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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
This was our third cruise but first (and last) time with Costa. They first stuck us in a cabin over the propellers and docking machinery. We did get our room changed. All the food tasted ike it was fast food micowaved for the masses. This ... Read More
This was our third cruise but first (and last) time with Costa. They first stuck us in a cabin over the propellers and docking machinery. We did get our room changed. All the food tasted ike it was fast food micowaved for the masses. This was probably to motivate you to try the higher end paying restaurants. Crew looked tired due to working 9 months straight without breaks. Cancelled 3 of our tours and dont even think of taking this ship if you are american or english speaking. Very Italian which implies Patience is not in their DNA nor being soft spoken. Get a good set of earplugs if you take thus cruise. Between the screaming children, rude gestures and poor entertainment we were anxious to leave the ship. Highlights were the wonderful tenor they had only perform one night and after the 50th rendition of 'Volare' heard throughout the ship it finally grew on me :) Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
We wanted to enjoy some of the sites along the mediterranean. Very disappointed with customer service. They were non attentive and did not respond to our concerns. Wait staff were indifferent and sometimes hostile and arrogant. ... Read More
We wanted to enjoy some of the sites along the mediterranean. Very disappointed with customer service. They were non attentive and did not respond to our concerns. Wait staff were indifferent and sometimes hostile and arrogant. Disembarkment and dispensal of passports at the end of the cruise was at best chaotic and disorganized. Recommendation save your money and go on an American cruise line. There you are treated like a king. There were no smoking signs everywhere, all of them were ignored and smoking was everywhere. Cabins were OK. Clean and modern. Entertainment was a joke. All shows were in Italian. No attempt was made to have english speaking shows. Over all the cruise was adequate, if you dont mind putting up with shoddy service, arrogant and inattentive food service people and waiters. The gym had 10 treadmills for 4000 travellers. The pool was more like a kiddy pool. See the world in a different cruise line Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
This was our 35 th cruise, and our first one in Europe. The ship was beautiful and very clean. However, they served a repetitive, cheap, and limited menu. There were only a few desserts to choose from during dinner, and no coffee served ... Read More
This was our 35 th cruise, and our first one in Europe. The ship was beautiful and very clean. However, they served a repetitive, cheap, and limited menu. There were only a few desserts to choose from during dinner, and no coffee served which surprised me even though we bought the beverage package. We had to get coffee at the bar area after dinner. The buffet areas were extremely crowded and a cheap repetitive selection of food. Sit down breakfast was limited and confined to one dining room. In order to eat a nice sit down lunch with a menu you had to pay. When I go on a cruise, I like to sit down elegantly for a breakfast or lunch and be served. My husband and I felt like there was a lack of communication from the captain. On every on of our previous cruises the captain usually gives a daily report from the bridge on weather etc. The entertainment left a lot to be desired. We didn't stay for many of them. After dinner, my husband and I would try to walk on the Promenade deck but couldn't because it was wet due to their early cleaning. Also, there were too many smoking areas on the Promenade Deck so as you walked for exercise you had to breathe in all of that smoke. Finally, we had a room on Deck 9 which was a mistake because the buffet area was above us and we could hear noise all night. After a few nights they finally moved our room to deck 8 which was much better. We will never go on a Costa Cruise again especially in Europe! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
I choose this cruise, primarily because I was able to coordinate dates with a friend and because it is a newer ship. I didn't appreciate how large it is and I found it too large for my taste, and there was a lack of information about some ... Read More
I choose this cruise, primarily because I was able to coordinate dates with a friend and because it is a newer ship. I didn't appreciate how large it is and I found it too large for my taste, and there was a lack of information about some services on board - such as which bars actually will serve a cappuccino? The atmosphere was very much family oriented which made it noisy and hectic. If I had read the ship features more closely I would have realized that this ship would be catering to families. As some other reviews have pointed out, what you get for your money is the ship. No information about the ports you stop at, and the shuttle was for a fee 10 - 12 euros per person at each port. It seemed like they are pinching pennies in ways that detract from the overall experience - being changed for water in our room even though we had a drinks package, being able to get a cappuccino at the bar, but the pastries at the bar were for a price, even though you could go to the dining room and get all the pastries you wanted. Overall the food was ok to good. A little disappointing given the Italian pride in their cuisine. The staff were very friendly and helpful, and our waiter in the dining room was very thoughtful. Getting off and on was well organized and delays were kept to a minimum. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
