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215 P&O Australia Cruise Reviews

We have just returned home after experiencing 19 nights on the first 2 cruises of the Pacific Eden, let me start with the positives, We found the entertainment on both cruises enjoyable and the spectacular in Sydney Harbour was a ... Read More
We have just returned home after experiencing 19 nights on the first 2 cruises of the Pacific Eden, let me start with the positives, We found the entertainment on both cruises enjoyable and the spectacular in Sydney Harbour was a highlight, the second cruise was marginally better than the first, however that's were the positive's end. I agree with the other reviews re the Waterfront Restaurant ( cafe would be a better description) Food cold on the first cruise Ok on second, menu uninspiring and to top it off no vegetables served with meals in the Waterfront on second cruise. The pantry concept will save on waste and hygiene issues, however same food day in day out lunch/ dinner is a boring and has often been sitting there for hours Angelo's and Dragon Lady were both complimentary I think P & O will be stuck with this as they cannot feed the passenger load just using the Waterfront. The Salt Grill cover charge $49 was enjoyable not because of the quality of food it was the best on board but nothing out of this world but we actually had tablecloths on the table/ salt pepper and proper drink and table service, so it appears $49 a head is the price for table service Tender operations at Esperance were a disaster and didn't improve on the second trip after waiting 6 hrs to get ashore at Mystery Island we gave up The interior decorators have had a field day with the public areas and dinning areas, Modern bright and colourful, however you need to remove most of the cushions of the coches if you expect to sit down, and in some area there are benches rather than couches The adult only pool area has next to no shade and so for most of the day is completely useless unless you like been burnt , We like a lot of other payed the brochure price for a product that is totally inferior, we also had the VIP package which took 3 visits to reception and 3 days before most of it was supplied . As Transit passengers Sydney and as we were changing cabins we were assured that our baggage would be transferred to the new cabin, We left our bags outside our room 9071 with the new room information 5118 clearly marked at 7am , after disembarking at 12 and completing the immigration procedures we were allowed on board at approx 2.30pm we went to our new room at approx. 3.30pm no sign of our bags, we eventually found them still outside of our old room and I moved them myself. For reasons only known to P & O there price lists everywhere for cocktails but none for any other drinks, you have no idea what you will be charged for a drink until you have ordered it and then if you are lucky you will get a receipt, I payed 2 radically different prices for the house wine at 2 different bars $8 and $12.50 I can only assume that the bar attendant made a mistake and 3 different prices for Brandy and Dry Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
My husband save for a long time each time we cruise. We were looking forward to the inaugural cruise of the Pacific Eden. It was an absolute shocker!!! It had been in dry dock for a short period and was must definately not in ship ... Read More
My husband save for a long time each time we cruise. We were looking forward to the inaugural cruise of the Pacific Eden. It was an absolute shocker!!! It had been in dry dock for a short period and was must definately not in ship shape condition when it took on its first paying passengers. I loved the public areas - they were stunning in appearance. Our cabin (to our great fortune as other were not so lucky) was perfect. That's were it all ended. 1 cold food first night and in general tepid food for the rest of our time on board 2 staff either untrained, had no idea what they were doing, unorganised or just plain sullen 3 everywhere we went toilets were not functioning 4 entertainment was repeated from other cruises or lacking in entertainment value 5 food and beverages just not available from the beginning of the cruise from printed menus. I'm not talking about 1 or 2 items I'm talking a lot of them 6 2 hour waits to get into a restaurant and then summoned by a buzzer - but you couldn't go too far away 7 2 hour waits to get your first course once you got a table 8 absolute de cake in shore day with tenders breaking down 9 due to tender issues we were 1 hour late for our tour 10 5 1/2 hour wait to get back in board in soaring temperatures, people collapsing from the heat, p & 0 didn't seem to care about getting water to people or even letting them know what was going on I could go on and on because there is more, but I think readers have got my idea now. The upshot for us now is we have cancelled our next sailing with then, organised for deposit to come back and will never sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
If you've been cruising before don't go on eden. UNLESS you wish to pay for Room Service, Ice Cream, Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Chips, and the Weakest (in spirits) Cocktails, Cold Food, No Variation in the Food (in the Pantry) No ... Read More
If you've been cruising before don't go on eden. UNLESS you wish to pay for Room Service, Ice Cream, Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Chips, and the Weakest (in spirits) Cocktails, Cold Food, No Variation in the Food (in the Pantry) No Vegan Meals, I can go on but p & o really have to pull up their game. They told me they were responding to the aussie market. Are we suckers who want to pay through the nose, for no service, but plenty of bars, booze???? Also, No Library, No Games Room, And they offer me a $300+ credit on another cruise. I WANT A REFUND ON THAT CRUISE FIRST Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
The Pacific Eden has been a complete disappointment. I believe that the ship was put into service too early. The furnishings in the cabin were the only pleasant thing. The public areas had not been vacuumed and the general grime was to ... Read More
The Pacific Eden has been a complete disappointment. I believe that the ship was put into service too early. The furnishings in the cabin were the only pleasant thing. The public areas had not been vacuumed and the general grime was to be seen. Also my luggage was lost until I went and found it myself. Apparently I wasn't the only one. That was not the worst thing though. That was the tendering process at Esperance. My husband and I were given tender tickets at 8.50am and waited till 11.30am to get on one. There was no communication whatsoever between the crew and passengers save for a few stupid jokes. We arrived in Esperance at 12.05 and were back to get on board at 12.50pm. We were at the head of the line finally when the empty tender was sent back to the ship. "Technical Problems" apparently. It was 3.30pm when we were on board. There was no shade or seating from the hot weather and the cold water had ran out. The young girls from Taylor's Tea Rooms are to be comendered for supplying distressed people with iced jugs of water. No thanks to P. O. Unfortunately the Pantry is a bit of a disaster in my opinion. There is very little to choose from a is mostly cold. The dining room has picked up,it's game a little since we boarded but still has a long way to go. There so many other problems associated with this cruise, but I have insufficient time to list. After our earlier cruise on Princess Lines, I find Pacific Eden so far behind the eight ball that they should be ashamed to take our money. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Sold as a shiny new ship, Pscific Eden was floating chaos. Fresh from dry dock, most of the public areas were shiny and new, yes, but that's where any similarity to The Love Boat ended. The majority of staff on board may have been ... Read More
Sold as a shiny new ship, Pscific Eden was floating chaos. Fresh from dry dock, most of the public areas were shiny and new, yes, but that's where any similarity to The Love Boat ended. The majority of staff on board may have been brand new, but had received little training and functionally ranged from just coping to inattentive and slow, to down right rude. The dining was mediocre at best, in fact we found the restaurants basically unusable. Twice it took 3 hours to serve a 3 course (average) meal, so we gave up and just used The Pantry, a floating food hall. The food here was also average. It varied little each day, especially the breakfast. I never need to see cold bacon and uncooked toast again. The worst part of the experience was the service. Except in our case for our cabin stewards who were excellent. Everyone on board was unhappy. Some cabins had no air con, there was no room service (the phone just rang out). The in cabin movies were in constant repeat and featured such classics as 10 year old episodes of The New Inventors (same episodes repeated constantly throughout the cruise) and week old weather from the US. I tried hard not complain but my patience was tested when I was asked by a member of the reception staff, "well, what do you expect me to do about it?" This was a reaction to my complaint a the fact that The Edge, the ships adventure area with flying foxes, funnel climbs etc was not functioning for the entire cruise. The manager of this 'service' was in a meeting for three days! I queued for 90 minutes to be treated with disdain. The ports we visited were excellent, but there were issues with the tender service. NOTHING ran smoothly. Getting off was slow and disorganised, we almost missed flights. It was a relief to get off. We felt like Guinea pigs on a practice cruise. Full price paying Guinea pigs! Supervisors, managers and chefs were conspicuously absent from public areas. In light of the complaints and chaos they should have been taking some responsibility. I asked for a complaint form but none were available. I approached an officer in a hallway and he literally RAN away from me. On the plus side, some of the entertainment and bands were good. The ship itself is only partly refurbished but quite pleasant. We made the best of our cruise and would cruise again but no way with P&O. I intend to follow this up and have asked my travel agent the same. I'm sure though, that any complaint I make will just be ignored. Cruisers beware! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We were looking forward to the cruise on P&O's "new" ship. However, it turned out to be the worst cruise we have ever done. Besides the tendering debacle at Esperance, and the complete lack of communication from the ... Read More
