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61 Seabourn Europe - Eastern Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

We are a well travelled couple (mainly cruises). We love to dance, explore and relax. We have sailed on the Odyssey before and we decided to do 4 back to back segments that included many Greek Islands, Turkey and Croatia. We were in port ... Read More
We are a well travelled couple (mainly cruises). We love to dance, explore and relax. We have sailed on the Odyssey before and we decided to do 4 back to back segments that included many Greek Islands, Turkey and Croatia. We were in port every day. Embarkation in Venice was easy. We had stayed in Maestre(a suburb so we could avoid the water taxi as we had much luggage) for one night but went into Venice for the day. Once we were on the ship we were greeted and told to have lunch in the Colonnade and then our suite would be ready. Everything went smoothly. When we got to the suite our luggage followed within 1/2 hour. There was champagne and fruit greeting us. Our cabin stewardess, Martine, was exceptional. Ship The Odyssey was filled (450 passengers) each leg of our cruise. The ship accommodated everyones needs. The decor, cuisine and staff were top notch. Always someone was there to say hello and after several days everyone knew our names. Cabin was very large with a huge bathroom (separate tub and shower)with excellent lotions, shampoos,etc. Balcony had a lounge and 2 chairs and nice size round table. We enjoyed sitting out on it every day as the weather was unbelievable. Sunny mild days. There were very few ship's activities except for a port lecturer who was extremely knowledgeable about the history and especially the archeology that was so important in this part of the world. Since we were in port every day activities were not important. One could always get a lounge at the pool and since it was cool the ship's four whirlpool tubs were busy. Service at the pool was excellent. Waiters kept bringing around specialty drinks or anything else one desired. Fridays found sail away at the pool with Maloissa caviar and blinis served by the chef and Food and Beverage manager. Restaurants There are 4 restaurants. The Restaurant (main dining room), Restaurant 2 (reservation only)which offered a seven course tasting menu that changed every week. The chef could win Iron Chef! Also the Colonnade: buffet and table service for 3 meals per day, and the Patio Grill at the pool: also buffet,freshly made pizza and service at the table but steaks and shrimp and lamb chops etc. at night. Home made gelato was available from 12:30 to the end of dinnertime. There were galley tours and shopping with the chef. At many of the ports our chef, Rafael, would take a few people to shop for fresh fish and produce and then create masterpieces with the purchases at meals the next day. Port and Shore Excursions We only took a few as we had pre-booked some private tours. The ship's excursions were fine. Just walking into the small ports and around the seashore was so wonderful. There were always free shuttles. Entertainment Shows were not until 10 PM and this being such a port intensive cruise, we were usually too tired to go. There was an excellent magician and a classical piano player extraordinaire. The dancers and singers were very talented. The cruise director and his assistant were very experienced, entertaining and able. The Captains (they changed after 2 weeks) were funny and personable. All in all Seabourn is our favorite ship and we will be on the Sojourn in 2014! Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
We have recently returned from a cruise on the Seabourn Quest, our first Seabourn cruise. We have previously sailed on various different cruiselines, most recently with Azamara Club Cruises so we were interested to see how Seabourn would ... Read More
We have recently returned from a cruise on the Seabourn Quest, our first Seabourn cruise. We have previously sailed on various different cruiselines, most recently with Azamara Club Cruises so we were interested to see how Seabourn would compare. In fact in the same year we sailed on the Azamara Quest and the Seabourn Quest and I will compare both ships at the end of this review. The Seabourn Quest is one of Seabourn's newest ships and it really was sparkling new and very smart indeed. Our suite was extremely spacious and comfortable with a good sized balcony and bathroom including bath. A bottle of champagne was waiting in our room which was already stocked with our choice of drinks which we had ordered in advance online. In reality we didn't touch any of them. Our cruise was quite port intensive so we spent our time exploring independently in the mornings and relaxing on board after lunch. We were very impressed with the spaciousness of the ship in that there are lots of open areas with sunbeds, settees, tables and chairs so there was no difficulty in finding a quiet spot to relax in the sunshine. We enjoyed spending time aft on deck 5 where there were 2 jacuzzis and a small plunge pool. Service on the pool deck was excellent with a constant stream of brightly coloured cocktails being offered or sorbet in champagne! In fact service throughout the ship was excellent too. We couldn't work out how they could call us by name without knowing our room number! We found it slightly strange to be escorted by arm to a seat in the bar or in the restaurant but it was great to request a specific table for 2 by a window and to be taken to one instantly, even if it meant taking off other place settings to convert it to a table for 2. We enjoyed all the food on board. We usually had breakfast and lunch in the Colonnade, which was a delicious buffet but with the option of freshly cooked items such as eggs benedict for breakfast and the most fantastic sword fish steaks for lunch. In the evening the Colonnade became a waiter served restaurant and we tended to alternate between eating there and in the more formal Restaurant. Once we joined a table hosted by the Ship's doctor and we learned that it is usual to be invited to join these hosted tables. One day we enjoyed the excellent Galley Lunch. Every type of food was beautifully presented and displayed throughout the Galley. The food was all great - not forgetting the lovely canapes served with our pre-dinner drink in the Club. In summary we loved the smartness of the ship, the size and comfort of our room and the spacious feel on board, with many quiet open areas - here the Seabourn Quest wins over the Azamara Quest. We love the food on both ships and the service can't be faulted on either. Where the Azamara Quest wins is in the friendliness of the Officers which creates a very happy atmosphere on board. We feel very privileged to have experienced both of these cruises and hope to sail on both again one day. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
The cruise: 15 nights on the Quest from Istanbul to Athens passing through Turkey, Israel, Egypt and Greece. Our background, second time on Seabourn, last time was on one of the smaller ships, about 5 cruises on Silversea, we usually ... Read More
The cruise: 15 nights on the Quest from Istanbul to Athens passing through Turkey, Israel, Egypt and Greece. Our background, second time on Seabourn, last time was on one of the smaller ships, about 5 cruises on Silversea, we usually cruise in Asia as we're based there, this time we really wanted to go a little further. Overall this was probably our best cruise ever, we had a load of luck, the weather was great, we met some incredible people, but we felt Seabourn on this cruise was a match, or the better of, of any experience we've had. First the ship. The Quest, and so I assume the other two new big sisters, is incredibly well-designed. It feels empty even when it's full, there were places we barely even got to. The main dining room is quite lovely, the Colonnade is friendly and very easy to spend time in, restaurant 2 is a lovely intimate space. We felt that Seabourn had scaled up their original small ships without losing the essence of space and personal touch, but improved just a little bit on every aspect. Seabourn Square is a great example of that, super area at the stern, fresh cappuccino, reception buried quietly in the middle instead of being an impersonal desk on deck X. We spent a lot of time there, a lot of people spent a lot of time there. Food on cruises is always important. The food on this cruise was very, very good. The main restaurant menus were fairly normal, but always with a local special to try and I had several of the vegetarian dishes and they were very good. The ship ran daily themes at each restaurant, it was honestly hard most days to choose where you really wanted to go because everything was great, this is a good problem to have. Restaurant 2, the theme restaurant, serves up a tasting menu, changing every two days, we went three times, it was very good indeed. The ship has a patio grill at night, it's pretty casual, we didn't try it, a lot of people liked it. The only thing I gave up on during the week was beef, tried 2 times, all ok but none stellar. Compared to previous Silversea and Seabourn cruises we've done, the dress code was definitely more relaxed and a lot of people seemed to quite like it that way. I rather like a little more formality myself, so we tended to dine in the dining room more than other places. I was a little sad that there were just 2 formal nights (formal optional) in a 15 night cruise and that probably only 15-20% of people did actually dress up, but if that's where cruising is going and that's what it takes to get people on ships, ok. It would have been nice if Seabourn had given a breakdown of nights before we left, we'd have packed a little differently than we did as we didn't expect quite as many Resort Casual nights as there were .. but we dressed up anyway ... The crew make a cruise, Seabourn completely delivered here, they were superb. They learned your name, preferences, habits etc in a few days and went out of their way to help you. If there was something they couldn't do, they were very nice about it and suggested an alternative. The only thing which annoyed me the whole week was probably the godawful musak blasting out on the pool deck. I didn't get why they did it, lovely scenery, incredible view, total peace and quiet, a nearly-deserted deck and the world's cheapest covers of the world's worst songs cranking out on deck. We never saw anyone complain when we asked for it to be turned down, which they normally did, but why they did it in the first place was a bit beyond us. Super cruise, perfect sized, perfect designed ship, top-notch crew as always on lines of this quality. We'll be back. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
Spent 14 days onboard this latest addition to the Seabourn fleet with my wife. We had a super luxurious time! Almost everything from embarkation to disembarkation ran like clockwork! At check-in, we didn't even have to touch our ... Read More
