8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
My father chose this cruise for our whole extended family to celebrate my maternal grandfather's 92nd birthday. Our party was 21 people. Before I start going into all the inadequacies of this cruise, I have to give a shoutout to ... Read More
My father chose this cruise for our whole extended family to celebrate my maternal grandfather's 92nd birthday. Our party was 21 people. Before I start going into all the inadequacies of this cruise, I have to give a shoutout to the good parts: 1. The Head Waiter Maximino Mondragon was super helpful in securing mutliple tables close to each other for our 21 people at the champagne brunch (extra charge). I went ahead the day before to confirm that we would be coming--it was held during an at-sea day, and Maximino confirmed our tables and promised me he would save us tables. On the actual day, when we showed up, Maximino was not immedaitely available, and his boss and all the other staff basically refused to seat us until ALL 21 of us were there--he was going to make us stand in the hallway to wait! Luckily, when I asked for Maximino, he came and fixed everything. But how we were treated by other staff was typical on the ship--I felt like we were in 1980s Communist China, where they had no clue what customer service was. We had gold card status, and we were herded around like cattle. 2. The Wonderland restaurant food was excellent (extra charge). Everything else about this cruise was terrible. I will never come back to a Royal Caribbean Cruise again (and I will certainly exert my influence to my family not to return.) We have gone on several Crystal Cruises (Symphony and Serenity) and they were a world apart. List of things that were inadequate: 1. The spa experience. My mother and I booked for massages. We showed up 15min early to the spa and were led straight to sit in a waiting area--where the fridge was empty with nothing to drink, nor fruits, nor snacks--unlike any other spa (on land or ship) I have been to. We were never taken to a locker room to change into robes or anything. Our time past and no one came to get us. I finally had to go back out to the check in/out area to tell them no one came for us. Then the lady at the front ran back, and 2 masseuses came to collect my mother and I to the massage room directly where we were directed to take our clothes off and lie on the table. The massages themselves were adequate. However, after our massages, when our bodies were covered in oil, the masseuses asked us to put our own clothes back on and go back out front to check out! So, we asked for bathrobes and slippers and a locker room. As they were leading us (now in bathrobes, grabbing our clothes and shoes and socks) towards the locker room, I mentioned that I was surprised that we weren't led to the locker rooms to put our clothes away and to get bathrobes on first. The masseuses answered that the reason was because we never asked for a locker when we checked in! "we do not advertise the availability of lockers, because we don't have enough of them"--that was the answer! We have subsequently talked to other spa guests and they had similar experiences! Elemis is supposed to run the spa--and I am shocked that it was so poorly managed. Needless to say, I have felt no need to return for any more services. 2. The food: as gold card status members, we had access to this special dining area (Coastal Kitchen) right next to Windjammer--the buffet place. We had to get through throngs of people in line to get to this place, which was uncomfortable enough in and of itself. The food that was served in Coastal Kitchen--the breakfast--was inedible. Bread was cold and hard and the congee tasted like dishwater. Needless to say, I never went back there for another breakfast. 3. My parents were in one of the premier cabins in the rear of the ship with an open loft like floor plan. Every time they have asked their concierge for anything, the answer was no, we can't do that. They were rationed 1 bottle of water per person per day (my sister and I were in the next step down cabin, still gold status, and we were given 1 bottle of water per person the entire cruise). Just as a comparison, my parents had the premium cabin in Crystal, and their concierge gave them a bottle of cristal champagne a day. Obviously, the price point was quite different, and we weren't expecting the same level of service and amenities, but the rationing of water was sad. There was 1 day when my parents' neighbors must have ordered room service. When these guests were done with their meals, they left the trays outside in the hallway (appropriately), and theses trays stayed out in the hallway, not taken away, for HOURS--almost 12 hours. My parents and I were joking we wished we took photographic evidence. 4. Reclaiming our passport: with gold card status, we were told that we could claim our passports in the Concierge Club at a certain time. I went to the Club during that window, and there was no one at the desk in the Club! I waited 20 min and decided to call the concierge using their phone--and it rang right at the desk! At least someone answered the phone. Apparently, they had some difficulties with 1 passenger's passport and they had to go fix the problem--and they're very sorry but they will be back in 10min. I waited another 25min before they showed up again (total wait time: 45min). It is shocking to me that they do not know to either get someone else to cover the desk if one of them had to run off, or leave a notice or something--if I did not call, I wouldn't know if I went to the wrong place, or how I could reclaim my passport! There were multiple other instances where poor management and poor service was the norm. It was SHOCKING. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
We have previously traveled on Oceania. Nautica is an ancient ship that should be retired. Bathrooms are horrific. Food and service were poor. Room service served rotten bananas, brown lettuce. Dress code not enforced in main ... Read More
