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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
we've just come back from majestic fjords with beautiful scenery and weather but alas was a disaster the ship was full the room was small uncomfortable and very noisy broken sleep with funnel next door no transfer of ... Read More
we've just come back from majestic fjords with beautiful scenery and weather but alas was a disaster the ship was full the room was small uncomfortable and very noisy broken sleep with funnel next door no transfer of room available several complaints unresolved reception issues couldn't get a buffet table was like being on a Costa ship Also the cost was very reasonably priced on the face of it.. but.. When you factors in cost of excursions and car parking then not so reasonable. So.. if the basics are not right.. then you can't really fully enjoy the good bits. Good Majestic fjord land Very relaxing with beautiful scenery Awesome in fact but that's the natural side of fjords for you with 3d passages that melt away and mountain overhangs you can almost touch as the ship sails through occasional narrow channels but you have to be up on deck at the right time to see them 1 particular spot was like the scene from Jason and the argonauts were Neptune pops up out of the water to save the ship from clashing cliff tops. Weather from other previous holiday comments weather could be very wet especially in Bergen but Unexpectedly the weather was gloriously sunny all week although occasionally very windy and cold Room Free use of safe Tea making but limited with small table and kettle Only 2 sockets in room Bed very uncomfortable and small for me Food Good value food with excellent English breakfast On gala and captains night the cuisine was excellent on other nights could be average though Cream teas and biscuits are to die for unfortunately everyone else felt the same.! when everyone comes back from days out at same time there are queues and shoving going on then finding a table is difficult too when ship is at capacity, which rather takes most of the pleasure out of it. The food is very good in general if not repetitive tho, sometimes bland and not very hot all of the time but one has to remember the cost of some of the cruises. The service is good in general as the staff trying hard to accommodate everyone but again because of this you can be waiting for 15 mins or more for a drink in certain bars. Cocktails of the day are usually very good and reasonably cheap at £3.50 per day. They did a wheat beer at same price which was a bonus as it's 1 of my favourites even tho its £1.25 in aldis I was just happy to see it as most cruises don't seem to accommodate wheat beer usually Bad Beds uncomfortable Small room and shower Tv poor Our room 5111 very noisy all day and all night Also had smelly gas smells from engines and main funnel Complained twice but not taken seriously. Like trying to sleep on a rollercoaster 1st time they sprayed carpet for smells 2nd time gave me ear plugs which were not adequate. Said they were full and couldn't change my room but found out later that they hold back some rooms in case of emergency. So our 50th and 60th birthday holiday was spoiled through lack of sleep and rest. 1st dining time too early and 2nd too late Only 1 buffet restaurant which was packed full several times with no spare tables and a scramble to get anything. The 2 main service restaurants too slow when busy and food some times not hot enough even when not busy. Excursions over priced and not good value when you can walk off and do some of the so called tours for nothing or a lot less when you just pop into tourist information and a small "what's available?" Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2019
I have always wanted to visit Tasmania and this cruise was advertised at a reasonable rate in the Sunday Mail. As this is the final voyage from Australia of the Astor I was not expecting much. We were surprised pleasantly by the ... Read More
I have always wanted to visit Tasmania and this cruise was advertised at a reasonable rate in the Sunday Mail. As this is the final voyage from Australia of the Astor I was not expecting much. We were surprised pleasantly by the cabin size and ample storage. The water pressure and hot water availability was faultless. The waste system operated faultlessly unlike other cruises we have completed. The food was incredible. The bar staff were knowledgeable and hospitable. A special mention for the entertainment staff and in particular the extremely hard working dancers. The shows kept getting better. The Captain was a true gentleman and exceptional host. Housekeeping and general cleanliness was to a very high standard. The spa was a pleasure to visit. The sauna and co located internal swimming pool were immaculately clean and attended by staff. I wasn’t expecting much from an aged ship on a relatively minor shipping line but I was constantly surprised and delighted from start to finish. Thank you CMV. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
