11 Silversea Silver Shadow Repositioning Cruise Reviews

Where to begin?? I chose Silversea because I had always wanted to sail on a smaller ship, and this 17 year old ship only holds 382 passengers. The itinerary was a 14 night sailing from Seward, Alaska to Tokyo, Japan. ... Read More
Where to begin?? I chose Silversea because I had always wanted to sail on a smaller ship, and this 17 year old ship only holds 382 passengers. The itinerary was a 14 night sailing from Seward, Alaska to Tokyo, Japan. Silversea's marketing materials boasts luxurious accommodations, free beverages, and a butler with every suite (all cabins are considered suites). So far so good.... but, in my opinion, that is where the marketing materials and reality part ways. Bus transfer to the Train Station: Having pre-purchased a transfer from the Hotel Captain Cook in Anchorage to the train station located adjacent to the Anchorage airport, the day before embarkation day I went down to the Silversea's representative's desk in the hotel lobby to collect a time slot ticket that would allow me on the bus. That went smooth enough. however we were told to be down there to hand over our luggage no later than 9:30 a.m. on embarkation day. Problem was there was no one there to take the luggage, no rep at the desk, and several of us ran around trying to figure out if we were even in the right place. Finally, the Rep arrived and a porter started scooping up the luggage left beside the Rep's desk, and we all just hoped it would go to the correct place as it seemed very hap hazzard. Transfer to the Ship: A complimentary transfer was provided through Silversea from the train station in Anchorage to the port at Seward. The description of this 4 1/2 hour journey said that 'refreshments' would be provided. Said 'refreshment' was about 2 ounces of sparkling wine to make a 'toast'. The seating on the train was on very tight bench seats with a table in front of you, so there was people on each side of the table looking directly at each other. We had been warned that there was no room for carry-on luggage and they didn't disappoint on that score. You had a space below your bench seat that was about 12 inches in height, which would accommodate a handbag, and perhaps a very small camera bag. We were 1/2 hour late leaving and basically from 12:30 p.m. until 5:30 p.m. if you wanted to eat or drink anything you were forced to order ridiculously overpriced beverages and tasteless food from the caterers that had the contract for the train. Arrival at the port: Since our 'check-in' had been done at the train station boarding the ship was quick and smooth. We were told to go to 'The Bar' on deck 5 where some very confused looking staff fumbled around and then you were assigned a miserable looking (in my case anyway) butler to show you to your cabin. It is one of those things that is supposed to make Silversea look good (in their minds anyway) but actually makes them look disorganized, and is off-putting with the lack of social skills by your escort. Cabin: I was in a mid-ship balcony on deck 6. It was pretty much as advertised and there were no problems at all. The 'teak deck' they advertise is just some teak planks placed over top of a steel deck, so not even as nice as the surfacing you would find on Celebrity's balconies. Oh well, it's an old ship so that can be forgiven. The nice thing about this cabin was its proximity to the laundry facility. The laundry machines become very busy during the cruise (and don't trust the time read outs on the machines) so it was easy to nip back and forth checking on my laundry. Food and Dining experience: Okay folks, hold on to your hats because this to me was the most unbelievable disappointment on this ship. The main dining room (cleverly named 'The Restaurant') is not a pleasant venue at all. Most nights it was kept at a temperature slightly above that of a meat locker. Even with the room half empty the service is painfully slow, the food arrived barely warm, and the food taste and quality was poor beyond description. The filet mignon was absolutely disgusting. They don't ask you how you want it cooked, and if you inquire they say they don't need to know!?! What arrives is a bland looking grey blob that looks like it was parboiled and finished off in a frying pan. If you don't believe me I invite you to pay a small fortune to sail on the Shadow and experience it yourself. After the second visit to this dimly lit, freezing cold, venue I refused to have dinner there again, so spent the rest of the cruise dining in La Terrazza, Le Champagne, and on one occasion The Grill (Hot Rocks). Le Champagne ($40 per person) and The Grill (free): I would recommend both of these dining venues. I went to Le Champagne three times and felt is was well worth the cost. Both food and service were outstanding! La Terrazza ~ this is the venue that serves as the 