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214 Costa Magica Cruise Reviews

This was our first cruise out of Rome. So many factors were involved and things to worry about. I had done my share of research here and other boards. This was our thirtieth wedding anniversary, our kids paid for our cruise. We were ... Read More
This was our first cruise out of Rome. So many factors were involved and things to worry about. I had done my share of research here and other boards. This was our thirtieth wedding anniversary, our kids paid for our cruise. We were staying close to Rome Termini Station. Walked there with our rolled luggage and boarded a train ( Platform # 24,25, or 26) Tickets were about 8 Euro for first class. With in an hour we were at Civtavecchia station. The cruise port is about 10 minute walk. By the time we got there we were little sweaty. The shuttle bus was waiting there to take us to the Magica ship. Luckily it was not a embarkation port so not too much lines.The ship took off in time and spent a night with little sea sickness. Next day We were in Savona. We had purchased cruise excursion from Costa Magica to take us to Principality of Monaco. I was told by several cruisers to take the ship excursions only. Well to my surprise a letter was waiting for me from Costa Magica. That there were not enough English speaking takers for this excursions and hence it was canceled. I would be credited in a form of a ship credit. The majority of passengers were Germans, and Italians. More about them latter. We were disappointed. As we were taking a six hour excursion we had not researched the port. We managed to get out and walked around in town. Luckily everything including the fort, were in the walking distance. There was a liquor store and we manged to buy a bottle of wine. Most of the ships crew were from India and few learned greetings did wonders with them. Our next port was Naples. We were supposed to be there from 1 PM to 6 PM only, and it was a cold rainy day. We had planned to taking a train to Pompeii, but cold and rainy weather prevented that. We found other couple to share a cab to Pompeii. Cost was 22 euro per person. It was about 40 minute drive. The driver waited outside till we returned. We made a mistake in not hiring a guide. Without the guide they were all the ruins of old buildings.We were back in our cruise with in 3 hours. PLEASE BRING UMBRELLA OR A PONCHO WITH YOU. Should have found the best pizza in Italy there but rain and scare of pick-pockets, we missed it. Next day we were at the sea on the way to Athens. Costa Magica had entertainment every night, twice a night. It was adequate. Opera singers were magnificent. Cruise director repeated the same announcement in 4 languages. English speaking people were in minority. After a day at sea we were in ATHENS. In this port I had taken a chance and had booked excursion with outside excursion company. Cruisingexcursions.com had sold me 3 excursions for 100 pounds( It is an company out of London). I was cringing that they would also cancel our excursion, but to our delight a nice car with a driver and English speaking guide were waiting for us.They took us on a ( Private!!!) tour of the city for next three hours.Excursion company did not cancel the excursion because only two of us were signed up with them. Grephiti all over the city. People do not seem to be happy. Eat lunch there but not that great. I think we get better Italian or Greek food in America. ( Please do not throw stones at me, this is my observation). Bottle of wine was shared with friend that night. Next day we were in Katakolon (?) Olympia Greece. This was Costas 65th anniversary. The port had arranged for traditional Greek dancers to welcome us. This was our 2nd excursion booked with Cruisingexcursions.com. There was a Norwegian Jade also embarked at the port, this time we had enough people for them to have a coach. It was waiting for us. They took us to Olympia and walked around the ruins. Can't think people were so advanced in those days too. We returned with in 4 hours. Now the Greek dancers were in full swing. Wife had bought Aurso ( Greek Liquor). Wish the Costa would serve some Greek food. But majority of passengers were Germans and Europeans. So the food was very bland. Salt and black pepper was the extent of the spice. I had read in the posts here that the breakfast and lunch would be served in a buffet style. That the Italians will run you over. Our experience was opposite, Italians were okay, if you tried to talk to them in few Italian words, but it was the Germans who were rude and crude. They acted like they own the ship. I spoke to staff and other passengers about it. I guess they are bailing out he Italians and Greeks, they probably think they own them. Please again do not throw stones, these are my personal observations. My thinking was that, I was going to Italy and Greece, I need to be respectful to them and their culture. By now someone else had copied us and bought in a bottle of Vodka. We had purchased Boys and Girls card, which allowed us 20 non alcoholic drinks for 50 Euro. It came in handy with Vodka. The normal drink price with tip was close to 8 Euro. All Inclusive drink card was sold for 160 Euro but we had to buy it for everyone in the cabin. We opted out. Regarding the buffet, if you want to, you can have breakfast served to you at same restaurant were you at dinner and same with lunch. The hours were restricted, so check them. The staff on the cruise was very efficient and nice. Same two waiters took care of us for 8 nights. We left them extra tips and for the cooks too. The food was eatable. There were 5 courses but nothing to write home about. Mrs. and I are very good cook, so it takes a lot to impress us. One night we requested Indian food, it was much better. Our next stop was Corfu Island in Greece. This was our third excursion with Cruisingexcursions.com. We walked out of the ship, went out of passport control. The passport was always with cruise ship. We had copied the picture pages in color, had emailed to our our self, kids and carried copy with us. To our surprise a driver and English speaking guide were waiting for us. It was a mini bus.They took us to the other side of island, beautiful place. Spring was about to come in full swing. The restaurant in the top of the mountain was fantastic. It was too early to eat there. by now we were getting used to drinking Capchinno (?). Our only complain was that it was served luke warm and not hot. The young guide took us all over the Island of Corfu. Out of all places I visited, I would like to go the that island again. It had past influence of Greeks, Romans, Venicians, and English. There were all different architecture, beaches that were totally different than here in Florida. We spent close to 4.5 hours with this young lady. She was delightful, she was from Chec Republic married to Greek and was very knowledgeable of Greek History. It was like a private tour at little expense. I am pretty sure that if I had booked these tours with Costa they would have been all cancelled. Latter on that night I went to Cruise Excursion desk to complain about our cancelled excursions. Attitude of the young lady behind the counter was that " what are you complaining about, you got you money back". When I told her about my experience with English company, she cared less. I as a business man tried to tell her that they could have offered us excursions with Italians may be at lesser price. We would have gone for it. But this was not USA, were customer service in a service industry is a Mantra. In my posts I had asked if there were self serve laundry was available on the ship. There was non. First 5 days, if you washed any of your clothes, 1.50 euro for underwear and so on, but on 6th day they ran a special of washing 25 pieces for 20 Euro. We went for it. Check with your cabin steward for this. Our next stop was in Dubrovnik. We were there at 8 AM. We had to pick up our passport, pay 8 Euro for a round trip to old town. People in this town were more English speaking. Walked around the old fort. Mrs was tired of all walking. The ship was departing at 1 PM. This was a German Lunch buffet day. Whole roasted pig, sour croute, potato salad and German beer was served. It was a riot. Went back to Cabin for an hour. By now I was craving for a good ole burger. Did found one. Satisfied at last. This was our last evening on the ship. On distant there were many islands, wondering what they were. It was very cloudy. I was hopping to go on deck and look for the stars but no luck. We put things off to do it next day, but it never comes. Next morning we were in Venice. Disembarkation was kind of confusing but went easy.We had booked couple of nights at Hilton Malino Stucky hotel. It was easiest hotel to get to. We took a ALI LAGAUNA shuttle from cruise terminal ( 10 minute walk) at cost of 8 euro. Our hotel was a first stop. They dropped us at the front door. Same shuttle boat can take you to Airport ( cost 15 Euro, and takes about 1 hour or more.) In all our cruise was great. We could not have gone to all these ports without to have to pack and unpack once. We thank all the crew members from India, Indonesia and from Philippines. They were the stars. In all this was very relaxing cruise and well worth the money we paid. Read Less
Sail Date March 2013
The selection of this cruise was 1. By season, as we can only close our own place certain times of the year, 2. by itinerary, 3. By home port, from Bavaria to Savona it is a 1 day drive, and 4. yes the price did play its part when deciding ... Read More
The selection of this cruise was 1. By season, as we can only close our own place certain times of the year, 2. by itinerary, 3. By home port, from Bavaria to Savona it is a 1 day drive, and 4. yes the price did play its part when deciding between candidates. My parents (DH's parents in law) paid for the cruise as a gift this was not foreseen but a gift very much appreciated. As a result they booked through the Costa Antwerp (Benelux) callcentre as it serves Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands where they live. Epic fail: the callcentre has trouble communicating in Dutch, they are essentially francophone... and since then all communications came in French (in which we are very very rusty) or in Italian (which to us is all but incomprehensible). Epic fail #2: the website loses all your details once you put them in. And we tried several times. In the end we got lucky once, but the parents did not, so had to fill in the papers again by hand in Savona. Epic Fail #3: when the cabin assignments came (we had booked 2 identical standard insides, as we do not tend to spend much time in there anyway), they were 8239 (deck 8, starboard almost all the way forward) and 1414, (deck 1, port side, almost all the way aft) They could not have put us further apart if they tried; and they were unwilling to change us to 2 cabins remotely together or even near the same elevator shaft. I mean we are all adults and adjacent cabins are not needed, but being the entire length, the width, AND the height of the ship apart is surely over the top? In the end we were instructed to ask at Guest services onboard. Upon arrival at the port, we were directed the wrong way down a 1-way lane, almost causing a head-on collision with a shuttle bus, and then our pre booked valet parking was nowhere to be found. After losing our temper with a parking attendant, we were directed to the right place. In the terminal, we got priority boarding to be able to ask about a cabin change. Very nice. On board, we got a very blunt NO. The ship was allegedly fully booked. We now know that there are two standard answers of guest services on board - sometimes even before you finish your sentence. The whole attitude is "Oh why don't you just go away". After unpacking we proceeded to have a look around Costa Magica and it is a very nice ship, if sometimes a bit OTT. Then to the muster drill which was very thorough, and very polite but firm with those who thought they should be exempt. When we met the parents, they told us that their cabin steward did not understand why we could not be together since his whole corridor was basically empty. Father and