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Cruise Ratings
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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
i chose this sailing because of a special promotion which made the price reasonable compared to most other azamera cruises and it had an interesting intinerary.. i had always wanted to sail on azamera due to its excellent reputation for ... Read More
i chose this sailing because of a special promotion which made the price reasonable compared to most other azamera cruises and it had an interesting intinerary.. i had always wanted to sail on azamera due to its excellent reputation for food quality, its small size, the free liquor and free gratuities. it lived up to my expectations, the staff is very friendly, the captain down to the housekeeping, food was excellent, white nights is a terrific event, get there early and grab a table with a very high end buffet. tendering was orderly and had minimal waits. the only 2 reasons it is not rated 5 stars was that we had a botched excursion where the vendor swisstours did not do all elements of the excursion in papagayo, azamera did refund us 50 per cent but we really wanted the complete refund. the second issue was the best entertainment on the ship was the singers and dancers and russ the cruise director who is also an excellent singer. azamera for some reason is letting go of all their singers and dancers as of feb 8th for some type of new format. this cruise had 3 nights of a violinist and a piano player/magician. do i really need 3 nights for classical music and no comedians. the inside cabin we had seemed smaller than other ships the same room size. overall though the cruise was excellent and i would definitely go on this cruise line. Read Less
BBMacLaird, CBO - Azamara Club Cruises has responded
Thank you blustig77 for the review. We hope you'll sail with us again soon!
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
My husband and I flew to CA to bring my father back to KY after his visit with my brother in CA. Since we were going to be in LA, we decided to take the four-day cruise. We arrived two days before departure and stayed at the Hotel ... Read More
My husband and I flew to CA to bring my father back to KY after his visit with my brother in CA. Since we were going to be in LA, we decided to take the four-day cruise. We arrived two days before departure and stayed at the Hotel Maya--a great place to stay. Had dinner at the hotel the first night and at the Reef (within walking distance) the second night. Spent the entire day before the cruise exploring the Queen Mary--which is within walking distance. Took the hotel shuttle to the cruise port, although we could have walked it. This was only our second Carnival cruise and was exactly as expected. However, we purchased the "Faster to Fun" pass which was wonderful. We arrived at port at 11:15 and was on the ship by 11:30!!! No long lines for lunch--went straight to Guy's Burgers and had the delicious hamburger. Although the service in the dining room was excellent, the food was so-so. We did really enjoy the Sea Day brunch! The room was very clean. We only saw our room steward upon arrival and that was it. Room service was very quick in the morning and also when I called for a hairdryer. Unlike Princess cruises that have production shows every night, there were only two production shows in the four days which were pretty good. Comedians were okay. Disembarkation was very quick. Got our luggage and walked straight to the Uber pickup and waited less than a minute for a ride to LAX. Overall, we really enjoyed the cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
A quick and fun getaway. Embarkation - chose a 12:30pm boarding time and walked right onto the ship with our carry on at about 12:15pm. Had lunch and then dropped our bags in our room before exploring the ship. Muster Drill - ... Read More
A quick and fun getaway. Embarkation - chose a 12:30pm boarding time and walked right onto the ship with our carry on at about 12:15pm. Had lunch and then dropped our bags in our room before exploring the ship. Muster Drill - this was the only thing any of us had any complaints about. It was delayed about 15 minutes and took much longer that we have experienced in the past. We missed sunset and had little time after the drill before our dinner time. Carnival should work on this. Cruise Director Matey - this guy is a lot of phone and somehow is every where on this ship. He and his crew did a great job keeping the activities fun and lively. His energy and campy style are just what cruising is about. Fun, Fun, Fun. Cheerio! Entertainment - excellent in every way. The comedy club is so much fun and a great way to end the day. The stage productions were really good. Epic Rock was awesome, costumes and dancers better than many broadway shows I have paid for. Couldn't have enjoyed that more and considered watching it again the same night at the second showing. Dining - nearly everything I had on this cruise was good, and some of it really good. Guys burgers = delicious and so fast and easy. Blue Iguana was really good, and I eat mexican in so cal all the time so my bar is high. I ate there every day for either breakfast or lunch. Food in the dining room was really good, I enjoyed every meal. And chocolate melting cake is always amazing. Ship - the ship is in good condition and the facilities, rooms, etc were are clean and comfortable. I don't like the smoking in the casino and how it spreads around the ship, for me this is an issue. I'm waiting for the time when smoking inside is prohibited all together as it really does inhibit my enjoyment of many activities in the surrounding areas. Ports - we like Catalina and enjoyed the day by renting a golf cart and taking a tour. It was a little cool in January but Avalon is a charming little town and a fun place to visit. We always get off in Ensenada and walk into town. A few drinks and a little shopping is about all we get around to. This cruise is not really about the ports so don't expect too much at this time. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Overall: Our experience was highly soured by the service issues below. Had they not happened, this would have been a mediocre cruise. Service: We had two major issues during our cruise. At our first port, we had booked an outside ... Read More