'buffet' for breakfast and lunch. However, it is far superior to a traditional buffet found on the non-luxury cruise lines, so it easily transitioned to a quaint Italian themed venue in the evening. I had registered as requiring a gluten free (gf) menu. To give you a frame of reference on Princess when you register as gf each evening after dinner the Maitre'd brings you the next evening's menu and works with you to advise which dishes can be adjusted to be gluten free. You then pre-order your specially prepared gluten free dinner (and can also pre-order lunch) for the following evening. In La Terrazza on the Silver Shadow ~ you arrive and are handed that evening's menu with 'Gluten Free' scrawled in handwriting across the top. Beside each dish is the hand written notation 'NO', 'NO', 'NO' and then eventually a check mark for a dish that doesn't contain gluten. News flash: I don't need these Bozos to point out which dishes contain gluten, I know that already. If I didn't know better I would have thought I was being punked!! Bare in mind folks this is a cruise that easily costs four times more than a similar itinerary on Princess, and this is their idea of providing 'luxury' service. Having been on 62 previous cruises with many different cruise lines it soon became apparent to me that the Chef/Chefs on this ship think they are above even the Captain, and rule with an iron fist. If I had a nickel for every time they removed prawns from the menu and replaced it with tilapia, or we were told 'No' for a request made at dinner, I'd be rich! Okay, so I could go on and on but you get the picture. I just want to leave you with one final experience that really brought into focus the Shadow's senior staff's attitude towards the passengers. One morning we were in port and I chose to remain on the ship. Around 10 a.m. I went into the Panorama Lounge to get a cappuccino and noticed four senior officers (Including the Hotel Director and the Head Maitre'd) sitting in one corner of the lounge. I took a chair a couple rows away from where they were sitting but noticed that they had lowered their voices when I came in. Well, as time went on their voice became easily audible and their comments shocked me. First they complained how the Cruise Critic passengers want a gathering organized on the ship, but they only talk to each other online and don't bother mingling once on board. Then the conversation moved on to how demanding the passengers were in the dining room, how they complained that the fish wasn't fresh, etc. etc. The degree of resentment towards the passengers exhibited by these officers was unbelievable. So there you have it folks. If you want to pay through the nose for sub-standard food, and be viewed as enemy #1 by the senior staff, have at it. Personally, I don't feel the need to drain my bank account for that kind of experience, especially since I had significantly better service and food on the Carnival Conquest last November. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
On our first Silver Sea cruise aboard Silver Shadow on September 7, 2017 (Anchorage to Tokyo), we encountered a plethora of stupid mistakes and errors, starting with the initial booking with the Fort Lauderdale office. Not only did we ... Read More
On our first Silver Sea cruise aboard Silver Shadow on September 7, 2017 (Anchorage to Tokyo), we encountered a plethora of stupid mistakes and errors, starting with the initial booking with the Fort Lauderdale office. Not only did we receive a confirmation booking in someone else’s name which was followed by the sales rep requiring us to produce a doctor’s letter (Fit to Travel) from husband’s doctor in 48 hours or our booking would be cancelled. We jumped through hoops, obtained the document, scanned and emailed to Special Services. The Special Services Manager quickly responded to us that this was totally unnecessary, as we had provided all the proper medical information on the original booking! Secondly we were stopped from boarding the train from Anchorage to Seward due to administrative mistakes by both front office and the ship. We were told we were being singled out because we did not have Japanese Visas (we are American citizens). The manager at the train station could not understand the requirement and could not get anyone from the ship to answer his phone calls. Finally, everyone else was processed with stateroom keys to board, we were allowed to board the train without stateroom keys. The manager alerted us we might be refused entry to the ship, in which case, they would return our passports and we would return to Anchorage on the train. Needless to say, it was a miserable 4-hour rain ride, as we were upset, confused and feeling stigmatized by the events. Turns out, no one representing Silver Sea in at Port of Seward knew what to do with us. Obviously without stateroom keys, we could not board. Asked