1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
We went on the Astoria in March 2019 and firstly the really good aspects: It went from our home port in Poole so no distance to travel. It is a nice size with not too far to walk to the restaurants and lounges, it is quite stable so ... Read More
We went on the Astoria in March 2019 and firstly the really good aspects: It went from our home port in Poole so no distance to travel. It is a nice size with not too far to walk to the restaurants and lounges, it is quite stable so although quite rough seas it didn't roll too much so no sea sickness. It had a cinema with recent releases being shown. They had a good speaker on board who shared his Vulcan experiences so being into aviation this was a nice surprise. The cabins were very well appointed with plenty of space for clothes etc. The staff were very friendly and we received good service. They provided shuttle buses at all the ports for independent travellers not going on the excursions so there weren’t the long walks that we have had on other cruise providers Next the not so good aspects The cabins were noisy and vibration from the engines could be felt all night long. We couldn't work out whether this was the location of our cabin - deck 4 mid ship but I suspect that it was throughout the ship but the beds were very comfortable so didn't affect our sleep. The general consensus was 'the more you pay the more you sway' .The service in the Olissipo restaurant was quite slow and the food average. We did treat ourselves to the steak bar and had an excellent 8 course meal although one of the steaks was too tough and went back. The schedules weren't kept to due to rough weather (not their fault) so we only ended up with 4 full days ashore and 4 half days. Our trip to the Scillies was cancelled which was disappointing. We felt that the information provided by the excursion team was poor for independent travellers. For instance when we went to Invergordon we were told that it was difficult to get the public transport into Inverness and that we should take the £25 ship transfer. In fact there was a bus that went straight into Inverness and cost only £12 return. Clearly they were more interested in selling the excursions. There were 2 sizes of wine on offer a large and small glass but despite repeated requests for a small glass, large ones (187ml) always arrived. So we ended up buying a bottle which was cheaper. Overall it is a good value boat and CMV are recommended as good organisers. We would go on Astoria again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
We wanted to experience Christmas on a cruise ship and we live in Perth so seemed the best option.The ship was great and the food good but we experienced bad weather going out and a cyclone coming back so that put a damper on it.The ... Read More
We wanted to experience Christmas on a cruise ship and we live in Perth so seemed the best option.The ship was great and the food good but we experienced bad weather going out and a cyclone coming back so that put a damper on it.The entertainment staff were absolutely amazing and kept us entertained most of each day.They worked very very hard. Our room was comfy and spacious with plenty of storage space. We bought the drinks package which was well worth it as it included half price coffees and tomato juice which we had a lot of(bloody or virgin) . We are not seasick travelers so that didn't worry us but it did a lot of others.This of course is not the cruise company's fault but if I went again I would choose a calmer time of the year and forget about Christmas.The best part were the shows and quizzes Read Less
48 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
I chose this cruise for it's itinerary, timing and value for money. It was also a way to get from Melbourne to London without jet lag and swollen ankles. It is an old ship and fairly small but I prefer the small ship atmosphere and ... Read More
I chose this cruise for it's itinerary, timing and value for money. It was also a way to get from Melbourne to London without jet lag and swollen ankles. It is an old ship and fairly small but I prefer the small ship atmosphere and friendliness. Overall the ship exceeded my expectations with a super friendly crew who went out of their way to make it an enjoyable voyage. Being small it moves around a bit in a swell and the stabilisers do not seem very effective but if you want a smoother ride you should stick to floating apartment blocks. The cabin was good for its type with the most comfortable beds I have had on my many cruises with various cruise lines. The in cabin entertainment was lacking with few movies that were repeated on a loop throughout each day. The show lounge entertainment was excellent with no shows repeated in the 6 weeks aboard. The dancers were great but the singers ranged from exceptional (Angelina) through to good with one who shall remain nameless who was painful. Pre dinner entertainment in the Captains Club was very good with a pianist and either a singer or violinist accompanying her. A nice way to start the evening. The cruise director Tony and assistant cruise director Katy ensured the entertainment flowed freely with a performance in the show lounge twice nightly and various sail away parties on the outside decks as we left ports. The second show was always less crowded and it was easy to find a good seat. The daytime entertainment was sparse but included 2 lectures each sea day which I found to be very interesting. The food was adequate but not great. Too much fish and chicken for my taste but the head waiter Tojo was fantastic in trying to accommodate me and would arrange extra steamed vegies or grilled meat and chips if all else failed. The bread rolls were excellent but the afternoon teas were not good as the cakes were dry, the scones like hard biscuits and the sandwiches boring ham and cheese every day. One big disappointment was the breakfast eggs. It is against Astor's policy to serve eggs either fried, poached or boiled, with a runny yolk. Every egg was hard in the centre. Health and safety was the excuse but I haven't seen this on other cruise ships and six weeks of overcooked eggs was an irritation to most passengers I spoke to. They need to consider passenger tastes rather than covering their own backs. Liz, the shore excursion organiser was very good. She went out of her way to help even if you were enquiring about a non ship tour. We had major health concerns on board culminating in a shoreside hospital visit in Capetown and 2 subsequent ships hospital visits. The ships doctor (Dmitri) and his staff gave us confidence to continue our voyage and ensured we had the appropriate care till we arrived in London to the point of offering to arrange specialist care on shore when we docked. Ships medical assistance is not cheap so good