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47 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We normally sail Norwegian, and have also sailed Royal Caribbean a few times. Our reason for choosing Pullmantur for this trip was solely cost - the cruises with this line are often very competitively priced. We are a couple in our mid ... Read More
We normally sail Norwegian, and have also sailed Royal Caribbean a few times. Our reason for choosing Pullmantur for this trip was solely cost - the cruises with this line are often very competitively priced. We are a couple in our mid 30's from Scotland. Our travel agent warned us that this is an old ship, that we're not paying much to travel with, and to set our expectations accordingly. We read through details of the ship and noted the key differences - that there is one main dining room, no choice of restaurants, and only a small selection of bars. We also noted that entertainment is in Spanish. We both absolutely loved this cruise. It is one of the most relaxing cruises we've ever had - and we will definitely be booking Pullmantur again. However, this cruise will not be for everyone, and it's important to appreciate that this Pullmantur is different - not necessarily better or worse. I will make some comments that seem judgemental - they are. These are my honest observations, and your feelings on the subject are likely to be different: The line is not American - which is strange, since Royal Caribbean own 49% of it, apparently. The passengers on Pullmantur are far less entitled than on American lines such as Norwegian and Royal Caribbean - they are happier, more care-free, and I have not seen the entitlement and rudeness shown to staff that I have witnessed on other lines. The staff seem more relaxed, too. There is no tipping - gratuities are paid with your cruise fare, and are not mentioned at any point during the entire cruise. On the rare occasion you have to pay for something, there isn't even a tipping line on the receipt! Inclusive means inclusive - you simply ask for a cava, and are given a cava. Nobody takes your card - there is no receipt presented in a folder, there is no opportunity for tipping. You just get your drink, a smile, and you're on your way. This is far more relaxed. Coffee - any variety - is free. I always resented 'speciality coffee' being charged for even with a premium drinks package on Norwegian. On there Horizon, there is a large (and overstaffed!) coffee shop called Cafe Cafe, which offers a variety of teas and coffees (as well as cocktails, and other alcohol) for free. It's a really relaxed environment. Photos - they barely bother. It's great! With other lines, you're harassed every damn night at dinner, every time you get off the ship, every time you get on the ship. We had one photo for getting on board, and one at dinner, and that was it - we never saw a photographer again. Ideal. Food - it's not American. There are no comforting piles of crap. It's largely Mediterranean, sensible portions, and decent quality. I have a food intolerance, and felt really looked after - I can recommend this line for coeliacs. Even at breakfast there is a gluten free area with cakes, bread, a dedicated gluten free only toaster, cereals, etc. They can make the usual adaptations to standard meals, but it's nice not to need to ask. See where I'm going here? It's not an Amercian line, and they don't nickel and dime you as though you're on one. So, that's all the things I love about Pullmantur. On to some drawbacks: Entertainment - this isn't an issue for me, but I know this is important to many cruisers. If you don't speak Spanish, then you will be disappointed. There are no broadway shows. There are things on in the theatre - no idea what, they're all in Spanish. Gym - this one did irritate me, but, it is what it is - it's crap, and despite limited space, it could be better. There are a few cardio machines - treadmills, static bikes. The bikes are showing their age, and I could feel one of them slipping, this needs proper maintenance. There is a good selection of free weights, but the benches are cramped, so it's just as well the gym wasn't busy on my visits. The choice of machines is bizarre - there are two entirely pointless goodgirl-badgirl machines (leg adducter machines!), which really aren't a good use of space. Replacing them with cables would give far more resource in the small space. Rooms - a mixed bag! First, I loved the space in my room, although I don't think it can be much larger than a standard ocean-view, it felt bigger, and there was loads more storage, not to mention a proper desk. It feels dated, but solid. The bathroom.... it's functional, it's clean - but looks dated. I can live with clean but dated, however, some people cruise for luxury, and the bathroom... well, it's a bit budget motel. But then, that's the price bracket you're paying. Casino - I hate the things; they're vulgar. The casino on this ship is tiny, and for once, is non-smoking! I have nothing nice to say about casinos anyway, but if I was into them, this casino would be underwhelming. Given that few people seemed to use it, clearly other passengers feel the same. That's it for drawbacks. Some random observations: I love the staff. They are kind, honest, and genuine. They do not have the false happy-smiley thing going on with American lines. No disinterested "How are you" type questions. They provide efficient, friendly, polite service, without the faux-customer service you'll see elsewhere. They will go out of their way to help you - even when you don't ask for help. For example, bar staff will often recommend a free house spirit rather than a premium drink. Overall, I don't feel sold to - I feel I have been on a relaxing holiday. We will be sailing with Pullmantur again, but not exclusively. They are not a premium line nor a luxury line - they're an honest company that'll provide a relaxing holiday. Read Less
