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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2019
Booked this cruise from Fremantle to Fremantle for 5 nights. My husband and I had never been on a cruise before. We both loved it! A great first experience on a grand old lady. Our room was bigger than expected with an ocean view room ... Read More
Booked this cruise from Fremantle to Fremantle for 5 nights. My husband and I had never been on a cruise before. We both loved it! A great first experience on a grand old lady. Our room was bigger than expected with an ocean view room with a double bed. Very clean room which was cleaned twice a day by Augustine. A lovely man who placed balloons on our door and organised an anniversary card for us. Hot and strong water pressure in the shower. Never used the fridge. Plenty of storage. We were on the baltic deck, room 417. A bit rough the first night, but I got used to the movement of the boat in consecutive days. We ordered the CMV Premium drinks package at $48 per person per room per day. I kept all drink receipts and we ending up drinking $110 more than the drinks package. Glasses of white and red wine, sparkling, most spirits, cocktails, mocktails included in the price. Gede the barman was a great asset to the ship. Food in the Waldorf restaurant was very good, however I did not find a good dessert. The afternoon tea in the Ubersee club was ok, but the cakes, scones etc tasted stale. Breakfast in the Waldorf was help yourself with lunch and dinner served to you. We ate at the Mediterranean and Asian fusion restaurants as well, and the food was spectacular. An extra $15 per person which was well worth it. 6 courses and they were all good. Some staff in the restaurant were friendlier than others, thank you Anastasia who gave outstanding service in the Waldorf. Activities weren't that exciting, we did enjoy the quizzes which were on twice a day. Karaoke and the disco was also fun. Activities were centred around the older clientele (70 years plus), we are in our 40's. This did not cause too much of a problem though, we just had another drink! Lol. Did not try the pools or spa/ beauty salon. On our wedding anniversary we received an anniversary cake with sparklers and had our photo taken. The company has just sent me an email of this photo, thank you very much. This ship is lovely, a pity it will finish cruising off Fremantle this season. A bigger ship is coming in its place so it will be interesting to compare them. My husband and I definitely would love to go on another cruise again. Thank you to all staff on board for a wonderful trip. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2018
The main reason that my husband and I chose this cruise was the itinerary. We enjoy long cruises and sailing 39 nights from Fremantle to Tilbury(London) appealed to us. Stops included Mauritius, various South African stops, St Helena, ... Read More
The main reason that my husband and I chose this cruise was the itinerary. We enjoy long cruises and sailing 39 nights from Fremantle to Tilbury(London) appealed to us. Stops included Mauritius, various South African stops, St Helena, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Casablanca and Lisbon. We went on many excursions but the visit to a private game reserve in Mossel Bay, South Africa and Marrakech was the most enjoyable The entertainment was superb thanks to the cruise director Katie with something different each of the 39 nights. The caliber of the singers and dancers far exceeded any other cruise that I have been on and the costumes were outstanding. Kudos to Captain Andrey for his friendliness and exceptional capability when required. There was something about the ambience of this cruise. The helpful, friendly staff always ready with a smile, the delicious food and the sea day activities made this cruise something special. This cruise was magical. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We travelled from Adelaide to Perth on the Indian Pacific and the Astor left a day after we got to Perth so we thought that would be an interesting way to return. The cruise started out badly discovering we had not got the cabin I ... Read More
We travelled from Adelaide to Perth on the Indian Pacific and the Astor left a day after we got to Perth so we thought that would be an interesting way to return. The cruise started out badly discovering we had not got the cabin I requested but that was the travel agents fault. The corridors are narrow but the restaurants were spacious enough. The service in the Waldorf was hot and cold. When you first sat down the drinks waiters couldn't wait to present you with the wine list and take your orders, but try getting a second drink if you didn't order wine. You could look directly at a drinks waiter and he would look away. They were each assigned a certain table and didn't seem to want to help any other table out. But, if you dined in the specialty Mediterranean restaurant it was like being on another ship! Service and food were both excellent. Even though some of the service was lax the food itself was pretty good to excellent. There is no facility where you can buy a good coffee except after 9am in the morning. My Wife likes a coffee first thing so she was not impressed. Another irritation was the fact they charged $10 a day in gratuities. I believe this contributes to the behaviour of some of the crew. We never saw our cabin steward once for the whole voyage. I am comparing them to the steward we had on our last Royal Caribbean cruise who always seemed to be available and wishing you good morning etc. Won't be cruising on this ship again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
This was a getaway for a group of friends. It was a marvellous time, going to Albany and back. The food was amazing every night, could not be faulted. I definitely recommend the Astor for people looking for a wonderful relaxing time. ... Read More
This was a getaway for a group of friends. It was a marvellous time, going to Albany and back. The food was amazing every night, could not be faulted. I definitely recommend the Astor for people looking for a wonderful relaxing time. We were lucky enough to have an upgrade and got a small suite on the Atlantic deck, which was an unexpected surprise. The shows in the Astor lounge were fantastic, I really enjoyed the ABBA show, and throughout the day there were quizzes, bingo, and in the afternoon music from various members of the entertainment group. One of the members of our group had a significant birthday and the crew provided her with a cake and a number of staff singing happy birthday to her. Which was a huge surprise to her, however she really appreciated the moment. This is not a cruise ship with casino, huge pools etc, which is not something I was looking for, but if that is what you want, the Astor is not for you. This was my second time on the Astor and I will be back again, thank you very much Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2018
