41 Marella Cruises Marella Discovery Caribbean - Eastern Cruise Reviews

This was our first cruise and we were a bit worried what to expect. However we had an amazing time, From embarkation with the welcome and the organisation at Gatwick airport we thought it was excellent. The ship was immaculate, we had ... Read More
This was our first cruise and we were a bit worried what to expect. However we had an amazing time, From embarkation with the welcome and the organisation at Gatwick airport we thought it was excellent. The ship was immaculate, we had upgraded to a suite on deck 8 which was fab and we had a lovely girl looking after us every day cleaning our room, ironed clothes for us and had chocolates on our bed every night. The staff work so hard cleaning the ship, in the restaurants and entertainment, I could not fault it, we we really impressed. The all inclusive option is really good for all the drink and food options. There was plenty of entertainment and shore excursions if you wanted it, we tended to do our own thing when we went ashore, with water taxis, trips etc. One trip they sold in port on St lucia I thought was expensive for being left 2 hours at a beach with not much to do and a quick stop at marigot bay, and they only had a bit of cheap rum punch to give you. I would not recommend this trip ( this was nothing to do with Tui it was one we did independently) It was a great experience going in and out of port, leaving port in the evening with a glass of prosecco and the sun going down is perfect and exciting waiting to see where you are off to next. Grenada was lovely but a bit pushy when you got into port selling tours. Bonaire was a lovely island and probably the best for snorkelling. Overall would recommend the cruise, we also did the 7 day stay in Barbados at the Waves hotel which was amazing to top off the holiday again a beautiful hotel and would recommend Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
6 islands cruise. We chose this cruise as initially all 6 islands were ones we hadn't visited. Unfortunately,3 had to be changed prior to departure but at least we didn't end up with our dreaded "days at sea" ... Read More
6 islands cruise. We chose this cruise as initially all 6 islands were ones we hadn't visited. Unfortunately,3 had to be changed prior to departure but at least we didn't end up with our dreaded "days at sea" Overall an excellent week. Overwhelmingly, staff were friendly, attentive and helpful. Typically- our cabin stewardess Serina was superb. Food was excellent in all the places we tried. Mostly for evenings we used either 47 or Gallery 47 (both included in price). Plenty of choice and well presented. We had a couple of breakfasts where the waiting staff were somewhat disorganised - eg coffee turning up, followed 10 minutes later, after numerous requests, by milk and a further 5 minutes for tea spoons (forks work well provided you use the wrong end!!) The inclusive drinks range was sufficiently extensive for most people with few exclusions. I suppose if you only like one specific brand you may be disappointed (eg Remy Martin brandy is excluded as is champagne) but genuine Bacardi and named Whiskies were included and the beers/lager were good for my taste. We would certainly not have benefitted from the Premium upgrade although we did pay extra a couple of times at the Coffee shop which we enjoyed. Island buffet was also very good and we used this for breakfast when we had early starts and also at lunch - problem here is trying not to eat too much when you know you face dinner later. Then, of course, there’s always afternoon tea for when you get peckish! Surf and Turf restaurant – We tried to book this from day 1 for any night but the best we could get was, on day 2, to be put on a stand-by list for the week! We didn’t get in. As we were on a cruise and stay we were only on board for one week. We suspect that all bookings went to people for whom this was their second week thus had pre-booked before newcomers arrived. Even though we were told this wasn’t the case, we couldn’t get any other explanation. So if you are cruising for one week only you may not get in which to us felt like we were penalised. Others who had been to Surf and Turf said it was good but maybe not worth the £28 ish supplement each. Snack Shack is worth a visit during the day – some sandwiches / boxed salads to take away and some people loved the fish and chips although we didn’t try that. Bar Eleven, the top floor bar was OK but not as good as some other Tui ships. We were hoping for an “Horizons” type of bar (eg on Celebration and Spirit this was a good sized pleasant relaxed bar with some live relaxed music). We think that sticking Bar Eleven in a thoroughfare between Kora La and Surf and Turf restaurants spoiled the atmosphere noticeably. For us the Atrium was far better although many others must have thought the same as it was sometimes hard to find a table. However if you go to the Atrium later when the show is on in the Broadway lounge, you stand a better chance of getting a seat. Some excellent entertainment here particularly the guitarist. Other watering holes were good with quizzes, music and entertainment aplenty. See separate review for cabin On the dress to impress night I reckon about 60% or so wore DJ’s, most others wore smart casual. I don’t think it matters as long as people are seen to make some sort of effort. We were lucky enough to get last minute seats on the Death in Paradise excursion on Guadaloupe. This wasn’t available online before the cruise and was thus a pleasant surprise for us. We only found out accidentally at the excursions counter onboard – no idea why Tui hadn’t advertised it – staff didn’t know. And finally, where did the name Marella come from. I see Tui don’t call their German ships Marella. Royal Caribbean, Holland America, Regent Seven Seas, Princess, P&O, Norwegian Cruise lines, MSC, Silversea etc . Compared with those I think Marella sounds second rate. Even Tui would sound better. Just couldn't spend enough time on board to try everything out so certainly large enough ship for our needs and transport between islands. Overall, very good ship, staff and entertainment with plenty to keep all well fed, watered and entertained. Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
We chose to return to the Caribbean again to escape some of the winter, and having had enjoyable cruises with Thomson Ships in the past chose to go on Discovery. We are getting older now and not so able bodied. My husband has a mobility ... Read More
We chose to return to the Caribbean again to escape some of the winter, and having had enjoyable cruises with Thomson Ships in the past chose to go on Discovery. We are getting older now and not so able bodied. My husband has a mobility scooter which we took with us for the first time. Everyone was amazing. As soon as we landed in Barbados after a wonderful flight and great service on board Dreamliner, we were met by a taxi and taken to the Ship. Our cabin on deck six was midships and perfect for lifts etc. We ate all breakfasts and most dinners in 47. The waiters loved parking the "Ferrari" as they called it usually doing a lap of the restaurant first. We ate in Surf and Turf and Kora la which were good. The Italian was also enjoyable and made a change occasionally. We didn't do much ashore as we had been to most islands before, but did do the catamaran trip in Antigua which was great. The Ship was immaculate. We were well informed by the Captain regarding weather and sea conditions and have no complaints about service, food, or crew who were all friendly and welcoming. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
We done a fly/cruise with TUI/Marella and came away impressed with their whole operation. Checking-in at London Gatwick was very easy with a short queue, representatives were on-hand from Marella to provide us our check-in details for the ... Read More