This really was a very good cruise certainly for this time of the year getting away to a bit of warmer weather , the staff laid on lots of entertainment with singing carols and everyone joined in ,also many other things were going on ... Read More
This really was a very good cruise certainly for this time of the year getting away to a bit of warmer weather , the staff laid on lots of entertainment with singing carols and everyone joined in ,also many other things were going on throughout the day , cocktails go down very well on the cruise also plenty of waiters serving drinks throughout the day and evening to save us getting up to get a drink at the bar,I am not sure where CMV get so many friendly staff but the staff really did make the cruise such a pleasure , nothing was to much trouble also looking at a closer issue the ship was spotlessly clean , on a couple of down sides we missed Gibraltar due to an issue with the propeller which got sorted in the Canaries the other was Maderia which had choppy waters for the tender boats going to shore , this made some not to well but maybe they should of stayed on the ship , i really wanted to see Maderia and as i don`t get sea sick it wasn`t a problem , the only main problem was docking the tenders coming back the swell was up a bit more and did cause an issue trying to get back but saying that I think all got back onboard to watch the fireworks which were fantastic , would i do this cruise again at Christmas , `Of Course ` , it is a great ship with great staff . Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
The ship was lovely especially the dining restaurant, which is set out so nice with partitions so you are in a secluded small section rather than open to the whole restaurant, what an absolutely brilliant idea, food was very nice and with ... Read More
The ship was lovely especially the dining restaurant, which is set out so nice with partitions so you are in a secluded small section rather than open to the whole restaurant, what an absolutely brilliant idea, food was very nice and with plenty of choices. The staff were friendly and nothing was to much trouble. Getting on and off ship was very organised. The only down side was the entertainment was a little hit and miss, Christmas show was very poor but other shows very good. The venues got very busy and we failed sometimes to get a seat. I would choose the ship again purely on the lovely dining experience. After sailing on Costa ship last May which was a really bad experience in every way I promised myself I would never ever cruise again, this one was already booked which I did not want to do but has restored my faith in cruising. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
My friend and I thought this would be a fun way to check out Cruise & Maritime's Magellan ship. Plus we thought it was a pretty good offer, £99 for dinner, a show, an overnight stay and breakfast the next day. We actually ... Read More
My friend and I thought this would be a fun way to check out Cruise & Maritime's Magellan ship. Plus we thought it was a pretty good offer, £99 for dinner, a show, an overnight stay and breakfast the next day. We actually splashed out and upgraded to a Superior Plus Twin Ocean View cabin so it cost us £129 each. We came by train. The weather was atrocious (not Cruise & Maritime's fault) and no taxi rank at Tilbury Town station. You have a short walk to a cab office hidden beside a fish and chip shop. We were very pleased to find a lounge offering tea and coffee plus snacks that you could buy while waiting to board the ship. Embarkation seemed relatively painless, we were in the first group, A, to board the ship. You still have the usual nonsense of them wanting to take your photo and holding up the queue. You're not shown to your cabin by an individual but there are crew on every deck to help you find your way. The atmosphere on the ship seemed very jolly. Not as many Christmas decorations as we would have expected especially in the dining room, the Kensington restaurant. There were 3 sittings for dinner and we had the first at 5.45. I was quite glad of that because I suspect if we'd been on the last sitting, I would have drunk quite a lot by the time that rolled around. I think that happened to a lot of people. There were certainly a lot of merry people later on. Everyone seemed to make an effort to dress up for the occasion. Some ladies looked very glamorous and a few men were wearing tuxedos and bow ties (older men). You had the obligatory photos taken at your table. I don't know what happened to the welcome cocktail because we never received one. My friend doesn't drink so got one diet coke for the entire meal, which I thought was a little mean of them as they said, half a bottle of wine per person. The quality of the meal was ok. I wouldn't say outstanding. That did surprise me a little because it is Cruise and Maritime's chance to show you how good they are. I'm gluten free and the menu did show everything that you can request to be gluten free. I was pleasantly surprised when I received two slices of gluten free bread without