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6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
This was a 7 day cruise, not sure why CC showing an 18 day voyage? Anyway, we have cruised quite a bit, mostly on Silversea but also have dabbled on Celebrity, HAL, RCCL, Paul Gauguin and Azamara. As much as we have liked SS, there were ... Read More
This was a 7 day cruise, not sure why CC showing an 18 day voyage? Anyway, we have cruised quite a bit, mostly on Silversea but also have dabbled on Celebrity, HAL, RCCL, Paul Gauguin and Azamara. As much as we have liked SS, there were a few things lacking and we wanted to see if Seabourn is more our taste. So we booked this trip primarily to try out Seabourn as we have done the Med several times before. EMBARKATION DAY: For the first time ever, we flew in same day as embarkation. Risky I know since it was a transatlantic flight from Florida to Rome, but all worked out ok. SB was there to pick us up. Although it took over an hour to finally leave the airport on the bus because of some issues with Rome airport personnel not being very helpful with a couple passengers that needed wheelchairs. Trip is about an hour to Civitavechia port, bus broke down in the middle of the highway. Finally after about 20 mins, the driver was able to get us on our way. Upon arrival at the ship, check in was super easy and fast. Cabins werent ready yet, so we grabbed lunch at the Colonnade which was delicious and then we explored the ship. FIRST IMPRESSIONS: WOW, so beautiful. It is a brand new ship, so I expected it to be modern and elegant it certainly was. Beautiful colors and materials. Being SS folks, we of course compared it to another ultra luxury ship and we thought Seabourn was much nicer, although SS’s newest ship the Muse is beautiful and pretty close to this ship when it comes to modern luxury. We particularly loved the Seabourn Square area. What a great idea, to have a huge comfortable space with lots of seating and windows with the guest services/shore excursions right in the center and they sit at actual desks. Seemed to be a more civilized way of doing things, more conducive to that relaxed vibe they always talk about and certainly lived up to for th duration of the cruise. The coffee shop is also in this space....just seemed like a great use of space I haven’t seen on any other ship. All of the spaces were gorgeous. CABIN: Again, very luxurious. We had a veranda stateroom and very comfortable in size and set up like what we are used to. We particularly liked the table and chairs set up across from the sofa which was a nicer place to have room service than just on the coffee table like most ships. Bed was very comfortable...and I m picky about that . I prefer a bit of a softer mattress otherwise I dont sleep well. We also thought there was plenty of storage of space for everything , we didnt feel like we had to get creative in order to store everything. DINING: THE RESTAURANT: we ate here twice. Lovely space. Service was slower both times than we care for....1.5 - 2 hrs is a long time for me to sit still. Food was good though and I like the page of regular items always available in addition to the daily things that changed throughout ship. Partner has seafood allergies and other aversions....and he didnt seem to have any problem finding something he liked each time. SUSHI: We dont eat sushi so didnt try it and didnt hear any feedback from other passengers. THE GRILL BY THOMAS KELLER: only 1 reservation was allowed for this sailing. We definitely would have liked to eat here again. It was delicious and service was excellent. It was a lot of food but all excellent. We had heard mixed reviews on this restaurant before boarding, but we really liked it a lot and loved the bar that is there as well. We would have drinks nightly at the TK bar regardless of where we ate dinner. The piano player was a super nice guy and enjoyed his playing. THE COLONNADE: we ate here 3 times I believe. We really enjoyed it. We really liked a couple of the servers and they took very good care of us. Dinners were excellent, often themed and it was a much quicker and more relaxed experience which suited us just fine. We also ate here during lunches and thought they had a very good buffet compared to the other luxury line we sail. Also really liked the outdoor seating here as well. THE PATIO: only ate here for a few lunches. We loved everything we had and liked the buffet section as well. Its a nicer set up and display from SS. Thought there were more options as well. We didnt do dinner here as each time we thought about it, the menu wasnt very appealing. IN SUITE DINING: we only did a few breakfasts in room and no other meals. Breakfast was fine. Nothing extraordinary but we didnt really order anything complicated. More importantly, our order was right each time and it was on time ! ENTERTAINMENT AND ACTIVITIES: we never do shows much at night and aren’t big on activities either. There were no sea days on this trip so really wasnt time for much . We went to one show and did enjoy it and liked that they had ballroom dancers in addition to the singers...thought it was an excellent addition. We dont do trivia or play bridge. But we do occasionally go into the casino. The manager was a super nice guy....we played slots but the mgr saw me watching other games and offered to teach me...thought that was nice. SERVICE: I think this is where Seabourn really shines. It s hard to put into words but this is really where they won us over. There was something about how they interacted that made us feel like they were being more than just polite or professional, but really were genuinely interested in us enjoying our cruise. We had dinner one night with the cruise director and another night with the hotel director. Both terrific guys and really really enjoyed their company. I often times pass on those invites for dinner. I like our table for 2...I am not usually interested in “making friends” at dinner. I will go eat with people we have met out that day but to be introduced at dinner, just not my thing. But we really enjoyed them. The crew that interacts with customers is primarily European and South African...I dont know if its something about that mix, but they were all so warm. We did have one issue regarding our flight home that we were trying to resolve most of the cruise. We had booked airfare with SB and so we needed to go through them to handle our problem. It was a “no” at first, then a maybe then a “no” then a yes.....it took a while but the guest services manager was very persistent with SB corporate office in Seattle and by the end of the cruise, we got what we wanted and so we were thrilled at how much they really tried. PORTS AND SHORE EXCURSIONS: We missed our first port of Bonifacio on Corsica because we had gale force winds that first night and crazy swells. A lot of people were sick. We werent able to get into Bonifacio so the captain substituted Ajaccio which is a port we were new to , so it worked out fine. We also visited Livorno (Florence), Santa Margherite (Portofino), Bandol, Palamos, Palma de Mallorca and ended in Barcelona. We only did 2 shore excursions. Both were pretty good and they kept the groups to a small number on the buses. The other places we did our own thing. FINAL THOUGHTS: We were so impressed and feel like Seabourn is now our favorite cruise line. However, we do like variety , so we have several other cruises booked not on Seabourn, but as soon as they come out with their full 2020 schedule, we will book something again for sure! Our only real negative would have to be the pool area. It just seemed very crowded. I didnt like the set up. Lots of seating for the patio grill folks eating. There’s no deck down the sides of the ship on the pool deck level, just some tiered decks on each side of the pool, but those areas seemed so hot. For a ship of 600 , we thought the pool area was inadequate . I dont think I would want to do this ship in the Caribbean. I much prefer a large pool, pool deck with decks down both sides of ship with plenty of areas to lounge , spread out and find shade. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
I've cruised with a number of high end operators (Seabourn x2 excl. this sailing, Silversea x3, Crystal x1, Sea Dream x1), and I've worked 37 years in the service business, both delivering customer service myself, and managing ... Read More
I've cruised with a number of high end operators (Seabourn x2 excl. this sailing, Silversea x3, Crystal x1, Sea Dream x1), and I've worked 37 years in the service business, both delivering customer service myself, and managing teams who do, in various countries around the world. I had wanted to try Seabourn Encore, as it was the newest ship in their fleet, and the itinerary was perfect. I had read previous reviews, and boarded with some concerns. Rather than focus on what is repeatedly praised, I will offer my objective feedback on those areas which attract unfavourable reviews. Cabin We booked late and could only secure a cabin on the lowest deck. A requested paid upgrade was not available on departure. Once you get over the 'snob value' of deck levels, it worked out for the best. The cabin was as good as any I have sailed in on other Seabourn ships on upper levels, in terms of noise and facilities, even though it was adjoining. Being in the middle of the ship, we felt little movement, and had no creaking movement noise, or from decks above. OK, our balcony had a metal panel beneath the rail rather than glass, but it made no difference, and was marginally bigger. We visited cabins on decks 9 and 10, and I certainly won't bother paying for higher cabins in future. Excellent appointments. Service We received efficient and courteous service from every staff member without fail. There were of course some staff who shone, but none disappointed. I've always been taught to treat others as you expect to be treated, and I cannot fault both the friendliness and professionalism of the team. Restaurant/food and drink service was timely (I note especially special orders for breakfast in the Colonnade), correct and the food was hot. It is apparent that some more experienced staff from other ships have been moved to Encore following previous poor feedback. Food We ate in all locations and for various meals. Everything we ate ranged from good to excellent. It is true that I noticed a reduction in quality in some areas however, as previously the 'excellents' outweighed the 'goods'. The afternoon tea service has been scaled back in terms of range and quality of the pastries and sandwiches. Most noticeably, the Colonnade dinner is much poorer than it used to be. The daily dinner themed menus's are