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16 Seabourn Transatlantic Cruise Reviews

Our fourth transatlantic since 2013, Crystal Serenity, 2014 Seabourn Quest and 2016 Regent Explorer. We embarked in Barbados, easiest we have ever experienced, from arrival at the dock to boarding took ten minutes. Stateroom was ... Read More
Our fourth transatlantic since 2013, Crystal Serenity, 2014 Seabourn Quest and 2016 Regent Explorer. We embarked in Barbados, easiest we have ever experienced, from arrival at the dock to boarding took ten minutes. Stateroom was available ten minutes after our 2.00 PM boarding. We had a stateroom forward on deck four, no balcony but a nice big window. First time without a balcony but we did not miss it on this type of voyage. Excellent bathroom provided with tub and shower. We found a big improvement in the dining over our previous cruise with Seabourn. The Thomas Keller Grill provided exceptional food and service and the Keller influence is followed up in the Restaurant menus which basically has to sections, one Keller Inspirations and the other classics, steaks chops etc. which can be mixed if required. All our dinners were taken in the Restaurant apart from three visits to the Keller Grill and taken from the inspirations menu. The food was well prepared and presented and almost always really excellent. The Restaurant was also excellent for breakfast and lunch. We did not use the Colonnade restaurant or the poolside Patio restaurants. Service in the Restaurant, Thomas Keller Grill was outstanding, this also applied to our cabin steward and the Seabourn Square staff. Service throughout the ship was universally excellent. One complaint would be the quality of the wines provided, drinkable but could and should be higher quality. Entertainment was good for a ship of this size. We watched two shows, Time Rice and the violinist, both very good. The band also played in The Club each night and were excellent with a talented female singer also a trio played in The Club who were also very good. We did not take any shore excursions but did disembark at Porto Santo and visited the town which is a pleasant and clean with a nice beach. Disembarking at Lisbon was delayed somewhat by the customs people who were using sniffer dogs to check luggage apart from that our bus was waiting to take us to the airport and this was handled efficiently. Finally the ship was clean and well maintained and the Odyssey and Quest both have lots of open deck space forward which provides a pleasant area for viewing when entering or leaving port. Read Less
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 April 2019
This was our third Seabourn cruise but the first in which we upgraded to a penthouse spa suite (because of a good deal) and the first where we crossed the Atlantic. Both were great experiences and are the focus of this review. The suite ... Read More
This was our third Seabourn cruise but the first in which we upgraded to a penthouse spa suite (because of a good deal) and the first where we crossed the Atlantic. Both were great experiences and are the focus of this review. The suite first. There are four of these above the spa area, reached only by a flight of curving stairs and so not practical for passengers with mobility issues. The deck or terrace of these cabins is twice the size of those in the regular suites, with an expansive stern view similar to the view from the terrace of the Colonnade restaurant but two decks higher. Suite advantages include a much larger shower, a separate room for the toilet, a separate bedroom with doors if someone wants to sleep while a partner remains awake, TVs in both bedroom and living area (42-incher in the latter), access to the spa serene area (which we didn't take advantage of since our own terrace was "serene") and flowers, healthy snacks, fluffy towels, etc. We felt very spoiled with the extra space. We wouldn't pay full brochure price for this suite (unless we were in the One Percent!) but if you can get a deal on an upgrade the spa suite is worth considering. The cruise joke is that "the more you pay the more you sway" because the bigger suites are higher, but we actually found this suite much more wind protected than those toward the bow, and the motion over the stern not particularly noticeable. The canvas awning on the deck sometimes made noise, but not to an annoying extent. We were also curious about crossing the ocean because we had enjoyed previous sea days on earlier cruises. Our itinerary was quite interesting, going from the Amazon to Devil's Island, the Cape Verde Islands, Canary Islands, and Morocco before ending in Monaco. The equatorial ocean was relatively smooth (still whitecaps, however, with a steady swell) and the sea days were quite relaxing without ever being dull. There was more than enough to do with lectures, shows, contests, games, classes, the gym, pool, and so on, and we never got bored watching the moods of the ocean. Recommended for those who want more days per dollar and like the sea. Overall, we're Seabourn fans who find the food, entertainment, and service excellent and are somewhat baffled by the occasional severely negative review. For what it's worth, many if not most of the passengers on board were repeat customers. Even with extra trainees on the ship because of the imminent expansion of the Seabourn line to the Ovation in May, the staff was friendly, competent, and fun to talk to. We requested the chance to sit at crew-hosted tables at supper and usually enjoyed meeting staffers and new passengers. When we wanted to dine alone we declined invitations with no problem. When we did mix, we learned much more about the ship and life at sea. This was a new itinerary and some of the land excursions were a work in progress, but we enjoyed every place that we went ashore. We also did kayak and zodiac trips with the Excursions Team and enjoyed that, although the outings are a little pricey. Overall the Quest has a good vibe - it's the most adventurous vessel because it goes to Antarctica and Greenland - and it sustains the attention to detail we'd already experienced on the Odyssey and Sojourn. I think the line is a good value and the Quest may be our new favorite ship. All-inclusive, no lines, no nickel and diming, no stinginess with food or drink, great crew to passenger ratio, and quite good entertainers and lecturers. Incidentally, the Quests went into dry dock for a $5 million facelift (new carpets, etc.) right after our cruise, and so it should be looking especially sharp for the rest of 2018. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Our 3rd SB cruise and it just gets better and better! Embarkation was faultless and quick, lunch in the Colonnade awaited us and we sat and had a leisurely lunch then straight to our cabin for unpacking. From then on, it was all just a ... Read More
