We were first-time cruisers and had read much on Cruise Critic, especially about this ship. To be honest we were a little apprehensive due to the many negative points and issues we read. Frankly, I think many of those issues lie with the individuals themselves and not necessarily the staff! I will elucidate later on this point.
We chose this cruise due to the many interesting ports from Stockholm through to Istanbul. It is far from South Africa and we needed to see as much as possible. Firstly we are glad we did not opt for a 7-day cruise. Only after 7 days did we really relax and begin to unwind.
We spent an extra day in Stockholm and enjoyed the old city to which we could walk from the hotel. It is an expensive city and we did not dine out. Due to the airport taking so long to get our bags out we had missed our shuttle, but as they run regularly the next one was able to accommodate us. Have the address though as they do not know all the hotels. Friendly people in the hotel who assisted us.
The cabin was supposed be larger than the standard stateroom but I am not sure. Then a standard cabin is surely tight. Only had a problem to store the one suitcase which would not fit under the bed and which caused stubbed toes throughout. We like to hang all our clothes mostly and found the hangers a little short in supply, but as we gave laundry in we got more hangers. The bed was comfortable as were the pillows. Being on the lowest deck and in the middle it was pleasant. Never heard anyone, our neighbours must have been quiet and access to one set of lifts was close.