We chose this cruise as we wanted a short one (Perth to Albany) and we were very happy by the level of service. The cabins though small were always very clean. Entertainment on board was great - every night was a great show Food was ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we wanted a short one (Perth to Albany) and we were very happy by the level of service. The cabins though small were always very clean. Entertainment on board was great - every night was a great show Food was good and drinks were plenty and as we were in a group we had a lot of fun. The maintenance team were also very helpful when we needed them I want to thank wholeheartedly the housekeeping team in particular for their honesty. On the last day I lost my diamond ring and I reported this to the Astor while back home. I knew the ring was in my cabin as I dropped it on the floor there. The housekeeping team had a thorough look in my cabin and the day after reported that they had found my ring back (lying on the carpet). A big thank you for having been so thorough in your search for my ring. It means a lot to me Marie S G Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We chose to cruise on Astor to check the ship out on a short cruise while contemplating a longer cruise on it. The prominent marketing in Australia of this boat sailing out of Perth-Fremantle using "pay for one and the second person ... Read More
We chose to cruise on Astor to check the ship out on a short cruise while contemplating a longer cruise on it. The prominent marketing in Australia of this boat sailing out of Perth-Fremantle using "pay for one and the second person travels for free" was an inducement. The daily charge of $10 Aust per person turned out to be more than better ships that we have cruised on. This is an old German ship which doesn’t have up to date procedures; e.g. a huge key and fob for entry to the cabin and a swipe credit type plastic card to transact on board both to be carried at all times, long slow queue to disembark and hand in the key etc. The mostly European crew were surprisingly curt. The PA system was unintelligible resulting in passengers looking at each other puzzled and asking ‘what did that announcement say?’ We bought the drinks package for $34 per person per day. We could have saved about $100 by simply buying drinks as we went. There was no advice about how to ‘register’ for the drinks package before you ordered your first drink at embarkation and paid full price. There were too many exclusions in the drinks package and no clarity about what was included; e.g. coffee was not included. The same drink was a different price depending upon which bar it was bought at. There was a receipt to be signed every time a drink was purchased, only one drink to be purchased at a time resulting in not being able to buy a friend a drink on your drinks package card, but a separate cash receipt had to be signed with that charged to your on board account which was tiresome and petty. There are only 2 dining rooms, a dining room with waiters and starched table cloths, and a cafe. Both are reasonable depending upon what you want and whether you want to be served. Both are small and usually busy with queues at the only coffee machine. The food is average compared with other ships on which we have travelled. Passengers shared serving utensils at the buffet and breakfast which is a potential health hazard not found on other cruise boats. Before we embarked we understood we had arranged for our party of 8 to all sit together each evening, but the dining room concierge refused to honour this. They insisted that it was "free dining". The staff wouldn't let a couple sit at empty tables for 2 insisting that they join people at larger tables that were not full. This resulted in the newcomers at the table being ignored by the serving wait staff who had previously served those at the table who had arrived earlier. One night at the main dining room all but 2 of our group were at the restaurant door ready to be seated, but the concierge refused entry until all were present. This resulted in 2 ladies over 90 (one on a walking frame) having to stand for 15 minutes outside the door which was rude and discourteous. Some dining room staff (such as those clearing tables) went about their tasks oblivious to the diners, with the result that there was some ‘congestion’. The average age of the cruisers was about 75 and more than several had walking frames or wheelchairs. The ship is not set-up for these devices with door sill projections at the entrance to some cabins, toilets, and bars resulting in people having to step over them. They need ramps at each of these obstructions. There is no ramp at some ports so they use the ship's stairway. This is very difficult for those people who had difficulty climbing the steep stairway. The ship rolled about as it slugged its way South to Esperance. Several passengers were seasick. None of these experiences are particularly worrying, just tiresome, petty and inconvenient when you are on a cruise expecting it to be enjoyable and relaxing. A reconciliation of all expenses [fare, travel insurance, drinks package, on board expenses], associated with this 5 day cruise resulted in a cost of $770 a day. In hindsight, at this rate we would expect a better cruise experience than we had. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
This was our first cruise and a test to see if we liked it. Rough seas the first night meant we felt a little queasy despite taking seasickness tablets, however after that we were fine. Seasoned travellers told us bigger ships handled the ... Read More
