My husband and I along with friends had a wonderful 8 day cruise from Barcelona to Lisbon on the Windstar a couple of weeks ago. It was our friends first time on a small ship, but we had experienced both Sea Dream and the Star Clipper in the past, so had something to compare the experience with.
Although we had thoroughly enjoyed our past trips we have to say that this recent trip was our favourite. The staff were exemplary, the food delicious and the accommodations were well appointed with ample storage.
Small ships are not for everyone..the entertainment is limited ( although our lounge duo were terrific) and it's more an early to bed early to rise format. However, if you want the intimacy of getting to meet people from all over ( generally North Americans of average age in 60s) you can't beat this small ship.
We loved it!