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Tear Down That Wall!

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We recently returned from two voyages onboard Silver Spirit.  We do love this ship... and Silversea overall... but I have to post a couple of things that perhaps Silversea Management need to hear.  I felt the overall food quality in most restaurants has declined.  The food quality in particular at La Dame has become somewhat mundane... the only thing that now makes this restaurant special is the environment/decor and the somewhat personalized service.  Hot Rocks, now called "The Grill" for some odd reason, is still enjoyable.  Seishin seems to now only offer "pre-made" sushi rolls, which are not as fresh as the handmade rolls used to be.  And they no longer serve Tempura at lunchtime; this was very disappointing, and in my opinion a poor decision on management's part.  The newly expanded La Terrazza was cozy and comfortable... although service was slow and some of the little things are missing or overlooked...  e.g. the roasted garlic came to us three times very dry and often times burned, etc.  Not acceptable for a specialty Italian restaurant onboard an arguably Italian ship.  It is those little things that matter.  Spaccanapoli pizza was consistently wonderful and we were thankful for that.  And new Silver Note was as enjoyable as always with Esther and Chantal making us all feel at home, but they really need to dim the lights just a bit... the bright lights during dinner made the room much less attractive.  And they should really find a way to restore the bar in Silver Note; that's a big loss.   But most importantly... TEAR DOWN THAT WALL!  The decision to split the once beautiful and elegant Silver Spirit Dining Room into two... Indochine and Atlantide... as was done on Silver Muse... was a huge mistake.  Menus in both restaurants have become uninteresting.   Indochine seems to be rarely used.  Atlantide seems to be used as the "Main Dining Room" by most guests... but the menu never seems to change.  The Maitre-D "claims" the menus change every seven days; perhaps they swap out an appetizer or one entree... but that's it.  When onboard for many days... the menu in Atlantide is very tiring.  And the fact that Atlantide does not offer a pasta option for dinner is very surprising and disappointing.  Lunch in Atlantide does seem to have a changing menu.  All in all... I hope they will please take a look at raising the quality of the cuisine onboard, and most importantly...TEAR DOWN THAT WALL and bring back one large elegant Dining Room.  These ships NEED a Main Dining Room with changing menus and daily specials.  We fear it is all becoming "same old, same old".
 

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I was on the Spirit last Novembre/December and I must say, I enjoyed Indochine very much. However, you are right, they should change at least some items on the menu more often.

The fish in Seishin was top grade, but the sushi rice was awful. Pasty, tasteless, ugh. I am no Sushi master but the sushi rice I make is way better. And yes, only sushi/sashimi at lunch is *very* restrictive (especially as my SO doesn't like it...).

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We were on the Muse last October and definitely missed the main Restaurant.  I actually liked Indochine but it was always half empty while Alantide was packed.  On my wish list is a smaller Indochine and the return of a main dining room.  On another note, pun intended, Silver Note was also excellent.  Much improved menu than its previous incarnation that only had appetizers.  We were very disappointed by La Dame and canceled a second reservation.  If I had a vote it would be to “tear down the wall” as well!

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I had understood that it was possible to order from the Indochine menu when dining in Atlantide. When I tried to do so during our last cruise, I was refused. Given that the kitchens are side by side, I would have not thought it difficult. Has anyone else tried this and succeeded?

So I would agree, tear down the wall but merge the two kitchens.

Rp

 

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I agree 110%!  For this reason, we will only sail on the three remaining (soon to be two, we're afraid) ships that still have a main dining room.  We want a dinner menu that changes entrees daily.

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Personally I loved Indochine so I'd not want to see that disappear.

 

Not quite sure why merging two restaurants and menus into one would give greater choice? Granted, the change of menu (or lack of) is another issue, so I'd prefer to keep them as they are, but rotate and change menus more frequently than they do.

 

That said, I could happily use just indochine and go through the menu....... I'm gutted that the Wind has a MDR and no indochine, though Im not making a suggestion to change it. Interesting to see a regular poster initially unsure of all the choices on the Spirit and Muse and currently on the Wind and missing the choices.

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The easiest change that would suit many people is quite straightforward:

 

Get rid of the bars - why waste dining room space with a bar when you are only steps away from Dolce Vita.

Make Indochine a bit smaller but otherwise keep it as is.

Take all the extra space, incorporate it into Atlantide and make it into a traditional MDR.

