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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: February 2019
chose for the ports to include NZ and Oz. over 15 nights 5 shows were fairly good, but the 10 others were dire. They use a company called level 54 who are shocking. many nights the audience only numbered about 30 out of 650+ ... Read More
chose for the ports to include NZ and Oz. over 15 nights 5 shows were fairly good, but the 10 others were dire. They use a company called level 54 who are shocking. many nights the audience only numbered about 30 out of 650+ passengers on board which pretty much sums it up. The tv films in the cabin were very old (eg under a tuscan sky) and went on repeat in the 2nd week which is inexcusable. If the weather had been poor then the sea days would have been very boring. Regular Azamara cruisers we talked to were disappointed and felt the cruise line is slipping in the same points we make above. on disembarkation we had to get off the ship by 9am even though our flight was in the afternoon! all other cruise lines we have used always allow you to stay on board after vacating your cabin rather than dump you at the airport! not impressed. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We chose Azamara and this itinerary based on the recommendation of friends who did it a couple of years. ago. We too weren't notified of the change of embarkation point, but noticed the ship in the "wrong port" the night ... Read More
We chose Azamara and this itinerary based on the recommendation of friends who did it a couple of years. ago. We too weren't notified of the change of embarkation point, but noticed the ship in the "wrong port" the night before from the roof top bar of our hotel. Sailing on smaller ships is a great experience. More attention from crew and an altogether sense of community familiarity that just happens among the passengers. We had a balcony room, midship on the deck 6. It was very comfortable and the small shower was adequate. Because of weather or just being out and about we really didn't use the balcony much but it was nice to have. The crew was always attentive, the entertainment very, very good, and most meals were well prepared. However more attention should be given to timing and suggestions as when to eat in the dining rooms if you want to make a show. Any time after 7.15pm creates a rush. Prime C was a disappointment, the food was just ok, the service slow and the room needs to be refurbished. Aqualina though did not disappoint. My only other comment on the food was that there way too much. Something was always there, available and too inviting. We did several exercise classes. More thought needs to given to the space required as many were popular and people couldn't participate. However they were advertised as 45 minutes, but most were barely 30. The Amazing Evening in Melbourne was in a beautiful recital hall with a performance by a top Australian vocal artist. Very enjoyable. The White Night was well done, the production performers professional and personable. Dancing in the Living Room to the Sound Sensations became a nightly destination for us. The crossing to New Zealand was a day and a half of rough seas, but part of cruising. But we found there were too many sea days, especially when they were back to back. All the ports provided something to do, some more that others. Napier was special and unique with its art deco architecture. We don't do cruise sponsored shore excursions. We find better value and choice is always available at the port. Cruise lines ask you think about the environment when using towels, etc, but they don't do anything about the amount of newsletters, brochures, invitations and sale announcements they produce. There must be better and more efficient ways to communicate to your guests and cut down on paper useage. It was ridiculous on this cruise. Overall, there is no reason not to consider Azamara for fun and enjoyable experience. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Itinerary is what counts and long port stays as well as Quest being a ship we sailed on previously. We love overnights in port so we have longer time in port. We use our ship as a hotel. We don't really care about casinos, shopping ... Read More