Overall: Our experience was highly soured by the service issues below. Had they not happened, this would have been a mediocre cruise. Service: We had two major issues during our cruise. At our first port, we had booked an outside excursion based on the cruise itinerary. We were warned ahead of time by the tour operator that the cruise might be on a different time zone, so I called ahead to Princess to verify the time we were planning on getting into port and was given the wrong time, making us miss our entire day's activity. We lost a deposit and a small amount of money on internet and phone charges trying to rectify it, but were given no assistance or even good-will gesture on board to make up for this error on their part and were referred to 'corporate'. It took days to reach them and they also refused to acknowledge fault or make any gesture to rectify the situation. Our second day in port we had booked an overpriced resort day pass with Princess' official excursions. We were a few minutes late to the meeting when my watch lost time overnight and were willing to pay our own way over to the resort. However, main staff had no way of contacting the excursion staff, and when we met with the excursion staff member, she would not tell us where the group went and had no way of contacting any other staff. We had to ask a random taxi driver where the cruise passengers usually go to find it, and our passes and when we finally arrived our passes were not fully honored, so we essentially paid $160 to sit on a crowded beach to be accosted every minute by schlock hustlers. We had to pay our own way back as well. We could not obtain a refund for this excursion either. The rest pales by comparison, although there were small issues with cabin service. Entertainment: Difficult to participate (i.e. Karaoke booked out before it formally began), and otherwise mediocre. Dining: Share restaurant was excellent. Main dining halls were good. Buffets were mediocre. Service in dining halls was very good, but limited during day in buffet areas. Cabin: Aging, but mostly clean. Reasonably spacious with nicely sized balcony. Ports and shore excursions: As above- otherwise issues included having very short window of time in Los Cabos, the third port and one of the locations with the most to do. Lines to get back to the cruise (tendering required) were extensive, and activity repertoire was limited by short time frame. Ship facilities: OK. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We had hoped this cruise would a be convenient escape from winter weather. Unfortunately, it was poorly managed, lacking in concerns for sanitation, fraught with hard-sales desperation and lacking in adequate accommodations for ... Read More
We had hoped this cruise would a be convenient escape from winter weather. Unfortunately, it was poorly managed, lacking in concerns for sanitation, fraught with hard-sales desperation and lacking in adequate accommodations for passengers! 3 days after departing on a 14 day cruise, I became ill with a strange virus and was denied access to medical care, but instead told to buy cough syrup! 3 days after completing the cruise I am now still recovering and receiving care from my doctor! Regarding the cruise experience; the food quality was average, service was generally disappointing, there was little oversight regarding sanitation of food preparation and service, and the management of disembarkation, transition between ships and direction to transportation was severally lacking! And forget about wifi access in your cabin, though we were told we would have this, there was essentially none. And if you have kids, don't expect in room entertaining TV for them! We did enjoy our excursion to Las Caletas, but Cabo San Lucas was rather disappointing! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We wanted to try out a new cruise line and some new ports, so we decided to take the Mexican Riviera cruise with Princess for our 15th anniversary. We were highly disappointed. I had always heard that Princess was a much nicer cruise ... Read More
