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Found 118 results

  1. A few questions regarding the traditional Penthouse Suites on Serenity: Does anyone know the dimensions of the shower? Is there adequate storage below the sinks or elsewhere in the bath? Closet storage: amount of space for hanging vs drawers? Is there drawer storage below the TV'S in either the bedroom living area? We'll be onboard for 100 nights in 2022 - one version of the World Cruise. Thanks to all the regulars for their help awhile back in evaluating all the cabin configurations. Yippee!
  2. Are there any Portuguese wines listed on the Connoisseur Wine List ?
  3. These three videos are designed for the Travel Agent Community but I think they are good for those who have not sailed Crystal Serenity or have not sailed since the dry dock in Autumn of 2018. They cover all of the enhancements made to Serenity and more including dining venues, food, entertainment and the amenities throughout the ship. Coincidentally the videos were taken when we were on-board earlier this year. Keith Part 1 - Interview With Hotel Director Scott Peterson Part 2 - Interview with Cruise Director Rick Spath Part 3 - Interview with Food & Beverage Manager Svein Erik Bye. Svein swings between both Symphony and Serenity.
  4. It’s been a short 7 weeks or so since we disembarked Symphony after a fabulous 17 night Asian cruise, and next week I'll be boarding Serenity for 12 nights. We don’t normally cruise so frequently, usually twice a year, but this cruise is a girls trip with my sister (hubby staying home and dog sitting and accumulating more annual leave days for our next cruise together 😀) and the timing works for both of us as does the itinerary which will see us tick St Petersburg off our bucket list. We depart for Stockholm on Sunday flying Ethiad business class. My first time trying out Ethiad airways - I’m sure it will live up to its good reputation although I was disappointed to find out that the particular flight we’re on is a 777 aircraft sporting their old business class cabin and seats. I’m sure we’ll survive 😁. Any fellow Aussies who are booking Ethiad to Abu Dhabi be mindful of which daily flight you choose - one is on the A380 and the other is the 777. Definitely try for the A380 flight which has the newer business class cabin. This will be a slightly different cruise experience for me. I’ve only ever cruised with my husband and we’ve developed our own little routines and rituals so I’m sure the schedules I'm used to will be a little different this cruise. I can see us probably spending less time at pre-dinner drinks and maybe going to the Palm Court more than the sitting around the Cove bar. I'm sure the casino won't get any of our cash and I'll also be spending much more time in ports than I'm used to - my sister is a walker and sightseer extraordinaire so if the ships in port from 9.00 and until 6.00pm I'm pretty sure she'll want to be off the ship for as much of that time as humanly possible. On the bright side, I may finally come back from a cruise having lost wright! My sister whilst she travels A LOT has never cruised before so it’ll be interesting to see how she takes to it and to see it from a fresh perspective. I’m really hoping Serenity knocks it out of the park in terms of dining and service, if only to justify all the raving I’ve done about Crystal over the last few years! So I’ll check back in once we’ve boarded or maybe even from Stockholm as we have a couple of days there before we embark - any suggestions of what we should try and see, apart from the ABBA Museum of course 😁 or any dining suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I should also just clarify the title of this post - I was hesitant to call it a “live blog” as I’m uncertain how often I’ll be able to check in, given how port intensive this cruise is. In the past I’ve always tried to diligently post almost every day and it can become a little onerous especially with a lot of ports and excursions so I probably won’t be writing every day but I figure a little about life on board is better than nothing - or that’s how I feel whenever anyone is kind enough to report from the ship. Anyone else on this cruise who wants to chime in please feel free - the more the merrier!
  5. Hello! My family normally books the Penthouse PH on the Serenity and are considering the new Seabreeze Penthouse (SH) cabins. Has anyone stayed in both who can compare them for me, specifically regarding the size? I'm seeing conflicting numbers for the square footage. Most travel sites state that the new SH is slightly smaller than PH. However Crystal's page for my cruise specifically states that both are exactly the same--412 SF. Help!
