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41 Cruise to Nowhere First-Time Cruisers Cruise Reviews

Fantastic fun filled girls weekend away..... Thank you Pacific Eden you put on a great Adelaide comedy 3 night cruise. Gosh, where to start, embarking couldn't of been any easier our luggage was taken before we boarded the ship then ... Read More
Fantastic fun filled girls weekend away..... Thank you Pacific Eden you put on a great Adelaide comedy 3 night cruise. Gosh, where to start, embarking couldn't of been any easier our luggage was taken before we boarded the ship then delivered to our rooms. We were upgraded to an ocean view rooms (big thumbs up). Rooms were spotless and smelt clean. Between the 5 of us we were given $125 in credit and 2 soft drink packages straight off the bat that was a great start to the weekend. So the drinking began in the Ocean bar where we met some great friendly staff that looked after us throughout the trip and even appreciated our sense of humour. So a massive thank you to Lanoan and Marie Joy in the Ocean bar and Margaret in the Mix @ Casino bar These guys made our girls weekend the best yet. The entertainment was some of the funniest comedians I have seen in a long time. Two in particular was Jarred Fell and Mr Bingo!. Jarred, Thankyou I haven't had a good belly hurting laugh like that in a while fantastic! Mr Bingo, I have never been a fan of bingo but if every bingo could have their very own Mr Bingo I would go to them all! Oh yes and we won the jackpot so yay for bingo!!!! The food was great we mainly ate at the Pantry so much to choose from and all was very tasty and such friendly and helpful staff. The Passenger Stewards on deck 4 were hard working, friendly and so helpful. So I would recommend to anyone thinking about a weekend away jump on board the Pacific Eden great value, great food, friendly helpful and entertaining staff you would love it as the 5 of us did. We will be back!!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
Having perused the reviews before we left, I was a bit unsure as to whether my best mate had made the right choice for this one......How wrong I was!!!! A fantastic ship, with the staff being more than helpful, even when I had an ... Read More
Having perused the reviews before we left, I was a bit unsure as to whether my best mate had made the right choice for this one......How wrong I was!!!! A fantastic ship, with the staff being more than helpful, even when I had an accident and ended up in a wheelchair for the weekend! The food and service for the whole duration, was second to none, and the prices were more than reasonable. Our check in was swift and slick, and nothing was too much trouble for our cabin steward. I stayed in a balcony room (5th deck, I think) and it was immaculate from start to finish. Didn't go ashore in Bruges, as I've been there before. Still, plenty to do on board. Disembarkation was smooth, and the food was excellent! It shows that the ship has undergone a major refurb since 2013, and I wouldn't hesitate to go again. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
Our first cruise and to be honest I feel as if I will not feel safe to try another. The emabarkation was well organised and the staff very engaging. Cabin was adequate and comfortable. We did not find our luggage for sometime even ... Read More
Our first cruise and to be honest I feel as if I will not feel safe to try another. The emabarkation was well organised and the staff very engaging. Cabin was adequate and comfortable. We did not find our luggage for sometime even though other people's were left outside their cabins. Eventually located it abandoned outside a lift. Neither of us get seasick (previously have been out on fishing boats etc). We did become very unwell but this was after consuming food from the pantry. The food is cold. Bacon and eggs, grilled fish so cold it was inedible. Tried to get a simple salad from the salad section. The top layer of the salad looked good but when served only 1percent contained what was on show the rest was lettuce from underneath. Sandwiches were not available only rolls that had an overload of bread and minuscule filling. Hungry we ate the luke warm zucchini soup. Hours later we were both vomitng. We are both health professionals and suspect the recent "gastro" outbreak was probably more attributed to the inadequate temperature control of the food rather than a virus, fellow passengers had the same complaint. The Waterfront Restaurant served delicious hot meals but was overcrowded and there were long waits to be seated. People trying to avoid the pantry! Sometimes just a snack for lunch is nicer than another sit down meal. Do not even think you will find a healthy salad sandwich anywhere on the Pacific Eden. It is understandable why buffet style has been replaced due to hygiene, however not to maintain food at a safe temperature is worse. Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
I think the reason for the negative reviews on this ship is that people have champagne tastes on a beer budget. I went on a 3 night Food & Wine cruise and really enjoyed it. This was my first cruise, and given the negative press, I ... Read More
I think the reason for the negative reviews on this ship is that people have champagne tastes on a beer budget. I went on a 3 night Food & Wine cruise and really enjoyed it. This was my first cruise, and given the negative press, I decided the best thing to do was go with an open mind. I traveled with 3 girlfriends & we all had a good time overall. A bit of a breakdown: The Room We shared a 4 berth oceanview cabin, which had 2 x single beds, a sofa & a bunk. The mattresses were reasonably comfortable & there was plenty of space to store all our luggage. The bathroom could use some touching up - there was obvious rusting & the shower curtain had mould stains. Could have used a few extra power points (4 girls getting ready at one time could be a challenge) & the TV quality wasn't great. We didn't spend a great deal of time in the room though so we were happy with what we had. Housekeeping was a little frustrating. Towels were not being replaced when left on the floor, & after 3 calls made to housekeeping over the course of an afternoon yielded no results, we ended up finding an unattended cleaning trolley & pinching some clean towels from there. Food Make sure the first thing you do when you reach your cabin is get on the phone & make a reservation at Salt Grill! Yes you pay extra, but it is absolutely worth it. The scallops were the best I'd had & I'm told the chocolate tart deserves a moment of silence. Luke Mangan was also sailing & popped out to say hello to the guests. The Pantry is pretty much a food court, we grabbed some food from there on the first day & didn't really enjoy it, so we stuck to Waterfront for the rest of the trip. Waterfront is lovely. Every time, we were welcomed with a squirt of Purell & never had to wait for a table. We didn't go out of our way to avoid peak times either. Variety in Waterfront is great. I have seen that people have complained about serving sizes - I had no issue, particularly if I was ordering entree, main & dessert. If you're extra hungry, order another serve - it's not going to cost you more! I will note that there were some issues with the food being kept warm on its trip from the kitchen to your table. Service was reasonable. Bircher muesli for breakfast was delish. Bars & entertainment Low points: The Gatsby & Bianco parties. Each person in the band seemed to be playing at a different speed making the music jarring. Apart from a couple of props, there was nothing particularly special about the parties. Service - while bar service was mostly great, there was an issue with a staff member who gave my friend still spring water when she'd asked for mineral water (she didn't specify sparkling). Rather than just swap the bottle, the staff member proceeded to argue with my friend until I pointed out that the bottle said Spring water, not mineral. It was a simple miscommunication - the server made it a bigger issue than it was. High points: The Blue Room - lovely atmosphere & music, a great spot for a cocktail & to enjoy some Jazz in the evening. Trivia - I have never laughed so hard at trivia as I did at the music trivia event with The Alter Ego. Evening shows - love the Mindreader, comedian was great too. The Marquee can get VERY hot - we didn't stay for the show on the first night because we were sweating as soon as we walked in the door. It seemed that a request to the staff fixed the temperature within an hour or so, although I did have to ask each day. A great introductory cruise for this beginner. I don't think I'm a cruise convert & I think I might go for a more upmarket cruise line next time, but P&O still delivered on what I paid for. No Noro Virus either! Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
This was a first cruise and a trial cruise for us and if three days on board MSC Sinfonia is any indication what cruising is really about, we'll never do it again! We can heartily recommend the suite cabins with balconies which are ... Read More
