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5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We have sailed Azamara a number of times and really enjoy the on-board experience. This itinerary attracted us because of the variation in cultures and climate. The embarkation was very smooth and we were quickly processed. . Because ... Read More
We have sailed Azamara a number of times and really enjoy the on-board experience. This itinerary attracted us because of the variation in cultures and climate. The embarkation was very smooth and we were quickly processed. . Because of an upgrade, we were staying in a Club Continent Suite as opposed to our usual Veranda 2. We really enjoyed the extra space, but did not utilize all the perks associated with the Suite. One of the perks was complimentary dining in the Specialty Restaurants, a choice we made for four of the 14 nights. For other dinners, of course, we ate in Discoveries (the main dining room), and on the Patio. Most breakfasts we frequented Windows, the buffet area. We were very pleased with the food in all the venues, especially the attention paid to certain food intolerances that limit some of our choices. One of the attractions for us on Azamara is the friendly and attentive service on board..From the room stewards to the waiting staff in the dining areas, this cruise was no exception. The friendliness is true of most officers as well. Although not noted for entertainment, in this case Azamara provided some of the best we have enjoyed. From The Azamazing Evening to more casual events, we found a lot to enjoy. Hard to pick out a port that was more enjoyable than the others. Because of our travelling through four countries, each port provided some interesting contrasts. As we sailed further North the weather cooled and rain became a sometime occurrence. That added to the variety of experiences on this itinerary. We participated in only two shore excursions. The trip to see Bayeux and its famous tapestry was well worth the cost. The walking tour of Cadiz was good but not amazing. In both cases we were travelling in relatively small groups. Most of the ports were quite accessible for those who wanted to explore on their own, and Azamara provided free shuttles where needed and appropriate. As part of that service, usually there was a guide at the drop-off points with maps and helpful suggestions. After sailing up the Thames the previous day, disembarkation at Greenwich was a little more complicated than at most ports. But the staff on the ships had it well under control, and there was a surplus of attendants on shore to assure that you made your connection with taxis for the airport, for travel home, or for extended stays in London. For the reasons above, out of 18 cruises this was one of our favourites. Although the itinerary is not one of the common ones offered, we think others should give it serious consideration. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
You can see photos from this cruise and our other sailings by following the link on our Cruise Critic profile page: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/profile/35108-jgnova/ I had a “zero birthday” coming up and wanted to do ... Read More
You can see photos from this cruise and our other sailings by following the link on our Cruise Critic profile page: https://boards.cruisecritic.com/profile/35108-jgnova/ I had a “zero birthday” coming up and wanted to do something special to celebrate – which provided a great excuse for another cruise. But it had to be something special – new ports and/or a new ship or, even better, a whole new (to us) cruise line. We also had the additional requirement that, because of health issues, the embarkation and disembarkation ports had to be within five hours travel time from our Northern Virginia home. I put together a list of options, which were mostly sailings from Miami or Fort Lauderdale that included the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao). One option stood out because it also included two days in Havana, Cuba, and was on Azamara Club Cruises Journey. This was a 16-night repositioning sailing from Miami to Manhattan, with stops in Havana, Aruba, Curaçao, Bonaire, St. Barts, Sint Maarten, and Hamilton, Bermuda. With four new (to us) ports on a new (to us) ship and cruise line, this became the obvious choice. And we are very happy we made that choice. Ship: The ship is lovely and very well maintained, despite its age – they were even refinishing the corridor handrails near our cabin. Like other ships under the RCCL umbrella, Journey was filled with artwork – paintings, prints, and sculptures (many by Salvador Dali) all over. The ship felt very bright all over – even the staircases and elevator lobbies, despite not having windows, felt very bright and open. The only times the ship felt crowded were when everyone tried to be in one venue at the same time – like White Night by the pool or the last two nights’ shows in the cabaret – and the staff brought in chairs for those events so everyone could sit. Cabin: The cabin had plenty of room for all of our stuff – drawers in the desk and in the closet, lots of hangers. There was plenty of light in the cabin, including extra lights by the desk, the bed, and a working balcony light. The cabin thermostat even seemed to work properly! We discovered that the coffee table by the sofa had a lever that raised it from coffee table height to a height that worked for eating our room service breakfast when we couldn’t eat on the balcony. Food: The food selections and quality were outstanding. With the exception of the AzAmazing Evening, when we ate in Windows (buffet restaurant) because of time constraints, we ate all our dinners in Discoveries (main dining room). We usually arrived around 7 PM and never had to wait for a table, which we usually shared with others, allowing us to meet many new people. Besides the menu selections, each night’s choices also included a chef’s selection and something more international, typically linked to the international themed dinner in Windows that evening. We could choose wines (at no extra charge) from each night’s selection of two whites, two reds, and a rosé – and they would pour wines offered on previous nights as well. We ate most breakfasts on the balcony, which was a treat – the server would even spread the tablecloth for us! The food was hot and usually delivered on time. We could even add things to the menu if we wanted (like a smoked-salmon omelet!). I had a few breakfasts in Windows on mornings when we had an early excursion and the selection was excellent. As opposed to other cruises on which we’ve sailed, instead of placing the omelet order and waiting while it was cooked, I just took a table card with a number and the omelet was delivered when it was done. The servers also provided all of the beverages, including fresh-squeezed orange juice. The ship had a few options for lunch. On days when our excursion returned in early afternoon, we went to the Living Room, where they had small sandwiches and desserts available. (That venue also had tapas in the early evening.) Other days, I would grab a burger (delicious) from the Patio or a salad from Windows and eat by the pool. Service: Service on the ship was excellent. The staff and crew would always greet us – our cabin attendants would open our door for us if they were nearby when we were returning. The pool staff were constantly walking around to clear up towels from vacated chairs and to take drink orders and clear up empty glasses. Entertainment: The entertainment was excellent. The ship’s cruise director and assistant cruise director each did a couple of shows and they were great performers. The ship also had an onboard troupe of six performers (four dancers and two singers/dancers) who did three different shows during our sailing. We were also entertained by a violinist, a magician/comic, and a pianist/singer, who joined the ship at different ports during the sailing. The violinist was a special treat for this voyage because of his work with Cuban musicians and students – and because he was joined for one piece by his young son, an incipient star. This was in addition to the pianist in the lounge and the ship orchestra and instrumental trio playing at different times throughout the ship. Our only complaint was about the volume – the cabaret shows would have been much nicer several dB lower. Ports: With the exception of Sint Maarten, we used the ship excursions in all of the ports. Cuba: The tour guides both days were very knowledgeable and answered all of our questions. The bus was quite comfortable as well. Cuba is a very interesting place to visit for many obvious reasons. There are very few private cars and most people use buses or shared vans for transportation. The six-lane highway leading to Havana was almost empty and there was little traffic in Havana itself, something unimaginable in most other national capitals. Most of the urban-area buildings are in various stages of disrepair, which is a shame because they looked as if they had been beautiful before the revolution. Houses in the outlying areas looked better-maintained. We did the Jewish Heritage tour our first day in Havana and visited a Jewish Cemetery, two synagogues, and a Jewish-owned boutique hotel. We got to meet with a community leader at one of the synagogues and he answered our questions about the Jewish community’s history and current life. Our second day in Havana, we went to Ernest Hemingway’s house in San Francisco de Paula (about 9 miles from Havana), and were able to see how he lived and the tower next to the house in which he did his writing. We then went to one of his favorite bars in Cojimar, where we saw “his table” and enjoyed a daiquiri made the way he drank them. We then went into Havana to another of his favorite bars (how many did he have?) and braved the crowds to have a mojito. We then had time to walk around the cathedral and other historical sections before returning to the ship. Aruba: As we had never been to Aruba before, we took a ship excursion tour of the island. This tour included a visit to an aloe processing plant, a lighthouse, a natural bridge, and the fascinating Casibari Rock Formations, which I’d like to visit again to see the petroglyphs. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and the bus was fairly new and very comfortable. Curaçao: Again, this was our first visit so we took the ship excursion for an island tour. We got to see a coastal national park to see the cliffs and rock formations along the coast and watch the strong surf. We also visited a lovely beach, the old salt flats in an unrealized hope to see the flamingos, and a former estate house most recently occupied by a famous local artist. As was the case in Aruba, the tour guide was quite knowledgeable and bus very comfortable. After a quick lunch in the Living Room, I hiked from the port into town to see the old synagogue, which we couldn’t tour because it was closed on Sunday. This also gave me an opportunity to walk across the Queen Emma Bridge, a pontoon bridge that floats on the water and swings off to the side to let ships through. I also was able to get a closer view of the Queen Wilhelmina Bridge, the tallest bridge in the world, and two other small lift bridges in Willemstad. Bonaire: Another new island and another ship excursion tour. The tour guide was knowledgeable, but the tour company used a smaller bus that was not as comfortable, especially for those stuck in the seats over the wheels. We got to see Bonaire’s lovely coastline, old salt flats with many flamingos raising their young, an old house showing how the early island residents lived, some slave huts right on the coast by the salt flats, and a modern salt processing operation. The tour guide was very good, but she had to keep telling the driver to slow down so we could take photographs. St. Barts: Although we had been to St. Barts five years earlier, we had seen only the port area in the capital so we took another island tour. This tour was in a mini-van and the tour guide was not very effective at discussing much about the island characteristics. We did get to see several beaches and the beautiful island geography. The company arranging the tours should have done a better job preparing a guide for the driver to use. Sint Maarten: We’ve been there several times and I decided to have a beach day. I had searched the web before the trip and found that two bars with beach chair/umbrella rental facilities had reopened at Orient Beach so I decided to go there for the day. There is a taxi rank right off the pier complex and the people there will assemble groups to various destinations. I was able to share a taxi with few other visitors (from another ship) and paid only $9 for the trip instead of the $25 the trip would have cost for just me. The taxi dropped us off mid-beach near the Bikini Beach bar, which looked nice. However, someone at the port had told me that Kon Tiki, a short walk down the beach, had better food. I paid $15 for an umbrella and comfortable chaise (including a cushion) for the day. There were attendants patrolling the beach to take food and drink orders, and the bar and restaurant looked great and had brand new facilities. So I had a lovely day on the beach watching people windsurfing and doing other watersports. Bermuda: We’ve been to Bermuda twice before, but we were docked at the Royal Dockyards at the far end of the island. We took ferry trips to Hamilton and to St. Georges, but had never seen the Bermuda countryside. This itinerary had us docked right in downtown Hamilton so we were able to walk around to see the shops and restaurants. We also took a ship excursion that drove along the south coast of the island to the Royal Dockyards, giving us a chance to see the lovely beaches for which Bermuda is famous and some historical areas. Embarkation/Disembarkation: Embarkation was fairly smooth with priority processing only for suite guests. While we had completed the forms for the Cuban visas, we forgot to bring copies with us, so we had to take time to write out second copies, which the port people insisted we needed even though we had copies at home. Disembarkation was slower than normal, probably because the immigration people had not planned on the high percentage of non-U.S. citizens, who took longer to process. Once through immigration, we located our luggage and found a porter quickly, who then took us out to the drop-off area. We were picking up a rental car and driving home, so I walked about 2 ½ blocks to the car rental office, picked up the car, drove back to the pier, picked up DW and our luggage, and headed through the Lincoln Tunnel. I think I spent more time in line at the car rental office than it took to get to the office and drive back and get to the tunnel. Overall experience: This itinerary was an excellent balance of port and sea days, with 8 ½ days in port and 6 ½ days at sea. The majority of the passengers were from the United Kingdom, which was a new experience for us, and we got to chat with a lot of people from places we had only read about. With fewer than 700 passengers on a smaller ship, we were more likely to bump into the same people repeatedly and get to know them. Even with open seating at dinner, we wound up having the same tablemates a few times and would greet each other by name when we were walking around the ship or sitting in the cabaret. Another pleasurable aspect of the cruise was that we didn’t feel hassled to spend money. Drinks and wine were included if we didn’t request premium brands, as were coffees. And there was no constant sales pressure to eat in the specialty restaurants, as we’ve experienced on other lines. The senior ship staff were always present and visible – the hotel director would frequently assist seating passengers in Discoveries and we saw the Captain walking around the tables at least once. The captain and hotel director were at the gangplank every morning when we left the ship for our excursions, wishing us a good visit. Captain Johannes and Cruise Director Eric had a constant repartee during the noon announcements, with the captain teasing the CD about his shirt every day and the CD finding something funny to say in response. They obviously have a great relationship and that enhanced the voyage. This was the best cruise we have ever taken, thanks to the ship staff and crew, ship size, passenger friendliness, food quality, and itinerary. We are looking forward to another. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise because we like the small ship experience with lots of sea days. We wanted to see Rio and Lisbon. Embarkation was a bit off-putting. We already had our bags tagged with our room number and did not need assistance ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we like the small ship experience with lots of sea days. We wanted to see Rio and Lisbon. Embarkation was a bit off-putting. We already had our bags tagged with our room number and did not need assistance getting our bags to the drop-off point. There was no place to drop our bags and we had to stand in line while others that used the porters were taken care of. Our bags were not delivered to our room--one was around the corner at another room and one was at the other end of the hall all by itself. Not a good start. The Pursuit is now only using the Azamara app to provide guest information unlike the TV that we have used on the other two ships. The daily Insights is still delivered everyday. The IT department assumes that all passengers are comfortable using apps and know how to use them. This is not true. There is limited info in the cabins about wi-fi and app usage. A user guide would have been appreciated. The only way to know how many wi-fi minutes have been used is to go to Guest Relations. The log-off app does not always work and minutes quickly are used. We generally liked the food but we ate mostly at The Patio. Half-way through the cruise oatmeal at breakfast in Windows was replaced with congee. Not a good choice. Frequently the food was cold as the warming plates being used did not keep the food hot. The service on The Patio is the best anywhere on the ship. We always got what we ordered and it was hot. We had lunch twice in Discovery and it was not good. The service is intolerably slow, the food selections are limited, and the food served was barely edible. Angelina's was wonderful but one pays for that. The veranda cabin is just like other Azamara ships. However, the fridge is now in a cabinet on the desk and that area gets very hot. There are also rough edges in the cabinet to skin knuckles on. Other cabinet doors are misaligned and easy to get caught on. As always, the room was well-taken care of by the room attendants. The guest lecturer for destinations was not helpful or informative. Silly asides for the first 10 minutes of the lecture are a waste of time. Some of the shore excursions were good and some disasters. One excursion had a major part eliminated because there was a typo in the description that no one had seen until half-way through the cruise. That typo had been there from the first posting of available shore excursions on the Azamara website and was booked because of the part that was dropped. It was great that there was an available excursion on the disembarkation day for those staying in Lisbon longer. The Guest Relations department continues to treat guests inappropriately. Telling me I am the only one on the ship that does not understand the problems with the app was not appreciated. Based on the line for the IT person and comments made by other passengers, I was not the only one. Many just didn't use the app. The officers were rarely seen unlike other Azamara ships. At the recognition breakfast for frequent Azamara guests, the captain and another officer stopped at our table for a minute. No more. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2019