extremely limited, and previously this venues dinner menus were a choice of part buffet, part a la carte menu. There was one tuscan market event which was excellent. The atmosphere was previously more lively and enjoyable. The Colonnade for dinner was a disappointment unfortunately in terms of offer and atmosphere. However, breakfast and lunch there was very good. The TK grill was excellent, however, on both occasions we ate there, lobster was not available, due to a 'sourcing' issue. That was disappointing. Entertainment Surprisingly good. Yes, there are a limited number of performers who appear throughout the cruise in various productions, but the standard of the performance, and the quality of the production was very enjoyable. The couple who performed in the Observation Bar (Bruno and Ana Rita) were exceptional, and regularly moved their audiences to tears. The one complaint in this area, was that on occasions, a pianist played in the Observation Bar at tea time, who was, to be quite honest, appalling. It was embarrassing for him and his guests. I would prefer nothing, rather than have to endure such appalling piano playing. My only criticism on ship design is on the layout and format of gents toilets. You need to have these available and plentiful adjacent to the restaurants. On the Colonnade level there was just one gents toilet and it was for disabled. The door was confusing to open/close and simply insufficient for this location. In other areas, rather than having urinals for multiple guests, a toilet would have a single cubicle. This, for me, is a major design failure. In summary, Seabourn Encore did not disappoint, and we had an excellent cruise. It's a shame that some of the restaurant quality fell a little short, but this seems to be a common trend across the luxury brands, as competition increases and consolidation occurs. If these quality issues could be addressed, it would be an outstanding experience, and not an excellent one. We would most definitely return to Seabourn, and The Encore. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We chose Seabourn as we like smaller ships, fewer passengers; we're a couple in our 60's / 70's. We like adventure, travel, we don't need a lot of theme entertainment, and we are foodies; food and wine are important. ... Read More
We chose Seabourn as we like smaller ships, fewer passengers; we're a couple in our 60's / 70's. We like adventure, travel, we don't need a lot of theme entertainment, and we are foodies; food and wine are important. The entertainment on Seaboard was just right; the entertainment acts in the Main Salon were entertaining, as were piano duo in the Observation Bar. Poolside parties . . .that meant dancing for us - fun! The MAIN REASON that I chose the Encore was the Mediterranean itinerary. Food: We loved the options of a casual meal in the Colonnade, inside or out. Sharing tables there or in the Restaurant was lovely in meeting new people. The theme nights in the Colonnade were pretty close in quality to the Restaurant. At lunchtime, if you’re on board and miss not getting in time before the 2:30 closing, the Deck 9 small buffet outdoors with salads, charcuterie, and hot entrees is a good one. High tea in the Observation Bar: a nice treat at 4pm, although once the service was pretty spotty / slow. In order of great good / ambience our dining preference is: The Restaurant, then the Sushi Bar, and next the theme nights at the Colonnade. The TK Grill was overly pretentious; there was a mistake in writing up my husband’s order for steak, the wait in between courses is far too long, and the decor isn’t modern as the rest of the ship. The TK Grill is not for us. Room Service for me every morning for breakfast - - I was feeling very spoiled! The Ship: I used the Fitness Center three times, very clean; light filled, good variety of machines. I only wish there were more light weights, as I do lift weight but have shoulder issues. And they need thicker floor pads for those doing sit-ups and Pilates exercises. For nighttime entertainment, the Grand Salon was perfect sized, with very comfortable seating. In the Square, this was handy as a meeting spot, plenty of seating areas for conversation, reading newspapers, drinking a latte. For outdoor decks, I like sunbathing, eating outdoors and finding a quiet spot. There was only one day I couldn’t easily find a lounge in the sun ; eventually I did. There are many nooks throughout the ship decks, depending on sun and wind where you can find a spot to your liking. Hot tubs were a bit on the small side, although there are enough in number. Shore Excursions: I booked a shared minivan for an excursion and the driver was careful, tour guide really informative. In Lucca, we rode from port in Livorno on the bus, then to Lucca for a walking tour. The tour guide was very organized, charming and gave good insightful talks. The half day boat ride from Santa Margherita to Camogli and Portofino was our highlight excursion! The most delightful experience . . .it was nirvana, for those who love boating / traveling like us. Read Less
40 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
The ship was new and nice, the pool areas were too small for all the guests aboard and it was hard to find available sunbeds, especially with people reserving them early in the day. The staff was friendly but over worked, and some were ... Read More
The ship was new and nice, the pool areas were too small for all the guests aboard and it was hard to find available sunbeds, especially with people reserving them early in the day. The staff was friendly but over worked, and some were quite new in their jobs. The drinks aboard were quite poorly mixed, and often way too strong or had a completely wrong taste. The food was ok, but nothing great, it is comparable to a 5 star all inclusive hotel, which this is esssentially is (floating 5 star hotel). The Seabourn singers and dancers who had shows in the grand salon, were divas, giving the impression that they were too good for what they were doing. Although the shows were not very good. There were some events called Rock the boat, which were quite entertaining where the staff also joined in for singing and dancing. They were probably the highlights of the tour. The excursions are poorly operated and the staff is not knowledgeable about them, I would recommend to refrain from joining any Seabourn operated tours, you will only be dissapointed. As this is a larger ship it will not will not dock in any of the smaller ports and you will have to go ashore by a Tender. I was quite disapointed that even in Monaco, we had to sail with a Tender to get to the harbour. If you have ever been on SilverSea before and hoping that this would be a little bit of the same, you could not be more wrong. SilverSea has much better service, and gives a much better experience. This is comparable to one of the low priced package deal cruises like MSC, however perhaps with a better suite. They did throw some good pool parties and had 2 caviar events, but the rest of the cruise was just a subpar experience. Better save the money spent on caviar to properly train the staff. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
We cruise more for the ports than any other factor. We have cruised many times on many lines. Last year we did an 18 day cruise on the seabourn Sojourn from Dubai to Singapore. A very good cruise with good staff and service. This year we ... Read More
We cruise more for the ports than any other factor. We have cruised many times on many lines. Last year we did an 18 day cruise on the seabourn Sojourn from Dubai to Singapore. A very good cruise with good staff and service. This year we did a 21 day cruise on the Seabourn Odyssey from Monaco to Lisbon. The main purpose was to go to Morocco for our first time. Unfortunately the weather generally throughout was poor. A fair bit of rain and quite cool. Interestingly Seabourn has this cruise one month earlier this year (2017). That should make all the difference. What made the cruise were the staff and food. Even better than last year and I wouldn't have thought that possible. Every single member of staff was friendly and helpful. We ate in all venues but often at night at the pool grill. They had heaters there and offered blankets. We preferred the more informal setting and the food suited us. We definirtely will sail Seabourn again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2016
Seabourn an excellent small ship line, had become dissatisfied with Cunard so tried the Seabourn Odyssey in the summer and were very pleased. On Seabourn, service is excellent, standard of ship facilities is very good too. Cuisine on the ... Read More
Seabourn an excellent small ship line, had become dissatisfied with Cunard so tried the Seabourn Odyssey in the summer and were very pleased. On Seabourn, service is excellent, standard of ship facilities is very good too. Cuisine on the whole good although more healthy options would suit us better and some of the complimentary wines offered not that great. Enjoyed dining in both the Colonade and the Main restaurant. Booked the new Penthouse Spa suites which were superb, Very roomy and had great views over the Balcony of the ship. Staff on the cruise were very professional and friendly. Entertainment was the best that we had see on any of the 26 cruises that we had been on. Even though we were only on for 7 days were very impressed as to how staff picked up on menu and drinks preferences in the dining areas and social areas. Booked a couple of tours and although pricey they were well organised and it is great they made sure that coaches were not packed and there was always space and time to see and do things at the destinations. Have already booked a couple more on the Seabourn Encore next year and will be interested to see how the new larger ship compares with the two that we have been on. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We have taken several voyages on Regent cruise ships and decided to try what was advertised as comparable to Regent for a Western Mediterranean cruise on Seabourn Sojourn October 2016. The dining experiences were flawless and there was ... Read More
