise fare. Wi-fi access is throughout the ship, and there are desk top PCs located in a "nook" of The Living Room. Most passengers used their own devices. An on-board "trechie" can assist. Viking Jupiter's internet service is the fastest, most reliable that we have experienced on a cruise ship. Also, amenities include wine (red and white) and beer (light and dark). Menu beverages have a modest charge, eg., $7.50 (including gratuity) for a Manhattan. No charge for all the bottled water you want. And, no charge for the daily refrigerator set up of soft drings, snacks, and Toblerone chocolates. Spa facilities have no surcharge.. Unwind in a sauna, a cold tub, the Snow Room, a hot whirlpool or churning pool. An ample variety of standard fitness equipment is also available.Spa treatments are available at fees comparable to other cruise lines. While I was pleased with a massage, my wife was less so with her facial. She noted a harsh abrasive material used on the skin that she hasn't experienced before. And, after leaving the spa, she discovered unpleasant blotches of a greasy cream on her skin. And, let me not forget the included excellent self-serve laundry facilities on 4 of the 6 cabin decks (soap is included). So nice not to be nickeled and dimed. One can opt for individual paid launtry at reasonable rates. Repeat: So nice not to be nickeled and dimed. For us a genuine surprise was a bottle of sparkling wine and cake delivered to our stateroom. Viking graciously added to celebrating our 50 years of marriage. And, the on-board dining; overall - excellent. Several individual dishes were too salty (some chefs know only that "spice"). We didn't eat at Mamsens, noted for light fare, but enjoyed the no-surcharge specialty venues. First night out was The Chef's table featuring regional Nordic cuisine. International cuisines rotate avery few days. We chose the Nordic which was excellently prepared and plated for full enjoyment. We also enjoyed an evening in Manfredi's Italian Restaurant, where portions easily contribute to expected weight gain on a cruise. One can book as many meals in these restaurants as there is availability. The Restaurant is the main dinner venue with multiple sections that avoid the "heard feeling" on other cruise lines; one can actually enjoy conversation without straining. Overall excellent well plated dishes with reasonable portions served by attentive staff who remember us when we repeat at their tables. Thank you, Henry for your songs and attentive service. For a snack, on the pool deck, light fare is available, including what may be the best hamburger at sea. Vegans can also indulge. And, The World Cafe serves for a breakfast buffet as well as lunch and dinner. Customized omlets are worth the few minutes' wait. Sometimes staff were overwhelmed by passenger needs, but they were attentive and (with few exceptions) handle the demands well. Buffet food is among the best we have had. Do no pass on the ice cream and pastry selections. Seek out the daily pizza options that go well with a Viking beer at lunch. As related above, Viking clientele are learners. Each port includes one tour. Additional, paid tours are available. Most included tours are city drive throughs with a couple of stops. Our Dublin 3 hour city tour had an excellent guide. He related neighborhood histories along with those of major monuments. He summarized economic conditions in the city and country as well as the possible Brexit impacts. Included was a 45 minute stop at Jubilee Gardens. We were able to hop off the bus to explore Temple Bar on our own. On the Orkney Islands the included tour got out of the port of Kirkwall into the countryside, and included a too brief stop in the seaside village of Stromners. My bride found a shop with her favorite roving from the native North Ronaldsay sheep - a breed that cannot be exported elsewhere in the world because of its particular seaweed diet. Plenty of time was allowed for a stop at the neolithic Ring of Brodgar, a predecessor of Britian's more famous henge. Port Ulapool's included walking tour was perfect for getting a sense of a western Highlands Scottish seaside community, and included a pub stop with adult and bakery refreshments along with lively local music. We felt that the guide gave a reasonable overview of life in the community. Comments do not include all of out complimentary tours. Among the paid tours we enjoyed The Beatles Experience tour in Liverpool, except for the hot, stuffy museum at the end. Otherwise the ecellent guide and typically cramped bus seating are worth the effort for "Fab Four" fans. In Edinburgh the Rosslyn Chapel and Glenkinche Distillery tour were well done. One has to suffer an excessive crowd at the chapel. So, it takes effort to appreciate the complexity of the architectural gem. Do leave a few coins to support the chapel cat. The distillery tour with guide Willie was excellent; that's from a Kentucky resident bourbon enthusiast. Very disappointing for a train enthusiast was the Ffestiniog Railway and Lunch tour at the Holyhead port. We arrived at the train depot with barely enough time to board - no time for photos. Photo opps were "promised" at the terminus. By the time most of the photogs in our group got to the head of the train the engine was decoupled and on its way through the rail yard. Then, we had to rush to a bus to get to the next stop, lunch in a hotel in Betws-y-Coed with provided meal and time to wander the community that reminded me of Aspen, CO, without the opulence.We traveled through the Sodonia highlands, Wales slate