having to ask for it. However, when ordering our choices, our waiter skipped past the salad course and implied you couldn't have it. So, we were surprised when we saw other people having it at the next table. So, our 5 course dinner was only a 4 course one. I had to have cheese to end with and the portions of cheese were very small. They looked a bit sad on my gluten free cracker. My friend and I ended up on a table for six by ourselves. We made the most of it but I did feel a little conspicuous. I'm not sure if I'm being unreasonable to think CMV might have done something about it once they realised no one else was turning up. There was a parade of the baked Alaska pudding and the chefs came out and went round as well, which guests enjoyed. I regret now not making the most of the limited time available to view the different types of cabins. We managed to get to see one suite, which had a disabled bathroom. The suite was nice but again, seemed quite small to me. It is good that CMV offer this. They did have some discounts if you booked a cruise while onboard but not a great discount and I don't know how people would have found the time. We went to the first show. The theatre is impressive, much nicer than the one on the Marella Spirit (now no longer sailing). The show, was quite fun and a couple of the young singers had good voices. Overall, not outstanding. The drinks waiters in the theatre were very prompt and efficient. We then visited a couple of the bars and had a walk around the ship to get a feel for it. Our favourite bar was the Captain's Club and Sinatra's Bar. The latter had someone playing the piano for a little while, which was nice. Drink prices were reasonable. There did seem to be plenty of bars. The spa looked nice and the prices for treatments looked reasonable. We went back to our cabin about 11, which was silly of us. We should have stayed up later as we got woken up several times by noisy, late-night revellers returning to their cabins. The next morning, we made the mistake of going to the Kensington restaurant as only 1 floor up from us. It was packed and there was an announcement soon, saying that there was no more room and advising guests to go to the Waldorf or the Raffles Bistro for breakfast. You had to queue quite a while to get your breakfast. Also, the nearest Ladies to the Kensington has only 3 toilets, which is ridiculous. You are asked to leave your cabin by 7.00 a.m. and disembark by 9.00 - 9.30. We disembarked quite early. A very nice CMV staff member ordered us a taxi. The cab driver told us that we were sensible to go early as he said it gets mad at the cruise terminal around 9.30. Overall, I enjoyed our stay although a little disappointed about the meal. I think it'd be a fun event for a group to go to. The ship reminded me of the Marella (formerly TUI) Spirit that I sailed on this summer. I'm sure that CMV is making money out of these events but not that it's succeeding in its primary purpose, to persuade people to go on a cruise with them. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We booked this cruise because of the Comedy Legends which we had experienced on a previous cruise. The embarkation was very quick, we had journed by coach from Victoria coach station which due to traffic took 1 & half hours. We ... Read More
We booked this cruise because of the Comedy Legends which we had experienced on a previous cruise. The embarkation was very quick, we had journed by coach from Victoria coach station which due to traffic took 1 & half hours. We found the cabin rather tired though the beds were comfortable, the wash basin was old and did not hold water very well due to a worn mechanical system. The shower though was perfect. Another problem was that the ship was draughty, especially the main entertainment centre the 'Palladium' on the right hand side so we sat on the left which was slightly better, we did have one session when the temperature was decent but soon was back to draughty a couple of hours later. The entertainment was generally good, after all we did go to see the comedy hero's who did not dissapoint. The in house entertainment team did a good show, the dancers were very good, the singers were let down by a poor sound system which was far to loud, do they not have a desibel meter, I did hear that some people that had earing aids took them out. The food was generally good though in the self service bistro was not pipping hot even when there at the start of service, the 'Waterfront' where the evening dinner was taken the menu was sometimes difficult to understand to those who did not have the experience in this type of dinning, also the service was a bit long winded. During the hotter days there were plenty of sunbeds around but the we had the old problem of towels on beds but no bodies. Over all we had, for us, a pleasent 15 days but don't think we would book another cruise on the Columbus. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We joined the Astoria in Portsmouth, Hampshire. We have just returned from a Norwegian Fjord Cruise. Unfortunately the weather was dire and we were unable to go to Eidfjord and Geirangerfjord. No fault of the company or Captain, we had two ... Read More
