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30 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Its 10 years since we were last on Arcadia, in meantime she had a full refurbishment, the cabins and public rooms were impressive and if anyone had a problem then the Housekeeping Manager would provide a solution. She is an older ship and ... Read More
Its 10 years since we were last on Arcadia, in meantime she had a full refurbishment, the cabins and public rooms were impressive and if anyone had a problem then the Housekeeping Manager would provide a solution. She is an older ship and externally there are areas showing age but considering she is at sea virtually daily and has been around the globe many times it can be expected. Daily maintenance is carried out as would be expected and if anyone was woken by the chipping drills on the lifeboat davits then perhaps they prefer lie-ins after 10.00 a or cant be bothered if their lifeboat wasn't serviced. Change of itinerary, we were notified by email 5 days before departure explaining the reason why a prolonged stop in Malaga was necessary. Some fellow cruisers said they did not know until they boarded. Can't explain this but I would suggest that as we are registered in the P&O Cruise Personaliser, where our email is recorded, this could be the reason for those who do not use this system. Yes we missed out a port of call and stayed in Malaga while she was being repaired, the captain kept us informed of the progress of the work. Unfortunately the 22-strong team of divers, flown in from the USA and elsewhere were unable to correct the problem with the port-side pod within the expected time and after arriving on Thursday (at top speed), we departed just after midnight on Sunday/Monday morning. Malaga is a lovely place and a leisurely walk or free for all passengers shuttle bus into the main area was provided.. We missed two sea days and one port. After departure one passenger decided to be seriously ill (not norovirus) but as Arcadia does not have a heli-pad, the Captain sailed at full speed for Venice for the passenger hope all was well) to be transferred to waiting ambulance on the quayside. Safety is a high priority and itinerary change is usually, sometimes weather also for other reasons but some people have to moan and disrespect P&O, fortunately the majority of fellow passengers we spoke to were happy with their cruise. Part-way through their was an outbreak of the dreaded Norovirous. We were not affected, The crew immediately put special measures in place specifically not being allowed to touch any item, plates, cutlery etc, having everything served to you. Not such a bad thing you know! Some passengers believing that they would never suffer from the virus did not wish to gel their hands before going into the restaurant. Probably the same passengers, and you know who you are, who do not bother to wash hands after using the toilets, who rush about and don't care ignoring warning notices and whose disgraceful disrespect of hygiene spread the infection. We noticed several mature passengers not washing hands after using the toilets and not wanting to gel before entering the food areas. After precautions were lifted, sadly a few passengers in the buffet decide to double-fill their plates, charge into the queues to get their fill totally regardless of common courtesy and respect for their fellow passengers and the hard-working crew. We found the food of a good standard and no complaints and I am a fussy eater. All the staff were polite and helpful. The entertainment was of a high standard and we thoroughly enjoyed the entertainment especially the murder mystery and Johnny Youle the guitarist. The Rising Sun pub has great atmosphere and the Palladium theater is one of the best that we have sat in on a cruise ship. Our cabin on C deck was spacious and our steward was very professional and friendly. The excursions were varied, we did Malaga (both booked and ourselves, yes we had time!) we did hop-on-off bus in Cagliari, walking tour in Split (great courier). Would we go on Arcadia again, YES Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We booked on short notice. This one was available for the cruise location we were looking for, and had some spots available. First thing we looked for was "tipping included" and pretty much everything else was also included. ... Read More
We booked on short notice. This one was available for the cruise location we were looking for, and had some spots available. First thing we looked for was "tipping included" and pretty much everything else was also included. Due to a lock door incident weeks prior, we were actually on the Emerald Destiny and not the Emerald Star -- a new ship in the fleet -- and it was amazing. Clean, fresh and new. The staff and crew were incredible -- always going above and beyond. Helpful, friendly and always smiling. The excursions were perfect. Just the right number. There was something new to do every day. Food was great. Lots of choice and the farewell dinner was unbelievably awesome. We knew ahead of time that there would be a large American group on board -- their group was SO FRIENDLY and it really added to the cohesiveness of the trip. Thank you, Parrot Heads! I have absolutely no criticisms of this trip or the crew or the touring company. Well done, Emerald. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise as it was going to places we wanted to visit, we had not been on Arcadia before and my birthday occurred during the cruise period. First impressions were very much on the lines of this HAS been a lovely ship but is ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was going to places we wanted to visit, we had not been on Arcadia before and my birthday occurred during the cruise period. First impressions were very much on the lines of this HAS been a lovely ship but is now very tired. We had no wish to spend three and half days in Malaga and as the stay lengthened were concerned other ports may have to be cancelled. One can only presume the additional work was brought about by the company extensively running the azipod in a damaged condition. Why divers had to be flown from USA goodness only knows. As usual information from P&O was scant For most of the cruise large sections of the Promenade deck were closed to passengers while.painting was