Our 3rd SB cruise and it just gets better and better! Embarkation was faultless and quick, lunch in the Colonnade awaited us and we sat and had a leisurely lunch then straight to our cabin for unpacking. From then on, it was all just a fabulous time. After an independent tour in Rio, we had 5 straight sea days before we reached Tristan da Cunha. Being able to visit the remotest inhabited island in the world was just stupendous, the Captain worked so hard to get all those who wanted to land on the island and it was not easy! Very rough coniditions but the care of the staff and the determination of the crew made it happen, and I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity. Then we had the island inhabitants aboard the next day and we feel privileged to learn about their lives on this island. Then some cruising around Inaccessible and Nightingale Islands followed by 4 more sea days before we got to Namibia, then Cape Town. We were lucky enough to meet so many lovely people on this cruise, it was a good mix of nationalities and we had such fun! The main dining room was as good as ever, we also went to the Patio, Colonnade and TK Grill but mostly the MDR sitting with a good mix of people on hosted and uhosted tables. Entertainment was mostly good, anything we weren't that keen on was just down to our taste, there was nothing wrong with any of it. The staff worked so so hard to make this leg of the cruise memorable and there are many I would commend for their cheerful friendly attitude. Yes, there were a few blips here and there.... when you are crossing the Atlantic you are going to run out of the odd thing but anyone who has a problem with that needs to think of the logistics of keeping a ship fully stocked for a total of 11 days, to me it just didn't matter. All in all, a memorable cruise that I won't forget Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We have sailed on several all inclusive luxury class cruise lines and prefer Seabourn over their competitors for many reasons. Our latest cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Barcelona on Seabourn Quest can sum up our reasons for this ... Read More
We have sailed on several all inclusive luxury class cruise lines and prefer Seabourn over their competitors for many reasons. Our latest cruise from Fort Lauderdale to Barcelona on Seabourn Quest can sum up our reasons for this preference. First is the Seabourn high standard of the ship's maintenance. We have yet to find one square inch of rust, shabby carpeting or non functioning equipment that would interfere with the enjoyment of our cruise. Case in point is the fitness center where all the equipment is up to date and in working order. We cannot say this regarding Seabourn's competition where we have experienced ships that simply seemed "down at the heels" and half the fitness equipment displayed "out of order" signs. Embarkation and debarkation were a breeze and we, as usual, were surprised at the rapidity of luggage delivery during both events. As with past experiences, Seabourn chooses to recruit its crew members from many different countries and each one brings a smile and willingness to make you feel special. Of course, some crew members are more competent than others, but we found no service issues on this delightful crossing. Last year we were fortunate to be among the first to experience the new Thomas Keller cuisine on board Quest and greatly enjoyed it . On this crossing, the chef's team has delivered again with a mix of Keller menus, Seabourn inspirations and classics. The restaurant inclusive wine selections are good and if we didn't like an evening's selection, we simply asked for another wine we liked including at the Keller Grill. We must say the most delicious dinner we have had at sea was the Thomas Keller fried chicken with cheese grits served at the Colonnade one evening. Many of our fellow passengers' only experience with fried chicken had been of the fast food variety so they turned up their noses and went elsewhere. Rest assured Thomas Keller fried chicken has no similarity to the greasy product that the world finds in places like....I shan't name brands! Let us just say if you ever have the opportunity go to Keller fried chicken night, please do so as long as you let us be first to the table!! We know how much work goes into serving this truly outstanding dinner. Before anyone thinks we work for Seabourn, we will make a couple of observations which we hope will be noted. The music in the Grill was so loud conversation was difficult. We would also like Seabourn to come up with some interesting trans Pacific crossings. Finally, we are disappointed that Seabourn has decided to originate Atlantic crossings from Bridgetown as opposed to Fort Lauderdale/Miami. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Where to start? We have cruised on a number of lines however Seabourn has provided the best expirience. The staff is a critical part of our comments. Every one seemed to know our names from the first day to the last. They were not 0nly ... Read More
Where to start? We have cruised on a number of lines however Seabourn has provided the best expirience. The staff is a critical part of our comments. Every one seemed to know our names from the first day to the last. They were not 0nly professional and courteous, more importantly they were interactive . We really enjoyed the interactions with them. As fate would have it a gentleman asked us to join him for dinner. We struck up a conversation with him and learned he was the oncoming hotel manager. each time we saw him in our daily meanderings a conversation ensued. One evening he asked us to join him for dinner which we did. We were also asked to host a table several times. We hosted lecturers and conversationalists which added to our learning experiences. We loved the anytime dining available in both the restaurant and Colonnade. Because of our desire to meet people we always asked to share a table. We dined with Australians, ew Zealanders, Brits, Germans, and of course Americans. This alone made our trip interesting. Unfortunately the food was eexcellent. I say that because our clothes shrank a bit. We scheduled shore excursions as well. They were nevered crowded. They limited the number per bus to about 30. Once that was achieved they opened another bus. They also had schuttle busses available to the center of town at every port. We had a number of favorite ports but St Petersburg stood out. The Hermitage was more than expected, as were the churches. Finally, Seabourn cemented our desire for cruising with Small ships. Cruising into downtown Bordeaux, and up the Seine River convinced us of that. Had it nor been for expected high winds we would have also gone into Downtown St Petersburg as well. Would we cruise Seabourn again? Absolutely and we will the good Lord willing and the creek don't rise. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