This was our first cruise and a test to see if we liked it. Rough seas the first night meant we felt a little queasy despite taking seasickness tablets, however after that we were fine. Seasoned travellers told us bigger ships handled the seas better. The experience for us was amazing. Our twin inner cabin was plenty big enough with a good amount of storage. A very clean ship with very friendly staff. Great food and great entertainment. The activities were fun and varied.There was nothing we weren't happy with. The cruise had a WW1 theme and the passengers were mostly over 60s which suited us as we are too! If we had to make a complaint it would be the constant smell of cigarette smoke on our deck (Baltic Deck). Also some passengers were smoking right under the 'no smoking' signs! We hadn't even arrived home before we started talking about our next cruise! Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We chose this cruise for the interest in the WW1 theme and visiting Albany. Embarkation was advertised for 2 pm but many people were already there. The process began just after 2 pm and groups were called depending upon arrival, thus ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the interest in the WW1 theme and visiting Albany. Embarkation was advertised for 2 pm but many people were already there. The process began just after 2 pm and groups were called depending upon arrival, thus leaving us near last, around 3pm. After that, we were checked in and went to our cabin, a Premium suite on Atlantic deck. This was a very spacious cabin, with 2 large floor to ceiling windows, a great amount of cupboards, drawers and surface spaces, a very comfortable bed and probably the best sized bathroom and shower we have experienced on a cruise ship. The decor was nice, navy blue carpet and wood. We were very pleased with this cabin and it was exceptionally clean and well maintained. The food throughout was good. We ate mainly in the buffet and enjoyed all our meals. Each day had different offerings and we had no problem at all finding a table. Service was great and efficient. The main dining room was the same. We have no complaints at all. The entertainment was fantastic. The resident singers, dancers and musicians were all great and were well received. The shows were varied and very suitable to all age groups. The most outstanding part of the cruise was the Dawn Service on board in the bay, visit to the incredible National ANZAC Centre, the dusk service up on the monument overlooking the town and the wonderful show that night, singing songs from the war era and listening to rousing renditions put on by the singers and dancers. Throughout the days we enjoyed outside activities, shows, deck games and organised activities as well as the entertaining presenter telling stories about the two wars. Sitting in the two bars was very pleasant, with both providing varied entertainers at different times. Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed this short cruise and would happily cruise with CMV again. With reference to the previous reviewer, you COULD put your suitcases out the night before and you DIDN'T strictly have to be out of your cabin by 7am. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
My wife and I booked a night on the Astor to see what it is like as living in Perth there are few cruises to choose from. I cannot give a view on actual cruising on the ship as it was an in port celebration, so we didn’t actually ... Read More
My wife and I booked a night on the Astor to see what it is like as living in Perth there are few cruises to choose from. I cannot give a view on actual cruising on the ship as it was an in port celebration, so we didn’t actually leave the dock. I have also been on around 13 cruises with Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises and Celebrity. The ship is small, built in the 80's and is getting on for a cruise ship. Embarkation was ok, we were given a group number and sat in the terminal till our group was called. We had arrived at 1130am and didn’t board till 1.30pm so a two hour wait in the passenger terminal. There appeared only 5 staff booking over 500 people hence 2 hour wait. After getting a 'seapass card' we walked on board. After getting on board we went straight to the room. We had booked a premium suite on Atlantic deck. Arriving at the door we realised there is no swipe or insert card entry. The door was unlocked, and two keys were on the desk. Given the ship had undergone an upgrade I would have thought electronic locking on doors to modernise it would have been a given. The suite was very good and extremely spacious and bathroom excellent. What let the décor down and also around the ship was the expanse of fake mahogany veneer everywhere making open spaces very dark and closed in. We had lunch in the buffet area which was average, Food was unimaginative, bland and lacked choice. There was also no staff member ensuring that people sanitized which given the increased risk of norovirus on ships I find amazing. We had a walk around the ship and given the size, deck space was at a premium. We checked out the indoor pool in the Wellness Centre at level one. I’m not sure Wellness Centre is appropriate as the area stank of cigarette smoke apparently from staff quarters. For dinner we went to the Waldorf restaurant and had to wait for a table. The waiting was not organised, and no queue was in place. The menu was good with lots of choice and presented very well. What let the service down was the food served in a luke warm state. After dinner we took in part of the show featuring singers and dancers. To be fair they do a very good job with the space they have to work in. On return to the cabin we had instructions that we were to be out of the cabin by 7am which I thought was very poor. During the night the noise from the funnel was loud and made sleeping difficult. In summary, the Astor I am sure caters for many people not wanting the frills / attractions / variety other larger cruise ships offer but I was not for me. I also think it is overpriced given the lack of facilites. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
We have taken 40+ cruises in the last 10 years and wanted to try the Astor as there are few options from Fremantle. We are used to very large Royal Caribbean ships but have also sailed with Princess, Celebrity, NCL, MSC and Cunard. We ... Read More
