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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose AmaLyra since the headquarters is local, based in Calabasas. We want to try local businesses in the area. It also has a very good reputation. We were 100% satisfied with the experience. We had taken a Rhine River cruise before ... Read More
We chose AmaLyra since the headquarters is local, based in Calabasas. We want to try local businesses in the area. It also has a very good reputation. We were 100% satisfied with the experience. We had taken a Rhine River cruise before through Amadeus. What a big difference!!! All excursions with AmaLyra were included with the price. Wifi and water bottles were also included. They also provided a Wellness coach daily. No hidden fees!!! River cruise entertainment are supposed to be boring or non-existent. NOT with AmaLyra - entertainment were provided daily. We specially enjoyed the Normandy World War 2 presentation, Edith Piaf tribute and classical music concerto. The DJ was outstanding too. What can I say about the meals - we even get to do a chef's table tasting (you pay extra on ocean cruises) that can be compared to a Michelin-rated restaurant. I can't say enough about the service. After the first day, the restaurant crews already remembered our table's special request - ex. warm creamer for coffee, soy milk since I'm lactose intolerant, a glass of ice, etc. Overall, first class experience for us!!! We will definitely cruise with Ama again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
My friend and I wanted to encourage our husbands to enjoy the Normandy area and we wanted to see parts of France, including Paris.... this trip fit the bill.... We had done our own exploration of Normandy for several days before the cruise ... Read More
My friend and I wanted to encourage our husbands to enjoy the Normandy area and we wanted to see parts of France, including Paris.... this trip fit the bill.... We had done our own exploration of Normandy for several days before the cruise and were very glad that we did.... I think a 1 day 10 hour excursion cannot capture the magnitude of what is available in that region for history lovers..... But, we LOVED our cruise with AMA.... the staff was superb... the food was delicious and ample, the shore excursions were guided by local experts.... I posted photos and notes from our trip at www.parisandnormandy.wordpress.com When we pictured a trip along the Seine, we pictured cute little town and riding our bikes along the river bank.... we were able to do that more than once on this trip. There were exercise classes every morning and afternoon that were available to all and even a small fitness room. It allowed you to work off some calories to be ready to eat the yummy desserts. I would describe our experience with the local guides as spotty.... some were superb and we would not change a thing.... others were so full of knowledge about the subject that they could NOT adjust for an audience of travelers who just wanted to soak in the BEAUTY of a particular site.... No blame to AMA, but a weather event precluded the majority of the people who went to the Normandy excursion to go to the American cemetery.... it was a major disappointment to them, but certainly AMA rebounded by finding other places they COULD go on that excursion... and did it on short notice as well. We would travel with AMA again in a heartbeat! If only we could be PLOPPED in our departure city and not have to make the flight! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
First river cruise and we have always wanted to see the Normandy beaches and cemeteries, so this was chosen. I had always heard of Viking from numerous TV commercials but a travel agent reco'd AMA as an upgrade, and it certainly was. ... Read More
First river cruise and we have always wanted to see the Normandy beaches and cemeteries, so this was chosen. I had always heard of Viking from numerous TV commercials but a travel agent reco'd AMA as an upgrade, and it certainly was. The ship is 10 years old, but stunning, as if it was manufactured yesterday. Every inch of paint is flawless and gleaming, the furniture looks new, and there is not even a speck of dust on this ship. The food choices were ample and I liked that there were buffet choices ready to eat along with many things you could order at each meal. Cruise manager Pau would be successful in any business, perfectly organized and highly competent. You get to know him quickly and he quickly attends to anything you might need. Every employee was cheery and solicitous. You could barely sip some wine before your glass was refilled at meals, all included in the price. The world's best bartender, Elena, made the week. Funny, quick and lovely, we will miss her. Were I to cruise again with AMA, I would try to choose based on what ship she is on. On-board musician Mike Minkoff played for hours and he has the guitar chops of Mark Knopfler(Dire Straits), plus gifted on keyboard and harmonica, with great song choices. We danced every single night. If you are choosing a cruise line right now, I'd pick this one, regardless of destination. It's an exceedingly well-run business with top employees and training. Oh, I really appreciated the small gym and the daily fitness classes. Might not have booked this trip without those. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
I chose Amawaterways because of their solo cabins w/ a french balcony. I removed a star because this was a wine themed cruise and i spoke w/ ama 3x and the reps did not mention this. i do not drink, therefore, i did not attend the 3 ... Read More
