We set out from Exeter Airport on 18th Sept, flight was good, Palma airport was a nightmare, long queues, very hot (no air con??) too many persons on escalator and no room at the top for people to move out of the way, one lady fell over. Coach transfer simply and quick - then the 5* service began we had to check in on the port side, and this was quick efficient well organised, friendly, all the entertainment team were there to help with the check in, we were on board and in our cabin within a very short time. The lock for the safe was fetched from the reception desk on deck 5, quickly and efficiently obtained. We then went into the Island Restaurant for lunch - this was buffet service with waiters seating customers, clearing tables, fetching drinks etc. and assisting people in carry plates to tables, the service here was first class plus!! The food was a good range, soup, salad bar, various hot dishes including vegetarian, and well marked up for persons who required gluten free, OK this is not top of the range food, but nor are you paying top of the range prices, it is good and well acceptable unless you are super fussy.
Our cabin inside, smallish, curtains over hanging space, but sufficient handing space and drawer space, bathroom of course small, but shower was efficient, and the whole lot very clean and kept in good order by our brilliant stewardess Daisy.
The whole ship is clean, clean, clean. Pool area very small, selfish persons reserving sun beds, but you get that everywhere, Drinks service is good, (was a little slow in the Ocean theatre, but when this was mentioned to the celebrations hostess the following night a big improvement, so they do listen to the customer) The 24 hour buffet is good same food as the Island Restaurant., but no table clothes, and this is where you get the afternoon tea food. Plenty of hand gels everywhere (wonder how many they use each cruise) so every effort is made by the ship to prevent infections. The entertainment is good and varied, with a wonderful singer Benjamin and a brilliant cruise director Ross. The Oasis restaurant is an extra charge, but if it is a special occasion (we had 2 birthdays to celebrate) well worth the extra, food is lovely.
We do not do the trips, just look around the local ports and towns - general comments heard re the trips was expensive and not enough time.
We met some lovely people on the two week back to back cruise, had a lovely time in spite of some rough weather and a non visited port as a result of the bad weather.
The ship is not modern, high class, but the service is wonderful, a lot of companies could look at the service provided on this ship and lean a few lessons in really making the customer their priority. Well done everyone on board.
Would have liked a wrap around deck, a hot tub,a self service laundry, waiter served evening meals, and better policing of the reserved sun beds, but these are personal preferences.
Transfer from the ship to the airport was very efficient - then totally down hill at Palma airport, they have adopted this all queue together for Thomson flights, which results in long queues with Thomson reps trying to direct people and having no idea of what they are doing, we arrived at the airport at 9 am for an 11.15 flight which we just managed to catch - no time to even visit the loo before we left the airport. Please Thomson go back to dedicated named airport queues - the one size fits all only works for budget airlines!!
Would I travel again on Island Escape Yes YES YES but not thro Palma airport.