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7 Star Clippers Star Flyer Europe - Western Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

We chose a repositioning itinerary that took us from Malta to Malaga, stopping in Sardinia, the Balearics, and along the Spanish Coast. Previous cruises had set our expectations. Star Clipper is a small line with three small ships that ... Read More
We chose a repositioning itinerary that took us from Malta to Malaga, stopping in Sardinia, the Balearics, and along the Spanish Coast. Previous cruises had set our expectations. Star Clipper is a small line with three small ships that use sail frequently. Frequent stops in European ports insured that the food stocks were excellent. As a repositioning cruise, the opportunities for water sports were limited, perhaps as a consequence the average age of the passengers was a bit higher. Weather was an issue on our two sea days with 4 to 5 meter swells and winds gusting to 40. (Force 7). The crew handled the conditions well and maintained service and safety. The key to enjoying Star Clipper is to understand and cherish the scale and limitations of a 300 foot sailing vessel. Sailing into and out of historical ports, feeling the motion of the sea, and finding entertainment in your fellow passengers are features of the experience. The Cruise Director, Yuri and Musician Melchor maintained a steady stream of amusements. The hotel staff was cheerful and unobtrusive. The menus were varied and preparation and presentation were excellent. For this voyage we were dockside in every port. We used excursions in every port as we didn't know the areas. We arrived in Valetta a week early and loved Malta! Really could have been there longer. Malta has something to appeal to almost every variety of tourist. Caligiari was a bit bland, but the sea front ruins excellent. All three of the Balearics were fine, varied and attractive. Cartegena was a pleasant surprise. A lot of new archeology finds and a revitalized downtown will make this much better known and more visited. Motril is really only a way to get close to Grenada and run up the canyon to see the Alhambra. Worth it for the path up and Grenada. Malaga in late October was uncrowded and pretty. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Don't bother reading any review on the Star Clipper line that wants to be critical. If people were not satisfied with the unbelievable quality of the food (fine dining each meal) the service and the overall sailing experience well I ... Read More
Don't bother reading any review on the Star Clipper line that wants to be critical. If people were not satisfied with the unbelievable quality of the food (fine dining each meal) the service and the overall sailing experience well I struggle to understand what they expect. The staff and the people from all around the world added to the enjoyment of the experience. If you want to spend time on a Casino on water get on those ridiculous ships that can't go to the beautiful intimate places that this sailing ship goes. To see this ship in full sail leaving a port accompanied by music and glass of wine is an experience you will never forget. The crew goes out of their way to provide every passenger with a once in a lifetime experience . Do yourself a favour and go you will never regret it !!!! An amazing experience Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We wanted to try the small boat experience. Wind in the sails etc.Freedom. What happened was unexpected and not very good. Worse parts first I think - which may take a while. The sails only went up when the boat was becalmed and ... Read More
We wanted to try the small boat experience. Wind in the sails etc.Freedom. What happened was unexpected and not very good. Worse parts first I think - which may take a while. The sails only went up when the boat was becalmed and not moving. Then only for short periods to take photos.So travel was by engine - noisy and smelly. We missed one important port due to weather conditions. Larger boats didn't have this problem. The substitute port was of no interest to us. Little to see, no maps or information. No excursions organised or even ideas on what to do or see. There was no time or research or plan. We were just dumped. No internet access to research ourselves. Lack of professionalism and unfriendly staff. It was obvious that no one really cared if we had a pleasant voyage. The staff were terrible in some cases. There was a lack of language proficiency. German was the main language. English and French and other speakers were badly treated. There was a large group of German travel agents onboard and all efforts were made to make them happy. The staff ignored the rest of us. There was no "sail away" from ports with music and sails. On departure from Athens it was pitch black on deck. Very crowded and no one could see or knew what was happening. I think I could vaguely hear the famous Vangelis music but although I walked around the deck it didn't get any louder. Staff were only there to sell champagne. The dining room was too cramped and full. Staff canteen feeling. Staff didn't engage with passengers, We sat with a delightful French couple one night and tried to find other french speakers for them. Asked the Maitre D' but he didn't bother to even think about it. Summed up the voyage I've saved the worst for last. Embarkation was easy but we were told to wait on deck for the safety talk. I'm guessing that the cabins weren't ready and they wanted to "manage" us there. Waited and waited. Sickly cheap drink offered. Eventually gave up and found our cabin. No map or introduction to the boat or schedule was given to us on day 1. Staff were here and there but no talking or engaging with passengers. They were mainly Filipino with poor english. Returned later for the safety talk. Disorganised mess. There are simply not enough European speakers there to manage the amount of passengers. Not enough space to do this properly. If that wasn't bad enough we had to sit while a staff member went through a long