  6. Good afternoon, Where on the Serenity is the ballroom dancing? Thank you.
  7. Greetings, We are sailing Serenity Oct 3-10. I believe on a 7 day sailing there might be a designated White Extravaganza? Looking for some recent experiences from Med/Europe sailors. . Do a lot of passengers join in on the all white attire aspect? It sounds fun, but neither of us would ordinarily pack any white evening outfits so its definitely a consideration in the planning. Thanks in advance!
  8. We have been on the Symphony before but this is our first time on Serenity. We are doing the Caribbean and they state there is one formal night. Our last several cruises have been on Oceania where the entire cruise is Country Club Casual. On Caribbean cruises , how dressed do they get on formal night? We always dress appropriately, but am not sure if my husband needs a suit for just the one night. We have been cruising for many years and I have been on these boards since they were on AOL. im not trying to start a “dress code” argument thread, but just want to make sure we are appropriately dressed.
  9. I was looking at a B2 cabin and noticed that on Serenity they have slightly limited views. Does anyone know what is limiting the view and how limited it is?
  10. Hello, Does anyone have, or know where to locate, the latest Room Service Menu for Crystal Serenity?
  11. My wife and I will board the Serenity soon. Since this is the CO forum, that is what I am posting about. We have not been on the Serenity since the reno and are really looking forward to it. Since others often also post about the pre-cruise activities, I will too. We are currently aboard the Crystal Bach, but I can’t say much since this is the wrong forum. If I were to say anything, it would be how incredible it is. This is our first river cruise and it is great.
  12. This is the current list of Wine and Champagne that can be purchased on-board Serenity which I thought might be of interest for some of you. It does not include the inclusive wine/champagne. WatersideWineList.pdf Keith
  13. I’m booked on the Serenity for Dec 2020 and would like to know about it’s WiFi performance. I’m totally spoiled with RCCL’s use of low orbit 03b with ~250ms ping rates. Question: What is the ping rate and download speed? Thanks in advance.
  14. I'll be sailing on my first Crystal ocean voyage and i forgot to ask the booking agent if there are excursions included in the cruise fare and if there is free wi-fi? i'm taking a Crystal river cruise in november and they do offer free excursions and wi-fi on the river cruises. Also, do they include alcohol and wines in the cruise fare? Thank you in advance for your reply.
  15. We have only sailed Serenity but have our eyes on the New Orleans to Miami sailing on Symphony 10/25/19. Please tell me what you like better about each ship or what may be unique to Symphony. Thanks, Ken
  16. Sailing on the Serenity with the family June 13 2021 Dover to Copenhagen. Any information on the Supper Club would be very much appreciated. Asked Crystal but answer was not helpful. Need to know what size the tables are, what time in the evening is it offered. Where is it offered? Understand its just on formal nights? Will be 7 adults and a 15 year old teenager! Thanks for your help.
  17. Is there somewhere we can see a menu from Prego and Umi Uma on this site? Thanks!!
  18. Does anyone (Keith, are you listening/reading?) know if Serenity is chartered or doing maintenance after the Barcelona-Quebec TA? There is a gap from Sept. 12-Sept. 20, 2020 when she sails from NY to Quebec.
