crystal/radisson/silversea Q

Aug 5th, 2003, 08:31 PM
  #1  
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crystal/radisson/silversea Q

I have recently got the cruise bug, bad, and I am planning my first two cruises for December-January (Caribbean) and June 04 (Alaska). I have read everything I can find on these three cruise lines (company websites, cruise critic.com, etc) and I have a good idea of the benefits and drawbacks of the ships for each line. However, I need some help on these three issues:
1. the snoot factor
2. the kitsch factor
3. the educational factor

In other words, has anyone sailed two or three of these lines and could you compare them on these criteria? I love luxury, but I don't like snoot. Do these lines generally stop at touristy places and do kitchy shore excursions? Is there good opportunity for learning on the ships?

Any advice would be most appreciated - thanks!
Sabie is offline  
Aug 6th, 2003, 02:12 AM
  #2  
 
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I believe the highest snoot factor would be on Silversea, Crystal 2nd, Radisson 3rd.
Kitsch factor - pretty much equal
Ed. factor. I would nod towards Crystal id only because it's a larger ship, therefore more people wanting to take classes. I believe all of them, however, will have lecturers specific to your itinerary.
I'd do Crystal to Alaska (magro-dome for the pool) and Radisson for the Caribbean.
thulewx is offline  
Aug 7th, 2003, 12:19 PM
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Hello,

Let me offer some comments to you from my perspective as a travel consultant....

Crystal has excellent, excellent educational programs on board their ships. Their service is exquisite and their cruise staffs are just lovely. The ships are a bit older, but the personal touches are what makes Crystal such a beloved cruise line. They pay attention to each guest's personal needs and try to make everyone's experience exceptional. It is not uncommon for people to refuse to leave Crystal after they've had the privilege.

Silversea is the utmost in luxury. Their rates are all-inclusive and they regularly win awards from Conde Nast Traveler, travel associations and other prestigious organization. They also have a very devoted clientele! The ships have the finest in amenities - including Frette linens, Bvlgari amenities and they offer very good values to upgrade to business class airfare.

Radisson also offers wonderful service. The ships are a bit smaller, more boutique style ships and a nice elegance to the experience. They do a fantastic cruise experience in Tahiti - people return with wonderful reviews and comments.

You might also consider Windstar Cruises - they have a lovely casual elegance atmosphere, very private and personalized service, all oceanview suites and staterooms, smaller masted sailing cruise ships with teak and marble throughout the ships. Windstar often has very high profile guests and corporate executives on the ship and they take great care to pamper everyone! Windstar offers excellent itineraries in the Caribbean, going to more exotic ports, such as the British Virgin Islands, Costa Rica, Belize.

As far as snoot factor, Crystal would probably be the most "snooty," but I call it more classy and traditional, than snoot. None of them will be kitschy - more class and elegance with teak, marble, glass in a different ambiance for each. Educational would be Crystal, but Windstar's unique itineraries would offer a lot of education opportunities in the cultural sense with well-educated, well-read, well-traveled guests

Have a great day!
juliae is offline  
Aug 19th, 2003, 07:35 PM
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Sorry, I must disagree with Juliae on Windstar. We have cruised Windstar as well as RSSC, Crystal, and Seabourn (silverseas in 2004) and Windstar is hardly in the same league as the rest. It is a nice, casual ship but not what I would consider elegant.

Personally, I found Crystal passengers quite impressed with themselves (women more than the men), RSSC down-to-earth, and Seabourn in-between. No kitsch factor on any of the lines and no tours including stops at the CD's uncle's antique shop. Only Seabourn refrained from "Art" auctions.

You won't be disappointed in your choices, but I don't think Windstar belongs among them unless you are considering Tahiti where a sailing ship is a wonderful way to see the islands.
winner is offline  
Aug 20th, 2003, 11:38 PM
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Sabie=

You might want to add Sea Dream Yacht Club into the pot....It is the old SEABOURN I and II that someone else purchased , gutted and transformed it into a SUPER upscale but country club casual cruise--small , as far as number of passengers but large on diversity of ports,great food and not and "attitude" like some the others mentioned..

