We have decided to go on a cruise for our first time. We checked the internet and found this very interesting deal. We embarked in Savona and observed that the ship was half empty, which was great for us. Generally the check in process was very smooth, the luggage was delivered promptly to our cabin which was quite comfortable, or at least better than what we expected.
Or route had its first destination in Malaga, which is a nice town. We have decided not to waste the money on Marbella and our neighbors confirmed how right we were... We had only a few hours so we just relaxed in the old town, had a glass of wine and some delicious tapas.
As a general rule I would say to be cautious in selecting the tours offered on board. They are quite expensive and some are really not worth the while.
The second destination was Funchal, Madeira. Lovely!
Then Teneriffa; we missed La Laguna and Teide but got ourselves at least some good deals on clothes as the VAT is very low in Teneriffa.
Casablanca, is a nightmare, Marrakesh, as well... got a new carpet now :-)
Then Barcelona, Wonderful; Marseille, very good as well but spending a day in Marseille on a Sunday is not quite smart as all shops are closed.
Now to the Ship again: We are swiss and hence speak a lot of languages, English, french, german and italian are no problem. So we understood what the others were saying and the information the others got. It was quite upsetting that the information in the various languages is quite selective, to put it diplomatically.
The majority was italian, which has its charm, given the fact that the German were like bees all over the place.
The food in the restaurant was quite good given the vast amount of food that needs to be prepared every day. Our wait staff and room attendants were mainly, indonesian, philippinos, indian or peruvian and they were excellent! That needs to be said and they are a real credit to costa. Without them, I would never travel with them again. The reason is the management. I have never seen such arrogant staff in my life. I am a hotelier and I am very sensitive with these things. I have complained on the spot, asked to see the hotel Manager (which I haven't seen during the entire cruise except on a picture), the executive chef was smoking on the guest floors with his buddy the main Maitre D' etc. the list goes on and on. They would not greet, not smile, not leave the floor when guests are passing. They were generally walking with their chin above their nose.
I have written a long list of "recommendations" as I am not a complainer per se. I just try to give feed back. Unfortunately, I have never received a feedback. I have even tracked down the corporate Quality improvement man who hasn't replied either.
Anyway, I would recommend the tour and the company again but with keeping in mind that the management is very, very poor.
I just consider ourselves very lucky as we have always good staff around us, fantastic table-mates at dinner, whom have become friends and interesting destinations discovered while returning back to work very relaxed :-)