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11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
My husband and I sailed on the 8/3/19 cruise on the Ovation out of Copenhagen. This was our first time on Seabourn but I have been on over 30 cruises at the ripe age of 31, with the last 15 on the Oceania line. I am an avid traveler and ... Read More
My husband and I sailed on the 8/3/19 cruise on the Ovation out of Copenhagen. This was our first time on Seabourn but I have been on over 30 cruises at the ripe age of 31, with the last 15 on the Oceania line. I am an avid traveler and feel I have a critical but fair eye. I had high expectations of this line and particular ship from word of mouth recommendations and other favorable reviews. I was quite disappointed and will list out all of my reasons while still making sure to give credit where credit is due. I will start with the positives first. My overall summary of the below is at the bottom of this review. Cabin: Our cabin was very nice and spacious. Bed and pillows are comfortable, ample room with a nice walk in closet and separate seating area. Bathroom has a double sink which is very nice, shower is marble and still small but pressure very good. Bathtub a waste of space in my opinion. Balcony nice size and overall room very spacious. We were in cabin 651 on the 6th floor located toward the center of the ship which was great. Molton Brown products in the bathroom and a selection of body soap offered on the first day. Room stewardess was attentive and did a very good job. Only complaint on the first day is that the room wasn’t cleaned well. The soap in our bathroom which was a body wash had been used and there was a lot of dust and finger prints on the table in the room. Otherwise, cabin was excellent and gets high marks from me. I believe we were in category V5. Ship: the ship is beautiful. Modern, clean, more yacht-like than cruise ship. A lot of wood paneling. 600 people but still felt very quiet even on sea days. Our favorite place to relax was the cappuccino lounge on floor 7 where they had tons of seating and recliners. Decor of the ship was very simple yet elegant. WIFI: very good! Much better WIFI than any other ship I’ve been on - in room technology good. Service: this is where our experience goes down the tubes. The service on this ship was HORRIBLE!! The staff do you a major favor and if asked for something that requires them to go out at all of their way, they are rude. We had some staff that were nice (mainly in cappuccino lounge and main dining room - except for maitre de) but all and all, the service sucked. Management lacks tremendously, customer service is non existent and the staff seem poorly trained, disingenuous and disinterested. I’ve really never experienced anything like this before - had we not met several other couples who also shared the same sentiment, I would have thought I was going crazy!! A few examples - almost every meal without fail we waited 10 minutes before getting anything to drink. If we needed a sauce to accompany a meal, we waited 10 minutes. In fact, we stopped ordering sauces because it was such a lost cause & by the time it arrived our meal was over. I asked for cream with my coffee - by the time the cream came, my coffee was cold. We were almost always at a meal with an empty drink that needed refilling. No accommodating what so ever. My husband likes the salmon in the colonnade - we asked if it could be served on the patio 20 feet away and they said no, they prefer not to. At dinner in the main, I asked if i could have a croquette that came with a different entree than what I ordered and was told no, they only had a certain amount and could not accommodate me. I mean, come on! I tried to move my Thomas Keller reservation because my husband wasn’t feeling well and was told with 11 days left on the trip that they couldn’t accommodate us. Finally, after getting the guest services manager involved, we got one at an undesirable time on a different day but at this point, we took what we could get. These may seem Iike minor gripes but we encountered them several times per day and was a major turnoff and took a lot away from the experience. The overall staff attitude was rude and requests of them felt like inconveniences. This in itself was bad enough to never return to this ship. As I said previously, several other couples experienced the same rude service. My husbands Camera was lost day 1 and finally arrived at our cabin with a cracked and dented lens. We requested compensation for the lens. Seabourn asked us to provide the link to the lens - which we did directly from the website - to prove it was $500. They tried to tell us it was a $200 lens (they had the wrong lens) and refused to refund us. We have yet to resolve this issue with them. Food - We are major foodies and we’re quite disappointed in the food on this ship. I will say that the quality is there in a lot of areas (not all) but the execution is not. Breakfast was good but the same every day. Not a bad thing, but boring after a while. A decent selection and probably the best meal. Lunch was a mixed bag. Salad bar always had nice items and the grill items - fish, burgers, hot dog, etc always very tasty and fresh. Meat quality good, fish quality good. My only complaint on the fish was it never had any seasoning or flavor - this was a major theme for most items on board - but I would still prefer to add salt vs. having the sodium and preservative packed food a lot of ships have, so this wasn’t a major complaint. All lunch hot food served in the chaffing dishes were slop and never hot. We almost never ate any of the prepared food served at lunch because it was room temperature and unappealing. Dinner : main dining room was respectable but not great. We didn’t have one meal there that was really delicious. Temperature was an issue and seasoning was non existent. I’ve never put so much salt on my food in my life. Service mixed. Our first night there we waited about 15 minutes before anyone came to our table. Finally the waitress comes over with an iPad looking down and says “what can i get you” - no greeting, no introduction. Very impersonal feeling. Sushi was nothing to write home about. A lot of rice and uninspired. I actually overheard someone say “it’s not as bad as gas station sushi” - I’ll leave it at that. The colonnade was OK - probably our least favorite. They do special nights like rib night or clam bake night and they look beautiful but just don’t quite execute it well. For example : rib night - the ribs came out in a beautiful Staub cast iron pan presented family style and looked delicious. Unfortunately, the ribs were dry, cold and had clearly been sitting on a heat lamp for an hour +. We sent it back and got a new rack that was the same dry and Luke warm ribs this time with some bbq sauce slathered on top. To put the icing on the cake, the assistant maitre de came over and instead of apologizing that the food came out lacking temperature and dry, explained that the ribs weren’t Texas style but st.louis style and weren’t supposed to fall off the bone..I mean ..really ? I’m not expecting anything more than a simple apology or some sort of follow up to see if the second round was better. Instead, I was blamed for expecting them to fall off the bone and they didn’t. I didn’t need ribs that fell off the bone, just didn’t want to eat something as dry as wood. The Patio by the pool in our opinion offered the best most innovative meals but even those fell short on flavor and execution. We also had a Northern Europe itinerary with a lot of rain and cool weather and found ourselves eating outside in the windy cold weather because the patio was the best choice. Thomas Keller which is the specialty restaurant was very good for a steakhouse on a cruise ship. I would say this is likely the best option on board. Food delicious but once again, service lacking. Not attentive and seemed to do you a big favor. We found in all restaurants that the deserts were mediocre and most didn’t taste cooked on board. I don’t think I had one desert I loved. I also found the breads were uninspired. In summary : good quality ingredients (for the most part ) that aren’t executed well. Oceania food trumps Seabourn by a landslide. A few other items to note: Older crowd, no children. Except for us (in our early 30s), most people were 65+. Not good or bad, just our cruise demographic. Free laundry was a nice feature with Miele commercial washers and dryers and complimentary detergent. Gym was small but clean, coffee on board was very good. Entertainment was respectable. Nice job at including different daily activities. Excursions - expensive but well organized. I read the ship docs at ports further away from the destinations to save on docking fees. Not sure if this is true. We did a few excursions - food provided on them was mediocre and limited and tours very pricey. Spa - didn’t use but quite expensive. Very few discounts offered throughout cruise. They had a “promotion” that if you do 3 treatments from a select number of services you get 10% off first, 20% off second and 30% off third. Note this is per cabin and not per stateroom. I know all cruise spas are expensive but this was more than canyon ranch on Oceania. I may have left stuff out but to summarize my overall impressions: cabin and ship top notch and classy, food better than the celebrity level lines but nothing special. Service was so bad it border-lined on offensive and as a result, I will likely not return to Seabourn. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Our main reasons for choosing the Ovation included some (but not all) of the destinations, notably Scotland, the relatively small scale of the ship (600 passengers), the suites (spacious, spotless, and beautifully appointed) the common ... Read More
