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289 Costa Mediterranean Cruise Reviews

Too many people.Too many italians. Too many childs. At the restaurant slow service and bad food and wine, Buffet with limited choice and poor quality. Difficult to find a seat at the buffet. Absolutely unsatisfactory breakfast. Cabins not ... Read More
Too many people.Too many italians. Too many childs. At the restaurant slow service and bad food and wine, Buffet with limited choice and poor quality. Difficult to find a seat at the buffet. Absolutely unsatisfactory breakfast. Cabins not cleaned well and ready only after 1 or 2 p.m. Rude staff at the reception desk. Poor entertainement and excursions too expensive. Slow and confusing boarding procedures. Difficult to find a seat during the shows. Approximate cleaning of common areas. Staff completely insufficient for the size of the ship. Long waits to talk to someone at the reception. No information provided to those who do not buy the excursions and who want to use public transport. You have to pay for everything. Bad experince overall. Definitively we have spent a lot of money to get a similar treatment to a scheduled ferry. Excluding Rome, the itinerary is not so interesting. Never again! Any usefull information to save money: MARSEILLE: use the free shuttle bus provided by the port Authority (500 yd from ship); BARCELONA: use the PUBLIC shuttle bus from cruise terminal; PALMA: use the PUBLIC BUS from cruise terminal to city center; CAGLIARI: the city center is just in front of you. Visit the city by yourself; ROMA: Be careful not to use unauthorized taxis. Best way is to go to ROMA SANPIETRO by train (www.trenitalia.com). Alternatively you may buy the only trasportation with a bus company at exit of the port. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
My friend and I had often looked at cruises but were both very wary about seasickness. Whenever shopping we would always pick out outfits that would be 'good for our cruise'. In comment this June, I said 'We have loads of ... Read More
My friend and I had often looked at cruises but were both very wary about seasickness. Whenever shopping we would always pick out outfits that would be 'good for our cruise'. In comment this June, I said 'We have loads of cruise outfits but no cruise", so we decided to bite the bullet. As I was travelling from the Canary Islands and my friend from the UK, we decided to choose Barcelona as our start and finish port and after a lot of investigation, booked with Costa and the Costa Diadema. We wanted a balcony cabin and with this we also booked the Piu Gusto drink package (well worth the money) and also took the opportunity of the Special offer of 99€ for 5 excursions (the price on board at the Welcome meeting was 149€). So with, cruise outfits packed, off we set. We travelled to Barcelona the day before and stayed at the Avenida Palace hotel which was ideally situated for a quick day tour of the sites in Barcelona. The following morning, we caught a taxi to the airport which was about 10 mins away and were dropped off outside the terminal. There was a queue to drop off cases, which moved very quickly. We were then directed upstairs where our photos were taken for our Costa Cards - and then proceeded to board. The whole operation was 'super slick' and far easier than passing through Passport control at Stansted airport!!!! Our luggage and Costa Cards had been delivered to our rooms - so we grabbed the courtesy beach towells provided and went straight out to relax and take the sun on deck. We wanted to stay on deck as we set sail from Barcelona at 1900 but there was a delay so we decided to go back to the cabin and unpack and prepare for dinner. We had brought with us packets of seasick tablets, every ginger product going and pressure bracelets. We unpacked, showered, got ready for the evening and only then did we realise we were actually at sea. So for any 'nervous first timers' like us, it is true!! You really do not feel the ship move!!! There was a Welcome meeting during the afternoon along with the safety drill. The Costa Cards can be activated at the totems throughout the ship by either depositing cash or linking them to your credit card. All purchases made on board, photos/extras/excursions etc are all added to your card. (On the last day, any remaining cash is returned to you in cash by the same machines - very well organised). See separate cabin review. We had requested second sitting in the Adularia Restaurant (21.15) - which is the smaller restaurant and seemed to have more tables for 2 passengers. The other restaurant is the Fiorentino (used for Breakfast too) and is on two floors. The food and service here were excellent - our waiter Sachin was very attentive and pleasant. The dinner service consists of 4 courses, anti pasta, soup/pasta, main dish of fish/chicken/meat etc and dessert. As well as the main menu, there is also always an added menu which includes, soup, salad, pasta, chicken & fish dishes. The menu is predominantly italian. The restaurant was busy but you didn't feel that it was crowded. One evening consisted of quite a few of the staff doing a dance and singing routine which was fun! There didn't seem to be a strict dress code - most people were dressed smart casual - the gala night did see some long evening dresses and suits for the men, but not everybody did this. When Sachin found out we drank white wine, there was always a bottle ready on our table before we had even sat down and more available, should we have wished. One evening we ate in the Teppenaki restaurant which incurred a surcharge of 30€ but was well worth it. Fantastic evening with excellent food and showcase cooking! I would have done this a second evening too if we had had time! A waiter service lunch was available in the Fiorentino restaurant -(regardless of where your evening restaurant was) or you could eat at the buffet Corono Blu. The buffet was on par with a good 4/5* hotel, salads, soups, grilled meats/fish, pasta, ice-cream, fresh fruit & pastries. Breakfast was also offered in the Corono Blu restaurant, continental style buffet - no hot food. The Fiorentino restaurant had bacon, scrambled eggs, beans, hash browns, boiled eggs, sausages as well as the normal continental menu. There was also another separate menu offering Breakfast specialities such as 'The Full Monty' - typical full english, USA breakfast of Pancakes, bacon and maple syrup, - Eggs Benedict, Mexican breakfast, omelettes which were all cooked to order and served at your table. Upon arriving at the restaurant you are allocated a restaurant - usually with other diners as there do not seem to be many tables for 2 available. We also used the room service and had Breakfast in our room from the Room Service menu, this had an additional charge of 5.00€ per person but was delivered on time and hot - worth it if you are rushing out for an early morning excursion! The evening entertainment in the bars on board was superb and catered for all ages and all tastes in music. It was really nice to watch people dancing to tangos, salsa, waltzes and never waited longer than a minute for a drink! There were lots of things going on during the day, wine tasting, dance lessons etc, etc which we did not take part in as we were out and about - but it all looked great fun! The Piu Gusto drink package was well worth it and covered the majority of cocktails, gin, vodka, whiskey, barcardi etc. There was a supplement for the more expensive makes of whisky/brandy & Champagnes. However, if you do not chose the drink package, they were still reasonable priced. A mojito was around 6.50€ which is actually less than I have paid in a 5* hotel in Gran Canaria. There is also a soft drink and water package - so apart from having a bottle of water on the table at dinner/lunch etc, water in the bars will be charged for. At lunch in the Corono Blu restaurant there is a water station where you can fill up a water bottle to take out on the deck with you or back to your cabin. Our day at sea between Mallorca and Sardinia we spent sunbathing. There are plenty of sunbeds around - it seemed to get busy mid-morning so few spare but then at lunch time lots became available again. We booked the 99€ excursion package (offered at 149€ at the Welcome Party). This offered a good range of excursions, but if there was another one you wanted to do, you could pay a supplement. IF YOU ARE ENGLISH - BOOK EARLY!! This was our only disappointment of the whole holiday and our fault entirely. We were unable to join the english speaking coach for our Rome excursion as it was full, so had to join the spanish speaking bus. This was fine for me as I speak spanish, but my friend does not - so I had to translate for her. MALLORCA We took the coach tour to the beach in Peguera and spent the day on the beach. I think the bus return about 1400 - 1500 hours - so it wasnt really a full day! Two Sunbeds and an umbrella cost approx 12€ and there are bars and restaurants where you can get drinks and lunch. As the ship does not leave until 0100 the following morning, we stayed at the beach and a taxi back to the Port was approx. 20€ SARDINIA Again we opted for the Poetto beach tour. Two sunbeds and an umbrella cost 13.50€. There was a small bar/cafe at the back of the beach where you could get a drink and a snack - wasn't all that! Beach was nice. ROME Early start!! I think we had to be on the bus by 0815! We chose the tour 'Ancient & Modern Rome', which gave you a good all round trip seeing the most famous sites. Rome is HOT in July, so make sure you have a hat and water. We started off at St. Peter's Square and the Vatican and had free time to wander around - there was no time to go inside as the queues are too long. We then joined the coach again and had a drive around passing the Coleseum and many other famous sites. We then stopped near to the Trevi Fountain (which was our meeting point) and had time to explore. It is a good idea to wander off up to the Spanish Steps (about a 10 Minute walk) and then back to the Trevi Fountain and then look for somewhere for lunch. (The picnics supplied by the ship are not that appetising - tuna and tomato sandwich, water, crisps, forcacia, juice, an orange and a chocolate wafer - apart from that there is nowhere to sit and eat - so we decided to eat in the restaurant recommended by the guide - La Taberna, just a minute from the Trevi fountain. The pizzas looked quite good but we chose a Caesar Salad which was the strangest one I have ever eaten. Lettuce, some kind of meat fried in breadcrumbs (it didnt look like chicken), slices of some type of processed cheese - definitely not parmesan and dressing!! Wasn't very good -but it was lovely and cool in there!! In all we really enjoyed the trip to Rome - it was very interesting and somewhere to return to explore more. The transfer journey is about 1.30 hours but all motorway and coaches are air conditioned. SAVONA We chose to to the Monaco trip which we had to pay a supplement for (about 50€). We had a fantastic guide (this time