 

Lack of menu change in Atlantide is a definite problem, and there's no real reason for it, a rotation of menus must surely be possible. And get rid of those slate plates that don't give you hot food. And my personal pet peeve - put the food in the middle of the plate, not perched ridiculously around the rim.

 

I was originally 'sold' on the Muse by Cruise Consultant Barrie who assured me that I could order from either menu in Indochine or Atlantide - this proved not to be the case. However, as I've posted previously, I was also assured when last on the Spirit that I could order from the Always Available/Room Service menu when in Indochine - I haven't tested this yet and all my upcoming cruises through till May 2020 are Wind/Whisper/Shadow so maybe someone else can give it a try? See if it's "misguided optimism" aka a lie.

The question arose because the food in Indochine is too spicy for me but I like the ambiance in the room and enjoy going there, especially as Atlantide is so busy. And the creme brulee is to die for.

Edited by jollyjones

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3 hours ago, jollyjones said:

Get rid of the bars - why waste dining room space with a bar when you are only steps away from Dolce Vita.

You bring up an interesting point.  I remember when we first saw Dolce Vita.  We thought to ourselves, "why in the world did SS waste so much space with bars in Indochine and Atlantide"?

I remember on a formal night this past summer when sailing with you we showed up to Atlantide @ 8:30p for dinner during the height of service.  I have never witnessed more poor and rude behavior by adults at any other time in my life.  It was down right shameful how mean some folks were being to the maître d'.  When it was our turn to approach the podium, we just told the poor chap that we would love to dine tonight in his lovely restaurant and that when a table became available he could find us in Dolce Vita.  He seemed relieved.  And, we got to enjoy the cavernous space all to ourselves.  In the end, it ended up being only about a 15-minute wait for a table and the maître d' was so gracious.

So, to your point, if they would at least remove the bar in Altantide, I would imagine they could at least get another four to six 4-tops into that space.

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I might be the odd man out here. I loved the bars in Atlantide and Indochine and would hate to see them go. And Cavernous was indeed the right word for Dolce Vita on the Muse! Whilst I enjoy a pre dinner drink in the Bar on the Wind before diving down one floor to the restaurant (Same for Atlantide and Indochine), there was something a bit more snug and welcoming than a bar that resembles a community centre hall.

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Remove the bar.  Put in more tables.  Plenty of bars aboard, not so plenty Atlantide seating.
The dynamics show one restaurant lightly used with the other full.  Good management observes guests' choices and responds.

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19 hours ago, les37b said:

I might be the odd man out here. I loved the bars in Atlantide and Indochine and would hate to see them go. And Cavernous was indeed the right word for Dolce Vita on the Muse! Whilst I enjoy a pre dinner drink in the Bar on the Wind before diving down one floor to the restaurant (Same for Atlantide and Indochine), there was something a bit more snug and welcoming than a bar that resembles a community centre hall.

 

It'd be great to have little areas to accommodate everyone's preferences, but when more space needs to be magically made out of nowhere, bars that may be used by a few people for an hour or two (if that) in the evening aren't high on the preservation list.

 

A useful thing about Dolce Vita that's perhaps not obvious to couples and groups - 'snug and welcoming' may translate for a solo into 'can't find a table to sit at' . I often like to enjoy a quiet pre-dinner drink and read or listen to whoever is playing the piano - easy in Dolce Vita, usually impossible in The Bar on the smaller ships so I never go there (except for trivia). Panorama on all ships is the best bar for a solo to chat with others so I go there if I'm feeling gregarious.

 

In reality, no bar anywhere on any of the ships is very far from the MDR/Atlantide assuming the telephones and elevators are working - if they're not, I doubt I'd be worrying about dinner!

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3 minutes ago, jollyjones said:

 

It'd be great to have little areas to accommodate everyone's preferences, but when more space needs to be magically made out of nowhere, bars that may be used by a few people for an hour or two (if that) in the evening aren't high on the preservation list.

 

A useful thing about Dolce Vita that's perhaps not obvious to couples and groups - 'snug and welcoming' may translate for a solo into 'can't find a table to sit at' . I often like to enjoy a quiet pre-dinner drink and read or listen to whoever is playing the piano - easy in Dolce Vita, usually impossible in The Bar on the smaller ships so I never go there (except for trivia). Panorama on all ships is the best bar for a solo to chat with others so I go there if I'm feeling gregarious.

