118 Seward Luxury Cruise Reviews

I have read recent reviews of cruises on the Mariner that cast doubt on the exceptionable quality of the cruise experience on this ship. In part, my motivation for writing this review is to balance what has been written by some others (and ... Read More
I have read recent reviews of cruises on the Mariner that cast doubt on the exceptionable quality of the cruise experience on this ship. In part, my motivation for writing this review is to balance what has been written by some others (and to reinforce the positive reviews of the Mariner Alaska cruises that also appear in CruiseCritic). I travelled with my two adult daughters for a 7 day Alaska cruise on the Regent Seven Seas Mariner. We spent several days on our own in Anchorage prior to the cruise, travelling on day trips with a rented car. The night before the cruise we stayed at the Anchorage Hilton (which we enjoyed somewhat less than our stay at the Sheraton Anchorage Hotel & Spa) in a free, pre-cruise package, followed by a bus transfer to the port in Seward on the day of the cruise. The embarkation was extremely quick and simple, taking no more than about 5 minutes. The cruise experience of all three of us on the Regent Seven Seas Mariner was extraordinary. The staff was uniformly outstanding (more details about this later) and very friendly, from the captain to the dining staff and the room cleaners. The food was, in general, excellent, and great efforts were made to adapt the menu to the special needs of one of my daughters, who is lactose intolerant and does not eat meat (more about this in the next paragraph). We enjoyed almost all of the shore excursions, although some were much better than others. We chose not to go to most of the entertainment shows (usually because we ate dinner relatively late, so I have no comments to offer on them). When I reserved the cruise, I informed our Regent Cruise Consultant (through whom I purchased the cruise), that one of my daughters is lactose intolerant and does not eat meat. Shortly after our arrival on board the Mariner, we met with the Douglas, the officer in charge of dining on the ship. He told us that every evening we would receive menus for the next day at all of the Mariner's restaurants and that we would be able to make modifications to suit my daughter's food needs. The first two days we made requests to make modifications in various dishes that were on the menu -- and to add a non-dairy prepared dessert. We also asked our butler to arrange with the restaurants that my daughter receive a special order of non-dairy pancakes at breakfast. Everything was prepared as we requested. Then we decided to be more pro-active with everything on the menu. What followed was extraordinary. We would request salads, main courses and desserts that did not appear on the menu, but whose ingredients either appeared somewhere on one of the restaurant's menus or which we knew were available. Essentially, we prepared unique dishes that my daughter thought she would enjoy, and the kitchen staff prepared those dishes especially for her. In addition, at every meal they would prepare a special cake or pie for her dessert and, on the last night of the cruise she received a fresh cherry pie that was the tastiest dessert that I sampled on the entire cruise. I can't emphasize enough the contribution to our enjoyment of the cruise that was made by such outstanding and individual treatment (which also was tasty); it transformed one of my daughter's and my concerns about the cruise into an enjoyable and sometimes even exciting (culinary) experience. I also would like to single out the warm and friendly atmosphere in interactions with the ship's crew. We had several opportunities to speak briefly with the captain, who was always willing to spend a minute or two to talk with us. Our butler, Arnel, was extraordinarily helpful and went out of his way to resolve any issue or answer any question that we might have. The cleaning staff, including our steward Thirupathi, always greeted us with a smile and a warm welcome. The dining room staff was almost universally warm, attentive and helpful -- and, in addition to Douglas, I would like to single out the French Dining Room Officer Maria; both of my daughters and I enjoyed talking with her and we also were impressed by her ability to direct the staff under her supervision as well as to take responsibility on herself. The ship experience was in general very positive. The ship was clean and aesthetically pleasing. There were some problems with the 2 elevators on the other side of the ship from our room and this may have affected many passengers, but the 3 elevators on the forward side of the ship had no problems. A particular on-board experience that the three of us greatly enjoyed was the cruise along the Hubbard Glacier and the ability to bring the ship so close to the glacier, allowing us to clearly see and hear the sounds of the glacier's calving. Additional highlights for us were the shore excursions. In general, we enjoyed the excursions, although there were truly local experts who added tremendously to their guiding based on many years of experience, whereas other of the "local" guides were less familiar with the sights that they described, as they were summer staff that seemed to have undergone a quick orientation, but were lacking deeper knowledge of the surroundings. The two excursions that one or all of us enjoyed the most were the Tongass Rainforest Nature Hike (from Sitka), which had an excellent guide, and the Mendenhall Glacier and Whale Quest (from Juneau). To sum up, on the basis of my cruise experience on this Alaska, Regent Seven Seas Cruise, I would definitely choose to sail again with Regent. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
My husband and I were looking for a smaller ship ( Sojourn holds 450 passengers) and a trip to Alaska. The ship is almost 10 years old and could use a little attention/updating in the way of carpeting, painting. Just a bit... That being ... Read More
My husband and I were looking for a smaller ship ( Sojourn holds 450 passengers) and a trip to Alaska. The ship is almost 10 years old and could use a little attention/updating in the way of carpeting, painting. Just a bit... That being said, the trip was quite enjoyable. We began in Seward, AK with effortless embarkation. Into the Gulf of Alaska ( seas a bit rough) and on to Harriman Fjord and Icy Strait Point. Juneau was the first major port, then Tracy Arm, Haines, Sitka, Wrangell, Rudyerd Bay, Ketchikan, Prince Rupert, BC, interior straits substituted for Klemtu, Alert Bay, BC and finally Vancouver to disembark. Disembarkation went smoothly. We arranged through Seabourn to stay two extra nights in Vancouver. Everything went off without a hitch. The Fairmont Pacific Rim is lovely. Pros: 1) service was OUTSTANDING on the ship. Our attendant, Kudzai, couldn’t have been more enthusiastic and helpful. Servers were on the ball. 2) excursions were plentiful. There were naturalists on board to give talks prior to port calls. Numerous Zodiac boats and kayaks were available for excursion use. There were many excursions to choose from, most included wildlife sightings though not guaranteed. We were lucky and saw whales, sea otters, black bears and sea lions each time we ventured out. Food: three restaurant areas to choose from with 24 hr room service. The “ Square” ( library with coffee, sandwiches and sweets) was another alternative if you didn’t want a lot to eat. Thomas Keller Restaurant is small and must be reserved. We went one night and it was fine. Gluten free and vegetarian options were available every night. Entertainment: husband and I didn’t take in much of this. Shows at night we’re at 9:45 and most days we were simply too tired to go. We did watch a magician who was actually very good and a comedian who also was pretty funny. The last night the Sojourn singers sang songs from musicals and classical pieces. It was a very good performance. There were also periods of time on the ship blocked out for bridge games, trivia, name that tune, LGBTQ get togethers, friends of Bill W., casino and various demonstrations ( cooking, jewelry making, etc. Cons: weather cannot be helped, but some excursions were cancelled due to it. Seabourn tried hard to suggest other similar options. Money was refunded upon cancellation. Spa is rather small. It also costs extra to use the sauna even if you have booked a treatment the same day. The spa attendants seemed not busy at all. I had a reflexology treatment which was awesome and my husband had a massage. He declared his massage very good. Often a massage chair was brought into a corridor, which also had me thinking spa business was slow. * this cruise seemed to be one for an older crowd. No kids. My husband and I are 58 and we felt like we were one of the youngest, if not the youngest couples on board. Still.... you couldn’t beat the glorious scenery: glaciers, waterfalls, wildlife all seen at close range gliding through the inside passage. Service was incomparable. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My lifelong motto has been that I hate the idea of cruising. The hoards of people, the mass quantity of low quality food, the tiny rooms, and silly excursions. I’ve been on two short cruises to appease family before, and just didn’t ... Read More