We were looking forward to the cruise on P&O's "new" ship. However, it turned out to be the worst cruise we have ever done. Besides the tendering debacle at Esperance, and the complete lack of communication from the ship's officers on the shore there, there were quite a few areas of disappointment. 1. Many of the staff on the ship appeared to us to be untrained in their roles. Most of the wait staff in The Waterfront dining room in particular were disorganised and slow to bring a menu, provide water, take orders, etc. For example, juice at breakfast was usually delivered at the end of the meal. 2. Cold or lukewarm food - a problem throughout the cruise in all of the dining areas. For the first time in my life, I had to return a meal to the kitchen because it was lukewarm, as was the replacement (which I also returned). 3. Meals in Angelo's and the Dragon Lady (made complementary on this cruise because The Waterfront could not cope with numbers) were at best uninspiring, I have had better at our local Chinese and Thai. Would certainly not pay extra to dine in these. 4. The Pantry is a great concept and has nice, modern décor. However, it fails in delivery. The food on offer there was very ordinary, essentially the same throughout the cruise and often only lukewarm. PS - serving the Indian and Mexican dishes on compartmentalised metal trays made it look a bit like dinner time at Alcatraz. 5. The menu in The Waterfront (and, I heard, other dining areas) remained virtually unchanged for the entire cruise - and a significant number of dishes were "unavailable". For example, cheeseburgers were not available because there was no ground beef aboard. A bit of menu variation would have been welcome. Could not recommend this ship until such time as P&O sorts out the multitude of problems aboard. A couple of positives - the fresh décor on the ship looks great and the shore tours, when we finally got ashore, were also great. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
What a let-down. Nice new furnishings and comfortable cabin, but that's where it ended. The bath was old and you could only use the shower if you were three foot tall. Had to pay for everything (ice cream, room service). The ... Read More
What a let-down. Nice new furnishings and comfortable cabin, but that's where it ended. The bath was old and you could only use the shower if you were three foot tall. Had to pay for everything (ice cream, room service). The pantry seemed like a good idea, but the same food day in day out for 10 days gets a bit monotonous. You can't eat a meal from a coffee table and older people cannot sit on bar stools. The Waterfront restaurant (main dining room) is too small, people were being turned away. No activities to do, except casino and trivia (need a much larger venue for trivia, had to claim a table an hour before or couldn't get in). No library. No games room, or even tables to play cards on. Internet station was a joke. Bingo was $30 a ticket, to win $24!! In Esperance two tenders broke down (lucky we didn't need them in an emergency) so took hours to get to shore. Coming back was worse. Hour and a half lined up in 38 degree heat. The café nearby came out with jugs of water, P and O did nothing. People were collapsing in the heat. I personally heard three calls for emergency medical assistance. It was about 8 o'clock before everybody got back to the ship. The café, hotel and yacht club were terrific, I cannot thank the Town of Esperance enough. We never caught sight of the captain, don't even know what he looked like. No maps of the ship on board (were told we would get them in Sydney). No newspapers. The TV was just old shows on a cycle. No new movies. No nothing. If you like drinking, fine, there were plenty of bars. If not, forget it. The crew were terrific, not blaming them. The management of P and O needs to have a long hard look at itself in terms of service. Could write a lot more. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
P&O's 5 Ship Spectacular out of Sydney Harbour on the 24th of Nov was supposed to mark a new age in luxury cruising to Australian 'cruiselings'. It was a disaster with one of the 'new' ships, The Aria, not even ... Read More
P&O's 5 Ship Spectacular out of Sydney Harbour on the 24th of Nov was supposed to mark a new age in luxury cruising to Australian 'cruiselings'. It was a disaster with one of the 'new' ships, The Aria, not even making it out of the harbour that night as planned and its other 'new' ship, The Eden, plagued with problems for its whole cruise. Let me just start by saying these aren't new ships. I was on The Eden and it is 23 years old. It was built in 1992 and a former Holland-American line cruise ship called the MS Statendam. My partner and i had constant problems on this cruise. It started with bags being lost and just continued from there. The line at reception was always at least a ten minute wait for the entire cruise as people needed to get daily printouts of what they were being charged for as alot of stuff ups where made on the first night. we had drinks charges on ours we never bought from the first night of the cruise. We found out very early that The Edge activities, all of them, will not be running this cruise as risk assessment certification had not even been secured by P&O for it yet and they would not have this until mid December meaning its next cruise (leaving the night we got back) would also not have any Edge activities running either. P&O have lied and mislead people totally in regards to this. We were never told this may not be an option. No one was even at The Edge location to stamp our treasure hunt either, i had to get a manager named Pana to sign it for me to be able to enter the competition. The ship was understaffed and the staff on board were not happy most of the time. Spoke to staff that had been pulled from other ships for this 'spectacular' and weren't very happy about it. We were accused of lying when a booking didn't show for us at the Dragon Lady restaurant by a staff member named Janice. When we told her to check with management she was then told by them that yes we do have bookings and it was managements fault as they forgot to book it in. (we had to make these food bookings at Dragon Lady and Angelos as they were the only places that could gaurentee my girlfriend would actually get a vegetarian meal). The Pantry that has replaced the Buffet is an obvious money saving grab and is really bad. the food in there is terrible. Most people still want the roast or fish and chips and so you are still lining up most of the time. If you wanted cheese you had to ask as it was only ever put out once for the whole 9 night cruise as far as i could tell. Waterfront was good but still did not have very many options for my girlfriend. I did appreciate not being sat next to strangers in Waterfront this time around though like we have been in the past. Salt Grill was delicious but there is also an extra charge for this restaurant as it is not included in any P&O cruise for free. the Main atrium is like a funeral home filled with urns for decoration. there is no art on board but in places you can see the outline of where there once was art. No art auctions at all and P&O never let us know of this too. the best part of the cruise was getting off the ship at the islands. The tendering process though was always hot and very slow. we are going to be calling the ACCC in regards to lies and misleading information P&O have made in regards to this cruise. For those interested the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission can be contacted on 1300 302 502 or via their website Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We have sailed on in excess of thirty voyages in various regions throughout the world, utilising many Lines and regularly sailing on 14 to 21 day-itineraries. Mr goldberg37 is aged 51, Mrs goldberg37 is aged 44. We have often championed ... Read More
We have sailed on in excess of thirty voyages in various regions throughout the world, utilising many Lines and regularly sailing on 14 to 21 day-itineraries. Mr goldberg37 is aged 51, Mrs goldberg37 is aged 44. We have often championed P&O Australia to people asking us about cruise-experiences, but not this time. Arrival at Circular Quay at 1PM for boarding of Pacific Aria started promisingly; very good traffic and pedestrian control immediately outside the ship, unlike the frequent chaos which defines this area whenever a ship is in port. Lots of porters about, too. Check-in and boarding were reasonably efficient, we embarked at about 130PM. All downhill from there. Our accommodation was Cabin 9031, the condition of this cabin and balcony was nothing less than putrid. Previous occupants hairs all over the bathroom floor and over the bathtub, a half-used cake of soap in the sink, a half-glass of someone's drink on the (sticky) bedside table, fingermarks and smudges on all mirror-surfaces, bed-linen reeking of perspiration, layers of dirt and hair on the vanity-chair, carpet with so much ingrained dirt that one could make their own sandbox. And this was supposed to be an Inaugural Voyage after a 3-week drydock??? What were they doing between Singapore and Sydney? The occupants of Cabin 9043 nearby were also heard by us to be complaining loudly about their own filthy accommodation. Pacific Aria's Food & Beverage Manager Martin Bell was passing in the corridor and he offered to assist (for which we are grateful). Mr. Bell acknowledged the