Our main reasons for choosing the Ovation included some (but not all) of the destinations, notably Scotland, the relatively small scale of the ship (600 passengers), the suites (spacious, spotless, and beautifully appointed) the common areas (ditto), the beverage plan (free everything unless you want to splurge) , and a generally older and well to do clientele. (We fit the former but not the latter). Once aboard we also appreciated the crew and staff (unfailingly friendly and polite, including our suite stewardess Ana Carolina), the Square, a combination library, coffee bar, and guest services area, dinner at Thomas Keller’s Grill, afternoon tea in the Observation Bar, and breakfasts in the Colonnade. Since we aren’t dressy and clubby types, we didn’t eat at The Restaurant , and eschewed the formals and clubby things. The shore excursions were pricey and just ok, and if you want WiFi you pay for it. The ship offers a laundry and dry cleaning service for a fee, but also includes a laundromat (free) which came in handy on our two week sail. Some of the ports of call were less than thrilling, but Oslo and Scotland made the trip worthwhile. If you visit Scotland in August you should definitely go to the Royal Scottish Tattoo in Edinburgh. The price of this cruise was relatively steep, but if you want to be cosseted, Seabourn is definitely worth the indulgence. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Seabourn does it right. Wonderful service, great suite, great food, embarkation was a 15 minute pleasure. disembarkation went smoothly until the coach we were on had no more room for our luggage, so a little stressful waiting on the next ... Read More
Seabourn does it right. Wonderful service, great suite, great food, embarkation was a 15 minute pleasure. disembarkation went smoothly until the coach we were on had no more room for our luggage, so a little stressful waiting on the next coach to see if our luggage made it to the airport in Copenhagen. twenty minutes later it arrived on the next bus. At our age, Mid to late 60s, jet lag from Georgia was a horror. Three or four days to fully recover. All of the restaurants on the ship were great, and the service at most was outstanding. Some of the ports were a bit lacking, the highlight of the trip for us was Northern Scotland, and most importantly, the Shetland Islands. The average age on this cruise was at least 75. Lots of folks with canes and walking assists. Did not try the pool or hot tubs, as the weather was cool. Our days were either rainy or perfect. Had great food at the Earth and Ocean, but most evenings it was too cool for us to eat in the open air. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2019
The Sojourn is an excellent ship. Almost everything is inclusive. Thomas Keller aka “The French Laundry and Per Se Signature restaurant “. You can only reserve it once on the cruise. Do not fret over it. The main dining room and ... Read More
The Sojourn is an excellent ship. Almost everything is inclusive. Thomas Keller aka “The French Laundry and Per Se Signature restaurant “. You can only reserve it once on the cruise. Do not fret over it. The main dining room and the second restaurant have daily menus on Thomas Keller inspired cuisine. I will post copies of it later. Service on the ship was impeccable. One morning the executive was and the Food and Beverage manager was making eggs Benedict for guest directly in the open dining room. Very rarely see this type of service in other high end ships. The free flowing wine, champagne and spirits was great and top shelf items. Imagine having Nicholas Ferrilaut champagnes constantly being poured for guests. Now I know the taste of great caviar. On the first full day I told the wait staff at the restaurant that I prefer a low sodium diet due to hypertension That was noted and in all my meals. Seabourn is quite a bit more than most of the others but it is well worth the price. In other cruises they push for the wine package , other paid extra restaurants but on Seabourn there is no premium $$$ restaurant. Every meal is like you are going to a specialty restaurant. There is no extra cost unless you want the super rare wine. Seabourn has their own expedition crew on board. This is a major difference than others. On most excursions these crew are experts and knowledge of the event. They are naturalist and have done these expeditions themselves The Seabourn Venture group on board is great. Overall I give the Seabourn Sojourn crew ten plus stars. Extra kudos to the Food and Beverage manager and his excellent team. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose this cruise because we had not been to Spain (except for Barcelona which we love), Lisbon or Porto, Gibralter or Morocco. The ports of call and shore excursions were fantastic. We saw many beautiful sights and learned a lot. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had not been to Spain (except for Barcelona which we love), Lisbon or Porto, Gibralter or Morocco. The ports of call and shore excursions were fantastic. We saw many beautiful sights and learned a lot. The ship itself was truly wonderful. The captain and officers were friendly and affable (not to mention very competent), the Executive Chef talented and sooooo personable, the Cruise Director (Handre) phenomenal and the cabin stewards perfect. All the wait staff in the restaurants were professional and at the same time welcoming. The entertainment was over-the-top wonderful. Seabourn does things right, and makes every trip a special adventure. One of the reasons that we love Seabourn is that the all-inclusive program makes the voyage so relaxing. The food is quality over quantity, and every meal was terrific. The deck parties were very enjoyable (lobster on the grill, dancing, champagne and caviar in the pool), and we were impressed by the "specialty restaurant," the Grill by Thomas Keller. One of our favorite activities was shopping in the market in Malaga with Chef Jes; the fish and produce were as fresh as they could be. The excursions were expensive, but the quality of the guides was excellent. The only negative on the excursions was the "hard sell" venues we were forced into in Casablanca and Tangier. They should offer a shopping excursion for passengers that are interested in buying rugs. One of our pet peeves, however, is that the internet service is ridiculously expensive. Since Oceana is offering free internet to its passengers, all other cruise lines should follow suit. We would highly recommend the Ovation for your next trip! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This one fit a particular time frame .We only had the first leg of 11 days . Had never had a chance to take a Seabourn cruise before . Very happy .They couldn't do enough for us .Came up with an extension cord for the C Pap machine . ... Read More
This one fit a particular time frame .We only had the first leg of 11 days . Had never had a chance to take a Seabourn cruise before . Very happy .They couldn't do enough for us .Came up with an extension cord for the C Pap machine . Stocked fridge and bar had a full liter of good vodka .Svedka , I think . Mixers, beer , champagne . Room stewardess was always ready to go . Dinning room had some slow arrivals of food at times . But all the food was excellent .They could cook , fish , steaks , pasta . The Colonnade buffet on the back deck was always good .Pool bars and dining line was a great choice in the afternoon for a late lunch .Open to 3:30 . Used room service for breakfast 4 different mornings . Arrived in 20 to 25 minutes and hot .Transfers booked through Seabourn worked fine , even with a flight delay .They were there to meet us . We got our luggage frisked in Lisbon on disembarkation .The Seabourn Rep was on the spot to assure us we would get a cab to the airport when we missed the main bus with everybody else . Even sent a very sweet Portuguese woman ( cute as a button ) with us to make sure we knew where we were going inside the airport . Actually went in with us . Bar people , deck crew , waiters were all on top of it at all times .Entertainment was very good of what we saw . Did a special afternoon opera segment on the deck with the main show vocalists one afternoon . Pouring Patron Margaritas at the pool .l .All you can eat , drink and no tipping or bar bill at the end . But I did leave a small thank you for the housekeeping girl and a bartender .Not expected though .A great time . The best weather the crew had ever seen on this crossing . Just lucky . Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
It was a wonderful cruise, we visited some remote islands which we found very interesting, the lectures were informative relating to the region. The food at all of the restaurants was very good with a good variety, the wines were of ... Read More
It was a wonderful cruise, we visited some remote islands which we found very interesting, the lectures were informative relating to the region. The food at all of the restaurants was very good with a good variety, the wines were of excellent quality and we particularly like the caviar service which was available 24/7! The premium restaurant was very good, no cover charge, was an added bonus, however you must book this venue. Our cabin was in a very good location for us. It was spacious and well appointed, with walk in robe, the bathroom was a good size with a full size bath and glass door type shower (no shower curtain!). The ship and crew were excellent at all times, no hard sell of tours, for that matter did not push any agenda, and were most helpful if you wanted to do your own thing. Nothing was too much trouble. Can’t wait to get back on Seabourn! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
I chose this cruise for a couple of reasons had a chance to travel with family and the thought of going to Barcelona, Morocco, Canary Islands etc. was a gem in itself. I enjoyed the culture, history and architecture of each country. I took ... Read More
