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40 Azamara Repositioning Cruise Reviews

My wife and I have been cruising for several year - often 3 cruises per year - but had not yet tried an upscale cruise like Azamara. The first thing that we noticed, not surprisingly, was that the Pursuit was not quite as large as the ... Read More
My wife and I have been cruising for several year - often 3 cruises per year - but had not yet tried an upscale cruise like Azamara. The first thing that we noticed, not surprisingly, was that the Pursuit was not quite as large as the other cruise ships we had taken previously. Next we noticed that the crew seemed to be more friendly than on other, larger ships. We subsequently determined that this repositioning cruise had about a 5-10% vacancy rate. This meant that there was less than 2 customers to 1 crew member!! This was definitely a positive. The cabin we had selected was an upgrade from ocean view to a standard balcony stateroom. It was only slightly smaller than the same type of stateroom we have travelled in on other non-Azamara ships. Other than that, there were fresh flowers in the room, lots of closet space for the 17 day voyage. The balcony was more that adequate for the single breakfast that we enjoyed during a sea day. We usually dined in the main dining room. The food there was among the best we had experienced on any other ship....make that THE best we had experienced to date. Service by the staff was efficient and most professional and friendly. The menu was very extensive. The specialty restaurants were also better than we had experience in any of the previous 15 cruise ships. The chef's table menu - 7 course - was quite extraordinary with our sommelier providing a wine education throughout the entire meal. The on-board entertainment was no better and no worse than that found on other ships EXCEPT for the Azamara singers who were, without at doubt, the best we had seen and heard anywhere based on individual AND combined talent. Unfortunately for others, the troupe of 4 individuals were completing their contracts on our cruise. I have no doubt that they will be back.....PLEASE! As this was a repositioning cruise, the ports were not the usual ports visited by ships throughout the regular season. Madeira Island, Canary Islands, Cape Verde, Salvador and Buzios, Brazil were quite beautiful. We particularly enjoyed the town of Funchal on Madeira Island and the magnificent Teide volcano on Tenerife in the Canary Islands. Needless to say, the starting point of the cruise - Lisbon, Portugal - was marvellous and Rio de Janeiro is, well, Rio! We spent a few days after the cruise on the Copacabana beach, checked out the statue of Christ the Redeemer and Sugarloaf mountain. Beautiful! Would we do this cruise in the future? Yes but not for a few more years. (Still too many other places to visit.) Would we sail with Azamara on other adventures? Definitely. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This our second time on Azamara and it definitely won't be our last. I have never been on a cruise where the staff and crew, from the Captain down to the young man cleaning the stairs, are so friendly. Having the Hotel Manager, the ... Read More
This our second time on Azamara and it definitely won't be our last. I have never been on a cruise where the staff and crew, from the Captain down to the young man cleaning the stairs, are so friendly. Having the Hotel Manager, the Cruise Director and assistant and others waving goodbye as we were disembarking was wonderful. It was as if we were valued friends who they couldn't bear to part with! The ship itself is spotless and understated. The entertainment is not as glitzy as on the bigger ships but it was all of high quality and enjoyable. Activities on board are the usual trivia, lectures, Bridge, card games etc. etc. My only gripe was that the Water colour artist was a woman I had taken classes with before on a different cruise. She may be a talented artist, but she is not a good instructor and the material she asked us to draw and paint was virtually identical to the previous cruise I had taken. But that is insignificant in my enjoyment of this cruise which was full of friendly passengers, divine food, plentiful wine of good quality and attentive staff. There is no casino onboard which is not something I miss and just a small area for smokers which did not bother the non smokers on board (me). My husband enjoyed the gym and the equipment in the Spa and we enjoyed the hot tub at the front of the ship, filled with salt water, so is wonderful on the skin. The speciality restaurants are wonderful, with attentive service and delicious food. The buffet served theme nights most evenings, and the main dining room selections were also of the highest quality. It was difficult to choose where to eat! This is not a cruise for younger people, or children but for my husband and me who are well travelled seniors, it was perfect. Can't wait to be with my Azamara family again! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This was our 9th cruise with Azamara, but our first ever transatlantic and our first cruise on the Pursuit. We chose it because we love sea days, but it also had 6 ports of call, so a good combination. We had a couple of nights in ... Read More
This was our 9th cruise with Azamara, but our first ever transatlantic and our first cruise on the Pursuit. We chose it because we love sea days, but it also had 6 ports of call, so a good combination. We had a couple of nights in Lisbon before the cruise and were really pleased that we had done so, there’s so much to see and do. We booked the Holiday Inn Express Avenida de Liberdade mainly because it’s very close to the metro. It was a good choice - very comfortable, just refurbished, and with a good breakfast (which included the Portuguese speciality of custard tarts- Yum!). The only snag was that as this was mainly a business area there were few restaurants nearby - you had to walk a little way towards the student area to find them. In the morning we bought a one day public transport ticket at the Marquis de Pompal metro station and used that to get to the old town area where we caught the tram to Belem, which was lovely. We walked to see the magnificent Monument to the Discoverers, and went into the lovely Igreja (Church) de Santa Maria de Belem. We caught the tram back & then caught the famous 28 tram through the uphill winding streets of the old town. We got off at Campo Ourique and caught the 25 tram back, getting off near the Cais de Sordre, then walked along the front to the beautiful Praca de Commercio, before getting the metro back to our hotel. The next morning we asked the hotel to order us a taxi to take us to the Santa Apollonia cruise terminal. We got there at about 11:15 am and were able to board immediately. We had lunch in the Patio, then went to our cabin when allowed to do so (about 1pm). One case arrived fairly quickly, the other took a little time, however we got unpacked and I had time to take a few things to the laundry room to iron them before the muster drill. After the muster drill there was the Cruise Critic Social (Meet & Mingle) in the Cabaret. It was pretty full (86 on the roll call). As always Azamara provided lots to drink and canapés. The Cruise Director Amanda asked us all to introduce ourselves, then there was time for people to have a chat. That night, and most nights, we ate in Discoveries (MDR). We had a drink first in Discoveries bar at about 7:15, then dinner at 7:45ish. We found it very easy to get a sharing table and did this most nights. It’s a great way to meet and get talking to people. Dinner was always very good, with good choices on the menu, and in addition two ‘specials’ each night - one relating to the destination and one the chefs special. We also tried Discoveries for breakfast, but unlike on the Journey in July, there was no buffet food there, other than fruit - it was just the food on the menu and we found service slow, so soon reverted to Windows (buffet) for breakfast. The first few days the weather was not too good - cloudy, cool and windy. The sea was pretty rough too, although luckily this did not affect us, but a few people were affected. Ports of call Madeira There was a free shuttle bus into the middle of town. We took the bus, then walked to the market and fish market, then to the cable car. We took the cable car up to the first station where we got out and went to the Monte Gardens. The gardens are set in a hill side and you walk down through the gardens to the beautiful waterfall, pond and house set at the bottom. We then paid to take a golf cart back up to the top, where we went to watch the ‘toboggan’ run, before catching the cable car back to the town centre and getting the shuttle bus back to the ship. La Palma, Canary Islands We had a booked a ships tour to the Caldera de Taburiente. It was an excellent tour to a beautiful area. The Caldera was caused by a massive landslide and the scenery is stunning. At the Caldera we had time for a reasonable walk, then on the way back we stopped for a drink and a snack at a house that was designed to match the Thai embassy in Paris. A very good tour and not too expensive. Tenerife, Canary Islands The ship docked at Puerto Cruz and a shuttle bus took us out of the docks, as the docks are pretty much in the town centre. We had decided to get the tram to La Laguna, the old capital of the island, which is a UNESCO heritage site. We managed to work out where to get the tram, but when we got there we found the ticket machine only too small value Euro notes. The smallest note we had was a €50, which was no good, so we had to walk back to a shop to get some change (which was