to produce our passports, we replied, “You have them”. After much delay, someone located our stateroom keys in the boarding area. No explanation forthcoming from anyone. My husband was ready to abort this trip and come home. At the gangway, expressing my dissatisfaction to Hotel Manager at the Port of Seward, I was told to contact the Finance Manager the next day. I asked to have this person contact me immediately! We were fed up with mistakes and errors. What else could go wrong? We received apologies for the “lack of communication” between Anchorage & the ship regarding our passports, as the processing from the home office had obliterated my passport data from the booking paperwork! We were victims again of the incompetent who handled our booking in the front office, and compounded by the manner in which this was escalated. All that was needed in Anchorage was confirmation of a USA Passport – not to be denied passage, or threatened to be returned to Anchorage. If not sufficient rationale to be disturbed by petty events caused by incompetence, we were again accosted by the reception staff on board Silver Sea via voice message, informing us they did not have our Russian landing cards, when in fact I had prepared them the same day we received them, personally delivered the cards to reception with the added information to look at our passports (in their possession) because we have valid Russian Visa (in case they wanted to include that data in the box provided on the form). I returned the call, being irritated by never ending cascade of stupidity and incompetence. The first receptionist did not seem to know what I was calling for….and put another person on the phone. I expressed my frustration at their incompetence and repeated all the conversation confirming delivery of the landing forms plus the fact of the Russian Visa. This person had the nerve to inform me I didn’t need the landing cards if we possessed Russian Visa! So why did I receive the landing cards in the first place if this is the case? More apologies forthcoming regarding “lack of communication” and “reception should not be bothering passengers” when the landing cards were already in ship’s possession. Any wonder I am fed up the compounding of errors, petty mistakes, and incompetency of Silver Sea organization & poor administrative procedures? The aggravation seemed never ending. Apologies notwithstanding, we say, “Never Again”! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We explored our departure and ariival cities on our own. We used some of the ship's excursions and also those provided by Abercrombie & Kent. The ship definitely needs to be ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We explored our departure and ariival cities on our own. We used some of the ship's excursions and also those provided by Abercrombie & Kent. The ship definitely needs to be refurbished - it's old and tired looking. The gym, spa and beauty parlor also needs to be modernized. Our cabin was nice and spacious - just a bit dark and very small veranda that needed to be better maintained. The TV in the room didn't work well and the ship should provide more than 1 hour of wifi service per day. The food and service in Main Dining Room was very good. La Terraza restaurant was OK and the buffets offered during the day were mediocre. Room service was very good!! Our meal in Le Champagne was outstanding! The evening in La Terraza on the 19th featuring the visiting French chef was excellent! The Grill during lunch was OK but the wait staff were frequently overwhelmed with the number of guests to serve. The SilverSea singers were very talented and enjoyable, the pianist, Nataliia was excellent but the guitarist/singer Charlie's repertoire was not current. The girls in the Beauty Parlor should speak better English. Our wait staff were all great as were the butler and his assistant. The Concierges need more training on what if offered in the Ports of call. It's time for the Cruise Director to retire. We would go again perhaps on a newer ship. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
After a pretty dismal ride on the Silver Cloud on one of its last cruises prior to refit, it was a pleasure to be on board the Shadow where most things 'worked'. The staterooms are still a little dated, think Italian hotel about ... Read More
