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4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We were a group of 2 married couples. We boarded the discovery with absolute ease everything run so professionally. Our cabin was ready on arrival we had only an indoor cabin on deck 2 which suited our needs perfectly. Enough room and ... Read More
We were a group of 2 married couples. We boarded the discovery with absolute ease everything run so professionally. Our cabin was ready on arrival we had only an indoor cabin on deck 2 which suited our needs perfectly. Enough room and everything that was needed. The ship was easy to navigate around and plenty of information and personnel around if you got lost We dined in the waiter service restaurant which was just like eating in a 5* restaurant every morning and evening. Entertainment was always available and was really good. We did a few excursions and again information was given and disembarking was carried out in a professional and organised way. The staff on the ship were amazing, every single one never did we see a miserable face and never greeted without a smile. The captain Chris Dodds does an outstanding job, he is an ever presence around the ship always taking time to stop and chat and made everyone on the ship feel special. Restaurant manager Kenan was always around with a smiling face and happy to help. Absolutely loved our cruise and would recommend to anyone Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
This cruise was a belated birthday present for my wife. She had always wanted to visit Jordan, and I wanted to visit the Suez Canal, so when I spotted the itinerary for this cruise it was a no-brainer. It suited that we did the ... Read More
This cruise was a belated birthday present for my wife. She had always wanted to visit Jordan, and I wanted to visit the Suez Canal, so when I spotted the itinerary for this cruise it was a no-brainer. It suited that we did the longhaul flight out first to Muscat in Oman to join the Discovery and only had a short flight home from Corfu. On this ocassion embarkation was a little hetic as our flight out of Manchester was delayed by nearly an hour which caused a bit of chaos for the crew to get our baggage onboard and the passenger's checked in. We were sailing within an hour-and-a-half, which was a shame as we would liked to have had a walk around Muscat before sailing. We were not new comers to the Discovery as we had sailed on her some 18 months previous. On this occasion we had an inside cabin, not recommended as it was dark and you felt like it was night all the time, however, the bed was comfy and the cabin staff did a wonderful job of keeping it clean and tidy and I also kept updated with the football results from the TV in the cabin. A major improvement in the restaurant's this time was that the food was always hot and not luke-warm like the last time, the service seemed to have gone up a notch too, so all-in-all it made for a great experience. We spent the first at at sea before stopping at Salalah in Oman. Because we had already pre-booked a few excursion we did not get off at Salalah, plus you had to either get a bus or taxi as Salalah was about 40 minutes away, and if you did your own thing you were advised to agree your fare before getting in the taxi, and also not to pay until you return otherwise you risk being left by your driver, this was slightly unnerving to say the least. Aqaba was our next port of call, here we had an excursion to Petra The Rose Red City which was well worth the money. We walked in the footsteps of Indiana Jones and discover the city that was lost to the world for over 1000 years. Petra is one of UNESCO's World Heritage Sites with 2000 years of history and 800 monuments still standing, well worth the visit. The icing on the cake for me was travelling through the Suez Canal. It is a sight you have to see for yourself just to grasp the scale of the project undertaken to land cut the Canal. I have to leave wit a word of warning, please ensure you cover yourself in sun screen before leaving your cabin. The temperature was always in the 40's and with the breeze whilst sailing it's like being in a fan oven. Many passenger's had the misfortune of being badly sun burnt on the first day, and spent the rest of the cruise looking like mummies. Don't make any sense to spend a couple of grand on a cruise holiday only to spend probably three times as much in doctor's fee. And another thing, some of the places you visit on your excursion, you have to cover your shoulder's and knee's especially if you wish to visit places of worship. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We chose this cruise to make sure we took our last chance to dance with Amy and Roland, the amazing professional dance couple, before the show team's contracts expired at the end of the season... we also really wanted to see Petra and ... Read More
