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31 Southampton to Cruise to Nowhere Cruise Reviews

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
We only spent a night on board the Escape and didn't see all of it, however, the bits that we did see were awesome! Firstly, the rooms. Size wise, they similar to those on MSC, Princess and Royal Caribbean. The shower was the ... Read More
We only spent a night on board the Escape and didn't see all of it, however, the bits that we did see were awesome! Firstly, the rooms. Size wise, they similar to those on MSC, Princess and Royal Caribbean. The shower was the largest that I've had on a ship, with it being equivalent to a proper shower cubicle at home. In the suites (which our friends had) the shower was a rectangle that ran the width of the bathroom, so pretty big. Colours are nice and have the usual amenities. For those who would use a travel cot, there is plenty of space alongside the wardrobe. We were a family of three, so we had a drop down bed; all pretty standard. The facilities on this ship are what makes it such a fantastic ship for families. The high ropes were great fun. There was a queue for this activity, but as you just get stopped on and then get on your way, there is no waiting around. The queue time was less than 5 minutes, even though the queue seemed pretty big. The course is well done; you can often choose a "solid path" or a woolly rope path, whichever you feel most comfortable with. The guys that work on there are great; I had a wobble at the zip wire across the ship, but the staff made me feel better and encouraged me to carry on. A word of advice; the course goes right around the front of the ship and the exit is where you start. I didn't realise that I had to go all the way back to the beginning until I had been on the course about 25 mins. Had I have realised, I would have turned back earlier. The walk through weather feature was in a really cool 'room' at the front of the ship, it had a real party atmosphere and is well worth a visit. The arcade room is fab. A must do is the paceman air hockey. At certain points in the game, 20 pucks invade the table and you have to go crazy trying to pot them. Other fun games included bowling on deck 7, pool, basketball etc. The food on the Escape was excellent, with many options of eateries and cuisines. We went to the show and ate in O'Sheehans Irish bar: nachos and fajitas. Good food for a quick eat. We needed to get our little girl to bed. Our friended ate in the complimentary Manhattan restaurant. They had lobster and steak, both of which were excellent. Everyone that we spoke to said the same. The show 'the Million Dollar Quartet' is really worth seeing. Our 4 year old sat through 90 minutes, foot tapping away and the finale got everyone, including ourselves up on their feet dancing. It was, by far, the best show we have seen at sea. Even my husband, who would always much rather sit in the sports bar of a ship really enjoyed it. The water park was worth stripping to swim wear on a cold October day! The slide with the inflatable tubes was great. It has jazzy lights inside so it's a bit different. The yellow slide is quite serene. Both were suitable for small children. The two thrill rides were closed, which was disappointing because they too looked fab. The children's water park had enough to keep younger children busy and the red slide was a lot more surprising than it looked! The pools were actually quite warm. Warm water was being pumped into the pools, so up near the wall waterfall it was actually like a warm shower. My little one laid down in this area and stayed there for quite some time. Bars- there are lots! Our favourite was the Brew House on deck 8. It's got a really cool vibe and we had some fun in the photo booth. Hubby really enjoyed choosing from tens of draught beers. We had a look around the kids club. It was enormous, with play stations, huge bean bags and plenty of space to let off steam. The staff were cheery and helpful. Despite being on the ship only a small time, we had a great experience and can't wait to sail on the Escape again. Though there isn't marble everywhere or diamond staircases, this ship certainly has the wow factor because of the entrainment, food and activities. Can't wait for our NCL cruise next year. 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
As we'd enjoyed the 2 previous Breakaway inaugural cruises, it seemed only right to sample Escape to see if the Plus added much to the already excellent concept. Embarkation was very chaotic , badly organised and confusing, with ... Read More
As we'd enjoyed the 2 previous Breakaway inaugural cruises, it seemed only right to sample Escape to see if the Plus added much to the already excellent concept. Embarkation was very chaotic , badly organised and confusing, with even the Haven guest moved from one area to another. We are gold members , but the priority boarding seemed to have been abandoned in favour of a numbered card denoting arrival time at terminal! Eventually we embarked, and had to tote our hand luggage until cabins were released. We decided to lunch early, and made our way to the busy Garden Cafe, enjoying simple soups and salad. A poor design feature on this ship is placement of tea and coffee stations, alongside main entrance, with milk away from the hot drinks.Since no saucers or mugs were in evidence,it is inevitable that scalds will occur, ...and did! We made our way to our deck 13 cabin and were delighted by its comfort, generous size and large full tub bathroom. The big disadvantage of a forward facing cabin is the long walk to the central lifts. We later met up with a friend in the hospitable, comfortable O'Sheehans pub, where tea was served,and staff were pleasant. All the staff on board were so very pleasant ,many from the West Indies ,softly spoken and ever smiling We walked along the Boardwalk, noting the changes in restaurants, all sure to be huge successes once Escape reaches her home port of Miami. Although damp and chilly, we just had to see the new Aqua park , simply fantastic slides and facilities , and the scarily high rope walks. This class of ship has some of the best facilities for keeping children and teens active and safe we have seen on any ship. All activities are properly tested , supervised, and participants trained beforehand. Mandatory drill occurred before we sailed, and we were astounded by the number of guests who ignored attending, even though all guest services were suspended. We dined in one of the 3 main dining rooms, Savor , with good food, good service , and very pleasant atmosphere. After some wine, we made our way to the main showroom to enjoy MillionDollarQuartet. It was probably the best ship show we have ever see. We were assured at the start that the musicians were" not faking it" .. It was wonderful , live music from very talented, charismatic musicians , all making you believe you were really watching the legendary musicians. Particularly enjoyable were the talent,the stage presence , and sheer charm of the young man playing Jerry Lee Lewis.. A phenomenal musician! The cast member playing Elvis's girlfriend was a joy to watch, she was stunning, and seemed almost to have an inbuilt motor! Later, we found the bed to be exceptionally comfortable, the lack of movement great, and in the morning the lack of docking vibration a great surprise . Breakfast in the garden cafe was excellent, with good choices, a busy omelette station , the one downside being the lack of tables at a busy time. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
We have just returned from a 3-day ‘taster cruise’ on the brand new Royal Caribbean Anthem of the Seas! If you’ve seen any of the advertising, the word ‘WOW’ features heavily. We can honestly report that it is an apt description ... Read More
We have just returned from a 3-day ‘taster cruise’ on the brand new Royal Caribbean Anthem of the Seas! If you’ve seen any of the advertising, the word ‘WOW’ features heavily. We can honestly report that it is an apt description of the incredible ship, its features and the service onboard. We had completed the online checkin process at home (including ‘uploading’ a photo) and printed our SetSail Passes before arriving at Southampton. At the dock, someone with a tablet computer completed the process in under 3 minutes and we proceeded to Security, from where we were asked to sit for a few minutes (after being informed the disembarking guests had all gone and the ship would be ready for boarding shortly – this was 10:30am). We boarded at about 10:45 and were immediately handed a glass of ‘bubbly’. We boarded straight into the Royal Esplanade where we first went down to Guest Services to set up our internet account. We are considered Platinum in Royal Caribbean’s loyalty programme due to our frequent sailings on Celebrity, so received a discount on our internet package. It therefore cost us $15.15 for unlimited high speed access for the entire 3-day cruise!! WOW! We used the Royal iQ app to check (and change) our restaurant reservations when we discovered that for this cruise only the four MainDiningRoom options (Silk / Chic / American Icon and Grande) would all be serving exactly the same menu of an evening … although a different version was created for