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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We reserved this cruise over a year in advance based on the itinerary; we had not visited any of the ports listed. There was a new stop every day between Lisbon and London, including two days in Bordeaux and London and a visit to Omaha ... Read More
We reserved this cruise over a year in advance based on the itinerary; we had not visited any of the ports listed. There was a new stop every day between Lisbon and London, including two days in Bordeaux and London and a visit to Omaha Beach. As an expedition cruise, all of the tours, and there were many to choose from, were included. This, and the fact that it was all-inclusive, was enough to sign me up. After that, however, it only got better and better and exceeded our expectations. A person was waiting at the airport for our private car transfer to the hotel (Lisbon Sofitel), which we booked (through Silversea) for a one-day pre-stay. At the hotel, a dedicated hospitality desk was available from 9 to 6 to handle all our questions, advise walking tours, restaurants and sites. On sail day, a luxury bus took us the 20 minute ride to pier and check in at Lisbon was quick. Although it was a our first time in Lisbon, we were never left to feel lost or easy tourist marks. (This was true of the all of the ports we visited). The ship was recently refitted and has furniture and appointments generally similar to the new Silver Muse. Style is subdued and elegant and lacks the Las-Vegas-Disney style glitz so distracting on the 3,000 passenger ships we have previously sailed. Although I knew this was an "expedition" cruise, I did not know until later that it was a "culinary" expedition cruise, with lectures on food, wine and cooking demonstrations. that does not say it all, however, as they also offered highly entertaining talks on military history, medieval cultural history, plants and animals. The tours offered reflected these particular interests. All of the tour guides were local and highly well informed. The passengers ran from about 50 to 80 years of age. I was particularly impressed by the care and attention given by all of the expedition staff on the tours. A crew member was always available to make sure no one got lost and everyone got back to the ship on time. Many ports had courtesy desks set up so that you could strike out on your own. Although Silversea does attract an older crowd (there were no children aboard), many of the tours required an admirable level of fitness, including several walks of several miles over various terrain and bike rides of several miles, and the passengers were more than up to this. They go in all weathers! By evening, passengers were happy to spend a few hours enjoying the evening meal, or a cocktail in the two lounges with pianists/vocalists. We did not miss the absence of broadway song and dance shows, which we usually skip anyway. The level of service was outstanding; you only had to catch the eye of the steward for the merest moment for them to be rushing to your side. Yet, it was not intrusive. Each cabin has a butler as well as a steward for cleaning. In our case, the butler handled in-room dining and assisted with clothing care and was generally always available nearby. About 30% of the passengers were US, the rest were Brits, Aussies and a smattering of others. All communications are in English. A red and white wine is selected every evening for dinner; they are of medium quality but usually locally significant. The cocktails are uniformly imaginative and superb. Although I have no interest in an Antarctic cruise (which is more than 50% of their expedition business), I would definitely sail with Silversea again on another type of expedition cruise. The one thing I would change next time is to make my own flight arrangements. Silversea offered a good price for the flights to and from Europe, but there was an upcharge if you did not want to fly back immediately after the cruise (ie, if you want to stay a day or more in the place of debarkation). It has nothing to do with the day of week on which you were leaving; it was just the mere change of departure date. Further, although you pay for the flights at the same time as the rest of cruise (which could be more than a year in advance), they do not actually "buy" the flight and assign the seats until shortly before you leave. Therefore, whereas you should get a choice of seats months in advance, you get whatever is left only 4 to 6 weeks before you fly. In our case, this meant that we were relegated to the last boarding group and were told we could not bring hand luggage onto the plane because there was no more room. This caused quite a bit of consternation at the outset of the trip. The last thing you want is to be kneeling on the floor at the departure gate trying to move valuables and medication from one bag to another two minutes before boarding.. I suggest that you price the flights before you make your cruise commitment.and see if you want to do your own flights and transfers. One last tip: Silversea has a "My Silversea" link on their website which allows you to review and reserve all tours, specialty dinners and spa services in advance. I did all my reservations on line and was not disappointed once. Many of the tours booked up on the ship and there was only a waitlist. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This was our first time cruising with Silversea, and we were impressed by the highly organized program, comfortable ship, delicious food, and terrific crew. Our fellow passengers were almost uniformly smart, interesting, and friendly. It ... Read More
