August 2015 - 10 Night Best Of The Baltic (Stockholm To Copenhagen) Cruise on Crystal Symphony
A Dream Come True
WE do not cruise because we thought it would be boring. Luckily my husband changed my mind and we went on this, our first cruise in 15 years. Amazing. Everything from embarkation to disembarkation is managed to the tiniest detail. The rooms are very functional with full shower and tub and many shelves and drawers so you can "spread out". The linens are lovely and the beds themselves very comfortable.
Check out their website, everything is exactly as presented. And the emphasis on both hygiene and safety, throughout the cruise, is appreciated. There are stations where you are able to sanitize your hands throughout the ship.
The food is truly amazing. And even though there is a breakfast buffet in the Lido,you also have the breakfast option in the Crystal Dining Room with a varied and delightful menu. I loved the variety yet the choices were presented in a delicate way, not mounds of food everywhere, as you can see even in luxury buffets.
The service in all of the dining areas is impeccable. It was surprising that our names were remembered by all of the staff members we met by the second day! that was a pleasant surprise.
The entertainment is mostly geared to the "older crowd". And the cost of the Internet service is high. I think it should be included, as most of their competitors have done.
I never felt that the ship was crowded. I thought that the day at sea would tell-the-tale. But no, on our day-at-sea everything was just wonderfully leisurely with no evidence that the ship was full, which I believe it was for our trip.
There are a couple of shops on board: Apropos and Facets. The former provided a collection of mens and women's clothing and accessories, mostly high-end: Furla, Chanel and Gucci handbags, Michael Kors clothing and some odds and ends costume jewelry. Facets is a high-end jewelry store with Hublot, Tag and other beautiful time pieces as well as designer jewelry you will also find at stores like Neiman Marcus.
The excursions are terrific. They ranged in cost from $49 to over $300. They were worth every penny. The guides are knowledgeable, have good personalities and attend to as well as are aware of your needs are you are transported about. since we took a excursion every day, we didn't miss the entertainment so much. It was nice to kick back and get ready for the next day.
I would have liked to have "modern/current" dancing and a great DJ available earlier in the evening. That was open after 11:00 nightly, but when you have an excursion at 8:00 and you already going through several time zones, it can be tough to do it. There should be a place where the ballroom crowd can do their thing at a reasonable hour, and the rest of us can "go to the club" at that same reasonable hour.
The transfer process both getting to and from the ship is flawless. Everything went smoothly. You can tell that they know exactly what they are doing. We left the ship in Copenhagen but our flight did not leave until much later that night. All of us with later flights were taken to a lovely hotel and staged there, with light meals provided, until our airport departure.
I don't use this word often, but I have to say that this trip was "perfect". The problem that I now have is that I started at the top with Crystal.
We are looking at future sailings and trying to decide where to take our next Crystal Cruise. I cannot wait to be treated "Crystal-fabulous" for another 10 days. We had a memorable experience and have decided to become "cruise-people" as a result of this trip.