Silversea Silver Moon Review
According to Cruise Industry News, Luxury and expedition cruises are the fastest-growing market segments, according to the 2022 Cruise Industry News Annual Report. The luxury passenger cruise ship segment has grown 119 per cent since 2012 to an annual capacity of approximately 721,078 passengers in 2022, from 324,512 in 2012.
Trying to determine which are the best ultra-luxury cruise lines and cruise ships can be a challenge, but it is important to do so as you will be investing a large amount of money for your dream vacation.
In this post, we review the Silver Moon cruise ship, one of Silversea’s newest vessels and take a close look at the onboard facilities during our recent voyage.
Table of Contents
Introduction to the Silver Moon
This voyage was our second cruise on the wonderful Silver Moon, one of Silversea’s newer ships and sister to Silver Muse and Silver Dawn. We joined the ship in Barbados for a 22-day voyage to Lisbon in Portugal which took in many of the islands in the Caribbean we had not visited before. Silver Moon is a sophisticated cruise ship which offers understated elegance at every turn – delightful cuisine plus excellent, intuitive service.
With just 596 passengers and a crew-to-passenger ratio of 1.45, this ship provides a relaxed feel, plenty of space around the vessel, and spacious public areas. Silversea is one of the few cruise lines offering an Ultra Luxury experience. If you love great food and being well cared for, Silver Moon is for you.
We enjoy Silversea as it is one of the few luxury cruise lines with a genuinely All-Inclusive fare. Our trip included the option of a Door-to-Door service, flights, a pre-cruise hotel in Barbados, accommodation, all beverages, gratuities and a selection of Shore excursions for each port of call.
|QUICK FACTS: Silversea Silver Moon|
|Registry:||Marshall Islands||Passenger Space Ratio:||74|
|Builder:||Fincantieri (Ancona shipyard)||Crew to Passeneger Ratio:||1.39|
|Class:||Muse||Decks:||11 Passenger Decks|
|Gross Tonnage:||40,700 GRT||Length:||698 ft|
|Berlitz Rating:||5 Stars||Beam:||89 ft|
|Godmother:||Gaia Gaja – of the renowned Italian Gaja Winery|
The Voyage Itinerary
Our transfer from the O2 Beach Club and Spa, booked by Silversea, was about a 20 minutes drive from the St Lawrence Gap area, where we stayed after our 8 hour flight from London to Barbados with Virgin Atlantic.
It was a hot and sunny day when we reached the Cruise Terminal to embark on Silversea Silver Moon ship.. The cruise terminal looked like an old warehouse, but it was well organised, and once the mandatory health checks and covid documents had been checked, we were all set to go.
Boarding was all very slick, and once onboard, we were presented with the obligatory glass of Champagne before finding our suite. Muster Drill for all newly embarked guests was a mandatory in-person session in the Venitian Lounge with a full demonstration and a trip to see our lifeboat. All very good and what we would expect from Silversea.
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Pre Cruise Experience
Included in our package was Silversea’s much-heralded Door to Door service, whereby you are picked up at home and driven by chauffeur service to the airport. Subcontracted to Blacklane, we have used this service before, and it worked like a dream.
However, on this trip, we had to take three suitcases which, under Blacklane’s policies, meant we had to request a five-person MPV. Silversea only pays for the first 50 miles, so we faced a horrendous extra charge for the extra 40 miles to the airport. We decided to decline this offer and arrange our own transport. Silversea did credit us £150 for the non-use of the service, but it left a bad taste in our mouths and spoilt the start of our holiday.
The flight arrangements were acceptable, and our Silversea pre-cruise hotel in Barbados was perfect. The O2 Beach Club and Spa is an all-inclusive resort in the St Lawrence Gap area of the island. Watch our separate video review of the hotel.
O2 Beach Club & Spa Barbados
A View from our Balacony Suite
We chose a Deluxe Veranda Suite 839, which at 323sq ft and a 64sq ft balcony, offers a luxury feel and is perfectly comfortable. The suite has a separate bathroom, walk-in closet, sleeping area and living area with a couch, table and desk. Storage is adequate for shorter journeys of up to 14 days, but a little more space for your clothes would be a bonus for longer trips.
The King size bed was extremely comfortable, and the sitting area was perfect for relaxing. Most suites include a balcony or veranda, which offers lots of personal outdoor space, making it an absolute joy to spend time outside. If you wish to take advantage of in-suite dining, the in-suite table converts into a proper dining table. There is a 40-inch LCD Tv with a generous selection of TV programs, movies and other features. You can view your daily activities and book restaurants and shore excursions. You can also do this using the Silversea Mycruise app on your mobile phone.