Spent 14 days onboard this latest addition to the Seabourn fleet with my wife. We had a super luxurious time! Almost everything from embarkation to disembarkation ran like clockwork! At check-in, we didn't even have to touch our bags. Our driver was directed to some hidden corner and our bags were unloaded for us directly from car to ship. Shortly after embarkation, ours bag were delivered to our suite. Then, our suite stewardess came round with a glass of champagne and canapes as well as a selection of luxury soaps. What a way to start a cruise! Throughout our cruise, all the staff were friendly and helpful. Many were outgoing and fun. The only crews who appeared stressed were the poor baristas coping with the hectic long line of orders for drinks at Seabourn Square. At peak times, the queue for drinks at the Seabourn Square cafe can get a little long. However, I commented on this to the Guest Services Manager in a form and he added another barista to the cafe during peak periods. The staff onboard gave me the impression that they were out to please and the managers would act on reasonable suggestions. During dinner, our waiters were hilarious and efficient. They added much joy to the overall ambience in the Restaurant. Needless to say, the food, wine and drinks were outstanding. Dinner at the Colonnade was more casual. We only dined there once and the Ribeye I had on 'Steakhouse Night' was heavenly! Restaurant 2 was also quite good but we preferred the menu in the main restaurant. Being a relatively new ship, the suites were almost pristine and our suite was very well-kept by our hardworking stewardess. Not only was the suite functional, it was also comfortable and clean - a luxurious home for 14 days. Activities onboard were enjoyable and the facilities were adequate. The cruise director is an experienced entertainer and looked after the guests well. This is a small ship, so we didn't expect big shows or a rock-climbing wall. But the shows were thoroughly enjoyable (e.g. a convincing Cher and Tina Turner impersonator; magic show by an established international magician). A waiter goes round each seat to take drink orders during the show. The back of the ship folds down to become a floating marina on "Sea Days" and complimentary watersports are offered. We had 1 sea day at Milos, Greece and we were able to take a sail boat out for a short sail near the ship. There was also Banana Boat, water-skiing, etc on offer but we didn't use them because we spent almost all the time sailing. The floating platform is certainly one of the best things about Seabourn ships. The gym is state of the art with wonderful outside views - certainly a motivation for us to workout. The treatment rooms in the spa are gorgeous, private, and they have a great view of the outside as well. Calin, my masseur, gave me a superb deep tissue massage. On another occasion, my wife and I had a couples massage by 2 female masseurs but the pressure was too light and less enjoyable. We sailed onboard Silversea Spirit last year and were making comparisons between these 2 luxury small ship cruises. I would say Seabourn beats Silversea because Seabourn's operations were 99% flawless but we experienced some major problems with Silversea that remained unresolved. Taking into account Seabourn's attractive loyalty programme and our wonderful first experience of this truly luxurious product, I doubt we would be sailing with any other cruise company in future. It's Seabourn only for us from now! Read Less
Sail Date August 2012
Flew to Rome with BA, arrived at port at 1.00pm to be greeted by iced fruit punch and cold towels. It took approx 30 mins to check in and clear security to being taken on board and straight to The Colonnade restaurant. Uniformed staff ... Read More
Flew to Rome with BA, arrived at port at 1.00pm to be greeted by iced fruit punch and cold towels. It took approx 30 mins to check in and clear security to being taken on board and straight to The Colonnade restaurant. Uniformed staff were on hand to take your hand luggage into a safe room whilst lunch was either served at the table (all set-up with table cloths, cutlery, wine glasses and iced water) or you could serve yourself. Wine and coffee served at your table as and when needed. I was totally surprised to be greeted by name as soon as I entered the restaurant!!! Cabins were ready at 2.30pm and wow what can I say about the cabin! We had a cabin on Deck 6 and it was huge! A full bathroom, in marble with bath, 2 hand basins, separate shower cubicle, toiletries were plentiful and replaced daily. There was a walk-in wardrobe with more than enough hanging space and several drawers. A huge extremely comfortable bed, full dining table with 2 chairs, a large settee and a balcony with table and 2 loungers. The fridge was filled with our choice of spirits, wines and soft drinks and replenished daily. There was a bottle of champagne and a bowl of fresh fruit on the table. The itinerary was full, we took 2 Seabourn arranged trips, both were excellent value with knowledgeable guides and not rushed. We had 3 tender ports, each one there was no wait for the tender and as soon as we boarded we left -- no more than 20 people seemed to be on any tender, also there was always bottled water to take ashore with you readily available at every port. On return to the dockside again there was chilled water and cold towels. Food and wine (all included) in both The Colonnade and Restaurant was exceptional, service was of the highest standard -- cannot be faulted. Although the shows were nowhere near as 'glitzy' as the larger ships, the standard was still fantastic-- 4 excellent singers, 2 dancers and illusionist and a female impressionist. All the staff were happy, well dressed, forever smiling and polite -- nothing was ever too much for them, they never seemed tired although I am sure they work long hours! We had a very interesting tour of the Bridge and another of the Galley -- all great and unrushed. At the end of the cruise in Athens the Captain was in the departure area and shook everyone's hand and said goodbye. This was one cruise that I never wanted to end! Read Less
Sail Date August 2012
We've been cruising since 1989, starting that year on Canberra (great ship). Since then we've moved up the quality scale a bit and over the last 7 or 8 cruises have come to prefer the Grills on Cunard. However, on 6 July 2012 we ... Read More
We've been cruising since 1989, starting that year on Canberra (great ship). Since then we've moved up the quality scale a bit and over the last 7 or 8 cruises have come to prefer the Grills on Cunard. However, on 6 July 2012 we flew out to Istanbul on BA and joined Seabourn Odyssey the following day for a seven day cruise to Piraeus via some of the Turkish & Greek islands. From the moment we joined the ship, we knew we had made the right choice. We were immediately directed up to The Collonade on deck 8 for lunch & refreshments out on The Terrace, where staff greeted us by name immediately. How they do that is just a mystery....do they have photo's of the passengers and their names pinned up in a cupboard??? After 'Murphy' had taken our carry on items and stored them away for us, we had a really a great lunch with some chilled rose and then made our way along to our cabin towards the opposite end of the ship. Our cabin was 813, grade V6 and absolutely perfect and our waitress Cornelia was a perfect match catering for our every whim. In fact Cordelia seemed to know whatever we needed before we had asked! The standard of decor and fittings on this ship were really good and everywhere absolutely spotless. The contents of our cabin fridge were exactly as requested and the welcome aboard bottle of champagne, chilling in the ice bucket and the canapes alongside were just perfect. Over the next 7 days we experienced pure luxury, delicious food, fantastic service with the most pleasing and attentive staff it has ever been our pleasure to cruise with. We even enjoyed enjoyed the entertainments! All the ports we went to were interesting and where we went ashore by tender that really went smoothly with just a few minutes wait. Leaving this ship and our newly found friends at the end of the cruise was quite sad...another week would have been great. Disembarking was handled with amazing efficiency, we were off, into the terminal where our baggage was on a trolley with our name on it, then into our car for transporting to Athens airport all in less than 10 minutes. Our experience just has to be cruising at it's very best and even though we have two other cruises already booked in The Grills on Cunard, we are planning another Seabourn cruise for early next year. Simply The Best - Well done Seabourn. Read Less
Sail Date July 2012
This was our first Seabourn Cruise and it exceeded all our expectations. The food, wherever you eat, is first class. The service is outstanding, all the staff on the ship are friendly and genuinely happy and helpful. The cabins are so ... Read More
This was our first Seabourn Cruise and it exceeded all our expectations. The food, wherever you eat, is first class. The service is outstanding, all the staff on the ship are friendly and genuinely happy and helpful. The cabins are so well equipped, television with movies and so much music to choose there would be something for everyone. An I Pod docking station, which also charges up the I Pod. The bar, not only with your choice of drink, but ice, mixers, stirrers, everything. Very comfortable beds. Big walk in dressing room with lots of hangars, safe, robes and slippers, even shoe polish and sewing kit. Laundry bags to send out or you can use laundry area. Lovely selection of toiletries, bath and walk in shower. Good air conditioning unit which was quiet. Room service was good, we had breakfast many times on our balcony which was delivered. The table was set up with white tablecloths, weather information was delivered with this. We also had a world news sheet delivered daily. The whole ship is beautifully and very tastefully done. We have cruised on many of the bigger ships before so are used to sailing with crowds. It was lovely to have a smaller quieter ship, I don't think we shared the lift with anyone else all week. There are lots of outside areas to sit which are never crowded. The marina that comes out of the back of the boat is fantastic, a lovely sea water swimming pool, sailing, water skiing, canoes. It is all done very professionally and took lots of staff a long time to set up. The entertainment was first class, we had two excellent guest entertainers. The resident singers and band were good. Staff escorted the ladies into the dining room, there were so many lovely extras on here I wouldn't have room to write them all. They really have thought of everything, sun tan cream, glasses wipes, cool spray or ice cold flannels when you are sitting out on deck. Nothing was too much trouble for any of the staff, we can't wait to go again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2012
We chose a 7 day cruise to see if we would enjoy Seabourn. It had been nearly 30 years since our first and only cruise. What a difference! Seabourn was above and beyond expectations!! The Quest is a gorgeous ship with wonderful ... Read More
We chose a 7 day cruise to see if we would enjoy Seabourn. It had been nearly 30 years since our first and only cruise. What a difference! Seabourn was above and beyond expectations!! The Quest is a gorgeous ship with wonderful amenities and lovely decks and lounges. Upon boarding our lovely stewardess, Monika, greeted us with champagne and canapes. Our suite refrigerator was stocked and the suite had a beautiful veranda where we spent many mornings. I would recommend booking a suite on the land side as we enjoyed beautiful views each morning as we sailed into each port. The staff on the Quest were young, polished and professional. Standouts include Deon in the Colonnade restaurant, Mark in the Observation Bar, Chris at the coffee bar, Maritza as the maitre d' and all of the Restaurant staff. The staff are predominantly from South Africa, Netherlands, Europe. They are all friendly and charming, wonderful to chat with. The cruise director, Handre is impeccable and friendly. There is so much to take advantage of: a nice pool deck, a beautiful main lounge with newspapers, books, a cafe. Multiple decks, two Jacuzzis, a sophisticated spa, a gym, fitness classes, a beauty salon. All the food and drink is inclusive unless you want some wine upgrades. The food is very good and there is a variety of dining options. We tried them all. The entertainers are very good and the shows were well done. A pianist and a comedian rounded out the "headliners" on other nights. We never went to the casino but the after-hours bar was always lively and a great spot to meet people. A few criticisms: The spa area can only be used for a few hours if you have booked a treatment. You have the option of paying a $300 per couple fee for the duration of the cruise to have unlimited access to the spa deck, warming chairs, sauna, steam room, tropical shower, Kneip bath. It is worth it if you like a quiet, private experience. The bedding: duvet and sheets, are not very nice quality. They REALLY need to improve that. Duvet was thin and flimsy, only came with the fitted sheet, not a top sheet. Sheet quality was poor. The "Restaurant 2" which requires a reservation is an intimate, quiet spot but the menu is far too contrived and the service is overbearing, describing each and every course with detail. The main Restaurant is far better with excellent choices and service. We really had a fantastic experience. Beautiful, modern ship with something for everyone. Read Less
