4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We found the arrival very easy,straight off the plane on a bus and on to the ship. The ship itself was not my favorite, not easy to navigate around. The seating in some of the public areas was very uncomfortable( the brown sofas in the ... Read More
We found the arrival very easy,straight off the plane on a bus and on to the ship. The ship itself was not my favorite, not easy to navigate around. The seating in some of the public areas was very uncomfortable( the brown sofas in the Squid and Anchor need throwing over board!) The resident entertainment was very good.Some of the guest shows on the other hand went from excellent to awful. The ship was kept very clean and all the staff worked very hard and were very friendly. The food was lovely, we always managed to get a seat or table without any problem. Plenty of places to sun bath ,either quiet or lively by the pool. The cruise itinerary was the reason we choose this particular holiday. We decided to stay on from Southampton to cruise up to Newcastle as it was easier to get home from Newcastle. WERE WE SORRY!!!! From what we heard 600 passengers disembarked, and 400 Tui reps and their family's embarked.( Bearing in mind the average age on the cruise was about 65 and the new passengers where younger ) the lovely cruise was spoiled by the new passengers. They were on for one thing, to get as drunk as possible as quickly as possible, resulting in us not being able to get served for over half an hour at some of the bars and having to suffer drunken behavior from quite a few on them. Not the staffs fault I mite add, purely how fast they where drinking. there were scuffles in the disco and security had to be called. People where also inconsiderate when returning to there cabins.The result was a lot of the original passengers where not very happy. This has ruined the memory of what was otherwise a lovely cruise. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
5 weeks before sailing the cruise was on offer at a good price.Got off to a great start when allocated our outside cabin which was huge! (9006) After that things went downhill a bit. First let me say the ship itself was hit and miss. Great ... Read More
5 weeks before sailing the cruise was on offer at a good price.Got off to a great start when allocated our outside cabin which was huge! (9006) After that things went downhill a bit. First let me say the ship itself was hit and miss. Great theatre with good sight lines. A decent sized cinema.But as a cruise experience did not live up to the standard we have become accustomed to with P@O. On sea days the main pool area was a no go for us,with its loud music,that was not even catered to the average age group of around 65 (it was an adults only cruise).Felt like we were back at Butlins.For anyone who likes to dance the Indigo disco with its small dance floor and no seats was a waste of time.What would on other ships be known as the crows nest was a strange layout and doubled as the casino.It was difficult to get a seat in the squid and anchor pub which was incredibly noisy and consisted of mainly childish game shows.And finally the food.Again hit and miss.as was the service.We finally cottoned on to two excellent waiters Maiko and Benjie one in the vista and one in the latitude restaurants. Service in the tapas and pizza restaurants was good.The staff were more multicultural than on any of our 18 or so other cruises.Some of the entertainment in the evening was good some not so good.Very little in the way of entertainment during the day,no lectures or talks just films in the cinema that tended to repeat.Spoke to people who had cruised on Discovery and much preferred it.All in all,in my opinion a long way to go to match P@O. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Having cruised with Marella (Thomson) since 2011 we were looking forward to another excellent cruise. We did the same repositioning cruise last year, the only problem then was a squeaking from a ship structure which had broken loose and ... Read More
Having cruised with Marella (Thomson) since 2011 we were looking forward to another excellent cruise. We did the same repositioning cruise last year, the only problem then was a squeaking from a ship structure which had broken loose and squeaked to the movement of the ship, we were in the same cabin this year and it had been fixed. The cabin staff were excellent and helpful as usual, in fact all staff were always smiling and eager to ensure you had an excellent cruise. Our first let down was the standard of food in the Meridian Restaurant for evening meal it was the worst we have ever encountered on a Marella (Thomson) cruise, our first two weeks were an excellent example on how to destroy food examples: rib eye steak tough and tasteless, chicken scallops dried out like crisp bread, veal cutlets you could have soled your work boots with, (totally un-edible could not even be cut with a knife). I had never seen so much food being left on plates, complaints regarding the standard of food was common place all round the restaurant. We were informed, but did not witness that there was an altercation between cruisers and kitchen staff, and apparently eight people were put of the ship in Madeira, if that was the case none was the chef as the food did not improve. Also it normally took two hours to serve three courses, it was not the fault of the staff, but the lack of staff, instead of two waiters and a runner there was only two waiters who were run off their feet. On the third week we decided to try the Lido for evening meal, it was basically the same menu but help yourself, we could not believe we were on the same ship, the standard of food was excellent and cooked to perfection, the only problem was finding a seat as so many cruisers had given up on the Meridian Restaurant for the Lido, The only night the Meridian Restaurant was OK was Captains Night, maybe it was we were only a few tables from the Captain. The second let down was disembarkation it was a total shambles, the first batch of passengers for embarkation was 08.00 the second batch was scheduled for 08.15. The first batch of passengers were still queuing in the stairways at 08.15, add the second batch and we had pandemonium, the lifts were unusable due to total passenger impasse on disembarkation deck, we were stuck on the stairwell for over an hour, it was so bad the elderly and infirm had to sit on the stairs. Unfortunately we have booked a stay and cruise on Marella Celebration for October 2019, will review again when we return, hopefully things will be back to the normally good standard of service we have received from Marella (Thomson). Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
The cruise itself was great. The rooms are large and well appointed, and the food is overall pretty excellent. It's amazing that we were at sea for more than a week, and yet they were still able to provide outstanding fruits and ... Read More
The cruise itself was great. The rooms are large and well appointed, and the food is overall pretty excellent. It's amazing that we were at sea for more than a week, and yet they were still able to provide outstanding fruits and salads. The Thomas Keller restaurant is intimate and outstanding and worth doing at least once during the cruise, and there's no extra charge. The service was very good. It's not the same standard I've experienced on past Seabourn trips. I remember staff throughout the ship would greet me by name, even on a first encounter. That made a huge impression and spoke to a level of excellence. After all, if the staff knows your name, they will remember other things about you too, like what you tend to drink or eat. That leads to anticipatory service - you are offered what you want, before you even ask for it. That level of service seems to be gone on Seabourn. Still, it's outstanding by most measures. The passengers on a long crossing tend to be a different crowd than you'll find on shorter cruises. Frankly, they're friendlier. There's so much time to get to know people, and we really enjoyed the passengers we met. But ultimately our trip was spoiled when my belongings vanished when transferred from the ship to shore in Lisbon. I would find out much later that my luggage ended up being mixed in with other passengers' valuables and put in a taxi. The response to my missing belongings was troubling. At the pier I was placated with false promises of an immediate response. Then in an effort to get me to move along, Seabourn gave me a number to call for help and an email address. No one answered the phone and the automated response from the email told me I'd get a reply within two weeks. No one responded to my requests for information until after I posted publicly on social media after an entire day of silence. Then there was a bunch of blaming of local pier workers, who Seabourn had hired, but then acted like those workers were an entity out of their control or responsibility. In the end, fellow passengers and their travel agent solved the problem of my missing belongings. I spent two days of my three-day visit to Lisbon dealing with the problem, which included meeting with the Portuguese police. Other passengers I met on the Odyssey told me later that they also had problems with wayward belongings. When I heard that I was not alone, I followed up with Seabourn's corporate office, and wrote a personal letter to the company president. I received a we're-sorry-you-feel-that-way response. That's pathetic, and a sign that upper management has no intention of dealing with a very serious security gap. My advice: enjoy the ship, but don't trust Seabourn with your valuables. Carry on and off the ship all of your belongings. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
We have traveled to Caribbean previously in 2017 on MSC Fantasia and had a wonderful time. It was a fly cruise. This time we flew out to Caribbean on Virgin Atlantic and this was a very pleasant experience. We decided to do a ... Read More
We have traveled to Caribbean previously in 2017 on MSC Fantasia and had a wonderful time. It was a fly cruise. This time we flew out to Caribbean on Virgin Atlantic and this was a very pleasant experience. We decided to do a different cruise in as much as we flew to Barbados and then after On our arrival in Bridgetown we had a very pleasant surprise. As we got off the aircraft we found coaches waiting for us at bottom of steps. We were taken directly to the ship and never touched our luggage until it arrived in our cabin. The cabin itself was a balcony cabin and was beautiful in every way. We chose a Fantastica cabin as it came with a drinks package. Our cabin steward, Erith could not have been more helpful and kept cabin spotless. We chose !st sitting dining in Golden Lobster Restaurant. The waiters were great and were very attentive including our waiter James ( name we used for him.) he left ship in Lisbon to fly home to Bali. His assistant waiter was called Abhishek Kumar from India and he went out of his way to make sure we had a fantastic holiday. He deserves the highest praise. The food was excellent although not to my taste all the time. The restaurant was spotless and well managed. The entertainment on the ship left a lot to be desired although the the trio with the pianist and 2 violinists we excellent and a pleasure to listen to. The service overall on the ship was first class and could not be faulted in any way. WE did not take any of the excursions and made our own arrangements. We found the islands very commercialized now and have got worse over the past few years. We took a taxi in Guadaloupe and the female taxi driver was the most dangerous taxi drive I have ever used. She was swerving all over road and reading phone texts and making nd taking phone calls. In Barbados was took a trip in a glass bottom boat which was most enjoyable and well worth the money. After leaving Barbados on 9th April we traveled 5 days across the Atlantic and it was a lovely smooth crossing to Tenerife which we enjoyed immensely. WE then visited Madeira which is a lovely island and I would recommend anyone visiting if you get the chance. The 3 visits to Lisbon, Vigo and Le Havre were not as good and as it was bank holiday most of town was closed. The appeared to be a lot of coughing on board which I hasten to add. I do not blame on ship. Our disembarkation in Southampton due to passengers who boarded in Le Havre did not attend the compulsory immigration procedures. This is the one complaint I have about MSC. It is used as a ferry service more that a cruise ship. Overall the ship and staff were perfect in every way and I would not hesitate to use MSC again although I would be more selective. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We were very apprehensive With regards to the trans Atlantic part of this cruise as we thought we would be bored being st sea for so long but were extremely pleased with the amount of entertainment on board such as lectures, classes and ... Read More
We were very apprehensive With regards to the trans Atlantic part of this cruise as we thought we would be bored being st sea for so long but were extremely pleased with the amount of entertainment on board such as lectures, classes and facilities available that in the end there was not time to do everything. The quizzes were very good and my wife joined the choir run by Claire-Marie who was very professional finalising with a concert on the last Friday afternoon with the drama and ukulele groups which was well attended by the guests on board. An overall memorable cruise with special attention given on my birthday aboard the ship without needing to tell Fred Olsen anything. The entertainment team, lecturers and guest entertainers were excellent with a variety of entertainment from opera to song and dance, comedy, and the staff evening was excellent. We also were very impressed with all the musicians on board Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We thought it would be fun to cross the Atlantic and a 16 day Re-positioning Cruise offers quite good value for money, We flew to Barbados, visited Antigua, Tortola and St Kitts and, after 6 days at sea crossing the Atlantic, stopped at ... Read More
We thought it would be fun to cross the Atlantic and a 16 day Re-positioning Cruise offers quite good value for money, We flew to Barbados, visited Antigua, Tortola and St Kitts and, after 6 days at sea crossing the Atlantic, stopped at Ponta Delgada in the Azores and then called in at La Coruna before docking in Southampton. We had never traveled with Fred Olsen before but had heard good reports from others. We thought the Braemar, a small ship relatively speaking, with just 900 passengers and just for grown ups (i.e. no children) would suit us well. We had lovely weather, pretty calm seas and the staff were delightful and very attentive. Our cabin (an outside one with a picture window) was reasonably spacious and had all the facilities we would expect. Importantly, the beds were very comfortable! When at sea I enjoyed playing Bridge and we liked the Quizzes. Some of the talks were interesting but the selection of films in the cabin was not so good. I thought the extras were very expensive (drinks packages, WiFi and short excursions) and was disappointed with the standard of the entertainment and some of the food, though the Breakfasts and the Food Stations were good. The overall conclusion is, therefore, that we enjoyed ourselves but would not rave about it and would probably choose to go for another P & O cruise next time, as there is a wider age range. Most of those on board were quite a bit older than us (and we are in our early 70's!) and they were - for the large part - loyal Fred Olsen repeat travelers! Horses for Courses, as they say! ps. A note of caution when booking: While the actual cruise is excellent value for money, when you add on additional costs for insurance (more expensive in the Caribbean and USA), gratuities, on-board expenses for WiFi, bar bills and excursions, rail fares, taxis, overnight hotel stays and also - in our case - kennel costs, your outlay is doubled! It is still a lovely holiday but it is too easy to overlook these when making the decision to go! Enjoy! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
Great Premium flight from Birmingham well worth the extra though why you should have to pay on top of £175 surcharge to reserve a seat baffles me. Smooth transfer to cruise terminal then super quick boarding less than 5 minutes after ... Read More