We chose this cruise to make sure we took our last chance to dance with Amy and Roland, the amazing professional dance couple, before the show team's contracts expired at the end of the season... we also really wanted to see Petra and sail through the Suez Canal. We have taken four cruises on Discovery in the last 11 months and have loved each and every one. I'm sure we will be back aboard Discovery soon. Our flight from Manchester was a little delayed (45 minutes or so) but the flight was good and we arrived in Muscat where we had a very speedy transit to the boat and check-in. We were in our cabin with our bags unpacked within an hour of setting foot on board. The embarkation crew were so friendly and helpful. It was lovely to be greeted by young people who remembered us, by name, from our previous cruises! Flying back from Corfu was less good... the airport is in a state of flux... it will be better soon. Discovery is a bright and airy ship with full length windows in the main dining rooms and a beautiful Atrium space. We stayed on deck 6 this time and the cabin was almost identical to the ones we had on decks 2 and 3 previously: plenty of hangers and hanging space; a lovely big bed and a powerful shower. Splendid! There are a variety of bars and restaurants in which the service is, in our experience, excellent. Sun-bathing is not our thing but the sunbeds were in great demand throughout the cruise. I found the open deck spaces crowded but I suppose that just shows they are popular. We ate almost exclusively in the waiter service restaurants: 47 Degrees and Gallery 47. Menu variety and food quality were excellent at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast in 47 Degrees was a treat... quiet, calm and great way to start the day.We did use the Islands, self-service and the Glass House restaurants on occasion and these too were excellent. We chose the use Islands only at "quiet" times... early afternoon... as we found that peak time dining there was a little too frantic for us. We really like the "free" dining system on Discovery. Dining between 6 and 7.45 we never had to wait and we were always able to select a table for two. Even at really busy times our maximum wait was 20 minutes and the "bleeper" system worked well. The entertainment aboard Discovery is fabulous. We watched this show team team for almost nine weeks on four cruises and they never missed a beat. Beautiful singers, amazing dancers and splendid, twice-nightly, shows were a massive part of our enjoyment of our cruises. On our first cruise, we learned to dance with Amy and Roland and we loved dancing with them on this cruise as much as we did on that first time. If you get a chance to cruise with Amy and Roland, I really encourage you to learn to dance... they're brilliant! We enjoyed watching the passenger choir and the ukulele groups perform their pieces with their professional mentors. A variety of lectures, quizzes, karaoke, tea dances and craft activities provided a full and satisfying experience. All aspects of service aboard were excellent. Cabin crew and restaurant staff were friendly and so hard-working. Service felt really personal with many staff knowing our cabin numbers and first names within days of starting the cruise. Captain Chris Dodds and Demitris were ever-present, personable and professional. It was very hard not to feel comfortable on this ship. We took only the excursion to Petra which was spectacular and good value... especially the free wi-fi on the coach! Ashdod and Aqaba were very enjoyable. we simply took the courtesy coaches and did our own thing. We have booked Discovery2 in November! Thank you Marella! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We choose this cruise for the itinerary and dates we are available to travel. The cruise sailed from Muscat, taking in a short visit to Salalah, Oman, then up to Jordan for 3 days/2 nights in Aqaba, for Petra, the Dead Sea, Wadi Rum, then ... Read More
We choose this cruise for the itinerary and dates we are available to travel. The cruise sailed from Muscat, taking in a short visit to Salalah, Oman, then up to Jordan for 3 days/2 nights in Aqaba, for Petra, the Dead Sea, Wadi Rum, then through the Suez Canal, around to Israel, Ashdod, for Jerusalem and Bethlehem, then over to Kefalonia and finally disembarking in Corfu. Unfortunately, after booking we discovered there would be no time to go ashore in Muscat, as we sailed early the following morning, and soon after booking we were advised that the Dead Sea trip from Aqaba was cancelled due to road conditions. We were disappointed but understand these things happen, so added an excursion to a 5 star hotel in Aqaba for a beach day instead. We had a great flight out in Premium on the Dreamliner, Muscat airport was easy and we were onboard quickly. The whole process smooth and efficient. We had an aft cabin, pre-booked and it was spacious, clean, comfortable, but I have to say on occasion noisy from the engine's, vibration was bad some nights, and yes, you do get a little soot on the balcony, there's nothing you can do about that, just don't wear white! The steward cleaned it daily. I'm not complaining, just pointing it out. The ship was full I think. Hard to get a sun bed. Or a seat in the atrium. Nowhere really for some peace and quiet, we were glad of our large balcony. Bar 11 was lovely for evening cocktails, we preffered the buffet for evening meals as we found the MDR very busy, squashed together and brightly lit, and actually didn't rate the meals there apart from breakfast and Beef Wellington. The surf and turf was excellent, you need to book as soon as you can! The excursions were a bit manic. They were long days in high temperatures which we were prepared for, but felt really rushed, the guides all knowledgeable and friendly, but a little inflexible. We were awed by some of the places we