I also LOVED Windstar and while it IS upscale and casual ( you do NOT need a jacket in the dining room), it is not in the same class as Crystal or Silversea..BUT the EXPERIENCE of sailing on a 4 masted yacht is to die for...and it is small enough to also get into smaller and more intimate ports...Would I got on Winstar Cruise line ( particular ship=the WINDSURF)again==YES YES YES!!

My hubs said PLEASE no more places where I need to carry a jacket but also please make sure it is upscale- THAT is Windstar in a nutshell....
andy is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 12:13 PM
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One thing to keep in mind is that Silversea is the most all inclusive, Radisson second, and Crystal third.
travelagent is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 04:31 PM
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Sabie-=

You also need to keep in mind that UNLESS you drink alot---it doesn't pay to pay the higher prices for Crystal/Silversea ( as they are all inclusive for all alcohol consumed)
andy is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 08:24 PM
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Andy--the only all-inclusive "drinks" on Crystal are sodas and bottled water, and those were only included when Serenity was launched. Liquor and wine is included in the fares of Silversea and Seabourn but NOT on Crystal (where gratuities are also not included as they are on Radisson, Seabourn, and Silversea).
winner is offline  
Aug 21st, 2003, 10:32 PM
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winner- thanks- someone told me that Crystal included the alcohol..
Appreciate the heads up...
andy is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 12:36 PM
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I have sailed on the 3 cruise lines as well as Windstar. I would not put windstar in the same catagory as the other three. I did not care for the class of people on the Windstar and we did the Greek Islands.Also the cabins were very small as were the bathrooms.
The Silversea is my favorite. I also think it is the best value. But keep in mind they are much smaller ships and don't have the activities the larger ships have. I like Radisson next, as it is a little larger, and new ships. I think Crystal is a great line, but I would only consider the new ship.
As far a educational, it depends what you are looking for. The Crystal usually has lectures from guest speakers for different cruises, but the others have similar. As far as a Caribbean cruise I dont know about any educational speakers, as it is a pool, beachy type of cruise.
Snoot factor, not with the cruise line employes. I think any time you are on any high priced vacation you will find some snooty people, but who cares you don't have to socialize with them.
sharoo is offline  
Sep 3rd, 2003, 01:25 PM
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Sharoo-

What,pray tell, was wrong with the class of passengers on the Windsurf???

It is upscale CASUAL-Not a super fancy in-your-face snob attitude, but just some extremely well-travelled people who want a 4 masted yacht experience and the option of NOT having to dress formal at all...Yet, still remain in an upscale casual mode.....

OK- the interiors of the ship were not crystal and glitz but it is a FAR cry from a Windjammer experience also...I call it more a Casual Celebrity Small Ship with Great service,Great ports,low to non-existent nite life, and good food..The whole idea of that type of ship is getting into the smaller ports and the laid-back attitude on the ship..EXTREMELY relaxing and totally unpretentious...

We met some fabulous people on our Windsurf cruise thru the Med---definitely NOT a Carnival experience by a long shot (which is how your post sounds)....And please Carnival people, don't scream...Carnival is a fun young type of party passenger....

Windsurf was full of lawyers,docs, and tons of super nice indian chiefs--and we all got along quite well....
andy is offline  
Sep 5th, 2003, 06:09 PM
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If it's great lectures and education you're after, you can't do much better than Swan Hellenic. I sailed around the British Isles with them, and I got a great education from lecturers in History, Natural history, Religion, Architecture and Gardens. And it wasn't one of those casual cruises, where you do the whoe thing in jeans, either. Men wore tuxes and the food and wine were wonderful. No tipping. All shore exursions included. Fantastic! www.swanhellenic.com
virgo839 is offline  
Sep 5th, 2003, 06:12 PM
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P.S. I have also sailed on Crystal, Silversea and Radisson. Crystal is my favorite. The staff is the absolutely the best at sea. My husband observed: "these people never say 'No!'" Not the case with Silversea. Talk about snooty. Radisson is my second favorite. Elegance without stuffiness. And the cabins are the most spacious in the industry. their staff is great, too. Hope this helps. Welcome to the wonderful world of cruising!
virgo839 is offline  

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