travel insurance is vital. The internet costs were very cheap ($5 Australian per hour) but totally unreliable. On the occasions where I had to seek help from the reception staff for internet and other problems they were great. Service with a smile always. The ship displayed some meanness in small ways. Like no shampoo and conditioner in the cabin, just a body wash in the shower which could have been dishwashing liquid. They gave us a lovely tray of chocolate goodies for Easter but we only received a chocolate on the pillow on the formal nights. Room service was limited and not complimentary. Other reviewers have said the crew are surly but we found everyone from the Captain down to be cheerful and friendly. The one exception was our cabin steward. She was a miserable soul who obviously didn't like her job. She kept the cabin clean but whether it was a language problem or a personality trait, her face could not form a smile. Would I travel on Astor again, yes I would, the good far outweighed the bad, a sentiment widely felt by fellow passengers, many of which had cruised with her multiple times. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We chose to sail on The Astor purely because of her itinerary. We thought is would be a great way to visit South Africa, instead of flying there. Our ports of call were, embarkation at Fremantle, Mauritius, La Reunion, Durban, Mossel Bay ... Read More
We chose to sail on The Astor purely because of her itinerary. We thought is would be a great way to visit South Africa, instead of flying there. Our ports of call were, embarkation at Fremantle, Mauritius, La Reunion, Durban, Mossel Bay and disembarking in Capetown. She then continued up the African Coast and onto Tilbury, London. We took the ship's tours in all the ports and would give them 5 stars for their organization and tour destinations. We were very lucky to have the opportunity to stay in The Astor Suite. It was superb with a very large Bedroom with ample wardrobe and cupboard space. A lovely bathroom with a large shower and bath with double hand basins and a separate toilet. The Living room was well appointed with a 3 seater lounge and 2 lounge chairs, plus an office desk. A small fridge and coffee machine was also supplied, and it was so lovely to return to the cabin and enjoy the views from 2 huge, double, floor to ceiling windows. Each evening they delivered hors d'œuvres to our cabin to enjoy before dinner. Because of the small number of passengers, it was so easy to meet others. The public areas were quite spacious, although the Astor Lounge was large, the layout in places made it difficult to view the shows, or guest speakers. We enjoyed the activities and loved being able to walk fully around the deck each morning for our exercise. By the end of our cruise, the food was beginning to be the same. It was a shame that we couldn't order eggs to order for our breakfast. The chefs wouldn't cook poached or soft fried eggs. The only option was a 10 minute, hard boiled egg or a hard yolk fried egg. We do not know the reason for this, because on other cruise lines this hasn't been an issue. I ordered ice-cream each evening and by the time I received it, it was mostly melted into a mess, so I did have some issues with the food. Cleanliness on the ship was impeccable; there are no complaints. Our Cabin Stewardess, Inna was wonderful. She looked after our needs without being in your face. The ship didn't handle the rough sea too well. On three occasions we were quite ill with sea sickness, so I would make sure you have 2 packets of sea sickness tablets with you, because it cost $3.75 for 2 tablets, and we needed many more. Captain was wonderful as were all the crew members. I would especially thank The Tour Director, Elizabeth (Liz), for her service. She did a magnificent job and worked with us in trying to take a tour of Capetown (which was our disembarkation port). She organized for our bags to be safely stored, and we were allowed back on board in the afternoon to collect them. Thank you again, Astor. You are a little gem of a ship. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Chose this cruise for the experience and to visit places in southern WA not seen before. After cruises on the QM2, was a bit concerned that I might not like this smaller vessel. Happy to say I liked it a lot. Seemed more a real naval ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the experience and to visit places in southern WA not seen before. After cruises on the QM2, was a bit concerned that I might not like this smaller vessel. Happy to say I liked it a lot. Seemed more a real naval vessel than larger ships. The lack of glamour was no problem - no space wasted on grand atriums, sweeping staircases and wide passageways. Not that such luxuries as these are not enjoyable - they are - but the Astor is such value for money, and everything necessary was provided, and more. Scrupulously clean everywhere. Excellent dining facilities and food. Comfy bed, with the best pillows. Contained within the cabin is a cupboard holding extra pillows, blankets and pool towels, - nice to not have to ask for these. Liked the fact that dining companions were seen about the ship, and greetings exchanged. Disappointing that a number of shore excursions were cancelled, due to lack of bookings. Prices were at the top end, so this could perhaps be reviewed to attract more passengers. Nothing is perfect: it was impossible to understand the tannoy....including during lifeboat drill. The library was seldom open, including during advertised hours. The 'quiet zone' in the Wellness centre is not quiet: during a massage, lots of noise from a crew room on one side and noisy children in the pool on the other. School holidays added to the pool noise, but perhaps a larger notice advising that only accompanied children may use this pool would help. Users of this centre should be confident that the 'quiet' part is honoured. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
Sailed to Auckland from Tilbury in October 2016. I had initial fears that I would be travelling on a floating old people’s home for 6 weeks and although I was 10 years below the average age on board they were a great bunch and many were ... Read More
Sailed to Auckland from Tilbury in October 2016. I had initial fears that I would be travelling on a floating old people’s home for 6 weeks and although I was 10 years below the average age on board they were a great bunch and many were repeating the trip. Some amazing and interesting people on board. Definitely not luxury cruising but extremely comfortable. I loved the breakfasts and still miss them. My wife just doesn’t do quite the omelette that they do on board. I also loved the fact that breakfast frequently lasted from 06.30 hrs to 10.00 hrs. Lovely wee ship and great experience. I may go again next year but am thinking of Columbus in January 2019 but am worried she might not be as friendly as Astor as she is about three times the size. . I also loved the informality of Astor and the way the crew could socialise with us at night. Prior to the trip I had not been on a liner since 1966 but I thoroughly enjoyed my trip. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We had a great relaxing and enjoyable cruise, from Tilbury uk to Perth, Australia. The staff througout the ship; that we had direct service from, were exceptional, very curious and always served with a smile. The highlights and most ... Read More