tricky as the owner spoke no English). Once we had small notes we managed to buy our tickets and caught the tram, taking it to the end of the line. We found our way into the old town which was quite quaint and busy as it was a Sunday and all the locals were out and about in their a Sunday best, creating a lovely atmosphere. Mindelo, Sao Vicente, Cape Verde We had pre-booked a day tour of the island with Green Line tours, along with about half the roll-call. They met us just at the end of the dock and took us into the town where we had a guided walking tour including the main streets, the main market, the African market and to see the beautiful picture of Cesaria Evora (the barefoot diva) who was from the island. Then the minibuses met us and took us on a tour of the island, including going to the top of Monte Verde. We stopped for the included lunch, which was pretty basic and somewhat spoiled by the numbers of flies around. Overall, though, this was an excellent tour and terrific value at $60 or $100 for two. Salvador de Bahia, Brazil After 6 sea days in a row we were ready to be back on land again. Unfortunately when we woke up that morning it was pouring down, and that continued all day - and when I say pouring, this was continuous tropical rain! Never mind, we really wanted to see the old town area of Pelourinho, so we put our cagoules on and ventured forth. The ship was docked very close to the lift that takes you up to Pelourinho, so it wasn’t far, but we still got pretty wet. This old town area is beautiful, if slightly ‘faded grandeur’ and we had a good walk around, calling in to two beautiful churches, both covered in gold leaf. There were a lot of tourist police around so it felt relatively safe. After a couple of hours we caught the shuttle bus back to the ship. Despite our cagoules we were wet right down to our underclothes - a day we won’t forget in a hurry. Buzios, Brazil We were supposed to be docking at Vitoria, but apparently there was to be a dock strike there, so Buzios was substituted. I don’t know what Vitoria would have been like, but Buzios was lovely. It was like a mixture between Saint Tropez in the old days and a small Caribbean resort. There were some lovely shops, including some very high end ones, and a couple of Havianas shops where the shoes were really cheap. The whole place was buzzing because they had a film festival at the time. We went on a little open sided ‘truck’ tour bus for a tour around the island - a bit bumpy, but interesting - and very cheap. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil We had a day here before disembarkation. We were intending to get a taxi to the Botanical gardens, but didn’t get off as my husband had a chest infection following a cold that just about everyone on the ship had had. We actually disembarked the evening before disembarkation as we had a late night flight back and decided we didn’t much fancy having to tour our suitcases around a Rio for the day. Given my husbands health, this proved to be an excellent decision. The White Night was supposed to be on the day we were in Salvador de Bahia, but having looked at weather forecast the Captain has decided to hold it at sea the night before. It was a beautiful calm night and a good white night. As always the food was lovely - no lobster, but some very nice huge prawns instead. We had three meals in the speciality restaurants - 2 in Aqualina and 1 in Prime C. All three were delicious. Overall this was an excellent cruise. As ever the service was superb - although we did notice some differences between the Pursuit and the other two ships. For example at night the sun beds on Deck 11 were cleared away into piles against the superstructure, whereas on the other ships they are usually left in rows, tied together if it’s expected to be rough. As we had gorgeous weather from Cape Verde to Salvador, Deck 11 was well used and sometimes the chairs were not laid out very early and it became a bit of a ‘bun fight’ to get them. The other unusual thing was the mix of passengers - there were well over 400 english, which is unusual in our experience. We got the impression that the cruise had been heavily promoted in the north of England in the few weeks beforehand. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We have sailed Azamara a number of times and really enjoy the on-board experience. This itinerary attracted us because of the variation in cultures and climate. The embarkation was very smooth and we were quickly processed. . Because ... Read More
We have sailed Azamara a number of times and really enjoy the on-board experience. This itinerary attracted us because of the variation in cultures and climate. The embarkation was very smooth and we were quickly processed. . Because of an upgrade, we were staying in a Club Continent Suite as opposed to our usual Veranda 2. We really enjoyed the extra space, but did not utilize all the perks associated with the Suite. One of the perks was complimentary dining in the Specialty Restaurants, a choice we made for four of the 14 nights. For other dinners, of course, we ate in Discoveries (the main dining room), and on the Patio. Most breakfasts we frequented Windows, the buffet area. We were very pleased with the food in all the venues, especially the attention paid to certain food intolerances that limit some of our choices. One of the attractions for us on Azamara is the friendly and attentive service on board..From the room stewards to the waiting staff in the dining areas, this cruise was no exception. The friendliness is true of most officers as well. Although not noted for entertainment, in this case Azamara provided some of the best we have enjoyed. From The Azamazing Evening to more casual events, we found a lot to enjoy. Hard to pick out a port that was more enjoyable than the others. Because of our travelling through four countries, each port provided some interesting contrasts. As we sailed further North the weather cooled and rain became a sometime occurrence. That added to the variety of experiences on this itinerary. We participated in only two shore excursions. The trip to see Bayeux and its famous tapestry was well worth the cost. The walking tour of Cadiz was good but not amazing. In both cases we were travelling in relatively small groups. Most of the ports were quite accessible for those who wanted to explore on their own, and Azamara provided free shuttles where needed and appropriate. As part of that service, usually there was a guide at the drop-off points with maps and helpful suggestions. After sailing up the Thames the previous day, disembarkation at Greenwich was a little more complicated than at most ports. But the staff on the ships had it well under control, and there was a surplus of attendants on shore to assure that you made your connection with taxis for the airport, for travel home, or for extended stays in London. For the reasons above, out of 18 cruises this was one of our favourites. Although the itinerary is not one of the common ones offered, we think others should give it serious consideration. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
You can see photos from this cruise and our other sailings by following the link on our Cruise Critic profile page: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/profile/35108-jgnova/ I had a “zero birthday” coming up and wanted to do ... Read More
You can see photos from this cruise and our other sailings by following the link on our Cruise Critic profile page: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/profile/35108-jgnova/ I had a “zero birthday” coming up and wanted to do something special to celebrate – which provided a great excuse for another cruise. But it had to be something special – new ports and/or a new ship or, even better, a whole new (to us) cruise line. We also had the additional requirement that, because of health issues, the embarkation and disembarkation ports had to be within five hours travel time from our Northern Virginia home. I put together a list of options, which were mostly sailings from Miami or Fort Lauderdale that included the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao). One option stood out because it also included two days in Havana, Cuba, and was on Azamara Club Cruises Journey. This was a 16-night repositioning sailing from Miami to Manhattan, with stops in Havana, Aruba, Curaçao, Bonaire, St. Barts, Sint Maarten, and Hamilton, Bermuda. With four new (to us) ports on a new (to us) ship and cruise line, this became the obvious choice. And we are very happy we made that choice. Ship: The ship is lovely and very well maintained, despite its age – they were even refinishing the corridor handrails near our cabin. Like other ships under the RCCL umbrella, Journey was filled with artwork – paintings, prints, and sculptures (many by Salvador Dali) all over. The ship felt very bright all over – even the staircases and elevator lobbies, despite not having windows, felt very bright and open. The only times the ship felt crowded were when everyone tried to be in one venue at the same time – like White Night by the pool or the last two nights’ shows in the cabaret – and the staff brought in chairs for those events so everyone could sit. Cabin: The cabin had plenty of room for all of our stuff – drawers in the desk and in the closet, lots of hangers. There was plenty of light in the cabin, including extra lights by the desk, the bed, and a working balcony light. The cabin thermostat even seemed to work properly! We discovered that the coffee table by the sofa had a lever that raised it from coffee table height to a height that worked for eating our room service breakfast when we couldn’t eat on the balcony. Food: The food