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5 Monaco (Monte Carlo) Crystal Serenity Cruise Reviews

Before we sailed, we were full of expectation to sail with the Best Ship of the Year. However, we were so disappointed about everything we experienced right from the cruise terminal. When we arrived, no porters to carry out luggage and ... Read More
Before we sailed, we were full of expectation to sail with the Best Ship of the Year. However, we were so disappointed about everything we experienced right from the cruise terminal. When we arrived, no porters to carry out luggage and we asked, the staff said we had to carry our big luggage all the way to the ship for check in. We were astonished but no one at the terminal was able to help. After checked in ( inside the ship already ), we asked about our luggage since the room was not ready until 3pm, the staff did not know how to react and simply asked to check with the Reception. We were upset and she finally got up and asked someone ( the Officer I think ) and she came to us and said our luggage would be taken care of. This was a bad start. Then, we headed to the main dining room for lunch and the food was very ordinary, I asked for an orange juice and the juice was not fresh and I was surprised and asked the waiter for a fresh one and said all juices were from the machine. Later I asked another waitress whom said all juices are fresh and brought me a fresh one. How could this happen ? In 7 days sail, we found the services were mediocre and food on the whole ( except a couple of meals ) was just above average, even their flagship restaurant Nobu restaurant. There were however, a couple of meals which were good, like lobster night ! I also think they are under staff, I was standing in a queue for 20 minutes for a burger while my friend was sitting at the table for 25 minutes before being served ( after waiving to the waiters a couple of time for getting their attention ), there were so many people and so few staff at the deck. However, in Tastes, another restaurant, the service was much better though. Most of transportation ( shuttle bus and tender service to/from ports ) were not well managed and sometimes were left alone with the driver to show us the way to the town ! Entertainment not too good also. Last one good thing to add was the disembarkation which was very smooth, it took us 10 minutes to reach to the outside taxi stand ! In summary, we would not choose Crystal again, simply for worth the money ! Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
My 4th cruise but first on Crystal Cruise. It will be very hard to cruise on any other line. Pros: Exceptional service. Our PURE room was kept in amazing shape as the attendant must have gone in multiple times throughout the day. So ... Read More
My 4th cruise but first on Crystal Cruise. It will be very hard to cruise on any other line. Pros: Exceptional service. Our PURE room was kept in amazing shape as the attendant must have gone in multiple times throughout the day. So pleasant and welcoming she was. Food is plentiful and clearly labeled. Ask for anything and they seem to have it and will bring it to you without question. Selection, taste and freshness of the food is better than Princess, Carnival and Royal Caribbean in my opinion. No up selling unless it is a very high end booze. I know you pay a premium for a Crystal Cruise but it seems worth it not to be nickle and dimed aboard when you are trying to relax. This includes the gratuities throughout the ship. Smaller ships (1000 people approx) You get to know so many people and very little if no wait times for anything. Entertainment is wonderful. I stopped going to most of the shows on the other lines as it was the same so-so talent teams but on Crystal the regular talent was amazing as was the headliners that they brought in at various stops. Cons:Very hard to find something to complain about but if I had to it would be that the service in the main dining room was very inconsistent depending on the crowd size. The first night was only half full so they set the bar high and it went up and down from there. Food in the dining room is wonderful as it is in the specialty restaurants with the Japanese restaurant being the best of the best Only went to one High tea as the "Mozart Tea" really interested me. While the food and tea were great the only thing that was special was the period costumes the staff wore. The pianist and violinist,played everything from New York New York to Fiddler on the Roof however no Mozart. Will be doing another Crystal cruise as soon as I can.. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
My third cruise on Serenity and my favorite so far. I have sailed 4 times on Holland America, which I enjoy, but Crystal really is a superior experience. I stayed one night in Monte Carlo at the Fairmont (Crystal package) which was ... Read More
My third cruise on Serenity and my favorite so far. I have sailed 4 times on Holland America, which I enjoy, but Crystal really is a superior experience. I stayed one night in Monte Carlo at the Fairmont (Crystal package) which was dreadful and outrageously overpriced. Once I was on the ship the bad hotel experience was forgotten. I appreciated the seamless ease of the check in and the immediate invitation into the dining room for a lovely luncheon with generous pourings of champagne. My cabin (B1 class) was ready and my luggage waiting as soon as I finished lunch. The cabin suited my needs perfectly - I appreciate the generous sized bathrooms and the veranda. Overall I found the service exemplary in every category - no complaints at all. I dined at the 6:00 seating, table of 8. I truly enjoyed the food in the dining room - this is where Crystal really excels. Great company at my assigned table although only 6 seemed to join us. Superb service in the dining room. I did not visit any of the specialty restaurants during this cruise because I so enjoyed the food and company in the main dining room. I enjoyed ports in the South of France the most - especially Sanary-sur-Mer which was just beautiful and not as overrun with tourists as St. Tropez. I took Crystal shore excursions in every port except Mallorca (didn't get off the ship that day). I was happy with each excursion - no complaints, although some were better than others. I disembarked in Barcelona - took Crystal transfer to the airport which was perfectly organized - smooth, quick and easy. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