daughter went back to guest services, where we said that we were furious about being lied to, the ship was far from full. One employee said rudely to the other in Italian: "they booked a cheap inside, I am surely not going to do anything about this, and if I start moving them everybody will want to move". I understand some basic Italian and translated in English to my father. My father then even volunteered to pay for an upgrade, but they insisted this was not possible either. Instead of being ashamed that we had understood what they said, we were still being treated as second rate citizens. The whole attitude for the duration of the cruise at the guest relations desk was "I don't know, I don't care and why don't you just go away".The service in the restaurant and by the cabin attendant was exemplary, really friendly and correct. The cabin was spotlessly clean and everything was in working order. In my parents' cabin there was a TL-light which started flashing in the bathroom during the cruise, this was immediately fixed and they even received a phone call later in the day to check if everything was ok now. The food in the restaurant was fabulous. The portions are very small, but this allows you to sample all the 7 courses. Note: the buffet is closed in the evening during the meal times in the main dining rooms, you can get pizza until 6 pm and after 9.30 pm, but that is it. If you are a buffet diner, do not go on Costa. We found all the staff to speak english, italian and at least 1 other language. Shows: a bit loud (the volume level), but not badly produced and taking into consideration that when there was spoken content they tried to do text in 5 languages, still 'all right'. That said, the shows just were not as entertaining as on other cruises, and were at just under 45 minutes a bit short. They were also squeezed in between early and late dinner seatings making people rush in from dessert of their early seating, or rush out early not to keep their tablemates waiting for the late seating. If we do not sail Costa again it will be because of the reservation/ guest service desk experience. The operational side excepting the front desk of the ship runs very well, but other lines in our opinion can match that experience without the drawbacks. If you are not dealing with the Antwerp callcentre, your experience with the reservation department might differ from ours. Whether the front desk of Magica is representative of the line as a whole? We would guess so, as it was most of the team reacting as they did, but who knows, if we do take another Costa cruise they might show us different. Read Less
Sail Date November 2012
just got back from a 6 night late deal on the Costa Magica and from getting onto the ship to getting back to the airport felt letdown by poor service.We wanted to experience The fabled Italian way to cruise and took up on this offer . ... Read More
just got back from a 6 night late deal on the Costa Magica and from getting onto the ship to getting back to the airport felt letdown by poor service.We wanted to experience The fabled Italian way to cruise and took up on this offer . We made our way to the cruise terminal arriving at noon to be told that we could not go on the ship till 3.30pm as they were cleaning it ,not even allowed to get some food /drink in any of the restaurants on the ship as we have done on other ships. The cabin was spotless and well kept and the beds were nice and firm as were the pillows (nice touch),The decor is very chic but not over the top ,again all public spaces were kept clean .The fixed dining option is one we rarely use( on any other ship we have been on) as we prefer to dine on our own and try the different food offered on a buffet service and also we like to dine but no to watch dancing waiters ( even if they are happy doing it). The alternative was to go to the buffet 4/5.30 pm to eat small open sandwiches with salad ,with small cakes to follow or wait till 9.30 and eat 2 different types of pizza.There was only water during the day and orange juice on a morning or the usual tea /coffee when available.The cabin had water (bottled) at a cost of 3.30 euro for 1 ltre which could be very expensive in the summer. The entertainment on the ship in the main theater was not very good and mainly in Italian (not a real problem),the theater was superb in condition and atmosphere .The main star was Italian and we were subjected to a a preview of all his previous encounters with stars before he came on and we had never even heard of this world superstar . We had to be out of our cabin by 8am on the day of going home (not a problem)but why wait till 3.30 pm before new passengers can board. We paid for transfers (via Costa) to return us to the airport only after a 2 and a half hour drive to be dropped of along with about 12 to 18 Brits at the wrong terminal,we pointed this out to the driver whose comment was "not my problem " and ushered us away .!The other passengers were of different coaches and all had the same story ,some said they were not allowed toilet stop( unconfirmed) but we all helped each other to get to the correct terminal . The other Brits were of other Costa ships including the Atlantica and the Mediterranea and they also complained about the standards of food served ( unconfirmed by myself or my wife only on their hearsay). Read Less
Sail Date October 2012
First the very bad: All our 3 excursions were cancelled. With very short notice. (No other English-speaking had booked.) As we are much more interested in the ports, than for example night shows and sunbeds, this made us very ... Read More
First the very bad: All our 3 excursions were cancelled. With very short notice. (No other English-speaking had booked.) As we are much more interested in the ports, than for example night shows and sunbeds, this made us very disappointed. Second, bad things of minor importance: 1. Breakfast- and lunch buffet were very crowded. After some days we find places to slip away from the most busy places. 2. Few of our fellow passengers understood English. 3. Coal flakes from the chimney were falling down on our stern-balcony. Now to the positive (including surprises): 1. Everything in our cabin was of very good quality and function. 2. The English speaking staff saved us from being totally isolated. And they were overall fantastic, both competent and friendly. 3. Food was very good. Both well cooked and high quality ingredients. (my mother was cook to the former Swedish king.) 4. The pool-area on the ship was very attractive, with its levels. 4. The "drink-package" was a very good bargain. Something like 20€/day for everything to drink. (Except the most expensive wines/drinks.) Naturally I compare this Costa-cruise, to the two on similiar ships I've made recent years. One was with Royal Caribbian (RCCL), Splendour of the Seas, the other was with Holland America (HAL.) MS Eurodam. And as I see it, all three give you, all in all, similar quality. Costa is cheaper, but have a more crowded ship. HAL offers more exclusive meals. My conclusion is that you get what you pay for. In future, I can choose any of them. When money is no problem, I prefer HAL. But if I want a wonderful ship, I choose the old Splendour of the Seas. Read Less
Sail Date September 2012
Costa Magica Cruise: Ten Days on the MediterInian Overview ... Having been on more than ten cruises, my wife and I knew pretty much what to expect. This is not a company that deals in expensive and highly rated cruises, so we ... Read More
Costa Magica Cruise: Ten Days on the MediterInian Overview ... Having been on more than ten cruises, my wife and I knew pretty much what to expect. This is not a company that deals in expensive and highly rated cruises, so we boarded not expecting much. After all, you usually get what you pay for. This was a last minute decision because it was cheap and took us to a cruise location where we had not been before. The cruise makes seven ports of call in ten days, ending back at its starting point in Marseille, France. Cabin ... Our first surprise was our room. Located on the bottom-most passenger floor, deck number one, we thought when we booked it that it would be tiny, cramped, noisy and uncomfortable. It turned out to be large , roomy with a bed that connected two twins with a single mattress cover making it as big as our California King at home. The room also contained a couch, an occasional chair and table making it comfortable to take room service meals. The lighting was super bright when wanted or could be adjusted downward to just two night stand lamps. The rooms have individual thermostats, so we were comfortable at all times. We had three clothes closets, two large pull out storage drawers under the couch, brightly lit make-up table, mini bar and a safe which could be locked and unlocked with a credit card swipe. The bathroom had the first shower that I have ever liked on a ship. Shut the water on and off without readjusting the temperature each time and the shower curtain stayed out of the way without sticking to my wet body. Did I mention the window? We were expecting little more than a port hole on the first floor, but it turned out to be a nice size window (about 4 X 5 feet) that was deep enought to sit in and watch the entry and exits to the ports and to watch the islands and the Mediterainian glide by. Crew ... The crew, as it is on most cruise lines, is made up mostly of workers from third - world countries. The ones we had most contact with were mainly from South America with a few from middle and far eastern countries. They were some of the most courteous, well mannered and pleasant crew we have encountered on any cruise. This is in stark difference to the passengers that I'll mention later on. Meals ... I can be picky about my food, so I'll say up front that I may not be totally objective here. The only meals we took in the main dining room were at dinner time. The quality was good as was the service. We always had a good choice. The only critical thing I have to say -and it really isn't a criticism- is that meat products do not have the same flavor as American meat products. It is not bad, it is just different. On the other hand, food choice in the buffet areas of the ship leaves something to be desired. The breakfast buffets are adequate, comparable to truck-stops in the U.S. Any other time, you have you choice of pizza and salad or salad and pizza ... that's it! Even in the late night selection the only variation is that you get to order your choice of three pizzas from a menu instead of taking it by the slice from the buffet. Entertainment ... As with the meals, something is left to be desired here. On other cruise lines we have been entertained by Hollywood performers, quality acts by well known musicians, comedians, and TV performers. On this cruise, we saw performances by no-name entertainers, a singer, a pianist, an acrobatic troup with dancers and a talent show by crew members themselves. On other lines, there were always two shows per night and the theaters were packed. On this line only one show was performed each night, and then, only to a partially filled theater. Excursions ... All the ports of call were places we were most interested in because of their historical significance. These are places we have only read about and this was the chance of a lifetime to see so many on one trip. Although a little pricey, we were not disappointed in any of them. We are still in awe at being able to tie time and place together with the history we were taught in earlier years. And the beauty of each place just left us breathless. Nickels and dimes One of the most irritating things we encountered on the cruise was prices charged for little things. Tap water on the ship is not potable, so you end up buying water for your room. The price per small bottle, about 12 to 13 ounces, will cost you €3.22, currently $4.25 U.S. currency per bottle. Consume two bottles each for you and your spouse or companion and you are talking about $17.00 U.S. per day ... Just for water. Take a ten day cruise and you will pay $170 for water alone. Want an eight ounce glass of draft beer? Be prepared to pay $6.45 U.S. How about Internet WIFI service? It will cost you $13.20 per hour. And, the instructions for use are so vague, they do not prominently show that you must return to the Costa web site to log off, otherwise your WIFI will continue running, costing you money although you may have turned your wireless connector off. So, don't think that the cost of your ticket is going to be the price of your cruise. You are going to be in for sticker shock. Passengers ... I guess I really should not complain here ... It is what I get for doing this cruise on the cheap. But, I have to say it. These passengers, as a group, were some of the most rude, uncouth, ill-mannered, people I have ever met. They never said "pardon me", "may I", "excuse me" or "thank you". And heaven forbid, don't get in their way at the breakfast buffet. They will literally (not figuratively) run over you to get there first. They reminded me of a stampeding herd of cattle. This is not to say we didn't meet nice people - we did. But they were a very select few. To sum up ... So, is it worth it? Yeah, I would have to say so. We saw some places and things we will never see again. And despite the type of passengers encountered and the petty pricing scheme, we are left with some good memories and a newfound perspective on history, maybe the most significant experience of all. Read Less
