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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
This was our third cruise with Thompson’s and compared to the first two the food was poor. In the Islands restaurant it looked so unappetising, and was bland. They are needing more staff, tables took ages to clear, not the staffs ... Read More
This was our third cruise with Thompson’s and compared to the first two the food was poor. In the Islands restaurant it looked so unappetising, and was bland. They are needing more staff, tables took ages to clear, not the staffs fault as they work so hard. Food in 47 was often Luke warm and one night in the Italian part it took 1 hour 20 minutes and we were still to have our desert. We paid in the Surf and Turf, the steak was nice but rest of menu was pretty average, the Asian restaurant where we tried the 2nd week gave you a large bowl of curry with runny sauce a small amount of rice and one small slice of Nan, we had to ask for more. In the evening the only place you can eat after 9.30 is a small area called the glass house, it has a limited choice...the show doesn’t finish till after that so was busy. The entertainment was average, the show team were all so young, maybe needing a bit of experience with older staff, around the ship there could be more going on, they had a magician which was excellent but he was on for an hour a day, he could have been going about the ship more, there was someone teaching Spanish but you saw her sunbathing, she was browner than the guests! There was a huge area the Antrim bar area that had little in it. The B52s were a great band. The price of treatments were ridiculous, far too much, over £100 for a massage. So many things had extra costs...a bridge tour £9.95, a drinks package for premium spirits, WiFi which was a joke it hardly worked excursions double the price of what you would pay on shore, the cost of buying photographs was stupid money..I think TUi are forgetting the majority of folk are paying nearly £2000 to come onboard The staff work so hard but around the restaurants that they needed more. They only get a few hours off daily, never a whole day in the months they are there. The higher posts seem to get a day off. The staff are so friendly and nice, I wonder if they ever get 5he tips we pay for The ship is spotlessly clean. If I’m honest I was disappointed and am going to look at other companies for our next cruise Read Less
31 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Paradise Islands cruise - St Marteen and Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, St Kitts, Antiqua, St Vincent and Barbados. The ship was amazing. It still has the smell of fresh carpets. It is immaculately clean. Hand sanitisers all ... Read More
Paradise Islands cruise - St Marteen and Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, St Kitts, Antiqua, St Vincent and Barbados. The ship was amazing. It still has the smell of fresh carpets. It is immaculately clean. Hand sanitisers all over too. We were surprised at the number of staff on-board - there is someone to tend to your every need. Getting off the ship and finding something to do is really easy, there are local buses in all of the ports and the islands are easy to see with some imagination - you do not need to take the ships excursions if you do not want to. Try getting hold of the lonely planet for the Caribbean if you want to do more than slob around on deck boozing or explore the port towns. The ship looks like a ship, not a floating hotel. It has a class and elegance that the enormous ships we were parked next to at some ports simply lack. Lovely atmosphere on board! Lovely outdoor decks. So All Inclusive - well we were expecting really basic British buffet boring food - what a surprise though. The two full service sit down restaurants were amazing on reflection. The choice and menus changed, the staff were amazing and the menus really different. Just like a modern bistros really. We were delighted with the quality too. There were a couple of slightly strange dishes, but on the whole we enjoyed everything - we are not fussy and love cooking and eating out. And the waiters were brilliant with fast, keen, attentive service. People forget that these guys are mass catering, and they likely pick up produce once a week in Barbados - so we didn't expect too much, but honestly it was great. The wine (especially the Merlot and Pinot) were perfect. Breakfast specials better than the full English! All inc drinks - branded spirits, lovely cocktails, Corona beer, cava and prosecco - we really did not feel the need to upgrade to the premium package, but if you want to have something nicer its a small supplement of £2.50. Perfect. Bottled water was £1.40 (sparking or still) but there were water stations around the ship to fill up bottles. Better for the environment. Perfect for us, and we bought water locally in supermarkets on the shore too to bring back on board. St Marteen and Tortola in the British Virgin Islands - these are fab islands. You can see through the devastation of Hurricane Irma, you can chat to the locals about their experiences and sympathise with their losses. The Island folk loved having us there and saw that Marella were ethical and responsible in coming back soon. Some folk on board really need to understand that our being there mattered. Biggest problem for us - Some of the other Brits. They love to moan, groan and winge. The cruise was not expensive compared to others, it was most certainly all inc and we were looked after from the moment we checked in at Manchester airport - mollycoddled all the way and home again- you did not have to use your brain once on-board (apart from the quiz!). The level of organisation is remarkable. For example, our bags were checked in at Manchester, and when we landed we boarded a coach straight to the ship from the apron. We did not even clear passport control or immigration. Our bags were by our cabins an hour or so later! Dreamliner flights both ways. Full service long haul airline, bang on time. Perfect. Staff on the boat - Ill say it again, brilliant. Entertainment - varied. if you are bored read a book or chat to someone! We loved the bar on Deck 11 in the eve - so chic! We had a lovely time! Thank you to everyone on board. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We have been on a few Thomson cruises before (now Tui Marella) We booked The Dream for a cheeky little get away. The ship is tired and not the most luxurious or glamorous but does what it says on the tin. The ship was at higher ... Read More