carried out. The overpowering small of paint was not pleasant albeit it did help mask the stench of sewage which pervaded the starboard side of that deck. At least three lifts were out of action for the whole cruise. Food in the Belvedere was tasteless as was custard in all restaurants. In Dubrovnik someone had the bright idea to put a trainee "driver" in charge of a tender. The vessel was packed, little air and at the port he had no idea what he was doing as a result we bobbed around and watches another tender overtake us and dock. The shops supply of yellow buckets were put to good use catching dripping water presumably from the air-conditioning. There was more but this is long enough. We certainly won't be going back on Arcadia Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise for the Itinerary specifically to visit Messina and Venice we received an email on the 20th June 4 days before we were boarding Arcadia telling us that we would not be going to Messina now as the ship needed to have ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the Itinerary specifically to visit Messina and Venice we received an email on the 20th June 4 days before we were boarding Arcadia telling us that we would not be going to Messina now as the ship needed to have technical work done and would be staying in Malaga our first port of call for longer ,we arrived in Malaga a day earlier than we were supposed to ,we arrived on Thursday and we were told we would be leaving on Saturday evening once the work had been completed but were then told Saturday afternoon that we would not be leaving until Sunday evening making us arrive a day later at all the other destinations we were visiting and the excursions that we booked were all cancelled and 2nd day in to the cruise we were told that there was an outbreak of norovirus and this got worse as the the time went on the buffet was limited due to this and we felt we were in a 2 star Hotel rather than being on a supposed to be luxury cruise that cost £6,140 a very expensive mistake the ship was old and tired looking lots of visible rust and supply’s being stored on the promenade deck work on the lifeboats was being done every day you do not go on a cruise to be surrounded by noisy works being undertaken you go to relax ,The food was tasteless especially in the meridian restaurant and we were also told that the ship would be increasing speed to make sure we reached the ports we were going to and also sailing back to Southampton so what was supposed to be leisurely days at sea turned in to a race with windy decks and a wave machine in the pool . Will not be ever going back on Arcadia again I think the ship needs to be retired .do not waste your money going on this ship Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Have previously cruised on P and O Britannia and loved it, so I chose a cruise of the Med on Arcadia, the itinerary was important.....but we were emailed 4 days prior to sailing with a changed itinerary as Arcadia was damaged and they ... Read More
Have previously cruised on P and O Britannia and loved it, so I chose a cruise of the Med on Arcadia, the itinerary was important.....but we were emailed 4 days prior to sailing with a changed itinerary as Arcadia was damaged and they would repair her in Malaga, so Messina was removed from our itinerary, so they could repair Arcadia in Malaga! So off we sailed on a faulty ship, and the repairs lasted 3 and a half days. So one can only say that P and O repaired their ship during the holidaymakers time. 3 and a half days stuck in Malaga, I could have taken a mini break for £300! Day 3 Norovirus breaks out. I am told that although a cleaning person was sent to the cabins of the sick and a questionnaire was pushed under the door, the sick were not checked over by a doctor unless a private consultation was requested at private medical prices!! Incredible.....as the virus was gifted to passengers on board. Food was dreadful, cooked by amateurs it seemed and very often inedible, oh well there was always the cheese and biscuit option. Indifferent service by tired overworked staff. Lack of communication from the Captain and medical team. Intercom systems that didn't work, so important announcements were missed. Sloppy cleaning of tables in the buffet and outside deck areas, no wonder the virus took hold. Dreadful experience and deplorable PR. Read Less
SOS
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Day 4 in Malaga due to engineering problem. This appears to have been kown about for some time - is its coincidence the remedial work was undertaken on a longer length cruise? I think not. On a 20 day cruise thats a lot of time. One post ... Read More
Day 4 in Malaga due to engineering problem. This appears to have been kown about for some time - is its coincidence the remedial work was undertaken on a longer length cruise? I think not. On a 20 day cruise thats a lot of time. One post missed so far with warning of changed itinerary to come Communication bad, yesterday found a message on return from day out to advise another day in port. With modern technology this could have been achieved by group email/ SMS. ship noticeably cleaner after infection control measures were taken to avoid potential norovirus outbreak. Food awful. Limited choice and poor culinary skills. It's truly a bad day when you are likely to return from a cruise lighter than you arrives onboard. Cabin and restaurant excellent. I can only conclude this is the reason many people are so loyal to them. In the present cruising climate they need a serious shakeup if they want to continue to make happy cruise memories. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise for its itinerary, with some of the ports being new to us. We have travelled on Emerald Waterways several times before, so had a high expectation and our expectations were all met and exceeded by this ship, its crew ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its itinerary, with some of the ports being new to us. We have travelled on Emerald Waterways several times before, so had a high expectation and our expectations were all met and exceeded by this ship, its crew and the itinerary. Emerald have high standards, and this continues on this ship. The crew are very hard working and friendly, and make every effort to respond to whatever requests passengers make. As with every Emerald ship we have been on, the food is to a very high standard. The crew prepare the dining room perfectly, so that it is almost a shame for the passengers to come in and spoil the beautifully laid tables. Cabins on river ships have to be fairly small, but they are well thought out with adequate storage space, and very good quality amenities. The Quietvox system which is provided free for shore excursions, is really good. Entertainment is always good on these ships, but on this cruise there were two US singer/songwriters plus a large group of their followers, all of whom added to the normal entertainment. The singers gave three concerts during the week, which were fun and enjoyable. There were also local artistes who came on board, and they were also good. If we have one less positive point about Emerald it is that we have done almost all of their itineraries and need them to add more so that we can make more bookings. We love sailing with Emerald. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Just a qualifier to start ... this is my first cruise, so I write this review lacking other benchmarks. I'm essentially rating and evaluating this cruise relative to other vacation experiences and the expectations from reading prior ... Read More
Just a qualifier to start ... this is my first cruise, so I write this review lacking other benchmarks. I'm essentially rating and evaluating this cruise relative to other vacation experiences and the expectations from reading prior reviews. That said, I don't see how this experience could have been much better than it was. Here are some highlights. Dining with dietary needs: One of my sons was gluten-free and dairy free. We found the main dining room and the specialty restaurants (Canelatto, Pinnacle Grill) to be particularly confidence building in terms of how they handle allergies. This was true for both dinner and breakfast (we never happened to eat lunch in the MDR). My son generally pre-orded his dinner for the next day at a current days dinner and the chefs were able to prepare it according to his needs. Dive In and the NY Deli also handled special dietary needs well. The Lido Buffet was a little more chancy as nothing was labeled, so we rarely ate there. Dining quality and experience: I don't see how it could be much better. Food was delicious and served at appropriate temperature. Range of choices in MDR and specialty restaurants was excellent. Service was phenomenal. Ambiance in the 2nd floor MDR was solid -- even better at times when we got a seat by the window. One observation was that one needs to allow about 1 hour for breakfast and 1.5-2 hours for dinner. In other words, it's European dining speed. That was quite acceptable. I loved the fact that you could get food until midnight. Evening entertainment: The Music Walk (BB King, Rolling Stone Rock Room, Billboard Onboard) totally exceeded expectations. The Rock Room cover band was very good as was BB King (the bass player was phenomenal) and they hide quite a bit of variation from show to show and night to night. But the two pianists in Billboard Onboard stole the show. They were engaging, exceptionally talented, and quite entertaining. We chose Nieuw Statendam for their emphasis on music so we had high expectations. This surpassed them. Only nit might be that many shows were very crowded, but if you were willing to stand, you never missed a beat. Other observations: -- The appearance of the boat was spectacular. It still had that "new boat" smell. :-) -- I personally liked the walking path around the exterior of the boat on deck 3. One of my sons really liked the basketball court on deck 11. -- I liked the fact that the hot tubs were kept at about 100F. That means that you could relax and not have to worry about leaving and 15-20 minutes. -- They seemed to have very good judgment as to when to close the roof on the Lido pool and when to keep it open. -- Entry and exit on the boat at port was well organized. Some minor nits: -- Sometimes the wait at the Guest Services desk could be a bit long -- up to 15 minutes. -- I had a few times where I was trying to get information and got different answers from different people. For instance, I could never figure out what time the pool closed. -- The Navigator app was OK ... but it did not consistently notify me when I received a chat message. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
For several years now I had wanted to cruise the Danube, maybe from watching all the Viking ads on PBS’ Masterpiece programs. So I began researching river cruises around the time Crystal first entered this market, and the reviews ... Read More
For several years now I had wanted to cruise the Danube, maybe from watching all the Viking ads on PBS’ Masterpiece programs. So I began researching river cruises around the time Crystal first entered this market, and the reviews immediately pegged it as the top of the line for luxury cruises. By the time we were able to actually book a cruise, Crystal’s river fleet had expanded and we wound up on a 10-day expedition on the newest addition, the Crystal Ravel. We were not disappointed: In fact, it was one of the rare experiences that totally exceeded expectations. First, the ship itself was smallish (four decks), with about a hundred passengers. I loved that it felt intimate—I have a horror of the 10-deck behemoths that cruise oceans. At the same time it was also stylish and modern. Our cabin wasn’t huge, but it had a small walk-in closet, a bathroom with two sinks and an excellent shower, and a very comfortable king sized bed. It also had a large flat screen TV, and we enjoyed watching a movie on it one night. Overall it was a very comfortable refuge. Then there was the food. We live in San Francisco, a foodie Mecca, but the cuisine on the Ravel was nothing short of marvelous, especially the sit-down dinners (they only had a buffet one night). Almost every meal was like eating at a five-star restaurant, with service to match. Wines on the all-inclusive menu were good to great (you can opt to pay extra for premium wines but we never felt the need). Two special meal options are worth mentioning: The bistro dinner in the smallish cafe (it’s free but you must reserve a seat since they can’t accommodate more than a couple of dozen diners), and the gourmet experience in the Vintage