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Sail Date: September 2019
been on prior scenic cruises twice before..though they could never exceed previous levels but they did..ship completely updated with hot tub, gym, masseuse, hairdresser, manicurist...staff attentive to all our quirky requests and ... Read More
been on prior scenic cruises twice before..though they could never exceed previous levels but they did..ship completely updated with hot tub, gym, masseuse, hairdresser, manicurist...staff attentive to all our quirky requests and needs..doing our laundry was huge. food is gourmet and plentiful. always have special needs food for vegetarians, gluten free diets..staff actually learns your names and constantly asks if there is anything they can do for you..bar variety is extensive with top shelf liquors and amazingly interesting cocktails beyond the usual..side trips and all transportation so well planned that it is effortless to travel with scenic..would have like the gift shop to be a little more extensive as the cruise line extends a 100 euro credit per person..no better place to spend it than on presents for the grandchildren but selection not extensive..needless to say we are looking forward to a fourth cruise with scenic as the exceeded all our expectations Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2019
I wanted to try Scenic because I wanted an all inclusive vacation where I did not have to worry about anything. We had first class food and service all the way. The crew and passengers were friendly. The excursions were well done with ... Read More
I wanted to try Scenic because I wanted an all inclusive vacation where I did not have to worry about anything. We had first class food and service all the way. The crew and passengers were friendly. The excursions were well done with no detail left unturned. I liked the electric bike option and we used them several times. I had a medical problem while docked in a small German town. Every effort was made to make my situation easier, and we were back on the ship within a short amount of time. The tour director was funny but very detailed oriented. The cabin was very comfortable and decorated nicely. Bedding was luxurious and the bed was extremely comfortable. The pace of the cruise was just right. My only downside was when the cruise was done, I didn’t want to leave. I could have traveled another two weeks with them. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Dates fitted - I wanted to do a river cruise in Europe- friends had a conference in Vienna so it seemed like a good idea to combine work and pleasure. I had completed a Nile river cruise in egypt and loved it so thought a chance to see ... Read More
Dates fitted - I wanted to do a river cruise in Europe- friends had a conference in Vienna so it seemed like a good idea to combine work and pleasure. I had completed a Nile river cruise in egypt and loved it so thought a chance to see some of the areas in Europe that I hadn’t visited would be good. The staff and crew have been excellent- especially the captain and butlers. Cabins are good except that the very small shower is difficult for taller people. Entertainment was exceptional - all activity alternatives were great - I enjoyed all of the ones I chose - particularly enjoyed the bike rides - especially the ride through Vienna. Musical entertainment was outstanding - loved string quartet, palais Lichtenstein, piano recital etc. also liked being able to walk each morning on the upper deck track. I found the gym fairly limiting as it was too small and very airless. A defibrillator should be mandatory and a trained medical staff member present. Overall I loved my cruise and would consider joining another scenic cruise. The most impressive thing is that you are exceedingly well looked after and that you don’t pay for anything once you are on board. Food is amazing and all food and beverages are provided with great generosity. Thank you Team Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
American's have not really discovered this Austrailian based cruise company, but we were lucky to find this river cruise while searching for last minute deals on line. We are experienced cruisers and thought why not try something ... Read More
American's have not really discovered this Austrailian based cruise company, but we were lucky to find this river cruise while searching for last minute deals on line. We are experienced cruisers and thought why not try something different. We ended up having the experience of a lifetime and enjoyed all the benefits of a first class all-inclusive cruise. Yes, we were in the minority (we were only two of 14 Americans on board, versus about 75 Austrailians and 60 Canadians) but that proved to be an advantage. It was nice to escape the political noise in our country and get some other perspectives from those outside the daily fray. We ended up sailing on a 15 day itinerary from Budapest, Hungary to Amsterdam and were given first class treatment all the way. Even though we elected to arrive in Budapest several days before embarkation without buying Scenic's pre-departure package - they still picked us up at the Airport and drove us to our chosen hotel for no extra charge. Very few cruise lines do that for you. Our embarkation in Budapest was seamless and Scenic had the premier docking position in Budapest so we could enjoy beautiful nighttime views of the Hungarian Parliament building and several beautiful bridges our first night on the river boat. Disembarkation was also a snap and Scenic even had someone meet us at the Amsterdam airport to guide us to our airline's check-in area. So nice. Food and drinks flowed freely on board with no restrictions whatsoever. We had specialty coffees and drinks at our disposal night and day and a fully stockied mini-bar that was replenished immediately. The wine selections for dinner and lunch were truly memorable and designed to complement the deliciously prepared meals. I was very impressed by the freshness of the fruit, vegetables and