For those who love a hot soak in the bath, the full-size bathtub does not disappoint. The bathroom has lashings of marble, and it feels opulent but very functional and is a one-person bathroom with a single large sink/vanity. But in saying that, the separate shower cubicle has a sensational rain shower head and wand. A wide selection of Bvlgari toiletries is topped up each day.
There are plenty of power outlets, both US and European and US. WiFi is free for one connected device per passenger throughout the ship, which was painfully slow at times but just about useable. We experienced download speeds of 0.06Mb/s and 0.07Mb/s upload. An upgraded internet package was available at $29 per day, allowing streaming and up to four devices to connect simultaneously. We understand that Silversea will shortly be transitioning to the SpaceEx Starlink system, which should vastly improve internet speeds.
Every suite comes with a butler who caters to your every whim. It’s a nice touch and just another example of the warm, genuine service onboard Silversea ships. Our butler Wellesley was a very proactive butler who was always around to help restock our drinks fridge, provide canapés, book or cancel restaurants and the like—a big plus for Silversea.
Midships Deluxe Veranda Suite
Public Spaces and Bars
Public spaces are comfortable and enjoyable, and the pool area offers one of the biggest pools on a ship of this size. Overall, Silver Moon offers an upmarket experience, one where you never feel crowded. The decor takes influence from the successful design of her sister ship, Silver Muse, and maintains the small-ship intimacy and spacious all-suite accommodations that are hallmarks of the Silversea experience.
At the same time, several public spaces have been reimagined for the enjoyment of guests: the Dolce Vita lounge, the Connoisseur’s Corner, the Pool Deck, and the Spa and Fitness Centre have each undergone comprehensive redesigns. Moreover, the Arts Café, the Panorama Lounge, the Observation Library, the Venetian Lounge, and the Casino each welcome guests with atmospheres of understated luxury.
In terms of Bars, there are some beautiful venues onboard to enjoy your favourite tipple. Most beverages are included in the cruise fare unless you wish to order from the premium wine selection. We have found all the included wines, beers and spirits onboard to be of very high quality, and we never felt it necessary to order from the premium selection. For those who like to drink in their suite, your butler will stock this with your favourite wine, spirits or soft drinks. The bars on board include the Pool bar, Panorama Lounge, Dolce Vita, Observation Library, Silver Note, and Connoisseurs Corner.
Another favourite of ours is the SALT Bar, which has a lovely intimate feel with a lounge-style club setting. The cocktail menu is exciting and completely different. Whilst we love the signature cocktail, ‘Selene de Moon’, there is so much more on offer based on locally inspired cocktails! Tip: get there early to get a seat, as this is a very popular venue for pre-dinner drinks.
The Silver Moon Pool by Night
The Arts Cafe on Silver Moon
One of the many things we love about Silversea is the wide range of restaurants and dining venues onboard. Virtually all dining is included in the price of your cruise on Silver Moon, which means your fare includes extras like snacks, canapés, and afternoon tea, plus an extensive in-suite menu for those nights when you don’t want to go out.
One of the ingenious ideas is the commitment to local ingredients and local dishes, thanks to Silver Moon’s S.A.L.T program. S.A.L.T, which stands for Sea and Land Taste, is an immersive cultural and dining experience designed to give guests a fuller understanding of the food they are eating and its relation to the culture of the places the ship visits. We found that dining at all venues is executed well, with seemingly as much thought and care given to food at the pool grill as to dishes at the SALT Kitchen. Portion sizes are manageable, and they are always happy to cater to those with smaller appetites.
Silver Moon offers open seating, anytime dining during restaurant opening hours published in the Daily Chronicle, though many restaurants require reservations. In every restaurant, waiters/waitresses use iPads/tablets for taking our orders and should link through to your dietary instructions.
Silver Moon offers a choice of eight dining venues, each boasting a distinct concept and a five-star service that rivals any land-based hotel. From the delicious fresh seafood in Atlantide to the exclusive La Dame and Japanese Kaiseki, Silver Moon delights with unforgettable dining experiences. We tried all the venues, and we were happy with them all.
SALT Kitchen Deck 4
Designed to bring to life and experience the tastes together with the culinary customs of the places visited on your cruise, the exclusive SALT Kitchen is unlike any other restaurant at sea. Open seating with no booking required. Our View: We loved the SALT concept, which works very well. Both the food and service were of a very high standard.
Atlantide – Deck 4
Here, you can enjoy a wide range of international food with the high service levels you expect for an ultra-luxury line. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Open seating with no booking required. Our View: A great restaurant offers good service levels and cuisine of a high standard. Excellent lunchtime menus. Some sofa-style seating in Atlantide is a little on the low side and can make you feel uncomfortably low when seated opposite someone on a regular chair.