After a pretty dismal ride on the Silver Cloud on one of its last cruises prior to refit, it was a pleasure to be on board the Shadow where most things 'worked'. The staterooms are still a little dated, think Italian hotel about 1992, but bathrooms have been smartly updated, and the ship was definitely comfortable with only 302 guests on board - it was a cruise with a low single supplement so not all the cabins were two to a room, in fact a lot of the passenger suites were occupied by staff and entertainers, including several on higher decks which seemed a bit cheeky when there might have been an opportunity to upgrade some paying customers? Anyhow, being on a lower deck - 4 or 5 - was the best deal on this voyage as we hit Typhoon (Tropical Storm) Talim on our northerly approach to Japan and this really threw the boat around for 24 hours, right down to the classic image of waiters, tables and glassware sliding across the floor of the dining room while the waves washed the windows. Food is always a highlight, and the relentless adherence to an 'Italianate' menu means a lot of repetitions and some slightly bizarre combinations - but even on a long overwater voyage from Alaska to Japan we had some excellent meat, fish and fresh fruits and salads in good condition. Entertainment is as bad as ever, a hoary old working-mens' club comedian was the Cruise Director who never learned a passenger's name, and the usual rag-tag collection of singers (two operatic, two musical theatre, two who can't dance) that it's never possible to weld into a 'company' or direct in a cohesive show. One good female lecturer from Alaska itslef, and two old bores. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
My husband and I just finished a fabulous cruise on the Silver Shadow. Our son lives in Japan so it was a great way to go there. The crossing was good except for one rough night. The service on the ship was perfect! The butlers were ... Read More
My husband and I just finished a fabulous cruise on the Silver Shadow. Our son lives in Japan so it was a great way to go there. The crossing was good except for one rough night. The service on the ship was perfect! The butlers were there when needed and did everything they could to make sure your every need was handled. The food was good as was the wine selections. I enjoy wine and found that I was introduced to many types of wine that I had not had before, which broadened my understanding of various grapes. The ship itself is comfortable and a nice size. It is in need of a little refurbishing but is due for dry dock in January. The lectures were outstanding! One speaker spoke on Japan and the other about the history of Warner Brothers. The entertainment was varied and enjoyable. We enjoyed opera singing,pop, violinists, and outstanding piano performances. All and all, we look forward to another Silverseas cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We chose this cruise because we had been on Silversea twice before and enjoyed the complete luxury as well as the intimacy of a small ship. We had never been to either Alaska nor Japan so we thought that it would be a great experience. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had been on Silversea twice before and enjoyed the complete luxury as well as the intimacy of a small ship. We had never been to either Alaska nor Japan so we thought that it would be a great experience. Knowing that there would be several sea days we thought that we would play bridge on those days ( or read). What was a real treat for us was the enrichment lecturers; each of them was very well prepared and so elevant to our cruise. The first lecturer was a professor of Migration economics who lectured about each destination in great detail before we arrived there. He went into detail about the history as well as the economy and demographics of our destinations. The second lecturer was a professor of the theater. Each sea day he would discuss a different show about East meets West. He went from the Mikado to South Pacific to The King and I and Miss Saigon. In each of these he discussed how the show portrayed the West meeting Eastern cultures. As an added treat on the last sea day he discussed Hamilton in detail. As always on a Silversea cruise the food was fantastic (as were the bar selections). While we could have dined alone at each meal we chose to sit with others each night at dinner, thereby meeting many others all of whom we thoroughly enjoyed dining with. I do have some problems with a few foods but the Maitre D' took care that each of our waiters were aware of my food allergies and I never hhad problems The ambience on the Silvershadow makes you think of the Italian influence on Silversea. This was especially evident in the bar which makes one think of an intimate European living room. Here we would enjoy cocktails and canapés as well as lovely piano playing each night before dinner. Our suite was lovely ( and very well located mid ship). As on all Silversea ships we were served by a butler as well as a steward. Needless to say, we wanted for nothing. The ports were interesting, especially the Japanese Northern most islands, which we would never have visited but for this cruise. The island of Hakodate is well known for its fantastic sushi but which we enjoyed. However, a real treat were the peoples themselves. Our first port, Kushiro, is a tiny port on the bottom of the island. Here the people went out of their way to treat us to a cultural show with Japanese dance, music and origami. As we sailed away those of us on port side were treated to Japanese music and dancing. ( We also had this at another Japanese port, Aomori. All in all, we could not rave about this cruise enough My only complaint is that my husband has mobility issues and there were very few shore excursions that he could do. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
