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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2014
First time on Norwegian after a previous cruise with Crystal. No attempts at comparisons here, just an honest review of our experience. Jade chosen for route and schedule and my wife and I were in cabin 11654 , an aft facing cabin. Cabin ... Read More
First time on Norwegian after a previous cruise with Crystal. No attempts at comparisons here, just an honest review of our experience. Jade chosen for route and schedule and my wife and I were in cabin 11654 , an aft facing cabin. Cabin - large mini suite with plenty of room due to its disabled facilities. Very comfortable and no noise to speak off. Relaxing view and wave sound from the good size balcony. Food - we did not have a bad meal on the ship. It was only on the second last night when we ate in Alizar that we felt the menu was a bit underwhelming. But the food that night was still good. We had the Ultimate Dining package and that was good value with all the options serving very good food. Breakfasts were always good and thanks to Mr Coffee Coffee and Mr washy Washy, a fun place to start your day. Staff - all the staff were great and it was good that many times they would stop to engage and not just serve. Entertainment - a mixed bag but not unexpected given the many different nationalities on board. Tenors of Rock, the Gymnasts and the Jadegirls with their 60's nights were standouts. Nathaniel Reed was a terrific piano bar player and host. Pretty much all the other entertainment options were provided and were more than satisfactory. Excursions - the few that we used were good value, especially the Sorrento and Pompeii tour through Naples. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
We booked this cruise primarily to escape the usual Christmas hype and also to experience the brand new Costa Diadema ship. We spent two nights in Barcelona prior to joining the ship on 22nd December 2014 and must admit to feeling some ... Read More
We booked this cruise primarily to escape the usual Christmas hype and also to experience the brand new Costa Diadema ship. We spent two nights in Barcelona prior to joining the ship on 22nd December 2014 and must admit to feeling some trepidation as we had never before cruised on a ship with so many passengers, however, we went with an open mind and were determined to enjoy the holiday. The embarkation process: We arrived at Barcelona cruise port early as we were in company with two other passengers we had met on route from Belfast. There were few passengers around at that time so the actual check-in process was quick and efficient. We were given a numbered card to be used for the boarding process later so we decided to sit back and relax with a coffee/ beer. Boarding commenced around 2pm and was done in numerical order according to the cards issued during check-in and, considering the number of passengers involved, it was also a fairly quick process. Once onboard, the sheer volume of passengers passing through the lobby area made it a bit chaotic , however, we quickly made our way to the lifts and found our cabin where we made contact with our Steward and were able to put valuables in the safe and unpack our hand luggage. We were impressed that our suitcases arrived very soon afterwards and we were soon unpacked and ready to explore the ship and have lunch. The ship: As a brand new ship, naturally everything was very new and fresh and it soon became clear just how big it was. We did a tour of the ship to get our bearings and also to ‘sus out’ the places where we might spend our evenings. The overall décor is undoubtedly ‘bling’ in style; however, we expected this and sometimes just marvelled at how much the interior designers had managed to cram in. All the public areas were large with plenty of seating so there was never any real problem; however, the Diana Lido pool area always seemed to be crowded although we only ever passed through it on our way to other parts of the ship. The pool seemed to be used mainly by children and I imagine that it might be unbearably busy in the summer when the retractable roof is back. There were plenty of elevators around; however, my vertigo prevented me from trying the scary glass lifts which seemed to go up forever from the main lobby area. The signage around the ship was generally good, however, for the first few days it was difficult to find the public toilets as they were not signposted and hard to miss unless you knew where to look. For instance we found no toilets near the lobby area on Deck 3 and the nearest ones were on Deck 4 hidden beside the entrance into the Emerald Theatre. Also, the automatic door opening mechanism in the toilets was a bit alarming at first as you were at risk of being seen by passing fellow passengers. We felt that the Concierge Desk seemed very small for the size of the ship and the number of passengers who would be likely to use it. It was only after standing in the queue for quite a time that we realised there was a ticket machine for issuing ‘next in line’ tickets, similar to those in large supermarket counters. This machine was strangely located in a corner away from the queue so most people did not even know it was there