Itinerary is what counts and long port stays as well as Quest being a ship we sailed on previously. We love overnights in port so we have longer time in port. We use our ship as a hotel. We don't really care about casinos, shopping or entertainment on board. I want a lovely cabin, great bed and nice common areas. Having said that, the Quest is in need of an overhaul. I was shocked at the condition of our bathroom- its was a bit gross with putty in the bottom of the shower. Wallpaper in the shower??? Not a great idea. the good news- it is going to drydock after the cruise following our departure in Cairns- after it docks in Singapore and it needs it. My only complaint about the service was in the dining room and the buffet in the am- I had to beg for coffee refills and for water!!! Its hot in australia and I don't think on a ship the caliber of Quest I should have to run after waiters to get water or coffee. Otherwise, the service was great. Clearly there were newbees onboard in both areas that did not speak English very well and struggled in that regard. They frequently smiled, said yes and disappeared never to bring what I had asked for. And that is literally the worst thing that happened over the 29 days. Otherwise, the service is impeccable, attentive and the folks on board we traveled with were delightful. I had a really great time and I will say- we have already booked our next 30 days B2B cruise. It will be on Quest- I hope the refurb is still intact when we sail again. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
One of the reasons on deciding to do this cruise starting in Auckland was to meet up with a relative who emigrated to New Zealand back in the 70s. Mission accomplished! On the itinerary, there were several ports in Eastern Australia ... Read More
One of the reasons on deciding to do this cruise starting in Auckland was to meet up with a relative who emigrated to New Zealand back in the 70s. Mission accomplished! On the itinerary, there were several ports in Eastern Australia which we had not previously visited and by sailing back-to-back it afforded us the opportunity to explore ports within Indonesia, and revisit Singapore. Despite its age, the Ship looked in fine condition, and was wonderfully clean and well-presented. In fact, no different to our last cruise in October last year. Therefore, we were surprised to learn it was going into dry-dock for a week for refit/modifications in Singapore. Embarkation in Auckland went very smoothly. This was our third time on the Quest (and our fourth time with Azamara), and it was great to see some familiar faces among the staff when we came aboard. Can honestly say we've always found the staff on Azamara ships to be well-trained, courteous, and helpful, yet very friendly. They are indeed exceptional people so it is no wonder they are offered repeat contracts. The entertainment offered on the ship in the evening, (Cabaret Lounge), is not high on our list of priorities, much preferring instead to listen to the ship's talented musicians on board, individuals and groups, who frequent the different lounges. However, pleased to note the 10-minute short plays and then the four opera singers, have been superseded with the return of the ship's company of 'singers and dancers'. Praise be! Although, tongue in cheek, one of the opera singers is still on board in another guise? On this B2B cruise, we've had two AzAmazing evenings, two 'White Night' events, and then two 'Chocolate Buffets' - so, what's not to like? And, delicious food, always. Have booked further cruises for next year! Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
We booked a back to back cruise on the Quest after enjoying a great cruise with Azamara from Singapore to Mumbai 2 years ago. We departed from Auckland on the 21.2.19 in a Club Ocean suite 7005. We were really impressed with the ground ... Read More
We booked a back to back cruise on the Quest after enjoying a great cruise with Azamara from Singapore to Mumbai 2 years ago. We departed from Auckland on the 21.2.19 in a Club Ocean suite 7005. We were really impressed with the ground staff at the terminal who were very helpful and were able to board the ship quickly. Our room was ready with a welcome bottle of Fizz. Once again it was immaculately clean.The bags arrived very quickly so we were able to unpack before exploring. As before we were incredibly impressed with all the staff throughout the ship. They were always friendly and helpful. Cruising around New Zealand was quite bumpy and we did miss the port of Gisborne because of the weather. We experienced quite a bad storm at sea the night before arriving into Wellington. Being on the front we know from experience that usually means you feel all the motion quite badly. The crew knew it was going to be stormy and offered over the announcement system a free acupuncture session the day prior to guests. My husband and I took advantage of this. It was a totally pain free and we never felt nauseous, so well worth trying. In Wellington we attended the Azamazing evening at the Cathedral which was fabulous and well organised. Throughout the trip all food in all restaurants and room service was fantastic - thank you chef Colin. It was still bumpy heading up the coast from Sydney so we missed the port of Mooloolaba. For missing the 2 ports we were promptly presented with a letter giving each cabin a 500 dollar on board spend for future cruises, which was appreciated. After that the seas did improve. At Cairns we stayed on board ready to start our next cruise. Very quickly those staying on were sorted with new cards. We had decided to try a owners suite on the back 6091 and the staff moved everything for us and we were unpacked well