Upon boarding the ship we noticed that all public rooms were in need of updating and refurbishment. The ship did not present itself as a luxury product.
As we were escorted to mid-ship stateroom #529 upon entering entering the corridor, there was a foul sewer smell. As we approached our stateroom, the odor appeared to be covered by chemicals and overheard our neighbor request the problem be fixed and not covered up by chemicals.
We immediately noticed, our verandah had litter and metal shavings as well as paint flakes on the teak decking. Immediately called the butler Vicky, who tracked the shavings into our stateroom. He summoned our steward who did clean the deck and vacuum our stateroom. The verandah door seal was worn and whistled all night.
Suite furniture was stained, needed cleaned and or reupholstered. Began to unpack, 50% of the hangars were broken or metal clips would not hold a pair of slacks. Sorted out bad hangars and gave the rejects to our butler.
Small bathroom, tub shower disappointing. Brown marble worn and no longer elegant.
The smell wafted into our suite all night. Called the hotel director around 10:00pm and was told he'd look into it, abolutely nothing was done, it got worse. Could not sleep because of the smell.
In the morning, our next door neighbor was moving all their belongings to an open stateroom across the hall because the smell intensified and a leak was discovered in their closet.
The embarkation buffet was lacking in fresh options. Bread looked and tasted institutional, casseroles from the day or two before.
Sail away party served the best food, shrimp cocktail, caprese and parmesan all great.
Dinner - don't let them seat you in the back of the dining room. (it was empty) It's noisy from engines grinding.
Wine was low quality, could not finish. The sommelier immediately suggested bottles to purchase, which on the first night appeared like a hustle to increase his bottom line. I thought we were on an all-inclusive luxury product.
The fish ordered was luke warm and dried out, even the lemon garnish was shriveled-- I should have known it wasn't going to be good. The lamb curry was below average. Dining staffed seemed stretched to keep the diners happy. Felt neglected in the back of the room. We did dine early and the food was still dried out. Not a great start to a 9 day cruise.
Next morning, first breakfast, cooked to order eggs came out one at at time and luke warm.
We looked at each other, this was to be our 30th wedding anniversary cruise.
How could we continue to be battling these challenges and stay on board, relaxed and happy?
We were docked at the port of Naples all day.
We went to the front desk and asked to disembark and meet the ship in Venice on June 7th. No one asked why, we just signed a paper to advise when we would be getting off and when we would be returning to collect our belongings.
We packed a few bags and ventured off on our own to explore and make our way to Venice.
I would like to thank the following hotels who saved our trip from being a complete waste: Romeo Hotel, Naples - Palazzo Victoria Verona -- Centurion Palace Hotel Venice.
Fast forward to Venice, June 7th - met the Silver Wind. Re boarded to close out our shipboard account and pack our remaining belongings.
The hallway on deck 5 still smelled, just like day one.
We asked that our airport transfers be refunded, because we were not staying on the ship, and we were told no. Not enough time given.
Did not see any water taxis to assist us with the luggage. Asked the excursion concierge desk and was told they couldn't help and that the water taxis would be there tomorrow.
When explaining we had gotten off the ship in Naples, he replied, yes we thought it was unusual, because you can take a ferry from Rome to Naples for much less money, his name was Alessio.
All in all we consider this a total loss.