We have been on a few Thomson cruises before (now Tui Marella) We booked The Dream for a cheeky little get away. The ship is tired and not the most luxurious or glamorous but does what it says on the tin. The ship was at higher sanitation so the buffet service was not help yourself but served by staff wearing gloves. The ship was dull as they had stuff on the rails and windows to clean them. This made the tired ship more dowdy, and you had to sanitize hands at every corner. I dont mind this as would rather that then get sick. The pools were open but the whirlpool and sauna were shut which was disappointing We ate mainly in the main restaurant Orion as we like waiter service and it was lovely. The cabin was as advertised compact but nice enough, there is so much to do and see the cabin is for sleeping and showering and attended to every day by our cabin steward Aiko who was lovely, The food is amazing and the drink package is great, we were offered to upgrade for another £100 but it is not worth it the AI package is more than sufficient especially when you ask to see the list of things included...........not widely advertised so worth asking The entertainment was second to none and the cruise director Taylor was great. All the staff are great so pleasant and make you feel very welcome and at ease, except the shop assistants they were somewhat lacking and could certainly take tips from the others. Read Less
Sail Date: January 2018
This was our first cruise and most certainly will not be our last. Firstly, I cannot praise the staff enough. The entertainment team were brilliant, the housekeeping team were so helpful.Towels and bedding were changed daily. (Towels twice ... Read More
This was our first cruise and most certainly will not be our last. Firstly, I cannot praise the staff enough. The entertainment team were brilliant, the housekeeping team were so helpful.Towels and bedding were changed daily. (Towels twice a day). Our housekeeper, Mukti, was happy to change our "pool" towels whenever we asked. The catering team, reception, in fact everyone, was hard working yet still had time to be friendly. With different entertainment and dining options on each level, there was plenty of choices for everyone. The meals were great. I highly recommend buying the all inclusive package. My one moan would be that the Wi-Fi on board was a little over priced, but with free Wi-Fi at all ports,this wasn't a problem. We took advantage of a lot of the excursions as we found this was the best way to make the most of the Islands and what they had to offer.Be prepared to see some of the most amazing scenery. We loved every minute and will be looking at returning next year. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Fantastic time on this cruise. The staff and crew made the holiday from the time we boarded until the time we left. We would like to thank all the staff but would like to name a few who made our first time special. Our cabin ... Read More
Fantastic time on this cruise. The staff and crew made the holiday from the time we boarded until the time we left. We would like to thank all the staff but would like to name a few who made our first time special. Our cabin steward was Ronaldo who always smiled and was always there if we needed anything. Every morning in the Meridian restaurant we were greeted by the staff who were all pleasant and helpful especially Rosey. At night we returned to the Meredian and was spoilt by Frank our waiter who was always pleasant, polite and who spent time learning our names so we felt special (especially my mother who is in her 80’s and everyone called met mammy). Our wine waiter was Kumar who was so polite and always smiling, he made sure our glasses were never empty and made the most fantastic cocktails. After the show at night (which were always brilliant) we went to the Horizons bar were the staff could not do enough for you. They were so funny the way the reacted to each other it was sometimes like being at another show. We would like to thank Mohammed, Roger, Cecelia, Benjamin and Rohan for making our time on the Marella a memorable one. All the officers were pleasant but we enjoyed chatting to Chimi who was in charge of all the restaurants. If we met any of the staff or officers around the ship they always spoke and therefore when we look at cruising again in the future it will be with Thompson’s. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
The flight from Manchester to Montego Bay on a Dreamliner was great. We didn’t see our luggage once we had dropped it off at the airport until it appeared outside our cabin about an hour after we embarked. The transfer from ... Read More