until they had reached the front of the line – it would have been better sited near the start of the queue where passengers could see it from the outset. This would dispel any possible arguments about who was next in line. The Concierge staff were very helpful and efficient and spoke many languages. Restaurants: We had been allocated open dining in the ‘Corona Blu’ restaurant for dinner each evening and the experience on our first night was not too encouraging. We expected to have to wait to get a table and this was not a problem , however, once seated the service was very slow and the family seated adjacent to us complained to the waiter who explained that there was a problem in the kitchen. Personally we were not unduly worried as we were not in any real rush to go anywhere; however, we could appreciate that it might be a problem for families with young children. To be fair, the service did improve on subsequent nights and we never had too long a wait. We did not particularly like the ‘Corona Blu’ restaurant itself and found the layout and décor very uninviting and dull when compared with the other restaurants onboard and it did not have a great ambience. ‘Corona Blu’ has very dark décor, furniture and carpets and on a few occasions we were seated in the side arms of the room which made us feel very cut off from the rest of the passengers – it felt like being relegated to an overflow part of the room and did not enhance our dining experience. On subsequent nights we specifically asked to be seated in the main body of the restaurant and this did not make us feel so isolated and it improved our experience. Given the large number of passengers onboard we felt that the standard of food was fairly good in the restaurant, if perhaps a bit ‘hit and miss’ at times, but we never had anything we could not eat and never went hungry. It was interesting that one of the Maître D’s told us he felt that the optimum number of passengers would be around 4,000 in order to be able to give the best level of service. To us, the ‘Corona Blu’ restaurant was simply a place to go and eat and then leave – it was not a place to linger too long afterwards. We had lunch a few times in the Diana Lido buffet and the food was excellent, especially the pasta dishes, even though it was just a bit chaotic at times due to the sheer number of people around. We always managed to get a seat and have a chat with our fellow passengers. Although we usually prefer a buffet style lunch, we also had lunch a few times in the ‘Fiorentino’ restaurant as it was easier to get a seat, and less frantic, if you went early enough. On one occasion only the ‘Adularia’ restaurant opened for a self-service buffet lunch which we really enjoyed and it was a pity this had not been an option every day. The light décor and layout of both the ‘Adularia’ and ‘Fiorentino’ restaurants was so much better and more welcoming than ‘Corona Blu’ and they both felt more like proper adult restaurants. We also heard from fellow passengers who had been assigned to the ‘Adularia’ restaurant each evening that there was a great atmosphere there with ad-hoc entertainment provided by the waiters and a much better rapport with passengers. Speciality restaurants: We went to the ‘Club Diadema’ restaurant on one occasion and thoroughly enjoyed both the food and the relaxed atmosphere. On a second night we went to the ‘Teppanyaki’ Asian restaurant with two fellow passengers who had now become friends and we all had a really fabulous evening of food and entertainment provided by the chefs. We finished the night off with a few glasses of champagne in the Bar Bollicine. Both speciality restaurants were well worth the additional cost and we would certainly recommend them to anyone. Bars: We had purchased the ‘all inclusive drinks’ package at the time of booking and this proved to be a very good deal. We both drank mostly wine or beer and the system worked very efficiently in all parts of the ship. We quickly found that our favourite watering holes were the bar in the main lobby area on Deck 3 and the Piano Bar on Deck 5. The bar and waiting staff in both locations were excellent and we soon became friends and looked forward to seeing them each evening. It is perhaps unfair to single out individual staff; however, we particularly enjoyed the craic with Barry and Jaydnash (Piano Bar) and all the staff in the Lobby Bar. Two waitresses named Xian and Joy in the Piano Bar also made us feel very welcome. The evening entertainment in both the Piano Bar and the Lobby Bar area was first class and was a real draw for passengers of all ages. From what we could see, the entertainment throughout the rest of the ship was equally good with something to suit all ages and tastes. On Christmas Eve there was even snow falling down into the lobby area which was a lovely touch and the children loved it – along with many adults. Kudos to Costa! Our only criticism would be the lack of an ‘adults only’ bar as the constant presence of young children running around a crowded bar, or being wheeled around in prams, was a bit off putting and perhaps not the best environment for them late at night. The crew: We have only the highest praise and respect for the crew throughout the ship for their efficiency