This was our first time cruising with Silversea, and we were impressed by the highly organized program, comfortable ship, delicious food, and terrific crew. Our fellow passengers were almost uniformly smart, interesting, and friendly. It seemed that the majority were repeat customers with Silversea, and I was inspired by both their loyalty to the brand and how well-traveled they were. We chose this cruise because of the interesting itinerary along the Pacific coast of Peru and Chile. The activities ranged from bird-watching from a Zodiac to long bus trips up into the Andes. Some excursions were amazing; some were a bit more elaborate and lengthy than would be ideal. The on-board experts were terrific; my husband and I really enjoyed the lectures we attended, and felt we learned a lot about wildlife, geology, botany, and archaeology. I only wished the Silversea guides had a more active role in the bus excursions, as the quality of the local guides was hit or miss. But the on-board lectures matched up well with the excursions, so we had enough information to enjoy the local trips regardless of guide quality. This sailing was a culinary cruise, and I thought that was a great bonus. The local chefs and wine experts worked with the cruise line's culinary instructor on some entertaining cooking demos (with tastings!). A cheese expert was the dark-horse star of the show: her cheese talks and tastings were funny and illuminating. This delicious culinary focus translated to the dining room, as well. The local experts contributed to some interesting dinner menus. There were a la minute cooking options for lunch on several days, and we got to see the chefs at work during some dinners, too. Experiencing local food traditions is always a highlight of travel for me; having that experience in such a refined setting was a real treat. Overall, I thought the food and beverage offerings were excellent. I noticed comments in other reviews about lukewarm offerings at the buffet; I experienced that at times, but I always had the option of ordering something else if food temperature mattered. I had cooked to order breakfast every day, and we ate at the outside grill for numerous lunches. The menus were so interesting and appealing, the only difficulty was deciding what not to order. Service was also top-notch--very personal and attentive (though dinners could be a bit drawn out, which I know is not to everyone's liking). The ship is well-maintained and very comfortable. I was pleasantly surprised by how uniformly happy the crew members seemed. They did so much to make sure we had a great cruise. Thanks to all of them, and to Silversea for a memorable adventure! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
This cruise went to places that we had never visited before. Having Silverseas handle all the transportion made for a more relaxing trip. Our Cruise Director, Moss was one of the best we've had in over a dozen cruises. Our only ... Read More
This cruise went to places that we had never visited before. Having Silverseas handle all the transportion made for a more relaxing trip. Our Cruise Director, Moss was one of the best we've had in over a dozen cruises. Our only dissappointment was the limited number of speakers and other onboard activities which we were told was becasue there were not sea days. Still think there should be more as we do not go ashore or take shore excursions ever day. The shore excursions we did take were very good for the most part. There was only one that disappointed us. The fitness center could use some upgraded equipment and a little more room. There was also too few machines for the number of people onboard so you either have to wait or come back another time. Our butler was very good and went out of her way to address any of our concerns. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
After two delightful days in Montreal we boarded Silver Whisper for our 10 day Canada and New England cruise. This was our seventh cruise on Silversea and it will most certainly not be our last. The Whisper, we were told, is scheduled ... Read More
