Advice? Luxury E. Med cruise with 12 & 14 yr olds + grandparents... used to Seabourn

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#1
SF Bay Area
20 Posts
Joined Jul 2011
Hi,

I am wondering which line/ship might be the sweet spot for a multi-gen cruise (our 12 & 14 yr olds, plus my parents... older but not infirm). I am looking for a cruise for the summer of 2018, in the eastern Med, including Italy and Greece.

I am not interested in ships of thousands of people, which seems to eliminate many of the teen ship recommendations. My husband and I prefer a Seabourn-type experience (mostly inclusive, not crowded, not "glitzy"). I looked at the Seabourn itineraries, but want to make sure I am looking at all the options.


We haven't traveled with our kids on cruises (they are well traveled to luxury hotels, cities, etc.). I'm not even sure how our family would be accommodated on a cruise in terms of rooms. Connecting? Are there suites on luxury ships that accommodate 4 people?

Kids club is not mandatory, but teen activities might be interesting. I *love* Disney, but we are at Disneyland often enough so that I prefer to keep our Disney experience at the parks. The focus of this cruise would be on the ports, and spending time as a family.

My kids did go on an Alaska cruise (Princess) with my parents, and they had a great time. I just don't think I would like being on a big ship.

Any advice is appreciated,
Diane
#3
Washington State
23,038 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
Any of the four major luxury cruise lines used by people in North America (Crystal, Regent, Seabourn or Silversea) can accommodate children during the summer. I'm not sure about Seabourn or Silversea but there are activities for teens on Regent and I believe there would be on Crystal as well).

Regent includes many excursions and Business Class airfare which may be a monetary consideration. Regent ships range from 490 passengers to 750 so they are larger than Seabourn but considerably smaller than Crystal.

The Med. is suffering from lack of people wanting to visit that part of the world so it is likely that you can get find a good fare for a luxury cruise line. Keep in mind the intense heat in the Med. during the summer. I would avoid August if possible. A local tour guide in Venice told us that August was "hell".

Hope that you find the perfect cruise for your family!
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#4
antwerpen
1,046 Posts
Joined Apr 2007
i did an Medit. in July on Europa 2, 3 years ago because the single sup was waived - never again with the heat!
i nearly collapsed in Viareggio and i needed assistance to go back on the tender
6 years ago i did 6 days on Crystal end of August : was also too hot ... for me no Medit cruises between 15 th June and early September anymore ...
maybe crystal is the best option ... lots of activities contrarely to SB
and with young people SS is not an option at all , i think.
#5
California
685 Posts
Joined Feb 2012
Originally posted by vistaman
i did an Medit. in July on Europa 2, 3 years ago because the single sup was waived - never again with the heat!
i nearly collapsed in Viareggio and i needed assistance to go back on the tender
6 years ago i did 6 days on Crystal end of August : was also too hot ... for me no Medit cruises between 15 th June and early September anymore ...
maybe crystal is the best option ... lots of activities contrarely to SB
and with young people SS is not an option at all , i think.
Yes, Crystal is friendly to multi-generation.
So is the Europa 2 on dual-language Hapag Lloyd, but it is hard to get on, discussed elsehwere. The E2 has separate swimming time for adults and children or kids with adults, so kids in the pool do not irritate older people who want peace. And on "family" cruises , i.e., during German holiday times, they even had a separate optional kids' dining area with hamburgers and kids' food options, and a beautiful separate play area and a teen club. Nanny service is also available in case parents want a romantic night themselves a couple times.
#6
Charlotte, NC
734 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
We are taking our 12 and 14 year olds back on Europa2 this summer to the Med having done the same 2 years ago when they were 10 and 12.

They have been on Regent and Disney and for a port intensive cruise like the Med prefer E2 due to the cabin size, the nice bathrooms, and the food.

Especially the food! The charcuterie and honeycomb at breakfast is a hit with the younger lark and the older owl one enjoys the wurst available for late riser breakfast in Sansibar. They also very much enjoy the table service restaurants as well.

The ship's excursions were good and a reasonable value.

The only concern I'd have for you is 2018 is quite near in terms of getting single supplement cabins (which you'd want so as to pay the less expensive child fare) and for 2018 I don't think there is a summer itinerary which does Greece and the Eastern Med. Though there is a lovely one EUX1814 which may interest.
#7
antwerpen
1,046 Posts
Joined Apr 2007
probably we will miss each other by one or 2 cruises
i am on europa 2 3rd June Athens Athens ( please no 30 ° C )
and on 1st August Bilbao - Hamburg with a call in my hometown
you are very right on the "charcuterie" , not found on any other company in the "luxury" level...so far
the cold cuts and cheeses for breakfast were even better on Mein Schiff as on Crystal and SB.
and honestly said : the breads and cakes croissants ... are better on Oceania as on the 2 mentionned above.
#8
1,262 Posts
Joined Jun 2003
Originally posted by ededmd
The only concern I'd have for you is 2018 is quite near in terms of getting single supplement cabins (which you'd want so as to pay the less expensive child fare) and for 2018 I don't think there is a summer itinerary which does Greece and the Eastern Med. Though there is a lovely one EUX1814 which may interest.
As discussed previously, suites within Categories 1-4 for solo occupancy up to April 2019 are rarer than hen's teeth.