After 7 years this was my first cruise on Silversea again. Food was outstanding, crew fantastic. I did not try Le Champagne. Food in La Terrazza, main dining room and Pool grill was just great. We had to cancel on port cause of bad ... Read More
After 7 years this was my first cruise on Silversea again. Food was outstanding, crew fantastic. I did not try Le Champagne. Food in La Terrazza, main dining room and Pool grill was just great. We had to cancel on port cause of bad weather but I think it was a wise decision cause of safety reasons. Yes the ship does need some refurbishment but it is still a beautiful ship. The crew was absolutely fantastic. I never heard anyone saying no to a request or a question. The few shore excursions I've attended have been really good. Especially the trip to the Railway and Floating Market outside of Bangkok. My cabin was great as always and my butler and room attendant did everything they could to make my stay another memorable one. I loved it so much I will be back on the Shadow in February 2018 cruising again South East Asia. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We chose this cruise because of the less-traveled itinerary--the opportunity to see a few places the typical passenger wouldn't see, especially Dutch Harbor/Unalaska and Kamchatska. The length (14 days) was also attractive to us, and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the less-traveled itinerary--the opportunity to see a few places the typical passenger wouldn't see, especially Dutch Harbor/Unalaska and Kamchatska. The length (14 days) was also attractive to us, and Silversea does a great job of providing excellent activities for the days at sea. I took bridge lessons and sharpened my game playing with other very experienced players. The bridge director was delightful and worked very hard to make sure the classes and games were worthwhile and organized. I would miss this if it wasn't provided on other longer cruises with multiple days at sea. I was so pleased to find dance instructors and having the opportunity to refresh my skills in the classes and then have several evenings to partner with the instructors on the dance floor. They were terrific hosts for the singles on the ship as well. Again, a must for longer cruises and I know the single passengers were very happy to have these two gracious gentlemen to accompany them in the evening and at events. Love the formal evenings! My husband loves putting on his tux and we plan ahead for those evenings with special attire and enjoy meeting the captain and crew and getting to know other passengers on the ship. With a few exceptions, everyone seemed to enjoy dressing for the occasions and brought their best elegant manners with them! The salon services are excellent. The manicurist was very professional and did an excellent job. The salon is beautifully appointed and very relaxing. The gym has the typical equipment and I was happy to see an exercise room designed into the facility (we had to use the observation deck on the Wind). The trainer on board was knowledgeable and I am sure her classes were well received. If I had my wish, I would love it if it were possible to provide a Pilates Reformed on board. The class she offered in Pilates was really a combo yoga/pilates and did not provide the pilates experience I get the most positive results from. The trainer on the Wind (even without the reformer) did have a more traditional pilates floor exercise class that was more demanding and met my needs. The food and beverage services were of the highest quality, both the servers and the food and drink. The wines were superb and free-flowing. You do feel as if the staff cannot do enough for you and if you don't see what you want, or exactly how you would like it, they do everything they can to accommodate your requests. The portions are "right-sized" so you can try every course if you wish, without feeling too quilty! I had dessert every night! Le Champagne is a special experience, which we enjoyed twice on this cruise. It truly is a delight, and the staff was so welcoming and genuinely seemed to love what they do! It is very nice to have multiple options for dinner every night, and we love La Terrazza as well. Love the Singers of Silversea! We knew one of the performers from a previous voyage, and he remembered us right away. He continues to grow and now leads the troupe and we were so happy for him. We