selections and quality were outstanding. With the exception of the AzAmazing Evening, when we ate in Windows (buffet restaurant) because of time constraints, we ate all our dinners in Discoveries (main dining room). We usually arrived around 7 PM and never had to wait for a table, which we usually shared with others, allowing us to meet many new people. Besides the menu selections, each night’s choices also included a chef’s selection and something more international, typically linked to the international themed dinner in Windows that evening. We could choose wines (at no extra charge) from each night’s selection of two whites, two reds, and a rosé – and they would pour wines offered on previous nights as well. We ate most breakfasts on the balcony, which was a treat – the server would even spread the tablecloth for us! The food was hot and usually delivered on time. We could even add things to the menu if we wanted (like a smoked-salmon omelet!). I had a few breakfasts in Windows on mornings when we had an early excursion and the selection was excellent. As opposed to other cruises on which we’ve sailed, instead of placing the omelet order and waiting while it was cooked, I just took a table card with a number and the omelet was delivered when it was done. The servers also provided all of the beverages, including fresh-squeezed orange juice. The ship had a few options for lunch. On days when our excursion returned in early afternoon, we went to the Living Room, where they had small sandwiches and desserts available. (That venue also had tapas in the early evening.) Other days, I would grab a burger (delicious) from the Patio or a salad from Windows and eat by the pool. Service: Service on the ship was excellent. The staff and crew would always greet us – our cabin attendants would open our door for us if they were nearby when we were returning. The pool staff were constantly walking around to clear up towels from vacated chairs and to take drink orders and clear up empty glasses. Entertainment: The entertainment was excellent. The ship’s cruise director and assistant cruise director each did a couple of shows and they were great performers. The ship also had an onboard troupe of six performers (four dancers and two singers/dancers) who did three different shows during our sailing. We were also entertained by a violinist, a magician/comic, and a pianist/singer, who joined the ship at different ports during the sailing. The violinist was a special treat for this voyage because of his work with Cuban musicians and students – and because he was joined for one piece by his young son, an incipient star. This was in addition to the pianist in the lounge and the ship orchestra and instrumental trio playing at different times throughout the ship. Our only complaint was about the volume – the cabaret shows would have been much nicer several dB lower. Ports: With the exception of Sint Maarten, we used the ship excursions in all of the ports. Cuba: The tour guides both days were very knowledgeable and answered all of our questions. The bus was quite comfortable as well. Cuba is a very interesting place to visit for many obvious reasons. There are very few private cars and most people use buses or shared vans for transportation. The six-lane highway leading to Havana was almost empty and there was little traffic in Havana itself, something unimaginable in most other national capitals. Most of the urban-area buildings are in various stages of disrepair, which is a shame because they looked as if they had been beautiful before the revolution. Houses in the outlying areas looked better-maintained. We did the Jewish Heritage tour our first day in Havana and visited a Jewish Cemetery, two synagogues, and a Jewish-owned boutique hotel. We got to meet with a community leader at one of the synagogues and he answered our questions about the Jewish community’s history and current life. Our second day in Havana, we went to Ernest Hemingway’s house in San Francisco de Paula (about 9 miles from Havana), and were able to see how he lived and the tower next to the house in which he did his writing. We then went to one of his favorite bars in Cojimar, where we saw “his table” and enjoyed a daiquiri made the way he drank them. We then went into Havana to another of his favorite bars (how many did he have?) and braved the crowds to have a mojito. We then had time to walk around the cathedral and other historical sections before returning to the ship. Aruba: As we had never been to Aruba before, we took a ship excursion tour of the island. This tour included a visit to an aloe processing plant, a lighthouse, a natural bridge, and the fascinating Casibari Rock Formations, which I’d like to visit again to see the petroglyphs. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and the bus was fairly new and very comfortable. Curaçao: Again, this was our first visit so we took the ship excursion for an island tour. We got to see a coastal national park to see the cliffs and rock formations along the coast and watch the strong surf. We also visited a lovely beach, the old salt flats in an unrealized hope to see the flamingos, and a former estate house most recently occupied by a famous local artist. As was the case in Aruba, the tour guide was quite knowledgeable and bus very comfortable. After a quick lunch in the Living Room, I hiked from the port into town to see the old synagogue, which we couldn’t tour because it was closed on Sunday. This also gave me an opportunity to walk across the Queen Emma Bridge, a pontoon bridge that floats on the water and swings off to the side to let ships through. I also was able to get a closer view of the Queen Wilhelmina Bridge, the tallest bridge in the world, and two other small lift bridges in Willemstad. Bonaire: Another new island and another ship excursion tour. The tour guide was knowledgeable, but the tour company used a smaller bus that was not as comfortable, especially for those stuck in the seats over the wheels. We got to see Bonaire’s lovely coastline, old salt flats with many flamingos raising their young, an old house showing how the early island residents lived, some slave huts right on the coast by the salt flats, and a modern salt processing operation. The tour guide was very good, but she had to keep telling the driver to slow down so we could take photographs. St. Barts: Although we had been to St. Barts five years earlier, we had seen only the port area in the capital so we took another island tour. This tour was in a mini-van and the tour guide was not very effective at discussing much about the island characteristics. We did get to see several beaches and the beautiful island geography. The company arranging the tours should have done a better job preparing a guide for the driver to use. Sint Maarten: We’ve been there several times and I decided to have a beach day. I had searched the web before the trip and found that two bars with beach chair/umbrella rental facilities had reopened at Orient Beach so I decided to go there for the day. There is a taxi rank right off the pier complex and the people there will assemble groups to various destinations. I was able to share a taxi with few other visitors (from another ship) and paid only $9 for the trip instead of the $25 the trip would have cost for just me. The taxi dropped us off mid-beach near the Bikini Beach bar, which looked nice. However, someone at the port had told me that Kon Tiki, a short walk down the beach, had better food. I paid $15 for an umbrella and comfortable chaise (including a cushion) for the day. There were attendants patrolling the beach to take food and drink orders, and the bar and restaurant looked great and had brand new facilities. So I had a lovely day on the beach watching people windsurfing and doing other watersports. Bermuda: We’ve been to Bermuda twice before, but we were docked at the Royal Dockyards at the far end of the island. We took ferry trips to Hamilton and to St. Georges, but had never seen the Bermuda countryside. This itinerary had us docked right in downtown Hamilton so we were able to walk around to see the shops and restaurants. We also took a ship excursion that drove along the south coast of the island to the Royal Dockyards, giving us a chance to see the lovely beaches for which Bermuda is famous and some historical areas. Embarkation/Disembarkation: Embarkation was fairly smooth with priority processing only for suite guests. While we had completed the forms for the Cuban visas, we forgot to bring copies with us, so we had to take time to write out second copies, which the port people insisted we needed even though we had copies at home. Disembarkation was slower than normal, probably because the immigration people had not planned on the high percentage of non-U.S. citizens, who took longer to process. Once through immigration, we located our luggage and found a porter quickly, who then took us out to the drop-off area. We were picking up a rental car and driving home, so I walked about 2 ½ blocks to the car rental office, picked up the car, drove back to the pier, picked up DW and our luggage, and headed through the Lincoln Tunnel. I think I spent more time in line at the car rental office than it took to get to the office and drive back and get to the tunnel. Overall experience: This itinerary was an excellent balance of port and sea days, with 8 ½ days in port and 6 ½ days at sea. The majority of the passengers were from the United Kingdom, which was a new experience for us, and we got to chat with a lot of people from places we had only read about. With fewer than 700 passengers on a smaller ship, we were more likely to bump into the same people repeatedly and get to know them. Even with open seating at dinner, we wound up having the same tablemates a few times and would greet each other by name when we were walking around the ship or sitting in the cabaret. Another pleasurable aspect of the cruise was that we didn’t feel hassled to spend money. Drinks and wine were included if we didn’t request premium brands, as were coffees. And there was no constant sales pressure to eat in the specialty restaurants, as we’ve experienced on other lines. The senior ship staff were always present and visible – the hotel director would frequently assist seating passengers in Discoveries and we saw the Captain walking around the tables at least once. The captain and hotel director were at the gangplank every morning when we left the ship for our excursions, wishing us a good visit. Captain Johannes and Cruise Director Eric had a constant repartee during the noon announcements, with the captain teasing the CD about his shirt every day and the CD finding something funny to say in response. They obviously have a great relationship and that enhanced the voyage. This was the best cruise we have ever taken, thanks to the ship staff and crew, ship size, passenger friendliness, food quality, and itinerary. We are looking forward to another. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We wanted to experience South America and visit the above two places. The ports of call did not disappoint. We bought the indulgence package which was well worth the extra money. - The app needs work. It’s not updated and does not ... Read More
We wanted to experience South America and visit the above two places. The ports of call did not disappoint. We bought the indulgence package which was well worth the extra money. - The app needs work. It’s not updated and does not match the daily program. There is a lot of paper that could be saved...... The food never disappoints and the staff go out of there way to please you. We never meet so many like minded people up to the last day! The entertainment was solid and there are plenty of activities. The specialty restaurants are also top notch in food and service as well. The bar staff in the Den were brilliant. The crossing was great and the captain diverted the ship for us to see Fernando de Noronha island, 200 miles off the coast of Brazil. On our last leg from Casablanca to Lisbon, the captain did a brilliant job of steering the vessel so that we would feel the least amount of effects of storm heading towards us. He succeed brilliantly. A master class of navigation and meteorology! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
I just took my first cruise on the Azamara Journey and was highly impressed with the ship, crew, food, and friendliness of the passengers. I had received an extremely good deal on an obstructed ocean view cabin and luckily was able to ... Read More
I just took my first cruise on the Azamara Journey and was highly impressed with the ship, crew, food, and friendliness of the passengers. I had received an extremely good deal on an obstructed ocean view cabin and luckily was able to select cabin 6036, which is between lifeboats and thus not very obstructed. I was pleasantly surprised how well laid out this cabin was and it was totally acceptible for one person with alot of closet space. The bed was extremely comfortable and the pillows were soft and easy to sleep on. I enjoyed the smaller ship experience and how friendly the passengers and crew were. The service was exceptional and the food was much better than other, larger ships I have been on. I liked the way the buffet was arranged at dinner with tablecloths and candles, so you felt like you were in a restaurant rather than a cafeteria setting. The ship tours were more expensive but they were much smaller than other ships, with an average participation of about 12-15 persons per tour. It was simple to get on and off the ship and particularly convenient to be docked closer to the ports. I booked several other cruises on Azamara because I felt the higher cost of the line was definitely worth the enhanced experience. It is especially good for solo travelers as Azamara seems to cater to those traveling alone, and the passengers are so friendly and welcoming to everyone. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Have only ever sailed with Celebrity but wanted to try Azamara while still attaining credits to our Celebrity Captains Club status. Pleasantly surprised, smaller ship but never felt overcrowded, crew were wonderful and met some lovely ... Read More
Have only ever sailed with Celebrity but wanted to try Azamara while still attaining credits to our Celebrity Captains Club status. Pleasantly surprised, smaller ship but never felt overcrowded, crew were wonderful and met some lovely passengers. Our first transatlantic which was leisurely but not tedious despite five and a half days at sea due to an itinerary change because of predicted bad weather at original ports of call. Found the main dining room too noisy and tables too close to each other so used Windows buffet for dinner which had plenty of choice and a more relaxed atmosphere compared to Celebrity.My husband enjoyed the daily talks by the retired Concorde Pilot but we found the evening entertainment limited. Quest has some signs of age but spotlessly clean throughouthe. Embarkation/Disembarkation very well organised. The staff and Officers were the friendliest we have ever encountered on a cruise ship.Very enjoyable and hope to sail Azamara again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Highly recommend Azamara Club Cruises. I can only give a recommendation for the Azamara Quest ship as I have not traveled on the Journey or new Pursuit yet. First time on Azamara and as long as the Quest does not get rid of their live ... Read More
Highly recommend Azamara Club Cruises. I can only give a recommendation for the Azamara Quest ship as I have not traveled on the Journey or new Pursuit yet. First time on Azamara and as long as the Quest does not get rid of their live dealer table games in their casino, it will not be my last. I loved this cruise and line and the service and meals and everything about it. It was nice being on a cruiseline that really takes care of its guests. It was easily 5 star service. There are so many people who I knew and was on a first name basis with throughout the cruise and I'm not talking about the passengers, but the staff who were great and went above and beyond any prior cruise expectation I had had. I booked my cruise through a cruise travel expert, who, in turn booked every aspect through Azamara. From the first meeting in the baggage claim at the Miami airport, to the representative making sure we were all on the bus and on the way to the Lisbon airport, they had every single detail covered. It was like clockwork! The hotel check-ins were smooth and easy and they were well prepared for us. To the buses from the hotel to the pier before the cruise and to the hotel from the pier after the cruise. The ship check-in was the smoothest ever. There was literally no line, we walked right up, handed in our cruise ticket and credit card. Pictures were taken and we were given our ship pass/room key and away we went. Everything was easy! Upon arrival on the ship, champagne was provided, they didn't ask for our room card to charge the drink, it was free. In fact, the back of the bar menu showed all of the free alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. All eating venues (with the exception of the two speciality restaurants) were included and the speciality restaurants weren't terribly expensive for the quality we received. Being docked in town was truly amazing. It was nice being on a small ship that was able to be right in the center of things. Literally off the ship and in the middle of town. Never had that experience on the larger ships that I have cruised on in the past. All communication from the captain was top notch, as well as from the cruise director, Tony. The activities planned from trivia to bingo to blackjack tournaments, guest lecturers, dance lessons, improv classes and the numerous musical events and shows were all unique and interesting to do throughout the cruise. The ship's officers were very visible throughout the cruise. The captain was available to speak to regularly, and many of the passengers were invited to dine with the officers during the cruise. It was truly a wonderful experience sitting with an officer and talking about his experiences and responsibilities. Captain Magnus truly commands a fine ship and wonderful crew. Almost every crew member I encountered really took care of me and other guests. Truly received wonderful service from the following team members: Ernest, Diana, Tony, Julia, Milda, Marina, Nikhil, Leon, Rebecca, Raymon, Ashley, Ernesto, Nikolai, Daniel, Yeldana, Shayla, Alicea, Mariana. I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting as I met so many wonderful crew members who graciously gave of themselves and made the voyage more enjoyable. Much different than the larger ships where you hardly get to know the crew at all, and certainly don't receive the same personal attention as you do on the Azamara Quest. Highly recommend you checking out Azamara Club Cruises, especially if you prefer port intensive trips and if you enjoy many days at sea on a transatlantic cruise. I've come home from my vacation truly relaxed and I have Azamara to thank. Keep up the good work and I can't wait until my next cruise with Azamara. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Great cruise on the Azamara Quest from Barcelona to Miami. Due to the hurricanes in the Caribbean, the itinerary was changed to eliminate St. Maarten and San Juan and spend two nights in Hamilton Bermuda instead. It turned out to be ... Read More