and friendliness, despite the huge number of passengers they have to deal with on a daily basis. They all worked very hard and we often felt sorry for them and wondered how they coped, particularly with embarkation day which seemed to be every day! Other facilities: It would have been nice to have access to a guest laundry/ironing room in order to freshen up creased clothes; however, we appreciate that this may not be possible given the passenger numbers on the ship. On a longer voyage this would be even more desirable. Unfortunately our upgrade to the Samsara Deck did not automatically entitle us to access to the Samsara Spa, however, on the first day we decided to pay for the voyage spa package as we knew it would provide us with a means of escaping the crowds and somewhere to relax. It was money well spent (€105.00 per person for 07-days) and we looked forward to going there every afternoon and enjoying one of the many therapy rooms or just reading quietly in the large, and usually empty, relaxation area with a pot of herbal tea ~ heaven! The Spa staff were also friendly and courteous, especially Tereza and the Spa Manager, Pavel. On the penultimate day of our cruise (28th December) we were unfortunately bombarded with constant tannoy messages over a number of hours which were obviously lifeboat drill instructions for new passengers who had just embarked in Marseille. Not only were these messages’ intrusive but they were repeated in at least three or four languages every time and we struggled to understand why they were being constantly transmitted into the cabins of passengers who had joined days earlier and who had already undergone the necessary lifeboat drill. These new passengers were presumably being put through the lifeboat drill at their allocated locations (as we had done when we embarked in Barcelona) so what was the point of all other passengers having to hear it all again, and again, and again? We fully appreciate the need for safety drills; however, this was perhaps a bit OTT. It really spoiled our last day onboard. The interactive portals provided on some decks were very useful for making speciality restaurant reservations; port transfers …etc. and avoided unnecessary queuing at the concierge desk. Ports of call: Unfortunately we visited most of the ports during the Christmas period and in most cases the shops were usually closed, however, we did get off in them all (except in Marseille) if only to stretch our legs and get a coffee. Palma de Mallorca was our first stop and we spent a pleasant couple of hours just meandering around the impressive Cathedral and the seafront. Naples was the port we had most looked forward to visiting; however, it proved to be a real disappointment. We felt it was very down at heel, neglected and dirty and everywhere was ruined by graffiti. Prices in the cafes were exorbitant compared to the rest of the ports we visited. Not somewhere we would wish to visit again. La Spezia was a fairly small town and we had a quick walkabout and a coffee before heading back to the ship for an early lunch. It has a nice walkway along the seafront leading into the town itself. Savona was a much larger town and had more of interest and a nice atmosphere. We had previously visited Marseille on another cruise and not been too impressed with the place so we decided not to visit on this occasion and to relax on the ship while it was a little quieter. Overall opinion: We actually did enjoy the cruise, due mainly to the friendliness of the crew. We quickly found those venues where we felt most comfortable and which suited our choice of entertainment. There was certainly something every night to suit all tastes and ages. Having cruised previously on ships with much smaller passenger numbers it took a while to get used to the sheer volume of people onboard - especially the large number of small children, however, we soon adjusted and learned to ‘go with the flow’. We would recommend the ship to others, provided they were prepared to wait in queues at meal times, and we could certainly give them some tips on where and when to go in order to avoid them. Overall very good Costa Diadema.   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2014
This was our 3rd cruise and our first with Costa. We absolutely loved it. We had been on a Celebrity cruise before and found it much too big and impersonal. On the NeoRomantica we could find our way around and regularly bumped into people ... Read More
This was our 3rd cruise and our first with Costa. We absolutely loved it. We had been on a Celebrity cruise before and found it much too big and impersonal. On the NeoRomantica we could find our way around and regularly bumped into people we got to know. There were not many English on the cruise but we went to the introduction meeting for English speaking and met a lovely American couple. Later at dinner that night they were sat on our table and we spent most of our holiday with them. The evening meal was amazing with 6 or 7 courses if you wanted. We paid extra for the all inclusive and enjoyed cocktails, wine with our dinner, coffees and hot chocolates. Well worth the money, infact considering the amount of food and drink we had I'm surprised Costa made any profit! There wasn't much in the way of evening entertainment, but I don't really expect it on a holiday. We ate late and with the good company, didn't finish eating until at least 11pm, we would then have a couple more drinks and go to bed, there was always tomorrow's new port to get up for. We were supposed to have a 7 hour wait at the airport on our way home but we changed our flights to earlier ones with easy Jet for no charge. All in all an amazing holiday, we arrived home relaxed and suntanned! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2013