visited, but just didn't have time to appreciate them. Destination Services on board were rude and unhelpful, and you had the feeling they didn't care once they'd got your money! Many people complained about various issues on various trips, but I don't think there's been any resolution. If you can, book privately or go it alone. There was a mix of entertainment, both day and night, a great comedian, opera singer, guy with a guitar, we didn't do the shows but heard they were good, just not our thing. Most of the staff are fabulous, friendly, helpful, with one or two exceptions. The food was good and varied and mostly hot (except strangely chilled poached eggs in the MDR on the last morning for breakfast!!) As I said we preferred the buffet, snack shack was great for lunch, glass house for snacks in the evening. Plenty of choice of drinks on the standard AI, though we paid extra for a fancy cocktail or coffee occasionally. Overall though, we felt extremely lucky to be able to do this cruise, visit the places we went to (we will go back independently), enjoyed our sea days with a book and a view of the wake, dolphins, stars, and our adventures on shore. The ship was still having the occasional engine/electrical problems, so we lost some time in ports too. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Our flights were delayed 15 hours from Gatwick and therefore lost a day of our cruise. Despite efforts to repair the damage we were informed that it was necessary to cancel our next 3 ports and limp to Dubai (Captains words) to pick up ... Read More
Our flights were delayed 15 hours from Gatwick and therefore lost a day of our cruise. Despite efforts to repair the damage we were informed that it was necessary to cancel our next 3 ports and limp to Dubai (Captains words) to pick up spares and specialist assistance on Monday. That took 2 days at slow speed as we seemed to sail the long way round? The plan was to fit the spares carry out tests and sail to Abu Dhabi on Wednesday for our scheduled visit. However the problem remained and the Abu Dhabi visit took place by road (1 hour there and 1 hour back) for those who wanted to go. On Wednesday evening the Captain announced that, after a long discussion with head office, Discovery would sail on Friday (7th) at 3 pm for India but at low speed, and as a result the ports of Mumbai and Mangalore would be dropped, leaving Goa (all of 8 hours), and Cochin where people on Adventure to India would leave the ship. We booked this holiday for the ports before Dubai and the the following Indian ports, Dubai not being of importance (only so many skyscrapers that you can see) we decided that we would rather fly home from Dubai as opposed to sailing another 3 days to Goa, if we made it, and then a day and a half to Kerala to then disembark and fly 11 hours home. I think we made the right choice as the ship did not leave Dubai until 3am the following morning. Life on board was pretty warm as the air con was only operating at low level . The food was not up to standard as feeding the whole ship for nearly 2 weeks with nobody getting off obviously depleted supplies. We had a balcony cabin, thought it would be nice for the 2 days at sea that we had planned, view in Dubai was the industrial end of the dock with lorries and forklifts running up and down all day. Day 2 and 3 the ship decided to load supplies and clean and paint the ship right outside our balcony starting at 6am. This was our wedding anniversary! We put in for our delayed flights when we arrived back in the UK and have now been told that the flight was delayed due to bad weather so no compensation will be paid, total lie! I am very disappointed with TUI and Marella as there has been no communication apart from refusing our flight delays, not sure i want to cruise with them again. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We took this cruise with another couple as they wanted to experreince the middle east and india . We chose Marella due to value for money and the fact that our one previous cruise had been with the Spirit and although this was an old ship ... Read More
We took this cruise with another couple as they wanted to experreince the middle east and india . We chose Marella due to value for money and the fact that our one previous cruise had been with the Spirit and although this was an old ship we had enjoyed the experreince.Our cabin (deck 8 junior suite) was fine, it was comfortable, clean and spacious. The balcony was large and well furnished and provided some respite from the heat and the noise from the pool deck. We found the public decks too full of sunloungers, quite noisey and at times it was difficult to find a seat/lounger to have a drink and a rest. Due to the electrical fault on board parts of our cruise were disrupted, we missed several ports and cruised slowly. ( compensation was offered and we felt was relatively generous at 2/3rds of the cost of the cruise).Due to the electical fault our cabin was very noisey at night and suffered from severe vibrations , we complained and were offered alternative cabins (same grade) after 7 days, together with a bit of on board spend. Staff really tried to help us so again we had no lasting issues as they did their best in the circumstances. Food was good as we ate the waiter service restaurants and in the surf and turf twice and the pan asain once. Food in the surf and