This was a first cruise and a trial cruise for us and if three days on board MSC Sinfonia is any indication what cruising is really about, we'll never do it again! We can heartily recommend the suite cabins with balconies which are quite spacious and comfortable.If you're a light sleeper, be careful of your cabin choice. We were in cabin 1040 which was underneath the entertainment deck and at 2.30am on Sunday morning, the 'entertainment' was still in full swing. The cabin had plenty of two-pin plug sockets so bring your adapters if you're from overseas. The TV selection was good - all the movie channels and news. Premium sports are broadcast in the bar only. Full bath with shower in the bathroom but no amenities apart from a shower cap and two ugly wall dispensers with body wash and shampoo. The staff we dealt with in the cabin and the restaurant were terrific. That's the good news. The embarkation was a three hour-plus ordeal with hundreds of us corralled and shuffling through a sweaty barn on the docks in 30C degrees. We are two healthy adults but it was a terrible experience for elderly people and for parents with young children. Boarding was supposed to start at 10am and we got there at 10.15am. People who got there earlier said they boarded with relative ease. We got on deck at 1.25pm and then were called for the emergency drill on deck and ended up standing around for another 30 minutes. It's not a good way to start any holiday. MSC point the blame at immigration officials for the delay in embarkation but they really need to sort something out because it's a ridiculous situation. The food on board was dreadful. We're used to buffet restaurants in large hotels but I've never seen anything so badly run as the main terrace restaurant on MSC Sinfonia. First of all it's far too small to cater for the thousands on board. As a result mealtimes are a virtual scrum. The variety of food and the standard of food were absolutely dismal. It didn't matter what time of day you tried to eat there - the hot food was always cold and the cold selection was minimal. The salad bar was a dismal joke - limp lettuce, tomato and sweetcorn with salami and 'ham' slivers which appeared to have a white face printed on it. The fruit selection consisted of three different types of melon and a fruit salad consisting of the same three different types of melon with a little pineapple mixed in. The pizza bar and fast food station - burgers and frankfurters - located just outside the buffet served food that was hot at least. The Galleone Restaurant offered a more civilised environment for breakfast and lunch but the food wasn't much better. Dinner seating is allocated and almost all the tables are for four, six or eight passengers so couples will almost always be sharing. Dining times are also strictly allocated - 6pm or 8.30pm. The menu selection is good but the food in our allocated restaurant - think it's called Il Covo - was always served lukewarm to cold. Room service food continues with the same standards - there's a limited menu of mostly stale sandwiches available and pizza is available after 8pm. Everything on board is priced in American dollars which makes it expensive for South Africans. We felt that wine prices were reasonable - ranging from around $12 to $18 per bottle but 15% service charge is added to everything. We bought an internet package before boarding but we were charged for another package on board and it couldn't be refunded before we disembarked because who ever was in charge 'wasn't answering his phone'. Portuguese Island was the only excursion offered on our mini-cruise. It's an uninhabited island. My husband opted for a snorkling trip but there was no visibility in the water so it was pretty uneventful. It's a day at the beach with a barbecue where once again they managed to serve unedibly cold food. Overall we'd give it a big thumbs down. Even the brilliant sunshine and the Indian Ocean and the cabin weren't enough to overcome all the negatives. There's far more enjoyable ways to spend your money! Read Less
Sail Date February 2016
If you enjoy bad service, filth and bad food then this trip is for you. My wife, 3 yr old and myself went on the cruise to nowhere ex Durban on 29 Jan 2016. We booked a suite which was the only good part of the trip as it was large and ... Read More
If you enjoy bad service, filth and bad food then this trip is for you. My wife, 3 yr old and myself went on the cruise to nowhere ex Durban on 29 Jan 2016. We booked a suite which was the only good part of the trip as it was large and luxurious with a balcony. However everything else was terrible. The worst was the hygiene. Cups were always stained with "stuff" encrusted at the bottom, on the lip and sides. There was vomit on carpets that were never cleaned the whole 2 days at sea. Linen and towels were terribly stained. Then the food -really awful and bland. It is all you can eat but the food is so terrible that you don't wanna. Also the buffet kept running out of food and you had to wait about an hour before the next batch was prepared. No complimentary juices at lunch or dinner, only at breakfast The fine dining was a bit better but nothing grand as you would expect. And don't bother complaining - it would be a miracle to see any senior personnel at the stations and the others you complain to just shrug their shoulders and do nothing. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
My Husband & I were excited but a little anxious about heading on a planned P&O trip due to the regular negative feedback people had left on P&O Facebook page! We decided it will be what we make of it! Sorry about the essay ... Read More
My Husband & I were excited but a little anxious about heading on a planned P&O trip due to the regular negative feedback people had left on P&O Facebook page! We decided it will be what we make of it! Sorry about the essay but our trip was 98% positive keep reading! Here is our review: We have just returned from comedy 'taster cruise' off Melbourne on the Pacific Jewel. We were in a level 5 'budget' cabin after purchasing a deal from scoupon. Our cabin was fabulous, easy to get to, clean, comfortable bed, tidy, good view & had everything we needed. Even the cloth shower curtain didn't get stuck to you (as they do.) Our room stewardess Liza was most attentive & made sure our every need was met! Her towel art- very cute & clever! Note: Tip your steward in person! In fact, all of the staff couldn't do enough for you, most of them loved their jobs! The entertainment/shows/bands were all great & there was a huge variety of things to do included in your ticket price!! Yes you had to pay if you wanted to do bingo, casino, some craft, & adventure activities (if you didn't everyone's ticket price would be higher!) There was so much to do at times there wasn't time to stop without 'missing something!' Now for the food..... I am a chef & we found the food to be good. The Pantry is a novel idea for a buffet, it allows for a variety of food without a single queue everyone lined up in. Indian, Asian, fish/chips/pizza Mexican, Roast, salads/soup/ sandwiches & of course dessert!! In 3 days I wasn't able to try everything, however the food we had was hot, tasty & better than the 'buffet slop' some places dish up. We were quite annoyed at the constant whinging & comments about the food onboard!! Folks you need to remember the chefs are feeding 2000 people every meal sitting for a DAILY budget of at a guess $15-$20pp at most!!! What do you expect?? One thing I will say is I hope they change variety of dishes more often on a longer cruise. However, like I said above, because we were there only 3 days we didn't have to eat the same thing twice (unless we wanted to!) The Waterfront restaurant was available unlimited (you could eat here every meal if you wanted) for a 3 course meal breakfast/lunch/ dinner for no addition cost. I would describe this as 'formal dining' with budget A La Carte food. You needed to book a table in this restaurant which had staggered times (the booking process was a little clunky & could use a little work)- more complaints heard (again how many meals do you think chefs can prepare at once!) The service was fabulous and staff were almost too attentive, the meal's we had were served quickly, were nice & presented well. The steak was cooked med/rare but was chewy, however it wasn't eye fillet or scotch so difficult to make tender!! The other courses spot on! Overall we had a positive experience & really enjoyed ourselves. We have picked up lots of tips for a longer cruise next time! As for all the 'negative Nancy's' out there you're never going to be happy as you clearly want champagne on a beer budget!!! Remember you get what you pay for! Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
12/15 3 day cruise Fremantle to Fremantle Check-in at Fremantle Passenger Terminal was the first contact with the ship’s crew, very professional and friendly. Fremantle terminal is basic and dated! Oops, if you have trouble walking ... Read More
12/15 3 day cruise Fremantle to Fremantle Check-in at Fremantle Passenger Terminal was the first contact with the ship’s crew, very professional and friendly. Fremantle terminal is basic and dated! Oops, if you have trouble walking a mile, get help! We had an interior twin room lower deck 4 port side, room 506, very clean, well equipped but small. Bathroom very small but extremely clean, bright, well-appointed with lovely soft towels including pool towels. Even brought the glen 20 freshener, didn’t need to use it (tip from what to bring). The cabin was quiet and ocean movement minimally felt. Air-conditioning was good but when rushing around in the cabin you did warmed up, so a fan would have been excellent to have! I’m going again in January, so I will bring a desk fan (bring European adapter) Weekend weather was around 25 degrees c, what to wear, on board perfect temperature, I didn’t t need a cardie, outside was pretty warm too. Afternoon, yes a sea breeze happen but it depends where you are at, still not cold. I brought too much cool weather gear, not used on this trip. Two lovely dining areas to choose, one with table service and one buffet style, both gorgeously set so much attention to detail. Great service, immaculate dressed multi-tasking crew from all over the world and so many of them. Coffee was divine, choice of teas and water all available, no charge. Food was plentiful and fresh! Sweets, too many to choose from, including an ice-cream station. Loved the grill (barbeque) Saturday lunch time at the buffet. Drinks prices ok, a summary, soft drinks around $3.95, Beer $6.95+, glass of wine $8.50 (nice wine too), bottle of wine mid varieties $22-$38, of course top shelf is available. Upon entering the dining areas a hand sanitiser unit is available and encouraged to be used. Wellness centre with beauty treatments, hair, saunas, and heated swimming pool with aqua gear, dumb bells, and noodles is available and I had a great time. Staff excellent at the wellness centre! Of course they will marketed the goods to sell but that’s business as usual .Didn’t use to outdoor pool. Had a wedding party on board, so good to see the wedding fashion stakes at its finest and the party people, the crew very attentive! Entertainment, well I loved it! 3 different cabaret themes over the 3 night cruising with a talented multi-tasking crew. Best part is leaving the internet behind and meeting people! Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
This was my first cruise, and i was so excited, was rather amused to see so many kids knowing that christmas break had not started yet, and there was a rather obnoxious thug like group that ran unchecked the entire time. There were so ... Read More
