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Crystal Bach Review

Find a Crystal Bach Cruise from £2,485

Crystal Bach
5.0 / 5.0
10 reviews

Exceptional dining and wine options makes ship a foodie haven
Nascent enrichment programming still has holes
Bottom Line
Beautifully designed ship with top-notch service provides luxurious cruising experience




Passenger to Crew


Shore Excursions
Sails To
Sails From
Crystal River Cruise Deals
Colleen McDaniel
Cruise Critic Editor-In-Chief

Crystal Bach Overview

In Crystal Bach, Crystal River Cruises has elegantly stitched together a gorgeous ship that sails Europe's Rhine, Main, Moselle and Danube rivers. The ship takes the best of what Crystal does on its oceangoing vessels -- dining, service and design -- and brings it to the rivers, only on a smaller-scale, with 110 passengers.

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Crystal Bach, which debuted in 2017, hits all the right notes with its dining, which is sophisticated without being snobby. Passengers indulge in clever, delectable dishes paired with fine wines, no matter where they dine onboard. The menu smartly walks the line between being ambitious and accessible to passengers with more traditional palates, and it does so while bringing in elements of local cuisine. This is a foodie's river cruise ship.

Likewise, service shines on Crystal Bach, which offers a 1-to-1.6 crew-to-passenger ratio -- meaning passengers feel as if there's always someone looking out for their needs. Crew are friendly and knowledgeable, yet service feels appropriately formal to fit the luxury setting. (For example, crew know passenger names even before they board, but staff refers to cruisers by "Mr. Smith" or "Ms. Doe" unless otherwise asked. Even then, it's likely you'll get "Mr. John" or "Ms. Jane.") What stands out, though, is the flexibility. Clearly, the crew know much about the ship -- Crystal's first new-build on the rivers -- and its venues as well as operations, and they're empowered to make decisions to satisfy passenger requests. This means any problems that might arise are handled quickly, and special requests are handled with confidence and ease.

Each cabin on Crystal Bach is assigned a stateroom attendant, as well as a butler. We loved having both on our Rhine River sailing and were thrilled when both took the time on the first day to introduce themselves and explain who does what. Our attendant kept our mini-bar stocked with our favorites, while our butler delivered daily afternoon tea and brought us room-service breakfast. On our last day, we had an especially early flight, and our butler kindly brought us a snack of bagels and lox -- perfectly wrapped -- to take with us for an airport snack. This thoughtful service is simply standard on Crystal Bach.

The design of the ship is beautiful; it feels like a high-end restaurant, with chic decor, elegant light fixtures and sunlight everywhere. All spaces naturally feel open because of the design elements -- such as a glass ceiling in the ship's Palm Court lounge -- that allow natural light in. (One downside to the glass ceiling is that it cuts into usable space on the ship's sun deck immediately above.) Passengers are content to lounge in the public spaces between meals and excursions, and it leads to a convivial environment. Cabins are roomy, with convertible tables that allow you to have a true ensuite dining experience and then tuck smartly out of the way after your meal. Many of the suites feature walk-in closets, and they're all fully loaded with any amenity you might need on your cruise.

Excursions and onboard enrichment are still a work in progress for Crystal, which plans to bring a version of the successful enrichment programs from its oceangoing brands to its river ships. Likewise, Crystal Bach is embarking on a new shore excursions program that is designed to give passengers more intimate, personal experiences in port.

Top Crystal Bach Itineraries

Crystal Bach
10 nights enchanting moselle

Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Dusseldorf, Koblenz, Bernkastel-Kues, Trier, Trier, Cochem, Arnhem, Amsterdam

10 Nights Enchanting Moselle

Crystal Bach

View All Crystal Bach Itineraries (11)

Fellow Passengers

Passengers on Crystal Bach generally are well-to-do and well-traveled. The average age hovers around 60, and most are from the United States and the United Kingdom. Children are permitted to sail, though Crystal warns that it reserves the right to restrict the number of children 3 and younger. Children six months and younger aren't permitted to sail Crystal Bach.

Crystal Bach Dress Code

During the day, Crystal Bach passengers wear casual, comfortable clothing. Much of the daytime is spent in port, so comfortable walking shoes and lots of layers are recommended. Swimsuits and cover-ups are appropriate poolside, though they are not permitted in dining spaces at any time. Neither are baseball caps. In the evening, passengers are asked to adhere to Crystal Casual, which means slacks or skirts with blouses or sweaters, or casual dresses for women. Men wear dress pants with open-collar, Polo or button-down shirts. No tie or sport coat is required, though casual jackets are fairly common on men.

Crystal Bach Inclusions

Cruises on Crystal Bach include all meals and drinks, including fine wine, Champagne and spirits, soft drinks, teas and specialty coffees. (It also includes these items in the mini-bars, which are replenished as necessary.) Up to 60 minutes of Wi-Fi daily, 24-hour room service, a self-service pantry, movies and music on demand and gratuities for all ship staff are included. There's also a complimentary self-service laundry for passengers wishing to wash, dry or iron their clothing while onboard. Pressing is complimentary. Cruise fares also include transfers to and from the airport, as well as one shore excursion in each port.

Laundry service, upgraded shore excursions, premium wines and spirits and spa treatments cost extra.

The onboard currency is the euro.

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Crystal Bach Ratings

Public Rooms5.04.6
Fitness Recreation4.03.7
Value For Money4.54.5

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More about Crystal Bach

Where does Crystal Bach sail from?

Crystal Bach departs from Amsterdam

Where does Crystal Bach sail to?

How much does it cost to go on Crystal Bach?

Cruises on Crystal Bach start from £2,485 per person.

Is Crystal Bach a good ship to cruise on?

Crystal Bach won 1 award over the years.

Awards and Recognition

Crystal Bach Member Reviews

Crystal Bach
USC Adventurer
Sail Date: Nov 2019
Crystal is really special and they are my cruise line of choice from now on.... Read More
Crystal Bach
Sail Date: Oct 2018
I can’t say enough positive about Crystal. Food was far beyond expectations. I tried things I would never normally try....and lived them.... Read More
Crystal Bach
Sail Date: Apr 2018
Only once did we need to enter Bach through another vessel and it was Crystal Debussy, an identical twin to Bach!... Read More
Crystal Bach
Big Ed1
Sail Date: Dec 2017
When the Crystal Bach was announced, we made our booking immediately and waited nearly two years for the ship to be built in anticipation off a once in a lifetime experience.... Read More

Crystal River Cruises Fleet

Crystal Ravel
7 reviews

Crystal River Cruises will welcome the line’s new-build Crystal Ravel in Spring 2018, carrying up to 106 passengers in luxurious accommodation.

Crystal Ravel Cruises to Europe View All Crystal Ravel Cruises
Crystal Mozart
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Crystal Mozart is the first ship in Crystal River Cruises' fleet focused on the highest level of amenities, service and experiences.

Crystal Mahler
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Crystal Mahler joined Crystal River Cruises in 2017 and accommodates up to 110 passengers in cabins that range from 220 to 750 square feet.

Crystal Debussy

Along with its sister luxury river ships, Crystal Debussy sails the Rhine, Main and Danube rivers. The 135-meter vessel debuted in April 2018.

Crystal Bach
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Launched in 2017 as one of four new-builds in Crystal River Cruises' fleet, Crystal Bach will sail with its twin sister, Crystal Mahler.

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