We done a fly/cruise with TUI/Marella and came away impressed with their whole operation. Checking-in at London Gatwick was very easy with a short queue, representatives were on-hand from Marella to provide us our check-in details for the ship. Bags were checked in all the way to the ship, so no need to pick them up at Barbados airport. Flights with TUI were good on-board the Dreamliner and is comparible to any good quality long haul carrier with TV's in seats etc. Landing into Barbados TUI had organised for buses for the cruise passengers to pick-us up from in front of the plane, so no need to go through immigration, which was a huge plus. Transfer took us straight to the ship where we checked-in. Check in was fairly quick to get on the ship. Bags arrived an hour or so later once we were on-board and were places outside our cabin door. The Marella Discovery was an impressive ship, my girlfriend and I were both first time cruisers so can't really compare to any other ships but the ship seemed to be kept in good condition, very clean and all new carpets throughout. We had a Balcony Deluxe cabin and found this roomy, balcony was good too and had a small table and 2 chairs, which we used quite a bit in the evenings. The ship had enough to do to keep us entertained when we were at sea, I especially liked the mini golf coarse. Pool area seemed to be bustling during the day but fairly quiet in the late afternoon and evenings, which was good. Gym was well equipped and it was great having a Trainer on-hand who held regular classes. Dining was good, we didn't eat any of the Specialty restaurants mainly due to not being able to secure a reservation however the 47 degrees (main restaurant with waiter service), Galleries 47 (Italian restaurant) and Glass House (Tapas) were good, food was tasty and moist. The Islands buffet had a large range of foods and was also good, we only ate here once at night and had a few breakfasts here, food was always hot when we went there. Bars were plentiful and the all-inclusive had a large range of branded drinks including Corona beer. We never waited longer than a few minutes to be served, which was better than most pubs in London! Staff were incredibly friendly and plentiful. They really did make the experience so much better. They also seemed to like their jobs and also took a personal interest in your day. Entertainment seemed ok, though were only went to the comedy and one other show. Activities organised by the ship were good and they hired local tourist companies which was a nice touch, most of our tours were small in size which was nice too. Most ports were just caught a local taxi to take us to a beach and bring us back to the ship and this was much cheaper and more private. Our week on-board the Discovery was fantastic and I would love to do another cruise in the future with Marella. It was very handy having everything all inclusive, as all the money we spent was on-shore, which was minimal. Marella being quite new the cruising world deserves praise as the whole week ran without any incidents or interruptions. We did have a late change of itinery where we missed out on Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands and went to Tobago and Antigua instead. Antigua ended up being our favourite port, so we were very happy with the change. The atmosphere on-board the ship was very positive and everyone seemed to be impressed with the ship and the cruise, a lot of people had been with Marella before, which was nice to know. Age group seemed to be a bit more mature, my girlfriend and I seemed to be the youngest on-board but this didn't bother us at all, again everyone was very friendly and happy. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
I chose this cruise only for the ports of call, which was then amended as the ship wasn't allowed in Puert Rico and US Virgin Islands. So we ended instead going to Tobago and Antigua yet again. I normally say you get what you pay ... Read More
I chose this cruise only for the ports of call, which was then amended as the ship wasn't allowed in Puert Rico and US Virgin Islands. So we ended instead going to Tobago and Antigua yet again. I normally say you get what you pay for and I certainly did not. I paid as a solo traveller and it was my 70th Birthday I would treat myself £4600 but I did have a small balcon but what I got for the price was disgusting. I ate in Restaurant 47 in total I just had 6 breakfasts I thought they were tasteless, lack of quality and not very warm. It was a good job I had taken some biscuits with me. Lunchtime in the islands the food there lacked very little choice unless you liked ChilI, chicken Korma rice and chips. The salad was non discript with plastic cheese and meats. The warmest and tastiest food was the fish and chips from the snack shack. Then we have dinner in total out of 14 dinners I only ate 3, I just could not taste anything. The quality, quantity and the presentation was disgusting I have never eaten such food in my life. I knew what I was supposed to be eating but that was it. I just had to leave it. On some occasions I had to leave the table as I felt physically sick.I did raise my concerns to the restaurant manager and to reception The we have the cabins I was on deck 6 hear the coffee port. A total of 3 nights I did not have a bath towel, on 3 separate occasions I had soaking wet hand towels and twice soaking wet bath/shower mats. The cabin steward was more interested in making animals out of the towels. The blue towels were thread bare, and I never had a white towel in 14 days they were all yellow and grey I do think these need all replacing. The last night of the cruise no bath towel I used a hand towel. When I went out to try and eat the cabin steward was outside I explained I did not have a bath towel so he came into the cabin to check and he blamed his assistant. When I came back later as soon as I opened the door such a horrible smell greeted me. I opened the bathroom door to find 2 soaking wet hand towels and the stench made wretch. I didnt know that I could have rang house keeping. During the night the smell was being blown round the cabin with the air conditioning, by this time I started with a bad cough, I could sleep and then I got a sore throat I felt so drained. I did report this again to reception. To end things on the plane back I could breathe properly, very short of breathe I had to have Oxygen for 6 hrs during the flight and of course I could eat. What was supposed to be a fantastic birthday present and a lovely cruise was just a nightmare. In future I will stick to P & O and you certainly get what you pay for. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
You hear good and bad. About Marella discovery,but I would say from what I found it’s mostly good ,from the moment you drop your baggage at the airport to collection at your return airport you ar3 well looked after....1 Dreamliner ... Read More
You hear good and bad. About Marella discovery,but I would say from what I found it’s mostly good ,from the moment you drop your baggage at the airport to collection at your return airport you ar3 well looked after....1 Dreamliner lovely quiet aircraft..2. Transfers to ship could not be easier...3 cabin clean and tidy every day ..4food enough choice for most people 5 entertainment could be better but enoug( choice to find something you like. ..6 .waiter/waitress service around the ship you could not fault ....ports of call were the best in the Caribbean,,...the things that could be improved on are(food)...letting you know what has garlic in as I had to ask most days ,they could put a label on them .sometimes the people behind the counters did not know ,another is including water in your cabin another is tonic water both these are extras (chargeable),the next is wi if should be free or at most a nominal charge Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
I chose this cruise ship because of previous reviews, this was our first cruise and did not want the formality of dressing up all the time, and all tips included, and the all inclusive option was perfect for us. The crew are very relaxed ... Read More
I chose this cruise ship because of previous reviews, this was our first cruise and did not want the formality of dressing up all the time, and all tips included, and the all inclusive option was perfect for us. The crew are very relaxed and friendly, nothing is too much trouble, they work extremely hard. The restaurant are fantastic there is food for everyone, spoilt for choice. I would chose Marella cruises again, if I was to change anything I would book a outside cabin, just personal preference as it was so dark. Overall the facilities and entertainment on board is fantastic something for every if you want to stay on the ship when docked or explore the amazing island, the destination team are very knowledgeable, I would definitely recommend swimming with sting rays in Antigua amazing, the wardens are extremely helpful and put you at ease. Definitely recommend Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. From checking in with no ques ( Manchester ) to having our luggage outside our door within 1 hour of getting to the room everything was easy sailing. As it was a special occasion we chose to ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary. From checking in with no ques ( Manchester ) to having our luggage outside our door within 1 hour of getting to the room everything was easy sailing. As it was a special occasion we chose to upgrade to a junior cabin suite on the 8th floor. Wonderful views each morning at on the balcony as we docked. The crew were fantastic both our cabin steward Nonet, to the croupiers in the casino. There where 4 of us 2 couples, most mornings we ate in the waiter restaurant at table 23 and in the evening the same but at table 105. The food was excellent and nothing was to much trouble, we where well looked after by Dejan and Rubia. From there it was to the Broadway show, most where excellent to watch, then to the Casino. The blackjack table where we met a lot of friends during the cruise. A big hello to Sean and Jorge you kept us amused. I used the wi-fi with out any problems during days at sea. We enjoyed it that much we have booked to join on the Asia cruise next April. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