We had a great relaxing and enjoyable cruise, from Tilbury uk to Perth, Australia. The staff througout the ship; that we had direct service from, were exceptional, very curious and always served with a smile. The highlights and most memorable time's for my wife and I, were, being invited by the captain onto the wing of the bridge, going through the 2 upper locks of the Panama Canal, what an experiance and on her birthday!! The second was being invited to the caprains table for dinner on galore night, in 15 plus cruise's, this was a first, and boy, what a lovely finish to our voyage. The evening shows in the theatre were fantastic and we were quite suprised, for such a small stage company, how they never repeated thier performances, the variety was unbelievable and well performed every time. My only criticism here is, the main performer was always, the star roll, that was very unfortunate, as there were others that were as good , if not better, that we and other passengers would have liked to have enjoyed seeing and listening to, I did mention it to the cruise director, he didn't take opinion or suggestions very well, saying pick on me day is it !!! Ah well , they to have off days!!! All bar drinks throughout the ship were very expensive, they offered various deals and offers, even that came out OT, so we chose not to drink on board that much, our budget wouldn't stretch to their outrageous prices, plus the range of beers were very small and not that enjoyable at all. There was a problem having working TV in the cabin, it's awfull, a real lack of cabin entertaint here!!! Overall, we had a great voyage and enjoyed all that the cruise offered to the full, that we participate in. Read Less
35 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We chose this cruise for its ports of call, destination and cost. Embarkation could have been handled better. We seemed to spend a lot of time lining up and by the time we got on it was time for drill. Astor is an older and smaller ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its ports of call, destination and cost. Embarkation could have been handled better. We seemed to spend a lot of time lining up and by the time we got on it was time for drill. Astor is an older and smaller ship and consequently does not have the facilities and amenities of the bigger ships. However, we found that less passengers meant we got to know each other and everyone was friendly and happy to chat. The morning quiz was so popular that not everyone could get into the bar. We sat outside and answered the questions ourselves. The guest speakers were popular and very informative, especially the astronomer. The evening shows were good on the whole. Especially the rock n roll show (Jordan stole the show) and the Rocky horror show. Jordan was great in that too. As the stage and seating were all on the same level everyone wanted to sit at the front. The food was good although we are not used to so much fish. We preferred the Waldorf dining room. Get waited on and don't have the push and shove of the buffet. And get plenty to eat without over eating. The shore tours are reasonably priced and a variety of options. Some people say the tours are expensive but you are picked up from the ship, returned, have an English speaking guide and any admissions are included. It is much easier in an unfamiliar place where English may not be widely spoken. Swakupmund Namibia was great. Nothing like I expected for a town surrounded by desert. That was an enjoyable day out with a man who lived there as a child and had seen it change from a small town to a thriving metropolis. Clean and modern. The sand dunes and carpet weaving factory were great. Our cabin and the ship in general was kept clean. Warning that a young man was cleaning the ladies toilets might have been useful. My only gripe would be why is Ascension Island on the itinerary when they really have no intention of stoping there. In 5 passes of the island they have only gone ashore once. They say the water is too rough but the island is a strategic place for the British and Americans which makes me wonder. Despite not going there we were 3 hours late arriving at Casablanca. How late would we have been if we had stopped at Ascension Island. This cruise was value for money. May not have the glitz and glamour of the bigger more expensive cruises but was more relaxed. And as I said to my husband it is the first time we have been on first name terms with the crew. And the captain is a good singer. Read Less
38 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This was a spur of the moment cruise for us (our 3rd cruise over 40 years). Convenient because it sailed from Fremantle and returned there, and 6 nights was enough time away during summer & the risk of bushfires. Our friends were ... Read More
This was a spur of the moment cruise for us (our 3rd cruise over 40 years). Convenient because it sailed from Fremantle and returned there, and 6 nights was enough time away during summer & the risk of bushfires. Our friends were onboard too on their second trip on the Astor. We had an inside cabin on Baltic deck in a forward position and honestly it was a great position. No noise whatsoever from engines, something to think about with future bookings. Our cabin was very adequate with two wardrobes, a full length mirror, desk with mirror, small fridge, tv, radio and two single beds which were a little too firm, but were reasonably comfortable. The bathroom was big enough and bright in white. The shower was fantastic, very good water pressure and really hot water. The whole cabin was kept spotlessly clean. We used the stairs the whole trip and they provided very good exercise. Food was mostly well presented. We preferred to dine in the Waldorf rather than the buffet of the Ubersee. Wine was $4.50 a half glass and from $25 a bottle. Tried a couple of cocktails but didn't enjoy most of them as they tasted weak and watered down. Did enjoy the coffee and tea that was available all day. Entertainment on board varied. The quiz was popular, and the Perth band they had for the trip was very good. Night time shows were interesting and a lot of effort went into them. We only went to two. Nice smaller ship without the big crowds which we enjoyed, as we wanted to be able to chill out and do our own thing. Astor handles rougher seas very well, and staff on board are on the whole, friendly and helpful, even where language can be a barrier. We enjoyed our trip immensely to Esperance and Albany and would travel again on the Astor. Read Less