My lifelong motto has been that I hate the idea of cruising. The hoards of people, the mass quantity of low quality food, the tiny rooms, and silly excursions. I’ve been on two short cruises to appease family before, and just didn’t like it. Well, when my other half suggested taking a luxury cruise through Alaska, I was not a fan of the idea. But, after watching a few videos, reading a few reviews and realizing he wasn’t kidding, we booked the Silversea’s Silver Muse 7 day Alaska cruise that started right before Labor Day weekend. The thought of the Butler Service, the suite with a bathtub and a balcony of our own, I had high hopes, but was very worried that my distaste for cruising would taint my experience. Spoiler Alert - I loved Silversea and would cruise with them again. This doesn’t feel like cruising - its luxury living. We booked the train transfer from Anchorage to Seward, and when I learned about the timeline of this, I was not pleased. First, the train didn’t leave until noon or later, so you wouldn’t get on the boat until after 5pm. Luckily for me, there was flooding on the railway tracks so they shut down the train, and we were instead going by motor coach, which meant we’d get to the ship by 2pm. I was so glad, so in hindsight, I’d recommend the bus transfer (or getting to Seward on your own), just so you can have a light lunch after embarkation on board and spend time wandering around the boat, checking things out. The boat is exactly as everyone else has described - contemporary, modern and new. The suite exceeded our expectations - I mean, who has a full size bath on a boat? The bed was extremely comfortable. I read that people didn’t like the way the TV worked. We loved it, because we could look at the restaurant menus, read about the next destination, watch videos of different cruises, and occasionally watch a movie or documentary. Why would anyone actually watch TV on vacation?? The butler service was outstanding. We became accustomed to breakfast in our room daily, along with a bottle of champagne waiting for us each afternoon. We were well taken care of, but it wasn’t intrusive at all. We only used the gym twice during our cruise, I walked on a treadmill on the day at sea and did one of the exercise yoga classes. The gym was clean and the treadmill was new and worked great. I liked that you were watching out the back window of the boat, but the class was just okay. Don’t expect to come onboard and get fit. The yoga class I took was very basic and ended up being cut short due to the raffle that day. Also the room for group classes is tiny, maybe 8 people can attend each session. Thank goodness for us, the cruise was mostly adults, and the ages varied. We are in our late 40’s and did not feel out of place. There were people of all ages, but there were definitely a lot of people well past 60, and everyone seemed to be retired. There were only about 3 babies/toddlers on the cruise, they were part of big family groups, so I don’t think it was a “choice” to be on this cruise with a child, since Silversea is definitely not designed for families or young ones. We seek out trips where kids are not allowed, so this was a plus in my book. The enrichment sessions for the Alaska cruise were good. There were several sessions, one on Glaciers, one on Totem Poles, another on Bears, one on Alaskan Bush Pilots and I’m sure there were others, all by the same person. One thing we loved was that if you missed the session, they recorded it and put it on the TV! We only attended one of the evening “shows” and it was fine. (but this is the part of cruising I hate, cheesy shows that are just embarrassing to watch). However, I will admit, the way Silversea did the show was classier than most, really just simplistic singing of songs from multiple eras. Also, the ladies that were singing in Silver Note were also very good. We sat at the bar twice and listened to them. Others have mentioned that this boat did not feel crowded. They are absolutely correct. The way they manage the restaurants, the activities, and the fact that the boat is quite large, you never feel crowded. We ran into people here and there, but overall, it was so different from other cruises where you feel like herded cattle. The only time you really noticed large groups was during the safety briefing and the last day while you wait to exit the ship. Now, onto the food onboard. My favorite dinners were at Kaiseki and Indochine - do not skip these!! Indochine had the most flavorful, unique food on the boat. I did enjoy La Terrazza, they had great house-made pasta. La Dame was very nice, but the food isn’t all that much different or better than Atlantide, which was great for formal night and the food was very nice. We ate at the pizza restaurant twice for lunch, and loved it. The Grill was a complete miss for me. I didn’t like the cook on a rock thing, and being pescatarian, my choices were limited. I opted for the shrimp, and it was gross. I couldn’t even eat them. The texture was awful. However, someone immediately noticed I was not eating them and offered me everything and anything to make up for it. We never dined at Silvernote, since we didn’t make a reservation early on, so we never got to dine there. Many people said it was great. The excursions we took were overall outstanding, well organized and timed well. While we could have booked some of these things on our own, we liked the idea of being with the companies that the cruise ship hired, so we knew they’d get us back to the ship ontime. Here are reviews of the ones we did: In Juneau, we did the Mendenhall Glacier Dog Sledding Trip. This was the highlight of the trip for me. From the thrilling helicopter transfer to the high country dogsled camp where you could see and hear over 300 dogs barking and getting excited to run, to the actual dog sled ride we took, and then we got to pet all the dogs and even held some 8 week old puppies. HIGHLY RECOMMEND this excursion. In the afternoon in Juneau, we did the Whitewater Rafting trip, which was super fun. The “rapids” were very mild and easy to navigate, but it was a nice way to spend the afternoon. They give you rain boots and waders, so as long as you have a rain coat, you’ll stay dry. We did get a few fun splashes along the way, but there was never a fear of falling out. In Skagway, we did the Chilkoot Lake Wildlife Quest. This was just okay. We took the public ferry to Haines, got in a small coach with 5 other couples and drove around looking for wildlife. We saw several bald eagles, but no bears. The lunch they served was nice, but overall, I would not choose this excursion again. Being active people in our 40’s, we would have liked a more adventurous back country experience. This would be a great experience for someone with mobility issues, but wants to see wildlife. In Sitka, we opted to take the Indian Falls Waterfall Hike. This was a no joke, 10 mile hike. We walked 5 miles in, and 5 miles back and it took the full 6 hours to complete. It was gorgeous getting well into the rainforest and our guide was a fantastic 21 year old local who knew so much about the area, the flora and fauna, and just a very pleasant person to spend the day with. If you opt for this strenuous excursion, make sure you have a good raincoat, good sturdy shoes and water resistant pants. The last 30 minutes of the trail we got dumped on, and I learned that my older raincoat was no longer as effective against the elements...... In Ketchikan, we took the Alaska Bear Adventure, which meant we took a float plane to a remote part of the island, got on a bus drove a bit, and then walked down to the viewing platform over the river to see bears. This was an AMAZING experience. We saw several bears fishing for salmon in the quick hour we were on the viewing platform. HIGHLY RECOMMEND this excursion. Bring binoculars and a camera! Tips: 1. Book dinners for later than you think. We often opted for 6pm or 7pm reservations, and in hindsight, 8pm would have been much better. Time flies between returning from an excursion and going to dinner, so having an extra hour to take a bath, relax or use the steam room, and get dressed for dinner would have been nice. I feel like this was our ‘rookie’ mistake being less experienced cruisers. 2. Do all your research on excursions before the booking window opens up. Then, go online the day they open up and reserve the ones you want immediately. The smaller group and more exclusive excursions were full within 24 hours. We did this and got to do every excursion we wanted! 3. Make dinner reservations right away as well, La Dame and Kaiseki were both full immediately after the booking window opened. 4. Do dress up for Formal Night! We ate at Atlantide for the formal night and that appears to be where many people go for the formal night. How dressy should you go? Totally up to you, but I saw long gowns, short cocktail dresses, sparkly pant suits on women and the men were in dark suits or tuxedo’s. 5. Things to bring: bring bath bombs (or bubble bath) for your bathtub; Pack a outlet converter for the UK, (while they have both US and UK outlets in your suite, having the converter made my life easier) and make sure you have comfy lounge clothes for time in your suite. If I decided to cruise again, I would definitely go with Silversea. This is a classy, upscale experience that offered great excursions, which is the only reason I would cruise, to see something, do something, or experience new places. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We have sailed on Regent's 'sister' line, Oceania Cruises, several times and have had excellent experiences, so when we were searching for a higher end cruise line to Alaska and found Regent and learned it was all-inclusive, ... Read More