We have taken several voyages on Regent cruise ships and decided to try what was advertised as comparable to Regent for a Western Mediterranean cruise on Seabourn Sojourn October 2016. The dining experiences were flawless and there was enough liquor offered to float a boat. However, if you are looking for excursion experiences off this ship, which we were, they were lacking. I called the cruise line several times during the planning stage, but they would not reveal their excursions until after we had paid for the entire cruise. For several destinations, there were only 2-3 options for 425 people. Our traveling companions were not able to join several excursions because the destination opprtunities were "sold out." One excursion we booked was cancelled at the last minute, with minimum interest by destination services to find another option for us. And then the service...our suite "stewardess" is in the wrong career. I called guest services every day for things like wash cloths, the daily Hearld (ship info), and more. She never called us by name, left one bar of soap for two people to last eleven days, gave us toiletries that had been used by others (less than half full), and never completely cleaned the bathroom. I cleaned the floor just to get rid of the smell. Our friends said she "was young and inexperienced." The liberal smoking policy on the Sojourn was reported elsewhere, so I can only reiterate that it was an issue. Neighbors smoking on their verandas meant that we could not use our veranda during their frequent smoke breaks. There were other places to go on the ship where you did not have to smell second-hand smoke, which we did. Overall, Seabourn Sojourn offered a luxury vacation, like Regent, with excellent food and beautiful common areas. Unlike Regent, Seabourn had limited shore excursions, a bothersome smoking policy, and very poor housekeeping service, The disembark procedure was wonderful, leisurely breakfast the last day with a couple of hours to connect with luggage off ship. But maybe I was just happy to leave. Read Less
31 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
Oceania lover has fling with Seabourn Barcelona to Monte Carlo 25-07-2016 to 04-08-2016 Background This was a special surprise gift for my mothers **th birthday. The last couple of years I have been cruising on Oceania (previous ... Read More
Oceania lover has fling with Seabourn Barcelona to Monte Carlo 25-07-2016 to 04-08-2016 Background This was a special surprise gift for my mothers **th birthday. The last couple of years I have been cruising on Oceania (previous on Celebrity en Star Clippers) but this itinerary looked just perfect with lots of small ports and the price for a V4 Verandah suite was the same as a Penthouse Suite on O. So I decided to give Seabourn a try and I’m happy I did. Pre-cruise We flew to Barcelona a day before the cruise and stayed at the Arts Hotel. A beautiful big hotel at the Port Olympic that is just steps from the beach and night live. We had a corner suite that was just absolutely stunning. One of the best rooms I have ever stayed in. Staff very friendly and helpful. We ate at Carpe Diem a small trendy restaurant close to the hotel and on the beach. Most shops are closed on Sunday so do a day of sightseeing instead. Ship We took a taxi at noon to the World Trade Center Port that is centrally located. Our luggage was immediately picked up by the porters and carried away. We filled out the health questionnaire and checked in. A few minutes later we boarded Seabourn Sojourn. The exterior of the ship or yacht as Seabourn calls it is glamorous but my first impression of interior was underwhelming. Compared to the opulent interior styling on especially the Oceania-class ships with crystal, polished wood and impressive artwork, Seabourn choose a far more subdued style. Beautiful in some area’s like the ‘The Restaurant’, Pool and ‘Seabourn Square’ but also a tad boring like in ‘The Club’ on Deck 5 that gave me the impression of being in a third party airport lounge. The styling of ‘Restaurant 2’ is more glitzy and eclectic and I hope the new Thomas Keller restaurant that will be replacing R2 will have a modern feel to it. For a ship launched in 2010 it just looks a somewhat dated. We totally loved the abundance of deck space and small quiet areas like the sun deck (6) with whirlpool (but no shower) and the small pool deck at the stern of the ship (5). The sunbeds are pretty but very firm and could use a cushion. The level of service was also fabulous. Smiling and truly attentive staff throughout the vessel that made us feel welcome and special. They knew our preferences by day 2 and really did everything possible to exceed our expectations. Our stewardess Ivana was a gem and the best ever. Not only did she keep our suite spotless, she also provided a wealth of information about the ship and services. Always great for first timers! Cabin Our V4 Verandah Suite (707) was light and roomy (only the space between the bed and dresser is tight). Oceania penthouse suites are larger but we were perfectly happy with the size of our small suite on Seabourn. I loved the bar and tv cabinets and being able to draw the curtains between the sleeping and living area. All very elegant! The mini fridge was stocked with our preferred soft drinks and there was a chilled bottle of champagne waiting for us. I ordered a flower arrangement in advance and it was big, nice and lasted the entire trip. The seating area has a well-designed layout but the fabric and colors of the chairs and especially the couch are an acquired taste. I don’t know if it was meant to be and art-deco theme but we didn’t fancy it. The beds are very firm not to say rock hard and the pillows gigantic. The bed linens are soft but the whole experience does not compare to the wonderful beds and linens that Oceania provides on its ships. We did love the small make-up vanity and the bathroom is spacious with separate soaking tub and shower. Molton Brown provides the luxury bath products and you have dual sinks, with high-end fixtures, marble tiles and good lighting. I would have loved to have a night-light there. A pair of drawers would have been a welcome addition to the bathroom since shelves and storage are limited. The suite also features a walk-in closet, safe and two bathrobes. I missed electrical outlets near the nightstands for charging my phone or tablet. The air-conditioning did what it is designed for and we had no problem getting the ideal temperature for our suite. We liked sitting on the balcony late at night with a glass of wine and listen to the waves and talk about our day. Food I love food! Buying it, preparing and of course sharing and eating it. My friends tell me that I’m a pretty good cook. Due to my line of work I have dined in many great restaurants but I also love a simple bistro or well-prepared hamburger. My loyalty with Oceania has to do with their food. The variety of their restaurants and high quality ingredients is splendid and although the menus could use a little more modern influences I do love that they have products like lobster, scampi and other seafood, premium cuts of beef on every menu every day. The food on Seabourn is good but compared to Oceania more limited. Fine products like lobster, caviar and premium cuts are hard to find on the menus and only available as a special order in advance. We don’t like to pre-order because it makes us feel uncomfortable. This food on Seabourn is very well prepared and tasty. Compared to Oceania the dishes served on Seabourn are more modern and lighter with less double cream and butter. Pizza, burgers and gelato were also very good. All our meals were good but only a few were very memorable like our experience in R2 and the Thomas Keller night in the Colonnade. We choose the more casual Patio Grill many evenings since the weather was wonderful and we like dining al fresco. I know many guests have mixed feelings about the partnership with Thomas Keller but we liked it a lot. Our night featured a modern take on the classic Waldorf salad and a beautiful bone in prime-rib with roasted broccoli and silky mashed potatoes. Seabourn could improve the quality and selection of breads, baguette and pastries. Drinks We aren’t big drinkers but like a good glass of wine. Most evenings the selection was fine with a few highlights like a Pouilly-Fuissé, Chianti Classico and Sand Tropez Rosé. A few bottles shouldn’t have been offered like a €3.99 bottle of J.P. Chenet that you can find in every cheap grocery store in Europe. Cocktails, champagne and digestives were always available and offered throughout the day by the pools and in the bars. We love that you didn’t have to sign for every drink. That really is a luxury! Seabourn could improve the quality of the coffee they serve. I got a cappuccino at Seabourn Square every morning but I couldn’t get the very friendly barista to get me a proper cappuccino made with a strong espresso and some foamy milk. The Barista Coffee Bar on Oceania wins hands on and I also missed those very tasty mini pastries featured on Oceania like the canelés and madeleines. Fellow guest It seemed to us that Seabourn caters to a crowd that is very hard to please. This was our only real disappointment during our cruise. We met so many people who seemingly had only one hobby and that was to complain about the food, drinks, service, menu and we even met a couple that told us that Seabourn should do something about the heat in the ports we visited. I’m not kidding! I have to say that being surrounded with so many people who felt to urge to complain out loud didn’t do much good for the overall atmosphere. This cruise had one day at sea and all sunbeds were already ‘reserved’ at 8:00 am by sophisticated guests like they do in those cheap all-inclusive resorts. Internet The system is slow and works with only device at a time. This is how most ships work…BUT charging a staggering $400 for 10 days is a total rip off. That’s almost 10% of the cruise fee. A luxury brand like Seabourn shouldn't charge for Wi-Fi at all and if it does it should be for a friendly fee. It's 2016 and 90% of the guests use the Internet. Smoking I don't smoke and after reading so many complaints on the cruisecritic.com board I was afraid I would have to endure smoking everywhere. I experienced no such thing and was pleasantly surprised. I never smelt smoke outside and we used the balcony a lot and never even got a whiff of smoke. I really don't understand what all the fuss is about. We got the message that Seabourn is going for a much stricter smoking policy in the near future. Victory for al the vocal complainers but this non-smoker didn’t have any problems with the current Recap We enjoyed every minute of our cruise with Seabourn. We had a fabulous itinerary, attentive staff, and a relaxing atmosphere with an abundance of space, good food and smooth sailings. Seabourn leaves little the wish for and tries very hard to give its demanding passengers a refined luxury experience. I'm afraid some guests on board are impossible to please and hearing so many complaints and seeing so many rude, snobbish people did spoil the atmosphere at times. No cruise line is perfect, there is always room for improvement, but I think Seabourn offers a sublime vacation. Would I choose Seabourn over Oceania? It totally depends on price and itinerary. If Seabourn and Oceania keep the same price level, I would book with Seabourn again depending on the itinerary. I really liked the small ship experience with small ports, no waiting for anything (except on sea days), no signing for drinks, good food and very attentive and well trained staff. But I do like Oceania's a little over the top decor, variety of restaurants, menus and the large penthouse suites. So my love for O is still burning but I do have a serious fling now with Seabourn. Read Less