Great cruise on the Azamara Quest from Barcelona to Miami. Due to the hurricanes in the Caribbean, the itinerary was changed to eliminate St. Maarten and San Juan and spend two nights in Hamilton Bermuda instead. It turned out to be great with warm weather in Bermuda and having the ship docked right in Hamilton. The white night was in Hamilton and the weather was perfect for dinner and dancing on the deck. This was our first transatlantic and we were a little concerned about all the sea days, but it was very good with plenty of activities and also time by the pool to relax. The ship stopped in Gibraltar and and Funchal prior to the Atlantic crossing. Both stops were very interesting and we enjoyed the excursions. The staff on the Quest was fantastic and the food was great at the main dining restaurant and the specialty restaurants also. We did the Chef's table that had wine pairings with all five courses. The entertainment was good with a mix of music, comedy, and dancing. The other great thing about a 16 day cruise on a small ship is that you get to meet great people and make friendships that will last well beyond the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
The Quest is a beautiful small ship. This was the second of our b2b. The food everywhere is excellent. The standard drink package is perfectly good for us. The wines were very nice, so we neither needed to order anything special nor a ... Read More
The Quest is a beautiful small ship. This was the second of our b2b. The food everywhere is excellent. The standard drink package is perfectly good for us. The wines were very nice, so we neither needed to order anything special nor a bottle of wine. We had an Ocean Suite all the way forward 6002. Loved the veranda even though it seemed awkwardly laid out. I still have no idea why there is a Butler. Ours, Eyup, was really a very nice man and always asked if we needed anything. He brought tea and set it up for us unless we asked him not to. The suit was nice but was a little worn. The breakfast in discoveries was always wonderful. There were brunches on Sundays, I didn’t really have any feelings about it. The food was excellent no matter which venu. The bartenders were great as well. The Casino was woefully under used. The 2 shops on board didn’t have much variety, and whomever is the vendor should look into that. There were activities going on all the time Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Our second Azamara cruise and it did not disappoint. Incredible service, wonderful crew, excellent food. It is an absolutely wonderful cruising environment. It is so nice to be in a small "community" and be able to recognize ... Read More
Our second Azamara cruise and it did not disappoint. Incredible service, wonderful crew, excellent food. It is an absolutely wonderful cruising environment. It is so nice to be in a small "community" and be able to recognize and meet so many of the crew and passengers. Let me state, unequivocally, that this will not be our last Azamara cruise. So....the "but:" The ship is one of the Renaissance R1 ships and it is definitely showing its age. The cabins were renovated in 2016, but are already showing substantial wear and shoddy workmanship. The new wall covering was peeling in several places and the shower stall had walls that were delaminating. In speaking to fellow passengers, our situation was definitely not uncommon. Additionally, some of the public areas are badly in need of some TLC. The tile around the pool was cracked in several places and the grout was missing as well. Given the premium price one pays for Azamara, this is inexcusable. While we are in our mid-60's, we were definitely among the youngest passengers on this sailing, and it is clear that most of the entertainment was aimed at an older demographic. While we didn't sail on Azamara for the entertainment, it was a bit of a disappointment that we did not enjoy most of the cabaret shows. So....all in all, an absolutely wonderful sailing, but not flawless. We can't wait to return to Azamara! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This was our fifth cruise with Azamara and our third on the same route. We chose the route twice before as one or other of us had had knee surgery and this repositioning cruise includes many relaxing sea days. The itinerary includes the ... Read More
This was our fifth cruise with Azamara and our third on the same route. We chose the route twice before as one or other of us had had knee surgery and this repositioning cruise includes many relaxing sea days. The itinerary includes the option to visit both Luxor and Petra. On the previous cruises we weren’t fit enough to take these strenuous tours, but this time we intended to, and did, ‘tick off’ both these bucket list destinations. We had stayed in Athens twice before, so decided to look for a hotel in Piraeus and we found a great one. The Phidias Piraeus is a small boutique hotel very well located close to the Zea Marina, which has an interesting range of boats from luxury cruisers to small fishing boats. The road around the Marina has many restaurants and bars, so is an ideal place to find dinner. The hotel itself was great. The receptionist could not have been more helpful. Our room was small but very tastefully decorated in a modern style and the bathroom was nice - everything was very clean. Breakfast was great, too. They took us to the port the next morning at 12 on their free shuttle, along with about 12 other Azamara passengers who were staying there. As usual embarkation was quick and easy and well before 1:00 we were on board sipping a glass of bubbly. We went straight to the speciality restaurants reservation table in Windows(buffet) to buy a 3 meal dining package for the speciality restaurants and make our bookings, then had lunch in the Patio. By 2:00 we were in our verandah stateroom (7021) unpacking. Our steward, Luis, was happy to get us some metal coat hangers to supplement the ones provided. The cabin was very comfortable, with lots of storage space. We had asked for a queen bed configuration, and bed was huge and extremely comfortable. The balcony was small but had a table and two chairs - big enough for us to sit out there. We ate most dinners in Discoveries (MDR) and overall the food was excellent. We had some main courses that were outstanding - lamb chops, surf and turf, filet mignon, lobster with scallops and shrimp risotto. Azamara generally does soups well too - favourites include red pepper soup and Thai seafood soup. There were two or three misses though - garlic soup that tasted of rubber, veal chops that were tough and Thai beef curry that tasted like stewed beef, but these were very much the exception. We usually shared tables at dinner, often with the same group of people who all went to the Discoveries bar at about the same time (7:30) and had many lovely sociable meals. We ate twice in Prime C and once in Aqualina and these were all outstanding meals. We mostly had lunch at the Patio (my husband thinks the Azamara special burger is unbeatable) and breakfast in Windows. Although we were happy with the included drinks, we felt that the quality of the wine was lower than on our last cruise, a year before. After dinner, we often went to the Cabaret Lounge to watch some or all of the show. Mostly these were song and dance shows by the ship’s group of entertainers, including the talented Eric De Gray, the Cruise Director. During our 16 nights aboard there were two guest artists - a comedian and a cellist, but we didn’t see either of them. On a few nights we ended the evening dancing to disco in the Living Room, with the DJ Marcio. On this cruise there was a good crowd up there most nights. The Azamazing Evening was, unusually, a little underwhelming! It was in Wadi Rum, which is a beautiful setting, but the entertainment was folk dancing, which was very repetitive. It was men in white robes (plus a boy) waving swords and dancing. There was wine to drink but the only food was flat bread made by a couple of women sitting at the base of the stage. As we were sitting near the back we didn’t even get to try it! It also became quite cold once the sun set, as the sky was clear. We enjoyed the sea days, as we love sitting on a sun bed on deck 11. That means that I can’t comment on the lectures, art classes or bridge lessons - we didn’t get to any of them. From Aqaba to Muscat the ship was subject to high security - there was a team of security guards onboard and all outdoor areas had to be kept dark between dusk and dawn. We had to close our curtains at dusk and not use our verandah light. Deck 9 was only accessible after dark by ‘smoker’s corner’ - but the added bonus was that the view of the starry sky was wonderful with no light pollution! As always with Azamara the service was generally excellent. Senior Officers were very evident - we spoke to the captain a couple of times, and the Hotel Director, Heike, was everywhere - directing people to buses in port, welcoming us back to the ship. The other thing that always impresses is with Azamara is the general friendliness onboard - crew and passengers alike, and this cruise was no exception. Ports:- Crete - Agios Nikolas - we went on the little blue land train. We took the 70 minute tour for €13, which went up into the hills to a view point over Elounda and Spinalonga as well as back over Agios Nikolas, then had a walk around this pretty little town. Egypt - Safaga - we took a 2 day private tour with Your Egypt Tours which included Karnak Temple, Luxor Temple, a sunset felucca ride on the Nile, an overnight stay at the 5 star Steigenberger Hotel on the banks of the Nile, the Valley of the