This was our third cruise with Thompson’s and compared to the first two the food was poor. In the Islands restaurant it looked so unappetising, and was bland. They are needing more staff, tables took ages to clear, not the staffs fault ... Read More
This was our third cruise with Thompson’s and compared to the first two the food was poor. In the Islands restaurant it looked so unappetising, and was bland. They are needing more staff, tables took ages to clear, not the staffs fault as they work so hard. Food in 47 was often Luke warm and one night in the Italian part it took 1 hour 20 minutes and we were still to have our desert. We paid in the Surf and Turf, the steak was nice but rest of menu was pretty average, the Asian restaurant where we tried the 2nd week gave you a large bowl of curry with runny sauce a small amount of rice and one small slice of Nan, we had to ask for more. In the evening the only place you can eat after 9.30 is a small area called the glass house, it has a limited choice...the show doesn’t finish till after that so was busy. The entertainment was average, the show team were all so young, maybe needing a bit of experience with older staff, around the ship there could be more going on, they had a magician which was excellent but he was on for an hour a day, he could have been going about the ship more, there was someone teaching Spanish but you saw her sunbathing, she was browner than the guests! There was a huge area the Antrim bar area that had little in it. The B52s were a great band. The price of treatments were ridiculous, far too much, over £100 for a massage. So many things had extra costs...a bridge tour £9.95, a drinks package for premium spirits, WiFi which was a joke it hardly worked excursions double the price of what you would pay on shore, the cost of buying photographs was stupid money..I think TUi are forgetting the majority of folk are paying nearly £2000 to come onboard The staff work so hard but around the restaurants that they needed more. They only get a few hours off daily, never a whole day in the months they are there. The higher posts seem to get a day off. The staff are so friendly and nice, I wonder if they ever get 5he tips we pay for The ship is spotlessly clean. If I’m honest I was disappointed and am going to look at other companies for our next cruise Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Paradise Islands cruise - St Marteen and Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, St Kitts, Antiqua, St Vincent and Barbados. The ship was amazing. It still has the smell of fresh carpets. It is immaculately clean. Hand sanitisers all ... Read More
Paradise Islands cruise - St Marteen and Tortola in the British Virgin Islands, St Kitts, Antiqua, St Vincent and Barbados. The ship was amazing. It still has the smell of fresh carpets. It is immaculately clean. Hand sanitisers all over too. We were surprised at the number of staff on-board - there is someone to tend to your every need. Getting off the ship and finding something to do is really easy, there are local buses in all of the ports and the islands are easy to see with some imagination - you do not need to take the ships excursions if you do not want to. Try getting hold of the lonely planet for the Caribbean if you want to do more than slob around on deck boozing or explore the port towns. The ship looks like a ship, not a floating hotel. It has a class and elegance that the enormous ships we were parked next to at some ports simply lack. Lovely atmosphere on board! Lovely outdoor decks. So All Inclusive - well we were expecting really basic British buffet boring food - what a surprise though. The two full service sit down restaurants were amazing on reflection. The choice and menus changed, the staff were amazing and the menus really different. Just like a modern bistros really. We were delighted with the quality too. There were a couple of slightly strange dishes, but on the whole we enjoyed everything - we are not fussy and love cooking and eating out. And the waiters were brilliant with fast, keen, attentive service. People forget that these guys are mass catering, and they likely pick up produce once a week in Barbados - so we didn't expect too much, but honestly it was great. The wine (especially the Merlot and Pinot) were perfect. Breakfast specials better than the full English! All inc drinks - branded spirits, lovely cocktails, Corona beer, cava and prosecco - we really did not feel the need to upgrade to the premium package, but if you want to have something nicer its a small supplement of £2.50. Perfect. Bottled water was £1.40 (sparking or still) but there were water stations around the ship to fill up bottles. Better for the environment. Perfect for us, and we bought water locally in supermarkets on the shore too to bring back on board. St Marteen and Tortola in the British Virgin Islands - these are fab islands. You can see through the devastation of Hurricane Irma, you can chat to the locals about their experiences and sympathise with their losses. The Island folk loved having us there and saw that Marella were ethical and responsible in coming back soon. Some folk on board really need to understand that our being there mattered. Biggest problem for us - Some of the other Brits. They love to moan, groan and winge. The cruise was not expensive compared to others, it was most certainly all inc and we were looked after from the moment we checked in at Manchester airport - mollycoddled all the way and home again- you did not have to use your brain once on-board (apart from the quiz!). The level of organisation is remarkable. For example, our bags were checked in at Manchester, and when we landed we boarded a coach straight to the ship from the apron. We did not even clear passport control or immigration. Our bags were by our cabins an hour or so later! Dreamliner flights both ways. Full service long haul airline, bang on time. Perfect. Staff on the boat - Ill say it again, brilliant. Entertainment - varied. if you are bored read a book or chat to someone! We loved the bar on Deck 11 in the eve - so chic! We had a lovely time! Thank you to everyone on board. Read Less
Sail Date January 2018
Well, we have just recovered and accepted the fact we are back from two fantastic weeks in the Caribbean, aboard the Discovery. So, here is my review. Let me say at the outset that there will be a few gripes, but more whoopees! But I ... Read More
Well, we have just recovered and accepted the fact we are back from two fantastic weeks in the Caribbean, aboard the Discovery. So, here is my review. Let me say at the outset that there will be a few gripes, but more whoopees! But I have decided to voice them, mainly for the benefit of those who have cruised Thomson/Tui before as there were a few contrasts we observed. Even so, whether you are new to cruising, the Marella Discovery or old timers to either or both, you will have a blast and I wish we were going back soon. Having said that, we have booked Marella Explorer for September, so you will know that we are still fans of the company. After a pretty grim year for us, we decided to bring forward our plans to return to the Caribbean. We were last there five years ago on Thomson Dream. We pushed the boat out, and went premium on the Dreamliner. Wow, what can I say! It was fantastic; comfortable, relaxing and the journey was really delightful. Our bones are getting old now and having that extra space made such a difference. Embarkation was smooth, but I did sweat and fret on the coach transfer. Having read on the terms and conditions and various threads that travel irons were allowed, I had packed my Mother’s old faithful. It is donkey’s years old and just about man enough to iron out the creases in my linen trousers. As we boarded the transfer coach from the airport, I noticed bold lettering in the welcome letter, saying that during security checks any suitcases which contained a travel iron would be kept at reception where the owner would be asked to remove it. The checks must be random, because my case arrived intact with the iron still tucked amongst my clothes. The first difference we noticed was on arrival in our cabin. We had a couple of minor issues which we knew could be sorted by the cabin steward. He was nowhere to be seen, which is unusual. They are always there to meet you and if needed, help you familiarise yourself with the cabin. He eventually appeared a few hours later, when we discovered him hauling cases. Our lovely cabin stewards are now also used as baggage handlers on embarkation days. We soon settled into cruising life. Food is excellent on this ship during the evenings. We could not fault any dinner we had. We ate in 47, Gallery 47, Kora La, Surf ’n’ Turf and Glasshouse. The only let down is the late night ‘buffet’. It is held in the glasshouse area, as the Islands buffet is