Great Premium flight from Birmingham well worth the extra though why you should have to pay on top of £175 surcharge to reserve a seat baffles me. Smooth transfer to cruise terminal then super quick boarding less than 5 minutes after getting off coach. Found cabin nice and spacious with large balcony. All ok there, luggage arrived within an hour or so. Muster drill delayed until a18:30 by late arrival of another flight so first evenings dining was a bit chaotic, no ones fault but quality of food was a sign of things to come unfortunately. Apart from Beach house (which we visited twice - very good) the quality of both MDR & buffet was underwhelming. Menus read well but failed to deliver most of the time. Entertainment. We like to see production shows and cabarets but except for 2 nights when a 7pm show was put on we had to choose one or the other as were on late dining. We’d book early or free time dining if booking P&O again though we did enjoy the company on our table. Ashore. Booked 2 excursions through P&O and 2 independently. St Lucia northern tour was very good with varied stops and good value. Taste of Antigua was poor value for money at £45 each for 20 minute bus ride to back street garden restaurant to tast 3 small nips of rum and a small selection of so so food. Did our own thing at St Maarten & Ponta Delgada. Tried most bars - planet was our favourite and felt prices were reasonable. Cannot see point of introducing package @ £40pppd unless they are going to boost bar prices to encourage take-up. We do not hold back but only spent around £350 on wine and bars in 13 nights. We tend to select cruises by itinerary so won’t say no to P&O again but we’re not sold on the brand yet. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
My wife and I chose this cruise for our first wedding anniversary. It was our first trans Atlantic cruise with seven sea days in total. Our cabin was a Junior Suite, 8564. The cabin was immaculate and extremely comfortable with a ... Read More
My wife and I chose this cruise for our first wedding anniversary. It was our first trans Atlantic cruise with seven sea days in total. Our cabin was a Junior Suite, 8564. The cabin was immaculate and extremely comfortable with a huge amount of space. We really could not fault it. Our steward Prakesh was wonderful - decorating our cabin on our anniversary was a lovely gesture. The food was incredible - I had seen reviews about it not being warm etc etc - just don't listen to them! It was the best food we had had at sea (I've been with Royal Caribbean and P&O) and we were particularly impressed with Gallery 47 - the Parmesan Wheel is to die for! The Surf and Turf restaurant is a supplement restaurant, but wow what an experience! We had Lobster and Fillet Mignon and it was just out of this world. We also dined in Kora-La, which was equally delicious. The ship overall was amazing, lovely, classy ship which has plenty to do. The shows were excellent and the bars/drinks were fab. Shore excursions were very reasonably priced as well, plenty of port information was available at reception if you decided not to go on a tour. We have just booked to go back in the same cabin on the Thailand - India cruise in March next year - we can't wait! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2018
The ship itself is lovely ,the passengers mostly french and italian where very noisy and had no idea of a queue, i think for some not all is ,,, just get in front. The food in the restaurants is not bad at all,shame they charge for ... Read More
The ship itself is lovely ,the passengers mostly french and italian where very noisy and had no idea of a queue, i think for some not all is ,,, just get in front. The food in the restaurants is not bad at all,shame they charge for water, the the breakfasts in the buffet is pretty dismal,cold eggs, cold beans, very monotonous, and they seem to close the buffet around 4/5 clock only pizzas thats great if you like lots of dough. We where in a balcony cabin 10 deck and that was about the same as any cruise ship we have been on, only thing was cabin steward was not very obliging, ask for more hangers,his reply ok will be right back, never saw him again, took some mugs down to cabin so we could have a cup of tea in the morning ( took our own kettle) and put them in a draw ,so steward would not take them away. Later found that mugs where missing, which only means he had gone and looked in our draw why would you do that, had no intensions of stealing them, then on last day was dismayed to find we had been charged for drinks we didnt have from the fridge, but we sorted that out at reception. Reception where very good at their jobs ,nothing seemed to bother them always smiling and happy to help. At most ports we had note shoved under door to say the cost of transport was 10 euros or 17 eros when most of the time you could pick up a free shuttle. We thought the shows where very good for international passengers and seemed to folfill the brief except for some very rude passengers who seem to think its ok to have there phones on and snapping away, one even texed all the way through the show ,,why bother coming ????? All in all, would go again on MSC but only from Southampton,, as most passengers seemed to use the ship as a ferry Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
This was our first experience on the Breeze since the change of ownership  from Seabourn to  Windstar.  We were catching another ship in Europe for a cruise in the Mediterranean for a month so we decided to do the two week Windstar ... Read More
This was our first experience on the Breeze since the change of ownership  from Seabourn to  Windstar.  We were catching another ship in Europe for a cruise in the Mediterranean for a month so we decided to do the two week Windstar crossing from Barbados to Lisbon rather than fly.  Having read other reviews, we were pleased to discover the ship was not carrying a contingent of workmen contracted to do maintenance work that would interfere with our enjoyment of the cruise. Comparing the different Windstar ships is  like comparing different champagnes.  Each experience is delightful and different.  The unifying overall enjoyment originates from  the hard working and faithful Windstar officers and crew who make every effort to call you by your name and remember little things from how many towels you want in your bathroom to your personal beverage preferences in the diningrooms. Our suite was mid ship on deck 5 and steps away from the circular stairway and the elevator.  We found ourselves spending more time relaxing in our beautiful, spacious suite than on any other cruise.  Our cabin steward provided the highest, most personalized service we have ever experienced on any cruiseline.   She not only kept our suite spotless, she capitalized on our appreciation for creative towel animals.  For fourteen nights she created different amazing animals or humorous creations;many of them were so unique, she became well known throughout the ship because of the photos we shared with other passengers. The quality and variety of food was the best yet of any Windstar ship, including the freshness and taste of the croissants, rolls and breads. The only disappointment was the ship itself which is in need of some major maintenance.   Hopefully many of the things listed below will be corrected when the Breeze goes into dry dock next week. 1.We saw a number of cloudy Thermo Pane windows with broken seals in the  Yacht Club that need replacement. Similarly the aft window frames in the Compass Rose lounge have been  shoddily repaired. 2. Large sections of teak deck on  decks  7 and 8 need major repair/replacement. 3. The swimming pool heater and the broken electronic control panel for the pool swimming jets need repair/replacement. The pool heater was broken for several days making they pool unusable and the Jets never worked at all the entire cruise.  Others aboard ship who boarded the week before us had already complained about the jets .    4. Rusty areas were visible around many windows. As far as the daily schedule, we would have enjoyed having more than just one lecturer to listen to aboard  during the two week crossing since there weren't a many activities offered. We took advantage of the discount for booking a further cruise on board. Although we are had a great cruise,  we both decided that for ocean crossings especially we prefer the Surf for several reasons: the ship is an additional 100 feet longer and with the sails up and lower center of gravity, there is less ship motion; we prefer the location and open design of the veranda on the Surf as well as the amount of open deck space for lounging and waking ; we prefer the location and adjacencies of the public lounges and diningrooms; there Surf offers a much more extensive fitness center, especially elliptical machines. The Breeze only has treadmill machines. Windstar remains our favorite cruise line by far.  We are fond of many crew we have repeatedly sailed with over the decades.  We think the Anschutz Corporation, owners of Windstar, have the right vision and commitment to maintain and improve this amazing fleet of small vessels. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We were lured onto Britannia as a last minute booking hence we were on a Saver Fare. We had experienced sailing with P & O prior to this booking and to be frank did not feel that this cruise company did not compare with our other ... Read More
