I can't say enough about the service on the Avalon Creativity. Every member of the crew had a "can do" attitude; went above and beyond to ensure an exceptional guest experience. I do not believe that the word "no" was in any one's vocabulary, I have experienced good service on other cruises, but this exceptional service came from everyone, everyday, consistently. It was amazing.
The Captain and Cruise Director wished us a nice day every time we left for an excursion, and welcomed us back every time; the cabin crew wished us a good day each and every morning; the waiters were all funny and efficient; the front desk staff never stopped smiling; the bartender was friendly and went out of his way to get us what we needed; the entertainment was excellent; the food superb, even the buffets were excellent. The desserts were great and the free flowing wine at dinner was a nice touch. This crew loves what they do and it shows. They are obviously led by an outstanding leadership More
The ship itself was comfortable, clean and up-to-date. The amenities were very nice. The only drawback - we are used to mini-suites on big cruise ships and this room was small in comparison. We were in the P category which is a pretty good upgraded cabin. We could open our sliding glass door which is floor to ceiling. There aren't balconies on these ships, but the top deck makes up for that. I think that Avalon cabins are actually bigger than other river cruise ships, so can't imagine what those are like!
The excursions were led by knowledgeable, easy to understand guides. Every bus we got on was spotless and appeared brand new. The only excursion that I could have skipped was Malmaison, as it had been refurbished and there was little that was authentic. Normandy was amazing. The other ports interesting and worthwhile.
The big drawback - we arrived in Paris around 8am. The representative from the line met us and was very nice and helpful. The chartered bus took us to a hotel, because you can't board the ship until 3:30p, and we hung out in a hospitality suite at the hotel. The suite had water, coffee and tea. No food was offered. We ventured out on our own to get food and to visit a fantastic, ancient cemetery in the neighborhood. Be sure to get the map and go to see this. It made for a long day considering we flew all night and had to hang out until the bus took us to the ship at 3:45p. People were sleeping on the sofas in the lobby of the hotel. Some chose to take an excursion to the Eiffel Tower for an additional $30pp fee. My suggestion is that they offer food to their guests and include a free mini tour around Paris. Hanging out that long to get on the ship, after such a long flight from the States was not a good first impression.
Overall, I would recommend this ship and Avalon to anyone. We will sail with them again. Less