producing region, distinct part of the UK. A positive with the Viking tours is that the limit seems to be around 25. So, one doesn't feel like part of ther herd. We took 7 included and 6 paid tours over the two weeks. So these comments offer only highlights. Preparing us for each port was a presentation by the cruise director and the shore excursion manager. Special kudos to Vicki, the cruise director. She was genuinely engaging and totally professional; and very unlike cruise directors on most prior non-Viking cruises, did not act like a clownish buffoon. I do fault the tour director, however, Javier, for a demonstrably lack of personal knowledge about some port tours. Debarkation, not a welcome 5:00am rise to be ready for our 6:15 group to end this Viking experience. In The Living Room we had fruit, breakfast pastry, and beverage options as we awaited our group call for airport transport. Friendly Viking staff were at every turn, literally as we left the ship. On the 90 minute bus ride to London-Heathrow Airport, a Viking representive gave us a guided narration through the London neighborhoods and assisted at our airport arrival. As my wife said, "This is one cruise that we return from without needing a vacation." Thanks Viking staff and Viking Jupiter crew. We'll be back! Lecturer quality is one reason for booking an Inside Passage Alaska cruise for 2020. It will be our fifth in the region. We look forward to the Viking difference. Finally, I have kept a spreadsheet for costs on prior 26 cruises and on this Viking cruise. For comparable 2 week cruises our Viking costs were only $300.00 more. I attribute this to the longer air distance to Norway. By comparison to US carriers, SAS to Norway and BA from London to the US provided FAR SUPERIOR comfort, food, service, and amenities in the same passenger class, Economy Comfort/Economy Plus or equivalent level. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We had never cruised previously because we did not like the idea of a floating city, so the smaller tall ship made sense, especially when it had a cruise that included our bucket list of places to see in Greece. We did our research and ... Read More
We had never cruised previously because we did not like the idea of a floating city, so the smaller tall ship made sense, especially when it had a cruise that included our bucket list of places to see in Greece. We did our research and knew what to expect, and the Star Flyer exceeded in most regards, especially the food! If tons of activity and entertainment is your goal, this isn't your best bet. If peaceful evenings on deck with no sounds but the wind thru the sales, and an intimate, yet casual setting for meals is what you like, this is for you. The group on board is small enough that mutual respect wins out over fighting for the best deck chairs or tables at dinner. The majority seemed to be seasoned travelers that know how to act in this setting and very friendly when sharing a table or space at the bar. So nice when the cruise director can address EVERYONE at the same time regarding excursions and ship-board fun. I don't think we'll ever take a trip on a large mega-ship! This setting was too perfect for us Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
We selected Regent because we have friends who highly recommended Regent as the best in the business. We were a party of 9 on this cruise to Alaska. 1 Grand Suite, 3 Penthouse Suites, and 1 Concierge Suite. The cabins were very nice ... Read More
We selected Regent because we have friends who highly recommended Regent as the best in the business. We were a party of 9 on this cruise to Alaska. 1 Grand Suite, 3 Penthouse Suites, and 1 Concierge Suite. The cabins were very nice although the Grand Suite had A/C problems from the start and took repair on several occasions. This should have been repaired prior to boarding. All other staterooms were in good condition except for a bathroom door that needed repair. Lets talk about water. Yes water. Regent has decided to process their own bottled water with little information as to where the water is coming from other than to say they have a new filtration system. We preferred Evian water which they had but it was like pulling teeth to make sure it would be available. Many times we would wait 5 to 10 minutes for our waiter to locate and provide us our request which is unacceptable. Also our Butler made it clear that it was not readily available. Really, on a 6 star ship Evian is not available. Somehow throughout the cruise we were accommodated. They are pushing their new water claiming that it is more ecological for the environment. I guess Regent no longer recycles? Lets talk about the food. We have been on several other cruise lines some with the same rating as Regent and others with 5.5 Stars and their food is much superior to Regents. We dinned in the Steak house that apparently serves USDA Prime Beef. Trust me this is not Prime Beef unless the new definition is bring a chain saw with you to dinner. The veal is also very tough. There is no question in our minds that NCL is using their standard beef selection from their other lines on Regent. We dined their several times and the beef just does not add up to choice much less Prime. The main dinning room was just ok and most of the food is pre prepared, and when served shows dried out edges on the food, in some cases food was served cold. Breakfast, lacks any special flair and the pancakes on one day were literally inedible and the bacon was full of grease and clumped together. Typical cafeteria