We have taken 40+ cruises in the last 10 years and wanted to try the Astor as there are few options from Fremantle. We are used to very large Royal Caribbean ships but have also sailed with Princess, Celebrity, NCL, MSC and Cunard. We went with an open mind as we knew this was a very small ship with limited facilities. However, this was more different that we expected and certainly not for us. Embarkation took 2 hours and was slowed by the fact they don't have credit card details at online check in stage. We had a Premium Suite on Atlantic Deck - it was clean and spacious and had a great full sized shower. The bed was comfortable and the room was our sanctuary away from everything else. The decoration was very dark - navy furnishings and dark mahogany wood everywhere so quite austere. It did make us laugh that we had a traditional room key and massive fob to lug around your Seapass (or whatever CMV call it) doesn't work as a door key.... never none that before! Food in the buffet was akin to school dinners - there were queues everywhere and food options were limited. None of the waiters wanted to help when I asked for cutlery. Not great, but edible. The hand sanitizer was not manned so fellow passengers were not using it which is not great when there are so many cases of Norovirus these days. Walking around the ship, it showed its age. The broken basketball net was a children's Fisher Price toy and sports equipment was past its best. The area around the outside pool was crowded with very few places to sit down and relax. The ship is tatty on the outside which is a shame. Deck space is very narrow. In fact, the whole ship is laid out with narrow and claustrophobic corridors which are made worse by the dark wood. Smears of greasy fingers were visible in many places. Anyone remember Fawlty Towers? It is a bit like that as you see the same staff everyone 10 minutes!! The queue for dinner was a farce - we were told to wait 5 minutes (reality was 20 mins) but as new passengers arrived, there was no system so those who turned up a long time after us went straight in. We had a table for 2, which was good, but service in the restaurant was slow and the waiters were not welcoming, more functional, and just asked what we wanted. Soup was cold and had to be sent back, I received the wrong salad so had to have it changed and the main courses (both lamb and beef) were lukewarm. This was a shame as it was beautifully presented. Dessert was ok but coffee/tea were never offered. We went to the theatre (a one deck show lounge) and listened to the act. The girl was a good singer and had an 80s repertoire. In fact, his really sums the ship up - stuck in a time warp and we felt like we had gone back in time. Notices around the ship, as well as drinks menu, were poor quality photocopies on cheap paper. Some claim this is a 4 star ship... 2 star is more realistic, possibly a low 3 star. The area around the entrance to the Spa on Deck 1 smells of smoke as this comes through from the staff area. Be mindful of this is you are looking to book a cabin on this deck and are a non smoker. The stateroom attendant barged into room whilst I was in the shower and never even knocked. We begrudge the $20 daily fee for gratuities when none of the staff showed any interest. We appreciate they have a hard job but they could at least smile and say hello to passengers. If you have children, there is absolutely nothing for them to do whether they are primary school age or teenagers. On departure morning, you have to be out of your room by 7am, complete with your luggage as there is no leaving it outside the cabin the night before.... so everyone turns up to breakfast with their luggage!! If you have never cruised before, the points raised may not be an issue. But if you are used to larger, newer ships with all the facilities and dining choices, you may be disappointed with the Astor. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2017
We wanted to experience Christmas on a cruise ship and we live in Perth so seemed the best option.The ship was great and the food good but we experienced bad weather going out and a cyclone coming back so that put a damper on it.The ... Read More
We wanted to experience Christmas on a cruise ship and we live in Perth so seemed the best option.The ship was great and the food good but we experienced bad weather going out and a cyclone coming back so that put a damper on it.The entertainment staff were absolutely amazing and kept us entertained most of each day.They worked very very hard. Our room was comfy and spacious with plenty of storage space. We bought the drinks package which was well worth it as it included half price coffees and tomato juice which we had a lot of(bloody or virgin) . We are not seasick travelers so that didn't worry us but it did a lot of others.This of course is not the cruise company's fault but if I went again I would choose a calmer time of the year and forget about Christmas.The best part were the shows and quizzes Read Less
26 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Take lots of antibiotics and cold and flu medicine with you. The cruise from Perth to Tilbury was full of sick people. They go to the card room, the bars, the dining areas and the lounge. They were taken on a tour of the kitchen. I ... Read More
Take lots of antibiotics and cold and flu medicine with you. The cruise from Perth to Tilbury was full of sick people. They go to the card room, the bars, the dining areas and the lounge. They were taken on a tour of the kitchen. I stopped going to the fitness classes, the entertainment and group activities because of the risk of infection. We ate outside. The well people were.becoming hostile to the sick people. Some well people would not use the pool. The bread and deserts are uncovered. Infection spreads. The gym has equipment that dores not work. It is like the rehabilition room in a rundown old person's home. The equipment in the crew gym is great but you are not allowed to use it. Forget this cruise if you have special dietory requirements. You either eat high cholestorol or salad for 39 days. The salad becomes boring. The white coat staff cannot fix things and they can hide behind limited English. The internet does not work. On the plus side you get to a lot of places. The excursion coordinator, Elizabeth, was excellent. It is cheap. The bar and waiting staff are great. They should be paid a living wage and not depend on tips. Tip those you like. Who knows where the $8 a day goes. If you like bus tours with lots of sick people this is for you. Not recommended for anyone who is or thinks under the age of 85 and who does not remember the war. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2017
We chose to sail on The Astor purely because of her itinerary. We thought is would be a great way to visit South Africa, instead of flying there. Our ports of call were, embarkation at Fremantle, Mauritius, La Reunion, Durban, Mossel Bay ... Read More