salads - not always the case on many cruises. The included excursions and enrichment activities were first class and I feel they had the connections to get us into some of the best places to visit. For example, our private concert at Palais Lichtenstein in Vienna was just beautiful. Another highlight was attending a performance at the Spanish Riding School in Vienna as well as an evening tour and dinner at Marksburg Castle in the beautiful Rhine Gorge. E-bikes were available for each port and we totally enjoyed touring various cities using them. We often saw Viking Ships docking at the same ports and doing some of the same tours, but I often felt sorry for them as we seemed to have the preferred times and better guides. I don't know how Scenic does it - but they do. My only caveat would be in regard to cabins. Because we did a last minute lower-priced booking, we were only able to book one of the smallest cabins with no balcony. Although the room was very clean and well appointed, for such a lengthy cruise, we wished we had been in one of the larger balcony suites. I wouldn't have minded the small cabin for a five to seven day cruise, but after 15 days I was tired of our small shower and the minimal room in our cabin. But that was a choice we made and of course we saved over $3,000 a person in the process. Just be warned - small cabins are small!!! One final point - our on-board tour director was fabulous. Very organized, clear and well versed about all our destinations. I know that my husband will never sail any other way than all inclusive going forward and we would definitely choose Scenic for our next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
What an experience! Customer service levels off the Richter scale!! Nothing was too much trouble for the staff. The Chef, Steve Groves was charming and so modest! Greg Wallace was a bundle of energy and made time for everyone, we learnt so ... Read More
What an experience! Customer service levels off the Richter scale!! Nothing was too much trouble for the staff. The Chef, Steve Groves was charming and so modest! Greg Wallace was a bundle of energy and made time for everyone, we learnt so much about his life, such an interesting man. The oyster schuking was memorable and even those not keen were happy to listen and learn. The Head Chef Mattias was a lively character who gave entertaining demonstrations. The whole cruise was geared around food snd wine, taking us to some of the mist stunning vinyards in the Bordeaux region. It was action packed with talks and wine tasting in some of the most beautiful chateaus. The music extravaganza bresthtaking set in the fairy tale Chateau d'Agassac. A beautiful ship visiting the best of the region, stunning scenery and top class local guides, full of personality and information. The Cruise Director Andreea, was full of energy and never flagged, always happy to help and make you feel valued. My favourite wine tasting was at the beautiful Chateau de la Riviere! Such a fabulous setting. The Gala dinner was an event where all the crew came and danced with us, along with Gregg Wallace and Steve Groves. This was a stunning and memorable cruise and worth every one of its five stars!! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
This was our second cruise with Scenic, chosen because it was one of the least expensive options to be honest. It also appealed that we could travel there by train, which seemed like a very civilised way to start a holiday! When the ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Scenic, chosen because it was one of the least expensive options to be honest. It also appealed that we could travel there by train, which seemed like a very civilised way to start a holiday! When the train times came through from the agent, I queried them, as we had to cross Paris from Gare du Nord to Montparnasse in about an hour - which seemed tight. She assured me that other passengers were doing the same, but I am very glad that I insisted on an earlier Eurostar, as I know that the other passengers only just made it! That first evening, I met with the chef and restaurant manager to talk about dietary requirements (I'm vegetarian) - although I needn't have done as there were always plenty of vegetarian options. However they delivered the menu to me each evening for the next day, saying that if I didn't fancy the veggie option, I could ask for something else - which was a lovely touch. They also both kept checking in on me throughout the cruise to see if I was happy with the food. Can't fault it! We were booked into the L'Amour restaurant that first night (it was my husband's birthday), and they made an appropriate fuss of him, with birthday cake and champagne to finish the meal. Great food and good company too (you are given the option of a table for 2 or to be sociable, and we were always sociable - except at breakfast as I am a grumpy morning person!). The food and wine throughout the cruise was great (I put on nearly half a stone in a week!), and the service was incredible - those people work so hard! I wasn't keen on the mocktails (too sweet), so I just drank champagne instead - the hardship! Great selection of drinks available, but if you are a gin-drinker, be aware that although they have some decent gins, they don't have premium tonics to go with them. The excursions were mostly excellent too. Despite booking on a cruise in Bordeaux, we have limited knowledge of wine, and so mostly chose non-wine-tasting excursions, and a couple were a touch disappointing (Libourne, nice enough, but not much to it, Cadillac was lovely, but an hour's coach trip away). Others places visited were really lovely though - I would definitely visit Bordeaux itself again, loved Blaye, and even went to visit the medieval festival in Bourg. Oh, I nearly forgot - Gregg Wallace and Steve Groves (MasterChef) were also there for some of it - which was interesting, but not the reason for choosing the cruise! The cooking experience with the chef was probably more interesting (though I was surprised at how limited the places were on this, I would have though everyone would have got to participate), and this was more demonstration than cookery class, but very enjoyable. One word of caution, if you want a river cruise that actually travels much, don't do this one. I had looked carefully at the itinerary before we booked, and was happy that we weren't going far, and (unlike other river cruises) we weren't visiting many big cultural cities, but I know others on the cruise seemed disappointed. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