before lunch. Once again the suite was immaculate. All Suite stewards and Butlers were very professional and friendly and really worked hard to meet our expectations. For entertainment we felt the ship managed very well considering the size, age range and different nationalities. We enjoyed the quizzes, talks, and shows. The gifted musicians and singers work hard throughout to entertain the guests. The White parties are fun and I recommend arriving earlier to get a table. At both white nights it rained just after the music started and we were impressed to see how quickly the staff moved the party indoors. The ships announcements were helpful and informative, we did feel very safe on board throughout our cruise. We were impressed at how quickly we were able to get on and off the ship, the security staff were very efficient. My husband used the gym on all sea days and found the equipment clean and well cared for. I used the spa once, I enjoyed the experience but would agree with other comments that it is very over priced -which may stop me using it in future. We did do some Azamara organised excursions. As usual we found them excellent, maybe a little pricey but the standards were very high and we felt very well cared for. Disembarkation was in Singapore and the ship was then off for a refit. One small criticism is that once we arrived into Singapore at lunchtime the day prior to leaving. The focus did seem to move from cruising to refitting. However this really was a fabulous stay on a great ship and I already have my next Azamara cruise booked. in case you are wondering we preferred the Club Ocean Suite at the front. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2019
Recently back from my second Azamara voyage, both on the Quest. Overall this Sydney to Auckland cruise was excellent with some notable improvements, however there are areas which continue to disappoint. On the positive side, I found ... Read More
Recently back from my second Azamara voyage, both on the Quest. Overall this Sydney to Auckland cruise was excellent with some notable improvements, however there are areas which continue to disappoint. On the positive side, I found the ship to be spotless and the crew genuinely friendly. Most notable was the main restaurant, Discoveries. I was greeted with a friendly smile and often assigned a lovely window table for 2. Yes there can be short waits at peak times, but if you are patient, it is always rewarded. The food & service were just outstanding both in Discoveries and Windows Cafe. The Patio also offered an alternative, and that was excellent as well. Deck areas were well maintained, and the crew worked hard to clear the many rainfalls which left areas saturated. My cabin, an outside window space on deck 4 was cozy and well serviced. I truly did not miss having a balcony especially considering the weather we had. This location is quiet and very convenient to everything. The self service laundry was very popular and difficult to get in. Still great to have when on extended holiday. I won’t go into the ports of call, but suffice it to say they were brilliant. I was truly blown away especially by the New Zealand stops. I spent a few days post cruise in Auckland and loved that city. Where Azamara continues to struggle are all areas I noted during my first voyage, 18 months ago. First, the front office just can’t seem to put out accurate information. As another reviewer noted, our travel documents stated the Quest would be berthed at the Overseas Passenger Terminal (OPT) in Sydney. For several months prior to the trip, the Port of New South Wales website showed her berthing at White Bay. I called Azamara several times and was assured by the CSR (and supervisors) that the ship would be at OPT. For those not familiar with Sydney, these locations are not close to each other, about $40 AUD taxi fare. Finally a few days before departure, another CSR emailed the Quest and confirmed it would be White Bay. An email was finally sent out, but many had already left for their travels and not everyone looks at emails on holiday. I overheard several passengers who followed the directions on their docs only to find the ship wasn’t there. This was not a last minute change of berth due to unforeseen events, the Port always listed White Bay. Needless confusion on a simple matter. As I mentioned my cabin on deck was cozy but the in room entertainment was awful. With 3 very rough sea days crossing the Tasman Sea, all the outside decks were closed due to high winds. A newer movie was $11.99 or you could watch Top Gun (circa 1986) over and over. Maverick and Goose- really? The last area was something I mentioned in several venues last time and received no response. Azamara touts itself as environmentally sensitive with signs reminding pax to reuse their towels. Yet, they continue to hand out hundreds of plastic water bottles and use little plastic bottles for shampoo, etc. There are always bins full of water bottles at the gangway, I have yet to see anyone return with an empty. I’m sure some folks try to dispose of them properly, but I’m guessing many just throw them away. It would be so easy to encourage people to bring a refillable water bottle with them or even better, provide one as a passenger perk instead of another tote bag. Fill stations are everywhere now, especially in Australia and New Zealand. An addition of a shampoo wall dispenser would eliminate the thousands of tiny plastic bottles used each cruise. This suggestion fell on deaf ears last time. Azamara is a good product, and I love the size of the ships, and the laidback atmosphere. I will be back but continue to explore the many options out there. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