We wanted to experience South America and visit the above two places. The ports of call did not disappoint. We bought the indulgence package which was well worth the extra money. - The app needs work. It’s not updated and does not ... Read More
We wanted to experience South America and visit the above two places. The ports of call did not disappoint. We bought the indulgence package which was well worth the extra money. - The app needs work. It’s not updated and does not match the daily program. There is a lot of paper that could be saved...... The food never disappoints and the staff go out of there way to please you. We never meet so many like minded people up to the last day! The entertainment was solid and there are plenty of activities. The specialty restaurants are also top notch in food and service as well. The bar staff in the Den were brilliant. The crossing was great and the captain diverted the ship for us to see Fernando de Noronha island, 200 miles off the coast of Brazil. On our last leg from Casablanca to Lisbon, the captain did a brilliant job of steering the vessel so that we would feel the least amount of effects of storm heading towards us. He succeed brilliantly. A master class of navigation and meteorology! Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this cruise as our wine shop was sponsoring the trip for customers. We had 46 people in our group. We were in Cabin 8052 which was right next to the elevators and stair well midship. We had our doubts as to the possible noise ... Read More
We chose this cruise as our wine shop was sponsoring the trip for customers. We had 46 people in our group. We were in Cabin 8052 which was right next to the elevators and stair well midship. We had our doubts as to the possible noise level for the location, but it was never a problem, we had no noise at all from the elevator and stairwell traffic. The room itself was very good with lots of storage and plenty of room to move about without any problems. The only issue is if you are not agile the tub presents a problem as it is a high step into the tub. Once in tub area to shower your head is practically touching the ceiling, I am 5'8" and clearance was about 1 inch, so if you are over 6' you will have to scrunch down. Otherwise the bathroom size is good. The Club Continent Suite comes with a stash of free liquor, Bombay Gin, Sotli Vodka, Rum, and Johnny Walker Red. The balcony was a bit tight but not an issue. I suggest that when you board, if you have a Club Continent Suite or higher the specialty dining is free, you book the specialty restaurants for every day you are on board, then cancel the day(s) you do not use on those schedule days, otherwise you are on a wait list the whole trip. The food is not spectacular on board, but very good. The surprise restaurant is the The Patio, poolside. Order a bone in sirloin steak that was as good as the steak house specialty restaurant Prime C. The menu at The Patio is very good. The best food of the entire cruise occurred on White Night when the food is superb everything from lobster, pork, steak, frog legs, calamari, etc. is available. Tons of desserts, too. Entertainment on board is good, nothing to write home about. The singers, magicians, and band are fine, good way to spend an hour relaxing on board. For dancing and drinking the Living Room is the place to be where they have a DJ and combo for entertainment. My favorite location was the Spirits bar in the Den which seems to be the gathering place on the ship most nights, cocktail lounge atmosphere with piano player. The bartenders were exceptional at the Spirits bar, but I learned they are not permanently assigned but rotated through the ship. The bartenders we had were Alex and Vlad, Alex was assigned to work the Mosaic Coffee bar and Vlad the pool bar on the next cruise, too bad as they are truly good at the bar. We booked three tours on board. We were very disappointed with 2 tours and loved the 3rd tour. This is hard to judge for future cruises as they rarely return to the same ports, but keep moving across the Mediterranean Sea and beyond. So it just could have been the locations we chose to see. Look into Viatour or local tour companies in port. Staff was friendly and helpful throughout the cruise. One nice feature is fewer passengers so embarkation and disembarkation at ports is never crowded, easy on and easy off was nice instead of waiting in long lines. The ship is small so navigating decks and going to bow to stern takes no time at all in getting around the ship. Would I do Azamara again, yes, now that I "know my way around and the tricks" The ship does not attract the younger crowd, families with children, or serious partiers so the atmosphere is laid back for people in the 50's and over age croup Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
I just took my first cruise on the Azamara Journey and was highly impressed with the ship, crew, food, and friendliness of the passengers. I had received an extremely good deal on an obstructed ocean view cabin and luckily was able to ... Read More
I just took my first cruise on the Azamara Journey and was highly impressed with the ship, crew, food, and friendliness of the passengers. I had received an extremely good deal on an obstructed ocean view cabin and luckily was able to select cabin 6036, which is between lifeboats and thus not very obstructed. I was pleasantly surprised how well laid out this cabin was and it was totally acceptible for one person with alot of closet space. The bed was extremely comfortable and the pillows were soft and easy to sleep on. I enjoyed the smaller ship experience and how friendly the passengers and crew were. The service was exceptional and the food was much better than other, larger ships I have been on. I liked the way the buffet was arranged at dinner with tablecloths and candles, so you felt like you were in a restaurant rather than a cafeteria setting. The ship tours were more expensive but they were much smaller than other ships, with an average participation of about 12-15 persons per tour. It was simple to get on and off the ship and particularly convenient to be docked closer to the ports. I booked several other cruises on Azamara because I felt the higher cost of the line was definitely worth the enhanced experience. It is especially good for solo travelers as Azamara seems to cater to those traveling alone, and the passengers are so friendly and welcoming to everyone. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2018
Have only ever sailed with Celebrity but wanted to try Azamara while still attaining credits to our Celebrity Captains Club status. Pleasantly surprised, smaller ship but never felt overcrowded, crew were wonderful and met some lovely ... Read More
Have only ever sailed with Celebrity but wanted to try Azamara while still attaining credits to our Celebrity Captains Club status. Pleasantly surprised, smaller ship but never felt overcrowded, crew were wonderful and met some lovely passengers. Our first transatlantic which was leisurely but not tedious despite five and a half days at sea due to an itinerary change because of predicted bad weather at original ports of call. Found the main dining room too noisy and tables too close to each other so used Windows buffet for dinner which had plenty of choice and a more relaxed atmosphere compared to Celebrity.My husband enjoyed the daily talks by the retired Concorde Pilot but we found the evening entertainment limited. Quest has some signs of age but spotlessly clean throughouthe. Embarkation/Disembarkation very well organised. The staff and Officers were the friendliest we have ever encountered on a cruise ship.Very enjoyable and hope to sail Azamara again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
Highly recommend Azamara Club Cruises. I can only give a recommendation for the Azamara Quest ship as I have not traveled on the Journey or new Pursuit yet. First time on Azamara and as long as the Quest does not get rid of their live ... Read More
