10 Seabourn Sojourn Caribbean - Eastern Cruise Reviews

By way of introduction we are a couple in our 60’s and have been on more than 65 cruises. For the past ten years we have sailed mostly with Silversea, Regent, and Oceania. This was our first Seabourn cruise since being on the Legend when ... Read More
By way of introduction we are a couple in our 60’s and have been on more than 65 cruises. For the past ten years we have sailed mostly with Silversea, Regent, and Oceania. This was our first Seabourn cruise since being on the Legend when it was first put into service many years ago. I know many of the readers of this review will be seasoned “Sojourner’s” but here goes….. Embarcation was a breeze in Ft. Lauderdale. SHIP The ship is lovely.  Very elegant and large enough for a variety of venues and settings yet small enough to feel intimate and comfortable.  Nice art work, well-placed bars, restaurants, clubs, etc.  Seabourn Square is brilliant.  In the "Square" is the coffee shop where one can get all kinds of coffees, teas, and specialty drinks (prepared by real baristas) along with various snacks and ice cream.  In the same area is what would be called a concierge center.  Here you will find guest service personnel at desks where you sit to conduct whatever business you need (like the purser's office on other ships).  The guest services center is flanked by computer banks on two sides which is the computer center.  On one side of the room is the library and on the other side of the room are the shops.  The excursions desk is also in the square.  SUITES Our Category V-3 suite was located on deck 6 and is indicative of the majority of the suites on the ship, save the Penthouse and Owner Suites.  It was very nicely appointed and decorated.  As you enter the cabin through a very narrow entrance there is a vanity area with lights and mirror.  The verandah was large enough for two chairs, that have foot rests that can turn the chair into a 'chaise' and a table large enough for two to enjoy a meal on.  However, the verandah furniture was worn and the mesh was uncomfortable. There were no cushions or head rests. The floor is teak and the glass railing provides for a lovely view of the sea and in port.  (Suites in categories V-1 and V2 have partial metal railings and the views are obstructed.)   The living area had a sofa (very hard) and a table that is very comfortable for two to dine on.  There are cabinets on each side which house the TV and the bar with the mini refrigerator.  There is ample storage throughout.  The sleeping area is separated by a curtain (if desired) and has excellent lighting for reading and/or relaxing.  The mattresses were not as comfortable as I was expecting for a premium line. Perhaps they will be replaced soon. The walk-in closet is spacious enough with five deep built in drawers and a safe.  There was plenty of room for hanging clothes. The bathroom was quite comfortable and well laid out. There is a twin sink vanity and a full sized tub as well as a small separate shower. While not loads of room for storage, there was certainly enough for us. Service by our stewardess was excellent. We hardly ever saw her, but our room was meticulously clean and refreshed twice a day. The towels were not of the quality one would expect from a premium cruise line and were a disappointment. Mostly they were scratchy and worn. Seabourn needs to address this. We did have an issue — that was resolved on day 2 — regarding having a bottle of champagne in our suite. When we booked, we indicated that we did not want any bottles of liquor in our suite (as we prefer to have cocktails in the bars and lounges), but would rather have champagne (which we do enjoy in our suite). We called Seabourn directly to ask them about this, as we had read on the Cruise Critic Boards that one could only order glasses of champagne in their suites. The Seabourn office assured us, as well as our travel agent, that this would be no problem and to simply indicate our preference on our “suite bar preference request.” When we arrived, there was a bottle of bourbon and a bottle of vodka which we did not request. We informed our stewardess of our request and she said that we would be charged $35 for each bottle of champagne we ordered. We asked her to check with the hotel manager and to reference the pre-cruise request we submitted. The next day she informed us that she had, indeed, spoken with “provisions” and that she would replace each bottle of champagne as it was consumed. The issued was resolved and we had no problems getting our champagne, but we shouldn’t have had to make that request twice. Dining venues The Restaurant The menus were not very innovative or exciting, in spite of their wonderful descriptions.  We found the food in the dining room to be just average to good.  The service and the presentation however, were excellent.  The “complimentary” wines were just OK. However, we were able to request different complimentary options other than the ‘wines of the day’ and we were accommodated with Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir instead of the standard Chardonnay or Malbec. The deserts were ordinary, at best, in any venue. However, the ice-cream was outstanding and there was a great variety of flavors as well as sorbets and frozen yoghurts. The Colonnade This was no ordinary buffet/alternative dining option.  There was both self-service and full table service for breakfast and lunch and full table service for dinner.    For lunch and dinner there were excellent varieties of foods and the design of the room made for easy access to each of the food areas.  For dinner, The Colonnade became a lovely indoor/outdoor bistro.  The menus, though limited, were more imaginative.  