We sailed for 14 days from Sydney to Auckland. There was a lot of confusion about which port we would depart from Sydney. Was very confusing up until almost the last minute as the original plan seemed to have been the Overseas Cruise ... Read More
We sailed for 14 days from Sydney to Auckland. There was a lot of confusion about which port we would depart from Sydney. Was very confusing up until almost the last minute as the original plan seemed to have been the Overseas Cruise Terminal - located near Circular Quay at the Rocks. Instead we left from White Bay Cruise Terminal. (Apparently they've had alot of confusion as we later learned that Azamara sent a representative to the OCT to redirect guests.) While many chose to be unhappy about it - the silver lining we found was that this allowed us to sail UNDER the Sydney Harbour Bridge - which made for some cool pics and videos. The ship itself seemed to be in good shape. I was surprised to hear that it is scheduled for dry dock in Singapore in a couple of months. Public areas, furniture, and cabins appeared to be in good shape - with nothing standing out as needing updates. We have sailed with Azamara a few times - but always on the Journey. Last time was in 2015. The Quest - as previously reported by others - is the same layout. Since our last sailing, they introduced the Living Room concept on deck 10 - replacing the Looking Glass. We really liked it. On bad weather sea days, it was packed. Service was great throughout the cruise. From bars to restaurants to cabin staff - they did a great job as they have in the past. We had one issue that we weren't initially happy with how they handled it - but then they reconsidered (without our asking) and contacted us to resolve in our favor. To make a long story short, we purchased the Ultimate Bundle - which was really worth it. Includes internet, spa credit, excursions credit, drinks package, laundry, etc. We expected that we would get the $40 credit per person for our status that we would have gotten if we bought just the internet package. They said that applied only to purchases of internet packages and not if it was purchased as part of a bundle. Sounds ridiculous and they finally understood why a guest would be confused between a package and a bundle. As I said, they eventually got it and gave us an onboard credit - which was what we requested. Food was good but not great. Discoveries (main dining room) had a pretty good menu with rotating selections. Always love that they consistently offer shrimp cocktail and french onion soup! Windows cafe was good for breakfast and lunch. We only tried it for one night for dinner and it was just ok. We are not buffet people - so we are probably biased anyway! The Living Room had a nice supply of sandwiches, tea (scones & cakes), and tapas throughout the day. Our bundle included the Ultimate Drink package. They had a nice offering but honestly didn't need it as most of the included wines they poured were acceptable. It's also nice that since our last sailing they have added prosecco to the complimentary list - as it was awkward to not have any bubbles on that list. (Although I should note that I take small offense to them calling it complimentary since we paid for an all inclusive cruise. They should said "included" or something instead." The White Night deck party was alot of fun. Lots of people remembered to pack their whites - so it really turned out to be a nice night. They brought a local band onboard who played fun jazz - followed of course by the ship's entertainers who did a great job leading dances, etc. Our fellow guests were mainly retired folks with a spattering of working age folks (40-60) from all over. Alot of Europeans (especially Scots & Brits), some Americans, and surprisingly alot of Kiwis and Australians (guess its easy to get to or from the ship!). We met lots of folks and enjoyed most. 14 days is a long time with some people - including those who jump in line or ignore that you are next for the bus and take the last 2 seats ahead of you ... Thankfully these folks were the exception and not the rule. Most of our fellow guests were classy and realized that common courtesy was the best way to go. As I frequently remind people who have to be "first" for everything - the cruise lines know what they are doing and never seem to run out of what people want! They take care of everyone! We had a balcony cabin on the eighth deck forward. Even with a few days of high seas, we did ok being forward. Tasman crossings can always be a bit rough they said. They were right! As described as naseum in other reviews, the bathroom (shower in particular) are laughably small. 