style food. Does this sound like a "6" star ship ? Lunch, was ok but again nothing special like other 5.5 and 6 star ships. They also had a grill outside near the pool that had no ventilation and you could eat their but then you needed to wash your clothes and take a shower as you smelled like you had been working as a short order cook. This is not an exaggeration by any means. With the cabin categories we had for the 9 people and Butler service you would think making dinner reservations would be easy. Think again. The ship is well maintained overall and pleasant. The captain did a 5 minute viewing of Hubbard Glacier as he did not plan ahead for the bad (fog) weather and their was a ship right behind ours that was on schedule for their viewing of the glacier. One of the main reasons for the cruise is the Glacier but somehow the Captain missed the memo. We cannot say this was a bad cruise but neither can we say it was a great cruise and by no means a "6" Star cruise. This is the problem when great cruise lines get bought up by larger more generic cruise lines. They try and integrate less with more and end up average. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
I wish I had read the Cruise Citic Reviews for this ship before I booked. I would not have gone ahead. Many of the reviews do not have nice things to say about this ship and they are accurate. Silversea claim that this is a 6 star ship. I ... Read More
I wish I had read the Cruise Citic Reviews for this ship before I booked. I would not have gone ahead. Many of the reviews do not have nice things to say about this ship and they are accurate. Silversea claim that this is a 6 star ship. I have done several Cruises and it is1 -1.5 stars at best. So in summary I paid a six star price for a 1 star ship. Everything on board is the cheapest of the Cheap. Even the bottled water in the cheapest they could buy. No Evian here - cheap water from somewhere in China. Cabins are rusted, no AC working, crew is not allowed to speak any other language then English and they are Latin Americans. The quality of the meals is the worst ever I have, the lowest quality and charged as a 6 Stars. Ship - Tired and Run Down. Staff - poor levels of english and you have to ask for everything 4 times Management - Don't care - we told them of our dissappointment only to be ignored - One manager organised one special meal for us and that was it. Special Requests - At first they tell they can't do special things for you hoping you will stop asking then after a while the reluctantly give in and get it for you - not what was expected on a "6 star" ship. Don't expect any pampering on this ship. They claim to have daily yoga, pilates and fitness classes - they had nobody on board to do them. This is the worst cruise I ever gone and not worth a Penny is TRASH.. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Did this cruise two years ago on L'Austral. It was so good we re-booked and took our adult children on with us this time on Le Laperouse. This trip was even better! The new ship is beautiful. Love the cabins and public areas. The new ... Read More
Did this cruise two years ago on L'Austral. It was so good we re-booked and took our adult children on with us this time on Le Laperouse. This trip was even better! The new ship is beautiful. Love the cabins and public areas. The new Zodiac landing arm is amazing. When not in use for this purpose we had a champagne cocktail party on it as well as a concert by an opera singer as the sun was setting over the Indian Ocean. Magical. The expedition team were fantastic. Very knowledgeable and likable. Wonderful Captain and crew on board and sensational food. An incredible itinerary in such a beautiful remote area. We felt very privileged to be able to hike to some of the Aboriginal rock art sites. We are quite well traveled and cruise a lot and hands down this was the best trip we have ever done. Could not fault a thing. If you haven't been to the Kimberley be sea, I would highly recommend it with Ponant. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
Our first time on a Crystal Cruise and chose this cruise based on recommendations and the itinerary. The pro's - Embarkation and disembarkion - quickest and most organised of any cruises done to date Food - The best food of ... Read More
Our first time on a Crystal Cruise and chose this cruise based on recommendations and the itinerary. The pro's - Embarkation and disembarkion - quickest and most organised of any cruises done to date Food - The best food of all cruise lines to date, only thing that let it down at times was the sweets, OK but not amazing unlike the entrée and mains. Service - Waterside - a big thanks to Gorkan, Tamas who really looked after us, the buffet staff were all wonderful, Pinto from the Italian restaurant and in the Cove bar, Chris and Priscilla who made our cruise memorable. Our cabin girl Danijela looked after us so well. Cabin - 5010 on the 5th deck was lovely, quiet, no movement, kept spotlessly clean and had adequate storage and all that you needed. Was a lot smaller than the Visa cabin (same cat.) on the Silverseas ships. Entertainment in the Galaxy theatre, enjoyable. the con's - Activities - What activities! So little to do apart from computer, lectures...…… Entertainment - this ship has marvellous bars but if your sitting in a bar after 10.00pm there is more likely hood that there will be more staff in the room than passengers. We sat in the Avalon bar one evening - Piano player and four of us and five staff...