23 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
I had great cruises on the Pride and the Legend, however i am not happy at all on the 3 biggers sisters as they provide a complete other product as the original. First of all it seems impossible for SB to verify a passengers history for ... Read More
I had great cruises on the Pride and the Legend, however i am not happy at all on the 3 biggers sisters as they provide a complete other product as the original. First of all it seems impossible for SB to verify a passengers history for the allocation of cabins booked on gurantee bas; On a level 16 i did receive the worsest cabin on board , after some complaints finally a V1 was assigned. Passengers with a far lower status (on guarantee) were noticed in far higher degrees. Not very logical in our actual time surrounded by IT. The cabin was very ok , but in the bathroom - especially in the morning there was a very unpleasant smell of "restrooms " , pending for quite long. From embarkation until the last moments you are faced with continuous cutbacks. I heavily took nuisance of the - unilaterally - daily closing down of the main dining room for breakfast and lunch. So compulsory buffets on a daily base - not 5 starred at all. If you are a continental breakfast eater you are faced with a poor choice of the same poor quality cheeses and cold cuts - 4 starred chain hotels are doing better. The professionnal skill of the Belgian chef is well known but it is very clear he must struggle with a far too narrow budget. Canapes on sailaways parties were very restricted in choice, and the party for the Seabourn Club was far from great. And save us from the blockparties ... We must qualify service as good to very good, entertainment very soso despite a very friendly cruise director and an even more friendlier assistant who did a great performance at the sailaway party . The captain was a very courteous man , hotel director very unpleasant and not very concerned what luxury does mean. Very homesick to the great days on the Pride and the Legend, i decided the above was my last on SB , nowadays a more polished version of HAL wrapped with a fancy gift paper (the free drinks) and a bow (the tiny caviar portions) however also attached with a big sticker C (the many cutbacks) Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
Having sailed a year ago on the small ship (Seabourn Spirit) I got spoiled into thinking that it is possible to have a feeling of cruising on a yacht even though I am on a cruise ship. With that in mind, sailing on a larger ship was ... Read More
Having sailed a year ago on the small ship (Seabourn Spirit) I got spoiled into thinking that it is possible to have a feeling of cruising on a yacht even though I am on a cruise ship. With that in mind, sailing on a larger ship was something of a disappointment, but only by comparison to last year's cruise. First, I must say, it is one of the best vacations I've ever had. The ship is in amazing shape. You can hardly tell it is moving even when it is going full steam ahead. The planning that goes into when and how fast the ship is sailing is all about accommodating the passengers. The food and the services in all of the dining venues is top notch. The cruise embarkation and disembarkation are quick and flawless. Your luggage arrives just after you do in your cabin. Even the basic cabins are all Jr. Suites with very clean and comfortable bedding, plenty of closet space even for those of us who over pack. The cabin stewards are all doing a fantastic job and almost never seen as they accommodate your schedule and not the other way around. Amenities are all top quality and plentiful. All of the ship facilities are kept spotless, and you really do not see it overcrowded except for the entertainment venue when a special act is preforming. Here are the imperfections that can easily be improved on with a little interest and effort of the company: 1. Entertainment on this ship (unlike last year) was quite a bit underwhelming, lacking talent, enthusiasm and interest to truly keep the guests coming back for more. Cruise director was very bland, the band seemed to play everything as if there was only one style of music on earth, the main singer was not very good, the piano lady was mostly playing music to put people to sleep and the guitar player did not draw much of a crowd either. The exception to this part was the featured opera singer who was both talented and entertaining. 2. The bar drinks quality - surprisingly was pretty bad. Despite having to mix drinks for people all day and using some of the best and freshest ingredients, the mixed drinks were terrible. I stuck to bottled liquor after repeatedly trying different drinks. 3. Information about the ports. Here you are on your own, unless you want to come and talk to the representative from the stop after the ship has docked or tendered people for an hour or so. Very little is gathered from the people who are supposed to be there to help you at the 7th floor Square. Not sure what they do there all day. 4. There were some lectures about upcoming ports sometimes, but they were typically held when the ship had other activities and the weather was at its best. It was hard to sacrifice that part of the cruise just to find out about the ports. 5. The sound of the alarm starting off the the emergency drill the day we boarded the ship is still ringing in my ears. This does not need to be full blast for the passengers sake, so if anyone from the ship reads this, please tone it down. I can't imagine what this did to the people with sensitive hearing aids. Overall, I would suggest to the ship crew to review the crowd incoming on the ship on each leg and adjust their schedules and activities accordingly. This year, the average age of the passengers was mid-50's as compared to mid 80's last year. They were much more active and ready to stay up and dance, play at casino, have later dinners, etc. I am sure many of them would have also preferred arriving at ports an hour later and departing few hours later. Let's hope you can keep these in mind and make the necessary adjustments to keep me coming back. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
I will deal with the minor complaint first. People hogging sun beds. This situation is not being dealt with, even after notices in the Herald. One couple in particular, at one time had two loungers on deck 9, and on deck 10, a table, ... Read More
I will deal with the minor complaint first. People hogging sun beds. This situation is not being dealt with, even after notices in the Herald. One couple in particular, at one time had two loungers on deck 9, and on deck 10, a table, four chairs and two more loungers. They were seen on some days to have a whole corner of deck 10 containing table, four chairs and four loungers. They would disappear for well over an hour, come back, move towels and articles about and then disappear again. Seabourn really have to get a grip of this as it was not a nice experience. Other than that our cruise was wonderful. Suite 805 under the flying bridge, absolutely no problems whatsoever. We ate in the Colonnade for breakfast, a few lunches and all our dinners. We had one lunch in Patio Grill which was ok, perhaps it was our poor choice. We had late lunch / snack in the Square which was excellent. We took three tours, the best being to the fortress on Menorca, the English gentleman guide was superb. The worst to Aix where the lady guide moved away so fast at one point that she lost the whole group. Stevan White, the conversationalist was informative and gave a good insight to the ports we were visiting. We will certainly book Seabourn again, but they must monitor the sun bed situation. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
It is painful to write this review, but the loss of the three smaller 'sister' ships coupled with the change in corporate ownership of Seabourn have had a very negative impact on the overall quality, in our view. After more than ... Read More
It is painful to write this review, but the loss of the three smaller 'sister' ships coupled with the change in corporate ownership of Seabourn have had a very negative impact on the overall quality, in our view. After more than a dozen Seabourn cruises starting in 2003, we are sad to say we will not return to these larger - and quite different, in terms of services and intimacy - 'Odyssey class' ships, or the larger ships to come. We feel there is some false advertising involved, as well; primarily, there seems to be an operating pretense to prior passengers that nothing has changed. Some of the marketing in our cabin still featured the now-retired smaller ships, rather shamelessly! The restaurant was closed for breakfast and dinner; the new tenders (life boats, actually) are an unpleasant experience; the Liar's Club was not held; the marina pool has been removed; the Captain did not show up for his own reception; etc. Specific issues aside, some of these issues could be addressed if management (hello, Holland America!) understood its historic customer base and cared to do so. Until then, Adieu Seabourn! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
We sailed on a back to back cruise on the Quest leaving out of Fort Lauderdale for Europe. We had sailed on the Quest nice before a year earlier. With few exceptions we found the ship and staff some of the best we've ever ... Read More
