Agents FAM trip – Crystal Serenity
31st October 2015 – 6 nights – Valletta to Monte Carlo
Hosts : Jon Schofield and Louise Harmer
The four cornerstones of Crystal: Service, Space, Choice, Quality…really say it all!
I was totally blown away with my first sailing experience with Crystal. The ship visits completed in the summer months gave me an inkling of what life onboard a Crystal ship would be like, but I have to say that I was completely blown away but how good it was.
The difficulty I had was that all the time I was making a direct comparison with the 15 or so cruises that I had done with Silversea, but Crystal is a completely different experience. It’s similar in a lot of respects, but offering so much more and it really did convince me that Crystal is the best kept secret among the ultra-luxury ships…..we really do have so much to shout about.
I won’t run through the trip on a day by day otherwise the report will be too long and you will lose the will to live but will break it down into sections of interest.
Embarkation in Valletta:
The weather was dreadful, dark clouds and heavy rain but after the immigration formalities pier side it was nice to get onboard. Check in by the Crystal Plaza was seamless and of course a nice glass of chilled fizz helped the process!
Our room was a Deluxe Stateroom with Veranda, it was lovely and already available once we’d boarded. I was greeted by the lovely Rakhi my stateroom attendant who guided me through everything.
It was great to have a good few days on the ship as it meant we were able to try out all the dining venues which of course were excellent. We experienced the Crystal dining room on a couple of evenings and then Prego and Silk Road both of which were incredible but I have to say my highlight was dining one evening in Tastes with stunning food and mood lighting.
Also a special mention for The Bistro which was one of my favourite locations….the cappuccino and cookies…wow!!
Leisurely breakfast or buffet lunch in the Lido Café was always a great choice, very relaxing….and what a selection of food!!
Could not find fault in any of the venues or the food on offer…what a CHOICE !!
I went along to every evening show all of which were to an excellent standard and so entertaining.
I also took in a film in the Hollywood Theatre one afternoon which came complete with fresh popcorn.
Saturday night was Halloween and all the entertainment team dressed up and put on a great show in Crystal Plaza, what a great party!
In the early evening it was very relaxing to listen to the Crystal Sextet play in Palm Court and watch the Ambassador Hosts dancing with the guests. It’s a great idea to have male and female dance hosts onboard.
The 60 minutes per day complimentary Wi-Fi worked a treat – the staff in CU@sea set me up on my laptop and my allotted complimentary minutes were put on a timer which counted down so you knew exactly how much time you have used up. It was such an easy concept and a nice extra benefit to guests on board.
I honestly could not fault the team on board, they never walk by you without a hello or good morning and were always cheery. The excellent service is one of our strongest selling points.
That also goes for Captain Vorland and his senior team, always so visible and so friendly.
It was really pleasing to see a very varied age range of guests. Nice to experience the Black Tie Optional formal, although most guests did have black tie / dark suit attire. I thought the Crystal Casual also worked well.
The product just offers so much and it was really good for me to be able to make a comparison to what I have promoted for the past 9 years. Crystal can just offer so much more choice, but still with that fantastic quality and yes, just so much space around the ships. This on board sailing experience has just given me so much more confidence to get out there and really shout about what Crystal has to offer, the majority of people just do not have a clue how good the product is and hey, I knew it was good…..but it’s just so much better!
Cheers to the future…..