like the variety of the talent in the group, especially the opera. Please keep this variety--we love the opera night, and the evenings when the individual performers have the opportunity to showcase their particular genres. The speakers were quite well-received, but we were only able to hear one session as they generally were a little early for us, or conflicted with bridge or dance! My husband loved the cooking classes. He would love to have a tour of the kitchen if possible. We did that on the Seabourn cruises and enjoyed seeing how they manage what they do for 400 people 24 hours a day! There were plenty of excursion opportunities and we had something to do at each port. It was too bad the weather didn't allow us to go to Kushiro, as I am sure we would have enjoyed seeing that area of Japan. However, the other two were very nice. That being said, it was disappointing that the all-day excursion to Lake Towada did not go as planned. The initinerary was too ambitious, and it would have been impossible to do and see all that was described in the flyer. The tour guide and driver were very knowledgeable and gracious, but they couldn't change the weather. The traditional lunch at the hotel was amazing and everyone seemed to enjoy it very much, however, I don't think the hotel was quite ready for such a large group and seemed a bit nervous and harried/confused. They did refund our fees in total, however, I felt it would have been acceptable and more than fair if they just gave back a portion as we did have a wonderful bus ride and opportunity to see a beautiful part of the island and have a really well-prepared meal and still get back to the ship on time. The sushi experience in Hakodate was amazing--the highlight of the entire excursion experiences we had. The owner or manager on duty during our visit was an amazing host and made our sushi experience memorable. Our visit to the dacha was unique and gave us the chance to meet a local person and understand firsthand her life and a bit of the real day-to-day culture, not just a show/museum/restaurant, but her home/her homemade treats/gardens and to get to know from her personal perspective what it is like to be a typical Russian citizen. The ship was always immaculate and well-appointed and it was the same for our cabin. It was perfect every time we returned to our room. The butler and service staff couldn't do enough for us. Our highlight is the packing of our bags at the end of the voyage. It is a special amenity that I don't think one can find on any cruise line but Silversea. It is one of the big reasons why we returned for our second voyage and we will enjoy it next year when we take our trip from Venice to Athens. We did not travel with our children (although given that they are in their 30s it would have been a delight, not just for us, but for the other passengers, I am sure) but we chose the small ships (Seabourn and Silversea) very the very fact that it is not appealing to most young families. We do love kids, and if a family brought their younger children, that would be fine. That being said, there really isn't much for them to do, unless it is an itinerary that is in a warm climate so they can be outdoors in the pool or running around the deck/playing outdoor activities. Our overall experience was terrific and we certainly look forward to next September when we arrive in Venice for our cruise to Athens. Many thanks to everyone that works so hard to make each trip memorable. Special Note: We were unable to go into port at Kushiro due to stormy conditions that required the Captain to take measures to ensure we were safe and as far away from the serious part of the storm as possible. We had a rocky 36 hours or so, but I commend him and his crew for ensuring our safety, keeping us well-informed, and even providing a cold but delicious lunch in the restaurant for those of us who were able (and willing) to move about the ship. By the time lunch was being served, the seas appeared to be calming down, and by dinner, regular meal services had resumed. The entire crew did everything in their power to make sure we were safe, well and cared for, to every extent possible. Well done! Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
This was my first cruise and I loved it. My suite (all cabins are suites) was nicer - and at least as large - as most hotel rooms I stay in. I had a veranda, but other than the veranda itself, even the smallest cabin on the ship is the ... Read More