in English) Monique who was very interesting and entertaining. Again Monaco is HOT, you first visit the old part where the palace and gardens are and you can see the changing of the guard at 11.55. You are then taken to Monte Carlo and the Casino area - there should have been more free time here, but we had got slightly held up, so it was a quick brief visit -but it was good to see. MARSEILLE We chose the Easy Tour which was a short ride into Marseille and then a walking tour of about 1 hour. The guide as very informative and it was very interesting - although out of everywhere we had been - probably the dirtiest! Lots of graffiti and rubbish in the old part. It was a great way to get a quick taste of Marseille and as soon as the tour had finished, we decided to return to the ship to relax on our last day, however there was free time until 15.45 which was the last shuttle. We thoroughly enjoyed all of the trips and they were good value for money with the special pack for 99€. Remember to book early if you want an english speaking guide - it seemed to me that once the coach was full - they would not put on more. IMPORTANT: We specifically asked at the Costa Tour desk if we needed to take our passports ashore and were told rather rudely - 'Are you from Argentina? You are European, you do not need passports'. HOWEVER, remember all other European Nationalities have ID cards, UK Nationals do not. Luckily, the guide to Monaco asked if everybody had their passports with them... and there were quite a few who did not!! Apparently, the coach can be stopped at any time by the police and ID asked for -so remember to take it with you. During the afternoon on our last day, we had a Goodbye meeting, where the disembarkation was explained. Basically, you settle your bill at the totems where any outstanding money will be returned to you - or if you linked your credit card to the Costa Card your will will be Zero and will have been settled. Unfortunately, we were about to hit Barcelona in the middle of the taxi strike, but Costa had arranged for coach transport to the Airport (22€) and station (15€) which was money well spent when we saw people wandering around Barcelona with all their luggage. Well done Costa!! Cases have to be left out side your cabin by 0100 hours - luggage labels are left in your cabin for you to attach, the cases are then taken and left in the terminal for your collection upon disembarkation. You have to leave your cabin by 0800 - so we were up early, went to breakfast and were then really ready to go. Depending on the colour of your label - dictates the time you should disembark - but it didnt seem to really make much difference - we went off at 0900 instead of 0930 and were told we may have to wait for our luggage, but it was there, easily found by the colur coding. All in all, we had a fabulous first cruise! We have lots of unopened packets of seasick tablets and ginger products - you really cannot feel the ship move!! We would definitely cruise again and definitely with COSTA - the whole operation was so well organised and problem free. The atmosphere on board was friendly and fun and there really is something for all age groups, families, young couples, friends, and older couples. FANTASTIC 10/10 Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Our overall cruise was one of our favorite vacation we have every experienced. Our cabin was on the 11th floor, with a balcony overlooking the ocean which was breathtaking. I personally wanted to say a huge thank you to the chef and ... Read More
Our overall cruise was one of our favorite vacation we have every experienced. Our cabin was on the 11th floor, with a balcony overlooking the ocean which was breathtaking. I personally wanted to say a huge thank you to the chef and waiters, who have served and treated us with utmost respect and they had especially cooked the food that we requested due to our limitations. We dined at the restaurant, A la Carte and not the buffet restaurant as we preferred a quieter area to dine. It was just my wife and I so just something a bit more romantic. So Thank You to Francesco Patamia - Maitred Thank you to Jhanito Gatus Jr - The Supervisor And thank you to Katuuk - the waiter I apologize if i wrote the names incorrectly but I'm sure you know who you are. Overall, service, excursions, cabin, dining and activities were spectacular. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
First problem that costa only sent the e tickets 3 days before the cruise after ringing the tour oppertater daily to this. The restaurants have the same menu each day for breakfast lunch and evening with an ever so slight tweak. There ... Read More
First problem that costa only sent the e tickets 3 days before the cruise after ringing the tour oppertater daily to this. The restaurants have the same menu each day for breakfast lunch and evening with an ever so slight tweak. There was a hot dog burger area, being a vegetarian i requested a veggie burger and was told that I could have one in the designated restaurant that evening with a charge. The options on the menu were poor. Usually on a cruise a slice of pizza as a snack is usually an option, but not with costa an whole pizzas has to be purchased. A second seating option that I asked to have on numerous occasions but was refused, but do not totally understand why as each stop passengers were embarking and disseminating. The cut off time for the self service restaurant was 9.30, therefore one had to eat before this time , if they felt like it or not usually there is somewhere to have a snack if feeling hungry before bed time. The first seating was 6.45 and second seating was 9.15, usually water is served free of charge , but only bottled water was available with a charge. We came back on board late one night as we had a early morning sailing. Every were was closed, the only cold water station was out if water and glasses. We went to the bar at the back of the ship were the staff were clearing away to be totaly ignored by the staff, a young member of staff was very helpful and provided us with water. Also lipstick was found on a drinking mug on another occasion. The staff were entirely rude and missarsble, the were without a smile or greeting. The entertaimment was flat usually there is something for everyone. There were no port talks, no information on port transfers only what was provided by costa at a higher cost. Whilst in our stateroom, there constant interruptions with tanoy announcements. There was not many places on board to have a quiet time to read, it seemed to be constant noise everywhere. We have been with numerous cruise lines and never had an experience like this.We enjoyed our stops and tended to have a meal off board . The only tv channels available were the news channels all other channels were in different languages and only films available were with a charge. It's our first and last cruise with costa and would not recommend it to anyone . Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
I am returning from a Costa Cruise on Costa Luminosa. I spent ca. $10,000 for a suite, a cabin with a balcony and on board extras. This was my first time with Costa. Although I did enjoy my food experience in the special restaurant ... Read More
I am returning from a Costa Cruise on Costa Luminosa. I spent ca. $10,000 for a suite, a cabin with a balcony and on board extras. This was my first time with Costa. Although I did enjoy my food experience in the special restaurant that is assigned in my category, I will NOT travel Costa in the future for the following reasons: - it is not until I wrote to Costa that I got an itemized onboard expenses summary. - it is impossible to sleep well on board as their ships don't seem to be sound proof. More specifically: cabin doors at poorly designed and people tend to party in the hallway. I did not have a noise problem on Celebrity or Royal Carribeans. - the spa was huge (a big plus) but it is not relaxing at all: my first treatment was poorly scheduled as I could not participate in the mandatory drill. - it is not easy to have the staff stick to the price that was discussed at the spa. Sorry Costa: I do like the italian vibes of the people onboard, but it was not relaxing at all considering all the money I spent. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
My first time not on an American cruise ship. I have been on Princess, Celebrity and Seaborne. My husband is Italian so thought we would try Fascinosa out of Savona (Genoa). We got a suite, which gives you the Intenditore all inclusive ... Read More
My first time not on an American cruise ship. I have been on Princess, Celebrity and Seaborne. My husband is Italian so thought we would try Fascinosa out of Savona (Genoa). We got a suite, which gives you the Intenditore all inclusive drinks package and access to the 11 floor dining room, which is fabulous. Great food and service. All for about half price of American cruise lines. We loved the Med cruise especially the stay in Ibiza where we took ferries ourselves to the beaches in Formentera. Very easy to take yourselves to the beaches via ferry. A terrific experience. But yes, it is European. Know that in Naples you can take a cab to almost any site for a private tour! But we enjoyed the tour via Costa in Palermo. We did a mix of taking Costa tours and traveling on our own. In Barcelona it was easy to walk to the shopping areas on our own and just fabulous. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This was our third cruise but first (and last) time with Costa. They first stuck us in a cabin over the propellers and docking machinery. We did get our room changed. All the food tasted ike it was fast food micowaved for the masses. This ... Read More
This was our third cruise but first (and last) time with Costa. They first stuck us in a cabin over the propellers and docking machinery. We did get our room changed. All the food tasted ike it was fast food micowaved for the masses. This was probably to motivate you to try the higher end paying restaurants. Crew looked tired due to working 9 months straight without breaks. Cancelled 3 of our tours and dont even think of taking this ship if you are american or english speaking. Very Italian which implies Patience is not in their DNA nor being soft spoken. Get a good set of earplugs if you take thus cruise. Between the screaming children, rude gestures and poor entertainment we were anxious to leave the ship. Highlights were the wonderful tenor they had only perform one night and after the 50th rendition of 'Volare' heard throughout the ship it finally grew on me :) Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We feel we are a good judge of cruises this being our 26th, the Embarkation seem slow but we were on board by 2pm & I will say that this ship is well presented & our Cabin was good & the Public area's very good. My first ... Read More