Kings, Queen Hatshepsut’s Temple and the Colossi of Memnon - all for $160. We also had some optional charged extras - the Light & Sound Show after dark at Karnak Temple and visits to King Tutankhamen’s and King Seti’s tomb. I loved the Light & Sound Show, but my husband found it boring. The two extra tombs were well worth the extra charge, especially Seti’s tomb - the paintings there were amazing, so fresh and vibrant. Jordan - Aqaba - we went on the ship’s excursion to Petra. A very hard day, but also well worth it. We walked for 5/6 miles on uneven ground - not so bad on the way there as it’s downhill, but hard work coming back uphill. You can pay to go in a carriage, but we didn’t fancy it, they went pretty fast and the passengers looked as if they were being thrown around a lot. The walk through the Siq is interesting as the rocks are amazing colours, then you get your first glimpse of the Treasury - the iconic building that you see in every bit of information about Petra. It’s amazing, but there is so much more to Petra - lots more carved buildings and even an amphitheatre. Oman - Salalah - we didn’t get off the ship as it was very hot (88) and the port was 25km from the town. Oman - Muscat - we took the ship’s free shuttle to The Muttrah Souq, which is huge. The main path is where all the souvenir stalls are, but it’s more interesting on the side and outer paths where there are stalls and shops selling goods designed for locals, such as shops selling abayas (Arab black dresses). We spent a couple of hours wandering around the Souq and the surrounding area. UAE - Dubai - took the ship’s free shuttle to the Dubai Mall. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We had been on Azamara before and pretty much knew what to expect except now it is mostly all inclusive. One of the things we really enjoyed was eating lunch in the main dining room on sea days (and we had 10 of them). I thought it would ... Read More
We had been on Azamara before and pretty much knew what to expect except now it is mostly all inclusive. One of the things we really enjoyed was eating lunch in the main dining room on sea days (and we had 10 of them). I thought it would be crowded but it was not at all- never had a wait. They usually had one breakfast type entree to choose from- good for us late risers! Service was excellent across the board. They had two nice brunches, one on our Sunday sea day and the other on Easter Sunday, also a sea day. We went to the "song and dance" shows and they were good. Lots of activities and guest lecturers for those who were interested. My only issue with the theater was that for some reason the screen has kind of a "hash tag" look which I found distracting. I mentioned this on the mid-cruise survey and they called and advised it's for some operational reason and can't be helped. However, the same movies are shown in-cabin normally the next day so it wasn't a big deal. Our favorite bar was the Sunset bar, and one of the places we liked to eat was the Patio- more "down home" type food than the main dining room. Also, it has a nice salad bar which we enjoyed. Again, service was excellent. Our room stewards were very good as well. Especially when you have so many sea days it's nice to have attentive stewards. Ports - we did a private tour in Gibraltar- that was the way to go (review is on Trip Advisor). We did a ship's tour in Tangier, Morocco because of the limited time we were in port and it was a disaster! We couldn't understand 95% of what the guide side (heavy accent, soft voice) and he did things out of order from what we expected. I have read other reviews and it seems that this is an area where Azamara really needs some help. I mentioned it to the Land Discoveries people and they advised they would look into it. My advice is if at all possible do a private tour. We didn't do much besides those two ports in one case because of pouring rain and the other cases because we had been there before. Enjoyed getting to know fellow passengers as well. Only thing kind of strange was that we never saw our final bill. We sort of had it "in our heads" and it seemed about right but it would have been nice to have it printed out. They had a long line at Guest Services when we disembarked so didn't bother to try and get one there. Transatlantics are not for everyone- however if you want to get some R & R and some activities as chosen they can be great! Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Fourth cruise with Azamara (and fourth cruise ever!). Wonderful to do the Trans Atlantic and it was all that I have come to expect on Azamara. Once again the whole crew from Captain Carl down were so friendly, professional and engaged. The ... Read More
Fourth cruise with Azamara (and fourth cruise ever!). Wonderful to do the Trans Atlantic and it was all that I have come to expect on Azamara. Once again the whole crew from Captain Carl down were so friendly, professional and engaged. The stateroom was always beautifully presented and the bed was very comfortable. Food was great and the whole ambience of the ship was so relaxing and perfect for a luxury break. Really interesting ports - loved the Azores and Gibralter and Tangier and Huelva were great. So good to have an overnight in Barcelona - and the ships tours and shuttle service were outstanding.The other passengers were a great mix of friendly, interesting and well travelled people.Loved every moment and special thanks to Juan (my room person), Ketut, Ruby, Bagus, Aldin and Daria (brilliant bar staff), Russell on room service and Alfred in Windows! Researching my next Azamara cruise - that says it all! Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We have cruised well over 30 times and this was one of the best experiences ever! It started with Captain Carl Smith. He was so wonderful and full of personality. The crew was exceptional and what's best of all, no samm annoying ... Read More
We have cruised well over 30 times and this was one of the best experiences ever! It started with Captain Carl Smith. He was so wonderful and full of personality. The crew was exceptional and what's best of all, no samm annoying fee's for every liquid beverage. That's right! Drinks and gratuities were not billed separately. The shows, crew and size of the ship was perfect for us! The selection of ports of calls was a perfect pick. Embarkation was the quickest we have ever seen. No long lines getting on and off of the vessel. The food was of great quality and offered a variety of local dishes which is a great way to live local. Rather you are a first time traveler ( we sailed with a couple who enjoyed their first) or a seasoned professional ( as we like to think we are) Azamara is a great choice. Bill and Gladys Mercurio Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was our fourth Azamara cruise. We chose it specifically because it started in New Orleans, a city we had always wanted to visit. We stayed in New Orleans, at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel on Iberville Street, for 5 nights and loved ... Read More
This was our fourth Azamara cruise. We chose it specifically because it started in New Orleans, a city we had always wanted to visit. We stayed in New Orleans, at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel on Iberville Street, for 5 nights and loved the city. Our hotel was extremely well located on the edge of the French Quarter and we were pleased with it. Embarkation was, as usual, quick and easy and we were soon on board drinking our welcome glass of bubbly. Our stateroom on deck 6 was a verandah stateroom. There was plenty of storage space in the cabin, and the bed was very comfy. The large TV opposite the bed was great and there is a reasonable selection of channels to watch. The bathroom was small, with a small shower with a curtain, but it was fine and we liked the new shelves for storage as well as the cupboard under the sink. I always take a couple of sets of cloth pockets to hang on the hooks on the inside of the bathroom door so that I can find a home for everything. We mainly used Discoveries (MDR) for our evening meal. We felt that the food had regained its Wow factor (missing on our last cruise). We loved the fact that although you can see the menu on the TV and outside the dining room each day, there are two main course dishes (Chefs Special and World Destination special) that are a surprise until your waiter tells you about them. The menu always had a great choice, with some dishes, such as Escargots in garlic butter, Prawns with Marie Rose sauce, New York strip steak, Salmon repeated every day alongside all the dishes of the day and the specials. Dining on Azamara is free time dining and most days we were able to be seated when we were ready (usually between 7:30 and 8:00pm). Sometimes we shared with others and sometimes had a table for two. We also bought a good value package for the two speciality restaurants - Prime C and Aqualina. The cover charge is normally $30 for each, but for $70 you can make 3 bookings. Meals there are exceptional, even better than the excellent quality in the MDR. We had breakfast and lunch in Windows - there were always plenty of choices and the food was lovely. You could have Bucks Fizz ( Mimosa) or Bloody Mary for breakfast if you wanted! I particularly enjoyed the ginger based 'Energiser' smoothie every morning. Most of the entertainment was very good. There was a pianist and guitarist who played in various venues and there were shows in the cabaret lounge. All the shows were good except one comedian who failed to get a laugh! We also enjoyed joining a trivia quiz team and taking part in the daily quizzes. We went ashore in all but one of the Caribbean islands the ship visited. We did not use any of the ship's excursions on the islands but did our own thing. In Grand Cayman we just had a walk around the town. In Port Antonio, Jamaica we got a taxi to give us a tour of the area, including the Blue Lagoon - not cheap at $40 a head for a couple of hours. In Curaçao we just had a wander around Wilhemstadt - very pretty little town with plenty of shops and restaurants and an interesting market along the canal. In St Barts we just had a look around - very expensive place, window shopping was the order of the day, as well as walk to Shell Beach which was nice. At St Maarten we took a taxi to Mahoe Beach ($20 a head) right next to the airport runway. Good fun standing right under the flight path as jets come in close over your head. At Nevis we took a taxi ($20 a head) to the Botanic Gardens and the Montpelier Plantation (Princess Di's favourite Hotel). The gardens are beautiful - well worth visiting. As we had a few hours before our plane home from Miami, we took a ship's excursion on the Hop On Hop Off bus. This was excellent - the bus picked us up at the dockside, including our luggage. Our luggage was then stored for us at Bayside Marketplace whilst we took the bus on the Blue, Miami Beach, route which we loved. Then we had an hour or so wandering around Baysie Marketplace which had a good range of shops, cafes and restaurants. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our first with Azamara, a repo from New Orleans to Miami. Part of our promotion was a overnite in NO with a dinner cruise on the Natchez Queen which was lovely. We stayed at the Doubletree Inn in the French Quarter -- good ... Read More
This was our first with Azamara, a repo from New Orleans to Miami. Part of our promotion was a overnite in NO with a dinner cruise on the Natchez Queen which was lovely. We stayed at the Doubletree Inn in the French Quarter -- good location, clean room. We had a handicapped accessible room due to DH use of a scooter which was on the 7th floor. First morning there -- a power failure (30 sec.) caused ALL elevators to stop working and we were stuck in our room for 5 hours. Why the designers of this hotel had all elevators on one system was extremely poor planning not to mention dangerous for safety reasons. After complimentary room service --- manager was finally able to get us on one of the service elevators so we could catch our Gray Line tour --- only for the elevator to quit between the second and first floor !! As the manager was with us --- staff on the other side of the door were finally able to get us out --- really funny when we talked about it later but not at that moment. The Big Easy is "OK" -- we really didn't get too see very much -- would have liked to see a plantation or two and more of the country. Bourbon Street is just a dark, dirty,narrow alley IMO. Didn't impress us at all. The Quest is a lovely ship -- the smallest we have cruised on to date. The service is OUTSTANDING. You couldn't ask for a more happy and accommodating crew !! Our Club Continental suite was wonderful -- so much more room than the original V 2 balcony I had booked. Actually was able to look into one and I have never seen such a small, cramped room and balcony. Of course, the CC came with a much higher price tag but we would have been very uncomfortable in the first one not to mention no space for DH's scooter ! Only drawback to Suite 8063 were the loud noises during the night from the deck above (Windows Cafe) from rolling carts and furniture. Islands: Were "ok" --- poor planning on Azamara's Itinerary Dept. to schedule Jamaica and St. Bart on Sundays when everything is closed -- not even a mini mart to grab a snack or two. Would choose the Quest again but i will look for better prices in the future. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
The dates fit into our schedule.The food was very ok on this ship. Not bad, not great. Too many people at the buffet lines and tables. MDR too physically crowded. The shows were fabulous. Momma Mia was Broadway quality. The shows were ... Read More
The dates fit into our schedule.The food was very ok on this ship. Not bad, not great. Too many people at the buffet lines and tables. MDR too physically crowded. The shows were fabulous. Momma Mia was Broadway quality. The shows were great.The cabin was a good size with a nice seating area. There was plenty of storage for 2 people. Also we enjoyed our excursions specially in country of oman with the best tourism Company there ( Lifetime-tours),Oman was my third stop on a four country vacation and I immediately fell in love with this country. At first I could not put my finger on why, but I think it was the heart of the people that made this place special. Ahmed, our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable and professional. He spoke with a certain pride about his country and I could see why. He took great care to make sure we had a great time and he altered the tour a bit due to my disability to make sure I could still experience a Wadi, but just not a challenging.Also the excellent service and organisation we had with this agency.Finally it was everything beautiful and relaxing. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
After cruising on all the "regular" lines since the 70's, my husband and I sailed a step up on Azamara. We mainly chose this line because it was convenient for us. We had our Retirement trip and stayed in Italy for 10 days ... Read More
After cruising on all the "regular" lines since the 70's, my husband and I sailed a step up on Azamara. We mainly chose this line because it was convenient for us. We had our Retirement trip and stayed in Italy for 10 days and wanted to do a trans atlantic cruise back across the pond. Wow are we glad we took Azamara! Everything was excellent. No lines, no screaming children, no rock climbing walls. Just pure relaxation. The beds are fantastic and the linens sublime. The service is impeccable. The food is awesome even in the main dining room and the pool grill. There was always a deck chair and always a clean table at the buffet which was the best I have seen at sea. This is not a "party" ship. Mostly older folks 55 to 70. Since I fit in that category I felt right at home. I now understand why over 40% of the passengers are repeat customers. They only have two ships but for everything the provide including wine, cocktails,sodas and specialty coffees at NO EXTRA CHARGE it is worth every dime. So after 20 something cruises I am now a loyal Azamara fan. Just wish I had become one sooner. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This was our first Azamara cruise and we liked it so much, we've already booked our next one. We were fortunate to be the first passengers after the refit in Singapore and we found a beautifully appointed ship with comfortable places ... Read More
This was our first Azamara cruise and we liked it so much, we've already booked our next one. We were fortunate to be the first passengers after the refit in Singapore and we found a beautifully appointed ship with comfortable places to relax, have a drink, meet friends, eat a wonderful dinner, or have a quiet moment. What we loved about the size of the ship is there are no lines like you get on the standard cruises - no long wait to embark, no hunting for a table at breakfast or lunch, no lines to go off on a shore excursion, no lines at any of the dining venues, and always a comfy lounger by the pool! Everything was elegant, civilized, amazingly clean, comfortable and relaxed. Nothing was snobby and I was happy to see people had left the ball caps and cut offs as well as the ball gowns at home. We met people from all over the world and everyone was warm and friendly. I would be remiss if I didn't mention the service. Every single person, from the cabin attendants to the Captain were friendly, helpful and available to all the guests and we each were made to feel like family. We filled out a survey on the third day about how things were going. I mentioned that the entertainment in the Living Room during the cocktail and tapas hours was too loud for conversation. I received calls from the cruise director, the head of hotel services and from guest relations. The music was immediately toned down (and the number of people in the bar increased) and I was thanked several times for speaking up. Everyone made an effort to know our names, and after the first few days, knew what we liked to drink and where we liked to sit. We chose to add the "Like" package to our cruise and would definitely do it again. This program came out after we had booked our shore excursions which meant we had to cancel some before the cruise to use the $400 credit for excursions booked on-board. I stressed about this, for no reason it turns out, because there was room available on all the excursions we had cancelled. I was very pleased with the unlimited wi-fi and posted lots of pictures for family and friends to follow. As well, we were happy with the included liquor package upgrade and were able to choose everything we usually drink at home. We also added a dining package and ate at Aqualina two nights and Prime C one. Next time we'll switch it up. Both are excellent although I felt the lighting in Aqualina could be dimmed a little for more atmosphere. We spent a few days in Singapore before the start of the cruise which let us recover from the very long plane ride from home and explore this very interesting (and ridiculously clean) city. We easily mastered the metro and saw the Botanical Gardens, Gardens by the Bay, rode the Singapore Flyer, took a bumboat ride and a trishaw tour. We also became somewhat acclimated to the high heat and humidity that we would experience wherever we stopped on the cruise. I would recommend a visit here for anyone passing through this way. Only one shore excursion took us to the dreaded 'craft sale' but it did have a western bathroom which was a redeeming factor. We saw a lot, learned even more and have so many memories. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We traveled with Azamara to the Caribbean in December 2015. We were so impressed we decided to book the transatlantic crossing and we were not disappointed. The service on Azamara is excellent. I also like the fact that this is all ... Read More