We chose to sail on The Astor purely because of her itinerary. We thought is would be a great way to visit South Africa, instead of flying there. Our ports of call were, embarkation at Fremantle, Mauritius, La Reunion, Durban, Mossel Bay and disembarking in Capetown. She then continued up the African Coast and onto Tilbury, London. We took the ship's tours in all the ports and would give them 5 stars for their organization and tour destinations. We were very lucky to have the opportunity to stay in The Astor Suite. It was superb with a very large Bedroom with ample wardrobe and cupboard space. A lovely bathroom with a large shower and bath with double hand basins and a separate toilet. The Living room was well appointed with a 3 seater lounge and 2 lounge chairs, plus an office desk. A small fridge and coffee machine was also supplied, and it was so lovely to return to the cabin and enjoy the views from 2 huge, double, floor to ceiling windows. Each evening they delivered hors d'œuvres to our cabin to enjoy before dinner. Because of the small number of passengers, it was so easy to meet others. The public areas were quite spacious, although the Astor Lounge was large, the layout in places made it difficult to view the shows, or guest speakers. We enjoyed the activities and loved being able to walk fully around the deck each morning for our exercise. By the end of our cruise, the food was beginning to be the same. It was a shame that we couldn't order eggs to order for our breakfast. The chefs wouldn't cook poached or soft fried eggs. The only option was a 10 minute, hard boiled egg or a hard yolk fried egg. We do not know the reason for this, because on other cruise lines this hasn't been an issue. I ordered ice-cream each evening and by the time I received it, it was mostly melted into a mess, so I did have some issues with the food. Cleanliness on the ship was impeccable; there are no complaints. Our Cabin Stewardess, Inna was wonderful. She looked after our needs without being in your face. The ship didn't handle the rough sea too well. On three occasions we were quite ill with sea sickness, so I would make sure you have 2 packets of sea sickness tablets with you, because it cost $3.75 for 2 tablets, and we needed many more. Captain was wonderful as were all the crew members. I would especially thank The Tour Director, Elizabeth (Liz), for her service. She did a magnificent job and worked with us in trying to take a tour of Capetown (which was our disembarkation port). She organized for our bags to be safely stored, and we were allowed back on board in the afternoon to collect them. Thank you again, Astor. You are a little gem of a ship. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
Chose this cruise for the experience and to visit places in southern WA not seen before. After cruises on the QM2, was a bit concerned that I might not like this smaller vessel. Happy to say I liked it a lot. Seemed more a real naval ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the experience and to visit places in southern WA not seen before. After cruises on the QM2, was a bit concerned that I might not like this smaller vessel. Happy to say I liked it a lot. Seemed more a real naval vessel than larger ships. The lack of glamour was no problem - no space wasted on grand atriums, sweeping staircases and wide passageways. Not that such luxuries as these are not enjoyable - they are - but the Astor is such value for money, and everything necessary was provided, and more. Scrupulously clean everywhere. Excellent dining facilities and food. Comfy bed, with the best pillows. Contained within the cabin is a cupboard holding extra pillows, blankets and pool towels, - nice to not have to ask for these. Liked the fact that dining companions were seen about the ship, and greetings exchanged. Disappointing that a number of shore excursions were cancelled, due to lack of bookings. Prices were at the top end, so this could perhaps be reviewed to attract more passengers. Nothing is perfect: it was impossible to understand the tannoy....including during lifeboat drill. The library was seldom open, including during advertised hours. The 'quiet zone' in the Wellness centre is not quiet: during a massage, lots of noise from a crew room on one side and noisy children in the pool on the other. School holidays added to the pool noise, but perhaps a larger notice advising that only accompanied children may use this pool would help. Users of this centre should be confident that the 'quiet' part is honoured. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
Itinary we want to go to st Helena and ascension we got to st Helena but not ascension Due to rough seas for a tender .think in five years a tender has not got ashore .we felt the ships food was not as good as other ships we have been ... Read More
Itinary we want to go to st Helena and ascension we got to st Helena but not ascension Due to rough seas for a tender .think in five years a tender has not got ashore .we felt the ships food was not as good as other ships we have been on but at no point did we ever go hungry . Entertainment as good as any London shows one of the singers called Roland Carr had fantastic stage presence t and I hope he gets picked up . Also wonderful polish singer opera again should be in opera house infact told her that. Staff excellent nonthing too much trouble reception who also speak German first class . Captain was very visible every morning as close to 11Am spoke to every one. A lot of the bigger ships could take a lesson . The ship has every thing that the larger ships have bridge, quizzes , shuffle deck, didn't Play . We had village fair which was very good captain again visible also wonderful weather. We didn't do any tours as we had been to most places .very good shuttle bus as Walvis bay got ripped off by taxi May be in the on board news paper would be good idea to put local fares in if there is no Shuttle bus. Felt shopping for presents unless you did it ashore ship,is missing out teddy bears things for grandchildren .also needs a shop where things you might have for gotten .i relize ship is that much smaller but feel shopping could have been better. Read Less
