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29 Canary Islands Romantic Cruise Reviews

We embarked in Malaga 2 days ahead of the main embarkation in Barcelona. We flew in with Ryan Air from Liverpool and arrived in Malaga at 11.15 am. We took a taxi to the port which cost 24 euros and we were at the port by 11.40 pm. We ... Read More
We embarked in Malaga 2 days ahead of the main embarkation in Barcelona. We flew in with Ryan Air from Liverpool and arrived in Malaga at 11.15 am. We took a taxi to the port which cost 24 euros and we were at the port by 11.40 pm. We dropped our suitcases off outside and were given our stateroom number. As we had booked last minute we were guaranteed an inside cabin and that was all we knew! We then made our way to check in and were the only ones waiting to do so. We were checked in, usual welcome on board photo taken and on board by noon. As this wasn't the main embarkation port, we felt a little let down that there was no welcome committee so to speak that you usually get and which happened 2 days later for the majority who boarded in Barcelona, as this is the main start to the holiday...first impressions. We quickly got our bearings found our cabin to find we had been upgraded to a porthole window..the cabin was adequate, clean and functional our suitcases were delivered by 1 pm. We had the muster drill in the theater which was painless. Food and service in the Garden restaurant was excellent. As we did anytime dining we didn't have the same waiter once but the standard we received was consistently good. We tried Windows for breakfast on one occasion but had to wait over an hour for our food so never went back but the staff were very friendly. The Bistro - not so good. The service was slow with no atmosphere. We waited over 40 minutes for our order to be taken and then a further 40 minutes for our starters to arrive. My husband who never complains had a really bad meal. We didn't bother with desserts as we were totally fed up by now and just wanted to leave. The manager promised to refund the cover charge as a goodwill gesture but we were still charged. Cagney's - good but not amazing. We felt a bit rushed as we had booked at 7 pm by 7.45 pm we had left having had 3 courses in less than an hour. Tappanyaki - starter and dessert disappointing but the main course was lovely and of course the added attraction of the chef cooking it for you was good although not sure if it warrants the larger cover charge. We only used the buffet restaurant now and again as it was always crowded with no where to sit unless you went out onto the back of the ship which would've been fine if it wasn't blowing a gale. The Blue Lagoon - good for munchies after the nightclub. The chicken wings were excellent. Also had fish and chips here during the day which were also very good. We found all the staff who served us in the bars to be friendly and efficient. A big shout out to Alfredo who works in the Beer Garden during the day and the Galaxy of the Stars at night. Go find him...he's such a joy and a credit to NCL. Also Philly in the night club, bless her she must have one of the hardest jobs on board dealing with the "rowdy ones" until silly o clock each morning. the staff in the champagne bar were excellent too. The entertainment staff were very good. They even managed to get my husband up for dancing like a Norwegian which was brilliant fun for me, he's still in hiding now ;) The pool was closed for 5 days whilst we were on board, mostly due to rough seas but then a crack appeared. We were fortunate to meet some lovely people on board who made the holiday for us as without them I think we would've been bored by day 4. We plan to cruise with them again next year. So in a nutshell... A very old ship which could do with a major refurbish, excellent staff, good food and good entertainment. After 6 cruises with Princess and 7 with celebrity we loved the freestyle idea. Would we sail with Norwegian again? Definitely but on a newer ship. Many thanks. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
My wife and I have sailed on MSC Fantasia and MSC Splendida which are the biggest ships flying the MSC flag and decided at Easter15 to have a week in Santa Cruz, Tenerife and a weeks cruise on the newly refurbished MSC Armonia sailing the ... Read More
My wife and I have sailed on MSC Fantasia and MSC Splendida which are the biggest ships flying the MSC flag and decided at Easter15 to have a week in Santa Cruz, Tenerife and a weeks cruise on the newly refurbished MSC Armonia sailing the Canaries and up to Casablanca. Looking at other reviews there is a real mixed bag of good and bad re MSC. We had fantastic cruises on Fantasia and Splendida and our decision to sail on Armonia was different on the smaller ship but we had a first class experience.. We had one of the few balconies on the Armonia which gave us Fantastica experience with Freetime evening dining. This was brilliant and we always got a table for two with a personal waiter every night. He was an Italian called Agostino and he made our evening meal experience by adapting very well to our needs over the week.. We found the food very good but yes it was different to what we would eat at home but we adapted and enjoyed what we got. If you want burgers, pizza etc you can use the buffet, but that is not the standard of food we want on a cruise (Ok for a snack). The ship was lovely and although we missed the bigger ship experience it had enough to give us a nice experience. Entertainment around the ship was the most noticable compared to the bigger MSC ships with fewer places to sit and enjoy music etc. This easter cruise was full but we never felt that we were overcrowded. Always book the Alegrissamo drinks package even if you are not a big drinker as it is well worth it. Ice cream, bottled water, fruit juice and coffees are included which is great. Our favourite stop on the cruise was Arricife and if you walk towards the car hire at end of the pier there is a free shuttle service. Did not like Casablanca, it was intimidating and a very long walk through the docks. We moored overnight in Casablanca and there was very little entertainment on the ship which was poor. No shops or casino and theatre closed as well. Poor planning by ship. We do like like MSC and are doing a pre Xmas cruise on their newest ship MSC Preziosa in Dec 15. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