We were lured onto Britannia as a last minute booking hence we were on a Saver Fare. We had experienced sailing with P & O prior to this booking and to be frank did not feel that this cruise company did not compare with our other cruises on Princess and Royal Caribbean,but felt that the this new vessel coupled with the itinery ticked the box. Cabin - G730 was our allocated cabin. Lovely spacious cabin on the aft end of the vessel with unrestricted balcony views. Unfortunately unknown to us this cabin was situated directly above the Live Lounge. This resulted in unbearable vibration and sound pervading our cabin. This was resolved after 48 hours and we were moved to C218 which proved to be very acceptable. The company is aware of this problem and we have suggested that this cabin should not be allocated. Check that you don't have this cabin or indeed either side of it! Cabins are clean and comfortable and well serviced by our cabin steward. Dining - Having booked late we found we were not able to access Freedom Dining before we departed and when we enquired on arrival we were told that Freedom Dining was fully booked. This led us to be allocated second sitting in Club Dining at 8.30pm. This was disasterous for us as 1. We like to eat early 2. We enjoy the company of others for our dining experience, as in the past we have made many friends this way. Due to the policy adhered to for Club Dining ( Oriental ) passengers are allocated seats on specific tables for the whole of the cruise. Unfortunately for the first three nights we were the only two on a table for six. No-one appeared to dine on the three evening in question on our table. Two couples on adjacent tables of six were also experiencing the same problems. On the first formal night we decided to personally instigate a move onto another table as indeed did another couple this was met with an obvious concern from the waiters who informed the Maitre de. He explained to us that whilst the seats on our table were empty they had been allocated and as a result he was reluctant to allow us to join other passengers in a similar situation. There was a lack of thinking outside the box here for the benefit of the passengers. We remained as a group on this table despite the concerns expressed by the staff but however they did return later in the evening to say they had changed our seating permanently so that we could remain together on that table. Due to the situation we did not return to eat at the ORIENTAL choosing to dine in the Horizon or the excellent speciality restaurants. Entertainment - A wide variety of very good entertainment probably one of the best selection experienced on many other cruises. We are used to watching West End standard entertainment but failed to follow the theme for the Underground production! which was very disjointed. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We have cruised nine times now. First time as an adult on P&O. Britannia is a lovely ship. I would recommend highly. But avoid the loyalty crew. We were on deck 9 and had a balcony, which we used, a lot. Its a shame people ... Read More
We have cruised nine times now. First time as an adult on P&O. Britannia is a lovely ship. I would recommend highly. But avoid the loyalty crew. We were on deck 9 and had a balcony, which we used, a lot. Its a shame people still think its ok to smoke on their balconies and we did a couple of times end up with cigarette butts on the floor, these were promptly cleaned away by our lovely steward. There are two designated smoking areas on the open decks for people to use. Limelight club, has a cover charge but is worth every penny. We saw the three acts that were available for these dinner shows and enjoyed everyone. Morecambe and Wise tribute was the best, it was like going back to my childhood, amazing. Epicurean, if we had eaten there earlier in the cruise we would have eaten there most nights. Cover charges, but worth it. Sindhu, We were a little disappointed and concluded that the our local Indian restaurant must have an amazing chef! food was good, but not great. We would book again on another cruise, but if our budget was tight, probably give it a miss. Beachhouse, Cover charge again, we had a lovely waiter called Nelson, charming and funny. Food is kind of American diner and was excellent. Freedom dining. This works well for us. But the downside is the tables for two are not in the best places in the restaurant, which annoyed me. Always stuck in an area of high travel from waiters or other passengers. Which is another reason to pay a cover charge and dine else where, nobody likes to dine in annoyed company, as I pointed out to hubby ;) Food was sadly a bit lack lustre, fish sometimes bland, chicken over cooked on one occasion and mushy veg every time. Another reason to either eat in the Horizon or pay a cover charge and eat to a higher standard. Cookery Classes - Highly recommended, I was surprised that hubby agreed to join the class. He really enjoyed it and I have the pictures to prove it! Next time the family are staying he's helping out with the cooking. He enjoyed it so much he actually booked us onto another one. Spa. I can honestly say I arrived limping, not able to move my neck without pain on day one and by the time the spa therapist and the acupuncturist had finished with me I was 100% better. What price health? Costa coffee - Trouble with Costa is they allow people to buy beans from anywhere. The coffees are also one button push delivered, which isn't what you expect from a premium price. The coffee was variable. Tip? go back to the last place you had good coffee on the ship. Smart Casual - I have no idea what they wanted and from the outfits the other passengers where wearing some other were confused as well. I will happily stick with what I asked, if P&O were clear and stuck by some kind of rule. I packed almost one cocktail dress for every evening and two long dresses for the formal nights. People were in leggings in the dining room, cut off tops, men in t-shirts, hardly a jacket in sight on casual nights. Weird and confusing. Formal nights - I have to say the passengers on the ship know how to dress for formal nights! fantastic stuff. Would we book again? We have, but a different P&O ship as we were so angered and disappointed by the treatment of the loyalty team that it will take a while to think about going back to anywhere they could claim a credit for. I can only say they were VERY rude and dismissive. Their customer service was appalling, we saw frustration, shortness of temper, excuses for behaviours and then being fobbed off in a way that makes your jaw go slack. Awful. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Having been fortunate enough to sail on the Royal Clipper several times both in the Mediterranean and Caribbean we felt it would be fun to do the Atlantic Crossing. Utterly brilliant from boarding to disembarkation. On arriving everyone ... Read More