We joined the Astoria in Portsmouth, Hampshire. We have just returned from a Norwegian Fjord Cruise. Unfortunately the weather was dire and we were unable to go to Eidfjord and Geirangerfjord. No fault of the company or Captain, we had two hurricanes! We put into Stavanger instead of Eidfjord and it's a beautiful little town, well worth a visit and delighted that we went there. We also went to Amsterdam (fabulous) and loved the organised river cruise with superb guide. We then went to Bergen (more rain) and Rotterdam (it stopped raining there for a little while!). Both interesting cities. The architecture in Rotterdam is fantastic while Bergen is a very beautiful old city with lots of character. The Astoria was built in the 1940s and I would describe it as very slightly faded grandeur but it is still certainly grand. There's a cinema and concert 'hall' with a lovely atmosphere. The entertainment was a really good standard and most enjoyable. Meals: I was taken aback by the small portions at lunch and dinner in the restaurant on board but in fact there were many, many courses, all very tasty and enjoyable. Great variety of food including veggie options and gluten free. You can also eat at the Grill on board. It's not as cosy as the restaurant where you sit at a table with other guests. We met the most lovely couple (and many others too through tours, bridge, concerts etc., ) and that made our trip especially fun. Cabins good. We had an outside cabin and last night as we came into the UK we left the curtains open to enjoy the moonlight on the calm sea. We were just above the water line on Mediterannean Deck and no one can see in! We had a bath/shower room. Everything was spotless. Crew - very friendly and helpful. Yes, it was a shame that we didn't get to the fjords but it would have been foolhardy to risk over 750 lives onboard (500 guests and over 250 crew). I have previously cruised on another line with large vessels and a thousand or so guests. I did not enjoy them but I love the Astoria. She's a brave little ship and got us through terrible weather safely. We are already planning the next cruise with Cruise Maritime Voyages. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
ASTORIA, THE SHIP: Astoria is the world's oldest active oceangoing passenger ship and was originally built and launched as MS Stockholm in 1948. Her capacity is around 540 passengers making her quite an intimate vessel. THE ... Read More
ASTORIA, THE SHIP: Astoria is the world's oldest active oceangoing passenger ship and was originally built and launched as MS Stockholm in 1948. Her capacity is around 540 passengers making her quite an intimate vessel. THE FACILITIES: SIRENES BAR is the “meeting place” on the ship. It’s a small area above the reception desk, holding around 150 guests. The drinks are reasonably priced (see menu shots), and you can purchase additional packages, depending on your circumstances. We picked all-inclusive (CMV Premium) and I think we were better off. In this bar it’s sometimes difficult to attract waiters, and it can take 10 minutes or so to get your drink. I think the fact that the bartender makes and pours all drinks means that the waiters can be waiting to serve their guests. The bar is cosy, but could need a little attention to the chairs upholstery,. LOTUS POOL BAR is the outside bar serving the pool and rear deck. In September this wasn’t open at night. CYCLOPES AUDITORIUM is the cinema and presentation theatre. There are 2 films a day in here, and presentations on various topics. CALYPSO SHOW LOUNGE is the main theatre, holding around 500 guests. Again, drinks are waiter service. The shows, for such a small ship, are very entertaining, being performed by the ship’s hard working “repertory” cast. ENTERTAINMENT as above, is first class from the small team of 4 singers and 4 dancers. They put on some very entertaining shows, ranging from Les Miserables, to Rock and Roll and Wartime Favourites. Special mention to the cruise director, Jon Dulson, who makes sure all entertainment in all bars is top notch. A special mention is also due to the resident band. They are a group of really talented players, some of whom are classically trained and they provided outstanding live music (Unlike some bigger cruise ships where the entertainment is driven by LED displays and recorded soundtracks). THERE ARE MANY OTHER nooks and crannies, such as the library, card room, cigar lounge etc, and of course there is a small gym and spa centre. There’s also a small casino, chapel and medical centre. SHOPPING – you probably aren’t going on a ship like this for the shopping experience, but there are small shops, a jeweller and the obligatory photo shop (although now with a touch screen instead of row upon row of photos on shelves) THE STAFF were always friendly and very helpful. CRUISE SPECIFIC – ours was the Fjords cruise in mid September. Unfortunately we had storms Ali and Bronah to contend with and 2 fjord stops were cancelled due to adverse open sea conditions, prior to getting there, and we were give £50 per cabin compensation for this. The size of Astoria really does mean, in our opinion, that the 7 metre waves we battled against meant a couple of nights very unpleasant sailing, with sick bags in the corridors and advice to the ladies not to wear high heels in the swaying conditions. Also, the presentations on the ship’s trips were very specific in mentioning, for example, the 3 steps onto the Flam railway train, but didn’t mention the very steep gangway needed at some stops, to get onto the jetties. These steps were problematical for some of the elderly passengers. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