We decided to do the Spirit for our honeymoon, we decided to not pay for the additional transfer cost through NCL but instead make our own way to and from Barcelona from Leeds, UK. Getting there was an absolute breeze, 80 minutes in the ... Read More
We decided to do the Spirit for our honeymoon, we decided to not pay for the additional transfer cost through NCL but instead make our own way to and from Barcelona from Leeds, UK. Getting there was an absolute breeze, 80 minutes in the car to Liverpool airport and then moving on to Barcelona through a very well priced Easyjet flight and finally a 39 euro trip to the port where we were immediately allowed to embark the ship. It took a good couple of hours to get our luggage though. Activities wise, I found these disappointing, compared to what I found on both the Epic and indeed the Jade, although with 4 sea days this could have been the reason - doing the same thing over and over isn't something I enjoy, especially when we played the bingo it was $50 a time (although that was the biggest bingo package) so we only did that twice. Dining wise, 2 free restaurants the Garden and Windows and 2 buffet restaurants (Blue Lagoon and Raffles) which were very nice although the paid restaurants were nicer (although the food was gorgeous wherever we ate) and Cagneys Fillet Mignon deserved a special mention, it was superb! The cabin had a designated steward who comes in twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening to create towel animals (awesome!) and leave the "Whats on" directory for the following day. Everything you buy practically on board has an 18% auto-gratuity added to the cost so things can get a bit pricey (take this into account before boarding) and the photos are very expensive - $200 for 20 photos, $19.99 additional if you wish to have all of the images you buy onto USB for future usage. The disembark process is a little chaotic, we had to be off ship by 9am, out of the cabin by 8:30am which was a little early for our taste! Read Less
Sail Date March 2015
We were travelling from Southampton to Madeira and then into the Canary Isles. We had chosen a suite which was really nice, clean, spacious and even given the time of year we had plenty of opportunity to utilise it. Boarding was fine in ... Read More
We were travelling from Southampton to Madeira and then into the Canary Isles. We had chosen a suite which was really nice, clean, spacious and even given the time of year we had plenty of opportunity to utilise it. Boarding was fine in Southampton the vehicle drop off was very quick and efficient and getting on board didn't take too long, what didn't work was that although asked to attend around midday, the rooms are not available so you are hustled into the Conservatory self service restaurant, which everyone seems to complain about and we called "The Zoo". I felt particularly since there are only a couple if dozen suites in particular, the room should have been ready as we had the romantic notion of going to our room and opening the champagne, instead I found myself in a canteen.....very disappointing. Things improved as we got to our room, we liked the size of the ship not so huge as to feel lost, food was extremely good, we just avoided the canteen. During the day the Al Fresco was fine for a light meal, lunch and afternoon tea available in the other two main restaurants and dinner was very nice in the Orient Restaurant which had set dinner times. It was good to see most people made a decent effort for the black tie events even on one day where it was rough and a lot of people were suffering. The average age was about 65 however there were some younger people on board and I don't think age matters, there were plenty of talks, dances, movies and shows during the day, the art class was particularly good. We didn't do the organised shore excursions we just walked into the towns in Madeira, La Gomera, Las Palmas, Lanzarote and Lisbon, all were very interesting and the weather was nice, dry and predominantly sunny. I felt that due to the policy of cutting prices so severely before sailing there was a definite element who would not normally cruise, this took away some of the exclusivity and feeling that you were among friends. The people who were at our evening dining table struggled to hold a civil conversation, some thought should be put into who you are seated with as this ruined our enjoyment of dining. Due to this we booked the separate dining of Marco Pierre White and the Sorrento on a number of occasions, both were very good and worth it though but again this spoiled the trip as did the fact that although the suites are quite expensive again there are no real perks apart from the odd fruit basket or flowers, some cruises have separate lounges, fast track embarkation etc and we felt P&O lacked that special feel. Staff were very pleasant throughout and worked extremely hard, we had a pleasant experience but I don't think I would use P&O again unless I went cut price, last minute and felt I was getting some sort of bargain! Read Less
Sail Date December 2014

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