Room, a pricey but amazing 8-course meal with awesome wines (you must also reserve this ahead of time—we ate with four other people). Even if you don’t splurge on the Vintage Room, definitely try the bistro meal, which is sort of tapas-like—a lot of small plates with everything from steak tartare and gravlax to prime beef, shrimp, and caviar. It was outstanding. Breakfast buffets were great, and you could opt for ordered specialties (e.g. eggs Benedict); I rarely even ate lunch but people I spoke with also enjoyed casual bistro and served options. Crystal’s all-inclusive shore excursions covered all the basics, and we also opted for a couple of esoteric extra-cost outings (for example, Vienna’s Jewish history). Guides were generally excellent, especially the one who escorted us through the infamous Mauthausen death camp. I liked that he didn’t sugar coat his comments on the complicity of the Austrian people. Finally, the service. Every single crew member, from housekeepers and wait staff to tour organizers, the couple who provided musical and games entertainment at night, and the butler who twice a day refreshed the ice in our ice bucket, seemed truly dedicated to pampering and otherwise seeing to our comfort and satisfaction. By the end of the 10 days they seemed to know all of us by name, and always greeted us as we walked by. This cruise was a splurge for my husband and I, but we both felt it was well worth it. Crystal In our view lived up to its reputation as the best European river cruise line out there. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
I was chosen to perform with a friend on board Brent Burns and 88 Parrot Head fans who went with us. My wife and I have done cruises on bigger ships, this was the first time on a river cruise. From the moment we hit the Amsterdam airport ... Read More
I was chosen to perform with a friend on board Brent Burns and 88 Parrot Head fans who went with us. My wife and I have done cruises on bigger ships, this was the first time on a river cruise. From the moment we hit the Amsterdam airport to the time we departed from Zurich we just had a great time. The ship in one I would choose again and again. The staff were helpful, friendly and seem to always have a smile on their faces as if they enjoyed what they did...a rarity. From our director to the young lady who tended to our cabin, to the front desk, the food staff...all were just outstanding. Our onshore tours were well organized and our tour guides were informative and friendly. We truly enjoyed the mix of being able to relax and yet still see a lot all at the same time. And certainly we enjoyed not having to pack and repack numerous times during this week journey. I would recommend this trip and this ship highly to anyone. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose Amawaterways after reading some very positive critics about food and excursions on their ships. On Amaviola, food was fair but not exceptional compare to other cruise lines but "La table du chef", once by cruise, ... Read More
We chose Amawaterways after reading some very positive critics about food and excursions on their ships. On Amaviola, food was fair but not exceptional compare to other cruise lines but "La table du chef", once by cruise, deserve congratulations. For excursions , it's true that choices were varied for every kind of people, young and older ones even with bike rides offered. What bother us the most on this cruise was general atmosphere with a lot of american's families getting together with grand ma et grand pa and not attending at all at cultural shows presented on the ship ....8-10 persons on a cruise of 150 persons for listing a french signer at Strasbourg, every body was on sun deck instead....it was pitiful! The night after, ship canceled show supposed to be presented !!! A separated club of 45-50 cyclists was on this cruise and may be this separated group changed atmosphere on the ship ! I don't know ! Also, service was average in room, bar and restaurant nothing too bad but nothing too good also. At bar, we were running to get drinks at tables, we were obliged to go the the bar counter .At front desk, smile wasn't included also.! On the upper deck or sun deck with a little pool very attractive and useful, under 35C weather, no service at all during all week with one exception to offered us once German coffee! We cruised twice before on Avalon's ships ( Danube and Seine rivers) and the personal was more joyful, friendly, service was better and food as good as on this Amawaterways cruise, member of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs For the river and cities to visit , it was amazing and we recommend this cruise with what companies you like but not necessary with AMA. For arrival and departure at ship and airports ....wow...exceptional personalized service and for that AMA deserves congratulations. We know that AMA can't be responsable of participation of their clients on a cruise but for those who want more joyful cruises, look before at what kind of people ships companies try to attract. May be we were only back lucky and AMA can offer more friendly cruises . Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Our third time on Azura and as it is every time we have cruised with P&O embarkation was smooth and stress free, this time a cruise to the the Norwegian fjords, loved our balcony cabin on L deck, being high up gave us some amazing ... Read More