We have just finished our first ever cruise on the Azamara Journey and it was truly an amazing experience. Right from the very start where we were met outside the cruise terminal, it didn't take long for us to go through customs and ... Read More
We have just finished our first ever cruise on the Azamara Journey and it was truly an amazing experience. Right from the very start where we were met outside the cruise terminal, it didn't take long for us to go through customs and were on board with a glass of bubbly and lunch waiting. Our balcony cabin was spacious enough and although we didn't use our balcony a lot it was lovely to have. The service on board was outstanding, Raymond and Hilda who looked after our room were fantastic and on my husband birthday they had gone in and put balloons and a Happy Birthday banner up, a nice touch. The food on board was very good, we ate in the Window cafe for breakfast and lunch and the discovery restaurant for dinner where we had excellent food and service. The entertainment that we went to was very enjoyable. There is nothing that I can fault about the cruise and I look forward to doing another one. Thank you Azamara Read Less
Sail Date: September 2013
We joined the ship on 24th September an all inclusive trip x 7 days. Busy day for the crew on change over day. Is was a full complement of passengers . We were also on this ship in 2009 . Allocated cabin 5528 small but functional ... Read More
We joined the ship on 24th September an all inclusive trip x 7 days. Busy day for the crew on change over day. Is was a full complement of passengers . We were also on this ship in 2009 . Allocated cabin 5528 small but functional chipped salmon pink wash basin shower cubicle was OK for average build of passenger , mattress a bit worn ,no hair-dryer for my partner.(you can hire one from reception) have to pay to use the cabin safe . We used the very popular Beachcomber self service restaurant for breakfast and lunch ,melamine plates and cups supplied most food hot food was served to you from the hot plate (cuts down on food waste ) help yourself to anything else , you could order an omelette . We used the Island restaurant in the evenings a bit less of a crush and exchanged cruise experiences with fellow passengers (,vibrations from ships engine room when docking or anchor chains sounds ) .Food was of very good quality. Public areas were clean but well worn ,whole ship in need of refurbishment. As the company are making money there is there need to up grade ? The entertainment team worked very hard and most passengers had positive comments . Most ships crew Officers and men were polite or friendly . The PUB could very busy and it was quicker to go to the bar to be served which I prefer rather than being hassled to buy another drink as happens other cruise ships . Invited to the Captains Cocktail party along with another 150 people , offered glass of wine or soft drink ! Learned the one passenger had sailed on the ship 17 times ,a waist of time attending this party. We took this cruise because of the ports call , Cavil, Livonia , Nice ,Toulouse, Barcelona I am aware of negative reviews , some are a bit unfair . Overall we enjoyed this cruise and would sail on the ship depending on the itinerary. Value for money probably not. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2013
We just finished our fourth cruise with MSC. The first was in 1999 when few Americans had heard of MSC. We loved it! The cuisine, the shows, the demographics, the waiters, came together for a very European experience. Since then we ... Read More
We just finished our fourth cruise with MSC. The first was in 1999 when few Americans had heard of MSC. We loved it! The cuisine, the shows, the demographics, the waiters, came together for a very European experience. Since then we have always particularly enjoyed our cruises with MSC. But this time things were very different. The cruise we took on the Armonia was largely in the Adriatic. The ports were fine and so were the excursions. So we enjoyed that part of it. The shows are still slightly wacky, fun and decidedly non PC. Enjoyed that too. The food, however, was substandard. I have been on quite a few cruises with different companies and this was the worst. It is a deal-breaker. Presentation was lovely, dining rooms too, but most of it was either overly-salted or utterly tasteless. How can anything so pretty taste so bad? We took to eating in the ports of call or ordering extra courses to see if there was anything we would want to eat. We are definitely not finicky eaters. It was clear that MSC is cutting corners. Part of what a passenger looks forward to on the cruise is the food. Not here. Also, no midnight buffets, everything including ice cream on deck had a price (didn't used to be that way), virtually no activities onboard. Passengers were left to entertain themselves with cards and board games and an occasional dance class. I have never been on such an uninspired cruise. I used to love going on MSC cruises. Not going with them again. Uh uh. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2013