21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We chose this cruise as there were no sea days so daily entertainment was not an issue. The Cruise line caters predominantly to the Spanish client but there were many on-board for whom English was the preferred language. All the staff ... Read More
We chose this cruise as there were no sea days so daily entertainment was not an issue. The Cruise line caters predominantly to the Spanish client but there were many on-board for whom English was the preferred language. All the staff spoke English. The ship was a no frills ship. We did not partake of any of the daytime activities as we were on shore each day. The evening entertainment was excellent, the absence of too much dialogue meant it was not necessary to understand Spanish. Food was good and plentiful, with a section for dietary needs such as gluten free and the service was excellent. The all inclusive deal was fair and being able to vet good coffee within this deal was a bonus. Water was feely available in all the bars so it wasn't necessary to take out the expensive extra drinks packages that were offered. Our Stateroom was clean if a little tired. Public areas were clean. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
I think that I can echo the same things about Pullmantur cruises that have been said here and agree. The furniture in the state rooms is in very bad condition and the collar around the hot tubs was broken. There were no excursions with ... Read More
I think that I can echo the same things about Pullmantur cruises that have been said here and agree. The furniture in the state rooms is in very bad condition and the collar around the hot tubs was broken. There were no excursions with English guides available at any port. We took a Greek Island cruise and I would expect the food and entertainment to be Greece themed but instead was all Spanish. The tipping was just added to your bill and you get no chance to dispute it or adjust it, they just add it to your bill on the last day. There are none of the amenities cruise ships usually have. No luxury at all. You get what you pay for though, transportation to five Greek Islands, meals, entertainment (in Spanish) and that's basically it. If you're looking for a normal cruise ship experience, don't take a Pullmantur cruise. Embarkation was a real problem. The buses that normally run from the subway station in Piraeus to the cruise port didn't stop and you have no way other than walking (over a mile) with suitcases in tow to where the ship was. That's a little hard to do in 100 degree heat. There should have been Pullmantur shuttle buses to take you to the ship. It's a very basic, bare bones, no perks cruise I cannot recommend. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
I choose this cruise to know greek islands and an oportunity to calm holidays with my wife. But unfortunately the cruise was a disappointment with accumulation of people in the pool, without conditions, not filled with cold water. For ... Read More
I choose this cruise to know greek islands and an oportunity to calm holidays with my wife. But unfortunately the cruise was a disappointment with accumulation of people in the pool, without conditions, not filled with cold water. For breakfast and lunch at times of us possessed no place to sit down and disfrutarmos the pleasure of living together as a family. Despite a few/some excellent employees got the bad impression of everything else and strengthening the lack of direct response to a passenger/customer who won't be back and will do everything to prevent other customers from using these trips. I effected an exhibition concerning occurred in 2017.06.10 in Mykonos that Pullmantur not took care to inform passengers and had 4 hours in the queue while waiting for transport to the boat more than 50 people, children, elderly and sick people. Besides the information that gave the old port of Mykonos to the new port where the boat was moored was incorrect and caused expenses and loss of time without being reimbursed. Best regards Azinhais Rosa Mr Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We chose this cruise because we were told the food was French and gourmet. Well, the food ok but not great. Also the destinations were very good: Sicily, Crete, Greece and Corsica. Ship is a bit old, but the crew were very nice and always ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we were told the food was French and gourmet. Well, the food ok but not