In fact for Cruise EUX 1814 the lowest category with availability for solo occupancy is Category 6 at 24871 Euros.

We solo passengers are just being forced to look elsewhere because of HLC's restrictive policy towards us.
#9
Florida
285 Posts
Joined Feb 2017
Originally posted by deiger
Hi,

I am wondering which line/ship might be the sweet spot for a multi-gen cruise (our 12 & 14 yr olds, plus my parents... older but not infirm). I am looking for a cruise for the summer of 2018, in the eastern Med, including Italy and Greece.

I am not interested in ships of thousands of people, which seems to eliminate many of the teen ship recommendations. My husband and I prefer a Seabourn-type experience (mostly inclusive, not crowded, not "glitzy"). I looked at the Seabourn itineraries, but want to make sure I am looking at all the options.


We haven't traveled with our kids on cruises (they are well traveled to luxury hotels, cities, etc.). I'm not even sure how our family would be accommodated on a cruise in terms of rooms. Connecting? Are there suites on luxury ships that accommodate 4 people?

Kids club is not mandatory, but teen activities might be interesting. I *love* Disney, but we are at Disneyland often enough so that I prefer to keep our Disney experience at the parks. The focus of this cruise would be on the ports, and spending time as a family.

My kids did go on an Alaska cruise (Princess) with my parents, and they had a great time. I just don't think I would like being on a big ship.

Any advice is appreciated,
Diane
I'm actually researching something similar myself for summer 2018. We have three kids, they will be 15, 12 and 2 at that time.

First, I read an article here on Cruise Critic about the luxury lines to see which lines had the most kids traveling on them (for each line they said "who sails" and gave some idea of demographics). The top two with kids on board seemed to be Seabourn and Silversea. I wasn't as concerned with kids/teen clubs mainly because a cruise of this sort would be all about the ports, with less time on the ship needing to occupy them.

I have just gotten a quote form Silversea and they offered connecting cabins for 2 and 3 people. Like mass market lines, the kids fares were not discounted, but the 3rd person in my cabin was. I submitted and RFQ on their website and a courteous and non-pushy staff member called me the next day to get me quoted. I'll be stopping off next at Seabourn. We're also evaluating Windstar and Crystal, although Crystal is larger than I really want. The smaller lines can get into different ports and I'd rather not be mass dumped in a port.

My boys have both cruised twice before (once on Royal Caribbean and once on Norwegian). This summer we're doing Alaska in Norwegian's Haven to get the mix of large ship amenities and small ship attention. It'll be a good trial run for us to see how Little Lady handles cruising. She has traveled with us quite a bit and enjoyed sailing so I have high hopes.

Please update if you find additional information - I'm curious to see what you found and what you decide to do!
#11
Philadelphia
5,147 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by cathaana
What I've read of Silversea, they are not too keen on kids. We'll probably try Crystal.
On our recent Crystal cruise there were exactly three children. It seems the average age on our cruise was mid to late 60's.
I am sure if you go during holiday time there will y be more children.
#12
Charlotte, NC
734 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by cathaana
What I've read of Silversea, they are not too keen on kids. We'll probably try Crystal.
I'd agree from reading the various line boards here.
Silversea does not seem child friendly to me - not least of all because of the dress code and a clientele who expects it to be enforced regardless of age.

No opinion on Seabourn and children.

Crystal seems like a decent choice during school holidays and summer when there is programming but yes a larger ship with smaller cabins overall.

I think if you haven't considered Regent you should look at them. They have child pricing on summer cruises.
Most of the Europe itineraries are $1299-$1499 per child. The suite sizes are such that having a 3rd person/ child will not cramp your space inordinately.

The dress code is simple and child friendly. Long pants and a short sleeve polo is perfectly acceptable attire within the dress code for dinner for both adults and children.

The per person for adults seems high but the all inclusive air and other features can be subtracted out and credited if one wishes to 'do your own'. The included excursions can be quite cost effective.
We did Regent in Alaska with our then 5 and 7 year old boys. They loved it.
#13
Florida
285 Posts
Joined Feb 2017
Originally posted by ededmd
I'd agree from reading the various line boards here.
Silversea does not seem child friendly to me - not least of all because of the dress code and a clientele who expects it to be enforced regardless of age.

No opinion on Seabourn and children.

Crystal seems like a decent choice during school holidays and summer when there is programming but yes a larger ship with smaller cabins overall.

I think if you haven't considered Regent you should look at them. They have child pricing on summer cruises.
Most of the Europe itineraries are $1299-$1499 per child. The suite sizes are such that having a 3rd person/ child will not cramp your space inordinately.

The dress code is simple and child friendly. Long pants and a short sleeve polo is perfectly acceptable attire within the dress code for dinner for both adults and children.

The per person for adults seems high but the all inclusive air and other features can be subtracted out and credited if one wishes to 'do your own'. The included excursions can be quite cost effective.
We did Regent in Alaska with our then 5 and 7 year old boys. They loved it.
This has been a really informative thread and thank you all. I'll look into Regent!