We initially booked the crossing, (Fort Lauderdale to Barcelona)..however, after listening to what the next contiguous cruise, (Wine and Food) we stayed on the ship I must say, this particular was the best one for us on Seabourn. ... Read More
We initially booked the crossing, (Fort Lauderdale to Barcelona)..however, after listening to what the next contiguous cruise, (Wine and Food) we stayed on the ship I must say, this particular was the best one for us on Seabourn. Every aspect of the trip, the ship itself, the staff and the cuisine. WOW! Everything about this cruise was excellent, (i.e., the ship itself, the staff, the cuisines and the wines!!! There were several people from the Corporated office in Seattle, who supported all of the daily events. Guest chefs were brought aboard during the sail, all of home provided special regional dishes.The Wine Guys were also aboard. They are world class experts on wines, especially, Spain and the United States. They made our trip s m o o t h............. I believe that the service on this particular cruise showed a level of excellence rising above what has always been wonderful. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
This cruise makes one stop on the second day at Madeira and then goes to Ft Lauderdale FL We spent the 9th to the 19th crossing the Atlantic. The weather was very good although overcast for part of the time. Generally the temperature ... Read More
This cruise makes one stop on the second day at Madeira and then goes to Ft Lauderdale FL We spent the 9th to the 19th crossing the Atlantic. The weather was very good although overcast for part of the time. Generally the temperature was in the 60s and 70s. A little bit bumpy the first day going west from Madeira but after than pretty smooth. Not lake quality but by n means rough. The ship and crew are marvelous. Food is just superb. Four restaurants and plenty of variety. Our cabin was very nice and good sized with a sitting area and a bed area. We were fortunate and had an outside porch area as well. The ship had several speakers who did some very interesting talks, Several by Paul Deegan, Phil Bye and Tony ( Anthony) Cooke. Paul's discussion of Everest climbs especially appealed to me but they were all very good. Staff were all extremely capable and made a point of being friendly. Watch for Johvan on the wait staff The ship only carries about 490 people so there is no sense of being in a herd. If you want a very relaxing and low key trip by water this is perfect. Once more, the food was superb Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We wanted to try a trans-Atlantic cruise just because.... It was wonderful. We took a southerly route and in spite of the season (December!) we spent each day at the pool or walking about the ship, or just sitting out on our balcony ... Read More
We wanted to try a trans-Atlantic cruise just because.... It was wonderful. We took a southerly route and in spite of the season (December!) we spent each day at the pool or walking about the ship, or just sitting out on our balcony reading. It took a little time to realize we could have what ever we wanted, when ever we wanted it! This kind of pampering is not normal. And it was all done with a smile. The staff are incredible. It very soon feels like everyone knows your name, your drink preferences, how you like your coffee. And they are unfailingly cheerful while maintaining a very professional demeanor. Also, our stateroom was spacious and very comfortable. The best it the industry, in my opinion. Finally, we were first attracted to a trans-Atlantic cruise because of the price. I believe we got what we paid for and more. We had a wonderful, very relaxing time, and would do it again in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
My wife and i cannot express our true pleasure sailing with seabourn again. in fact we sailed 5 previous weeks on the seabourn sun. now the princendam a member of holland america. Also on the spirit. we have one thing to say about ... Read More
My wife and i cannot express our true pleasure sailing with seabourn again. in fact we sailed 5 previous weeks on the seabourn sun. now the princendam a member of holland america. Also on the spirit. we have one thing to say about the odyssey-perfect. the highlight of our trip was shopping with the chef. Thomas was his name and seabourn needs to keep him forever. he has a outgoing personality and is truly a delight to be around. Food, what can i say terrific. service could have not been better. 6 stars+ in every aspect. Our cruise director david was a delight and we even had his assistant ross who was marvelous, funny and extremely talented. the trivia game at 12 noon everyday was a hoot. not serious which makes it fun. we met a lot of cruisers who will probably remain friends for a long time. seabourn again, yes sir without a doubt. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
I have often repositioned from Europe where I live, to the United States to visit my family...I must say that the Seabourn Odyssey ranked tops in almost every category. I have only paid to cruise a few times as I normally am at work ... Read More
I have often repositioned from Europe where I live, to the United States to visit my family...I must say that the Seabourn Odyssey ranked tops in almost every category. I have only paid to cruise a few times as I normally am at work bringing guests onto the ships, and cruising as the Tour Manager, not as the Cruise Director.... I have heard reviews about 45 minute long deliveries of Coke Light, on every night of their cruise, and the entire dining room up in arms about slow, poor service....I am a Tour Manager, and have been one for the last 30 years...I know excellent service as I dine in restaurants breakfast, lunch, and dinner...every day, about 250 days a year, so figure I have eaten over 21,000 restaurant meals, free, for work...further, I eat out on my own 5 meals a week, in some of the very best restaurants in the world, JOEL ROBUCHON, GUY SAVOY, ENRICO DERFLINGHER, MICHAEL MINA, THOMAS KELLER, BRADLEY OGDEN, CRISTINA BOWERMAN, etc. , etc. So what restaurants were these people describing on the Odyssey???…no way, no how, can the service be described as anything less than excellent...yes, I had a forgotten ice tea, and a main course took a little time once or twice, BWTF are we in such a hurry for to begin with...for those that wrote such false things about the outstanding staff in the restaurants front and back of the house, please check out a movement called #SLOW-FOOD in Italy...the difference between eating and dining is about 1 1/2 hours...The buffet at the Colonnade was always an option! THE GOOD: AMAZING SHIP, awesome embarcation, debarcation, due mainly to having only 450 guests on board, amazing food, AWESOME FRENCH FRIES, and I loved the breadsticks, but the fries are world class, Thomas Keller every other night!, coffee and cakes at the Seabourn Square, amazing books in the library, the plethora of chaise lounges all over the ship, The SERVICE by all of the staff, the included quality of the wines, and included drinks, Hendricks anyone?