This is our worst cruise experience. The ship circulates in the west Medit. Sea and stops at several ports. At every port there are people getting on or off the ship. The newly boarded people are, as usual, very excited, which makes this ... Read More
This is our worst cruise experience. The ship circulates in the west Medit. Sea and stops at several ports. At every port there are people getting on or off the ship. The newly boarded people are, as usual, very excited, which makes this ship extremely noisy. There are people running and shouting at small hours in the hallway every evening. The cleaning and preparation crew move the chairs, drop heavy boxes, mop the floor using heavy machines from mid night to early morning with no consideration that there are people sleeping under the dining area. We had 7 sleepless nights on the ship. In addition, the dinner on this ship has also a lot to be desired. All members of our family (3 people) had severe diarrhea on board. The dinner has very few choices of cheap dishes. We went to the formal dinner once and never did again. The buffet was so-so and was very crowded. There was only one counter that offers fried eggs in the morning and the line was half mile long every morning. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Our first cruise on Costa was great. We took 4 children and everyone had a great vacation. All food was included - there were no "excluded" items for extra $ such as lobster. There was all the ice cream you wanted. You ... Read More
Our first cruise on Costa was great. We took 4 children and everyone had a great vacation. All food was included - there were no "excluded" items for extra $ such as lobster. There was all the ice cream you wanted. You could eat pretty much any time you desired. I am not a cruise snob but I have now been on 9 cruises on 6 different cruise lines both with and without children. My expectations are not unreasonable, simply based on previous experience. Unfortunately Costa has changed and not for the better. For example, There is no "free ice cream" available. Many of the best food items you now have to pay extra for. The dishes offered were definitely not as good as on the previous trip. The buffet closes prior to ending time and runs out of food. Much of the food is the same every day. However our waiter, Joey, in the dining room was wonderful. Very attentive, trying constantly to please. Internet/wifi costs an exorbitant fee and many at the hospitality desk are not very helpful. However, Matteo was the epitome of what an ideal customer service representative should be. The evening entertainment (singers not including the opera soloist) was less professional than on previous cruises. The on shore excursions were pricey. And a heads up to those who have not cruised before. There is a "service fee" every day on your account which you may or may not be made aware of until check out. You can opt out but it is a major undertaking to get this accomplished. Conflicting information and requirements from different employees at the same hospitality desk. Thank you again Matteo for your help. We had a good time doing out own agenda on shore, the food was adequate and the employees mentioned, along with help from Jessica, (the english liason), made it a good trip for our family. However I think I will be looking at other cruise lines in the future unless Costa Cruise Line makes some major modifications to their current policies. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
We were looking for a Mediterranean cruise to take the middle week of a three week vacation. After reading a lot of reviews, we booked this cruise on the Costa Diadema with a little bit of trepidation as it seemed a majority of the ... Read More
We were looking for a Mediterranean cruise to take the middle week of a three week vacation. After reading a lot of reviews, we booked this cruise on the Costa Diadema with a little bit of trepidation as it seemed a majority of the reviews were either four star or one star. From the very beginning, we knew we were going to love this cruise.....checkin at Civitavecchia was seamless -- we showed our tickets and passports and were boarded without a wait....have never had that happen on any cruise ship, yet alone one that had close to 5,000 passengers on it! The cabin was nice sized with very comfortable bed and ample room to move around. Our cabin steward was outstanding the entire week. Since we had been on vacation for a week already, we had laundry needs, and Costa was the best, with a laundry special of 25 pieces for a flat rate of $20 euros, washed and folded. The cabin was made up each morning and