We're experienced cruisers who wanted to try a smaller ship, and Paul Gauguin was touted as the top of the line experience. It very much failed to live up to that billing. The ship had apparently just come out of dry dock in ... Read More
We're experienced cruisers who wanted to try a smaller ship, and Paul Gauguin was touted as the top of the line experience. It very much failed to live up to that billing. The ship had apparently just come out of dry dock in Singapore, and this was the first sailing since.
I am a PADI certified diver who had not dived recently, so I felt the South Pacific would be a dream destination to get back in the water. I did my early homework, got myself a replacement certification card, etc. before the trip. They advertise that they have a refresher dive (one in the pool and one in a lagoon) and even advised me to go immediately to the dive desk to sign up, as the refresher "takes place tomorrow". Thirty minutes into the cruise, I had my first major disappointment when Regis told me, in a very short and unapologetic tone that there would be no refresher on this cruise. He actually struck me as rude.
My wife and I were also very eager to use the water sports marina on the back of the ship. It was closed the entire cruise. I know at least five people who inquired as to why....and got 5 different answers. One was even told it was illegal to use it in all the ports on this cruise. This was very typical of the poor communication on this ship. Guests were left wondering most of the time, and inquiries were met with disinterest or even deliberate deception. Eventually, I was told had been broken for months, and had not yet been checked even though the ship had just come out of dry dock in Singapore. Odd considering that the water sports marina is a selling point that these folks emphasize when selling this overpriced ship.
Many on board were repeat customers, and unanimously told us that previous experiences were amazing, but that things seem to have gone far downhill.
For the most part, the service from the cabin stewardess, the wait staff, the bartenders, etc was excellent. I enjoyed most of the lecturers, especially Jean Michel Cousteau and John Hay. The entertainment wasn't my cup of tea, but many on board enjoyed it. But overall, the poor organization, lack of communication, and disinterested attitude of the management were extremely disappointing for a cruise that cost two or three times what we've paid anywhere else. We will not be going back. Read Less