The ship sailed from Tilbury, which attracted us because we wouldn't need to fly, albeit we live in Cumbria so it was quite a trip. Embarkation was excellent, we arrived, parked the car, took the complementary bus to the dockside ... Read More
The ship sailed from Tilbury, which attracted us because we wouldn't need to fly, albeit we live in Cumbria so it was quite a trip. Embarkation was excellent, we arrived, parked the car, took the complementary bus to the dockside and were embarked within a few minutes. Very smooth. Disembarkation was a little fraught, we had to be out of the cabin by 09.00 and we had to wait a couple of hours in crowded public areas before we could disembark. But once we docked, we were off the ship and in our car within half an hour. Excellent. The cleanliness of the ship was exceptional. We did object to guests taking glasses and plates to weather deck areas and leaving them for others to pick up. What's wrong with people returning these objects. We were, though, chastised (in a nice way) by a steward when we tried to clear our table and return the plates. The cabin was first class, an outside cabin with window. The cabin was kept pristine by a hard working and very friendly cabin steward. We had taken the option for the company to allocate the cabin and were very happy with it. We had self service breakfast and lunch and used the Waterside restaurant in the evening. The food was exceptional for the price we paid, the caterers work miracles. Food on cruises has suffered since the heyday of cruising, but prices have been kept down and you cannot expect Michelin star food on McDonald's prices. But we were very well fed. Entertainment and activities I would rate as poor. The entertainment staff seemed to do little except put on a couple of shows a week. On other cruises, the entertainment staff have run daytime activities but on this cruise. most activities were advertised as unhosted. I got the impression the entertainment staff were along for the cruise and not really to work, Evening entertainment in the various bars was poor. There were a couple of guitarists who appeared to have just finished the beginners guide to the guitar. Not impressed When we booked the cruise, it was advertised as adults only but when we joined the ship, we found families with children. I've nothing against children, but they did tend to be noisy and there wasn't a lot for them to do. We chiefly took the cruise to visit St Petersburgh and this did not disappoint. The only sour note was that prior to arriving there, all passengers were given a briefing note which suggested that the residents of St Petersburgh lived in the dark ages, transport would be sub standard ad if we talked to anyone, their accent would be impenetrable. All nonsense, the Russian people were very friendly, the transport and guides were excellent and most people spoke at least some English, without an accent. We would holiday with Cruise and Maritime again. The Columbus is a nice ship. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Good value for money. Great VIP drinks package. Fusion Indian restaurant was out of this world! My only issue was that as this was a Multigenerational cruise, the entertainment was still aimed more at the older end. And the acts were ... Read More
Good value for money. Great VIP drinks package. Fusion Indian restaurant was out of this world! My only issue was that as this was a Multigenerational cruise, the entertainment was still aimed more at the older end. And the acts were exactly the same all week especially in Taverners Bar. And the quiz questions were for people of 70 years plus. Even the kids questions were hard. The 2 best entertain part was the farewell party which I really enjoyed and Ian's Magic Show which my 5 year old really enjoyed. And as an entertainer Ian was spot on. We had an issue with a prebooked wine package that had been discontinued on that brand so we were unable to get our 5 free bottles, but with some emails between our agent and the ship, Elvis the bar manager sorted this out which meant I've brought my 5 bottles home with no charge. Would I book with CMV again? Maybe, but the entertainment needs updating for multigenerational cruises. I do understand it's normally an adult only cruise line but I feel they need to adapt for the school holidays. Read Less
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