My husband and I are first time European river cruisers. We never liked ocean cruising but river cruising is another matter all together. Luxurious surroundings, outstanding service, food and wine selection; not to mention very interesting, included excursions off the ship made our cruise very remarkable and memorable. We were very surprised how smoothly the ship sailed. Half the time, we never knew we were moving. The dining room was the focal point for our journey because we shared our daily experiences with friends we met on board. The maÃ®tre de, Richard, was amazing! He addressed everyone's needs simultaneously either with a friendly welcome, sharing information or satisfying your requests. His humour and camaraderie are a real asset for the River Duchess. He worked shoulder to shoulder with his staff setting an outstanding role model.
The selection of food, presentation, variety and preparation were above standard; always hot and delicious. Shore excursions were varied and interesting especially the ones where we met the local people of each country we visited. Our favourite was the home cooked meal with Anita in Croatia; industrious,fascinating lady. Our tour director, Mery, also contributed to our happy, carefree existence. Her comical interaction with my husband made our trip very relaxing; like being with friends and family at home. We cannot sing enough praises for the wonderful time, staff and tours we experienced on this ship. We are looking forward to our next cruise with Uniworld.