26 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
We chose Astor for convenience as we could embark and disembark in Fremantle, which is close to home. We are happy to travel mid ship, in an inside cabin, and our 13 square metre cabin surprised us with its excellent design and ample ... Read More
We chose Astor for convenience as we could embark and disembark in Fremantle, which is close to home. We are happy to travel mid ship, in an inside cabin, and our 13 square metre cabin surprised us with its excellent design and ample storage. Just make sure your case isn't deeper than 9" (22cm) or you could be struggling to store it under the bed. The ship is spotlessly clean, staff friendly and polite (although with many European staff on board there can be some infrequent and very minor language issues). Food was good and we had many melt in the mouth offerings. Ask for more vegetables, if required, and they are happy to oblige. The bakers on board are to be complemented on their skills, including bread/rolls, pastries cakes and slices. Entertainment was first class and Astor has many very skilled musicians and dancers. During the day, at sea, scheduled activities are not as numerous as on a larger ship, but we found there was always plenty for us to do. Captain Psarrakis is very proud of his ship and staff and on one occasion he personally found a chair for me when he noticed that I was standing at a busy time in the Captains Table Bar. Captain Psarrakis also used his skills to expertly manoeuvre the ship into a safe position in Esperance, when a rolling swell meant we would not have been able to disembark at the usual anchorage site and may have missed out on going ashore. We appreciated his efforts. A voyage down the Western Australian south coast saw us within sight of the mainland all of the way and it was often pleasant to sit out on deck and watch the changing scenery. We would have no hesitation in recommending Astor to those who are keen to experience a smaller ship experience (approx. 600 passengers). Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This was our first cruise and we loved it Very clean room and common areas constantly being cleaned This was a short cruise but a great introduction whilst the Astor is small compared to others I see why many love her it's not ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we loved it Very clean room and common areas constantly being cleaned This was a short cruise but a great introduction whilst the Astor is small compared to others I see why many love her it's not shiny new and modern but warm and welcoming The crew were happy and very helpful maybe more signage on the ship would have been helpful This trip had a good mix of people but this is clearly not a ship for children limited activities The food was ok we dined in the Waldof resturant and the meals did become repetitive and average more choice in the Buffett and better desserts enjoyed afternoon tea there several times The drinks package was good value but the water package is not The nighttime shows did not meet expectations they need a lot of work I feel high school students could provide a better standard Lots of room around the ship for quite reflective time or if you prefer bars and music that's available also The use of the tender in Esperance was fast and professional and the volunteers in the towns were lovely and appreciated No tender required in Albany and a wonderful day was had I found the twin rooms very spacious the double rooms have less room to move about great storage in the rooms Highly recommend not sure I would like the modern ships will have to contemplate this Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
As first-time cruisers we weren't sure what to expect, or how a small ship like Astor compares with a 4,000 passenger monster. We were attracted by the bargain rate of $900 for two people for five nights. If the cruise had cost two or ... Read More
As first-time cruisers we weren't sure what to expect, or how a small ship like Astor compares with a 4,000 passenger monster. We were attracted by the bargain rate of $900 for two people for five nights. If the cruise had cost two or three times as much our post-voyage opinions might have been sterner. The ship was excellently maintained and operated. If there were grumpy crew members we didn't see them. I suspect that reviewers who harshly criticise crew are types who like confrontation and making complaints. The interior cabin was small but as described on the website. The only failing was an erratic vacuum toilet that sometimes left solid and liquid offerings unflushed, then later whisked them away at a time of its own choosing. Food was generally good. Some of it looked better than it tasted but the chef deserved more bouquets than brickbats. Unlike another reviewer we had no stale rolls or hard scones. Quite the opposite, both were excellent. The entertainers merited top marks for trying even though their cheesy dancing, cheesy singing and cheesy costumes weren't to our taste. A different show was presented each night. We excused ourselves from afternoon bingo, morning quizzes and other activities that would appeal to some. Life on board would have been cost-free if we'd been teetotal and hadn't bought one souvenir photo. For what we paid the cruise was extraordinarily good value for money. We began to feel a bit 'stir crazy' after three days. The cruise taught us that more of the same wouldn't be our next holiday choice, but that's the way we are and not a criticism of the Astor. Overall, a highly satisfactory and memorable trip. Near to top marks to the Cap'n and his capable, cheerful crew. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This was our first cruise on the Astor, but our second cruise in three years. Our first cruise was on RCL Voyager of the Seas, so absolutely cannot compare these two vessels. The Astor is an old girl, as reflected in the decor and ... Read More
