This was our 5th Azamara cruise, the first in a suite. We were used to the excellent crew, atmosphere. dining and entertainment. Journey did not let us down. Without port days the cruise experience was focused on the cruise itself.
Cabin- nice with real bathtub, more than adequate closet space. Wonderful service from our Butler and Room attendant, never obtrusive but very efficient.
Food was Azamara, high quality and service. Whether in Discoveries or Windows , Pool Grill or the specialty Restaurants. Because there were only about 350 passengers Aqualina and Prime C alternated nights of opening. This caused no problem that I saw. The free wine option provided excellent 'Boutique Wines' in copious Quantity.
The lectures were interesting 'Discovery' and Animal Planet presenter Nigel Marven gave several lectures on his experiences with various wildlife programmes and showed examples, fascinating. A US District Attorney gave background to famous trials and a great speaker taught us to appreciate the enormity of the Universe, complete with nightime event on Deck 11 spying stars in the sky.
There was Ballroom dancing classes, Watercolour painting and even Portuguese lessons.
The multi talented Entertainment staff headed by CD Eric de Gray with 'sidekick' Chris provided professional shows assisted by guest singers and a comedian. The talented Dan Daly hosted Piano time in the Mosaic cafe even though I sang a song with him as 'Ethel Merman', special mention to Marcio DJ and a great Yorkshire lass Sara-Lou who put up with a lot of good natured geriatric ribbing with great tolerance and humour.
If you want a professional, luxury experience with out the stiff formalities of Tuxedos and enforced mealtimes and Table 'Mates' Choose Azamara.
Downside, the Hotel Director was almost invisible, not the ever attentive visibility of Heike or Philip, never saw him never made himself known.
No one was at the gangway to say Goodbye and as a multiple traveler never got invitations to Dinner with the Officers, Tours of the bridge etc that we enjoyed on previous cruises, but really 'no big deal'.
The Hotel PreCruise, the Fenix was central clean and comfortable and good value however the Cruise Air travel booked by Azamara was an absolute disaster.
Bad flight planning gave us a connection in London that was impossible to make.After 7 hours rom Canada we missed our connection along with some other passengers, having to sit in London for 5 hours for the next flight. Arriving in Lisbon our, and others, bags did not arrive, there was no one from Azamara to meet us or transfer us. We did get the bags about 30 hours later after doing all the tracing etc ourselves. People arriving on the same route the next 2 days had th same experience. Several cruised without their baggage, one gentleman lost his custom wheelchair.
The bus to the ship was supposed to be at 12 Noon, they arrived at 1-15, the hotel had no one to contact. Not a good experience.
Leaving at San Juan we were taken in School type buses to the Airport, no room for bags that were to follow in a van, fortunately they did, though we had to wait, unescorted outside the Airport for them to come.
Great Cruise line, my advice, handle the transfers and hotels yourself and have a professional Travel Agent at least review any air arrangements before accepting and dont expect any shore representatives to turn up or assist with problems.