The scenery everyday is awesome. Going through the locks was very interesting. Butlers and bartenders were friendly knowledgeable and attentive. Food was delicious and varied. I am allergic to shellfish and felt they could have done ... Read More
The scenery everyday is awesome. Going through the locks was very interesting. Butlers and bartenders were friendly knowledgeable and attentive. Food was delicious and varied. I am allergic to shellfish and felt they could have done a better job of ensuring that there was options when shellfish was on the menu. Portobellos the Portuguese restaurant was excellent with magnificent service. The evening Crystal dining room had a varied menu. We found the service very slow on the nights that the speciality service/restaurants were open. Loved the butler service for morning coffee! Relaxed before breakfast and enjoyed the scenery. The Portugese bar b que up on the sun deck was very good. Ribs were amazing! The musician was entertaining and engaged the crowd. One night there was local entertainment which was also very good and engaging! Cabins were efficient but small. Bathrooms were well appointed. The tours were good but some required too long a bus ride. A few were sick and not enough was done to find out why. Probably the heat as it was very hot Throughly enjoyed the trip though. Cruise directors were very knowledgeable. We took the three days in Lisbon prior which very worth the extra days. Porto was beautiful with great tours. Enjoyed the cooking class tour of the galley and being able to interact with the chef Very efficient boarding. A little confusion on the embarking as they moved us to a hotel. The lunch at the hotel was not very good compared to the ship Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Best reviews, best TRUE all-inclusive, best dates, best location stops and tours, amazing cabin. The staff is second to none. BBQ on deck, personal service, incredible food and beverages, informative and small-town tours... we will ... Read More
Best reviews, best TRUE all-inclusive, best dates, best location stops and tours, amazing cabin. The staff is second to none. BBQ on deck, personal service, incredible food and beverages, informative and small-town tours... we will be back many time! The ship is amazing, clean and well laid-out. Amazing and varied gourmet meals, well organized tours to very special destinations. The staff attentiveness is second to none. I researched over 25 river cruise lines for the best... this was it. Cabin, although expensive, was spacious and provided an un-encumbered view of all sides of the ship...truly and amazing experience. Special surprises such as an on-board BBQ, nightly entertainment from local sources, private concerts in Palais Lichtenstein, concert pianists, world-class violinists, dancers, and musicians. The cruise director Yvonne is a treasure and the captain and his crew approachable, thoughtful and willing to go the extra mile to ensure a wonderful and life changing experience. We will be back! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We chose this cruise at the last minute and did not really know what to expect. After a long flight we embarked the ship in Amsterdam with a minimum of fuss and found what should have been a hectic experience very smooth and welcoming. The ... Read More
We chose this cruise at the last minute and did not really know what to expect. After a long flight we embarked the ship in Amsterdam with a minimum of fuss and found what should have been a hectic experience very smooth and welcoming. The staff aboard “The Pearl” were nothing short of fantastic and really made our cruise the experience of a lifetime. The cabin is small but very comfortable and the onboard amenities plentiful. We really enjoyed the the small ship experience especially the all inclusiveness. Our every need was catered for. The itinerary was extensive and we found that the experiences included of the highest quality. The food was of a high standard and plentiful, we wanted for nothing In that regard. The staff really were exceptional on our cruise and my praise really doesn’t do justice to their hard work and motivation. I can recommend Scenic enough for introducing us to the wonders of Europe. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
This is our second time with Scenic, the first being 14 nights from Amsterdam to Budapest. The Scribe in Paris was our pre cruise hotel and it was wonderful. The room was very comfortable and the staff very friendly. Scenic was able to ... Read More
This is our second time with Scenic, the first being 14 nights from Amsterdam to Budapest. The Scribe in Paris was our pre cruise hotel and it was wonderful. The room was very comfortable and the staff very friendly. Scenic was able to extend our stay with their rates for 6 nights which helped for a smooth transition. We bussed from Paris to Chalon Sur Seone where we embarked. Bus ride was about 5 hours excluding a stop for lunch along the way. Embarkation was easy! We stayed in a Royal Balcony Suite which was great. The extra space was well worth the extra cost and our butler and cabin attendant were terrific. Maybe it's because we were in France but the food and wines were outstanding. The entertainer was very versatile and good. Ports were fine although we wondered why we stopped at Vienne, but my guess is because of spacing and availability for the boats along the river. There was not much to see and we were only there for a few hours. The "special experiences" offered by Scenic were also great...Scenic enrich, sundowner cocktails, and the two specialty dinners. The best part of everything is included. It's always nice to leave with no need to pay for anything else. Granted you pay it in the fare but it's still nice not to get charged for "extras" like so many other cruise lines do. I would travel with them again and highly recommend. They are two for two with us! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
