The Seabourn Quest cruise ship is one of the most luxurious in the world. It’s a small ship that has a club-like ambience and staff who pride themselves on delivering intuitive service. When I reviewed Seabourn Quest I discovered gourmet restaurants and chic bars, as well as sophisticated entertainment. Not to mention luxury, all-suite accommodation.
However, there are things worth knowing about a cruise vacation on Seabourn Quest. For instance, there are fewer dining venues than you might find on larger cruise ships. On the other hand Seabourn Quest’s intimacy lends itself to impeccable, personalised service.
Limited number of dining venues.
The Seabourn Quest cruise ship is an Odyssey-class vessel belonging to Seabourn Cruises. Seabourn Quest was built in Italy by the shipbuilder T. Mariotti and entered service in June 2011. It is 195 m. / 650 ft. long with 11 passenger decks and has room for just 450 guests (double occupancy), so it never feels crowded.
Seabourn Quest was refurbished in 2018 with a fresh decor in the public areas and suites, as well as enhancements to the onboard spa.
Indeed, the intimate vessel is designed to feel like a private yacht with teak decks, stylish bars, fine dining and gracious suites. There is even a retractable marina at the stern.
Seabourn Quest has a chic main dining room, a Michelin-star inspired steakhouse, a terrace buffet and a poolside eatery. There is also a cafe for light snacks and refreshments.
The main dining room is The Restaurant. I rate it as the best dining venue on Seabourn Quest. The menu showcases innovative culinary trends and gastronomic classics. What’s more the menu changes daily. On my review voyage there was an exceptional Roasted Qual & Spiced Figs with Caramelized Fennel, Salsify Ragout, Pomegranate & Poultry Jus. Not to mention tempting desserts like Strawberry Soup & White Chocolate Parfait with Fresh Berries Pistachio Crostini & Crackers.
The Grill by Thomas Keller is an art deco-style American steakhouse. The menu, inspired by Michelin-starred chef Thomas Keller, includes an exceptionally good Roasted Free Range Chicken & Thyme Jus which takes two days to prepare. It serves two people.
The Colonnade is a casual buffet restaurant on the Seabourn Quest cruise ship. The buffet continues to set the at-sea standard for outstanding food quality and presentation. There is also daytime poolside dining at The Patio buffet. In the evening the venue becomes Earth & Ocean at The Patio with an array of inventive dishes served à la carte, including Seabass with Eryngii Mushrooms, Stir Fried Super Greens, Toasted Garlic & Wasabi Lime Butter.
The Seabourn Square on deck 7 has a tempting selection of savoury snacks and pâtisserie, as well as gourmet coffee and teas.
Seabourn Quest nightlife
The nightlife on Seabourn Quest is stylish and sophisticated. A talented pianist entertains in the Observation Bar and a band play sets in The Club, where there is also a late night disco.
The Grand Salon is the theatre on Seabourn Quest. It plays host to production shows like the highly regarded “An Evening With Sir Tim Rice”, as well as guest entertainers.
Suites on Seabourn Quest
All the rooms on Seabourn Quest are suites and every one has an ocean view. The least expensive suites have a picture window, rather than a veranda.
I stayed in a Veranda Suite on my Seabourn Quest review voyage. These suites are the most popular on board. They are wonderfully spacious with a marble bathroom that has a separate soaking tub and shower. What’s more, there’s a luxurious teak veranda with outdoor furniture.
For those who like even more space the Seabourn Quest cruise ship also has larger suites with separate bedrooms and living areas, like the stylish Penthouse Suite.
Every room on Seabourn Quest has a Suite Host and Suite Attendant who create an atmosphere of comfort and luxury. On my voyage the Suite Host actively sought to create so-called ‘Seabourn Moments’; bespoke memorable experiences. It helped make my voyage extra special. The Suite Hosts are there to indulge, whether it be drawing a relaxing bath or arranging an in-suite cocktail party.
