We chose this cruise based on the itinerary as well as our good impressions of the Azamara brand from previous cruises. Clearly Azamara is no longer equal to it's number one competitor Oceania. Although the itinerary was excellent and we greatly enjoyed each and every port immensely, the direction Azamara executives are taking is not to our liking.
The embarkation process was smooth and efficient. The staff professional and the ship beautiful. We prefer the small to mid size ships and have sailed on R Class ships many times. Quest is well maintained and is a joy to sail on.
We only did one Azamara excursion as all our other tours were booked privately consisting of 8 to 10 fellow passengers arranged on our roll call here at Cruisecritic. All of our tours were excellent and informative.So based solely on the cities we visited the cruise was exceptional.The Far East is a special place to visit.
Our cabin was just fine. Clean and comfortable. The ship is outstanding. Our disapproval of several issues made this lees than a wonderful cruise. Firstly, Azamara has chosen to discontinue providing casinos on their ships which came as a surprise to us as this differs from our previous cruises with Azamara. The casino space has been replaced with a lounge that was never very busy. Had the entertainment in the several lounges or in the Cabaret lounge been up to par this might not have bothered us as much as it did but in general the entertainment was deplorable.
Dining was not as good as it was on previous Azamara cruises with overdone meats and uninspired selections at Discoveries restaurant. Prime steakhouse served perfectly tender steaks and the dinner there was a real treat. Aqualina, the Italian specialty restaurant was just fair.
The pool area is comfortable and always busy during the day but since head office has decided that pleasant soft background music is no longer necessary at the pool and only twice on our cruise did they have a live band preform there, we felt the area was missing something. As on previous Azamara cruises soft piped in hits from the 70's and 80's worked beautifully.
Oh and I should mention that the line does provide in cabin movies at $11.99 per movie which for the price we pay for the cruise seems to be a money grab.
We have loved cruising with Azamara in the past but it is no longer the Azamara we remembered. In all probability we will choose another line to sail with in the future.
Small but very nice