We wanted to try out a new cruise line and some new ports, so we decided to take the Mexican Riviera cruise with Princess for our 15th anniversary. We were highly disappointed. I had always heard that Princess was a much nicer cruise experience but we just felt that it was way overpriced for what you got. In the past we have cruised Carnival and MSC. This was our 14th cruise. Carnival is better than Princess, in our opinion, and there is no comparison between MSC and Princess. MSC wins on everything. The food was extremely repetitive and most days for lunch ended up having a salad because it was the same food options everyday in the buffet. This was the first cruise that I ever lost weight on. The traditional dining experience wasn't any better. I am not sure who came up with the menu options for this cruise but it was awful. Entertainment was poor. The magician and the comedian were good but the magician only had a show one night. The comedian had an early and a late show one night and then another night had 1 late show. The Mexican folklore show was okay. But their other shows were extremely disappointing and we actually got up and walked out half way through the "Magic to Do" show which Princess seems to think is so great. It isn't. The hard sell on this cruise ship was the worst I have ever seen. We spent $400 for a couples massage and then my massage therapist actually got pissed off because I wouldn't buy the extremely overpriced lotion she was trying to force on me. Usually I make 3-4 visits to the spa on a cruise but after this experience I never went back. Selling on this ship is out of control. They walk around while you are eating in the buffet trying to get you to sign up for wine tastings or specialty restaurants. You couldn't walk into a store without them trying to redirect you to the overpriced Effy store. My husband forgot his cuff links. Every store told us that we had to go to the Effy store for cuff links where they were almost $200 a pair. We searched ourselves and were able to get him a pair for $10 in the store where tshirts and logo stuff was sold. Debarkation was also the most organized and stressful that we have ever seen on a ship. We were an hour late getting into port and this just seemed to throw everything off. There was very little communication about what was going on and everyone was trying to wait in the same area because no one was telling anyone what was going on or what to do. We ended up being 2 hours late getting off the ship. We even witnessed a Princess employee getting very rude with cruisers that were upset about missing their flights. There were a few things we did like. We enjoyed have a drink each evening before dinner in the Vines Wine Bar. Their waiter and bartender were very entertaining and knowledgeable about their wine offerings. Our room steward was also really good. After asking him for something once, he always made sure we had what we needed for the rest of the week. Cabo San Lucas was another highlight. It is a beautiful port. We did the whale watching tour offered by Princess and we totally enjoyed ourselves. It was a relaxing day of whale watching and saw quite a few of the whales that are in the area for the season. The only disappointment was that we left the port at 2pm and didn't really get to enjoy the port after our tour. The line was so long to get a tender back to the ship that we were afraid to do anything and risk being too late for a tender. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2018
my group arrived late for embarkation but the crew got us registered and on the ship pretty quickly, we had to carry our own luggage which was a bummer but it was okay especially after I heard from other cruisers that their bags came up ... Read More
my group arrived late for embarkation but the crew got us registered and on the ship pretty quickly, we had to carry our own luggage which was a bummer but it was okay especially after I heard from other cruisers that their bags came up missing, I was disappointed in my cabin , I paid for balcony stateroom and my children stayed in an inside cabin which I found to be the same exact size, only difference was I had a balcony. I have cruised many times before and always get a balcony or suite so I was extremely disappointed. the only good thing about the room was my room steward kept it nice and clean the entire time. I took this cruise for my birthday and found very little night life on this cruise, I was a little bored , it seemed like everyone slept for 2 or 3 days before I even saw movement or any entertainment. The night club didn't start playing music till 11pm and by 1:30am nobody was around. I could not even enjoy my balcony because the people next to me complained about noise the entire time , it was as if they got on board to sleep. The buffet was small and didn't have many choices but the dining room was nice, I enjoyed sitting down for a nice meal every night. The pool was nice and so were the Jacuzzi's . I had a spa treatment and ended up getting blisters on my feet and was told to see the ships doctor but of course I would have to pay out of pocket. I was not offered any compensation at all. I paid for a private balcony breakfast which I never received because room service lost my ticket, they claimed they would give it to me another day but never showed up !!! and I never received a refund which of course I asked for. the ports were beautiful !!! we took a tour of the city in Puerto Vallarta , saw the church and beautiful boardwalk, then did a tequila tasting and did a little shopping before we headed to the jungle where we zip lined, afterwards we had a great lunch of lobster and shrimp and fish which was the most delicious meal I have ever had it was very fresh !! in Mazatlan we did a city tour and saw the cathedral which was absolutely breath taking!! we got some great photos and had had lunch on the beach. In Cabo we got off the ship and took a tour on a glass bottom boat afterwards it dropped us at Medano beach where we stopped at the Office and ate and drank some more tequila. The prices were great the bottle of tequila (Don Julio) and 8 plates of food came to about $100. We spent some time on the beach and relaxed. ON the way back one of the boat operators stole from us so that left a bad taste in our mouth for that port. I go on cruises just about every year sometimes twice a year and I doubt that I will ever cruise on Princess again. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2018
