Europa 2 Review

Editor Rating: 5.0
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Why Choose Europa 2?
  • Luxury cruising's most beautiful new ship
  • Great variety of restaurants
  • Enrichment ranges from 3D cinema to cooking school

Europa 2 Overview

Europa 2, which debuted in 2013, marks a radical departure for Hapag-Lloyd Cruises. The ship is less formal, more family-oriented and definitely more contemporary than Europa, the company's flagship luxury vessel. Europa 2 is also aiming to attract cruise travelers from beyond its German-speaking base. As such, Hapag-Lloyd has pledged that all voyages on Europa 2 will be bilingual, with everyone from cabin stewards to enrichment lecturers offering English-language services; Europa offers just a handful of bilingual cruises each year.

No question, 40,000-ton, 516-passenger Europa 2 is one of the most beautiful ships afloat. It feels more like a chic boutique hotel on the French Riviera than it does a cruise ship. It's sleek, with Hapag-Lloyd's trademark high ceilings on the main level. Aside from a sprawling lobby bar/reception area, spaces are more intimate and cozy than grand. Hapag-Lloyd spared little expense: Colors are subtle, and steel and limestone are used throughout. The ship features silver leaf ceilings and halogen lighting, along with the odd splash of bright color, such as granny smith-green Murano glass chandeliers in the Serenissima restaurant, the only place where marble is used.

All the art is original and includes pieces by Damien Hirst and Gerhard Richter in addition to works designed just for Europa 2.

Ship highlights include spacious, well-designed standard cabins (all with seating areas and balconies) and a handful of family-friendly connecting cabins. The Ocean Spa is a destination unto itself, with numerous steam rooms, relaxation areas, a beauty salon, a gym, workout rooms and a lovely outdoor lounge area off the aft.

Hapag-Lloyd hopes English-speaking luxury travelers will make up some 25 percent of Europa 2's passenger base, while the other 75 percent probably will hail from German-language countries like Austria, Switzerland and Germany. It must be noted that although smoking is limited onboard, there still is plenty of it, particularly in lounges like Sansibar and Jazzclub.

If you're familiar with the venerable Europa and longing for a more laid-back experience amidst edgier surrounds, Europa 2 offers a superb cruise experience. It's not traditional luxury, but with its emphasis on food and service, its industry-highest space ratio in public spaces, intriguing itineraries, family-friendly programs and staterooms, and a genuine commitment to offering English-speaking travelers the same experience as its core German passengers, Europa 2 is a gorgeous addition to the industry's global luxury lineup.

Europa 2 Fellow Passengers

Europa 2's strongest passenger base is German, though it does attract English-speakers, primarily from the U.K., Hong Kong and North America. There's a younger demographic on this ship, especially during European school holidays, due in part to its design and shorter itineraries.

Europa 2 Dress Code

While Europa 2 is more casual than Europa, passengers are chic and well dressed. Think upmarket resort casual for daytime and slightly more formal (flowing pants ensembles for women, jackets for men) at night. Tuxedos are not necessary on Europa 2.

Europa 2 Gratuity

Gratuities are included in all cruise fares.
Next:  Europa 2 Cabins
By Carolyn Spencer Brown, Editor in Chief

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Europa 2 Editor Ratings

  • Category
  • Dining
  • Public Rooms
  • Cabins
  • Entertainment
  • Spa & Fitness
  • Family & Children
  • Shore Excursions
  • Enrichment
  • Service
  • Value-for-Money

Ship Facts

Ship Stats
Crew:  370
Launched:  May 10, 2013
Decks:  11
Tonnage:  40,000
Passengers:  516
Registry:  Malta
CDC Score:  Not Yet Inspected
Cruise Deals

8 Europa 2 Reviews from our Cruise Critic Community

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Member Since 2012
8 reviews
357 forum posts
3 helpful votes
My husband and I just completed our first Europa 2 trip, Capetown to Capetown 12/19/15 to 1/3/16, with port stops along the way in Luederitz and Walvis Bay, Namibia, and then on to Mossel Bay, Durban, and Port Elizabeth. We had six sea or ... Read more
Member Since 2003
4 reviews
239 forum posts
1 helpful vote
Sailed October 2015
Recently my husband and I took a cruise on bi -lingual Europa 2 from Limassol to Dubai. Our interest was two-fold: we wanted to see Petra and transit the Suez Canal, and we wanted to experience the ship. We flew to Larnaca, Cyprus where ... Read more
English Voyager
Member Since 2003
2 reviews
908 forum posts
3 helpful votes
Sailed September 2015
Other reviews on the Europa 2 provide a detailed description of the ship's amenities. My previous cruise on the Europa 2 was in July 2014, with embarkation in Southampton, and cruising through Portugal, and Spain. This year I had ... Read more

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