Sail Date May 2012
I'd like to center this review on the food--which was great! I'll get to that last. You might want to skip ahead, if that's what you're looking to read about. Definitely an affluent "over 50" crowd. About a ... Read More
I'd like to center this review on the food--which was great! I'll get to that last. You might want to skip ahead, if that's what you're looking to read about. Definitely an affluent "over 50" crowd. About a 50/50 mix of European and Americans onboard. We brought our two kids, ages 20 and 21. They found about 6 others that age onboard, and all befriended each other. There were a handful of couples in their 30's and 40's as well. Service was great. Almost every employee was genuinely super polite. I won't talk much about the destinations. You can easily look those up elsewhere. But, generally, we docked, or tendered around 8 am, and left port either around 5 pm, or occasionally 10 pm. We took one paid excursion which was good. A nurse from the ship seemed to be there to ensure that the tour was up to Seabourn's specs. I found that to be interesting. (She wasn't there on her own off time, but rather as a rep from the ship.) Our guide was a local Turk, a school teacher: knowledgable and funny. My only negative comment is that when we left each port, the "sail away" party was one guy on an acoustic guitar! This may reflect the "over 50" crowd...I hear other sail away parties are genuine parties. But, we were onboard when the Quest was celebrating it's one year anniversary. THAT was a party: unlimited black caviar, high quality smoked salmon, and champagne. Then, after dinner, the party continued with chocolate truffles, and amazing sweets. ALL food and drinks are free 24/7. Johnnie Black, Chivas, Grey Goose--ALL top Shelf...Fantastic! (I don't drink: what a waste, right? My wife drinks wine, and was very happy about the selection.) All coffees, expressos, capuchinos are included as well. Onto the food...Here's the bottom line: we live in New York, where high quality food is very common, and not super expensive. By high quality I mean shrimp, scallops, lobster, filet mignon, T-bone and rib eye steaks, quality smoked salmon, fresh tuna and lamb chops. Let me say that except on the last night on Celebrity when steak and tuna were offered, NONE of these items were available on the Royal Carribbean or Norwegian Cruises that we took. All were available on Seabourn. The lobster and tuna were in a little short supply, but we had Nigerian shrimps which are the size of medium lobsters on multiple nights. The same for steaks, scallops, salmon, and lamb chops: plentiful. The desserts were very high quality. Especially on the one year anniversary party. Amazingly, an older couple who had sailed on other high end cruise lines were disappointed with the food! Let me say that we have never sailed with Crystal or Regency; only NCL, Royal C, and Celebrity. The selection and quality of foods during breakfast and lunch was amazing as well. But, you only have a 2-3 hour window in which to eat. Nothing is put out all day as is done on the other cruise lines. Room service is available 24/7 and includes shrimp and steak. There are 4 restaurants from which to choose for dinner. One is an outdoor grill; two are sit downs, and one requires reservations--no extra money, just reservations. This restaurant, Restaurant 2, is very similar to Per Se in Manhattan: it is a tasting menu. While fresh tuna was offered in the Salad Nicoise, and sushi, it was in slightly short supply in my (spoiled!) opinion. not so for enormous shrimp, steaks, and scallops. You could order these items for every meal! Lobster was served only once. Hope this helps!! Thanks, 76Mike Read Less
Sail Date May 2012
We took this cruise principally because of the itinerary,and for the curiosity of trying a line other than Silversea. In my past reviews of Silversea cruises I approached my views as a hotel owner ( Relais& Chateau)which resulted in ... Read More
We took this cruise principally because of the itinerary,and for the curiosity of trying a line other than Silversea. In my past reviews of Silversea cruises I approached my views as a hotel owner ( Relais& Chateau)which resulted in pointed comments over food and wine, but never of their service and the experience of cruising with them. As for Seabourn, they failed on many fronts,and more importantly, they left no lasting impression. Seabourn believes that it is a very efficiently run operation. They strive to board, communicate and feed people with military precision. The problem is that nothing they do stands out, and as a result they offer a very generic product.Some examples follow: 1) Seabourn is staffed primarily with recent graduates from hospitality schools in South Africa and Eastern Europe. Although these young men and women ( kids) are eager to please, Seabourn is not a career for them.It is a ticket to see the world. Contrast this with a professional service staff whose livelihood depends on renewing contract after contract with the same employer, and the difference in attention to detail becomes palpable. Two days into the cruise while having lunch on the pool deck, a waiter inadvertently spilled a lot of salad dressing ( ie oily and slippery) onto the deck. When alerted to the spill, he dismissively said not to worry because the decks were swabbed at the end of the day. This was code for it's not my problem because I happen to very busy, and some underlings will take care of it. A professional, regardless of "rank", would have cleaned it up immediately. As it turns out Seabourn has a hierarchical service protocol which defies logic. Instead of relying on one professional waiter to supervise everything which is needed at any given table ( their station), the orders, the drinks and the table service are handled separately. The results were chaotic, and eventually became the butt of jokes because we never knew which dish or drink would appear in front of us, leading to frantic shuffling of plates and glasses. Many readers may consider this picayune, but the next example will drive my argument that Seabourn does not understand, or support superior service. After six days, our chambermaid ( excellent, by the way) alerted us that she was headed home to Namibia and that her replacement was boarding in Athens.This young lady had flown from New Zealand, and boarded the ship jet-lagged beyond recognition. Worse, she had never worked for Seabourn before and therefore was not familiar with their protocols.Once again, the result was chaotic. Between crash courses in safety procedures, she tried her mightiest to keep up with her cabins, but exhaustion won. Our cabin was barely made up at the end of the day, and I can only blame Seabourn for their work scheduling and hiring criteria. A professional employee ( ie familiar with the company after many contracts) would never let this happen. 2) The food on the ship was all over the map, from excellent to inedible. As a rule of thumb, the meals in the Restaurant were good, and became excellent with the Chef's menu ( once a week). The Collonade was good for lunch and marginal for dinner, while the Restaurant 2 was a nightmare. The latter was an experiment in tapas/ cuisine minceur run amok. The pool deck food was one giant salad bar, with soggy pizza. My main objection to Seabourn is its total lack of personality. The cruise director did not "direct" anything. Their were no activities such as trivia, bridge, golf etc. supported or promoted by the ship. Instead the director spent his time over the sound system constantly warning us about something:" If you don't show up at the safety muster we will throw you off; the seas are rough so be sure you are willing and capable of boarding a tender;if you don't board by 5pm, we will sail without you etc". Perhaps the Costa disaster has infected their behavior, but it is certainly not welcoming.And welcoming is the feeling that you should have on a premier line, but alas Seabourn is driven by a belief that they are good when in fact they are not. They get this belief by a relentless effort ( over the intercom by the Captain, no less) to get passengers to fill out feedback forms. In my hotel experience this is a false exercise because most people will rate anything highly just to get it over with. The fact are that when you drill down, and ask yourself if you had an exceptional experience, the answer will be no. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
We originally booked a guarantee V4, and were shortly upgraded to V6. Then the week before we were due to sail we had another upgrade to a Penthouse Suite. We had no problem with noise of which I have read on some other reviews in any part ... Read More
We originally booked a guarantee V4, and were shortly upgraded to V6. Then the week before we were due to sail we had another upgrade to a Penthouse Suite. We had no problem with noise of which I have read on some other reviews in any part of the ship. We ate breakfast and lunch in the Colonnade and of which I have no complaints whatsoever. The staff were very attentive, they would serve whatever was required or you could just help yourself. I tended to eat omelettes for breakfast, which were lovely, my husband had steak and eggs on the last day, which he said were excellent. Our evening meal was taken in the Restaurant in the "Irish Corner" wonderfully run by Nicola and her staff. Nicola with her irish sense of humour made the meal an experience. The food itself was excellent and well presented with complimentary wines served by a knowledgeable somelier. We took two organised tours, one from Argostoli which took in the underground lake, which I have to admit was a little disappointing, and then went in Sime where Captain Correlli's Mandolin was filmed. The tour took in most of the island so gave us a good look round. The second tour took us to Ancient Corinth and the Canal, another enjoyable and interesting tour. We spent some afternoons on one of the sundecks, there is always a quiet one to be found, and enjoyed being served iced water/cocktails/champagne. We also spent a small amount of time in the Square which was a really lovely area where you could read the papers/books/do the jigsaw/have a coffee, cake or ice-cream/book tours or just sit and enjoy the peace and quiet which seemed abundant on this ship. Leaving the ship at Athens was well ordered with no queues or the feeling of being abandoned off the ship, even the captain was there to say goodbye. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
We have 46 cruises under our belts and chose the Seabourn Quest for the itinerary which was not the same old, same old Eastern Mediterranean and as a case of first impressions were impressed as the experience reminded us of the days of the ... Read More