Just returned from a fabulous 14 night cruise on Thomson Majesty.This ship may not have the plushest of cabins, and not very powerful hair dryers but the staff were amazing and couldn't be faulted, special mention to our cabin ... Read More
Just returned from a fabulous 14 night cruise on Thomson Majesty.This ship may not have the plushest of cabins, and not very powerful hair dryers but the staff were amazing and couldn't be faulted, special mention to our cabin stewards Mukaffe and Richard who looked after us so well, and amazed us by their towel sculptures. Chosen for the itinery the ports of call were fabulous, we tended to do our own thing and didn't use the ships tours and managed really well. We used the Four seasons restaurant every evening and were so well looked after by all the waiters especially Frank and Simon who were wonderful, the food was lovely and it was nice not to be over faced, we pre booked a drinks package which was tremendous value for money. The entertainment team were superb and really made our holiday, it was like being at a West End Show every night, special thanks to Brandi, Max,Alice,Craig,Rob,Brian , Beth and Gareth, we had the pleasure of meeting Paul and Steve as cruise directors and both were entertaining and good sports, I must mention the amazing sail off from Venice which was enhanced by the beautiful voices of Brandi, Max and Rob singing fabulous Arias such as Figaro and Nessum Dorma , a truly spine tingling awesome experience. I have never cruised with Thomson before but will certainly do so again, the plusses far out way any negatives Read Less
Sail Date: June 2013
We have just returned from a week sailing on Majesty, our outward flight went well, and we were soon on board with our luggage arriving at the cabin nearly as quickly as we did. Our restricted view (half blocked by the lifeboat support) ... Read More
We have just returned from a week sailing on Majesty, our outward flight went well, and we were soon on board with our luggage arriving at the cabin nearly as quickly as we did. Our restricted view (half blocked by the lifeboat support) cabin on deck 8 was as expected and kept spotless by two very hard working ladies, we agree with others that the standard cabins are small, but we got by with a bit of planning, cases just fitting under beds etc. We had no problem with any of our facilities. We had been told there was to be the lifeboat drill soon after arrival, so while waiting we decided to unpack, we had a knock on the cabin door and were told to get our life jackets ON and go to our appointed area or we would be late, now I am no expert but my understanding is you do not go to the drill area until the alarm sounds and you do not put your jackets on until on deck. We had no choice but to comply, but feel that the drill was poorly carried out as all people were already on deck when the alarm was sounded (my area any way) and after a lot of hanging around, were taken through the drill procedure of putting jackets on and the cabin count taken. We were disappointed with the buffet; food looked good, but was often lukewarm, vegetables often cold, due to food being kept in cabinets and moved around the ship, large trays of food are put out and not replaced often enough, it would mean more work, but smaller trays of food being replaced more often would correct this, food on the deck grill and other restaurant's was ok. Fresh juices were served in the other restaurants but a watered down version in the buffet at breakfast was not fair, I only wish I had found out sooner. You soon learn what to avoid. I did not see anyone monitor food temperatures at all. I was told that the water for tea in the urns could have been hotter, but the coffee was fine The drinks package is not as good as in previous years on the other ships, I spoke to one officer who said that the DP is being standardised on all their ships, so you will get the same on whatever ship you are on, so it may no longer be value for money as other packages for wine, beer that are available may suit you better. An order for cola on DP varied from a small tumbler filled with ice and very little cola, to a thin tall glass or Plastic tumbler dependant on who took the order. Equally with wine spritzer, when we ordered two at the same time we got a wine glass, but if only one I got a tumbler. The tours are expensive, but we enjoyed them, the walking tours took no consideration of the problem people were having adjusting to the heat, some fit but older people in our groups struggled to keep up, also it was very easy to lose the guide as we were such big groups, more guides are needed, one lady nearly fainted at the Trevi fountain due to the need to keep up, all the tours on Italian Flavours could be done quite easily independently with a bit of research and forward planning, however we decided to do our own thing