It was especially nice to be able to sit out on the back deck for an al fresco dinner. The Patio Grill By day, this pool side casual venue was quite popular, though we found it to be very bland and "perfunctory."  The 'fast food' type lunch items were tasteless and the salads and entrees (which did change daily) were very bland and boring.  At night, however, the Patio Grill was a lovely outdoor 'grill.'  Steaks and seafood were well grilled along with a nice changing buffet of appetizers to match the theme of the evening.  There are limited tables and on some nights people arrive very early to insure a seat! Restaurant 2 We found Restaurant 2 to be a fun and inventive alternative. The pre fixe menus were imaginative and tasty. The service was extraordinary. While we enjoyed it, one visit in 10 days was amble for us. Room Service We enjoyed breakfast in our suite almost every morning. Because we were vacationing and not on any set schedule (nor did we have any tours booked in advance) we waited to order breakfast when we awoke and when we knew what we were in the mood for, rather than ordering the night before.  Our breakfast always arrived just as ordered and actually quite fast, usually in 15 minutes.  The table was laid with a table cloth and linen and was set up just as you would find in the restaurant with every detail (salt, pepper, and appropriate condiments).  On a couple of occasions we decided to have dinner in our suite (which we could order off the dining room or room service menu). These turned out to be two of our most memorable meals, accompanied by bottles of wines of our choice. The Bars We enjoyed the service at all of the bars.  Every bartender and all of the waiters were great.  The pool service bar is quite fun to observe as they start "roaming" the pool area (both decks) with drinks of the day, cold towels, and even sun tan lotion.  All the servers were friendly and accommodating. Service Seabourn prides itself on their level of service and they do not let down.  All service personnel were professional and accommodating.  The only disappointment was that during our entire 10 days, not one crew member asked for, or called us by name.  Not even the maître d's who asked for our suite number (not sure why) every time you entered a dining venue in the evening.  This was not a deal breaker, but certainly a surprise. Our past experience with Silversea and Regent was to be addressed by our names starting from day one.  They even had "cheat sheets" to help staff remember passengers.  The disconcerting thing was that some passengers were addressed by name and somehow it made us feel “less than.” Disembarkation was as easy and seamless as embarkation. It was well organized and just flowed. We enjoyed the ship enough that while onboard we booked one of the new Penthouse Spa Suites on the Quest for next year. So I guess that is enough of an endorsement!   Read Less
Sail Date December 2013
We have been wanting to try Seabourn for several years and received a very nice email offer for a 10 day Sojourn Caribbean cruise with stops in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Basseterre, St. Kitts, St. Johns, Antigua, St. John (Cruz Bay), USVI and ... Read More
We have been wanting to try Seabourn for several years and received a very nice email offer for a 10 day Sojourn Caribbean cruise with stops in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Basseterre, St. Kitts, St. Johns, Antigua, St. John (Cruz Bay), USVI and Isla Catalina, Dominican Republic. Also, 4 sea days was a big plus, as we enjoy sea days. This was our 55th cruise, and had been to all the ports except for Antigua. The ship was delayed coming into Ft. Lauderdale because the Captain on the prior segment was taken ill, so our embarkation was delayed by a few hours. Not a problem as we had come in 2 days early are were staying at a nearby hotel, just a short taxi ride from the port. We enjoy smaller ships, and found the Sojourn's 350 passenger size to be not too small (as with their older 3 ships) and the ship was really easy to get around. The ship was spotless, cabin extremely well laid out with lots of storage space, especially for a shorter cruise. Being outdoor walkers, we enjoyed walking on the metal deck rather than use the gym. We didn't use the pool, and had little opportunity for sun-bathing, but did enjoy the cabin and balcony. We enjoyed a few shows which were quite good considering the small space. We really like having everything included (soda, water, wine), only paying for tours and the internet. The staff was outstanding - and almost every night, we were invited to a staff's table, where we met many interesting, well-traveled passengers. The Seabourn Square with the coffee bar alone will put us on this ship (and the sister ships) again! We took the train tour in St. Kitts, which we enjoyed, and only walked around the other ports, as we had 'been there, done that'. Our only disappointment was the food, which we found not up to Holland ships on their longer trips (21 days or longer) or Regent's ships. But overall experience made up for that! Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
I previously wrote a quasi review/compare contrast of Seabourn to Oceania. I want to expand a bit to be clear and fair. I also want to make clear that I am not writing as a snob or elite, but somebody who really enjoys the luxury travel ... Read More