La Terrazza – Deck 7 Inside and outside dining on the back of the ship
A firm favourite with us and most Silversea regulars, La Terrazza, is recommended for those seeking an authentic Italian dining experience. For breakfast and lunch, La Terazza offers a wide range of buffet options with the option to order freshly cooked favourites. At night, La Terrazza transforms into an Italian restaurant with an extensive menu that changes slightly each night. The seafood, meat options and plates of pasta are lovely. Try the Lasagne for a real treat. Reservations are required only for dinner at La Terrazza.
The Grill – Deck 10 Pool deck dining
For casual dining, the Pool Grill is the best option onboard. Open for lunch, the Pool Grill offers favourites, including wraps, burgers and salads—an excellent alfresco venue for when you want something satisfying but not too large. When night falls, the Grill becomes ‘Hot Rocks’ where you cook your own meal on hot volcanic stones—always great theatre and a treat where you can cook the steaks and seafood to perfection.
La Dame by Relais & Chateaux – Deck 8 Intimate venue.
A guest reservation fee of $60USD pp is required. In partnership with the luxury collection of hotels and restaurants, La Dame is Silver Moon’s upscale French fine dining restaurant, offering classic dishes with the occasional contemporary twist curated by Silversea’s top chefs. We tried this, and the food was exceptional, and this is a good choice for a special occasion. Whether the $120 per couple is good value is debatable, as the food is just as good elsewhere on the ship.
Our View: Whilst La Dame is perfect for special occasions, it is questionable whether the $60USD per person cover charge is worth it.
Kaiseki – Deck 4
A guest reservation fee of $40USD pp is required in the evening. Kaiseki is the Silveresea take on an Asian Fusion restaurant, executed well. Serving fresh Asian favourites, Kaiseki pays homage to the meticulous preparation and beautiful presentation of Japanese culinary excellence. The ship’s sushi bar during the day, Kaiseki, offers various sushi rolls and sashimi options. One of the smaller venues onboard, Kaiseki is a popular spot on sea days, especially when people are looking for something different. Diners can select tables or sit at the sushi bar while the chef makes rolls fresh to order. At lunch times reservations are not required.
Spaccanapoli – Deck 11
The best Pizzas we have ever had at sea. A trip to Naples without leaving the ship; Spaccanapoli is a relaxed Napolese-style pizzeria serving both Tradizione and Da Napoli pizzas. Our favourite: Tradizione Salsiccia, San Marzano Tomatoes, Fior di Latte, Sausage, Fresh Basil and Parmigiano Reggiano
Silver Note – Deck 7
Taking its cues from the world’s most exclusive nightspots if you are looking for something genuinely different, try Silver Note, which offers South American and Japanese fusion food. It’s a menu of smaller portions, so you choose between two to four dishes.
Silver Note also is a jazz club, so one night, you might hear a trio and another a pianist. Regardless, the music is a lovely complement to the meal, serving as a pleasant backdrop but still entertaining. Reservations are required at Silver Note, where dinner isn’t served until after 8 pm.
Our View: One of our favourites, but booking is essential as the venue is intimate and popular.
Arts Cafe – Deck 8
One of the trendiest venues onboard, thanks to its sophisticated cafe-style decor, artwork and floor-to-ceiling windows. The Arts Cafe is the go-to space for a snack, tea or coffee, with a light bites menu that changes throughout the day. For coffee lovers, the Arts Cafe doesn’t disappoint, serving only freshly ground Italian Illy coffee at all times.
On those occasions when you don’t want to go out, All-Around dining is your option. Silver Moon’s room service menu is excellent, giving guests extensive choices so you don’t feel like you are missing something by not visiting a restaurant. Food is available 24/7 and can be served in any of the public areas or bars.
The shows on board the Silversea Silver Moon start at 9:45 pm in the Venetian Lounge theatre with varied performances from Italian opera and classical pianists to 1960s West and Broadway show tunes. The performances by the Silversea Singers and Dancers were lively and always drew a full house.
In the evenings, many bars had background music with the Silver Moon Trio or Cocktail pianist. We would go to the Silver Note bar if we fancied some jazz music in the evening. During the day, there were several interesting lectures by guest speakers—all very high quality.
Our View: The seating in the Venetian lounge is a problem as people sitting on the comfortable bench sofas have their view interrupted/blocked out by guests seated in the individual tub chairs in front of them, which are higher than the sofas. Beware.
With Silversea’s unique Sea And Land Taste programme. S.A.L.T.℠ offers a rich gastronomic experience. Curated with Adam Sachs, former editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine, S.A.L.T. focuses on reflecting your destination through taste by sourcing authentic ingredients prepared with respect to tradition. From market trips and special dinners in the S.A.L.T. restaurant to cooking demos cooking lab, S.A.L.T. takes travellers further than ever before in-destination experiences.