Highly recommend Azamara Club Cruises. I can only give a recommendation for the Azamara Quest ship as I have not traveled on the Journey or new Pursuit yet. First time on Azamara and as long as the Quest does not get rid of their live dealer table games in their casino, it will not be my last. I loved this cruise and line and the service and meals and everything about it. It was nice being on a cruiseline that really takes care of its guests. It was easily 5 star service. There are so many people who I knew and was on a first name basis with throughout the cruise and I'm not talking about the passengers, but the staff who were great and went above and beyond any prior cruise expectation I had had. I booked my cruise through a cruise travel expert, who, in turn booked every aspect through Azamara. From the first meeting in the baggage claim at the Miami airport, to the representative making sure we were all on the bus and on the way to the Lisbon airport, they had every single detail covered. It was like clockwork! The hotel check-ins were smooth and easy and they were well prepared for us. To the buses from the hotel to the pier before the cruise and to the hotel from the pier after the cruise. The ship check-in was the smoothest ever. There was literally no line, we walked right up, handed in our cruise ticket and credit card. Pictures were taken and we were given our ship pass/room key and away we went. Everything was easy! Upon arrival on the ship, champagne was provided, they didn't ask for our room card to charge the drink, it was free. In fact, the back of the bar menu showed all of the free alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. All eating venues (with the exception of the two speciality restaurants) were included and the speciality restaurants weren't terribly expensive for the quality we received. Being docked in town was truly amazing. It was nice being on a small ship that was able to be right in the center of things. Literally off the ship and in the middle of town. Never had that experience on the larger ships that I have cruised on in the past. All communication from the captain was top notch, as well as from the cruise director, Tony. The activities planned from trivia to bingo to blackjack tournaments, guest lecturers, dance lessons, improv classes and the numerous musical events and shows were all unique and interesting to do throughout the cruise. The ship's officers were very visible throughout the cruise. The captain was available to speak to regularly, and many of the passengers were invited to dine with the officers during the cruise. It was truly a wonderful experience sitting with an officer and talking about his experiences and responsibilities. Captain Magnus truly commands a fine ship and wonderful crew. Almost every crew member I encountered really took care of me and other guests. Truly received wonderful service from the following team members: Ernest, Diana, Tony, Julia, Milda, Marina, Nikhil, Leon, Rebecca, Raymon, Ashley, Ernesto, Nikolai, Daniel, Yeldana, Shayla, Alicea, Mariana. I'm sure there are others I'm forgetting as I met so many wonderful crew members who graciously gave of themselves and made the voyage more enjoyable. Much different than the larger ships where you hardly get to know the crew at all, and certainly don't receive the same personal attention as you do on the Azamara Quest. Highly recommend you checking out Azamara Club Cruises, especially if you prefer port intensive trips and if you enjoy many days at sea on a transatlantic cruise. I've come home from my vacation truly relaxed and I have Azamara to thank. Keep up the good work and I can't wait until my next cruise with Azamara. Read Less
Sail Date: February 2018
We love Azamara. Travel is what you make it. We enjoyed bridge lessons tremendously and the individual entertainers were phenomenal. Personnel on board are VERY accommodating and trained well to take care of every possible need we could ... Read More
We love Azamara. Travel is what you make it. We enjoyed bridge lessons tremendously and the individual entertainers were phenomenal. Personnel on board are VERY accommodating and trained well to take care of every possible need we could imagine. Wasn't crazy about some of the ports, but that always happens. Was surprised to see negative ratings about this voyage as everyone we talked to and met were very happy with this cruise. Came down with a bad cold on board and the doctor couldn't have been better. Some accompanying symptoms necessitated us being confined to quarters for a day, but we received free TV movies and any food we wanted from the room service menu or Discoveries Restaurant, only served on paper plates, not real dishes. We understood the necessity of this. Imagine our surprise several days later when we received a letter from the staff saying we would be comped one day on our next cruise to make up for the missed day we spent in quarantine. WOW! That's service! Best of all were the people we met on board and that's really one of the main reasons why we travel, to meet people from around the world and share conversations with them. Places are wonderful but people are even better! Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We had always wanted to try Azamara as they are the upscale product of RCCL and Celebrity, and our loyalty status transfers over equally from Celebrity. The ship is small - 30,277 tons and accomodates up to 694 passengers. Azamara ... Read More
We had always wanted to try Azamara as they are the upscale product of RCCL and Celebrity, and our loyalty status transfers over equally from Celebrity. The ship is small - 30,277 tons and accomodates up to 694 passengers. Azamara caters to an upscale, sophisticated cruising crowd. There were no children on this crossing and a large percentage of the guests were retired. The ship's public areas are nicely furnished and kept clean and tidy. There are two small retail shops with high end merchandise and a small casino which got limited use on this sailing. The Discoveries Dining Room is "open seating" for all meals. Service was inconsistent and slow until we found a great waiter and assistant. Food was generally good, but not what we were expecting. The Windows Cafe and the Patio both served quality food and had a nice variety to suit most guests. We enjoyed the entertainment and the Cruise Director, Tony Markey, was one of the best that we have encountered. There were two guest speakers on board discussing history and forensic science. I can't say enough about the fantastic crew! From the Captain to the dishwasher, everyone tried to please the guests. Azamara's "White Night Party" held in Hamilton, Bermuda, was amazing. Wonderful food and entertainment. The ship's officers even served food in the buffet line. Small ships have positives and negatives. We had about 24 hours of rough seas, which you really feel, but we were able to dock in downtown Hamilton, Bermuda. Small ships also make it easy to meet other interesting passengers and mingle with the entainers and crew. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
Great cruise on the Azamara Quest from Barcelona to Miami. Due to the hurricanes in the Caribbean, the itinerary was changed to eliminate St. Maarten and San Juan and spend two nights in Hamilton Bermuda instead. It turned out to be ... Read More
Great cruise on the Azamara Quest from Barcelona to Miami. Due to the hurricanes in the Caribbean, the itinerary was changed to eliminate St. Maarten and San Juan and spend two nights in Hamilton Bermuda instead. It turned out to be great with warm weather in Bermuda and having the ship docked right in Hamilton. The white night was in Hamilton and the weather was perfect for dinner and dancing on the deck. This was our first transatlantic and we were a little concerned about all the sea days, but it was very good with plenty of activities and also time by the pool to relax. The ship stopped in Gibraltar and and Funchal prior to the Atlantic crossing. Both stops were very interesting and we enjoyed the excursions. The staff on the Quest was fantastic and the food was great at the main dining restaurant and the specialty restaurants also. We did the Chef's table that had wine pairings with all five courses. The entertainment was good with a mix of music, comedy, and dancing. The other great thing about a 16 day cruise on a small ship is that you get to meet great people and make friendships that will last well beyond the cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
The Quest is a beautiful small ship. This was the second of our b2b. The food everywhere is excellent. The standard drink package is perfectly good for us. The wines were very nice, so we neither needed to order anything special nor a ... Read More
The Quest is a beautiful small ship. This was the second of our b2b. The food everywhere is excellent. The standard drink package is perfectly good for us. The wines were very nice, so we neither needed to order anything special nor a bottle of wine. We had an Ocean Suite all the way forward 6002. Loved the veranda even though it seemed awkwardly laid out. I still have no idea why there is a Butler. Ours, Eyup, was really a very nice man and always asked if we needed anything. He brought tea and set it up for us unless we asked him not to. The suit was nice but was a little worn. The breakfast in discoveries was always wonderful. There were brunches on Sundays, I didn’t really have any feelings about it. The food was excellent no matter which venu. The bartenders were great as well. The Casino was woefully under used. The 2 shops on board didn’t have much variety, and whomever is the vendor should look into that. There were activities going on all the time Read Less
Sail Date: November 2017