Sail Date May 2012
Costa Cruises Brazilian Holiday December 22 to 30 2011 / 8 nights Itinerary Embark in Buenos Aries Day 1: At Sea Day 2: At Sea Day 3: At Sea Day 4: Angra dos Reis (Brazil) Day 5: Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) Day 6: Ilhabela (Brazil) ... Read More
Costa Cruises Brazilian Holiday December 22 to 30 2011 / 8 nights Itinerary Embark in Buenos Aries Day 1: At Sea Day 2: At Sea Day 3: At Sea Day 4: Angra dos Reis (Brazil) Day 5: Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) Day 6: Ilhabela (Brazil) Day 7: At Sea Day 8: Punta del Este (Uruguay) Disembark in Buenos Aires We were in Buenos Aires over the holidays for 19 days. We were looking for options to compliment our stay; either go to Mendoza, Igazu, stopover in Santiago or other. We found this cruise on the Costa web site and found the itinerary very interesting for the week of Christmas. I have cruised with Carnival twice before in the Caribbean. Costa and Carnival are sister companies and Costa is an Italian version of Carnival. Therefore, my expectations were set on what I experienced with Carnival which is basic and not to expect too much. I had cruised on the Carnival Victory twice. For this cruise, we cruised on the Costa Magica, a sister ship of the Carnival Victory so the layout of the ship was familiar. The passengers were mostly Argentinean and Brazilian; they sold this cruise from both ends so the crowd changed somewhat after the stop in Rio. Since this was a holiday cruise, we were expecting many children. What we did not expect were undisciplined children with parents that did not seem to care. Children of all ages over ran the ship. They were everywhere, running in the hallways, getting on and off elevators pressing all the buttons on the way out, in the casino gambling, in the adult pool, in the Disco, roaming around everywhere unsupervised. It was like being in an unsupervised day care. The crew did the most they could but since the parents did not seem to care there was not much they could do short from kicking them off the ship. I must add that some of the adults were just as disrespectful, stealing deck chairs, being loud and obnoxious, cutting in on the buffet line and so on. I have never seen such chaos on a ship or in a resort or hotel in all my travels. The lack of respect for others was unbelievable. The ship's crew was just as shocked since the ship had just crossed the Atlantic a few weeks before, so it was culture shock for them. However, I do hold the crew responsible for not applying the rules out of respect to all their passengers. They seem to have given up. They did remind passengers of the rules in the daily newsletter but the rules were never enforced when situations arose. Many crewmembers informed me that the ship had over 3000 passengers. According to the ships stats the capacity is 2700. If this is true, this may explain the reasons for the subpar service and disorganisation among the crew. Cabin: I always book a cabin with a balcony on a high deck, we were on deck ten and the cabin was identical except for the decor as the Victory cabins with balcony. Ironically, I was on deck 10 on the Carnival both times. The cabin decor surpasses the Victory, it is less tacky. Our cabin steward Caitano was impeccable. Courteous and was very attentively to details, thoughtful and always had a smile. We tipped him very well and he was very appreciative. He deserved it. Food and Beverage: Breakfast at the buffet restaurant was the same everyday and the taste and quality was awful. Fruit was rare and limited to a few choices. Watermelon every day, cantaloupe one day and it was not ripe. Mango on every other day and it was not ripe. No toast, eggs floated in some sort of liquid, potatoes were very oily, bacon was extra salty, and the sausage was more Chorizo style witch I find is not suitable for breakfast. They ran out of yogurt often, no spoons available at the buffet and the coffee is from concentrated liquid, very disgusting. There was an omelette station set up in a corner and the wait time was more than 25 minutes. The la carte breakfast option was available for 90 to 120 minutes each morning starting at 7am. Not very particle hours, we made it to the la carte breakfast on the last day. Nothing better here than what the buffet offered and the service was lousy. Coffee refills were never offered and the staff did not seem to want to be there. Lunch hours for la carte were just as impractical as the breakfast. They seem to have planned these hours so you cannot make it and they do not want you there. We had the lunch buffet twice. Again tasteless food and not very many healthy options. On one day, they had hamburger patties with no buns. I asked and the staff behind the buffet and she said there was none. After lunch on our way out passing, another buffet there was many buns. Staff did not seem to care or want to be there and had no idea what hospitality service is. I witnessed some of the worst hospitality service I ever experienced on this ship The buffet dining area was always disorganised. Dirty tables, tables full of used plates, uneaten food would stay there for long periods. It was difficult to find a table. We usually had to clear the table ourselves and clean it. They definitely did not have enough staff on hand; the staff present seemed disoriented and incompetent. The drink service was slow or nonexistent, most of our meals at the buffet were without beverages due to lack of servers. These situations happened everyday at the buffet restaurant during lunch and breakfast. After a few days, I saw eating on the ship as nourishment or as much as you can get out of the choices they offered. The buffets were not refilled fast enough and often had to wait for a refill. It was very frustrating and unacceptable but had no other choice if you were hungry. I am no fan of fast food but the golden arches would have been a welcome site after two days on the ship. The buffet was opened at night for a few days during the week for 90 minutes. I found this unacceptable when you are dining at the second seating at 22h15. We did not experience the evening buffet due to the limited times it was offered. Waiting until 22h15 at night to eat after a full day at a port of call was not practical. The seated dining at night was just as chaotic and the rest of the services. The dining room never opened on time, always late. Service at the beginning of the week was slow; as the week progressed, it got too fast. The food was mediocre at best. Cheese plates were served with soda crackers or soup crackers. On the Italian theme night, nothing tasted or looked Italian, very disappointing from an Italian cruise line. I know my Italian food since I am a meeting and event organiser for high-end clients and work for Italians. The cannoli served would have insulted any Italian. It was disgusting and an insult to serve such a thing or call it a cannoli. When I mentioned this to our waiter, he told me that they serve the real cannoli when in Europe. Then why not in South America? Tea was served everyday and offered the same options every day. Dry tasteless cakes, pastries, and sandwiches that had a slim piece of cheese or meat in bread 3 inches thick. Tasteless pizza served everyday with plain tomato sauce and hardly and cheese, just enough to make it somewhat white. Would it be that hard or too expensive to add some vegetables or event some pepperoni. I thought I was on an Italian ship, again very disappointing to find the same cardboard with tomato sauce everyday!! Salt and pepper was needed to make it taste like something. What surprised me is that no proteins were in tea or pizza afternoon choices. If you missed lunch and were dining at the second seating at 22h 15, you are out of luck and will be hungry until dinner; no other option for food was available when the pizza service was done at 19h30. When retuning from an excursion at the end of the day, no food or snacks were available. You better have eaten before boarding and get something decent. We ate as many times we could on shore before embarking the ship. We dined at the club restaurant twice during the week. It was excellent and the service was impeccable. The dishes were well presented and were very tasty. The Maitre D Justine was amazing and a very hospitable host. These were the only two times that we had a decent meal on the ship. Bar service at the bar was good, some bartenders were useless, they did not know their drinks or available liquors. We quickly noted these bartenders and avoided them. We purchased an all inclusive drink package that was offered for a few hours the day of arrival. It was an excellent choice and it was profitable for us. The quality of beverages was very good and the cappuccino at the bars was good, this was a relief since the regular coffee offered at the buffet was awful. Entertainment Music from a can is not my opinion of musical entertainment. Signers sit behind a piano or with a guitarist and the rest of the instruments and computer generated. Playlist were repeated every night. I think I heard Por Ti Volare and Quando, Quando Quando more times during the cruise than I did in my entire life, it was unbearable. I avoided the theatre shows after peaking at one. Bad singers, dancers, and animators are a standard on this ship. This was a Christmas cruise so Christmas music played over the ships loudspeakers all day for 8 days, the same songs over and over again. On the 27th I went to customer service and asked why they were still playing Christmas music. There response was that it was a Christmas cruise. However, Christmas has past and it is over move on! Ports of call This is the main reason we booked this cruise and we were not disappointed. Each port was amazing we visited places we would have never visited if it were not for this cruise. We booked excursions on all the stops except for Angra dos Reis. The excursion in Rio de Janeiro was not worth the cost. The English excursion was cancelled due to little demand so we took the Spanish one. The local guide was very kind and took the time to answer all our questions. I am disappointed that the ship did not offer a personal translator as they did for a French couple in Punta del Este. I would have paid the extra costs. Ilhabela is beautiful but we were there for only 5 hours. Way too short of time to appreciate this destination. Same for Punta del Este. All stops were tendered except for Rio. The wait times to board a tender in Ilhabela was 1 hour, an hour wasted waiting in the hot sun. The wait time for a tender was 45 minutes in Punta del Este. Bad planning and timing on part of Costa. At least they rented a tender service in Punta del Este to compliment their own to make the wait shorter by 15 minutes. It was always a relief to get off the ship and have a good meal. That was reward enough and made the wait tolerable. General Internet service was slow and we were charged for time we did not use. We did log off as