closed. Sorry folks, but nothing like you will have been used to. It is served by one person who does not honestly have much to serve. Apparently, it is soon to be called ‘late night snacks’. The biggest shame, is that on the other ships (and we have been on all the other Thomson’s) it was great to go to the buffet restaurants and meet the show and entertainment team who would also eat there late at night. They rarely bother here. We did something really daft. We upgraded to the premium drinks package. It really is not necessary, but I drink loads of cola and fanta during the day and I do like a nice coffee and fresh orange juice. We are not fans of cups of post mix drinks that are stuffed with ice. So, we wanted canned drinks, a good gin and vodka and good coffee, so thought that at £7 per day each it would be worth it. To be fair, we did get our money’s worth but then found that the good coffee was not served until the coffee shop opened at 10 a.m. and the freshly squeezed orange juice was also not available until 10 a.m. I wanted both at breakfast! Never mind, I thought I could then have the orange juice at lunchtime in Islands. No. They stop serving it at 11.30am! Also, what really exasperated me, was they have removed drinks waiters from Islands buffet. So, because I don’t drink alcohol during the day, I had to remember to queue at one of the bars to get a soft drink before we went to the restaurant. My husband could help himself to beer or wine. The Hotel Manager, who give him credit is always visible around the ship, was soon collared by me. He said they do not have the accommodation for the amount of crew they need, so he had to pull the drinks service in the buffet to give more service at the bars. I suggested to him, that at the very least they could keep the juice machine from breakfast going into lunchtime. Entertainment was as always excellent. The show team were brilliant and the Broadway Show Lounge is the best we have experienced on any ship. There really is no bad seat and you know you do not have to worry that you won’t get a seat if you are not there extra early. The musicians (Pianist and Saxophonist) were good, but we were a little disappointed with the party and resident bands. We have definitely seen better on the other ships. Guest acts were outstanding. Quizzes etc. were very much in keeping with the usual formulas. We did feel for the first time that with the exception of the show lounge, the evening entertainment became a little ‘samey’. We had a de-luxe balcony cabin which we made full use of. Morning coffee pulling into port and vodka pulling out. Bliss! Plenty of storage space and comfy beds. Overall, we had a fantastic holiday and I hope all of you heading out there have an equally great time on this lovely ship. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Having done several cruises with various companies including TUI Celebration (a great little ship full of fun and with great service), last April we booked with friends to spend Christmas on the Discovery. Back in October we did a late ... Read More
Having done several cruises with various companies including TUI Celebration (a great little ship full of fun and with great service), last April we booked with friends to spend Christmas on the Discovery. Back in October we did a late booking on the same ship, the last Med cruise before it headed off to the Caribbean. Expectations for the Christmas cruise were high and we just hoped that there wouldn't be as many negatives as there had been on the October cruise. How wrong we were. This time we had a deluxe balcony cabin. I have had standard cabins in the past that have been more deluxe than this one. The towels and bed linen were thin and had seen better days. On the surface the cabin was kept quite clean but I did find an old pair of men's pants with a hole in the crotch stuffed in the corner of the wardrobe. Yuk!!! Food on board was pretty good with plenty of choice. Didn't try Kora La or Surf & Turf after friends who had been said it wasn't worth the extra. The Island Grill (or canteen as I called it) was a free for all dining experience with people in a feeding frenzy trying to find somewhere to sit and eat. In October there was a wine waiter service which has now been replaced by a help yourself bar. The Asian waiters were as ever a smiling, charming bunch. Not so the sour faced Eastern European restaurant and bar staff who generally appeared to have a lack of training and courtesy. Unlike other cruise companies TUI did not change the itinerary post hurricane Irma. The Discovery was the only one to call into St Martin and Tortola even though both islands had been destroyed and there was nothing to see but devastation. When the excursions desk explained that we were calling there because the islands needed tourism and our money I told him that I felt we had paid quite a lot of money for a scenic cruise not a charitable one. The variety of excursions on offer were excellent and not that pricey compared to other cruise companies. The ones we did were brilliant and were probably the highlight of the holiday or maybe it was just a case of getting away from the damned ship. The entertainment was poor. The show team was worked to death doing 6 shows twice nightly per week most of which we had seen on the previous cruise. Apart from a comedian there were no other guest artists during our 2 weeks apart from a magician/juggler who was more like a kids entertainer. The musicians on board were awful and totally inappropriate for the type of cruise we were on. The 'Party Band' Eclipse were excellent but songs by Adele, Amy Winehouse etc.are not the sort of stuff to make you want to get up and dance. Where was the West Indian/Caribbean band that is standard on Caribbean cruises and why weren't the staff dressed in Caribbean shirts? Why were there no evenings of entertainment on deck on those warm balmy nights? The only entertainment on deck in the evenings were the kids films at 9 pm. This ship was totally lacking in atmosphere, we could have been in the North Pole for all the Caribbean atmosphere that there was on board. There was never enough seating in the bars (Live Lounge, Atrium and Bar 11) and yet the Venue with a bar, stage, large dance floor and plenty of seating was hardly ever utilised. As was the case in October, many passengers totally disregarded the rules and smoked/vaped all around the ship and as usual security and uniformed staff were noticeable by their absence. I have come to the conclusion that the all inclusive drinks package is there to the detriment of other services. Cheap cabins, cheap untrained staff, poor entertainment, need I go on. The icing on the cake was our last evening in Bar 11. It was like a scene out of Rab C Nessbitt with an older woman and her husband so drunk they could hardly sit up let alone stand. We had booked another cruise on the Discovery 2 and were due to depart in March but as it is on an identical ship with the same shows/entertainment and service needless to say we have cancelled. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Chose this cruise as we liked the itinerary and have been on Thomson cruises before. We also wanted to see how Marella Discovery compared with Thomson. The flight from Newcastle was delayed 2 hours and on board my husbands in flight ... Read More
Chose this cruise as we liked the itinerary and have been on Thomson cruises before. We also wanted to see how Marella Discovery compared with Thomson. The flight from Newcastle was delayed 2 hours and on board my husbands in flight screen didn't work so they moved us to the back of the plane which had more room. Other than that the flight was fine. Your luggage is taken at the UK airport then you don't see it till its outside your cabin. On arriving on the ship we were informed that our first port of call in Tobago was cancelled and we would have a day at sea as some passengers delayed from Birminham wouldn't arrive on board until the early hours of the morning. This did give us time to explore the ship and get our bearings. We do not spend much time in our cabins on cruises so chose an inside cabin, we were allocated cabin 7007. When we arrived it was made up as a double but as that meant one of us climbing over the bed to get in and out after two nights we asked our cabin steward to change it to twin bed set up and the cabin felt much roomier. Our steward Artemio was brilliant. The food on board was ok but at times could have been hotter and the service in 47 was extremely slow and the portions were small. One night it took us two hours 15 minutes to be served 3 courses so we missed the show that night. (have always had choice of 4 courses on previous cruises) After that night we reverted to islands for our evening meals. We visited the Italian restaurant once but were very disappointed with the food in there. The calzone was more like a Cornish pasty - tiny and very stodgy bread. The all inclusive drinks package was great with no need to upgrade to premium. We both like our G&T and you could have Gordon's, Beefeater or Tanqueray but ask for your brand or you get a cheap one. We drank mainly in the Live room (Vanessa is brilliant) and the Atrium and a few times in Bar 11 and all the staff were great. The entertainment team had been brought in off Discovery 2 and did a great job. Especially the Sebbie Mercury show and Daniellas Christmas concerts. We didn't take any tours from the ship knowing from previous experience and my own research on the internet that local tours were available and much cheaper. In many of the ports we got island tours which included a beach stop for between 20 and 30 US$. All in all a good cruise. Slight improvement could be made with the food and a few more waiters in 47 to speed up the service would help. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Holiday Review Ship: Discovery Dates: 10th December - 24th December 2017 Travelling: 2 Couples, 1st Couple Ages - 36 & 38 2nd Couple Ages 70 (Partially Sighted) & 74 (mobility issues). All first time Cruisers, but well ... Read More
