Ship Review | Silver Explorer -by Ngaire Keene Hutyra
Overall Opinion: This is an expedition ship and therefore should not be compared to the larger luxury cruise ships. However, as far as an expedition ship goes this is an outstanding ship, and I believe the best expedition ship on the market. The ship has great cabins, better than many mass market lines and also comfortable and spacious public rooms.
CABIN BATHROOMS: First the overall bathroom details, so that the descriptions are not constantly repeated on all the individual cabin category descriptions.
Double Class Cabin
Grand and Owners Suites
Grand and Owners Suites
Standard Bathroom | Adventure Class, Explorer Class, View, Vista, and Verandah: The standard bathroom is a full size bathtub/shower combination with a toilet and a single sink. This is not large but larger than the Oceania bathrooms for a comparison. There is a lot of usable storage space. Under the sink, is the center cabinet that holds the trash can and a little space. On each side of this center cabinet, is another cabinet each with two shelves. There is a medicine chest behind the mirror on the wall with three 6-inch deep and 12-inch high shelves. The mirror over the sink has two medicine chests on each side and you can move these mirrors to see the back of your hair. The shower head in the bathtub is adjustable and there are two shelves in the bathtub area to hold toiletries. There was really more storage space than we could fill with our things.
Suite Bathroom | Double Suites, Medallion, Expedition, and Silver Suites: These bathrooms are wonderful. There is a full-sized bathtub, a good size walk-in shower, a very large vanity with an over the counter mounted oversized contemporary sink, and narrow shelving on both sides of the vanity. The bathroom is attractive with a marble floor and accents and rosewood cabinetry.
Grand Suite and Owners Suite Bathrooms: These bathrooms are large and have divided areas. Entering the bathroom you have very large vanity with an over the counter mounted oversized contemporary sink and narrow shelving on both sides of the vanity. On one side, the bathtub and shower are behind a frosted glass door. The shower is not enclosed but drains directly into the floor area next to the bathtub. On the other side of the vanity, is the enclosed toilet stall.
CABIN DESCRIPTIONS: The cabin sizes shown by Silversea do not always equate to what I saw on the ship. For instance, in the Explorer class, Cabin 406 on the deck plan appears to be much larger than it is, and it is the same size as the other square cabins.
I also think the rectangular cabins are really bigger than 175 sq. ft. as they look almost the same size as the View, Vista and Verandah cabins that are 230 sq.ft.
Adventurer Class | The least expensive cabin, portholes and smaller. Six cabins in this category. 152 to 163 sq. ft.
Portholes have storage area
Positives: There is really quite a bit of room in these cabins and they are an excellent value. The desk area is much smaller than in the other cabins, however still large enough for a laptop computer as well as extra counter space and some drawers, this area also houses the mini bar. The storage is adequate with double closets and behind the full length mirror on the wall you find a safe and four deep shelves. There is one chair next to the wall across from the desk area. Deck 3 is the same deck as reception and where you disembark on the zodiacs so this location is very handy.
These are the smallest cabins on the ship. These are the only cabins with two portholes instead of a window. In bad weather, they may need to close these portholes then it becomes an inside cabin. This is far more likely to happen in Antarctica than in the Arctic. If there is bad weather in the Arctic, they can slip into a fjord and escape most of the rough water. These cabins are on Deck 3, which is the lowest deck with passenger cabins and also they are located far forward, but there is quite a bit of the ship left in front of the cabins. They are reached by a small narrow hallway.
Explorer Class | Eight cabins in this category. 152 to 175 sq. ft.
Explorer Class Square Cabins (402, 404, & 406)
Explorer Rectangular Cabins (403, 405, 407, 409, & 411)
Upgrade Cost: From the Adventurer Class on a 10-day voyage to the Explorer Class, it will be approximately $900 more per person. All of the Explorer Cabins are larger than the Adventurer Class plus they are one deck higher.
On the brochure, cabin 406 appears larger but it is the same size as 404 and 402. These three cabins are square rather than rectangle and that does not feel as large as the rectangular cabins.
Cabins 403, 405, 407, 409 and 411 appear to be slightly smaller but the same layout as the higher category View and Vista Suite cabins. These are larger than the four square cabins in this category. These are in this price range only because they are so far forward on the ship. I would estimate they are all in the 200 to 220 sq. ft. range.
Square Layout Positives: The three square cabins have a different layout. At the end of the bed, are one or two arm chairs and the same desk area as in the View and Vista Suites that is on the wall. This desk area gives you a lot of counter and storage space and houses your mini bar. The closet is located across from the bathroom as you enter the cabin. The closet is easier to access than the closets in the View and Vista Suites. These cabins feel far more spacious cabins than the Adventure Class cabins and still substantially less in price than the View or Vista suitess. This is a good value if you do not want portholes and/or the risk of having those portholes closed. These square cabins will sell fairly quickly.