We have previously traveled on Oceania. Nautica is an ancient ship that should be retired. Bathrooms are horrific. Food and service were poor. Room service served rotten bananas, brown lettuce. Dress code not enforced in main dinning room. Folks wore flip flops, torn/dirty sweatshirts. Dining room drapes were wrinkled and dusty.Mold on shower curtain in bathroom. Staff appeared to be poorly trained as compared to previous cruises with Oceania, bu tried very hard to be helpful. When a crew member was asked about staffing he commented that Oceania had "moved crew members around to newer and bigger ships." Spoke with high level management person, while on ship, and he agreed with me, regarding problems, and we did receive a credit of thousands of dollars toward next cruise. That demonstrates, to me, that management is acutely aware of the problems. Why else would the company compensate me for my observations? Oceania management either does not want to or cannot improve the situation. Our belief is that since being bought by NCL that the organization is "milking the cash cow." That is to say that management has cut back on services, quality of food, and ship maintenance, in terms of quality and comfort for passengers, Read Less
20 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
It was my first cruise with Azamara, the first of two cruises booked with them. I didn't enjoy any single part of this cruise and feel "ripped off" as I did the last time we travelled with RCI. There were some points that ... Read More
It was my first cruise with Azamara, the first of two cruises booked with them. I didn't enjoy any single part of this cruise and feel "ripped off" as I did the last time we travelled with RCI. There were some points that were good, these being a nice cabin, nice ship, good service, good organisation at ports. Now for the bad points: The day time activities were beyond poor; a few trivia quizzes on sea days and two uninteresting lecturers, one talking about the past history of the ports being visited and one discussing whether China was defensive or aggressive. Certainly not topics that most women onboard would want to attend and not interesting to me. The entertainment by the visiting entertainers was reasonably good but the shows put on by Eric, the ships entertainment director and the ships singers and dancers was poor. I was fed up of seeing and listening to the narcissic Eric at every end and turn and the singers overall were far too loud and the words of unknown songs could not be distinguished. Overall, other than the visiting entertainers, the routines were amateurish. The guitar player was too monotonous and the ships pianist whilst good on the one night he played in the theatre but for the rest of the time was mundane. Few people attended the Living Room after 9:30 pm so dancing was none existent. It seemed to me that most people went to bed early. The ship in the evening was dead. However, what really upset me most was the poor quality of the food. My wife, daughter and daughter in law are all excellent cooks and we all enjoy quality food. My grandson is a trained chef and his chef uncle on the other side of the family has cooked not just for me but for Margaret Thatcher, The Queen, the late King Hussain of Jordan and Sir James Goldsmith. I know what represents good food and this didn't come anywhere near the mark. I don't believe the chefs are chefs, they are poor cooks. Breakfast was OK in the Windows restaurant although there was no Finnan Haddock and no Kippers. Lunchtime on sea days in Discoveries restaurant was uninspiring so most meals were taken in Windows Cafe. This was also disappointing as no meals were enjoyable. it was just food. Individual bowls of tomatoe, cucumber, onion, peppers and chicken served one day were in my opinion used the following day by turning them into a special salad using all of the same components. On several nights there was a theme, Indian, Morrocan and British. I decided to try the British night, my home country. Fish and chips were on the menu but I have to say that there isn't one British fish and chip shop who would offer the meagre portion of fish served by the server. There is more fish in a half a fish finger and the server then asked "Do you want one or two pieces". It was clear to me that the ships budget is limited in cost. Pasta and chicken dishes in Windows cafe and Discoveries restaurant predominate the menus. On the day of the barbecue it was held indoors. I asked why and they said it was the likelihood of rain but it was a sunny day and as we were only a few days into a long cruise it could have been postponed to another day but wasn't. There was not one single barbecue item, not a single sausage. Inferior chicken was offered wrapped in breadcrumbs to disguise the bone and gristle. A poor representation of a real barbecue. On another occasion in the cafe lamb hock was offered but since when has a lamb hock had a knee joint? After a few days of poor food I confronted the two Head waiters but it didn't make any difference. The menu in Discoveries restaurant is basically 75% the same every evening. So called specials make up the rest. Yet on one evening there was two chicken dishes and two broiled New York Steaks so limiting the choice further. One night I had the seafood soup. On the following night I had a different seafood soup but it was the same one as the day before: one prawn, one mussel and some clams. On the last night I had a lamb hock. I don't however believe it was lamb as the bones were far too big for a lamb and more likely to have been mutton. This was not five star food, I have been served better food in a works canteen. There was no sirloin steaks, no rump steaks, no steak Diane, no Tounedos Rossini, no cod loin, no chateaubriand. I have had those on other ships along with first class enrichment lectures and entertainment at less than half the price paid to Azamara. Since when has skirt from the bottom of a cow been served as a steak? The coffee in the Mosaic cafe was poor and several other people commented about this. Finally why do professional cocktail makers use measuring cups when dispensing the components of a cocktail when on Azamara the components are dispensed without regard to using the correct measures? Every drink served varies from the last one. All in all a thoroughly unenjoyable cruise. Whilst on the ship I contacted my travel agent and cancelled the second paid in full future cruise on Azamara. I will never travel with Azamara or RCI ever again. Read Less

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