2 Martinique Romantic Cruise Reviews

From the first there were high hopes that this would be the ideal cruise. We carefully selected our cabin, paid for an upgrade from the Bella Class and were told we would have drink tickets available. Our luggage was tagged for our ... Read More
From the first there were high hopes that this would be the ideal cruise. We carefully selected our cabin, paid for an upgrade from the Bella Class and were told we would have drink tickets available. Our luggage was tagged for our room and we were at the ship early. Happy to be allowed boarding somewhat earlier than the listed time our passports were scanned and the luggage scanned and sent to our room. We went through the next phase of having our photo taken for the ID (again matching our passports and clearly assigned our cabin.) When we reached the registration area, amidst the chaos of what felt to be pushy sales for drinks packages and upgrades we already paid for we were soon told "we have no record of you." We pointed out the impossibility of this - having our luggage already aboard and heading to our selected room. This had to be mentioned twice to be clear: we had a room, and clearly the computers would have indicated a problem during the early phases of ship access. Fix It Note: Your computer systems should be integrated. This is a clear failure to enter consistent data or a failure in the database. The second case is quite rare. Imagine how we felt to be offered an "upgrade" to a different room for our troubles. That would be so helpful. Oddly the "upgrade" did not seem to consider the following items: A) Our carefully chosen room that was not directly under dance or performance deck. Our "upgrade" had us under an activity deck so that we would hear people running along the deck, amplified it sounded "like a heard of wildebeest." B) We checked our access cards - which were in the new suite - and as surprising as this was since we were "not in the system" we also found that our access status was "Bella" class. One might be shocked that this "sudden" upgrade seems to have been a shift of our cabin denying the upgrade we paid for. Obviously our expectations of having the 12 drink tickets evaporated. I am left to ponder if the offered tickets were placed in the original cabin. C) Assured our luggage was to be forwarded, and feeling the need for my medication (asthma inhalers) I went in search of our luggage after a few hours. There was no effort to reroute our luggage to the new location. If I were to guess why - "we weren't in the system" so they didn't know where to look for it. It didn't make it easier for me to manhandle our luggage to the elevator when I found it only to find two elevators on service and two elevators consistently packed with people. This effort made me unhappy. That failure was not welcome - but at least I could take my medication. The dinner service was scheduled for 9:30 in the evening. It seemed light fare and we were hungry, and I was disappointed to have the sales pitch for drink services and alternate food offerings during dinner. Due to a change in our plans, since I was already ill with a cold, we requested an earlier dinner seating the next evening. Summary: at the end of Day 1 things felt like this was a shakedown cruise and people didn't really know how things were scheduled. It may be possible that the drink tickets were not delivered by the agency we booked with but the "not in the system" and room upgrade that wasn't an upgrade were not hopeful. My thoughts - "It can only get better." For the cruise: The cabin and the ship were clean, though I felt perhaps the ships stabilizers could be better. Aside from the pitter-patter of small feet in combat boots overhead some of the ceiling tiles creaked and any loose hangers in the closet would rattle. The buffet was not up to my expectations. Perhaps I expect too much but the offerings of pizza and burgers were not to my taste or to my body's acceptance. This persisted with other offerings I sampled over the cruise. I like food, and having to resort to salads (the salad bar was good) for my lunch left my wife bemused. Over the course of the week we also sampled the breakfast buffet. The comments as follows: Bell Pepper Omlette - "where is the Bell Pepper?" This was the same for the cheese omlette to the point that I went to another region of the buffet to find cheese to put on my cheese omlette. The "custom omlette" station had too long a line to sample the custom made omlettes but my experience with the others was not leaving me inspired. Some of the fresh plates from the rack were not clean. I know that is a difficult element to master when people grab ten plates at a time. We did get an earlier seating for dinner by the next day. (Yay!) We also had excellent company at the table and Jayland was eager to please. We learned then that we could order more than one appetiser, entree and dessert. That information would have been useful the first night and I don't understand why we were not told. The portions were still a small so we took to multiple orders. There were some disappointments and the meals were hit and miss. This included a shrimp bisque a couple of days in where my wife found one shrimp that would fit on my baby finger-nail. While I liked the onion soup the cheese on some form of plaster-hardened bread was hard to cut through. The other couple at our table