We feel we are a good judge of cruises this being our 26th, the Embarkation seem slow but we were on board by 2pm & I will say that this ship is well presented & our Cabin was good & the Public area's very good. My first surprise was the Cabin Steward asked us when he should come to our Cabin morning or evening, we have never been asked that before but we opted for the morning & that was it. No change of towels in the evening or a 'Turn Down' Service. Unfortunately we suspect it was our waiters first week & he was unable to put the knives & forks on our table correctly & took an age. I did complain & the next night he was given extra help. The food was average I would say & not being a pasta lover this restricted my choice of dinner. One of my complaints was that on every other cruise that we have taken water is given to all seated guests at Dinner as a matter of course, NO, not on Costa ships YOU PAY for water. My other main complaints are that at 10.30am after the breakfast period ALL Coffee machines are closed down & you are then unable to get any hot drink at all, except water. Unless you PAY for a coffee/Tea etc. At 9.30pm all food outlets are closed down & you are not even able to get a biscuit or hot Coffee, unless ofcourse you go to one of the PAY outlets & get a pizza or burger!!!! One thing to watch out for & I missed in all the small print, is that the GRATUITIES/SERVICES ARE MANDATORY & so you are unable to amend even if the service is rubbish. The other thing to be warned about with Costa is that the Information Sheet that you get each day is very limited & does not give you sufficient information about the Port of Call. i.e. in Mykonos, Costa charge you 10 Euro per person for a 3 minute Bus ride into 'Town', which including my 5 yr old Granddaughter. I paid for the 6 tickets & the Bus drops you off about 200 yards from the town, not too far I hear you say. But as you got off the Ship in Port the Water Bus (which you walk past to get to the Costa Bus) costs 2 Euro's each & takes you to the middle of the town. No mention of that in the info sheet. Another observation shall I say is that this Ship has a large outdoor screen which on other ships I have been on, show Music Type video's etc.during the day or cartoons which transcend the language barrier, NO, not Costa all it showed during the day was adverts for their Services i.e. Photo Shop etc. Costa with limited warning changed the Disembarkation Port from Venice to Trieste & because, they say, there was 'civil unrest' in the town & therefore not their choice to amend the Port (to avoid compensation claims). We were intending to get off the ship in Venice & get a taxi to the Airport, but as we were getting off in Trieste this necessitated us taking a 2 hour Bus journey back to the Venice Port & then trying to get a taxi through the 'Civil unrest', (as Costa put it) to the Airport for our flight home. My fear was, we may miss the flight so we were forced to purchase Transfers. Costa then charged us 30 Euros each (including 5 yr old) for a Transfer from Trieste to the Venice Airport. No sorry I will NOT being going with Costa ever again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We wanted to enjoy some of the sites along the mediterranean. Very disappointed with customer service. They were non attentive and did not respond to our concerns. Wait staff were indifferent and sometimes hostile and arrogant. ... Read More
We wanted to enjoy some of the sites along the mediterranean. Very disappointed with customer service. They were non attentive and did not respond to our concerns. Wait staff were indifferent and sometimes hostile and arrogant. Disembarkment and dispensal of passports at the end of the cruise was at best chaotic and disorganized. Recommendation save your money and go on an American cruise line. There you are treated like a king. There were no smoking signs everywhere, all of them were ignored and smoking was everywhere. Cabins were OK. Clean and modern. Entertainment was a joke. All shows were in Italian. No attempt was made to have english speaking shows. Over all the cruise was adequate, if you dont mind putting up with shoddy service, arrogant and inattentive food service people and waiters. The gym had 10 treadmills for 4000 travellers. The pool was more like a kiddy pool. See the world in a different cruise line Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
This was our 35 th cruise, and our first one in Europe. The ship was beautiful and very clean. However, they served a repetitive, cheap, and limited menu. There were only a few desserts to choose from during dinner, and no coffee served ... Read More
This was our 35 th cruise, and our first one in Europe. The ship was beautiful and very clean. However, they served a repetitive, cheap, and limited menu. There were only a few desserts to choose from during dinner, and no coffee served which surprised me even though we bought the beverage package. We had to get coffee at the bar area after dinner. The buffet areas were extremely crowded and a cheap repetitive selection of food. Sit down breakfast was limited and confined to one dining room. In order to eat a nice sit down lunch with a menu you had to pay. When I go on a cruise, I like to sit down elegantly for a breakfast or lunch and be served. My husband and I felt like there was a lack of communication from the captain. On every on of our previous cruises the captain usually gives a daily report from the bridge on weather etc. The entertainment left a lot to be desired. We didn't stay for many of them. After dinner, my husband and I would try to walk on the Promenade deck but couldn't because it was wet due to their early cleaning. Also, there were too many smoking areas on the Promenade Deck so as you walked for exercise you had to breathe in all of that smoke. Finally, we had a room on Deck 9 which was a mistake because the buffet area was above us and we could hear noise all night. After a few nights they finally moved our room to deck 8 which was much better. We will never go on a Costa Cruise again especially in Europe! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
I am Italian and been many times on cruises of different flagship. This one had a good itinerary, so we went for it. There are a lot of positive things and also a lot of negative one.. I try to mention as much as possible and ... Read More
I am Italian and been many times on cruises of different flagship. This one had a good itinerary, so we went for it. There are a lot of positive things and also a lot of negative one.. I try to mention as much as possible and forgive me is something is missing. What I did not like too much. Booking. I was told by a friend to use a certain tour operator specialized. Then I discovered more and everyone was cheaper.. not much but cheaper. And a lot cheaper then costa.(why) Booked 2 rooms one with a small bed for 3 years old boy. Asked tour operator and was told , don’t worry when you arrive there they will change in case , one of the room to be close to the other one. We have been assignated two rooms at the opposite side of the ship.and also booked in two different restaurant and at two different shift... When we arrived the only worries of the staff was, did you registered for the drink , or coffee or any packages?... the room we have to wait just before the departure.. Registering means you will get services and you will pay after a day or so. Result, no room changes possibility, ship was full. ( why I was told in another way?) To get there I had to ask at least ten people with very important uniform as the office was only serviced by 3 persons for 3500 guests... All the other staff we asked informations couldn’t speak any language unless portoghese... ( brasilians coming from cheapest part of the country) and the rest Philippinos which have a good English. I fluently speak more then 5 languages apart mine.. so I believe I can talk with someone. Not to be too long No informations service good enough Waiting for restaurant second shift. Nightmare... hundreds of guests pushing for getting their seat, and all the staff looking to their biz and not been able to give infos... The smell of food of the carpet closer to the restaurant and almost overall was terrible. Dust in the rooms Curtains in the rooms not cleaned. Service in the room basic. As now the tip is included in the salary, so the effort to get rewarded with ( from a minimum tip up) is not more an advantage, so they don’t care much Anymore. Bed sheets, old and badly pressed, changed maybe every tree dayS or more. All in the ship is for making money. Wherever you stay you can only spend money. Fantastic drink service. You order get your card before the order you have to pay, and finally , at staff leisure you get your drink. Waited for a bottle of wine ordered and payed at the start of dinner and got when we finished the dinner with the sweets.. asked few times and answer was is coming... Same as for drinks aperitives , we ordered 4 spritz and a beer, at 5 pm. Supposed to get peanuts with it. ( for chips you have to pay, but we don’t eat fried things) asked many times, payed appx 50/60 us , even spoken with food and beverage manager, but never got the peanuts, the waiter didn’t care... and we really didn’t want to get drunk at 5 pm.... Thanks Buffet If you don’t like to wait , you can always eat at the buffet restaurant. Fantastic. Only problem is too many people and not so clean. So you have to queue everywhere and think there are so many people of different countries, and different kind of behavior... Disaster Plus they close ever so quick, basically your have very short time to eat . Rooms service or breakfast service you pay, before bkf was free in the room. Table, they sit people as they come, before at least was a lot of questions in order to combine same languages or areas or interests... Ship was cleaned perfectly only the last day or before last, because where a meeting of the oldest traveling agent of costa or so. You would have noticed the difference, everything was like new. Last negative, ship is not old but, bed sheets, chairs , carpet etchas got to be changed more. Even the granit or marble in the floor, greasy , not cleaned with proper products, No more the midnight sweets buffet, just a small and quick self service.... Overall poor and cheaply done, compared with few years before and other companies. Positive, Good music entertainment Good kids entertainment Sometimes evening surprise by dinner with a bit of music.. Good food menu , but the best is written , you have to pay ...( this is not positive) better to have special payment restaurant with exposed menu and with prices) Good itinerary, unfortunately sometimes too short Overall not satisfied . You pay quite a lot for what you get, and considering the service cleaness , etc, no worth for the money. Ps I can afford to pay, just extras I payed 2k . So I don t mind . I wish I had a better service. Definitely I will try other companies for the next cruise.. Hope you will find it better. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We chose this cruise because it departs and arrives from a single location (Savona), where we can park our car safely. This is our third time to cruise with Costa and we always enjoy their friendly service and their on-board entertainment. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it departs and arrives from a single location (Savona), where we can park our car safely. This is our third time to cruise with Costa and we always enjoy their friendly service and their on-board entertainment. The itinerary included some of our favorite locations (Malaga and Barcelona), as well as some places we had not been before (Valencia and Cadiz). The length of stops was okay, except for Barcelona, which was only about 4 hours and was therefore pretty frustrating. Savona is always our starting and stopping place for Costa cruises. This is a lovely little Italian town. Boarding was well organized, with parking and luggage service. We dropped our bags off together with our car, then walked into the terminal and waited for our boarding time. The parking/luggage attendants are really friendly and they took excellent care of our luggage and our car. After boarding, we had time to have a drink or snack while enjoying a view of the harbor, waiting for the cabins to be ready. When our cabin was available, they advised us, and then our luggage was there waiting for us, without incident. Disembarkation at Savona is chaotic and not so well organized. Although Costa enforces the disembarkation schedule, there were too many people in the terminal at one time, making it very hard to negotiate with a wheelchair AND baggage cart. However, we were prepared for this and we just took it as it was. We were driving to our next location so we were not stressed about meeting a plane or train, but I can understand others who did have to deal with that stress. We highly recommend to others to NOT plan to drive a long way on the day you leave the cruise, because you will be really tired. We normally drive a few hours to Firenze (Florence) that day, and that is as far as we would want to drive that day. Prepare to be exhausted at the end of a cruise. On board, we enjoyed the evening shows with fantastic dancers and great musicians. They truly make it easy to have fun. This time we were less than impressed with the overall dining experience, where we felt that the variety was limited, and the qualify of food was not as good as on previous Costa cruises. Unfortunately, Costa does not really cater to travelers in wheelchairs. They have some accessible cabins, but very few accessible suites, and so far we have been unable to get a suite, even though we tried to reserve from the first day the cruise was available online. Maybe we have to have some other connection that we don't know about. More about the cabin below. Excursions organized by Costa do not offer wheelchair accessible buses, so it is up to us to organize ourselves. We gave the "Public rooms" category a lower rating because in many places, the music was way too loud, making it impossible to have a conversation. However, we found a piano bar where the music was to our liking and not too loud, and there we enjoyed snuggling with drinks and having time to just be together as a couple. Overall, we had a great time and are looking forward to another cruise in the next couple of years. One plus of traveling with Costa is that they are registered in Italy and therefore are subject to EU regulations. One of these regulations states that when traveling with a disabled person that needs constant assistance, the companion/carer does not have to pay other than drinks and taxes. Costa respects this regulation and therefore we pay full price only for one of us. However, beware that if you are eligible for this allowance, you must request it from Costa BEFORE departure. We learned about this during our second Costa cruise but too late to request it for that cruise, so this time we were wiser. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
When arriving on the ship there was a lot of confusion and our rooms were not ready. Once getting into our rooms it took another 2 hours for my bag to arrive. There was many things that were not included on this cruise which is not ... Read More
When arriving on the ship there was a lot of confusion and our rooms were not ready. Once getting into our rooms it took another 2 hours for my bag to arrive. There was many things that were not included on this cruise which is not stated on the website. The entertainment was really bad. I have been on 3 cruises before this one and could not believe how boring the entertainment was. For good entertainment and value for money I would go on the Royal Caribbean again. I have been on the Royal Caribbean 3 times now and I can never fault it. There was not much to do for the children and the entertainment during the day was very boring. The food was also bad. When ordering meals you were unsure of what each one was and it would come out looking like it was chucked on the plate. When waiting to get a drink it took forever to find someone to order. Most of the time we just gave up and didn't order any drinks. I went on the cruise with my sister and her family and having them for company was good. It is a good cruise if you just want to relax as there isn't much happening when you are on the boat. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
The reason I decided to write this review is to warn those people who privilege the rest and sleep at night to dancing and partying (I am not judging here, cruises are the right place for such things, just claiming my share of pleasure-the ... Read More
The reason I decided to write this review is to warn those people who privilege the rest and sleep at night to dancing and partying (I am not judging here, cruises are the right place for such things, just claiming my share of pleasure-the night's sleep): this is an old ship and there is practically no sound isolation. My cabin ( 11101 if i remember well) was exposed to very loud music to the point things were trembling each night from 23 till 1.00. Earplugs were not helpful. In this ship it is either one is lucky to have one's cabin far enough from the epicenter or not. Hospitality did not offer any sustainable solution either. Having paid about 4000 euros for three persons in a suite for a week's time, I really think it was a pitiful investment. This was a real shame, because on the whole the total experience was not awful at all. The club restaurant provided very friendly personalized service accompanied by quite acceptable and sometimes deliscious food. I could say Edd and Err saved our expeprience on the whole. Excursions, inspite of all the efforts of the guides, were not at their best, because the poor guides had to speak up to 4 languages which resulted in repeating one thing like where to find the toilettes and where to meet up to 4 times...Very little space left for cultural information. Spa on this ship is a joke and not worth a try, a shame again because it used to be a good part of a cruise activity for me and family. Finally, a valuable info for coffee lovers: traditionnally, on all Costa ships I travelled coffee is a very delicate issue: my point is, the americano they are offering in general service, is below human dignity, while the one in the bars is too strong for a morning. Well, I could order a cappucino, but I do not drink milk... My personal solution was to pack a little french press coffee maker and the brand I am used to. It could serve for a good verbal tea as well. Hot water is something one can always count on Costa company! The last but not least-many thanks to our cabin butler Yan for his perfect service and friendly smile. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This was my first cruise, so I have nothing to compare it to, but based on my experience on the Favolosa it will be my last. Initially boarding was a nightmare - only 2 people to book in dozens of passengers that all seemed to arrive at ... Read More
This was my first cruise, so I have nothing to compare it to, but based on my experience on the Favolosa it will be my last. Initially boarding was a nightmare - only 2 people to book in dozens of passengers that all seemed to arrive at the same time. I have no complaints about the (inner) cabin, it was spacious with lots of storage. Suitcases went under the bed. The crew were excellent - very accommodating and friendly. So what was wrong, you ask? First of all the ship is way too big and after 10 days aboard, I still couldn't find my way around. Its also too crowded and noisy. Passengers were mostly Italian and some of the kids were annoying, running everywhere, pressing all the buttons on the elevator etc. The food was pretty bad. Buffet breakfast and lunch was virtually the same meal and it was repeated every day. Due to the crowds, it was also very difficult to find an empty table. We had the late dinner at 9.15 pm and although the menu read well, the food itself was mediocre at best and extremely salty. Some dishes were inedible. We had one of the drinks packages (Brindisi) which wasn't cheap, but only certain drinks were included and as one other reviewer mentioned, bottled water was an extra charge. Costa provided a shuttle bus from the various docks into the cities, BUT it was an extra charge, so we didn't use them. In some cities, time ashore was very limited and we didn't get a real feel for these places. We could have taken their tours, but again, not cheap. We had 2 sea days and they were a nightmare. The crowds of people and noise were only emphasized on these days and one was faced with a wall of people by the elevator doors, so you couldn't even exit the elevator. Entertainment was 'so so'. There were a couple of good acts in the theatre, but the rest were pretty ordinary e.g. karaoke contest, interpretive dancers. I can't believe this ship is only 7 years old. The decor harks back to the 1970's - orange, brown, dark green - not very appealing. Overall I couldn't wait to get off the ship vowing never to do it again! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
DONT CRUISE WITH THEM!!! Customer service very poor, they didn't help you at all and give wrong advices, they treat us very bad when asked for some help. I puthink money in the account to pay for excursions for 2 cabin as they asked ... Read More
DONT CRUISE WITH THEM!!! Customer service very poor, they didn't help you at all and give wrong advices, they treat us very bad when asked for some help. I puthink money in the account to pay for excursions for 2 cabin as they asked and then they took money from each account..and when I asked to take 500€ from 1500€ to give back the other family they said I can't take out any money until I disembark. ..but they treat us badly. Restaurant: food was horrible...but the worst was that after 9pm was no food...only pizza which we had to pay extra for it. Housekeeping: terrible...linen bed was never changed in a week and was very dirty...and I was with a baby so I had to stay in that misery. Beach towels was left wet on bed for 2 days ..I put them outside the door to be changed but was taken and never brought back new ones. We had to pay for everything on board ... The drinks was only but glass never by can or bottle.!!! I asked for iced coffe and I received a glass with ice and a expresso. I have more to say but most important DON'T CRUISE WITH THEM!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