This was my first cruise, and i was so excited, was rather amused to see so many kids knowing that christmas break had not started yet, and there was a rather obnoxious thug like group that ran unchecked the entire time. There were so many people, and the noise level seemed very loud. The music at the pool was not relaxing, it was of the "hip hop" variety for the most part. Not all of us are into it, and after two days of watching certain people "whip" and nae nae. I wanted to puke. We were not able to use the hot tubs because they were packed with kids that should have been in school. There were also people smoking out on the main deck, no one said anything to them. Our cabin was on the second level, towards the front of the ship, and not only did we feel waves, it sounded like doors slamming all night, this also added to my frustration. The hallway smelled like sewage, and towards the end of the cruise, many places smelled of vomit. The chairs were also sticky right along with the floors. So by saturday, i was more than ready to get off the ship, and honestly had no desire to get back on. We only had 6 hours at cozumel, which is also crap. The process of unloading the passengers was mass confusion, and everyone began crowding, it could have been a disaster, so much for all their "safety"concerns. We were also warned to be back by 330 pm or they would have no problem "leaving us". Many of us bought alcohol and it was promptly confiscated upon return. That way they could continue to charge over inflated prices for drinks. The bottles we bought were for gifts. They had no worries with us. My husband stood in line for over an hour the last morning in order to retrieve them, others spent longer. We did go to the comedy club on Saturday night, and even then, kids were there as well, although they were asked to leave for the late performance, which was actually the best part of the cruise. For the most part, i was stressed getting off this tub, and i won't be back. I do not feel like Carnival takes safety seriously, or their security would have been more present enforcing rules. Parents do not parent anymore, and people do not act like adults. That dosen't mean that i want to spend several days putting up with it. I can get enough of that at the mall. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
I was a bit wary of cruising mainly due to seasickness experienced on car ferries from UK to France. I decided to take the plunge with my experienced cruiser family. To my delight, I didn't feel nauseous at all. We had a great cabin ... Read More
I was a bit wary of cruising mainly due to seasickness experienced on car ferries from UK to France. I decided to take the plunge with my experienced cruiser family. To my delight, I didn't feel nauseous at all. We had a great cabin on deck 6 which was quiet and well appointed with a cheerful steward looking after us. The ship was very clean and hand sanitizer is used in every food area. The crew members are helpful and enthusiastic. We lounged in the adult only pool with the cocktail of the day, ate tasty meals in the dining room and the Windjammer cafe. We enjoyed the dance show and the ice show was fantastic. I tried ice skating and rock climbing and danced the night away poolside. It was a brilliant introduction to cruising and I will definite be back for more. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We just got back from Norwegian Cruise to nowhere that started from New Orleans. We were booked from 11/13/15-11/15/15. It was party of 10 that went on a three days cruise. It is our first time to cruise in United States. It was three ... Read More
We just got back from Norwegian Cruise to nowhere that started from New Orleans. We were booked from 11/13/15-11/15/15. It was party of 10 that went on a three days cruise. It is our first time to cruise in United States. It was three family and 10 members. We (three of us) stayed at stateroom 11130 on eleventh floor, room with balcony. We are absolutely amazed with service, organization and everything in between. Even though the arrival took a little of time due to many new customer service representatives doing check ins, we had best time from the moment we entered the ship. Service was amazing, starting with clean room, enough towels, very nice bathroom. We were told that there is a children station where they had programs for children. Our 6 years old girl LOVED it. Splash Academy rocks!!! The staff was awesome! My husband and I had a lot of time for ourselves to enjoy, which we were not able to do it in ages. Our child couldn't wait to go on all scheduled programs. There is a lots of food options, entertainment, ... shopping, but we ate mostly in Venetian. The service, food, everything is 5 stars. Servers were exceptional. Staff from Monte Negro and Croatia were the most pleasant ones, but all others as well. Great experience. We went to Irish Pub, to Club to dance, awesome! Our overall experience was GREAT one! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
I was part of a select group of people who had an opportunity to take a 2 day cruise to nowhere to preview the ship. I've never taken a cruise before but was very impressed with the experience. Here's my thoughts: 1) The ship: ... Read More
I was part of a select group of people who had an opportunity to take a 2 day cruise to nowhere to preview the ship. I've never taken a cruise before but was very impressed with the experience. Here's my thoughts: 1) The ship: it was beautifully decorated and easy to understand the layout. It's huge, so there's a lot of walking. The water was pretty choppy so we could feel a little movement below us. There was a few times we turned green. 2) Food: there's a lot of specialty restaurants and a huge buffet called the Windjammer. The windjammer was great for breakfast and offered a great variety so everyone could find something the liked. 3) Shows: we saw We Will Rock you and although the plot is cheesy, the singing was fantastic. We're talking better than Broadway. Very talented cast. We also saw Spectra's Cabaret which had great singers too. The show was interesting... Definitely more edgy and an acquired taste. 4) Activities: everything was awesome! I recommend doing the North Star sightseeing bubble while near a port. We did it in the middle of the ocean and so we just looked at clouds. Also, the bumper cars were much rougher than I expected. Plenty for kids to do though, including a room for teenagers to watch TV and lots of X-boxes, ping pong tables, roller skating, etc. 5) Rooms: the room was nice and pretty spacious as far as cruises go, I'm told. The bathroom and shower were pretty tight/claustrophobic. Plenty of storage though and great closets. We had a deck which was great too. We had a king size bed and there was also a couch which you could sleep on if necessary. 6) The Staff: Amazing. They could not have been any nicer! Every time I turned around someone asked if they could help me. They were beyond attentive! 7) Getting There: I took a car service (Carmel) to get to Port Liberty in Bayonne, NJ from Manhattan/NYC. The price was $49 + tolls and tip. Be warned: Tolls were $18! As far as timing, I got there with no traffic in 50 minutes. Once I arrived, the boarding process was very quick. Have your 'Set Sail' ready and it will go even faster. Overall, we had an awesome time and I would recommend this ship! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
At first, I was weary about embarkation. When we first walked through the door there was a large jumble of people in (somewhat) lines in front of Royal Caribbean representatives holding ipads for check-in. After getting in line, it ... Read More
At first, I was weary about embarkation. When we first walked through the door there was a large jumble of people in (somewhat) lines in front of Royal Caribbean representatives holding ipads for check-in. After getting in line, it exceeded my expectation and went very quickly, we gave the reps our set sail pass, they asked a few simple questions, snapped our pic and sent us on our way to Security. This was also a breeze! The lines were sorted out, some for general boarding and others for suites and high tier Crown and Anchor members. After a short walk through the metal detector we were on our way up the escalator onto the gangway, where we were greeted with a red carpet walk way and beautiful floral arrangements, when we boarded the ship we entered directly into the Royal Esplanade on Deck 5, which is of course where everyone was gathered and was a little hectic at first, but after everyone was settled in you would’ve never known how many people were on the ship. When leaving port in Cape Liberty, Bayonne, NJ, we had the best view of New York City. The first place we ate was Café two70, which had hot/cold sandwiches, salads, soup and fresh carved meat, all in different stations where you would pick out what you wanted, and get it in seconds. I had the BLTA (Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato and Avocado) Salad which was delicious and the 4 cheese melt, again, delicious! Our first dinner we had was at ‘Devinly Decadent’ which is a low calorie, heath conscious complimentary restaurant which was originally a specialty restaurant on board and was later converted to complimentary. The starters and desert was self-serve buffet style, while the menu items were separated out by 500 and 700 calorie options. I had the lemon glazed prawns and filet mignon, which was served with steamed carrots, broccoli, asparagus and a portion of mashed potatoes. Everyone at the table had the filet mignon and all had the same reaction “WOW!” It was incredible! It was cooked to perfection and full of flavor. You would never guess this was only 500 calories! At desert they had small portions of carrot and pumpkin cake, as well as flourless cakes and dark chocolate brownies. I particularly loved the pumpkin cake. We ate at Windjammers café for breakfast which had all kinds of great breakfast options including fresh fruit, fresh baked pastries and bread, hot and cold cereal, pancakes, waffles, meats, egg and omelet stations and so much more all in buffet style. Lunch we had at Johnny Rockets, which was a great little burger place, but it had a long wait time. And finally, our last dinner, we had at Wonderland. One of the specialty restaurants on board which was unbelievable! First off, the décor was incredible; it was based from Alice in Wonderland so it had a very funky and fun element to it. There were mismatched chairs at each table with formal table settings that were oddly shaped or colored to go along with the ‘wonderland’ theme. The menu was Magical! It started out as blank white paper in a large gaudy frame, they provide you with a paint brush and a “magic