This is our fifth cruise with Scenic and it has been impossible to find fault with any of them. We have found on this cruise, as with the other cruises, that all of the staff go “the extra mile” to ensure that you have an enjoyable ... Read More
This is our fifth cruise with Scenic and it has been impossible to find fault with any of them. We have found on this cruise, as with the other cruises, that all of the staff go “the extra mile” to ensure that you have an enjoyable voyage. There is a variable and high standard of cuisine with quality wines and a large variety of alcoholic beverages. There is also a 24/7 self service machine for coffee and other hot drinks. Transfers at both the start and end of the voyage are arranged and carried out efficiently with the occasional chauffeured pick up and return to home on some voyages. The guides on the various inclusive tours are also friendly, knowledgable and fully fluent in English as well as other languages. We believe that Scenic “all inclusive “ prices give the best value for money. We chose this cruise because it was in a part of France that we had not visited before. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Wow! I have never been so spoiled! It was amazing, I truly believe that every staff member wants you to have the absolute best time are there to make sure it happens. From the initial greeting when we got to the boat to the time we left. ... Read More
Wow! I have never been so spoiled! It was amazing, I truly believe that every staff member wants you to have the absolute best time are there to make sure it happens. From the initial greeting when we got to the boat to the time we left. One of the highlights was When the chef would come out after each port talk and let you know the culinary masterpiece that he had prepared for you that evening. We were never hungry... The wait staff were always very attentive and polite and never left you wanting for anything (my husband may have had a couple of 2 dessert nights). The wine glasses were never empty. The excursions were top notch with really great guides. The cruise director JJ did such a great job of explaining all the possible excursions the first night that we actually ended up changing a couple of our choices and were not disappointed. The room and ship were luxurious and tastefully decorated. It was worth every dollar spent and I would definitely go on another scenic cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
This ship is a 5 star hotel and the service is fantastic. I also loved the app for your phone that alerted you to points of interest you sailed by, and that you could look up info on all the cities along the route. Also loved that fact ... Read More
This ship is a 5 star hotel and the service is fantastic. I also loved the app for your phone that alerted you to points of interest you sailed by, and that you could look up info on all the cities along the route. Also loved that fact that once you paid the fare everything was included, no surprises at the end of the cruise. Highly recommend Scenic Cruises! Embarkation and disembarkation was very organized and went smoothly. The ports of call and shore excursions were well organized and very interesting. I would have liked to have more than 1 day in Budapest and maybe 1 less day in Vienna. The entertainment was very good with a good variety and many special things only for Scenic like the classical music concert at Palais Liechtenstein, and the Salzburg Sound of Music Show. Our cruise director, Richard Grey, did an excellent job of organizing local talents to come on board to entertain us. Al in all I would highly recommend Scenic Tours and I plan to travel with them again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We have friends who told us the river cruises were a great way to see an area. So we decided Europe. Our travel agent recommended Scenic as a choice for an all inclusive trip for the price. From the time Scenic picked us up in Amsterdam to ... Read More
We have friends who told us the river cruises were a great way to see an area. So we decided Europe. Our travel agent recommended Scenic as a choice for an all inclusive trip for the price. From the time Scenic picked us up in Amsterdam to the time they shuttled us to the airport in Budapest everything was first class. In fact they even let us upgrade our airline tickets to business class (highly recommended for international travel) for a very reasonable fee. The trip was so well organized all the stress was removed which travel often brings. The service was exemplary. Food excellent at every venue. Cabin was spacious with all the comforts. Our cruise director, Richard, worked tirelessly to insure all aspects of our tours and free time went smoothly. Never a dull moment but somehow with time to just relax and "vacation". This was my first introduction to Europe and Scenic did it well. I told our "new friends" we met on the cruise, I have never been so far from home but never felt so much at home. Still trying to process all we've seen and experienced. I will definitely recommend Scenic. Thank you Scenic for a memorable trip of a lifetime. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I had previously (last year) done a cruise with Scenic and was very satisfied. I originally chose this line because they were one of the few who offered a single cabin with a balcony. As it turned out I was lucky enough to upgrade to a ... Read More