condition of the cabin and made contact with the local Accommodation Supervisor who attended and also agreed with the unacceptable condition of the cabin. The two stewards who were responsible for the cabin were sent to clean our accommodation, but really it was not much better afterwards. The cabin furniture was NOT NEW. Just about everything in there was stained and chipped, verging on life-expired. Lifeboat drill was a joke, at least that's how the crew-members at Lifeboat Stations 1 and 3 seemed to treat it. One glamorous female employee was agreeing with passengers that the whole drill-thing was very tiresome, and just put up with it and then we can "HAVE FUN!". Someone should show her a Costa Concordia documentary. If the staff treat the drill like a hassle, that will be how the passengers also treat it. Our bags (although clearly labelled 9031) were eventually found outside Cabin 9047. Jessica Mauboy did an excellent concert on the back of Pacific Aria and spoke beautifully about her happiness at being offered the godmother's role. Sailaway up Sydney Harbour was a great experience; Pacific Aria followed Pacific Eden and Pacific Jewel and Pacific Pearl gave lovely horn-salutes to our ships as we approached the Heads. No response from Pacific Aria - was Aria "too cool" to respond? One wouldn't have though it was a navigational issue as other ships seemed to having a great night with the horns. But we will stand corrected if need be on this one. A walk around the decks on the seaday morning. Disused paint-tins still with the large 'flammable' emblems on them being used by P&O as ashtrays. No kidding. Nothing like flammable-liquid tins being used for ashtrays by a global corporation. Pipes with gigantic holes in the, and internal-insulation either flapping about or missing completely with matching holes. Asbestos? Who knows? Maybe passengers are supposed to expect that whatever travels through the pipes isn't so frequent or important, given the size of the holes and apparent lack of interest in repairing them. More pipes leaking some unpleasant-looking liquid which pooled in the deck-troughing. Examination of our balcony in daylight revealed more. The balcony exterior-light is hanging at a precarious angle, held on by plastic-ties, one of the braces having apparently failed completely. Layers of chocolate-brown sludge on the balcony-sill, along with some chunks of electrical-plaster. Mud all over the step from the balcony into the cabin. Balcony-table so deep in grime that you could carve your initials into it. Filthy, filthy, filthy. No sign of the Captain out and about on his "new" ship. Certainly didn't seem to be one who was much interested in meeting his passengers and expressing appreciation in joining him on Aria's Inaugural Voyage. Other than Jessica Mauboy's show on Sailaway Night, there was no on-board welcome function after departure from Circular Quay (even for past-passengers) - no event or direct address from the Captain or P&O management in recognition of this occasion. A 'White Night' Party, but this is a booze-up that is now used by P&O throughout their fleet on just about any old voyage, regardless of cruise-duration. Highly disinterested service from bar-staff throughout the seaday. We observed one barman sarcastically thanking another employee for "coming to work today". This was most definitely said with anger, not as a joke by the employee. We periodically gave-up waiting to be served at certain bars, and observed other passengers do the same. Bar staff were not exactly "pushing it" in terms of productivity, often not even an acknowledgement by bar-staff of being there and waiting service would be received. Up to an hour after breakfast-service was completed and the area generally vacated, we saw half-eaten food lying all about the Pantry eatery, including meat-scraps. In some photos we took, you can also see staff lazing around in the background, actually leaning on Pantry-furniture. All this with the eatery looking as though a food-fight had taken place and no interest or attempt in cleaning-up. Carpet within the Pantry was not just flaking, but chunks of it were coming-away and were left lying-about, regardless of this being food-preparation and presentation areas. Disinterested staff standing-about watched us take photos, but seemed to have no inclination for cleaning or controlling this. We had lunch in the Waterfront Dining Room. Food was good, but of the four glasses on our table (112), three were filthy. At a table next to us, a female passenger asked for a new glass to drink from as the one on her table was dirty - the waiter reached over to the next table, grabbed a glass and handed it to her and walked-off. The passenger checked the glass, commented how dirty the new one just given to her also was, and she then gave-up trying to drink some water with her meal. She left the restaurant quickly at the end of her meal, saying how thirsty she was. The starboard side-ceiling of the Pantry was raining with "something" on the second evening. We don't know if it was clean water, 'grey' water, sludge or what it was. Like a mini-Niagara Falls that ran the breadth of the starboard side of the Pantry - really pretty, if one ignored that this stuff (without known origin) was alternately dripping on yourself or your food (sometimes both, depending on how you were able to shield your food). We have photos of this, too. Arrival and docking at Brisbane's Hamilton Wharf was 100 minutes late, at 740AM instead of the advertised 6AM. No acknowledgement even from any of the crew until 7AM, when passengers were instructed to turn-up at their departure-points "30 minutes later than scheduled". There was no explanation from staff as to the cause of the delay - staff actually told us that they didn't know why we were almost two hours late. In the No. 10 elevator going to Deck 7, the name still showed in blue font over gold background 'MS Ryndam'. Disembarkation, when it eventually happened at about 815AM was totally uncontrolled. Chaos. No supervision throughout the aisleways and corridors leading to Deck 5 for disembarkation. Most people had onward-journey commitments and there was no information at all from Aria management and crew about how late arrival at Brisbane would be, nothing to indicate to passengers how they might review their travel-options. One first-time cruising family from Nowra asked us whether "all cruises are like this" and are the crews on other ships "friendlier". One female veteran cruiser advised that she usually sailed with Princess Lines and this experience has definitely turned her off P&O for good. Amongst other passengers waiting at the Marquee Lounge Disembarkation Point, the initials "P&O" were modified by disgruntled cruisers for a number of differing meanings - use your own imagination for this one. We were not sorry to disembark from Aria. To us, this was a makeover by P&O on another tired ship, done on the very thriftiest of investments. This was an opportunity to utilise a lovely 'traditional' ship and give it a tremendous spruce-up. The advertising brags about "5,000 pieces of furniture", "enough carper for the MCG (twice)", "250,000 manhours", "900 workers" (really? what were they doing?), "10,000 litres of paint" (okay, maybe - the tins are still being used as passenger-ashtrays - really classy); more believable - "enough paint for 450,000 Aussie homes" (again, the paint-tins were left-behind for ashtrays on the decks, so we believe that one). We feel ripped-off by this experience - we had believed the many months of advertising promoting Aria and Eden, and the promises of on-board cleanliness, quality accommodation and sharp service. There was no substance in the reality. We lost count of the number of apologies from junior managers in relation to the issues aboard. Truthfully, a number of supervisors of various responsibilities aboard Aria, actually encouraged us to write to P&O management on disembarkation to describe our experience, unanimously saying that if passengers don't draw attention to the issues, things will not improve. All this on a first-voyage for Aria. The buck should stop somewhere with someone within P&O with this one (but probably won't). In its current condition and state of staff-interest, Aria is only fit for the breakers. Based on our own experience on this short cruise, we really cannot believe that a fair-dinkum walk-through of Aria was conducted by senior management, cabin by cabin, before this voyage. Anyone from P&O management patting themselves on the back for Ryndam's transition to Aria should not kid themselves, this was totally unacceptable. Others on this voyage may disagree, but this was our experience. And we are submitting photos of all our concerns as mentioned in this review to our travel-agent. Praises for bar-waitress Evangeline, Waterfront waiter Jayson, Restaurant Supervisor Anne, Guest Services Junior Purser Reshmi. They deserve better than their current posting. Or maybe instead promote them to training-positions for P&O. We still have no idea how Aria lost almost two hours overnight. Mechanical failure? Fuel-thriftiness? Maybe the Captain thought we would enjoy the sights of the Brisbane River by daylight rather than dawn. This is our preferred choice. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Dining in the pantry very ridicules set up line up for bacon and eggs line up for toast line up for fruit way too much lining up. To have a meal in the Waterfront you have to line up 1/2 hour before they open. The cleanliness of the ... Read More
Dining in the pantry very ridicules set up line up for bacon and eggs line up for toast line up for fruit way too much lining up. To have a meal in the Waterfront you have to line up 1/2 hour before they open. The cleanliness of the Pantry was woeful the same food scraps on floor was there when I boarded and then when I left. Was not vacummed once. The bath in the cabins are a hazard it was hard to get in and out of the bath just to take a shower. Public toilets must have only been cleaned once or twice a day as they was always dirty. Staff was very slow with service. The same food for each day was a bit off putting considering it was tasteless and to eat it 2 days in a row was woeful. No I will never sail this ship again. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
