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The experience started badly in Manchester Airport, the check in lines were unbelievable it took nearly 2 hours to check in. This needs to be sorted there was no separate check in fo cruise passenger or if you had printed your own boarding passes which would have speeded everything up. Naples airport dreadful too had to walk for 20 minutes in the heat with cases ! Thought suitcases would have gone straight to cabin. Overall we enjoyed the cruise and thought it was reasonable value for money. There are areas that need to addressed though so hence my detailed review. The ship was lovely the public rooms were very nice newly renovated so were very modern however ship was always freezing air con too cold ! The balcony cabin was really nice and roomy and kept very clean by our steward. New bathroom with glass shower doors better than a curtain! Entertainment in the main theatre from the young singers and dancers was excellent - some really good shows. Other entertainment awful far too many silly game shows and quizzes should just pay more for quality artists. Don’t really need full on music and quizzes all day by the pool either. Resident groups were average. Karaoke was ridiculous as the screen is behind the person who is singing so all you see when in the audience is the back of the head of the person singing. All staff particularly waiters and bar staff were very good and efficient. The food in the main restaurants was good but not fantastic there should be more choice very limited no curries or chillies or liver or fillet steak. Buffet food not as varied as it should be and couldn’t believe at breakfast there was no egg station to make fresh omelettes etc and no carvery at lunch or dinner never known that before on a cruise. Speciality restaurants expensive Drinks package ok but wish Marella would invest in a decent Zinfandel Rose instead of the dry house rose . Also no Strongbow cider in main buffet restaurant but 2 Fosters pumps ? Tables for 2 in main dining room far too close together might as well have been on table for 4 ! No ice bucket or water in cabins and no daily news sheet or map or info re port of call - seem to be cutting back a bit too much I think. Been on many cruises with all the major lines and I do like Marella particularly for their itineraries and reasonable prices but they just have to be careful they don’t cut back on costs too much to reduce the quality of a cruise experience and ultimately effect how many repeat bookings they get. Naples Airport on return journey horrendous no proper system to queue at gate and no air conditioning and subsequently delayed. Very very limited food on plane going back as had sold out due to queues at Manchester Airport on incoming flight as nobody had a chance to buy food in Airport so passengers bought everything up on plane on flight to Naples!

Good cruise but improvements necessary

Marella Explorer 2 Cruise Review by Ang93

3 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: June 2019
  • Destination: Italy
The experience started badly in Manchester Airport, the check in lines were unbelievable it took nearly 2 hours to check in. This needs to be sorted there was no separate check in fo cruise passenger or if you had printed your own boarding passes which would have speeded everything up. Naples airport dreadful too had to walk for 20 minutes in the heat with cases ! Thought suitcases would have gone straight to cabin.

Overall we enjoyed the cruise and thought it was reasonable value for money. There are areas that need to addressed though so hence my detailed review.

The ship was lovely the public rooms were very nice newly renovated so were very modern however ship was always freezing air con too cold ! The balcony cabin was really nice and roomy and kept very clean by our steward. New bathroom with glass shower doors better than a curtain! Entertainment in the main theatre from the young singers and dancers was excellent - some really good shows. Other entertainment awful far too many silly game shows and quizzes should just pay more for quality artists. Don’t really need full on music and quizzes all day by the pool either. Resident groups were average. Karaoke was ridiculous as the screen is behind the person who is singing so all you see when in the audience is the back of the head of the person singing. All staff particularly waiters and bar staff were very good and efficient. The food in the main restaurants was good but not fantastic there should be more choice very limited no curries or chillies or liver or fillet steak. Buffet food not as varied as it should be and couldn’t believe at breakfast there was no egg station to make fresh omelettes etc and no carvery at lunch or dinner never known that before on a cruise. Speciality restaurants expensive

Drinks package ok but wish Marella would invest in a decent Zinfandel Rose instead of the dry house rose . Also no Strongbow cider in main buffet restaurant but 2 Fosters pumps ?

Tables for 2 in main dining room far too close together might as well have been on table for 4 !

No ice bucket or water in cabins and no daily news sheet or map or info re port of call - seem to be cutting back a bit too much I think.

Been on many cruises with all the major lines and I do like Marella particularly for their itineraries and reasonable prices but they just have to be careful they don’t cut back on costs too much to reduce the quality of a cruise experience and ultimately effect how many repeat bookings they get.

Naples Airport on return journey horrendous no proper system to queue at gate and no air conditioning and subsequently delayed. Very very limited food on plane going back as had sold out due to queues at Manchester Airport on incoming flight as nobody had a chance to buy food in Airport so passengers bought everything up on plane on flight to Naples!
Ang93’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Cabin
Very pleased with the cabin spacious and modern with nice bathroom and balcony . Cabin steward excellent.