We chose this cruise because of itinerary. Unfortunately due to hurricanes in the Caribbean 2 scheduled stops were changed but can't blame Azamara for the weather. We sailed from Barcelona having had 5 days in Barcelona prior to ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of itinerary. Unfortunately due to hurricanes in the Caribbean 2 scheduled stops were changed but can't blame Azamara for the weather. We sailed from Barcelona having had 5 days in Barcelona prior to cruise. We stayed at Avenida Palace hotel which was very good and a short walk to all the sites. Embarkation was not as smooth as previous boardings with Azamara. Took a while to line up through customs ( not Azamara fault), but then a lengthy walk to ship and another line up in the Caberet lounge to be issued ship passes etc. this was our first trip on The Quest our other 3 cruises have been on The Journey. We noticed pretty well immediately, as did a lot of other passengers, that the crew did not seem as happy as they should be. For the first 5 or 6 days service from bar areas was slow, tables on the 9 deck area were not cleaned very often. Service in the windows cafe was very slow or non-existant - there was 2 mornings where we were not offered water,tea or coffee! After the first 5 or 6 days though things improved in these areas and staff were very attentive and "on the ball" for the rest of the trip. The food, staff and service in the Main Discoveries dining room and the 2 specialty restaurants were outstanding. Special mention of Afley in Discoveries- he was excellent. Our cabin attendants were wonderful, very friendly and helpful without being intrusive. The trivia games and other activities were fun and well run but sometimes overlapped so you had to miss something. Especially on sea days perhaps more thought could be given to scheduling. We did not do any of the offered shore excursions preferring to go out and about at our own pace. I have given an average score for entertainment- this is only because we have seen all but 1 of the guest acts and crew performances before - that said we did see most of the shows and even though it was 2nd or 3rd time around, we enjoyed the shows and they are certainly professional. Debarkation in Miami was slightly delayed but again no fault of the ship, everyone is at the mercy of USA customs and immigration. When we could debark it was quick. Overall we thoroughly enjoyed our cruise. We love Azamara and look forward to our next trip next year Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2017
Our second Azamara cruise and it did not disappoint. Incredible service, wonderful crew, excellent food. It is an absolutely wonderful cruising environment. It is so nice to be in a small "community" and be able to recognize ... Read More
Our second Azamara cruise and it did not disappoint. Incredible service, wonderful crew, excellent food. It is an absolutely wonderful cruising environment. It is so nice to be in a small "community" and be able to recognize and meet so many of the crew and passengers. Let me state, unequivocally, that this will not be our last Azamara cruise. So....the "but:" The ship is one of the Renaissance R1 ships and it is definitely showing its age. The cabins were renovated in 2016, but are already showing substantial wear and shoddy workmanship. The new wall covering was peeling in several places and the shower stall had walls that were delaminating. In speaking to fellow passengers, our situation was definitely not uncommon. Additionally, some of the public areas are badly in need of some TLC. The tile around the pool was cracked in several places and the grout was missing as well. Given the premium price one pays for Azamara, this is inexcusable. While we are in our mid-60's, we were definitely among the youngest passengers on this sailing, and it is clear that most of the entertainment was aimed at an older demographic. While we didn't sail on Azamara for the entertainment, it was a bit of a disappointment that we did not enjoy most of the cabaret shows. So....all in all, an absolutely wonderful sailing, but not flawless. We can't wait to return to Azamara! Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
We chose this cruise because of the pricing, OBC, and itinerary. The Azamara Journey crew worked hard to prevent a ship wide outbreak of a GI virus and were successful. Someone(s) foolishly ate some street food. As always the rooms and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the pricing, OBC, and itinerary. The Azamara Journey crew worked hard to prevent a ship wide outbreak of a GI virus and were successful. Someone(s) foolishly ate some street food. As always the rooms and public areas were clean, the food was delicious, and the land excursions excellent. Every night a different cuisine was served in Windows, the buffet restaurant, giving guests a chance to try different foods. The best place for evening dining is The Patio with table service but one can also visit the buffet line from there. We were able to get to know the different countries we visited. We were delighted to see Eric, the Cruise Director, again. He is so much fun and so entertaining. Standard drinks and tipping are included in the cruise price which means you aren't trying to drink your way through a liquor package and you don't need to worry about tipping too little or too much. They still need to improve their Wi-Fi connection. This was another wonderful cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This was our fifth cruise with Azamara and our third on the same route. We chose the route twice before as one or other of us had had knee surgery and this repositioning cruise includes many relaxing sea days. The itinerary includes the ... Read More
This was our fifth cruise with Azamara and our third on the same route. We chose the route twice before as one or other of us had had knee surgery and this repositioning cruise includes many relaxing sea days. The itinerary includes the option to visit both Luxor and Petra. On the previous cruises we weren’t fit enough to take these strenuous tours, but this time we intended to, and did, ‘tick off’ both these bucket list destinations. We had stayed in Athens twice before, so decided to look for a hotel in Piraeus and we found a great one. The Phidias Piraeus is a small boutique hotel very well located close to the Zea Marina, which has an interesting range of boats from luxury cruisers to small fishing boats. The road around the Marina has many restaurants and bars, so is an ideal place to find dinner. The hotel itself was great. The receptionist could not have been more helpful. Our room was small but very tastefully decorated in a modern style and the bathroom was nice - everything was very clean. Breakfast was great, too. They took us to the port the next morning at 12 on their free shuttle, along with about 12 other Azamara passengers who were staying there. As usual embarkation was quick and easy and well before 1:00 we were on board sipping a glass of bubbly. We went straight to the speciality restaurants reservation table in Windows(buffet) to buy a 3 meal dining package for the speciality restaurants and make our bookings, then had lunch in the Patio. By 2:00 we were in our verandah stateroom (7021) unpacking. Our steward, Luis, was happy to get us some metal coat hangers to supplement the ones provided. The cabin was very comfortable, with lots of storage space. We had asked for a queen bed configuration, and bed was huge and extremely comfortable. The balcony was small but had a table and two chairs - big enough for us to sit out there. We ate most dinners in Discoveries (MDR) and overall the food was excellent. We had some main courses that were outstanding - lamb chops, surf and turf, filet mignon, lobster with scallops and shrimp risotto. Azamara generally does soups well too - favourites include red pepper soup and Thai seafood soup. There were two or three misses though - garlic soup that tasted of rubber, veal chops that were tough and Thai beef curry that tasted like stewed beef, but these were very much the exception. We usually shared tables at dinner, often with the same group of people who all went to the Discoveries bar at about the same time (7:30) and had many lovely sociable meals. We ate twice in Prime C and once in Aqualina and these were all outstanding meals. We mostly had lunch at the Patio (my husband thinks the Azamara special burger is unbeatable) and breakfast in Windows. Although we were happy with the included drinks, we felt that the quality of the wine was lower than on our last cruise, a year before. After dinner, we often went to the Cabaret Lounge to watch some or all of the show. Mostly these were song and dance shows by the ship’s group of entertainers, including the talented Eric De Gray, the Cruise Director. During our 16 nights aboard there were two guest artists - a comedian and a cellist, but we didn’t see either of them. On a few nights we ended the evening dancing to disco in the Living Room, with the DJ Marcio. On this cruise there was a good crowd up there most nights. The Azamazing Evening was, unusually, a little underwhelming! It was in Wadi Rum, which is a beautiful setting, but the entertainment was folk dancing, which was very repetitive. It was men in white robes (plus a boy) waving swords and dancing. There was wine to drink but the only food was flat bread made by a couple of women sitting at the base of the stage. As we were sitting near the back we didn’t even get to try it! It also became quite cold once the sun set, as the sky was clear. We enjoyed the sea days, as we love sitting on a sun bed on deck 11. That means that I can’t comment on the lectures, art classes or bridge lessons - we didn’t get to any of them. From Aqaba to Muscat the ship was subject to high security - there was a team of security guards onboard and all outdoor areas had to be kept dark between dusk and dawn. We had to close our curtains at dusk and not use our verandah light. Deck 9 was only accessible after dark by ‘smoker’s corner’ - but the added bonus was that the view of the starry sky was wonderful with no light pollution! As always with Azamara the service was generally excellent. Senior Officers were very evident - we spoke to the captain a couple of times, and the Hotel Director, Heike, was everywhere - directing people to buses in port, welcoming us back to the ship. The other thing that always impresses is with Azamara is the general friendliness onboard - crew and passengers alike, and this cruise was no exception. Ports:- Crete - Agios Nikolas - we went on the little blue land train. We took the 70 minute tour for €13, which went up into the hills to a view point over Elounda and Spinalonga as well as back over Agios Nikolas, then had a walk around this pretty little town. Egypt - Safaga - we took a 2 day private tour with Your Egypt Tours which included Karnak Temple, Luxor Temple, a sunset felucca ride on the Nile, an overnight stay at the 5 star Steigenberger Hotel on the banks of the Nile, the Valley of the Kings, Queen Hatshepsut’s Temple and the Colossi of Memnon - all for $160. We also had some optional charged extras - the Light & Sound Show after dark at Karnak Temple and visits to King Tutankhamen’s and King Seti’s tomb. I loved the Light & Sound Show, but my husband found it boring. The two extra tombs were well worth the extra charge, especially Seti’s tomb - the paintings there were amazing, so fresh and vibrant. Jordan - Aqaba - we went on the ship’s excursion to Petra. A very hard day, but also well worth it. We walked for 5/6 miles on uneven ground - not so bad on the way there as it’s downhill, but hard work coming back uphill. You can pay to go in a carriage, but we didn’t fancy it, they went pretty fast and the passengers looked as if they were being thrown around a lot. The walk through the Siq is interesting as the rocks are amazing colours, then you get your first glimpse of the Treasury - the iconic building that you see in every bit of information about Petra. It’s amazing, but there is so much more to Petra - lots more carved buildings and even an amphitheatre. Oman - Salalah - we didn’t get off the ship as it was very hot (88) and the port was 25km from the town. Oman - Muscat - we took the ship’s free shuttle to The Muttrah Souq, which is huge. The main path is where all the souvenir stalls are, but it’s more interesting on the side and outer paths where there are stalls and shops selling goods designed for locals, such as shops selling abayas (Arab black dresses). We spent a couple of hours wandering around the Souq and the surrounding area. UAE - Dubai - took the ship’s free shuttle to the Dubai Mall. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
This was our first cruise with Azamara but we have cruised with the following lines, Celebrity (Elite Status), NCL, HAL & Princess. Azamara advertises as a luxury cruise line but we feel they fall short with making this claim. ... Read More
This was our first cruise with Azamara but we have cruised with the following lines, Celebrity (Elite Status), NCL, HAL & Princess. Azamara advertises as a luxury cruise line but we feel they fall short with making this claim. The good: • Azamara has a reciprocal agreement with Celebrity so we received all of the perks that come with our Celebrity Elite status. • The muster drill started on time and it only took approximately 20 mins. • The cushions on the deck lounge chairs are very comfortable. • Our stateroom attendants (Supriyono & Rovic) were fantastic. • The pool butlers and bar staff provide great service. • The majority of the staff are very friendly and greet the passengers. The not so good: • The internet is very slow and it is often difficult to connect to it. • They have fees for events that take place on seas days. Wine tasting, iPad classes etc and on other cruise lines these are free. I did not attend any but it seemed to me they were nickel and diming the passengers for events that should have been free. • The salt & pepper shakers in the Discovery Restaurant were disgusting. They need to be replaced. • The staff on the patio and veranda are disorganized and it does not appear that they have assigned tables. You either have 3 waiters asking you if you would like something or no one comes to your table. • The ship is not handicapped friendly. The doors on decks 9 & 10 that lead out to the decks are wooden and they are very heavy. If it is windy it is very hard to open them and they do not have any automatic door openers on any of the doors. They also have small ramps on either side of these doorways over the door sill which adds an additional challenge to passengers in wheelchairs. • I realize that food is subjective and we found the food was good and there was a variety but it was noting out of the ordinary. We found that it was about the same as we would expect on Celebrity. This is the first cruise line that we have been on that didn’t offer chocolate cake. • The guest Services Staff did not appear to be happy. I realize they probably have one of the worst jobs on the ship as they deal with every complaint but they didn’t greet anyone with a smile and they waited for the passenger to start the conversation. • If you read the bios of the Senior Staff they all state that they are engaged with the passengers on a daily basis. I don’t know where they were on our cruise but Capt Carl, Hotel Director Phillip & Cruise Director Russ where not up on deck 9. I did not see Chef Monica come in the Discoveries Dining Room on any of our 16 night cruise. Summary: We had a good cruise but we do not see why Azamara considers themselves as a luxury cruise line. The service and food was good but it was not better that we have experienced with Celebrity. We purchased the cruise during one of their sales, we did get a good price and we definitely received our money’s worth on this cruise. If we would have paid full fare then we would have been upset as Azamara is charging the same as other luxury cruise line but it falls short in our opinion. Would we cruise with Azamara again? Yes, but only if the price is right. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
We had been on Azamara before and pretty much knew what to expect except now it is mostly all inclusive. One of the things we really enjoyed was eating lunch in the main dining room on sea days (and we had 10 of them). I thought it would ... Read More
We had been on Azamara before and pretty much knew what to expect except now it is mostly all inclusive. One of the things we really enjoyed was eating lunch in the main dining room on sea days (and we had 10 of them). I thought it would be crowded but it was not at all- never had a wait. They usually had one breakfast type entree to choose from- good for us late risers! Service was excellent across the board. They had two nice brunches, one on our Sunday sea day and the other on Easter Sunday, also a sea day. We went to the "song and dance" shows and they were good. Lots of activities and guest lecturers for those who were interested. My only issue with the theater was that for some reason the screen has kind of a "hash tag" look which I found distracting. I mentioned this on the mid-cruise survey and they called and advised it's for some operational reason and can't be helped. However, the same movies are shown in-cabin normally the next day so it wasn't a big deal. Our favorite bar was the Sunset bar, and one of the places we liked to eat was the Patio- more "down home" type food than the main dining room. Also, it has a nice salad bar which we enjoyed. Again, service was excellent. Our room stewards were very good as well. Especially when you have so many sea days it's nice to have attentive stewards. Ports - we did a private tour in Gibraltar- that was the way to go (review is on Trip Advisor). We did a ship's tour in Tangier, Morocco because of the limited time we were in port and it was a disaster! We couldn't understand 95% of what the guide side (heavy accent, soft voice) and he did things out of order from what we expected. I have read other reviews and it seems that this is an area where Azamara really needs some help. I mentioned it to the Land Discoveries people and they advised they would look into it. My advice is if at all possible do a private tour. We didn't do much besides those two ports in one case because of pouring rain and the other cases because we had been there before. Enjoyed getting to know fellow passengers as well. Only thing kind of strange was that we never saw our final bill. We sort of had it "in our heads" and it seemed about right but it would have been nice to have it printed out. They had a long line at Guest Services when we disembarked so didn't bother to try and get one there. Transatlantics are not for everyone- however if you want to get some R & R and some activities as chosen they can be great! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
Fourth cruise with Azamara (and fourth cruise ever!). Wonderful to do the Trans Atlantic and it was all that I have come to expect on Azamara. Once again the whole crew from Captain Carl down were so friendly, professional and engaged. The ... Read More