……...so no atmosphere at all. Found the piano (2 piano players) and violin (she was amazing) all a bit boring over an 11 day cruise. Same as the duo. Really need more entertainment geared for passengers who would like up beat music and a bit of fun. Saying that, seems that the majority of the passengers are very old (and we are in our 70's). We did not book our excursions through Crystal as found it much cheaper to book ourselves online. Alaska itself is more suited to fit and able passengers who would like to do outdoor activities. If your interest is the towns, found them all much the same, so many jewellery shops, same type of tourist shops, etc. All a bit contrived. Sitka was my favourite stop, lovely walks and suited for older passengers. After two cruises with Silversea's I was anticipating staff calling us by name occasionally but found only Chris in the Cove bar remembered our names after 11 days. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
From start to finish our cruise was amazing. From the food to the tours to the cabins and staff, we had no complaints on our trip from Budapest to Vilshofen. Even when Mother Nature decided to change our plans (we were supposed to sail to ... Read More
From start to finish our cruise was amazing. From the food to the tours to the cabins and staff, we had no complaints on our trip from Budapest to Vilshofen. Even when Mother Nature decided to change our plans (we were supposed to sail to Nuremberg but the river was too low) they made sure that not only could we go on our previously chosen off ship tours, they made sure we had the option to tour a more local spot for those who didn’t want a long bus ride to their original tour choices. Speaking of which, the tours were interesting, educational, varied and nearly every single port had something for everyone. And when it didn’t. Stay on the ship and watch the beautiful scenery pass you by! Not to mention the amazing food and lovely lounge pianist. There’s even a pool you can relax and enjoy, plus a fitness room and on board massage therapist as well as a hairstylist if you want to pamper yourself. We highly recommend this tour to anyone considering it! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
A few weeks ago, we cruised aboard MS Insignia. It has been several years since we have been on Oceania (due to retirement plans). We were looking forward to two things: The voyage to Cuba and how the line has fared in the years since ... Read More
A few weeks ago, we cruised aboard MS Insignia. It has been several years since we have been on Oceania (due to retirement plans). We were looking forward to two things: The voyage to Cuba and how the line has fared in the years since we last travelled with them. First things first, the trip to Cuba was cancelled. Not Oceania’s fault, as it hit all the cruise lines hard. We had originally booked a low deck porthole cabin for this trip. Once the Cuba trip was cancelled, Oceania came back to us with a very nice package of monies returned AND possible upgrades. We chose an upgrade (which we paid for), to Concierge level. We spent a few days in South Beach, pre cruise, and then boarded Insignia. We were very pleased with the refurb that the ship had just finished. Beautiful and elegant in all aspects of this small ship. This was our 65th cruise and have been on many lines, but must say that the small ship feel was really nice. Our cabin was a nice size with lots of storage space, very nice balcony and great amenities. We spent more time on this balcony than many other ships from our past. The bathrooms are very small; particularly the shower, but we are not large people, so it did not affect us. Our cabin stewards were excellent, exceeding our expectations. Bottled water was placed in our cabin each day and always kept full. Bottled water is filtered aboard ship and replaced each day in your cabin (included). You can walk the entire length of this ship within two-three minutes. We were on Deck seven, so we were always two decks up to the Terrace Café and Pool, or two decks down to the Main Dining Room. There are two shops, a very tiny lobby and several areas to enjoy drinks or relaxation. The library on Deck 10 was a beautiful place to relax and read. The days of libraries like this on most ships are gone. The Show room area was very spacious and was used for several different events during the voyage. This ship has very limited entertainment. A pianist in the evening, along with a quintet of strings. The main show was always at 9:45 p.m., when most of the ship had gone to bed. The entertainment was okay, but we did not go to more than one show. There is also a stunning view lounge on the upper decks with wonderful views of the ocean. The times we went there to enjoy an after dinner drink, it was usually empty! The FOOD is what we were most anxious to try as we had remembered it being outstanding from a previous cruise. We were not disappointed in any of the venues on board. The two specialty restaurants are included in the price, but you only get one shot at each of them (unless you are a Suite guest). Both Toscana and the Polo Grill were outstanding, each in their own way. The quality of the food, presentation and service were all excellent. The Main Dining Room was excellent too, with a wonderfully diverse menu each evening and great service. Very nice wine lists in all outlets also helped. We enjoyed breakfast in the MDR several times, and again, was top notch. The Terrace Café is the buffet. It is not very big, nor is there a large selection. We did feel, however, that the food