This was my first cruise and I loved it. My suite (all cabins are suites) was nicer - and at least as large - as most hotel rooms I stay in. I had a veranda, but other than the veranda itself, even the smallest cabin on the ship is the same size. No "inside" cabins. Very nice. This cruise had "Gentleman Hosts," who among other things, organized a cocktail party each evening for the solo cruisers, of which I was one. This was a very nice touch by Silversea. There were 8 or 10 of us "solos", and we had a cocktail party each evening and then the Gentleman Hosts would escort us down to The Restaurant for dinner. It wasn't mandatory, but we never had to eat alone. Silversea's social game is very strong. I reserved several evenings in Le Champagne, the hoity-toity extra-cost restaurant, but after my first night I canceled the rest of my nights. Why? Because the pace was very, very slow. i'm sure it took at least 3.5 hours for dinner, and if you're eating alone it is too slow. Perhaps if I'd brought a book. This is going to sound trite, but team trivia was a major event every single day at 4:45. It was so major an event that some folks would not go on certain excursions because they would return after 4:45. I give the cruise director Kirk Detweiler the credit for this event being so popular. Enrichment - we had Kathy freaking Alexander doing enrichment: Astronaut, Space Station resident, NOAA head, incredible. Service - the crew is there to make your voyage the best you can have. That's all there is to it. Any crewmember will do any thing you ask. The second time they see you they will know your name, and if you've given any preferences to any other crewmember, they'll know about that, too. Excursions - generally excellent, although we did find it amusing that they did send us to a French restaurant for lunch in Kushiro, Japan. Children - no, I saw two children and only saw them once on the entire trip. Would I go again? I've already booked the E->W version of this in September (my birthday and retirement day.) Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Departed Tokyo on 7 May, ticket clearly marked Tokyo, but I am sure I was not the only person who went to Yokohama overnight pre-cruise. The fault of too much confidence due to too many cruises, I even went to the Yokohama Terminal, but it ... Read More
Departed Tokyo on 7 May, ticket clearly marked Tokyo, but I am sure I was not the only person who went to Yokohama overnight pre-cruise. The fault of too much confidence due to too many cruises, I even went to the Yokohama Terminal, but it was about 1 1/2 hours by train and taxi to reach Harumi Terminal Tokyo. Yes, a smaller ship can berth in Tokyo but this terminal is less convenient than Yokohama. It is far away from what you want to see in Tokyo and there is lack of public transportation at the pier. Ship departs to brass band fanfares....almost 200 persons took part for our ship's farewell, this ship was quite full, but perhaps just 300 guests. Rough full sea day to reach Kushiro the third day. This port is perhaps conveniently en route but otherwise one of the worst ports to visit. The facilities include only two markets, interesting only if you are interested in seafood and raw fish. Gala Welcome Dinner on sea day was good with foie gras and lobster. The afternoon tea was great and classy. Two sea days before Petropavlovsk, Kamchatka. The sea was surprisingly calm in this northerly region and the ship's excellent cuisine and services helped make very comfortable restful days. Le Champagne now increases cover charge to $40 but still worth it. For this you can order multiple courses of caviar, foie gras, scallop, and lobster and it is a must for me whenever I cruise on Silversea. One excellent point on this ship is that they deliver menu of the next day each night, so you know in advance when to do the Le Champagne dinner, or the Italian dinner, or stone grill, as an alternative. Petropavlovsk turned out to be an excellent port of call. I took a morning excursion for local sights and saw interesting things of Russian cultural interest, and on return I opted to end at the town centre, where I caught the ship's free shuttle bus back to the ship. The city centre's supermarket was interesting though it is not convenient to make a desired purchase of a giant Kemchatka crab to take home. Two more sea days to cross the pacific but it actually is three whole days as we gain a day at the International Date Line, but it is a pity that on arrival at Dutch Harbor we were unable to visit as heavy fog rendered a zero-visibility situation and the pilot cannot join the ship. The ship reached the port areas before 6am and tried to call the pilot for hours in vain. There is no choice but to abandon this call as it appeared, but when we sailed another sea day till early afternoon the weather was sunny and clear. So it is four sea days, but sea days are to be enjoyed and are expected on a reposition cruise, on a 5-star ship. Though it was a pity missing Dutch Harbor. Add one more sea days to finally reach Kodiak Island in the USA. The centre of town is only a 20 minute walk but ship still provides free shuttle bus. We had a whole day at this 'nothing to see' small town, but there is something to see in the afternoon excursion of