agreed. We were again offered to buy steak and lobster. It felt like this was being used to leverage sales of the T-Bone steak and lobster. We were offered to purchase a wine for the New Years Eve dinner. Oddly, even though this was the first time we were offered we were told all but two sparkling wines were sold out. We noticed those wines were readily available at the bar on other evenings. This is at odds with logic - why were we not offered the new years selections earlier, and how can you be sold out of something you still had a supply of? Inquiring minds want to know. The room service was good, the shower clean, the water hot, with enough storage for our goods. In St. Kitts the room program did mention in the fine print that photo ID would be needed. After a number of stops where it was not needed this change caught me by surprise since I was not reading the fine print in detail. While there may have been an announcement it did not come across the speaker in our cabin and by the time I opened the door to hear what was being said in the hallway the message was in German. My German is way too rusty. We got off without photo-ID and had trouble getting back on. What would have been good? Having a SIGN by the exits saying "for this port you need photo-ID to get back" and maybe a person to check before they get off the ship. What else left me disappointed? Oh, one or two more things: I went to Medical - and staff were trying to stop me from going there. All I wanted was a blood pressure check (give me the cuff/stethyscope and I would do it myself) and the nurse practitioner didn't inspire confidence in that she didn't know how to find "blood pressure" in the menus and had to be shown. My wife went to the spa for a full package (massage, manicure, pedicure, facial) and she came back with a wound on her nose. The facial should not take off the face. "You can cover that up with makeup" doesn't cut it - the charge was for a first class service, there is no room for error on that. Yes, it healed by the end of the trip but it never should have happened or the charge should have been withdrawn. I was not impressed by the entertainment, either. Perhaps we were picky but we had been on another cruiseline and found there that the instruments were played on key, the singers had a greater dynamic range for vocals in pitch and rhythm and the dancers could dance in sync. I feel the decor of the Safari Lounge needs a revamp on top of that. Smoke - open casino smoke would bleed into other areas of the ship, making it hard to move to the other end of the ship without changing floors. The open smoking on the upper deck did on occasion waft to our balcony, and I did see someone toss a cigarette butt overboard - regardless of the rules it was disconcerting to witness. The Final Costs, on the last day I was surprised by the automatic tipping built in (10e/day/person) and thought this was included in the package price. Maybe I was wrong, but I felt I needed a drink. Waiting fifteen minutes to not have anyone take an order we changed bars. At the next bar I ordered a 6e gin and tonic from a menu and was presented with wonderful gin and tonic with a bill for a 7.50e ... and while this was corrected I could only ponder through the trip how many times this had been done to me, recalling that we were supposed to have drink tickets. Have I missed any details? Probably a few. Little things, like the MSC special access ramp that I couldn't use one morning at 9am scooting back to the ship with some cough medicine for my wife. There was nobody on the ramp coming off or going on, but it was for the yacht club members... so I got to wander the distance to the next ramp in the morning shower that happened overhead. A crisis it was not, but the ramp was idle. All in all, no single thing is worth crying about. Even all the things summed up are not a crying shame. However, it all adds up to an experience that does not match the effort to deliver a prime service. The restaurant food should be five star, room assignments should not be lost, the buffet should have a higher quality of food, the entertainment needs a boost, the Safari Lounge needs a makeover and the Nurse Practitioner needs better human relations training as well as practice record keeping on the computer Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
First of all ,I have to say that the stuff was so kind and friendly..I became a friend with some of them :) The cruise was amazing,my cabinn had a balcon with the magic view..but i spend a little time in it because you have so much ... Read More
First of all ,I have to say that the stuff was so kind and friendly..I became a friend with some of them :) The cruise was amazing,my cabinn had a balcon with the magic view..but i spend a little time in it because you have so much things to do such as drinking coctails,sunbathing,swimming,going in the theatre,eating,going in gym,disco.. I fell in love with the guy from my group and that's one thing that made everything better :) I sleep maybe for 3 h every night because I used to stay so late at night because I wanted to enjoy every minute. When I came back home I dreamed about cruise and moments spent on it every night! That's the real proof that I had a wonderful time because it had a influence on my mind:) It's like a fairy tale :)))) Read Less
Sail Date January 2015

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