After two delightful days in Montreal we boarded Silver Whisper for our 10 day Canada and New England cruise. This was our seventh cruise on Silversea and it will most certainly not be our last. The Whisper, we were told, is scheduled for some fairly major refurbishment later this year. While I am confident that will be a successful re-do I found very little about the ship in dire need of attention. The public spaces were very well maintained and our Silver Suite was immaculate. The wooded built ins would benefit from some sprucing up and there are not enough outlets for all the gadgets needing charging, but that's about all we could see needing much attention. We had dinner twice in Le Champagne: excellent in both service and cuisine--three times in La Terrazza: the Duck Ragu captivates us--three times outside at The Grill: always fun--and twice in The Dining Room: good service and above average cuisine. Lunch and Breakfast were generally at the La Terrazza buffet and both were very good. A couple of lunches outside at the pool were also good, although I wish for a little more variety on the menu. The ability to reserve dinner reservations on line is a real improvement. The Voices of Silversea were not exceptional and we did not attend many of their performances, but we do not cruise on Silversea for the entertainers. Of course, without question, the best part of Silversea cruising is the staff. We were called by name so early and often it was amazing. And every face is a smiling one. I give them a 10 in every regard for service. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
The shore excursions are a rip off, we did a fishing trip where we never had a chance to even touch a fishing pole. Because they put 6 of us on a tiny boat and pulled names who ever got to go first fished until they caught a salmon. ... Read More
The shore excursions are a rip off, we did a fishing trip where we never had a chance to even touch a fishing pole. Because they put 6 of us on a tiny boat and pulled names who ever got to go first fished until they caught a salmon. Problem was only two people got a chance to fish they caught a on of other fish just not salmon. So 4 of us never were able to fish. Which it cost $290 a person for this Salmon fishing excursion. It took 4 days on the cruise to get them to get back to us and they only refunded half of our money for two adults. It didn't end there I received the worst massage at their spa I had to tell the woman 7 times to please not use so much pressure, there was an obvious lack of training. Also if you do not make reservations in the restraunts prior to the trip you will not get into the during the trip you have to eat at their open seating restraunt, every night. All the pre requests were not met. Other than house keeping and butler staff the cruise was horrible. I would never recommend Silverseas. They try and sell you stuff non stop. We are used to luxury hotels and the conditions were far from it. The first four days the water in the shower and tub smelled like waste water, it was putrid. I filled the bath and the water was brown... Not work $9900 for two people. The food is pretty much the same in all the restraunt severe night just slight changes. The quality was very poor, the wait staff I will say is very good. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We have sailed in the Med numerous times and wanted to experience the Adriatic. While we planned on traveling during the summer months few ships offered great locations literally every day of the voyage. This was our first time on Silver ... Read More
We have sailed in the Med numerous times and wanted to experience the Adriatic. While we planned on traveling during the summer months few ships offered great locations literally every day of the voyage. This was our first time on Silver Sea and we were very pleased. Embarkation and disembarkation were uneventful/very smooth. Silver Spirit: The ship is luxurious and small- although there were 550 passengers and nearly same amount of staff, it always felt empty except on the pool deck. BONUS: in addition to cleaning service, the ship has irons, washer/dryer and soap on each floor at no cost. While some of the passengers were extremely rude about using them (in particular a rude Brit who took the soap scoop from one floor to another leaving them without a scoop, rather than just asking the ever-present butlers for one) it was a welcome addition since we traveled prior to the cruise and had a chance to clean some personal items. Enrichment and activities: SS includes some on-shore activities activities and they are adequate if you have never been to the ports. Clive and his staff were really accomodating- especially watching them handle "difficult" passenger who decided to just "join" tours even though they didnt have the courtesy to sign up as the rest of us did. We purchased some excursions- some better than others. Hvar, Dubrovnik, Venice, Split, Zadar, Treiste, Ravenna were lovely. Tried a day tour "Flavours of Montenegro (Kotor)", spent 5 hours in a car and 1 hour each at two RUSTIC family wineries/homes. WONDERFUL people but I cannot imagine that there aren't locations closer than two hours from the port. For $300 it was definitely not worth it. Additionally, we visited Albania- not ready for prime time. Not surprising due to the cost of this cruise, the average age is approx 65 (although there are MANY couples in their 30's, 40'sand 50's and quite a few infants and teenagers) there is NO music on the pool deck or anywhere on the