This was our first cruise on the Astor, but our second cruise in three years. Our first cruise was on RCL Voyager of the Seas, so absolutely cannot compare these two vessels. The Astor is an old girl, as reflected in the decor and furnishings, and also she's quite noisy. Lots of creaks and groans but she's well kept and maintained at least on the surface. Although the carpets are well worn and stained in parts, she's kept VERY clean. The Cabin: we were in cabin 480 on Baltic deck. Had a small window view. Yes the cabin is small, but it has plenty of storage for the two of us. No coffee/tea facilities which was disappointing but had a bar fridge. Small TV with limited channels. Bed was two singles put together against one wall left not a lot of room for moving about, but we requested a double bed and that's what was available. There was a constant noise from vibrations, rattles and the like due to the age of he ship, and that was annoying, especially when trying to sleep. But our biggest complaint was with cigarette smoke. Somehow cigarette smoke made its way into our cabin an a daily basis. And it was particularly strong in the hallway. I complained twice but it kept happening. Food: we ate like kings every night and put on 3 kg! So not complaining about that. Like every good restaurant, there were good and bad days, but in general food was great. Service: our cabin steward Agus, was a delightful man that cared very well for us and the cabin. Nothing to complain about. As for the rest of the crew, they are all very hard workers from other parts of the world. Yes their way of speaking is different to us Aussies, but they do their best to accomodate every request. Some of you may take offence at their tone and briskness, but it's just a different culture and they are not speaking in their native tongue. Entertainment: BRILLIANT! The singers and dancers rehearse several times a day and it shows with very professional shows. The Ship: An oldie but a goodie, but having said that, there are a lot of trip hazards due to the build of the ship. You constantly have to step over a lip to enter the toilets, and access the decks. Ok if you are fit and able, but not if you use a wheelchair or Zimmer frame. The lifts.....only fit 4-6 people (at a squeeze) at a time and there are only 3 on the whole ship. Thats a real pain! Cigarette smoke: if you are a smoker you'll love his cruise ship as it seems you can smoke anywhere and get away with it. If you hate cigarette smoke (like me) then pick a cruise line that is smoke free, or at least has very limited and isolated smoking areas. We got sick on this cruise, a head cold, but had to stay n cabin for 2 days, But all in all we enjoyed it. Probably wouldn't sail on the Astor again, because we were spoilt on Voyager of the seas for size etc. Astor is great value for money, if you enjoy good food, great entertainment and excellent service. If you want a luxury cruise with plenty of onboard activities for kids and teens then look elsewhere. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
We were quite impressed by Astor. For a small ship it punches above its weight. It is very well appointed and is really quite spacious. When it became apparent the Trivia sessions were so popular the venue was quickly changed to ... Read More
We were quite impressed by Astor. For a small ship it punches above its weight. It is very well appointed and is really quite spacious. When it became apparent the Trivia sessions were so popular the venue was quickly changed to accommodate the crowd. It was also spotlessly clean, we have cruised many times and this is definitely the cleanest ship we have been on, bathrooms were immaculate, cabins were smallish but functional. The activities offered were in line with most cruises, although not as frequent probably due to the availability of space. We enjoyed the variety of food offered at both the buffet and the dining room. The Cruise Director, Toby, was very versatile and did an excellent job, did everything from singing, voice-overs, panto, even took the Sunday religious service. The entertainment troupe was top class and they managed a full production each of the 11 nights, include in this the band and special mention of the violinist. All of the crew were very pleasant, friendly and eager to please. Disembarkation was a little congested and could be remedied by reducing the numbers in each group. We experienced some big sea swells which Astor handled very well. We found this to be a very relaxing, friendly fun cruise and would definitely consider sailing on Astor again. Also a big plus is the Femantle departure. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
Hi , just a quick review , my partner and i have been on many cruise mainly all bigger ships , but due to needing a quick and cheap holiday we settled on the astor .. To start of with i will mention the food .. food was great for a ... Read More
Hi , just a quick review , my partner and i have been on many cruise mainly all bigger ships , but due to needing a quick and cheap holiday we settled on the astor .. To start of with i will mention the food .. food was great for a cruise , as i mentioned already we have been on quite a few cruise and the astor was one of the best for food .. i could not complain about the food , for the food i would give 5 stars alone . ( there are a few older fuddy duddys on the cruise that complained about the food , but due there Alzheimer they forgot what food taste like with flavor ) The drinks package is a must , for $29 a day all your can drink well it was well and truly worth it. cocktails are around $11 a day pre mixed drinks around the same price, so get the package well worth it The Spa i had a facial and my partner had a massage at the same time , my partner was very happy with the massage and the facial i loved , the lady that done mine was one of the nicest people i have meet on a cruise we talked the whole session . yes they do try t sell you stuff after the session but that is there job a simple no and they leave it at that and go back to taking lol was great so go to the spa the young Serbian lady done my facial will highly recommend her . Down side to the cruise i had .. was the entertainment .. yes they have there evening show , and they had bingo but was hoping for more , i know its a small ship but a little more during the day would have been great ( plus keep me out of trouble with the other half for 5 minutes lol ) And the downstairs restaurant was the same meals as the buffet up stairs every day , so was not worth going to the dinning hall . i asked about the fusion nights but they were not on this cruise as it was only a 5 night cruise so that was disappointing. The tv did have only the 2 channels for movies that replayed on a loop but i didn't go on a cruise to sit in my room and winge there was nothing on the tv .. my response to people that winge is get of your butt and go meet people , you didn't go on a cruise to sit in a room day and night !! All in the cruise on the Astor was great i would go on there again , it was a cheap holiday , and for the price you cant complain . Thanks to the crew for a great time aboard until next time happy sailing .. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
12/15 3 day cruise Fremantle to Fremantle Check-in at Fremantle Passenger Terminal was the first contact with the ship’s crew, very professional and friendly. Fremantle terminal is basic and dated! Oops, if you have trouble walking ... Read More