I chose this cruise for a couple of reasons had a chance to travel with family and the thought of going to Barcelona, Morocco, Canary Islands etc. was a gem in itself. I enjoyed the culture, history and architecture of each country. I took many interesting tours and found each day was more exciting than the first. I loved the idea of Specialty Dinners and dressing up in our wonderful attire. The months have passed now so it is hard to remember every aspect of the trip. I was impressed with Seabourn because of the amount of guests on the ship. It is important to me that the ship isn't overcrowded. My Room Stewardess was lovely and met my needs. I was respectful to her as she was to me and she respected my wishes when I had the privacy sign on. She was most considerate. I like that in a person that we both had mutual respect for each other. I stayed in 618 and the stateroom was very accommodating. The Lively Entertainment was awesome. I looked forward to that every evening. The staff in general worked very hard. I liked Aldo at the Sky Bar and he always knew my drink, he would say "Strawberry Daiquiri" Ms. and I would say thank you very much. I would sit up to the bar and sing along with Rose the lovely lady at the Piano. I loved the spa and staff were most pleasant. I also liked Jared gave me some good pointers about keeping in shape. I welcomed his advice. To sum it up the staff were excellent and Seabourn will never be forgotten. I do apologize in advance that some information now escapes me. One day I will sail her again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We have just finished a 19 day Seabourn adventure to Alaska and as we anticipated it was what we have come to expect from Seabourn. For both of us it was our second visit to this wonderful state. The first 5 days were a part of the ... Read More
We have just finished a 19 day Seabourn adventure to Alaska and as we anticipated it was what we have come to expect from Seabourn. For both of us it was our second visit to this wonderful state. The first 5 days were a part of the Seabourn expedition program. We were met at the Anchorage airport and then whisked off to the Thomas Cook hotel where we met David the tour guide, coordinator, and all around handy guy. That evening we had a group dinner with 26 cohorts, soon to become friends. The next morning it was off to Denali via an 8 hour train ride through some gorgeous country. Wednesday was a free day for us to rest and take in the lodge. Excursions were available although Dee and I just took the day off. Thursday’s we were off into the park, not just a panoramic view but deep into the park. Where most tours go in about 15 miles our excursion went in about 63 miles. During that wonderful drive we ran into ptarmigans, caribou, grizzly, doll sheep, magpie, and the preverbal snow hare. Every minute of the 8 hours trip was fun and exceptionally interesting. Our guide had been leading these expeditions for 30 years and knew the park like the back of her hand. Our last day was a busy one as well. The alarm jolted us awake at 6:00 AM, we put our bags out, got breakfast then, on the bus for a three hours drive to Talketna. There our intrepid group boarded three planes to fly to Anchorage. The reason for the plane ride was to give us the opportunity to see the Alaskan back country and get a great view of a number of glaciers. We were taken aback by the beauty of the mountains and glaciers from a birds eye view. After an hour and a half of flying we landed in Anchorage and it was off to lunch, then on to the ship. In short the expedition was more than we expected in terms of quality, and the wonderful companion ship of our travel mates. It was truly a Seabourn experience. There is a lot to be said about knowing a group of people before you get on the ship. The companionship of the expedition group continued on into the cruise. If you are visiting Alaska via Seabourn and they offer this pre cruise adventure, take it. We have been on the Sojourn before, and like its sister ship the Quest it was a great cruise experience. Once on board we saw cruise members we had sailed with before and believe it or not they remembered us. Like previous trips the crew was very attentive and after a short period of time knew our names and our preferences. One of the surprises on this trip was the fact that our suite was upgraded from a veranda suite to a penthouse suite. Our joke was that it was so large that Dee and I had to carry gps devices to find each other. In truth the suite was fantastic. It had a separate bedroom, living area, a dining area, a two room bathroom, and a huge veranda. The itinerary was excellent as we were able to go places larger ships could only dream of. Add to that the off ship excursions via kayak and/or zodiac really made these excursions up close and personal. The picture opportunities were plentiful including glaciers, whales using bubble netting to get their lunch and a female grizzly with her two cubs just to name a few of the opportunities. The food, as in the past, was excellent. We are Colonnade people as we like the more casual dining experience. Our one complaint is that consuming this food seems to shrink our clothes. . As is our way we continued our “May We Join You” philosophy. We share a table every night with different people. On this trip we met lawyers, entrepreneurs, a gentleman and his wife who lived in South Africa, New Zealanders, Australians, and Germans. The most impressive couple however was the couple who exuded tremendous courage and strength in the face of health issue. As we have written before and will again, Seabourn knows how to make a cruise special. We love cruising with Seabourn so much that in 2019 we will be returning to the Quest to venture to Antarctica and the Amazon. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We traveled with 3 other couples. We chose the cruise for its ports of call, areas we had not been to, and its lack of sea days. The service was excellent, from our cabin steward, Josephine, the destination manager Murat, the Director ... Read More
We traveled with 3 other couples. We chose the cruise for its ports of call, areas we had not been to, and its lack of sea days. The service was excellent, from our cabin steward, Josephine, the destination manager Murat, the Director of guest relations, Joanna, and the Asst Maitre'D Karim were exceptional. Everyone knew ours names, and fulfilled our every request. There were a few early hiccups, but the entire team jumped in and made the cruise wonderful. The food was excellent, and the service was superb. When our Virtuoso hosts left the pier in Dubrovnik, without the eight of us, Murat jumped in, got us a guide and saved the day. He was wonderful. The Virtuoso reps from California were not. When we confronted them, they denied everything, said they thought we were not going, and never apologized - very disappointing. Back to the cruise - Touring until 1-2 o'clock and back to the ship was wonderful. It gave us in-depth exposure, tired us out, brought wonderful relief when we got back to the ship for a late lunch. The entertainers were wonderful, talented performers, but on a smaller ship, you have to expect limited entertainment. However what was presented was wonderful. An example of the training and character of one entertainer Nathan Morgan, was exemplified on one tour, when a solo woman was way behind the tour group, Nathan unobtrusively hung back and waited for her so she wouldn't get lost. Our cruise Director was always full of energy and is an outstanding opera singer. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We booked this cruise for its awesome itinerary. We've been in over 115 countries, but not Iceland or Greenland. Those of us on the Roll Call thought we'd have a Meet & Mingle get together. The Quest was unaware of such a ... Read More
We booked this cruise for its awesome itinerary. We've been in over 115 countries, but not Iceland or Greenland. Those of us on the Roll Call thought we'd have a Meet & Mingle get together. The Quest was unaware of such a social gathering. I met with the Hotel and Bar Manager who made our Meet & Mingle possible. I was so delighted such a party would take place. Guest services helped in sending out invitations and Roberto, the Bar Manager, arranged the food and drinks. We were honored to have the Captain and several of his officers attend, plus Chris, the executive chef. Pictures were taken of this first of kind event and those will follow soon. Thank you Seabourn Quest for making possible a very special and unforgettable event. Please include Meet & Mingle parties on all your sailings. The staff at the Patio Grill were the best. Brooke and Jose were outstanding. This was our first cruise with Seabourn and we look forward to returning on another. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
I think we may have found the Goldilocks ship on this ten day cruise. This is, first of all, a beautifully decorated ship in every way, colors, designs, spaces are all lovely in a muted but sophisticated way. Kudos to whoever is ... Read More
I think we may have found the Goldilocks ship on this ten day cruise. This is, first of all, a beautifully decorated ship in every way, colors, designs, spaces are all lovely in a muted but sophisticated way. Kudos to whoever is responsible for this. I have probably been on twenty ships from a dozen different lines over the years and I cannot think of a better one. The ship is designed so that basically, all of the cabins are pretty much forward and all of the "activities" are aft. This way, there is nobody bouncing down your hall on the way to something 24/7. None of the cabins is far from some elevator. We were in 655 which was a "standard" balcony cabin on deck 6, but otherwise not at all "standard." While the actual size may be more or less the same as most other upscale ships, it seemed much larger and, for example, I know the bathroom was larger with separate full length tub and free standing shower and two sinks. Major storage everywhere, a pleasant seating area, fridge, dining table, balcony, furniture, set-ups etc. all of the first order. Most of the "white suit" crew was the usual array of east/west European although not exclusively. Every single member of the crew warranted five stars for attitude and graciousness. The area called Seabourn Square on Deck 7 served as the concierge area, as well as home of numerous newspapers, a coffee bar, internet points and just a pleasant place to be. Never any lines at the various concierge desks. The main pool deck is on 9, but we found a smaller haven on 5 aft with a pool, hot tubs and lounging chairs that was never crowded. There are sufficient bars on several decks and plenty of food when and where you want it. Thoughtful touches everywhere. Our little area 5 aft, for