Crystal Cruises—the luxury voyage
By Ralph Grizzle
FORCED TO NARROW down my choice to
the number-one reason to cruise Crystal, I
would have to say it’s the staff. While it’s true
that every cruise line hangs its hat on great
service, Crystal stands a notch above.
Maybe that’s why readers of upscale travel
magazines have given the luxury cruise line
top honors for 17 consecutive years. Crystal’s
staff transforms an upscale travel experience
into a personal travel experience. They make
a point of knowing your name and your preferences, and they seem to have a genuine passion to serve and surprise.
For example, one evening as I was walking to the Crystal Symphony’s boutique to buy
a tie, I was stopped by the hotel director, who
asked if he could help me. When I told him I
had forgotten to pack a tie for formal night,
he sat me down at a bar, told me to have a
drink and said he would be right back.
Moments later he returned with one of his
ties, which he had retrieved from his cabin,
and proceeded to wrap it around my neck
and form a perfect knot.
Stepping on board a Crystal ship for the
second time (or third or fourth) is a lot like
coming home. You’ll be greeted by familiar
faces. Half of the crew members who began
working for Crystal at its 1990 inception are
still working for the company today.
Besides exceptional staff, Crystal sets
itself apart with larger ships than are typically
found in the luxury segment. Carrying 922
and 1,070 passengers apiece, respectively,
Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity are
large enough to provide spacious public
rooms and multiple dining venues, plus the
industry’s most extensive repertoire of
onboard classes, lectures and workshops.
I enjoy the varied entertainment options,
from Broadway-style musicals to classical
music and a cappella groups to comedy acts.
There’s also a full-size casino with Nevada
gaming rules for those who gamble.
COURTESY OF CR YS TAL CRUISES
Monuments and Monte Carlo: Sail from
Barcelona (Spain) to Rome/Civitavecchia (Italy)
aboard Crystal Symphony, calling at Barcelona
(Spain) overnight; Monte Carlo (Monaco) overnight;
and Florence/Livorno and Elba/Portoferraio (Italy).
Costco member bene;t:
• $420 shipboard credit (per stateroom)†
All-Inclusive cruise features:
SEVEN-NIGHT LUXURY CRUISE from $2,900 per person* Valid on 4/8/12 sailing. Category E Stateroom
For additional details,
click Travel at Costco.com.
*Price shown is per person based on double occupancy, is valid for
select stateroom categories only, and is true and accurate at time of
printing. Restrictions and blackout dates might apply. All offers and
inclusions are subject to availability, may change or be terminated
without notice, are valid for new bookings only and are available to
Costco members residing in the United States. Unless otherwise
noted, offers are not combinable with select rate codes, coupons
or other offers. Travel purchases are not included in the Executive
Membership annual 2% Reward program. Offer shown is cruise only
and is valid on select dates. Cancellation and change fees may apply.
Any unused portion(s) of inclusions are nontransferable, nonrefundable
and not redeemable for cash. Costco Travel disclaims liability for any
inaccuracies or typographical errors. Ship’s registry: The Bahamas.
†Value of shipboard credit is determined by category booked for ;rst
and second passengers only. For bookings made within three weeks
of departure, credit is not guaranteed. Costco Travel is registered
as a seller of travel in each of the states listed: California
registration number: CST 2054248-50 • Florida registration
number: S T 32555 • Hawaii registration number: TAR 5595 •
Iowa registration number: TA 620 • Nevada Seller of Travel
registration number: 2007-0060 • Washington registration
number: WST 602042600. Registration as a California Seller of
Travel does not constitute approval by the state. 11TR0805 4/11
The Costco Connection
To view a sample selection of Crystal sailings,
visit the Travel section of Costco.com or call
An avid cruiser for nearly two decades, Ralph
Grizzle specializes in reporting on luxury