each of the three evenings. Our cabin was lovely, the bed extremely comfortable, the balcony huge (with two chairs, two footstools and a table). The cabin furniture did not include a coffee table – however, we discovered that the dressing table was movable and was designed to be used as a breakfast/dinner table in the cabin. Excellent idea. There is a kettle with ample supplies of tea and biscuits, and on the last day a plate of macaroons magically appeared. The bathroom is quite large with an excellent shower. The toiletries are very pleasant. We soon discovered the lounge at the back of the ship called Two70! It became our favourite place. There is also a café there with excellent breakfast and lunch choices. For dinner, we ate in American Icon (as the menus were identical, we chose not to wait in the Silk queue where we had been booked). The décor is wonderful and the food and service were both excellent. The other two evenings we ate in Wonderland and in Chops Grille – they were both outstanding, but in Wonderland we probably had our best meal ever on a ship. UNIQUE and FABULOUS!! (We have completed about 40 cruises, and our preferred lines are Seabourn and Azamara, so that is saying something.) We were more than a little apprehensive about the size of Anthem of the Seas (considering we prefer 200 – 600 passenger ships), however, the ship handled the number of passengers extremely well. This is partly due to the fact that there are two main shows each evening – one at the front of the ship in the Royal Theater (We Will Rock You which lasts 2 hours and is excellent) and another at the back of the ship in Two70 (Spectra’s Cabaret which is PHENOMENAL!!!). Between those two venues there are three others with live music, as well as numerous other bars and restaurants (and of course, the obligatory casino). Charging onboard is done with your SeaPass card or your WOW bands (rubberised watch-like straps with an embedded chip). These bands can be used anywhere you can use a SeaPass card. There is a FlowRider, the NorthStar aerial adventure, the SeaPlex (which can either be rollerskating, dodgems, a basketball court, a DJ booth or a circus school). Overlooking that are Xbox rooms and table tennis areas. There is a rock climbing wall as well as RipCord where you can experience skydiving while at sea. The Bionic bar is interesting and the selection of eateries incredible. Everywhere there are smiling and helpful crewmembers – all very well trained and beautifully groomed. We were truly WOWED! It was an incredible introduction to Royal Caribbean and we will certainly be back. If you have a chance to experience this – DO! Read Less
Sail Date May 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
Embarkation on the Anthem was really quick. Very impressed with the size of the ship. Cabin was lovely and spacious, plenty of cupboard space. We had a balcony which was great. Room attendant was excellent. Food and service was ... Read More
Embarkation on the Anthem was really quick. Very impressed with the size of the ship. Cabin was lovely and spacious, plenty of cupboard space. We had a balcony which was great. Room attendant was excellent. Food and service was excellent. All the entertainment onboard was fantastic. Spectra show, We Will Rock You. Rock the Boat excellent music rock group. Plenty to do onboard Northstar, roller skating, bumper cars etc. Disembarkation was the only problem. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Britannia certainly lives up to her name......Big, Beautiful and British!! From the moment you step on board and are greeted with the huge 'Starburst' chandelier in reception you know you are about to be 'wowed' in all ... Read More
Britannia certainly lives up to her name......Big, Beautiful and British!! From the moment you step on board and are greeted with the huge 'Starburst' chandelier in reception you know you are about to be 'wowed' in all things British. The Atrium consisiting of three floors.At the bottom with the Market Cafe...a fantastic place to enjoy Charlie Turnbull's selection of cheeses and charcutries...and not only that but people watch too!!! who doesn't like doing that!! then up a level to the shops then again up a level to The Glass House for some serious wine tasting. Now lets talk cabins...All cabins are either inside or balcony...granted balcony cabins are very compact indeed on the balcony two chairs a footrest and a table that you would not be able to use all at once. The cabin interiors are more spacious in their design than other ships and the bathrooms whilst being compact offer the largest shower cabinets I have seen and with no curtains in sight!! Entertainment on board is excellent...from ballroom dancing to the traditional P&O Crow's nest room, however, one of the newest advances on Britannia has to be the Limellight Club...a traditional supper club with an act whilst dining, making it an evening to remember. Food...oh Food is typically British and so tasty from the main restaurants to the buffet restaurant it is ALL of a high standard and all those other venues in between...Sindhu, The Oriental, The Market Cafe, Horizon, Java, Room Service it is a gastronomic tour of the world with a British base. Outside there is plenty of space for all to relax and enjoy the various pools and jacuzzi's, whether it from the family areas to the Serenity area and then the retreat for pure indulgence, should anyone want to remain fit on board the Gym is the largest I have seen on any ship. I cannot wait to revisit for a longer cruise. I hope you all enjoy this ship as I have.   Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We sailed on the 2 night 1 day shakedown cruise prior to Britannia's maiden 14 day cruise leaving Southampton on March 14th 2015. Britannia is a beautiful ship, stunning restaurants, lovely colours throughout the ship, well designed ... Read More
We sailed on the 2 night 1 day shakedown cruise prior to Britannia's maiden 14 day cruise leaving Southampton on March 14th 2015. Britannia is a beautiful ship, stunning restaurants, lovely colours throughout the ship, well designed bar areas and public rooms, a really stunning 3 deck atrium with the starburst flowing down in the centre to all 3 decks. On our first night our party of four dined in the Epicurean Restaurant, the Fine Dining Restaurant on Deck 16. It has a cover charge of GBP28 per person, but, it is well worth the money. The starter, main courses and desserts were to die for, I will not mention any particular dish as all were totally stunningly presented, full of flavour, served at the correct temperature and in large specially shaped glasses, bowls and plates further enhanced our enjoyment. I must mention Olivia, our waitress for the first part of the evening who was brilliant. All of the other waiting staff were as equal however, Olivia had that special touch. Our day at sea was spent at anchor off of the French coast and gave all guests on board a chance to explore the ship, she is beautiful. There are spacious sun decks atop if you wish to take in the suns rays, a fabulous "retreat" at the bow for adults only at a charge. There are several public rooms, bars and longes, not once did we feel there were too many passengers on board. On our last night at sea, we dined in the Peninsular Restaurant for Freedom Dining. We chose the menu recommended by Marco Pierre White, one of 5 speciality Chef's on board P & O cruise liners. Oh my God, we thought we were back dining in the Epicurean Restaurant! A superb gastronomic feast, a compliment to the chef's in the Peninsular galley. Following our fabulous meal, we all went to the Headliners Lounge to watch the 10.30pm show. the theatre was soon full, the show superb, however, I must say, P & O have taken theatre presentations to a higher level with their use of LED projectors, LED lit backgrounds, no live band at all but a wonderful musical sound and visual display with the dancers performing at 100%. As our Queen, Queen Elizabeth the 2nd said at the naming ceremony, "may God bless her and all who sail on her", Britannia not only has waived the rules, she will also rule the waves for years to come. I commend Britannia as a "British" cruise liner to sail on. Read Less
Sail Date March 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
Decided to make the short hop to Hamburg @ back to stock up on german goodies.. Encountered some interesting weather which was forecast well in advance. Had wonderful service, food and i am sure the entertainment would have been so too IF ... Read More