We have sailed on Regent's 'sister' line, Oceania Cruises, several times and have had excellent experiences, so when we were searching for a higher end cruise line to Alaska and found Regent and learned it was all-inclusive, we decided to give them a try. Overall it was a good experience but I would not rate the experience as highly as I have rated the Oceania cruises we have experienced. Ship: While the ship has been updated, the decor is lacking in appeal. The main carpet throughout the ship is dated in style though it looks new. The multi-story atrium wall across from the bank of elevators is a dark brown with some blown glass pieces that look dark and dreary. The artwork throughout the ship is contemporary but not to my taste Our cabin 732, a Veranda suite, was appealing with comfortable furnishings. The bathroom had marble and granite with a roomy shower -- no tub. Dining: Marina has two truly speciality restaurants. Prime 7 for steak and Chartreuse for French cusine. They turn the breakfast/lunch buffet restaurant, La Veranda, into Sette Mari for Italian themed cusine in the evening which was quite good so much so we went back a second time. The carbonara was very good. Prime 7 was excellent. We ordered a ribeye steak and Alaskan King Crab and made our own shared surf and turf. Both were excellent and we enjoyed this dinner tremendously. However, the people seated at the table next to us ordered lobster and we could overhear them complaining that it was overcooked and they were disappointed Chartreuse was our poorest most disappointing meal of the week. I ordered a tenderloin steak -- it was tough and not flavorful. The cheese souffle, which had to be ordered 20 minutes ahead of time, was ok -- not bad but not the best souffle I have had. Our first evening we dined in the main dining room, Compass Rose. I ordered the fish special of the evening which was pan fried red snapper. Something must have happened to my order as it took a long time and the waiter as well as maitre d came by to apologize for the wait and ensure me my meal would come soon. When the fish finally did arrive it was over cooked and dry. Other meals we had at Compass Rose were much better including our last evening on board during which I had a crusted baked salmon which was cooked perfectly and very tasty. We had breakfast each day at LaVeranda. I initially was impressed that their cooked to order egg station would take your order and table number and then deliver it to you. On Oceania, one of my main complaints for their similar breakfast station was that you placed your order and then had to stand with alot of other people waiting. Regent's ordering system was an improvement, with the exception of one morning where they must have lost my order and I waited and waited. My husband was finished with his breakfast and I was still waiting for mine. I had to ask wait staff a couple of times to check on my order. Lunches at the Pool Grill were all very good. In general, the wait staff throughout the restaurants are all very professional and eager to serve and please. Being all-inclusive, we enjoyed wine with every dinner and the somms kept our glasses full. The all inclusive for drinks and wine was one of the top experiences on Regent -- there was no waiting for a bill at the end of a meal or in one of the lounges. When we were finished we just got up and left. Entertainment and Activities: While I enjoyed several of the shows put on by the onboard singers and dancers, these were not to the taste of my husband. One evening was a country-themed show which he would not even go to so that evening we watched a movie in our cabin. Since the Mariner is a small ship there were not multiple concurrent choices for evening entertainment. The first night and a subsequent night they had a magician, Fred Becker with his wife/assistant who also sang. He put on a great show both nights they performed. He also did a workshop and taught a trick or two and answered questions which was interesting. On Oceania, there was a string quartet that played nightly. Regent did not have this. They had a duo with a guitar and a singer who were good but they were not in the Observation Lounge during the pre-dinner cocktail time. Playing at that time every evening was a pianist who played well but it was very much background music and not entertainment that you sought out. Our other issue with the entertainment was that shows do not start until 9:30 p.m. We were generally done with dinner by 8 or 8:30 p.m. which meant that we had time to kill before the show started. Moving up the show time to 9 p.m. would be a great help to how an evening flows for passengers. The shows were mostly sparsely attended with the theater on the main floor more than half empty and very few seats taken in the balcony. Moving up the time to start earlier I think would help draw a larger audience. Activities were few on board, although we did particpate a few days in trivia and my husband did the mensa quiz. The enrichment lectures on Alaska and wildlife were all interesting and well delivered. Cruise Director: The cruise director Andy was very outgoing. I saw and interacted with him and his wife, Tammy, who serves as social hostess, more than any other cruise director/team on any ship I have sailed on. Andy was at every show walking around and talking with people prior to the show. Tammy also was very friendly and talkative. They are excellent respresentives and ambassadors for the Regent brand. Ports and Shore Excursions: Another benefit of Regent is that we had many shore excursion options from which to choose that were included in the cruise fare. However, the best 'port 'was actually the afternoon we sailed into Disenchantment Bay and approached Hubbard Glacier, all while on the ship. We staked out a prime viewing spot earlier in the afternoon at the Observation Lounge which is forward on the top deck. The day we sailed in the weather was outstanding! The cruise director, the cruise enrichment lecturer, Eric Ball (who was excellent -- I attended all three of his talks) both said it was the best weather day all season for Hubbard Glacier. Being a smaller shiip, the captain was able to take us in extremly close to the glacier and we spent quite a bit of time 'hanging out' there. It was a festive, fun party atmosphere with all of the other passengers. Other shore excursions we took: In Sitka, we went two-person kayaking which was very scenic and enjoyable; hiking the Chilkoot Trail, although we had several older (in their 80s) passengers who clearly were not phycially fit enough to be on this excursion, which was rated a 3, the top difficulty rating. Consequently, we had to go very slow on the hike and continually had to keep waiting for them to catch up. I was concerned that one of them would fall going up or down the terrain. So this put a damper on this hike, although the trip ended with river raft ride along a river where we saw so many bald eagle I lost count. We also did a hike which was rated a 2 in difficulty that was a leisurely stroll through the Tongas National Forest with an extremely knowledgeable nature guide. The highlight of this excursion was that we were able to see lots of salmon swimming upstream. Another excursion was a 10-person canoeing trip to the Mendenhall Glacier. The canoeing ended up being more challenging than expected but it was very enjoyable and we got as close to the face of the glacier as we were allowed. We also went by Nugget Falls and were able to get out of the canoe and get some great photos in front of the falls. Overall: One of the reasons we were attracted to Regent originally was that the ship is a smaller ship -- under 700 passengers. However, this ended up in some respects being somewhat of a negative to the overall experience. Sometimes we were the only couple or perhaps one of two or three couples in the Observation Lounge or Horizon Lounge. Many areas of the ship were empty and 'boring'. The best times on board were when there were people filling the room and creating some buzz or excitement, such as when we approached Hubbard Glacier, and another late afternoon as we sailed the Inside Passage and people again gathered in the Observation Lounge to look for orcas and humpback whales, which we were delighted to see! The all-inclusive experience definitely has benefits. Passengers looking for a very quiet, small ship experience will be quite pleased with Regent. I would consider sailing with them again depending, of course, upon itinerary and pricing. However, for the overall experience, our next couples cruise will be back on Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Some friends our ours recommended this cruise after they had taken it and loved it. We booked it through the travel arm of a large retail enterprise, which was probably a mistake. Prior to the cruise, there were several communication ... Read More