example, had its own little min fridge stocked with ice, soft drinks and, of course, anything you every wanted to order from "room service" which will deliver anywhere in the ship. The Observation Lounge forward on deck 10 is lovely and you never waited for more than two minutes for someone to show up for your drink order. Plenty of space in the outdoor areas and the Thomas Keller bar was a great place to relax before dinner. The Restaurant was never crowded and had no "bad" tables - you were also given the option to sit with fellow passengers or not at any meal. The Thomas Keller Restaurant on 8 had a superb menu - but I will follow anyone anywhere for a good Dover sole meuniere or a nice steak. You are guaranteed one sitting up there, but we managed three by hanging around the bar a lot and getting to know frequent Seabourn guests. Most guests on Seabourn are stuck on this line and never seem to go anywhere else. Many were on the cruise prior to ours and/or stayed on for the next 11 day cruise. We really didn't know how anyone could stand this kind of life without a coronary for more than the length of our cruise. All of the drinks, sodas etc. were top shelf. Secret: just because it is not formally listed as available, doesn't mean it isn't. This is a "can-do" kind of place and we found many wines by the glass that were available for the asking. The guests were of the elderly persuasion ( as am I), but there were a fair number of younger couples, families with teens and even a baby somewhere I heard of but never saw. Speaking of which, even though this ship was at capacity 600, you rarely saw more than a few dozen around except on deck 9 during the one ship day we had. The ports were sometimes interesting, sometimes, throwaways, and we were content to rent a scooter or electric car or similar many times on the smaller islands just to see the sights from a different perspective. We took no formal tours. Many of the guests rarely left the ship - this is the kind of ship you sail on because it is so pleasant to sit in the sun reading a book or snoozing on a deck lounger. My companion hit the spa for a massage and found it up to snuff. The exercise area looked nice and perfectly adequate although we did not partake. There is a small casino that was virtually empty at all times. OK, to preserve some credibility and to defer suspicion that I am a shill for Seabourn, I'll pick a couple of nits. Half the menu at the Restaurant never varied ( it was still quite good), but there could have been a little more variety on the other half. Many of the red wines by the glass (included) were, from my perspective, not up to snuff, but I gradually found several I liked "off" the list. The flat screen TV allowed only minimal controls ( ie. no CC) and bad volume ( even for those with good hearing like my companion) on several of the Movies/TV shows on demand - regular TV stations ( mostly news) were fine. The entertainment was nothing to write home about, but never is and we rarely even make the effort. And that's about it, folks. I guess you can say that we have drunk the Kool-Aid and will, in the future, limit our cruises (except with little kids) to Seabourn (not much for little kids to do on this ship). We went ahead and paid the deposit which comes with a 5 % discount on a future cruise or your money back. I expect we will not be getting our money back. Happy Trails. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
Starting with the boarding on the ship. When we arrived at the harbour of Athens we were very friendly welcomed an taken care off. Checking in procedures were very smooth. It only took 3 minutes from our taxi to the ship. Than we entered ... Read More
Starting with the boarding on the ship. When we arrived at the harbour of Athens we were very friendly welcomed an taken care off. Checking in procedures were very smooth. It only took 3 minutes from our taxi to the ship. Than we entered our veranda suite on deck 7. We were pleasantly surprised by the size and the look and feel off the suite. A bathroom with a separate bath tub and shower. Enough room for our clothes and belongings. And a nice sitting area. Our stewardess came to introduce herself and during our trip she was very helpfull. The experience on board in the fullest sense of speaking was great. The attention off the staff, the quality off the food and the surroundings of the ship were magnificent. We are experienced and demanding world travelers and this experience belongs to the best we have ever seen. We liked it so much that we already booked another cruise with the Encore. The excursions were so-so. Some off them were great some of them not. The in-room dinning experience was also below what you might expect of it. Overall it definitely was great and as indicated allready we go for a next time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Seabourn consistently delivers a luxury experience. The thing that sets Seabourn apart among so many cruise line options is that you never feeling like one in a crowd. Every staff member aboard treats you as though you are the most ... Read More
Seabourn consistently delivers a luxury experience. The thing that sets Seabourn apart among so many cruise line options is that you never feeling like one in a crowd. Every staff member aboard treats you as though you are the most important person on the ship and they deliver on nearly anything you might request either formally or in some cases a casual mention of something you enjoy will be noted and delivered as a surprise. The staff are the secret to Seabourn's success. We have been on numerous Cruises on a wide variety of lines. Seabourn is our go to, first choice because "Luxury once enjoyed becomes a necessity". Our favorite suites are Spa Suites. We're not Spa afficianados but the suites themselves are the best aboard. They are positioned above the Spa on the highest level of the ship on the stern. Your extra large balcony has a wrap around view of the wake of the ship and it's magnificent. There are no crowds, the ships total number of passengers result in the feeling of space throughout the ship. the only time we feel crowded is during the lifeboat drill, which unlike most cruise lines, is held in the dining room so everyone can sit while being instructed on safety procedures. they had a new chef aboard and his food was excellent. We were in France for a week prior to boarding and I've never had a bad meal in France (someday I'll get some bad food there, but it would be a national crime in france to ruin a meal). So after a week of culinary excellence and incredible meals... we were still impressed ...immediately at our first meal aboard the quest - lunch while awaiting our suite to be ready for occupancy. It was delicious, served buffet style in the Colonnade restaurant but everything was flavorful, savory and cooked perfectly. When you depart this ship, you feel like you're leaving family and the lap of luxury. It's not a good feeling to leave after your vacation is over. they had one last surprise for everyone as they disembarked. we are accustomed to arriving off of the ship into a luggage retrieval area where all of your bags are scattered around within some sort of color coded area. Seabourn has made baggage retrieval so simple by putting a sign with your name on the bags that are awaiting you when you disembark. It's a small detail but one that left us feeling pampered for a few minutes more as we left the ship (see the photos attached) Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
Yacht Harbour Cruise Feb 17 2018 Embarkation at Barbados went very smoothly. We arrived at 2pm and were on board, in our suite by 2:45pm, being welcomed by our stewardess with canapés and a bottle of chilled champagne (not sparkling ... Read More
Yacht Harbour Cruise Feb 17 2018 Embarkation at Barbados went very smoothly. We arrived at 2pm and were on board, in our suite by 2:45pm, being welcomed by our stewardess with canapés and a bottle of chilled champagne (not sparkling wine,but champagne!) Our bags were delivered by 3:15pm. The suite was lovely. Just like the YouTube videos we had seen. Spacious suite with very comfortable bed. Two club chairs, dining table, couch with foot stool/coffee table. Bring UK adaptors. There are a couple of North American plugs and a couple of UK plugs. We had to run an extension cord across the room for my husband’s CPap. The staff taped down the cord to avoid a tripping hazard . They had no adapters for us to borrow . We travel with an extension cord. The bathroom was lovely too. Double sinks. A separate shower and a soaking tub (no shower in the tub). Plenty of storage space. There is a lovely vanity area with a drawer for cosmetics. There is a walk-in closet which is roomy enough to use as a dressing room. We could have stored clothing etc for a month long cruise and still have drawers, shelves available. By the way, this is suite 648. Just a regular balcony room. The balcony has 2 chairs with footstools and a table. It is cleaned every day - swabbed down, including the glass railing. In general, the food and beverage service was wonderful. The food was excellent in most venues. The Patio was lacking somewhat, but you have other options! The Restaurant was excellent, food and beverage. The Thomas Keller was good, but not hugely superior to the Restaurant. The house wines are great. Many different wines available as part of the basic fare. We opted for wine in our suite and bottles arrived regularly! Lots of water too. One treat that we enjoyed was the caviar and champagne. Order whenever you want. Nice! The fitness facility was very nice as well. The pools were clean. Two pools. Main pool was about 5 feet deep and there is a stairway with a wide stair at about 4’ deep suitable for aqua aerobics. Lots of lounge chairs but hard to get one in the shade at times. The pool on deck 5 is very small, and only 3’6” deep. There are 2 whirlpools here and it is a much quieter choice than the main pool. The only drawback with this is getting a drink. Sometimes no service there, but always water and self serve soft drinks in the cooler . We took this cruise for the ship more than the ports. Frankly, they all blend together in my memory! Some were very sleepy. The weather was so windy that we missed having the marina day with caviar in the surf. This was done in the pool instead. We also had to change our Tobago port due to wind. Didn’t bother us. Bottom line, I highly recommend Seabourn Odyssey. The crew was excellent. The ship well maintained and clean. All as advertised! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