How disappointed to arrive at our balcony cabin to prepare for the much advertised 5 Ship Spectacular to find a dirty, unmade room, dirty glasses and sheets all over the room. A very disappointing start, but seemingly impossible to fix ... Read More
How disappointed to arrive at our balcony cabin to prepare for the much advertised 5 Ship Spectacular to find a dirty, unmade room, dirty glasses and sheets all over the room. A very disappointing start, but seemingly impossible to fix because there were so many problems on board that it was impossible to get through to reception. Then we discovered we had NO AIRCONDITIONING - the room was suffocatingly hot, not possible to be in there. After contacting house keeping who said they'd report the fault, I thought I'd go for a swim to cool down, but wait - no bags! It took over 3 hours on board before my bag turned up. Eventually I contacted the Director of the Hotel who was extremely arrogant and insisted that he was the highest I could go, but he did not control the engineering team who would fix the air conditioning, so he could not tell me when it would be fixed. I think the guy was having a very bad day as everywhere passengers were complaining about filthy rooms, broken toilets in their cabins, lost bags, lifts out of service, queues at the lifts, at reception, at the restraint, and so on and so on. If only I could get through to customer service to speak to someone. They make it impossible for you to contact them. I may contact Fair Trading, as I certainly didn't get what I paid for ($1,000 per night for RUBBISH)!!!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Disgusting service, no one in charge to check, promises not kept. No one advised / announced time change (SYD to BNE overnight passage), even some staff and the SPA did not know. No programme delivered the night before for next day ... Read More
Disgusting service, no one in charge to check, promises not kept. No one advised / announced time change (SYD to BNE overnight passage), even some staff and the SPA did not know. No programme delivered the night before for next day activities. Only arrived later the next morning. Cabin phones, did not work most of the time. Cabin not ready when we boarded even though we were the first paying passengers. Either the VIP passenger left an unholy mess or the staff are not up to it. Can’t understand how two cabin staff per cabin can’t cope. NO facecloths, nor tissues in the room, no body lotion, although the shampoo, condition and body wash was not bad. Requested face cloth from reception as the phone was not working and we could never find our cabin attendants. Well we are still waiting and we had to use the hand towels to shower. Our bathroom was not cleaned/ refreshed, whilst we were at dinner, a first for us and we have done many cruises with other cruise lines. Beds should be twin and not queen in some of the staterooms as one cannot get past the bed and couch, did like the mirror magnifying mirrors which was left from the RYNDAM/HAL ship. Loved the bar areas, something for everyone. We liked The Pantry idea, loved the new deck furniture but not sure with staff laziness and attitude how long this will look nice and clean. Also pleased they have kept some of the HAL features such as the small cinema, but will they serve FREE fresh popcorn like they do on HAL, doubt it. The SPA facilities and gym also very nice and staff very professional in these areas. We waited over an hour to be seated for breakfast in the Waterfront Restaurant even though plenty of empty seating, shows the staff are not trained and no co- ordination. When the breakfast orders did arrive, the stewards could not remember who ordered what and the food was disgusting with passengers at our table walking out hungry as the pantry upstairs would have been closed by then. The chef needs to be replaced, dinner was not much better with the ribs we chose to share tasted off and old. Rolls stoggy and not heated, nor crisp. Emily, our waitress at dinner on our second night, was good but the food tasteless, old, and soggy and meringues pure sugar and not light and fluffy. No tablecloths on the tables in the Waterfront, croissants, pastries not heated, soggy and cold straight from the fridge, two small pieces of butter on a table for 6, no salt and pepper either. We had to go and beg from another table as not a waiter in sight. Décor in the Waterfront very pleasant with tables at a good height and chairs very comfortable. Also plenty of space around the tables but as mentioned big disappointment with service and standard of food even though the menu looked appetising. Although the idea of The Pantry is great and the food was reasonable and liked the idea of staff doing the serving, so much more hygienic and I am sure stops a lot of wastage, however, it took ages for tables to be cleared and wiped. The Asian & Indian foods in The Pantry were excellent and well presented. The queues later at night at the Grill and (for which one pays) were miles long. On other cruise lines we have travelled, one could still get a snack at a bistro area until midnight or better still FREE room service from a small but adequate menu and best of all delivery of a pot of coffee in the morning. Then we really felt we were on holiday and on a cruise but not on this ship nor P&O! I am pleased we did not pay for the Luke Mangan restaurant (it was fully booked) as the noise from the Blue room was deafening so one would have had to shout over dinner. The one and only sea day we had the pools were closed in spite of calm seas. The bandstand/ aft was only removed midday. Why were the staff not onto it earlier, scraping and cleaning and varnishing around the pool area even though the ship is just back from refurbishing and this during and inaugural cruise when we all paid a premium for our cabins. Enjoyed the soft relaxing music on the aft deck whilst we had a beautiful sea day, pity the pool was not open. Pity the bar service is so dismal. Also the great big eskies behind the POOL bar filled with beer was disgusting with staff tripping over it. Pity the area around the centre pool soon became a smelly mess as staff did not clean the area of food, cups, glasses etc. We could not get a drinks service on the aft deck outside the Pantry , nor the pool area and had to find a bar and request and carry ourselves, so much for being on holiday and being looked after. Bar service was very slow in most bars if one sat at a table. Again had to ask for the very sticky table to be wiped. Never before have we had to sign for a drink and then have to wait 15-30 mins for it to arrive. Cocktails outrageously expensive. We did not order a bottle of wine as we did not wish to carry it around with us like peasants, as the dining room informed us they could not keep it for us. If one ordered a white wine it would not have been chilled as not all staterooms had fridges. Reception staff arrogant. Requested face cloths from reception as the phone was not working and we could never find our cabin attendants. Well we are still waiting! The name tags are so small, I am starting to think on purpose as there were so many passengers complaining and always a long queue. Never have I spent so much of MY precious holiday time at reception. The VIP (past passengers) were ropable as none of the promised items, champagne, canapes, robes etc were available. When one passenger complained she was told that it would not be given on our voyage. So much for this particular voyage and all the fanfare and premium fares (our same cabin dropped by $230pp per night leaving from Brisbane, the cruise after ours) to be part of what could have been a positive memorable experience. Printers were not working most of the time at Reception. Dragan seemed to be the only one that knew anything. I only know his name as I asked as one cannot read their name tags. Most of the time only one person on duty as well. Other cruise lines four or six. Delivery of final accounts delivered very late on day of disembarkation and many passengers found errors so had to wait in a long queue so reception was very busy and at great inconvenience to passengers. Seems, since P&O moved most of their booking and admin to the Philippines, the whole booking experience has become dysfunctional. Had it not been for our amazing travel agent we would not have proceeded. Initially /pamper packs were advertised in every stateroom for the Aria then removed from the website and yes I was given an extra OBC to compensate when I raised the matter but that shows we are just numbers and not passengers so the logo “LIKE NO PLACE ON EARTH” is just the opposite. Embarkation was well organised, however we had to wait a very long to board, luckily we were seated. We don't know why. We saw many agents VIPs boarding walking straight past us / given preference over paying passengers. Disembarkation was dismal: Disembarkation was a shambles as no one bothered to ask what time passengers wanted and most did not have much luggage for a two night cruise so was a waste to print luggage labels and allocate colour zones. In the end passengers pleased themselves as some had flights to catch which created a lot of congestion on the stairways and small lifts. Would not like to think what would happen on a ship of 4000 passengers. The ARIA is a beautiful ship and we had such high expectations being a smaller ship and new innovative designs and thought that just, maybe, it would be of the same standard as HAL being an ex-HAL ship but it was our worst cruise ever. Being charged for room service, items from the grill, ice cream, 1.5% for using a credit card when it is a cashless on-board IS PRETTY DISMAL. I was advised it is a gratuity free ship and normally we still tip staff who deserve it but on this ship, none did. Also I was charged 5% gratuity at the SPA???? If anyone from P & O bothers to read passenger reviews then change staff attitudes, better training and more staff would be a good start. Stop charging for room service credit card fee of 1.5% ( in a cashless society on board). Passengers were handing over cash all the time as they ran out of their shipboard account and I think they did not realise the extra costs on board, nor the price of some drinks. Small extras such as ice cream, burgers especially as many families travel on P & O should not be an extra charge. Vast takings and revenue from the bars should allow for this. Bigger name tags for staff, change their attitude. Cruising should be a relaxing holiday not money grabbing. As a shareholder of CARNIVAL, I should be pleased for the money generated especially in the bars but as a passenger the whole cruise on the Aria has left me so dissatisfied that I will never travel P &N O again. Our friends were excited for us to be doing this inaugural cruise on the Aria and requested our feedback so I doubt if they will either as they know we are regular cruisers. The list goes on and on. So much for trying to create and offer a high end boutique hotel experience! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Firstly let me begin with the only positive words I have to say about our 2 night 5 Ship Spectacular Experience. Jessica Mauboy, you are beyond awesome. What an insanely talented performer, so energetic and inclusive of the crowd around ... Read More