evening. Dining was a great experience every evening in the Fiorentino Ristorante. Our waiter, Ajid, was the best we've ever had on a cruise. The menu was fantastic, with three or four special choices in each category, plus a standard Italian fare always available. My wife and I both cook gourmet recipes, and this food was five star in every respect; choice, presentation, flavor and service. Being from USA we had bottled water at our table each evening free of charge. Sparkling for me, still for my wife, with full bottles sitting on the table when we sat down. We were never rushed, nor did we ever wait too long. We ate at the Teppanyaki Grill one evening and it was a fun show and marvelous Japanese food, right down to the Miso soup and Asian ginger salad. We had lunch one day at the Lido buffet, and like most cruises, found it to be a feeding frenzy, although the food was better than we've had on other cruises. Most mornings we opted for breakfast in our cabin at no charge, as we had paid a little extra for premium services. The excursions were well planned and reasonable, as cruise ships go. We appreciated the fact that Costa forewarns customers which excursions might be difficult for mobility impaired passengers. We took three 'easy' tours, which were perfect and still let us enjoy the major sights of each port.... Disembarking was just as easy and flawless as getting on the ship! No long waiting for our time slot, we were out of the cabin at the required 8:00 a.m. time, went to breakfast, retrieved our passports and left the ship to find our luggage waiting. Would we take Costa again? In a heartbeat! We have decided that all the negative reviews come from people who do not understand European service. While many of the passengers seemed rude and would brush by you, that is just the way they are. Announcements were always made in several languages and easy to understand. The 10 euro daily service fee is below that of most other cruise lines, and in fact we tipped both our room steward and waiter additional before we left the ship. Ship crew was not indifferent as many people have said, but were attentive to and responsive to all of our needs. Well done, Costa Diadema, and thank you for a wonderful experience! Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
Let me start off by saying I am neither a complainer nor a pushover. I like to say things as they are and to hell with what the majority or otherwise might say. Nor am I a happy clapper willing to give out praise where it not due. That ... Read More
Let me start off by saying I am neither a complainer nor a pushover. I like to say things as they are and to hell with what the majority or otherwise might say. Nor am I a happy clapper willing to give out praise where it not due. That out of the way, let me proceed. As seasoned travellers myself and my wife have been most places in the world and often several times over. However, until now we have resisted the urge to cruise. Don't ask me why, I have no logical reason, other than liking to be in charge of my our own day to day lives and what we decide to do with them, which is best suited to a holiday where we set the daily itinerary. I was often put off by the choice available, the often very high prices, and unfortunately, the high prices upfront to fly to some of the departure ports from Northern Ireland. For instance, the Caribbean felt a good option several times, but paying up to £700 each for flights just to get to Miami and then the cost of the cruise on top was a turn off. Deep down I also had a fear that I would get cabin fever, and also harboured an illogical feeling that a cruise ship was merely a tarted up ferry and I would know it inside out and back to front within an hour. This proved to be unfounded. So this year we decided it was time to break our mould and book a cruise. The Western Med seemed a safe bet, and being slightly off season in March we wouldn't have spent a Kings ransom if it turned out we really were not up for cruising at all. If we liked it, then spending a lot more in some sunny summer exotic destination would be less of a worry. After an evening of internet research, I arrived at the Costa website, and we finally decided on a Western Med 7 night cruise on the Costa Diadema out of Barcelona. We booked an exterior room with a balcony. We also booked the Piu Gusto all inclusive drinks package including Cocktails. So off we set in early March 2018 In the midst of severe arctic weather as a result of the polar vortex over Ireland and the UK in late feb early March 2018, and we duly arrived in Barcelona on a rather pleasant saturday afternoon. Our cruise wasn't due to leave until Monday night, so we decided it would be good to book a hotel for 2 nights in Barcelona as well. This was a great decision, we had 2 lovely days in the city, and our hotel was right by the cruise port which meant a 2 minute transfer from hotel to Ship on Monday afternoon. Monday came quick enough and a quick taxi run saw us arriving at a modern fresh Cruise terminal purpose built by Costa. The Diadema in all its spotless glory was tied up alongside. Our labelled bags were whisked away, and an hour later, we were called to board. On entering the ship the lavish design is the