I chose Amawaterways because of their solo cabins w/ a french balcony. I removed a star because this was a wine themed cruise and i spoke w/ ama 3x and the reps did not mention this. i do not drink, therefore, i did not attend the 3 enrichment lectures all focused on wine. there was also a wine pairing dinner lost on me. in addition, most shore excursions ended in wine tasting. the last day in Paris only offered a visit to a wine museum. i felt strongly that i was on the wrong cruise. i usually cruise w/ uniworld so i was not expecting luxury and there were no Murano glass chandeliers. however, the service was equal, therefore, outstanding. my cabin stewardess quickly caught on that i went for breakfast at 7 am and cleaned my cabin then. she replenished the body products daily. i always refuse turndown service because i am diabetic and can not eat chocolate, but i was pleased w/ her service. she spoke limited english so i didn't have to chat which for me, as an introvert, was a bonus. i appreciated returning from breakfast to a clean cabin as if by magic. Valentine and Anton, in the dining room, were friendly, but not intrusive. i do not communicate before my morning coffee and again they quickly caught on to my dietary requirements and left me alone at breakfast. as a diabetic, i eat every 3 hrs., therefore, valentine always asked what i would like for my evening snack when he took my dinner order. all the waiters let me order double portions of vegtables. i ordered veggies from one item and the fish entree from another. i am well aware my dietary habits r wierd and appreciated their flexibility. the food was 5 star dining. all river cruises have a coffee machine in the bar, but i have never encountered coffee that was better tasting from the machine, than in the dining room. several cruisers and i marveled at this phenomenon. it was GOOD coffee. ama offers several options for shore excursions, although found it odd that passengers had to book excursions before the cruise. the cruise director, john, was competent. i was surprised a cruise in Normandy didn't offer an excursion to the Bayeux tapestry. .if i had not cruised to Normandy before w/ uniworld and seen the tapestry i wouldn't have taken this cruise. details make a cruise great. i was surprised to find ama had sent a thank u post card when i returned home. also, ama supplies postcards, stamps and mails them free. bonus. my grandchildren luv getting postcards they chagre for stamps if u send a postcard u have purchased. best of all, the postcards arrive. i mailed postcards from Hawaii that never arrived. i also appreciated the stretch classes and yoga. ocean cruises charge extra for yoga. i would cruise amaway again, despite the fact that i resent not being told this was a wine cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We thought for the price it would be an upmarket cruise, having previously done a cruise with Viking who were terrific and thought APT would be the same. The service in the dining room consists of getting your own coffee, trying to hunt ... Read More
We thought for the price it would be an upmarket cruise, having previously done a cruise with Viking who were terrific and thought APT would be the same. The service in the dining room consists of getting your own coffee, trying to hunt up somebody who will get you a wine, the Hotel manager was totally out of her depth, the staff ran the place.Some of the excursions were excellent but a number including a "Signature" excursions were a joke. The nightly wines were undrinkable, the house wines were better, some of the food was excellent, some like the duck and salmon was over cooked dry and terrible , the portion sizes were a joke with men getting a child's serve and the ladies more than they could eat. Finally if you are looking for a travel experience you should be aware the boat is 90% Australian, most very old, but then the nightly entertainment is obviously designed around that demographic. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2018
We chose this cruise because we have been with AMA waterways before. We had a poor hotel experience in Paris before this cruise (I must emphasise here that this was an hotel of our choice and absolutely nothing to do with AMA) and so we ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we have been with AMA waterways before. We had a poor hotel experience in Paris before this cruise (I must emphasise here that this was an hotel of our choice and absolutely nothing to do with AMA) and so we needed an uplift. We were not disappointed. From the moment we boarded we found a very warm welcome. Everybody from the captain down was very friendly and helpful. It was nice to meet some members of the crew who we have seen before - the m'aitre d, the head wine waiter and the waiter at our table. Dining was superb. Dinner had a flexible arrival time which was very convenient. The quality and choice of the food and wines was excellent as was the service throughout the entire cruise. A 'happy hour' before dinner was a new innovation - certain drinks and cocktails were available free of charge. Although we only went on a few shore excursions, these were well organised with good guides. We had plenty on room on the coaches, and the tours were organised to suit the abilities and wishes of the participants. The Cruise Director was excellent, very well organised and plenty of time to handle queries. The service throughout the cruise was faultless. Nothing was too much trouble. We have come to expect high quality from AMA Waterways after three earlier cruises with them, and once again they have come up trumps. We have already booked another cruise with them for next year. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
After a lot of research, we chose this cruise Paris/Normandy, with this company, for the best itinerary, value, and guest reviews. Also because they offered a Canadian tour to the Normandy beaches . And we are so thankful we chose AMA! ... Read More
