This was our 26th cruise, 13th on Fred Olsen. While the cruise was ok, Olsen is not as good as it was before change of management. The outstanding feature is the crew. They are the very best of any cruise line we have been on. Efficient, friendly, helpful and always smiling. Many of them remeber us. The food was ok, The View self service restaurant is far better than the formal dining room, where the service was extremely slow and the food only lukewarm. The Vasco Goan restaurant was excellent. The Bolette theatre company were talented and enthusiastic but we did not enjoy all their presentations, particularly a silly one about a hairdressing saloon. yet again, some of their stuff was for far younger audiences than those aboard. One act, a solo singer, we did not like at all, with his suggestive body movements and that he only featured songs by black artists. We have seen this man before and avoid his performances. The comedian and the illusionist were very good. The entertainment manager was excellent; articulate and interesting. he is worthy of a better job, possibly in the visual or audible media.
From Southampton all the way to Madeira is far too long without a port of call. Two nights and three whole days.
The Captain was very good but I found his heavily accented and halting English very hard to understand. It shone through that he really cared about his crew, which was great to see.