first thing that hits you. This was no glorified ferry! The ship is beautifully fitted out and spotlessly clean. We made out way to room 2037 on deck 2 and were pleasantly surprised at the size of the room, the bed and balcony. Our two Cruise cards were awaiting us on the bed. These act as your boarding card/ ID at port stops, your payment method whilst onboard, and your door keycard for entry to your room. The idea is you "pair" your credit card to the cruise card at one of the multiple terminals onboard. You then no longer use personal cards or cash on board. Any accrued cost, you settle the night before your trip ends. Of course, the card also holds details of your drinks package, so all your drink 'purchases' are free. You will be called to a meeting point an hour or two after boarding, resplendent with life jacket for a compulsory drill. All in all it took about 20 minutes. This is taken extremely seriously by the crew members and they expect you to treat it as seriously and pay attention to all that you are told. Common sense, and no more an interruption on your cruise than the flight attendant instructions at the start of a flight. At this point, I'll explain go back and explain the drinks packages. There are several, from water only, kids soft drinks, meal only wine packages, wine only all areas, main spirits wines and beers, everything inc Cocktails (but not absolute premium brands) this is the package that we had , and the everything you want package including the very top brands like 20 year old Brandys. Note: everyone travelling on the same booking must have the same package for adults. This is to prevent the card holder 'buying' drinks on the all inclusive package, and passing them to others who haven't paid for the package. Incidentally, I saw this once with a group of 30 something men. The barman saw it happening and immediately refused further service to the whole group. They were then escorted from the bar. I don't know if their cards were confiscated, but on the literature it does say that this could happen if abused. Simply, do the right thing and you are fine, if caught, the bar staff take it seriously and will take action. All the bars on ship serve the same range of drinks and the extensive drinks menu is at every bar. You simply look at the coloured dot that represents your package on the front page of the menu, and any drink that has your colour dot (yellow in our case) then that drink is included. Our package was hugely inclusive and only about 3 cocktails and a selection of like 20 year old brandies were excluded. It included dozens of top brands. Martell, Johnny Walker, Baileys, Smirnoff, Gordons, Martini, Bacardi, Canadian Club, and loads of liquors and beers, coffee, soft drinks and juices.. The Cocktail menu was to die for, with about 30 on offer. (Try the Bahama Mama!!) At €8.20 a cocktail, it would be an expensive night if you were paying by drink. Our package was €175 each. We each drank about €70 of cocktails etc on the first night! :-) Suffice to say, the drink package is worth it. When you consider it includes your wine at dinner, soft drinks etc at lunch time, all your Illy coffees on board. I estimate our tab would have been not much shy of €1000 for the 8 days onboard. (you can avail of your breakfast, lunch and drinks package on departure day as well!) Stay away from the minibar in the rooms as usual over priced. Now for all said above, heres the anomaly. This company (Costa) has a real bee in its bonnet over drinking water! Yes, the stuff you need to stay alive. It is not included free in the room (€3.50 a litre from the mini bar.) It is only dispensed from water dispensers to cup in the buffet area, and by glass only in the restaurants. If you want chilled bottled water, you have to pay extra! even with a drinks package, unless you take out the actual water drinks package! So Martell VSOP brandy and €9 Cocktails are included on your package, but chilled bottled water isn't even though they would likely stock it at about 10 cents a bottle! Very strange, and it seems to irk a lot of people going by comments here and elsewhere. It also seems unique to Costa. So, sort it Costa, really silly policy and one which needs addressed. I cannot for the life of me understand having an all inclusive drinks package and not having the cheapest and most basic form of drink available on it! However that said, I don't remember gasping for water onboard, it is available from dispensers 24/7 and we kept a litre in the room at all times. Moving onto dining. I can genuinely say that If I had have believed some of the ridiculous reviews left by some people here and elsewhere, I may have cancelled the trip. What it did do was leave us with some doubts as to what the food would be like. There must be a lot of people out there with very low tolerance levels, or very delicate palettes . This is an Italian cruise ship. There is no escaping it caters mainly for Italian, Spanish, French and German peoples. In fact English was the 3rd or 4th language translated for announcements. I am not a picky eater at all, but I admit enjoying the typical UK/ Irish diet. Everything from fish and chips, roast beef, a good curry etc. But I also enjoy rice dishes etc. I wouldn't say I am