potion” to dip it in, and you pant away to find your menu appear! As your menu dries, the paper turns blank again. We gave the waiter free range because we just had no idea where to start. After we counted I believe he provided us with a total of 17 dishes! Almost all were placed in the center of the table and we picked away at it family style. My favorite dish was the Short Rib, which was busy cooking 36 hours before we arrived for dinner; it fell right off the bone and melted in your mouth. All the dishes had an imaginative element, such as the eggs were served with a bowl of smoke over them so they seemed to catch fire when you removed it. The appetizers were served in curved spoons or wire whisk. The halibut cooked in a clear bag which had to be cut open to reveal a powerful aroma of rosemary and the veggies served in a rye bread and truffle oil combo that looked like a bed of dirt. All around fun experience! Royal Caribbean is big on activities, so needless to say, on our 2 night cruise we didn’t get to see them all! The ones we did get to experience were great! I was able to watch as some of our party experience the Ripcord by iFly indoor skydiving which looked like a blast. I chose not to partake in the North Star due to long wait in line, we chose to check out the Seaplex instead, but the North Star sure did look cool when we saw it in action! The Seaplex is a convertible venue that could be for bumper cards, roller skating, ping-pong tournaments, sports and a number of other things. On the top level of the Seaplex is an Xbox live gaming room and ping pong tables, on the bottom is the arena and arcade. Perfect place for Tweens and Teens! On the last night we saw “We Will Rock You” a Broadway style show exclusive to Royal Caribbean which was entertaining and funny! Great acting and singing voices showed they did a great job with auditioning the cast. The special effects and well-made props made you feel immersed in the show. Afterwards, we experienced some of the night life the “Music Hall,” a two story night club, bar, and entertainment area. Great venue, live music and DJ were both crowd pleasers! Top deck had an indoor pool and outdoor pool, a few hot tubs and kids area, all of which looked like a blast, the kids pool also had a “lazy river” which was just a small circular pool that the water went around in but looked great for kids. I was able to experience the adults only solarium, which had a relaxing atmosphere, and gorgeous 3 level pool. There were 4 hot tubs in the solarium, I was able to relax in one while looking out the forward of the ship while the sun was setting, absolutely best spot to relax. The ship’s gym was state of the art, on the very top deck with a gorgeous view all around. Any exercise equipment you could imagine was up there, and they also were doing sign up for a variety of different classes. On deck 4 and 5 were a variety of shops and restaurants and also the “Bionic Bar” which was 2 robotic arms that you ordered your drink from an ipad, and then waiting in the queue for your drink to be made. There were large screens on either side of the bar that explained what it was doing and which guest the drink was being made for. When your drink was ready the screens would let you know, and then you can simply scan your bracelet and the drink slid down the bar for pick up. Although this novelty was very interesting it was a very long wait time before your drink was ready. Even with shorter lines. The children’s area was separated out into 5 different rooms for 5 different age groups including a nursery. Bright and colorful décor and low ceilings made it a bright and inviting place for children to be in. On the day of disembarkation we packed up and rolled out! We met up and started to funnel out, we walked through representatives who scanned out bracelets and thanked us by name for sailing, we walked the red carpet again back off the ship and down the escalators to customs, where we waited in line for merely 5-10 minutes for a quick and easy entrance back into the US. We exited the building to find representatives pointing guests to the direction of shuttles, taxis and parking. We were quickly put onto our correct shuttle bus and back to the airport in no time at all. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Spent one night on the ship as a celebration to end of year of challenges taken on to raise money for a local children's charity , well this was spoilt by the whole experience . Firstly on Arrival at room , which was not even made up ... Read More
Spent one night on the ship as a celebration to end of year of challenges taken on to raise money for a local children's charity , well this was spoilt by the whole experience . Firstly on Arrival at room , which was not even made up , told by housekeeping on this cruise no coffee in cabin , tea bags but no kettle . Can live with that . First meal , well food was cold , staff rude not attentive at all , when received bill was horrified to find they had added an 18 percent gratuity , well the Services was not worth , your find this is standard company policy . Evening meal in the Manhattan ,we booked this 6 plus weeks ago , 8.30 sitting , we were still waiting at 9, to be told we still need to make up the table , the queues were out the door , people standing in the lobby it was like a crowd at a football match . Once seated we were given one menu between 8 of us , eventually more were handed out , we ordered our meals including dessert told this was to save time !!! Starters arrived , not up to much really , after some 45 mins our dirty plates were still on the table no one had been near us to even offer drinks or water . We had to call a manager over to ask what was happening , she showed no interest at all and thought by giving us a bottle of wine would make it right . Meals arrived , all cold , parsnips with steak which was like rubber , menu said chips , chicken so dry could not chew it . Crisps served with chicken and gravy , that did it called manager again (Corrine) , she said she would be back in 5 mins never came back . So we left with no dinner and ended up with a bar snack . We decided to make the most of our time , well had missed all the entertainment and no on board night club , everything shut at 1 ,on speaking to guest relation , was told its not a proper cruise , well we paid. Proper over rated price for what can only describe as butlins on water . I would not recommend this ship or company to anybody , could go on for ever Jusy don't bother wasting your money Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
We tried this just to see what a cruise proper would be like but we have to say that we wont be rushing to book one anytime in the near future - certainly on a ship of this size!! Perhaps a smaller liner may suit us. Anyway, the ... Read More
We tried this just to see what a cruise proper would be like but we have to say that we wont be rushing to book one anytime in the near future - certainly on a ship of this size!! Perhaps a smaller liner may suit us. Anyway, the embarkation procedure was fine, took quite a bit of time but you have to wait at an airport don't you?? Our cabin was lovely and the double bed in it was soon separated for us by the steward (we are two ladies) - only two teabags in the room though - could have done with at least a couple more. Unfortunately we were woken twice in the night. The first time by a young girl walking in the cabin, chatting on a mobile and turning all the lights on - she soon left after she realised her mistake but we are still curious how she got in at all??? The second intrusion was a annoy announcement advising that "bravo drill" had been cancelled!! This announcement was made we believe three times at about 3 in the morning - probably someone pressed a wrong button somewhere. We were not impressed. We had a lovely meal in Taste BUT our biggest mistake and one which we feel is tantamount to being criminal, was that we ordered two glasses of red wine. At the end of the meal, the invoice was handed to us and it was for £33.46 - we could not believe it - £16.73 for one small glass??? Absolutely outrageous - how can this possibly be justified? Apart from this, we were handed, on disembarkation, an invoice in the sum of £60.46 being the heavily overpriced glasses of wine together with two service charges of £27.00. I'm sure someone will say "its in the small print" but it shouldn't be, it should be in very large print. Finally we managed to go to the Theatre to see The Million Dollar Quartet - excellent show but we only got there by chance. We tried to book the 7.00 p.m. show on the onboard reservation screens, only to be advised that there were no seats left!!! We took the chance after our meal just to have a look at the theatre, only to find there were plenty of seats available so had we not bothered and taken the touchscreen as being gospel, we would have missed it. What is wrong with the touch screen bookings? All staff we encountered were very helpful and polite but some found it difficult to understand what we were saying (English) and had to get another staff member to help. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
well, we thoroughly enjoyed trying out a brand new ship! we couldnt fault anything.we had booked manhattan dining for 6.30 and got in straight away,had 3 staff serving our table all pleasant cheerful and polite Veal course was ... Read More
well, we thoroughly enjoyed trying out a brand new ship! we couldnt fault anything.we had booked manhattan dining for 6.30 and got in straight away,had 3 staff serving our table all pleasant cheerful and polite Veal course was delicious.saw the million dollar quartet at 10pm.got in straight away and it was excellent ! went to 5 o clock somewhere after the show and such a fun atmosphere there.. thought the pool/ropes/slides area amazing .We wished we had booked the 2nd taster for the 28th..checked out everywhere else on the ship and had a late night snack at 2am in osheehans,,fast service and great snacks..we would recommend the ship for sure Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
We were very excited when we booked the holiday, it was the first time on a cruise for us and there was soo much hype surrounding the cruise, Anthem of the seas, we couldn't wait to get on-board. However, there were soo many negative ... Read More