rambling talk in German, English and French. Went on and on. We can only hope that her German was good as the rest wasn't. All the briefings on deck were like this. Long, long waits. Long, long mangled talks that were often unintelligible. We wasted so much room waiting and enduring these. When we were on deck there was no where to sit and enjoy the feeling of the sea air. All seats were taken early and aggressively defended and were too few for the number of passengers. We had to stand or stroll but that was hard given the number of people packed into such a small space. The public rooms had very small windows and missed the sea experience. We didn't dock in ports. Apart from Athens all were done by tender or even zodiac. Now for the good bits. We found prices for drinks very reasonable. There was a great cheap laundry service. Food was plentiful. It was easy to move around the boat even for those with slight mobility problems. Not suitable for wheelchair users but there were plenty of elderly and/ or walking stick users. We did like our small but very comfortable cabin and the whole boat was very clean. Being on a small boat could be pleasant but there were far too many people for that to happen here. The overcrowding made the staff too stressed to do a good job and the passengers unhappy. It was not a happy voyage. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
A cruise on a sailing cruise ship sounds like unbelievable heaven. Sailing on the Mediterranean, to all the beautiful ports on the French Riviera, sounds wonderful right? Boy was I wrong. First off we got rooms, side by side on the top. ... Read More
A cruise on a sailing cruise ship sounds like unbelievable heaven. Sailing on the Mediterranean, to all the beautiful ports on the French Riviera, sounds wonderful right? Boy was I wrong. First off we got rooms, side by side on the top. Our cabins were the top of the choices we could have. They were very cute and roomy. I went with my 2 daughters. Rather than going on and on about the trip in detail, Ill just write what the disappointments were. 1-The food. It was poor. More like cafeteria food. The omelet bar in the morning was the highlight of all meals. I wasn't the only one who thought this. I had many conversations with at least 15 passengers at tables that agreed. 2- The staff. All except one guy (His name was Michal) were far below average. When I asked a question about the name of a port or how long we were there..it was a shrug, and a simple " I don't know" he was uninterested in me or my question. I was a bother to him just by asking. 2- If I tried to ask a question about how something was cooked, no one had any idea about any of the food. When I pointed out that a vegetarian meal was NOT a vegetarian meal and was flagged as so, because it had crab in it, the food manager replied with a snotty remark " Oh are you going to point out every screw that's not right on the ship?" The others at the table couldn't believe how rude he was. 3- The cruise director was always MIA. She was never able to be found, when we wanted to ask any questions. 4- In the brochure it stated water sports included. But when we got our room fliers delivered, it stated that there was No jet skiing, No water skiing, and there was only 1 Stand up paddle board, and 1 Kayak offered. So we had to wait and take turns. There was only 2 guys dealing with all the water sports and bringing things back and forth from the ship. I believe, they were completely understaffed! 5-No Wifi offered. Period. You have to pay extra. 6- The pictures of my higher priced room, showed a lovely marble bathroom with a Jacuzzi tub. I envisioned taking a Jacuzzi in the evening after a long day at the ports. But much to my surprise, the Jacuzzi didn't work and barely had bubbles coming out. In fact the room needed a face lift badly. Everything seemed old and in need of some kind of repair. 7-Staff, as I stated earlier, there was only one guy that was kind, and nice and helpful. His name was Michal. The massage therapist was also wonderful, well trained and very sweet and professional. That's about it. No one was ever around to help. To get towels, to pick up dishes left by the pool. There was no cocktail waitress to help, and dishes were left sometimes all night long. The pool area was left a mess and at one point, I went around and picked up dirty wet towels and put them into the basket. This was about 7pm. I had glasses and dishes under my chair that were left for over 8 hours. 8- There were no table and chairs set up to sit outside. So if you wanted to sit out and look at the water and have a drink, good luck. No place to sit. 9-There was a bridge tournie. Fun right? Until we all showed up to play and there were no cards!! It seems that no one was prepared at all. If you have a game planned, and you know its coming up, go buy some cards at the next port. 10- At one port, I believe it was Corsica, they wouldn't let the transport boat drop off. So we were in the boat for an hour, roaming around trying to find a place they would allow us to be dropped off. Why wasn't this discussed with them way prior to us landing at that port? Very maddening!! 11- Water bottles would have been a nice touch each day, perhaps offered by staff when the water transport picked us up or dropped us off. It was extremely hot and we were very thirsty. 