… the lectures, the amazing television channels, the wifi when it worked, the FREE LAUNDRY ROOMS, with irons...the free and included, constantly revstocked mini bars in the cabins. Superb knowledge of wine by everyone in the dining rooms, and especially bynthe actual Sommeliers... Awesome bathrooms with full deep baths and seperate showers. THE BAD: calling the ship and experience 6 star( certainly the following should not have happened or been possible on a 6 star ship) as it is too subjective and builds expectations too high, the poor GYM, what one would find in a 3 star hotel, terrible not having the missing 10 machines, and thinking the Technogym Wall would suffice( hard to use if a stretching or Yoga Class is in that area, The poor areas for streching classes, a true let down in a large spa area, mens and womens change rooms had tiny saunas, for two or three people max, NOT SIX STARS! The damaged and stained windows in the gym area...The pay for extra quiet area in the spa, the infrared saunas would burn your butt big time, and the whole area should have been the gym to begin with...Not giving out a list of ALL THE WINES AVAILABLE by the glass, why should I have to ask for that list? Why was it delivered 2 days later? Terribly small T.V.'S mounted in a stupid way, so not fully viewable from the bed…really not 6 star....we should have 50" tvs, with sound bars....The mini golf was a joke, 6 star is on the Celebrity Equinox, on real grass, or any Royal Carribean ship, epically not 6 star, nor were the 60% selection of left handed putters and woods and irons...why was there not a golf simulator on board? The Ping Pong table was in a far too windy area...for such ultra limited recreation choices, this ship ranked a 1 star rating, beyond poor...SUITES? A suite must have a seperate bedroom, otherwise it is a Jr Suite...these CABINS were generous in size, but the Cruise Ship Industry deserves to get sued by every single passenger, when their cabins turn out to be just that, when they a buy SUITES.... THE UGLY: no wine lectures or iPad classes, or photo work shops...the one wine tasting offered was to drink 40 dollar glasses of wine....why so expensive? Why not use the wines included for free and discuss them? CONCLUSION: I loved this cruise ship, and Seabourn in general, however not 6 star, as that infers beyond perfect...I loved the inclusive nature of everything on board, and the CAN DO attitude of everyone on board...I thought the food was great, better than all my cruises so far, with strong competition from the French Chefs on Le Ponant, and the amazing chefs on the Mississippi Queen....EVERY SINGLE PERSON ON THE SHIP SEEMED TO BE A REPEAT GUEST… incredible loyal following, and I can see why....Seabourn is a class act in every way....I cannot wait to book again!!!! Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
We did a T/A stopping in Maderia. Then 2 weeks of Western Med. stopping everyday! Like the sea days better. Barcelona to Rome and back with different ports. We had sailed on the Quest last year and loved it! Same cabin type V5 deck 6 ... Read More
We did a T/A stopping in Maderia. Then 2 weeks of Western Med. stopping everyday! Like the sea days better. Barcelona to Rome and back with different ports. We had sailed on the Quest last year and loved it! Same cabin type V5 deck 6 cabin 640 perfect location. Just steps away from everything. Food was good, a few dishes didn't make the mark but over all very nice. The MDR could be slow in serving on occasion. But we are not really in a hurry to go anywhere except to attend a wonderful show. Only one bump in that road was a comedian...ugh! Otherwise stellar. Our CD Heather...what a voice!!! and ACD as well. We had to change cabins for the last week and it was done smoothly and quickly with little fuss. Our cabin attendant Camila was a jewel! Took really good care of us! Even tho the food is very good...some un-gourmet items Seabourn does better than anyone at sea: Pizza, French Fries, Burgers & bread sticks...Chef in the Colonade was wonderful very approachable...mussels in a divine sauce was a huge hit one lunch. Mr. Chai even brought me a finger bowl with lemon! What service. Very hard to adjust to reality after Seabourn! The great thing about traveling on Seabourn is you meet so many interesting people, all very well traveled. We just love it! We did the post package in BNC and stayed at Hotel Casa Fuster, a great location, but a bit worn around the edges. Next time we will try the Majestic. For tapas go to Boca Grande....just to see the bathroom! We flew back home on LH Business Class...service was excellent but the food was awful!!! I was quiet surprised. We are already booked for next year! Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We boarded the Seabourn Quest in Barcelona on October 26. This was our 1st Seabourn cruise. We had previously sailed on many cruises on the "mass market” lines and had one Regent voyage about 3 years ago. We spent 18 days on the ... Read More
We boarded the Seabourn Quest in Barcelona on October 26. This was our 1st Seabourn cruise. We had previously sailed on many cruises on the "mass market” lines and had one Regent voyage about 3 years ago. We spent 18 days on the Quest ending our cruise in Rio. The following are my impressions of the voyage and ship. From the moment we checked in we felt this cruise would be an exceptional one and we weren’t disappointed. We had booked a Wintergarden Suite and knew it would be large. It exceeded our expectations! The suite is well-laid out with plenty of storage space, pleasing décor, an extremely comfortable bed and great living space. We had a couple of parties in our suite and there was plenty of room for entertaining. At the second party we had 26 guests and weren’t crowded. Our cabin stewardess Natalie did a fantastic job and was the best attendant we’ve ever had. I had been reading the Seabourn forum and did have some misgivings about the issue of smoking. Perhaps we didn’t have many smokers on our cruise, but the only time that I really smelled it was in the Observation Bar in the evening when we would go there for a drink before dinner. I didn’t find it to be overwhelming or enough to put us off going there. The other thing that seemed to be endlessly discussed on the forum was the quality of the included wines and champagne. We enjoy wine with meals but are not by any means oenophiles. We found what was offered to be quite good with a nice variety