I had previously (last year) done a cruise with Scenic and was very satisfied. I originally chose this line because they were one of the few who offered a single cabin with a balcony. As it turned out I was lucky enough to upgrade to a double cabin on my first cruise, and a deluxe double cabin on this cruise, which was wonderful. The extra space makes quite a difference - as a single I probably spent more time in my cabin than some couples would. I arrived in Budapest a couple of days prior to the cruise and stayed at the Marriott Hotel, along with a number of other Scenic guests. I had plenty of time to explore the city which remains one of my favourites. There was one hiccup on embarkation day, when my luggage didn't make it from the hotel to the ship. This may have been in part because I had done my own hotel booking and didn't let Scenic do it. (I got a cheaper and I think a lot nicer room than my fellow Scenic guests.) I was on their shuttle, but I received no instructions for the transfer of my luggage, and the hotel clerk apparently didn't understand the process. My cases were finally tracked down by Scenic many hours later, for which I was very grateful. Other than that, embarkation and disembarkation processes were excellent, and all exits and entries on the ship during the cruise were most efficient due to our identity tags. Tip - take a lanyard to avoid having to clip the tag on. They ran out of lanyards on this cruise. The staff were always polite and friendly and couldn't do enough for you. My butler made sure I had my early morning coffee every day. When there was a moth infestation through my open window one evening, he was there in a flash to help me get them out of my cabin. One thing I noticed this time was that the butlers were also on the serving staff in the dining room, which had not noticed on my first cruise. Staff cutbacks? Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
Essentially took this tour with another couple who where wanting to celebrate their 30th Wedding Anniversary. Despite the fact our airplane arrived well over an hour late in Prague the very approachable Scenic representative was their to ... Read More
Essentially took this tour with another couple who where wanting to celebrate their 30th Wedding Anniversary. Despite the fact our airplane arrived well over an hour late in Prague the very approachable Scenic representative was their to greet us and take us to the local hotel. Likewise for the balance of the trip all the services from presentations by the Cruise Director, departure for excursions to opening of the restaurants were completely on time and very timely. The Chef on our cruise provided an excellent array of culinary delights both on the buffet and a la carte services. The cut on everything from slices meats to vegetables and dessert items was flawless. I inquired with the Chef who frequently made table checks about the "secrets" about a "Clear Tomato" that was being served for lunch. Chef Broccoli was most generous and provided a recipe for this exceptional soup. The effort put in by the entire staff of our trip was 110%. They worked well as a team and professional ignored the occasional unthinking and too casual guest. My only concern would be that the dining room was a slight bit noisy and congested and that for "older" folks (70 +) might find it tiring after more than a week. Likewise the rooms will be a tad small for those on the "heavier or tall" side. The Tailormade Scenic software very innovative and highly effective. I only recently have been using a smart phone but found it enhanced the trip. The system was occasionally nonfunctional when listening to the tour guides in large congested areas. However the information and pictures while sailing down the picturesque Danube River very complementary. Did find the survey questionare at the end of the tour rather long and time consuming. I thought it might take 20 minutes to complete but it had so many questions that I ran out of time and had to omit the last quarter of the survey. Cabin balcony excellent. Really liked the size, the glass, even the comfortable chairs. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We were very impressed reading the itinerary and all the trip offered. It was our first river cruise with scenic. The daily programs are explained every evening, before dinner. Svetlana armstrong, our cruise director was wonderful! Her eye ... Read More
We were very impressed reading the itinerary and all the trip offered. It was our first river cruise with scenic. The daily programs are explained every evening, before dinner. Svetlana armstrong, our cruise director was wonderful! Her eye for detail is exceptional, there was never a time she wasn't there for the guests: ensuring all understood the guidelines of what to do, where to meet, along with all the historical places we would be visiting. Every day was a wow! vadim palchun, our historian, program director, and guide was beyond an a++. Vadim"s intellect surpasses any historian we have ever met. Vadim greeted us every day with humor, patience, knowledge and passion for russia as he guided us thru his homeland. The palaces, the cathedrals, the museums, (don't miss the world war 11 museum) the ballet, the rivertours, the folklore show, & the phenominal old moscow circus!!! Was outstanding!!! Truly, surpassed our expectations! the only significant problem involved the limo service from home: to and from the airport, would not want to deal with this limo company again.. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Where could you possibly start to tell people how AMAZING!!!!! The crew of the Scenic Diamond are!!!! From the beautiful Pat, Ros, Nick & Hôtel Manager Cristian at the front desk, along with the fabulous Krasimira, Zina, Crusise ... Read More
