Azura Cruise Review by Dotts: Best dancers ever
Best dancers ever
We have been to the Caribbean on holiday before and on P & O before, but this was our first time on Azura. We were told t was the sister ship to Ventura, but somehow seemed easier to navigate than Ventura.
We had a fitness walk on the promenade each morning, which sadly was also the smoking area, so our lungs while exercising where filling up with the smoke fumes, from out fellow unfit passengers. Mad to have that mix on the same deck.
Our room was restricted view, but actually I prefer an inside cabin, it's more private, as at every port we were next to another cruise ship, and could see into their cabins and them ours, so if you wanted privacy, you would have to close the curtains.
We had seen most of the shows before on other cruises, so we didn't go to them all, but the ones we did go to were really excellent, I couldn't fault one of the singers or dancers. There is normally one or two who don't quite make the grade, but I was very impressed with More these performers.
I didn't enjoy the celebrity impersonators and the venue isn't big enough, They should have been performing in the theatre. There was a local band playing, but the music was a bit middle of the road, I'd liked to have heard some songs that have been released in the last 18 months, not stuff from the 60's and 70's that I don't remember
Such a shame, we watched two films outside along with about 6 other passengers, it wasn't a popular attraction. We had blankets if we needed them.
When it's a black tie night, I am very disappointed that there are so many lounge suites, it spoils the specialness of the evening, I don't like that standards are allowed to be lowered. The women mostly make an effort, and I think the men should too, it's only respectful. Don't book a holiday with rules and expectations, if you don't want to abide by them, there are plenty of other places you can go, and the ship does sell dinner suits so there is no excuse.
I've noticed that people don't abide by the no reserving of seats rule. I just throw their towel or whatever off, if they are not there, and sit on the chair, staff should monitor this more, and not leave it up to the passengers to fight over. It clearly says no reserving of seats, and that applies to the theatre and bars in the evening, if you are not there tough. The only time I think it's ok is if you have gone for a swim and leave your stuff on your chair, but doing this and going for lunch is just selfish and greedy. Please think about others and we can all have a nice holiday, not just you.
Service in the restaurants was excellent, but the standard of the food has gone down. I expect they are 'nicking' it off the plate, as seems to be the norm these days. It's very difficult to get anything different at any speed. At breakfast I have hot water and lemon and my husband has cream in his coffee, every morning we had a long wait for both. We were on Freedom dining, which means you are not stuck with the same old people every night, which is such a joy, for them and me. There is only so much you can talk to complete strangers about night after night.
The reception staff were really helpful
One member of staff manning the library and also having to help with internet problems is not enough, nearly everyone had a tablet or lap top these days, so that really needs addressing. I liked the idea of extra perks once I had bought my internet package. Beware the internet is very slow, especially if you are attaching a picture.
I had my hair cut on board, it is one of the best cuts I've had, and for a very reasonable £30.
Do be careful in the Caribbean, some passengers had watches and necklaces taken off them, the people are poor and we look very wealthy to them, saying that I didn't wear any jewellery , and didn't feel afraid. We went on local transport except for one port where we took the trip to Virgin Gouda, a really excellent trip, but on the whole we like to integrate and give our money to the locals. We went in Maxi taxi's for the most part, and the drivers are so proud to show you their islands.
Barbados was the worst embarkation I've ever had. We were met on the tarmac of the plane, so no customs- the bane of all our lives. We got onto tiny coaches with no place for the luggage except our laps, which is not good for our legs after a 9 hour flight. I wouldn't recommend the Thompson flight either, with a choice of 4 films all on at the same time, so you can't watch them all, and there was no way of pausing the screen. We did pay for an upgrade, which wasn't worth it. My gluten free meal wasn't put on the plane both ways, the stewards were lovely, really really lovely, they explained I was down for a GF meal, but it wasn't on board, so they cobbled together a lovely meal for me, but if you have a dietary requirement, you could starve, if you don't bring your own food on board. Be warned.
We are trying Cunard for the first time this May 2014, no flights, sailing from Southampton Less
Read more Azura cruise reviews >>
Read Cruise Critic's Azura Review >>
Great cabin, but not enough hangers
Port and Shore Excursions
As soon as you get off the ship, there are taxi's waiting to take you anywhere, that was the same at every port My sister lives in Barbados, so it was a great way to spend three days with her and the family
My favourite port. My family come from Dominica, so it was wonderful to get the chance to visit. I had a three page email from my uncle of places to visit. I went to the museum first, $3 to visit, and got a feel for Dominica, and the lady there was very helpful about the places in his email. She suggested I got the local bus, so we did. The driver took his passengers to their stops and when the bus was empty took us around to all the places my uncle had told/suggested we visit. He also mentioned a book I should buy, I had to go to 4 book shops to find it, but eventually got it in Jays on the corner of Kennedy Avenue. We went about 15 miles out of Roseau , the rain forest is truly wonderful and the coastline amazing. This is such an unspoilt island, we were eating guavas off the trees. I loved the nature of Dominica, and would certainly go back.