Just back from another (yes, another!) Azamara cruise, sailing this time from Venice to Athens. Not one, not two, but THREE new ports (for us).
From day one this cruise was really special, from the wonderful greeting welcoming us onboard from Elizabeth, the Hotel Director, right through to the last night dining in Prime C with Emerson waiting on us so perfectly. Captain Antonio is such a wonderfully caring Captain making sure all his passengers and crew are happy and he has such a great sense of humour - it was wonderful to sail with him again. The hotel reception desk staff are so friendly and helpful.
The Den is such a great place to meet up (as is The Living Room) but unfortunately a recent change has been the introduction of intrusive background music which is either so low it is just indistinguishable background noise or so loud it intrudes upon conversations. There are areas without it, fortunately, but only in the games room/internet area and the Sunset Verandah, The latter of which unfortunately does not have a Sunset Bar (though the waiting staff cope very well).
The Journey Den area still has a casino until the next refit, but it does have a wonderful ‘window on the world’ multiscreen wall and I think it would make a great addition to The Den on the Pursuit.
The entertainment isn’t what is was - now only four singers performing mostly uninspiring shows. For instance they perform one called ‘Broadway’ but perform songs from many British shows which eventually made it to New York. Also some of the songs seem unsuited to the voices of the singers who perform them (Solo Saxophone from “Miss Saigon” an example, with the singers singing ‘solo sax-I-phone’!) The White Night is a significant exception with the Azamara Pursuit’s revised White Night performance (possibly a full 90-minute long) really Top Notch and the best White Night on any of the Azamara ships. Cruise Director Tony Markey also has a first class show especially when accompanied by his wife Christine.
Lee the Assistant Cruise Director, has such great people skills - always around making sure that everyone is having a great time. Fernando is a great LCV Ambassador and Cruise Sales Manager.
We enjoyed a number of excursions on this cruise, usually with excellent guides but find (a) some of the excursion descriptions are not accurate, and (b) some excursions are sold to people unable to keep up, thus delaying everyone else.
On the last night of this cruise we dined with friends in Prime C when Emerson waited upon us with sheer professionalism making the evening an absolute delight. However there were several people in the restaurant unsuitably attired - a young man in shorts and flip flops and another man wearing a straw hat and rambling pants. May I suggest that a note be included on the restaurant confirmation of booking card reminding diners of the expected standard of dress. This would make it clear and ease the embarrassment of restaurant staff.
Why do we keep coming back to Azamara? Firstly, it HAS to be the crew - they are EXCEPTIONAL! They give such caring service and always so willingly and with a smile. At breakfast on the Windows Terrace this morning, Gina welcomed us and smilingly brought us our English breakfast tea. Azamara suggest that “You’ll love where we take you”, and we do. We love where they take us - we love HOW they take us, and we love WITH WHOM they take us (the wonderful crew and frequently other Azamara frequent cruisers).
We look forward to sailing with Azamara again. We don’t intend to wait long - we sail again in July!
Delightful stateroom with plenty of space.
A very picturesque little town
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Very hot when we were here so just enjoyed an almost empty ship
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