Where could you possibly start to tell people how AMAZING!!!!! The crew of the Scenic Diamond are!!!! From the beautiful Pat, Ros, Nick & Hôtel Manager Cristian at the front desk, along with the fabulous Krasimira, Zina, Crusise director Sonja!!!! Chef Matthias, Chef Jones & omelette superstar Robert we’ll keep you well fed along with ALL the amazing kitchen crew (FYI- bring ya fat pants with you ya gonna need them!!!) The truly sensational Cabin staff (lead by Angela) the fabulous Amanda, and the super wonderful beautiful Ionela (who was our cabin attendant) The AWESOME staff in the bar of Stoyan, Petrica, Daniel (aka Babycakes my favourite) you guys are the best!!!! brilliant conversationalists, super fun and are amazing dancers!!! The absolutely BRILLIANT wait staff led by Pavel, Daniel (the one) Tedour, Andri, Bachelor (who is also one!!!) The beautiful Alex, Vas, Costi etc!!!! All the ships crew and of course; Captain Sebastian & his first Mate, who is also his Father Co. captain Gary!!!! If you do not love this cruise, the food & the amazing people who make up the crew on this ship- YOU ARE the problem, not the tours, not france and not the ship!!! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Returning travellers with loyalty to Scenic due to excellent past experiences. This was the 2nd leg of our two cruises having come straight off the Scenic Gem on the Sceine. This cruise in Bordeaux was a concentration on the French wine ... Read More
Returning travellers with loyalty to Scenic due to excellent past experiences. This was the 2nd leg of our two cruises having come straight off the Scenic Gem on the Sceine. This cruise in Bordeaux was a concentration on the French wine a food experiences. The uniform specification and layout of the ship makes you immediately feel at home. The consistently high level of attention from all the staff - butlers, room staff, bar staff and wait staff the dining areas - meant that the overall experience was the same as any previous Scenic cruise. The experience was enhanced by the excellent local guides for all the off ship excursions. Scenic offered a range of excursions that were always to a high quality location. We travelled out and back from the buitiful city of Bordeaux which really was a highlight of our visit to France. We will certainly be returning to Scenic in the future. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
This is a very hard review to write, because the ship has been designed to be to many things that are so different, which is difficult to achieve. The design has certainly tried to incorporate a high degree of luxury and speciality gourmet ... Read More
This is a very hard review to write, because the ship has been designed to be to many things that are so different, which is difficult to achieve. The design has certainly tried to incorporate a high degree of luxury and speciality gourmet dinning venues in an expedition vessel with many unique features. So from my point of view, I really have to review it on the basis that it is an expedition ship or discovery yacht (as Scenic like to call it) with the ability to view the landscape and nature from the ship as well as from the air and below the surface of the water. It was for these features and the region it was to travel that I chose this cruise, even long before building of the ship had even started. The ship certainly looks the part from the outside with modern lines and a purposeful structure. However on in the inside the design deficiencies of trying to be too many things, become much more apparent. It seems as though there has been too much effort put into making it modern and futuristic with little or no thought into making it practical or functional. The Eclipse is a paperless ship, so there is an overuse of electronics which as we all know do not always work as they should and in many instances are confusing or complicated to operate. And when they go wrong, no manual or conventional system is able to take it place. From a safety point of view the hand rails which are square in profile have sharp edges and corners as do many handles, taps and tables. These may be in fashion at the moment and look good, but can catch you or your clothing which may be dangerous on a moving ship. The dark colours which prevail throughout the ship together with mirrored surfaces everywhere are not conducive to an older generation of passengers, which I would assume will be a large part of the Eclipse future income. Most modern expedition ships have forward and aft lifts or stairs, the Eclipse only has only has one set which are situated more towards the stern of the ship. This means easy access to the outer decks is very limiting and certainly can take a lot longer. It is important on a true expedition cruise, to have quick and easy access to outer decks and indoor observation areas to view nature and wildlife as soon as possible after sighting. Unfortunately the observation lounge has very limited forward vision but at least allows good access to the large outer bow deck. Also this lounge only has self-serve tea and coffee and no bar, while the restrooms are along way a way at the stern. The outside observation deck is good for viewing nature and wild life but deck 10 which is all outside, is a really good area for viewing as it give a 360 degree view. Mind you a part of this deck is set aside for smoking. This deck like most deck has a very large protruding roof structure which is a benefit in raining conditions but can be a hindrance to viewing birds and mountains from certain areas such as the observation lounge. The main lounge is very open with the reception at one end and the main bar at the other which makes it very open and probably less personal. The seating layout and design does not help in making the area as friendly as other expedition ships. Dinning venues are generally good but all with limited seating. There is no buffet option for dinner which is not ideal for a true expedition ship either. Some passengers just want a quick meal and get to bed early after a long days adventure. The main theatre is round and has very comfortable seating, unfortunately a couple of large pillars block vision from some of the seats. With a full complement of passengers the theatre would be very hard pressed to fit them all in, which will be a problem sometimes. The use of plain dark carpet in areas of the ship was probably not a good decision, as it