Holiday Review Ship: Discovery Dates: 10th December - 24th December 2017 Travelling: 2 Couples, 1st Couple Ages - 36 & 38 2nd Couple Ages 70 (Partially Sighted) & 74 (mobility issues). All first time Cruisers, but well practiced normally long-haul globe trotters. 1st Couple: Premium flights & Junior Suite 2nd Couple: Extra Legroom seats & Inside cabin deck 8 Flights from Gatwick for both couples with assistance booked in advance for 2nd Couple & pre-booked lounge access. At Gatwick:- Parking booked with ACE Parking meet & greet, excellent service very easy drop-off at the short stay carpark north terminal & incredibly fast pick-up at 6am on Christmas Day from the short stay car park north terminal. Car was exactly the same as when we dropped it off & service from both the Driver & call centre/office was efficient & professional. Total Cost £68.85 for 15 days parking. Airport Lounge: No. 1 Gatwick, access included with Premium flights for Couple 1, Couple 2 access pre-bought @ £55 for 2 pax. Breakfast was simple but just what we needed bacon rolls & an omelette with self-service hot drinks, fruit, pastries & yogurt. Also available were free news papers & Wifi. Seating was plentiful & comfortable. Reception staff were smilie & very helpful even at 6am where as the waitress at the bar was miserable and looked like she was forced into work that day at gun point. Outgoing Flight: Premium seats were well worth the money as always & I personally would not fly with TUI long haul any other way, they recline well whilst giving the people in seats behind you space to move. Couple 2 were very happy with the extra leg-room seats but next time will prefer to go Premium for the extra seat pitch as well as leg room. Cabins: Junior Suite 8574:- We are so glad we paid extra for a Junior suite, we’ll worth paying for. We Pros:- The cabin was spacious, very clean and kept very well by our cabin steward & his assistant. They were always smiling, polite & professional. They replenished the Clarins toiletries when needed & kept us well stocked with water. They also made sure we used the best value laundry service when we filled in the wrong form. Mattress was a little on the firm side but we slept really well every night. We had issues with the Aircon unit not turning on properly when we 1st checked in, however it was sorted the same day and worked really well for the rest of our stay. Bathroom was spacious with a shower & bath. Loads of storage space. Sockets were US & European with the TV having a USB Port that was very easy to connect a games console up to. Cons:- We were under the Gym weight room and at 8am most days people would be in the gym dropping weights onto the floor & waking us up with the noise this would continue on & off throughout the morning, day & evening during gym opening times. It was tolerable for us as we’ve lived in flats in London for most of our lives so very used to continuous noise others however may find the noise very off putting. I would also steer clear of Cabin 8578 as this cabin is under where the treadmills were in the gym & the noise here was so much worse & much harder to ignore. Travel Tip:- Take the following, a Door Hanging Organiser https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01IQJLAEG/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o03_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 , a Europe &/or US Travel Adaptor extension cord https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B005DRD87W/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 and a games console I recommend an Nintendo SNES Classic Mini console as the games are preloaded onto the console, it's really small & light, fits perfectly in the Hand Luggage. Inside Cabin 8549:- Before the cruise my parents said that paying extra for a balcony or window would be a complete waste of money as they didn’t intend on spending any time in their room. Pros:- Cabin Stewards were absolutely brilliant with my parents. When my Dad took seriously ill on board while my husband & I were off ship they really helped my Mum out by trying to find us on ship & generally looked out for them and always made sure they wanted for nothing in their room. Cons:- The room was really small, much smaller then we were expecting, they wished they had booked a Junior Suite too as they struggled to get out of bed as there was no room between the bed & either wall. Travel Tip:- If you have pre-exsisting health issues getting adequate Travel insurance is paramount. If my parents hadn’t they would of had a huge medical bill from the on-board medical centre. Which by the way was top-notch, they stopped my Dad slipping into a diabetic coma & he was able to enjoy the rest of his holiday after only 1 days bed rest. The medical staff are 1st rate. Ship:- The ship was lovely, not 5 star hotel quality but really great value for money. It was a hotel I’d say it was an excellent 3 star. The staff were brilliant, it was clean & easy to get round. I suffer with travel sickness regularly and I was never seasick. My parents loved all the bars and preferred dining in Islands (The 9th Deck buffet restaurant) over all the other restaurants. The food was always hot, plentiful and great choice our only negative was the lack of “local” food. It would of been great to have a small selection of food from the Island we’d stopped at that day. Gallery 47, Food was alright we only ate there once as choice was quite limited, we only had to wait 5 mins for a table. 47, Again the food was nice breakfast was the same as what was normally available in Islands but with table service. We only waited 10mins for a table. We only ate here once. Kora La, extra charge restaurant. The food here was awful, I would avoid as it’s a complete waste of time. Surf & Turf, extra charge restaurant. Steaks were beautifully done well worth the extra charge. Spa Services:- Not a lot of choice of facial treatments if you don’t need anti ageing treatments. massages were excellent, Manicure & pedicure’s both Shellac & normal were brilliant and well done. Hairdresser’s were clueless if you have anything other then European or Asian hair. I’m mixed race so my hair is in-between European & African, its also quite long. I went in for just a wash & blow-dry. The hairdresser took about 2 hours to do this and my experience was awful, I was hit in the head with the blow-dryer, my scalp was repeatedly burnt, my hair was yanked about then ripped out of velcro rollers every after I said my hair was too fine for them. My head stung for days. So if you don’t have European or Asian hair I would avoid the hairdressers as they are not honest enough to say they can’t do all hair types. Excursions:- For me the standout was the horse riding in Antigua for £60, My husband really enjoyed the Sun & Rum tour in Grenada for £36. My parents really enjoyed the Train tour in St. Lucia. Our overall favourite Island was Grenada but I felt most at home in Guadeloupe. We had a fabulous time and we are all now converts to cruising, so glad we took the plunge after avoiding it for years. Now looking at 2019 Asian Itineraries. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
We chose this ship after discovering that TUI did cruise and stay. The flight from Glasgow was fine. Transportation from Airport to the Ship was quick and we checked in quickly at the Terminal. Our Balcony Cabin was on Deck 6. It was ... Read More