Firstly let me begin with the only positive words I have to say about our 2 night 5 Ship Spectacular Experience. Jessica Mauboy, you are beyond awesome. What an insanely talented performer, so energetic and inclusive of the crowd around her. Beautiful inside and out with a glow that could have lit up Sydney Harbour all by itself. We had the time of our lives on the first night of our sailing, a truly magical experience. Pacific Aria on the other hand, was a major disappointment and P&O Australia must listen to their passengers about all that was wrong with this ship or else they will be left with a vessel that will simply not be patronised. Australian cruisers do have other options available to them P&O so don't treat us like we are not worthy. The Pantry is a disaster, who designed the new style of seating??? Bar stools and couches, not sure how you can eat a meal on these without making a mess on either yourself or the floor. The constant dripping of water (well, at least I hope it was water??) from the roof above was bizarre and a really poor reflection on the quality of workmanship that has been used to transform this ship into Pacific Aria. It dripped into our food, drinks and all over us aswell. How can "new" carpet be disintergrating before your very eyes on a ship experiencing it's maiden sailing. Not sure how, only know that it is. Language barrier in this area of the ship was a real issue also, staff were simply not able to communicate with passengers on a basic level. These guys and girls work so hard and such long hours but it is not much fun for either staff or passenger when you ask a simple request and it is just not understood on any level. Main dining room is beautiful to look at but that's where the joy ended. No salt and pepper on our table, incorrect food and waiters that were so dis-connected and dis-engaged they appeared robotic. Soup was supposed to be served with a breadstick, dessert pudding was to be accompanied by ice cream, mains balanced out by side dishes of vegetables. Nope, not in the Waterfront. You take Pot Luck in this place. Main pool deck was lovely, had a Country Club feel about it and such comfy padded lounges. Loved this section of Aria. Cabins were ok, beds were cosy and our cabin was clean. Our Cabin Attendant never introduced himself which was a shame for our kids as they have established lovely friendships with previous attendants during past cruises. I took this to be yet another reflection of how profoundly unhappy the Ship's staff were. The Main Theatre is an embarrassment, no other word for it. Terrible seating with none of the grandeur seen on other cruise lines. Finally, I will leave the worst two issues for last. Firstly, disembarkation went beyond a farce, it was actually a dangerous powder keg that was so close to igniting into full blown violence. How can a two night Sydney to Brisbane cruise that enjoyed great weather, run late. Not sure but this one did. No communication from P&O which left many passengers in a tricky situation upon our late arrival into Brisbane. Tempers flared at the Deck 5 Gangway to such a point that we repositioned our kids just in case fisticuffs started flying. P&O, your Security Staff were manifestly inadequate. My two young children know how to treat people with more respect, courtesy and understanding than your so-called "highly trained experts". Secondly, how dare your "Entertainment Staff" play music on the open pool decks that is riddled with expletives. This took place in the pre Jessica Mauboy entertainment which I wrongly assumed would be a family friendly environment. What a disgrace. Would you have been comfortable sitting with your children at an all ages event while the F-Bomb is flying around you constantly?? I'm no prude but I draw the line at constant swearing in songs that 11 year olds are trying to dance to at 7pm in the evening, it's not like we were sitting in an adults only bar at midnight. Yuck, but sadly this lack of care is indicative of the lack of respect Pacific Aria had for it's passengers. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
I am currently on the ship and im still trying to figure what all the fuss is about the pacific eden may have had a make over but im still trying to find it in most parts of the ship! The cabins are still the furnishings from when it was ... Read More
I am currently on the ship and im still trying to figure what all the fuss is about the pacific eden may have had a make over but im still trying to find it in most parts of the ship! The cabins are still the furnishings from when it was a holland America line and stuck in the 1990's the decor is so dated in all the rooms. And for some of ut there are upgrades that are not even finished teething problems aint the word! Toilets on most of the decks are out of order and dont even get me started on food quality the pantry the food is mass produced and cold by the time you get it and there is next to no choice i say bring back the buffet!!!! The waterfront has a very small choice and not good quality and takes ages to get your meal. And then theres the situation for the smokers now where that they can have a relaxing drink while the smoke its nearly all out in the sun! Sun safety there is none and its degrading making them stand up on the top deck just because they want to have a smoke (no i dont smoke) In the cabins there is fixtures that are broken doors hanging off the runners on the wardrobe it needs to be put back into dry dock and done properly P&O this is pathetic! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
When I first sighted the Eden as we approached White Bay, I couldn't believe we were sailing out on her that afternoon, she looked anything but new and refurbished. After all the advertising and hype about the 5 ship spectacular it ... Read More
When I first sighted the Eden as we approached White Bay, I couldn't believe we were sailing out on her that afternoon, she looked anything but new and refurbished. After all the advertising and hype about the 5 ship spectacular it was all for publicity and the cameras. Embarkation was an absolute nightmare, Staffing was minimal, assistance at reception were unprepared for the barrage of enquiries and complaints, many of the times for for events on program had been altered and were missed due to not informing the passengers,kids were running around the bars and nightclubs till all hours - playing on the stairs and elevators when they were working that is, the emergency elevator didn't function until the 3rd last night. The air conditioners were not functioning well either in the reception area it was always so crowded which made it very uncomfortable and stifling. Toilets blocked and overflowed. The shore trips on the tenders took so long to arrange and get tickets most people didn't go ashore due to the time factor, there were even 2 tenders being repaired due to malfunctions. We even missed our private shuttle pick up due inexperience of untrained staff. Smokers were alienated throughout the trip, sent up top deck in wind and rain due to bad weather, we were unable to purchase drinks we had no service, I think having paid like all the passengers we should have been better accommodated. There was not enough deck chairs or seating around the adults pool deck. No music was played for enjoyment. The pool in the Atrium was kid/ family/ bar didn't have enough seating either and the kids screaming bouncing of the walls and the heat made it uncomfortable. Meals were of poor quality and variety in the Pantry, and quantity was an insult you had to ask for more like a beggar to get a decent feed. Food was cold before you sat down, the food had been rehashed together from lunch to make up dinner dishes (cucumber and tomato was breaking down as if it had been reused for a week in the salad). Waterfront restaurant food was not much better. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
After all the publicity for the Pacific Eden I was looking forward to a cruise which was really something special, surely P & O would have pulled out all the stops to make it so? A bit chaotic to get to and on to the ship but my cabin ... Read More