available. Based on the consumption we saw around us at lunch and dinner our shipmates must have felt similarly. We can’t remember ever seeing as much champagne being consumed as we did on this cruise. We ate most of our breakfasts and lunches in The Colonnade and enjoyed both the venue and the food. We liked that there were tables outside so we could dine al fresco if we liked. The buffet available was always tasty with lots of options and we liked the specials that would be cooked to order and served at your table if we chose them. We had lunch with our trivia team in the dining room one day and I had a ladies’ lunch there as well. They were both very enjoyable. One of the highlights on the last sea day was the Galley Market Lunch. For those who don’t know what that is, in the dining room at one end a buffet of salads, cold meats and breads is set up. In the middle of the dining room are tables with a large variety of desserts. For everything else you must go into the galley which has been set up with stations offering all sorts of foods. As we entered the galley we were offered a shot of ice cold vodka. The things available included fondue, crab legs and claws, large prawns, mussels, sushi, roast suckling pig, beef, lamb, veal, gratins of vegetables and seafood, sausages and sauerkraut, pastas, etc, etc. Everything we selected was prepared very well. We ate most dinners in the main restaurant and never had to wait more than a moment or two for a table. The room was in our opinion a very nicely decorated and lighted venue. On two evenings we were invited to sit at an officer’s table and we found the company very enjoyable. One evening we ate at Restaurant 2, the only place for which you must make a reservation. The menu there is a tasting menu which changes a few times during the cruise. We found the food to be very tasty and extremely imaginative and creative. The room is small and intimate and it was a nice experience. On the last two nights we ate outside at the Colonnade with a group of friends and we enjoyed those meals as well. Sitting with the sound of the wake and watching a far off lightning storm was quite magical. It had been many years since we’d been on a ship as small as the Quest and never on one with so few passengers. We wondered how we would like making a transatlantic crossing on a ship of her size. Well, we decided she is just about perfect. With 450 passengers and 330 crew members the ship never felt crowded and our every need was taken care of almost instantly. The crew was always smiling, friendly and eager to help with anything they could. It was amazing to us that after only one encounter with a staff member they would remember our names and greet us with them when we walked past. The future cruise consultant Sara was a delight. The Destination Services manager (shore excursions) Claudio was also amazing. I asked him a question about a tour in Cape Verde. He wasn’t sure of the answer but said he would find out for me (we were at sea for a couple of days). The next day he contacted me to give me the answer after calling the tour operator in Cape Verde. I was impressed. This was also the first time in many cruises that we knew who the Cruise Director was. Usually we have no idea and don’t really care. On the Seabourn Quest our cruise director Handre was always visible and very competent and engaging. The facilities on the ship were also very nice and more than adequate for the number of people onboard (we did have a full ship). We didn’t have a problem getting a seat in the theater or lounges for any event. There were always deck chairs available. We went to a couple of the lectures and found them interesting and educational. We only saw a couple of shows but enjoyed them as well. On sea days we played trivia and liked the format Seabourn uses. We met some wonderful people as a result of playing. In every port except one we took Seabourn shore excursions. We found them all to be enjoyable. I think the largest number of people we had was one with 34 people. The guides were all very knowledgeable and did a good job. The longest one we took was from Casablanca to Marrakech. It was a long day but well worth the trip. Our guide Mo did a great job of making sure we were all secure as we wandered the souks in the old city. A couple of our tours included lunches (including the one in Marrakech) and the food was all very tasty. We thought the tours were well-priced for what we received. In conclusion, we agreed that this was our best cruise to date. Seabourn’s attention to detail makes the cruise experience truly exceptional. We liked it enough that we have booked another cruise for next year.   Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
The Cruise .. We arrived at the terminal at about noon .. saw the luggage whisked away and took a seat. I suppose that there would have been about 100 passengers already there [ships accommodates 450] and boarding commenced at 12:15. I ... Read More
The Cruise .. We arrived at the terminal at about noon .. saw the luggage whisked away and took a seat. I suppose that there would have been about 100 passengers already there [ships accommodates 450] and boarding commenced at 12:15. I had seen some comments on CC Boards about early boarding and by 12:30 we were guided to the Collonade Restaurant for lunch, hand luggage stowed temporarily, until suites were ready at 2pm. By the time lunch was over we had met about 8 people that we knew from past cruises. Big Sister Experience .. Both of our previous Seabourn Cruises had been on the “Little Sisters” and we really did love the atmosphere and the service, so it was with anticipation that we took to sea on a “Big Sister”. Is it being unfaithful to say that the hardware that is the ‘big sisters’ is better than the little sisters. * In suites, the bathrooms have an improved layout with both shower and bath and the TV entertainment system has movies on demand, account checking, and heaps more. * Seabourn Square is a wonderful innovation, encompassing the Café, internet connections, iPads to read the latest newspapers, guest services [took me 3 days before I realized where they were], recliner lounges and a huge multi language library. * The Club has a proper stage and a bigger dance floor [?] but still has all the ambience of the original model. * The deck areas – Patio bar and grill and Sky bar are a great utilisation of space – and the pool is now accessible and in sunshine. * The on-board shop is a decent size and sold clothes that fitted me, as well as ladies clothing, jewellery and perfumes – apparently. * There are more Dining options, with Restaurant 2 and the Collonade both operating each evening. We tried the former but not the latter, although heard comments that it was also good. But in contrast the software was not as good as the little sisters even though it