I previously wrote a quasi review/compare contrast of Seabourn to Oceania. I want to expand a bit to be clear and fair. I also want to make clear that I am not writing as a snob or elite, but somebody who really enjoys the luxury travel experience and expects to get what we think we are paying for. My biggest problem with Seabourn and the reason for the less than favorable review is based on advertising my wife and I were under the impression we were buying a luxury product on par with Oceania or Crystal or perhaps a Ritz Carlton/Fours Seasons Hotel experience. Our experience was a let down. Although the ship is smaller than most with fewer passengers and an excellent passenger to space ratio (which is really nice) the quality of the food and soft furnishings is lacking and frankly poor beyond belief. My wife and I really feel that the food and soft furnishings are so mediocre - and so not even close to being on par with a shoreside semi-fine dining experience - that the Seabourn experience can be best summed up as an expensive sized down version of a Holland America cruise. Not to knock Holland America (as I have in the past), but at least HAL does not advertise to be a six star product and in many regards is superior at a lesser price point. We are very well traveled and enjoy luxury as much as the next luxury seeking traveler, but also expect to get what is promised and what is paid for. A few examples include many unhappy crew members who are frankly rude. For example, Seabourn boasts "all inclusive liquor". We are not big drinkers, but I do enjoy good wine and in support of Seabourn their house wines are really terrific. However, their reds/cabs are served in the same glasses as whites. I asked one night at dinner for a proper cabernet glass and the waiter said "oh...you mean you want a revenue glass" in a very demeaning and disparaging way that myself and our table mates found very embarrassing and unacceptable. How awful, instead of just kindly bringing me the requested and appropriate glass. Although room service is served nicely with table cloths the quality of the food is no different than HAL and Princess. Again, not to knock these products, but for the price we paid we expected more. For example, I orderd a "bowl of berries" that consisted of three strawberries cut in half and I kid you not one blueberry! Deck furniture is worn and uncomfortable. The standard lounges are the exact same ones we have seen on Princess or the rear deck of HAL with the slingback without cushions. Again, nothing wrong with that, but for a luxury product we expected something more on par with Crystal, Regent, Oceania etc. Cushions with terry cloth covers would be terrific and certainly are found on the competition and when you are in the tropics do make a difference. This is what you also find at Ritz Carlton and Four Seasons. Cabin towels are not of high quality and heavily starched. They are somewhat akin to what you might get at a Sheraton. Again, please don't be sensitive and take offense. Nothing wrong with Sheratons, but they don't boast to be a Ritz Carlton or Mandarin Oriental. Multiple times towels actually had clearly visible brown stains. Again, for a product claiming to be of high caliber and price commanded - very disappointing and gross. Another example of missing mark and our expectation is bar service. Bartenders seem non caring and simply go through the motions. When you dine at a fine restaurant or steak house it is not uncommon to have a special drink request. Such a request might be no sweet and sour, but fresh lime juice in my margarita. These requests are ignored and sweet and sour used severl times. Another for example, my wife ordered a mudslide. The only deviation she asked for was to have it served in a short glass instead of one of the large smoothie glasses as she preferred a high octane low volume drink. The bartender rudly made clear that this request was not possible. When she said "other bartenders on the ship have made it for me this way" his answer was "I'm not other bartenders do you want it my way or not at all". We were shocked! Again, in life not a big deal. However, on a "luxury" or even not so luxury vacation unnecessary and kind of upsetting to be treated rudly when you are guest with a not so difficult or demanding request. The ship is only three years old and shows signs of aging everywhere. Much of the outdoor seating (not lounges, but wicker furniture) has ripped and stained cushions of poor quality. Our bedding was awful and sheets were balled. The bedding does not even come close to that of the Mariner Dream Bed on sister line Holland America or that of the Westin Dream Bed. Certainly, it cannot even come close to comparing to Oceania, Azamara, or Regent (fair competition). Again, for a six star product we expected better comfort and quality. In fact, other than the crowds and perhaps, respectfully, passenger demographics Holland America remains in hindsight a good value when a Neptune Suite is booked when compared and contrasted with Seabourn. As previously stated in my comparison to Oceania and Azamara which in some regards is thought to be a near luxury product compared and Regent which is direct competition to Seabourn which is marketed as "luxury" there is simply no comparison and Oceania, Azamara, and Regent wins hands down and will be our choice consistently moving forward when looking for a luxury product as we do have a choice. My wife and I always enjoy our cruises and my critical critique is not meant to be demoralizing or demeaning to Seabourn in any way, but merely to express our disappointing opinion of where they miss the mark - which they consistently do in so many areas. We are glad we sampled Seabourn. That being said, again there is a lot to be appreciated about Seabourn including the smaller ship, lower than usual passenger count for a ship of 30,000 tons (only 425+), high passenger to space ratio, and high crew to passenger ratio. If things such as soft goods like bedding and quality of food and selection of food are not important and you are not a foodie I can see where Seabourn would be very enticing as their itineraries are fabulous. We just think for us better options exist. Its really an issue of value for the money and we feel other lines excel better at the same price point. Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