This cruise seemed good value but it’s basically the easyjet the seas, seems cheap but will charge for everything! We sailed from Barcelona for a week around Italy etc... I have sailed previously with other liners but this was ... Read More
This cruise seemed good value but it’s basically the easyjet the seas, seems cheap but will charge for everything! We sailed from Barcelona for a week around Italy etc... I have sailed previously with other liners but this was definitely the worst. Here is why; Check in was disorganised with no visual information of where to go next. This lead to a confused check in which didn’t help out stress levels with a young baby and 5 year old in tow. Staff told us different things. One saying don’t que go straight to the front of the line, when arriving we were told to join the que. The costa port had no luggage trollers and with lots of bags, a pram and a travel cot plus the kids it made the port very difficult. Pre arrival I contacted costa and asked about a cot for my son told that all had been allocated and I couldn’t have one. I forwent my car seat and brought my travel cot adding greatly to the struggle with luggage. I was told after arrival that they had travel cots available. Our travel got damaged in transport and we didn’t even need it in the end, very annoying! No information in the room for pre booked packages. Ie princess for the day, spa etc.... also had no daily itinerary and had to quit for 16-20 mins to get one. Get used to waiting in the guest services que if you are English speaking. No information was given and it wasn’t made clear as to what is included in the premium package and the drinks packages until I questioned it after queuing at guest services. I had an idea but wanted the detail as it was so confusing. The English information is minimal and disorganised at best. My daughter was looking forward to kids club and was accepted into squark club. They say they give rust bands for safety in an emergency, mine was not given the rist band, that details the muster point etc. until I asked on the second admission. Was not told where to pick them up in an emergency. Basic safety not followed!! Come on, not great given their history! No children’s programme until we asked on the second day. Noted that others had them delivered to the cabin. Spa package was reserved. When we came to find out how the week package worked, cards were taken for payment and wrist bands given. We were offered upgrades for an extra fee. We declined a number of times and had decline assertively before they stopped the big sell. We then had to asked whether we got robes towels etc... and they were given to us only after asking. We then waited while the person serving us went onto serve someone else. We were not shown around and thought we had to work it out on our own. We asked different staff and guests about what to do ie where towel are kept, what area is what, how the tea area worked etc... when I complained the receptionist was helpful offering a tour tomorrow but did not understand our issue with poor customer care. Just kept reiterating about the reason we signed the robe out and had to sign it back. Most food is frozen or tinned I think and tastes like it. Not at all as good as any other cruise I have been on. We cook far better at home. Booked princess package for our daughter, despite ordering online, we had to que one again in guest services for the receipt so we could fill a form in to allow her to do it! Even guest services were confused why they wouldn’t Accept the email! No communication, so much so I worry about how they would communicate in an emergency. Kids can only dance at 10pm until midnight in the disco! I suppose ok for European timetable but for brits they were alienated. NEVER AGAIN!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Having paid so little it should have been a clue not to expect the best of service or standards, but if it were possible to rate zero I would. Most of the staff had an attitude that passengers were an inconvenience and the only time ... Read More
Having paid so little it should have been a clue not to expect the best of service or standards, but if it were possible to rate zero I would. Most of the staff had an attitude that passengers were an inconvenience and the only time they were prompt was when it was time to close services, sometimes a tiny bit early, e.g. on a day at sea waited 15 minutes for a waitress to finally come and take my order, when I pointed out the delay she aggressively said she was on her own (one would have thought as all passengers were aboard they might have known it would be busy) The food was at best average and the decor was more cheap and tacky than luxury. However all of these things might have been tolerated if the ship was not full of unconrolled, screaming children, from babies to young teemagers, who treated the whole ship including the casino, the theatre and adults only salons as unsupervised kindergarten. It is well known that the Italian culture is very family friendly but on this ship it was to the detriment of adults. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Having cruised with Costa previously, this was a very disappointing experience to the point we have now chosen not to book this line ever again. Ship needs refurbishment, cabin was very small and service was non existent. At the start of ... Read More
Having cruised with Costa previously, this was a very disappointing experience to the point we have now chosen not to book this line ever again. Ship needs refurbishment, cabin was very small and service was non existent. At the start of the cruise we were asked to select when we would like the cabin to be cleaned! The suggestion was it woul only happen once a day. Rembrandt, you have to pay the gratuities with this line. Forget breakfast unless you like cake, bread buns and fruit. Entertainment was ok but catering for Italian customers. Dining experience was very slow and they now charge fro the water! My wife has made the suggestion that we only use Costa to get from A to B. In other words, use Costa as a ferry service e.g. Barcelona to Savona. Real cruisers willl be let down by booking Costa Cruise so be warned. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
I read a lot of bad critics before going but we really enjoyed the cruise. Sure there were things we would like to change but overall it was a good one. -the embarkation was at venice. We went with the people mover from piazza roma ( ... Read More
I read a lot of bad critics before going but we really enjoyed the cruise. Sure there were things we would like to change but overall it was a good one. -the embarkation was at venice. We went with the people mover from piazza roma ( tip- remember to buy tickets for the coming back to venice and skip the lines at the ticket machine). The embarkation is very very slow! We waited more then 2 hours, so no need to harry , come very early or very late. We came around 12 and and entered the ship around 3 o'clock. The rest of disembarkation at ports and at venice was pretty good )we had a flight to catch so asked to get first at venice). The ship was very clean, i thought the decor will be italian -something special, but i didn't like it- looked old fashion not at all impressive to my taste. The cabin was a little smaller the the celebrity but clean and the stewart was all the time there- very good. There was cigarette smoke in the corridor (i think from the inner rooms) , complained several times but nothing was done. The food- was very good in the restaurants, good attention and good quality of food. We were worried about the water but because our agency was from the usa we received free bottles at dinner. At the embarkation we did the water package - 13 bottles for 39 euro( don't remember exactly) - so we had water at night and at gym. About the drinking package - we were 2 adults and a 14 years kid - all of us are not great drinking - not soda or alcohol so didn't take the drinking package and bought a wine and water package- 6 wines and some 7 bottles of water for 130 euro. We were glad with this package. Had some beer (4-5 euro plus tax) and some cocktiles ( 7-8 euro). Cappuccino 3-4 euro at evening. During the last days they also selled some wine =very cheap =some 10 euro (not so good but we had for the evening at dinner). The entertainment was mediocre - had a great tenor one evening , the rest were the entertainment stuff - not at all the same level as the celebrity. The theater is very big and very well equipped. The buffer is chaos!! Very bad organised - the tables are for 6 and couples or singles occupy them leaving you no place to seat. Usually we strolled with plates and looked for a place to seat. A lot of noise and a lot of queues ...very bad experience and we preferd to go to the restaurant. Maybe less selection but quieter. The service was very good ! Last problem- there was supposed to be a teens club - a spacial room with play station and etc. No place like this just an announcement to gather near the disco...and the activity was at night with parties- this is a shame because our teen couldn't meet other children his age. OVERALL WE KNEW THIS IS NOT A CELEBRITY OR CARNIVAL CRUISE SO HAD LOWER EXPECTATIONS BUT ENJOYED IT AND HAD GREAT PORTS (AGAIN VERY SHORT TIME AT PORTS...) Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
I’m not saying I regret taking this Costa Cruise. It was cheap and reviews indicated it wouldn’t have much in terms of amenities or decent food. It also had the smallest cruise room we’ve ever stayed in. All of that aside, the cruise ... Read More
I’m not saying I regret taking this Costa Cruise. It was cheap and reviews indicated it wouldn’t have much in terms of amenities or decent food. It also had the smallest cruise room we’ve ever stayed in. All of that aside, the cruise cake with free drinks, good service, and a great international flair. Our 12 abs 14 year olds found enough to do, and we sailed for the ports anyway. It was ok. Would I sail Costa again if the price is right ... yes I would. Would I recommend it to others? If you’re ok with Carnival and aren’t sailing for the food, then yes. Would I recommend it for families? I’d say no if you have young children. There wasn’t much for them on this ship. I’m of the mindset that fun can be had anywhere, and our party of 7 - 2 seniors, 3 adults, and 2 teens - all had a good time. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
The furnishings in the cabin looked well used. The ship is getting old but it is still seaworthy. The staff gave conflicting answers to simple questions asked. A inexpensive Wi-Fi program was offered to counter the expensive ... Read More