Some friends our ours recommended this cruise after they had taken it and loved it. We booked it through the travel arm of a large retail enterprise, which was probably a mistake. Prior to the cruise, there were several communication glitches, but I don't know whether that was the fault of the travel "agent" or Regent. In the end, the glitches mostly worked out, but it was a frustrating start (example: took forever to get our flight information and then huge delay in the flights actually being booked, which made upgrades difficult). Then, when we arrived at the Anchorage airport, the transportation arrangements to our hotel (the Marriott) were chaotic. The young man who was supposed to be holding a "Regent" sign in the baggage claim area did not have a sign; we found him through the process of elimination, since the other cruise lines all had signs. Regent was taking guests to more than one hotel, and there was some disorganization surrounding getting appropriate bags onto the appropriate bus. Unfortunately, none of the people involved in the process inspired confidence, and were amused that any of us were worried about our bags that were nowhere in sight (turns out there was a third cart of luggage still inside the airport that was almost overlooked). Anyway, we and our bags got to the Marriott where we were not allowed to take our bags to our own rooms; the Marriott staff who brought them to our room entered without knocking, which of course is not appropriate, but apparently he thought none of us were in our rooms yet. Ah well, the bags arrived, and these were annoyances, not earth-shaking problems. It's just that is was surprising, given Regent's reputation. In the end, we enjoyed a very nice visit in Anchorage, with good food, some nice shops, and a visit to their very nice museum. The next day we took the two-hour plus bus ride to Seward to board, but we left much later than the time Regent had included in the materials they sent us, which was actually a good thing, again just surprising. It was a beautiful and pleasant and uneventful ride; our driver was personable and informative. The boarding process in Seward went smoothly and fairly rapidly, and we were happy to find our bags already in our room (a deluxe F suite on deck 8) when we arrived. Our room steward greeted us and was delightful. The distilled water I had requested for my husband's CPAP was not in the room and the steward clearly had not been informed of our request, but she very quickly retrieved some for us. What we missed, unfortunately, was a get-together that occurred promptly after boarding; it was on the printed materials left in our room, but we were focusing on getting somewhat settled in, changing clothes, etc., and had not yet read the materials, so we missed it. Live and learn, we won't make that mistake next time. As for the cruise itself: We were unbelievably lucky and had perfect weather the whole time. This minimized any negatives that occurred. We loved all of our excursions, which were all no-extra-fee. We loved Compass Rose and Prime 7; Chartreuse was disappointing in food, but the service was excellent (as it was for the most part in every restaurant). We mixed it up for many of our breakfasts and lunches - Pool Grill (excellent), La Veranda (also great), Compass Rose (became our favorite). We also liked the one dinner we had in Siete Mare. One of us attended the guest lectures, and was impressed. The other attended the wine tasting, which is basically an introduction to the wines they serve, and it was fun; the wines are not upper tier, but most were acceptable. We skipped the shopping presentations, because that was not important to us. We did not use the spa or the exercise facility. The casino was mostly dead every time we checked it out. As for the main theater shows, we were not impressed, but in fairness, we see many Broadway and Broadway-quality shows due to availability of extraordinary and top-notch entertainment where we live and where we travel. Kudos to the performers for giving it their all, but they need a little more support, direction and better material. However, we were very impressed with the pianists, the instrumental ensembles, and the duo (singer and guitar player) who performed in the bars and lounges; they were all excellent. And the final night show put on by the crew was delightful. For the most part, the staff was excellent and friendly, always a friendly greeting in passing, an offer to assist if it appeared necessary. We loved our room stewards, and they kept our cabin in great shape. There were occasional staff persons who were not very warm, but at least they were able to give accurate information. We thought the interior of the ship was really lovely, and we liked the art. It never felt crowded. We appreciated the laundry facilities, which we used several times. All of the seating in the restaurants, lounges, public areas was comfortable and almost always with adequate space. We had a few negative experiences that were puzzling. On our last night, we had a late reservation in Prime 7, so we went to the Observation Lounge to take in the beautiful view and have a drink before dinner. It was mostly empty, but we waited for over a half hour for someone/anyone to take our drink order; other people sitting nearby had the same experience. It was like we weren't there. I finally went up to the bar to order, and the bartender promptly prepared the drinks but seemed frustrated, so I have to guess there was some staffing issue that evening. They also had not cleared the tables the entire time we were there, so we and others eventually moved used glasses to other tables so that we had a somewhat clean place to put our drinks. That same lounge had seemed to have some trouble filling drinks orders a couple of days prior, which again appeared to be a staffing issue. When there are very few "customers", it's hard to understand why there would be very slow service or no service. The other negative experience was when we tried to contribute our remaining onboard credits to the Crew Welfare Fund. I asked at the reception desk who I should see to do that, and the gentleman working there told me it was not possible. So, we used the credits buying things we really did not need in the onboard boutiques. Later, someone else told me he was mistaken, that indeed we could have put our unused credits in the Crew Fund. So, while we would have been very happy to put a few hundred dollars toward the crews' benefit, his misinformation prevented it. Disembarkation went very smoothly. We placed our bags outside our cabin before 11pm, and they were waiting for us when we got off the ship. There was again some chaos in the terminal after we got off the ship, but the very friendly Canadians kept us smiling and eventually we were on the bus on our way to the airport. We have Global Entry, so the getting through U.S. Customs at the Vancouver airport was a breeze. We did not expect perfection, and overall we felt the experience was truly wonderful. But the few negatives did seem to be out of character for Regent's reputation. We will cruise with Regent again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My travel agent booked this cruise for myself and my husband. I did not read any reviews on about this cruise or ship until after we had already booked the tour. As we trust our agent very much. However, after reading the reviews, I was ... Read More
My travel agent booked this cruise for myself and my husband. I did not read any reviews on about this cruise or ship until after we had already booked the tour. As we trust our agent very much. However, after reading the reviews, I was quite upset and almost ready to cancel the getaway all together. I am very happy that we didn't cancel and went on this cruise. Although we read in many reviews that the food was mundane or just ok, we felt that it was great. We saw many people state how the ship was old, musty and rusted; however we did not see this. As to us it was very beautiful. We stayed in the Horizon Suites and couldn't have been more comfortable. The service on the ship was complete accommodating, organized and did everything they could for us to make sure we were happy. We were able to book all the excursions that we wanted with no issues, while some we were put on a waiting list, they still made sure we somehow were able to join the rest of the passengers in these adventures. Not everything was "perfect" as nothing always is. There were a few hiccups along the way but nothing to be upset about. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Great experiences previously with Viking River Cruises and wanted to try their ocean small ships. This ship was 4 times larger than the Viking longships, but we never felt crowded. There were so many places to find a quiet spot to ... Read More