Having been fortunate enough to sail on the Royal Clipper several times both in the Mediterranean and Caribbean we felt it would be fun to do the Atlantic Crossing. Utterly brilliant from boarding to disembarkation. On arriving everyone was made so welcome and with only 108 of us there was no queuing. The air of expectation on leaving Barbados was tangible and there was lots of laughter as we got to know each other. With a wonderful mix of nationalities there was always lots to talk about and learn from others. This was added to by some fascinating talks about the history of sailing and navigation. Some may want more 'laid-on' entertainment but everyone was on this ship because of what it offered - something completely different and so incredibly special. We have crossed the Atlantic on the QM2, which was wonderful and all the pomp and dressing for dinner was special but it couldn't compare to this. 16 days without seeing land - we were supposed to call in at the Azores but a storm meant we couldn't so sailed some 300 south. The storm was enjoyed by all of us as even our wine was served in short tumblers. You soon learnt to always have one hand for the rail! The cabins are not huge but it is a sailing ship for a few not a giant for thousands. Having said that they are extremely comfortable and the beds are as good as you will find on any ship and better than many we've been on. Within no time at all the crew know us all by name and what drinks we prefer and the officers come and join different tables each evening for dinner, which is fantastic as we can hear their stories. There is open seating so you can have fun enjoying the company of different people from across the world and we have never heard an argument - only fun! Thank goodness there are ships and cruises for all tastes but if you enjoy good company, good food and laughter then you will never do better than a Clipper Cruise - can't wait for the new Flying Clipper to come into service later this year. Enjoy yourselves whatever you do. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2018
Love the transatlantic crossings, as you get time to relax on the sea days. Loved some of the talks, particularly ones by Dr Ken MacTaggart. Absolutely loved Peter Piper, J'Adele, and Pete Matthews (I was on Stage!) Some of ... Read More
Love the transatlantic crossings, as you get time to relax on the sea days. Loved some of the talks, particularly ones by Dr Ken MacTaggart. Absolutely loved Peter Piper, J'Adele, and Pete Matthews (I was on Stage!) Some of the waiters in the Live Lounge were just not interested in bringing the drinks ordered, which was exceptionally disappointing. The meals and buffet I think were noticeably 'cheap' and a smaller selection than previous P&O cruises. The layout of the new ship is unbelievably poor with the up and down decks and only port and starboard side to get certain places. P&O try and take every opportunity to extract more money out of you at every turn! If things continue the way they are you might end up paying to go to the buffet. (They will then confiscate food brought on board!) Who puts the gym on the side of the ship, so that when you are running everything is going left to right in front of you! One shower in the gym changing room, seriously P&O? Well clearly very seriously, as there were no towels in the changing rooms to get dry with, another first with any cruise ship I have been on. 50% of the washing machines were out of action and 3 treadmills too, that I know about. The new 'no alcohol' Policy sucks, but I guess they are just getting in line with other lines. The webcam was turned off for many sea days, just showing Bosch instead. I like to use this with muted sound to give an indication of the light outside and a simulated sunrise in the inside cabin. I don't know about the Costa, as it didn't taste like Costa, and I drink a lot of Costa coffee!! Some of the Bath towels were well past their best and overdue replacement. Not nice white and fluffy! I was left behind on a tour in Ponta Delgada!!! Great to have a glass shower door, but I do think a larger person will have problems with the way it opens. It still leaks, but there are none of the normal drain holes on the bathroom floor, so it just floods. The Headliners have usually be absolutely fantastic, but had to walk out a few times this cruise as they were disappointing. All that said I did have a very relaxing holiday and none of the above really spoiled things, it was just not expected, particularly from their current flagship. Finally a first for everyone... Because of the Portuguese dock workers strike we were apparently the first ever ship to Tender at Ponta Delgarda!! All very well managed by P&O at the last minute - Well done! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
storm riley caused 8 days at sea no trip to the azores on way back. The last time i did a p&o cruises where the itinerary wasn't changed was 2012 that year i did 2 cruises with no changes since i have done 3 cruises this one had 2 ... Read More
storm riley caused 8 days at sea no trip to the azores on way back. The last time i did a p&o cruises where the itinerary wasn't changed was 2012 that year i did 2 cruises with no changes since i have done 3 cruises this one had 2 change originally we were going to saint martin i accepted that changed due to the hurricanes then we had storm riley the email came on the day before we left no visit to ponta del gada instead a return to babrbados. Flight was good i had upgraded to extra legroom as i was travelling with my parents we just decided to have more room as it was 8 hours. warning the bus's in the Caribbean leave a bit to be desired not much space and very cramped when you land the bus's are very close to the runway no security at the airport only dock side at the ship. We had an easy run through boarding as my mum had assistance at gatwick and due to this we all got into same assistance line we were on in under 20 minutes a lot of people were waiting for an hour or more. I had been on Azura in april 2012 around the med she looks the same just a little bit rougher round the edges. The restaurant on the 1st 2 nights were sit any where as people don't finish getting of until late on 2nd day (we were on the 1st day of boarding) when we did sit at our allocated table it was very enjoyable my only issue was the marco pier white menus which i haven't enjoyed and always revert to old faithful which isn't on the menu on dress up nights but can be ordered sirloin steak and prawn cocktail. I didn't go to anything in the theatre apart from seeing darkest hour film there on a sea day i did see jimmy tamley the ventriloquist in Manhattan he was excellent and adult theme compared to the theatre version i was told by someone else. Only did one trip with saint kitts railway my only problem was i got heat stroke on the bus getting there had been at the back neck started getting hot by the time we were on the train i was drinking water like it was going out of fashion but wasn't getting any better so don't remember much of it. I came to the assumption during this cruise that p&o no longer believe in customer service due to my issues with my cabin as i have said below and friends having various issues it seems their moto is the customer is always wrong and having spoken to other people i wasn't the only person who felt this way. I have decided to not cruise p&o anymore will look at celebrity again and maybe royal Caribbea. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2018
Liked the itinerary but particularly a visit to tha Azores, however, the cruise got off to a bad start when we received an email the day before flying out to Barbados saying the ship would not be stopping off at the Azores because of a ... Read More
Liked the itinerary but particularly a visit to tha Azores, however, the cruise got off to a bad start when we received an email the day before flying out to Barbados saying the ship would not be stopping off at the Azores because of a storm in the Caribbean. We later learned that people already on board had this info. at least 10 days before! After a 2 hour delay, we arrived on board and entered our cabin to find the w.c. was within half an inch of overflowing on to the shower room floor. I reported this immediately but nothing was done for 2 days so, I was up during the night flushing it. Somebody eventually attended to it but did not repair it properly so it was reported again and this time it was done immediately and successfully. The cabin was comfortable and the steward we had was very good. The food in the dining room was a 8 out of 10. However, the black-tie nights resulted in us not being allowed to eat in our normal restaurant and not being allowed to drink in certain bars.Our only option without paying extra, bearing in mind we had paid full fare was to go to the buffet restaurant which was so abysmal we complained on 3 occasions about cold food,lack of choice , hit and miss organisation etc., but it seems that due to the fear of people attending black-tie nights complaining about us (even though we always dress smartly in the evening) we were discriminated against. We spent 8 days at sea coming back to Southampton and during that time they held 4 black-tie nights! We were told by many other passengers about their disgust with the food and service in the buffet restaurant. Personally, we have eaten in better transport cafes! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