Decided to make the short hop to Hamburg @ back to stock up on german goodies.. Encountered some interesting weather which was forecast well in advance. Had wonderful service, food and i am sure the entertainment would have been so too IF i had chosen to make use of it. as an old QE2 superfan, any other ship struggles to compete, but having sailed the Mary and Victoria I was pleasantly surprised that the Elizabeth with her more subdued decor was the better of the 3. Only disappointment was the casino which looses all atmosphere with her reduced size , no bar and slots placed within feet of the cramped tables.felt more like an arcade than an adult gaming experience. plus side i saved lots of money by not being a regular. It might also have been helpful if All staff were aware of the "Vaping" policy on board and the fact that they don't produce smoke at all ... but these are observations and not complaints. My biggest bugbear are the moaners..Why do they bother to sail at all ? Cunard do everything to make even the shortest trip enjoyable,they can't control the weather and ships everywhere do bob up and down.and yes in winter we get wind near the uk...being late in was a bonus. nobody was billed for the extra meals provide. My favourite meeting point was the Churchill Lounge (for obvious reasons) The friendliest folk tend to pop in and out at all hours. with this trip due to the outdoor conditions being busier than most. So if you are a moaner stay away from Cunard... They continue to provide exactly what they claim too ..You get exactly what you are prepared to pay for..and on a 4 day hop leave all your pretensions and bad manners on shore. When the weather is inclement the crew have to work twice as hard and if only the brits would wash their hands before leaving the bathroom they couldn't even complain about having to sanitise so often. Yes I am a true brit but we as a nation have the worst statistics for bringing on the bugs. I enjoyed this trip as I always do.QE2 won't be coming back so don't waste time moaning and comparing. I certainly will be back but i do hope the moaners won't be. Read Less
Sail Date January 2015
We have been on three other cruises with P&O, but this was the smallest ship so far, hence a lot of rolling in a 6 metre swell in the North sea! The cabin stewards were great, but the rooms are past their best - ie. water stains on ... Read More
We have been on three other cruises with P&O, but this was the smallest ship so far, hence a lot of rolling in a 6 metre swell in the North sea! The cabin stewards were great, but the rooms are past their best - ie. water stains on the shower curtain (cabin A245) . The whole ship needs an upgrade. There were buckets placed at various points catching water dripping from somewhere and heaters low down drying out carpets. The food was good most of the time (whitebait was disgusting and the Barnsley chop was over cooked) The entertainment was second to none (the Headliners and the ship's crew!), but it was still a little boring mid-afternoon when at sea for two days - a bigger ship would have had more to do. The captain was very entertaining and kept you up to speed with everything nautical. Bad news... £15 per hour to use the Wi-Fi was outrageous when it is free even on buses nowadays! Some of the trips were overpriced. do not do the reindeer ride - several primitive sledges tied together and a walk across an empty expanse for half an hour or so was no fun would have liked more time at the top of the mountain (cable car ride) at Tromso and the guides in Bergen and Stavanger were terrible - mumbling, erring and generally not knowledgeable . We managed to see the northern lights though and I Got some great shots with a shutter speed of 25 seconds. It was cold though - -26 degrees C - but worth it Read Less
Sail Date March 2014
We enjoyed a small taster on an inaugural 1 night cruise to nowhere. Our cabin was a family inside which was adequate for 2, but I struggle to see how 4 can fit in. The storage was somewhat lacking, hanging space was fine, but not many ... Read More
We enjoyed a small taster on an inaugural 1 night cruise to nowhere. Our cabin was a family inside which was adequate for 2, but I struggle to see how 4 can fit in. The storage was somewhat lacking, hanging space was fine, but not many shelves for clothes and other belongings. The cabin felt cosy and the beds were very comfy. The bathroom is surprisingly spacious with plentiful storage. The decor is tasteful dark wood veneer throughout. The shower was powerful and a ladies leg shaving bar was a nice touch. The Getaway is beautiful ship inside and out, and is decorated in a contemporary modern style, with lots of white, taupe and brown. Extensive use of led lights is made throughout and the neutral decor is accented with bright colours (azul blue, cerise pink). This is the Miami theme shining through. E.g. stairwells were accented with bright pink and there were images of south beach and other Miami inspired imagery. A cute touch is the fish on the carpet which swim 'forward'. The outside deck areas are superb, with lots of interesting features including the waterfront which provides outdoor seating for chargeable eating and drinking venues. There are no non-smoking sections on the waterfront. I imagine this area will be over-running on a Caribbean sailing. The ropes course is vast and instead of bright colours like on breakaway, it is themed in a pirate ship style with mock wood which is much classier. It's a stunning feature which is interesting to watch from below. There's a small crazy golf course below. Our favourite bars were Mixx martini cocktail bar and the mojito bar. You can get a martini flight with six half measure martinis for $15 from the Mojito bar (Cosmo, le fizz, aviation, appletini, blue lagoon and coconut cocktails included on a glass tray). They also had a mojito flight available. One thing I did notice was the lack of drinks menus on board. The main list was a 'navigate to your drink menu' with a very limited selection of cocktail options. For example cosmos were not listed. I don't drink cocktails often so it would have been helpful to have the classics listed somewhere. Come knowing what you want. The bars themselves were well stocked with lots of brands and flavours of vodka etc. The food was good overall. Of course this is subjective, but the negatives were that some food was served cold/ lukewarm or not very nice. The breakfast eggs, bacon, sausages were awful, but eggs Benedict and omelettes were delicious. Salmon on bagel was excellent but French toast was far from good. Pancakes were much better with delicious maple bananas. Everyone agreed the coffee was really awful and tea was Liptons which doesn't taste liked proper tea to a Brit. The buffet is well laid out and the decor is reminiscent of the Ikea cafe. There is some outdoor seating. We ate lunch and dinner in taste and savour. The decor and ambience was very sophisticated and elegant. We enjoyed both experiences greatly. Dishes were hit and miss. The salmon tartare was too salty to finish. Crab salad and calamari delicious. Rack of lamb not of the highest quality, but was tasty nevertheless but the mint jelly was so bright in colour it could be luminous after dark! Sirloin steak was very tasty as was the excellent salmon dish for dinner. Caesar salad with chicken was also a hit with us. Pasta was often served to those in our party cold, but quickly replaced. Deserts were disappointing, crumble was too sweet and grand marnier cream pudding was not so good. Cheese biscuits and fruit was lovely and portions were large. Deserts were far too sweet for our tastes. Bread was so notice we asked for seconds. Entertainment options were numerous on board. Howl at the moon was very popular and fun. Legally Blonde was unexpectedantly excellent, not usually the sort of production we are drawn to, but the execution was excellent and it was 1.5 hour of pure entertainment. Sets, costumes, singing, choreography were all 5 star. The theatre is comfortable but there are no little tables for drinks, don't order martinis. They won't fit in glass holders in the seats. The ice bar is an experience, but a novelty and basically a rip off. It is like being in the fruit fridge room at Costco, but with the addition of 2 bright coloured vodka drinks. There is one 'throne' made of ice and a bar made of ice and plastic....and that's about it. We did get some good photos which make it look better than it was in reality! The tropicana room is beautiful, it has an old skool Miami posh hotel vibe, with wooden dance floor and live band. We didn't eat there because we could not get a table. O'Sheehans is huge and wings were as tasty as we were led to believe. The place is open 24/7. Flamingo grill is on deck 16, is open to the elements. Fitness facilities are excellent especially the weight room which had a single dumbbell weighing in at 75lbs. The spa is is spartan and very white; large floor to ceiling windows with fabulous views. The swimming areas were generous and inviting, although 4000 passengers will surely fight over them. Could have added another pool really. The 6 waterslides looked amazingly fun, the water was warm but we didn't have time to try them. Duty free was not available on our cruise to nowhere. The casino is mid ship and open plan, there are lots of machines and a lack of roulette tables. It is a shame non-gamblers have to walk through the casino to get to other parts of deck 7. Smoking here is controversial. You can smell in on deck 6 below, but not too bad. The staff were excellent, they provided very enthusiastic and proactive service, although the bar service was painfully slow. Overall we loved the ship. The only criticisms was the lack of artwork and the decor is in places a little plasticky and does not scream luxury. Perhaps this is due to the Miami theme? We were expecting a little more of a nod to the Art Deco era of Miami on this cruise liner, rather than a modern contemporary vibe. The layout is easy to navigate and interactive screens throughout the ship help you on your way. This ship will be in its element when based in Miami. The picturesque outdoor decks and outside drinking and dining options will make this ship stand out in the Miami market.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