Welcome to winter! Just back from a 10 day RT on the Sojourn FLL to FLL, eastern Caribbean. (Deck 8, V6). It was good to get back aboard the larger Seabourn ships again after a couple years gap and several runs on the smaller Legend, ... Read More
Welcome to winter! Just back from a 10 day RT on the Sojourn FLL to FLL, eastern Caribbean. (Deck 8, V6). It was good to get back aboard the larger Seabourn ships again after a couple years gap and several runs on the smaller Legend, Spirit, and one of the very last on the Pride this year (heading to Windstar soon). All the Seabourn touches come in the larger ships, but so so so much extra, and all of it modern and high tech facilities the old ships just can't deliver. This run was especially well orchestrated for its relentless attempts to really bring back the FUN in warm weather cruising, albeit, Seabourn style! 4 (yes 4) well attended deck parties made the cruise extra special. Caviar, cocktails, starlight dancing, and all with enjoyed with one of the most well travelled groups of cruisers you'll ever meet. On this particular voyage, 5 couples had logged over 350 sailed days with Seabourn, - some of the lines royalty to say the least! My only CON (and I'm a very picky one for details) is that Seabourn needs to invest in some high end deck chairs and furniture. For a line that demands its tariff, you would expect Oceania, Crystal, St Regis, Four Seasons style deck chairs, (you know, the ones with comfy cushions, and dressed with terrycloth covers and head pillows).... but instead, Seabourn leaves you with the EXACT same lounge chairs as you find on the Eurodam and Nieuw Amsterdam.... Ugh. Not exactly the most comfortable chair when you just need that extra hour snooze before cocktail hour. Everything else is wonderful, and good enough that we've already booked the Sojourn again for its 2nd world cruise segment (Sydney to Hong Kong 34 days FEB 8 2014) Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
Just returned from our first Seabourn cruise and must say that it was very nice compared to main-line cruises we have experienced in the past (we have been mainly HAL cruisers for the past few years). I really enjoyed the smaller ship, one ... Read More
Just returned from our first Seabourn cruise and must say that it was very nice compared to main-line cruises we have experienced in the past (we have been mainly HAL cruisers for the past few years). I really enjoyed the smaller ship, one never felt crowded aboard. Also did not miss the ships photographer being in your face constantly, nor did I miss the line pushing "junk" items or "Gold by the inch", etc. The dining, especially at dinner was just superb, both food quality and service were what one would like to expect on all cruise lines, but alas this is no longer true on the mainstreams who now push their alternate dining at the expense of the standard. While I am not sure that it is worth two to three times the price of a HAL cruise I sure did enjoy it! But, if you can afford to cruise at Seabourns prices, this may be the way to go! Cabin was very nice, but frankly it was only a bit larger than a Veranda on HAL. This did make room for a small dining table that made room service meals much easier and Seabourn made them more special with setting up the table with all the trimmings including a white tablecloth. I did not particularly care for the cabinets with shelves in the main cabin vs drawers, this made it much more difficult for me to locate items as I practically had to get down on my knees to find where I had put things. However, the closet did contain drawers that made up for some of it. An odd thing was that the room safe, which was in the closet, had no handle or pull and it was impossible to open the door without something to pry it open with. Read Less
Sail Date November 2013
My wife and I are in our early 60’s and have cruised more than twenty times, mostly on Celebrity, with one other luxury experience on Paul Gauguin. We just disembarked from our first SEABOURN experience. All we can say in WOW! What a ... Read More
My wife and I are in our early 60’s and have cruised more than twenty times, mostly on Celebrity, with one other luxury experience on Paul Gauguin. We just disembarked from our first SEABOURN experience. All we can say in WOW! What a pleasant surprise to sail with other professional people, many still working like myself. While we saw plenty of older folks on this sailing, it was refreshing to cruise with others who shared similar interests and weren’t looking for the '"party night and say” experience. We’ve been disappointed on recent 14 night cruises on Celebrity which found us among the youngest passengers on the ship. Seabourn provides a perfect mix of ages within an '"adult only” environment. We realized the '"Seabourn difference” within the first moments of our very easy embarkation from Fort Lauderdale. Crew members whom we had never met addressed us by our last name and this treatment continued throughout the cruise. Our veranda cabin was about the same size as a SKY SUITE on Celebrity and these cabins are the majority of cabins on the ship. With walk-in closets and marble bathrooms, Seabourn had us from the moment we opened our cabin door on deck six. A spacious walk-in closet, a large marble bathroom, and a wide array of luxury toiletries gave a welcome, upscale feel to our home at sea. The mini bar was well stocked with our pre-ordered list of alcohol and mixers. While the selection of TV stations is weak at best, we were pleasantly surprised to discover a selection of nearly 100 movies on demand