Great experiences previously with Viking River Cruises and wanted to try their ocean small ships. This ship was 4 times larger than the Viking longships, but we never felt crowded. There were so many places to find a quiet spot to hang out, it felt like a private resort. Spa was excellent with full use of hydro therapy circuit at no additional charge. Food was excellent. Never had to wait for anything with open seating. Main dining room was large and fairly noisy. We we traveling as a group of nine and found the World Cafe buffet dining to be more than suitable for our group. Infinite choices, never rushed, attentive service by staff at all times. Explorers Lounge on top deck was wonderful place to sit and have a snack/drink at any time of day. Never crowded. All staff were excellent. Never without a smile on their face and showed true desire to meet your needs. Including the captain who was happy to stop and talk while walking his rounds on deck. We loved the experience and have already booked our 2020 Viking cruise from Bali to Sidney. Can't wait to go! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Alaska still holds, for travellers, the experience of the Great Outdoors of wild forests, mountain sky lines, fast and slow flowing water ways. Wild life abounds in their natural habitat that will hold you in that moment. Spend your ... Read More
Alaska still holds, for travellers, the experience of the Great Outdoors of wild forests, mountain sky lines, fast and slow flowing water ways. Wild life abounds in their natural habitat that will hold you in that moment. Spend your leisure time in local restaurants and saloons passing the time with the local people. Sunrise and Sunsets make many photo opportunities. We took the before and after extensions. This gave us "Alaskan Wilderness Express" rail journey to the Denali National Park. Then on by coach over land with well appointed Hotel accommodation to Seward. Our extended stay in Vancouver which allowed to us unwind before the flight home. Viking Orion we found to be such a relaxing ship to cruise on. The service by all the staff and crew was absolutely outstanding. The entertainment felt soft and intimate around the bars. Talented show artists gave excellent performances across all styles of entertainment. The Night Club Torshavn will complete your day. You will find food that covers all appetites. Everything fresh and local. We always ask "How do they do it so well"? Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I heard very good things about biking and wanted a cruise ship that did not have children. Our cruise to Alaska surpassed anything that we envisioned. The staff was incredible, very attentive to needs. It was one of the best vacations we ... Read More
I heard very good things about biking and wanted a cruise ship that did not have children. Our cruise to Alaska surpassed anything that we envisioned. The staff was incredible, very attentive to needs. It was one of the best vacations we have ever been on. The food was amazing, everyone in the staff was fabulous, and if the staff had allowed us to win The bean bag toss, it would have been perfect.lol! We were celebrating our anniversary, and it was made it into a very special occasion. The entertainment had very talented people, However what I liked most was lectures that they provided. There was a resident astronomer and a resident historian ho gave lectures that were incredibly interesting. We even got to look at the stars and planets through the Telescope that was on board. The singers in the lounge were absolutely incredible. Excursions were handled very well , and they were all well-planned and well-executed. We are planning on many more Viking Cruises. The Viking Cruise Line is highly recommended. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I travelled with family and they recommended this cruise line having sailed with them before. The ship is smaller than what I have previously cruised on so I was concerned about motion - turned out to be a non-issue (not sure if it was ... Read More
I travelled with family and they recommended this cruise line having sailed with them before. The ship is smaller than what I have previously cruised on so I was concerned about motion - turned out to be a non-issue (not sure if it was just the ship or the calmer waters we sailed mostly in Alaska). We were traveling with my senior citizen mother so the smaller ship was a great size for her to easily navigate. Although the ship was at capacity we never felt crowded, never waited in any line, and service was impeccable. Cabin was spacious (Verandah Suite Deck 8) and we had 3 in the room with no issues. Bathroom was very spacious and the shower was wonderful with great water pressure. Loved the towels and bath amenities. Our butler was excellent, and it was a nice service. We booked tours in all our ports independent of the ship so I cannot comment on this aspect. Entertainment was basic and we did not do much during the day other than bingo while at sea, which was fun. The evening entertainment was just OK. The best show was the tribute to Queen. Casino is small but not overly crowded. One table each for blackjack, poker and roulette and there were some slot machines. The ship was beautiful and well kept, service outstanding as I mentioned. A few blips to be aware of: 1. Embarkation timing could be seriously improved. We arrived in Anchorage the day before the sailing and took the scenic railway to the ship with the cruise line the next day. Our bus to the train did not depart until 1230pm, so the morning was quiet and sort of boring with not much we could do. The train ride was pleasant, scenery was beautiful, but the ride was long and we arrived at the boat close to 6pm. We were on the last car of the train so last to exit and get on board. As soon as we got on board it was muster drill time, we did not even have time to walk around the ship and get acclimated. After muster we had to get ready for dinner and felt very rushed to unpack and get organized. Rather than keep us in Anchorage, it would have been better to have us depart and arrive at the ship an hour or so earlier to allow passengers to get their bearings. I know most passengers arrive on the train so it gives the crew max time to prepare the ship, but there should be a happier medium. 2. Remember to bring converters. The USB ports did not work and there were not enough USA outlets. There were no converters available to us when we asked our butler and we did not read that converters were recommended to bring- our fault for not asking I guess. 3. Restaurants were overall pretty good. Some blips in service and food quality during dinners in both Atlantide and La Terrazza. I thought the food was good but I think I expected better given the luxury level of the line- it was not much better than I have experienced on other 'less luxurious' ships. What was nice - service was outstanding all over the ship, maitre d's addressed you by name within 24 hours of being onboard, staff was friendly everywhere, and the available wine and any beverage you want anytime were certainly nice! So overall we had a wonderful cruise on the Muse and for our Alaska trip but I am not sure I would book again with them at this time. I reserve the right to reconsider my comment though if I cruise again and see significant advantages to Silver Sea. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
With daughter and son-in-law to celebrate birthdays and anniversary. Daughter has serious food issues, and the crew took fabulous care of her. The food is good, especially liked the buffets. The chef made several beautiful chocolate cakes ... Read More
With daughter and son-in-law to celebrate birthdays and anniversary. Daughter has serious food issues, and the crew took fabulous care of her. The food is good, especially liked the buffets. The chef made several beautiful chocolate cakes for us. The ship is beautiful, and different from other ships we have been on. We loved our cabin, a penthouse suite. Loved the double sinks and large shower. The bed was wonderful. Enjoyed the planetarium shows, a unique feature. Enjoyed the shore excursions, but especially enjoyed sitting and reading in the afternoons. Since the was an inland passage crude, the view were wonderful. The onboard lectures were always top notch and very interesting and informative. ON the minus side, one night our Halibut was way over cooked, but that was just one occasion. The embarkation could not have been smoother. We also loved the public entertainment - very talented people. We would definitely sail again with Viking. PS loved the bird sounds in public bathrooms. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Love Viking. Always wanted to go to Alaska. Room is a little small. A/C is so so. Love the drink package, speciality restaurants, shore excursions. Internet a little slow. Crew is very nice. Food is great. Boat is beautiful and so clean. ... Read More
