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7 P&O Cruises Ventura Cruise Reviews for Family Cruises to Caribbean - All

Made a mistake by booking Ventura - Very noisy ship especially in the atrium with dance classes going on all day so unable to relax in the bar or coffee lounge. This went on in the evening so instead of having a pianist we had blaring ... Read More
Made a mistake by booking Ventura - Very noisy ship especially in the atrium with dance classes going on all day so unable to relax in the bar or coffee lounge. This went on in the evening so instead of having a pianist we had blaring music to contend with -very unpleasant so went to Glasshouse. Excellent cabin and "Elvor" our cabin steward was very professional and did a excellent job. Waiters were excellent and always asked if everything was O.K. which it was. We even had the chief come round one evening and ask if everything was satisfactory. Entertainment and shows were a disgrace P&O must do better. Far too many people for size of ship. Could not get into shows talks or lectures. Had passengers playing cards in the restaurant at breakfast and no action taken by staff. Water bottles being filled from water machines while staff were watching and no action taken, Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We chose this cruise for my wife's 60th having used P&O before on a number of occasions, sadly things are not what they used to be. The dining experience is now average in terms of product and service, green beans with everything, ... Read More
We chose this cruise for my wife's 60th having used P&O before on a number of occasions, sadly things are not what they used to be. The dining experience is now average in terms of product and service, green beans with everything, if they could serve them as a dessert I think they would! Waiters have had cutbacks and are overworked resulting in a poorer service which is not their fault. The dining room ceiling leaked form the air conditioning unit and we had this problem on 3 nights, eventually being moved table. The food was passable and you will not go hungry on the ship as there is always a buffet open somwhere on the ship. The ship is in need of the refurbishment it is currently getting in Brest,France. Our cabin was spacious as it was a deluxe cabin and it was also a bit tired, the grouting around the bath was black and carpets needed replaced. There was a leak in our balcony door which soaked the carpet. However saying all that the bed was very comfortable and cabin steward excellent always ensuring we had everything we need for a comfortable stay. The entertainment was of a good standard, other activities where geared for P&Os elderly clientele and was standard fair, is shuffledeck,table tennis, quizes, bridge clubs and not to mention the ballroom dancing classes in the atrium. The Atrium could be put to better use as it is the hub of the ship and we would have liked to see more live music in this area as it would have helped the atmosphere on the 3 floors which it serves. The Arena theatre is the main area for twice night shows and was very busy on our cruise as the ship was full, (in fact you needed to get to your seat 30 minutes before most shows to ensure a seat). The Havana lounge at the opposite end is a terrible venue and was known as the Meerkat lounge due to the high backed seats (the comedian mentioned he could only see the heads of the audience popping up and down like meerkats). The ports of call were good and excursions offered quite good but certainly not cheap. They do look after your safety though and tend to go a bit overboard sometimes, that was not a pun! Overall we did enjoy our cruise however would avoid going back on the Ventura even after the current refit it is undergoing. The ship is just not to our liking, the Arena's seats are to tight, Havana lounge enough said, no separate Cinema which should be a given on such a large ship. Carnival have striped bare much of the niceties of a P&O cruise and not replaced them with anything. We will try other lines in future to see if there is better value for money to be had. Read Less
Sail Date February 2018
Chose this cruise for the prospect of sunshine and warmth. The ship was in good shape overall apart from scruffy lift doors and grubby chairs in the Buffet. Food in the restaurant had improved since our last visit a year ago. However, ... Read More
Chose this cruise for the prospect of sunshine and warmth. The ship was in good shape overall apart from scruffy lift doors and grubby chairs in the Buffet. Food in the restaurant had improved since our last visit a year ago. However, thought the Buffet food was not as good with lunchtime offerings being only luke warm on many occasions despite trying visiting at different times. Cheeses were disappointing with very little choice and cut up into tiny cubes. These were quite sweaty at times. No nuts on offer unlike the Oriana which served pecans and walnuts a plenty. Cabin , an inside on C Deck,, was in good order and well serviced by our effecient Steward. The daily Horizon newsletter arrived quite late around 9pm although I did notice the deck below had theirs a lot earlier. The library offerings were rather abismal and need to be looked at as the shelves were quite empty at times. The lady running this area ,which was combined with the internet , was rather abrupt and absent quite often putting up a be back soon sign . Wifi offered was for use in a 24 hour time slot at various prices. This system is ridiculous as who would want to sit at a computer for 24 hours on a cruise? To get to your emails cost almost £13 Not good value. Many of the visiting acts we had seen before and a couple of the comedians told the same jokes. Headliners, the singers and dancers, did the same old shows so did not bother with those this time. Too many quizzes and not very well organised. Very little for folks who stayed on board on port days. The Entertainment Manager, Natalie, had very little presence around the ship. I only saw her on a few occasions when she introduced the acts in the Arena Theatre. Liked the ports of call. Weather was as hoped for and the ship was kept at a good temperature. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