a big lover of the classic mediterranean diet, but I would have a go anyway. Suffice to say, the food will be different than the UK or Irish traveller might be used to. But its of very high quality. In a nutshell, both my wife and I were bowled over with the quality of food on offer. The Italian chefs onboard created dishes each night that were just amazing. From basic spaghetti and pasta dishes, to the beef, lamb, chicken and pork offerings. We were blown away. It was so satisfying too, as our expectations had been lowered so much by these reviews!. I have to say to some of the reviewers on this site, some of you must be serial complainers or just unfortunate, because the experience we had all over the ship was of a serious effort to provide top class food and experience and I don't think we were let down once. You will be allocated a dining room on day one, with either sitting 1 or 2. We were in the Fiorintino restaurant on deck 3/4 for first sitting. Some reviews said staff were nasty and overworked, food arrived cold and took hours. I think you are reviewing the wrong boat. Our waiter was prompt, wine bottle in hand before you had even warmed the seat. The 5 course menu browsed, a nibble at the constant supply of fresh breads, and the first course arrived within 10 minutes. We never spent longer than 1 hour to 80 mins in the restaurant unless chatting to people. It was a lovely experience in 5 star surroundings. The waiting staff were warm and friendly and nothing was too much for them. The food was superb, resented like a top restaurant and cooked perfectly. Now, if you didn't want the sit down 5 course meal, or you decided to eat later, the Buffet on floor 10 was available up until well after 9. If you have experienced all you can eat buffets before, this will be of no surprise to you, but it was no where near the problem some have posted. Its busy, but we never found it crazy busy. You may well have to look around for 2 or 3 minutes to get a seat in the actual buffet area, but never longer than that. Also the area directly outside the buffet has hundreds of seats and tables to eat at also. The buffet runs along 3 sides, and is split into Oriental (Chinese type dishes, rice, fried rice, noodles, ribs, chinese chicken pork etc,) Italian, spaghettis, pasta, lasagnes, ravioli, then a big area serving roast beef, chicken etc. A large salad area and a dessert area. Again, for a buffet, the food is very good and you can have a really nice meal here. One review I read actually said, "most of the food available in the buffet is cold"! what absolute rubbish! This is also the location for your continental breakfast. Cooked breakfasts are at your designated restaurants. In addition to this, there are 3 or 4 "prestige" restaurants, costing about €25 per person per head over and above your inclusive package. There is the Tarayaki, The Ferrari and another. We never bothered, as the food inclusive was so good. You also have an Italian Pizzeria and a burger bar available (at a cost) to about 1.30am, or room service 24 hours at a cost of course. The Pizza is to die for, seriously. We had a full cooked breakfast in bed one morning for €10 all in. (Full UK style) So thats the food aspect. We were really delighted. I expect in review columns like this, it is natural that people will come to complain more than compliment, but I really must say a big congratulations to Costa for service and food. So on to the ship itself. Wow. Its a bit of an assault on the senses. The sheer size of it is the first thing that hits you. It is vast. 16 floors high, numerous bars restaurants etc. A shopping mall, casino, cinema, theatre, disco, nightclub, 2 pools, jacuzzis, country club, Ice cream parlour, spas. Just about everything you would expect. I understand its one of if not the biggest currently on Mediterranean duty. The shops are typical of cruise liners. Tommy Hilfiger, up market watches, and the typical Boots type perfume and lotions shops. Not really our thing but nice enough to kill an hour or so. Do be aware, they run 'sales and promotions' most nights, but in reality the prices are rubbish and its easy to get sucked in when in holiday mode. You will pay at least what you will pay at home, sometimes a lot more! Suffice to say, ignore the 75% off luxury watches promos. Ripoff. But I am sure you are not cruising for the shops on board. Each night, you will receive the ships "newspaper" detailing all of the next days activities and the port of call. This is excellent because you know whats on the ship at any time. We enjoyed a show one night in the vast theatre, and shows change nightly. But we found our home in the country club where a terrific cover band called Royal Alligators played Dire Straits,Queen, Toto, Police, and all the old classics until the early hours. They were very talented and pulled big crowds each night. Other than that, it was nice to just drift about the ship in and out of venues to see what was on, you really can lose yourself walking about the many decks and bars. The bar and lounge areas are all slightly different but designed beautifully, and its lovely to sit in any of them and just take in a bit of entertainment. And this is non stop. This is a dancing boat! Morning noon and