We chose this cruise because I wanted to see Heidelberg again and we chose Emerald because it had been recommended to us. This was our first cruise of any kind.
The cruise started on a Saturday and we were leaving home on the Wednesday, three nights earlier, to have one night nearer our airport and two nights in our embarkation city (as part of oour booking). Two days before leaving I emailed Emerald as I had not received any documentation. I receive back a confirmation that my documentation had been dispatched by courier, with a delivery by 20.00 hours on the Wednesday. I had to suggest the documentation be emailed to me, then we delayed our departure until after the package arrived at 16.00 hours. After that hiccup the organisation couldn't be faulted.
Transfers from airport to hotel and hotel to ship worked perfectly. We had a wait in the ship's lounge until our cabin was ready but that gave us an opportunity to meet and talk with some of our fellow passengers.
In the main breakfast and lunch were buffet style and waiter served at dinner. Wine and beer were complimentary at lunch and dinner and we had the drinks package for other drinks. This meant carrying a package ticket but after a couple of evenings the bar staff knew we had tickets and didn't ask to see them again. Service was outstanding in both the restaurant and the lounge bar.
Entertainment in the evening was a good mix with not everything being to everyone's liking, but something for everyone.
In the main the ports and excursions were good. In hindsight we wouldn't have gone on the Alsace Wine Tasting Tour as we didn't think it was value for money and would have preferred spending more time in Strasbourg. The visit to the open air museum of 16th century life and demonstration of Black Forest Cake making was interesting, but a long drive.
Would we go on another river cruise - yes. With Emerald - absolutely
We booked the Owners Suite and the only complaint could be that suitcases could be stored under beds in other cabins but, because of the type of beds there was no room and we ended up storing them under the dressing table.
Service to the cabin was first class with used towels changed up to three times a day, canapes left in the cabin, a free mini-bar, ample bottled water and laundry collected and returned the same day.