ship. It was SO boring. There has to be a way to have some sort of "beachy" music. I resorted to my ipad. The people likely to complain can't hear it anyway so whats the big deal? FOOD: Every meal was delicious. Waitstaff were all wonderful. Eat at Sheishin for lunch: no charge and the meal is nice. Restaurant serves wonderful meals EVERYTIME. LaTerrazza is good but once is enough-their pesto pasta and bolognese are the best I have ever eaten. The Grill was great- ensure you try the shrimps which were fabulous. LeChampagne- while its an $80 upcharge, is perhaps one of the finest meals we have every experienced anywhere. Deon and Anastasia were certain to please. The only drawback is that there is no food served between 3:30-6pm unless you order room service. Recognize the ship is small but unless you enjoy high tea, you have to eat in your room in the afternoon if you get snacky. One evening event, "Death By Chocolate" was incredible. Make sure you ask what day it takes place. Had a wonderful head waiter, Taiphun, not told us about it, we would have surely missed it. Unfortunately, they used to have a "BBQ under the Stars" but apparently USDA (AKA US bureaucrats) shut it down. What a shame. PS: TOP SHELF liquor and nice wines included. If you don't like the wine they recommend ask for alternatives, which they will provide at no cost- Emily, the sommolier, was sweet and found us what we preferred every time. Finally, the only other areas for improvement would be more on-board events. Even a simple cooking class in the afternoon would be welcome. We went to the "Asian medical improvement" and the presenter was a no-show- too bad the ship didn't even mention it a we were sitting in the area with the sign. While the entertainment staff tried their best, it was boring. Can't believe that every night its the same plan: piano duo on pool deck, followed by the show, followed by lounge entertainment (Lou was great!), followed by the entertainment staff in the lounge...wow. We actually crashed early a few nights because we were desperate for some entertainment and the movie channel was the best we could do.... One final shout-out to the staff- they put Disney (AKA Happiest place on Earth) to shame. Too many to name but every one was wonderful. In summary, would we do it again? Absolutely! Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We sailed on the Silver Spirit on it's Athens to Venice seven-day cruise in August 2016. It was our first time on Silversea and we were looking forward to our cruise and it didn't disappoint! Embarkation was as easy as ... Read More
We sailed on the Silver Spirit on it's Athens to Venice seven-day cruise in August 2016. It was our first time on Silversea and we were looking forward to our cruise and it didn't disappoint! Embarkation was as easy as imaginable. We were the only two people embarking. We did get there a little early but not much. We were escorted throughout the process and even escorted to our cabin to see where it was even though cabins weren't ready yet. We had lunch on the pool deck and by 2pm the cabins were ready and our luggage had been delivered! We had a veranda suite on deck six. It was very spacious with a great walk-in closet and plenty of drawers for storage. The sitting area was spacious too. The bathroom was nice although we never used the separate tub. We did use the veranda some and that was fine. A couple of other nice treats were the binoculars in the room and the TV in the mirror. However, the sound and picture quality on the TV need updating. It wasn't HD quality and the sound was like like a radio not quite set to the station. Our butler was new but good. We had breakfast in our suite every morning and he was very punctual. We really liked the small ship feel. No crowds, no lines. Also no pesky photographers. Service was very good throughout. We also liked the all-inclusive aspect and not having to sign for drinks, etc. Having bottled water when getting off and on the ship was great. Some nice cool towels when returning after a hot day in port would've been a nice touch. We only got that at embarkation. We have had that service on other lines and were surprised not to find it with SilverSea. The food was very good to fantastic. I realize that's subjective but we like to have a great meal at a nice restaurant and Silver Spirit did well in the regard. We had dinners in Stars Supper Club, La Terrazza (twice), the Hot Rocks Grill and Le Champagne. We had dinners ashore twice. We had lunch by the pool and in the MDR a couple times. We always had breakfast in our suite. We also thought the bar service was very good, either with standard cocktails or wine or with some special orders. We were traveling with a small group so we didn't partake of the entertainment. We did find some time to play blackjack though and found the dealers and fellow players to be very good. We ended the cruise up a few bucks, so that helped! There isn't much for shopping on the ship compared to bigger ships but that was OK. They do have some sundries hidden away if you need something basic; you just have to ask in the