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- #1Regent Seven Seas Cruises#1 in Best Cruises to Europe
Regent Seven Seas Explorer debuted in 2016, making it the newest ship in the fleet. It's also the largest, welcoming up to 750 passengers. The ship makes service a top priority, with a nearly 1-to-1 crew-to-guest ratio. According to recent cruisers, the crew was friendly and attentive.
Travelers were even more impressed by the all-suite accommodations, which are some of the largest offered among ocean liners. All 375 suites include spacious balconies, marble bathrooms, walk-in closets, interactive flat-screen TVs and unlimited Wi-Fi.
Another high point: the cuisine. Explorer offers eight dining areas that range from the casual Pool Grill to Asian creations at Pacific Rim. As part of 'Regent Experience,' all specialty dining is included in the cruise fare.
Outside the cabins, guests can spend their days participating in cooking demonstrations, lounging by the pool or relaxing in the library. At night, entertainment options include casino games, cocktail lounges and shows in the Constellation Theater. Complaints about this ship are few and far between, though some reviewers felt the entertainment could be more impressive.
The best perk, according to recent passengers? All shore excursions are included. In 2019-20, Seven Seas Explorer sails to destinations in the Tropics, Europe, Australia, the Mediterranean and more.
- #2Viking Ocean Cruises#2 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
Like its four sister ships, Viking Sun – which began sailing in November 2017 – carries 930 passengers and 550 crew members. One of the ship's highlights is its all-veranda accommodations. Cabins range from 270-square-foot Veranda Staterooms to the 1,448-square-foot Owner's Suite. All accommodations include flat-screen TVs, complimentary Wi-Fi access, stocked minibars and bathrooms with heated floors. Those who choose an upgraded room receive additional perks, such as priority reservations at the spa and specialty restaurants.
Onboard dining options include Manfredi's Italian Restaurant, the internationally focused World Café and the poolside Aquavit Terrace. Guests can also visit the main restaurant for a menu that changes daily.
When it comes to ship activities, guests can receive treatments at the spa, lounge by one of two pools (including an infinity pool on the stern of the ship) or mingle with other passengers in The Viking Living Room. In the evenings, entertainment includes live performances in the theater and movies in one of two cinemas.
- #2Seabourn Cruise Line#2 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
The 458-passenger Seabourn Odyssey began sailing in June 2009 and – like its sister ships – is an all-suite vessel. Travelers can enjoy complimentary Champagne upon arrival, fresh fruit daily and 24-hour room service, plus everyone has access to a personal suite stewardess for additional requests. Each cabin is equipped with a separate living area and bedroom, a stocked bar, a flat-screen television, a walk-in closet and a bathroom with a tub, shower and dual sinks.
The four dining options aboard the Seabourn Odyssey range from casual poolside fare, such as pizzas and salads, to The Grill by Thomas Keller, which serves upscale meals and tasty libations. Post-dinner, travelers can relax with a cocktail at one of the bars or test their luck at the casino. The Seabourn Odyssey also offers nightly entertainment like movies under the stars and dance parties on the boat's deck.
Onboard amenities on this ship include two pools, six outdoor hot tubs, a fitness center, a nine-hole putting green and a spa. The ship also allows cruisers to enjoy water sports equipment like kayaks, paddle boats and Hobie Cat sailboats in select destinations.
In 2019-20, Odyssey sails to a number of ports across the Mediterranean and the Caribbean, as well as some transatlantic voyages.
- #4Celebrity Cruises#4 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
Launched in 2012 and last updated in January 2018, the 3,046-passenger Reflection sets itself apart with features like a top-deck Lawn Club and the Game On interactive activity center with flat-screen table games. Another highlight is the Alcoves, where guests can enjoy crowd-free cabana lounging (for an extra fee). The ship is set to receive a full refurbishment in 2023.
And with 11 restaurants and cafes, including seven specialty dining venues, passengers have plenty of choices when it comes to cuisine. As far as cabins go, 85 percent of Reflection's staterooms offer verandas, and the ship offers a wider variety of suite cabins than other Celebrity ships. All cabins come appointed with minibars and flat-screen TVs. Passengers who choose AquaClass suites receive extra perks, such as direct access to the spa and 24-hour butler service.
Recent passengers complimented the ship's layout, citing the pool areas are particularly comfortable and never overly crowded. Thanks to a 2-to-1 guest-to-crew ratio, cruisers can also expect personalized service.
- #4Silversea Cruises#4 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
Fully refurbished in May 2018, the 608-passenger Silver Spirit prioritizes customer service. With 411 crew members on board, it maintains less than a 1-to-2 crew-to-passenger ratio.
The ship's full redesign left it 49 feet longer, enhancing the space around the ship. Guests will enjoy dining options like Spaccanapoli (Italian), Silver Note (tapas-sized dishes), Atlantide (seafood), Indochine (Asian) and more. There are a total of eight dining establishments, many of which recent visitors called "superb."
Recent cruisers were also pleased with the all-suite accommodations. All offer ocean views, and 95 percent include private verandas. The spacious suites (ranging from 312 to 1,668 square feet) offer amenities like butler service, minifridges and full baths with separate showers.
The extra space on board also allows for a roomier spa – 8,300 square feet, to be exact. When you're not getting pampered, take advantage of the ship's other activities like fitness classes, casino games and enrichment courses. Come nightfall, unwind in one of three bars, or catch a performance at the Venetian Lounge.
- #4Viking Ocean Cruises#4 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
Launched in April 2016, Viking Sea is the second vessel in Viking's Ocean Cruises fleet. Carrying just 930 passengers, the ship's small size is designed to allow direct access to smaller ports such as Bergen, Norway, and Montreal.