did get there in the end. Basically, I’m talking about the time it took staff to connect names and faces. On the Little Sisters [200 passengers] we were known in about 3 days, on the Quest I think it took more like 6/7 days before we were being recognized and as incomprehensible as it sounds, I think it may have taken the Head Waiter about 12 days. Am I not a memorable person, that eats every day ?? The service however was still very good .. and the breakfast waiter eventually did get the idea that I didn’t want to see salad items as a garnish. In whose reality does lettuce go with eggs and bacon ?? Big Sis Entertainment .. This is one area where there are significant differences .. some good, some bad .. * the Big Sis’s carry an entertainment staff of 7 singers and dancers, guest entertainers, lecturers, plus a Cruise Director and an Assistant – all of whom were excellent on Quest, I should add. They also had a band and a solo guitarist in the Club, both good but not great. * Lil sisters don’t have the entertainment staff [they have the rest] but do carry an extra Assistant [usually a guitarist] and the CD and his/her assistants are frequently on stage strutting their stuff. They also carry a band and a duo that play the Club. Here’s my gripe .. if I go for a pre-dinner drink and want to have a dance, it’s almost impossible with a solo guitarist .. but with a duo and a band, it works really well. It should be easy to fix, and yes I have shared my comments with Seabourn. Big Sis Dining .. We are laid back for breakfast, occasionally like to check out the dining room to see if it’s busy or not, casual for lunch – although the battered fries at the patio grill were enough for Robyn to make that her preferred location – but like to have dinner in the Dining Room. And yes, we do like to join ‘Hosted’ tables, because it’s a great way to meet people and to meet members of staff – mostly entertainers, some officers - who carried themselves very well and were a wonderful advertisement for Seabourn. Big Sis Events .. There were a number of extra ‘events’ that were staged during the cruise that were simply excellent, executed very well, obviously a lot of time and effort went into them, for example; * The Halloween Party in the Club. The entry was decorated in cob webs and other Halloween paraphernalia, whilst the whole entertainment team and CD’s were in fancy dress. This was the biggest night of dancing and jolliment that I saw all trip. * Crossing the Equator. Complete with dunking the crew and kissing the fish. * Caviar in the Pool. Traditionally Caviar in the Surf but as we weren’t stopping at these locations this crossing, a great compromise. * Staff Tug of War. An Atlantic crossing tradition, the staff provides all the entertainment and seems to enjoy themselves enormously. * Rock the Boat. An evening dance party held on deck. Fortunately this wasn’t subject to bad weather as a couple of the other deck events were. * Tea Dance. This saw the whole of the Club set for afternoon high tea with the traditional cakes, sandwiches and of course hot scones. And yes we got to Waltz. * The Epicurean Event. Did we really need more food ? Of course not but it was lovely. * Galley Lunch. An enormous amount of effort to enable guests to walk through the galley to collect their own food – of course someone will be at the exit to carry it back to your table for you. * The Laundry. I sent a suit to be pressed and it was a bit late being returned, so I rang and asked for a hurry up. The suit was delivered – which was then I realized that we had not filled in the form correctly and hadn’t actually requested same day service. Feeling guilty I went to guest services next day and confessed, wouldn’t want the boys and girls in the laundry to get in trouble on my account. Seabourn People .. I like the people we meet on Seabourn [most of the people most of the time] and like the fact that cruising is a bit of a ‘leveller’, and for that short period of time that we cruise together we are treated as [almost] equal. Seabourn Special Requests .. Seabourn are excellent at accommodating peoples requests once they are on board, for example special meals, champagne and caviar for breakfast, private tables, anniversaries and celebrations, etc. Before we set off I lodged a special request with Seabourn in Seattle, for a pre-mix vodka drink for my wife[Smirnoff Ice] and a particular beer for me [Kilkenny] and subsequently exchanged a few emails on the subject. It was a delight to find out that both of these drinks were provided and the staff was very helpful in ensuring that the bars in which we drank stocked the beverages. Rio de Janeiro .. I was awake about 5.30am and stepped out onto the balcony to discover the Sugar Loaf Mountain just there – in front of me. We had arrived in Rio de Janeiro. So naturally I woke my wife. Disembarkation went according to plan – Seabourn are very good at letting you off when you want to get off, you just have to make sure you ask before hand. In a Nutshell .. Seabourn is wonderful cruise line. The ship was in first class condition and was exceptionally well appointed. The staff excell at delivering a personal service. The experience was luxurious. Read Less
Sail Date October 2013
In summary, the service was impeccable. This was our first cruise on Seabourn and the service met and exceeded our expectations. That is not to say that there were items that needed to be improved but we would definitely sail again. ... Read More
In summary, the service was impeccable. This was our first cruise on Seabourn and the service met and exceeded our expectations. That is not to say that there were items that needed to be improved but we would definitely sail again. Our transatlantic cruise departed from Fort Lauderdale and contrary to our last embarkation it went were smooth. Maybe being the only ship in the port and a Tuesday was the reason for the speedy embarkation. In March, it had been two hours to get to the dock and on-board the ship. The ship was about 90% full with about 60% Americans, followed by British and German passengers. As expected, the cabins were not ready so we had lunch in the Colonnade on Deck 8. This was first experience with great service and the free flowing wine. It was definitely a first class buffet restaurant, with large comfortable chairs. There were some aspects of a standard cruise ship buffet but the layout for the most part made for rapid access. The only negative was the use of chafing dishes for "hot” food that actually was only warm. Also it was quite clear that the staff had excellent language skills and able converse in multiple languages with the passengers. With a few exceptions, most passengers were older than 60. The lunch did accomplish one critical aspect for the cruise, the decision on what complementary wines were worthwhile. Earlier reviews