at no cost per showing. FOOD is a big focus of Seabourn. My wife and I are not '"foodies” so we were less impressed with ultra-gourmet offerings of Restaurant Two and found ourselves very comfortable dining on the fantail of Sojourn at '"The Colonnade Restaurant”. Here we found high quality food at lunch and in the evenings. We especially enjoyed theme nights featuring Indian and Asian cuisine. The Colonnade is more an upscale bistro than buffet, with impeccable service. We started each day with breakfast from room service which was always perfectly on time and quite enjoyable. Make sure you go to the '"Galley Buffet” in the main dining room for lunch. It was a fun event and provides a great behind the scenes look at the galley. Like most cruises we have experienced, the only low marks fell in the area of onboard entertainment. I know we aren’t alone in thinking ALL cruise lines needs to '"freshen” their nightly entertainment options. The average age on this cruise was probably sixty, yet the presentation of the music was still stuck in the '"Broadway” style of singing and dancing. There was a so-so comedian and a '"fair” illusionist we had seen on a Celebrity cruise several years ago. Let’s be honest- Many silver haired passengers today grew up with the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, The Beatles and other rock and roll acts. Our youth marked some of the best music in a century, yet the cruise lines seem fearful of bringing classic rock acts to Baby Boomers. I just don’t understand this thinking. And with all of the TV talent shows filling prime time, surely Cruise Directors can snag some of the top ten contestants to modernize a very boring and stale cruise entertainment scene. We did enjoy a female vocal impersonator who was quite good. The only other negative I will mention is the cheap pool and deck chairs. We were expecting an upscale pool experience as well, with comfy lounge chairs with thick padding instead of low end, inexpensive pool chairs. Despite the shoddy furniture at the pool and on our balcony, the SERVICE was spectacular poolside and across the ship. We loved the fact we didn’t have to endure frequent ship wide announcements over the PA and enjoyed the '"quiet” environment poolside, free of loud music and annoying contests. We are highly independent travelers so I can’t comment on Seabourn’s excursions, as we made our own plans. Make sure you don’t miss Seabourn’s private island if you visit the Dominican Republic. The crew did an amazing job provisioning the island and making sure passengers had a wonderful time, despite rain and clouds. There were no children or teens on our Caribbean cruise. Frankly, we enjoyed the all-adult experience. Seabourn is not for the '"party” cruiser. We found the Sojourn to be a relatively quiet experience, which appeals to us. Even what appeared to be a rigid dress code became more relaxed as the cruise progressed, and I was find with the resort-casual attire most evenings. The Sojourn is the perfect sized cruise ship. At 30,000 tons and under 500 passengers, we never felt crowded or rushed. We met interesting people and thoroughly enjoyed our first Seabourn cruise. We are booked on a 14-night Asian cruise on Celebrity in 2014, but you can be sure we will be back on Seabourn in the future.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
I know that alot of people go on cruises looking for something different to do. My wife were looking for a decompression. We've travelled the US some 50 times, been to Europe to see the ruins twice, and now look at vacationing as an ... Read More
I know that alot of people go on cruises looking for something different to do. My wife were looking for a decompression. We've travelled the US some 50 times, been to Europe to see the ruins twice, and now look at vacationing as an opportunity to just relax. This cruise met that need and then some. The first 2 days at sea allowed plenty of time to do nothing, dine on excellent food, and move around doing nothing at all. No place to be, nothing that really needed to get done, and no deadlines. We didn't find any of the ports particularly attractive, though we went ashore for the experience and tshirts and magnets. We just enjoyed being on the water, even in the tenders. Our room was on the 8th floor, where you find the pool-with plenty of sun deck, the Patio Grill--which is and open air restaurant for lunch and dinner that is excellent for service and food, The Collonade--where we ate 90% of our meals on the back open terrace preferably--a buffet style restaurant. Some thought the ships walking deck not large enough, not us, we did our walking around the ship itself, albeit at a slightly less pace. If you were looking for a drink, their were plenty of options to choose from, with the drinks and meals all inclusive. The room was large enough for 2 without getting in each others way. There was a sitting area with a couch(not the most comfortable) and 2 chairs with a small table. I wouldn't recommend planning on watching ESPN. The sports channel was from Britain and news was the main option for us. The bathroom was very spacious with 2 sinks, a bath, and a shower. Our bed was comfortable, not home, but comfortable. The maid service twice a day kept the room neat the entire trip. It was our first Ocean cruise, and the recommendation we got from a close friend with over 50 cruises under his belt, was spot on with Seabourne. The convienence of being able to cruise from Ft. Lauderdale and return there, the luxury of the room and ship, and the open sailing has probably spoiled us for future cruises--we'll always be comparing to Seabourne if we take any other line. We sail for the sport of it, not really for the destinations. If that's what you're looking for, go with Seabourne. It's worth every penny. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
