The main onboard entertainment venue is Deck 5. The Cabaret show lounge is an intimate performance space with a bar in the back. Instead of a Broadway-style theater with a big stage and stadium seating, it feels more like the secondary show lounge on larger ships with a small stage, dance floor and rows of free-standing chairs that are arranged in semicircles around the dance floor. Sightlines aren't fabulous, so be sure to grab a seat early.
Continuing aft, the Casino Luxe features slot machines and gaming tables, as well as Club Luxe, its own recently expanded bar. Past the shops, the Mosaic Cafe is in an open, atrium-style space with scattered seating that represents the social hub of the ship; it's where you pause to grab a midday snack, hang out on a sea day with a deck of cards or a good book, or listen to musical performances. Outside Discoveries is the Discoveries Lounge, which is the perfect spot to sip a before-dinner drink while listening to music. On Deck 10, the elegant Looking Glass lounge has it all: a dance floor, D.J. booth, bar, card tables and board games, and Wii. Typically, multiple activities are going on there at once.
If you are on a longer cruise, you will find that Azamara Quest packs its sea days with plenty of daytime activities. (The spacing between event listings in the Pursuits daily newsletters is noticeably reduced to squeeze all the activities in.) But, for the most part, activities are limited to cliched onboard events. You'll find multiple trivia games each day in addition to line-dancing classes, spa seminars on burning fat faster or eating more to weigh less, arts and crafts like origami or jewelry-making, casino or sports (Ping-Pong, shuffleboard) tournaments, bridge, bingo, culinary demonstrations and wine-tastings. Enrichment programming has never been a hallmark of Azamara, but that should change, due to the line's new arrangement with Compass, a provider of top-notch enrichment lecturers used by companies like Crystal and Seabourn.
In the evenings, you can find a variety of musical entertainment throughout the ship, including a guitarist or pianist at Club Luxe (by the casino), Looking Glass or Discoveries Lounge. Performances in the Cabaret show lounge on our cruise featured a comedian, singers and a classical pianist -- nothing super special.
Some nights offer additional evening entertainment, including movies, dance classes and an alfresco deck party called White Night that features a huge outdoor buffet and local folkloric entertainment.
Azamara's shore excursions department offers the usual sightseeing opportunities, but it has amped up its options with the addition of tours directed at more active travelers. One example is a four-mile hike on a French Riviera beach with a break for a wine tasting and typical Provencal meal. Prices are all over the map. A concierge is available to help passengers arrange for private excursions or tours that are run independent of the ship. The ship also provides complimentary shuttles to and from port communities, where available.
Each cruise, except for transatlantic voyages, includes a complimentary AzAmazing Evening that showcases the best of local culture in fabulous settings and famous landmarks. In Gibraltar, for example, passengers were treated to a concert inside St. Michael's Cave. In Saint-Tropez on the French Riveria, they watched a polo match, then socialized afterward with polo players onboard the ship. And in the Ancient City outside of Bangkok, passengers had a personal tour of replicas of different kingdoms, where they were introduced to Thai beer and cuisine.