in Messina, just going round on the road train seemed simple enough, just to see the main tourist areas in the Port area, but later on discovered we had been ripped off as we found that for two of us we had been charged 10e each, but had we joined with others and gone as a private group we would have had a considerable discount so were not impressed. Someone else however lost 100e by buying from a trader only to find they had bought two tiles instead of what they had wanted, so Thomsons safety aspect while on their tours in some cases does stand up. Now fast forward to our last day, it is so obvious, Thomsons are only interested in the new people coming on board, kicked out of the cabin by 9am, even though some people were not flying out until late in the day, a courtesy cabin with only a 30min slot arranged through reception could be arranged or you pay for a cabin , charge of Â(EURO)35 applies, and no guarantee it was the one you had been in, your main baggage is collected in the early hours and goes out on the quay and stays there until you fly out , whatever the weather. We went down at our allocated time, (no warning message over the tannoy, so any one dozing could miss their flight) and stood in the blazing sun until eventually a coach moved a few yards towards us and we were able to board, (the crew were busy looking after those going on to hotels, or new people coming on board, in other words, those that Thomsons could make more money out of?) Once at the airport, we were soon processed through the system and a smooth flight home, (but with very slow service from the hostesses as they were chatting instead of moving speedily through the plane as on our outward journey) but with the best landing I have ever had. A lovely ship and holiday overall, but not sure we would sail on her again. Ciao for now Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
Just got back from the 10 day Eastern Mediterranean cruise on Celebrity Equinox. It was a great cruise. We had worried a bit about weather but figured if Celebrity was still sailing that part of the world at this time of the year, our ... Read More
Just got back from the 10 day Eastern Mediterranean cruise on Celebrity Equinox. It was a great cruise. We had worried a bit about weather but figured if Celebrity was still sailing that part of the world at this time of the year, our chances were pretty good. It turned out great. It only rained on us once, and that was in the afternoon when we were ending our tour at Ephesus. Obviously, the weather can't be guaranteed but as I said, my mind was set to rest by the very fact of the cruise taking place and my confidence was rewarded. First time on Equinox. Second time on Celebrity. Have cruised a few with Crystal and once with Silversea. Our first experience with Celebrity was on the Millennium a few years back. Some of the quibbles we had with the cruise line then were similar this time, but just quibbles. Would definitely cruise again with Celebrity. First things first: The ports were amazing. A ten day cruise and only two sea days. Highlights were Ephesus, Rhodes, Delos and Naples (Pompeii). In Ephesus and for Pompeii we took Celebrity excursions. Both had excellent guides. I know a lot of people shun the cruise line tours, claiming overcharging but our experience in those two ports were good enough to reassure us for future trips. They are pricey, but the convenience and oversight make them worthwhile, at least IMHO. In Rhodes we had our own driver and guide and that was of course also excellent. Both ways of arranging tours worked for us. We looked after ourselves in Delos (Mykonos), Santorini, Athens and Messina. We were in Concierge class. After we booked our cruise, we told some good friends and they decided to come along. When they called, they were offered immediate upgrades to Solstice Class. I understand--luck of the draw and all--but it seemed a little weird that the people we had convinced to join the cruise were now eating in a separate dining room. They tried to invite us to the "Blu" but no dice! So in the end the four of us ended up eating once in Silhouette together, a couple of times in the speciality restaurants, and a couple of times in the crepe restaurant. We heard that there were other people in the same situation. Just seems silly that Solstice guests have to just make friends with other Solsticers, find other venues, or eat alone! We didn't like the main dining room. Service was okay; food was okay; but we generally felt rushed and the tables are way, way, way too close together. We had hoped for Select Dining--didn't make the short list--and found the early seating a bit early and the late seating a bit late. Ate breakfast once in Silhouette and again, just felt uncomfortable at how close tables were to each other. Although the dining room wasn't full, we were still all grouped together like we were in a diner and the staff wanted us handy to their stations. We liked the Tuscan Grille and ate twice in Silk Harvest. Food was excellent. Staff really nice. Perhaps a little overdone on the "Are you enjoying yourself?" interruptions. Loved the Cellar Masters bar and bartender. Dealt with the Concierge once and he was very helpful, arranging for our very early departure