14 days is a long cruise for us - but we found the size of the cabin to be adequate, including plenty of storage. Ok - now the areas where Azamara could improve ... 1. they seem to have started nickel and diming for some things... charging for movies on the TV ($12 or something) seems a little much ... and charging for a bridge tour or behind the scenes tour .... Seems rather Royal Caribbean, instead of Azamara ... 2. When the Living Room was packed, it sometimes took awhile to get served ... once they saw you needed something, they were helpful. More a matter of not enough servers instead of the staff being lazy 3. Entertainment was the same as on small ships... They could learn from the larger ships and try to make this a bit better 4. Prime C was just ok ... seems like they could improve quality of beef ... (Aqualina was excellent). 5. Excursions were pricey. Disappointed a few were cancelled due to lack of interest. Overall - super happy with this cruise. Kudos to Azamara for having some of the friendliest crew and definitely the most engaging officers at sea. We sail with Seabourn, Oceania, and SilverSea regularly and think Azamara is just as enjoyable and a much better value! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
After cruising Regent and Seabourn we were looking for a more casual experience coupled with an in-depth itinerary of New Zealand, and Azamara fit the bill. Itinerary included Melbourne,Tasmania and the North and South Islands in New ... Read More
After cruising Regent and Seabourn we were looking for a more casual experience coupled with an in-depth itinerary of New Zealand, and Azamara fit the bill. Itinerary included Melbourne,Tasmania and the North and South Islands in New Zealand. We were lucky enough to have great weather in Milford Sound and Captain Magnus did a great job navigating the ship. We loved the genuinely friendly crew, no formal nights or snootiness, wonderful food and late night/overnight port stays. Passengers ranged from 40s to 70s mainly from Australia, USA and NZ with 60s the average.The ship is immaculate and nicely appointed with modern art, and elevators were never crowded despite a fully booked cruise. Embarkation was fairly smooth although luggage delivery was slow. Our butler Xavier was friendly and helpful throughout. As suite guests we were entitled to dine at Prime C and Aqualina free of charge. We dined at both and they were wonderful, although the food in the main dining room Discoveries was delicious too. However spacing between tables at Windows and Discoveries was extremely tight which felt claustrophobic when fully booked. We really enjoyed the Patio for casual outdoor lunches and dinners as well. Shore excursions were generally very good but Azamara didn't offer everything we wanted to do so we arranged several tours on our own as well. Entertainment was just OK, although the comedian Simon Palomares was an unexpectedly hilarious treat. Azamara brought on a local high school group to perform a spirited haka dance, a highlight of the trip for us. Downsides were relatively minor - slow, spotty and pricey Internet service, a cruise industry problem. Azamara's in-room TV and video offerings are pathetically bad. What good is having 2 large flat screen TVs in the suite if the picture is of poor quality with limited stations and on-demand movies are a whopping $11.99 each? We booked a one night post stay through Azamara at the Pullman Hotel which we don't recommend. They never called our number during debarkation so we ended up running to the taxi at the last minute despite being ready early, a chaotic scenario. We met many repeat clients onboard and can see why. Overall we had a fantastic cruise experience with Azamara and already booked another one. Can't wait! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
Sydney Harbor for NY Eve reason for trip. Supposed to see fireworks from ship, docked at White Bay - poor dockage - back view of bridge, lack of transportation to/from. Bought an overpriced NY Eve party at the zoo. It was awful, to ... Read More