and roll call comments led me to believe that the free wines would not work out. This was not the case since we found 2 whites that were very good, one red that was very good and another red that was good. Our cabin was the standard veranda suite that was about 300 square feet, not counting the balcony. The cabin size for more than enough for 2 people and had plenty of storage space. The couch was uncomfortable, which is typical for a cruise ship. The only issues in the cabin were the shortage of electrical outlets and the relatively small size of the TV monitor. The balcony contained two mesh steel adjustable chairs and a similar table. Although the ship is relatively new the deck furniture was showing its age with peeling paint. For a high end cruise line I found the furniture to look cheap and not that comfortable. Also we noticed similar chairs in the pool area with the same condition. We really liked the marble and granite bathrooms, which included a full sized tub, and a separate, glass shower cubicle. There is a beverage area with a fridge stocked with preferred beverages. Prior to arrival we had specified the 2 bottles of liquor we wanted. When we arrived one was incorrect but it was quickly remedied. The fridge was well stocked with a variety of soft drinks and water. When we told the cabin attendant, what we liked for soft drinks, she quickly filled the refrigerator with the chosen beverages. As noted by other reviews, the fridge is inside a cabinet that really heats up. It took us a day to realize this and we learned to keep the cabinet door open above the fridge. Finally I would like to complement the cabin staff, they were always available to meet your needs and our cabin was made up quickly. Maybe it was the fact that our cabin was midway between the cabins they serviced and the cleaning equipment was always located outside our door. The ship offers four places to eat, as well as room service. We only used the room service for breakfast and always ate indoors. Although the seas were calm most of the days there was always a wind that prevented us from using the balcony as well as the uncomfortable chairs. Seabourn Sojourn offers four places to eat, as well as course-by-course room service which you can have on your balcony if you wish " all balconies are big enough for a table and two chairs. I can say that The Restaurant on Deck 4, was the best main dining room on any ship we have on to date. The Restaurant is a stunning space done out in cream, white and lavish textures of leather, crystal and soft gauze. Some find all those neutrals clinical but I'd label it ultra-stylish. Dining is open-seating and we never had to wait. We never tried breakfast in The Restaurant but had both lunch and dinner. The menus had some standard offerings but changed every day with new starters, main courses and desserts. The desserts were the only items that were subpar. You got to choose your wines from the standard list but the serving staff pushed a different wine at each meal. You could order from the special menu but I found the selection a little limited and the markups on par with expensive New York restaurants. The service in the restaurant was first class and periodically we were invited to dine with a member of the crew or entertainment staff. The Restaurant did impose strict dress code. Although daytime wear is casual after 6 p.m., Seabourn has three categories for evening attire: formal (optional), elegantly casual and resort casual. Formal dress occurred 3 nights and required tuxedos (about 20% of the people) or dark business suits with ties for men and cocktail dresses or formal apparel for women. Elegantly casual meant that men to wear a jacket, a collared shirt with or without a tie and women could wear most outfits but no jeans. The resort casual was about the same as elegantly casual except no jackets for men. One the first day they provided a schedule for the entire cruise. The only problem was they decided to change a resort casual to elegantly casual, so we needed to return to our cabin for jacket. Not a big deal since the ship was small. Restaurant 2 is characterized as Seabourn's attempt as tapas place. The decor seems to look like an overdone Chinese restaurant. It is very similar to Red Ginger dEcor on Oceania ships. You get to taste about 12 bites served in about 6 courses. The food is an eclectic mixture that seems to emphasize Mediterranean style cooking. For us the dining experience was a bust. The portions (bites) were spaced apart by 15-20 minutes. If you go to Restaurant 2 eat a large lunch or do what we did; book early and go to the Colonnade for more food. The Colonnade was described earlier for our initial lunch. In the evening the Colonnade becomes a more formal dining venue, with theme dinners roughly based on regions (Italian, French Indian, etc.) or surf and turf night or steak club night. They offer a unique menu each night that allows you to order items specifically cooked for you. I would say they got it right most of the time. The service also was great. The last location is the Patio Grill is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and serves burgers, fries, pizza, salads. The cold food was fine but the hot food was cooked elsewhere (except for the fries) and served in chafing dish. In comparison to the Waves grill on the Oceania, the Patio grill was a distant second. The MDR was the best but on other ships the specialty restaurants were generally better than the food on this cruise. With the exception of the fruits and vegetables everything else was frozen. Finally if you like sushi this is not the ship for you. The one item they did poorly. On a transatlantic trip, you really get to know the ship since you have no place to go. The pool area was well done except for the quality of most of the chairs and the pool attendants did not set up your chair with towels, which I would have expected on this type of cruise line. There were other outdoor areas including the whirlpool at the bow on Deck 6 that was too cold and breezy on the cruise. The pool area at the aft on Deck 5, and the Sun Terrace on Deck 11 were better choices. Unlike other ships there were always available chairs on the sea days. During the day the major event was the noon time team trivia contest. Approximately 25% of the passengers participated and unfortunately some took the game to seriously. Most other activities were the standard shipboard lectures, tours, dance classes, etc. The two guest lecturers had a few good lectures but too many poor ones. One of the speakers, Graham Anthony had a hard time staying on the topic. The Seabourn Square on Deck 7 provided a place to get for coffee and pastries in the morning and catch up with limited copies of newspapers. It also houses a small library (maybe too small) and number of computers. The cost of 2 hour