Every day there are two scheduled cooking classes based on the cuisine of the area where you are sailing. The lab is exceptionally well set up, and each of the 12 students has their own workstation. These classes are top-rated and fill up very quickly. To book, pop down to reception, and they will sign you up. On our trip, we did “Nourish: Bright Caribbean Vegan Food and I-Tal Diet”
Our View: A great experience and an excellent opportunity to learn something new on sea days
Whilst there is no official dress code for the daytime on Silversea, they ask that swimsuits are only appropriate by the pool, and guests are requested to wear a shirt and shoes at all times in the public areas and to remove hats during mealtime (apart from hats or head coverings worn for religious reasons).
The evening dress code has three levels – Casual, Informal and Formal. The evening dress code is advertised daily in the Chronicles.
On Casual evenings, Ladies are expected to wear dresses, blouses, and pants, and for Gentlemen, Sports shirts and slacks—no shorts, flip-flops or jeans indoors after 6 pm.
The dress code for informal evenings is dresses or pantsuits for ladies and jackets for gentlemen (tie optional). On formal nights: cocktail dresses or pantsuits for ladies, tuxedos and dinner jackets or dark suits and ties for gentlemen.
On formal nights guests may choose informal wear for dining at La Terrazza, Kaiseki and Silver Note. Dining at Hot Rocks and Spaccanapoli is optional casual all nights. On our trip, we had three formal nights.
Boutiques & Onboard Shopping
There are three boutiques on the Silversea Silver Moon. One is a high-end jewellery shop, a large one with a great selection of watches, jewellery and perfume. On the other side of the corridor is another with men’s and women’s clothes, Silversea-branded merchandise and accessories. Toiletries and other essential items are available upon request in the boutique or through your butler.
The shops are open only when the ship is at sea, outside territorial waters, and generally on each sea day. Everything you purchase gets added to your Silversea guest account linked to your room key and the credit card you chose during the embarkation process. The boutiques are a great place to use up your onboard credits!
Wellness Spa & Fitness Centre
Silversea offers a holistic approach to wellness that integrates exercise, fitness and spa therapies with health lectures and nutritious dining to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle, even while away from home on a cruise.
Whether you want to work up a sweat in the state-of-the-art Fitness Centre, take a circuit training class, or enjoy Pilates in the aerobics room, the spa and wellness centre has the right option for you. With state-of-the-art Technogym equipment, free weights and speciality classes, the Fitness Centre combines elite design with programs specifically created for your body type and needs. With personal trainers available for individual sessions, training here is more of a five-star experience for all fitness levels and backgrounds.
For those who fancy a stroll, brisk walk or jog around the ship, Deck 11 features a two-lane track (ie slow and fast lanes!) Hold on to your hat on those windy days on the ocean.
What’s Included in Your Cruise Fare
- Meals at most restaurants onboard
- All beverages
- One shore excursion per port
- Enrichment Lectures
- SALT Lab cooking activities
- All shows and entertainment options
- Most daily activities, unless otherwise noted
- Use of the fitness centre
- Shuttle transfers into town centres
- Butler service
- Limited WiFi for one device
- Wetbar and minibar setup
- Self-service laundry
- Door to Door Executive private transfer service (Door to Door fare Option)
- International roundtrip flights, with business class upgrades, in selected destinations
- In-country flights (when required by the itinerary)
- Pre- and post-cruise hotel nights, based on flights
What’s Not Included in Your Cruise Fare
- Premium WiFi (depending on suite category)
- Dinner at Kaiseki ($40USD pp) and La Dame ($60USD pp)
- Spa treatments
- Personal training sessions
- Access to the ship’s thermal suite
- SALT and premium shore excursions
- Laundry and pressing services (free after 100 days of sailing with Silversea or on Grand Voyages)
Who Is This Cruise For?
Older couples and families who want a beautiful yet comfortable ship that gets them to out-of-the-way destinations that larger ships can’t reach.
Families with small children or those looking for bold luxury on action-packed ships
A genuinely refined experience, Silver Moon has an international feel mainly due to its Italian heritage and the mix of passengers from all over the world, with a heavy dose of Americans, Brits and Europeans. Fellow passengers are generally well-off, well-travelled, and accustomed to excellent service.
Decor onboard is understated, never veering into flashy. Silver Moon isn’t a ship loaded with crystal chandeliers or miles of marble, but it feels opulent yet relaxed at the same time.
Would we travel with Silversea again?
Yes, based on the itinerary and value for money. The new ships Silver Nova and Silver Ray are pretty tempting.