Viking Sea's staterooms range from 270-square-foot Veranda Staterooms to the 1,448-square-foot Owner's Suite. All accommodations include balconies, flat-screen TVs, king-sized beds, complimentary Wi-Fi access and bathrooms with heated floors. Those who splurge on upgraded staterooms receive extra perks like priority reservations for excursions, spa treatments and specialty restaurants.
The ship's facilities include a fitness center, a Nordic spa (complete with a snow grotto), an outdoor gym and yoga area, a theater and a one-of-a-kind infinity pool on the stern of the ship that gives the illusion of swimming in the ocean.
When you work up an appetite, the Viking Sea offers a variety of dining options to quell your hunger. They range from casual Norwegian cuisine at Mamsen's to alfresco dining on the Aquavit Terrace. Recent passengers report a stellar onboard experience, describing the food as delicious, the ship as comfortable and the service as top-notch.
- #4Viking Ocean Cruises#4 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
When it debuted in 2015, the Viking Star was the fleet's first ocean liner. Welcoming up to 930 passengers, the Viking Star stands outs for its staterooms, which are all outfitted with a veranda. Cabins range from 270-square-foot Veranda Staterooms to the 1,448-square-foot Owner's Suite, which offers a dining area that can seat six, an ocean view dry sauna and a boardroom that seats 12, among other amenities.
Beyond their rooms, passengers will find a spa, several shops, a theater that hosts live performances and lectures, two cinemas for screening movies and two pools, including a glass-backed infinity pool cantilevered off the stern.
There are eight dining options to choose from, all with no additional charge or fee. For fine dining, there's The Restaurant, Manfredi's Italian Restaurant and The Chef's Table, which touts a multi-course tasting menu with wine pairings. For a more casual atmosphere, passengers can stop at Mamsen's for Norwegian deli-style eats or the Wintergarden for afternoon tea, among others.
In 2019-20, Viking Star sails to destinations in Europe, the Mediterranean, Canada, the Caribbean and more.
- #4Viking Ocean Cruises#4 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
The 930-passenger Viking Sky – which debuted in February 2017 – is one of the newest ships in Viking's ocean cruise line. Identical to its four sister ships, Viking Sky receives rave reviews from past passengers for its port-heavy itineraries (cruise fares include one complimentary excursion per port) and luxurious, comfortable staterooms. Cabins offer between 270 and 1,448 square feet of space and include balconies, complimentary Wi-Fi access, flat-screen TVs and bathrooms with heated floors, among other amenities. Those who opt for an upgraded stateroom or suite are treated to additional perks, like priority reservations at the spa and specialty restaurants.
Viking Sky's activities include classes at the fitness center, treatments at the spa and destination-focused lectures. The ship also offers two pools and two whirlpools, including an infinity pool on the stern of the ship. In the evenings, passengers can enjoy live performances in the theater or watch destination-related movies in one of two cinemas.
Guests also have their choice of cuisine, from alfresco dining on the Aquavit Terrace to Manfredi's Italian Restaurant. With 550 crew members on board, the ship maintains a nearly 2-to-1 guest-to-crew ratio.
- #4Seabourn Cruise Line#4 in Best Cruises to Europe (tie)
Ovation debuted in May 2018, making it the newest addition to the Seabourn family. The ship holds 600 passengers and has an intimate crew-to-passenger ratio of nearly 1-to-1.
Seabourn Ovation adhere's to the line's penchant for luxury, offering all-suite accommodations, fine dining experiences and indulgent onboard activities. All suites boast verandas that overlook the ocean, plus standard amenities like a complimentary in-suite bar and flat-screen TVs. Extra perks, like spa-style "Pure Pampering" baths drawn by your personal suite stewardess, are available. Most recent guests were pleased with the level of service on board, though some had issues booking shore excursions at the designated counter.
Amenities range from complimentary fitness classes to spa and salon treatments to a deck with private cabanas and a whirlpool. Come nighttime, cruisers can unwind at the alfresco Sky Bar, try their luck at the casino or enjoy a movie or dancing under the stars.
Passengers also have a variety of eateries to choose from, including The Grill by Thomas Keller, which serves steakhouse classics created by its namesake Michelin-starred chef. Should the restaurant be fully booked, guests can dine at one of four other casual and fine dining venues, such as the Japanese-focused Sushi and the buffet-style Colonnade.
- #10Crystal Cruises#10 in Best Cruises to Europe
On the heels of a dramatic 2017 redesign, Crystal Symphony (first launched in 1995) boasts new open seating and dining areas, new Penthouses and Penthouse Suites, high-tech features and reimagined public spaces. The one thing that hasn't changed is the exceptional customer service Crystal is known for; recent travelers noted the crew was warm, attentive and extremely professional. The ship holds 848 guests and has a 1-to-1.7 staff-to-guest ratio.
The ship offers a variety of activities including fitness programs, musical performances and treatments at the feng shui-inspired spa. All accommodations offer ocean views, flat-screen TVs, minifridges and bathtubs. Those who choose Penthouse category rooms receive additional privileges, like personal butler service.
Dining options include the Waterside dining room, modern Chinese-inspired fare at Silk Kitchen and Bar and a Marketplace and Churrascaria serving casual buffet breakfast and lunch options by day and Brazilian-style delicacies by night.
Disclaimers about ship ratings: A ship’s Health Rating is based on vessel inspection scores published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If a ship did not receive a CDC score within 22 months prior to the calculation of its Overall Rating, its Health Rating appears as N/A; in such a case, the ship’s Overall Rating is calculated using the average Health Rating of all CDC-rated ships within the cruise line. All ship Traveler Ratings are based on ratings provided under license by Cruiseline.com.
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