Our third time on Azura and as it is every time we have cruised with P&O embarkation was smooth and stress free, this time a cruise to the the Norwegian fjords, loved our balcony cabin on L deck, being high up gave us some amazing views of Norway's spectacular scenery, usually go for an inside cabin but was definitely worth the extra for a balcony Our cabin was in good condition and kept spotless by Misty our steward, all the crew worked really hard and we received excellent service throughout the ship, ate mainly in MDR where the standard of the food was very good, having a vegetarian menu with different choices each night is great, used the buffet for breakfast and sometimes for lunch, again no complaints although for some reason at breakfast they hid the mushrooms and would only bring them out if you asked for them! Headliners were good as always, enjoyed most of the guest acts. The singing duo in the Planet bar were very good as were the resident band Pulse Sailing through the fjords was amazing and we enjoyed all the ports we visited, we didn't book any excursions instead we booked the Flam railway online before we left, the flam railway site said it was fully booked but we booked through the Norway national rail website and it was all fine, also went on the funicular to the top of mount Floyen in Bergen and went to the Magic Ice bar, both of these were excellent and you don't need to book ahead Disembarkation also went very smoothly, we really enjoyed the cruise and always enjoy sailing with P&O and can't wait for the next one! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Second time on Azura. Once to the Caribbean which I easily give 5 stars. This time to the Fjords. Had a wonderful time. Loved the cruise but the food was terrible. There was no choice. Everything was cold and uneatable. We went to the ... Read More
Second time on Azura. Once to the Caribbean which I easily give 5 stars. This time to the Fjords. Had a wonderful time. Loved the cruise but the food was terrible. There was no choice. Everything was cold and uneatable. We went to the restaurant and they messed that up, it was a right shambles. My partner sent his food back twice and it was still wrong after that. Entertainment was great, staff pleasant, cabins maintained. Food was just awful. We couldn't afford to eat when at the destinations because we hadn't budgeted £22 for one beef burger because that is what it costs to eat out in Norway. They must all be millionaires or something! The entertainment was excellent, the staff where nice. We did all our excursions through the P&O planner and they looked after us really well. I have a really big issue with paying so much money and not being able to eat properly that is all. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise as it suited us and our friends date wise, number of days wise and places it visited. Having done 3 cruises on large ships (2 in the Caribbean and 1 to the Norway fjords) we were surprised how different it was. It ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it suited us and our friends date wise, number of days wise and places it visited. Having done 3 cruises on large ships (2 in the Caribbean and 1 to the Norway fjords) we were surprised how different it was. It was so relaxing watching the world go slowly by and you could barely notice the movement. Sea sickness doesn't happen on these cruises, yet you still visit other places from the same 'hotel' room. Our only downside was getting up early most days for trips, which started between 0815 and 0915. The cabin was spacious, the food great, the service wonderful and the staff so friendly. We enjoyed the violinist and opera singers - two separate entertainers on different days. The pool was lovely for cooling off in too, though rather small for swimming in. Our drinks package worked well and was far more economical. Being with around 170 passengers, you get to know more people on the cruise and a lot of the staff. We are already planning our next river cruise! Most people on the cruise were 60-75, like us. If you are younger and don't mind being in the minority then that is fine. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Today we came back from the cruise on Aida Perla. We had 7 days cruise starting from Hamburg. It was our third cruise. Two previous were on Italian ships. The first on Costa Fascinoza and the second on MSC Precioza. The Aida Perla is new, ... Read More
Today we came back from the cruise on Aida Perla. We had 7 days cruise starting from Hamburg. It was our third cruise. Two previous were on Italian ships. The first on Costa Fascinoza and the second on MSC Precioza. The Aida Perla is new, modern and well maintained ship. We came to the port by a shuttle from the Central Bus station. We booked it via AIDA site. The same was on the way from the port. An embarkation was well organized. The dinner is different from the Italian ships. There are few buffet restaurants in various styles. First two days we got upset searching a free table (they don't set you in 1st or 2th dinner shift. You come when you want). But then we learnt to check via screens on every deck, indicating where are free tables. Also you may come after the planned break and to have free tables abound. The food is hot, not like sometimes on Italian ships. You have real abundance of food and they always add after it ends. The cuisine is German cuisine but plenty and variety may supply every taste. Red and white wine and beer are free. I very liked a possibility to prepare a tea with big choice of various kinds either in bags and either in boxes but they provide paper bags to fill with a tea you choose. The water for tea is very hot (again, it is not similar to Italian ships). Twice we ate a dinner in restaurants requesting to made early reservation. You pay for drinks but don't pay for the food (you commit to order the drinks). But the service was excellent. You feel as VIP, not like one of hundreds in crowded restaurant we were accustomed of it in previous cruises. We had a balcony cabin on 14th deck. The cabin was excellent. I especially liked big closet and also enjoyed wooden floor in the bath room. There is a folded hammock on the balcony. The cabin is equipped with two USB connections to charge your devices. I appreciated that smoking was limited to few areas (in my review for MSC last year I wrote the it was the ship stinking with cigarettes due to almost free smoking). You don't need to pay automatically tips. Even if you want to pay, you hardly have to whom you may pay. We left banknote for our room servant despite I didn't meet him. In the buffet restaurants you take a food by yourself and there is now your own waiter. A swimming pool is big and clean (essentially bigger than on Italian cruises and the water is warm. On Italian ships you have to be a hero to immerse in the cold water of the swimming pool. Also an aqua park for children is located in close space and it creates good vibe in Northern waters (our last cruise also was in the Northern Sea and nobody dared even to look at open aqua park exposed to wind and cold). I have to say that nobody touts on AIDA and photographers don't hunt you. It is big advantage. Spa prices are the same for every day. They don't raise the