35 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We chose this cruise for its ports of call, destination and cost. Embarkation could have been handled better. We seemed to spend a lot of time lining up and by the time we got on it was time for drill. Astor is an older and smaller ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its ports of call, destination and cost. Embarkation could have been handled better. We seemed to spend a lot of time lining up and by the time we got on it was time for drill. Astor is an older and smaller ship and consequently does not have the facilities and amenities of the bigger ships. However, we found that less passengers meant we got to know each other and everyone was friendly and happy to chat. The morning quiz was so popular that not everyone could get into the bar. We sat outside and answered the questions ourselves. The guest speakers were popular and very informative, especially the astronomer. The evening shows were good on the whole. Especially the rock n roll show (Jordan stole the show) and the Rocky horror show. Jordan was great in that too. As the stage and seating were all on the same level everyone wanted to sit at the front. The food was good although we are not used to so much fish. We preferred the Waldorf dining room. Get waited on and don't have the push and shove of the buffet. And get plenty to eat without over eating. The shore tours are reasonably priced and a variety of options. Some people say the tours are expensive but you are picked up from the ship, returned, have an English speaking guide and any admissions are included. It is much easier in an unfamiliar place where English may not be widely spoken. Swakupmund Namibia was great. Nothing like I expected for a town surrounded by desert. That was an enjoyable day out with a man who lived there as a child and had seen it change from a small town to a thriving metropolis. Clean and modern. The sand dunes and carpet weaving factory were great. Our cabin and the ship in general was kept clean. Warning that a young man was cleaning the ladies toilets might have been useful. My only gripe would be why is Ascension Island on the itinerary when they really have no intention of stoping there. In 5 passes of the island they have only gone ashore once. They say the water is too rough but the island is a strategic place for the British and Americans which makes me wonder. Despite not going there we were 3 hours late arriving at Casablanca. How late would we have been if we had stopped at Ascension Island. This cruise was value for money. May not have the glitz and glamour of the bigger more expensive cruises but was more relaxed. And as I said to my husband it is the first time we have been on first name terms with the crew. And the captain is a good singer. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We chose this cruise based on value for money. We were not seeking a "party" boat. I must admit I was expecting it to be boring, but had a wonderful time. The activities were well planned and the food was excellent the entire ... Read More
We chose this cruise based on value for money. We were not seeking a "party" boat. I must admit I was expecting it to be boring, but had a wonderful time. The activities were well planned and the food was excellent the entire trip. Crew were very professional. Despite being on the boat for 38 days, we did not want to get off when we arrived in England. Has definitely turned me on to cruising. The stops along the way included Mauritius, various locations around South Africa and Namibia. Loved Cape Town and St Helens. Then Morroco and Portugal. Loved the ambiance of the entire trip. Met many wonderful people. My wife got gastro on the boat, however I believe this is an occupational hazard of cruising. Whilst I was not sick, we were in lockdown in our cabin for 76 hours. However all the way through the Doctor, crew and officers ensured that we were well looked after. They were very professional and ensured that the illness was not spread to others. I cannot speak highly enough. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
Did an overnight 'port party' on the Astor before she headed back to the UK. Boarding was a bit of a joke. Stood around waiting for a long time with nothing happening until a couple of minutes after boarding was supposed to ... Read More
Did an overnight 'port party' on the Astor before she headed back to the UK. Boarding was a bit of a joke. Stood around waiting for a long time with nothing happening until a couple of minutes after boarding was supposed to start. Then everyone enters en masse and ushered down to the restaurant, but it was full, so we were told to wait in the bar. Went to the bar, told to go sit down, then waited for over 20 minutes and no one came to take a drink order. We finally went to see what was happening with lunch, and found a long line waiting to get into the restaurant. Lunch was a bad experience - although talking to other passengers, advised that this was not the norm. It was a buffet, and while the waiters were very good, the quality of lunch left a lot to be desired. As a vegetarian, had some limp salad and some very unappetising pasta, although got a free glass a champagne and the table settings were nice. We expected some afternoon entertainment, but there was nothing on offer, so we explored the ship. The cabins are a really good size and nice and spacious. They are old style and key operated, not swipe, and they don't lock on closing, but require key locking. The ship is not big but there are beautiful sitting areas along the corridors and plenty of nice bars and places to sit. The gym was small and not that well equipped. The pool was empty while in port. Dinner was a more formal event with a meat and vegetarian option. We got there early and were seated at a table for two, but the restaurant was not big enough for everyone on the ship and there were long lines waiting to get in ( again, this is apparently not the norm, and usually two restaurants open so the lines would not be an issue ). Waiters were delightful and very polished and the food for dinner was superb. Could not fault it. Some nice evening entertainment. Classical musicians and some live music. The evening show was in the lounge - nice venue, but unless you were at the front, you could not really see the performance that well. Some beautiful voices of the performers. Then the party out the back of the ship - live music, great atmosphere, and really good entertainment. Drink prices reasonable. And the party went til late for those that wanted to dance the night away. Breakfast once again had long lines to get in, and then huge lines for the hot food, although variety and quality of the food was nice. Staff around the ship were all pleasant and helpful. As we only did the overnight event, its probably not a true reflection of how the ship normally operates and the fact that there was a norovirus outbreak prior to boarding also made things more difficult. I thought it a nice old ship with lots of charm and would be perfect if you were happy to sit around and watch the world go by, but there was not enough entertainment / activities during the day for my liking so I would not sail on her again. Read Less