12/15 3 day cruise Fremantle to Fremantle Check-in at Fremantle Passenger Terminal was the first contact with the ship’s crew, very professional and friendly. Fremantle terminal is basic and dated! Oops, if you have trouble walking a mile, get help! We had an interior twin room lower deck 4 port side, room 506, very clean, well equipped but small. Bathroom very small but extremely clean, bright, well-appointed with lovely soft towels including pool towels. Even brought the glen 20 freshener, didn’t need to use it (tip from what to bring). The cabin was quiet and ocean movement minimally felt. Air-conditioning was good but when rushing around in the cabin you did warmed up, so a fan would have been excellent to have! I’m going again in January, so I will bring a desk fan (bring European adapter) Weekend weather was around 25 degrees c, what to wear, on board perfect temperature, I didn’t t need a cardie, outside was pretty warm too. Afternoon, yes a sea breeze happen but it depends where you are at, still not cold. I brought too much cool weather gear, not used on this trip. Two lovely dining areas to choose, one with table service and one buffet style, both gorgeously set so much attention to detail. Great service, immaculate dressed multi-tasking crew from all over the world and so many of them. Coffee was divine, choice of teas and water all available, no charge. Food was plentiful and fresh! Sweets, too many to choose from, including an ice-cream station. Loved the grill (barbeque) Saturday lunch time at the buffet. Drinks prices ok, a summary, soft drinks around $3.95, Beer $6.95+, glass of wine $8.50 (nice wine too), bottle of wine mid varieties $22-$38, of course top shelf is available. Upon entering the dining areas a hand sanitiser unit is available and encouraged to be used. Wellness centre with beauty treatments, hair, saunas, and heated swimming pool with aqua gear, dumb bells, and noodles is available and I had a great time. Staff excellent at the wellness centre! Of course they will marketed the goods to sell but that’s business as usual .Didn’t use to outdoor pool. Had a wedding party on board, so good to see the wedding fashion stakes at its finest and the party people, the crew very attentive! Entertainment, well I loved it! 3 different cabaret themes over the 3 night cruising with a talented multi-tasking crew. Best part is leaving the internet behind and meeting people! Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We sailed on the Astor from London to Auckland, New Zealand. The voyage was wonderful and the ship and crew exceeded our expectations . Boarding at Tilbury was average , but with only 505 guests it did not take lone really. The ... Read More
We sailed on the Astor from London to Auckland, New Zealand. The voyage was wonderful and the ship and crew exceeded our expectations . Boarding at Tilbury was average , but with only 505 guests it did not take lone really. The ship is not suitable for kids or wheel chair use , but we knew this before boarding. Disembarking at Auckland was just too easy. We were told there were 249 crew on board. The food and shows were of a very high standard for a small ship.Every single night brought a new show in the show-lounge. Many outstanding production shows as well as single acts. The crew could not have been better , always willing to help with a smile. Tips were included in the ticket and it was good not to have a 15% service charge added to drinks etc. We had a bonus of an up-grade which was nice. The Captain was amazing , always about the ship and joined in the singing and dances at times. Mixed with guests on shuttle buses etc.Of all the cruises we have done, he rates top in our book. The ship though old was in pristine condition through-out. Up keep of varnish work etc was non-stop and put bigger cruise ship operators to shame. The ports of call were all enjoyed and the ship charges for tours was very reasonable compared to other cruise lines. Though the smallest ship and maybe the oldest we have cruised on , we really did enjoy every da (and night) on board Astor Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
Tilbury was our port of embarkation in October 2015 enroute to FremantleWA. Also, we were passengers on the Fremantle - Harwich voyage in April 2014 and it was a marvellous experience. Don't misunderstand, we enjoyed our time ... Read More
Tilbury was our port of embarkation in October 2015 enroute to FremantleWA. Also, we were passengers on the Fremantle - Harwich voyage in April 2014 and it was a marvellous experience. Don't misunderstand, we enjoyed our time aboard however, from day one we noticed the bean counters had been at work. The a la carte cuisine was not quite as sumptuous, but pleasant nevertheless. Our biggest complaint was that the ship was too often hours late into the ports we visited, which meant that we had little time to explore. The excuses given ranged from slowing for whales in the vicinity, lost time bunkering and heavy weather. Two former sea captains travelling as passengers dismissed the excuses as verbal tripe. Bunkering should have been factored into the ships schedule. Whales were well and truly out of the shipping lanes at this time of year and we had not experienced heavy weather.....Go figure! This, they said, was merely a relocation voyage to enable Astor to commence its season out of Fremantle. The real reason the ship was frequently late, they said, was that the ship had slowed to conserve fuel. Therefore, and unfortunately, Astors 500 passengers were short-changed and did not receive all they had paid for. Astor is 30 years old, 3-Star ship, but it delivers value if itineraries are met. The crew was so obliging and we thought the service from cabin steward to table and drink waiters was exceptional. At times, language barriers with drinks staff added levity to afternoon libations. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We lowered our expectations of this cruise compared to the likes of HAL and RCI but in many aspects we felt it was even better. Boarding was easy at Tilbury after taking the train from London then the free connecting bus. On board we ... Read More
