AmaCello Cruise Review by cruisestitch
- Sail Date: October 2011
- Destination: Europe River
We had read and viewed the wonderful photos posted by a Cruise Critic regular, which you can see at http://www.thepreismans.com/ and I highly recommend that you do so if you are interested in river cruising. As a matter of fact, look there before you go on with my review, it's that good!
We were a group of five, all experienced ocean cruisers. We began with a few days in Vienna on our own (Renaissance Imperial Riding School hotel) then took a train to Budapest, staying at the Marriott.
We took taxis to the boat's launch area, across the river from our hotel. Check in was smooth and right from the start we knew it was a first-class experience. First impressions are so important!
Staterooms were, as we expected, not roomy but they were comfortable and the French Balcony with its full sized windows always gave a sense of spaciousness. Even the single room, which is quite a bit smaller than the regular rooms, was fine.
AMA provides a walking tour of each port, with options for slow walkers and faster walkers. The one person in our group who has pretty severe mobility problems had trouble with even the gentle options. The towns just aren't set up for people who can't go up and down stairs very well. The boat has a small elevator, but it doesn't go up to the Sun Deck, so that's a limitation for anyone who can't do stairs, too.
The thing I take away from me most from this cruise was the absolute professionalism of the staff. If there was a small problem at a meal (once the quiche wasn't hot) they were on top of it right away and came back several times to see if everything else was correctly prepared.
One couple asked the hotel manager and food manager for a favor which they were able to accomplish. It meant a lot, and they both really went the extra mile.
The Cruise Director on this line will make or break the entire experience. Our cruise director was Roland and he was amazing.
We bought a transfer to Prague for the end of the cruise since it seemed much the easiest way to get there, and included a stop in Karlovy Vary, which we wanted to see. In Prague, we stayed at the Marriott which was across the street from the Hilton Old Town, the hotel AMA uses, so that couldn't have been more convenient.
We are already looking to book our next AMA cruise -- a first-class experience in every way.