26 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
We chose Astor for convenience as we could embark and disembark in Fremantle, which is close to home. We are happy to travel mid ship, in an inside cabin, and our 13 square metre cabin surprised us with its excellent design and ample ... Read More
We chose Astor for convenience as we could embark and disembark in Fremantle, which is close to home. We are happy to travel mid ship, in an inside cabin, and our 13 square metre cabin surprised us with its excellent design and ample storage. Just make sure your case isn't deeper than 9" (22cm) or you could be struggling to store it under the bed. The ship is spotlessly clean, staff friendly and polite (although with many European staff on board there can be some infrequent and very minor language issues). Food was good and we had many melt in the mouth offerings. Ask for more vegetables, if required, and they are happy to oblige. The bakers on board are to be complemented on their skills, including bread/rolls, pastries cakes and slices. Entertainment was first class and Astor has many very skilled musicians and dancers. During the day, at sea, scheduled activities are not as numerous as on a larger ship, but we found there was always plenty for us to do. Captain Psarrakis is very proud of his ship and staff and on one occasion he personally found a chair for me when he noticed that I was standing at a busy time in the Captains Table Bar. Captain Psarrakis also used his skills to expertly manoeuvre the ship into a safe position in Esperance, when a rolling swell meant we would not have been able to disembark at the usual anchorage site and may have missed out on going ashore. We appreciated his efforts. A voyage down the Western Australian south coast saw us within sight of the mainland all of the way and it was often pleasant to sit out on deck and watch the changing scenery. We would have no hesitation in recommending Astor to those who are keen to experience a smaller ship experience (approx. 600 passengers). Read Less
38 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This was a spur of the moment cruise for us (our 3rd cruise over 40 years). Convenient because it sailed from Fremantle and returned there, and 6 nights was enough time away during summer & the risk of bushfires. Our friends were ... Read More
This was a spur of the moment cruise for us (our 3rd cruise over 40 years). Convenient because it sailed from Fremantle and returned there, and 6 nights was enough time away during summer & the risk of bushfires. Our friends were onboard too on their second trip on the Astor. We had an inside cabin on Baltic deck in a forward position and honestly it was a great position. No noise whatsoever from engines, something to think about with future bookings. Our cabin was very adequate with two wardrobes, a full length mirror, desk with mirror, small fridge, tv, radio and two single beds which were a little too firm, but were reasonably comfortable. The bathroom was big enough and bright in white. The shower was fantastic, very good water pressure and really hot water. The whole cabin was kept spotlessly clean. We used the stairs the whole trip and they provided very good exercise. Food was mostly well presented. We preferred to dine in the Waldorf rather than the buffet of the Ubersee. Wine was $4.50 a half glass and from $25 a bottle. Tried a couple of cocktails but didn't enjoy most of them as they tasted weak and watered down. Did enjoy the coffee and tea that was available all day. Entertainment on board varied. The quiz was popular, and the Perth band they had for the trip was very good. Night time shows were interesting and a lot of effort went into them. We only went to two. Nice smaller ship without the big crowds which we enjoyed, as we wanted to be able to chill out and do our own thing. Astor handles rougher seas very well, and staff on board are on the whole, friendly and helpful, even where language can be a barrier. We enjoyed our trip immensely to Esperance and Albany and would travel again on the Astor. Read Less
15 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
As first-time cruisers we weren't sure what to expect, or how a small ship like Astor compares with a 4,000 passenger monster. We were attracted by the bargain rate of $900 for two people for five nights. If the cruise had cost two or ... Read More
As first-time cruisers we weren't sure what to expect, or how a small ship like Astor compares with a 4,000 passenger monster. We were attracted by the bargain rate of $900 for two people for five nights. If the cruise had cost two or three times as much our post-voyage opinions might have been sterner. The ship was excellently maintained and operated. If there were grumpy crew members we didn't see them. I suspect that reviewers who harshly criticise crew are types who like confrontation and making complaints. The interior cabin was small but as described on the website. The only failing was an erratic vacuum toilet that sometimes left solid and liquid offerings unflushed, then later whisked them away at a time of its own choosing. Food was generally good. Some of it looked better than it tasted but the chef deserved more bouquets than brickbats. Unlike another reviewer we had no stale rolls or hard scones. Quite the opposite, both were excellent. The entertainers merited top marks for trying even though their cheesy dancing, cheesy singing and cheesy costumes weren't to our taste. A different show was presented each night. We excused ourselves from afternoon bingo, morning quizzes and other activities that would appeal to some. Life on board would have been cost-free if we'd been teetotal and hadn't bought one souvenir photo. For what we paid the cruise was extraordinarily good value for money. We began to feel a bit 'stir crazy' after three days. The cruise taught us that more of the same wouldn't be our next holiday choice, but that's the way we are and not a criticism of the Astor. Overall, a highly satisfactory and memorable trip. Near to top marks to the Cap'n and his capable, cheerful crew. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This was our first cruise and we loved it Very clean room and common areas constantly being cleaned This was a short cruise but a great introduction whilst the Astor is small compared to others I see why many love her it's not ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we loved it Very clean room and common areas constantly being cleaned This was a short cruise but a great introduction whilst the Astor is small compared to others I see why many love her it's not shiny new and modern but warm and welcoming The crew were happy and very helpful maybe more signage on the ship would have been helpful This trip had a good mix of people but this is clearly not a ship for children limited activities The food was ok we dined in the Waldof resturant and the meals did become repetitive and average more choice in the Buffett and better desserts enjoyed afternoon tea there several times The drinks package was good value but the water package is not The nighttime shows did not meet expectations they need a lot of work I feel high school students could provide a better standard Lots of room around the ship for quite reflective time or if you prefer bars and music that's available also The use of the tender in Esperance was fast and professional and the volunteers in the towns were lovely and appreciated No tender required in Albany and a wonderful day was had I found the twin rooms very spacious the double rooms have less room to move about great storage in the rooms Highly recommend not sure I would like the modern ships will have to contemplate this Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
Having cruised several times in the past and liking the atmosphere of smaller vessels we chose Astor for this cruise to Esperence and Albany. Being an elderly lady of the seas "Astor" despite a recent refurbishment still appears ... Read More
Having cruised several times in the past and liking the atmosphere of smaller vessels we chose Astor for this cruise to Esperence and Albany. Being an elderly lady of the seas "Astor" despite a recent refurbishment still appears outdated with drab decoration and claustrophobic cabins. The cabin air conditioning worked at one level only and was insufficient to supply a good quality air flow. The small ocean view window was encrusted with salt and provided no view. The food provided was plentiful but mediocre in quality and variety howvevr the dining staff were friendly and attentive to their duties.The price of drinks is excessive and the alcoholic beverage package is a rip as all members of the cabin must agree to pay before it is valid e.g. Currently $29.00 each per day!) The shore excursions offered (although a little pricey) met expectations and the organisation of landing and boarding ran smoothly. Disembarkation was little more that organised chaos with crowds of people thronging around the gangway to disembark as early as they could. Overall though not a total DIS ASTOR I think we will stick with the tried and tested Princess Cruises. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2016
This was our first cruise on the Astor, but our second cruise in three years. Our first cruise was on RCL Voyager of the Seas, so absolutely cannot compare these two vessels. The Astor is an old girl, as reflected in the decor and ... Read More
This was our first cruise on the Astor, but our second cruise in three years. Our first cruise was on RCL Voyager of the Seas, so absolutely cannot compare these two vessels. The Astor is an old girl, as reflected in the decor and furnishings, and also she's quite noisy. Lots of creaks and groans but she's well kept and maintained at least on the surface. Although the carpets are well worn and stained in parts, she's kept VERY clean. The Cabin: we were in cabin 480 on Baltic deck. Had a small window view. Yes the cabin is small, but it has plenty of storage for the two of us. No coffee/tea facilities which was disappointing but had a bar fridge. Small TV with limited channels. Bed was two singles put together against one wall left not a lot of room for moving about, but we requested a double bed and that's what was available. There was a constant noise from vibrations, rattles and the like due to the age of he ship, and that was annoying, especially when trying to sleep. But our biggest complaint was with cigarette smoke. Somehow cigarette smoke made its way into our cabin an a daily basis. And it was particularly strong in the hallway. I complained twice but it kept happening. Food: we ate like kings every night and put on 3 kg! So not complaining about that. Like every good restaurant, there were good and bad days, but in general food was great. Service: our cabin steward Agus, was a delightful man that cared very well for us and the cabin. Nothing to complain about. As for the rest of the crew, they are all very hard workers from other parts of the world. Yes their way of speaking is different to us Aussies, but they do their best to accomodate every request. Some of you may take offence at their tone and briskness, but it's just a different culture and they are not speaking in their native tongue. Entertainment: BRILLIANT! The singers and dancers rehearse several times a day and it shows with very professional shows. The Ship: An oldie but a goodie, but having said that, there are a lot of trip hazards due to the build of the ship. You constantly have to step over a lip to enter the toilets, and access the decks. Ok if you are fit and able, but not if you use a wheelchair or Zimmer frame. The lifts.....only fit 4-6 people (at a squeeze) at a time and there are only 3 on the whole ship. Thats a real pain! Cigarette smoke: if you are a smoker you'll love his cruise ship as it seems you can smoke anywhere and get away with it. If you hate cigarette smoke (like me) then pick a cruise line that is smoke free, or at least has very limited and isolated smoking areas. We got sick on this cruise, a head cold, but had to stay n cabin for 2 days, But all in all we enjoyed it. Probably wouldn't sail on the Astor again, because we were spoilt on Voyager of the seas for size etc. Astor is great value for money, if you enjoy good food, great entertainment and excellent service. If you want a luxury cruise with plenty of onboard activities for kids and teens then look elsewhere. Read Less
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