offered was very nice quality and we enjoyed it. We especially enjoyed the great cheeses each day (which were not the processed goo that you get on most ships). Sitting outside on the ship’s fantail, was really nice, especially in the Caribbean setting. The pool restaurant served very nice sandwiches and grilled items cooked to order. Also, it had a daily fruit and salad bar, along with some of the best ice cream and shakes at sea. Our ports of call were not the reason we stayed with this cruise after Cuba was cancelled. Key West, Roatan, Belize and Costa Maya (which had to be skipped due to high winds) were all okay. We had been to most of them, so we didn’t do any excursions. I could write many pages about this ship, but need to conclude by saying we look forward to travelling with Oceania again in our cruising future. IF you like the small ship experience, you will love this ship!! Thanks again to all members of the crew that made our week go by way too fast! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
One of my bucket list items and this trip did not disappoint. Even though we had to make 2 different ship changes due to the damaged lock, the crews were all amazing and handled the transitions flawlessly. We didn't lose a single ... Read More
One of my bucket list items and this trip did not disappoint. Even though we had to make 2 different ship changes due to the damaged lock, the crews were all amazing and handled the transitions flawlessly. We didn't lose a single excursion. Ships were immaculately maintained and all crew from the cabin stewards to the captains were top notch. The ships extra amenities at a small fee were exceptional offering everything from hair dressing to workout rooms to massages to laundry. Our cruise director Silvia ensured that everyone was well informed and looked after. This company provides a full service with all meals, drinks, excursions, air fare, transfers and tipping were included in our package price so we never had to spend a cent on board and oh yeah did I mention we had use of a personal butler as well - it just doesn't get any better than this. The food preparation, quality, quantity and presentation were all superb. Both my wife and myself have food allergies and the Maitre D' stopped by our table at almost every meal to ensure we were properly taken care of. A printed copy of every day's menu was delivered to our room with food items redacted on the menu that we were not supposed to eat leaving nothing to chance. Wait staff was amazing offering top rate service with a smile and good humor. Th selection of excursions ensured all people regardless of desires or abilities could be accommodated and they were fabulous with stops from small old towns to large cities (Vienna, Budapest). E-bikes available to anyone who wished to use them - free of course. Everything on board was ultra modern. Th dining room, lounge and even the cabins were well appointed and spacious. We had a balcony suite which I would highly recommend. These trips are not cheap but do not use a budget carrier go with the best use Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
Scenic were recommended to us by friends that had previously done the Jewels of Europe Cruise. It truly meets their promise of all inclusive cruising. We have hardly put our hand in our wallet for the past two weeks. The onboard dining ... Read More
Scenic were recommended to us by friends that had previously done the Jewels of Europe Cruise. It truly meets their promise of all inclusive cruising. We have hardly put our hand in our wallet for the past two weeks. The onboard dining and bar service was fabulous along with all the entertainment provided. Huge range of foods available for different tastes and dietary requirements. Scenic spare no expense when organising the land tours providing several choices at each port. We had private bus transfer and usually had priority netrance to most attractions, saving the frustration of queuing. Even provide water bottles for us to take on excursions. Our cruise director, Patrik, was very knowledgeable and was always available if you required extra information or assistance. We Will definitely choose Scenic again in the future when planning our next holiday. The 'all inclusive' nature of the Scenic Cruise makes it good value as we haven't had to purchase any drinks or extra land tours. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
This was at the top of our bucket list and Scenic did not disappoint. They are Incredibly organized. Absolutely love there are no surprises. All staff were terrific, always smiling, always speak and extremely helpful. Cabins are ... Read More
This was at the top of our bucket list and Scenic did not disappoint. They are Incredibly organized. Absolutely love there are no surprises. All staff were terrific, always smiling, always speak and extremely helpful. Cabins are cleaned twice a day. Food was amazing as well as the wine. Great entertainment. River cruising is definitely a wonderful way to see a lot of countries as well as the highlights of each in a short amount of time. Love the tours and learning traditions of each country. I really don’t believe I would travel with anyone but Scenic. 15 day cruise is just perfect. We made some wonderful friends. Love the fact that on a smaller cruise we really feel like family. The staff tend to pick up on little things that each of us like and are at our service whenever we need or want them. Highly recommend Scenic Spaceships. Read Less

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