on the last day. The cost of the Celebrity cruise was so very reasonable that the "nickel and diming" of the charges for drinks etc. was only moderately annoying. That being said, my husband and our friends did feel strongly that charging for a tour of the ship operations was way out of line. Trying to figure out the cost benefit of the various drinks packages was also a struggle. Personally would prefer to spend a few hundred more for a ticket and have basic beverages included. (Soft drinks, water--the occasional beer or house wine..). Also, something quite weird: we were all encouraged to buy tix for a shuttle bus in Mykonos "in order to avoid long ticket lines outside." Never saw a long ticket line. Actually never saw a ticket line at all. Also never saw anyone asking for a ticket. That $8.00 per person was definitely a questionable charge. One thing we really liked was the diversity of the passengers. People were very friendly, not at all affected, and there were enough Brits, Irish, Aussies etc. on board that general good humor prevailed. Beware, however, if you like the occasional cigarette. Places for smoking are very restricted and can get quite crowded. No smoking indoors at all. Which made it a bit chilly for an after-dinner inhale. Passengers in those predicaments agreed that while they all understood that smoking is a filthy disgusting habit, fact is, some people still do it. There was quite a bit of grumbling that the staff (apparently) have a room on board where they can smoke but mere paying passengers have to brave the elements. On the other hand, the shared annoyance made for a spirit of camaraderie that was also, in its way, appealing. Does seem like one bar where the remaining tobacco fiends could gather would be popular--at least with the Europeans on board. From one extreme to the other: smoking to working out! The fitness facilities were great. Would be nice to have more room for individual workout routines a la body sculpting, crossfit etc. People were fitting themselves in and around the machines to do their pushups, situps etc., particularly when classes were in session in the only open space. Celebrity might also like to remind some of its staff that pushing to the front of buses/tenders to be first off or jumping lines in the Oceanview cafe in front of passengers doesn't send the right message. A few people commented on such experiences. Overall, loved the ports, liked the staff and the other passengers. Ship was in great shape. Food overall was fine. A few too many "extra" charges. Would be nice to stay in ports later in the evening for the opportunity to dine ashore. Looking forward to another Celebrity cruise sometime soon. And the Equinox would definitely be first choice. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2012
This cruise was a last minute booking for us. We were delighted that it ended in Athens, Greece where we live. The Crown Princess is an absolutely gorgeous ship and many fine touches are there to make you feel special. I don't like ... Read More
This cruise was a last minute booking for us. We were delighted that it ended in Athens, Greece where we live. The Crown Princess is an absolutely gorgeous ship and many fine touches are there to make you feel special. I don't like the fact that there is no indoor pool though. That would have been very nice because the weather in November in the Med is not pool weather. The kids program was very nice and our son enjoyed his time there. We have been to all of the ports before so our goal with this cruise was to enjoy the ship, service and family time. I'm the one who ventured out on my own for most of the ports and that was ok. Dining on the ship was lovely and Thanksgiving was absolutely terrific. We loved the outstanding service in the dining room. The food was very good though I wouldn't recommend fish other than salmon. The desserts were always wonderful as was the bread. The cruise director Sam tried hard but really needs to get some new material. She told a set of jokes I've heard at least four other times about the "dumb questions cruisers ask." Our cabin was very nice but the only problem was that the cabin steward had such a huge load that our cabin often was not done up until late in the afternoon and late in the evening. This did not work well for us. But, I give him credit for getting our mattress changed out for us. It was in horrible shape and I can't believe wasn't changed before. I know Princess is supposed to have the best onboard shopping but I didn't think so. Their sales weren't very good and I really didn't find much that I wanted or needed. I'm really into onboard shopping so this was unusual. Carnival Breeze had much better shopping in my opinion. I like the Piazza idea but not the fact that seating is limited to those who buy beverages. It is therefore not easy to enjoy the entertainment there unless you are willing to pay for drinks. Well, you can stand. Also, we had our teeth whitened and just to warn you... it is a bit of a gimmick. Yes, our teeth were a bit lighter but the technician tried to sell us $400 worth of capsules so that the results would stick. We were disappointed and would not recommend it. Read Less

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