Fourth cruise with Azamara (and fourth cruise ever!). Wonderful to do the Trans Atlantic and it was all that I have come to expect on Azamara. Once again the whole crew from Captain Carl down were so friendly, professional and engaged. The stateroom was always beautifully presented and the bed was very comfortable. Food was great and the whole ambience of the ship was so relaxing and perfect for a luxury break. Really interesting ports - loved the Azores and Gibralter and Tangier and Huelva were great. So good to have an overnight in Barcelona - and the ships tours and shuttle service were outstanding.The other passengers were a great mix of friendly, interesting and well travelled people.Loved every moment and special thanks to Juan (my room person), Ketut, Ruby, Bagus, Aldin and Daria (brilliant bar staff), Russell on room service and Alfred in Windows! Researching my next Azamara cruise - that says it all! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2017
We have cruised well over 30 times and this was one of the best experiences ever! It started with Captain Carl Smith. He was so wonderful and full of personality. The crew was exceptional and what's best of all, no samm annoying ... Read More
We have cruised well over 30 times and this was one of the best experiences ever! It started with Captain Carl Smith. He was so wonderful and full of personality. The crew was exceptional and what's best of all, no samm annoying fee's for every liquid beverage. That's right! Drinks and gratuities were not billed separately. The shows, crew and size of the ship was perfect for us! The selection of ports of calls was a perfect pick. Embarkation was the quickest we have ever seen. No long lines getting on and off of the vessel. The food was of great quality and offered a variety of local dishes which is a great way to live local. Rather you are a first time traveler ( we sailed with a couple who enjoyed their first) or a seasoned professional ( as we like to think we are) Azamara is a great choice. Bill and Gladys Mercurio Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
Our most recent journey took us on the Journey on what was supposed to be a luxury cruise from Singapore, through Thailand, Vietnam, and ending in Hong Kong. Our flight arrived late the night before, so we only had half a day to explore ... Read More
Our most recent journey took us on the Journey on what was supposed to be a luxury cruise from Singapore, through Thailand, Vietnam, and ending in Hong Kong. Our flight arrived late the night before, so we only had half a day to explore Singapore before boarding the ship later that day. We have been to Singapore many times before, so a short stay was adequate. I will say that if you have not been there before, the city is spectacular, especially Orchard Road at night during Christmas. We arrived at the Harbourfront Cruise Center mid-afternoon, and embarkation was a breeze. It was not crowded, the associates seemed to be well trained with the process, and were friendly and efficient. The ship had recently been refurbished in drydock, and looked brand new. Our cabin, a Club Continent Suite, had been remodeled without a tub, but had a very large shower and a marble/granite (or look-alike) sink. The room was very comfortable, had more than enough storage space with a good size balcony. This was the first time we had butler service, and still not sure what we could have asked for. He was instrumental in getting our dinner reservations in the specialty restaurants, which for suites is complimentary, but must be reserved because they do fill up, especially toward the end of the cruise. The ship is small compared to today's standards, and I do not believe we sailed full because upgrades were available in all categories by paying a reduced fee at the front desk. Breakfast....for the first time, I can honestly say that the buffet breakfast was better than the dining room. The dining room breakfast on the first two days was less than poor. Menu was uneventful, and food had no presentation at all. Waitstaff were not very attentive, possibly not experienced enough. The dining room was not busy, so service should have been better. The buffet had a good selection for the size of the ship, and had a made to order fresh waffle station, and made to order egg station. You could place your egg order and it would be delivered to your table by friendly attentive staff. The waitstaff were available to bring you most varieties of specialty coffees (no charge) and the fresh squeezed orange juice was wonderful. you could also order any variety of breakfast smoothie created on the spot. But...even better than the buffet was room service. The room service menu included items you could not get in the dining room, or the buffet (i.e.steak and eggs). We enjoyed breakfast on our balcony two times, complete with tablecloth and cloth napkins, delivered on time by our butler. Lunch.... in the dining room was a little better than breakfast, but again nothing to write home about. We were in port many days, so lunch was off ship. The few days we ate in the dining room, again not crowded, service was hit or miss. They did have a fresh cooking station which one day had tuna, another salmon, and the third time we were there, pasta with fresh clams. These items were very good, the rest of the menu seemed to be lack-luster. Wine was served with lunch, but getting a refill had to be asked for. Dinner.... We were fortunate to have Aqualina and Prime C as an option because we sailed in a suite. In both restaurants, by far, the best beef we have had on any ship, consistently every night. The lobster salad and lobster bisque were both outstanding, and memorable. All dishes were very well presented, delivered at the right temperature. Every dish was very good, and enough variety on the menu that for 10 days we did not tire of the choices. However... the service again was hit or miss. Such a shame, because the food was really outstanding. Wine was served as usual, but a refill had to be asked for, unless you ordered a wine that was not on the complementary list. The wine stewards were more attentive to the tables that requested those wines. Service should not suffer if you choose to drink a wine included in the meal. Bar service was also hit or miss. Many inconsistencies in the quality of the drinks. Fortunately, the drinks are all inclusive, and you can always order another, but you hate to be wasteful. Entertainment was good for the size of the ship. No big production shows. The casual musicians throughout the ship were very good, and the music level was just enough to enjoy it, and still be able to make conversation wiith your fellow travelers. Eric, the Cruise Director was always very visible (I guess being 6 1/2 feet tall would also help). He was very talented, took part in the production shows, and also had a show of his own. The guest entertainers were fun, the two we saw were a comedy musician, and a comedic violinist. The cruise ship singers and dancers also doubled as the activities staff, and were frequently late to their assigned activities. We enjoyed most of the trivia, the hardest part was not the questions, it was trying to understand the member of the activities staff and their pronunciation. One of the best benefits of a small ship, especially in the Asian ports, you get to dock right downtown. The sail up the rivers to these destinations is wonderful. On some of our past cruises with the same destinations, we were sometimes docked two hours away from the city. Staying in port longer and later was also a plus. Shuttle service was still provided, but you could walk with no problem. We chose a ship excursion to the Royal Palace in Bangkok. The country was still mourning the death of the King last October, so the Palace was more crowded than usual. The tour was good, but because of the crowd, it was hard to keep the group together, and difficult for the guide to explain what we were seeing. The tour would have been better if we were in smaller groups. We chose to go to the floating market the following day, again a ship excursion. This excursion was outstanding. We had a great time navigating the canals on the way to the market where we had plenty of time to people watch and to shop for trinkets..(i.e. more crap to pack!!) The highlight of the whole trip was the AzAmazing Evening held in Saigon, and it was just that...AzAmazing!! After a great buffet in the dining room all the passengers that chose to go were taken by bus to the event. We arrived and walked through some gardens where artisans were available to do calligraphy, caricatures, clay figures, etc. We were seated at small round tables on a lawn in front of a raised stage. The entire area had been covered with circus type tents because of the potential rain, an extra step they had not planned on. The performance highlighted the different types of music and dance from the different regions of Vietnam, and ended with a modern fashion show. We were served beer, wine, soft drinks, juice and water along with many plates of various finger food, most native to the area. The waitstaff was attentive, but not intrusive, and only served between the performances, very well done. The enrichment speakers onboard were very professional and had good presentations. One was from the WWF, World Wildlife foundation, and spoke about food waste, a great topic for me since I am in the retail food business. The other speaker was from Nasa, explaining the future of manned space travel back to the moon and beyond. The seminars were not very crowded, disappointingly, the speakers were very good. So, there were many highlights, but also many lowlights that need to be addressed. We did get a very good deal on this cruise, and feel we did get our money's worth. Paying regular price...we would think twice. Would we return...yes...we have two more booked for 2018, but again, we did get a great deal on those. With some new companies emerging into the small ship luxury market, Azamara may need to look closer at their service level, and some dining room meals, these were clearly not AzAmazing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2016