 

In reality, no bar anywhere on any of the ships is very far from the MDR/Atlantide assuming the telephones and elevators are working - if they're not, I doubt I'd be worrying about dinner!

 

The good thing about opinions, we are all entitled to them and each individual has different perspectives and takes on what's important and what isn't. I did even suggest in my reply that I might be in the minority. 

 

As to not going to the bar on the smaller ships because you'd like to listen to music, I can certainly say that wasnt the case on the Shadow and the entertainment was very well received. (Acoustic guitarist.) I'm hoping they have similar in April on the Wind. I'm sure you will enjoy if they do.

 

There are lots of areas on the ship I'd consider a waste of space, but accept there are many who want those places. Like the smoking room! Lets make it a smoke free ship! lol.... OK that was tongue in cheek, but it partially serves the purpose. I dont use the theatre either. I would ban the gym too, but that would be shooting myself in the foot as I do use it sometimes. 

 

Anyway, I do get your point about space management and the percieved need for a larger Atlantide. (I must admit I did think on the Muse that did actually disappear in the refit that took place when reservations were removed. May have that wrong though and just a proposal by CC members with suggestions?) I know it was certainly there on the Spirit last September.

 

I'll compromise. Nick some of the space at the rear of Indichine and transfer over to Atlantide. How does that work?

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My partner and I have been cruising with Silversea for over 20 years (around 30 cruises); we just returned from a 14 night Australia/New Zealand cruise which was our first time on the Muse and our first experience with the new dining program.  We, too, loved "The Restaurant" on the classic Silversea vessels and we less than excited with the new multi-restaurant concept when it was announced and introduced but, after our recent cruise, we warmed up to the idea and like eating at different venues each night.  We were honestly surprised by how easily we embraced and then liked the new concept.

 

Our experience was as follows:

1. Anytime Dining selections are available in every restaurant without issue.

2. The food and service on our voyage was outstanding: La Terrazza and Silver Note [Stars] in our opinion were greatly improved, La Dame [Le Champagne] was extraordinary on the Muse with amazing food and over-the-top service (we don't like the two seating program however), the Grill was same as always (its good but not our favorite), we did not do the Japanese restaurant this time and we also missed the tempura offerings at lunch - we skipped lunch there since its was only cold items, we enjoyed Inchochine far more than we thought that we would and the food was interesting, tasty and innovative, and Atlantide did a fine job replacing the Restaurant.  The Pizza Restaurant was pizza, we don't understand the big excitement about offering pizza - are we missing something?

3. I do agree that Atlantide needs to be expanded and Indochine can be downsized a bit; while we never had any problems getting a table (even at peak dinner hours) at Atlantide, it was busy and seemed crowded while Indochine was only partially full even with its less dense seating arrangement.  Rumor has it that this issue will be addressed on the Moon and Dawn (and probably later retrofitted onto the Muse and Spirit):  Atlantide will be expanded by about 40% and Indochine will be reduced is size; this will be done by repositioning the dividing wall between the two venues with one bar (instead of two) positioned to serve both restaurants.  So, its not tear down the wall but, instead, move the wall.  (Also, Atlantide will gain some waiter service stations to make table service easier.)

4. On our 14 day cruise, menus did change about half way though the cruise at Atalantide, La Terrazza and Indochine - but the changes were subtle.  We also missed the daily menu changes that we enjoyed in the The Restaurant; variety is a good thing and wonderful way to try new dishes.  We think that the solution is to add special choices to menu each night; something local and relevant to the region that the ship is cruising in would be appreciated.  That said, I don't think it will happen: with one kitchen servicing four dining venues on Deck 4 it is not clear if even more menu selections can be consistently produced; we visited the galley on this latest cruise and chatted a bit with the chef and got the impression that the standardized product is the future.

 

Its clear that The Restaurant is out and multiple dining venues is in at Silversea: they are not looking back.  Perhaps a bit more fine tuning is required - let the Hotel Director and F&B managers know your feelings when on board....they do listen.

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I vote for removing most of the shops.  You could shoot off a canon in them most of the time and not hit a customer.  The merchandise is overpriced and not particularly useful.  I wonder whether they make any money.  Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe the space is leased by Silversea, so they have less incentive to remove them.

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LAL - thanks for the report, sounds like SS are listening. 