almost always looked dirty as did some of the dark glass tables. Suites are generally dark and bland with reflective surfaces everywhere. Almost no warmth has been added. Our suite had one blueish toned painting, which only made the room feel even colder. Although the TV is very modern, it was set behind glass which meant you could not view it from any reasonable angle, even in bed, because of reflections. If you sat directly in front of the TV for viewing, you had the pleasure of seeing yourself reflected in the glass. As well the TV menu and remote control was more confusing than normal, and very slow to respond to button control, quite frustrating in fact. The cabin itself has a very thin curtain to the balcony and an electronic blind which lowers to darken the room at night. The problem with this setup is that, not only was it noisy to operate but also if you wanted to look out at night while your partner slept, the noise and possible additional night would wake them up anyway. The suite we were in was a deluxe verandah which was good in size but had limited drawer and wardrobe space. The wardrobe doors block access in and out of the bathroom when opened and there are no additional hooks in the suite to hang expedition clothing such as hats or jackets. Suite bathrooms do not have a conventional hand basin. Instead they have a sloping flat surface to take water away, so there is no plug. This not only means it cannot be used for washing personal clothing but the design also tend to splash much more water everywhere, including over oneself. As mentioned before, handles are square and on the shower door they are really sharp, certainly an accident waiting to happen. The bed was very comfortable and the air conditioning, which covers a good temperature range, is effective and easy to adjust. The internet throughout the ship is generally very good and seems to have a higher capacity with less dropouts than other ships we have travelled on. Staff to passenger ratio is very favourable, however it is my understanding that staff quarters have been built to the very minimum standard, which is small. Only time will tell if that is the case, and that will be through staff turnover. I know a number of staff left the ship in Quebec. The ship itself is very smooth and relative quite. It certainly handles rougher conditions better than most other expedition ships and its dynamic positioning system is brilliant. This system means it does not have to drop anchor but can stay in the one position with almost no movement. However the side thrusters, which keep the ship in position, do create some problems for zodiac drivers as they approach the ship. The idea of having helicopters and a submarine to enhance the experience is certainly very appealing and the experience is certainly worth while. Unfortunately there will be many instances where they will be unable to be used due to local restrictions or weather conditions. With passenger expectations high for these experiences, the Eclipse could have some very unhappy customers at times. Local restrictions may become a bigger issue in certain regions in the future for both the helicopters and submarine. In summary the ship itself is very good but it certainly could have been better, in fact world class, had there been much more functionality designed into its main purpose, which I assume is a discovery yacht. Although I did not chose to sail on a maiden voyage, unfortunately that is the way it turned out. So how did this inaugural voyage from Reykjavik to Quebec, on the Scenic Eclipse go. It certainly did not start well. Three days prior departure we were advised that boarding the time would be delayed by three hours from midday. Instead a room at a local hotel near the port was made available for meeting, and a light lunch was provided. We all waited until around 3pm the revised boarding time, when we were advised that boarding would not take place for another 24 hours. Scenic staff then spent several hours arranging accommodation at various hotels all around Reykjavik. The whole process was handled so badly that passengers became extremely unhappy. Scenic also offered us to board the ship for drinks that evening. Many passengers took up the opportunity to view the ship, which may have been a mistake as we were able to see just how unready the ship really was for the cruise. To fill in the following day Scenic offered a full day, which turned out to be very good. After the tour we did board the ship, and saw just how tired and wore out the staff really were from preparing the ship for us to board. They must have worked day and night without much sleep, never-the-less to their credit they still had a smile for some very unhappy passengers. Realistically the ship was several weeks from being ready for sailing with passengers. To highlight how unprepared they were for passengers at the safety drill there was no check list to make sure everyone attended and when they did try to do a roll call too many were not present so they gave up and said it was all over. During the first few days there were many issues, certainly far to many to mention here, but overtime everything started to improve and by the time we reached Canada things were running quite smoothly and everyone seemed to be enjoy the cruise even with issues remaining. Food quality varied from average all the way up to exceptional. Hotel staff were friendly and generally good to excellent while the expedition staff were very competent and did a great job in making the experience more enjoyable. Over time I’m sure the ship will become a top quality product, but its design issues will remain, which is ashame. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
Never heard of Scenic but travel agent recommended because of balcony, dates and itinerary. Spotlessly clean and outstanding service! Beds are so comfortable and balcony is so enjoyable. We had the perfect view of Parliament in Budapest ... Read More
