The room was very comfortable, and the ship seemed in good shape. The lounges were nice. Weather did not really permit us to spend a lot of time on deck while at sea. The exercise room was nice, with really up-to-date machines, although I would have preferred a few more of them, as several times there were none available.
Staff were uniformly polite and professional. Our cabin steward was amazing and among the highlights of the trip. Restaurant staff were helpful and service was generally good, although sometimes they were a bit overwhelmed by the crush of guests.
Excursions were excellent. The Shore Excursion staff held a briefing each day outlining the next day's activities, and rode herd on the local guides, although in an unobtrusive manner. The guest speakers each offered several lectures, which were generally very entertaining, although sometimes only tangentially related to the sites we were visiting. I also would have preferred if the lectures were timed better--related to sites we would be visiting the next day rather than places we had visited a few days ago or three days from now. Still, well done.
Most of the local guides were well chosen also, or we were very lucky. Some of these guides really made the sites come to life (e.g., in Split, Crete, and Naxos). In general, I would have preferred a bit more time ashore, especially when guests could navigate to the ship on their own or via tenders (as opposed to ports where we used shuttle buses.
The food was generally good, although arranged around the excursions in such a way that EVERYONE was usually trying to eat at the same time. I don't know how better to time it, however. We had some nice meals in the sit-down Marco Polo room, although the buffet upstairs offered nice options even at dinner.
Post-cruise stops were managed awkwardly. The cruise line tried to crowd in as many things as possible in Istanbul after disembarkation, hitting all of the obvious stops. This resulted in a rushed morning, where we did in three hours what our local guide told us he would usually recommend doing in a day and a half.
All in all, we learned a lot, enjoyed our trip, and felt positive about the cruise line. We would definitely cruise on the Aegean Odyssey again!