We have 46 cruises under our belts and chose the Seabourn Quest for the itinerary which was not the same old, same old Eastern Mediterranean and as a case of first impressions were impressed as the experience reminded us of the days of the old Song of Flower. Our first cruise with Seabourn and what a wonderful experience! Embarkation from Venice was organized and painless. After security photos were taken we were escorted on to the ship and taken to La Colannade for a buffet lunch that was beautifully presented with many items from which to choose. At 2 pm our room was ready. Cabin 656 is mid ships, spacious, and nicely appointed. Our cabin attendant, Michelle, made us feel as a very welcomed guest. She was professional, friendly, appeared to like her job and not tired. Staff & Service - Throughout the ship the crew all seemed happy, uniforms were always clean and pressed, and appeared not to be tired. Really outstanding service from all. Dining - Menus are delivered to your cabin each evening for the following day. La Colannade on deck 8 is buffet for breakfast and lunch and a sit down for dinner. The buffet changed daily, was beautifully presented, and had many items from which to choose. Tablecloths were used at dinner and the menu had a few items different from the main dining room which you could choose. Service was friendly, professional, and outstanding. The Restaurant on deck 4 is the main dining room and has a contemporary feel. Here too the menu changed daily, service friendly, professional, and outstanding. The Patio Grill's menu changed daily too, but you could always get a hot dog, hamburger, salad, and french fries that were really great! On most nights the Grill was open for dinner. We did not try Restaurant 2. Wine and drinks flow freely though a lot of the complimentary wines are from South Africa. I'm not a wine snob, but find some of the South African whites too fruity and was offered a really nice French Chardonnay. Children's Clubs - None! The passenger compliment was over 40 with no children on board and hailed from the UK, Australia, France, Germany, Spain, and the US. Activities - Don't look for bingo, art auctions, movies under the stars, or the in your face photographers. Instead enjoy Enrichment Lectures. Entertainment - Here again I'll go Wow! The small productions shows were very well done. There was a jazz pianist, classic and rock hits on an electric cello, and Kenny Smiles the comedian. Thankfully there were no jugglers and magicians! Shore excursions: Koper, Slovenia - We took a ship's tour to "Seaside Pirin & Taste of Wine & Olive Oil". We would have enjoyed seaside Pirin a lot better if it hadn't been raining, but you can't fault the tour for that. The wine and olive oil tasting at Santomas Winery more than made up for it. Ravenna, Italy - A ship's tour of the "Amazing Mosaics & Dantes Tomb" was interesting. The mosaics are beautiful and well preserved. The guide provided us with "Whispers" so that everyone could hear. Opatija, Croatia and a ship's tour to "Historic Pula". The Roman amphitheater was impressive as it was made of limestone and is still used today for the Croatian Film Festival. We enjoyed our walk through the old town and during our free time chose to view the mosaic rather than walk to the castle. If you go to the castle, you must have the Croatian kuna as that is all that is accepted. Sibenik, Croatia - A ship's tour and long ride each way to Split and the Diocletian Palace. Split was very crowded and it was difficult to hear the guide. In Split there is a long promenade with seaside seating and many cafes where you can sit and watch the world go by. Dubrovnik, Croatia - We took a private tour with Tanja B. who we found through www.toursbylocals.com. Tanja met us at the pier. Her English is flawless. We toured the old city then took the cable car up to where we visited the "Homeland War" museum and beautiful views of the city. After seeing the destruction caused by the war to Dubrovnik, we really appreciate the fact that the city is a UNESCO Heritage site. Kotor, Montenegro - On your way in or out of Kotor, one should be out on deck as the views reminds you of the Norwegian fjords. Here too we took a private tour with Dragna Djukic who we also found through www.toursby locals.com. She lives in the old town and is really proud of her city. Her English is good. In the old city there are many shops and restaurants around the many plazas. From the old city, we drove out to the seaside town of Perast and took a short boat ride out to the "Church of Our Lady of the Rock". Just my opinion, but is a "must do". Corfu, Greece - Here we took a private taxi tour. We found Spiros through www.corfutaxitours.com. He met us at the pier and will customize your tour to your interests. Of particular interest to us was the monastery, Achilleion Palace, and the thyme that grows wild. It was nice when viewing various sites to be told "Take your time. I'll be waiting for you here." At one point Spiros stopped and brought some bread and then stopped at "George's" where he used the bread to let us sample some olive oil, olives, and wine. The bread was really yummy! Argostolion, Greece - A ship's tour of "Robola Winery & St. Andrews Monastery". The winery was disappointing, but the Monastery more than made up for it. Pylos, Greece - A ship's tour "Nestors Palace & Neokastro Castle" was interesting and well worth the visit. From the castle, we could walk back to the town and pier. Santorini, Greece - We booked a private tour through www.santoriniwinetours.com and Vaios who is a sommelier with a great sense of humor. Vaios met us at the bus station with a very comfortable van that seated 10 people. We toured 3 Estate wineries, Boutari, Estate Argyros, and Domaine Siglas. Each was different. Vaios give you a little booklet that tells you the history of Santorini's wines, the grape varieties, and a tasting form. The booklet is not only a nice memory, but a learning tool that one could use at almost any winery. We're now at disembarkation in Piraeus. Even disembarkation was painless and well organized. We did go on to spend 4 days in Athens at the King George Palace where service and dining is very good. The view from the roof top dining room, Tudor Hall, of the Acropolis is a nice way to start your day. We can also recommend a private taxi tour with Lambros Petropoulos, e-mail: lpetrgr@yahoo.gr. His English is excellent. He has a great sense of humor and knows Ancient Greek history. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
Once we were 'checked in' (which took about 20 minutes), were were dealt with efficiency and courtesy. Met on the pier, welcomed, guided to our cabin, shown its facilities and made to feel special. Our cabin steward quickly ... Read More
Once we were 'checked in' (which took about 20 minutes), were were dealt with efficiency and courtesy. Met on the pier, welcomed, guided to our cabin, shown its facilities and made to feel special. Our cabin steward quickly made herself known to us and welcomed us. Indeed, the most refreshing and positive aspect of the whole cruise was the professionalism, helpfulness and friendliness of the staff, who went out of their way to serve us in every way. However, the very helpful and friendly demeanour never strayed into over-familiarity and this must be down to training and company philosophy and is to their credit Our cabin had a few housekeeping issues on arrival, which were dealt with immediately -â€" thereafter our cabin was spotless, as were all visible areas on the vessel. Linen, floors and windows were all clean and very presentable. Having stayed in high-class hotels, we recognise the standards as equivalent to many, and a deal better than some. The food. -â€" Just too much, too often! And the drink -â€" as much and as often as desired! However, we never saw any evidence of over-indulgence, although I often ended dinner feeling like a burst sofa. We were very impressed by the range of wines and drinks on offer, indeed we never at any time opened the courtesy spirits laid on in our suite. We have dined in some excellent restaurants throughout the world and, whilst there were odd courses or individual items which could have been hotter or more precisely cooked, we found the food to be of an excellent standard with good variety and options. My wife is a fish-eating vegetarian and (evening) dining room staff very quickly started to anticipate how her meal could be augmented on any given evening -â€" very impressive. The ship offered a good range of entertainment - individual, organised and self-organised and there was never any feeling of compulsion to participate unless we wished. The entertainment on board was good. Accomplished musicians were laid on for tea, functions and concerts and the standards were generally high and very acceptable, though it is never possible to cater for all tastes. We listened to a very knowledgable historian and our guides on the shore excursions were good - albeit an tad verbose and (well, Greek!) Most notably, Odyssey organised an evening visit and concert to Ephesus from Kushedasi for the passengers. Not only was the concert played in a magical and well-lit venue, we returned to the vessel to be met at 9pm by the whole crew of the ship lined along the pier with drinks, snacks and a vast 'welcome back' poster! - a very nice touch. As staff came to know us, they called us by name and very quickly demonstrated their awareness of our preferences (e.g. my early-morning espresso was being made as I entered the lounge and the wait-staff knew we preferred a certain Shiraz!), this level of personal attention was impressive and very much appreciated. We found the Odyssey an excellent size -â€" big enough for comfort, yet small enough to feel a bit exclusive. We dressed (me in a dark suit and my wife in a dark trousers/top combo) for formal nights. It was optional but most people made the effort, we never saw any evidence of the crew 'streaming' guests according to their formality of dress - I think we all felt it makes you feel special, if you make an extra effort to look the part for the occasion. So, to summarise -â€" yes we LOVED Seabourn -â€" an improvement on our recent experience of Norwegian Cruiseline and vast improvement on our much less recent experience of Carnival. Read Less
Sail Date October 2011
We booked the Seabourn Quest, Greek Islands and Turkish Delight, sailing from Athens and disembarking in Istanbul. We were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary, where we recruited another couple to go with us on a 2 week European ... Read More
We booked the Seabourn Quest, Greek Islands and Turkish Delight, sailing from Athens and disembarking in Istanbul. We were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary, where we recruited another couple to go with us on a 2 week European vacation that included 2 days in Athens, Greece at the beginning, then another couple days in Istanbul and 3 days in Paris before heading back to the USA. The ship was absolutely spectacular in every way! When we arrived in our stateroom there was a bottle of champagne on ice waiting for us. On days where we needed to be up early, we arranged for breakfast to be served on our balcony. The staff gave us a special treat on the last night, where we celebrated our anniversary. Every need was met without even asking. While there were 450 people on board, the ship never seemed crowded, nor did we have to wait for seating at meals. There are a number of places where you can feel like you have the ship to yourself, such as the forward deck on the 6th Level, where there is a hot tub and sun deck during the day, and a quite spot to be with that someone special at night. Read Less
Sail Date September 2011
The Odyssey was an excellent experience in many ways: comfortable and attractively decorated rooms, lovely bathrooms, mostly excellent common facilities, some very good service, and a good itinerary. However, there were numerous ... Read More