price for a sea day. Wi Fi works excellent in every spot in the ship. And now that's a time to count few downsides. The most frustrating is that the ship is oriented to serve only German-speaking clients. Almost every letter (including daily on board newspaper) comes in German. I appealed to reception and asked to have the same in English. It was not possible but they invited me to come with the message or newspaper ant to get their translation. I suppose it's not a solution. Very often they announce something in German but it is not followed by the same in other languages. I felt not important and not valued guest. Stew names in the buffet are written in German. We paid for musical party in the evening but left disappointed after they had started to manage it in German only. Ship shows looked poor in comparing to Italian ships. The best were on Costa Fascinoza. And if you don't come at least a half an hour before, you don't have any chance to find a seat. The theater is small and it isn't built as amphitheater. So a back of a person sitting in front of you avoids you to see. Also the theater is not built as a separate department in front of the ship. It is located in the middle and people walk freely via both sides of every theater deck. Dancing parties were boring. A folk hardly danced and nobody tried to pull them for dancing. Last year on Precioza guys and girls from entertainment team knew how initiate the dancing. There was no discipline of disinfection. Nobody verifies usage of hand sterilization devices at entries of dining rooms. Sometimes there is no sanitation liquid in the devices. Also the trash is built so that you can't litter the paper into and not to touch it. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
First impressions of the boat were excellent and we had no reason to change our minds. Embarkation was smooth and we were shown to our very comfy accommodation. The cabin was quite compact but very well designed so space wasn’t a ... Read More
First impressions of the boat were excellent and we had no reason to change our minds. Embarkation was smooth and we were shown to our very comfy accommodation. The cabin was quite compact but very well designed so space wasn’t a problem. It was kept immaculately by the housekeeping staff throughout our trip. The food was outstanding, covering many of the regional specialties during the course of the week, always plenty of choice and always delicious. The wine was well chosen and flowed freely during lunch and dinner. We cannot praise the staff enough, always friendly and helpful. They made you feel your enjoyment of the holiday was very important to them. The daily excursions were well chosen using knowledgeable and helpful local guides. The evening entertainment on board was enjoyable, especially the quizzes and dancing, we also had great fun taking part in a salsa lesson one afternoon. We were particularly impressed by the officers’ sympathetic, discreet and effective handling of a thankfully minor medical emergency involving my husband, who has diabetes. The discreet subsequent enquires as to his health were greatly appreciated. Thank you to everyone for a fabulous cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
This was my 13th cruise but my first alone,after the death of my wife in 2015,_the Norwegian Fiords were a place we had on our bucket list but never got to do it together so I decided it was time to take the plunge and see how life onboard ... Read More
This was my 13th cruise but my first alone,after the death of my wife in 2015,_the Norwegian Fiords were a place we had on our bucket list but never got to do it together so I decided it was time to take the plunge and see how life onboard alone was, a inside cabin was a first for me but it kept the cost down besides which I only wanted to sleep and shower in it and it was fine for me other than it having fold away bunk beds either side of my bed that made it somewhat cramped. I opted for first sitting dining on a table of 8 and found myself in the company of lovely friendly people 3 others than were alone and conversation flowed readily, daily menu was well varied as you would expect and excellent quality. The onboard entertainment was as good as any cruise I've ever taken but the Dancers & Singers in the Show were the best I've ever seen. Service was good and as with every other cruise cabin staff were always happy and smiling. First port of call was Stavanger and it was a easy stroll from the ship into town and get a feel for life in Norway, a very expensive country. I did one excursion in Flam and that was on the railway that traverses up the mountain spectacular views. Olden was a poor port of call apart from walking around the Fiord it was a day wasted. Bergen: This was the highlight of the cruise we has sunshine all day and it is without doubt the most interesting place to visit such a loverly harbour and a trip up the heights to look down on it. The trip back to Southampton was a nice calm sea and pleasant cruising, so my first experience as a single cruiser at 73 years was a a flood of past memories and I enjoyed it, I will choose another and look forward to it. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Our first European trip was an incredible experience. We fell in love with the culture, the people and, of course, Emerald. We were impressed by the simplicity and warmth of the check in and check out process. The food was delish and ... Read More
Our first European trip was an incredible experience. We fell in love with the culture, the people and, of course, Emerald. We were impressed by the simplicity and warmth of the check in and check out process. The food was delish and more always available if needed....perfect for a 15yr old son. The service was excellent without being stuffy. They knew us by name the moment we stepped on!! The ports and tours were a perfect blend of activities that made us feel much more involved in the true culture of the towns. The age group on board was much older than us and quiet but our family enjoyed meeting and learning from others. However, more younger people on board would have been nice for our family especially in the evenings. We also would have loved more flexibility with meals particularly dinner. Maybe a serving time within a 90 min time frame would have allowed us some variability. Overall, Emerald exceeded our expectations and solidified our love for Emerald, river cruises and Europe. We can't wait to sail with Emerald again!!! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