This was a last minute booking two weeks ago but we are so glad we did. We got to Southampton at 10.45 am but security didn't happen until after 11.30am. Boarding was onto deck 5 which isn't spectacular but once you go up a deck ... Read More
This was a last minute booking two weeks ago but we are so glad we did. We got to Southampton at 10.45 am but security didn't happen until after 11.30am. Boarding was onto deck 5 which isn't spectacular but once you go up a deck the ambiance changes. We chose to go up to the Garden buffet for lunch and had a very nice soup, salad (and pudding). The staff were very helpful and in plentiful supply. We then set off to find our cabin which was by far the best we have had as I will explain below. We had a drink in O'Sheenan's bar but my wife was not impressed with her Irish Coffee as it was made with squirty cream and not proper cream which was available elsewhere. We toured the ship from top to bottom and we both had a taster message to music which was very nice. The gym equipment is brilliant with all the latest machines. We eventually chose Savor for dinner at approx 7.30pm but this turned out to be a drawn out affair lasting over 2 hours apparently as the same kitchen supplies both Savor and Tropicana (main dining room) so we had quite a wait for starters of Chicken Mulligatawny Soup and Shrimp with ginger but well worth the wait. Our main course we both had the Striploin steak which was succulent and plentiful. I had Mint and Strawberry profiteroles and my wife had the cheese selection, again very delicious. We then moved onto the casino before the late showing of Legally Blond. Very good cast but not quite London or Broadway standard. I guess trying to fit a show onto a small stage has its drawbacks. My wife felt the Theatre was 'tacky' with noen striplights but 10/10 for effort. Back to the casino and the smokey atmosphere. Why they can't ban smoking full stop to he outside I do not know. We sat near to Bliss which was going full blast and quite full. A few idiots had a few too many but security were present and not over fussy. Breakfast was back in the Garden buffet and minor point, no English bacon but there again its going Stateside. As we only took a carry on we disembarked very quickly at 9.00am but on the way off, a few people were annoyed at being disembarked for 24 hours to let the TA's on, surely NCL could have let them stay pre TA crossing. All told a very nice ship and if it sailed from the UK we go on her again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
The Norwegian Getaway is going to be based year-round in Miami sailing around the Caribbean. This is my Norwegian Getaway review with observations, advice and tips based on sailing on the inaugural sailings out of Southampton before the ... Read More
The Norwegian Getaway is going to be based year-round in Miami sailing around the Caribbean. This is my Norwegian Getaway review with observations, advice and tips based on sailing on the inaugural sailings out of Southampton before the ship moved to her new home. Style and Decor I really like the look and feel of the ship interior. One of the things that always surprises me about Norwegian Cruise Line is its style. In my mind I think of Norwegian as being a little bit brash but whenever I come on board the newer ships like Norwegian Epic and now the Norwegian Getaway I enjoy the decor and style throughout the ship. It is not overly loud and has a feel of sophistication. It is not a very traditional liner style design but does feel like you’re in a contemporary hotel and resort. The Getaway has Miami themes weaved throughout the ship linked to its home base. This includes some of the names of the restaurants and murals of the iconic art deco buildings on Miami beach. Deck Six, Seven and Eight hold most of the main public areas. On Deck Six is a large atrium area with the usual excursions desk, guests services and a huge video wall. Radiating from here are the many bars and restaurants. There is a central core with a resplendent chandelier. All the large Norwegian ships like the Epic, the Getaway and the Breakaway have a magnificent chandelier. It’s at the heart of the ship and it sets the tone. Radiating from here are more restaurants and bars. Freestyle Cruising Dining Choice Norwegian is known for its “freestyle cruising” which means lots of choice. On board the Norwegian Getaway you have a choice of 28 dining options, including room service. There are a couple of free dining options including the Garden Cafe buffet restaurant, Tropicana, Taste and Savor restaurants. Then you have a multitude of dining options where you pay surcharge including O’Sheehans Irish Pub, Teppanyaki, Cagney’s Steakhouse, the Italian restaurant La Cucina, the Argentinian restaurant Moderno Churrascaria, Ocean Blue by Geoffrey Zakarian, sushi, or noodles. Entertainment The other thing Norwegian really focus on is entertainment, including bringing brand name entertainment on board. For example, on the Getaway they have ‘Legally Blonde’. They also have a magic show with dinner in the Illusionarium. They have a new innovation on board in the “Grammy Experience”, where they have Grammy nominees and winners performing on various cruises. They also have the ‘Burn the Floor’ dance show with a latin twist. When you look at the daily program you have long lists of bars, restaurants and entertainment! One of the things that did catch my eye as a huge fan of water parks are the amazing water slides. They’re very advanced, including one where you stand on a pad, the floor gets pulled away from you and you zoom down doing almost and entire loop the loop. There is also a large ropes and zip line course. There is a large Kid’s and Teen Club. The Kid’s Club has a partnership with characters like Sponge Bob Squarepants and other characters from Nickelodeon. Stateroom Design I stayed in a Veranda Stateroom on Deck 11e. I really liked the cabin and feel they are much better than on the Norwegian Epic. Self Managing of Bookings All around the ship are giant over sized wall panels like large iPads. These can be used to make all your reservations for dining, shows and excursions using your cruise card. It means that it takes a lot of pressure away from the Guest Services Desk so they can spend much more time helping with more important problems than booking shows and meals. Smoking The policy follows the US approach and rules on smoking. It’s not as strict as some cruise lines as smoking is allowed in balconies. You cannot smoke in your Staterooms. There is some smoking possible out on the decks and in the casino. Busy and Large The Norwegian Getaway is a big ship and it holds over 4,000 passengers. Officially it holds 3,969 guests based on double occupancy, however on most cruises there will be many more as families and groups of people traveling will often have a third or fourth person also in the cabin. There are 1,640 crew to look after those passengers and so a pretty good crew to passengers. As it is a large and busy ship embarkation and disembarkation can be slow and you do have to line up. Budgeting and Add-on Costs Norwegian is a value line and the fares to get you on board are attractive usually. Because of the freestyle approach to cruising there is the potential to spend a lot more money on board and you do need to bear in mind to budget properly. If you want to take full advantage of everything that it has to offer you need to make sure that you are budgeting for dining surcharges, gratuities which are added on around $12 per person per day, excursions, drinks and gambling and gaming. Dress Code Norwegian does embrace a more relaxed approach to the dress code. It is very different to more traditional cruise lines like Cunard, Holland America, and P & O which have formal nights, semi-formal nights and smart casual nights. The Norwegian Getaway dress code dress code is “resort casual”, and shorts are allowed in most dining venues, except for the Tropicana Room which is the main dining room, Ocean Blue and Le Bistro after five o’clock. In the evenings you will find a mixture of dress codes around the ship. Even if you do wear a suit you don’t feel out of place, but overall it is a much more relax and informal. Best Suited For: - Lovers of Resorts: If you are the sort of person who wants a huge amount of choice and like going to resorts, then the Norwegian Breakaway is for you. - Families: The ship, facilities and choice means the ship is great for families as there will always be things that everyone finds they like.The pricing and accommodation works well for families too. - Solo Travelers: Norwegian does embrace solo travelers with dedicated cabin area for solo travelers. It has its own lounge, meeting areas, and lots of events for solo travelers. - Premium Travelers: The other thing they have is the Haven, which is the premium ship within the ship. This has larger suites with butler service and dedicated dining, pool and spa. - Youthful Mindset:It’s a young vibrant, young minded cruise line and ship.There is a lots of things going on. The daily program is packed. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a daily program on any cruise line that’s quite chock-a-block as that on Norwegian Epic or Norwegian Getaway. They’re both absolutely jam-packed. Overview The Norwegian Getaway is a modern ship. It’s large. It’s busy. There’s lots of choice. It’s for the people who want to be on the go and have lots of things to do. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Shall we, shan't we? We had heard mixed reports of cruising but, at the last minute and on a wet, miserable December day, decided to book on a twelve day cruise on Oriana from Southampton to Morocco calling at Portugal, Spain and ... Read More