We sailed on a back to back cruise on the Quest leaving out of Fort Lauderdale for Europe. We had sailed on the Quest nice before a year earlier. With few exceptions we found the ship and staff some of the best we've ever experienced. We always marvel at the personal service and name recognition. How do they do it? We were confidentially told that the staff is quizzed on name recognition and the ones that score the highest get preferential time off in ports... We are " foodies " and generally are not a fan of ship food. Even with a smaller ship like the Quest, food still has to be prepared for 400 guests within a short period of time. With few exceptions, the food is prepared flawlessly. There was only one evening that the service wasn't good. It was he changeover day in Barcelona. There was a staff turnover evidently and it showed. The food was slow, and the service disorganized. We had been on the ship for two weeks at that point and knew the difference. We also had a relationship with many of the staff, so we felt obliged to say something. The knew and felt terrible. It's really important to try to stay in the same section and get to know your wait staff. Once they know you and your preferences they will really effort to get it right. There are many nights that the MDR is full, and many have returned late from excursions and all want to eat later. The staff gets very stressed, but remain calm and focused. We sat in the back against the wall at a four top every night facing the restaurant. We marveled at the efficiency and execution of the wines being poured ( everyone drinking a different wine by the glass ), food being delivered and tables being cleared and bussed. Daniella, the hostess gets special Kudo's from us. We sat in a variety of locations at first, but once we settled into a section we liked, she did all she could to keep us there. It really helps to have the same servers if possible. We even arrived later to make it easier. The bar service in the Observation lounge is great ( Grigory ), the wait staff and ambience in the bar on level five is great too. We just can't say enough about the staff. ( obviously ). The ship is beautiful. We never had a problem getting lounge chairs by the pool or a table in the Colonnade for lunch or breakfast. On other cruise ship lines both can be a problem. Getting on and off the ship in ports is near effortless, whether docked or tendering. The rooms are clean and large. Our cabin attendant was perfect. Whatever we needed was supplied, we never had to ask twice. We ate in Restaurant three times, of the most part the food was really good. We like Tapas tasting menus though. We've read that R2 is going to change in the fall. I'm not a big fan of the Patio Grill concept, or food. We didn't eat there. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014
Embarkation: Flawless - We arrived at the pier a little after noon. There were no lines to check in and after the usual formalities we walked on the ship, left our carry-on bags in the stateroom, and were seated before 12:45 at an outside ... Read More
Embarkation: Flawless - We arrived at the pier a little after noon. There were no lines to check in and after the usual formalities we walked on the ship, left our carry-on bags in the stateroom, and were seated before 12:45 at an outside table overlooking the ocean at the Colonnade. Stateroom: Our veranda "suite" #723 was very comfortable. Closet and drawer space was very good. The inside table was large enough for room service breakfasts when we had early shore excursions. The bed was excellent and the cabin seating furniture was fine. The bathroom was very good with ample storage, two sinks and an excellent shower. We didn't turn the TV on but assume it worked. Food: We thought the MDR felt stiff and its ambiance took away from the otherwise fine quality food and service. We had an excellent meal at Restaurant 2 but the fixed menu may not always appeal. Apart from one dinner at each we favored the Colonnade. We ate outside there most nights with stunning views and equally fine food and service. Breakfast and lunch at the Colonnade were both OK. The table service menu was limited but a buffet was available for those so inclined. Beverages: Wine is included in the cruise price. My Wife thought the white wines outstanding. I was not that impressed with the red wines and was disappointed not to have the option of a better glass of wine at a reasonable extra charge. We took our afternoon tea at Seabourn Square. It was ordinary bagged tea, often served in paper cups. It compared poorly with my experience with Celebrity where, for a few dollars, you are served a proper pot of tea. Entertainment: The resident Soujourn musicians were OK. The ship was chartered by Entertainment Cruise Productions who had a dozen or more world class musicians on board. We were spoiled listening to so many great performers. The staff musicians seemed raw and weak by comparison. Service: Excellent - The customer service desks at Seabourn Square were well staffed and very efficient in dealing with internet questions and currency exchange. The stateroom was always well cared for. Shore excursions: We took four Seabourn excursions and all were very good. Disembarkation: Excellent - We had room service breakfast before leaving the ship at 8. The timing was perfect for our 8:30 tour by Barcelona Day Tours. They met us just outside the luggage pickup area, gave an excellent introduction to Barcelona and left us at our hotel. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2014
My husband and I were on the Seabourn Quest - April 29- May 13- Gems of Western Europe- 14 day cruise. It was one of the most amazing trips we have ever taken! This was our first cruise with Seabourn. It exceeded our expectations! By the ... Read More
My husband and I were on the Seabourn Quest - April 29- May 13- Gems of Western Europe- 14 day cruise. It was one of the most amazing trips we have ever taken! This was our first cruise with Seabourn. It exceeded our expectations! By the 2nd day we were greeted by all the staff by our names. We had previously sailed on Silversea three times. We were always told Seabourn is a little better than Silversea. Well, Seabourn is in a different class than Silversea. It doesn't even compare. First of all the food was EXCELLENT! I am from New Orleans so I am use to great restaurants and the food was THE BEST!! I see how sometimes people on these boards complain about the food. I was honestly concerned after reading some of the forums before we left for the cruise. Speaking to other passengers on our cruise- 90% of the passengers never heard of Cruise Critic. I was told 65% are so of the passengers on our cruise were repeat customers. Most of the passengers that were repeats that we met have sailed Seabourn 7 times or more. They also told us they think Silversea is an inferior product and would not sail on them. Back to the food. We always ate breakfast in the Colonnade. Besides the Buffet they have special order items that you can add to your breakfast. I even had Lamb Chops for breakfast- always asked for double cut! They were delicious. My husband said the French Toast was great! We loved seating outside at the Colonnade. If it was cool a few days- they had cashmere blankets to wrap yourself around. When you asked for expresso or hot coffee in 1 minute hot coffee would come. Amazing service every time! We had room service for breakfast only once- when we had a very early tour. It was prompt and perfect! Every afternoon I would order from room service some snacks and within 10 minutes it came. The guacamole was delicious and they give you a huge bowl! The Shrimp on Room Service Menu were huge! We ate lunch frequently in the outdoor Patio Grill. The Cheeseburgers were the best I have ever tasted. I always added grilled mushrooms and grilled onions. Seabourn is famous for their French Fries. They were FANTASTIC! Everyday they had choice of 2 pizzas that were being made fresh right in front of you! Delicious!! Of course they had lots of great salads and other grilled items. They had great freshly made delicious ice creams and sorbets - changing flavors everyday. Loved the Pistachio Ice Cream.The Manager of the Patio Grill would come over and make sure everything was fine. What incredible Service! ( We felt the hamburgers and pizza on Silversea were unedible!) At the pool -waiters brought around delicious frozen drinks! We always ate Dinner in The Restaurant ( Main Dining Room). Wonderful food choices every night. So many choices. Our favorite waiter( which we requested every night) would make suggestions and if he thought there were 2 great appetizers- he would bring out both. My husband loves fish and thought the fish courses were OUTSTANDING! The filet which we always ordered double cut -size - was as good as best steak houses we have eaten in. ( Also had delicious peppercorn sauce to put over it). The filet is available every night on the " Classic Menu". (We also felt the Steak on our last Silversea cruise was unedible). If you want two lobsters - you can order it. If you want to special order something- just tell the chef 24 hours before - My husband special ordered a whole sea bass. They will do anything to please you. Just ask! My husband loves desserts. Our waiter would always bring out 3 desserts for him to try! The waiters work in teams and do a fabulous job. Just an example of the efforts they make to please you- On the last night we wanted a table for 10. We went to the manager the night before to request it. All the tables of 10 were taken. So she said she would have the ship's carpenter come and make a new table of 10 to accommodate us. Now that is called AMAZING! We didn't go to Restaurant 2- the specialty restaurant- but some of our friends we met did- and they said it was EXCELLENT! We loved Seabourn Square! They had staff there 24 hours a day to help you with tours, internet or general questions. It was also a great place to go to read newspapers. They had little mini-computers with all the newspapers on them. And of course they had coffee, tea, desserts, and ice cream all day long. Now to the staff and service. Seabourn staff work 4 months on and 2 months off. The staff love that arrangement. On Silversea I think the staff works 8-9 months per contract. So I think they are worn out. Also all the staff is from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa etc.