Enjoyable but certainly not 5 star. Embarkation was a shambles & upset a lot of people before they started their vacation. Come on Azamara - it's not rocket science and you must be able to do better than this. Staterooms were very ... Read More
Enjoyable but certainly not 5 star. Embarkation was a shambles & upset a lot of people before they started their vacation. Come on Azamara - it's not rocket science and you must be able to do better than this. Staterooms were very comfortable although a bit small, however I think the bathrooms were the smallest we have experienced on any ship, particularly the showers. However, having said that they were spotlessly clean & well maintained. Very comfortable bedding & lovely décor throughout the ship which certainly gave it the club-like feel. Staff were generally quite friendly but this was not consistent. Food was of a consistent high standard in the main Dining Room and was certainly 5 star in the speciality steak restaurant. Entertainment was average but there were two or three stand-out artists. The Azamara evening was certainly amazing. Overall it was an enjoyable & relaxing experience after a hectic 10 days in India. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was our fourth Azamara cruise. We chose it specifically because it started in New Orleans, a city we had always wanted to visit. We stayed in New Orleans, at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel on Iberville Street, for 5 nights and loved ... Read More
This was our fourth Azamara cruise. We chose it specifically because it started in New Orleans, a city we had always wanted to visit. We stayed in New Orleans, at the Courtyard by Marriott hotel on Iberville Street, for 5 nights and loved the city. Our hotel was extremely well located on the edge of the French Quarter and we were pleased with it. Embarkation was, as usual, quick and easy and we were soon on board drinking our welcome glass of bubbly. Our stateroom on deck 6 was a verandah stateroom. There was plenty of storage space in the cabin, and the bed was very comfy. The large TV opposite the bed was great and there is a reasonable selection of channels to watch. The bathroom was small, with a small shower with a curtain, but it was fine and we liked the new shelves for storage as well as the cupboard under the sink. I always take a couple of sets of cloth pockets to hang on the hooks on the inside of the bathroom door so that I can find a home for everything. We mainly used Discoveries (MDR) for our evening meal. We felt that the food had regained its Wow factor (missing on our last cruise). We loved the fact that although you can see the menu on the TV and outside the dining room each day, there are two main course dishes (Chefs Special and World Destination special) that are a surprise until your waiter tells you about them. The menu always had a great choice, with some dishes, such as Escargots in garlic butter, Prawns with Marie Rose sauce, New York strip steak, Salmon repeated every day alongside all the dishes of the day and the specials. Dining on Azamara is free time dining and most days we were able to be seated when we were ready (usually between 7:30 and 8:00pm). Sometimes we shared with others and sometimes had a table for two. We also bought a good value package for the two speciality restaurants - Prime C and Aqualina. The cover charge is normally $30 for each, but for $70 you can make 3 bookings. Meals there are exceptional, even better than the excellent quality in the MDR. We had breakfast and lunch in Windows - there were always plenty of choices and the food was lovely. You could have Bucks Fizz ( Mimosa) or Bloody Mary for breakfast if you wanted! I particularly enjoyed the ginger based 'Energiser' smoothie every morning. Most of the entertainment was very good. There was a pianist and guitarist who played in various venues and there were shows in the cabaret lounge. All the shows were good except one comedian who failed to get a laugh! We also enjoyed joining a trivia quiz team and taking part in the daily quizzes. We went ashore in all but one of the Caribbean islands the ship visited. We did not use any of the ship's excursions on the islands but did our own thing. In Grand Cayman we just had a walk around the town. In Port Antonio, Jamaica we got a taxi to give us a tour of the area, including the Blue Lagoon - not cheap at $40 a head for a couple of hours. In Curaçao we just had a wander around Wilhemstadt - very pretty little town with plenty of shops and restaurants and an interesting market along the canal. In St Barts we just had a look around - very expensive place, window shopping was the order of the day, as well as walk to Shell Beach which was nice. At St Maarten we took a taxi to Mahoe Beach ($20 a head) right next to the airport runway. Good fun standing right under the flight path as jets come in close over your head. At Nevis we took a taxi ($20 a head) to the Botanic Gardens and the Montpelier Plantation (Princess Di's favourite Hotel). The gardens are beautiful - well worth visiting. As we had a few hours before our plane home from Miami, we took a ship's excursion on the Hop On Hop Off bus. This was excellent - the bus picked us up at the dockside, including our luggage. Our luggage was then stored for us at Bayside Marketplace whilst we took the bus on the Blue, Miami Beach, route which we loved. Then we had an hour or so wandering around Baysie Marketplace which had a good range of shops, cafes and restaurants. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was our first with Azamara, a repo from New Orleans to Miami. Part of our promotion was a overnite in NO with a dinner cruise on the Natchez Queen which was lovely. We stayed at the Doubletree Inn in the French Quarter -- good ... Read More
This was our first with Azamara, a repo from New Orleans to Miami. Part of our promotion was a overnite in NO with a dinner cruise on the Natchez Queen which was lovely. We stayed at the Doubletree Inn in the French Quarter -- good location, clean room. We had a handicapped accessible room due to DH use of a scooter which was on the 7th floor. First morning there -- a power failure (30 sec.) caused ALL elevators to stop working and we were stuck in our room for 5 hours. Why the designers of this hotel had all elevators on one system was extremely poor planning not to mention dangerous for safety reasons. After complimentary room service --- manager was finally able to get us on one of the service elevators so we could catch our Gray Line tour --- only for the elevator to quit between the second and first floor !! As the manager was with us --- staff on the other side of the door were finally able to get us out --- really funny when we talked about it later but not at that moment. The Big Easy is "OK" -- we really didn't get too see very much -- would have liked to see a plantation or two and more of the country. Bourbon Street is just a dark, dirty,narrow alley IMO. Didn't impress us at all. The Quest is a lovely ship -- the smallest we have cruised on to date. The service is OUTSTANDING. You couldn't ask for a more happy and accommodating crew !! Our Club Continental suite was wonderful -- so much more room than the original V 2 balcony I had booked. Actually was able to look into one and I have never seen such a small, cramped room and balcony. Of course, the CC came with a much higher price tag but we would have been very uncomfortable in the first one not to mention no space for DH's scooter ! Only drawback to Suite 8063 were the loud noises during the night from the deck above (Windows Cafe) from rolling carts and furniture. Islands: Were "ok" --- poor planning on Azamara's Itinerary Dept. to schedule Jamaica and St. Bart on Sundays when everything is closed -- not even a mini mart to grab a snack or two. Would choose the Quest again but i will look for better prices in the future. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2016
The dates fit into our schedule.The food was very ok on this ship. Not bad, not great. Too many people at the buffet lines and tables. MDR too physically crowded. The shows were fabulous. Momma Mia was Broadway quality. The shows were ... Read More
The dates fit into our schedule.The food was very ok on this ship. Not bad, not great. Too many people at the buffet lines and tables. MDR too physically crowded. The shows were fabulous. Momma Mia was Broadway quality. The shows were great.The cabin was a good size with a nice seating area. There was plenty of storage for 2 people. Also we enjoyed our excursions specially in country of oman with the best tourism Company there ( Lifetime-tours),Oman was my third stop on a four country vacation and I immediately fell in love with this country. At first I could not put my finger on why, but I think it was the heart of the people that made this place special. Ahmed, our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable and professional. He spoke with a certain pride about his country and I could see why. He took great care to make sure we had a great time and he altered the tour a bit due to my disability to make sure I could still experience a Wadi, but just not a challenging.Also the excellent service and organisation we had with this agency.Finally it was everything beautiful and relaxing. Read Less
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