great. Also the destinations were very good: Sicily, Crete, Greece and Corsica. Ship is a bit old, but the crew were very nice and always helpful and polite. We started to return to Marseille, FR from Greek Katakolon GR with a full day at sea on 18th of October 2016. We were schdeuled to stop and visit Adjaccia, Corsica on 19th. After that we were to proceed to Marseille, FR arriving the monring of the 20th. Events changed things. About 22:30 PM on the 18th a public announcemnet indicated that we were changing course for Naples, Italy becuase one of the passengers was very ill and need to be hospitized as soon as possible.We were to arrive in Naples about 3:00 AM on the19th to drop off this passenger and then proceed non-stop to Marseille, FR. The stop at Adjaccio, Corsica was cancelled for 1700 passengers. with no mention of compensation. We and many other passengers were very dissapointed. We discovered that the ship was to disembark all of us and immediately pick up 1700 new passengers to embark at 17:00 PM. It seemd to us that we were now just some cargo. We would not have taken this cruise if we had known that over 80% of the passengers were over 80 years old. There were many people in wheelchairs. On Wednesday, the 19th, mid afternoon the Italian Air force had to send a rescue team in a helicopter to airlift a 93 year old man to Livorno, Italy. We later discovered that 4 other people had been disembarked in ports along the way because of health issues. Smoking was permitted in some areas. This is not good Excellent captain - very precise movement and control of a large ship. This ship has good stabilizers. Nice music in bars in evening, but sets were always too short, no more than 45 minutes. Internet was poor by satellite MTN out of Miami, Florida. Various payment plans - Example 100 minutes for 39 Euros.The software design for Internet was very bad. Some kinds of alcoholic drinks were free, but we had to pay for mineral water. Some of the outside restrooms awere dirty and smelled bad. - others were ok. Carpets in the hallways were dirty, stained and worn as was the carpeting on the stairways. We had 5 days of problems with the front desk re our credit. It was actually a problem in their databases and information management. Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
As a family we wanted to make our annual vacation. Firstly our local agency misguided us about the age of ship. We wanted to travel with a new ship. But Zenith was built in 1992 and unfortunately it felt that way; from the smell and ... Read More
As a family we wanted to make our annual vacation. Firstly our local agency misguided us about the age of ship. We wanted to travel with a new ship. But Zenith was built in 1992 and unfortunately it felt that way; from the smell and service to the furniture. Although some of dining serving staff were helpful, most of bartenders were grumpy and somewhat careless. During seven days at least three of the bartenders were angry over little things. In Zenith ship, the 11 th floor is the general dining area where one can have all his or her emails, if wished. The entry area is closed to the kitchen where a strong smell first stops you. Then you have to walk toward the back to get over with it. Finally, one must never ever share his or her credit card with accounting, because they overcharged us. Although the night before I confirmed everything. I realized that every single day they charged for things we did not even authorize. So they almost tripled shared us. Unfortunately we cannot reach to any accounting or customer service team of Pullmantur Zenith. As a summary, only one with absolutely no expectation of service and quality may go with Zenith ship. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2012
After attempting to find information about this cruise line and seeing that there was very little, and what we did find was a little so-so to negative, we were nervous to say the least. However, I have nothing but good things to say about ... Read More
After attempting to find information about this cruise line and seeing that there was very little, and what we did find was a little so-so to negative, we were nervous to say the least. However, I have nothing but good things to say about this cruise! Even though most everything was in spanish on the ship, it did not bother us in the slightest. Everything that was needed to be heard in english was given. The crew was very friendly, and most spoke english as well. There was probably only 15 +/- english speaking passengers on the cruise. The fact that this cruise was all inclusive was even better! Wine and beer free flowed at dinner...your glass was NEVER empty! The wine was not bad either with a few choices. The food was very good as well. The only bill you have at the end of the cruise is for your gratuities, any excursions you booked (not recommended if you can't speak spanish, transfers are okay though), premium drinks, or duty free shopping. I will say the shopping was not so great if you wanted to buy clothes. The brand they mostly sold was Tommy Hilfiger and it was way overpriced for US standards and Duty free in my opinion. But I didn't come on a ship to shop. The staff at our