The furnishings in the cabin looked well used. The ship is getting old but it is still seaworthy. The staff gave conflicting answers to simple questions asked. A inexpensive Wi-Fi program was offered to counter the expensive charges on regular internet programs. Unfortunately this program was useless as you could not get your emails. Some of the water dispensers in the buffet lines did not work and you could not fill water bottles. Charges for water for your room was expensive. Wrist bands were not used so filling out paperwork for food/drink etc was a common issue. Many of the buffet locations were closed down at various times which forces you to scramble to find open stations. Elevators very slow. Line ups occurred frequently at the front desk. The emergency muster was in disarray and not informative or reaffirming. Wine selection was limited. With a few changes I feel this ship could be a good sail. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
Let me start off by saying I am neither a complainer nor a pushover. I like to say things as they are and to hell with what the majority or otherwise might say. Nor am I a happy clapper willing to give out praise where it not due. That ... Read More
Let me start off by saying I am neither a complainer nor a pushover. I like to say things as they are and to hell with what the majority or otherwise might say. Nor am I a happy clapper willing to give out praise where it not due. That out of the way, let me proceed. As seasoned travellers myself and my wife have been most places in the world and often several times over. However, until now we have resisted the urge to cruise. Don't ask me why, I have no logical reason, other than liking to be in charge of my our own day to day lives and what we decide to do with them, which is best suited to a holiday where we set the daily itinerary. I was often put off by the choice available, the often very high prices, and unfortunately, the high prices upfront to fly to some of the departure ports from Northern Ireland. For instance, the Caribbean felt a good option several times, but paying up to £700 each for flights just to get to Miami and then the cost of the cruise on top was a turn off. Deep down I also had a fear that I would get cabin fever, and also harboured an illogical feeling that a cruise ship was merely a tarted up ferry and I would know it inside out and back to front within an hour. This proved to be unfounded. So this year we decided it was time to break our mould and book a cruise. The Western Med seemed a safe bet, and being slightly off season in March we wouldn't have spent a Kings ransom if it turned out we really were not up for cruising at all. If we liked it, then spending a lot more in some sunny summer exotic destination would be less of a worry. After an evening of internet research, I arrived at the Costa website, and we finally decided on a Western Med 7 night cruise on the Costa Diadema out of Barcelona. We booked an exterior room with a balcony. We also booked the Piu Gusto all inclusive drinks package including Cocktails. So off we set in early March 2018 In the midst of severe arctic weather as a result of the polar vortex over Ireland and the UK in late feb early March 2018, and we duly arrived in Barcelona on a rather pleasant saturday afternoon. Our cruise wasn't due to leave until Monday night, so we decided it would be good to book a hotel for 2 nights in Barcelona as well. This was a great decision, we had 2 lovely days in the city, and our hotel was right by the cruise port which meant a 2 minute transfer from hotel to Ship on Monday afternoon. Monday came quick enough and a quick taxi run saw us arriving at a modern fresh Cruise terminal purpose built by Costa. The Diadema in all its spotless glory was tied up alongside. Our labelled bags were whisked away, and an hour later, we were called to board. On entering the ship the lavish design is the first thing that hits you. This was no glorified ferry! The ship is beautifully fitted out and spotlessly clean. We made out way to room 2037 on deck 2 and were pleasantly surprised at the size of the room, the bed and balcony. Our two Cruise cards were awaiting us on the bed. These act as your boarding card/ ID at port stops, your payment method whilst onboard, and your door keycard for entry to your room. The idea is you "pair" your credit card to the cruise card at one of the multiple terminals onboard. You then no longer use personal cards or cash on board. Any accrued cost, you settle the night before your trip ends. Of course, the card also holds details of your drinks package, so all your drink 'purchases' are free. You will be called to a meeting point an hour or two after boarding, resplendent with life jacket for a compulsory drill. All in all it took about 20 minutes. This is taken extremely seriously by the crew members and they expect you to treat it as seriously and pay attention to all that you are told. Common sense, and no more an interruption on your cruise than the flight attendant instructions at the start of a flight. At this point, I'll explain go back and explain the drinks packages. There are several, from water only, kids soft drinks, meal only wine packages, wine only all areas, main spirits wines and beers, everything inc Cocktails (but not absolute premium brands) this is the package that we had , and the everything you want package including the very top brands like 20 year old Brandys. Note: everyone travelling on the same booking must have the same package for adults. This is to prevent the card holder 'buying' drinks on the all inclusive package, and passing them to others who haven't paid for the package. Incidentally, I saw this once with a group of 30 something men. The barman saw it happening and immediately refused further service to the whole group. They were then escorted from the bar. I don't know if their cards were confiscated, but on the literature it does say that this could happen if abused. Simply, do the right thing and you are fine, if caught, the bar staff take it seriously and will take action. All the bars on ship serve the same range of drinks and the extensive drinks menu is at every bar. You simply look at the coloured dot that represents your package on the front page of the menu, and any drink that has your colour dot (yellow in our case) then that drink is included. Our package was hugely inclusive and only about 3 cocktails and a selection of like 20 year old brandies were excluded. It included dozens of top brands. Martell, Johnny Walker, Baileys, Smirnoff, Gordons, Martini, Bacardi, Canadian Club, and loads of liquors and beers, coffee, soft drinks and juices.. The Cocktail menu was to die for, with about 30 on offer. (Try the Bahama Mama!!) At €8.20 a cocktail, it would be an expensive night if you were paying by drink. Our package was €175 each. We each drank about €70 of cocktails etc on the first night! :-) Suffice to say, the drink package is worth it. When you consider it includes your wine at dinner, soft drinks etc at lunch time, all your Illy coffees on board. I estimate our tab would have been not much shy of €1000 for the 8 days onboard. (you can avail of your breakfast, lunch and drinks package on departure day as well!) Stay away from the minibar in the rooms as usual over priced. Now for all said above, heres the anomaly. This company (Costa) has a real bee in its bonnet over drinking water! Yes, the stuff you need to stay alive. It is not included free in the room (€3.50 a litre from the mini bar.) It is only dispensed from water dispensers to cup in the buffet area, and by glass only in the restaurants. If you want chilled bottled water, you have to pay extra! even with a drinks package, unless you take out the actual water drinks package! So Martell VSOP brandy and €9 Cocktails are included on your package, but chilled bottled water isn't even though they would likely stock it at about 10 cents a bottle! Very strange, and it seems to irk a lot of people going by comments here and elsewhere. It also seems unique to Costa. So, sort it Costa, really silly policy and one which needs addressed. I cannot for the life of me understand having an all inclusive drinks package and not having the cheapest and most basic form of drink available on it! However that said, I don't remember gasping for water onboard, it is available from dispensers 24/7 and we kept a litre in the room at all times. Moving onto dining. I can genuinely say that If I had have believed some of the ridiculous reviews left by some people here and elsewhere, I may have cancelled the trip. What it did do was leave us with some doubts as to what the food would be like. There must be a lot of people out there with very low tolerance levels, or very delicate palettes . This is an Italian cruise ship. There is no escaping it caters mainly for Italian, Spanish, French and German peoples. In fact English was the 3rd or 4th language translated for announcements. I am not a picky eater at all, but I admit enjoying the typical UK/ Irish diet. Everything from fish and chips, roast beef, a good curry etc. But I also enjoy rice dishes etc. I wouldn't say I am a big lover of the classic mediterranean diet, but I would have a go anyway. Suffice to say, the food will be different than the UK or Irish traveller might be used to. But its of very high quality. In a nutshell, both my wife and I were bowled over with the quality of food on offer. The Italian chefs onboard created dishes each night that were just amazing. From basic spaghetti and pasta dishes, to the beef, lamb, chicken and pork offerings. We were blown away. It was so satisfying too, as our expectations had been lowered so much by these reviews!. I have to say to some of the reviewers on this site, some of you must be serial complainers or just unfortunate, because the experience we had all over the ship was of a serious effort to provide top class food and experience and I don't think we were let down once. You will be allocated a dining room on day one, with either sitting 1 or 2. We were in the Fiorintino restaurant on deck 3/4 for first sitting. Some reviews said staff were nasty and overworked, food arrived cold and took hours. I think you are reviewing the wrong boat. Our waiter was prompt, wine bottle in hand before you had even warmed the seat. The 5 course menu browsed, a nibble at the constant supply of fresh breads, and the first course arrived within 10 minutes. We never spent longer than 1 hour to 80 mins in the restaurant unless chatting to people. It was a lovely experience in 5 star surroundings. The waiting staff were warm and friendly and nothing was too much for them. The food was superb, resented like a top restaurant and cooked perfectly. Now, if you didn't want the sit down 5 course meal, or you decided to eat later, the Buffet on floor 10 was available up until well after 9. If you have experienced all you can eat buffets before, this will be of no surprise to you, but it was no where near the problem some have posted. Its busy, but we never found it crazy busy. You may well have to look around for 2 or 3 minutes to get a seat in