Shall we, shan't we? We had heard mixed reports of cruising but, at the last minute and on a wet, miserable December day, decided to book on a twelve day cruise on Oriana from Southampton to Morocco calling at Portugal, Spain and Gibralter. We arrived at Ocean Quay in mid- January where check in is faultless: a fifteen minute queue through security then, an hour after being dropped, we are in our cabin with luggage delivered an hour later. It is clear from the outset that cleanliness is a priority with hand wash available everywhere and squirted on to your hands before boarding and before entering food areas. Having heard tales that fellow dinner guests can be pot luck, we had requested a table for two in the dining room. That would have been a mistake and we need not have worried! We found ourselves on a table for six meeting an experienced cruising couple about our age with whom we could chat easily and in a relaxed fashion. The other couple never materialised so we remained a foursome for the remainder of the cruise. On our cruise, we were told that, of 1600 passengers, only about 600 were first time cruisers! During the entire cruise, we never met anyone who was on their first cruise, only well travelled and sociable folk who had found cruising an acceptable lifestyle: the record was one lady who was on her fiftieth (or was it seventieth) cruise! By 1000 on the first morning, we have entered the Bay of Biscay in a moderate sea and F7 winds. Not ideal conditions for a first timer and I had not taken anything. First thing, I was not feeling too good but, after an hour of sleep and the purchase of wrist bands, I had recovered to explore the ship and the numerous food outlets. Chaplins Cinema is a great place to pass away an hour or two in the bleak crossing of the Bay and the choice of films is good: not all latest releases but most within the last twelve months and varied and acceptable. Tea in the Peninsular Dining Room is not to be missed! A choice of teas along with sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and assorted cakes not doing anything for the waistline. A very well equipped gymnasium has more than sufficient equipment and was never anywhere fully utilised in the time that we were on the ship. I enjoyed the cycling and rowing machines but others were using the jogging, walking and weightlifting equipment. Staff were in abundance on day one but left you to your own devices thereafter, which suited me. We enjoyed our cabin, an outside with a window in which thick curtains divided the bedroom and living areas. The bathroom is well lit with ample mirrors and generous bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, soap and shower gel. There are more than sufficient dining choices, most appealing to Brutish tastes. The Conservatory has food available all day from continental breakfast at 6 am through lunch and era to a themed evening meals. The Peninsular Restaurant offers full breakfast, waiter served lunch and, with the Oriental, full five course evening meal. The small Al Fresco is open all day offering whatever is relevant to the hour. Then Tiffany's, the Costa Coffee outlet, is a popular and elegant meeting place, one that we enjoyed later in the evening when the concert pianist was playing. There was too much entertainment for us. It starts at 0800 and continues until midnight. The ship never appeared to be crowded: there was always somewhere to sit and enjoy the cruise be it on deck in the sun or below in the elegant public areas. I enjoyed the library but it would be better if there were a range of magazines to browse: I suggest that you take your own. The Theatre Royal shows were excellent. Clearly, ports of call will vary from cruise to cruise. Suffice to say, that we always arrived on time and had no problem coming and going to and from the ship with the minimum of necessary security. We did not take any excursions taking advantage of the regular shuttle buses. We would not bother to go ashore at either Agadir or Gibralter if they were offered again, the former being intimidation, the later being tatty. Cadiz was best. However, to just remain on board and enjoy the scenery and sun would be sufficient for us. Communication with passengers was good. At the last port, La Coruna, situated at the southern end if the Bay of Biscay, the Captain warned of rough seas with a 10 metre swell - he was right. Just as my soup arrived, we entered the swells and being situated at the stern, the Oriental was the place to experience the excitement! The rough seas continued through the night and all of the final day at sea making walking around interesting. Meeting others and having a chat normally resulted in having a dance: I stopped to talk with one acquaintance and, a few seconds later, he was on the opposite side of the ship. We followed the Captain's advice and purchased some Avamin from Reception enjoying an excellent night sleep in the rough seas. Would we go again? Yes, without doubt. Remarkable value for money, a pleasant way to escape winter with easy travel from Southampton "avoiding flying" being a frequently quoted plus point for fellow passengers. P&O have it right from the friendly and attentive staff through the varied menus to the general pampered ambience: they clearly know their target market and long may they continue as we will happily sail with them again. Roll on next winter! Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
We travelled up to Southampton the 14th & went to the docks for a quick look at this enormous & brightly decorated ship. She stood resplendent in the sunshine & we then stood on Town Quay to watch her sail away nicely ... Read More
We travelled up to Southampton the 14th & went to the docks for a quick look at this enormous & brightly decorated ship. She stood resplendent in the sunshine & we then stood on Town Quay to watch her sail away nicely illuminated down the Solent blasting her horn as she passed the dwarfed Red Funnel ferry!! Wednesday dawned dull & showery but, it didn’t dampen our excitement as we drove through Gate 8 at 10.30am & into the car park We walked the short distance into the terminal & went straight to a check in desk, quickly receiving our cruise cards & lanyards, through security & into the lounge. After a 20 minute wait our “colour” was called & we boarded. We headed straight to our port side mid-ship balcony cabin on deck 14 & dropped our luggage. After a quick greeting from the room steward we headed off to start exploring the ship. CABIN. The cabin was not as big as some we’d stayed in but, was adequate for 2 people. However, if the third bed & the ceiling bunk were utilised it would be somewhat cramped. The balcony was also bijou but had 2 chairs & a table. The cabin had a generous amount of storage, a large wardrobe with half shelves & half hanging. It also contained the safe with the usual code system (it was illuminated inside which is handy in the dark.). The vanity unit had the mini bar/fridge underneath plus the hairdryer (powerful!!) & 2 cupboards with shelves. There was also a cube storage stool with removable table tray top. On top the unit was a coffee/tea machine with filter coffee; tea bags etc. plus glasses, an ice bucket & the telephone. There were 4 sockets 2US & 2 Eurpoean. The television was mounted alongside the unit & was on a swivel to view from the sofa or bed. The bed was large & very comfortable with small bedside units either side. The side nearest to the balcony doors was very narrow making access to the bed difficult if you are not very mobile. The life jackets were found in a basket under the bed as mentioned on the Emergency Instructions notice on the door of the cabin. To the side of the entry door was the card slot to turn on the lights. Also two switches for “Make up the Room” or “Do not Disturb”, each lighting up a tiny light outside the cabin to give instructions to the room steward. The bathroom was spacious with the ever popular shower with doors!! Shampoo & shower gel was supplied & the water flow was excellent. The wash basin unit had plenty of storage & shelves to put all your “essentials” on & hand wash was supplied. The loo roll was also easily reached!! On returning to the cabin in the late evening we found a cute mouse peeping out from under the pillows made by the steward from a face cloth! A lovely touch & would prove popular with children. GARDEN CAFÉ. (BUFFET) This is situated at the Aft & there are serving stations in the middle with plentiful tables all around, including tables for two. There are 12 stations on each