session was under $20 and was a real buy for a cruise line. This was especially important since we have a number of relatives in Boston during those tragic events. It also has multiple people serving as the ship's concierge. No long waits like on other ships for service, and they knew the answers to your questions. In the evening, there are three sources of entertainment: piano music and drinks before and after dinner in the Observation Bar, music and dancing in The Club with a singer and the ship band and finally a different show each night in the Grand Salon. The Observation deck was always crowded before dinner and you could not hear the piano player. The music and dancing in the Club were good and were not crowded at any time but the shows were almost the same each time. We normally do not attend many of the shows on cruise ships since they tend to be loud and not much else. This cruise featured a revue show that was very good. Good voices and only two dancers that did not get in the way of the singers and also danced to the music. The magician was more of a playing card manipulator but he was entertaining. The British comedian was called the "the clean comedian”. A better description would be the unfunny one. Finally there was the Casino, which was really small but was the right size since I never saw more than 10 people in the room. Most often it was 2 or 3. It was the only cruise I have been on where they had blackjack and poker tournaments and no one came! The highlight of the evening cruise shows was the concert pianist, Tomono Kawamura. She was outstanding. The Spa and fitness areas were small but useful. The only complaint was that there was only one recumbent bike and it was the only piece of apparatus that had a waiting line. The other item I found to be done right was that the crew repaired broken equipment. Twice I saw them repairing the equipment while on other cruise lines the "out of order” sign was there for the entire cruise. Treatment rooms were adequate but for some reason they always seemed to be short of supplies, one day it was towels, the next it was soap and finally cold water. This was the only area of the ship where service was lacking. If you read my other reviews then I really dislike the shore tours offered by the cruise line. With all of the drinks included it was hard to spend the cruise credits provided by the TA. Also with only two stops there were not too many choices. We took the standard Madeira ride on the cable car and the ride down on the wooden sleds. The excursion was fun but was not well run. Although there were two guides they did not make sure that everyone on the tour stayed with the group. Two people were "lost” but eventually they made it down to catch the bus back. To spend the credits we also signed up for the Lisbon tour of Lisbon and then a drop off near the hotel area. The embarkation was very smooth but ship announcements could have been done better. The Lisbon tour was well run and the guide made sure everyone was accounted for at each stop. They also were able to navigate around all the obstacles in Lisbon created by a marathon and a protest against the government that shut down many streets. My final comments are to the cruise passengers. Please pay attention to the tour when it says that there is a fair amount of walking on a tour. If you have problem getting on or off the bus then you should reconsider the tour. There were a number of concerns in choosing this cruise including the recent number of poor reviews. We were lucky and we did not experience the same poor service, in fact, it was the best. The other concern was the effect of free alcohol on the passengers. Maybe due to their average age, there were no instances of intoxicated passengers that I saw on the entire cruise. On other ships with the all you can drink packages, resulted in a large number of drunks. Read Less
Sail Date April 2013
Although we began cruising with Sitmar in 1976, it had been 15 years since our last cruise in French Polynesia. I had always wanted to do a transatlantic crossing and my wife has tried for years to get me to spend sometime in europe. ... Read More
Although we began cruising with Sitmar in 1976, it had been 15 years since our last cruise in French Polynesia. I had always wanted to do a transatlantic crossing and my wife has tried for years to get me to spend sometime in europe. Seabourn provided the opportunity to do both on a six * ship, the ODYSSEY. We flew into Rome and spent 3 nights at The St. Regis, touring the sights, prior to boarding our home for the next 3 weeks. The boarding process was painless and our luggage was waiting at our suite when we arrived. Our room stewardess introduced herself and we discussed our service requirements, which she duly noted and then performed flawlessly for the entirety of our cruise. We soon learned to anticipate a personal message or artistic preparation from her when returning to our suite at night. She was great! We purchased on board tours in 4 ports and utilized the Seabourn "on & off" complimentary transport into town at the other ports of call. This is a wonderful service provided by Seabourn as an included item which saves the taxi expense from ship to town and return. The purchased tours were as described and well guided. Life on board ODYSSEY was as I anticipated, without children and consisting of a mature and experienced group of world travelers who were, for the most part, congenial while respecting ones privacy. We have made friends on previous cruises with whom we have remained in touch over the years and this cruise also produced some who will be friends for life. We were blessed with incredible weather in the western Med - mostly sunny days and calm seas - and the crossing had the only 2 days of rock n' roll weather during the cruise. We ate in all the venues and found the food to be exceptional in both quality and presentation. Wine was complimentary and choices other than the nightly selection were available. A wine list of "premium" wines was available for purchase but I never found the necessity, as the selection of provided wines was quite in line with my tastes. The selection of liquor was substantial and met our desires for quality Scotch, Tequila and after dinner drinks. There was no additional charges for these items and bottles of our preferred liquor was also placed in our suite, where our stewardess re-filled the ice bucket three times daily. For our last dinner aboard with invited friends, I requested in advance three special order items, all of which were delivered graciously to our table. Service was always friendly and professional in all the restaurants and poolside. Staff was helpful and always concerned that we have an enjoyable experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2011
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