turf although an extra was very good. Getting drinks was not a problem although we found the soft drinks (soda especially) had a very unpleasant taste perhaps as it came from treated water rather than from a branded bottle. Entertainment was so so, not really to our taste, although we did see several shows etc none really stood out. the live bands were OK however at times the DJ appeared to play music he liked rather than that appropriate for a 60 plus audience. Staff were mixed, some went out of there way to help, some were rude maybe lacking english skills.Drinks varied in quality depending which bar was used. We all thought that at times the Captain (Chris) was not professional. We did not (maybe some did) appreciate being greeted on his daily tanoy to 'this is el capitano speaking', neither did we appreciate his juvenile humour in trying to say phuket and his again less than professional banter with the entertainment manager. As the ship was esperreincing performance problems and our cruise was being compromised we would have appreciated a more serious and professional approach. Ship was OK and although our cruise was disrutped we did enoy our holiday. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We too were on the Adventure to India Cruise that was affected by the ship having electrical problems. There is good and bad to be told but after reading other reviews I want to be sure this point is made first. To ensure that we had ... Read More
We too were on the Adventure to India Cruise that was affected by the ship having electrical problems. There is good and bad to be told but after reading other reviews I want to be sure this point is made first. To ensure that we had a good time despite the problems, every member of crew we met went the extra mile and then another mile just to be sure! The service was truly excellent from all departments. The Captain (EL Capitano) Kept us informed and put safety first at all times (It seems you can have a professional attitude and a sense of humour as well!!) It was also clear that the crew had a lot of respect for him. Helped by his support for them when a few bad-mannered passengers started venting their childish frustration at the ships staff. " I will not tolerate this kind of behaviour" Quite right Captain nor would I! The problems came from the Tui head office staff and directives which started with them deciding that we would rather spend or first day in Sussex rather than Muscat. The whole experience was made worse due to the ridiculous inefficiencies of the Tui staff. We arrived at Gatwick to find that the flight was delayed for 15 hours and that they had known about this for over 12 hours. Despite this prior knowledge they took another 3 hours to sort out a hotel in Crawley and then only laid on one bus for 150 passengers leaving the rest to stand out in the cold for up to 2 hours with their luggage. It was not until we were finally on board the plane that the standards of efficiency and service kicked in. I cannot deny that missing 5 days of enjoying different ports was not a huge disappointment but there was compensation given in regard to the lost itinery and extra sea days. Now the good stuff!! The Food was of a good standard in all restaurants (tried them all except Kori La) and the service was truly excellent. A special mention is due to Head waiter Georgio and from his team Jhonus, Bobby, Lazar, Robert, Natolino and Talcum on the desk. They did all they could to ensure every guest felt special. It is also worthy of note that unlike other cruise lines we have been on, restaurant staff reminded customers to use the hand sanitisers and changed and cleaned the cruet between customers. There is the main restaurant which presents a different menu every day and the Italian on the balcony above which offers two menus on alternate days. The buffet has a bit of everything and the glasshouse has a different identity for day and evening. Surf and Turf is extra but worth it if you enjoy steak. Kori la has Asian Fusion and Sushi. The all-inclusive drinks package includes wine, prosecco, branded beers and spirits liqueurs port and most standard cocktails. No need to upgrade to premium unless a you drink only a very specific brand. Thanks to Waitresses Nevana and Tatiana for keeping the drinks coming all evening, and with a smile every time. The entertainment in the Broadway lounge had certainly moved up a gear with a talented team and some very good shows over the two weeks. The other musicians and entertainers kept a lively atmosphere going through the evenings and bar 11 had a DJ every night for the times you wanted to keep the party going until the early hours. The excursions we took were organised well and the staff worked hard when ports were changed or cancelled and then re-instated. Good to see so many of them accompanying the coaches. Talking with other passengers we soon realised that everybody (including ourselves) had a few little changes they would like to make that tailored everything to their personal taste. You can't please all the people all the time, but our experience was that the crew still tried to make this happen. In conclusion Marella Cruises represents great value for money and Tui would do well to send all their uk and head office staff on a cruise to find out what customer service really means. Read Less
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