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Sail Date: May 2011
The basic product is good the food and service were excellent, particularly from the Philippine crew. Entertainment was good but I would have liked more shows, in particular music theatre type of entertainment.

We paid almost ... Read More

The basic product is good the food and service were excellent, particularly from the Philippine crew. Entertainment was good but I would have liked more shows, in particular music theatre type of entertainment.

We paid almost double what some peoplepaid, especially late booker's and we had a basic inside cabin on level 5. When at sail the walls vibrated, the engine sounds recreated the noise of being in the middle of a storm, the beds were very hard to the point they woke you up.I was very glad to leave behind our cabin !!!! Other guests said their rooms had no sound and the beds were comfortable but they were on a higher deck. There was also a smell of stale water as you walked along the corridor on level 5, this persisted throughout the cruise.

We went on 2 day trips one to Sorrento & Pompeii the guide could not speak very good English, we were given earphones, through which we could hear every conversation she had. She lost 2/3 of the group twice, people fell over on the extremely rough ground and she didn't even notice this. She walked us around Pompeii for 2 hours whilst mumbling on and on, when we could have seen less and learnt more. An exhausting day Sorrento good Pompeii disastrous.

We went on the most expensive trip to Rome casting £110 going on a train as it was going to get us there quicker, however they didn't mention the 45 mins we had to sit on the train before it departed. The leg space on the train was very very limited; seats were positioned opposite each other so we had our legs woven in between strangers legs which was a bit embarrassing !

Imagine 4 large cruise ships arriving in Rome on the same day going on the same , to see the same sites ; it was like tourism gone mad, so crowded you couldn't see any of the monuments properly.

We were taken to the Colosseum by coach and we saw this from outside, we had about 20 mins here to get a drink etc We got charged £3.50 for a 500ml bottle of coke ! We then went on the coach for a short drive and then were walked for 3 1/2 hours through narrow streets in a convoy of 48 people to see the mega crowded Spanish steps, horrendously crowded Tivoli fountains, on to the Parthenon and then in 28 degree heat walked through what seemed to be endless back streets for lunch, this to be fair was quite good . By the time we all reached lunch the rep must have counted all 48 of us about 5 times, he asked us to walk in two's as if we were in school which we all had a laugh about. After lunch we queued to go into St Peters the queue was 3/4 of the way around the Vatican Square it did move quickly but once in the Church it was not a Religious experience just an endless snake of visitors again tourism gone mad.

After 2 trips We felt ill, so we cancelled a trip to Barcelona. The trips were labelled as active walking and we did go to the Ship talk about the trips but nobody explained it would involve 2 and then 3 1/2 hours walking in hot weather over very rough ground. Given the average age of the cruising clientel I think they need to spell this out more as the message is not clear.

My advice would be don't book early the best dael seemed to be for late bookings. don't see a cruise as a major sight seeing trip the crowds are too big as too many cruise ships in port causes chaos. A decrition of Active walking can mean up to 3 1/2 hours persistant walking in very hot temperatures so be carfull what you book

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Sail Date: May 2010
Today, just got back today from a 1st time Thomson Cruise aboard the "new" ship Dream. Please be aware, this is merely a re branded ship from a previous cruise company Costa.

Thought it would be nice to share our views with other ... Read More

Today, just got back today from a 1st time Thomson Cruise aboard the "new" ship Dream. Please be aware, this is merely a re branded ship from a previous cruise company Costa.

Thought it would be nice to share our views with other potential cruisers. We are a couple of fifty somethings, but extremely youthful in in mind & spirit. It is not the first time we have cruised, having patronised the wonderful Royal Caribbean & Princess Cruises. We quite frankly did not expect this cruise to live up to the experiences enjoyed in our previous 1st class experiences. We were to be fair, not as disappointed as we thought we would be. Yes the ship is much smaller than our previous cruises. Yes there are still branding showing the previous Costa influence. Pictures and etched mirrors depicting evidence of this previous owner.

The Ocean bar, was small but intimate. The Andromeda self serve buffet was badly placed in one straight line. Which meant that long queues were inevitable. The deck area was small with little shade, but had a small poolside bar & grill. The Sirens buffet on deck eleven was much better placed and is recommended. This is situated near to the other small seawater pool and has a grill area on deck also. Highly recommended are the lunch grills and omlette facilities at breakfast. After noon tea is also a special treat and worth trying. But watch the waste line. Watch the amount of food that gets selected and trashed.

The Orion restaurant was large, hot, but full of happy staff, willing eager and obliging. Special thanks goes to Edgar, Ling & Evan who went out of their way to ensure we had the best advice on the evenings menu, the wine. They were also accommodating when allowing us to keep our party of six together for dining. They especially remembered our likes & dislikes.

The Medusa Ballroom was great for late evening cabaret after a showcase performance in the theatre. The productions were polished, professional and often funny & moving at the same time. We loved the Cruise Director & his team of extremely talented singers & dancers. Special mention to ballet boy (not sure of his name), but he was so adapted to singing and dancing in the musical theatre genre. All the dancers and singers were a joy to listen to. Switching from contemporary numbers to the classics, show tunes to films. Le Mis to Miss Saigon. Ah what a joy.

The only down side to this experience was the poor plumbing & dreadful stench of sewage on the stair wells. Also the fact that often times the public loos were out of order, necessitated an trip back to the cabins. The bathroom facilities in the cabin were old & tired and need replacing. Our bath was chipped, scratched and had rust marks. Not acceptable. Also often the toilet had no water and could not be flushed. Occasionally the basin ran dark water, splashed with rust or black gunge. We were luckier than the people on the interior cabin opposite, they had no water in their cabin for days.

All in all you get what you pay for. But we had a grand time despite our little grumbles. Hope you enjoy the benefit of this review. Do not let it put you off cruising. Am sure these little hiccups will be sorted out soon.

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