-On Silversea it is mostly Phillippino . We found with the Silversea Waiters- if they didn't understand what you were asking- they were too embarrassed to ask you to repeat. So there was always major communication problems- resulting in problems in restaurants with your requests. The waiters on Seabourn were more polished and professional in everyway. We felt the service on Seabourn in all the restaurants was far SUPERIOR to Silversea. Honestly, there was no comparision. We found on Seabourn every staff member had the BEST ATTITUDE! We liked that you don't need to make reservations for the restaurants. ( except for Restaurant 2) After touring all day- we could just pop in to the restaurant without having to plan in advance. ( that is why I wouldn't like Oceania- need to make reservations in advance and you are limited to how many reservations you can make in a certain restaurant) Also we loved the passenger size of the ship. You get to know so many passengers and staff members on a smaller ship. Oceania is too large for us! We would not have had that same personal experience with the Staff. Every night before dinner we would meet all our new friends in the Observation Bar- where there was music and the most DELICIOUS snacks-( especially that great guacamole and chips!) (Again Silversea snacks at the bars on our last cruise were not good). The chef onboard our Cruise was Chef Martin. We thanked him at the end for the FABULOUS job he did. Someone told us they had a Michelin Chef onboard our cruise that was observing and making suggestions to make the food even better. He said they are always looking for ways to make the food even more FABULOUS! We had a Market Galley Lunch one day at sea. It was the most amazing buffet in the Main Dining Room and then you went into the galley where there was more food. We actually never made it to any shows. We always stayed in the dining room until 11:00 P.M. because we ate dinner very late. But people who made it to the shows said they enjoyed them. We would never go on any other cruise line. We are hooked now! Everyday of the cruise my husband and I would say" This is the most WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE." We didn't want it to end. We met the most interesting people from all over the world. Every passenger we met was so friendly. Everyone on the cruise we spoke with all felt like we did - saying the cruise was FABULOUS! In conclusion- most of the Seabourn Passengers on our cruise- don't read Cruise Critic, they love Seabourn and they wouldn't sail on any other line. If you are looking for a 5 star experience ( like a Four Seasons experience) then Seabourn is the most FABULOUS cruise line out there. This cruise was one of the highlights of our lives! We travel all over the world for our business and have stayed in the finest hotels- and this Seabourn Cruise was PERFECT in every way- Service, Food and Attention to Details! How would we describe our Seabourn Cruise! MAGNIFICENT!! FANTASTIC!!! INCREDIBLE!!! We will never forget it and can't wait to take our next Seabourn cruise. If you want the BEST SERVICE, GREAT FOOD, and a WONDERFUL cruise experience then Seabourn is for you!!   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2013
Having experienced indifferent/poor service and food on Silverseas Shadow, I am very very pleased to report that Seabourn Quest has restored our confidence in 6 star cruising. Having enjoyed 5 Seabourn cruises in the last 8 years we were ... Read More
Having experienced indifferent/poor service and food on Silverseas Shadow, I am very very pleased to report that Seabourn Quest has restored our confidence in 6 star cruising. Having enjoyed 5 Seabourn cruises in the last 8 years we were worried that standards might have slipped. Happily this wasn't the case - our 10 day cruise in the Med was excellent (though two of the ports were less than interesting). Our suite was immaculate on arrival and well maintained throughout the cruise. The standard of the restaurants and bars was exceptional and the service provided by the multi national staff couldn't be faulted. We were pleased to see that generally the dress standards were upheld and enforced, even though it seems that some folk find it difficult to differentiate between the codes set down. Seabourn's staff selection recruitment and training are obviously of a high standard - and it is evident that the staff appear happy and therefore work excellently as a team. They actually seem to enjoy what they do. Silverseas could well take a lesson in this. It was nice to see some familiar faces amongst the crew - evidence that Seabourn succeed in keeping their staff. The standard of the entertainment seems to have improved - not the predictable and formulaic girl/boy song and dance troupe. A 'mentalist'/mind-reader/magician made a change, and the female singer/impersonator was excellent. I sincerely hope that Seabourn do not change their strategy and start marketing to families with young children - there are plenty of cruise line that fill this niche already. Seabourn is for discerning clientele who enjoy a sophisticated but relaxed ambience - without kids. One suggestion I do have is that Seabourn should consider including Canada and Alaska in their itineraries - they would leave Silverseas for dead in this Region. Well done Seabourn Quest staff.   Read Less
Sail Date: August 2013
We have sailed with Seabourn on three occasions now and we really felt that there a definite skimping around the edges with regards to a few things. Firstly, the food seems to have dropped in both quality and choice. Many of the choices ... Read More
We have sailed with Seabourn on three occasions now and we really felt that there a definite skimping around the edges with regards to a few things. Firstly, the food seems to have dropped in both quality and choice. Many of the choices in the evening were variations on the same theme as the previous evenings. The food in the restaurant was often lukewarm. The best food we had in the evenings was in the Colonnade, where the steaks and seafood were the best choice. Many passengers were commenting that they had asked for a different wine, orange juice at breakfast, or a coffee or port after their main mail and they never turned up. Food orders were lost, with one couple telling us that they had not even been served their main course at their evening meal, and subsequently being offered to have it delivered to their room as the restaurant was closing! Things like this had never happened on our previous sailings. In the cabin, we were unfortunate to be next door to people who smoked. We could not sit on the balcony due to the smell of it. They really should make the cabins non-smoking as smoking indoors severely impacts the majority of passengers who do not smoke. Also, the bedding and sheets are not of the quality you would expect from a 6* cruise line. Often our bedding had small holes and the towels were wearing very thin. A cruise of this standard should offer high quality thread count and also soft thick towels. With regards to the Cruise Director, so many passengers were asking "what exactly does he do?!" He was the most "vanilla" Cruise Director we have ever had. There was no energy about him and he did not make his presence known. Later in the evenings the entertainment staff did come into The Club to mix and mingle with the guests which was nice. However, the CD spent almost all of his time drinking and dancing with the gay couples. Generally, the service and friendliness of the staff was very good, particularly with the staff in the Colonnade, pool and the bars. Claudio, the Colonnade Maitre d' does creates a nice ambience in his restaurant and he will go to great lengths to ensure that he gives you that extra bit of attention. Philip the barman in the Club also gave great service. There also seems to be a real drive towards having families on board. I really do not understand why parents would want to bring young children onto a ship like Quest, given that there are very limited facilities available to them. Having said that, the children who were on board were very well behaved and their parents did their best to keep them happy and occupied. The main problem on board was some very rude Americans! There was a very lovely couple who were celebrating their 69th wedding anniversary. Several American passengers complained about them using the pool as they were not nice to look at in their bathing suits!! I was also told off by a very rude American lady who came into the gym and immediately told me off for using an area that she wanted to use so "I should move!" Generally, we had a nice time, but we really feel that this time around, Seabourn was definitely not as special as we remembered it from previous sailings... Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2013
As well travelled Silversea passengers we decided to try Seabourn on a twenty day Mediterranean cruise which had a very appealing itinerary, we had a pre cruise stay in Athens before boarding our ship the Seabourn Quest, we met many other ... Read More
As well travelled Silversea passengers we decided to try Seabourn on a twenty day Mediterranean cruise which had a very appealing itinerary, we had a pre cruise stay in Athens before boarding our ship the Seabourn Quest, we met many other passengers at our hotel who had travelled many times before with Seabourn and told us we would enjoy the experience. The Quest is a beautiful ship very well designed with a well thought layout for days at sea, there is the main pool deck, another small pool area at the stern, hot tub on the bow and the “Retreat” on top of deck 11, a nice quiet place to relax with double sun beds. Our veranda suite was of good size and very clean but for a six star ship we did expect bath sheets and not towels in our bathroom. Unfortunately you do compare ships and service apart from the entertainment onboard there are many negatives when compared with Silversea, our biggest complaint revolves around the service and food, we did have three staff issues with the restaurants two being staff were very rude and one tapping a guest on the shoulder telling them to hurry up and choose a desert we consider to be inappropriate. The food was very bland together with the poor choice of deserts and cheese boards, we found throughout the three restaurants onboard the menus were different but the ingredients were the same and after ten days into our cruise the same menus appeared again, according to a member of staff the menu for that day is the same on the combined fleet of Seabourn ships so our Chef Franck only has to prepare food to the Seabourn schedule which is not very creative for a Chef, more like the same procedure at McDonalds. Our biggest problem was the dress code, I have read earlier comments from members that they found there was too many elegant casual nights when gentleman must wear a jacket, we feel the opposite on formal nights with only two on this cruise tuxedos or dark suits with a tie must be worn, guests failed to comply to the ship rules we saw mostly gentleman wearing not even dark suits but sports jackets and non matching trousers together with open shirts, if you did dress correctly you felt like a “duck out of water”, on elegant casual nights again sports jackets, trousers with an open shirt could be worn but the gentleman onboard ignored the jacket request we even saw one man with a zip front rain jacket and trainers eating in the main restaurant together with a man wearing shorts in the bar area on an elegant casual evening, I can only say to you members that have posted on this site moaning about dress codes this is a six star cruise line I repeat six star, we go to the Ritz in London quite often why not try and get in there without a tie and jacket, no chance. There were other issues to long to list,the Seabourn faithful we met prior to the cruise also were saying this was not up to normal Seabourn standards but overall we enjoyed the cruise itinerary. Silversea we are coming back.   Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
