We chose Crystal Serenity for its food, service, entertainment value (including the lectures), and the itinerary it presented for our trip.
|Crystal Symphony's bathroom|
The Cruise Critic Cruiser's 2014 Choice Awards were given out earlier this year and I checked to see how the Serenity did. For the small ship category it got a 4.6 rating. The top rating went to Seven Seas Navigator with a 5.2.
There were a lot of ships on the list that we've not sailed with mostly because they are all premium lines and the travel budget doesn't allow for that much luxury all the time.
|Our room on the Symphony -Serenity's sister ship|
I think it's all a matter of expectation. Some of the less expensive cruise lines offer great value and good service. Some food is better than others though but that is a matter of personal likes/dislikes. When you choose, look for the cruise that fits your budget, your timeline, your preferred destination, and keep your expectations reasonable. That last one is important. It's why my husband says, "There is no bad cruise."