Al and I recently did a ship inspection on one of the most beautiful ships we’ve had the pleasure of seeing: Crystal Symphony.
It’s not just that it was beautiful, though. Somehow, it just…felt good.
Next summer, 2019, this gorgeous ship will cruise through the Inside Passage and past the waterfalls and glaciers of Alaska’s rugged coastline. We decided it was time to do more than simply have “Alaska cruise” as a line item on our bucket list.
Actually, I did try in December of 2017 to book it for the summer of 2018, and every one of Crystal's Alaska sailings was fully booked already! By December!
Maybe this had something to do with it: last year the readers of Condé Nast Traveler voted Crystal Cruises the "World's Best" medium-sized cruise line, for a record-making 24th time. I guess when you do something well, the world beats a path to your door. So, lesson learned: this year I'm starting early for next summer!
If “Alaska cruise” has been on your bucket list for too long already, why not come join us!
As you can see from the photos below, while Symphony is an elegant ship, it’s not stuffy. With one of the most generous square-footage-per-passenger allowances in the cruise-line industry, there are plenty of places to relax and chill, such as lounges (often with live piano music), poolside, a library, and a movie theater with recent releases.
And there are also places to be active: a tennis court, putting green, fitness center and a promenade that encircles the whole ship, to list a few.
Crystal has a reputation for serving some of the best food at sea. ln addition to multiple other restaurants, passengers are entitled to one complimentary night's dining at both Prego and famed chef Nobu Matsuhisa's only sea-going restaurant, Umi Uma. As you probably know, a Nobu restaurant on terra firma is in the $$$$ category.
I love the openness and light of Silk, one of the other restaurants. Wouldn't it be fun to swing in that chair?
One of my favorite spots of all, though, is Palm Court—a perfect place to lounge under skylights and maybe listen to live piano music while cruising through majestic scenery. This is also where daily afternoon tea is served (on beautiful china, I might add).
Last but not least is just the general ambience and quality of this ship. Lots of beauty and interesting features provide a feast for the eyes.
So here are the details:
Sailing Dates: July 23-30, 2019
Where: Roundtrip from Vancouver, Inside Passage
Itinerary: Per map
Map courtesy of Crystal Cruises
Size: 858 passengers (with a crew of over 500)
Price: Prices are based on cabin type and location on the ship, and are only locked in when booked. Current availability (per 4/3/19) starts at $2,985 per person if booked by April 30.
Please note below all that the price includes, in addition to $325 per person in shipboard credit by booking into this group.
This is also a Virtuoso-hosted voyage. This includes an exclusive champagne reception, just for those passengers who are booked through a Virtuoso travel advisor. The host will be available to help with any questions or needs during the cruise (and, of course, Al and I will also be there).
One of the things we love about Crystal—in addition to how beautiful their ships are, and how spacious, and how good their food is—is that they don’t nickel-and-dime you once you’re onboard. The following are all included in the price:
All gratuities onboard the ship
Complimentary select fine wines, premium spirits, champagnes and beers throughout the ship
Complimentary custom coffees, soft drinks, juices and bottled water
Complimentary evening of specialty dining in both Prego and Nobu Matsuhisa’s Umi Uma (as well as onboard dining in the other restaurants, of course)
Complimentary daily afternoon tea in the Palm Court
Numerous classes and enrichment lectures, live entertainment, and recent-release films in the onboard theater
Reduced single supplement
Even free launderettes
Out of curiosity, I googled what another popular cruise line charges for beverages. Here are some of the prices shown: bottled water ($2.25-$3.25), can of soda ($3.25), latte ($4.25), beer ($6.95-$7.25), glass of wine ($10.00 - $16.00). If not included as complimentary, beverages could easily add $250-$300 per person to the cost of a 7-day cruise—and no doubt more, if their wine is as good as Crystal's! :)
MONEY-SAVING BENEFITS OF BOOKING INTO THIS GROUP
In addition to the value that Crystal inclusions provide, and the added benefit of a dedicated Virtuoso host, we can offer the cost-saving benefits of generous per-person shipboard credit of $325 per person (mentioned above), which can be used for Crystal excursions or spa treatments, gift shop, etc.
If this is something you think you even might want to do, it's a good idea to make a deposit to secure your spot, get the best cabin selection, and take advantage of the cost savings of this group.
Contact us at Vicki@schecktrek.com or (626) 272-5781 for more information. We'd love to have you onboard!
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