Last minute booking. Flew out in Premium Economy from Glasgow with TUI on Dreamliner for 2 week cruise on Azura. Very comfortable and good service on the flight. Embarkation in Barbados excellent and smooth. Straight from plane to the ship ... Read More
Last minute booking. Flew out in Premium Economy from Glasgow with TUI on Dreamliner for 2 week cruise on Azura. Very comfortable and good service on the flight. Embarkation in Barbados excellent and smooth. Straight from plane to the ship and luggage delivered to cabin. These are probably the only plus points I can say about this cruise that were better than 3 previous Caribbean cruises we have done with Royal Caribbean, Princess and Celebrity. We are non smokers and hated the smell of smoke coming down the corridor from the vast smoking area on Stbd side of deck 15 & 16 near forward swimming pool. We were amazed at how much deck space was allocated to smokers on this ship. Entire starboard forward side was a no go area for us on deck 15 & 16. The toilet facilities leave a lot to be desired on Azura. The only toilet on pool deck was in the centre between 2 pools and you had to enter the smoking area to go there. The ladies toilet here was often in a disgusting state I was informed. Cubicles out of order and no soap. Many of the Ladies toilets were out of action and long queues formed outside below decks before and after shows. Ports of call average. We never did any overpriced excursions. Entertainment average. Some good acts. Adele, Mark Walker Etc. Background music diabolical at the pool and around the ship. Endless hours of meaningless mundane Latin music until the DJ appears at 5 o clock. Apparently the music is sent from head office and they have to play it all day. Maybe they should realise that people might like to listen to some popular songs for a change or will that rock the boat too much causing cardiac arrest for seasoned cruisers. !! Food and service was generally very good but no better than other cruise lines. The Venezia could get very congested sometimes with people trying to squeeze past with trays etc.The space is limited inside the Buffet. P&O are living in the past and cater mostly for stuffy elderly types. Not a lot to attract younger people. Some people look down on you if you have not done at least 20 cruises with P&O and reference is made quite often in the theatre by Entertainment Director. Who can remember Captain so and so from Canberra or Oriana in 1973 ?? Who has been on Adonia EtcEtc .Ha Ha. No interest to younger passengers. Disembarkation, A nightmare. Flight cancelled. P&O knew this the day before and never informed anyone until we had checked out of the cabin with minimum hand luggage.We never saw our luggage for 2 days. It was taken away on Thursday night and got it back at Glasgow on Saturday night. Overnight hotel was a dump. NO RUNNING WATER, for 2nd day in a row, NO TOILETS , Food disgusting, NO SANITATION. Sat in chair all night. Bed disgusting. Checked in next day to find we are downgraded to Economy on what appeared to be the oldest Jumbo Jet in he sky !!! Wamos Airlines. No inflight entertainment. Nothing. Crammed into middle row of 4 seats !! Even though 200 empty seats on plane. Did not pay Premium for this to arrive at 23,20 in Glasgow on a Saturday night 18,5 hours late.. This is the Life ?????????????? P&O should be ashamed. Elderly ladies were left wandering around Glasgow Airport at this time wondering what to do. No assistance at all. Many stranded and unable to get home. Our first and last Cruise with P&O is memorable for all the wrong reasons. American passengers would never stand for this type of treatment and neither should we. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
This was our first cruise with P&O having cruised previously with Cunard and Royal Caribbean. The coach transfer from Gatwick to Southampton was chaotic, meaning we arrived at the ship at 16.45! Once on board we found our inside ... Read More
This was our first cruise with P&O having cruised previously with Cunard and Royal Caribbean. The coach transfer from Gatwick to Southampton was chaotic, meaning we arrived at the ship at 16.45! Once on board we found our inside cabin to be fine and we had an excellent room steward (Martino). We were given the Freedom Dining option in the Peninsular Restaurant and we found the food and service really good. The entertainment was very good throughout the voyage and the entertainment staff were really good too. The problem with this ship is that it seems to have been designed to cram as many guests on board as possible, over 3600! One guest told us that the Headliners Theatre has a capacity of 1000, so if you want a seat to see a good show you need to be there quite early. If a good act is on in the Live Lounge you have little chance of getting a seat. Similar problems arise when trying to get on equipment in the gym. The walking deck is very small-I went to check it out on the second morning and, in terms of traffic, it reminded me of the M25! Sun loungers were definitely at a premium too! We still enjoyed the cruise overall and would cruise with P&O again, but on another ship. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
we have been on this cruise before, however entertainment poor, all the same shows as last year , bands and singers all sang sad songs,people said ;get me out of here;.....NOT A HAPPY SHIP .The comic Peter Piper was good,.singer Benjamin ... Read More
we have been on this cruise before, however entertainment poor, all the same shows as last year , bands and singers all sang sad songs,people said ;get me out of here;.....NOT A HAPPY SHIP .The comic Peter Piper was good,.singer Benjamin Moss has a good voice,but again guests complained about his smutty jokes in between songs.Josh very friendly shame about the others in the show team.Staff in 47 fantastic.but food cold and lots of oil on veg in island on 9th floor ,even oil on top of mashed potatoes,very hard to find healthy option food ,also very underhanded as they knew we were not going to certain ports BEFORE we set of yet did not inform guests,the bar staff could do with more training,I understand they took on alot of new staff.when you think we were all going to the west indies,you would imagine it would be upbeat instead of dire entertainment,something is wrong with the agency that is supplying the entertainment.I would sack them and give the contract to someone else Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We checked in at Gatwick and flew by Dreamliner to Barbados. We were taken directly (the hold luggage is taken directly to the ship) from the aircraft to the Ship, so no immigration or collecting baggage at the airport. Check in at the ... Read More
We checked in at Gatwick and flew by Dreamliner to Barbados. We were taken directly (the hold luggage is taken directly to the ship) from the aircraft to the Ship, so no immigration or collecting baggage at the airport. Check in at the port was seamless and efficient. We had an outside cabin on deck 3 which was spacious and comfortable with a large picture window. Only downside if any was there was no fridge, otherwise lovely. The ship was brilliant. We prefer this freestyle type cruise and this was excellent value for money. I was slightly apprehensive after reading some reviews, however we experienced no problems whatsoever and indeed it exceeded our expectations. If you want formal, luxury type of cruise then maybe this isn’t for you although you’d have to pay a lot more on Cunard or other providers. We bought the drinks package which was well worth every penny. Good house wine and drinks whenever you wanted them. Prosecco flowed freely. The food in the buffet was our favourite. The quality and choice was amazing and we never failed to find something tasty to eat. There was a roast at lunch and dinner in addition to a speciality menu ie Greek, Turkish, Chinese etc, perfectly cooked and a choice of vegetables and salads. Soup was delicious and every day there was a traditional British pudding, including various sponges, spotted dick, fruit crumbles all served with lashings of custard as well as other deserts to choose from. The pastry chefs excelled and the cakes at afternoon tea were a delight. We also ate in 47, the formal dining room which was very nice and you could eat any time during their opening hours and choose to share or have a table for two. We also ate at Gallery 47, the Italian restaurant, also very good. We treated ourselves and ate at the Sushi bar, which