After all the publicity for the Pacific Eden I was looking forward to a cruise which was really something special, surely P & O would have pulled out all the stops to make it so? A bit chaotic to get to and on to the ship but my cabin was a good size, cool and pleasant. The entertainment wasn't bad. There the pluses end. The main gripe for everyone was the awful food. Like a food hall in the pantry with inferior food and little change from day to day. The Waterfront restaurant could not cope, again the food was mediocre, sometimes not available, tepid, no vegetables and not enough variety from day to day. I had my smallest main course ever in Dragon Lady and could not be supplied with rice when asked for. Fortunately I like Trivia as there was plenty of that but not much else. No demonstrations, talks etc. Many of the advertised activities just did not happen, especially for the younger people. My cabin staff were excellent and some of the bar staff too. The entertainment staff tried hard but most of the rest were not up to scratch. The shore tour in Noumea was a waste of time and money. I feel shortchanged with this cruise as I had also paid a single supplement. Instead of a wonderful experience it ended up being a very damp squib. P & O need to do something to make up for ruining so many people's holiday. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
With high expectations and a sense of occasion we boarded the Eden in Sydney for the Five ship Spectacular on one of the most beautiful harbours in the world and unfortunately that's where anything spectacular ended. The public ... Read More
With high expectations and a sense of occasion we boarded the Eden in Sydney for the Five ship Spectacular on one of the most beautiful harbours in the world and unfortunately that's where anything spectacular ended. The public rooms where beautifully if somewhat impractically furnished but that didn't extend to the whole of the ship, more than a faint whiff of Holland America survives..and speaking of whiffs we could never find out what that smell was on deck four was, maybe it was the toilets that continually failed, who knows. The highlight of cruising ( well for us anyway) is the dining experience and I can honestly say I've never had a dining experience quite like it...but not in a good way. As a hospitality trainer I felt so sorry for the staff in the Waterfront Café as they obviously hadn't had any and were kept busy returning food to the galley with the faint hope that your second choice was going to be more edible than the first and occasionally it was. More than once it took 3 attempts to find a wine onboard that was available by which time we'd already finished main course such was the speed the food came out, even managed to get my main served while still eating my entree which was interesting, Tried both Dargonlady which looks fantastic and with careful consultation with the staff had quite a nice dinner, Angelos Italian however was a different story altogether and not one that had a happy ending. Drink pricing was interesting with only cocktails being listed, everything else was on a need to know basis and you only knew if and when you asked for a receipt ! Our cabin attendants were fabulous considering the amounts of cabins they were required to service twice daily and could not fault them. Overall we enjoyed the ship itself, I can see the direction P&O is heading with this style but please it was only half completed and should not have been let loose on unsuspecting 'cruiselings' knowing the negative feedback that was going to follow, and yes we have booked on the same ship next August with the sincere hope that P&O actually take notice of these critiques and will follow through...heres hoping Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
I have just returned from having the worst holiday and experiences cruising on Pacific Eden from 25 November 2015 to 4 December 2015. I travelled with my husband, 2 children and 8 other immediate family and friends (party of 12). We were ... Read More
I have just returned from having the worst holiday and experiences cruising on Pacific Eden from 25 November 2015 to 4 December 2015. I travelled with my husband, 2 children and 8 other immediate family and friends (party of 12). We were so excited to go on this new cruise and saved our money all year. Pacific Eden was our pick of cruises due to the advertised facilities for the children. As soon as we told the children the ship had Laser Tag and Bungee Trampolining, we all agreed that Pacific Eden was the ship. This was to be the family holiday and get together that was well overdue. Unfortunately as soon as we boarded the ship, the major disappointments began. We were advised that the P&O Edge Adventure Park was not up and running and neither were the Laser Tag or Bungee Trampolining. This was not my families’ first cruise having travelled Carnival in 2014. When we planned this cruise, we choose something where the children will have plenty to do and have fun doing it. This also gives the adults some quiet time. The following is listed in no specific order but problems were constant. The children went to kids club to see what they had to offer and when they entered and saw all the TV's, Xbox's and games, they thought awesome. The immediate bad news was that only 2 of 8 TVs worked and the Xbox's needed updating and could not happen till cruise returned to Sydney. The children went into the kids club on 3 occasions during the course of cruise. They found it boring and very little to do. We took the children for a game of tennis on the 3rd day of the cruise to find out there was only had 1 ball left because the nets had holes through them and the balls were going overboard. This was the same problem with the basketball. We were told they would get more tennis balls at Noumea. The children went up to play tennis again on day 7 but activities person would not give them a ball to play. I went with my husband, brother and his partner to see why the children could not have a tennis ball. The activities person did have 3 balls left of the 12 they bought at Noumea but now couldn't find 2 of the 4 tennis racquets. The children hated the cruise and could not wait for it to end. They never want to go on Pacific Eden again but were referring to the ship as Pacific Disaster. They were bored and only had the pool to play in and spent a lot of time in the room playing Ipads. I felt very sorry for the children on this cruise with all the disappointments they had with everything advertised they thought they could do. It was very misleading. Perhaps P&O could have contacted adults with children on the cruise to let them know about the children’s activities that would not be running or would be poorly organised at this stage. I am aware that would be a logistical nightmare for P&O but then we would not have suffered. If P&O had given the option, we wouldn't have been on that horrible ship and would have chosen the Pacific Pearl or Pacific Dawn. My experience and my husband’s experience, as bad as the children’s. After boarding ship, we went to reception and had lined up for over 45 minutes because there were only 2 staff members working and one person walking around looking busy but not serving people. When it was my brother’s turn to go up to reception desk and my turn after his, we were told we had to go to deck 6 for the lifejacket and evacuation drill and they could not serve us. When we returned to reception, we had another 45 minute line up only to be told to come back later because the attendant didn't understand that I was in room 4171, my husband and children were in 4163 and I wanted their account bills to go on my credit card. I refused to come back later after lining up twice and insisted that I want it fixed now. She then asked another person to help and it was fixed and done in a matter of 2 minutes. After that experience I had no desire to return to reception. Unfortunately I had no choice but to go back to reception each and every day to have the bar drinks removed from the account from the previous day. My husband had a premium drink package and drinks should not have been charged to account. Surely this should have been remedied after one day. Our rooms were comfortable, the beds and pillows were fine but we had no hot water for most of the cruise. Then it was just luck how long the water remained warm. I thought the rooms had been refurbished, but if this is the case, they forgot to replace the dirty rusty taps in the shower. There was a constant vibrating noise in the vent above our heads that went over the light, the lock on the door did not work and my room key stopped working on day 4. This time the dreaded wait standing in the reception line was 20 minutes. The room staff were lovely people and spoke to us every day. They were very happy people and did a great job cleaning our room and making beds. The duty free shop also ran out of cigarettes and alcohol that we wanted to purchase and we therefore made no duty free purchases. I consider duty free shopping one of the fun things when on a cruise. The water front restaurant was good but the staff in the evening were rude. There was not enough staff and obtaining a drink near impossible. Perhaps staff shortage brought on what I believed to be rudeness. One evening we were served by a lady one night that pretty much went round the table saying “what do you want” and while taking our orders, she was pointing at other staff, giving them a filthy look and pointing at tables. She was not a happy person and just didn't seem to want to be there. Another night we were served by Herbert. He took all our dinner orders and then returned took our drink orders. I asked him nicely to take the children’s drink orders sitting at the table next to us but he forgot. I told the children “it's ok and we will ask him when he came back”. When he returned to our tables and gave the 8 adults their drink orders, I asked again if he could take the children’s drink orders and his response was “Do you want your dinner or do you want the kids to have a drink?" I responded that I want the children to have a drink. Never have I been spoken to so rudely by a restaurant staff member, I was shocked and disgusted at how rude this man was. Our food orders took a lot longer to be served that night than any other night and I am sure he did this on purpose. Wilbert was our waiter for breakfast one morning and he knew how to treat a customer, speak to children and have a playful joke. Maybe Wilbert could train Herbert in relation to customer service. There were not enough tables in the Waterfront Restaurant and we were left standing and waiting for over an hour one night