Seabourn has earned the title of our most-beloved cruise line since we first sailed to Alaska, circa 1999. The food, intimacy, service and the attention to small but important details placed Seabourn as our top luxury cruise line. The ... Read More
Seabourn has earned the title of our most-beloved cruise line since we first sailed to Alaska, circa 1999. The food, intimacy, service and the attention to small but important details placed Seabourn as our top luxury cruise line. The original Seabourn vessels, the Pride, Legend and Spirit have just 104 suites. That is about 210 people served by a crew of about 170. Not a bad passenger to crew ratio in terms of service. The ships were originally built in the late 1980's and were refurbished between 2009 and 2011. We have sailed the three original ships many times and love them, but there are sacrifices. Because the ships are older, there are no verandas. The top suite category has a "Balcony" suite which allows you to open sliding doors to fresh sea air, but they are really French windows not verandas you can actually sit out on. The pool is very small and often in the shade, as if added as an afterthought. In the last few years, Seabourn added three new larger ships to their fleet, the Odyssey, Sojourn and Quest. These ships were twice the size of the older ships and carried twice the passengers. Most of the suites had verandas and the central swimming pool was large and beautiful. My Wife and I were very skeptical whether Seabourn could offer the same exquisite cruise experience on a much larger scale. Well, we needn't have worried. We sailed the Sojourn for 10 days from November 27-December 8, 2011, and the ship was fabulous. The Sojourn was, if not the most beautiful ship I've sailed, certainly among the top three. For those curious cruise lovers out there, the other two contenders were the Regent Seven Seas Voyager and the Crystal Serenity. It should be noted that both of those ships are much larger, with 800-1000 passengers. I should emphasize we took the Sojourn cruise just to experience the ship, as the itinerary was pretty mundane. The Sojourn is nothing short of spectacular. A pleasant surprise was how many crew members and guests we knew from previous sailings on the smaller ships. Let me use this space to praise the people who made our voyage extra special. While tipping is neither required nor expected, when people go above and beyond, I have always felt they should be rewarded and try to do so. I always manage to miss a few of them, but I'll be seeing them again. Darius, my bartender buddy from the Legend, who I was thrilled to find on the Sojourn. He is both a marvelous bartender and one of the nicest and funniest guys I've met at sea. Our Cabin stewardess Anne was terrific and very sweet. We like to have both breakfast and lunch in the Dining Room every day, and Annie, Nigel, Kimberly and Drew were a delight. Jo and Claudia made the Coffee Bar a must-visit every day. Jo's interpretation of Iced Coffee made us skip dessert at lunch in order to have one. With ice cream, caramel, chocolate sauce and cinnamon, it was better than dessert. So good it ought to be illegal. Neither Sue nor I drink booze, and we had a ball with Sommelier Daniela Balser, who tried and tried to find something to entice us. She was very funny and we were sorry she was leaving to go on vacation halfway through the cruise. Arek, the Assistant Matre D' made sure we were pampered at every meal as only Seabourn can. Although there are four dining venues in the evening, we wound up in The Restaurant every night. This was strictly a personal choice. When the day's activity sheet arrives each morning, the menus for that evening are provided for all four venues. It just happened that the Restaurant offerings suited us the best. The food was excellent, although I maintain that their smaller ship, the Legend, has the best cuisine afloat. Conde' Nast agrees. In addition to The Restaurant, there are several other dining options every evening. Restaurant 2 offers small-dish tasting menus with the offerings changing nightly. The Colonnade is a more casual alternative to the Restaurant, offering both indoor and outdoor seating. The Patio Grill, overlooking the main pool, offers al fresco dining nightly. Our suite was elegant in typically-understated Seabourn style. The veranda was a haven for morning coffee, an afternoon snooze or pre-bedtime star-gazing with the sounds of the ocean and the salt breezes easing your transition to sleep. A tip about the verandas; the less expensive veranda categories, V1 and V2 have railings that are part metal and part glass. Categories V3-V6 offer all glass from floor to the teak rail. If you are going to pay for a veranda, go for the V3-V6 categories. A few extra dollars offers an unobstructed view of the sea from anyplace in the suite. It is a small detail, but the kind that matters to me. The bathroom was a fabulous two-person, two-sink marble affair with both a glassed-in shower and a large bathtub. I wish my bathroom at home was half as nice. As with all Seabourn ships, suites feature walk-in closets, refrigerator, mini-bar, and interactive flat-screen TV. The refrigerator is stocked with the beers, soft drinks, water and juices you selected on your pre-cruise order sheet. The first evening, two liters of the premium liquor of your choice are delivered to your suite. The table in the sitting area converts to a Dining table, and all Dinner can be served to you course by course in your suite should you feel like a private evening in. In addition to the large central pool, there was a smaller pool on Deck 5. At the bow on Deck 11 was the Retreat, a place to sunbathe