We were very excited when we booked the holiday, it was the first time on a cruise for us and there was soo much hype surrounding the cruise, Anthem of the seas, we couldn't wait to get on-board. However, there were soo many negative reviews on its sister cruise, Quantum of the seas, actually negative reviews on cruises in general that it was surprising. People were complaining on everything form check-in times, luggage arrival to food, service, etc. it was really off-putting especially when we were travelling with a 2yr old. But, thankfully, from he moment we stepped in, until the time we got off the Anthem, it was an experience like no other... It one word, it was Awesome!!! It was soo good that we didn't want to get off the cruise!! Ours was a 3 nighter, so maybe longer duration ships might have issues, but our cruise, everything was as smooth as butter!! (Apart from the British/EU weather) Check-in was super fast, we already did it online so the whole process took like 5 mins. We made it to the cruise terminal in our selected time during the online check-in so as soon as we got there, we went straight through after an immigration check. Once one board, the first feeling was walking up to this huge chandelier and huge hall room decorated with big LCD screens depicting the fall season. It was simply overwhelming!! We were then directed to our staterooms through the many super-fast elevators. At the door of our stateroom, our room key was waiting stored in compartment beside the sign board. They call this the sail pass, which is very important and you should carry this while debarking the ship for shore excursions. The stateroom was spacious, sparkling clean and was maintained at the right temperature. The balcony was spacious and was the best part of the room. We spent hours in there, despite it being freezing cold, wrapped up in blankets. It was just a marvel watching the waves, watching the ship dock and un-dock, seeing it make a 180-degree turn and just lying there listening to the sound of the waves. We soo loved the balcony stateroom. As we were checking our room, we heard and knock and our luggage was waiting for us along with our stateroom attendant. We were a little worried as online reviewers complained that they did not receive their luggage until late night. so once again, RC nailed the whole service of collecting our bags from the car park, to getting them to our doors and then when we disembarked, they were waiting for us in our designated zone. Super Smooth, once again!! We were on deck 12, room 12212 right in the middle of the ship. I really had huge concerns about deck 12 as after looking at the Anthem's design, we found out that there is an over-hang which extends from the 14th floor so the middle part is indented, then there are struts, these long poles extended from the over-hang which are placed right into the balconies! I was worried for this, thinking that it will reduce the space in the balcony and obstruct the view. I couldn't find anything online about this so hopefully this will help other cruisers. The poles do end up in your balcony but the are merged into the side dividers in the balcony. So you hardly notice them and they do not take up any extra space in your balcony. The over-hang does block the sky-view a little when you are standing up near the edge of the balcony, but you hardly notice this whilst sitting down, so you do get a full view. Check the pictures which will give you a better understanding of this: http://i60.tinypic.com/uv7us.jpg http://i60.tinypic.com/334i1ef.jpg http://i61.tinypic.com/mlsduc.jpg Plus, all thro the middle of the ship, when you look directly down from the balcony, you don't see the water, but you see the huge life-boats. The indented design of the ship in the middle was to accommodate these life-boats. These 2 are minor points, but the huge plus is that you are located close to the elevators/stairs and more importantly, it rocks lesser in the middle of the ship, so for all you guys with motion sickness, this is the ideal place. And trust me, this is soo true, when it was very windy, I did check the front and the back of the ship, it felt as if I was on a swing! I never felt motion sick in my life and on day three, it was really rough weather and I felt the ship was stirring my insides over and over in a circular motion. This really did give me a little sick feeling so had to sleep it off! So middle of the ship, very good for people who suffer with motion sickness. Now, back to the stateroom, there is a nice huge comfy bed, a sofa-bed for the little one, ample cupboards every where, so you have enough storage, a digital safe and there is a mini fridge stacked up with snacks and drinks which cost extra if you use them. There is under bed storage as well, this is really good as we could store our huge suitcase and stroller under it. Our stateroom attendant Mailene was simply awesome. She was very friendly, gave us lots of tips/info and every time we used to leave the stateroom and return, she made sure that we felt as if we were walking into our room for the very first time!!! It was that clean, soo much that we felt bad for leaving our stuff around as she even sorted those too! We stopped doing this after the first time :) The washroom has a capsule shower, is nice and spacious and very functional. Coming back to the ship, not sure where to start...everything is soo good, actually Grande is the word!! Since it is new, the ship is sparkling clean, with really a huge staff, looking after each and every section! Every part felt like it was a 7 star hotel. The top decks were excellent, a huge jogging/walking strip that spans the entire ship, then there are outdoor/indoor pools. The main star attraction, the North Star, a London eye shaped capsule that takes 14 at a time and lifts high up in the sky giving you an awesome areal overview of the ship! Note though on shorter cruises, it doesn't move-out 90 degree into the ocean, this one is reserved for the larger ones as the attendant said, it will take more than 30 mins and not sufficient time for all passengers on short cruises. Also note, there was heavy wind when I took the capsule so besides up and down, we also had rocking motion :)) again something to consider for the motion-sick/vertigo sufferers. Then there is the Solarium, an adult only retreat zone. This was really calm and peaceful, you can retreat here quietly with a nice book and a drink... Very relaxing! Then the giant giraffe, our little one loved this and played with it for a long time :) Then there are the flow-rider, virtual flight simulator and rock climbing. Guess on longer cruises all this is plenty of activity to keep guest entertained. On the shows/movie front, there is a royal theater, 3D cinema plus the Two70 which has these huge robotic screen as it transforms from a cafe into entertainment center. Coming to the other main aspect, the food...one word again "Awesome".., it's clean, hygiene, tasty and loads of variety...especially for a short cruise, there was ample choice.. So much that we couldn't find time to eat in all of them. On the first day, we tried Sorrento for a quick bite and the pizza which they served was hot and fresh! In the evening, we reserved for a fine dining experience at the Silk and the food was decent. Next day, we went to the Wind Jammer for breakfast and it was brilliant...lots of choice and the dishes were tasty... It's such a shame, that we pay almost £20 per head at our local garden center and the food is not half good as in the Wind Jammer!!! Really sad when you pay premium price in Britain and its no where nearly as good as on the RC!! For lunch, we went back to the wind jammer and once again there was ample choice and really tasty food. No wonder it was always soo packed with guests! Dinner was at Chic and the ambiance was really posh!! For the third night, we were supposed to go to the Grande, the only restaurant where you need to wear a jacket but the menu at Wind Jammer was soo tempting that we skipped the grande!! We felt that two nights to fine dining was enough and wanted to enjoy the more casual approach at WJ :) Main thing regarding food is, round the clock, you will find someplace open serving food...even in the wee hours...there is still plenty choice to grab a quick bite! So all in all, this was a wonderful trip and we became huge fans of the Anthem and Royal Caribbean that we will surely return and try longer duration!! There is absolutely no negative points which I can think of, it's such a brilliant experience and I think here in UK, we will have to wait for few months as the Ship is heading for America for summer... So all you guys in the US, you will really have a great time!! Here are a few tips for first timers and cruisers in general that might help: - Check in online and print off the sail passes, this saves soo much time and makes the whole process quicker - upload pictures of all those who are travelling with you when you complete the online check-in, this will speed up the process even further - setting a credit card on your account is helpful, you can buy stuff directly with the smart band, this sports strap wristband which they provide for you and all your guests, including children - Wind Jammer is the place to go for food, they serve this round the clock, but they do follow timing correctly, so check breakfast, lunch and dinner times and make sure you fit into the correct slot so you can enjoy the food thoroughly! - Drinks and water are expensive if you buy them on board, so I do suggest buying these packages before hand. We got the suvernor Coca-cola cup which costed £6 per day (per person) and this gave access to soda machines which are located at various places on the cruise. You can use that to fill up with water at these thirst stations at Wind Jammer, alternatively, you can drink water from normal tap in your room. - Make reservation before hand if you wish to enjoy fine-dining experience. There are several complimentary restaurants plus a few which you have to pay extra. - Same goes to on-board activity like flow-rider and rip-cord flight. Pre-book them as they are popular and fill up quickly - You need to carry the sail passes (not just the bands) of all your passengers if you wish to disembark the ship and go for shore vacation - There are several photo points where they take pictures for you, you can buy them at the information points on the cruise. You can buy digital prints or order them printed off but make sure you do this before the last night as we thought they would offer online service to purchase these later on, but turns out they do not offer this facility! - Finally, children who are not totally potty trained will not be allowed into the swimming pools. Also, those who are under 1mt will not be allowed in the North Star. I do apologise for the rather long review, but hope you all find this useful! This cruise was definitely one of the best vacations which we took and the quality, level of service and care which Royal Caribbean provided was unbeatable! Thank you RC for providing such an amazing experience!! Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