we chose the ventura because of the sailing date (winter sunshine), the itinerary and the price. embarkation with a wheel chair was smooth and little waiting, the balcony was adequate as was the cabin. after a couple of days I realised ... Read More
we chose the ventura because of the sailing date (winter sunshine), the itinerary and the price. embarkation with a wheel chair was smooth and little waiting, the balcony was adequate as was the cabin. after a couple of days I realised that I had not taken any pictures of the ventura usually I'm clicking away at everything and that is the thing about the ventura it is a basic no frills ship, built the same time as royal Caribbean's independence of the seas the difference is startling - the independence gives the impression of no expense spared, the ventura no expense spent food - probably the most important for a lot of people, the meat and fish were excellent and cooked correctly however the vegetables were not, either over cooked or under cooked, p&o please note you cannot eat under cooked potatoes, only chips and mash were edible, most people complained and the reason given for not cooking the veg properly - it is all new menus sir - unbelievable entertainment - some very good some average some rather poor - nowhere as good as ncl or royal Caribbean, the headliners show was repeated again and again and again, there were a lot of p&o regulars who were very disgruntled entertainment quizzes - very popular with a lot of cruisers - it was so poorly organised and amateurish, so many questions repeated again and again that people gave up mentioning it - p&o IT IS NOT DIFFICULT you have 28 night cruise with a set number of quizzes prepare them all before you set sail and why oh why do you have two quizzes at the same time - one quiz had 15 teams and the other had just two teams and then you would have a stint of a few hours with no quizzes- TRY ORGANISING IT the staff excellent apart from a couple of members of the entertainment staff who treated the PAYING customers like morons but having cruised a fair few times I have never ever heard staff talk back to the guests as did those two members of the entertainment staff at one point there was very nearly a bust between guests and staff, the staff decided that there would not be a quiz as stated in the programme but instead there would be a hi de hi game, fit for 6 year olds - only when the guests threatened to walk out was a quiz reinstated excursions - because one of our party had difficulty walking and standing for long periods we chose the easy excursions - not bad at all and not bad value either, the last one we did was st kitts and nevis which I would not class as easy but medium disembarking with a wheel chair - frankly appalling we left 2 and a half hours after we should have and there were people we left behind who probably had to wait another hour or so - no explanation nothing - p&o get yourself organised surely you want to get people off the ship for the next cruise I did enjoy the cruise, met some lovely people but with just a bit of simple organisation and cooking the vegetables especially the potatoes properly (it is more difficult to cook meat and you did that superbly) the cruise would have been excellent value and so much more enjoyable, a number of p&o veterans were thinking twice about going with p&o again, warning p&o there is a difference between being value for money and being a budget cruise line Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
Last year's 28 day cruise to the Caribbean was so brilliant in every way, so we'd no hesitation, along with many others, about booking the same cruise for this January. Why, after so many different cruises with other ships and ... Read More
Last year's 28 day cruise to the Caribbean was so brilliant in every way, so we'd no hesitation, along with many others, about booking the same cruise for this January. Why, after so many different cruises with other ships and other lines, do we keep returning to Ventura? Because life is so easy. There's nothing to trip you up- no hard sell; no immense tipping; few announcements about expensive events; no bar on the alcohol you can take on board; plenty of activities and entertainment without pre-booking. Even small things count- a first timer on P&O asked how one paid for the launderettes... I replied that this was P&O, which is just so easy... and yes, even that is a free service. For some reason, the only port stop before Barbados was in A Coruna instead of Madeira, which did mean a lengthy number of sea days- but sea days are one reason for choosing this. My husband enjoys the crossing, but his delight is snorkelling on the islands, which he managed most of the time. Age is beginning to show, though, and he had to miss one of the precious days through sheer exhaustion. I'm not a fan of the Caribbean, so limited myself to a little shopping and spent time back on the ship in the air conditioning. Our cabin steward was on his first ever cruise, and was an absolute delight. He went out of his way to help us, and the cabin was always immaculate. We do enjoy the walk-in