The Odyssey was an excellent experience in many ways: comfortable and attractively decorated rooms, lovely bathrooms, mostly excellent common facilities, some very good service, and a good itinerary. However, there were numerous shortcomings that, when stacked against the Silversea experience, left Seabourn in second place. Embarkation and disembarkation procedures were inelegantly handled. Upon embarking in Venice, in the middle of a giant heat/humidity wave, we were kept in the terminal for over an hour before being able to board. Check in procedures were slow, we were dripping wet from humidity and miserable, aside from fruit juice upon entering the terminal no refreshments were served while we were on line, not even bottled water. On disembarkation, passengers were told to be ready to leave and then were kept waiting for over half an hour as we were disembarked by "groups". This was after we were sent to three different floors because no one could figure out where they had our passports (not everyone's, just ours). The overall experience on both ends was akin to flying a budget airline. Some of the staff was superb, some woefully undertrained in terms of handling guests graciously. We had a wonderful cabin steward and a few excellent dining staff. Others buzzed around in an abrupt and overworked manner without so much as even a smile. We often had to ask three or four times for simple things like milk with one's coffee, one more than one occasion aperitifs arrived after the first course, and there were often long waits between courses. On one evening, we arrived at the opening of dinner hour to find the dining room doors mysteriously closed. We opened them to walk in and were asked to wait outside even though there were other guests already seated. After a few minutes, one of the staff came out and told what was now a small group of us that they had gotten so many guests the moment the doors opened that they didn't think they could serve everyone so they had closed the restaurant for 15 minutes while they took the first arrivals' orders. I was stunned. Most of the tables inside were empty and all they had to do was show people to seats, serve a quick glass of wine or champagne, explain that they would be a little slow that night and then get on with it. Instead, they left us standing in the hallway until they were ready. It couldn't have been less appropriately handled. In general, we found the food in the main restaurant to be decent, The Colonnade to be good, and the lunch buffet at the pool terrace to be god awful (think hot dogs, bad heat lamp pizza, over cooked chicken breasts with rubbery skin, and all of it repeated daily. However, the house wines were good and breakfast and lunch buffets in the other restaurants were quite good. On the positive side, the guests were very international and friendly, the itinerary was interesting, and much of the staff, including our cabin steward, were superb. The ship facilities are excellent (although I question the decorating choices in the main restaurant and the bar), the computer room and library area are spacious and comfortable, and the in room internet works beautifully. I would certainly sail with Seabourn again, but if the itineraries are similar, take Silversea. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We sailed on the Seabourn Odyssey, new to 6 star luxury cruising, we have sailed on Azamara & Celebrity cruises many times and wanted to see experience more. The cruise around the Greek Islands and Turkish delights was one place ... Read More
We sailed on the Seabourn Odyssey, new to 6 star luxury cruising, we have sailed on Azamara & Celebrity cruises many times and wanted to see experience more. The cruise around the Greek Islands and Turkish delights was one place we had never visited before so the itinerary was ideal. The ship is beautifully designed with lots of space for the 450+ guests onboard, there was plenty of open space, and no rushing for a sunbed.on a smaller cruise it guarauntees 1:1 service, all staff work very hard and happy to do anything for you. around all decks outside all staff are always there ready to serve you drinks and ice creams and even offer sun cream lotion. everywhere on board is clean and highly maintained, there are plenty of areas around with comfortable seating, to give you ability to chill out and it makes it home away from home. The food is Michelin standard; fine dining service is supberb. Waiters escorts all ladies to the dining table, made to feel so elegant. The dress code most impressive; no one was allowed wearing jeans/ shorts tee shirts and on nights where dress code requested formal; all men have to wear jackets, shirts tie as well as for elegant casual nights, is was great to see how this was managed and adhered to, actually seeing men sent out of dining room to get a jacket was good. If you do not like and appreciate etiqutte of fine dining and dress code then this cruise may not be for you. The cabins were very spacious, and well laid out, with a walk-in closet and ensuite with bath and seperate shower. The entertainment team were our shining stars , Amy, Sion, Mark & Laura, together with Dancers Sergy and Ariyana most outstanding, they partnered well and really deserve standing ovation (not sure of spelling names correctly) wished we could have seen more of them perfoming. it was an absolute pleasue to be in thier company. The cruise director Nick and Brent was brilliant hosts, socialised very well with all, amazing appearances and wore some colourful clothes, made sure they meeted and greeted everybody, we partied and danced to music from the bands and singers, all were great, did not go to bed till the early hours everynight! All of seabourne crew and guest should be proud of what captain decribes, all are treated as "we are family", "seabourne family". The cruise was ultra inclusive, which included premium brand drinks, the waiters remember what you drink, and always had one ready on the table before you could take your seat and were always genuinely smiling, the room attendants were singing in the corridors, which to us meant they were happy in the working environment. The library and compter station was very good, very comforatble designed seating and all newspapers daily printed out. situation in coffe bar, which was fabulous. The gym however was rather small and not much equipment due to space and certainly not up to standard of LA fitness, was very hot, very narrow! Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We departed from Athens and disembarked in Istanbul on this small ship with 462 passengers. It was a pleasure trip which was put together to reunite a group of 15 couples, many of whom had attended a semester in college in Athens several ... Read More
We departed from Athens and disembarked in Istanbul on this small ship with 462 passengers. It was a pleasure trip which was put together to reunite a group of 15 couples, many of whom had attended a semester in college in Athens several years ago. The service and food were superior throughout the voyage. The ship is beautiful and the amenities on-board are first-class. This is one of the rare instances in which the advertising accurately depicts the product. The staff was uniformly attentive. The all-inclusive aspect eliminated the complication of straightening out complicated bar bills and dinner wine tabs with a group of people. We were given a tour of the bridge by the First Officer and the Executive Chef gave us a tour of the kitchen operation. There was a formal night in which most of the passengers participated in formal attire. The ports of call were the Greek Islands of Milos, Patmos, Mykonos, Rhodes and Lesvos and the Turkish cities of Kusadasi and Istanbul. The port excursions were well-considered and there were several options from which to choose. A Seabourn evening of classical music in the ruins of Ephesus outside of Kusadasi, Turkey was spectacular. The moon came up over the coliseum on cue and the candle lit tables, wine and music were perfect. All in, an exceptional trip and delightful crew which I highly recommended. The accommodations and public rooms were beautifully appointed and the small size of the ship provided intimacy and space. There is a small casino, four dining areas, a library, coffee bar, multiple cocktail bars, 2 pools, several hot tubs and outdoor sunbathing areas. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
I debated about writing this review as a part of me wanted to keep it a secret just how good this cruise line is. We had high hopes as you do when reading the marketing of any Company but always that has to translate through the ... Read More
I debated about writing this review as a part of me wanted to keep it a secret just how good this cruise line is. We had high hopes as you do when reading the marketing of any Company but always that has to translate through the delivery by staff. This Company live by what they say they will deliver. I don't know if it is the Company training or the Captain who set the standards but whoever they got it just right. Firstly the ship, we were a bit concerned it would be too small. this was not the case. the suites are spacious, bathrooms are the best of any ship we have been on. Beds and pillows really comfortable. The public areas were never crowded. this could in part be down to a different port daily but even when sailing it never felt crowded. I can't comment on the quality of the shows as I never made any of them! nearly always last out of dinner. Food first class, good choice. The Restaurant is fine dining service impeccable without being fake. Colonade for breakfast and theme dinners was less formal but still equal to a good city restaurant. Best bits for us were the whole atmosphere, no announcements, don't book this ship if you have children. this is not the market they cater for. If you want to be entertained there may not be enough to do, in fact there is little formal entertaining. That said I took a book and read the same page at least 2 dozen times and either fell asleep or had somewhere to go. The ports we called at had enough for the allocated time. Only niggles. The balcony door opens rather than slide but I suppose that is more economical for the air conditioning. I really could go on for ages about all the positives so why did I almost cry? On leaving the ship the captain and staff had lined up to say goodbye to every passenger. I did not want to leave anyway but this just topped it for me. Well done to every member of the crew for a job well done. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
SEABOURN QUEST CRUISE ATHENS TO VENICE 21ST AUGUST, 2011 This was our second cruise on Seabourn, our first was on the sister ship Seabourn Sojourn, part of the World Cruise in April of this year. We flew to Athens to join the ... Read More
SEABOURN QUEST CRUISE ATHENS TO VENICE 21ST AUGUST, 2011 This was our second cruise on Seabourn, our first was on the sister ship Seabourn Sojourn, part of the World Cruise in April of this year. We flew to Athens to join the ship, our transfer from the airport to the ship we had arranged ourselves. We were met at the port by the usual smiling staff of the Quest, soon we were whisked off to our suite which was ready at 1pm. We arrived to the usual bottle of champagne and canapEs, and not long after our stewardess, Jackie, arrived to wish us a pleasant cruise. The itinerary for this cruise was, Athens, Santorini, Katakolon, Corfu, Kotor, Dubrovnik, Tri Luke Bay, and ended in Venice. Well what can I say about the Seabourn experience, but a big WOW!! Again it did not disappoint, nearly as good as the Sojourn but not on one or two counts. The entertainment, we felt, was not as good as the Sojourn, they only did two production shows and the rest were guest entertainers, which were not as good this cruise. The other thing we felt was that they have certainly downgraded the wines that they pour for lunch and dinner. On Sojourn we always had more than one red and one white to choose from, but on Quest they only offered one Red and one White with no other choice, only if you insisted you were not keen on the wine, would they go and try to get something else, this never happened on our first cruise with Seabourn. Overall the food was good to very good, one thing that I felt was better on this cruise was the fact that main course meal, in the Main Dining Room, were hot, which is something that I like. The Colonnade Restaurant was also very good. We had very good waiters and assistant waiters throughout the cruise, and a special mention should go to , Deon, Yorik, and Belindah. The one good thing about this cruise was that we have never experienced a Marina Day and we had this on Quest, our last day in Tri Luke Bay. They drop anchor and then the Marina comes out of the back of the ship. They have a swimming pool, which looks like a shark's cage, this is lowered into the sea and you can swim around in it. They then have such things as Kayaks', Banana Boat rides, Sail Boats, Speed boats etc. It really was a great day. Of the ports that we visited the highlight was Kotor in Montenegro, which was like sailing into the Norwegian Fjords, a beautiful sail in and the town was very interesting indeed. Again a first class cruise and now we looked forward to our next one on Odyssey. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Cruising on Seabourn is like being at a Ritz Carlton that takes you to various destinations. The service aboard is magnificent. Whether in the main dining room, The Colonnade, Restaurant 2 or even Seabourn Square, you are treated as if you ... Read More
