Britannia Cruise Review by Leoni
- Sail Date: September 2018
- Destination: Mediterranean
We read the reviews; just as we had for Ventura; but dismissed them as there had been bad reviews of Ventura too, but we'd not had a single issue (apart from a minor dislike of the buffet restaurant which we found cramped).
Unfortunately; in hindsight the bad reviews of Britannia are accurate. It was a disappointing cruise from the start. I will say that our cabin was perfectly fine, and the steward service excellent, our steward was a delight and the highlight of our cruise. However service elsewhere on ship was somewhat surly from time to time and lacked the friendliness and attention to detail we experienced on Ventura.
Embarkation was flawless and we were on the ship quickly; our luggage arriving quickly afterwards. We unpacked and found the cabin to be perfect; although we were disappointed that we couldnt folllow our spending on the TV like we could on Ventura.
the Horizon Buffet restaurant is a massive improvement on the buffet restaurants on Ventura, far more wide, open spaces, easier to navigate with a tray. The restaurant is very popular and you are better to go earlier or later; avoid it at busy times if you want to find a seat. I felt the food on offer was better quality than on Ventura. Unfortunately the same could not be said for the MDR; we were booked on the 2030 seating and frequently across the 12 nights of the cruise the food quality was poor and once I even sent food back - food from Marco Pierre Whites menu, nonetheless! - because it was stone cold!
Entertainment. The entertainment was abysmal. We saw PULSE so many times that we even started noticing when they rejigged their shows; meaning they'd perform some numbers on their 80's show, and then they'd appear later in the cruise slotted in on another show called something else. There seemed to be much more variety on Ventura and we had been able to see quite a few different acts.
The Limelight Club. We were really looking forward to this - but our choice of act was either Claire Sweeney or Cheryl Baker. And we're not in our 70's, so that was rather disappointing. We had to give it a miss.
The Crystal Room - what an utter, utter waste of a venue. Absolutely beautiful, elegant space, wasted night after night after night with a dreary singer, followed by " and 1,2 3, 4...!!" instructor led Ballroom dancing for old people. Utter, utter waste of a beautiful venue and a space that could have been put far better to use.
Decor - believe the reviews. Posh ferry springs to mind. Ventura is not in the same league as Princess or MSc ships; but Britannia as the flag-ship was expected to have a sense of refinement and class. It doesnt. It is dark,dreary and... to our cost we found out, not as well maintained from a cleanlinless point of view. Everywhere we went on Ventura, there were staff cleaning. I lost count of the number of times i saw the handrails on the staircases being polished and cleaned with hand sanitiser. Not once did i see this on Britannia....as a result I caught a virus. By the end of the cruise, and after I had been too ill to get off the ship for 5 of the destinations, the whole ship had it and it was dubbed "Britannia Cough" amongst the passengers. On return home I saw my doctor who prescribed yet more antibiotics and steroids; and I was ill for a further two weeks.
We are booked on Azura for September 2019 which we booked prior to booking Britannia; and we have high hopes that it will be similar to the lovely time we had on Britannia. Unfortunately the Britannia cruise has done its worst; and we are booking with Princess for 2020.
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