dinner service was OUTSTANDING! Nothing was too much trouble and they were very friendly and professional. It was probably one of the highlights of our trip. They seated us with other English speakers, so there was plenty of conversation at dinner. Yes, the early seating for dinner was at 8pm, but sometimes you didn't get back from your day until later. That allowed you time to get ready and relax. The bar staff was also great, they would remember what drinks you liked and have them ready for you soon after you arrived in the bar. The cleaning staff was also great. I have nothing to compare this cruise to. I felt the rooms were average, but comfortable a cleaned to a good standard. They were actually bigger than I had imagined, so I was pleasantly surprised. The ship itself was in good shape and clean through out, well maintained. The pool was small, but we were going to beaches on shore, so that wasn't important to us. We used the gym a few times, some of the equipment needed repair. I wouldn't recommend the shows. They are all in Spanish, so if you can't speak Spanish it is a waste of time. Overall we were very impressed with this cruise and would recommend it to anyone who doesn't mind being around a different culture. This isn't the latest state-of-the-art cruise ship, but it was a great time anyway. The wonderful crew and the all-inclusive make it a no-brainer if you ask me! I would definitely recommend this cruise to others. In fact, we are thinking of taking another Pullmantur cruise because we thought so highly of it! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2008
We flew from Gatwick with no baggage belts not a good start but arrived at Palma still happy to join the Island Star first impressions of the ship were mediocre it looked a bit ragged lacking basic care and attention. This description ... Read More
We flew from Gatwick with no baggage belts not a good start but arrived at Palma still happy to join the Island Star first impressions of the ship were mediocre it looked a bit ragged lacking basic care and attention. This description fitted the inside as well carpets grubby on stairs although our cabin inside allocated on arrival (late booking) was larger than we expected. The linen had seen its best with tears in the quilt cover, no change second week, yes one change per week. Towels we found ok the pool towels provided had seen better days. Our first excursion around the ship revealed very dated and shabby furniture in the library theatre and other communal areas. although ship only 18 years old with alleged major refurbishment in 2006 nothing would appear to have been updated in public rooms. Eating aboard was in the beachcomber, island restaurants which were buffet style. Beachcomber 24 hours, Island set times only difference you waited to be seated in the Island, the Grill was open 12 to 8pm The fare in the beachcomber island was exactly the same, limited choice of hot vegetable limited to one per lunch and dinner. main courses lunch and dinner consisted of chicken and or fish every day with a stew of beef or other such. The grill served burgers chicken steaks or hot dogs. The other restaurants steakhouse and oasis were on payment the steakhouse was £35 for two which included a bottle of house wine. The oasis charged £30. per two. Generally the food in these was a good basic standard but very repetitive on the second week. Hygiene we found poor by some passengers they did not use the disinfectant machines or wore no upper body clothing or shoes when getting food which was not corrected by restaurant staff. We found the drink prices to be excessive comparable to city prices in the city of london with house plonk at "£10-45 a bottle named wines substantially more champagne up to £100-00 per bottle. Wine bought in Port not allowed on board. Basic tea and coffee provided everything else charged for. Money grabbing was evident everywhere, bridge tour £5-00 photograph with capt. £10-00. Maintenance of the ship very poor resulting in a lot of burst pipes poor paint finish and shabby decor toilets constantly not working backing up air condition breaking down propulsion systems breaking down, to name a few of the things that happened whilst on board. Everything geared to saving money to the detriment of the ship and its passengers. The crew not the officers were the back bone of the ship. They were poorly rewarded and indeed the winebar stewards were not paid a basic wage but paid on commission basis subject to quota being met. The company staff confirmed wages topped up by tips alleged pre paid although at time of writing unable to substantiate pre paid tips reached the crew. The entertainment was not sampled as it did not appeal although others views were mediocre. Excursions were not sampled as previous experience proved expensive and lacked polish and substance, supported from others who did take. Overall the value for money was poor compared to what is on offer elsewhere. The ship needs a lot of work and attention to detail. We would not recommend this ship for cruising to anybody as it caters for people who do not expect much or indeed get it and know the difference. Read Less
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