  19. We board in a little more than one week’s time. Would love to hear from anyone on the current cruise. I was excited to read that 33 have signed on for the M&M. Does anyone know or recall the bus arrangements into Bruges? I have previously been there w. Crystal and have fuzzy memories of a shuttle to the gate...? Then a bus into town....no taxi stand. Thanks. Paula
  20. My wife and I just returned from a 12 day cruise on the Crystal Serenity from Barcelona to London. This was our first time on Crystal. We have been on numerous other cruises over the last 20 years -- all on either Princess, Holland America or Celebrity. I had been told by a few friends that Crystal was a step above - i.e. - a luxury line vs a mid-tier line, and I wanted to see what the difference was. To be honest, we have very much liked these other lines and, for the most part, always thought we got excellent service. This review will focus mostly on what I like and didn't like about Crystal and the differences I found between Crystal and Celebrity (which is the line we have used for most of our recent cruises). The cabin - we had an A1 cabin - deluxe veranda. The cabin was well laid out and furnished but relatively small - about the same size as a veranda cabin on Celebrity. I did like the large flat panel TV and bathroom. I feel the cabin is equivalent to the Celebrity Aqua cabins. Of course the cost of the Crystal cabin is about double what the Celebrity Aqua cabin would cost (understanding that the cost of the cruise takes into account many other things beside the cabin). I believe that you could probably get a Celebrity sky suite for about the same cost as the Crystal veranda. The food – here is where Crystal is supposed to excel. Some things were excellent others were just fair. I found it was hit or miss. The chateaubriand they served was outstanding – so tender you could cut it with a fork. The prime rib, however, was a large portion but relatively dry and tough. The lobster was great and a good portion size but the “king crab legs” (which were offered in the supper club) were small and not very good. They were supposed to be served with butter sauce but I had to ask for it in order to get it. Also I wasn’t given a seafood fork and had to use a regular fork to eat the crab which made it difficult. I suppose I could have asked for a seafood fork but the waiters were so busy I decided to just make do. One night I ordered scallops in Waterside. They were delicious however, the portion consisted of two small scallops and two dollops of risotto. It looked like an appetizer at best. When I mentioned this to the waiter as he cleared the table he, of course, offered to bring me more but everyone was done eating so it didn’t make sense to wait. Other dishes that were excellent – the veal parmigiana in Prego, the lamp chops, a number of salads and soups and the burgers from the grill served at lunch. Overall I would say the dining room food is on par with Celebrity’s Luminae suite restaurant. Regarding the burgers at lunch, there was only one person cooking them which caused us to have to wait a good half hour plus in line the day we came back a little late (after 2PM) from our excursion. We, and the others in line, were not happy about this. One thing that I particularly did not like was feeling like second class citizens in the dining room. We were invariably given a table either next to the kitchen, next to an entrance or next to a serving area. I can only attribute this to our being first time Crystal cruisers. The one night we went to the supper club we got there on time at 6:30. As it turned out there was only one table left in the front row but it was at the far corner of the dining room. I thought maybe it might be better to sit in the second row in the center (which was available) but was told that this front row, far corner table would be better. As it turned out, our view for the whole show was the back of the performer’s head. We left early. On the positive side, room service was the best we have ever had as was the service at the front desk and the embarkation and debarkation. We also very much liked the convenience of having the complimentary laundry machines available. The entertainment was excellent and on par with the larger ships which, I believe, also have excellent entertainment. Overall we had a great trip as we do on almost every cruise we take. So, in summary, if you ask the question – would I cruise on Crystal again? Is it worth the additional cost – i.e. a verandah cabin on Crystal costing about the same as a suite on Celebrity? I am not so sure. On Crystal --- in one sense it was good not having to deal with the crowds of people you have on the larger ships but in another sense sometimes it felt dead at night after the show when on Celebrity there is always a lot of action (which we like). Right now, I will probably book our next cruise in a suite on one of the Celebrity ships.