I had been preparing myself for my 2 night inaugural cruise aboard the P&O Britannia, excitement was upon me and I was counting down the days until I board P&O's biggest accomplishment - The Britannia. Nothing could quite ... Read More
I had been preparing myself for my 2 night inaugural cruise aboard the P&O Britannia, excitement was upon me and I was counting down the days until I board P&O's biggest accomplishment - The Britannia. Nothing could quite prepare me entirely for all of the "WOW" moments and how many times I would alert my partner to "look at that" or how many times I would attempt to get the perfect picture at the right angle to try and justify Britannia's beauty and to fit it all in. After embarkation we went straight to our Balcony cabin D215 - not too far from the lifts and at the fore end of the ship, quite a good location up on deck eleven. I can honestly say, hand on heart I was blown away by the intricate attention to detail that had been shown within the whole design of the cabin, everything has its purpose, the lay out is great and it truly feels like a boutique hotel. The bed is really comfy, the Balcony more than adequate and the bathroom compact and comfortable. With "The White Company" toiletries and "Dowe Egberts" coffee - what more could a girl ask for? To say I was in my element is an under statement. The beautiful pink fresh flower and the tray of sweeties welcomed us to our home for the next 2 nights and how welcoming this was, we really did feel at home. We decided to find our bearings and went for a wander around this magnificent ship to explore the numerous decks and see what we could find, we were not disappointed. The design and decor of the whole ship is immaculate, it's pure perfection, simple, elegant, modern yet classical - no amount of words or photos can describe the beauty of the Britannia - you must experience it yourself to understand. After venturing out and about and exploring the numerous bars that Britannia had to offer us throughout our stay we decided to retire to our cabin to get ready for the evening ahead. As we got ready I was curious to see what the menu had to offer us as we were booked in at the fine dining restaurant "The Epicurean" I was under the impression that it's a modern twist on Mediterranean cuisine, but nothing could prepare me for the unexpected delight that we were about to experience. We were given the option of where we wanted to sit and were informed that we were the first to sit in this chosen location, a mixture of different sized tables and more private "couch areas" provides a great restaurant to provide an intimate atmosphere, we were introduced to our waitress for the evening and she catered to our every need, she advised us what the dishes were (as it's not your average restaurant experience this advise was definitely required) she helped us choose our wine for the evening and was professional yet friendly. We received an entree which can only be described as a cream of tomato soup in a frozen lollipop! This was a "Bloody Mary" and it was extraordinary! It was packed full of flavour and provided a great talking point for the evening, quirky design and perspective of food is (in my opinion) one of the main aspects of dining at the epicurean. The Bloody Mary lollipop was only the beginning, when I received my bowl of soup I was first of all surprised at the appearance of my starter as it appeared to be one of those pre-conception "A La Carte" meals where there's not a lot on your plate and you're sat there wondering where the rest is . . . . . . . The ingredients for the soup were in my bowl (immaculately presented I might add) then I was served a jug of warm cream which was poured into the bowl which resulted in my most divine mixtures of flavours and texture (my soup). The main course was delicious packed full of flavour and variety complimented by a perfect portion size it was absolutely faultless. Before we received our dessert we were served another entree - I was given (what can only be described as a frozen lipstick) I enjoyed a burst of strawberry & cranberry as I ate my "frozen lipstick" whilst my partner enjoyed what appeared to be a fried egg - which was actually a sweet delight, again another twist on modern cuisine. The dessert was well presented and along with a great mixture of texture and flavour - the presentation was immaculate, this restaurant is certainly worth the visit for the experience alone. After dessert we attempted to go into "Brodies" (the British pub) but it was very busy so we chose the quieter option of the "Blue Bar" a great place to people watch and enjoy a tipple or two. As we returned to our cabin for the evening we enjoyed the turndown service with a chocolate each on our pillow, we hit the hay and woke up the following morning feeling refreshed after a great nights sleep. Up to my 2 night cruise aboard the P&O Britannia I had never experienced a Balcony cabin whilst sailing (only in port overnight) so as you can imagine I was incredibly excited to make the most of this experience. As I pulled the curtain back I was greeted with nothing but ocean - from left to right I scanned back and forth and we was just surrounded by nothing but the ocean. I put the kettle on along with my cardigan (it was so sunny but not too warm) and I sat on the Balcony watching the world go by, it was surreal, so relaxing and therapeutic to hear nothing but the waves was magical, who'd have thought I was on board a cruise ship with over 3500 others, I certainly wouldn't, I was in my own world and could easily have stayed there, if you're a book lover you would have been in your element, imagine just sitting there and losing yourself in a novel written by your favourite author, pure bliss. After a couple cups of coffee it was breakfast time so off we went down to the Horizon - a typical buffet restaurant, loads of choice, freshly made to order omelettes, healthier options or a tailor made full English - the choice is yours. We went down around 09:00 and most of the window tables were already taken, so if you want to enjoy the view your probably best getting down there a little earlier. We then decided to explore and take more photos of this beautiful ship and stopped later on for a "Costa Coffee" at Java, a great spot for people watching, we even spotted the captain himself Captain Paul Brown. We browsed through the shops and I was delighted to see a great choice of British brands aboard the shopping choice including Pandora, Radley, Fiorelli and so much more. Yesterday, we wanted to visit the Crow's Nest which was my favourite place to be when I went on my first cruise, it was too busy so made a pact that when it opened at 12:00 we would head up towards there and we did, a great social place to be, lots of seating options and the best views on the ship! Plus, at 2pm the pianist started to play which created an evermore relaxing atmosphere, it is a great way to spend the afternoon toasting an end to a perfect day After enjoying the view it was then time to go back to the Epicurean as we had booked in for Eric Lanyards afternoon tea, we joined the queue which resulted in a 5 minute wait (even though everyone had pre booked) so pre-booking is a definite must, we were shown to our table where our pretty afternoon tea set was sat waiting, we were then asked if we wanted tea or coffee, which I found great as I'm a huge coffee lover and even though tea is all part of the experience, I was pleasantly surprised when I was given a choice. There was a menu advising of what each delicacy was and also a menu for a wide variety of teas available, the treats were beautifully presented, gorgeous in taste and again very quirky design - an eclair that was actually a sandwich, a chocolate treat in a plastic looking case which you could actually eat, small pink juice filled balls that pop in your mouth, a great modern twist on traditional afternoon tea! We saved ourselves after having breakfast and waited until 3.30pm for this, it was definitely worth the wait and unexpectedly filling, therefore, I'd recommend the wait from breakfast if you book in for the afternoon tea. After several cups of coffee, our tray was empty and we headed back to our cabin to relax for an hour before it was time to get ready yet again. We got ready and went down to the limelight club for the evening with Jaki Graham, a popstar from the 80's (which I didn't know until the night) we were shown to our table and ordered our drinks, we were then served an entree followed by our 3 course meal from the set menu offering 2 choice of starters, 3 choice of mains and one dessert. The food again was great, however, by the time we finished dessert we weren't really enjoying the limelight club experience and was allowed to leave taking the bottle of wine we had just ordered with us, really I should have researched the "act of the evening" prior to booking as we're not really love song lovers and were both born after Jaki's fame, we couldn't really relate to the songs although she had a great voice it wasn't really our scene, so we headed to the Live Lounge. The Live Lounge had 2 young chaps singing recent release songs and then a disco in between, this was more "us" and we felt right at home, it held a great atmosphere as people were getting up on the dance floor when their favourite song came on and it was great to see everyone in their formal attire and some in their casuals too all on the same dance floor. A few times couples had got up on the dance floor and performed a dance together (it felt like strictly come dancing at times) which was fab to get such a great variety of people and dress codes, the atmosphere was fantastic as everybody applauded the cruisers who can dance, the look of enjoyment on their faces was a lovely sight and everybody enjoyed watching them too, a great night was had by all. Then, that was it, time for bed and disembarkation the following morning. I can honestly say this has been my favourite most enjoyable yet relaxing cruise experience I have had so far, everything was great, I had never been on a P&O cruise before and I will definitely recommend them and of course the Britannia to anybody wanting a home from home 4 star cruise experience, although the Britannia appears as a 5 star boutique hotel in certain areas. I can see why P&O are so popular now, with Dowe Egberts coffee in your cabin, the White Company toiletries and British TV channels so you can keep up to date with the soaps it's a fantastic home from home experience that can offer you to see the world yet you only have to unpack once. My plan is to sail on the Britannia again at some point next year when they release the 2016 European/Med itineraries and I would also consider booking a 3/4 night break on her in between "just because", I would have to have a Balcony cabin as I love the Ocean, hearing the waves and find sitting in the Balcony so relaxing, I would recommend our cabin D215 as its not too far from the lifts and it offers a great view! We would definitely visit the Epicurean again and have to do the Eric Lanyards afternoon tea experience again, we would probably like to try the Indian restaurant "Sindhu" also "The Retreat" looked the best place to relax on board so we'd definitely have a few hours planned in there whilst the ship was at sea, I could plan my itinerary on my next cruise (I am a bit of a planner as I like to maximise my time on board and make the most of the whole experience) I'm just counting down the days until P&O release the Britannia's 2016 schedule to see where we may be sailing to . . . . . . . . Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