they requested but our time kept being counted since their server never logged us off. We ended up purchasing 7 hours of internet time. We placed a complaint on day two after purchasing 3 hours and never used more than 1. After the third complaint, they informed us that an email was sent to Italy to see if they can refund some time. I asked that they provide a report of the quantity of KB uploaded or downloaded and at what times when we were connected. I also asked that they do not provide an answer to us the last night onboard, which is exactly what happened. They credited 90 minutes of internet time to our account not a refund. I will be contesting the internet charges with my credit card company. After this experience with customer service, I learned that they are only pencil pushers and cannot help you even if they wanted to. We also had to contest 4 charges on our account that were incorrect; these were credited after 2 days. Brazilian immigration took our passports when we boarded. I questioned many time as to when our passport would be returned. I got many different answers. None proved to be correct, again bad training and people that do not care. We read every piece of information we received since all announcements were in Spanish and Portuguese on board. We were looking for some sort of info as to when we would get our passports back. When we disembarked in Buenos Aires, I was waiting to see a counter where we would receive our passport. There was none. We were near the exit when I asked a Costa crewmember where do we retrieve our passports. She answered that they were given out on board last night. I became very upset and was infuriated. We were never informed that we needed to claim our passports in the theatre the day before or go to customer service to claim it. We had to re-board the ship to get our passports at customer service. They knew immediately who we where and what we wanted. They said they called us on our cell phone but it was busy. That is untrue since my phone was on and I have voice mail. They were calling names all morning for people to go to customer service but they never called us? Again bad planning and they prove again that they customer service cannot deal with any situation. Conclusion After this experience, I will never cruise with Costa again just as I will never cruise with Carnival again. I will also add every other cruise line this company owns. Holland America, Cunard, AIDA, P&O cruises, Seaborn, ibero and Princess. If this is the kind of service they give you on Costa and Carnival I cannot expect much more form the others, even if they are called or are higher categoroes. They do not pay attention to details; do not care about passengers, its all money grab. They give you the cheapest of everything. I do not like Wall Mart and Costa and Carnival are the Wall Marts of cruises. If I am going to spend what I spent on this cruise, I will make sure next time I get something decent for my money. I am a meeting and event executive; I work in the hospitality industry. I work with clients our office has had for over 20 years. Why? Because we treat all our clients with respect and give them the best there is with the budget they have. I can tell you if a hotel if a dump just by walking into the lobby. My expectations were low and they managed to go lower. I loved the ports of call but the rest was a nightmare. A crewmember even confirmed this. I hope this helps anyone planning a cruise. My advice is look elsewhere and spend a little more and get your monies worth. When you spend your hard earned savings on vacation you deserve it. PS: My review was written before the incident with the Costa Concordia in Italy. When I read about what passengers experienced during the evacuation it does not surprise me. Chaos, confusion and bad training were witnessed all week on the Costa Magica. The Captain of the Magica and his officers were in the ship's bars every night consuming alcohol and fraternising the female passengers. Many other crew members were also in the bars. This in my opinion is unprofessional and should not be tolerated. My sympathies to all the Costa Condordia passengers. Read Less
Sail Date December 2011
My 3 best friends and I planned this trip to celebrate my sister-in-law's retirement. We planned to go 3 days early and visit Rome before boarding the ship. We booked cruise, tours, transfers and hotel all on line. After landing, ... Read More
My 3 best friends and I planned this trip to celebrate my sister-in-law's retirement. We planned to go 3 days early and visit Rome before boarding the ship. We booked cruise, tours, transfers and hotel all on line. After landing, our transfer took us directly to our hotel, DeLaVille Intercontential in downtown Rome. This hotel is a little pricey, but much worth it. Our rooms had little balconies opening onto a beautiful courtyard with antique french doors. Each balcony had beautiful flowers growing in pots even though it was November. The rooms were refreshing, beds wonderful and staff top notch. I would highly recommend this hotel with it's European flair and immaculate care they give to their customers. We had booked several days of tours with a company called "All Around Italy". Our guide and owner, Fabrizio was prompt, courteous, knowledgeable and very entertaining. He took us to Florence, Rome, then picked us up from the ship in Naples (Amalfi Coast and Pompeii) and into Tuscany after we disembarked from the ship. This was definitely the high-light of our trip. I would highly recommend using this company for any private or group tours. He knows people every where and can individualize your tour as you like. He took us to authentic restaurants off the beaten path for the best Italian food we have ever had. Hands down, he's the best! We boarded the Costa Magica on Saturday, November 5. All four of us were pleasantly surprised over the smoothness of the boarding process. All of us had been on cruises before, but never had we seen such ease with boarding. Before we knew it, we were on and so was our luggage! We had been told that the majority of people on this cruise were European and this is true. However, all the staff on the ship speak many different languages and we encountered no staff member unable to speak English. The cruise ship had a special representative for English speaking guests, and Natalie was absolutely the best. She was always available and even planned events for us to meet other English speaking guests as well. There was no problem getting around the ship and we met many other guests from America. The cabin was surprisingly large for an inside cabin. It had ample closet space and a large bath. We felt it was very adequate for our use. However, don't expect shampoo nor washcloths on these European cruise lines. We didn't mind.....we had brought our own. The food was good. I have been on other cruise lines and I can't say it was better or worse. It's very heavy Italian. We did take the late dinner time and that was a mistake. Europeans eat very late and it was much too late for us Americans. We didn't get started until 9:30, and never finished before 11 or 11:30. However, we felt we could have eaten much quicker, but the service was a little slow. The staff was great, but seemed to have too many tables to take care of. The wine packages are a very good deal. We had read where there had been problems with getting your wine when you needed it, however we did not have that problem at all. It was always readily available where ever, and when ever we wanted. The staff was exceptional. Our cabin attendant, server, etc. all was helpful and attentive. The courtesy desk was very helpful. The ship had lots of activities and the excursions that were good. Most of the tour guides spoke 2 languages on the bus because there was always other languages spoken along with English. Costa tried their best to only put 2 languages per bus. That was usually not a problem, though some times the guides were difficult to understand. The prices on the tours were also priced well and the guides were very nice. Over all, I would recommend the Costa Magica and would cruise again with them if the opportunity exists. I found the ship to be clean, friendly very international. If you want to visit Italy with Italians, I would recommend this ship. Read Less
Sail Date November 2011
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This ... Read More
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This was probably our last Costa cruise. The ship called at Dover so we were expecting a few more brits this time, but there were apparently only about 80 aboard so in a distinct minority. This cruise appeared even more geared up to the Italians. Announcements were made in 6 european languages with English following up the rear and sometimes not at all. As before, the Italians were loud, rude and pushy so be warned! We were on Deck 6 Caravaggio which is a bad place to be. If you have a cabin in the central block above the Salento Grand Bar change it. We were in 6297 and directly above the stage so we could hear Bingo calling and the loud thud of eurobeat music until 1.30 each morning. There was also a continual loud vibration. You won't get an early night in any of these rooms. Another problem with this ship is the lack of designated smoking areas and the lack of decent ventilation. Both the bars at the rear of the ship allowed smoking so there was no escape. The 'air con' seems to kick in once an hour but is not very efficient. The restaurants in particular get very hot. Maybe the Italians like it that way but we found it very uncomfortable. If you fancy watching TV forget it. The only English speaking channel is BBC world news. We didn't fancy any of the theatre shows this time and our English companions said most were dire. We were fortunate on this cruise to find an English guitarist Ron who kept us entertained in one of the bars. Pity the cruise director decided to alternate him every hour with a classical duo playing violin and piano. We enjoyed some of the ports of call but unless you are a committed europhile and can withstand the general mayhem recommend avoiding Costa. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
This was our first cruise and it will not be the last , we sailed from Dover uk on the costa magica I was a bit worried after reading some reviews , let me start by saying never take notice of reviews if you have not cruised before make ... Read More
This was our first cruise and it will not be the last , we sailed from Dover uk on the costa magica I was a bit worried after reading some reviews , let me start by saying never take notice of reviews if you have not cruised before make your own mind up .The ship was fantastic as was the cabin and food , the staff were excellent they could not do enough for you , my wife is celiac and she was catered for just as well as we were .The cabin was cleaned to a high standard every day and the ship was spotless the drinks were a little expensive but we took the j2 drinks package and made good use of it . I cannot understand why people give this company bad reviews , as this was our first cruise we have nothing to compare it with but if other cruise companies are half as good as this one then I would be happy , yes it is an Italian company so expect to here announcements in different languages but they are far and few between they did not bother us at all , most of the staff speak good English so communication was not a problem. I did not take any of the excursions as they are quite expensive as you would expect so I cannot comment on them but a couple we meet on board said they were quite good. So to sum up the cruise was fantastic and costa are excellent and I would most definitely take another cruise with them.I hope this review helps. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
Remember this is an Italian cruise line......not a package holiday from the UK. Some of the previous reviewers have obviously boarded this ship thinking that with a stop in Dover that it would be full of Brits; this was certainly ... Read More