This cruise was a good way to see New Zealand and Australia and Indonesia in a short time. We visited interesting places and particularly enjoyed the Ventures excursions in zodiacs and kayaks and hiking. The ship is spectacular with ... Read More
This cruise was a good way to see New Zealand and Australia and Indonesia in a short time. We visited interesting places and particularly enjoyed the Ventures excursions in zodiacs and kayaks and hiking. The ship is spectacular with excellent speakers and restaurants.The food is varied and really good although it tended to be very salty and more information about fat content and better descriptions on the menu would have been appreciated. Some favourites were the soufflés and the Japanese restaurant. The Thomas Keller was rather disappointing as there was the same menu every time and the portions were enormous.Much too big. The entertainment was superb and all the singers and dancers excellent. Very enjoyable. The only one we were not enthusiastic about was the Piano player at the Thomas Keller. The new Seabourn ship is about to launch and consequently many staff have left for it so there were a lot of staff who did not know what they were doing. The beverage service was really slow and we had often finished breakfast and lunch at the patio before getting a drink.the staff were super friendly but rather disorganized. The cabin attendant was not as efficient as she could have been too and the carpet had stains on it when we boarded. Surely it could have been cleaned? The enrichment lectures we’re mostly interesting and sometimes excellent and it was great to be able to treat children them on the cabin TV. Some of the shore excursions were not very well described and not worth the money but others were really worthwhile.We loved the ventures trips. It was disappointing that we did not have a marina day as we had enjoyed those before but swimming in the ocean was limited due to jellyfish stingers and the weather. Altogether the fitness facilities were severely lacking. A huge amount of space had been devoted to a retreat to bring in more money. This could have been used for yoga or Pilates or running track. We definitely will sail again with Seabourn . Best cruise line we’ve been on. Complaints are just nit picking really. Read Less
20 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This is our second cruise on the Encore this year and the most disappointing. The crew was missing the usual spark and coordination that we associate with past Seabourn cruises. This was our 6th cruise with Seabourn and we found the food ... Read More
This is our second cruise on the Encore this year and the most disappointing. The crew was missing the usual spark and coordination that we associate with past Seabourn cruises. This was our 6th cruise with Seabourn and we found the food was lacking in variety and below the usual standard expected with this line. Rather than raising the bar I think senior management are cost cutting and lowering the standards . There are many cruise lines in the same category as Seabourn offering the expected service that is associated with a five star rating. The Encore has one more deck housing 150 additional people more than the three previous ships. The Thomas Keller grill is much larger and a small Sushi cafe has been added as well. While taking that into consideration you have 150 more people occupying the same passenger areas. We feel this ship and the yet to be launched Oviation are not up to the standards of the 3 smaller ships.The officers usually mix with the passengers, we found them very aloof with the exception of two restaurant officers. The entertainment was lacking in variety and quality. We feel Seabourn is heading in the wrong direction. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We have been on several river cruises with Uniworld and had wonderful experiences and on a 2 week cruise with Blount on the Great Lakes in the USA, but apart from couple of cruises up and down the Norwegian coast on the Hurtigruten, this ... Read More
We have been on several river cruises with Uniworld and had wonderful experiences and on a 2 week cruise with Blount on the Great Lakes in the USA, but apart from couple of cruises up and down the Norwegian coast on the Hurtigruten, this was our first sea cruise. The moment we stepped on board in Singapore, we entered a world of comfort, luxury and plenty, all delivered with good humour and kindness by the hard working staff and crew. We were drawn to Seabourn because the food at all the restaurants is included as well as drinks. We did not want to face a large bill at the end. We were also attracted to this particular cruise because it included a lot of sea days and although we wanted to see an interesting part of the world, we also really wanted to relax. Cabin Our cabin was on Deck 5 (the lowest residential deck), and we had a beautiful big room with a verandah, a separate lounge room, a big comfortable bed and a big bathroom with a bath (yay!!!!!), with high quality and plentiful bath products and big, soft towels. There was plenty of storage and the view from the verandah was uninterrupted. Compared to the cabins on river cruises, this cabin was a mansion. A couple of times throughout the cruise, we had a "meet your neighbours" party. This is a great idea. Food The food at the Restaurant, Sushi, the Collonade and the Patio was outstanding. There was plenty to choose from and everything we chose was well cooked and delicious. We are big fans of Asian breakfasts, particularly Vietnamese. So when we boarded the ship, we asked the chef if he could cook us a Vietnamese Pho a couple of times a week for breakfast. And this he did. It was delicious and fragrant and we got many envious stares as it was delivered to our table. This was truly outstanding service. We really enjoyed lunch at Sushi. The bento boxes were delicious and the staff were wonderful, particularly the lovely lady from the Caribbean who served the wine and sake. The food at the Restaurant was outstanding. We had the best steaks we have ever had and their other dishes were also delicious and beautifully presented. The service was fantastic, particularly from Duane from Barbados and her colleague (also from the Caribbean). These two women were friendly, funny and incredibly efficient and helpful. We ate at the Collonade often. The variety at the buffet was always fantastic and we could both always find something delicious to eat. We particularly enjoyed the congee for breakfast and that’s what we had on the days we didn’t have our Pho. We often went to the themed dinners and always really enjoyed them. The lovely lady from Portugal who was the hostess at the front desk was so helpful. The Patio is an up market fast food joint and it was the place to go when we had a hankering for a hot dog, hamburger or pizza. We were not impressed by the Thomas Keller Grill. I had the lobster thermidor and it was swimming in butter and all the food was far too salty. The Grill had all the pretentions of a fine dining establishment without the haute cuisine. The menu never changed, and, unlike the other restaurants, we could not request any changes to the dishes. Aparently the chefs knew better what was best for us. On the other hand, we had Thomas Keller inspired dishes at the Restaurant and the Collonade and they were absolutely beautiful. We hail from a part of Australia that produces truffles and we love em. We were very excited to know that there were a lot of dishes which included truffles. Unfortunately the truffle was undetectable. The executive chef explained that they cannot get fresh truffles, so they use canned ones. These have very little aroma or flavour and I suggest they should leave the truffle out of the menu until they can get the good stuff. Drink The wine ranged from very good to acceptable and there was always plenty to choose from. There was a huge variety of cocktails and the lovely bar man in the Observation Bar always brought over our favourite cocktails as soon as we sat down. Great service. Public Spaces Even though the ship was nearly full, it never felt crowded. I love to find a quiet spot to read and I could always do that. The Observation Bar was pretty much deserted during the day and I could sit and read and watch the ship ploughing through the water. My only complaint was that each day at around 10am, a couple of blokes used to meet to have a very loud, shouty discussion on religious issues. Their conversation dominated that large space and I suspect they were trying to attract other participants. I was really not interested in their subject matter and I could not concentrate on my book. It appeared to me to be officially sanctioned, as one of the participants was a member of the clergy. The bar man told me he had tried to direct them to a private meeting room but to no avail. I am surprised the senior management didn’t insist. Seabourn Square was always a great place to get to know other guests. It’s comfortable and welcoming and refreshments are laid on. Entertainment We really enjoyed the shows put on by the in-house singers and dancers. These people were very talented. We didn’t see all the guest performers but those we did see were great. We also really enjoyed the guest lecturers and learned a lot about the Middle East and the Suez Canal. We loved the cooking demonstrations by the Executive Chef Kurt Timmermans . What a clever man he is. Staff and Crew We found the Captain and his team to be personable, approachable and helpful. My husband had lots of technical questions and he went out of his way to answer them. The cruise director was a delightful woman, as was her assistant and the staff at the Square went out of their way to help us. We booked excursions as we went along and they always made excellent