the Russian heritage tour. Next morning we were at Homer, Alaska, which is interesting. I took a morning excursion and see much of this interesting town connected by road to Anchorage with a 4-hour drive. On return I also explored the 'Spit' area which is a long strip of land along harbour offering interesting local shops and restaurants to explore, with a really beautiful scenic backdrop of yacht harbour and snowy mountains. To me this unspoilt town is the most interesting place to visit in Alaska, above all touristy inner-passage ports. This is a very relaxing trip on a truly first class cruise of impeccably service that you feel welcome almost every moment. The more traditional dining suits me best, even in comparison with other Silversea ships. Interesting that there is difference between this ship and Silver Spirit in cuisine. On arrival at Seward we were offered free scenic railway transportation either to airport or to a town hospitality centre in Anchorage Captain Cook Hotel. This is a great gesture of Silversea and a real treat. My last trip between Seward and Anchorage was by road, but the train ride in a special coach chartered by Silversea was a surprising highlight, much better than by road. It took longer because we went up a 1000-ft mountain range before descending, passing through snow clad landscape, with glaciers virtually hanging outside the window, It was a highlight 4 hours by any standard. All in all, a very satisfactory cruise despite the loss of Dutch Harbor, and for this region the sea condition was surprisingly smooth. I may even opt to return one day, probably also on Silversea, but this is not for port-incentive minded passengers. For me, the ship, a good one, is the destination. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
We just returned from 15 spectacular days aboard Silver Shadow. Everything was in top shape. We embarked at San Pedro, CA, essentially the cruise terminal for Los Angeles. We had chosen early embarkation since we had to vacate the hotel at ... Read More
We just returned from 15 spectacular days aboard Silver Shadow. Everything was in top shape. We embarked at San Pedro, CA, essentially the cruise terminal for Los Angeles. We had chosen early embarkation since we had to vacate the hotel at Noon anyway. Arrived at Shadow about 12:30 and our cabin, a Silver Suite, was ready. And it was lovely. Clearly showing the recent renovation, it had new carpeting and drapes, as well as upholstery and new flat screen TV's. We enjoy the extra space a Silver Suite provides, and on a long cruise such as this one, especially with most days being sea days, it is well worth the extra expense. We had dinner twice in La Terrazza and twice in Le Champagne. The other nights we ate in the Dining Room. All the meals were quite good. The new arrangement, apparently an experiment, in Terrazza has a guest chef presenting their cuisine. The chef for this cruise was Suzanne Tracht from California and, frankly, her cuisine is nothing special. On the second night we dined there, they also had the Terrazza favorites side by side with the guest chef's concoctions and that was a welcome change. Le Champagne is intimate and worth the extra cost, but just barely. The Dining Room food was creative and well presented, and our waiters - Sabi and Dennis were outstanding. We ate in their area each evening we dined in that venue. Breakfast and lunch we usually had at The Terrace cafe (the name for La Terrazza during the day) and that buffet was well done. Also ate at poolside several times and had the world's best hamburgers there. Because this cruise was a re-positioning cruise and the highlight was transiting the Panama Canal, port stops and shore excursions were nothing special with stops in Acapulco and Puerto Vallarta, Guatemala and Colombia. Again, nothing to write home about, but that was not the point of the cruise. The transit through the Canal was fascinating, accompanied by expert commentary and cooperative weather. There was quite a bit of entertainment, including dancing productions that were quite well done. And on the farewell evening, when the Captain indicated that he knew folks would be back on Silversea and he introduced the crew - about a hundred of every occupation on board paraded in to a rousing standing ovation. He's right; the essence of Silversea is its remarkable crew members. That's what has kept us coming back for this our third cruise on Silversea. They get it right, down to the smallest detail. Read Less
Sail Date November 2008
Silver Shadow Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.2
Dining 5.0 3.9
Entertainment 3.0 3.4
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.5
Family 2.0 3.5
Shore Excursion 5.0 3.9
Enrichment 4.0 3.7
Service 5.0 4.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.6
Rates 5.0 3.9

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