We lowered our expectations of this cruise compared to the likes of HAL and RCI but in many aspects we felt it was even better. Boarding was easy at Tilbury after taking the train from London then the free connecting bus. On board we were escorted to our cabin where our luggage was already there. Most outside cabins have twin beds, unfortunately due to fitted furniture these cannot be made up into a double and one of them is also a sofa by day so less comfy. We viewed the inside suites and they were fabulous, about twice the size. Plenty of wardrobe space in the cabin and a decent sized bathroom with shower. Bathrobes were provided which was a nice touch. Dining was great, a non standard menu meant we were able to dine on different produce from the ports of call. A lovely tropical buffet out of Mexico and suckling baby pigs after Nuka Hiva. On a Gluten free diet the chefs went out of their way to be helpful and even cooked a couple of cakes to my own recipe. Many special functions were held out on deck which was lovely. On board most amenities are on deck 5 making it very easy to get around the ship. The showroom lacked a tiered system and views were often obstructed if you sat at the side. However the show team were fabulous and soon got to know people by name. A few had strong accents which made it difficult to understand during things like quizzes. Cruise Director Toby could, in our opinion and many others, have improved things by adjusting the times of certain activities. On long cruise people are less keen to be up late at night partying and having a disco that started at 11pm mean most people did not attend. Morning exercise classes were good, well attended but sporadic. There were some very interesting guest lecturers on board and being a long cruise there was plenty of chance to get to know them personally. The 4 lots of 7 days at sea were difficult for many people with some getting cabin fever but we really enjoyed that time. Ports of call were all good and the passage through the Panama Canal with guest lecturer was a highlight. With less than 500 passengers on board this was more like one big happy family than a cruise where you never see the same people twice. There were a few instance of people claiming "their seats" that causes a little friction but it was well dealt with. Highly recommended and excellent value. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2015
This was our first cruise, so we were not sure what to expect. The check-in procedure was smooth and once we were on board the staff were waiting to show us to our cabin, with our suitcases not far behind. Throughout the whole voyage the ... Read More
This was our first cruise, so we were not sure what to expect. The check-in procedure was smooth and once we were on board the staff were waiting to show us to our cabin, with our suitcases not far behind. Throughout the whole voyage the staff and crew were absolutely fantastic, the service they gave was exemplary and they always smiled and said hello to everyone. We saw the very caring way that they looked after some of the less mobile passengers as well. Both the public areas and our cabin seemed to be newly refurbished and everywhere was spotless. We had a cabin with a window, and a sofa which was turned into a bed each night by our maid. The cabin had everything we needed, and well thought out for a small space. The food was excellent... I believe some reviewers thought the drinks expensive but I suppose it depends on where you come from. We did not find them unduly so. We were expecting to be given an early or late sitting for dinner but the ship did not seem to be full so we ate at any time. We went to all the evening shows, the standard of singing and dancing was very high, not to mention the fantastic costumes. We were not keen on the comedian who came across as quite old-fashioned... lots of the jokes had seen better days! Everything was very well organised, we had a daily itinerary given to us each evening with the next days schedule on. Being a small ship there was little in the way of shopping on board but there was plenty of onboard activities to keep most people happy although the weather kept us inside until towards the end of the cruise, and it was good to chat with other passengers as well. We had booked a selection of trips ashore and were glad we did as the time factor meant we did not have long in any of the stops. This was the main drawback for us, but we realise this is the nature of cruises and we already have plans to go back and spend longer in some of the places. To sum up, we thought it good value for money and would certainly consider another cruise on the Astor. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2015
We found the Astor to be a 3+ star ship at a 2 star price on our three-day trip to nowhere. The service is exceptional, better than Cunard. Staff were friendly and efficient. The biggest table setting in the Waldorf dining room is six but ... Read More
We found the Astor to be a 3+ star ship at a 2 star price on our three-day trip to nowhere. The service is exceptional, better than Cunard. Staff were friendly and efficient. The biggest table setting in the Waldorf dining room is six but when we wanted a table for eight two tables for four were slotted together. The other exceptional feature is the cleanliness. The ship and cabins are well maintained and spotless. Embarkation and Disembarkation were particularly quick and efficient. This may have had something to do with the fact that there were no foreign ports involved. We appreciated the express disembarkation where you could just take your own bags, hand over your keys and with a swipe of your card proceed to the gangplank. The food is good, without being great. We preferred lunch to dinner and liked the fact that the serves were not too big. Drink prices were reasonable, mainly $30 to $40 for a bottle of wine, cocktails and mixers around $9 and beer from $6.50 to $8.50. One downside was that tap beer, especially from the bar overlooking the pool, was not cold enough. There are plenty of places on the ship where passengers can find their level of activity, from reading on the promenade deck lounges to the lively drinking set on the lounges and tables round the pool to the sports deck. There are the usual quizzes, bingo and a pleasant afternoon tea with cake, biscuits and scones. The Captain's Club provided a good atmosphere for pre and post dinner drinks. Entertainment, especially an ABBA revival, was good in the showroom. Our Ocean View twin cabin was adequate with two comfortable beds, plenty of hanging and storage space and a good shower with plenty of water. The walls between cabins are thin but once everyone realises this they tend to quieten down. We did not experience rough conditions so I cannot comment on the Astor's stability.   Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2015
The ship is about 28 years old but has been recently refurbished and for the size is quite modern and very comfortable. We did have very smooth seas for the cruise and everything ran like clock-work. There are two excellent main places to ... Read More