alternative suggestions if the one we wanted was booked out. Everyone we dealt with had clearly been through rigorous training and did their job beautifully. Passengers Mostly Australian and American with a few other countries represented as well. Age range 60 and upwards. Mostly lovely people who were thrilled to be on board such a lovely ship, living in the lap of luxury and having such a wonderful experience. They were a pleasure to spend time with. However it always amazes me how a small minority are constantly complaining about anything and everything and thought nothing of being very rude to the staff. They seem to get off on it. We found there were always passengers like this on river cruises as well. Excursions These were on the whole, enjoyable, with some that were outstanding. Our favourites were the Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi, shopping with the chef in Muscat, the incredible first sight of Petra and the cooking demonstration in Santorini. The Grand Mosque is gobsmackingly gorgeous, the visit to the market with the chef was really interesting and Petra is definitely one of those places everyone should see. The cooking demonstration at a small restaurant attached to a farm on Santorini was some of the most beautiful food we have ever tasted. What that woman could do with a fresh tomato was a miracle. I was surprised that Seabourn didn’t provide passengers with audio headsets. Uniworld provide them for every passenger. On several tours, people got left behind and there was a great scramble to find them again. At Petra, it’s a long, difficult walk from the bus into the site and we lost the guide very early in the journey. It’s hard to get lost there, but it would have been nice to know what we were seeing. Laundry There is none and the cost of the laundry service is eye watering. However, being Aussies, we were well organised. We brought our own collapsible clothes line and a wonderful washing aid called a Scrubba. It’s a heavy plastic bag with a built in wash board and it worked a treat, although our room occasionally looked like a Chinese laundry. I understand they are going to provide a laundry soon and that’s a great idea. Internet Very patchy and as other reviewers have said, it should be part of the package. In summary, this was a wonderful experience. We both work and it was just lovely being waited on by friendly and attentive staff, to eat and drink deliciousness, to be entertained and to see really interesting sights. We have just booked a 45 day cruise on the Seabourn Quest in February, from Buenos Aires to Monte Carlo. Can’t wait. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
Our fourth Seabourn; this one to Australia-New Zealand. (Previously: Norway; then Mediterranean/Adriatic, then Antarctic (Wow), then this one, somewhat less overwhelming than the last. New ship, the Encore, c. 600 passengers. ... Read More
Our fourth Seabourn; this one to Australia-New Zealand. (Previously: Norway; then Mediterranean/Adriatic, then Antarctic (Wow), then this one, somewhat less overwhelming than the last. New ship, the Encore, c. 600 passengers. Substantially larger than the previous class of ships (Odyssey/Sojourn/Quest) which in turn were bigger than the previous ones: Spirit et al.) Yes, there are more passengers and yes you know it when you're on board, yet they've done a nice job of enlarging the scale of the ship without much changing the ambience. Best: Katy Schott (must be the best cocktail pianist at sea); the main Restaurant --4th level (remarkable to be able to serve all those people so graciously at the level of a great hotel dining room pretty much all at the same time -- while rarely anywhere near a market); stabilizers (smooth ride even when they were saying something about rough water); the various bars; the well appointed cabins and their closets, bathrooms, and terraces; the pleasant, apparently happy, rather well turned out and "mature" guests. Worst Complimentary wine by the glass (mediocre when you're very lucky); public announcements (they didn't seem to know when one should be broadcast in public areas only and when they should have been piped into every room to be sure every passenger got the message); the Thomas Keller restaurant, which, in three tries, never got, I thought, quite beyond pretentious (cf. main restaurant, above); expensive wi-fi that sometimes worked. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
This was our fourth cruise on Seabourn and we're planning our fifth for Alaska, so I think you can tell we are sold on the company. More on that later. This cruise starts in Hong Kong, touches china at Xiamen, goes down through the ... Read More
This was our fourth cruise on Seabourn and we're planning our fifth for Alaska, so I think you can tell we are sold on the company. More on that later. This cruise starts in Hong Kong, touches china at Xiamen, goes down through the Phillipines, Malaysia in Borneo, Turns at Singapore, Up to Thailand, Cambodia, then up through Vietnam including Halong Bay and then back to Hong Kong. As many people do, we got off in Sihanoukville to fly to Angkor Wat for two nights before rejoining the ship in Ho Chi Mihn City. Because my wife has substantial difficulty with stairs, we arranged private excursions for many of the ports and had our own guide and driver for Angkor Wat. So this time around, I have experience with only a few of the shore excursions. The Phillipine stops were largely Phillipine tourist locations. Hundred Islands is interesting geography with lousy snorkeling, Coron on the other hand was brilliant snorkeling, some of the best coral ever, not to be missed. Boracay was very touristed because of Chinese New Year, but pleasant if crowded. Singapore is a delightful stop and would have made a good place to start or stop. Cooking class in Hoi An (Danang) was excellent. Photos of Halong Bay is the way I finally convinced my wife of this cruise. It is beautiful, but all the tourist boats go (with some 6,000 people per day) to the same locations, so it's also a little packed. If you can afford Seabourn, you should. I can't actually speak to the peer cruise lines, since we chose Seabourn at the start and never left. But this one is great. Tips are "neither necessary or expected", but this is a staff that operates like one working for tips. They are constantly friendly, helpful, and engaging. We enjoy cruising in part because of the social aspect. It pays to be a little bit forward and not shy in introducing yourself to others, but we've always found it easy. With 450 passengers, we keep running into the people we've met, but we also arrange to meet folks for drinks and dinner. At dinner in the main restaurant you can ask to be seated with others and you will be put at a table for six, which makes for pretty good conversation. There are no assigned seats or times, just show up when you want between 7:00 and 9:00. We are quite found of Restaurant 2, which provides a fixed tasting menu each night. Some feel it's a little pretentious, but I think it's just pretentious enough. No extra charge, but you do need reservations and it tends to be fully booked by the middle of a cruise. So reserve early. We have room service breakfast each morning, in part to avoid the calorie menace of a breakfast buffet. Ordered the night before, it is almost always delivered right at the start of their 15 minute window. of 26 breakfasts, one was late, causing us to gulp it down in order to make our excursion. That evening, there was a plate of chocolate truffles and two glasses of champagne along with a nice note of apology for our inconvenience. The food on Seabourn is outstanding. We met friends on this cruise who are vegan, they felt very well served. Each night they discussed the menu for the next day with the staff and they got generally excellent meals. If you can make good food for vegans, how much better for we sensible carnivores. The house wines are good with alternative wines both for white and red. The only problem is the magic Seabourn wine glass which is always full. The demographic on Seabourn is American/British/Australian with a smattering of others. The ship runs in English, with a crew drawn from across the world. The passengers are older, the majority retired. On this cruise the age range included some middle aged folks, matching some of the photos in the brochures. There were no children, and this would not be the cruise for them. The bottom of the age range is about 40. One of the things we love about the Seabourn ships are the suite layouts. Large with both a tub and shower (didn't use the tub this time), two sinks, and a walk-in closet. We've always had a Veranda and appreciated it. The entertainment is solid. We like the staff singers and dancers. Seabourn has often brought a local group on board to perform, those are some of the best. The lectures on this cruise (Seabourn calls them "conversations" but they are lectures) were from good to great. Hong Kong is a fine place to start and end a cruise. We had 2 nights before the cruise and 4 after. If you're there, go to Sam's Tailor for a custom suit. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We chose the Seabourn because friends of ours had already booked the cruise. We had heard wonderful things about the cruise line and were anticipating an exceptional experience. Unfortunately the weather was not in our favor and we had ... Read More