 

And my my point about Dolce Vita versus The Bar is related to availability of empty tables, not the entertainment. 

 

PS I agree about the shops!

Edited by jollyjones

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7 hours ago, LAL Cruiser said:

We were honestly surprised by how easily we embraced and then liked the new concept.

Thanks for sharing your perspectives LAL Cruiser after your recent Muse voyage.  Like you and your partner, DW and I fell in love with Muse and all her choices.

 

In regards to Spaccanapoli, we love it for the spontaneity of an afternoon snack.  We tend to do a lot of touring by ourselves and many times skip lunch.  Therefore, when returning to the ship in late afternoon it's nice to be able to grab a quick pie to tie us over until a late dinner.

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2 hours ago, Stumblefoot said:

In regards to Spaccanapoli, we love it for the spontaneity of an afternoon snack.  We tend to do a lot of touring by ourselves and many times skip lunch.  Therefore, when returning to the ship in late afternoon it's nice to be able to grab a quick pie to tie us over until a late dinner.

 

Funny, I guess that great minds think alike.....we also tour independently often missing lunch either at La Terrazza or The Grill and sometimes head up to the pizza place when we return.  It is a nice additional but, in our opinion, nothing revolutionary.  Maybe they can take it to the next level?

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6 minutes ago, LAL Cruiser said:

It is a nice additional but, in our opinion, nothing revolutionary.

 

Oh, definitely agree!  It's just a nice change of pace with a really good crust, especially for those of us who hail from a pizza desert state like Colorado.

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On both our Muse voyages we have never had any problem in ordering from the Anytime dining menu when in Atlantide or Indochine. Having seen the galley on the Muse I still cannot understand why it is not possible to cross order in either restaurant though.

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On 1/28/2019 at 2:52 AM, Silver Spectre said:

Having seen the galley on the Muse I still cannot understand why it is not possible to cross order in either restaurant though.

 

I do wonder if the resistance is down to scale. I expect the odd dish swapped over would cause no harm, but if were made available for everything and most in the two restaurants chose from the Atlantide's menu, that it's this scenario that would be a problem and want to avoid.

 

Obviously they can't be seen to do it for one without others having noses put out of joint by being refused. I'd expect supplies and availability of the correct plates etc may also play a part in the decision to a lesser extent, though I don't think that would explain why the menu can't be served in your room.

 

I certainly agree with everyone's views that it's a pity SS don't allow it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by les37b

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I agree about getting rid of the shop save or at least some of it. 

May I make mention of The Arts Cafe. We used it a lot on the Spirit last year when coming back from a tour. They had salads light soups a good afternoon tea and, in the evening, scrummy chocolate truffles to take away for a midnight feast. It has a.goid outside space, on the Spirit anyway, but seemed under used. I shall miss that too on the Wind. 

Rp

 

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In an idle moment, I have been looking at the proposals for the Silver Moon. I can't see any deck plans for her as yet, but under the dining options, there is no mention of either Indochine or La Dame.

Rp

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7 minutes ago, rosepark said:

In an idle moment, I have been looking at the proposals for the Silver Moon. I can't see any deck plans for her as yet, but under the dining options, there is no mention of either Indochine or La Dame.

Rp

 

Knowing how accurate the info on the website can be at times, I do wonder if that’s a mistake or if Atlantide has just become the MDR by default? I could have thought that might be the deal, but missing La Dame makes me think it’s an error. (At least the La Dame part.)

 

i appreciate Indochine wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but it definitely was my favourite eatery on SS.

 

im sure when it announced it was going to by the twin of Muse and restaurants were the same. Another new owners change?

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4 minutes ago, les37b said:

im sure when it announced it was going to by the twin of Muse and restaurants were the same. Another new owners change?

It would be pretty shocking because the Moon was supposed to be the twin of the Muse.  Plus, you've got the Silver Dawn, another sister ship to be delivered the fall of '21 followed by an unnamed as of yet Muse class ship in 2022.

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A couple of belated observations:

 

The OP certainly knows how to get attention with subject line!  🙂

 

It’s important to remember that the bars cater to guests who want drinks with/before their meals.  The bartenders can be quite busy.  There has to be some bar on deck 4 — thought it could be a service bar without seating for guests.

 

I heard that there is thought of removing Asian orientation to the second restaurant and instead making it a restaurant featuring dishes appropriate to the region in which the ship is then cruising.

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