Sydney Harbor for NY Eve reason for trip. Supposed to see fireworks from ship, docked at White Bay - poor dockage - back view of bridge, lack of transportation to/from. Bought an overpriced NY Eve party at the zoo. It was awful, to their credit, I received a full refund - that can't cancel out an event of a lifetime. Shore excursions cancelled, private transfer booked (shore excursions person to meet me on shore - he didn't, then tried to blow it off as a 'miscommunication'. I called him out - then he said he had something else to do). I was told I received emails (at least 3) I didn't. ..including the final statement - they proudly state they are 'eco friendly' - I would get an email statement (should I pay $30/hour to check my email on the ship...really...shame on them). Thank goodness I asked for the paper statement so I could see my $1000 credit for the NY Eve mess. Crew and passengers embark/disembark at same location on the ship - it makes a mess...long lines to get on/off ship. Buffet was self serve - passengers and crew were coughing and sick...not surprising. Soon people were reaching for the food with their hands, staff didn't care. Staff uses passenger elevators/stairs and are constantly moving tables and chairs thru the public areas. If you are in their way they just push you.It was really bad . won't be back Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
Booked this cruise nearly three years ago so, looking forward to Christmas and NY on board ship and especially fireworks in Sydney harbour. The day we boarded in Fremantle, Western Australia the temperature was 41c, like anoven. Great ... Read More
Booked this cruise nearly three years ago so, looking forward to Christmas and NY on board ship and especially fireworks in Sydney harbour. The day we boarded in Fremantle, Western Australia the temperature was 41c, like anoven. Great to get on board, no queuing which was good. Didn’t have to wait long for our luggage to arrive. Then up to get some lunch in Windows Cafe. We booked a Club Balcony, Port side. Having been on Azamara ships before we knew what to expect especially the small bathroom and shower with the plastic curtains!! However, all clean. It was a lovely balmy evening when we sailed out of Fremantle although we did head into rougher seas during the night. Our first port of call was Albany which we had been to many times before as we lived in Perth for a number of years. Albany was much cooler and good to walk around and stretch those legs. Christmas Day was spent cruising the Great Australian Bight. We went for the brunch at around 10am, very busy but some amazing choices of food. The main meal being in the evening which was great. No complaints about food on this cruise what so ever, well, breakfast was pretty much the same each morning but, I did enjoy the black pudding!! We did a ships tour when we docked in Adelaide, which to be honest was not great due to the fact our tour guide could not get the microphone to work. Anyway, we toured around Adelaide,headed for Mt Lofty to get some amazing views over Adelaide and the coast. Then headed to Hansdorff in the hills. A stinking hot day 41c. Hansdorff is a very pretty little town settled a century ago by the Germans and still retains a lot of character. The following day we were docked in Kangaroo Island. Then two days at sea before we sailed into Sydney Harbour. Went shopping as the January sales were on. I must say at this point, we did not do any tours as we live in Australia and have been to all the places on this cruise before. Shuttle buses were provided each day we were in port, on NYE they were dropping guests at Central Station from there you can catch a train to Circular Quay and elsewhere in Sydney. This was because a number of roads were closed due to the fireworks that Evening. Day two we were dropped at Darling Harbour from where you can catch a ferry into Circular Quay. All buses ran smoothly each day. New Years Eve, the ship put on alfresco dining on the main deck but, unfortunately there was a heavy down pour at 8pm which ruined everything. Fortunately, we had decided to eat in the main dining room. At midnight we went up on deck to watch the fireworks and although we were seeing them from the backside of the bridge they were still amazing. I gather people who went to the zoo got drenched due to the earlier downpour. So glad we never paid the extortionate price the ship was asking. Day two in Sydney we met up with a friend for lunch in Darling Harbour. Our last port of call was Hobart, Tasmania. Most unusual for Hobart it was stinking hot, 36c. Walked around the dock and took photos of some of the yaghts that were still in dock after finishing the Sydney to Hobart race. Last stop Melbourne where we disembarked. The disembarkation was very smooth as was the coach trip back to the airport, all handled very well. My main moan, too many days at sea, did we really need to go straight from Adelaide to Sydney. The evening entertainment, well 4 opera singers gets a bit boring. Variety is needed. Too many people going down with coughs which I ended up with. Ships stewards were great, always smiling. They work so hard. Food was good, much better than our last cruise on Azamara Journey in July 18. Overall, a good cruise, met some lovely people. Oh, nearly forgot, we did enjoy the Ships Expo they put on for one of our sea days, excellent, good to see and chat to staff who work in the background keeping everything ticking over Read Less
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