  21. Evening Attire This topic comes up often across all Cruise Critic boards and is always one where many opinions are expressed. My intent of starting this thread is not to get into a discussion or argument on what people wear. I really don't care what others do but just to share what I have learned about the recommended attire on Black Tie Optional nights. Many years ago, when dining on land, going to the theatre, going to work, taking a cruise it was easier IMHO to define the dress code. For example, when I first worked it was a suit for men. Eventually that changed to business casual, and that is when it became challenging to define what that means. I remember being involved in writing the description for it and it was not easy. Then came along casual. Ugh! Not easy to define that. On land some restaurants have attire called dressy casual. What does that mean? Often if I see that I call the restaurant to ask for their definition of dressy casual. From time to time people ask what the attire is on Crystal Casual nights and Black Tie Optional nights. Both are fairly easy to describe. One of the questions that often comes up is can you wear something other than Black Tie Optional to any of the dining venues at night. For example, can you wear Crystal Casual on Black Tie Optional nights? I realize now when asked this question I was "somewhat" incorrect in my answer and believe others giving similar advice have been as well. I misinterpreted a casual restaurant for dinner with the recommended attire. I wanted to share what I have learned not only recently on-board Crystal Serenity but also when I sailed on Crystal Symphony last year. The recommended attire for Black Tie optional is the same no matter where you dine on those nights on-board Symphony or Serenity and for the rest of the evening. However, because the former Tastes on Serenity was a casual restaurant and now replaced by Silk and available on both ships and with Churrascaria being casual many of us would say that casual attire is fine in those two restaurants. I always wondered if that was the case why Crystal didn’t put this in their pre-cruise booklet that comes with the final documents, or on the Crystal website or in Reflections. This is because the recommended attire for all dinner venues for BTO night is the same. However, if people show up at Silk or Churrascaria on a BTO night in Crystal Casual attire, they will not be turned away from being seated at these two venues because the Head Waiters of each restaurant don't enforce it. With that said the idea behind a BTO night was to make it a dressier night than a Crystal Casual night but to offer guests options so that it was not Formal attire only. So the bottom line is that you will find on a BTO night a mix of clothing at restaurants such as Silk and Churrascaria from (Crystal Casual to BTO which gives an option for formal to less formal (eg., sports jacket for men) attire. My experience is at Waterside the vast majority of people will be in BTO attire. However, if someone arrives with Crystal Casual attire they likely will not be turned away. At Prego and Silk the vast majority of the guests will be in BTO attire but a few will show up in something not in keeping with BTO attire. How much of this enforced will depend on the Head Waiter/Specialty Restaurant Maitre d’. At times I have seen people turned away and other times they were not turned away. Often it depends how casual they are. For example on one of the cruises following the World Cruise two couples were in very casual attire (sandals for the gents and one not even in a collared shirt) and it was explained to them what the attire was for the evening and they said they would go back to their rooms to change. The purpose of this thread is not to get into a debate about what to wear but just to say that after all these years I finally understand why in the writeups provided by Crystal they have not shown a difference on BTO nights by restaurant. One could argue that maybe they should make Crystal Casual the "official" attire for one or both restaurants (Silk and Churrascaria) on BTO nights but that is not why I started this thread. Rather it was to share what I have learned on-board both ships. Keith
  22. I’ve completed my latest walkabout video of the Serenity. It includes shots of all the recent renovations like the Seabreeze suites. Check it out at https://youtu.be/5kAY9Vm5JPE
  23. Hello Crystal Serenity Cruisers, My husband and I are cruising Crystal for the first time and we're going on Serenity. Can anyone please tell me the difference in the cabin verandah railings? When looking at pictures, it appears the midship verandahs have a lower solid railing than the verandahs toward the bow and the stern. Is that true or just an optical illusion? I'd like to have a larger vertical clear view of the ocean from inside the cabin. Any comments or suggestions would be very appreciated, thanks! Trish
  24. A down-side that had been mentioned by a couple of people on the board was how firm the new couches are. I agree as I had the same experience when I sat on one of them. I wanted to let you know that Crystal is in the process of replacing all of the foam inserts for the sofa cushions to resolve this item. I thought those of you who are booked or considering one of the new Seabreeze Suites would want to know that this issue is being resolved. Keith
  25. The Silk Menu has been updated on Serenity. It includes the following new items: Prawn Salad, a new Hot & Sour Soup with Crab Meat, Lobster and Eggplant Curry, Wok Fried Duck Breast, and Signature Stir-Fry Beef Tenderloin. Keith
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