If you know the difference between Machiavelli and McDonalds, between France Soir and Hog's Breath, between the Park Hyatt and the Holiday Inn....... then this is NOT the cruise for you. Booked a year in advance. Dreamed and ... Read More
If you know the difference between Machiavelli and McDonalds, between France Soir and Hog's Breath, between the Park Hyatt and the Holiday Inn....... then this is NOT the cruise for you. Booked a year in advance. Dreamed and planned of each minute of the 3 days, not only my first true holiday in 15 years but also my 40th birthday, and the reality was in truth more like a nightmare. Men in their 40s, who got tattoos in the 20s when they had 6 packs, now have kegs and sttttttttrrrrrrrrreeeeettttttccccchhhhhhhed out dragons, tweety birds and naked ladies, consider it acceptable to wander around topless with 2 to 4 drinks in hand throughout the ship. Put a shirt on boys, we don't want to see it and you shouldn't be showing it anywhere outside of the pool or your bedroom, not in public drinking, shopping and dining areas. Crowds and queues, substandard bidvest type food, none of the luxury gourmet experience detailed and promised. The one half way decent meal required an additional payment as it was a specialty restaurant. Given the amount paid for this cruise in a top suite, to not have this included just ended up being insult to injury. Having as mentioned, booking a year in advance, I think we paid the highest rate on the entire ship as we had booked the very first suites (below the single royal suite) on this cruise and had therefore paid absolutely the highest price with no discounts or OBC inclusions or the like that were offered over the next 11 months prior to the cruise. We got NO discernible special treatment despite having booked in an Owner's Suite and in fact had our first nights restaurant reservation cancelled due to a private party despite having booked some weeks (basically when bookings opened) in advance. Given that this booking was to celebrate my 40th birthday, this was not a good start. Cancelled our drink package after day one having not actually been able to get to a bar to order an inclusive drink. Did eventually get a refund. Room service, despite the poor quality, was efficient and crowd free. Room attendance was good. Cabin was very nice and ended up being our sole refuge and one enjoyable aspect of the trip. Expected to spend 20% of our time in there but probably ended up closer to 70% to avoid the incessant crowds. Fortunately it was lovely if a little dated, and requiring better maintenance and cleaning - found a pair of brand new Gucci socks in the packet in the drawer, didn't quite compensate us for the rest of the issues. Binoculars were a nice touch. Basically the cabins are a little like being at the Windsor or the old Hilton on the Park (pre renovation) in Melbourne. You are not getting a Langham, Crown or Park Hyatt Experience here. They are comfortable and functional - but given this was a top suite seemed a little underwhelming. Concierge club was worse than the worst hotel lounge or airport lounge anywhere in the world. The canapes for the evening cocktail hour were put out at the start and were either all taken and not replaced or left to develop bacteria over the next few hours. No replacements no health standards or safety just a plate of nibbles unwrapped and dumped on a counter. Basically if you want to go for a total piss up for 3 days with people that don't have tastebuds and you really like crowds then this is for you. If like us, this sounds like HELL then AVOID and don't waste your money. I know if you can't say something nice you shouldn't say anything at all but I really don't want anyone else who envisaged the romantic and luxurious version of cruising to be fooled/duped/conned/tricked into believing this is it! PS Booked through RACV and not worth the bother, if you really are a sadist or just have to attend a bucks/hens weekend which is all this cruise is good for, then book direct with RC. Read Less
Sail Date February 2015
I'll state up front that this is my first cruise. My wife has cruised a few time before. We went on a 2-night cruise to nowhere out of NYC to celebrate our 40th birthdays. We arrived to the port in New York City around noon and went ... Read More
I'll state up front that this is my first cruise. My wife has cruised a few time before. We went on a 2-night cruise to nowhere out of NYC to celebrate our 40th birthdays. We arrived to the port in New York City around noon and went through the cruise terminal within 15 minutes. I was surprised that we walked onto the ship so quickly. Immediately upon boarding Breakaway I could tell that I liked the style of the ship. The interior decor is fresh and modern, yet warm. Very different than the Peter Max-designed hull artwork, which is quite flamboyant. We went to find our balcony stateroom to set our luggage down. We brought only carry on bags for the quick sailing. We found that our stateroom was already made up for us. However, there were a few spots where the cleaning crew had missed the mark. They were good about fixing the issue later that day and we had no other issue with the cabin. The cabin was a good size for the two of us. I was not expecting a lot in terms of spaciousness and I felt that I was pleasantly surprised how airy the room felt. The decor was clean and modern. The bathroom was roomy, with ample sink area storage and a good size shower. The balcony was wonderful, with a table and two chairs for relaxing. It was on the smaller side and it would be difficult to sit in a recliner on the balcony. The sliding door was very solid and when locked did a great job of blocking out outside noise. Also, as a parent I appreciated the lock mechanism that was set high on the door, away from small hands. Departure from New York City is amazing at night. The skyline all lit up is a sight to behold, as well as the Statue of Liberty. Passing under the Verazzano Narrows Bridge is also a high point of the sail out. I will say that since it is January it was very cold. I was well prepared with lots of layered clothing, gloves, and a winter hat. Dinner at the Manhattan Room was excellent. I have to say I was ready for the food to be pretty blah, but in general I was very happy with the food I received. In particular the fish dishes were excellent. I had a broiled cod dish that was amazing and my wife had salmon that was also excellent. We liked the decor and energy of the Manhattan Room and did both of our dinners there. We had lunch in Taste, which is a seated meal, and the Garden Cafe, which is the buffet. Taste was excellent and the buffet was generally good, though not quite as good as the seated restaurants. The Garden Cafe was a great place to grab a quick snack or ice cream treat though, and provided great views from deck 15 aft. We ate breakfast at O'Sheenan's pub and at Taste. Both very good basic breakfast. My favorite food related thing was the Sabrett hot dog carts that pop up around the ship. Delicious! We went to see Rock of Ages. This is not a show for kids. It is very risqué and they make an announcement to that affect before it starts. As a person who grew up loving hard rock in the 1980s it was a great trip down memory lane. I absolutely loved the show! But definitely not for kids. We also bought entrance to the Ice Bar, which is basically a freezer with a bar and ice sculptures in it. The $20 admission gets you two drinks, so it's in line with other bard on the ship. It was a cool experience, pun intended, and I am glad we did it. Probably wouldn't repeat though. Obviously since it's a winter sailing we couldn't make use of the waterslides. There were a few brave souls in the heated pools and hot tubs. I walked the ship and found an amazing looking ropes course and mini golf. My biggest regret is that we didn't have more time and sail to a warm weather location where we could really enjoy the outdoor facilities that Breakaway has to offer. We docked back at the port of New York early on Sunday morning. We ate breakfast with friends and made our way off the ship at our leisure, around 9:30. It was a simple process to get through immigration and we met our ride outside the terminal. My favorite feature of the ship the the Waterfront, which is the wrap around promenade on deck 8. Many of the restaurants offer outdoor seating in warmer weather and it's just a great place to walk around the ship early in the morning and take in the sea air. Overall we had a terrific time on Breakaway. We would definitely go again, but next time on a longer cruise to a warm weather location and with our kids. For me it was the perfect introduction to cruising and the location in NYC is super convenient.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
The 2 night weekend escape aboard the Norwegian Dawn Ship was not a fun sail for neither my sister nor me. Let's begin with the Dawn being set to sail at 4pm and not sailing until seven. When my sister called the reception to ask ... Read More