We chose the Seabourn because friends of ours had already booked the cruise. We had heard wonderful things about the cruise line and were anticipating an exceptional experience. Unfortunately the weather was not in our favor and we had to for go a lot of exploring in Quebec, which is a beautiful city. We had to also miss one of the ports we were looking forward to , Bar Harbor Maine due to unfavorable weather. We went to Boston and were shuttled to Salem for our scheduled tour. The tour guide kept us out for six and a half hours when the tour was scheduled for five. Even thought the passengers were ready to get back to the ship she insisted she had signed a contract with the ship for six and a half hours and had the bus keep driving us around Boston in circles. The ship was lovely and well kept and most of the help were great. When we returned from on shore tours there was no one from the ship to greet us or help us up the ramps . I have never before been on a cruise ship that did not have personnel to greet you when you disembarked or when you returned. That was very disappointing as some of the ramps coming back were difficult to maneuver. The food was very mediocre. Lunch in the Colonnade was disappointing almost every day. There was a lack of salads, a nice simple turkey sandwich would have been great. The dinner menu was very un inspiring and the choices were about the same every night. The plates were not even served very appealing. Even the special dining room was disappointing, no flowers not the table, nothing special at all. The guest services were extremely helpful and friendly I had cut my leg and had to go to the medical facility, which was very professional and well run and helpful. The entertainment was mediocre, and did not perform what was specified on the daily program. I know I would not travel on the Seabourn again, nor would I recommend it. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was our second time with Seabourn...and the second time with Odyssey. Originally this cruise was supposed to go from Athens to Istanbul but it was changed due to troubles in Turkey. Still it was worth it as we went to several Greek ... Read More
This was our second time with Seabourn...and the second time with Odyssey. Originally this cruise was supposed to go from Athens to Istanbul but it was changed due to troubles in Turkey. Still it was worth it as we went to several Greek Islands including Crete, Rhodes, and Mykonos. Ship: Just the right size with a super friendly staff. Not really any change than the first time we sailed which was during the summer of 2015. Cabin: Very nice and very roomy. Service in the cabin was extraordinary. Dining: Food is always excellent. We ate in Restaurant 1 and Restaurant 2. We also ate on the patio for lunch a number of times and in the buffet. We had room service for breakfast every day. Excellent service. Entertainment was fun and also interesting. They had a speaker who talked about the various islands we explored. As I said, service throughout was excellent. Ports were wonderful and the excursions were quite interesting. We'll be taking the Odyssey again this summer from Rome to Barcelona. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We booked Seabourn's 7 Day Cruise on board the Odyssey from Venice to Athens and could not be more pleased by the experience. While nothing is perfect, and there were some bumps along the way, this was by far the best cruise ... Read More
We booked Seabourn's 7 Day Cruise on board the Odyssey from Venice to Athens and could not be more pleased by the experience. While nothing is perfect, and there were some bumps along the way, this was by far the best cruise experience I had and plan on taking more Seabourn cruises in the future. We arrived in Venice, Italy one night before embarkation. While we did have about a day to explore the city, in hindsight I would had liked one more day. We stayed at the Splendid Hotel in Venice which was a great location to see a lot of attractions in the heart of Venice. The hotel was great and our room was much bigger than expected. If you do stay here I highly recommend taking a water taxi directly to and from the hotel if you have a lot of luggage. We did have trouble with embarkation. It started when we asked the hotel about the best way to get the port. They recommended a private water taxi for $100 Euro. They also told us we could take the water ferry from the Rialto Bridge for $15 euro per person. We cheaped out and that was a mistake. We asked the hotel which stop to get off and they said Tronchetto. We asked the people on the ferry and they said the same, which would have been correct if the ship was at the main terminal. But since the port was so busy that day, the Odessey was at the San Basillio terminal, which is a much different ferry stop. So after a lot of walking, some panic and a $20 euro taxi ride around the port, we got to the right place. Problem was it was late, a little after 4:00pm, and the Italians inside the terminal said the boarding process was now closed. After some more panic, and a lot of back and forth in English and Italian, they reluctantly let us on board where we started the check in process. It was a very tense hour and at one point we felt like we might actually miss the boat. But in the end we got on and the Seabourn staff were very welcoming. Once we were checked in we immediately went to the mandatory safety meeting with the rest of the passengers in the main restaurant. It was there I realized that we were on a much smaller cruise. All 400+ passengers were there for the safety meeting. Once the meeting was over (about 15 minutes) we were allowed to go to our room. Our room was great. Much bigger than some hotels I have stayed in Europe, New York or San Francisco. About five minutes after we got into our room, our stewardess came and greeted us with gifts. It was a really nice touch and made us felt welcomed. About five minutes after that, the ship’s on board guest services called to ask us about the embarkation. We told them what happened and they apologized. That night we sat in the observation bar and watched the ship leave the beautiful city of Venice. Then we went to the main restaurant for dinner and had amazing steaks. I found the food at all of the restaurants on the ship great. We had dinner at all three during the course of the cruise. The main restaurant had a solid menu. The colonnade had different themes every night. And Restaurant 2 is defiantly worth a visit or two. We had lunch many days at the Patio Grill, which was very good. We hit the colonnade only twice for breakfast, but both times were good with a very large selection of breakfast items. I liked that you could hit the buffet or order items like eggs and pancakes to order. It might sound strange but I prefer to order my scrambled eggs fresh versus getting them from the buffet line. On our first full day on board we took a tour of the galley with the head chef. He was great and showed us where most all of the meals were cooked. He talked at length about the process they go through to insure the quality of the food. He even told us they fly all the meat served on board from the US to make sure the quality of the meat is the highest possible. The head chef also told us they do source seafood from local vendors at some of the ports they visit. What was also impressive is that the ship bakes all the bread and pastries daily on board, only bringing in gluten free products from the outside. What we really took advantage of was the room service. We had breakfast in the room five of the days during the cruise. The night before we would fill out a card and leave it on the door before we went to sleep and the next morning the waiters were there with everything we had ordered. We even tried to stump them a few times with special orders, but they handled it flawlessly. I will say they were prompt. While the card gave 15 minute time frames for delivery, they were they a minute after the initial time. For instance the first day I asked for 7:00am to 7:15am. They were there at 7:01am, I had not even gotten out of bed yet. Every time we ordered that was the result. It was great. We also ordered room service after a late night of drinking and dancing. I ordered a cheeseburger at 1:30am. I swear I had just hung up the phone and a waiter was there with a perfectly cooked cheeseburger. It was impressive. As far as the alcohol and wine served on board, it is all top notch. They have a wide selection of beer and hard alcohol. The wine served at dinner was better than most restaurants. There are some premium wines and alcohol you can purchase, but honestly the regular selection is so good you really don’t have to spend extra money. The pool area is not the biggest, but it is nice. So is the spa. I had a wonderful couples massage with a ritual bath after. The bath is outside in a private area that overlooks the sea. The Spa also has nice steam rooms and saunas to use after your treatment. I did not use the gym, but I did stop by. It is not very big, but it had a nice selection of equipment. They also offer different classes like stretching, yoga and palliates (free of charge) in both the morning and in the late afternoon. The entertainment on board was OK. The shows were entertaining, but not spectacular. The best was probably the magician, who performed twice, each show was different. The club was OK, not too wild or crazy. The casino is small with only roulette, black jack, three card poker and some slot machines. One pro tip, You can take your winnings to Seabourn square (the reception area) and put your winnings (if you have any) towards your bill. I did not know that and cashed out at the casino receiving U.S. dollars. We didn’t really participate in any of the other activities so I cannot comment on them. I will say the passengers on board were mostly adults, and most were of the retirement age. That’s not to say it was filled with retirees, but there were not a lot of families with children which was nice. Given the quality of the service and the time of year we traveled it was not a cruise for families. The cruise went from Venice, Italy to Athens, Greece. Our first stop was Primosten, Croatia. We didn’t book an excursion and spent half the day walking around the small island. After a drink we opted to head back to the boat and spend the afternoon at the pool. It was truly relaxing. Day two took us to Dubrovnik, Croatia. We booked our own tour online and took the shuttle bus from the port to the old city. Once there we went on a Game of Thrones tour which was great. If you’re a fan of the show I highly recommend it. Unfortunately it started to rain very hard so after the tour we returned to the ship and did not get to spend a lot of time in the old city. Day three we went to Corfu. Once again we skipped the cruise excursions. We rented a car right at the cruise terminal from Hertz and drove around the island. It was a lot of fun and we got to see a couple of the villages and beaches