Remember this is an Italian cruise line......not a package holiday from the UK. Some of the previous reviewers have obviously boarded this ship thinking that with a stop in Dover that it would be full of Brits; this was certainly not the case. Infact, we very rarely saw many english speaking guests whatsoever - with the exception of the two couples whom we were seated with for Dinner. Embarkation was smooth and speedy at Dover with first impressions of the ship being - wow! We were sat for Dinner on a table of 6 and had a great laugh with the other two couples who were also British. The X1 drinks package is highly recommended - all beers are served by the glass in both the restaurants and buffets but you can take them out if unfinished - including full bottles of wine which can be ordered strategically and wil last you the rest of the night! On conclusion to the eating arrangements we thought it was a shame there is no alternate dining arrangement - the evening buffet being just pizza and salad (you cannot use x1 package there, only in the restaurant on an evening). However the food overall was excellent. I can understand some of the negative reviews on here as I work in a professional role within the food industry and am fully aware of the varying degrees and opinion and how everybody believes their opinion is 'right'! However many are just misleading. The lunchtime buffet had much variation and was of good quality. Dinner consisted of up to 7 courses depending upon your hunger levels - all very good quality, some dishes were a variation on a theme but always good quality. And, after 7 courses, I challenge anybody to still be hungry! We took just one Costa trip - to Paris from Le Havre. Whilst this was 96 euros it was the only realistic way of seeing the city in one day. The trip overall was good and showed you the main sites as well as allowing you 3 hours to wander around by yourselves. It was well organised and worthwhile. It has been mentioned a great deal about the italians on board. Yes, they do push in and yes they can come across as a bit rude - especially when getting a lift, what is it about getting in a lift before somebody else gets out?! You get to the stage where you cannot help but laugh! At no stage however did it become unbearable. The entertainment was a little hit and miss. Give it a go and take it with a pinch of salt. If you out off the ship exploring the cities (thats the main reason you're going on a Northern Europe cruise isn't it?) and then eat when you are back on-board it doesn't leave you a great deal of time to worry too much about the entertainment, that's what we found anyway. On a final note one of the best experiences of the cruise was the staff on-board the costa magica. Outstanding. The cabins and the ship as a whole were spotless. The itinerary made the cruise for us. Oslo being our favourite port of call although all stops have much to offer. It was a shame it rained all day in Copenhagen as it looked a lovely city also. Overall a cracking cruise without any major probelms at all. Would I cruise with Costa again - yes i would. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This ... Read More
My wife and on went on the Western Mediterranean cruise aboard Costa Magica in March this year (see previous review). We spotted a bargain priced 10 day cruise on Magica around Northern Europe and decided to take the plunge. This was probably our last Costa cruise. The ship called at Dover so we were expecting a few more brits this time, but there were apparently only about 80 aboard so in a distinct minority. This cruise appeared even more geared up to the Italians. Announcements were made in 6 european languages with English following up the rear and sometimes not at all. As before, the Italians were loud, rude and pushy so be warned! We were on Deck 6 Caravaggio which is a bad place to be. If you have a cabin in the central block above the Salento Grand Bar change it. We were in 6297 and directly above the stage so we could hear Bingo calling and the loud thud of eurobeat music until 1.30 each morning. There was also a continual loud vibration. You won't get an early night in any of these rooms. Another problem with this ship is the lack of designated smoking areas and the lack of decent ventilation. Both the bars at the rear of the ship allowed smoking so there was no escape. The 'air con' seems to kick in once an hour but is not very efficient. The restaurants in particular get very hot. Maybe the Italians like it that way but we found it very uncomfortable. If you fancy watching TV forget it. The only English speaking channel is BBC world news. We didn't fancy any of the theatre shows this time and our English companions said most were dire. We were fortunate on this cruise to find an English guitarist Ron who kept us entertained in one of the bars. Pity the cruise director decided to alternate him every hour with a classical duo playing violin and piano. We enjoyed some of the ports of call but unless you are a committed europhile and can withstand the general mayhem recommend avoiding Costa. Read Less
Sail Date August 2011
We traveled for the 11 day cruise boarding at Le Havre, France around the North Sea. Happily, we had fair weather and enjoyed Scotland, an old favorite Amsterdam, and Hamburg in the sun. Crossing from Norway to Scotland was a terrible day ... Read More
We traveled for the 11 day cruise boarding at Le Havre, France around the North Sea. Happily, we had fair weather and enjoyed Scotland, an old favorite Amsterdam, and Hamburg in the sun. Crossing from Norway to Scotland was a terrible day at sea, and half the (full) ship was a bit sea sick. Costa is just a cut above MSC in quality, however, it is a big trench above the other Italian line in price; and frankly, although MSC is the pits, so is Costa. Catering to a majority of Italians, you'll find smokers abound, unattended children in places they shouldn't be - like the casino, and using the corridors as playground space. It's the same old poor quality bar drinks -- MIA TIAs made with 40% lemon juice; coffee from mid-west America, runny eggs and greasy potatoes in the morning buffet, to same old same old lunch, to dinner by candle lite but perhaps only to hide the poor quality cuts of meat, questionable fish, and rot gut wine. However, deserts were acceptable - but not the corny cheese plate with stale walnuts. So why do I say "dishonest". Nowhere, except in the fine print of the final boarding pass, is the 6€ per day per person tip mentioned that it is not negotiable. Perhaps in advertisements it is mentioned, but never that it cannot be argued with in the case you don't agree that the service warrants it- like all other cruise line packages. So there, if you understand a finer point, you see that the tips should be added to the cruise price - making it a less competitively package. Thus, it's false advertising. Perhaps here, I'd like to point out that Vacations To Go lists that the charges are negotiable, perhaps out of ignorance. All that aside, the cruise was pleasant, inside cabin small but well appointed and serviced. Regarding the ship in general, it is decorated to the hilt, however, it has few interesting public spaces, with deck 5 serving as a main public space with a host of lounges of differing venues. But, just as with the food, attitude, excursions, etc. these offer little value as they are overcrowded, or sometimes just dead due to lack of interest or talent. The spectacles in the theater were saved from embarrassment by a quartet of fairly talented Chinese acrobats. Without these, take a star off Costa. Actually - I give it a 2 star rating, and have had better food, entertainment, and service on 3 star ships, like the Louis Magesty. Regarding the casino, just forget it as the pay offs on the slot machines were non-existent; you could easy drop 50€ per 1/2 hour play on almost straight loses. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
Having been on 21 cruises over the past 8 years with 8 different cruise lines, we decided to return after about 5 years to Costa having been with them on four other occasions, Victoria, Atlantica twice and Europa. We enjoyed those cruises ... Read More
Having been on 21 cruises over the past 8 years with 8 different cruise lines, we decided to return after about 5 years to Costa having been with them on four other occasions, Victoria, Atlantica twice and Europa. We enjoyed those cruises with minor irritations and wanted to see how they now compare with other ships and companies.This time it was Costa Magica, chosen mainly because of the Itinerary. We were absolutely delighted with our first impressions of the ship's public spaces. In wonderful true Italian style and flare each area was delightful, especially the main lounge deck 5. In fact all the main public lounges, bars, nightclub, piano bar etc were on deck 5 and so tastefully appointed, except the rear lounge, Capri, where the furnishings looked dated and tired. We had a balcony as usual as my wife does not like having the air-conditioning on and we leave the door partly ajar at night. The cabin was very good and nicely furnished but was a wee bit smaller than others we have had...not quite so wide. The shower was excellent although it kept over-flowing flooding the bathroom on three occasions despite having reported it. The situation was perfect for us, mid-ships deck 9 and very near the lifts. This is important for us as my wife does have some mobility problem. Deck 9 on Costa Magica was for us the most perfect of all our cruises...short walk to the morning buffet; a few steps to the outside pool/spa and even shorter to the lift straight down to deck 3 for the theatre. Our dining room was on Deck 3, a short stroll from the theatre which was a delight. We were fortunate enough, as always, so far, to get a table for two. This was in lovely small area beneath the balcony with two very attractive very large blown photo pictures on the rear wall. It was almost like being in a small Italian restaurant in Italy. Of recent times, we don't usually eat in the main dining room more than say 3 times as the Alternative dining arrangements have been so good (see below). We ate every night in the main dining room and the food was very good to excellent with the most attentive and charming waiter and wine waiter who actually delivered your wine BEFORE you start eating. Our experience on many ships has been that the busy wine waiter never manages to get the wine to you until you are on the second course! This was a great plus along with others, one of which was a jug of iced tap water immediately came to your table as you sat down. The reason we ate in the dining room every night is because the Alternative Dining was virtually non-existent, consisting of one buffet area counter no more than 15 feet long consisting of a choice of pizza, pizza, pizza or pizza and some tired looking salad bits. Quite dreadful. Also there was no "Anytime dining for those who like that arrangement and quite clearly Costa have not caught up with the other cruise lines where the alternative dining...buffets are extremely good...for example on the 5 Royal Carribean Ships and 2 Princess ships we have been on, where quite often we have had better meals up in the buffet than in the dining room. And so Costa should take a really close look at what the competition are offering as they will over time, I fear, loose out to those who like a choice. The was just one other place you could eat on a "fine dining" evening and that was in Club Venezia where the ambience, views, furnishings, china, glassware was simple quite stunning. But that cost an extra Euros 20 each person plus wine/drinks etc. Now to the buffet - breakfast and lunch. I rated these 2 out of 10 for several reasons. The main buffet areas finished serving at 10am....help we are on holiday. The only buffet breakfast area still open after 10am was in the covered pool area at the back of the ship which stayed open until 11am. More often than not we ate there. This was a very pleasant and bright area to have breakfast save for the very limited number of tables and chairs with the main space being given over to loungers by the pool. Kids in the pool could be noisey. The main breakfast buffets and the covered pool buffet lacked so many things I am used to on other ships and indeed at home.Apart from diced melon