night, there are couple Cha cha'ing or Latin dancing to their hearts content. There are free classes on constantly, with bands, singers, musicians, comedians, and dancers doing different shows every night. The public areas are busy, but not frantic. Italians do tend to converse loudly and shout rather than talk, but I don't remember ever feeling that the Ship was rowdy or boisterous. Just happy! You would have thought the waiting and bar staff would be trained to slow down the drinks intake of all those all inclusive passengers to save the company money, but its quite the opposite. The staff will arrive as soon as your glass is empty to fetch a refill. The service is excellent. In fact, the attention and service of staff all over the ship is really exemplary. They are courteous, well trained and efficient. There are always people polishing stair rails and glass partitions, cleaning surfaces etc. You will not see a fingerprint on this ship. I'll not dwell on the ports called at. Suffice to say, we stopped at Palma, Palermo in Sicily, Rome, Savona, Marseilles and back to Barcelona. I cant comment on the tours, but we booked the bus transfer to Rome and it left and came back on time, and the same in Palma. On early arrival back at Barcelona, we had breakfast. Our cases were left outside the room the night before to be transferred to the terminal for collection (saves you carting them through he ship on exit). We were told we could stay on board until about 1 pm which we did, availing of lunch and a few more Cocktails! So an excellent trip with 5 star service board and food. We will definitely cruise on the Diadema again. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We have just returned home from a weeks cruise around the Med on the Costa Diadema. This was my annual birthday cruise and we have cruised on the Diadema before, this was our 3rd time. I shall post comments on how we found our cruise ... Read More
We have just returned home from a weeks cruise around the Med on the Costa Diadema. This was my annual birthday cruise and we have cruised on the Diadema before, this was our 3rd time. I shall post comments on how we found our cruise experience to be but this will be a lengthy review. I shall be posting menus, and current drinks prices as well as extracts from the daily whats on programme. For those who do not like detailed lengthy reviews you have been warned (Grin). As we are Perla Diamente (top level tier Guests) one of the perks is that our cases are collected from our home and delivered to the ship (only within Europe) so armed only with hand luggage we set off from Alicante train station to Barcleona the day before the cruise departed. The journey takes 5 hours on the fast train and it is a comfortable ride. We stayed this time at the Crowne plaza fira centre, only 2 stops from Sants which is one of the main hubs and from the hotel is only 3 stops from Drasanes which is the cruise terminal metro stop. The Crowne Plaza was a comfortable stay and we had booked an executive room which was very comfortable. The following day we departed the hotel and made our way to the cruise port. There are shuttles running from near the colombus monument whch drop you off outside the terminal at a cost of 3€ single or 4€ return. On the shuttle bus we met a couple of Italian people who recognised us from our last cruise, This happened quite a lot of times on this cruise both with passengers and staff and was a wonderful surprise. Outside the cruise terminal, you showed your travel documents and you were given an embarkation number, ours was number 1 (another perk) you then made your way inside the terminal where you filled out a health questionaire form. You then went to check in where you handed in your health check form and tickets, your photo was taken and you were then told that your cruise card would be on the bed in your cabin and given a time when embarkation would begin. We were then escorted to the VIP lounge (another perk) dont get too excited, it was just a smallish room with a table of snacks (crisps,(chips) biscuits, (cookies) various soft drinks, (soda) and water. We were told that somebody would be up to escort us to the ship embarkation point at 1.30pm. We were the only people in the VIP lounge and if i'm honest, i did miss the hustle and bustle of the other passengers, but unfortunately because of current health issues i now don't do well in crowds especially when people tend to push and shove or dont concentrate on where they walk. It doesn't take much for me to lose my balance, so i tend to wait until crowds disperse. Anyway a few minutes before 1.30pm we were indeed escorted to the embarkation line where crowds of people were standing around waiting to be boarded. Even with the anouncements that boarding would begin with number 1 followed by 2,3,4,etc people were still trying to board with higher numbers, to no avail, The young lady who was escorting us made it quite clear that they had to sit down and a clear path was made for me. I think i would have fallen if this had not have happened, so thanks Costa for this definate improvement. The obligatory ships embarkation photo was next and then we were on board. Our cabins were ready and we went to the cabin to collect our