I have been a raving fan of National Geographic for over 60 years! Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic combine adventure, hiking, snorkeling, learning about the planet in an unbelievable experience to be remembered forever. I love ... Read More
I have been a raving fan of National Geographic for over 60 years! Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic combine adventure, hiking, snorkeling, learning about the planet in an unbelievable experience to be remembered forever. I love the crew and the variety of experiences that comes all packaged in a remarkably well-organized expedition. I plan on being on one of their expedition per year. Future excursions will be to Costa Rica, Panama Canal, The Faulklands, Antartica, and Europe. This year we took our 9 year grandson. He came back with a deeper appreciation for the earth and was changed forever. My husband and I always come back more relaxed and enlightened to do better and to be better. Thank you, National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions for sharing your work with us. Everyone I see hears me talk about my many excursions with Nat Geo. From Alaska, Galapagos and now from Baja California. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We booked this cruise was for my 75th Birthday celebration. Our cabin steward, Cyrus, was excellent and kept the cabin neat and clean without being intrusive. The Botticelli dining wait staff, Richard and Edson, were excellent and service ... Read More
We booked this cruise was for my 75th Birthday celebration. Our cabin steward, Cyrus, was excellent and kept the cabin neat and clean without being intrusive. The Botticelli dining wait staff, Richard and Edson, were excellent and service was what we've come to expect from Princess. The Princess Theater singers and dancers were very enthusiastic and talented and although we've seen these production shows many times, they still are interesting and exciting to watch. The featured singer, David Austen, was one of best we heard on a cruise and we bought his CD. The comedian, Doug Funk, was a fantastic improvisationalist, and had the audience laughing from the beginning to end of his performance. He was assisted by some very bright and engaging volunteer audience participants. The assistant cruise director, a young man from Australia, was very funny and always had a smile for everyone entertaining everyone with his dialect impersonations. The Ruby, even thought it is not one of the newest Princess ships, still looked great and was well maintained. However, it is due for a refurb, especially the cabin carpets because some passengers are not careful about spills that leave minor stains that can't be removed by shampooing. We saw about a dozen whales and many, many dolphins that rollicked in the bow waves of the ship jumping and doing flips at the cheers and laughter of the passengers. In Puerto Vallarta we were in port with the Grand Princess and were berthed at pier 3 since the usual pier 1 area is under construction. We repeated the Viva Tequila excursion since we enjoyed it so much the last time we did it in March 2017. It has changed with the open air, multi-car "trolley" thru the city tour was replaced with a bus because the city decided it was too disruptive to local traffic. The Tequila Museum is a newer building converted by the Mexican Tequila producers and is in a refurbed large stage theater. We were given "unlimited" margaritas made the traditional Mexican way not the American way and they were much better. The museum staff gave a tour and presentation on the myths and origin of tequila and how it is made which was very informative. In the theater there was an enlightening discussion of how to drink and distinguish between the major varieties of tequila based on its processing and aging. We then had a sample of each of the tequila varieties, Blanca/Silver, Reposado and Anejo to taste. One of the best folkloric shows that we've ever seen was then presented. This was then followed by a short walk to the beach for a complementary lunch at the Mangos beach side restaurant. Highly recommend this excursion when in Puerto Vallarta. At Cabo we were in port with Holland America's Westerdam which left with us and we paralleled our courses all the way to LA being only a little more than mile or so apart for the last 2 days. It was neat to see their lights at night off the port side. In summary, the cruise on the Ruby was great and we truly did come back relaxed and renewed. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We knew it was an older ship and before cruising were a bit puzzled that the reviews seemed quite polarized. We have been on about 45 cruises (will take time to count them up sometime when I'm not either planning a vacation, on vacation, ... Read More