I did explore Paris before embarkation. Saw all the local attractions and enjoyed the local restaurants. Did not like having people smoking in restaurants, hopefully this will be addressed in the near future. Welcome dinner was lovely ... Read More
I did explore Paris before embarkation. Saw all the local attractions and enjoyed the local restaurants. Did not like having people smoking in restaurants, hopefully this will be addressed in the near future. Welcome dinner was lovely with the beautiful city as a backdrop. . Dining experience was very good. Entertainment was good and enjoyed Chef’s cooking experience. Service was excellent. Some of the ports were littered with rubbish but that was not Scenic’s problem, local authorities should look into this problem. Shore excursions were very good , except the day of the Somme Battlefields excursion, the restaurant that day was not up to standard, food was terrible and were not offered anything other than the local cheap red wine. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly, thanks to the Cruise Director. Cabin was clean and very comfortable , servicing the cabin was prompt , with friendly service by staff. All in all, a very enjoyable cruise and I would highly recommend this trip. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
First cruise to the Baltic and turned into a wonderful experience. Lots of variety in ports and a different experience in each. First time also on this ship and instantly became my favourite Service was excellent Food terrific ... Read More
First cruise to the Baltic and turned into a wonderful experience. Lots of variety in ports and a different experience in each. First time also on this ship and instantly became my favourite Service was excellent Food terrific Entertainment amazing. Best singers and dancers yet. And Paul Ruck tribute to Eric Clapton is as good as it gets Photography team were also brilliant and came away with 30 AFFORDABLE photographs Stateroom a little on the small side but it didn’t matter The ship has large choice of venues and areas for relaxation Never even used two of the pools and one was enclosed Balconies a little tight but again not a problem Stateroom service was excellent and unobtrusive Buffet option was more than adequate Occasionally experienced strong winds and the ship handled it really well Excursions including embarking and disembarking were dealt with very efficiently and excursions very good value Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose this cruise because of Backroads. We were doing the biking/river cruise trip and felt that unpacking once on a ship and not having to think of where to get meals, etc would be a good decision. Backroads and their guides were ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of Backroads. We were doing the biking/river cruise trip and felt that unpacking once on a ship and not having to think of where to get meals, etc would be a good decision. Backroads and their guides were amazing and wonderful. The AMASonata and its crew were beyond our wildest dreams. I have never been more pampered, offered so much amazing food and drink, and been provided with every imaginable form of entertainment. From the Captain right through to Ali our housekeeping staff member, we were impressed and incredibly pleased. Wei-Ler our cruise concierge was everywhere all of the time, doing anything and everything to make our trip more exciting and seamless. We recommend this trip, whether you do it with the Backroads biking or just do the cruise, very highly. In fact, it was the best trip we have taken in our entire lives. Thank you one and all on the AMASonata for this trip of a lifetime. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
Having cruised the Rhine also with Scenic, we needed another holiday where we would also be spoilt, and so we decided to go with them on the river Seine, visiting WW1 and 2 battlefields, and many other interesting historical places. The ... Read More
Having cruised the Rhine also with Scenic, we needed another holiday where we would also be spoilt, and so we decided to go with them on the river Seine, visiting WW1 and 2 battlefields, and many other interesting historical places. The crew of the Gem are brilliant, and there is honestly nothing bad that can be said about them, they are attentive, dedicated staff who will do anything for you. Lots of great wine and cheese to be tasted. Watch your waistline on this cruise, as France is famous for it food, and the Gem's chefs are brilliant, and produce some absolutely great meals, and of course if you don't like what's on the menus they will make you anything. Once your on-board put your wallet and CC's in the safe, you will not need them. Everything on this cruise was included, including alcoholic drinks, and by the way there is a massive range of cocktails, which can be skippered or slurped on the upper deck in a light breeze as you sail down the river. Scenic Gem can get into harbours other cruise ships can not visit, so you are alone sometimes whilst docked, brilliant! Try this you will not be disappointed, but you will be spoilt. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2019
My wife and I thought this was an easy way to experience Europe without a lot of pressure on us and we were right. From the start Scenic was fantastic. Pick up at airport in Budapest was the one thing we were nervous about but a Scenic ... Read More