and relax with super-comfortable sun beds rather than chaise lounges. As always, Seabourn attention to the little details was unsurpassed. While sitting in the sun, we were brought sun screen, cold mango sorbet in champagne, frozen fresh fruit on sticks and spritzed with mineral water to cool off. Complimentary 15-minute massages were offered on deck. It was not too hard to take, to say the least. The brochures featured great pictures of the Watersports Marina which opens out at the stern and offers swimming, kayaking and sailing right from the back of the ship. I had enjoyed this many times during cruises on the three smaller ships, but strangely, to my knowledge, the Marina was not opened once in our 10-day cruise. Obviously, this was not going to happen during our four days travelling at sea in the open ocean, and the ship actually pulled in and docked in San Juan and Antigua, so those days were out. But in St. John and St. Barts, we were at anchor while in port and tendered in. Those are traditionally the times the Watersports Marina is lowered. Perhaps the winds and current were too strong; I really have no idea. But I don't believe the Watersports Marina was opened during our cruise, and I would have liked to have at least heard an announcement explaining why. The Spa on the Sojourn was visually the most remarkable I have seen in all my cruises. Occupying two decks, it features such luxuries as wooden heated loungers to relax pre-massage, Kneipp walk pool, saunas, steam, outdoor whirlpools and a cabana area. I have posted several pictures, but they don't really capture just how mind-boggling this spa is. That said, I had booked four massages and wound up cancelling the last two. While the massage was adequate, it was not what I had expected, and at over $140.00 for 50 minutes, hardly a bargain. I have massages regularly at home and perhaps I've been spoiled. There is, of course, a fully-equipped fitness center for all you gym people. As I do on all my vacations, I made it a point to walk past the Fitness center at least twice daily. For all the diehard Seabourn veterans loyal to the older, smaller ships, I see no reason to change that. I have already booked for next year on the Legend, our fifth time aboard. That being said, I would strongly encourage you to give the Sojourn, Quest and Odyssey a chance. The cruise experience is a little different, yes there are more people, but it is a first-rate cruise experience. And the ship is so much bigger, I found more places to be completely alone than on the smaller ships. Seabourn has done a great job. I think you'll be glad to have tried the new ships. Please see my blog piece with photos at http://theworldaccordingtojud.com/ Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
NOT 6 STARS, NOT EVEN CLOSE Sorry, Seabourn Sojourn, but you're not a six star ship. I'm not sure you're even a 5. You only had one chance to make a good impression, and you missed the boat. What can you expect when ... Read More
NOT 6 STARS, NOT EVEN CLOSE Sorry, Seabourn Sojourn, but you're not a six star ship. I'm not sure you're even a 5. You only had one chance to make a good impression, and you missed the boat. What can you expect when "Twiggy" is your Godmother. We sailed right before Christmas, and now as I looked back on this woefully inadequate cruise experience, the world would have been a much better place if we had donated the $10,000 cruise fare to the Salvation Army. We boarded the ship around 1 or 2 in the afternoon, and we boarded to a lot of confusion. The rooms were just made available, so there were a lot of people standing in the hall way. I asked where lunch was being served, and the staff just looked at me in utter amazement. It turned out that lunch wasn't being served anywhere, so we ordered room service. This was so strange. The disorientation never got any better because the crew seemed very new. Many of them were just "temps" filling in until someone came back. This whole cruise seemed like one big "test run" with the passengers footing the bill. The morale of the crew was very low, particularly with the dining staff. Although the food was delicious, the dining room service was very poor, and I thought the dining room managers were just plain mean and very much on edge. The ship has very uncomfortable furniture -- the passengers joked that this was the IKEA special. If you weigh more than 150 lbs., you won't fit in the chairs in your stateroom. They're narrow and the couch is very hard. There are 2 huge lawn chairs on the balcony that are too big for a small balcony. The lighting should have dimmers and provide indirect lighting throughout the cabin. It's either way too bright in the room or too dark if you turn the lights out. It's not a comfortable place to read. We traveled with another couple who stayed in a Penthouse Suite. They said "save your money". There's a wall enclosure around the bed with very little room to walk around, like a box within a box. All they did was complain about this wall in their cabin. Also, there's no artwork aboard this ship. It is cold, and the walls are bare. There's no warmth to this ship at all. The entertainment was horrible. They have this little auditorium with big columns everywhere -- you can't see the stage. The singers were all off key, and the volume was ear-shattering. Most of the people on this ship were older, but someone in management really wants to discourage this demographic from sailing on Seabourn. No one on this ship looked like the young models in the brochure. Most couples in their 20's & 30's can't afford it, but Seabourn has this fantasy that this is the age group on this ship. What's worse is they cater to a group that barely exists as a customer base. The ship is full of people speaking foreign