After a lot of research, we chose this cruise Paris/Normandy, with this company, for the best itinerary, value, and guest reviews. Also because they offered a Canadian tour to the Normandy beaches . And we are so thankful we chose AMA! We were welcomed at the airport, handed over to our driver, and whisked away to the AmaLyra, where we were met with the warmest greetings by the crew. I knew right away that we had chosen well. Truly the trip that we had dreamt about, our cabin was perfect for viewing the sights from our french balcony whenever we were cruising. The meals, the service, the excursions, were all first class, the most outstanding thing being the crew, their friendliness and smiles, and every single person always went above and beyond. We enjoyed so much this trip of a lifetime until an unfortunate and unexpected medical problem, very sadly we had to leave the cruise on day 4, my husband being admitted to and having surgery in Rouen hospital. Our Cruise Manager went to hospital with us, and stayed with us as long as she could, she was our support and comfort as everything progressed much faster because of her. She and AMA made sure we were looked after, one of their local guides in Rouen came everyday to the hospital, and was our liaison with medical staff. He was our lifeline and we are so grateful. Our cruise manager kept in contact every day, so caring and supportive, her optimism was my strength. As difficult as it is being sick in a foreign country, we were overwhelmed by the compassion of these two people, and are very grateful to AMA for being and employing the best! After this experience, we hope to do another rivercruise with AMA, they are the very best!! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
Our trip with AMA Waterways went very well from start to finish. The staff was outstanding and went out of their way to assist us with our every need. The bus excursions and in town tours were well organized. The guides for each tour ... Read More
Our trip with AMA Waterways went very well from start to finish. The staff was outstanding and went out of their way to assist us with our every need. The bus excursions and in town tours were well organized. The guides for each tour were well informed and each tour added to our adventure. Having the voice boxes on the tours was great. (Just a reminder, spare voice boxes and earphones should accompany all guides, in case of malfunctions while touring). The meals were varied and offered enough variety that we could enjoy all the meals. The bag lunch that was prepared for our full day excursion was both delicious and HUGE! No one went hungry on that trip. The Chef’s table was a wonderful experience. What a perfect way to enjoy both the food and presentation in a more intimate setting. It was lovely to try new food, that we may not have tried otherwise. Annie, the cruise director, was such a delight. She was always organized and informed and well versed in the various areas we stopped in. No question phased her! She was always calm, had a good delivery of information and she wove in some humour along the way ... a perfect mix for being a cruise director. As we prepared to depart the boat, to go to the airport, Annie was sure to remind us to make sure our yellow and red suitcases were in the taxi before departing. Yes, she even knew our suitcases personally! Then, we prepared to take our AMA transfer to the airport, we made sure we had everything and got in our lovely transfer vehicle. We had no worries, as Annie had assured us we had enough time at the airport. We arrived at the airport in good time and expected to flounder on our own, but no, one last special touch by AMA... A lovely gentlemen helps us with our luggage, gets us to check in with our airline and with a big smile on his face, he wishes us a good journey home. Such wonderful service and a lovely finish to a memorable holiday. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This was our first river cruise and we had never been to Normandy. The D-Day beaches were the draw but the entire Seine to the Manche journey was beautiful. AmaWaterways is superb. The personal service, warmth and friendliness was ... Read More
This was our first river cruise and we had never been to Normandy. The D-Day beaches were the draw but the entire Seine to the Manche journey was beautiful. AmaWaterways is superb. The personal service, warmth and friendliness was outstanding. The excursions were thoughtful and the guides a cut above. The dining rooms were outstanding. Every need was anticipated and every whim was satisfied. I left some items in my cabin after we disembarked. By the time I had emailed the AmaWaterways headquarters, the items had been found and were in the process of being packaged and sent to my home. This is such great customer service. We will never use another cruise line for river cruising. These folks really care about keeping us happy. The Paris hotel for the cruise, the Intercontinental Marceau, was lovely, immaculate, with great service and location. We stayed before the cruise, rather than after because that suited our plans. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
I chose this cruise because of the timing, and itinerary. My Mother and I purchased this cruise only 2 months before the departure date and I booked everything directly with the AMA Waterways call centre. the experience was amazing right ... Read More
I chose this cruise because of the timing, and itinerary. My Mother and I purchased this cruise only 2 months before the departure date and I booked everything directly with the AMA Waterways call centre. the experience was amazing right from the moment the representative picked up the phone! Helpful, and knowledgeable we had the cruise, the after extension and our flights and transfers all completed within half an hour. We were met at the airport by the cruise line representative, put in a comfortable transport directly to the ship. Although we arrived early we could stay on the ship in the lounge until our room was ready, lunch and hot beverages were served. The Cabins are small but cozy and my only complaint was the beds were uncomfortably hard. But the linens were beautiful and the shower was modern with instant hot water! There was also Apple TV and internet access in the room. The food was outstanding - particularly the Chefs table, but the regular meals were top notch. the soups and the breads deserve special mention. The ship itself was a bit Dowdy, but comfortable. For me the highlights were the tours, and the cruise manager went out of her way to be helpful. My mom is 79 and recovering from knee surgery (we were celebrating here recovery) Everyone on the staff was helpful and kind. Each room came equipped with your own Quietvox for the tours, which was a nice touch, when you met your guide it was simple to link to her/his transmitter so it was easy to hear and i found the transmission to be very good. I felt the tours were all top notch! Read Less
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