Love Viking. Always wanted to go to Alaska. Room is a little small. A/C is so so. Love the drink package, speciality restaurants, shore excursions. Internet a little slow. Crew is very nice. Food is great. Boat is beautiful and so clean. Already booked another cruise. Can fit luggage under bed. Has more drawer space. Loved our balcony. Do the helicopter ride to Mendenhall Glacier and dog sledding. Loved the train ride and the excursion on the Deadliest sea boat. Manifred I had excellent steaks. Loved not always having announcements, no children, and older crowd. This was our 2nd cruise with Viking. The spa is wonderful. The pools excellent. Bar service is above all other. Entertainment could be a little better. Love having wine, beer, soft drinks included. And being able to stay pre or post at beginning and end ports. Airfare is great. Top of the line in cruises as far as I am concerned. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this cruise because we had loved our river cruise with Viking and wanted to try our first ocean cruise with them. We liked the idea of a smaller ship and no kids. The itinerary sounded good and we were interested in the pre and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had loved our river cruise with Viking and wanted to try our first ocean cruise with them. We liked the idea of a smaller ship and no kids. The itinerary sounded good and we were interested in the pre and post extensions. My husband and I selected the 5-day Denali extension. The train was a wonderful experience as we relaxed in the glass domed car and watched the gorgeous scenery go by! The food on the train was really good as well. Our guide was very knowledgeable and fun. We went into the park on a park bus with a naturalist learned a lot. We wished we could have gone further into the park. The included dinner buffet was just acceptable. The hotels were nice and scenery was amazing! Talkeetna was a great town with arts and crafts along with good food. We boarded our ship in Seward and took the Kenai Fjords optional excursion. Great views of puffins, Stellar sea lions, humpback whales and sea otters. Holgate glacier was wonderful and we were very near! In Valdez we took the optional Wrangell-St Elias excursion and were surrounded by stunning mountain views and waterfalls. We took the optional small boat whale watching excursion at Icy Straight Point and couldn’t have been more thrilled with the Orcas! There was a pod by our boat that was no more than 5 feet away! We enjoyed Skagway with the Gold Rush Cemetary and the Red Onion Saloon. The trip through the White Pass was a disappointment as it was all fogged in as usual. We took the included excursion in Juneau to Mendenhall glacier and the salmon hatchery. The scenery at the glacier and Brotherhood Bridge couldn’t have been more beautiful with the fireweed blooming! I recommend taking the tram up the Mt Roberts -great views and interesting exhibits! The raptor center and bear sanctuary in Sitka were interesting. We opted for the 2 day extension in Vancouver. Unfortunately, the transfer to the bus was poorly managed and we all stood on concrete for the better part of an hour before we were able to board the bus. The city tour was great and very inclusive of all the city sights. We loved Vancouver! Friendly people, great seafood and gorgeous! The only disappointment was that Viking had scheduled our flight out at 6:20 AM which meant our time in Vancouver was cut short and we had to get up at 2AM. We tried for at least 6 months to change the flight and were never able to change it. We even paid the extra charge to try to do so. The airport did not function well at that time of the morning. We stood in long lines for almost 2 hours and had to load our own luggage on to the conveyor belt. Poor ending for a magnificent trip. Our cabin on the ship was great! Roomy with great amenities. It was a Penthouse Veranda. The food on the ship was great. We liked the general buffet and Manfreddi’s best. The ship size was perfect! The guest lecturers were very informative and if we missed a lecture they were recorded to watch in our cabin at leisure. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We joined my brother Mike Martin, his wife Sherry on this cruise. My brother had wanted to sail the Inside Passage on an Alaskan cruise. My husband and I had cruised to Alaska on two other occasions but enjoyed it so much that we were ... Read More
We joined my brother Mike Martin, his wife Sherry on this cruise. My brother had wanted to sail the Inside Passage on an Alaskan cruise. My husband and I had cruised to Alaska on two other occasions but enjoyed it so much that we were glad to go again. The embarkation went smoothly. I was glad we didn't have to wait to board ship when we arrived at the dock. For desembarkation I suggest that passengers be made aware that they can wait onboard until their color group is called My cabin review is below. Our dining experience was excellent due to the expertise of the kitchen staff. The consistently provided us delicious meals. The wait staff were always very friendly and attentive to our needs. We thoroughly enjoyed the Orion Vocalists performances, especially the ABBA Songbook and the Beatles Songbook. We also very much enjoyed the Viking Classical Duo performance of Movie Magic. We enjoyed our shore excursions especially the Kenai Fjords by boat near Seward, the Columbia Glacier Cruise near Valdez and the Potlach Totem Park near Ketchikan. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Alaska has been on our bucket list for years, and when Viking announced they would be sailing to Alaska we jumped at the opportunity, having experienced a Viking River Cruise in 2014, the Romantic Danube. The Viking Orion had not yet been ... Read More
Alaska has been on our bucket list for years, and when Viking announced they would be sailing to Alaska we jumped at the opportunity, having experienced a Viking River Cruise in 2014, the Romantic Danube. The Viking Orion had not yet been completed when we made our reservations, so watching her development was exciting. Viking truly has transported the finest of their river cruise ships into their ocean cruise ships, and it felt like coming home when we boarded at Seward. One aspect of the cruise that was attractive to us was the specific itinerary that included more of Alaska than just the fabled Inside Passage. We did the pre-cruise extension in Anchorage, where Viking picked us up at the Anchorage airport and transported us to the Anchorage Hilton for 2 nights, then onward from Anchorage to Seward to join the ship. The weather was not always cooperative and in Seward it was raining and chilly outside, but warm and welcoming onboard. Embarkation was smooth and fast, and the primary downside was the distance we had to walk from the point where we cleared security to the ship itself mostly in the rain. From then on the weather was either cloudy and cool or clouds and sun. Valdez was beautiful, sunny and clear; overcast at Hubbard Glacier and Icy Strait Point and Skagway, sunny and warm at Juneau, mostly sunny at Sitka, cloudy at Ketchikan, and gloriously sunny on arrival at Vancouver. Of the many attributes offered by Viking, having all outside cabins with balconies was a definite plus, the small size was wonderful with just 930 passengers, and perhaps the one consistent comment we heard was how thankful our shipmates were that there were no children (us included). Folks, this is not a party ship, yet it packs in more entertainment options than are possible to sample in the 11 days we had available. We would definitely cruise again with Viking Ocean and River Cruises. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Everything about the cruise was top notch. Accommodations were outstanding and we really enjoyed the variety of dining options and special events. We especially enjoyed trying the steam and regular saunas, cold plunge pool and ... Read More
Everything about the cruise was top notch. Accommodations were outstanding and we really enjoyed the variety of dining options and special events. We especially enjoyed trying the steam and regular saunas, cold plunge pool and 'snow' room ... quite a unique experience. There were learning experiences at every turn from pictures with explanatory plaques lining the hallways to the displayed artwork with attached narratives. However, the thing that continues to make Viking our favorite cruise line is the service. We didn't encounter one surly or indifferent crew member. We were so amazed that we ended up asking the ones we became close to why they chose Viking and, to a person, they said that the overall package and treatment Viking extends to them is far better than cruise line(s) they had worked for before. The theme was that Viking was 'family' and they were treated as such. We couldn't have been more pleased with our experience. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We are not travelers. This trip was perfection. The ship, its design and appointments, crew...all perfection. Every detail, every comfort. I think I could be talked into living aboard! The hotel in Vancouver for extended stay was ... Read More