around the island. We ended the day walking around the Old Town Corfu. Day four was Nydri. We had an excursion booked, but it was canceled due to weather. I will say out of all the ports, Nydri was our least favorite. While we did get off the boat, I would of rather spent the entire day on the ship. Day five was Olympia. That day we took the Seabourn excursion “Best of Olympia” tour. It was really wonderful and our guide was engaging and informative. We went to the birth place of the Olympics and to two museums to see some of the artifacts found at the site. The tour included a delicious traditional Greek lunch at a lovely restaurant just outside of the new city of Olympia. Then we had about a half hour to walk around and see the new city. Day six was probably the biggest surprise, Monemvasia, Greece. Words cannot express how amazing and beautiful this small town really is. We had originally thought we would spend about two hours in the town and head back to the boat. We ended up spending almost the entire day exploring the town including a challenging climb to the top. It was a breath taking view on a sunny day. We had lunch in the old city which was quite good. My only regret about that day was not taking a bathing suit and towel for a swim in the Aegean Sea. Our last stop was Athens. This is where our time on the ship came to an end. Disembarkation was a breeze. We had a transfer to our hotel arraigned by the Seabourn staff. It was simple and fast. It could not be better. Athens is amazing. We only spent a day there, but could have easily spent three. Seabourn is not cheap, but you really get what you pay for. The nice part of the cruise was pretty much everything was included, our bill at the end was minimal. There was no extra charge for all of the alcohol, room service and coffee bar stops. Overall the service of the staff was top notch and I would highly recommend taking a Seabourn cruise. I plan to make my next cruise on Seabourn. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Our first Seabourn trip and without doubt the best cruise we have ever taken. Many, many positives and few negatives made it a very enjoyable 10 days. We also made friends with lots of fellow travelers and had a number of pleasant ... Read More
Our first Seabourn trip and without doubt the best cruise we have ever taken. Many, many positives and few negatives made it a very enjoyable 10 days. We also made friends with lots of fellow travelers and had a number of pleasant evenings in their company. Embarkation in Barcelona at the World Trade Centre was very smooth and although our boarding time was stated as 2pm we arrived around 12pm and had no trouble boarding. This also gave us time for lunch at The Collonade restaurant while our rooms were being readied. Food and service throughout was excellent. We confined ourselves to The Restaurant and The Collonade with a few snacks at the Patio Grill. We did book Restaurant 2 once, but cancelled as the menu did not look too inspiring. To be honest, we have had degustation in quite a few restaurants over the years including Michelin starred, and would much rather order a la carte. Consequently we didn't bother to book Restaurant 2 again. We tried a number of Thomas Keller dishes and not overly impressed. One smoked rib dish we ordered in The Collonade one evening was very dry. We also ordered room service a couple of times including breakfast everyday which was consistently excellent. The overall service on board surpassed expectations. All of the crew were friendly, very efficient and they really looked as if they enjoyed what they were doing. The young lady who looked after our room catered for our every need and seemed to be always on hand with an hello and a smile. We also very much enjoyed the entertainment offered. All of the bars and lounges seemed to have some entertainment or live music and every evening in the main salon there was a show around 9pm. Primarily provided by a young troop of singers and dancers who were London West-End quality. Our cruise director Sophie was also a very accomplished singer in her own right and she entertained us a couple of evenings. As a cruise director she was brilliant and her energy was astonishing. The only negatives were 1. the exorbitant cost for a very slow wi-fi service. While I understand it is difficult to provide a fast service at sea, I believe it should be provided totally free with perhaps a daily data and access time limit; 2. The quality of the so called "complimentary" wine. No list of available wines was provided and we had to make a special request to eventually obtain one. There were some nice wines on the list, but these had to be requested from the wine waiter who often gave us a "how did you know about that one" look. They also seemed to push a particular wine each day and also push their premium wines (especially in Restaurant 2 we were told by other passengers) which are not good value. Considering Seabourn has fixed routes, which often pass through fantastic wine regions (ours went through Provence and Bandol), you would have thought it would not be too hard to source local wines as they passed through and also stimulate the local economy. If they want somebody to source local wine for them, I’m their man! I would also look very carefully at the Seabourn excursions which in my view are expensive. We privately arranged two wine tours in Provence and Bandol which were both excellent very good value. We also did our own research on the places we visited which was fun and planned our own walking tours. In summary, a great experience. I would highly recommend Seabourn and would have no hesitation in cruising with them in the future. Read Less
27 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
I am not a frequent cruiser. However, the purpose of taking cruises was getting away from home to have some relaxing time and enjoyment. Service, food and pleasent surrounding became the major. Seabourn Quest is a small ship. ... Read More
I am not a frequent cruiser. However, the purpose of taking cruises was getting away from home to have some relaxing time and enjoyment. Service, food and pleasent surrounding became the major. Seabourn Quest is a small ship. Comparing to other luxury cruises, Silversea and Crystal I took before, there are not that many public area to explore in Quest. All dining facilities or bars have 2 to 3 hours set hours. Only Square has longer hours to get limited snacks, tea and coffee. Otherwise need to use room service. For us, sitting in the cabin, might as well stay home. Overall appearance of the facilities in the ship were so plain and boring. Don't talk about any interior design. If there were no chandeliers in MDR, with all white curtains, you would think you were in a huge cafeteria dining hall. Such so unappealing, there were very few people used it for breakfest and lunch. We usually would like to have breakfest and lunch in MDR in other ships, but not Seabourn Quest. Overall, the service was good B+ , very professional but lacking personal touch and warmess. We were the one extending ourselves to try to know the staffs and set up some human communication with them. Also staffs in dining always try to be attentive and interrupt the conversation constantly. It was very annoyed and would not happen in any upscale fine dining restaurants. Dining was disappointed. MDR, B, rating, inspiration menu was better than classic, still not inspired enough and creative. Every other day, with Thomas Keller special giving some varieties. Thomas Keller grill C+ we are never the fan of Thomas Keller, especially his bristro style restaurant. Nothing exceptional. Especially the deserts, his nightly special desert in MDR even better and more elegant than the Grill. I will prefer the old restaurant 2 menu than the grill. Colonnade overall C- the choice of breakfast was limited but okay should be B. The lunch hot food buffet was like cafeteria food and not appealing. I tried a couple times and gave up to order daily special or go for cold buffet. The dinners in Colonnade were the worst experiences. Thomas Keller special night remind me Keller's Ad hoc diinner I had but worse. The Japanese night even unbelievable bad. Used fish and chip batter to be tempura batter. Giving two pieces of whole steak with salty soy sauce as teriyaki beef dish. Completely no hint of Japanese favour and called it Japanese dinner night. Poolside Bristro, C, always the some old things everyday. When you had excursion at shore and came back late after lunch time, it was the only place you could have hot food. Nothing worth to mention. Afternoon tea, C, the place setting was nice. Using Mighty Leaf tea that is my favorite at home. But using the same sandwiches and sweets as Square everyday. Only difference was you could not get Might Leaf tea in Square or other places through out the ship. Other eating facilites only served ordinary brand tea bags except room service if you can know the name of the tea for request. One thing was very interesting. By 4:40, staffs already started to collect all unused settings. Looked like it would help to improve the clean up efficiency and killed the atmosphere of afternoon tea. Square, D rating, same sandwiches and sweet everyday, so boring. Entertainment C- , only two outside preformnces for 3 nights were excellent in 10 days cruise. The solon's trio was good. The in-house entertainment were below average. Did not get that much entertainment in the ship. There were few Shore excursions were attractive. However, you paid triple amount of money for 3 hours kayaking if you did yourself. You only got 45mins kayaking time. The hiking in national park in Gaspe only one hour and did not match the description of the excursion. It was so ordinary as we were hiking in the county park behind our home. Fitness center was so small. Worse than some small hotels. Going to walk at shore to have some excercise better than using such small fitness center. I can say the ship does not care to give any one exercise oppertunity or does not think we need excercise. Overall experience did not match our expection of Seabourn would offer. It was so average. Read Less
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