the actual buffet area, but never longer than that. Also the area directly outside the buffet has hundreds of seats and tables to eat at also. The buffet runs along 3 sides, and is split into Oriental (Chinese type dishes, rice, fried rice, noodles, ribs, chinese chicken pork etc,) Italian, spaghettis, pasta, lasagnes, ravioli, then a big area serving roast beef, chicken etc. A large salad area and a dessert area. Again, for a buffet, the food is very good and you can have a really nice meal here. One review I read actually said, "most of the food available in the buffet is cold"! what absolute rubbish! This is also the location for your continental breakfast. Cooked breakfasts are at your designated restaurants. In addition to this, there are 3 or 4 "prestige" restaurants, costing about €25 per person per head over and above your inclusive package. There is the Tarayaki, The Ferrari and another. We never bothered, as the food inclusive was so good. You also have an Italian Pizzeria and a burger bar available (at a cost) to about 1.30am, or room service 24 hours at a cost of course. The Pizza is to die for, seriously. We had a full cooked breakfast in bed one morning for €10 all in. (Full UK style) So thats the food aspect. We were really delighted. I expect in review columns like this, it is natural that people will come to complain more than compliment, but I really must say a big congratulations to Costa for service and food. So on to the ship itself. Wow. Its a bit of an assault on the senses. The sheer size of it is the first thing that hits you. It is vast. 16 floors high, numerous bars restaurants etc. A shopping mall, casino, cinema, theatre, disco, nightclub, 2 pools, jacuzzis, country club, Ice cream parlour, spas. Just about everything you would expect. I understand its one of if not the biggest currently on Mediterranean duty. The shops are typical of cruise liners. Tommy Hilfiger, up market watches, and the typical Boots type perfume and lotions shops. Not really our thing but nice enough to kill an hour or so. Do be aware, they run 'sales and promotions' most nights, but in reality the prices are rubbish and its easy to get sucked in when in holiday mode. You will pay at least what you will pay at home, sometimes a lot more! Suffice to say, ignore the 75% off luxury watches promos. Ripoff. But I am sure you are not cruising for the shops on board. Each night, you will receive the ships "newspaper" detailing all of the next days activities and the port of call. This is excellent because you know whats on the ship at any time. We enjoyed a show one night in the vast theatre, and shows change nightly. But we found our home in the country club where a terrific cover band called Royal Alligators played Dire Straits,Queen, Toto, Police, and all the old classics until the early hours. They were very talented and pulled big crowds each night. Other than that, it was nice to just drift about the ship in and out of venues to see what was on, you really can lose yourself walking about the many decks and bars. The bar and lounge areas are all slightly different but designed beautifully, and its lovely to sit in any of them and just take in a bit of entertainment. And this is non stop. This is a dancing boat! Morning noon and night, there are couple Cha cha'ing or Latin dancing to their hearts content. There are free classes on constantly, with bands, singers, musicians, comedians, and dancers doing different shows every night. The public areas are busy, but not frantic. Italians do tend to converse loudly and shout rather than talk, but I don't remember ever feeling that the Ship was rowdy or boisterous. Just happy! You would have thought the waiting and bar staff would be trained to slow down the drinks intake of all those all inclusive passengers to save the company money, but its quite the opposite. The staff will arrive as soon as your glass is empty to fetch a refill. The service is excellent. In fact, the attention and service of staff all over the ship is really exemplary. They are courteous, well trained and efficient. There are always people polishing stair rails and glass partitions, cleaning surfaces etc. You will not see a fingerprint on this ship. I'll not dwell on the ports called at. Suffice to say, we stopped at Palma, Palermo in Sicily, Rome, Savona, Marseilles and back to Barcelona. I cant comment on the tours, but we booked the bus transfer to Rome and it left and came back on time, and the same in Palma. On early arrival back at Barcelona, we had breakfast. Our cases were left outside the room the night before to be transferred to the terminal for collection (saves you carting them through he ship on exit). We were told we could stay on board until about 1 pm which we did, availing of lunch and a few more Cocktails! So an excellent trip with 5 star service board and food. We will definitely cruise on the Diadema again. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
My first cruise and it did not scare me off from going on others. It did however cement our resolve never to cruise with Costa again. A bedlam of constant noise, either from the clientele (if you do not enjoy Italian style of ... Read More
My first cruise and it did not scare me off from going on others. It did however cement our resolve never to cruise with Costa again. A bedlam of constant noise, either from the clientele (if you do not enjoy Italian style of communications... don't go! Just sayin!) or from the very frequent announcements. If if wasn't the daily safety drill (yes, this cruise is a rolling cruise... peep embark and disembark on every port, you can imagine the impact on atmosphere on board, very unsettled, felt like a ferry most days) it was crew only announcements (what an actual?) or super super bingo bingo et al entertainment war cries. There is no area for quiet chilling and since no blankets were provided relaxing on the deck with a book was not possible. Only place to get some peace would have been our cabin.... nearly lost my mind on the at sea day of the cruise! Food was a mixed bag. I'm not going to dwell on the buffet horrors, the food was mediocre (and mostly cold) at best, the brutish feeding frenzy of the clientele was too much for me to deal with but luckily there was the sit down option. Dinners in Fiorentina were the highlights of our cruise. The early seating was the most peace we found on our cruise and the food was pretty good too! Unbelievably coffee and tea were not available freely outside breakfast and the 4-5pm afternoon snack time. Entertainment in the main theater was on amateurish side (apart from last night, the Russian acrobat duo was proper good!) and being amused by enthusiastic ball room dancing civilians can only keep me amused me so long. Staff were OK, we didn't really get involved with demanding anything from them... kind of gave up on expecting anything special upon realization at what kind of cruise this was. Gym was full of loud teens despite no under 16 should have been allowed. I saw one bambino stood on a table by the water machines, no one, not parents nor the staff batted an eyelid. A lot of people were making piles of sandwiches from breakfast tables to have later, that kind of crowd...! The one Costa 'excursion' we took was the coach only to Rome from Civitavecchia: Departure from port was delayed by 45 mins due to broken down coach, 15 mins were added in Rome..... no apologies, no gestures of anything (customer service does not come naturally from this lot!). Both ways our driver (different) was busy one-hand driving down motorway whilst happily (and, typically for region, loudly chatting on his mobile phone). On our way back our guide (a German) lady joined in on the act. I'm certain I'm not alone in NOT enjoying listening to unnecessary mobile conversations of others... not to mention the safety aspect! To recap: Future cruises will not be on Costa. I do not get my kicks from being sleep deprived and successful holidays are not made of feelings of claustrophobia, not to me anyway. If you enjoy your cruise as an opportunity to travel between cities in style and comfort, whilst being entertained, Costa is not for you. In fact, I'm a rather unclear as to whom the Costa experience is aimed at! Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We have just returned home from a weeks cruise around the Med on the Costa Diadema. This was my annual birthday cruise and we have cruised on the Diadema before, this was our 3rd time. I shall post comments on how we found our cruise ... Read More
We have just returned home from a weeks cruise around the Med on the Costa Diadema. This was my annual birthday cruise and we have cruised on the Diadema before, this was our 3rd time. I shall post comments on how we found our cruise experience to be but this will be a lengthy review. I shall be posting menus, and current drinks prices as well as extracts from the daily whats on programme. For those who do not like detailed lengthy reviews you have been warned (Grin). As we are Perla Diamente (top level tier Guests) one of the perks is that our cases are collected from our home and delivered to the ship (only within Europe) so armed only with hand luggage we set off from Alicante train station to Barcleona the day before the cruise departed. The journey takes 5 hours on the fast train and it is a comfortable ride. We stayed this time at the Crowne plaza fira centre, only 2 stops from Sants which is one of the main hubs and from the hotel is only 3 stops from Drasanes which is the cruise terminal metro stop. The Crowne Plaza was a comfortable stay and we had booked an executive room which was very comfortable. The following day we departed the hotel and made our way to the cruise port. There are shuttles running from near the colombus monument whch drop you off outside the terminal at a cost of 3€ single or 4€ return. On the shuttle bus we met a couple of Italian people who recognised us from our last cruise, This happened quite a lot of times on this cruise both with passengers and staff and was a wonderful surprise. Outside the cruise terminal, you showed your travel documents and you were given an embarkation number, ours was number 1 (another perk) you then made your way inside the terminal where you filled out a health questionaire form. You then went to check in where you handed in your health check form and tickets, your photo was taken and you were then told that your cruise card would be on the bed in your cabin and given a time when embarkation would begin. We were then escorted to the VIP lounge (another perk) dont get too excited, it was just a smallish room with a table of snacks (crisps,(chips) biscuits, (cookies) various soft drinks, (soda) and water. We were told that somebody would be up to escort us to the ship embarkation point at 1.30pm. We were the only people in the VIP lounge and if i'm honest, i did miss the hustle and bustle of the other passengers, but unfortunately because of current health issues i now don't do well in crowds especially when people tend to push and shove or