The ship is about 28 years old but has been recently refurbished and for the size is quite modern and very comfortable. We did have very smooth seas for the cruise and everything ran like clock-work. There are two excellent main places to eat, the Ubersees Club (casual buffet style) and the Waldorf Restaurant (more formal). There are also two small specialty restaurants, one Asian and one Mediterranean style - small surcharge applies) but I did not try either. This ship cruises mainly in Europe and caters to European passengers and the food reflects that. From the cold meats, cheeses and roll-mops for breakfast to the style of desserts on offer. All of the usual fare is available cereals, eggs and omlettes cooked to order, multiple bread choices and pastries, noodle and pasta dishes cooked to order for lunch and dinner. Lots (and lots) of pork is offered. Fresh fruit is a bit rare. There are Asian and European F&B staff. The Asian staff have a much better grasp of English and have willing smiles and seem to enjoy their jobs. Alas quite a few of the (Eastern) European staff struggle a bit with English and some are rather sour and surly and seem resentful when you ask for something. This was perhaps the only bad part of the whole Astor experience. The (few) sour and surly male staff. I did not participate much in the on-board activities but from all reports they were enjoyable and well attended. The age group of passengers on my cruise was mainly 60years plus. Not a ship to go on if you are under 40 and want lots of late night fun or take kids on. In fact I think it would be unwise to take children on this ship. I would travel on Astor again without hesitation. The bigger ships might have it all, the Astor has pretty much all you need if you're after a quite, relaxing, laid back cruise. The few sour and surly male staff notwithstanding. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2014
I was just having a look at the reviews of the Astor and for the first time in my life had an urge to spend the time (which i treasure greatly) to sign up to a site so i could put my two cents worth. I was on the Astor from Freo to Bali ... Read More
I was just having a look at the reviews of the Astor and for the first time in my life had an urge to spend the time (which i treasure greatly) to sign up to a site so i could put my two cents worth. I was on the Astor from Freo to Bali and back for 10 days over xmas 2014 on my first cruise experience. When i saw that the Astor was here and having wanted to go on a short cruise to dip my toes i did a bit of research waited a month or two and booked at what i believe was a reasonable price. I was not expecting a five star experience and i didn't get one. What I did get was a very pleasant time at a very reasonable price. I am a not a complete skinflint but i am a sucker for value for money and if that gets your heart racing then I can recommend the Astor (although the experience may vary of course) I have spent a bit of time on the ocean and whilst the trip out of Freo was a bit rough it didn't last long and soon got to the point where one night I had to get up and go outside as i thought we were dead in the water. We were steaming at a steady rate and i couldn't feel or hear a thing. I didn't hear either of my neighbors except once when there was some shouting.which you would have heard in a crowded street. The public areas of the ship were deathly quiet most of the time and the only noises that could be heard at times was the waitstaff when they were asking for drinks orders or delivering them. The Staff were very friendly, they all spoke english (of varying abilities but you get that when you have to speak several languages), they were all polite, they were all courteous, they were all professional and every single one of them went out of their way to make sure I was looked after. The reception people looked a bit frazzled on occasion but i was still served professionally. The Captain is a good sort and the ship is clearly looked after. Our baggage was delivered to our cabin without issue and the room stewards were fantastic. I had a slight issue with a leaking shower and they sorted it out immediately by getting a maintenance guy in and cleaning up after he fixed it. The only issue I can say bug'd me was the constant apologizing while it was happening but after seeing some passenger behavior i can understand why they were doing it. After being in remote camps in the 80's and 90's the food was better than what I was expecting could be cooked for a crowd of 600 three times a day but I couldn't rate it versus other ships. I do however eat good food when at home and know when I am being fed rubbish, which this wasn't. The full service restaurant was a nice experience and I didn't mind a short wait in the Captains bar until a table was free as i was getting to be a bit of a fan of a cocktail and quickly got used to a pre dinner drink in the Captains lounge. Compared to a bar in Perth the drink prices were reasonable and less than I was expecting given I was very much a captive audience. I was not that keen on the idea of cruising and i might have been going out of my mind for the first three days trying to turn off after a hectic year but i did get to relax, mainly because the internet was next to useless for trying to get work done (it was sufficient for emails though and i was warned). I enjoyed the experience more than i thought i would, which the wife was eternally grateful for. Thank you Astor, Captain and crew, you set us up for a good start to the year.   Read Less
Sail Date: March 2014
I was prompted to write this review after seeing a couple of negative ones. We were a group of 10 that went on the Astor in March 2014 for a 3 night cruise to nowhere (Busselton). My Comments: Boarding: was very smooth and quick. Took ... Read More
I was prompted to write this review after seeing a couple of negative ones. We were a group of 10 that went on the Astor in March 2014 for a 3 night cruise to nowhere (Busselton). My Comments: Boarding: was very smooth and quick. Took about 20 minutes from arrival at Terminal to cabin. Cabin: outside twin, very comfortable and very very clean Meals: overall would rate 4 out of 5. Good food and service, with a great wine list including western Australian wines. The boat: is what I would call boutique – a small vessel with about 600 passengers when full. The public areas had a really nice feel and our favourite spot was the Captains Club bar. Having been on a few P and O boats, by comparison this one is cosier, and very clean – the public toilets spotless as well. Entertainment: again very enjoyable, though the sound system was not balanced promptly on the 2nd night’s performance. Disembarkation: probably my main criticism was the queue to drop off your cabin key, confirm you have paid the bill and retrieve your passport/photo ID – this took about 30 – 40 minutes. Disabled access (wheelchair) – as with many ships of this style and age – I noted the corridors are not ideal (not wide) for wheelchairs, and the lift takes ages. Would I recommend to others? Yes   Read Less
Astor Ratings
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