We knew it was an older ship and before cruising were a bit puzzled that the reviews seemed quite polarized. We have been on about 45 cruises (will take time to count them up sometime when I'm not either planning a vacation, on vacation, or working to pay for a vacation) with 8 different cruise lines. We like Princess but if our previous cruises had been like this one, we wouldn't say that. And if our next one is like this one, it will probably be the last with them. Overall, we think Princess has a large group of loyal people in the Bay area who are so delighted to cruise without flying somewhere that they are happy with anything reasonably OK. But 'reasonably OK' is not what we've come to expect from Princess. The ship is old, but the housekeeping department overall is doing a great job keeping it looking clean and beautiful. We were in a large suite and our furniture and carpet were in bad shape. Metal staples stuck out of upholstered chairs and caught your clothes and skin. We had to have maintenance come several times about heating and A/C malfunctions. I could give many examples, but kept thinking that if this is how the large expensive suites look, what will the people in smaller cabins be faced with? Painting over the rust only works for so long. The front-line service staff were super-- cabin stewards, waiters, most of the people you saw. The exception was the passenger services staff who were rigid, argumentative, and did not listen well. We observed others dealing with them before we had occasion to do so. In any business, there will be problems. Your reputation lives or dies based on how you solve problems for your customers. These folks are the front-line problem solvers, but clearly did not view themselves as such. Three times we got information from them that was simply wrong--including being told that suite passengers were not allowed to use the Club Class dining option. The senior staff were largely absent. We have never seen so few officers and senior people around the ship. The only time we saw them was at the Elite reception.The cruise director was invisible, except when announcing the main theater shows. The evening entertainment scheduling was poor, with hundreds of people turned away from the main show every night and nothing else on between 7:30 and 9:30 most nights. The stage productions, if you showed up 30 minutes ahead and got in, were great, but the other singers and performers were not, and had little variety. Many people had trouble getting tables for anytime dining, including in Club Class where no reservations and no beepers are allowed, so you got to choose between dinner and seeing the evening show. We have never been on a cruise where it was so hard to get into any shows or entertainment events. We did enjoy the daytime enrichment lectures, especially Gordon Dedman, the Australian wilderness survival expert, who also plays the trumpet in the band. And then the food... in our opinion, a real mixed bag: Buffet was the worst we've seen on any ship. Very little choice, no freshly cooked options, no pasta station, no sandwich station, no omelette station--especially for lunch. Processed cheese rather than real cheese, very limited fruit choices, no seafood at lunch time (unless you count smoked mackerel), lunch the same every day. Pizza was awful, both up on Lido and in Alfredo's. Gooey crust with what tasted like cheez whiz instead of real cheese. Stuck to the roof of your mouth. I didn't know pizza could be that bad. Main dining room options were good, for the most part we enjoyed them very much, especially the shrimp, prime rib, and steaks. We had major problems with a food allergy (which we usually can deal with easily after lots of experience doing so) because the kitchen wasn't communicating well with the waiters, but it was resolved the last few days. And that doesn't affect most people, so I will post separately about that for those interested, in the Princess forum. Our dining room service, dinner and lunch, was very good. We do think they should find a few people who know a little about wine, and should provide better wine glasses in the dining room, even if not the expensive and fragile Reidel ones. Crown Grill was OK but service there was not as good as we expected-- we always do the steak house at least once on a cruise and this was the first time we've been disappointed. Sabatini's dinner was a big disappointment. They are using a new 'innovative' menu which is not Italian, heavy on herbs, light on quality ingredients. They make fresh pasta which is nice. I am pretty sure we have previously gotten complimentary 'good' coffee in the specialty restaurants but not now--if you want a cappuccino you'll pay. As Suite passengers, we got the special Suite breakfast which we love--it's a highlight of our day and was on the Grand. The morning Crown Grill staff get to know each passenger and make you feel special and very well spoiled. Fresh berries, real orange juice, beautiful eggs benedict, you name it. Yum! And the best coffee on the ship. Speaking of coffee---it was worse than usual, and even in the International Cafe when you pay extra, was weak. If you get a 'large' it seemed to me they just put more water in the cup. After asking for an extra espresso shot, it was still weak. I'd say about 1/3 the flavour of a Starbucks regular--at about $4 extra cost. Come on, Princess-- give some value to the coffee drinkers. I gave up and had tea other than at the Suite breakfast. Overall, I hope the food and entertainment issues we encountered were unique to the Grand and not an indication that Princess. Fitness room was great, lots of equipment and well maintained. San Fran provided good embarkation and disembarkation, though the promised 'priority' for suite passengers didn't really work out. Getting on and off the ship at ports was smooth, including tenders. Port information on Princess is good and you can download their PDF port guides to your phone. And I am sure you're sick of this long review by now! Read Less

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