was a supplement of £13.95 and well worth it if you enjoy sushi and sashimi. The cruise was for 13 nights with six days at sea and our stops were at St Lucia, Antigua, Madeira, Malaga, Ibiza and then we flew home from Majorca. I can’t comment on the Thomson excursions as we arranged our own using advice on Trip Advisor etc. I was concerned about spending six days at sea, however the entertainment lead by Ted and his team was varied and interesting. We particularly enjoyed talks by ex police officer Simon Dinsdale, cookery, and ice carving demonstrations. Dance classes, Ukulele lessons and choir lessons were also available along with quizzes and numerous other forms of activities. A first class gym with modern equipment and Yoga and Pilates classes too. The climbing wall was challenging and fun to do. Some of our fellow passengers did have various complaints but they were mostly niggly little things that wouldn’t have bothered us. Ie they thought the sea was choppy. Sun beds always appeared to be an issue, although we always managed to find somewhere to sit and it wasn’t a big deal for us. For two days there was quite a swell, however to my knowledge no one was sick and in fact I’ve experienced much worse on previous cruises, and I expected worse considering we were in the middle of the Atlantic. Apparently though most Atlantic crossings are very smooth and there’s not a lot anyone can do about the weather. The staff were friendly and helpful, special mentions to Rosmic, our cabin steward, Denny for excellent and friendly service in Bar Eleven, Alasdair the DJ for great music. Kamal at the omelette station in the buffet and all the other staff, who always had a greeting and remained cheerful. I would definitely recommend Tui Discovery . We’ve already booked for next year! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
This was our second cruise with Thomson having been on the spirit last year gave me the bug to book another one. We travelled with my sister on her 1st cruise. The Discovery was a much bigger ship and easier to get around. Disappointed ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Thomson having been on the spirit last year gave me the bug to book another one. We travelled with my sister on her 1st cruise. The Discovery was a much bigger ship and easier to get around. Disappointed that when at sea for 6 days due to wind sunbeds where not available on upper deck and everybody thought it a good idea to fill every spare space on lower deck blocking walkways etc and making it very difficult at times for individuals able bodied not to mention those with mobility aids. Unlike the previous post we attended every show on the later slot and would say each show was fully attended and thoroughly enjoyed, there was only one which I was disappointed with was the penultimate one which I found boring.The show team worked very hard to out in these productions and their professionalism came through. The cabin and ship were kept very clean and the staff around the ship were always friendly. There is a bar on deck 10 which is very understaffed especially on sail away's and should be looked at. I would say that there seems to be far to many guests to the ratio of staff, and they are very stretched at times. The open seating which has been introduced for meal times didn't really work for us. comparing it against my last cruise the service was very slow and we had to keep asking for a top up of drinks. On a number of occasion we were sat in a corner near the kitchens and felt like we had been forgotten. Although I must add that the food was excellent. The entertainment throughout the day for us was a little on the overload with quizzes etc, and some of the live entertainment was a little too much especially the saxophone man and the acoustic guitar around the pool. A little soft music would have been nice once in a while rather than live music. There were two fantastic live groups Trinity and B12 whom my sister and I thought were fantastic. Given all the above good and not so, this has defiantly not put us off travelling with TUI/Thomson as we met some incredible people who we hope we will meet again in the future and had a truly memorable experience. I hope Thomson will take the comments made and where improvements can be made on board they do so for future guests to enjoy. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Flight out Manchester to Barbados, great on Thomson Dreamliner. Embarkation smooth with no Drama. Ship looked stunning, and we were looking forward to our first cruise with Thomson, after they procured this ship from RCI. We are seasoned ... Read More
Flight out Manchester to Barbados, great on Thomson Dreamliner. Embarkation smooth with no Drama. Ship looked stunning, and we were looking forward to our first cruise with Thomson, after they procured this ship from RCI. We are seasoned cruisers, and were looking at whether Thomson were to be a competitor for P&O In the UK market. The price we paid was reasonable alone, as well as the free upgrade to AI drinks. Well here goes, We had a decent cabin on deck 8 which was classed as a deluxe interior. Cabin 8023 was assigned to us when we were on board. Plenty of space and well kept. The only negative was that the pool area was above , and you were waken by the noise of the pool or fellow holidaymakers claiming and marking their sunbed as their territory. Please note no fridge. Ronaldo the cabin steward a real credit to Thomson. The ship itself is the smallest we had sailed on, but no dramas, and held herself well in some stormy conditions on the 6 day crossing. Bars were plenty and the theatre and facilities were ok. Gym small and half the equipment not working. Bars, our favourite was the venue, but was spoiled by some really poor cheesy entertainment. Bar eleven was nice too and was open till 0300. Drinks, reasonably priced, although we were AI. The drinks package was fine and wine by the glass was available with meals. Just watch the heavy sales pitch to upgrade to Premium. At 80 quid each person for the 13 nights to upgrade to premium it looked worth whilst. Covers all drinks and brands including craft ales.....the selling point for me. The disappointment was that most drinks including the ale ran out 2 days out to sea, and each bar does not stock the same drinks so its a little hit and miss. Cans of mixer are covered in the package as well as bottled water in cabin and speciality coffee at the coffee port. All in all worth the money. Well done Thomson. Dress code was lax, with anything goes. Most people did make the effort though. Food simply was poor in buffet, but good whilst seated in 47 degrees on deck 4.The free Italian in 47 gallery on deck 5 was brilliant. Snack bars ok and Barbeque on pool deck really good. Speciality dining is expensive. Excursions very expensive...do your own. Same with money exchange...poor rates. So far so good......now the entertainment......dismal. Mostly local on this cruise and usually the theatres where dance shows, the teams tried hard but not every night. In madeira a singer comedian from Wigan was on....ok best describes his efforts. The venue was all about trivia games and quizzes, very crude in parts and aimed at adults only...not in good taste and cheap, poorly managed rubbish. The local singer and band at best average just. This was the last winter cruise and the ship was now taking up its summer port and itineraries from Palma, so the crew were flying home with us, as with the entertainment team. Cruise ending, means you leave out your luggage on the last night, its collected and then you reclaim it on the dockside when you disembark. You then load the coach and join the check- in race. Loaded onto a cattle truck and flew home. The 2 hour flight home felt longer than the 8 hours out on the Dreamliner. Really poor here. Palma airport very busy and the walk to the departure terminal long. To be fair still good value for money all in all. Attention to detail will get Thomson there. Thanks for reading my honest review... Read Less
27 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
This was our seventh Transatlantic crossing, the fourth with Thomson, sorry, TUI! and about our 25th cruise in total. Previously we've crossed on Celebration, lovely little ship! I shall be sorry to see it go, Azura (P&O) and ... Read More