section: at lunch time these are Pizza, Asian, Soups, Grill, Carving, Sandwiches, Asst Breads, Salads, Specialities, Beverages, Sweets & Fruits & Ice Cream. Something for everyone in our opinion. The food we chose was delicious & we thoroughly recommend the gateaux! It does get busy at peak times but in good weather with the additional outside seating it shouldn’t be a problem finding a table. BISTRO . We chose to eat our evening meal in one of the Speciality dining venues & booked a table at the Bistro shortly after boarding. We had a table for two & the waiters were efficient & polite. The Maître D was subjected to a barrage of abuse by a very rude gentleman & dealt with him calmly & politely which is more than he deserved!! The meal was absolutely delicious, my husband’s steak was tender & cooked to perfection. It was hot & service throughout first class. The desserts were “to die for” & I’d recommend the Bistro to anyone fortunate enough to cruise on Getaway. MDR’s We didn’t dine in any of the 3 MDR’s but, they were nicely laid out with plenty of “proper” tables for two, (2 chairs, not a long bench seat!). They seemed to have a lovely ambience & the sample menu had a good choice of dishes. SVDKA/Inniskillin Ice Bar. We booked a visit to the Ice Bar on boarding the ship. It’s open from 5.30pm in one hour slots. We were provided with a hooded poncho, gloves & tickets for 2 drinks either alcoholic or non-alcoholic. It was -6C & the bar had ice sculptures & ice walls. If you have visited a Scandinavian Ice Bar you may be disappointed, if not it’s worth a visit for the “experience”. GETAWAY THEATRE: We booked for the 10pm performance of “Legally Blonde” online. The doors opened 30 minutes before curtain up & your cruise card gets “swiped” on the way in (be sure to have one card per person!). Seats are on a first come basis & are rather hard, hopefully they will soften up with wear! It’s a small theatre for the size of the ship. The show however, was excellent. The cast were energetic & mention has to be made to “Elle” who was on stage for most of the 90mins. The show is of the “High School Musical” style which seemed to be a shock to some passengers but, a quick check online would have provided an insight into the type of show. SHIP & OBSERVATIONS; Obviously the Getaway was clean & sparkling as any new ship would be. The external artwork is either loved or hated but, doesn’t add or distract from the enjoyment of the cruise. It’s a huge ship & the carpets in the cabin corridors have fish “swimming” towards the front to help in navigating your way around. There are lifts at the front & aft, 8 in each location, they were fast & we didn’t have to wait when using them. The Atrium is on decks 6, 7 & 8 with a beautiful centre piece of a crystal chandelier which along with the glass staircases, changes colour. Guest Services is situated on Deck 6 & they were very helpful & polite. There are 22 bars & lounges catering for all tastes from pub style to piano bars. There were many quiet seating areas dotted around the ship. A two lane bowling alley, arcade games, climbing wall, rope walkways, mini golf are among activities for teens & active adults! There are flumes, fun pools & much more to keep everyone occupied. The casino is large but, we didn’t spend time (or money) there. For the Fitness conscious there is an extensive gym area & a fabulous spa thermal suite with pool. The Photo Gallery was organised differently: on the cruise card is a location where you will find a file with corresponding number & your photos inside or you can use the cruise card to swipe to view. On a longer cruise 10 photos can be put on a USB stick for $19.95, but have to be completed in ONE transaction. DISEMBARKATION On this cruise as we were all carrying our own luggage it was not representative of a longer cruise. It did seem to go smoothly though. All in all we thoroughly enjoyed this taster cruise, NCL may not be to everyone’s taste but, for us we loved every minute, we just wished we could have stayed on longer.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
In July of 2013 as a family we boarded the NCL Jade, having read the reviews and having sailed previously with Carnival on the newly refurbished Sunshine we were a little apprehensive. the Jade was a fantastic ship and the Staff were eager ... Read More
In July of 2013 as a family we boarded the NCL Jade, having read the reviews and having sailed previously with Carnival on the newly refurbished Sunshine we were a little apprehensive. the Jade was a fantastic ship and the Staff were eager to make our stay enjoyable. in November i booked the one night stay on board the NCL Getaway, the newest addition to the NCL Fleet and sister ship to the NCL Breakaway. Not the biggest in the fleet (the biggest being the NCL Epic) however, a quality ship by far. Our experience. we arrived at the Port of Southampton at 12.00pm, unlike our previous experience with boarding, this one seemed to be a lengthy procedure. we eventually boarded the ship at 1.50pm and was greeted by many helpful staff assisting in anyway they could. we proceeded to our cabin which we found to be modern, and extremely large (we booked Allocation on arrival). our first dining experience. we then proceeded to explore the ship (it is huge) rather than dine buffet we decided on a sit down meal. we ended up at the "Savor" restaurant. this served fast food with a fine dining twist, the quality of the food was good and service superb. The Ship. it would take a lot longer than one day to explore this ship in its entirety however, we spent a good couple of hours looking around. the sunshine deck had many amenities, Rock Climbing, Mini Golf and not to mention the Water Slides amongst many other things. what amazed me was that in the middle of January the clientele seamed to be of retirement age however this did not seem to hold them back when it came to the Zip Wire and what is the largest ropes course at sea (no holding back). Evening Dining Spoiled for choice, throughout the exploration of the ship and trying to make the best of our "1 night" we made and cancelled many reservations at the restaurants on board, yes i would say i was spoiled. we eventually ended up at Moderno Churrascaria, a truly unique experience "Start with an impressive salad bar of imported cheeses, olives, cured meats, ceviche and specialty salads. Be sure to save room for the delicious skewers of slow-roasted meats including beef, pork, lamb and chicken – all carved tableside by our Pasadores" Service yet again Superb, food very good. Evening Entertainment. after dining we caught the late show "Legally Blonde" this is a must, the quality of such a show at sea was second to none. the only downfall being that the seats in the theater, they are extremely uncomfortable, after the first half an hour i was in pain with my back. (we were not the only ones.) this is an issue that really needs to be addressed. overall. we are told that the CEO of NCL was on board, this ship is a real credit to NCL. all in all i give the NCL Getaway the thumbs up, its just a shame that it will not spend any more time in European waters. Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
Our first cruises 10 years ago were with NCL,..since then we have cruised exclusively with the RCI family taking around 3 cruises a year. So when we learnt that NCL’s newest ship was doing a 1 night sailing from Southampton we leapt at ... Read More
Our first cruises 10 years ago were with NCL,..since then we have cruised exclusively with the RCI family taking around 3 cruises a year. So when we learnt that NCL’s newest ship was doing a 1 night sailing from Southampton we leapt at the chance to see how the ship compared with those of RCI. We booked via the head office – which is in the UK – unlike RCI who appear to have abandoned the UK market by outsourcing their call centre to Guatemala….. . We found them to be very efficient. Online checkin was easy, as was the facility to prebook shows. Something we have not needed to do before. The ability to prebook restaurants was not offered beforehand. First impressions – the ship is large 145,000 tonnes carrying 3969 passengers so she compares to Independence (154,000 tonnes and 3634 pax). As we have cruised several times on Indie it is natural that we made comparisons. And with this thought, the decorated hull and the obtrusive ‘stuff’ on the top of Getaway looked garish and ‘cheap’ compared to the sleek curves and subtle colours of Indie. Onboard though it was a different story – the colours and furnishings and fabrics made us feel as if we were on board a Solstice class ship. Very very classy indeed. The ship was 1 day old so she had a lovely new ship smell. Our cabin was a balcony, very well appointed with nice reflective wood, some very clever use of storage, and again the bathroom was straight out of Solstice, with a wonderful large glass shower and even the little rail so ladies can shave their legs. There were dispensers with shower gel and shampoo – far better than the all in one gunk you get on RCI. 2 European and 2 USA plugs. Hairdryer located under the dresser. But a very small balcony and a tiny table. Other clever design touches included lights in the safe, and lighted ‘make up my room’ or ‘do not disturb’ signs which is far