wardrobe style of the Grand Class ships. We had chosen an obstructed outside cabin, and were delighted to be upgraded to a less obstructed one- a lower style of lifeboat under the window, marring very little of the view. We're not big eaters, so chose the buffet for most meals, where the choice was good; our favourite places to eat were Beach House and the Glass House, although we had excellent, imaginative meals in Sindhu and Epicurean, with incredible service and attention. One pleasure of taking Ventura in the winter is having a covered pool, but it didn't take many days before the outside pools were in use. This is not the time of year when children are on board- we probably noticed a dozen or so- and the majority of people were probably retired or semi retired; this didn't seem to stop the evening activities such as dancing, but we possibly missed having younger people around. However, we had a large group of friends from the previous year, and made many more over the four weeks. There were certain niggles- the activities were not as numerous as last year, when we frequently missed lunch to fit them all in; the choice of films shown in the Arena wasn't very good, although I watched two memorable ones, and the Horizon Bar, as always, is a disaster if you want to see what's happening on the stage...it's hardly a live performance if you're simply watching a TV screen. The famous waterfall from deck 16 aft down on to the Terrace Bar made many appearances- we still have the photos from last year of people standing with umbrellas beneath it- but as we've known this since our first visit in 2009, it's become just a minor annoyance. As is the background music both in that bar and in the buffet- you're aware of a noisy beat and a screaming woman, but have no idea what actual music is being played. Minor niggles, not likely to put us off, and certainly nothing as major as on other lines we've used. Perhaps we'll do this again next January, although living in a remote place means a difficult journey- much aided this year by having our luggage collected earlier. Unfortunately, P&O only leaves from Southampton... our hope is that when little Adonia returns, she might be home ported somewhere in the North. Until then, we have a short cruise booked out of Newcastle, with easier journeys to and fro. Read Less
Sail Date January 2017
This was a thoroughly enjoyable cruise from start to finish. The embarkation and disembarkation were efficient and well managed. The ship was clean and well maintained. The cabin was fine and well serviced by the cabin stewardess whom ... Read More
This was a thoroughly enjoyable cruise from start to finish. The embarkation and disembarkation were efficient and well managed. The ship was clean and well maintained. The cabin was fine and well serviced by the cabin stewardess whom nothing was too much trouble. The food was good and service excellent. Ewe went for the freedom dining which is now our normal choice where available as we like the flexibility this offers. The buffet was fine but we preferred the restaurant as the former could be a bit crowded and a "bit of a free for all". The choice of food was excellent and quality good. The entertainment was good with a reasonable variety of choice. The theatre viewing was excellent although sometimes a little on the warm side. The gym was excellent with good quality equipment. The Captain was excellent keeping us well informed without being intrusive. He altered coarse and speed several times to optimise stability. The weather as expected in the Caribbean was excellent. The shore excursions we took were Ok if a bit expensive. Overall an excellent experience and would travel on ship and P&O again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Excellent holiday with plenty of hot sunny days. Embarkation and disembarkation was excellently organised and finding our luggage on disembarking was easy. Our cabins were ready when we embarked and luggage was delivered while we had ... Read More
Excellent holiday with plenty of hot sunny days. Embarkation and disembarkation was excellently organised and finding our luggage on disembarking was easy. Our cabins were ready when we embarked and luggage was delivered while we had lunch. Cabin was clean with a good balcony. Cabin stewardess was excellent and provided everything required on demand. We used freedom dining as has been our normal when available. we were happy with this . Service in the dining room was excellent and the water were very attentive . Food choice and quality were excellent. The buffet restaurant was OK but with the number on board could be a bit of a "free for all" and best avoided at busy times like 9.00am and 12.00. the ship has an excellent gym with a good choice of state of the art equipment. Entertainment was good with a decent variety. The only thing was the theatre sometimes was a bit warm. there was a reasonable choice of things to do on sea days. The Captain and officers were good at keeping us informed without being intrusive. The captain made several deviations in coarse and speed to minimise ship movement and the ships movement was minimal for the duration of the cruise. The shore excursions we took were Ok if a bit pricy. Overall a good experience and would travel with P&O again. Read Less
Sail Date January 2016
Ventura Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.2
Dining 4.0 3.8
Entertainment 4.0 3.6
Public Rooms 4.0 4.0
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.9
Family 4.0 3.9
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.5
Enrichment 3.0 3.3
Service 4.0 4.0
Value For Money 4.0 3.6
Rates 3.0 3.9

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