This was our seventh Transatlantic crossing, the fourth with Thomson, sorry, TUI! and about our 25th cruise in total. Previously we've crossed on Celebration, lovely little ship! I shall be sorry to see it go, Azura (P&O) and Adventure of the Seas (RCL). Flight was great. Travelled Dreamliner Premium Club which is worth every penny of the additional charge. Transfer was OK by Barbados standards but they don't have big comfy buses and its only 30/40 minutes so no big deal. Embarkation was swift and possibly helped by the fact we were in a Junior Suite with priority boarding. First impressions of the ship were good. Thomson, sorry TUI, at last has a ship in style and facilities to rival the big lines. It IS quite impressive! Very spacious and loads and loads of interior light in the public areas. I did note like another reviewer the crew demographic had changed with many Eastern European crew members, but who cares where they're from provided they do a good job and they largely did. We ate mostly in the main restaurant served by two great guys, Julio and Appollon. Ive cruised with many different cruise lines and on all Thomson ships except Dream and without a doubt, the food was every bit as good as any other four star cruise line and better than some Ive travelled on . I often read and have posted reviews myself complaining about cold food but not the case on this ship in the main restaurant where the food was always interesting, varied, well presented and hot. Only ate once in the self service restaurant and my choice was very nice but luke warm. The only minor hiccup came early in the cruise when a waiter who shall remain nameless served us at lunch. Three out of four starters came out all of which were hot so three of us began to eat. We then saw the main courses delivered to the waiter station at the same time as the missing starter. Three of us had finished our starters whilst the fourth was still eating theirs when the waiter came to the table and said he was going to serve the main courses because they'd been there a while. He didn't ask.... he just told us! We declined his kind offer and asked that the main courses when served be replaced having been standing about ten minutes and fish cools quickly. At this point it seemed that we'd asked for the impossible and were visited by Head Waiters, Restaurant Managers and other waiters one of which took responsibility and resolved the problem. Thank you to Anthony! The first waiter never served us again even though he was always close by. Not sure if that was by design or luck but a restaurant needs in my view to conform to common dining etiquette and on this occasion, it didn't. This incident apart, the main restaurant was excellent! Thank you. We like to eat in the specialist restaurants and the Italian was really good and does not incur a surcharge. I cant t say the same for my experience of Surf and Turf for which there IS a surcharge of £25 per head. Previously we've eaten in Mistral and Kora La on Celebration and the al a carte on Majesty. All three are excellent restaurants with a great food in a convivial atmosphere for an additional £20 a head. In the case of Mistral, that's for a six or seven course quality meal served by experienced and knowledgeable waiters. In Kora La on Celebration, you enter an oriental environment with suitably dressed waiters and the food is great. This is not the case on Discovery. The atmosphere and environment is no different to any other restaurant and depending on the time you eat, you have the vast pool deck screen glaring through the windows into your face. Not very oriental! I'm sorry to make the comparison but I'm afraid to do so is inevitable. We cancelled our reservation in Kora La as we found the screen intrusive and would have detracted from the dining experience. For your £25 in S and T, there are four courses and my personal view is that the food was little different to that served in the main restaurant. I chose seared scallops as a starter. It consisted of three small queen scallops which were not seared. Nice but........For my main I chose Sole which was to be served at the table. No fault of the waitress but I'm sure she hadn't deboned many sole. It took an age for her to do so whilst the fish was cooling all the time. Why not ask the customer whether or not they would like the fish to be deboned at the table or would they prefer to do it themselves. I wanted to scream out "Please give it me to do" but I resisted not wanting to cause any embarrassment. In short, S and T was not a good experience, not good value in my view and one I would not repeat in the current circumstances. We did speak to the head of F and B, raised our concerns and made the comparison with Mistral but his response was "Its the new concept" It certainly was different to Mistral and a "difference" I didn't care for! For me, a backward step. It's sad that there are no longer any wine waiters on board. Wine is now very ably and frequently provided by your table waiters but it was a little hint of extra class to have a wine waiter?waitress. I'm sure someone from TUI will read this review and I would point out that my comments are intended for their benefit also and to ultimately improve MY experience. I'm not a serial moaner and have cruised many times and to make comparisons although subjective, is inevitable. I have noted one comment on a review which I also totally agree with and is something we commented on when speaking to those in authority. In S and T restaurant, it was as if I was being served by someone speaking from a prepared script. Each waiter who approached the table started with the same pre prepared script and conversations with them were very stilted.. Ive never experienced this before on a Tui ship. It is unnatural, unwanted by me at least and makes normal conversations difficult. Please let the waiting staff be themselves. They can still say what they need to say. It was so obviously scripted, it became farcical. Lets be honest, Discovery is a nice ship. I didn't see a speck of dirt anywhere, 99.9% of the crew are fantastic. There is plenty of deck space and the sun beds are comfy. Although the bed grabbers were there at the crack of dawn as always, we never struggled to find availability.. I did read another review which commented that two of the six days were rather rough (my description, not theirs) My response would be to say that it was nothing more than gentle pitching and not nearly approaching rough. Have a ride through the Bay of Biscay on a bad day when all the doors are secured and you are not allowed outside at all. That's rough!!! Yes I agree the upper decks were closed for sunbeds on a couple of days but that was for safety reasons to prevent anyone being injured by airborne sunbeds. Yes it was windy, but if you ride a motor bike at 20mph into a 20mph headwind, it WILL be windy!! The ship was travelling at 18 knots (20mph ish) into a 20 mph headwind. Not much that can be done about that. Ive had worse transatlantic crossings but none I would describe as being uncomfortably rough and certainly none where abandoning ship became a consideration!!!. Its a great way to get home without jet lag whilst just relaxing or doing whatever takes your fancy on the ship. We don't do the shows so I cant comment on entertainment. Overall, we really enjoyed our cruise. So much so, we've already booked again for next year on Discovery and I look forward to once again meeting some great people providing a great experience. Thank you. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Our first time Thomson ,,,, (we have done many PO , princess, and Royal Carabean ) And it was more than we expected ,,, entairtainment great , so much choice in food , so much so we never got to the speciality resturants , we did a ... Read More
Our first time Thomson ,,,, (we have done many PO , princess, and Royal Carabean ) And it was more than we expected ,,, entairtainment great , so much choice in food , so much so we never got to the speciality resturants , we did a transatlantic 6 days at sea , felt there could have been a movie on through the day , as we are not all into quizzes ,,,,, however we came home and booked the Discovery 2 for March next year ...but not a transatlantic again , we spoke to other cruisers ,who were on there first ever cruise ,and said it would be there last ever cruise , as I said not enough going on in sea days . Great friendly staff and all inclusive premium drinks .... No cheap drinks ...... Staff in tge resturants were so friendly ... I cannot take peppers (allergy ) and chef made special fo me . Read Less

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