better than tacky laminated signs. Ice was provided and we even got a towel animal! Overall Getaway wins on the cabins. We set about exploring the ship which claims to have 27 dining options and 22 bars and lounges. Most were located on 678 Ocean. A very clever concept. And we just loved the idea of “on the waterfront” where most of the specialty restaurants offered an outside eating option – this would be fabulous in the Caribbean, not so good in the English Channel in January. One of the things we dislike about Indie is the lack of connection with the sea. On the RP you could be in the middle of a shopping mall.. The range of dining was very impressive – there are even 3 different MDRs. Loved the look of Tropicana with the bandstand and dance floor – very elegant. We dined in Cagneys ($30pp cover – very good food and very similar to Chops). I had mentioned it was DH’s birthday and he was given a full sized cake, I think on RCI you get a candle stuck in your desert…! We had lunch in O’Sheehans which offered a good selection at no extra charge. However with so many restaurants on board we thought it would be easy to run up a large account whilst you sampled them all! However the prize for innovation must go to the Ice Bar! $20pp included 2 drinks. Thick lined ponchos and gloves were essential (provided). Drinks prices onboard were $5.25 for a Corona; $9 for a glass of Proscecco; $29 for a bottle of Rose or Ravenswood Zinfandel (which I think is cheaper than RCI). Entertainment – we remember the shows on NCL being very good indeed, and they still are. We went to the 7:30p performance of Legally Blonde – excellent with a very good vocal cast. Unlike Saturday Night Fever on Liberty which was so poor we walked out after 10 minutes. The theatre was very small – just on one level which surprised us. There was a variety of live music around the ship, but not so loud that it was intrusive. We enjoyed the duelling pianos in Headliners. So Getaway wins on entertainment too. There is not a main atrium as such, rather 2 smaller ones that link 678 Ocean. By the coffee shop there was a large screen but this showed the view from the bridge as you sailed away. A nice idea. Interactive boards guide you round the ship and show restaurant availability in 30 minute windows. Spice H2O at the aft of the ship was a great space although we were slightly confused as to who could go there or to Vibe Beach club and we were conscious of the many ‘pay to enter’ areas. There also was just one very small swimming pool for 3939 guests and I could find no complimentary sauna or steam rooms. The ‘stuff’ on top consisted of a large climbing frame and brightly coloured waterslides. There was also a rock climbing wall, and bowling in O’Sheehans. For the children there was SpongeBob SquarePants….he just waved and was not nearly as friendly as Shrek or Puss in Boots! NCL claim that there are fireworks on every sailing……we had no fireworks. Indie wins on outside space and pool areas So you can probably gather we were very impressed indeed. Unfortunately the Getaway is now bound for a life in Florida, and the ships in Europe are either the horrid looking Epic or one of the older ships, so I’m not sure if we will sail with NCL in the near future. But if we were in Florida and Getaway and Indie offered the same itinerary I do honestly think we would chose Getaway. Sorry RCI. In summary; It would have to be a port intensive cruise as NCL wins hands down for evening dining choices and entertainment; but looses out on balcony size and swimming pool size! However, our next RCI cruise is on Oasis. It will be interesting to see how she compares.   Read Less
Sail Date January 2014
This was my forth cruise with Princess, the first on this particular ship. We sailed from Southampton which is usually a joy but on this occasion it was a nightmare , Ocean Terminal and three hours to get on the ship, all those green and ... Read More
This was my forth cruise with Princess, the first on this particular ship. We sailed from Southampton which is usually a joy but on this occasion it was a nightmare , Ocean Terminal and three hours to get on the ship, all those green and red colour coded cards, there must be a better way. Once on board at least the state rooms were ready, but the buffet at the Horizon restaurant was not up to the usual standard and we were a little disappointed, not the best start. Our stateroom (B249) was lovely as usual, spacious despite being the cheapest grade, with fridge, hair dryer, twin beds ( friends sharing), lots of hanging space and a very nice shower room, room safe, TV with a lot of choice and all the latest movies free ( unlike P&O). Always kept clean and well stocked by the steward , fresh fruit free but pay for drinking water ( I bring my own). Room service free, breakfast in bed available ( didn't have). The ship is I think quite old but clean and with a style that will be familiar to anyone who has been on The Grand Princess or the Caribbean Princess. On this cruise they were having problems with the public toilets , they smelt odd at first and then packed up altogether, not a disaster as the Stateroom facilities were fine, may have been inconvenient for older or disabled cruisers. The food was not as rich in variety as on other cruise ships we have travelled on, although still well prepared and presented we found there was less choice and slightly less quality, this may be Princesses new standard or peculiar to this ship, we can't know. I do know that as a person who does not ( medically CAN NOT) drink alcohol I was given a vodka based cocktail having ordered a non alcoholic one which made very unwell for 24 hours ( not good). However the service in the restaurant was excellent, making us feel like valued customers, a treat for us. Unfortunately we found the Spa ludicrously overpriced and the spa staff very pushy and felt we were being pressured into booking treatments we didn't want, we didn't buy any even though we usually do. The shore excursions were also totally over priced but fortunately we just got off the ship and made our own way. Rotterdam was a particular gem, a free tour bus takes you from the dock into the shopping area, with an informative guide giving interesting information along the route, it also brings you back and all free. They do not tell you about this on the ship. At Guernsey we simply tendered off (a minor miracle in September, when it is usually too rough) and had a nice few hours shopping ( even on a Sunday some shops are open, particularly good deals on duty free perfume, watches and jewellery), so our two ports were very enjoyable without the extortionate excursions. We enjoyed immensely the musical show in the Princess theatre, with an around the world theme, westend quality, superb. A band played for ballroom dancing, a comedian who was funny (not blue) went down well, and movies under the stars with popcorn, milk and biscuits, as many cosy blankets as you needed was a treat. Disembarkation was well handled and everyone waited in comfort, unlike recent experience with P&O. We enjoyed our cruise but felt perhaps a little of the shine has gone, replaced by a hard edged materialism, the sell sell sell mentality is unwelcome, bring back the relaxed service where the customer feels special not like a consumer. I will be cruising again with Princess but will be careful to watch them mix my cocktails and I shall gird myself ready for the on slaughter of hard sell. Read Less
Sail Date September 2013
I felt that after reading the reviews given so far it didn't paint a proper image of the Royal Princess for future cruisers, so I will give an accurate overview from an experienced cruiser who normally travels with Princess, Royal ... Read More
I felt that after reading the reviews given so far it didn't paint a proper image of the Royal Princess for future cruisers, so I will give an accurate overview from an experienced cruiser who normally travels with Princess, Royal Caribbean and Celebrity. Overview:-Stunning ship from outside and interior. The atrium must be the the most impressive centre point of any ship I have seen and princess have done well to make it a destination of its own full of bars, restaurants and eateries, all of which are beautifully designed. The entire ship was sparkling (as it should being a few days old )Embarkation:-As quick an easy as any other cruise line. With a grand entrance to the piazza. Public Rooms:-Princess have done a great job with integrating bars and restaurants to compliment each other. E.g. Wheelhouse and crown grill. Sabatines and vines. The show lounges look great and I have to agree with other reviewers that the main theatre looked pretty small but I loved having the vista lounge back instead of club fusion which featured on other recent ships. Princess live is interesting but I didn't really attend anything in this area so hard to give a review on, I must say I liked the explorers lounge and feel I will miss having this area to the ship. Club 6, the new lounge/late night entertainment venue is stunning. Well designed and a great idea to bring it closer to the atrium area. I do feel that it was a miss not to have an dedicated observation lounge which I think princess passengers would have enjoyed being of the older clientele . The shops look very