We are not travelers. This trip was perfection. The ship, its design and appointments, crew...all perfection. Every detail, every comfort. I think I could be talked into living aboard! The hotel in Vancouver for extended stay was lovely, with a spectacular view. The brunch one of the best ever. On the cruise, the food and service were superb. I had the pool to myself most mornings. The lectures and TED talks were highlights, as was the planetarium 3D film on the Sami reindeer culture. Icy Straight Point and the town of were highlights. Sitka was a disappointment. We visited museums and galleries wherever we went, and they were a joy. I do wish there was still a formal or dressy night option. The musicians throughout the ship were fabulous. Would have enjoyed a tour of the mechanical levels of the ship. The concierge services were repeatedly helpful and informative. The daily newsletter, and the onscreen itinerary maps onscreen in the rooms were much appreciated. Best cruise ever! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Our first time on a Crystal Cruise and chose this cruise based on recommendations and the itinerary. The pro's - Embarkation and disembarkion - quickest and most organised of any cruises done to date Food - The best food of ... Read More
Our first time on a Crystal Cruise and chose this cruise based on recommendations and the itinerary. The pro's - Embarkation and disembarkion - quickest and most organised of any cruises done to date Food - The best food of all cruise lines to date, only thing that let it down at times was the sweets, OK but not amazing unlike the entrée and mains. Service - Waterside - a big thanks to Gorkan, Tamas who really looked after us, the buffet staff were all wonderful, Pinto from the Italian restaurant and in the Cove bar, Chris and Priscilla who made our cruise memorable. Our cabin girl Danijela looked after us so well. Cabin - 5010 on the 5th deck was lovely, quiet, no movement, kept spotlessly clean and had adequate storage and all that you needed. Was a lot smaller than the Visa cabin (same cat.) on the Silverseas ships. Entertainment in the Galaxy theatre, enjoyable. the con's - Activities - What activities! So little to do apart from computer, lectures...…… Entertainment - this ship has marvellous bars but if your sitting in a bar after 10.00pm there is more likely hood that there will be more staff in the room than passengers. We sat in the Avalon bar one evening - Piano player and four of us and five staff...……...so no atmosphere at all. Found the piano (2 piano players) and violin (she was amazing) all a bit boring over an 11 day cruise. Same as the duo. Really need more entertainment geared for passengers who would like up beat music and a bit of fun. Saying that, seems that the majority of the passengers are very old (and we are in our 70's). We did not book our excursions through Crystal as found it much cheaper to book ourselves online. Alaska itself is more suited to fit and able passengers who would like to do outdoor activities. If your interest is the towns, found them all much the same, so many jewellery shops, same type of tourist shops, etc. All a bit contrived. Sitka was my favourite stop, lovely walks and suited for older passengers. After two cruises with Silversea's I was anticipating staff calling us by name occasionally but found only Chris in the Cove bar remembered our names after 11 days. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Our first mistake was assuming that, like Viking, Silversea cruises would be adults only. In fact, out of 580 passengers, 76 were children, about two thirds of those under 5 years old, or even babies. There are virtually no facilities for ... Read More
Our first mistake was assuming that, like Viking, Silversea cruises would be adults only. In fact, out of 580 passengers, 76 were children, about two thirds of those under 5 years old, or even babies. There are virtually no facilities for young children on the ship, so they were mostly bored and amused themselves running up and down the stairs and corridors uunsupervised. The swimming pools and hot tubs were completely taken over by the kids, even though under 12's were not supposed to use the hot tub. They also made their presence felt in the dining rooms, crying and tipping over chairs, and rather spoilt some of the excursions. We were particularly shocked when, on the first day, young children were helping themselves from the buffet using their hands. Aside from the children, there were several other things that were disappointing. The restaurant menu only changed once and then only a few items were different. We had one instance of shockingly rude service in the grill restaurant. The alternative restaurants were fully booked months ahead. We found that there were few places to enjoy a quiet cup of coffee and that these were usually very crowded indeed. The room service meal we had one evening was supposed to be served course by course within 20 minutes. In fact, it took an hour to arrive and then it all came at once, except the wine, which took a further 15 minutes to arrive and the meal was only warm, not hot. The room was not always as clean as I would like and the bath supplies were not replaced except when I asked. We had been advised to have a low floor cabin for wildlife viewing, but we were over the lounge and had quite a bit of noise from the activities there, notably the bingo, quizzes and late night music. On the plus side, the cabin was amazing and the bathroom was superb. The bed linens were very luxurious, as were the toiletries and there was a choice of pillows. All the food and drink was included, and this was mostly of a very high standard. We also had a selection of fresh fruit in the cabin every day. The scenery and excursions were excellent and we were very lucky with the weather and wildlife sightings on the trips. However, overall the experience fell well below what we had expected from this luxury brand. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Disclaimer - this was our first cruise and perhaps our expectations were unrealistic. The ship was beautiful. The food and service were spotty. We enjoyed the food and experience at Silver Note, Kaiseki and Indochine. Atlantide was ... Read More
Disclaimer - this was our first cruise and perhaps our expectations were unrealistic. The ship was beautiful. The food and service were spotty. We enjoyed the food and experience at Silver Note, Kaiseki and Indochine. Atlantide was the most disappointing. The service was inconsistent (i.e. at the empty Grill at lunch it was hard to get anyone's attention for a second glass of wine and when it finally came it was not with a smile!). We couldn't get a decent steak on board. Our son ate steak at practically every restaurant and a request for 'medium' came back either blue or brown - never pink! That was a real let-down. The Hot Rocks concept was gimmicky and not worth the effort. The over-sized dentist bibs they provide did not protect our clothing from getting spattered with grease. La Dame and Terrazza both had decent food and the service was outstanding - especially the maitre d' (Rodel) in La Dame - he was a real charmer! Service is where we feel Silversea really dropped the ball. We had a large suite with a separate dining area so we decided to have breakfast in the suite each morning. It arrived cold every day and on the second day I asked our butler how many suites he serviced. He responded 14, which surprised me. I asked him what happened if everyone wants breakfast at the same time and he said he tries to get his colleagues to help. He was hardworking but rushed off his feet. It wasn't unusual for him to be paged by another suite while he was with us and he would then use our phone to call and see what his other guests needed. While 1:1 service is impossible, one man servicing 14 suites will never equate to luxury service. We felt bad for him so tried to ask for as little as possible. He was also off-duty from 12-4 and during that period no one answered his phone. We never used his service after 6pm so I'm not sure if the timing of the break is the most sensible? Silversea offers a 'dedicated butler' which I think means only that you'll always see the same face? In our experience it put too much pressure on one person and it would be much better to have a team helping each other and ultimately the guests. Echoing other reviewers, the pool area, while pretty, was not restful. It was teeming with young kids. We traveled with our mid-teens and although they fancied going for a swim or in the hot-tub the atmosphere was always off-putting. We loved the afternoon trivia, ping-pong and the kids appreciated the large selection of streaming media. This was our first time in Alaska and we were impressed by the ports and the people. We didn't do any shipboard excursions but we thoroughly enjoyed the trips we privately arranged - whale watching in Juneau, Emerald Lake/Yukon tour in Skagway, Wildlife Boat Tour in Sitka and Anan Creek Bear Tour by float plane in Ketchikan (this is a must do if you don't mind the small plane). One of the on-board highlights was the afternoon at Hubbard Glacier. Having the forward deck was a huge plus. I thought that the Captain turned the whole ship 360 at the glacier, but all it did was pivot to port and starboard a few times. We saw plenty of spectacular calving. We had fully intended to re-book Silver Origin for the Galapagos while on board but our experience just wasn't compelling enough. On our return we were offered a sizable incentive to re-book but we decided to try Celebrity Flora instead - even though it was slightly more expensive. I waited a few weeks to write this review to see how the experience settled on us, and while I wouldn't say it dissuaded us from cruising again, I don't think we'd ever revisit Silversea. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We were so excited to sail with Silversea through Alaska. I must say the excursions have been great, the rooms are nice and the food very good (although no healthy options available.) Where the boat really fails is it’s amenities. The ... Read More