cruise cards, then up to the restaurant club diadema (yet another perk where all perla diamente and suite guests get to take all their meals on board.) Because this cruise was so busy they had to allocate 2 seating times instead of dine as you please, 1st seating was at 6.30pm and 2nd at 9.15pm. We were 2nd seating but if you got peckish beforehand you could always have a little something from the buffet area. Justine was the Maitre'D in the club Restaurant and we are old friends, we have watched him grow through the rank and file and he has now been promoted again to assistant Matre'D throughout the whole ship. We are thrilled for him and for those of you who know him, i'm sure you'll agree his promotion is richly deserved, for those who don't know him, if you ever get the chance to meet him, you are in for a treat. He and his team looked after us (again) so well, and we are proud to call him a friend. I did take some menus and i will copy what was available under another heading. This may take some time as i have not mastered the art of thumbnailing and pasting, so i'll have to type everything. The rest of the afternoon was spent reaquainting ourselves with the ship, some parts have been re-decorated, The ship is very big and glitzy but she does feel very welcoming. I have taken a video of the ship and for the first time i will attempt tp post it on a very well known video web site (LOL) this will be my first attempt, so please do be kind and patient. We then got ready for evening dinner and went to the show in the theatre, reserved front 3 rows for Diamente and Suite guests up until 5 minutes before the show starts, this is now rigourously enforced and you will be asked for your cruise card. It is amazing the number of passengers who when challenged argue with the host/ess even though it is clearly marked. I would'nt want their job for the world and i take my hat off to them. A nightcap after the evening meal and then bed. Goodnight day 1. Ports of call. Because we have sailed this route many times, we decided to mainly enjoy the ship. The majority of passengers do tend to go ashore and on port days you do feel as if the ship belongs to you, at least for a little while. Costa tend to embark and disembark passengers at the vast majority of points called, which makes it easier for passengers to embark at a point thats closer to where they live. Their main hub is savonna in Italy. So on this cruise it's like a loop. Savona, Italy, Marseille (France) Barcelona (Spain) Palma de Mallorca (Spain) At sea. Palermo (Sicilly Italy) Civatevecia for Rome, (Italy) and then back to Savona. We chose to embark and disembark in Barcelona. This time the only port of call we got off, was in Marseille, The ships shuttle bus cost 10.95€ return journey. We only got off here because we had arranged to meet some French friends of ours who we met on our last cruise. They live about 2 hours from Marseille and kindly met us. We had a fantastic time catching up on all the news and had a wonderful meal in a restaurant sat outside on the terrace. The weather was very kind to us with clear blue skys and a warm temparature of about 20c, 68-70f. Cabin. Because we were only on board for a week we opted to stay in an inside cabin in a premium category. It was perfectly acceptable and had plenty of storage space, 2 large suitcases fit under the bed. Our cabin steward Marie looked after us very well and it appears that Costa too are now trying to slowly introduce the Morning, Evening, or both cabin service. Their explanation is they are trying to reduce the effect of detergents on the environment. Marie made the choice for us and put both. We are very tidy people and try to make the cleaning staffs job as easily as possible, they work incredibly hard and for very long hours. Whilst walking up and down the cabin corridor we are often horrified at the way some passengers leave their cabin, the words pig sty come to mind. At the moment Costa charge a service fee of 10€ per person per day, this is shared out between all non salaried staff from the person who cleans the public areas up to your dining room attendants. It is clearly stated that this is NON removable and so it is easy to factor this into the cost of your holiday. Believe me, these guys and girls are worth every penny of this service charge. For us, these cruise staff make our holiday and we appreciate every single one of them. Every single staff member we encountered were hard working and friendly. A smile and a cheery greeting goes a long way and we gained an insight into the lives of these dedicated people. Entertainment. Entrtainment ranged from spa and health talks, excercise classes, games on deck, dance classes and quizzes during the day. Perhaps not as much as on an American /British ship but there is something for everyone. For me, i'm a people watcher, i find people of different cultures and countries fascinating. It doesn't matter if i can't understand what people are saying. It's how they interact with each other that speaks volumes. I can easily spend the day just watching people. I also have some home hobbies and can often be seen doing some crochet. Evening entertainment consists of different bars having musical bands, duos and solos. On this cruise