for dinner. We were lucky after hearing other people talk about how there wait was near 2 hours. We tried out the Dragon Lady and Angelo's. The food was nice but menu limited as they are already ran out of some food and our selection was limited. The tender boats to the Islands. We were told once you have your tender ticket to be ready within half an hour. Two hours later after sitting with the kids ready to go we were finally able to get on a tender boat. More disaster when our tender boat broke down and it took near an hour and half to get back to the ship, sign back in and sign back out again and get on another tender boat to the island. By the time we got to the island and had a quick swim the shops were shutting down and no longer running the glass bottom boat or canoes. The children missed out once again. The 2 hour wait happened on all 3 islands that we had to tender too. We were all disgusted at Isle of Pines as we sat and waited for our tender ticket to be called as we watched staff members coming back on the ship with their souvenirs and fancy hats that the islanders had made. We were still waiting with 4 children to go to the island. Surely when problems were constant on the ship, passengers would have been the priority at any given time. The washing machines. I attempted to wash 3 times during the cruise. The first time I realised $1 coins were needed and had no option but to attend reception, this time a 20 minute wait. When I got back to the washing machine and put clothes in, I realised there was no washing liquid coming out. I was informed that somebody had already complained earlier in the day but problem had not been fixed. The second time I went to the laundry, the same problem, no washing liquid and the dispenser flashing red again. The third visit to the laundry was lucky. I finally had a machine that had washing liquid in it. The clothes would be washed and not a drawn out rinsing process. That was the most excited I had been since the cruise commenced. The entertainment was ok. I'm not really into the Broadway musical shows but am sure a lot of other people were happy with performances. I found there wasn't much to do at night time besides the casino after watching a half hour show but the lady comedian was awesome and so was the Vietnamese comedian. What a pity they were not booked for some other shows. The magician was also awesome and the only show my children liked Again, only booked for one show. It would have been nice for the children to have their own magician show as well, perhaps during the day. I looked forward to playing poker in the casino but that was just another disappointment as well with both tables not working. The roulette table was always full with people waiting behind those seated to have a turn. There were 2 tables but I only saw the second one going once. Must have broken down. I don't know the answer to that one. As the days went by more toilets were put out of order and it was very annoying going from one deck to another to find a toilet that worked. My brother went to 3 in a row that were all out of order. I went to 2 different ones that were out of order. They didn't get fixed and remained out of order for the remainder of cruise. The elevators were very slow and only 2 working some of the time at the back of the ship. The morning after Mare only 1 elevator working for some time before others became operational. Elevator's had problems all through the cruise. This is my very basic review of Pacific Eden. I can quite happily say that we will never cruise on the Pacific Eden again. I am still quite angry about the cruise we had saved for and looked forward to for a whole year. We were so excited for this cruise and got nothing but disappointment. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Terrible experience. We will start with the best parts as it is very short :- - Outside public areas very comfortable - entertainment very good - balcony cabin quite spacious but in dire need of refurbishment with rusty & ... Read More
Terrible experience. We will start with the best parts as it is very short :- - Outside public areas very comfortable - entertainment very good - balcony cabin quite spacious but in dire need of refurbishment with rusty & unclean balcony, stained carpet & having a shower over a bath is downright dangerous on a ship with such poor stabilisers such as the Pacific Eden. The worst parts :- - The Pantry with its' cold unappetising fare which was never replenished when it ran out, even though it might still be open officially for many more hours. Worst idea P& O have ever tried is to replace the good old buffet with this totally disorganised substitute. - Unhappy crew members, many of whom complained bitterly re being pulled from their normal ships to be placed on this one with no training for new services or how to know their way around the ship ( how can they direct the passengers when they don't know themselves! ) - Main restaurant which was always so busy that you needed to go to pick up a bleeper 30 minutes before wanting to eat & no tablecloths! - more like a café. Also the staff were under pressure which made for much lack of a happy, enjoyable meal experience. - The two speciality restaurants which were turned into normal dining to cope with the demand were not good & had we had to pay extra for the dining experience, we would have definitely demanded a refund. - We renamed this the 3 dollar ship as most extras seemed to cost that amount. Want pie & chips? - 3 Dollars, Pizza? - 3 Dollars, Room Service?- 3 Dollars, Laundrey ? - 3 Dollars . The only different was ice cream which cost ( you've guessed it ) anything between 3 &9 Dollars. Who are they trying to kid ? On Princess ( which is the same company ) all of this ( except for the laundrey) is FREE - as it should be having paid out for an inclusive holiday. Also the manageress of the ice cream counter is a very short tempered,loud, impatient person with zilch customer service skills. - Why is mandatory to purchase 2 overpriced drinks packages when only one of you drinks? Again, on Princess they are able to be purchased individually for a far cheaper price. - Is there a Captain on board ? If so he never appeared or made any of the announcements. - Tender transfer was a totally disorganised , unpleasant experience. The worst time was Mystery Island where although tender tickets had been picked up early morning some people could not get on one until 2.30 p m when the last one back to the ship was 4.00 pm. A total unorganised shambles. In general P&O should be making major apologies & giving at least part refunds to their THOUSANDS of unhappy passengers for their many marketing mistakes. In addition all these issues need to be addressed - listen to the crew ( the ones who live & work every part of the ships & interact daily with the FARE PAYING passengers) to put right the wrongs that the office staff have deemed is what will happen on board - it's the staff on the front line that have the knowledge of how to achieve a happy environment for all - not the pen pushing suits,only interested in the bottom line of a profit margin. Bad press = less customers = less profit= job losses= goodbye P&O. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
50 percent of the public toilets on board were out of order. The floors of the ones which did work were often covered with (used) toilet paper and weren't clean. Paper towels to dry your hands weren't refilled once they were ... Read More
50 percent of the public toilets on board were out of order. The floors of the ones which did work were often covered with (used) toilet paper and weren't clean. Paper towels to dry your hands weren't refilled once they were empty. Many of the lifts were out of order. One 60 kg person travelling solo in the lift was enough to make it read "overloaded" and refuse to work. Lifts which did work often had cups and glasses piled into the corners and left there. Food in the Pantry was repetitive (same food every day) and ordinary in terms of standard. The Pantry is NOT buffet style. It's bain-marie food which you ask for and a crew-member then puts on a plate for you. Think Coles Cafeteria. It does eliminate the wastage (and the slow buffet queues) you see on the other P&O Australia ships, but it's still not a venue you look forward to dining in. On the first night, the Angelos and Dragon Lady restaurants were closed due to private functions. Waiting time for the Waterfront Restaurant was over an hour. Although the Waterfront restaurant is on Deck 7, it must be accessed from Deck 8. None of the public toilets on Deck 7 work. Of the 2 sets of female toilets on Deck 8, only 1 set is operational and it consists of 2 toilets, one of which is permanently locked. Advance bookings at the Waterfront restaurant are not permitted, however you needed to queue in order to get a beeper to come back later. We waited over an hour and then when our beeper went off we needed to queue AGAIN before finally being shown into the restaurant. Then when we finally got into the restaurant half the tables were vacant. Why?? The showers in the cabins were difficult. Initially the water would run dirty brown but it cleared after a minute or so. At 5 pm all we could get was hot water and no cold. At 11 pm all we could get was cold water and no hot. Air conditioning problems are rife. Some areas are arctic and some areas (like the sides of the Pantry and the Dome nightclub) are like sitting in a sauna. Entertainment was hit-and-miss. A Sit Down Comedy Club comedian on the last night was superb. A "comic" hypnotist and the resident entertainers were an outdated cliched yawn. The sound systems need to be worked out. If there was a live artist in one of the bars then it was difficult to carry on a conversation. Watching the people participating in Karaoke it became obvious they had no sound feedback so they couldn't hear themselves OR their backing music. The nightclub floor was largely empty as the DJ just put an album on and let it play through. When we asked if they'd play dance music we were told there were people on board from head office so the album was what they had to play. We were bored out of our minds on this ship. The adults-only pool area is a decent size but needs some options for shade. Regarding the shops, I'd forgotten a toothbrush and it turned out it wasn't possible to purchase one on board. Half the stock they DO have in the shops doesn't have prices on it. The VIP earlybird booking bonuses we were entitled to weren't provided so we needed to queue in line at reception to chase them. On a positive note, the beds were comfortable and the cabin stewards were friendly chaps. Drink prices are reasonable, even if the service is slow. Holland America must be laughing their heads off to have got rid of this ship. I've done at least a dozen cruises with various cruise lines and this is easily double-the-worst of them. If your idea of a great cruise is; * queuing for average food, * searching for a working toilet, * taking the stairs because the lifts don't work * doing trivia quizzes (win a HAT!) and * playing bingo then go for it. Otherwise, I suggest booking ANYTHING else. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