We were so excited to sail with Silversea through Alaska. I must say the excursions have been great, the rooms are nice and the food very good (although no healthy options available.) Where the boat really fails is it’s amenities. The gym is very poorly equipped and overcrowded (weights do not go over 20kg and it is cheap equipment.) Where it really fails is the pool. It is a very small pool that I’m sure it nice but we haven’t been able to get into it since we’ve been here. The pool is filled with kids every hour of the day. Parents are not watching, kids are sliding all over the wood and pushing each other into the pool. It’s a safety hazard and inconvenient for anyone who is looking to have a relaxing vacation, or a swim after a hot day. If you want a room and food Silversea is great. But I believe most people go on a cruise for the full experience. If so, you’re better off on a different boat. We will not be cruising with Silversea again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
This was our 3rd Viking Cruise, but our first Ocean Cruise. We wanted to experience Alaska, but in "Viking style", without gambling, large crowds, and with a focus on history and culture, gourmet dining, excellent wine, and ... Read More
This was our 3rd Viking Cruise, but our first Ocean Cruise. We wanted to experience Alaska, but in "Viking style", without gambling, large crowds, and with a focus on history and culture, gourmet dining, excellent wine, and without children aboard. Viking once again exceeded our expectations, from the moment we stepped aboard, through departure. The staff was very proactive, accommodating, and attentive. The excursions were well planned and interesting, and the food and wine were outstanding at all of the restaurants aboard. Toward the end of our cruise, we decided to attempt to upgrade our overnight cross country flight home to First Class, due to the length of the flight and the time difference, and the concierge service took care of our request within a day (obviously, with the additional expense as expected). There were lectures and discussions offered prior to each excursion, and even a Planetarium, with 3 separate shows (you need to make a reservation for these, as seating is limited, but we didn't have any problem doing so.) There is a health club and spa aboard, a small pool, and many places to sit and relax while you watch the scenery go by. We would highly recommend Viking for any adult(s) who are interested in experiencing Alaska in a relaxed setting while providing luxurious accommodations and excellent dining. The highlight of the trip for us was observing the Hubbard Glacier. The weather was ideal, and to see the massive wall of ice, and hear it as it moved, and to see pieces of it occasionally fall into the sea was very memorable. I also very much enjoyed the zip line excursion. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We have done 3 Viking River cruises and enjoyed them all. So, we decided it was time to try a Viking Ocean cruise. First and foremost, Viking needs to have BETTER included excursions. In just about every port the included excursion was ... Read More
We have done 3 Viking River cruises and enjoyed them all. So, we decided it was time to try a Viking Ocean cruise. First and foremost, Viking needs to have BETTER included excursions. In just about every port the included excursion was really no better than us getting off the ship to explore the little Alaska town we were in. In-fact, in Ketichikan we bought our own tickets to attend a "Lumberjack Show" (lasted just over 1 hr), and they cost $35pp. Why couldn't Viking have offered that as an included excursion? Bottom Line: Offer better included excursions and try and have more than 1 available in each port! Second, remove the curtains in the "Living Room", by the coffee bar and on the 2nd level. You can't see thru this material and it would be nice while your having a drink or coffee to see the scenery!! Third, you REALLY need to train your bartenders better. After trying two Pina Colada's and a frozen Daiquiri I gave up on any frozen offering. Each time the ice was not pulverized enough so when you tried using the straw, it would always get clogged. And yes, I went to THREE different bars and had the same very poor results. Hell, the first time my wife ordered a Banana Daiquiri, they brought it to her in a martini glass. No kidding, a Martini glass. Lastly, the entertainment was, for the most part, a joke. Every night a member of the ship's staff "entertained". The 4-some (2 guys, 2 gals) who did the Beatles show and the Abba show did a pretty good job, but the overall result was very un-polished and amateurish. We never (on a 10-night cruise), had a "head-liner" or a professional comedian or magician. Kudo's to the guys and gals who worked the stage EVERY night, but they should be "fill-in" acts not the main show each and EVERY night!!! If VIKING wants to compete with Azamara and Oceania they need to heed these words and I am sure the words of many other seasoned travelers. We have done one Azamara cruise, and VIKING isn't even close to them when it comes to food quality (and choices), entertainment, and overall service. We haven't tried Oceania yet, but have friends who have done both (Viking and Oceania), and MUCH prefer Oceania. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
The cruise ship was up to Viking normal high standards. The cabin was well prepared and continually tidied and readied..the cabin service usually forgot we didn`t wanted our beds turned back etc but minor point. We were very ... Read More
The cruise ship was up to Viking normal high standards. The cabin was well prepared and continually tidied and readied..the cabin service usually forgot we didn`t wanted our beds turned back etc but minor point. We were very fortunate with some excellent weather throughout the voyage. The atmosphere on board was very relaxed throughout. The food was excellent and we much prefer the more relaxed format in the self service area as standards are not compromised at all. Mrs Wood`s hair appointment was average. Some of the included excursions were disappointing and the game needs to be upped here as we felt this was part of pushing you to pay for the far better extras ones.One of them just dropped us off in town to do our own thing.Juneau excursion was unnecessarily rushed and we had little time to enjoy the glacier facilities etc.Our extra whale watching at Icy strait Point was very good indeed. The lectures and talks were generally very good and the delivery was interesting and relaxed with most but not all of them.Kathy Slamp we found the best of them. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I had visited 49 states and was trying to figure a great way to visit my 50th, Alaska. After much research, taking a Viking Cruise seemed to fit the bill. We were pleasantly surprised at the excellent service, gourmet food, and ... Read More
I had visited 49 states and was trying to figure a great way to visit my 50th, Alaska. After much research, taking a Viking Cruise seemed to fit the bill. We were pleasantly surprised at the excellent service, gourmet food, and wonderful excursions. We enjoyed the pools, movies, lectures, outdoor activities, etc. The crew went out of their way to learn our names and to provide anything that would help us to enjoy our cruise even more. We were so impressed with the service and the ship, we scheduled another cruise for next year. The cabin had everything you needed for a week at sea. The bed was luxurious and the balcony provided for a personal view of the Alaskan landscape. We thought the excursions were well planned and educational. I especially enjoyed the planetarium and shows on board the ship in the evening. There is no doubt that Viking provided the best experience possible for one's first cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019

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