We traveled with Azamara to the Caribbean in December 2015. We were so impressed we decided to book the transatlantic crossing and we were not disappointed. The service on Azamara is excellent. I also like the fact that this is all inclusive so there is no "card swiping" every time you order a drink. The smaller cruise ships do not feel crowded and getting seats in the bar or around the pool is never a problem. The crowd on this cruise tends to be older, so if you are looking for lots of activities and night life this is probably not the cruise for you. Entertainment has never been a strong point for Azamara, which we knew prior to the cruise and as a result we did not attend many of the shows. The selection of TV shows / channels is limited and I would have liked to see a larger selection of free movies. I do find the internet expensive and wish that it was included in the price of the cruise, however that is the only negative. The food was very good. We did not eat in any of the specialty restaurants. The all inclusive options were very good and we prefer the more laid back style of the outdoor and buffet restaurants. The ports of call on this cruise were all excellent. It was stated that there would be no taxis in Nice where we disembarked and we needed to book a shuttle with Azamara. This was not the case. Taxis were plentiful and we would have saved money by taking a taxi, since the shuttle did not go to our hotel. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We enjoyed five days in Miami enjoying some much wanted winter warmth before boarding the ship. We stayed at the Intercontinental Miami which is very convenient to the port but perhaps a little impersonal. Maybe next time we will stay in ... Read More
We enjoyed five days in Miami enjoying some much wanted winter warmth before boarding the ship. We stayed at the Intercontinental Miami which is very convenient to the port but perhaps a little impersonal. Maybe next time we will stay in a slightly smaller hotel. Embarkation was a breeze and very quickly we were onboard and enjoying the reimagined Azamara Journey. The changes to the ship are really good, the whole décor is lighter and there are two great additions, the Patio, which serves a dining menu outside between 6.30 and 8.30 each night and The Living Room (the old Looking Glass Lounge) which is now busy all day. The Living Room serves lovely Tapas free of charge each evening and is a delightful place for pre dinner drinks. We were excited to discover our refurbished suite on Deck 8 (we've been with Azamara several times) and to find it had a lovely walk in shower and lots of great storage in the room. Our room team kept the room so clean, always nipping in when we were out, like magic elves!. Dining was very good, every meal was excellent and the included wines were really good and better than we enjoyed on a previous Azamara cruise. We are in Prime C, Aqualina, The Main Dining Room, The Windows Café and The Patio. Being a transatlantic cruise, there were lots of entertainments and activities. Trivia was very popular, though I preferred the water colour classes run by Diane and the jewellery making run by the lovely dancer Sasha. There was something for everyone, though unfortunately the enrichment lectures were on subjects that did not have wide appeal. The service on the ship was extremely good, every crew member treats you as an individual and works out what it is that would make a difference for you. Everyone greets you with a smile and all the officers are very visible and will stop and chat with you whenever. We only went on one excursion in the Azores which was a very good one where we visited a pineapple plantation, a small village, saw the vistas of the Blue and Green Lake and finished up with some wine tasting. It was one of the better cruise line excursions we have been on. In other ports we just did our own thing as all were very walkable. No ships shuttles were provided in Gibraltar due to the control of the local taxi association but a shuttle was offered free of charge in Palma. Azores, Alicante and San Tropez did not need a shuttle because of the joys of Azamara, docking right in town. Would we go again with Azamara - were it was so good we booked two more cruises onboard. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We just took the Azamara Journey on the Transatlantic cruise from Miami to Nice. What a terrific ship. Food was always excellent and the staff at the restaurants are absolutely terrific. Not only were they helpful with recommendations ... Read More
We just took the Azamara Journey on the Transatlantic cruise from Miami to Nice. What a terrific ship. Food was always excellent and the staff at the restaurants are absolutely terrific. Not only were they helpful with recommendations but our waiter, Carlo has an absolutely wonderful sense of humor.The bar tenders are great and very knowledgeable. We thoroughly enjoyed The Living Room, their topside lounge. The waiters there soon learned our drinks of choice and were always johnny on the spot with the drinks. Balcony stateroom was decorated beautifully, as was the entire ship. An advantage of this small ship is that the staff gets to know you and soon anticipates your needs. The staff at Guest Relations were always helpful and Heidi, the hotel manager was always around to answer questions and resolve problems. Getting on and off the ship at the various ports is a breeze and the disembarkation process was the best I've ever experienced. The Port stops were excellent with enough time for exploration. Entertainment is only average and management should do better when booking acts, especially the performers who are there for the whole trip. Another concern was the number of service dogs on board. The owners did not appear to need the service dogs for any more than companionship. These dogs were everywhere including the dining rooms. I can easily see this issue getting out of hand. Azamara should more carefully screen the need for these dogs to be on board. We would recommend the Azamara Journey to anyone wanting a great cruise experience Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
Our last Transatlantic cruise was in 2008 when we sailed from Miami to Barcelona, but this cruise on the Quest was far superior in quality. The embarkation in Miami was trouble free, if a little lengthy, simply because so many guests ... Read More
Our last Transatlantic cruise was in 2008 when we sailed from Miami to Barcelona, but this cruise on the Quest was far superior in quality. The embarkation in Miami was trouble free, if a little lengthy, simply because so many guests arrived at the same time. Once on board we were welcomed with champagne and we sat in the lovely Mosaic cafe until our stateroom was available. We were in a Sunset Balcony stateroom which was the usual balcony cabin size but with a much bigger balcony overlooking the aft of the ship. Whilst the cabin size is quite compact and the bathroom small, the cabin was well appointed and immaculately attended to throughout our cruise. Felitiadad, our attendant, and her assistant, could not have been more obliging and friendly. They called us by name immediately and It was a pleasure to see them every day. We ate in Discoveries restaurant each evening and thoroughly enjoyed the food. On one occasion, my steak was only warm and rather tough. After mentioning this to the waiter, it was whipped away and I was served a hot, extremely tender replacement. The waiters in the dining room were exceptional. Nothing was too much trouble. They too, called us by name, quickly knew our tastes, and seemed genuinely interested in us. The Windows restaurant served a varied selection of dishes and , once again, staff were attentive and helpful. Wine with lunch and dinner was of good quality and plentiful. The Mosaic cafe served lattes, cappuccinos, iced coffees and a variety of teas. It was also a delightful spot to sit and 'watch the world go by'. We were exceptionally lucky with the weather and spent many hours on sea days sunning ourselves by the pool. The sun beds were the most comfortable I have ever used and towels were very large and plentiful. Waiters were constantly walking around offering iced drinks and sorbets. Entertainment during the day, was plentiful, and in the evening of extremely good quality for a small ship. The dancers and singers were delightful, and Tony, the Cruise Director, tireless in his involvement. My only criticisms of this cruise were that the itinerary, whilst limited, was somewhat thoughtless, as the two ports on route to Seville, (Bermuda and Tenerife) , both fell on Sundays, when most shops and facilities were closed. The journey down the Guadalquivir River was exciting, as it was quite a navigational feat for the Quest. However, it berthed almost in the centre of Seville. Unfortunately, if you had not booked an extra night in a hotel, you did not get to see the city at all, as disembarkation was early the next morning! There is no question that, God willing, we shall sail again on Azamara. Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
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