We've travelled with Seabourn before, but also, for complicated reasons, we've been on some larger ships (up to 1600 people) in between. Even checking in to get on board reinforced why we will never want to go on such large ships ... Read More
We've travelled with Seabourn before, but also, for complicated reasons, we've been on some larger ships (up to 1600 people) in between. Even checking in to get on board reinforced why we will never want to go on such large ships again. Took a few minutes, no waiting. Greeted warmly on board, and from then on, remembered how lovely it is to be greeted and remembered by name. Nobody popping up to say 'sign here please' when you wanted a drink. No need to have to think out the rate per day for tips. No high pressure selling of excursions. There if you want but if not, help to do what you wanted to. Room for everyone (easily) in the theatre, so no hoards of people rushing to get a seat. No tender boats, nor docking miles outside the town. We hardly saw the cabin stewardess, but the suite was always immaculate. The food was wonderful. I don't eat meat, but I always had plenty of choice, and in fact, you could get more or less anything you wanted. We did stick, on the whole, to what was offered on the menus, but other people 'amended' things or asked to go off piste to an extent that we really wonder how the waiting staff and the kitchens manage. It was all beautifully presented, hot if it was supposed to be hot, arrived in timely fashion. I'd really like to know how they keep their cheese - from different parts of Europe, but all just a the right point for eating.We opted to share tables virtually every night, either by invitation to sit on one of the larger tables (8 or 10) hosted by one of the ship's staff or officers, or by presenting ourselves to the maitre d' and saying we'd enjoy company. So we met some lovely people. Probably almost two thirds on board were North American, a fair number of Brits, and the rest of several nationalities. My husband describes the whole cruise as 'pretty much impeccable'. Scratching around for any suggestions for improvement was tough, and perhaps the only thing which could have made the cruise even more enjoyable for us would have been if they could have organised to have some dancing in the theatre / lounge which has plenty of space (and was probably under-utilised). Instead, the only dancing was in the Club, which only had enough room for the squashed jiggling on the spot type of dancing. If you were looking for Las Vegas / Broadway style shows, you'd have been out of luck, but entertainment was perfect for us, in other words, low key, not too loud, nice singers, a couple of dancers, and port lectures and bridge and galley tours.We hadn't been to several of the ports, and particularly liked Corsica, Sardegna, Mahon (Minorca)and Valencia. We will certainly be happy to go back for a longer look at these ports. We were also blessed with weather that was pretty good for the time of year in the Med (end of November) so that probably was a bonus for us. We have already paid a deposit on a future cruise with Seabourn Read Less
Sail Date: June 2012
We have sailed on many luxury lines and this was our first Seabourn cruise. We had heard raving reviews and I don't know what we expected, but we were let down. The service was excellent, but not any better than on comparable ... Read More
We have sailed on many luxury lines and this was our first Seabourn cruise. We had heard raving reviews and I don't know what we expected, but we were let down. The service was excellent, but not any better than on comparable lines. The food was very good, probably a notch better than the competition. Our suite was disappointing. It was smaller than expected, in comparison with other luxury lines. There were larger suites on the ship, but much more expensive yet. I cannot complain about the ports of call. They were great. We did not take any of the ships tours, except in Menorca, where it was OK, nothing special. We booked our own private tours everywhere, since the prices of the private tours were prohibitive. One aspect of the cruise was better than the competition, and that was the shows. They were great. I would sail on Seabourn again if prices were more in lines with the competion. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2012
two fabulous days in Rome followed by our Iberian Idyll cruise. Embarkation was a doddle; no waiting or hanging around and straight to a tasty lunch. Our midships verandah suite was spotless with a chilled bottle of champagne waiting ... Read More
two fabulous days in Rome followed by our Iberian Idyll cruise. Embarkation was a doddle; no waiting or hanging around and straight to a tasty lunch. Our midships verandah suite was spotless with a chilled bottle of champagne waiting for our arrival. Our stewardess was a young English girl who was very nice and looked after us well. Well done Emma. thank god - no towel animals. we did not use the formal restaurant but ate in the Colonnade or had room service. we thought the food was excellent and service equally so. They were all bang on with regard to drink top ups etc - we were extremely well looked after and it was nice that part of their service is that they remember your name. bed linens were high quality and the bed extremely comfortable. I chose complimentary toiletries by L'Occitane and Molton Brown. I have to think hard to find a downside to this ship, but I will say that the excursions are very expensive and the choice of products in the shop is limited and geared towards the mature American market. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2012
We, (a couple in our mid-50s) boarded the ship in Civitavecchia having taking a private car to the port from Rome airport. Quickest embarkation ever, at around 1230, and straight up to The Colonnade for lunch, with the first of many ... Read More
We, (a couple in our mid-50s) boarded the ship in Civitavecchia having taking a private car to the port from Rome airport. Quickest embarkation ever, at around 1230, and straight up to The Colonnade for lunch, with the first of many glasses of champagne that would be consumed throughout the cruise. We were in a V6 amidships cabin (booked a V1 guarantee) which was in a superb location on deck 7, close to Seabourn Square. I think all the veranda cabins are the same size, with large bathroom with separate shower, bath and double basins, walk-in wardrobe with large safe, comfortable bed, sofa, table & chairs for dining, and two semi sun loungers on the deep balcony (though I never got to grips with the foot rest of these!). Even a choice of soaps and Molten Brown products were available. Muster station was carried out before sailing, with passengers being asked to assemble in The Restaurant, and names were checked off to make sure everyone attended. There was one formal optional night, where most men were in suits and ladies in cocktail dresses (there were a few in long but not many) and the jackets required for men policy was enforced in The Restaurant on formal optional and elegantly casual nights. We found the wines provided to be perfectly acceptable and you could ask for a different variety if you didn't like what was offered, or pay for something 'premium'. Huge variety of cocktails and liqueurs available and they certainly don't scrimp on measures. We found the food to be delicious -- sensible size portions and a good choice in The Restaurant, The Colonnade, Patio Grill, Restaurant 2 (reservations required) or room service. We tended to eat breakfast at The Colonnade, a mix of buffet and table service and dinner in The Restaurant. We did not try Restaurant 2, which is reservations only, nor room service. You can choose which drinks you would like in your cabin beforehand, though we only drank the soft drinks and never opened the alcohol -- too much going on elsewhere. There were certainly enough sunbeds on our cruise, with those round the main pool being the most popular. Ours was a port intensive cruise, with only one sea day, so there was not a great deal of entertainment, though there were things such as galley visits, bridge visits, unsupervised bridge games, chef's demonstration and three musical evenings (two dancers and four singers of varying talent) and a magician, which we did not see, plus a trip ashore shopping with the chef. We called at Portovenere, Sanary-sur-Mer (which despite being a Sunday and election day had plenty of shops open especially for us), both of which were tender ports but it was only ever a short wait for a lifeboat to/from the ship, Barcelona, which was really busy (and a tip we learned, if you are a 'senior' you do not need to queue to get into La Sagrada Familia -- you can go to the front of the line apparently -- we did not qualify, which I guess is a good thing!) Malaga, Cadiz, Portimao (there was quite a lot of moaning about this port -- granted it is a bit run down now but Praia da Rocha beach is about a 10 minutes walk away, or there are lots of golf courses nearby) and finally Lisbon. We did our own thing in each port, having read up on them first (and great shoe shops in Cadiz and Portugal for those who might be interested!). The ship's tours did not particularly appeal and we thought they seemed very expensive and the HoHo buses are always a good bet to get a feel for the place and see the main sights. All the crew on board were amazingly attentive and friendly. Passengers were mainly North American and British but a good mix from numerous other countries as well. At meals you could choose to dine alone or join others, which is what we did most nights and met some great people. We would definitely cruise with Seabourn again and it has without doubt spoilt us.   Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2012
I cruised with my 28 year old daughter from March 31 to April 6 on the beautiful Seabourn Sojourn. We left from Monte Carlo and went to Marseille, Sete, Barcelona,and Elba. This is a wonderful cruise for people who enjoy fine food, ... Read More