Never heard of Scenic but travel agent recommended because of balcony, dates and itinerary. Spotlessly clean and outstanding service! Beds are so comfortable and balcony is so enjoyable. We had the perfect view of Parliament in Budapest when we entered our room and the view at night was spectacular! Enjoyed meeting and spending time with like minded passengers who appreciate high quality and service. We enjoyed taking the bikes on our own in Vienna so having some free time was appreciated. We were pleasantly surprised to find we could board ship early and have lunch before embarkation so we didn’t have to walk around Budapest with our luggage. Early morning coffee in our rooms was delightful from our butler who also provided ice and snacks every afternoon in a timely manner. Entering locks was a new experience especially from the outside deck on top of ship. We even visited the Captain in the wheelhouse. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Met at the airport for transport to the ship. Getting to the ship and into our cabin went very smoothly, Cabin was sparking, and we had plenty of room to stow things away. Staff were more than welcoming. We were booked to sail on ... Read More
Met at the airport for transport to the ship. Getting to the ship and into our cabin went very smoothly, Cabin was sparking, and we had plenty of room to stow things away. Staff were more than welcoming. We were booked to sail on Crystal, but there was a change of ship earlier due to water levels. Fortunately we had no issues with high or low water and were able to complete the entire voyage on the Jasper. Staff were exemplary - couldn't do enough to make us happy. Bartenders were a little heavy handed with alcohol in the mixed drinks. Food ranged from average to brilliant, however, we never went hungry or thirsty. Range of tours was varied. Some of the "easy walking" tours were an effort for some guests. We were pleased to be traveling with a mostly Australian group. The atmosphere was relaxed and happy, and I believe our traveling companions helped to make it so. We sailed from Amsterdam to Budapest and then went on to Prague. The bus to Prague took 9 hours, however the Cosmopolitan hotel was a delight, and Prague was fun to explore. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Wanted to visit Amsterdam and Germany and it was the perfect way to do it. We chose the Scenic Ruby as the ship and decor was very modern. We had the room at the rear of the ship. The rear window was wide that we didn’t have to ... Read More
Wanted to visit Amsterdam and Germany and it was the perfect way to do it. We chose the Scenic Ruby as the ship and decor was very modern. We had the room at the rear of the ship. The rear window was wide that we didn’t have to leave our room to see the beautiful river scenery especially the castles. The food and service was five star, all our needs were met by our wonderful butler with early morning coffee and breakfast in our room. There was a also a full buffet breakfast in the dining room with a great selection of cold and hot food. Evening meals were five star. The daily soups are to die for. As you cruise through the towns and past the vineyards you get to try the lovely wines and beers in that area with you meals. It seemed happy hour all day. The bar staff would were very attentive and ready to mix your favourite cocktails. The musical entertainment on board was excellent. There was a good selection of shore excursions. Our Cruise Director was informative advising us of the next days’ tours and departure times. Comfortable coaches and guides were ready each day to take us on our guided tours. This was certainly a five star cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Were not sure what to expect for our first River Cruise but we were certainly impressed from our airport arrival and transfer to our hotel a few days before the cruise. The transfer from the hotel to the ship, the crew, and cruise far ... Read More
Were not sure what to expect for our first River Cruise but we were certainly impressed from our airport arrival and transfer to our hotel a few days before the cruise. The transfer from the hotel to the ship, the crew, and cruise far exceeded our our expectations. The transfers to our hotel after and a few days later to the airport we expect we will have the same exceptional experience. Having 40+ Ocean Cruises under our belt we were not sure what to expect but are glad we did and will do another River Cruise again. And Scenic will be our choice. We could not have asked for a better learning or entertainment experience. The entertainment was from Classical to Country to Rock and Roll to A Disco Dance Party with the crew the night before. Again I cannot say how impressed with the Ship, Crew, Ports of call, excursions, food, and entertainment. Consider Scenic in your travel plans. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Had always wanted to visit Vietnam / Cambodia but wanted to do it guided. had never been on a Scenic Cruise before but the “all inclusive” Scenic package really appealed. To be truthful I had no idea how all inclusive it would be ... Read More
Had always wanted to visit Vietnam / Cambodia but wanted to do it guided. had never been on a Scenic Cruise before but the “all inclusive” Scenic package really appealed. To be truthful I had no idea how all inclusive it would be but if you chose not to buy souvenirs or a drink in a bar when off ship then there was very little need to take cash. We budgeted for some spending but returned home spending very little at all. They say inclusive but I did not expect top shelf drinks including a gin menu, yes a menu there were that many to choose from. Food allergies were no problem either with a super attentive and highly skilled chef ensuring wonderful food. The level of service from all staff was exceptional, every cabin has its own butler, unpacking and room service drinks ....you don’t have to lift a finger. Great excursions and truly caring and memorable guides. In one word.....FAULTLESS......highly recommend Read Less
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