The 2 night weekend escape aboard the Norwegian Dawn Ship was not a fun sail for neither my sister nor me. Let's begin with the Dawn being set to sail at 4pm and not sailing until seven. When my sister called the reception to ask about this we were met with firm answers/attitude of dont ask just wait. Once we boarded the ship we had lunch at the Garden Cafe where I found a piece of hard plastic in my dinner. Upon further inspection, I learned the small round plastic was the Top to a condiment jar of some type! I felt really bad at this point because that was the begining of our 2 night weekend escape. The worst part is when I took a bite into my food it was in my mouth and I sister saw my face and said what is it, yes it was in my mouth. It's a good thing it was hard plastic and not something else and I didnt break a tooth. I quietly told a Supervisor who said thank you for not making a scene! Really?! On our way out of the Garden Cafe I decided to get a Souvenir from this cute machine so I swiped my card twice only to learn that it was broken. I reported that to the Cafe Supervisor she said she would get it fixed it or post a warning sign. When I returned the next day a man and what looked to be his grandson were trying to learn why the machine would not give them their Souvenir; so yes the Supervisor never posted the sign that the machine was broken. The beds in our stateroom were clean and comfortable but in the bathroom were long pieces of dark European hair in the shower and sink as well, its not hard to clean up hair. I went to a Bar on deck called the Oasis and I was trying to Order a drink from the beverage Manager Norman from Jamaica who was rude. Know that the Bar was not crowded at this time so I was not holding up the line or anything but he was trying to rush me. I decided to ask him to recommend a drink for me when 3 ladies walked up to the bar Mr. Norman abruptly turned from me and served those ladies. I Waited until he was done and I ask him to prepare the same drink for me that he had just prepared of those 3 ladies since it looked good. The Beverage Manager told me to grab a pre-made drink from a side table and he would add Rum to it? What? Why? Just prepare the drink I finally ask you for please and at this point I'm shaking my head in disappointment. I wanted to tell the manager about customer service yet I didn't want to ruin the other cruisers day. I also wanted to pull the tag from his shirt that read Manager yet as I stood there feeling angry and sad, I just walked away. The Hot White Party was the best part of the Dawn's experience but just know that with the watery dinks at the Spinnaker Lounge plus tips you will spend more than you normally do, and thats not so bad if the drinks weren't watery! The gift shop aboard the ship was pretty nice. The gift shop sold many great items especially the hot ticket item liquor! But know this the liquor you buy cannot leave the gift shop until you leave the ship! When my sister and I were leaving the ship we passed the gift shop and saw about 300 or so people in that line. My sister will not sail again. I will sail again just not on the Dawn. Read Less
Sail Date November 2014
I went on this cruise because i am sailing her in December to the eastern caribbean, and i wanted to see what the ship was all about... Really i can't judge the ship too much, because it was only for one night, and a lot of loud roudy ... Read More
I went on this cruise because i am sailing her in December to the eastern caribbean, and i wanted to see what the ship was all about... Really i can't judge the ship too much, because it was only for one night, and a lot of loud roudy people, which i don't enjoy too much..... but getting back to the Gem, i thought that the ship had a very homey feel, and nice and cozy....Definitely the ship was very easy to navigate around on.... I prepaid for a reservation at the Le Bistro which was $20....and had a lovely time dining there, and the food was absolutely delicious, and presented to the table very nicely.... I had the Filet of Beef, which melted in your mouth.... also ate in the Pacific Dining Room for lunch and breakfast the following morning....and i thought that the food was very good, and the food was presented to me nice and hot.... again as i said before, i cannot judge to much on the ship, as i was only there one night....but some of the people that were on the cruise, were down right loud and roudy...even in the Le Bistro, where i ate, they had a large birthday party in there, and those people were so so loud, that some of the guests asked to be moved to a more quieter location.... My cabin was 9549....forward on the ship....it was an inside cabin....and i loved it.... i got the nice cozy feel to the room....and everything was in order..... I am definitely looking forward to my cruise on the Gem in December, and i know that i will have a better experience....as it is a nine night cruise..... It was very convenient for me to get to the pier....I took the LLRR to Penn Station and hopped in a taxi, and i was there in minutes.... Had a very enjoyable time, dispite the loud and roudy people..... Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
Well I booked a Nowhere cruise from the port of San Diego. 2 hours in the sun waiting to get on board. There was a guy (Mid 20's)missing his left leg and on crutches with a USMC tattoo on his arm, he waited the same amount of time ... Read More
Well I booked a Nowhere cruise from the port of San Diego. 2 hours in the sun waiting to get on board. There was a guy (Mid 20's)missing his left leg and on crutches with a USMC tattoo on his arm, he waited the same amount of time standing right in front of me. Shame on Disney part 1. The ship is nice. Service was average. dinner both nights was served at cool temperature and took 1 hour from ordering it. Asked for another got one 2 degrees warmer I decided not to eat spit so I ate it. Kids club is a joke. Early 20 year olds sitting around shooting the breeze attempting not to interact with the kids. My 6 y/o got punched by a 10 y/o. I was told about it after my son told me about it. My daughter (10 y/o) was told to watch TV no activities at kids club. The pool was dirty my 2 boys got Strep throat. About 100 kids in the mickey pool total nightmare. The ship rocked like a cork. I was in the NAVY for 12 years was on a frigate that rode better. The whole cruise was at 7 knots so slow we where rocking around the whole time. Image trying to ride a bike super slow. I played foos ball on the top deck with a ping pong ball as a foos ball. The housekeeper only left a towel shaped as a swan on the last night with tips envelopes under it. Tacky at best. I was so disappointed in the cruise 2 days 2 nights for 2 adults and 3 kids $2355. What a joke. If you like to stand in lines and like to pay premium prices skip Disneyland and go on one of their cruise ships. Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This was our first ever cruise and a 2 nigh "taster cruise", this has put us off cruising for ever. first two and a half hour wait in southampton in a humid marquee, arrived on time at 11am, to be herded into a marquee with no ... Read More
This was our first ever cruise and a 2 nigh "taster cruise", this has put us off cruising for ever. first two and a half hour wait in southampton in a humid marquee, arrived on time at 11am, to be herded into a marquee with no explanation as to why, then endured 2.5 hours of waiting with insufficient seating. you could not get served in bars, half an hour wait minimum, with extremely rude staff, telling you to sit down for waiter service, but there were no waiters or waitress, if you went direct to bar to try and get a drink, you were spoken to very rudely and told to sit down. I dont think I talked to one other passenger who wasnt suffering the same, this continued through out the cruise., with arguments and complaints about lack of service and rude staff all over the place I will never, never use MSC again and if this was their idea of trying to get me to book a big cruise by "enjoying one of ther taster cruises, then they are living in cloud cuckoo land. a very disgusted and once only cruise passenger Read Less
Sail Date May 2014
This was our first cruise on a ship. It was a local promotion which was really great value for money. My review is split between good and bad things: Good things: what a fantastic way to enjoy the ocean. 3 nights was a good trial and for ... Read More
This was our first cruise on a ship. It was a local promotion which was really great value for money. My review is split between good and bad things: Good things: what a fantastic way to enjoy the ocean. 3 nights was a good trial and for us it was definitely a winner and we loved it. We enjoyed the Turkish baths and the relaxation spa area was a great breakaway from the crowds on deck 11. Food galore - so you defintely won't starve but if you are watching your weight - be warned - temptation is everywhere. The pizza is basic magherita and the other choice was vegetarion - but oh so super delicious. We loved the Buddha Bar - chilled music and some really great artists. Bad things: Stricter rules on use of the Turkish baths should be implemented. Persons under the age of 18 should not be allowed. There were noisy children running in and out of the showers and the baths which was very disruptive. We had an ocean view cabin on deck 8 - the bed linen really needs an upgrade badly - horrible pillows - you can feel the knobly sponge. The blanket was very worn out and tired and the beds were hard and uncomfortable. My husband and I are not "big" people, yet we found the shower area to be cramped. I don't know how the bigger sized people shower. We never got to enjoy the jaccuzi in the pool area - again - overun by children and certain guests just totally hogged the jacuzzi. The embarkment procedure at Cape Town harbour was totally disorganised and a long wait of 2.5 hours was not pleasant. There needs to be better signage and queue management. Several very confused passengers were trying to fathom out where to go. I did my booking on-line and thought I was specific about my request for restaurant seating but it seems this request was not actioned and then it was frustrating to get this changed once on board. Only the maitre d could change the seating arrangments and it was difficut to get hold of him. I would definitely upgrade to a suite on our next trip - yes we will defintely go on another cruise. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014

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