We chose this ship after discovering that TUI did cruise and stay. The flight from Glasgow was fine. Transportation from Airport to the Ship was quick and we checked in quickly at the Terminal. Our Balcony Cabin was on Deck 6. It was small and dated. The balcony was also very small. We have been on several other cruises and this was the smallest cabin that we have ever stayed in. During the course of the cruise my back was becoming more painful and it was because of the very uncomfortable bed. The Cabin was not entirely clean on arrival. The carpet had not been cleaned. The Cabin Steward was very nice and polite. During the week she forgot to replace the Towels and also the Pool Towels. The small dressing table surface had liquid stains and had not been wiped. The Dining was average. We used the Restaurant for Breakfast and Dinner. One evening we used the Sushi Restaurant and this was fantastic. My wife had dietary requirements and the restaurant were very attentive for this; to there credit. We never had a bad meal but neither did we have an outstanding meal. On two occasions for breakfast we waited a long time to be served. Special mention to Mimi a Supervisor who saw what had happened and rectified immediately. We did not think there was enough staff working in the Bars or serving around the Sun Decks during the daytime. You did have to wait a long time to be served. Some of the Staff would not give you eye contact to be served. The day at sea was a disaster as per usual some guest had the towels on the sunbeds and were nowhere to be seen. We did observe crew place cards on the towels but they waited 1 hour before removing the towels. We spoke to some of the crew regarding this and they were indifferent to there response. We did a Cycle tour of Antigua and Michelle and Cameron were the Guides. They were both excellent and very professional. There was a wide range of abilities of the cyclists so perhaps something to consider for the future. It ended with a beach visit which was within view of the ship. Despite being told some of the group did not bring towels and swimwear so the stay was cut short by their insistence on returning to the ship. Shame as it was a lovely beach and place to relax. The other places were all good in there own way. We did not experience the nightly entertainment as we dined late each evening. Some of the service provided by the crew was fantastic and some was downright rude. Two areas of particular note was the destination service desk. My wife spoke to an English female behind the destination desk and asked her a question. She was actually looking away from my wife whilst providing a very bland answer and was totally disinterested. We were not provided with full information regarding last day departure and transportation to our hotel. When I queried the matter with the Customer services desk I was asked "What do you want me to do about it" The crew member was again very indifferent to my query and situation. Basically we had to vacate the cabin at 8am and because we had no information we were not able to reserve a late check out cabin. Departure day from the ship was a wasted day as you were hanging around the ship waiting to be transported to your hotel late in the afternoon. There is very little open in Bridgetown on a Sunday. Our biggest issue was the large number of Guests who smoked. The Discovery allowed Guests to smoke on the starboard side of deck 4 and an area on deck 9 near to one of the bars. Smoking was not allowed in the cabins but the occupants of a cabin on one side of ours continually smoked. We will not Cruise with Marella/TUI or Thomson whatever name they go under in the future. I have no doubt that some Guests will have loved this cruise however having done several cruises with other companies this was without doubt the worst. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
wow what a great ship run by a good crew, joined ship at Palma no probs strait forward. Sailed to cartengena, malagar then off to Madeira , followed by five days at sea to the carabean. Cabin cleaned twice a day to high standard by artemo ... Read More
wow what a great ship run by a good crew, joined ship at Palma no probs strait forward. Sailed to cartengena, malagar then off to Madeira , followed by five days at sea to the carabean. Cabin cleaned twice a day to high standard by artemo . Dining was great in all restaurants, fussy eaters would not go hungry. Entertainment was so so aimed at the older generation. Bar service was prompt but some people complained they had to wait five mins.ports were nice considering they have just had hurricane season, but not much evidence of this. Would I go again, defently next year. Try it don't listen to the moaners. Disembarkation went smoothly , flew home on the tui Dreamliner nice plane with good cabin service arrived at Gatwick and only the baggage reclaim was the normal British go slow.overall a great holiday. Traveled as a couple with friends Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This was our first cruise. We picked it because so many people told us what a fantastic experience it would be . Everyone raves about the quality of food, the level of service etc that you receive and we thought it would be a great way to ... Read More
This was our first cruise. We picked it because so many people told us what a fantastic experience it would be . Everyone raves about the quality of food, the level of service etc that you receive and we thought it would be a great way to visit a lot of new destinations in one trip. We love the Caribbean and have spent many holidays on various islands and were looking forward to both re-visiting some of these as well as setting foot on some new ones. We certainly didn't get what we both paid for and expected. Yes, there were good points. Our cabin with balcony was fine and serviced very well. The drinks included in our AI package were of a good quality. The evening entertainment was superb. However, everything else was extremely poor. The food was for the most part pretty diabolical - the standard of poor school dinners. The only good meals that we ate were in the restaurants which carried a surcharge, one of which cost an additional £60 for the two of us!!! Service in the main dining room was by and large abysmal, often waiting 3/4 to 1hr to be served our main meals. It would appear that a lot of the staff were new and were being given on the job training, which maybe accounted for some of the bad service. However, we did not sign up to be part of a training programme ! Yes, there were a lot of apologies and offers of more drink, but really it got to the point when all you wanted was your dinner!! The buffet restaurant was a total let down. We only tried it for a main meal on our first night. It was completely chaotic. Food looked awful. All dishes looked completely unappetising - very poorly displayed. There were no wine glasses - indeed no white wine,and the list goes on ! We did try it one more time for breakfast during the cruise but it was just like a bunfight to try and get food and tables were left uncleared and dirty. We didn't go back there again! Most excursions that we went on were also disappointing- incredibly poor value for money! At the end of our holiday we were unlucky that our flight was delayed and we had to spend a night in a hotel on Barbados. Obviously, rooms had to be found for a whole planeload of people, but we were assured that they would all be of the same quality. Unfortunately, we were part of a group that were put in a hotel, probably not fit for purpose. Amongst, many awful things, there was not even enough drinking water for us all. We have obviously raised all these points and more with Tui, who have not even had the decency to reply. So, we are now taking our case to ABTA who we hope will be able to help us. Would we cruise again ??? Certainly not for a long time, and definitely not with Tui. In the past we have booked many holidays through Thompson holidays, and yes we did sometimes have problems . The difference is that they were always sorted out in a speedy and professional way. Shame on Tui for not doing the same ! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Our first time Thomson ,,,, (we have done many PO , princess, and Royal Carabean ) And it was more than we expected ,,, entairtainment great , so much choice in food , so much so we never got to the speciality resturants , we did a ... Read More
Our first time Thomson ,,,, (we have done many PO , princess, and Royal Carabean ) And it was more than we expected ,,, entairtainment great , so much choice in food , so much so we never got to the speciality resturants , we did a transatlantic 6 days at sea , felt there could have been a movie on through the day , as we are not all into quizzes ,,,,, however we came home and booked the Discovery 2 for March next year ...but not a transatlantic again , we spoke to other cruisers ,who were on there first ever cruise ,and said it would be there last ever cruise , as I said not enough going on in sea days . Great friendly staff and all inclusive premium drinks .... No cheap drinks ...... Staff in tge resturants were so friendly ... I cannot take peppers (allergy ) and chef made special fo me . Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We are seasoned cruisers both with Thomson's and other cruise lines. Until now we have always enjoyed cursing with Thomson and have always had a good cruise experience with them. However our latest cruise with their latest ship ... Read More