every single entertainer was very good with a good choice of music style. The various dance floors always had people dancing and enjoying themselves. The theatre shows were a good mix ranging from production shows, Tenor, a one man circus show and a sort of balletic acrobatic show which had the audience on their feet, including us, for a standing ovation, seriously it was that good. There is also the late night disco which always had a crowd, unfortunately that doesn't really get going until well after midnight and because of health issues or too much food(LOL) i usually have to retire by then. I did stay up for the white night party and that was amazing fun but i did suffer for it the next day(grin). I will type some of the activities from the daily Diario in another segment so please be patient. Food and Drink. For the price we paid for the cruise (just over 50 pounds a day) remember you get Breakfast, Lunch, Afternoon snacks and dinner, plus your accomodation,your different ports of call and your entertainment, this offers incredible value for money and nobody in their right minds could expect Gourmet meals for this amount of money. We have cruised with Costa a lot now and for us they are now our preferred cruise line. We don't know what they have done but certainly on this cruise the food went up another level. We were astounded at the quality. I don't know if it was the same in the main restaurant but certainly in the club diadema and the food from the buffet had certainly improved. It was average to good before but this time for us it was good to excellent. In the club restaurant you only get the Italian experience whilst the buffet has a more international choice, for me when i'm on holiday,i do like to be waited on and have the gleaming cutlery on white table cloths. Sometimes however i do fancy a little something different especially Asian food, but i don't like waiting in line. Justine (Maitre'D) must have over heard me and to my horror but delight he came over and told me not to order anything from the menu as he had sent 1 of his waiters to get me a selection of Asian food from the buffet, it was delicious, yet i was a little embarrassed that 1 of the waiters walked to the buffet to get me it. That's going above and beyond. On another occasion i had chosen the lamb from the menu and was saying to Donald (my darling other half) that if i was at home i'd be gnawing on the bone (grin) It was so tender and sweet. Again i must have been overheard because lo and behold a plate with 2 extra double cut chops appeared in front of me. On the final night of my cruise it was my birthday and as another perk of the loyalty club you receive a birthday cake, it was huge. Imagine my surprise when another birthday cake appeared, this time from the chefs and staff of the club restaurant decorated with the words “we will miss you” The chefs and staff of the restaurant then toasted me with champagne. I was extremely humbled and touched (i cried) again thats going above and beyond, and i thank them all. We enjoyed every single meal. Some people criticise the high cost of drinks which can work out expensive especially if you do like to drink. However you can't expect to pay the same amount of money for a drink as you would pay in your local pub/bar. Prices are comparible to a 4 star hotel. We are not really heavy drinkers of alcohol but we do like an occasional drink and i discovered the delights of Hugo Spritz rosa (elderflower syrup topped up with prossecco and some sort of red liqour) so i'd have a couple of those as well as soft drinks water tea and coffee. Donald would do the same but he liked tha black russian. We had reserved a piu gusto package at 29.49€ per person a day. Remember we are not huge drinkers but we kept a list of all we drank and if we had not purchased the package we'd have spent 822€. by purchasing the package we spent approx 398€. please remember that 15% has to be added to all drinks purchased and the prices shown do reflect this. I will type the menus and drinks list in a seperate section. Disembarkation. As another Diamente perk we get laundry up to 25 items washed, dried and folded. We also get the luggage delivered back home. The luggage does have to be wrapped in cellophane and i really hate doing that. When i had done it and called for it to be collected from the cabin, i was asked why i hadn't let them wrap it for me, apparantly i'm the only person on the ship with top level status who did this and i hate it, so i know what to do next time (giggle) We had a leisurely breakfast and Lunch on board and then sans luggage made our way back to Barcelona Sants to Alicante. The train left at 4pm and we were back in the house at 10.30pm. The cruise is over and we do miss it. We had a fantastic time and can't wait for our next one aboard the Costa Victoria in June. I hope you enjoyed reading this. As i said Menus, drinks and entertainment will appear soon. Read Less
Costa Diadema Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.0 3.2
Entertainment 4.0 3.4
Public Rooms 4.0 3.7
Fitness Recreation 5.0 3.3
Family 4.0 3.3
Shore Excursion 3.0 3.0
Enrichment 2.0 2.8
Service 4.0 3.4
Value For Money 4.0 3.2
Rates 3.0 N/A

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