shop. There was some confusion in getting our butler to help with a purchase of Zantac, as our documentation stated that Butlers or Reception could help with this purchase, but we ended up just getting it ourselves. Both the Butler and Reception insisted we see the doctor for this over-the-counter medication. Since we spent a good part of the time in port, the ship's shops were not open very often. The internet was typical cruise ship internet; good enough for checking email, Facebook and the news. We got an hour a day with our suite and that was enough for us. We booked our excursions through Silversea. Several were included excursions and they were good. We had a paid shore tour in Venice that was quite good and a dinner ashore in Dubrovnik at a family estate that was fabulous! On thing about this cruise, the held our passports on the ship. They said it was to assist with getting clearance in each port. We got them back in Venice. We heard they might do that so we brought color copies of our photo page with us ashore. Disembarkation was just about as easy as getting on. With such a small ship, finding our luggage was very easy. Overall a five star cruise! Read Less
17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
Just returned from a Silversea Shadow cruise from Seward to Vancouver. Silversea is a luxury cruise line and I was so impressed with all aspects of the cruise. I loved the size of the ship. This particular ship holds only 392 ... Read More
Just returned from a Silversea Shadow cruise from Seward to Vancouver. Silversea is a luxury cruise line and I was so impressed with all aspects of the cruise. I loved the size of the ship. This particular ship holds only 392 passengers, so we felt very special on the cruise. The people who work for Silversea obviously love their jobs, as they have worked for the cruise line for many years. We were treated royally by all members of the staff. We have a Veranda suite and it was lovely. The food was terrific and we enjoyed eating in all the restaurants throughout the week. Silversea is an all-inclusive cruise company and we paid one price for the cruise, port fees, all food, all alcoholic beverages, and all gratuities. There were no surprises at the end of our cruise. If you are looking for the perfect cruise to Alaska, look no further. Read Less
20 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
Itinerary and the reputation of SilverSea were our reasons for choosing this cruise. The itinerary was all we hoped for; the older ship and its management less so, based on flooded cabins. Embarkation in Hong Kong and debarkation in ... Read More
Itinerary and the reputation of SilverSea were our reasons for choosing this cruise. The itinerary was all we hoped for; the older ship and its management less so, based on flooded cabins. Embarkation in Hong Kong and debarkation in Tokyo were handled very well: easy, lots of direction and help, punctual. Our suite was sizable, with a walk-in closet that was very welcome. Staff service at all venues, and our butler, were outstanding. The food was good, though not as good as Oceania. Entertainment was good, but limited; the cruise director did double duty as a singer/comedian, and was actually not bad. One good lecturer, one mediocre. We noticed immediately, however, that the ship was in need of work: e.g., the deck railings were in serious need of varnish. Later we learned this ship is due to be "retired" next year, which may explain possible deferred maintenance. The problem arose on day 10 of the 16 day cruise, when we encountered high winds and heavy seas. That can happen. But this older ship was simply not "ship shape." Dozens of staterooms--our deck 5 starboard was the worst hit--were flooded by wind-swept rain and ocean spray that leaked through the veranda door seals, soaking the carpets (and some clothing and under-bed suitcases). That continued for at least 12 hours, with no solution offered to stop the leaks and no official communications from the captain. Inconceivably, very little, and nothing effective, was done over the remaining five days of the cruise as the soaked cabins became uninhabitable from the smell alone. We were offered downgraded accommodations (no balcony), but had to insist on getting some help moving. Even that cabin had a leaking window. No announcements by the captain, no meetings with ship officers, no remedial plans presented and no offers of help. Silversea, after several weeks, finally offered us (but apparently not others), a very modest and restricted credit toward a future cruise, hardly proportionate to the number of days we had no use of our suite. Amazing, and disappointing, for a high-end cruise line. My ratings below are for the first 10 days, before the ship and its crew were tested by stormy weather. For the last week of this cruise, most of these ratings would have been negative. I can only hope those sailing on the Silver Shadow this year enjoy good weather, and that at least the Deck 5 suites have been stripped and refurbished while in port. Read Less
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