This was the worst organised and run cruise we have ever been on, luckily it was only 3 nights long. One of the best things about cruising is the dining experiences but dining on Pacific Aria was atrocious. The Waterfront dining room has ... Read More
This was the worst organised and run cruise we have ever been on, luckily it was only 3 nights long. One of the best things about cruising is the dining experiences but dining on Pacific Aria was atrocious. The Waterfront dining room has been cut in half with the top floor made into specialty restaurants where you are expected to pay extra for a meal that is small, mushy and cold. There were long lineups at the Waterfront dining room and you are expected to take a buzzer and wait who knows how long to be called as if you are at the local fish and chip shop. The entertainment was limited and sporadic and we hardly found a comfortable seat anywhere on board with the Showroom the worst layout we have come across. We had an oceanview cabin which was quite good and our cabin steward was good. The Reception desk was dysfunctional and unhelpful with even the most basic duties such as settlement of on board account. We have been on other P&O ships and have been very happy with them, even going back to Pacific Sky but this one was absolutely terrible. Not sure what the point of having a boarding time allocated because it was open slather. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
P&O Australia, hang your heads in shame. The Pacific Jewel is a joke. There is not one redeeming thing about this scrubbed up old tub. The staff look absolutely miserable and the morale is appalling low, The food on the Pantry is the ... Read More
P&O Australia, hang your heads in shame. The Pacific Jewel is a joke. There is not one redeeming thing about this scrubbed up old tub. The staff look absolutely miserable and the morale is appalling low, The food on the Pantry is the same everyday. The quality is cheap & tasteless ( I had a cake on day one and was could have been used as road surface ). My travelling companion got chicken which was raw in the middle. The coffee machines looks like they were left overs from the 1980's Oriana. It is the 21st Century, but P&O think machine coffee is acceptable, Do you want a Capuccino or a Flat White? You need to pay for it ! The pool is the size of a residential Clark Rubber pool. Imagine nearly 2000 passengers trying to get in it. The cabin was tiny and extremely unimpressive. Do you want to relax at the back of the boat. Forget it. There was an infestation of fleas ! I was so relieved to get off this tub. We spoke to so many other passengers who were glad to escape the abysmal 2 star rust bucket. It was so depressing and upsetting, I wrote a lengthy email ( with photo's of the fleas ) to P&O Australia. As I suspected, they made the fatal mistake of completely ignoring it. I contacted them and they advised "we have received your email and are currently investigating it". I asked them when they would get back to me. Typical P&O Australia, I was advised " We don't know". I immediately escalated the matter to the CEO of Carnival Cruises ( who own P&O Australia ) and was contacted within 24 hours and offered a 50% refund of my holiday. NEVER EVER AGAIN. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
What could have been a great trip was ruined by rude staff, except for housekeeping who were lovely, major plumbing issues in some cabins, flooding, brown bath water, tasteless food, only time worth eating was breakfast in the pantry. The ... Read More
What could have been a great trip was ruined by rude staff, except for housekeeping who were lovely, major plumbing issues in some cabins, flooding, brown bath water, tasteless food, only time worth eating was breakfast in the pantry. The waterfront restaurant was not worth going to, tried twice and dissapointed by food and staff. Angelos restaurant was the worst of the lot . Dragon lady was ok except I think the dragon served us. Half of the lifts dont work. It took hours to be tendered of the ship in Hamilton Island because they only had 2 or 3 tenders running. I could go on and on but just want to get over it. I and my travel companions couldnt wait to get off. No I am not a whinger , Have done several cruises and always enjoyed, but def not this one. On a positive the bed was comfortable and room was a decent size, although my friend thought her cabin was dirty and bought some cleaning wipes in Cairns Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
The Pacific Eden is sold to people as a refurbished Ship. It is far from it! OK on the good side, the restaurants are brand new and are very well decorated as is most of the bars. The rooms and general public areas are all very old and ... Read More
The Pacific Eden is sold to people as a refurbished Ship. It is far from it! OK on the good side, the restaurants are brand new and are very well decorated as is most of the bars. The rooms and general public areas are all very old and dated. We had a suite that was nice and big, however it had a very old (Art Deco?) feel to it. The bath was badly stained and had been patched. The toilet and sinks were also stained and in bad need of replacement. The balcony was rusty and had very old broken furniture. The TV was a small old 19" Plasma, however it did have a DVD but nowhere could i find any to borrow! The bed was comfy though with a good supply of pillows. The dance floor was directly above so don't think of getting to sleep anytime before midnight! The comedy shows were excellent with a good selection of male and female performers, we didn't miss one show and were fully entertained. Now to another big disappointment - the food. The main restaurant had fantastic decor but was badly let down by the quality of food and attention to detail by the wait staff. The portion sizes were reminiscent of the old "dollar dinners" that seniors used to be able to purchase from RSL's! Food was quite tasteless and overcooked, I had to ask 3 times for a wine list and when the white wine finally arrived it was warm! I complained and got a nice cold one but no apology or attempt at rectification. We also went to the new "Dragon Lady" asian restaurant which had an amazing decor but again, badly let down by the quality and quantity of the food, try 3 dumplings or 3 small chicken satay sticks for a main course sized meal! The food we had was cold and not tasty. The rice was stodgy and over cooked as was the sushi. The wait staff were excellent, however very embarrassed to be serving such crap food General Comments: The ship had a very old oily smell to it! The toilets outside the main restaurant were dirty with waste paper bins overflowing There was no staff dispensing hand sanitisers at restaurant entries like other cruise lines have Even though the seas were very flat this little boat was pitching quite badly. would make for an interesting ride in heavy seas! The seats in the Theatre were very uncomfortable and in the upper circle there was a hand rail making it hard to see the stage. The Comedians, illusionist and actors/singers/performers and shows were excellent. We were supposed to be served complimentary coffee and pastries for Breakfast on debarkation but nothing was supplied! There is no long term parking options at White bay terminal, it cost me $60 in taxi fares from and to Central Railway. No public transport close to the terminal either! Would I go on a P & O ship again ? I doubt it. I am surprised that this long established company would serve up such a bad experience. Trying to make a silk purse out of a sows ear never works. I would not recommend this to any of my friends. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
We were expecting quite a lot from the Pacific Eden if the advertising was to be believed. Yes, the decor is quite nice in some areas... But this ship and its public areas are small compared to other ships such as the Jewell and the ... Read More
We were expecting quite a lot from the Pacific Eden if the advertising was to be believed. Yes, the decor is quite nice in some areas... But this ship and its public areas are small compared to other ships such as the Jewell and the Pearl... Which makes everything cramped and crowded.... The staff were very unhappy, nothing like the service we have experienced on other P and O Ships... There are not enough waiters in the Waterfront Restaurant, they are unfriendly and stressed... So the wait to get your meal or even a drink was very long.... Food was lukewarm. The Pantry is a disaster!!... The other passengers were frustrated with this long process and so were the staff trying to serve them... Hopeless, we wont go on P and O again until they get rid of it and go back to the buffet... All in all a small cramped ship, trying to cater for too many people and a ridiculous Pantry style eatery system with very unhappy staff... We are glad it was only 3 nights. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
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