Cruising on Seabourn is like being at a Ritz Carlton that takes you to various destinations. The service aboard is magnificent. Whether in the main dining room, The Colonnade, Restaurant 2 or even Seabourn Square, you are treated as if you are special. The staff is incredible and many even greet you by name. They always have a smile. Nothing is ever too much trouble and they never seem insincere. We enjoyed the 12 course-tasting menu at Restaurant 2 and loved our Indian dinner under the stars at the Colonnade. The food is fabulous! The main dining room is like a 5 star NY restaurant and the wine and champagne flow freely. As a matter of fact we had a bottle of champagne, a bottle of white wine, a bottle of red wine and a full bottle of Makers Mark in our room! The wines served at dinner were always good.There were always delicious drinks by the pool. It was so nice to sit by the pool and not have someone try to sell you an $8 pina colada in a souvenir glass. Speaking of the pool, there were always chairs. While the pool is small and doesn't have the bells and whistles of the large ships, it is relaxing and luxurious. It felt very sophisticated with out being boring or stuffy. With only 450 people on the ship you got to know your fellow passengers. Everyone on the ship was so positive and truly enjoying the experience. There were no people complaining about anything because there was nothing to complain about. The spa was fabulous and not that expensive. I had a great deep tissue massage and a scalp, neck and shoulder oil massage and treatment. It was delightful. The cabin was larger than many hotel rooms I have stayed in. There was a granite bathroom complete with double sink, shower and separate tub. We had Molton Brown shampoo, conditioner, bath gel and lotion and Oatmeal soap for the shower. The towels were fluffy and soft and the sheets and duvet were Egyptian cotton. The bed was so comfy. And there is a walk in closet. There was never a line for anything. Embarkation took about 5 minutes and they escorted us to the dining room for lunch. Our cabin stewardess greeted us with champagne and canapEs. The ports were beautiful and the excursions were great. We had terrific guides and felt we got our money's worth with each one. We especially loved the Greek cooking demonstration in Santorini The marina off the ship was a great experience. We took a paddleboat out and paddled around the ship. The marina was a little chaotic because there were mostly younger people on this cruise ( 40s, 50s and 60s and families). But still nothing compared to a ship of 3000. The evening entertainment was fun. We even watched a movie under the stars. There were tons of movies available on demand in the room but we never watched any. We drank so much wine at dinner that by the time we got back tot he cabin at 11 or 11:30 we were ready for bed. We worked out in the gym and I took a pilates class. They gym is small but I always managed to get on a bike or elliptical machine. They also had BOSU balls and weights There was no pressure to tip and you never had to sign a bill for drinks. It was 7 days of luxury and relaxation. Really the only thing it has in common with the mainstream cruise lines, is that it is a ship. This was a trip we will always remember (and I have 400 photos to help us do just that!) Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
This was our first time travelling with Seabourn and loved the experience. We thought the suite was very spacious with muted decor; loved the granite and marble double basin bathroom and loads of room in the walk-in-robe. We found most ... Read More
This was our first time travelling with Seabourn and loved the experience. We thought the suite was very spacious with muted decor; loved the granite and marble double basin bathroom and loads of room in the walk-in-robe. We found most of the multi-national staff very attentive and friendly and wouldn't hesitate to recommend Seabourn to anyone. We LOVED the food in The Restaurant and also felt the same with the degustation menu in Restaurant 2. Also, there was plenty of variety with the buffet breakfast and lunch although one could order a-la-carte if one wished. The first week we visited ports in the Black Sea. Why we visited Constanza in Romania is anyone's guess. I didn't here one positive report from anyone who ventured ashore. The second week was from Istanbul to Athens where we visited the port of Kusadasi plus many Greek islands. The tour of Ephasus was a highlight together with the concert that night for passengers held among the ruins of Ephasus and the wonderful welcome back to the ship by the ship's band and staff. The third week was from Athens to Venice and we particularly liked the port of Kotor in Montenegro which is a fortified town at the end of a 27 kilometre long fjord. All in all a wonderful experience although a very busy one as it was a new port for 19 out of the 21 days on board. Our days consisted of going ashore or on an excursion, returning to the ship for an afternoon nap to get ready for another fun and interesting night ahead of us. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
This cruise was absolutely the very best cruise we've ever taken! Beginning at embarkation in Venice, white-gloved waiters hand you a champagne glass of punch which is just a small preview of the wonderful things to come! As soon as ... Read More
This cruise was absolutely the very best cruise we've ever taken! Beginning at embarkation in Venice, white-gloved waiters hand you a champagne glass of punch which is just a small preview of the wonderful things to come! As soon as you enter the ship, another white glove attendant escorts you to your cabin, handling your carry-on luggage for you. When you enter your suite, it's just plain jaw-dropping! Granite bath with separate shower and full-size tub, walk-in closet, comfortable bed, flat-screen tv, separate living room with sofa and table w/2 chairs, verandah with another table w/chairs and lounge. Fresh fruit, champagne and caviar on toast await you along with a mini-bar of soft drinks and beer...all complimentary! Understated elegance are the 2 words to describe your suite and the entire ship! The food was terrific in all 3 dining areas and the room service menu was the most extensive we've ever seen. You can even order dinner from the nightly restaurant menu and have it delivered to your suite! The room service waiters don't just drop off a tray on your table...they set your table with a white cloth, lay out your food and explain each dish! In an hour, room service calls and asks if everything was satisfactory and would you like them to pick up the dishes!! No trays and dishes to lug out to the hall! We went to the whirlpool on our deck, enjoying the beautiful weather and who should appear but a waitress with a bottle of champagne and 2 glasses..."Would you care for a glass of champagne?" It was a fabulous moment of utter luxury! We thought we'd died and gone to heaven! The cruise director Handre and his staff, Heideicha and Marla were amazing....they made it a point to meet everyone on the ship and made each passenger feel welcome...they knew us by name almost immediately! Our suite attendant, Inta, was wonderful...anticipating our needs before we had a chance to ask for anything! We visited 7 ports in 7 days...quite a job for the Captain...and each port was wonderful. We took 6 excursions and each was well-worth it (we needed one day to just plain relax on the ship). We especially enjoyed the Aerobello tour in Bari, Italy and the Myconos Island Tour. Since the ship is small, there was no jostling for buses or waiting in long lines....the cruise director's staff handled the preparation for boarding the buses with ease. There is definitely something to be said for the smaller ships....it's a mad-house on the large ships to just get on and off the ship at each port, let alone line up for the buses. It's also important to mention that each and every crew member..from the bartenders to the waiters...engage the passengers in conversation and each was proud to be on a Seabourn ship and truly liked their jobs. To sum up this review, there isn't one thing we'd change on this ship and we look forward to sailing on Seabourn when the ships arrive in the Caribbean! Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
We arrived in Athens the night before the cruise left and stayed at the Electra Palace Hotel. We were fortunate enough to be upgraded to a Junior Suite on arrival. The room was very elegant with wood floors and overlooked the garden. We ... Read More
We arrived in Athens the night before the cruise left and stayed at the Electra Palace Hotel. We were fortunate enough to be upgraded to a Junior Suite on arrival. The room was very elegant with wood floors and overlooked the garden. We had dinner at the Roof Top Restaurant in the hotel and it was a gourmet meal with a fabulous view of the Acropolis. Breakfast is included in the room rate with many choices. The hotel is in a great location and is just a few minutes walk to the Plaka and Acropolis. We took a cab from the hotel to the port and were met curbside by a Seabourn representative who walked us into the check in area. Check in was fast and within a few minutes we were on board. We had been assigned cabin 619 which is a handicap cabin and were unable to switch it before our departure from the US, so when we got on board we went straight to Seabourn Square to see if we could switch it. The ship was full so the friends we were travelling with offered to switch with us as they were not going to be using the bathtub. I love to soak in a tub so everyone was happy! The handicap cabin is larger and the bathroom is big with a shower curtain. There is no walk in closet in this cabin and instead there is a closet with a sliding door. The closet is not very deep. Our cabin was 709 and everything was just perfect. Plenty of storage in a walk in closet, a little vanity with mirror to do make up with US and European outlets. The bathroom was elegant and within a few minutes of being in the cabin, we were greeted with champagne, canapes and a choice of soaps for the bathroom. There were six of us travelling together and we ate in the main restaurant 5 out of the 7 nights. My sister in law is on a gluten free diet and she met with the chef the first evening and was assured she would be well taken care of in that regards. And she was. By the next day, she had gluten free bread sticks and rolls at the table every meal and she could choose anything she wanted on the menu and it was prepared for her gluten free. We were all very impressed by how easy they made it for her. The food in the main restaurant was wonderful. The wines were always good and the one night when Pinot Noir was offered and I said it was not really my favorite kind of wine, they brought me a Merlot instead. We didn't get around to making reservations for Restaurant 2 until midweek and by then it was fully booked for the rest of the cruise. We ate at the Colonnade 2 evenings as one was a French theme and one was a Spanish theme and both meals were absolutely fantastic. We were very lucky with the weather so breakfast was usually al fresco at the Colonnade. We did get room service one morning and it was good but frankly I prefer to decide what I want to eat the morning of instead of having to decide the night before! The table on the balcony is also a little small for having several different items and plates. We ate lunch every day at the Colonnade although I believe the main restaurant was open for lunch. The staff were terrific. They were friendly and efficient and always full of smiles. Nothing was too much trouble. Captain Thue-Nilsen was around the ship a lot and was very friendly and had a great sense of humor. His lovely wife was on the ship that week and they made us all feel like we had been invited on a vacation on their yacht! Due to the fact that we were in port every day, we were pretty tired after dinner and were happy to go back to our beautiful cabin and relax and read so unfortunately I didn't go to any of the shows. We did book shore excursions in Corfu (Achilion Palace), Kotor (Budva and Sveti Stefan), Dubrovnik (Cavtat ) and Zadar (Krka National Park). All were most enjoyable. Due to a windy day the cruise part of the Dubrovnik tour was cancelled and they included a city tour instead which was excellent. We did walk the walls in Dubrovnik as it was a warm sunny day and I highly recommend it. Ravenna was wonderful. We managed to do all five of the churches with the mosaics. They are very beautiful and a must. The shopping was good in Ravenna! I have reviewed the ports separately but would be happy to answer any questions on them. If you are going to Kotor, get up early to watch the sailing into the fjord as it is stunning. If you are able to climb a few stairs, do walk the walls of Dubrovnik as the views are amazing. None of us wanted to leave the ship when we docked in Venice! We took a cab to the airport, left our baggage at the Left Luggage in the arrivals hall and went back into the city on a Water Bus which was 25 euros roundtrip as our flights were only in the evening. So was it everything I dreamed it would be? Absolutely! Would I do a Seabourn cruise again? Absolutely! We all said we were ruined and would never be able to do any other cruise line after this. Read Less