The flight from Manchester to Montego Bay on a Dreamliner was great. We didn’t see our luggage once we had dropped it off at the airport until it appeared outside our cabin about an hour after we embarked. The transfer from Montego Bay to the ship was not so good as we waited in a queue for over an hour waiting for a bus to transfer us to the ship. We were lucky. A number of flights landed in quick succession and some had to wait 2 hours for their transfer. It was raining heavily in Montego Bay and the traffic to the ship was busy so maybe this caused the problem. Our first impressions of the ship were that it looked great and we weren’t disappointed with it at any stage of the cruise. We had an inside cabin on deck 3 and it was more than adequate for our needs and it was kept spotlessly clean. The staff throughout the cruise were very friendly and helpful. All said hello when we passed them. We ate in the restaurants and buffet and found the food and service to be very good we also ate in the Surf and Turf Restaurant and the meal was fantastic. We didn’t feel the need to upgrade to the Premium drinks package as there was already plenty on offer that we liked. We found the entertainment to be of good quality although it wasn’t always to our taste. We mainly used the ship excursions and thought they were reasonable value for money. One of our excursions was to 2 different places and the price was either £44 or £55. I looked at the separate prices for each attraction and the entrance for each of them was $40. We also had a guide to each of them, transport to them and a drink at one of them. On some of the other excursions lunch was included. I listened to the complaints of some on the cruise and you can make your own mind up if you think they were justified. I visited deck 9 on a number of occasions during the day and evening and some were complaining that the All Inclusive package was not good value for money. I visited that deck a number of times and the same people were there complaining whilst having a different drink each time I was there. They seemed to be slurring their words a bit come later in the evening! Someone was complaining that the climbing wall was not open when the Cruise News clearly states the opening times. We had a couple of rough days at sea and someone complained that the outdoor pool was closed and the same person complained that there was no entertainment on the outside deck that day. It was obvious to me that it would have been unsafe. Some complained that there was not enough to do on sea days. I have a copy of one day’s cruise news, a port day, and there are 24 different activities and this does not include the entertainment around the ship, the shows, the climbing wall or the mini golf. After a tour of the rainforest one woman complained that she had seen too many sloths and not enough of other kinds of animals. We enjoyed our cruise and the ports of call and would have no hesitation in going on this ship again. Indeed we could probably do the same cruise and still find different things to do. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
For what is suppose to be a newly refurbished cruise ship they sure cut a few corners but the cabins are both comfortable and clean. The housekeeping staff are some of the more pleasant individuals onboard. All the staff look miserable ... Read More
For what is suppose to be a newly refurbished cruise ship they sure cut a few corners but the cabins are both comfortable and clean. The housekeeping staff are some of the more pleasant individuals onboard. All the staff look miserable and overworked. Or it could be the guest who has made them this way. I have honestly never been on a ship where the F-word was so prominently used. You would think you were at a stag party. The aim for the day seems to be to drink as much as you can whilst making as much noise as you can. This isn't exclusive to the younger guests either. The ship has a relatively young laid back captain and this can be seen in the actions of some of the staff. (The service is not a bobby dazzler as the captain would say) There seems to be a general disorganised service across the ship, with staff who seem to have minimal training and little to no guidance. Entertainment was OK, nothing special. What is interesting is that they seem to be using the best singers less that some of the ones who could easily do damage to one's eardrums. The ports during my trip were mostly great and it was great to get off the ship for a while and experience some of the local cultures. The ship did offer some great excursions but we also found some great excursions when we got ashore. The food lacked taste and while fairly varied frankly lacked any excitement. Overall not impressed. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
This was our first holiday without the kids (both started Uni) so we were looking forward to a relaxing time. We flew from Birmingham Premium Class, everything ran smoothly from checking in to the lounge, then the problems start... ... Read More
This was our first holiday without the kids (both started Uni) so we were looking forward to a relaxing time. We flew from Birmingham Premium Class, everything ran smoothly from checking in to the lounge, then the problems start... Premium Class is just a decent economy with minimal extra room and no real support for your legs when reclined if you wanted a sleep, also we sat to the rear of premium (by the toilet) and we had a set of two couples who thought it would be a good idea to stand around this area and act like they were down the pub having no regard for other passengers and the flight attendants seemed oblivious to it and in the end I had to speak to them which is quite embarrassing my advice is save your money go economy and spend what you save on either upgrading your room or drinks package. On arrival at Montego Bay it was crazy we had to wait in a hot non air conditioned corridor for over an hour which we thought was for customs but actually was the lack of coaches to take us to the ship. At this stage people around