I cruised with my 28 year old daughter from March 31 to April 6 on the beautiful Seabourn Sojourn. We left from Monte Carlo and went to Marseille, Sete, Barcelona,and Elba. This is a wonderful cruise for people who enjoy fine food, excellent service, large cabins, and open bars. The all inclusive concept is indeed that; room service, all service, all drinks, a fully stocked refrigerator with drinks and alcohol, and movies were all included. The ship is gorgeous and immaculate, our cabin was a balcony suite that was very well appointed. The food on the ship was exceptional. It was very high quality and beautifully prepared. We ate lobster tails, caviar, lamb, crab legs, and drank champagne. The service was amazing, very kind and accommodating. Perhaps my one criticism was that the entertainment, particularly the "show" was very poor quality; the singers were off key and no one in the show danced well. In addition, the dance music group did the same set each time they performed, old disco music. We couldn't believe that a ship of this high standing has such poor entertainment. I would not hesitate to recommend the Sojourn unless you are looking for a party ship. Be prepared to feel lucky to be able to enjoy such a special experience. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2012
As a couple that has traveled extensively and usually in way off the main road "adventure mode", the thought of being trapped on a large ship with thousands of other people was enough to make the blood run cold. I also get ... Read More
As a couple that has traveled extensively and usually in way off the main road "adventure mode", the thought of being trapped on a large ship with thousands of other people was enough to make the blood run cold. I also get seasick so the entire idea seemed dreadfully unappealing. We have friends who love cruising and kept telling us to try it. One day a brochure arrived in the mail with a very good offer for a 6 day Mediterranean luxury cruise aboard the Sojourn complete with complimentary veranda upgrade. We thought that six days wasn't bad if it turned out to be insufferable agony and that location would not lend itself to a lot of rocking and rolling of the ship so we signed up. We also decided to spend three days in Provence and the night before sailing in Beaulieu-Sur-Mer as well as two nights in Rome post-cruise. We got a taxi to take us to the embarkation area and our bags were whisked away. It took not even fifteen minutes to get checked in and get our photo IDs and we then proceeded to our suite where our room stewardess was waiting with champagne and appetizers. She was very efficient in showing us everything about our suite, offering an assortment of soaps and other amenities and making sure that our mini-bar preferences were correct. Shortly thereafter there was a mandatory safety drill and we immediately began meeting other passengers. After the drill we were having cocktails al fresco with some new friends and enjoying the beginning of this adventure. One of my very few complaints is that the band was a bit too loud as we were in a far corner and still had a bit of difficulty conversing over the noise. We proceeded back to check out our suite more thoroughly and to dress for dinner. The suite was spacious and well decorated with a huge walk in closet and a safe. The wide screen TV offered a large selection of entertainment from movies and news to educational programs given on the ship. The bed was extremely comfortable but the couch....not so much. As we rarely used it, this was not an issue. The veranda was roomy enough for a table and two chairs with some extra room and was a lovely addition to the suite. We have dined in many fine establishments in our travels and felt that the food in all of the restaurants was of extremely high quality. We never once had trouble getting seated and we truly enjoyed the variety of cuisine from the classic offerings of The Restaurant to the quirky and innovative tasting menu of Restaurant 2. For buffets as well as food cooked to order, the Colonnade and the Patio were ideal. I have to say that the service in every one of these restaurants was spot on at all times. We never found ourselves waiting for anything and the staff was always friendly and outgoing without being obtrusive. The house wines that were poured were quite nice and to be honest, better than what we had expected. The ports visited were quite fun and we were happy that we could walk on and off the ship without having to wait for a tender. ( As you can tell, we are very novice when it comes to cruising ). There was plenty of time to hike around and explore and then get back to the ship for a bit of relaxation before moving on. I have to admit that I did not care for the one day at sea and as it was a dreary spring day, I spent it in the gym which was quite well equipped. Perhaps the larger ships are better for offering more activities but I do not see any sort of trans-Atlantic type cruise in the cards for us. As far as the entertainment went we did like the comedian fellow even though we came in halfway through the act. To be honest, we don't usually join in group entertainment activities so we didn't spend any time dancing to the live band or that sort of thing. After dinner, we generally headed up to the lovely observation bar and had champagne with new friends and listened to the lovely piano and singing of Simon. A perfectly relaxing end to what were usually very active and full days on shore. I must also say that I have read of "cruise snobbery" where some people are quite rude to others they consider "newcomers". We did not observe any such thing during our cruise and we met many people who had cruised many, many times. Even my black, purple and green highlighted hair didn't seem to put anyone off. ;-) Thankfully we were told that taxis can be difficult to get at Civitavecchia so we chose to book a private car through Seabourn. Once again, this was handled with ease and efficiency and it literally took less than five minutes to get our bags and get in the car and be off to Rome. In summary, we had a wonderful first time cruising experience and will definitely do it again. We enjoyed the all-inclusive aspect and never once felt any kind of pressure to pay added gratuities to any of the staff. The ship was spotlessly clean, the crew was completely and always professional and now we are spoiled. Everyone that we told this was our first cruise told us that we had set the bar pretty high and we could not agree more. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2011
SEABOURN ODYSSEY CRUISE 31.10.11 TO 07.11.11 This was our third Seabourn Cruise this year, having sailed on Sojourn and Quest earlier in the year. We flew to Istanbul the day before embarkation and stayed in ... Read More
SEABOURN ODYSSEY CRUISE 31.10.11 TO 07.11.11 This was our third Seabourn Cruise this year, having sailed on Sojourn and Quest earlier in the year. We flew to Istanbul the day before embarkation and stayed in the Senator Best Western, this hotel was recommended by British Airways. We were met by a prearranged courier service who took us to the hotel, a very efficient service. The hotel was very clean and comfortable; our only problem was that it was situated right next to a Mosque, so we were awakened very early by the Call to Prayer from the speakers. We were then taken to the ship by the same taxi service we had had the night before, again on time and very efficient. Our arrival at the dock at 2pm was greeted by a very long queue for check in, I must say that Seabourn must take note, fortunately for us the weather was dry but rather windy, but if it had been raining then passengers would get very wet, there was no shelter until you got inside the actual check in area. Even though there were more than four people in the area checking passengers passports only one was working, and even he was too busy talking to so that passengers had a very long wait. Once through this check we were soon onboard with the normal service you would expect from Seabourn. We were escorted straight to our suite, and when the lift doors opened we were greeted by name from the Maitre'D from our cruise on Quest, a gentleman by the name of Nicolas. We then found out that he had recently been promoted to Head of Training. I cannot believe that the staff remember people's names like this, they must see thousands of passengers over the weeks they are onboard. Our suite was as normal, everything in place including the onboard bar stocked to our requests. We were then introduced to our Stewardess, Ana, again nothing seemed too much trouble for her, requests made were soon fulfilled. Our sail away from Istanbul was magical, it had started to go dark and all the lights were on and we were greeted by the Cruise Director, Mr. John Barron and his deputy Mr. Garry Timms, both of these gentlemen proved over the cruise how likable they are. I can see why passengers have such good words to say about these two as each day progressed they became more like lost friends. We were even invited to a hosted table in the MDR by the two. The ship in general was clean and tidy, and the staff could not do enough for you, many times we were greeted by name, and asked if everything was to our liking, you only had to ask and they went out of their way to accommodate you. Little things on the Odyssey were slightly different than her two younger sisters, main one for us was the spa area. On both Sojourn and Quest they have done away with the free Ladies and Gents steam room, but on the Odyssey they had both steam room and sauna in the ladies and gents changing area. We think we can see why this is, and it must be the money. On Sojourn and Quest they charged to use the stream room and at 30 dollars a day was in our opinion is rather a lot. Many of the passengers commented on this and felt that they should have kept the design the same for all three ships. Food again was good to excellent throughout, the only problem we found, was that they ran out of "Berries" We talked to the Chef and he said that due to the recent strikes in Piraeus (Greece) some of the containers had not been able to get through. We also had an evening in Ephesus which was well attended, but due to the time of year it did get very cold towards the end of the evening. As usual when we returned to Odyssey we had the traditional "Welcome Home" where the staff comes out to greet you "Home" along with the usual hot toddies. Our Itinerary was as follows:- ISTANBUL LESBOS KUSADASI MYKONOS RHODES PATMOS MILOS ATHENS Soon it was all too soon to disembark Odyssey and hope that it will be not too long to board yet another of Seabourn Yachts. Thanks must go to John Barron, Cruise Director, Garry Timms, Deputy Cruise Director, Our waiters Tony and Vaughan, and Angela in the Colonnade our Stewardess Ana and the whole of the crew, including bar tenders, entertainers etc etc. Read Less
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