My husband and I have sailed on both Silver Wind and Silver Cloud. Prior to this, we have sailed on Crystal and Princess. But we've grown to love this cruise line most of all, and try to take a cruise once per year.
They are small, carrying 290 passengers, which means you meet so many fellow shipmates. Both ships are nearly identical and just stunning in decor. They are warm ships, with mosaics and lovely paintings. The staff is very efficient, but there is always a smile.
What I love the most are the ships' suites, cabins large enough that I am always comfortable and feel right at home. There's a lovely walk-in closet and large bathroom; bathtub has jacuzzi. Crystal's penthouse suites have larger bathrooms and a separate shower as well.
The pool area is large enough for passengers, plus there's a small casino (three tables, a few slots) and two bar/lounges. I understand that the cruise line now uses a South African firm to run it's spas, a big improvement over the previous spa company I imagine.
We have yet to sail on one of Silversea's National Geographic cruises, when a writer or photographer from the magazine is aboard, but that must be very special. On my last cruise (the Baltic) I was disappointed to find there were no on-board lecturers to make the ports more meaningful. Just a man who talked about pearls.
We've cruised in the Baltic and Mediterranean with Silverseas and both cruises were perfect. We visit some of the traditional ports and a few that are smaller, but charming and unspoiled.
The food is very, very good and the service is warm and very friendly. We found one seating at dinner and met new friends throughout the cruise. For lunch and breakfast, many chose to dine in the more casual Veranda restaurant, which has buffet. The made-to-order pasta was outstanding. Several nights after particularly long and tiring days ashore we chose to dine in our stateroom. It was served splendidly -- the small coffee table in our cabin folded out into a good size dining table and the steward served us course-by-course. Afterward, we had brandy on the balcony as the waves lapped against the ship. I don't think I've ever been so happy or serene.