My husband surprised me with a week cruise on Crystal. I only had a couple weeks notice that we were going, and usually I prefer to plan more in advance but Crystal had everything so well in hand and well organized that this wasn't a ... Read More
My husband surprised me with a week cruise on Crystal. I only had a couple weeks notice that we were going, and usually I prefer to plan more in advance but Crystal had everything so well in hand and well organized that this wasn't a problem at all. I really don't know what to say in this review except to say that I adored this ship, mainly for the staff's attentiveness and the fellow passengers' civility. The ship never seemed crowded, there was never an issue finding a seat to have lunch at and there was absolutely no lining up like sheep, waiting, for anything. Check-in was smooth and despite a fairly significant line, fairly painless. I know others go on and on about the fact that the staff learns you name with in the first day and this is true but what impressed me more is that every single staff person seemed genuinely happy to be there. Probably the very best part, for me, was my fellow passengers. The others on this ship were well-mannered and civil. There was none of the pushy-ness that I have experienced on Celebrity or RC, probably because there was none of the crowding. The crowd was mainly mid-30s to late 60s-ish with a few older people as well. But mainly the passengers were well-travelled, mannerly, active adults. There was only one child on the ship and he was a teenager with his Grandmother. Yes, the cabin was quite small, but the ship was such a delight that I rarely stayed in it so it didn't matter to me. The cabin was impeccably clean, well appointed, and exceedingly comfortable. Our steward was terrific. The entertainment on board was small but were good. The Cruise Director (I think his last name was Spath?) was outstanding and very personable. Really, all the senior staff was quite nice. The food was excellent. I didn't have a single bad or even mediocre meal. We planned our own excursions, so I can't comment on those. Really, the entire experience was top-notch and I can't wait to book another Crystal cruise.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
Hi: For a comparison, you might want to see the Review I wrote on Seabourn in May of 2012 under the name of 76mike. The food aboard the Crystal Serenity was fantastic--very similar to that on Seabourn. It would be hard to "pick a ... Read More
Hi: For a comparison, you might want to see the Review I wrote on Seabourn in May of 2012 under the name of 76mike. The food aboard the Crystal Serenity was fantastic--very similar to that on Seabourn. It would be hard to "pick a winner." However, here are some differences with other details of each cruise line: 1. Our room was larger--substantially--on the Seabourn ship. We had a basic room with a balcony on each cruise. However, the Seabourn room was more of a suite--with a separate room. My wife and I kept getting in each other's way in our Crystal stateroom. To be fair, I assume that both were of the same "price category." 2. On Seabourn, the selection of wines and champagnes was much better. No Rose Champagne on Crystal. The hard liquor selection appeared to be similar on both cruise lines. And, it's included on both. 3. The specialty restaurants on Crystal are better than those on Seabourn. Crystal has a Nobu onboard--with a limited menu. You can eat as much sushi as you want! And their Italian restaurant, Prego, served one of the tastiest meals I've ever had. Be sure to make reservations for both when you book the cruise. They sell out quickly and may have no seats even when you are boarding! 4. Crystal has about 1000 passengers; Seabourn around 500. A definitely older (mostly retired) and more American crowd on Crystal. 5. The friendliness of the staff is about equal--but with less passengers on Seabourn, you have a more intimate relationship with the staff. 6. We didn't do many excursions on Seabourn; we did on Crystal. They are of a very high quality. No complaints. 7. Not that the "Sail Away" parties were that great onboard Seabourn, but they were absent on Crystal. 8. Shows: maybe a bit larger and better on Crystal. But I guess that depends upon what you like (e.g., Magic or Broadway Shows), and what happens to be booked on your cruise. 9. Coffee: Seabourn had a far better selection of chocolates and pastries in the coffee shop. Also, if you want filtered--American coffee--on Crystal, they only have the same type of machine in every restaurant. It does grind the beans, but the taste is very bad. I forget the type of American coffee on Seabourn; both do have the Espresso machines for "designer" coffee drinks. 10. It might have just been the promotion we used for each cruise, but the Seabourn cruise was quite a bit cheaper. Well, it does appear that Seabourn rates higher according to my criteria, but you can't go wrong on either cruise line. I don't understand the negative reviews for these ships. Maybe bad luck, or disgruntled passengers. I'd like to stress that my wife and I had a superb time on both cruises. And yes, how lucky are we all to be facing such a decision: Crystal or Seabourn!! i hope this is helpful. Thanks, Mike New York City USA October 2013 Read Less
Sail Date September 2013

Top Crystal Serenity Itineraries

Crystal Serenity Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.4
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 5.0 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.3
Family 4.0 4.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 5.0 4.2
Service 4.5 4.6
Value For Money 4.0 3.9
Rates 5.0 4.1

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