We are seasoned cruisers both with Thomson's and other cruise lines. Until now we have always enjoyed cursing with Thomson and have always had a good cruise experience with them. However our latest cruise with their latest ship Discovery and the newly named company TUI was a different matter. Gone are the experienced friendly Pilipino crew to be replaced by very in experienced crew, mainly from the Balkans and Eastern Europe who are very different in nature. The service was very patchy in the bars, it was very poor in certain parts of the ship. There was constant loud inappropriate music all over the ship both for the age group and where it was playing. I really did not want to listen to disco music while having dinner and breakfast in the main restaurant 47 degrees. The waiter service in 47 degrees and 47 degrees gallery was poor. The waiters have not been trained correctly in how to serve at table. They constantly served me before my wife, leant across me rather than serving between us. Removed my plate before my wife had finished her meal. They did not make eye contact with us while telling us who they and their assistant were. They were reading from a prepared script in their head with no real interest in us. It was like talking to someone in a call centre. There appears to be no dress code anymore. We saw people wearing shorts and tee shirts in the main and speciality restaurants. Even on formal night the dress code was advertised as Dress to Impress, what does that mean!! somebody thought it meant dirty jogging bottoms and a union jack tee shirt which had his breakfast down the front of it. No one was challenge about their dress. I think I could have gone to dinner in a vest and that would have been OK. The entertainment was terrible both in the bars and the theatre. The standard was very poor. There were technical issues in the Broadway Show Lounge involving the comedian one night because the curtain would not work, with the show starting 15 minutes late. There were apologies from the cruise director, who then disappeared to another bar for a drink with one of the ships officers. If he stayed in the theatre as he should have, he would have been on hand for a further failure of the sound system 5 minutes after the first one. All four of us along with many others got up and walked out. The cruise was advertised as a comedy theme cruise, they lied, we had two comedians and they were as funny as a boil on your bum. The jokes were on us. We were also told they would be a member of the 70 group The Drifters appearing, he must have drifted off somewhere else because he wasn't on our ship. There was not enough staff on hand for the number of passenger on board. You could not get a seat anywhere after the show had finished. There was only one quiet bar on the ship, which was bar 11, unfortunately the bar is two small as the majority of the area that was once a large bar has been converted into two speciality restaurants leaving bar 11 sat in the middle and unable to accommodate the many people looking to find a relaxed and quiet bar. Even bar 11 turns into a disco at 11.30. In conclusion: Thomson's/TUI have taken the whole cruise experience down market. Its as if they have taken a hotel complex package holiday and put it on a ship. Ocean Village has been brought back from the dead. For anyone who has never been cruising before you will probably think the ship it's great. For those who have experienced the true joy of quality cursing in the past with Thomson's and other cruise lines such as P&O, Princess, Celebrity etc, our future will not be with the new TUI Discovery All Inclusive. If we were in any doubt as to whether this was a one off, we had our thoughts cemented as we departed the ship, coming on board were a large group of Sun newspaper staff who were there in an official capacity wearing Sun Bingo Tee-shirts. Say goodbye to Thomson's say Hello to TUI. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was our fifth cruise with Thomson and by far the worst. Firstly the good point:- We stepped off the airplane steps and onto a bus that took us directly to the ship. It went down hill from there. The bad points:- Food, ... Read More
This was our fifth cruise with Thomson and by far the worst. Firstly the good point:- We stepped off the airplane steps and onto a bus that took us directly to the ship. It went down hill from there. The bad points:- Food, in the buffet hall the food was cold. In the 47 degree restaurants which were waiter service if you didn't order a bottle of wine you got shoddy service. Cabins. Despite booking a deluxe balcony cabin the room was small only just wider than the length of the bed. Limited cupboard space. Entertainment. All the usual trivia quizzes. The shows were below average. Desk space, not a lot of normal seating, OK if you wanted a sun bed otherwise tough. Destinations team, a formal complaint is going in about them. Trips were cancelled without notice, we asked if there was any alternatives and were told "No tough". Later we asked why thy didn't tell use about the port tours and organise us into groups, they said they were unaware of them, So I asked James if he knew about them he said "no" when asking further how long he's been on the cruise and has he never been ashore he suddenly remembered On one the trips one of the reps had a birthday and they wasted so much time on her they had to miss two stops. When we complained Agail was rude and didn't care. We spoke to James and he was worse, when I asked to speak to the manager he said he was the assistant manager and he would have to do, we spoke to reception and said we wanted to raise a formal complaint but they did nothing. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We had a super holiday on the Tui Discovery which we had selected based on the ability to directly fly to Barbados and the itinerary of the islands we visited over the 14 days. I was initially a bit worried that is a 20 year old Royal ... Read More
We had a super holiday on the Tui Discovery which we had selected based on the ability to directly fly to Barbados and the itinerary of the islands we visited over the 14 days. I was initially a bit worried that is a 20 year old Royal Caribbean ship that had been modernised however the ship was really nice, modern and well kept. In fact it was a slightly smaller ship than we have been on previously with other cruise companies which meant it was easier to get around and you didn't have to bother waiting for lifts etc. Another big plus from our perspective with this ship was that the drinks prices were very reasonable indeed (almost UK pub prices) which unlike with other cruise companies you didn't have to pay through the nose for your drinks. This meant we didn't have to go through the rigmarole of trying to smuggle bottles of wine like we have done on our past cruises!! We mainly ate in the 47 Degrees and Gallery 47 (the Italian) restaurant and the quality of the food was on the whole very good. There was however the occasional course for which the portion sizes were either a bit on the small size or not quite up to standard but this was in the minority. We also ate in the Hot Stone restaurant which was very good and one night we ate in Kara Le the Asian restaurant which was excellent. The service in all the restaurants was good with some excellent individuals but there were a few waiters who probably needed some extra training in my opinion. We had a balcony cabin which was really nice and our cabin steward Carlos was absolutely excellent. Although on most of the islands we did our own thing and used local taxis etc we did do a cycle tour of St Kitts, a hike to a waterfall in Grenada and also the farewell to Barbados tour on our last day with Thomson. I thought the cycle tour was a nice idea and we got to try out an e-bike which I must say are absolutely marvelous in providing you with some extra drive when cycling up hill! Finally, in terms of entertainment we went to a few of the Broadway which I must say we enjoyed. All in all I would certainly recommend Thomson and this ship. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
As with a previous cruise from Barbados the overall 'getting there' was faultless for us. Our suitcases were taken from Manchester airport and we didn't see them again until they were delivered to our cabin. The Dreamliner ... Read More