similar to other princess ships, just more spread out and the casino looked as to be expected. Bars:-So many bars to choose from you will not be disappointed. Crooners looks great but very similar to how it is on other ships. Other bars include Bellini's, wheelhouse, vines, lobby bar and sea view bar. Have to say I was a little disappointed in the sea view bar. I think they could have made more of this in terms of using it as a mini indoor observation lounge, but still a great idea. Restaurants:- again, very similar to other ships in terms of main dinning rooms but these have been enhanced and are truly stunning with spacious seating and more tables for 2 than ever before. Sabatinies has been expanded and located to near the piazza. Looked fab. As does Crown Grill. Both of these restaurants have a reasonable fee of $20-25. Alfredo's the new pizzeria is great. Amazing food , atmosphere, menu and its fee free. The sushi bar in the main atrium looks beautiful and food delicious but never got a chance to try. Main difference on this ship is the horizon court/bistro. This area has been majorly expanded and Princess have taken this to another level dividing it into a bistro for a quick bite, and court for a substantial buffet meal including indian, Mexican, Chinese and others. They have also incorporated the crab shack and fondu in this area-for a small fee. Top deck:-Fantastic top deck with the largest pools I have seen at sea. Movies under the stars has been expanded and the screen is double the size. I feel princess could make more of this at night by putting a few movies on instead of one or two. The adults only area is wonderful, especially the sanctuary and pool area. Stunning and the best in the industry! Cabins:- We had a standard balcony cabin on caribe deck. Very comfortable cabin but I was slightly disappointed with the shower curtain coming back. Think the way other cruise lines have gone with the glass door is the way to go. TV is great as is the new entertainment system "movies on demand" Crew:-Excellent and friendly crew who seem to be getting to ropes with the new ship. Give the staff a few weeks to settle in and this will be up to scratch. Overall, great 2 day cruise. We have booked in September which we are very excited aboutAnd feel the little niggles will have been sorted out by the. The ship as I have previously stated is wonderful, a huge improvement to other princess ships with the azing piazza, expanded pool deck and fabulous dinning options. Royal Princess is now a real contender in its industry. Read Less
Sail Date June 2013
After a 60 minute wait we boarded the ship at 1pm, dropped off our luggage at the cabin, and had a quick lunch at the Lido buffet. We enjoyed everything about our cruise, especially eating in the Britania Club restaurant, most of our ... Read More
After a 60 minute wait we boarded the ship at 1pm, dropped off our luggage at the cabin, and had a quick lunch at the Lido buffet. We enjoyed everything about our cruise, especially eating in the Britania Club restaurant, most of our meals were taken there, we were looked after most royaly by our waiters Emmanual and Dennis. Nothing was too much trouble for them, eg. extra sauces, extra vegetables. A bonus of eating in this restaurant was having the freedom to eat when we chose, without the cost of the grills. We ate fish and chips at the Golden Lion one lunchtime, always very popular,and sometimes hard to get a table. We had afternoon tea most days in the Lido buffet as there were long queues at the Queens room, and we had previously enjoyed this experience on the Queen Victoria. Ditno, out cabin steward soon knew our routine, and our cabin was always cleaned on our return from breakfast, he also regularaly checked if there was anything else we needed. We had a wonderful sailaway from Hamburg on the Sunday,the marathon had been held earlier in the day, and crowds lined the banks to wave us off. I have read previous reviews of this cruise, and I can only comment on our experiences. We had a wonderful cruise, we were treated with respect and friendliness by all,and we are counting the days for our next cruise on the Queen Mary for the Queens Jubilee. Read Less
Sail Date April 2012
In my mind, this appears to be.... 'the mother of all ships'. I'm interested to see that there are other large liners on here that get higher votes. I like that. It gives me other options. This ship is immense, beautiful, ... Read More
In my mind, this appears to be.... 'the mother of all ships'. I'm interested to see that there are other large liners on here that get higher votes. I like that. It gives me other options. This ship is immense, beautiful, and finished to a very very high standard. We selected club dining so had a table that we could use at anytime. It really worked for us. The staff were brilliant. The wine waiter Jakob was fantastic. We couldn't have asked for more. Nothing was too much trouble. Jakob took us on a journey each evening with our wine choices. He knew roughly what we liked so we accepted his choice. Very very entertaining. Stunning food. Fantastic dining area. We loved it. The entertainment onboard was equally as fantastic. There was sooo much choice. The Red Lion pub quizzes were a big hit. The bands playing in the various bars equally good. A cinema on board with a few hundred seats. A fantastic theatre. A beautiful ballroom. We loved the black tie captains evening. We loved Blake on the last night. Lots of stuff to keep people entertained whilst crossing the Oceans, (not for me I'd rather get on once it's crossed). LeHavre was a pleasant enough port. Not much there. I wanted to visit Hornfleur but with so much to see on the ship in such a small time slot we decided not to. Brugge was beautiful. A lovely lovely city. We took a cab from the side of the QM2 and used the same people to get back. We loved every minute of this once onboard. A little glitch getting on board as the ship wasn't ready and we kind of got stuck for a couple of hours in a holding area in Southampton. Not too much of a problem though. Thank you Cunard for creating a really special experience. Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
We were recommended by a friend to go on the Celebrity Eclipse. He told us that others were like "Premier Inns" and that Celebrity was of a much higher standard. We were amazed at the size of the ship and also our cabin. It had a ... Read More
We were recommended by a friend to go on the Celebrity Eclipse. He told us that others were like "Premier Inns" and that Celebrity was of a much higher standard. We were amazed at the size of the ship and also our cabin. It had a wonderfully comfortable bed, large flat screen television, settee and a good sized bathroom. We chose a balcony cabin so that we could sit out late at night enjoying the view.Having purchased the "premium alcohol pack" which is quite expensive we decided to experiment with all the cocktails we could manage! - which was great fun without getting silly. I'd recommend this pack because the drinks on board can be quite expensive.You couldn't tell the ship was moving in spite of white horses on the sea and a bit of a blowing gale, the food was like none other I've had - from Filet Mignon to snails etc. Waiterscouldn't do enough but probably should have left us alone more. I don't want to be told "Here is your delicious steak sir, cooked to perfection", I'll decide that (although it was!). Having been blown away by the ship (and that's after only seeing a bit of it) and before we left Southampton we'd already decided on another cruise, to the Med in September on the Celebrity Silhouette.I think we've been spoilt because, now having got the cruise bug, were thinking of another one to France in July with another company and, having read revues, will stick with Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date April 2011
My partner and I were invited onboard Equinox for a one night cruise to nowhere so our time onboard was limited but had a lasting impression!Although I'm not a seasoned cruiser I have been onboard numerous other ships for similar ... Read More
My partner and I were invited onboard Equinox for a one night cruise to nowhere so our time onboard was limited but had a lasting impression!Although I'm not a seasoned cruiser I have been onboard numerous other ships for similar events and this is the first time I've walked away with such a strong opinion on a ship of this scale.This ship has such elegancy and class throughout that I was quite stunned.We had an Ocean View Stateroom, which was neat and compact with plenty of storage. The colour scheme and design was very calming and it really felt like somewhere you could relax for weeks at sea.The bathrooms also have ample storage, which has always been rare in my experience.We only had time for a few drinks in Cellars and then we ate in the Silk Harvest, which is their Asian Fusion restaurant. The food and service was superb and would fit in well in any trendy European City.The whole Promenade Deck is extremely classy, with a fabulous Martini bar.Even though I had a very limited view this really felt like a ship Celebrity can be proud of and a huge pat on the back for the designers! Read Less
Sail Date July 2009

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