and pineapple all mixed together, there was a marked absence of fresh fruit. A few bananas, plums but they went very quickly and not replaced. I saw no apples. The other fruit was TINNED pears and TINNED peaches. No nuts, seeds, raisons, bagels and the most disgusting looking bacon I have seen...crispy burnt dark lean bacon dripping in fat...no English type bacon which we English like!! On other ships there is usually a choice of bacon . No fresh toast but two slices wrapped in greaseproof and often been standing there for half hour or more. The covered pool area buffet was even worse with a very limited assortment. Bearing in mind they closed at 11am at 10.25 when we got there I asked for some toast, only to be told they were not preparing any more as it was too late. And she was quite rude to. I reported her to the Supervisor who was well aware of her attitude from other guests. Also there was no fresh fruit at all offering only tinned pears...and no yogurts..too late being the answer. Lunch time buffets were acceptable but nothing in comparison to ALL the other ships we have been on, so again Costa need urgently to address these issues. A very large theatre seating 1,600 but because of so many different languages, they are rather limited in the choice of performer...no comedians or any act which has spoken word in it. One of the highlights for me was a brilliant tenor singing some lovely music, only to be spoiled because they do not close the doors at the rear of the theatre and we were sitting about three-quarters of the way back and could hear quite loudly the music coming from the central atrium area...rather disrespectful to the artist ...and that happened each night.On other ships the doors are closed at the start of the performance. Although we knew what to expect through previous travels with Costa, we were just as irritated with the repeat in several languages (usually six at least) of every single announcement throughout day and evening during the entire cruise. One of the worst was when they were trying to get passengers to attend Bingo...and when announced it in a foreign language it comes over even more irritating...as "bingo, bingo, bingo" this happened almost every day and at least twice or three times . They had bingo sessions at 8.30 or 9pm some nights in the main lounges...now I ask you, is that really necessary? Kids...there were quite a lot of children on board up to teenage level and I was quite surprised and rather annoyed that they were allowed up so late. On other ships there is often a curfew at midnight and I think Costa should consider this. Costa Magica, like the other Costa ships is a late night ship with as many as five different areas playing music for dancing or listening well up to and past 1 am..a real must for the keen dancer. The Animators in the two main lounges were just brilliant and always managed to get many people dancing and with such enthusiasm. Excursions. We don't usually do many of the ships' excursions these days and prefer to do our own thing, which where available is the Double Decker Hop on and Hop Off City Sightseeing buses. These are excellent value BUT and a real big BUT , no ship we have EVER been on EVER tells you about them and yet on this particular cruise in at least three ports they stop right outside the ship. I even mentioned this to one of the bus reps who was most surprised saying that he will tell his boss because they pay , in this case , Costa to advertise them. Well they don't and nor do any other cruise ship as far as we have experienced. Life is all about choice and I feel that Costa and indeed other cruise lines should do the decent thing and give their passengers a choice. On one cruise I went on I asked how far the railway station was from the ship...she told me it was quite a long way. It was in Cobh and I wanted to go to Cork and she obviously wanted me to buy an excursion through them. I didn't and to my amazement as you step off the ship in Cobh right opposite on the other side of the road is the railway station..Just another example of being aware of alternatives to the ship's excursions. Gratuities. These were added to your bill at the end of the cruise and no choice but to pay them. Although having no choice, we did find it refreshing that we were not bombarded with reminders almost daily (on Royal Caribbean) of the need to pay gratuities. In fact it was never mentioned in the whole trip with Costa nor did it appear in the Information Booklet in our cabin...so, well done Costa. We still decided to give a small token to our waiters and cabin stewardess. Embarking and Disembarking. Embarking was just amazingly quick...in fact the quickest, walking straight on. This itinerary is rather unusual in that passengers are taken aboard on several ports of call...Dover, Amsterdam, Hamburg, Oslo, Copenhagen , Edinburgh and Le Havre and because only about 120 passengers got on at Dover, it was exceedingly quick and easy. At some ports it was a bit chaotic when returning to the ship and unless you sussed it out, it was quite easy to get behind the new guests who were having their passports and documents checked ...there was no clear sign at any port to show you the entry line for existing passengers. Overall we thoroughly enjoyed our cruise bar for the points I have mentioned and would again go with Costa as we know what to expect and not expect.There is a lovely atmosphere on board their ships, which for some, can be a bit too noisy at times. Read Less
Sail Date July 2011
We have been cruising with the Costa Magica in May 2011. Our veranda stateroom on deck 6 was nice but a little cramped for 2 adults and two children. Because of the promotion "children stay for free when sharing a stateroom with the ... Read More
We have been cruising with the Costa Magica in May 2011. Our veranda stateroom on deck 6 was nice but a little cramped for 2 adults and two children. Because of the promotion "children stay for free when sharing a stateroom with the parents" we choose to stay in one stateroom. We loved sitting on the balcony because of the good weather and the nice views. Breakfast was not so good. For lunch there was an option between the self service buffet and the normal restaurant. At 4 o clock there was a high tea at the self service Lido deck. 7 course dinner was OK. The soups did not taste well. Hardly any vegetables and fruit are served. You can eat some good tasting pizza all day long. There were two formal nights. On this nights a children's dinner was being served. Child entertainment was OK. There is children's entertainment from 9 o clock in the morning till 10.30 o clock in the evening, but there are only two children dinners. A lot of the miniclub crew don't speak English very well and sometimes activities are skipped. Children are not allowed in the whirlpools. The water-slide is fun, but really bad for your swimming-clothes. We embarked in Savona. The check-in was quick and there were good parking-facilities for 10 euro per day. Read Less
Sail Date May 2011
Took a weeks cruise on the Costa Magica. After reading all the other reviews on this cruise I should have took more notice as everything bad that was said happened.So much so that after four days my wife and I booked a flight on the ... Read More
Took a weeks cruise on the Costa Magica. After reading all the other reviews on this cruise I should have took more notice as everything bad that was said happened.So much so that after four days my wife and I booked a flight on the internet and came home.This is not I repeat not for English passengers.After 15 other cruises we though we knew what to expect. WrongAll the English waking trips were cancelled as late as eight pm the night before.The food was really bad, and if you didn't eat by the time the dining room closed that was it until the next morning. That is unless you wanted dried up pizzaI would strongly suggest that you avoid Costa. We tried to switch off by going to the adult only pool.On arrival it was more like a children's holiday camp. This cruise was the pits Read Less
Sail Date April 2011
We booked this cruise because it fit the kids spring break, good price, good ports. I liked that it left from Rome because you need more than one day to see Rome. But getting from Rome center to port was long and expensive. We took the ... Read More
We booked this cruise because it fit the kids spring break, good price, good ports. I liked that it left from Rome because you need more than one day to see Rome. But getting from Rome center to port was long and expensive. We took the train to port, not expensive but train station had no elevator, had to carry luggage up and down stairs, signs at station were horrible, no one to help, no announcements for stops. Cruise port to airport we sucked it up and took a taxi for $200.00.Only 10% of passengers are native English speakers so it was interesting hearing all the different languages, crew does speak English. Cleanest ship I've ever been on-never saw a dirty glass or dish even early morning! My 14 year old LOVED hanging out with European teens in the disco and made lots of new friends! 9 year old only went to kids camp once- intimidated by kids speaking italian and Spanish. Really nothing for the 12 year old she was between age groups. We loved the smerelda lounge after the show, they played bingo every night then had a game with audience participation. Kids were allowed which you don't see on American ships! Music was from all countries and everyone danced-it was great fun!! Their version of the midnight buffet is great-every night at midnight waiters walked through the whole ship with trays of appetizers and sweets, much nicer than one night gluttony. We did not care much for the food but did not go hungry. Shows were great-many different kinds not just same dancers every night. Ports were great! Very different experience for kids with all the languages, they saw that the United States is not the center of the universe!!! Europeans are lots of fun and more free spirited than Americans-they must not need much sleep because all ages were in lounge dancing after midnight and up by 7 in the morning!! This is a circle cruise meaning passengers are getting on and off at all ports-this was great because there was not 2000 people trying to disembark at the same time! Cruise was a great cultural experience for all of us!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2011
I,m going to try to be as fair as possible. I'll start with the embarkation process. We arrived to the port(Civitavecchia) early so we walked around town. When it was time, we didn't have any problems. Everything went completely ... Read More
I,m going to try to be as fair as possible. I'll start with the embarkation process. We arrived to the port(Civitavecchia) early so we walked around town. When it was time, we didn't have any problems. Everything went completely smooth. We went to our cabin and it was perfect. Nice decor and clean. We met our stewardess, Katerina and she was an angel. Really nice and helpful.Our first hiccup, was the fire drill. We asked several employees and no one knew where we had to go. Someone said it was in the theater, but it was empty, so after waiting for a while we went back to our cabin.Food in the MDR was very good. The portions are small but that's the way the Italian eat. If you order the five courses you will be fine. I always order no more than three and for me was perfect, since we had the late seating and I don't like to go to bed too full. The breakfast buffet was awful, the eggs look like egg soup, the oatmeal, completely watery. All this is understandable since Europeans don't eat big breakfast like we do. Lunch buffet was OK. Pizza not the way Americans eat them with a lot of cheese.Smoking is really bad, but again Europeans smoke a lot. It seems they haven't heard about cancer and smoking.We didn't use the casino, because of the smoking. In the open areas was OK.Ports visited were nice. We couldn't visit Tunis and Marseilles was a disaster. We got in to Marseilles and they had buses (7Euros) to take you to the city. We got in a bus and after waiting for one hour in a traffic jam, they stopped a bus that was coming from the town and took us back to the ship. We couldn't see Marseilles which was one of the places I wanted to see. Costa knew that there was a strike in the port and they put the people at risk. Later we learned that a bus was attacked and the strikers laid down on the streets so no one would go into the city. They even had to call the police.All in all, the cruise was OK. We were four couples, so we had a great time. Europeans in general are not as polite as the Americans. They cut the lines, they bump into you and not say sorry, they rush into the elevators even if they see that you were first, but at the end we did the same to them and laugh. Like they say Live and Learn!!!! Read Less