12- Music. What can I say. They have an organ player. He was ok, but I felt like I was in a bad wedding movie. They should perhaps offer a DJ at night to dance to or listen to? Just an idea. By the pool as well. 13- Towels. Never enough, and always seemed to be a fight for chairs and seats. I saw two angry discussions about who's towel was who's, and someone took someone else's chair. There should be more then enough to go around. But the clean towel ben was always empty. When I went to look for someone to ask for towels, it took a long time just to find someone to bring some! To be totally fair, the ports were lovely. Sailing in the middle of the ocean was wonderful. Waking up to the warm sun and watching a sunrise from the front of the ship, while sipping my coffee, before anyone else was awake yet, was beautiful. My cabin steward was very good, the room was cleaned daily and he made a few towel animals that were left. The chocolates and treat tray was also a plus for my high end room. It was filled daily with new treats. There were 2 channels of music in the room. That was nice, would be nice if there were maybe 1 or 2 more channels. All in all...we made the best of the trip. We laughed about all the mishaps and decided to write a log of all things that we felt could improve. This is the list I wrote in our travel journal. Will I cruised with the Clippers again? No way. Unless I'm given a free cruise, on a new , and improved sip...then I might. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Recommended by a friend who also went on the same cruice, and he was a friend if the owner which he helped to finance to built the ships.. At that time I was living in Sweden. The crew and service aboard was absolut excellent. And I meet ... Read More
Recommended by a friend who also went on the same cruice, and he was a friend if the owner which he helped to finance to built the ships.. At that time I was living in Sweden. The crew and service aboard was absolut excellent. And I meet my future wife on the cruice,we get married feb 14 2014 she had cabin number 119, and I moved to USA where she was living. Very happy with the cruice. We are both living in southern California. Our tour went to: Malaga, Casablanca, Tanger, Gibraltar, Sevilla. We are hoping that we can make it again on one of the Flyer Ships. My wife had been on Star Flyer some years before, from Athen to Asia ended in Phuket, Thailand and to Hong Kong. That's why she did a new trip. even that time she was very satisfied with every thing at that time too. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
Summary We like Star Flyer but there are many faults that need to be addressed before we chose to sail with them again. Ports of call, experience of the CD and poor information could and should be perfect after 20 years but are not ... Read More
Summary We like Star Flyer but there are many faults that need to be addressed before we chose to sail with them again. Ports of call, experience of the CD and poor information could and should be perfect after 20 years but are not Hotel Info We booked the Phoenicia independently which is a wonderful place and we could see the ship from our window Ship Info Small tall ship with an intimate atmosphere. One sitting evening meal which suited us. Disappointed that a couple of promo groups wore beach wear to dinner. The staff should have done something about this but didn't. Activities There were too few opportunities to use the array of water sports equipment. Service Liked the waiting staff who were mainly Indonesian, Go-an and Filipino. Port & Shore Excursions Not good. Many complained about the overpriced excursions which comprised of sitting on a bus for the morning. The cruise was rescheduled a week before we boarded to avoid Tunisia and we were not informed. We visited 3 ports in Sicily but had no information or maps and so this made life very difficult. The cruise director was ill informed and had no knowledge of any ports at all. The first port of call was even called a "hole" by the Captain - why take us there? Travel To Port of Embarkation We flew in from LHR 2 days beforehand and enjoyed our stay. we walked from the hotel to the ship which was 10 minutes Stateroom A little bit worn and in need of a refit.We had a good choice of cabin. The TV was irritating as it only had 1 intermittent channel of English which flickered, and 3 promo video's. Food We enjoyed the food but were not excited by it> Did not like the rubbery lobster. Entertainment The evenings were fun and hosted by the crew and passengers. Disembarkation Very good - off the ship and at the Gare within 1/2 an hour Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
This was our 4th Star Flyer cruise and for atmosphere on board was probably the best. Windy weather and fairly high seas meant a change of itinerary but that is part of the fun! We started from Monaco, St Tropez the next day. Then a sail ... Read More
This was our 4th Star Flyer cruise and for atmosphere on board was probably the best. Windy weather and fairly high seas meant a change of itinerary but that is part of the fun! We started from Monaco, St Tropez the next day. Then a sail across to Corsica, Menorca and finally Majorca. We were kept well informed of the changes and the reasons for them and were very happy with every port we visited. The captain was first class, a lovely friendly man who obviously enjoyed every moment of his job. The cruise director couldn't be faulted, so professional with a lovely warm personality. Food as usual top quality, cabin well equipped and spotlessly clean, all crew and staff greeting us with a big smile every day. Bill the musician on board was expert at getting the passengers singing, dancing - or just listening. If, like me, you have a birthday whilst on board you will be serenaded by the waiters at dinner and have a lovely birthday cake. Unlike many cruises this is provided as a gift from the Star Flyer - they get your date of birth from your passport. A lovely personal touch. If you love the sea, maybe a little unpredictability due to sailing conditions, a relaxed and informal atmosphere, then this ship is for you! Real sailing, miles of ropes, 36,000 square feet of sails. We can't wait for next year when we will be on the Star Flyer again exploring some new places. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011
Star Flyer Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 3.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 4.1
Entertainment 3.0 3.1
Public Rooms 4.0 4.1
Fitness & Recreation 2.0 N/A
Family 2.0 2.7
Shore Excursions 3.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 2.0 N/A
Service 4.0 4.2
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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