us were getting irate (complaining, swearing being quite aggressive to airport staff) and all was adding to the stress levels which probably could have been avoided with a little communication to let everyone know the process. The bus journey was fine and when we arrived at the terminal it was chaos again no structure and people pushing in and nobody taking control. We finally got our cards and went to our cabin (without any guidance). We decided to go for a junior suite and were quite happy, it was clean and had reasonable space and the balcony was a god send with the table, chairs and sunlounger although rust could be seen all outside but it was during our two weeks a sanctuary to get away from the foul language and selfish behavior of some other passengers especially around the buffet area and main pool. After arriving onboard we were told that our itinery had been changed, this led to us going to the Cayman Islands first and due to the weather our excursion being cancelled and also the same in Mexico the excursion being cancelled and finally in Cuba I had to ring around to our excursion operator to reschedule (I booked independently) then on our second week one stop in Columbia was cancelled all together, they did have an extra stop in Jamaica to compensate. I understand that the weather can not be guaranteed and it was most unfortunate that we had just one of those bad weeks but I still think if our schedule wasn't changed we would of potentially not missed out on at least one of the excursions. Overall on board I would suggest the vibe of the ship is like a 3 star Costa Brava All Inclusive Hotel so if that is not your thing (it isn't mine) you are not really going to enjoy or going to get value for money as I cannot believe that anyone who hasn't been on the beer all day can enjoy the food and entertainment provided. The flight home was better without any issues (except if you fly premium from Montego Bay you can't use the lounge unless you pay more!!!!! never know that). THE SHIP: Little tired in places I suggest a rushed refit (rust on paintwork virtually everywhere) but overall it is hard complain. CABIN: We had a Junior Suite and was so pleased we upgraded as when walking past others (Balcony / inside cabins) I don't think I would of lasted the two weeks onboard. The lounger on the balcony got plenty of use. DINING: Simply terrible, the buffet was like a war zone survival of the fittest, Main & Italian Restaurant poor service and the food had no taste and all the cuts of meat we the cheapest we tried each twice to give the benefit of the doubt but there was not doubt it was pretty much awful, the best free restaurant in the evening was the Glass House, this was because they did pizza and nobody can mess a pizza (saying that I probably won't have another this year after 7 you do get fed up. We ate twice at the Asian Restaurant, the food was good (not sure if that was because the other food onboard was so bad so our taste buds had been shot) service was poor unless you were in a big group or had a Birthday (Waiting on staff seemed more interested in singing "Happy Birthday" instead of looking after diners) numerous times I had an empty glass for over 5 minutes and I only got a refill after calling the waiter over. Drinks, we upgraded to the premium package, it was well worth it as the brands offered on the all inclusive were not what I would normally drink, also you have a 1.5ltr bottle of water delivered to your room every day so you don't have to drink the fountain stuff!!! plus you get coffee & tea from the coffee bar included, soft drinks like coke you can ask for a cans also asked for canned mixers with your spirits (normally an extra £1.00) instead of drinking the flat bottled coke / lemonade they serve (believe me it does make a difference). ENTERTAINMENT / ACTIVITIES: The shows in the main theatre were extremely poor they had lots of energy but no direction I am sure if they listened to the shows themselves they would be distraught on how bad they sounded. Each week they had a comedian which was really the only decent entertainment over the two weeks. Resident musicians were ok Activities - Don't bother!!! SERVICE: Our Cabin Boy Carlos was fantastic on the first two days he was for ever trying to please and I like my privacy and said to him that I know he was only trying to impress but I enjoy our space after that he respected that and was first class efficient and did what ever we asked and the room was always cleaned properly. Other staff were poor in the main not sure if they had not had the correct training or that they just could be bothered. Captain Chris and The Entertainment Directors daily announcements were mainly annoying (Captain was either Bobby Dazzler or Cracking sure he thought it was endearing but just got on your nerves after three days) The daily news was a joke also what a waste of paper never changed other than a few lines about the next port of call, one thing that did entertain us was they had one section about different craft beers they had changing every day as a special, every day we would check and day one Hobgobblin day two Hobgobblin yes you have it everyday. PORTS & EXCURSIONS: We had three excursions cancelled due to weather / not going to port of call, which is understandable but annoying as was down to the change of schedule possibly?? The shore excursions that we did manage to go on were mainly booked through the ship and I have to admit they were very good and we felt extremely good value for money and would recommend if anyone goes to Costa Rica to do the Zip Wire tour we did it in torrential rain but it was still amazing and the photo / video package they offer after is really fairly priced. Read Less
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