As with a previous cruise from Barbados the overall 'getting there' was faultless for us. Our suitcases were taken from Manchester airport and we didn't see them again until they were delivered to our cabin. The Dreamliner aircraft was comfortable and with good entertainment. We arrived into Barbados and were whisked straight to Discovery without the need to go through the airport. Embarkation was quick and easy and so our cruise began... First impressions of Discovery were that it was big (compared to Celebration). We had our first look around and were impressed with the public areas that we came across. The atrium was quite impressive and it was good to see a proper theatre for the shows. The bar areas also seemed a bit more contemporary to those on Celebration. We had two cabins during our cruise and both we found to be spacious enough for our needs and had everything we needed including plenty of storage and a bonus of a 'free' safe. During our time on the cruise we had our evening meals in the main dining room, gallery 47 and the glass house. We like to dine just the two of us and this wasn't a problem - we only had to wait for approx. ten minutes with a pager on one evening. We found plenty of choice in both 47 and gallery 47 (two menus alternative nights) and found the food we had to be of good quality and served well. We found it much simpler for the wine to be served by our waiter than a sommelier - much quicker too than previous cruises. Carlos one of the waiters in Gallery 47 deserves a special mention for his friendliness and helpful attitude. Bar service around the ship was good - not slow as some people have mentioned and a great choice of drinks to suit everyone. Breakfast in the Islands buffet was ok- a good selection of cooked and continental foods but finding a table was sometimes a bit of a chore. Afternoon tea was great though !! We often missed lunch so the Snack Shack was great for grabbing a quick salad, sandwich or cookie - a nice informal touch to the ship. Three things stand out for us about the entertainment; Paul Evans the cruise director - he should have his own show in the evenings !! Protégé - great band although we would have liked to have seen them more in the evenings around the ship playing more contemporary music, in the right environment. A good show seems to have been a jamming session with the band and Others including Mr Sax but this was late on and we had an early start the next day so missed it. Mr Sax - brilliant performer who really came across as enjoying his performances. We also enjoyed the comedian that came aboard and the crew show was great. We went to two of the shows in the Broadway lounge and these were also good. The evening quizzes etc that were put on in the Venue seemed a bit lack-lustre to us - perhaps it isn't the right 'venue'? A couple of things we did notice on this cruise regarded the staff onboard. The senior staff seemed invisible - we got used to seeing them around and about on celebration but other than 'Dress to Impress' night hardly saw them which is a shame. Also we found a lot of European staff to be a bit surly and not as friendly as the Asian staff which was very noticeable. It would be a shame to loose this quality. We had chosen the cruise because of the itinerary and only had one day at sea. The ports of call were all great for us but we really enjoyed Bequia, Guadeloupe, St Kitts and Antigua. We went on two ship excursions which we thoroughly enjoyed and found to be good value for money. Plenty of the ports had local companies offering tours as we came off the ship. equally we found it easy to do our own thing using local buses for a fraction of the cost and with a lot of local flavour thrown in!! We had a brilliant time and will go again with Thomson knowing that we will have another quality time. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
EXCELLENT: - The itinerary (12 islands in 14 days with just 1 day at sea) - The 32in seat pitch on the 787 Dreamliner was fine for the 8hour flight to Barbados - Seamless transfer of luggage from Gatwick bag drop straight to ... Read More
EXCELLENT: - The itinerary (12 islands in 14 days with just 1 day at sea) - The 32in seat pitch on the 787 Dreamliner was fine for the 8hour flight to Barbados - Seamless transfer of luggage from Gatwick bag drop straight to cabin - Slick organisation - Food quality (with a few exceptions) - Cabin space and storage - Shore excursions - All inclusive drinks and tips NOT SO GOOD: - No destination lectures - Lack of variation in food and few locally influenced dishes - Room water (£1.90 a bottle) not included in drinks package - No toiletries other than soap in cabin - Surf and Turf restaurant expensive, pretentious and difficult to book but food good - The account App did not work and still showed zero spend at the end of the cruise - No local guide books in Library - Shopping is mainly watches, jewellery and perfume but few general supplies - Loud music everywhere (hints of Club 18-30 forty years on) - Ship rules e.g restaurant dress code, towels on sunbeds, smoking areas not enforced - Finally DO NOT order lasagne in Gallery 47 Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
We flew from London Gatwick in the premium section of our Thomson flight. Both outbound and inbound flights were on time. When we landed in Barbados, cruise passengers were the first to leave the plane and we were put into coaches and ... Read More
We flew from London Gatwick in the premium section of our Thomson flight. Both outbound and inbound flights were on time. When we landed in Barbados, cruise passengers were the first to leave the plane and we were put into coaches and transported to the ship. We did not have to collected our luggage, it went straight to the ship. As we were the first flight to arrive, embarkation was very quickly carried out. When we got on the ship we were shown to the lifts, told our cabin was on deck 7 and up we went. There was a steward in the lift area and he pointed us in the right direction. That was the 1st difference we noted, no steward to show you to your cabin and show you where the safe etc. was. The cabin was bigger than I expected and had a free safe ( the 2nd difference), a fridge, walk in shower, 3 seater settee, desk and chair. The balcony had a small table and 2 chairs. The cabin was light and airy. So after a quick shower and a change of clothes (from our hand luggage) we went off to explore. Our first impression of the atrium and glass lifts was 'wow'. There are loads of places to eat on board that are included in the cruise price. There is the main dining room 47 degrees. We only ate dinner here 3 times as we found the service to be extremely slow and the food lukewarm. But we always had breakfast here as we are not fans of buffets. Most of our evening meals were taken in the Gallery 47. Here, the food is mainly Italian but the only have 2 menus which they rotate each day. There is also the chefs choice from the main dining room, which I often had. The food and service here was much better. You can also go to the glass house for dinner and have either 3 tapas or a piizza as well as a basket of bread and a cheese or meat or mixed sharing platter. The first time we had tapas but the 2nd time we had tapas for one and pizza for one and said we would share both. You can also pay £9.95 and cook your own steak on a hot stone. Then of course, there is always Islands, the buffet restaurant or the snack shack. We liked the snack shack for a quick light lunch. It is really a grab and go servery but they do small trays of chicken or fish and chps, hot dogs, burgers etc. You can pick up premade sandwiches, wraps, rolls and salads here. Lunch is also available in the main dining room and salads are available in the glass house. Or of course there is the buffet. The drinks package was the best we have had. It included bottled Bud, Corona, Peroni to name but a few. We didn't like the house red but on checking the wine list, we found we could have chianti. So that is what we ordered each night. The weather wasn't brilliant. We had quite a few showers the first weeks, a few less the second week but very strong winds.Precursor to the storms that have hit the east cost of the U.S. We managed to make all our Ports. We did 2 ships tours. One was the Botanical gardens and Deshies Beach in Guadaloupe. We wanted to see where Death in Paradise was filmed. On changeover day we went to Harrisons cave in Barbados and got soaked through. In St Lucia, we went with Cosol Tours. Well worth the $75 per person for the day. In St Maarten we booked with Bernards Tours, again well worth $40 each for 4 hours. The other ports of Martinque, Grenada, Dominica, St Vincent, Bequi, St Kitts, Antigua and Tortola we just wandered around as we have done island tours there on previous trips. Not sure we liked not having wine waiters. We missed the Filipino waiters. Nearly all the waiters, head waiters etc were European and wore suits. It was very Germanic. Certainly not like the other ships in the fleet. The theatre shows were excellent. For a change we hadn't seen any of them before. Didn't like the format for the game shows, the fun element seemed to be lacking and the same faces were contestants most nights. Music was playing constantly day and night. The only quite places during the day seemed to be the adults only veranda and the promenade deck. Would we sail on her again. Yes we would if the itinery suited as the pros outweighed the cons. Read Less
Sail Date February 2017
Marella Discovery Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.1
Dining 4.5 3.9
Entertainment 3.5 3.7
Public Rooms 4.5 4.1
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.7
Family 3.0 3.7
Enrichment 2.0 3.4
Service 4.5 4.2
Value For Money 4.0 3.7

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