dont concentrate on where they walk. It doesn't take much for me to lose my balance, so i tend to wait until crowds disperse. Anyway a few minutes before 1.30pm we were indeed escorted to the embarkation line where crowds of people were standing around waiting to be boarded. Even with the anouncements that boarding would begin with number 1 followed by 2,3,4,etc people were still trying to board with higher numbers, to no avail, The young lady who was escorting us made it quite clear that they had to sit down and a clear path was made for me. I think i would have fallen if this had not have happened, so thanks Costa for this definate improvement. The obligatory ships embarkation photo was next and then we were on board. Our cabins were ready and we went to the cabin to collect our cruise cards, then up to the restaurant club diadema (yet another perk where all perla diamente and suite guests get to take all their meals on board.) Because this cruise was so busy they had to allocate 2 seating times instead of dine as you please, 1st seating was at 6.30pm and 2nd at 9.15pm. We were 2nd seating but if you got peckish beforehand you could always have a little something from the buffet area. Justine was the Maitre'D in the club Restaurant and we are old friends, we have watched him grow through the rank and file and he has now been promoted again to assistant Matre'D throughout the whole ship. We are thrilled for him and for those of you who know him, i'm sure you'll agree his promotion is richly deserved, for those who don't know him, if you ever get the chance to meet him, you are in for a treat. He and his team looked after us (again) so well, and we are proud to call him a friend. I did take some menus and i will copy what was available under another heading. This may take some time as i have not mastered the art of thumbnailing and pasting, so i'll have to type everything. The rest of the afternoon was spent reaquainting ourselves with the ship, some parts have been re-decorated, The ship is very big and glitzy but she does feel very welcoming. I have taken a video of the ship and for the first time i will attempt tp post it on a very well known video web site (LOL) this will be my first attempt, so please do be kind and patient. We then got ready for evening dinner and went to the show in the theatre, reserved front 3 rows for Diamente and Suite guests up until 5 minutes before the show starts, this is now rigourously enforced and you will be asked for your cruise card. It is amazing the number of passengers who when challenged argue with the host/ess even though it is clearly marked. I would'nt want their job for the world and i take my hat off to them. A nightcap after the evening meal and then bed. Goodnight day 1. Ports of call. Because we have sailed this route many times, we decided to mainly enjoy the ship. The majority of passengers do tend to go ashore and on port days you do feel as if the ship belongs to you, at least for a little while. Costa tend to embark and disembark passengers at the vast majority of points called, which makes it easier for passengers to embark at a point thats closer to where they live. Their main hub is savonna in Italy. So on this cruise it's like a loop. Savona, Italy, Marseille (France) Barcelona (Spain) Palma de Mallorca (Spain) At sea. Palermo (Sicilly Italy) Civatevecia for Rome, (Italy) and then back to Savona. We chose to embark and disembark in Barcelona. This time the only port of call we got off, was in Marseille, The ships shuttle bus cost 10.95€ return journey. We only got off here because we had arranged to meet some French friends of ours who we met on our last cruise. They live about 2 hours from Marseille and kindly met us. We had a fantastic time catching up on all the news and had a wonderful meal in a restaurant sat outside on the terrace. The weather was very kind to us with clear blue skys and a warm temparature of about 20c, 68-70f. Cabin. Because we were only on board for a week we opted to stay in an inside cabin in a premium category. It was perfectly acceptable and had plenty of storage space, 2 large suitcases fit under the bed. Our cabin steward Marie looked after us very well and it appears that Costa too are now trying to slowly introduce the Morning, Evening, or both cabin service. Their explanation is they are trying to reduce the effect of detergents on the environment. Marie made the choice for us and put both. We are very tidy people and try to make the cleaning staffs job as easily as possible, they work incredibly hard and for very long hours. Whilst walking up and down the cabin corridor we are often horrified at the way some passengers leave their cabin, the words pig sty come to mind. At the moment Costa charge a service fee of 10€ per person per day, this is shared out between all non salaried staff from the person who cleans the public areas up to your dining room attendants. It is clearly stated that this is NON removable and so it is easy to factor this into the cost of your holiday. Believe me, these guys and girls are worth every penny of this service charge. For us, these cruise staff make our holiday and we appreciate every single one of them. Every single staff member we encountered were hard working and friendly. A smile and a cheery greeting goes a long way and we gained an insight into the lives of these dedicated people. Entertainment. Entrtainment ranged from spa and health talks, excercise classes, games on deck, dance classes and quizzes during the day. Perhaps not as much as on an American /British ship but there is something for everyone. For me, i'm a people watcher, i find people of different cultures and countries fascinating. It doesn't matter if i can't understand what people are saying. It's how they interact with each other that speaks volumes. I can easily spend the day just watching people. I also have some home hobbies and can often be seen doing some crochet. Evening entertainment consists of different bars having musical bands, duos and solos. On this cruise every single entertainer was very good with a good choice of music style. The various dance floors always had people dancing and enjoying themselves. The theatre shows were a good mix ranging from production shows, Tenor, a one man circus show and a sort of balletic acrobatic show which had the audience on their feet, including us, for a standing ovation, seriously it was that good. There is also the late night disco which always had a crowd, unfortunately that doesn't really get going until well after midnight and because of health issues or too much food(LOL) i usually have to retire by then. I did stay up for the white night party and that was amazing fun but i did suffer for it the next day(grin). I will type some of the activities from the daily Diario in another segment so please be patient. Food and Drink. For the price we paid for the cruise (just over 50 pounds a day) remember you get Breakfast, Lunch, Afternoon snacks and dinner, plus your accomodation,your different ports of call and your entertainment, this offers incredible value for money and nobody in their right minds could expect Gourmet meals for this amount of money. We have cruised with Costa a lot now and for us they are now our preferred cruise line. We don't know what they have done but certainly on this cruise the food went up another level. We were astounded at the quality. I don't know if it was the same in the main restaurant but certainly in the club diadema and the food from the buffet had certainly improved. It was average to good before but this time for us it was good to excellent. In the club restaurant you only get the Italian experience whilst the buffet has a more international choice, for me when i'm on holiday,i do like to be waited on and have the gleaming cutlery on white table cloths. Sometimes however i do fancy a little something different especially Asian food, but i don't like waiting in line. Justine (Maitre'D) must have over heard me and to my horror but delight he came over and told me not to order anything from the menu as he had sent 1 of his waiters to get me a selection of Asian food from the buffet, it was delicious, yet i was a little embarrassed that 1 of the waiters walked to the buffet to get me it. That's going above and beyond. On another occasion i had chosen the lamb from the menu and was saying to Donald (my darling other half) that if i was at home i'd be gnawing on the bone (grin) It was so tender and sweet. Again i must have been overheard because lo and behold a plate with 2 extra double cut chops appeared in front of me. On the final night of my cruise it was my birthday and as another perk of the loyalty club you receive a birthday cake, it was huge. Imagine my surprise when another birthday cake appeared, this time from the chefs and staff of the club restaurant decorated with the words “we will miss you” The chefs and staff of the restaurant then toasted me with champagne. I was extremely humbled and touched (i cried) again thats going above and beyond, and i thank them all. We enjoyed every single meal. Some people criticise the high cost of drinks which can work out expensive especially if you do like to drink. However you can't expect to pay the same amount of money for a drink as you would pay in your local pub/bar. Prices are comparible to a 4 star hotel. We are not really heavy drinkers of alcohol but we do like an occasional drink and i discovered the delights of Hugo Spritz rosa (elderflower syrup topped up with prossecco and some sort of red liqour) so i'd have a couple of those as well as soft drinks water tea and coffee. Donald would do the same but he liked tha black russian. We had reserved a piu gusto package at 29.49€ per person a day. Remember we are not huge drinkers but we kept a list of all we drank and if we had not purchased the package we'd have spent 822€. by purchasing the package we spent approx 398€. please remember that 15% has to be added to all drinks purchased and the prices shown do reflect this. I will type the menus and drinks list in a seperate section. Disembarkation. As another Diamente perk we get laundry up to 25 items washed, dried and folded. We also get the luggage delivered back home. The luggage does have to be wrapped in cellophane and i really hate doing that. When i had done it and called for it to be collected from the cabin, i was asked why i hadn't let them wrap it for me, apparantly i'm the only person on the ship with top level status who did this and i hate it, so i know what to do next time (giggle) We had a leisurely breakfast and Lunch on board and then sans luggage made our way back to Barcelona Sants to Alicante. The train left at 4pm and we were back in the house at 10.30pm. The cruise is over and we do miss it. We had a fantastic time and can't wait for our next one aboard the Costa Victoria in June. I hope you enjoyed reading this. As i said Menus, drinks and entertainment will appear soon. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
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