Sail Date March 2011
This was the fourth time we had booked a cruise but the first time we managed to actually embark. Previous cruises were aborted due to cold feet, illness and snow.The GoodThe flights on BA and the embarkation process in Savona went ... Read More
This was the fourth time we had booked a cruise but the first time we managed to actually embark. Previous cruises were aborted due to cold feet, illness and snow.The GoodThe flights on BA and the embarkation process in Savona went smoothly with very little queuing. The ship is large with plenty of hiding places so only felt crowded between evening meal sittings when the bars get busy. Information was pretty good with a newsletter delivered to your cabin every evening.The staff are very friendly and helpful despite the long hours they work and the cruising public they have to deal with.We were travelling on a low budget so had an inside cabin on the lowest deck at the front of the ship. This working out fine as we were out most of the time, if a little noisy when the shipped docked due to the side thrusters being nearby.The food is adequate given the number of people on board. The restaurants are OK - we dined in the Portofino restaurant with 4 other Brits. You are usually allocated a table with people who speak the same language. The Bellagio buffet was pretty good with usually something to suit every taste, but get there early or late to avoid the crowds. There is also a grill serving junk food for those who need it. We purchased the X1 drinks package through Costa before we sailed. This cost around £80 but allows you unlimited drinks at meal times. It states drinks by the glass but we were given a bottle of wine and water at each evening meal so it worked out as a good deal. It does not seem to be promoted on the Costa website or if it is not easy to find! When embarking we also bought the packages for soft drinks which we fully utilised and the one for water which we didn't. Be aware that there are drinking water taps onboard, which you can use to fill up your bottlesThe theatre entertainment was generally good - not London West end but professionally produced shows with the exception of the staff production on the final night. If you prefer a seat in the upper tiers arrive early.The organised tours were mostly good if expensive. So much depends on the guide assigned to your group. They were OK but one was very difficult to understand and they had to give information in at least two languages so everything took longer. Next time we will do our own thing and use the shuttle buses, which operate at every port of call and charge a few euros to go into town. Incidentally, we are now experts on cathedrals in the western med.The BadThere was a mess up with the restaurant allocation at the start. A card is left in your cabin giving the table and restaurant allocation. Ours indicated the restaurant Smeralda at the rear of the ship. When we arrived our table was occupied! After about 20 mins of furious keyboard tapping and discussions we were finally directed to the correct table in the Portofino restaurant.We tried the Club Vincenza fine dining restaurant one evening but it was not worth the extra 20 euro p/p charge. My wife's lamb was tough and the sauce and potatoes very salty. The loo in our cabin stopped flushing twice but was quickly fixed.The ship is not easy to navigate initially with confusing signs at the lifts. You are never sure which way you are facing on the ship. We weren't alone in this respect!There appears to be no air conditioning so bars and restaurants were often very warm, I dread to think what they would be like in summer.The majority of the passengers were Italian with Germans, French, other Europeans and quite a few Americans. The Brits were in a distinct minority. The Europeans don't do queuing, so be prepared for a bit of shoulder barging to get your own way or just chill out and let them get on with it, which is what we did.Italians are extremely noisy with only 2 volumes - loud and extremely loud. If you value you eardrums try to find a table away from large groups. They also invade your personal space standing over your shoulder and shouting to friends and family and pushing recliners hard up against yours on the sun decks.The UglyThere is nothing exceptionally bad to report. My wife had a bit of a dispute with a large Italian, who wanted our theatre seats for his family. She told him in no uncertain terms to shift and he went of muttering about the English! Needless to say, I kept out of the argument to protect my health. Best policy is to have a laugh about the customs of our EU friends. Vive la difference!We enjoyed our cruise on the Costa Magica and are now looking forward to Christmas in Australia and New Zealand on the Diamond Princess. Read Less
Sail Date March 2011
We sailed out of Rome with 6 adults and 2 small kids (3yrs and 9 mos) Boarding the ship was confusing and because we never received any tickets in the mail we had to fill out a bunch of paperwork when we got there. The building is ... Read More
We sailed out of Rome with 6 adults and 2 small kids (3yrs and 9 mos) Boarding the ship was confusing and because we never received any tickets in the mail we had to fill out a bunch of paperwork when we got there. The building is small and was unorganized but fortunately because it was January it was not too bad to get through. We got on and the crew were all very nice and almost all of them spoke English. Our cabin was very spacious and had a large space like a window sill for my 3 year old to sit in and watch the ocean. They provided a crib and we had a twin bed and still had plenty of room to get around. Our steward was more than accommodating but finding him sometimes was difficult but others were more than helpful to get him in when we needed him. The ship is very pretty it reminded me of a Carnival ship but less flashy but nicer than a Princess ship. There were not alot of activities to do onboard during the day on the ship but because we had a port to go into each day we were ok with that. They do have a round the clock kids room that we took the kids to and they really liked that. Most of the activities that were offered were fitness related like dancing or aerobics. The food in the buffet was ok... breakfast was good, there were some traditional American eats like pancakes, waffles,cereal and bacon and eggs every day. Alot of meats and cheeses and a fish dish each morning! The afternoon and evening buffet offered hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza and other finger foods. All ok, nothing spectacular. The dinners in the dining room were much better but I have to say that Carnival has better food. We bought a wine and water package for 99 euros and that was the best way to go for us. It gave us 6 bottles of wine and 10 bottles of water and that lasted the entire cruise. The reviews about getting around on the ship are over exaggerated. Every cruise I have taken is like this. You just have to get it figured out and remember what elevators go where. We feel that by the end of every cruise that we have finally figured it out! So I think that is normal. There are alot of Italians and other Europeans on board and some are rude but so are Americans. I just pushed back when they pushed me and that seemed to work. That only happened a couple of times. For a layed back culture they sure are in a hurray to cut you off in the food lines or to get on and off the ship. Its actually quite funny. I just let them cut. We had our 9 month old daughter and that brought alot of positive attention. Everyone loves a baby! Actually there were ALOT of kids and babies on this cruise. I was surprised. Getting on and off for port tours was easy. This cruise has embarking and disembarking in 3 different ports so it can get crowded at times in the atrium. But they seem to be pretty organized with all that going on. They only thing I dont care for was the smoking section in the atrium. But Europeans are very much into smoking and was expected. Its just stinky and I hated walking through it every day. The Tours offered were nice. We had to deal with the riots in Tunisia and therefore were sent to Corsica instead and then in Marseille there was a strike and had to be rerouted to Tulon which put us about an hour away but those situations were out of Costa's control so I cant blame them. Overall we had a great time. Disembarking was not hard to get through either. I would take this cruise again in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date January 2011
Since we were cruising in January, my main concern was about the weather but it turned out to be dry, sunny and the sea was calm throughout the cruise. Overall impression of Costa is very positive. We are a family of 2 adults + 1 ... Read More
Since we were cruising in January, my main concern was about the weather but it turned out to be dry, sunny and the sea was calm throughout the cruise. Overall impression of Costa is very positive. We are a family of 2 adults + 1 teen (15 years old) and everyone was kept busy by Costa's staff: the kid was off for the Teen Zone, my husband was into leaning Italian language and I was happy with Latino dance lessons. The ship is new and cabins are spacious. Negative: staff look exhausted, there's plenty of smoke in some areas and route was changed twice - we skipped Tunis and Marseilles. If you wish to ear gourmet cuisine - you can try it ashore. On board food is plentiful and eatable - nothing more than that. No complaints, though! Evening theatre performances are also far from being top of the range - it's not Vegas, after all! We did enjoy watching it couple of times - no complaints, we booked a cruise and not a theater performance! If you watch your spending you would not loose a fortune for on board expenses. not cheap, but reasonable. Would we like to come back? Yes, we definitely would. Read Less
Sail Date January 2011
Here's a few of comments on our experience on the Costa Magica: We had a balcony cabin in the middle of the ship right off the elevator. Amazingly enough it wasn't noisy despite the high traffic area. The cabin was larger and ... Read More