My wife and I thought this was an easy way to experience Europe without a lot of pressure on us and we were right. From the start Scenic was fantastic. Pick up at airport in Budapest was the one thing we were nervous about but a Scenic employee was waiting for us in the arrival hall. A light lunch was being prepared for us when we reached Scenic Amber, which we were pleasantly surprised about, after being up for 30 hours. The ship was very clean and we were welcomed by Mauricio the hotel manager. The entire crew was awesome. From JJ the cruise director to the lounge and wait staff. We loved this group of people. It didn't take them long to know what our drink order was or "Egg benedict?" for breakfast. This group was truly fantastic. Food was great!! I have read some negative reviews about food and they make no sense to me. My wife is a picky eater and she was so proud of herself for all the unique and new foods she ate. Chef Istvan is very proud of his work and he should be. They make the bread on board and I had to have some every day. Great choices of fish or different meats that tied into the area we were traveling. Well done! We were on the Jewel Deck in a small cabin but it was fine. We liked the extra storage on the "shelf" next to the picture window...ran the whole length of the cabin. Very helpful in a tight room. Room was just a place to flop. Great shower though! The excursions were great. I loved having time, other than Budapest, to be able to go off on our own for at least 90 minutes. Plenty of shopping and sightseeing was done. The concert in Vienna was awesome as was Schoenbrunn Palace in Vienna, Melk Abbey, and the trip to Salzburg. Regensburg was so much better than expected. Entertainment seemed fine. We watched a little of it. People seemed to be enjoying it. My wife and I liked hanging out in the evening air on the top deck and watching the river and lights. Again, the service by this crew couldn't have been better. We wanted to take a few of them home with us. I love friendly banter and this crew is allowed to be themselves so hats off to Mauricio and JJ for that. The crew was very attentive and made sure your glasses were full if you wanted them to be. We definitely hope to go on a Scenic cruise again...maybe the Rhine next time...after we get the two kids out of college! Well done Scenic Amber!!! Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
7 day fly cruise around the Greek Islands with two restful sea days. Perfect itenary for us and although we have sailed many many times with P&O we had never been on Oceana. Firstly , we were aware of her size and age, so ... Read More
7 day fly cruise around the Greek Islands with two restful sea days. Perfect itenary for us and although we have sailed many many times with P&O we had never been on Oceana. Firstly , we were aware of her size and age, so expectations were not high. However it has to be said the staff are excellent, friendly and provide excellent service. Nothing is too much trouble. The food was also of a very high standard, with an extremely wide choice and very accommodating waiters. The ships function rooms have been upgraded and create a very relaxed and inviting atmosphere. What really lets this ship down are her cabins. Not only are they very small , that also includes the balcony , but they are in great need of attention . Air conditioning is extremely loud througout the night, the bathroom is so small when using the toilet you can touch the door, the shower cubicle is minuscule and shower heads falling apart, drains do not seem to drain away properly and despite the cabin being cleaned extremely well each day, the cabin looks well worn. Despite this the itenary of the cruise around Greece did exceed expectations. Beautiful ports with easy access to sights. SoundaBay whilst remote, you can take a public bus from the port to Chania - 20 minutes away and what a gem. Santorini is wonderful. Pre hotel stay in Malta at the Excelsior was perfect. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2019
We chose Scenic as we were looking for a cruise that was 100% all inclusive. It turned out to be the right decision as we never once had to pull out our wallet. The only additional cost was a massage! Scenic lived up to everything we ... Read More
We chose Scenic as we were looking for a cruise that was 100% all inclusive. It turned out to be the right decision as we never once had to pull out our wallet. The only additional cost was a massage! Scenic lived up to everything we expected. Rooms were excellent and the addition of a small balcony was great on mornings when we wanted room service rather than eating at the restaurant. Food was very good with incredible selection. Tours had enough variety that it appeared there was something for everyone. For people considering a river cruise for the first time here are some pointers that I was not aware of and had I known it would have made the experience even better: 1. Don't take the top deck for a room if you are travelling in the summer. Air Conditioning works better on the lower level. Rooms closer to the back of the boat are louder due to the engine. If you like white noise then they are great. Rooms closer to the front you hear everyone passing your room. 2. Do your research on destinations along the river you are cruising on along with tours. Some of our tours were two hours bus ride before you got to your destination. My assumption was destinations would be a virtual walk off the boat. (I understand the Rhone is more like this). When it was it was a walk off the boat such as Durnstein it was fantastic! 3. Compare docking stops. On the Danube we sailed by Passau. It looked fantastic but Scenic does not stop there...… Viking does. 4. Understand how often you can be up on the sun deck on the river cruise. Depending on low bridges or locks you are limited to just the lounge area below. This is when you really want a balcony ….. or pick a different river. The channel between the Danube and Nuremburg there are many locks. Although interesting we loved being up top so that is a disappointment. 5. On Scenic you would do a tour and the boat would continue down the Danube and you would pick it up later in the day. One day we passed on the tours and enjoyed just cruising. Again look at the schedule..... this may have been my favourite day! Ultimately identify how much you want to be busy or relax and choose the right cruise based on this. 6. Beware that the success of a cruise can be very dependent not only on the staff but also who you have the luck of cruising with. With a minimum of less than 200 people if the group is fun..... you will have fun. We met many ships along our cruise and it became obvious we were very lucky with the group we had. 7. Cruise success is also dependent on whether the water is at the right height. Check months and get some statistics from your travel agents to try and ensure that you will be on the water for 100% of your trip...… or book last minute like we did. Read Less

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