Square Layout Negatives: There is a full-length mirror, but there is nothing behind that mirror so these cabins lack the extra shelves that both the Porthole and View and Vista cabins offer. At a location this far forward on the ship, there could be more movement in rough seas.
Rectangle Layout Positives: Same cabin as the more expensive View cabin but at a lower price. Window size is the same as the Deck 3 View cabins. Larger than the square cabins in the same category for the same price.
Rectangle Layout Negative: This far forward on the ship could mean a rougher ride in bad weather.
View, Vista, and Verandah - 230 sq. ft. | Verandah Suite has a 15 sq ft. balcony
Differences in these cabins and upgrade cost from Explorer Class:
Example for a 10-day voyage -
View Cabins (3 ft. window) - approximately $975 more per person
Vista Cabins (4 ft. window) - approximately $1300 more per person
Verandah Cabins (15 sq. ft. balcony) - approximately $2600 more per person
Vista & View Cabin
Vista Cabin (larger window)
Vista as twin beds
Vista & View closets
The View cabins are located on Deck 3 and have an approximately 3 ft. window. The Vista cabins are located on Deck 4 and have an approximately 4 ft. window. This does not sound like much difference, however this is very noticeable when you enter the cabins. Deck 4 is the most convenient deck to be located on, as it is the same deck as the dining room and only one deck above where you board the zodiacs. Deck 3 is also convenient with the zodiac loading and reception desk in this area. Whether the larger window and slightly more convenient location is worth the additional expense is a personal decision.
Positives: The interior of these cabins is identical. This is the category with the most cabins. These are very inviting cabins with the large desk area with lots of counter space and storage and a mini bar. Across from the desk, there are two chairs and a table or in the three berth cabins a couch with a hide-a-bed for triple capacity. The storage is more than adequate with double closets and behind the full length mirror on the wall you find a safe and four deep shelves. The room is well decorated with wood accents and rounded corners on the bed.
Negatives: The desk areas do not have a chair that you can sit on to work on your computer at the desk or a stool of any kind. On boarding, you can ask for a chair and they may have one available. The bed is very close to the closet doors and this is a very tight area. These are the only real faults I can find with these cabins. A good choice unless you want to upgrade to a balcony or a larger suite at a substantial cost.
Deck Choice: I have sailed on deck four and deck three. Deck 4 is probably the most convenient. Same floor as the dining room, one deck down to the zodiacs and one deck up the main bar. However I loved being on Deck 3 coming from the zodiacs it was so handy. Being near the reception desk was good too. So if you wish to save some dollars I am sure you will be quite happy on deck three.
Medallion Suite | 351 sq. ft. Verandah 86 sq. ft.
Cabins this category and up feature COMPLIMENTARY LAUNDRY
Medallion Class Cabin
Medallion Desk Area
Positives: Located on Deck 7 with the larger suites, this is a good option for someone who wants a real balcony, and a little more room than the standard cabin. These also have the larger bathroom that is featured on the double suites. These cabins are square rather than rectangular and feel quite spacious. Complimentary laundry service is included with this cabin category.
Negatives: Really there are not any negatives to this cabin category other than the higher price point.
Double Suites | 460 sq. ft.
Expedition Suite (View Window) - Deck 3
Expedition Suite (Large Picture Window) - Deck 4
Silver Suite (Balcony) - Deck 5
Desk Area Living Room
Living to Bedroom
Positives: These are all great cabins and the same in the interior. Only variance is deck location and view window, large window or balcony. These are very spacious suites with tons of storage. They are actually two standard cabins made into one large cabin. The living area and bedroom are divided by a sliding door that hooks secure. So you can have this as one big room or pull the door and have two separate rooms. The dressing area and closet is extremely spacious with a full chest of drawers and shelves. There are two televisions, one in the bedroom and one in the living room. These suites also include complimentary laundry. Also of course, the larger marble bathroom. If you can afford the price, I really suggest one of these cabins.
Negatives: No negatives, just the price but if you can afford the fare these are great cabins.
Large Suites | Deck 7
Grand Suite - 675 sq. ft. with a 87. sq. ft. verandah
Owners Suite - 626 sq. ft. with a 158 sq. ft. verandah
Owners Suite Bedroom
Owners Desk Area
Grand Suite Bedroom
Positives: These suites are very large with totally separate living and bedroom areas. Both feature the oversized bathroom described in the bathroom section. The suites have a coffee machine and bar set up. The owners suite has a large verandah and the grand suite is on the front of the ship with great views from the windows.
Negatives: Simply the price, again if you can afford the luxury of these suites you will be very comfortable.