Sail Date October 2010
My wife and I took our first Seabourn cruise this past October onboard the Odyssey from Athens to Venice. Overall we really enjoyed the trip and the ship was wonderful, probably the nicest cabin bathroom we have ever had. So overall ... Read More
My wife and I took our first Seabourn cruise this past October onboard the Odyssey from Athens to Venice. Overall we really enjoyed the trip and the ship was wonderful, probably the nicest cabin bathroom we have ever had. So overall impressions we had were: 1) the ship was great although we think we prefer a ship with a little more to do. Being in our early 50's we aren't quite ready for this type of cruise. 2) our cabin (820) was great. Big, comfortable, clean, one of the best we have ever had. 3) food started off almost over the moon but as the cruise went on settled down to be just very good! Service was excellent in every restaurant and you got the feeling people were actually interested in helping you. 4) itinerary was great with Monte Negro being a very special highlight for us. It was suggested we get up early, 6am, to watch the ship navigate it's way into port and it was one of the best recommendations we had, absolutely wonderful. Overall we really liked the cruise however there could be a little more clarity around the no tipping policy and dress code but we played it safe and dressed up and tipped at the end. The tip was a personal choice though as there was never any mention or pressure however in conversation with other passengers there was some confusion. Read Less
Sail Date October 2010
Having spent many an hour reading reviews and posts regarding Seabourn Cruises I though it only right and proper to take the time and write a review of my own . Anyway, this is going to be long enough so I better get started. Ship: ... Read More
Having spent many an hour reading reviews and posts regarding Seabourn Cruises I though it only right and proper to take the time and write a review of my own . Anyway, this is going to be long enough so I better get started. Ship: Seabourn Odyssey. Cruise: Athens to Venice. Cabin: A category. Booking: UK Travel Agent. Ground transport: Organised myself. Pre-embarkation: Seabourn customer services in the UK are a bit of a joke, I twice waited over 25 minutes on hold and once over 30 minutes without ever speaking to anyone, however; my TA stepped in on each occasion and spent the time on hold to get the necessary answers, she told me the longest period spent on hold was 42 minutes. I can only surmise that Seabourn have grown in terms of available rooms threefold but have not grown in terms of customer services by the same amount. Embarkation: Embarkation was very smooth taking around 45 minutes from getting out of the taxi on the jetty to holding a glass of champagne in the grand salon, however; we did meet a couple in the queue for security who were "transit" passengers and had been ashore for the morning and got caught up with the passengers embarking, they complained that transit passengers were getting a raw deal as they were awoken very early (7am) by PA announcements for disembarking passengers that went on for almost 2 hours, and that on "transit" days the Colonnade operated on shorter hours meaning they had missed lunch on their previous "transit" day (the lucky devils where doing 3 weeks). Being stuck waiting in line with the embarkation passengers is really not good enough and Seabourn should have a fast lane for such passengers. FYI the colonnade closes at 1pm on transit days so you can't nip straight up there for some lunch as I had been previously advised, although the patio grill was open the fare on offer was not very imaginative, the main dishes were Croque-monsieur (cheese on toast) tuna melt (cheese on Tuna) and pizza (cheese on bread). This was the only time that I found myself wanting in terms of selection throughout my week on board. Cabin (or suite as Seabourn prefer to call it): The suite was quite forward and down a couple of corridors which got us confused a couple of times but once we got our bearing the midnight stagger home was easy. The suite was very well appointed and as good as I have encountered in 5 star hotels. Champagne on ice, a fully stocked mini-bar and our pre-selected drinks were all waiting for us along with a short note of welcome from the captain. Our cabin stewardess ( I won't name anyone in this review, good or bad, as I don't think it's fair) arrived shortly after we arrived and introduced herself with some canapEs and discussed our mini bar requirements (types of soda and water etc), she was very friendly and very likeable and although the standard of cleaning was not so good her extremely pleasant demeanour meant we just couldn't complain and so even when my wife found some toe nail clipping behind the bin in the main bedroom we simply bit our lips. One thing that surprised me was the amount of disturbance we had, early morning risers slamming their door at 6am every morning, veranda door slamming and veranda furniture scrapping around 7:30am, bow waves, anchor chains, bow thrusters and PA announcements all led to a feeling of discomfort, one of the most annoying things was the room service waiters when they returned to collect the trays etc from suites that had elected to have breakfast in bed, they always slammed the door so hard they almost took it off its hinges. If you are an early riser then this wouldn't be a problem, but if like me you like to lie-in until after 8am forget it, one way or another you will be up around 7am at the latest, when we got to Venice we stayed overnight and I was so tired I slept right through to 11am the next day. So my advice is, if you can afford a higher floor, midship berth you should book it, if you can't afford it and you are light/late sleeper expect to be disturbed. Main dining room, The restaurant: The food in this restaurant is exceptional and at times bordered on perfection, I loved every single thing I ordered, and I can only describe the whole experience of The restaurant as magnificent. However; please be aware that Seabourn have changed their dining options and The restaurant is only open in the evening, this means that apart from dinner the odyssey is a buffet only ship which disappointed us no end as we like to partake in a more formal lunch every now and again but this was not possible. I enquired as to the reason for the change in opening hours (I think it had changed 3 weeks earlier) and I was told that it was a staffing issue as too few people were utilising it to make it worthwhile, I jokingly asked if I could have a percentage of the costs saved as I had effectively paid for this service but that was met with a furrowed brow and a "that would not be appropriate sir". However; to reiterate, The restaurant is magnificent and all the staff who work there should be very proud of what they produce in such quantities but with such high quality both in terms of food and service but only being open for dinner is just not acceptable to me especially when the ship is completely full. The Colonnade restaurant: Breakfast and lunch are buffet style affairs and at dinner time á la carte. Breakfast is very good, I actually prefer a buffet breakfast so it was perfect for me and there is an option to order eggs, toast and a couple of other things that are brought directly to your table but the vast majority is buffet. The available fare is both substantial and of a very high quality, the queueing is minimal (the longest queue I saw was 6 people and that was unusual), food is replenished immediately and if not will be brought to your table as soon as it is ready, tea and coffee are topped up without asking. I had read that waiters would offer to carry guests plates back to their tables but neither my wife nor I were ever asked if we wanted our plates carried for us but to be honest we would have declined anyway. Breakfast closes at 10am, for me that is a little early and on two occasions I saw people turned away around 10:10 as we were leaving. We only ate lunch here a couple of times, firstly because after such a good breakfast it is hard to have lunch before 1:30 - secondly, because we like to have a la carte lunch and thirdly, because we not overly impressed with what was on offer. Don't get me wrong, the food was good, but for example, one lunch we went for was themed seafood, well they really did theme it seafood as everything was seafood in one form or another from the carvery, salmon en croute, seafood chowder, curried mussels, mixed seafood this and mixed seafood that, I didn't fancy seafood so I was kind of stumped. We only ate dinner here once and to be honest it was pretty good, but with the other options available we were never going to return and only went the once to see what it was like. The hours that the colonnade operate are not set which can confuse some guests, I heard grumblings that in particular on "transit" days it closes early for breakfast and lunch which is terribly unfair on the "transit" guests, on our embarkation day we heard stories of guests who had dined between 1pm and 1:30pm all week were met with a CLOSED sign on "transit" day meaning they only had the patio grill to go to which is not really acceptable. The staff who work in the colonnade are (as all the wait staff are) extremely good and very attentive, I write this just in case they are reading this review and feel left out. Restaurant 2: We only ate here once as the night that we did we felt we had missed a night in the main dining room (yes, as I said it is that good), we had a 7 course sampling dinner with various wines to compliment each course. The food was imaginative and well executed, the service was also very good but it had such stiff competition from The restaurant and unfortunately it lost out mainly because of the necessity to pre-book and then arrive at a fixed time, whereas The restaurant is open seating with no need to book, this means you can get ready at your leisure, you can have a second pre-dinner cocktail if it takes your fancy or if you are engaged in conversation delay dinner until later. Booking restaurant 2 is not that easy and you have to be quick to get a table exactly when you want one, however; if you call guest services and tell them you have not been able to book a table yet they will extend the 48 booking time, or they can arrange a table after the normal 9pm slot, we spoke to a couple who dined there at 9:15 with only 4 other diners but please note the 7 courses take around 1 hour 45 minutes so it will be a late night and you will miss the entertainment. Patio grill: This is an in between dining option and should be seen as such, the food is fairly limited and themed with pizza, hotdogs and hamburgers always available. I once asked for a steak and it was refused, probably my only refusal the whole cruise and it took me aback somewhat as a steak is available 24 hours from room service so you would think it would be available here too but apparently not. We ate here 3 times I think, mainly as a snack with an afternoon drink when we returned from shore, staff, apart from the chef who refused me the steak, were of the usual exceptional standard and the pool staff who offered the drinks were brilliant too (I'm dying to name a few but that would be so unfair on the ones whose names I have forgotten). At night the Patio grill serves surf and turf and although we didn't try it we heard good reports and it is an ultra-casual dining option where we regularly saw people dining in shorts and tee shirts which was quite fitting around dusk and they did not look out of place at all. Room Service: We tried breakfast