1 Marella Cruises Marella Discovery 2 Cruise Reviews for Family Cruises to Europe - Western Mediterranean from Corfu

Room and facilities I had an outside cabin on deck 2 - 2026 There is much more storage everywhere - the wardrobe is a much better use of space on Marella as you have the big waste of space on most P&O ships. It is a Slightly ... Read More
Room and facilities I had an outside cabin on deck 2 - 2026 There is much more storage everywhere - the wardrobe is a much better use of space on Marella as you have the big waste of space on most P&O ships. It is a Slightly smaller cabin but is suitable. The Shower was good with good pressure. There was a Sofa in the room. I do Wish I’d got a balcony now as I’m used to them but it was sufficient. The Safe was strange - credit card to open and close it but sufficient. Towels were poor quality compared to P&O and they threatened you with a £10 charge if they didn’t come back to the room. Bed is comfortable but the bedding is not as good quality. No toiletries except a hand soap and body wash - most hotels provide this as a basic. P&O offer designer White Company in all state rooms. Shampoo, conditioner, soap, body wash and body lotion however I accept that some people want to use their own anyway but it helps with luggage. I understand there are toiletries in the better cabins on Marella. I Liked the towel animals. Nice surprise. The Bathroom is a good size with plenty of storage space. Tea coffee good but no biscuits although to be fair P&O are getting worse for quality biscuits anyway. There was No fridge! but I suppose as AI you don’t really need one. Prefer P&O rooms by far - more luxurious and better facilities. Net curtain had blood on it so asked for it to be changed. It hasn’t come back since. Stains on bed sheets. Asked for them to be changed too. Seemed to be washed in. Food This is mixed. The MDR is better quality on P&O such as Cheese boards are silver service and there is six course menu. Steak is available every night. That sort of thing. However the Buffet food is better and more varied on Marella. Buffet set out better too. On Marella I waited ages every single time I ventured into 47. No service for about half an hour. I expect it’s because we’re in at the busy time and to be fair I’ve had poor service on P&O too when on freedom dining so I expect this is a freedom dining thing. I suppose I prefer club dining. I later found out that there are only 3 serving staff per 11 tables (wow) This would explain the slow service. There clearly is not as many serving staff in the restaurants compared to P&O and this is most obvious at the bars and restaurants. The food is ok but not well presented compared to P&O but there are available everyday options of chicken and fish. I would have liked to see steak as per P&O. Marella certainly had More places to eat like gallery 47 but we had poor service there. However the food was nice. Lunch in MDR. Slow service again for ordering. Food comes out quick but drinks do not. Then I discovered the Harvester style salad bar and all was forgiven Kora la sushi - amazing and worth the cover charge. Snack shack great, love the fish and chips! Surf and turf was so nice and worth the extra money. I ate here twice. Overall the buffet and specialist restaurants win on Marella. The MDR was far superior on P&O. Staff All smiling and friendly. Most on P&O are miserable looking. However there is a hell of a lot less on Marella than P&O. Approaching the bar on P&O is a no no and you can’t sit longer than two mins on a sun lounger before someone comes round saying drinks drinks. Saying that on Marella standing at a bar I always was served very quick. Loved the pop up bars too! Winner was certainly Marella for friendliness. Entertainment Saw the Charlie Chaplin show. It was ok but like a school performance. There was no glitz or production compared to P&O. The opera singer was fantastic leaving Venice. Really made the day. The entertainment team around the pool are much better than P&O. Not just quizzes but interactive game shows too. I enjoyed splash bingo and catchphrase. Sail away parties are much better on P&O as it’s a big thing every sail away but I know that’s not everyone’s cup of tea. The comedian Phil Milbourne was very good. I loved the murder game with interactive remote. The singing dancing group in the theatre was not very good at all compared to the headliners but it was the only thing. Winner Marella Captain Chris He seems very normal. Is it normal for the captain to be so informal? I’ve never experienced this before but I liked it. Every time we docked it was a ‘Bobby Dazzler’ lol I liked that you still got invited to dine with the captain something that is missing from P&O. Winner Marella Bars All really good. I think I miss the variety of bars that P&O have such as a pub, a posh bar, a piano bar etc depending on my mood but overall all lovely places to drink. I enjoyed listening to the lay playing piano every early evening. The AI option is great for most. I personally like to choose my own wine so difficult for me but plenty to choose from if wine isn’t your thing. Winner P&O The Ship You can tell it’s an old RCI. Worn in places but in better condition than Oceana imo. For a small ship there always seemed to be a seat everywhere. Nowhere was ever too busy. Sun beds were plenty. So easy to get a sun bed. I find people moan about sunbeds when they can’t get them next to the pool. I liked the deck patrol idea but I didn’t feel like she enforced the no reservation rule very often. It’s a small ship so it’s easy to find your way around. I have been on some whoppers so this was lovely and easy. Loved the interactive boards and penguins! Never had to wait for a lift. In fact I hardly used them as everywhere was so close! Liked water dispensers. That was so easy. Hated there was no laundry room. Running everyday produces smelly washing. Ship tours are a great idea and relatively cheap. The public toilets seem to be cleaned more than P&O but general cleanliness in public areas was better on P&O. Winner Draw. The P&O ships are newer but Marella was designed better. (Laundry room is missed lol) Kids club Poor compared to P&O. Probably my most scathing review. Three 2 hr sessions per day. What a Pain. I’m not one to get rid of my kids but my boy prefers kids club when we’re at sea or on the ship because he makes friends. It’s very restrictive and the rooms are not set out well or friendly looking. The activities were the same every night and there seemed to be no Program for the week. There is no night nursery either. When I was first cruising with a small baby this was so useful to get date nights. There’s other things to do as a family like the golf and climbing wall. It’s great but wears off pretty quick and the wall was only open a couple of hours a day. There are family sessions but no one uses them and seems pointless. Seems good for young ones as the entertainment staff dress up but any older than 7 they’re alienated. There is no provision for children over 11 so then people wonder why teenagers are hanging about. Grouping together 3 year olds and 10 year olds doesn’t work and then it closes at 10 so the kids end up in the bar or parents leave early so where’s the holiday in that! P&O in comparison have kids clubs open all day and your place is booked at the beginning of the cruise. None of this pre booking rubbish! The clubs are set in age groups up to 17 year olds and it closes at 1 am. There is a night nursery with pagers with cots and beds and more staff than on Marella. There are set times when it’s closed for lunch and dinner and there’s a kids tea. I much prefer this one. No set times which suits us. He isn’t in there all day by far but at least he gets to choose as and when he goes rather than the restrictions Marella have. I think they’ve based the clubs on the resorts which doesn’t work on ships. Overall I think Marella is great value for money, the ships are very well designed and there is always a good itinerary. However it lacks the finesse and service of a quality cruise liner. What saves it is that you’re in port everyday which limits your time on board. I have thoroughly enjoyed it and I would come back if the itinerary was right but I think I would look at other cruise lines before this to see if the deal overall was worth it. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
Marella Discovery 2 Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.5 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.7
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 3.5 3.7
Family 3.5 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.5 3.3
Service 4.5 4.1
Value For Money 4.0 3.7

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