languages - loudly. There were large families from Mexico and South America that demanded, and received, all of the attention from the staff. These people were loud, arrogant and always moved around in a pack. Personally, I'm more at ease on ships where the majority of passengers are Americans. I wouldn't believe what's in the brochure about all this luxury service. At the end of the cruise, the staff expected to be tipped. There was one man from room service that kept yelling from the hallway if everything was all right. He just wouldn't leave us alone, so I finally tipped him. I also felt pressure to tip the room stewardess. Make no mistake, this staff had their hand out as the cruise was nearing its end. My honest assessment is if you're independently wealthy and money is no object, then I would sail on the Sojourn for a new experience. Many of Seabourn's passengers are rich people who have nothing better to do. But if you only take one nice vacation a year like we do, I would not recommend this ship. There's not enough value to justify the high price of the cruise fare. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
Ok, let me first say that everyone takes a cruise for different reasons.Mine was to relax and relax I did........... I reserved this cruise on a last minute website for about 76% off the rack rate, so the bargain outweighed the ... Read More
Ok, let me first say that everyone takes a cruise for different reasons.Mine was to relax and relax I did........... I reserved this cruise on a last minute website for about 76% off the rack rate, so the bargain outweighed the disappointments. I traveled with my partner and we chose this itinerary for its 11 days of "no thinking" ports with 4 days at sea. Our "maiden Caribbean cruise" had about 465 people on it. 64% were new to Seabourn. This was our first trip with Seabourn so we had great expectations based on the great reviews it receives from so many travel sites and publications. We chose a suite without a veranda, as We are rarely in our cabin anyway.The suite was nice with a great walk in closet but cheesy bedding and upholstery. The shower was awkward and leaked all over the floor when used. Rough waves makes the cabin walls and ceiling creak and crack . Our attendant was very nice, but nothing special. Our first night we decided to have dinner in the more casual restaurant. Service was haphazard and over zealous. We were rushed through some really terrible food , and left wondering if it was just a bad night.Breakfast the next morning was the usual cruise fare of a decent ship. The next night we tried the main dining room and again were rushed through an over rated, over described menu that was nothing more than bad catered food lacking any real taste but looking pretty on the plate. Ok the next day was our first stop, and I could hardly wait to eat at a local restaurant and get some good food in my system. back to the ship and what to do for dinner? We found the patio grill which actually cooked your entree when you ordered it. This was the only decent food on the ship, and we ate there every chance we could for dinner. I have to admit that I am lucky to have the options of eating at really great restaurants around the world, so I guess my exposure has made me a little more jaded; but this was truly tasteless food . Restaurant two is by reservation and is a prix-fix tasting menu. I have to admit that based on other guests reviews and my luck in the other venues, we chose not to waste our time. Enough about the food though. Entertainment...................When you hear someone say that they should be singing on a cruise ship.... Seabourn has found these people. It was actually awkward to watch and listen to most of them. They try hard, but its just elementary. Bars and Nightclub........... Everyone was great in these venues. personable and accommodating. They were actually fun because the ship had allot of younger people on it. The casino looks like an afterthought to the ship though. In suite food service ( Food again)........... These guys were great. Followed through on everything, and made the effort to scrounge up fresh things to eat;remembered favorites and followed up afterwards. Other venues. Seabourn square is a great understated idea with a coffee bar. The only fault we could find is that it was not bussed enough and dirty dishes sat around for a long time. The Library had allot of 2010 publications. The pools are what they are, and I came home with a nice tan. Hot tubs are in multiple places and were rarely used by guests. Ok, so I did not like the food, but when you cannot even find a chocolate chip cookie that tastes good then I have to wonder how Hampton Inn did it all these years................The smoking is bad on the ship and allowed in the cabins, so be forewarned. We had a very relaxing trip and walked off the ship 10 pounds lighter so that's ok. The cruise was a bargain so it did not matter to us. If I had payed premium prices though I would have been perturbed to say the least. My summery is that the Sojourn was a good ship ,but in no way deserves the high numbered star rating that comes with Seabourns smaller ships or other 5.5/6 star rated lines. It just did not meet the details and quality it should. Time will tell how the new ships pan out, but I'm betting there are changes in the future. Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
Seabourn Sojourn Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.6
Dining 4.0 4.2
Entertainment 3.0 3.8
Public Rooms 5.0 4.7
Fitness Recreation 4.5 4.1
Family 2.5 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.7
Enrichment 4.0 3.9
Service 4.0 4.5
Value For Money 5.0 3.8
Rates 5.0 4.0

Find a Seabourn Sojourn Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click