in bed on more than one occasion and it was a completely decadent affair and a fabulous way to start the day, our breakfast arrived on time each time and apart from a hot water flask that had been previously used for hot milk and not washed meaning very cloudy hot water and not having salt and pepper another morning service was perfect, breakfast in bed, a la carte, served on a fully set table is a truly luxurious option. One afternoon I called for a pot of coffee and it arrived with a plate of cookies, the waiter said he had popped them on in case we fancied a snack; it was this kind of touch that really impressed us. I would point out that we had read on a forum that room service could be ordered in places other than you room i.e. the sky bar or poolside but that is not true, we asked and were told room service is purely for your room. Seabourn Square: Quite a nice idea of having a cafe style outlet, where you can have a cup or two of coffee whilst waiting to make arrangements with guest services. Observation blounge: This is an absolutely wonderful venue, during the day you can partake in afternoon tea, in the evening you can have pre-dinner drinks and after dinner it is an elegant piano bar serving cocktails and drinks until midnight, it is an amazing place to watch the sail-aways that occurred at 11pm. We were delighted to the sounds of a pianist/vocalist who was excellent and sang requests which gave it an air of sophistication, again though Seabourn let itself down somewhat by closing the observation bar at 8pm on our last night meaning we missed our after show drinks listening to the pianist whilst watching us sail out of Ravenna, I heard the next day whilst disembarking there had been such a furore that eventually they re-opened the bar but alas were weren't informed of this and so missed out. Sky bar: Nice enough bar but nothing special and we used it only on embarkation day to watch the band play us out of port; old Seabourner's complained that this used to be the hub of late night drinking but it now closes at 11pm The Club: This is an elegant pre-dinner cocktail bar but turns into a very lively late night club with two sets of entertainers interchanging meaning the music doesn't take a break until well into the early hours. You can also pop out onto the stern deck area for a smoke if you are that way inclined. During our cruise there was a six piece band and a duo that played there every night, they were both of a very high standard and quite superior to what I had expected. Beware the cocktails, they are superbly mixed and it is very easy to get carried away, literally..... The grand salon: Much has been made of the obstructive view offered by the support beams, it is true that there are several support columns and if you sit in line with them your view will be obstructed, however, it was never necessary to sit behind one as there were normally plenty of seats elsewhere. We were entertained but the Seabourn singers who were OK but far too pretentious for our tastes, they had a habit of staring sternly into space when they weren't singing and when they spoke they put one or two too many marbles in their mouths for my liking, (what has happened to this world, is an accent so common?) We also had a comic magician who was ( I want to say magic but that's too corny) very entertaining indeed, and a pianist (not the one from the observation bar who played and sang every night, this was a one show in the week pianist) who we thought was a concert pianist but was more Vaudeville than Broadway, she did an old Victoria Wood song (English comedienne) which some found funny and others found a tad offensive, I found her to be a wasted talent as she was obviously hugely talented but played quite simplistic tunes, she also had her mother along on a freebie and I'm afraid to say I found her somewhat course and slightly discourteous to paying guests and I heard of at least two couple who had been made a joke of by her. This was a bit of a running theme for me, we saw numerous employees acting as full paying guests, from the Seabourn singers (drunk in the observation bar one night and unforgivably disrupting the pianist), the magician (who actually paid for his supper doing table tricks) the pianist and her mother, then there were the parents of the Seabourn singers and then some technical people, followed by officers in uniform. Apart from the magician who seemed to really enjoy doing his tricks at all hours, the rest of them merely congregated and spent the night together in bars and the club, maybe this is normal on cruise ships but (I'm going to be called snobby for this) I paid a lot of money with the expectation of some level of exclusivity, to see the pianists mother sitting hour after hour outside the club smoking, cackling and making rude comments to paying guests got up my ever so in the air nose. All poetic joking aside, I am a really down to earth person who has worked very hard to pay for this cruise and found it a little upsetting to see people enjoying all this for free without thought for the guests who had paid their hard earned money for their, in some cases, once in a lifetime cruise, Seabourn, if you do read these reviews take note, there were quite a few grumblings on disembarkation morning regarding the state of the pianist (so drunk she was barely able to walk) and her mother laughing and snorting at the top of her voice whenever anyone said anything remotely funny. Maybe this is why Seabourn is opening The restaurant only at night and cutting the Colonnade opening hours, the staff are drinking them dry...... Outdoor facilities: There is a multitude of place to lie in the sun and more sun loungers than guests (although I'm guessing here as there were never more than 50% taken at any time I went), the normal loungers do not have mattresses but are fairly comfortable, there are some double ones that have nice comfortable mattresses on them but they are fixed so you can't turn the to face the sun. We were offered cold towels a couple of times and sunscreen most times we sunbathed, drinks are abundant and the more out of the way places (i.e. deck 6 whirlpool) have a soft drinks tray and ice with waiters doing a loop every hour or so. The Spa: An excellent facility with a good balance of gym/salon/treatment areas. The staffs are not Seabourn but are definitely out of the Seabourn school of charm and service, although I only actually used the gym it was a pleasure (if running on a treadmill can ever be called a pleasure) and the shower and sauna rooms were meticulous. Smoking policy: On the Odyssey smoking is permitted in the following areas. Port side of the Sky bar, outside the club on the main deck, on the port side of the observation lounge, inside all suites and on all verandas. I do not smoke but never smelt smoke other that one night passing a suite when someone was leaving while someone else was smoking in that suite. The observation lounge rarely had anyone smoking in there and when there was the air conditioning was more than adequate to remove the smoke. Outside the club on deck 5 was used more by the smokers but it is outdoors and the wind takes care of it seamlessly. Dress code: I have read a lot of rubbish about the dress code and would like to put the record straight. The restaurant, on the seven night cruise we had two elegant/casual and five casual evenings, on the casual nights I spotted people in polo type tee shirts, one night there was an English gentleman in cargo pants and crocs and several ladies of various nationalities in flip flops. On the elegant casual night I saw several short sleeved shirts and one elderly American gentleman in a nylon button up short sleeved polo shirt trucked into a pair of brown slacks without a belt, it looked really out of place but nothing was said as said gentleman looked very old. The colonnade, this is always casual and I saw jeans on several occasions, yes, shock horror, jeans! It was ultra casual and although I never saw shorts I heard the week before there were some American students who had been allowed to wear them outside on the patio. Restaurant 2, on the night we dined there everyone was dressed in a minimum of a long sleeved shirt, I wore a jacket as did several other diners. The general feel was of casual mixed with a few die hard formality lovers, personally I wore dress trousers and long sleeved short on all but the elegant/casual nights when I also wore a jacket.. Drinks: I was genuinely surprised at the quality of the drinks available, as we sat at the sky bar on embarkation day I noticed a top shelf with some pretty high end bottles of spirit on it, I enquired if there was a price list for these drinks only to be told they were included, I'm talking Remy Martin and Courvoisier cognac, Belvedere and Grey Goose vodka, Matchmaker bourbon etc, there were some drinks in the Club at a premium but these were drinks that cost over $100 a bottle in duty free. Champagne was always available both at the bar and through room service. Cocktails could be ordered with normal spirits or the high end spirits (Grey Goose martini anyone?). Wine in the restaurants teetered between acceptable and good, I'm no wine expert but I realised some of the wines were better than others and found out which were the best ones and asked for them by name. After dinner drink sir? Baileys sir? No problem sir, I'll be right back, amazing! Getting to know you: I had read that by the following day of embarkation most of the crew would know your name, well I think on the smaller ships that may be true but on a 7 night Odyssey cruise it's probably just not possible, we were only once greeted by our names without having first introduced ourselves, one or two waiters even forgot our names after we had introduced ourselves previously but it didn't bother us, a perpetually filled glass, a smile and a "how are you today" is more than enough for us and I cannot say how impressed we were with all, even the first time onboard staff, they truly made our journey an unforgettable one. Disembarkation: As smooth as embarkation, we asked our room stewardess what time she wanted us to leave by and she said 9am would be OK as she had a lot of early risers this week (didn't we know it) so the extra hour was a god send, we left the cabin around 8:45, had a bite to eat in the colonnade and left the ship at 9:15 to be met by the Captain and cruise director to say farewell, a perfect touch to an almost perfect cruise. Conclusion: Some will read this and think I am being overly picky, others will read this and be grateful for its honest and objective approach, as I said in my opening gambit I spent hours researching Seabourn and I think on more than one occasion I was led astray by well intentioned but never the less incorrect posts. There is an undercurrent of posters who I feel are trying to give people the wrong impression of Seabourn to try to attract the kind of people they want to meet aboard, I was once told that the optional elegant casual was that the option was that you could eat in the other restaurants if I didn't want to wear a suit and tie, what poppycock, Seabourn has changed, it is filling its newer, bigger ships and I don't think they will risk their new clients to try to appease their old guard so all these posters are doing is confusing people and having them carry too much excess baggage. Seaboun's recipe is perfect, however; and it's such a shame, sometimes they miss the mark a little and don't quite live up to their promise, closing the main dining room during the daytime is typical of how head office decisions are affecting the onboard staff, moving staff around so much also means that we were asked several times what we wanted to drink because the waiter our waitress had just joined that day and in some cases had only joined Seabourn that day (yes straight into the firing line without a minutes training, but they did admirally in keeping us first timers happy, as for the old guard, Seabourn beware. To end we are still deciding if we will return to Seabourn, if I have a hotel room that is noisy I can change rooms or move hotels, aboard a full cruise that is just not possible so I felt a little trapped to be honest which is a real shame. Read Less
Sail Date September 2010
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