Here's a few of comments on our experience on the Costa Magica: We had a balcony cabin in the middle of the ship right off the elevator. Amazingly enough it wasn't noisy despite the high traffic area. The cabin was larger and more spacious than we had on both NCL and Princess. As stated by others who have been on the Magica, it took the whole cruise to figure out how to navigate the ship. I highly recommend that you get yourself one of the larger maps of the ship that the information desk and learn how to find your way around. One of the cruise critic members posted a very good explanation on how the cabins were numbered and the decks broken up. The most important lesson he gave was to look at the picture of the ship located at each elevator. It will indicate where you are and what direction the ship is pointed. When you get off the elevator look to see which direction you need to go so you won't get too frustrated trying to find your way to dinner. The Magica had two seatings for dinner. We chose the first seating and found our table mates extremely pleasant. We were all English speaking and enjoyed each other's company. In fact, the evening meal was the best part of the day with these folks. The other valuable thing I learned on cruise critic was about the 1X package for beer, wine, and water. We called our agent who called Costa and got the package for us. It saved us lots of money on drinks. This package allows you beer or wine by the glass and bottled water at lunch and dinner only. We tipped our waiter at the beginning and during the cruise and he kept our glasses filled. He also poured some for our dinner partners at our request. So each night at dinner we went through one or two bottles of wine and several of water. Big savings there. The breakfast buffet was not as expansive as is on NCL or Princess but it was adequate. We did not take advantage of the buffet for lunch so I am unable to comment. Dinner most nights was good but not outstanding. We did have one evening when they served lamb chops that everyone asked for seconds. We liked the pasta and the bread was great. If you wanted something in between meals you had to find the grill which was located at the very back of the ship where the indoor pool is. It was not like NCL where you could find food at all hours. One of the reasons that you don't see many obese Europeans, the portions were normal sized instead of supersized. I was happy about that. The coffee was only fair however you could buy cappuncino's and lattes that were pretty good. We got our "coffee fix" at the various ports where the espressos were great. The staff worked seven days a week, and usually stayed on the ship for several months. They all spoke excellent English. In addition there was an English speaking "host" by the name of Sean who was available at certain hours if you had questions. He wasn't very helpful with finding out about doing the ports on your own. He said that his job was to support the excursion so he was unwilling to give info on how to get around on public transportation.I surprized and disappointed since I found that the cruise director on NCL to be more than happy to tell you about what cheaper options available once on shore. Embarking and disembarking was the easiest of all. They had everything ready when you got there so all you had to do was go through screening and show you E tickets. Once you got to your room you found your room keys and info on setting up your credit card as well as the daily itinerary in English. They also provided a daily synopsis of the world news in the form of a little newspaper that was created on board. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
We are a Canadian family of four experienced cruisers, who cruised the western Mediterranean with Costa over Christmas 2010. The seven-day cruise is a loop, with guests embarking and departing at every stop. We boarded in Marseilles.The ... Read More
We are a Canadian family of four experienced cruisers, who cruised the western Mediterranean with Costa over Christmas 2010. The seven-day cruise is a loop, with guests embarking and departing at every stop. We boarded in Marseilles.The itinerary is ideal - hitting all the major cities. We disembarked at all stops, and made our way independently into the city. The ship-organized excursions had restrictive itineraries (and were expensive), and we wanted the freedom to explore on our own. While little information is available on the ship, we found it very easy to navigate each city on our own. Onboard, we were not happy with the food, in terms of either quality or quantity. The ship is confusingly laid out (something other cruisers have noted), and it was very hard to orient ourselves. The gym was well-equipped, and we used it every day. Otherwise there were few activities on board - the intent seems to be that the ship is a floating hotel, moving from city to city. Overall, we were very disappointed with our Costa Magica cruise to the western Mediterranean. There were very few activities on board the ship for English-speakers, and literally no programming for children (12 and 14). In light of how bored the children were, I decided to try to download a movie for them to watch. After visiting the front desk and being assured that the very expensive 3 hour internet package (27 euros total) was high-speed, with excellent access throughout the ship, I purchased the package. Within 20 minutes, I had downloaded 0.0001% of our movie - which would have need 400 hours to download! I immediately requested the cancellation of my package, and the return of the fee. Front desk staff told me to come back the next day: this was repeated 4 more times on our 7 day cruise. I wrote to Costa in early January to request the refund - I heard nothing from the company for 7 weeks. After follow-up, today, the office has finally explained that "because I used the service" I cannot be refunded. I would not cruise again on the Magica, and encourage other English-speaking families to think carefully about choosing this ship. Certainly, know that you will need to independently organize all your children's activities, and cannot depend on the cruise to offer options. Read Less
Sail Date December 2010
Let me start off by saying I had expected this to be a totally different experience than any of my previous 13 cruises. However, I never expected it to be the worst cruise I've ever been on. It was my first cruise out of a European ... Read More
Let me start off by saying I had expected this to be a totally different experience than any of my previous 13 cruises. However, I never expected it to be the worst cruise I've ever been on. It was my first cruise out of a European port. I realize it left out of Italy, but I really thought it would be more amenable to the different nationalities on the cruise. They were not! I DO NOT recommend this cruise to Americans unless they are fluent in Italian. The cruise line made very little effort to speak anything but Italian. It was near impossible to participate on any of the on board activities. The entertainment staff did say a lot of things, ie., Bingo and other games, in English but it was so fast and so mixed in with 5 other languages they rattled off, you could not follow at all. All the ship announcements were in Italian. It seemed that there were only a few announcements that they ever said in English. I was truly terrified that if there were an emergency on this ship, I would never have known what to do. This brings me to the Safety Issues. There was no safety drill upon embarkation at Civitavecchia. This cruise is a circle cruise; meaning people are embarking and disembarking at every port. They do consider Savona the first port, which was the last day for us. That is when they did a life boat drill. Guess it was our tough luck if anything happened the 6nights before that. This is an EXTREMELY budget cruise. It is advertised in Italy dirt cheap with kids sailing free. You truly get what you pay for. The Italians on this cruise were extremely rude. They do not believe in lines or waiting their turn. They were pushy and arrogant. The lack of communication was a huge problem. They also smoke like crazy and smoke anywhere they like. This ship has more smoking areas than non smoking areas. If this is a problem for you, be aware! If you are not used to horrible food and and plastic cups, do not take this cruise. You can see Costa has cut back everywhere they possible can. The only thing you could get 24/7 was coffee and water. They shut the ice cream machines all hours except buffet hours. You had to go to dinner every night in the dinning room. There was not a dinner buffet option. For this reason, people were dressed anywhere from formal to grunge in the dinning room. I'm a 100% Italian American. I am used to good Italian food. There was NONE to be found on this cruise. The pasta dishes at dinner were the only thing that was near what I would call authentic Italian food. The buffet food was hardly edible. Dried out pizza, tasteless burgers and fries. How you can ruin french fries is beyond me. The cabins are good size like all Carnival products. The Entertainment on the first night was okay. The second night, okay, after that it was downhill right to the bottom at horrible. There were three nights where the highlight of the show was juggling. Each night they repeatedly dropped what they were juggling....pretty poor performance. You can tell the cruise lines was spending NO money on entertainment. They were also spending NO MONEY on Air Conditioning. It was almost was an unhealthy hot through out the entire ship. The dinning rooms was unbearable. I left every night as quickly as I could because of the heat. The poor staff was always sweating as were many of the guests. I think it was a health hazard, but I'm sure the cruise lines just looks at it as saving money. The cruise lines provided very little direction when trying to find your tour buses and exit the ship. They never announced you were in port and could start disembarking or what deck to disembark from. It was always a guess if it were deck 3 or 0. The only saving grace at all on this cruise were the staff. The dinning room and other working crew all spoke English and were always willing to help you out. The were great. All in All I wish I had not gone on this cruise. I will gladly pay double or triple on my next cruise to get a better experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
We had not taken Celebrity in a few years so we recently booked a 3 nighter. The Eclipse is a beautiful ship, elegant and luxurious but not garish. The service was amazing and the food was the best we have had on any of the 52 cruises ... Read More
We had not taken Celebrity in a few years so we recently booked a 3 nighter. The Eclipse is a beautiful ship, elegant and luxurious but not garish. The service was amazing and the food was the best we have had on any of the 52 cruises we have taken. We favor Crystal, Radisson, MSC and Holland America but are fine with RC and NCL's newer ships. Costa is a disaster and Carnival has it's own customer base but we are not Carnival customers. We had a mini-suite which was beautifully appointed yet smaller than most. The bedding was terrific, one of the most comfortable we have ever experiences at sea. The embarkation and disembarkation was flawless. The cabin steward was very anxious to be of service as were the dining room servers. We hate buffets but the one on Eclipse was so well laid out and the food so good that we had lunch there twice. We used the dining room for breakfast and tried some of the specialty restaurants. The Bistro on 5 is great with only a very minimal cover charge. Those who visited the upscale restaurants raved about them but we waited too late to make reservations. We will now look at Celebrity first in the future. It is a ship for guests with refined taste used to some of the nicer things in life. Read Less
Sail Date November 2010
English speaking customers will need to get used to the fact that ALL communication comes in 4-5 languages before you know what it is that they are trying to tell you. The shore excursions are all very good, but you have to make sure you ... Read More
English speaking customers will need to get used to the fact that ALL communication comes in 4-5 languages before you know what it is that they are trying to tell you. The shore excursions are all very good, but you have to make sure you are in an English spoken tour beforehand. Food is acceptable. Dinner serving size are smaller but is just perfect for me. The buffet is crowded and the self-serving coffee and juice machines don't work sometimes. But what I really want to compliment Costa is their great customer care to those of us who happened to be stuck in Genoa, Italy when most of the European airports shut down due to Iceland's volcano ash problem. For those who booked their air through Costa, Costa put us at the 4-star Bristol Palace Hotel which covers full breakfast daily, and assigned us to dine at a great local restaurant for lunch and dinner. As the airports gradually opened up, people got re-booked to go home. We ended up to stay at Genoa for 6 extra nights and we do appreciate what Costa has done for us. A+ to Costa's customer care! Read Less
Sail Date April 2010
Costa Magica Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 3.0 3.1
Entertainment 4.0 3.2
Public Rooms 4.0 3.9
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.7
Family 4.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.2
Enrichment 1.0 2.7
Service 4.0 3.7
Value For Money 4.0 3.2
Rates 3.0 3.9

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