The Seabourn Spa & Wellness centre is a partnership with best-selling author Dr. Andrew Weil. It is the first of its kind at sea and offers indulgent massage and beauty treatments, as well as mindful living guidance and even acupuncture.
Unfortunately, Seabourn Quest does not have a dedicated jogging track. So most guests used the open space on deck 5 to jog or power-walk.
Seabourn Quest activities
Seabourn Quest has the usual shipboard activities including lectures from guest speakers, bridge and team trivia. There are also deck sports including golf, table tennis and shuffleboard.
Seabourn Quest also has wellness and mindfulness seminars, as well as complimentary walk-in hair consultations. There are ladies pamper parties, afternoon teas and even caviar sail-away parties too.
In addition, there are get-togethers for friends of Dorothy, friends of Bill W and solo cruisers.
The boutiques on Seabourn Quest are known as The Shops and they sell designer apparel, fragrances and jewellery.
All the activities on Seabourn Quest are in the daily Herald newsletter. Though it’s worth noting this is no longer printed, rather it is available through the Seabourn Source app.
There are lots of different shore excursions available on the Seabourn Quest cruise ship. These include panoramic bus tours, speedboat trips, epicurean adventures, bike rides and bespoke private limousine journeys. Though it has to be said, some shore excursions can be significantly better than others. What’s more, cost doesn’t always reflect the quality of the excursion.
For instance, when I reviewed Seabourn Quest there was an enjoyable tour into the country side with lunch at a farm. Whereas a more expensive speedboat trip to an overcrowded Croatian beach proved somewhat disappointing.
Editor’s tip: Seabourn offer shore excursions to UNESCO World Heritage sites around the world. These are often the best shore excursions.
Shore excursions can be purchased online in advance of your cruise. You can also purchase shore excursions once you get on board.
Seabourn Quest dress code
The Seabourn Quest dress code is smart and stylish, but on my review voyage it was never stuffy. Guests wear casual resort-style clothing during the day, but it’s worth noting that swimwear is not acceptable in any of the restaurants.
After dark there are two different dress codes: Elegant Casual and Formal.
Women wear slacks, skirts, and blouses. Men wear slacks and a collared shirt (jacket optional).
Women wear evening gowns while men wear Tuxedos or suits.
It’s worth noting that the Formal dress code only applies to The Restaurant. Dress in other dining venues is always Elegant Casual. The number of formal nights varies depending on the cruise duration. Voyages of up to 13-days have one formal night. Cruises lasting 14- to 20-days have two formal nights, while longer voyages have three.
Seabourn Quest inclusions
The Seabourn Quest cruise ship is all-inclusive. That means all meals, fine wines, Champagne and spirits are part of your cruise fare. Also included in a Seabourn Quest cruise fare are non-alcoholic beverages, specialty coffee and teas.
Editor’s tip: You can purchase premium alcoholic beverages, but on my review voyage the house wines and spirits were excellent.
Gratuities are also included in the cruise fare; in fact tipping isn’t expected.
A Seabourn Quest cruise fare also includes shuttle bus transfers from the port to town when it is not nearby. Guests also get a smart Seabourn tote bag, plus exclusive Molton Brown bath products.
Seabourn Quest has a loyal following. Indeed, on my review voyage many passengers were return guests.
They are usually discerning and experienced cruisers who range in age from 40 to 70-years old.
Most guests are from the USA and the UK, however Australians, Canadians and Europeans are also onboard.
It’s worth noting that Seabourn Quest is gay-friendly.
Seabourn Quest conclusion
The Seabourn Quest cruise ship is ideal for those who enjoy an indulgent cruise vacation. The ship is ultra-luxury, but it never feels pretentious. Indeed, the service is genuinely warm and intuitive. I also thought the dining was outstanding, though some may find the choice of restaurants limiting. All things considered I think Seabourn Quest offers an exceptional cruise experience.
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