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10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I had previously travelled on the Magellan and Columbus with Cruise and Maritime and had enjoyed both trips. On this basis, I booked a 30 day cruise to Canada with my partner on the Marco Polo. Embarkation on 5th Sept at Tilbury was ... Read More
I had previously travelled on the Magellan and Columbus with Cruise and Maritime and had enjoyed both trips. On this basis, I booked a 30 day cruise to Canada with my partner on the Marco Polo. Embarkation on 5th Sept at Tilbury was chaotic and delayed. On being shown our cabin, I immediately saw that it would not meet our needs because of insufficient storage. My complaint was lodged with the cabin steward who offered extra hangers and said that empty suitcases could be stored one deck below. Upon further enquiry, I was advised that these would not be accessible. My partner has recently endured cancer treatment necessitating the use of bulky incontinence aids which added to our luggage. We were called for the evacuation drill immediately. After this, I went promptly to reception and lodged the need for more (accessible) storage. I was told that no other adjustments could be made. I then asked to leave the ship. I was advised that as it was 15.45 and the ship was sailing at 16.00 that it was too late to disembark. I confirmed that I would have to leave at the earliest opportunity at Glengariff. The receptionist stated that she would escalate my complaint to her manager. During the next 44hrs at sea, I had the misfortunate to have my initial concerns realised and worse fears confirmed. Marco Polo is described as “elegant” and “stylish” . This is misleading. Rather it is tired and dated. For example. the Marco’s Bistro carpet was soiled and sticky, the ceiling in Scott’s Bar was damaged with twisted metal and broken lights. Two lifts were unreliable ( I was stuck in one for several minutes) and then broke on the first day requiring repair. The stench of diesel on the Baltic Deck and in our cabin was all-pervading and nausea-inducing. I was advised that the ship is over 50 years old. To describe the ship as stabilised is misleading. During the crossing to Ireland, there was excessive roll even though the sea conditions were described as “slight”. I saw no stabilising fins being deployed presumably to maintain speed and fuel efficiency as seas were slight. I witnessed several passengers stumbling and numerous accidents with crockery and glasses including with the senior officers (broken glass) during the Captain’s presentation in the theatre. My nausea and discomfort when laying in our cabin were compounded by the strong stench of diesel. The food was not of the same standard as on previous voyages. Although I was not able to eat much beyond the first day due to nausea, my partner who was a chef confirmed that too much salt was consistently being used in all the dishes he tried. To describe the entertainment as “truly sparkling” is misleading. The entertainment’s director offered a comically bad rendition of an Elvis impersonation on the first night and then made a hardsell on drinks etc. The dancers were good but the material they were given to work with was woeful. Given the cramped conditions in the theatre, the first night was enough to dissuade us from going back the following evening. On the 6th, Sept I again went to reception and stated my intention to disembark the following day. Once again I was told me that my complaint had been escalated to the manager but no response had been forthcoming and he was not available to speak to me. On 7th we anchored at sea for Glengariff. Disembarkation by tender was delayed (I finally got ashore 3 hrs after arrival). I confirmed to reception that I did not want to disembark but felt I had no other option as my complaint had not been resolved. I incurred the cost of of repatiation and the disappointment of not being able to enjoy what iI had eagerly anticipated as a trip of a lifetime. Cruise and Maritme have advised me that they take 28 days to respond to complaints. I recommend avoiding this ship. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We choose this cruise to see a bit of Canada. Had done a couple of cruises about 20 years ago and not sure about 31 days. No need to worry as the time aboard ship there was plenty to do - games, quizzes and talks or craft sessions. Or ... Read More
We choose this cruise to see a bit of Canada. Had done a couple of cruises about 20 years ago and not sure about 31 days. No need to worry as the time aboard ship there was plenty to do - games, quizzes and talks or craft sessions. Or even choir, line dancing and acting. Embarkation was fine and the cases that we had sent ahead by TEFRA were waiting at our cabin door. We chose late sitting in the Waldorf with a table of 8. Out table companions were fab - a couple from Scotland, couple from South Yorkshire and couple from Australia. The meals and choice were great. My only complaint was that sometimes the main course was only lukewarm and not hot. If I asked for it to be hot it was otherwise best to eat it quick. I must say the first course were usually delicious and could have ate more! There was 4 formal nights and quite a few Informal nights which towards the end of the cruise might as well be casual as the dress code was not enforced as it had been at the beginning of the cruise.The Bistro was great for breakfast and lunch although at peak times it was hard trying to find a seat. Basically just had to ask if seats were free and so got to meet lots of people. Quite a few were Australians. The evening entertainment was absolutely fantastic. The small team - Mitch, Callum, Josh, Chrysy, Annette and Savannah and the dancers made each show very enjoyable. They did 2 shows a night (unless the odd comedian or other act was on) then a show in Scott's Bar after the last show in Marco Polo lounge. They also did the quizzes and games during the day so worked really hard to keep us entertained. Due to illness I missed the night they did songs from the Musicals but the last night when I saw Les Miserables (my favourite) they deserved a standing ovation. Our cabin was on Atlantic so same floor as the Waldorf and handy on a night for the restaurant.The cabin was a good size with 2 portholes.There were 2 sets of 4 drawers (one between the twin beds) and a 3 door wardrobe with safe. Plenty of hangers and could ask cabin steward for more if needed. The bathroom was fine and the water in the shower was lovely and warm. Towels as and when you wanted them. Cabin steward did or checked the cabin twice every day and bed was always made again on a night. Ashveer our steward was brilliant when we were ill with a virus and checked if we needed anything a few times a day. We did a lot of the excursions and were well worth the money apart from one. The Sugar Shack Experience in Montreal was awful and wouldn't recommend at all. Glengariff - a lovely tour round the area with a coffee stop and then time in the time. Bought a lovely cardigan. St.John's, Newfoundland - a boat trip to see the puffins, bald eagles and possibly dolphins. This was a wet day and no dolphins but still a good trip. Halifax and the Tall Ship was lovely and a glorious day Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown - One of the prettiest places on this trip. Went to see the Confederation Bridge which we sailed under later on the way out. Also a lovely shopping area nearby but not enough time to see all the shops which was a shame. Quebec (day 1) - tour round Quebec and Montmorency Falls. Loved seeing Quebec. Quebec (day 2) - St Anne du Beaupre Basilica, canyon (falls) and Island was on a very wet day but the tour guide was very good so overall the trip was good. Saguenay - Fjord museum was good but not enough time spent there. Then went on to Le Pulpier where we had too much time for what there was to see. Baie-Comeau trip took you to a beautiful church - St Emilie - oldest church in Baie-Comeau which only has one mass a year. Also The Garden of the Glaciers - fantastic. Havre St Pierre - a small town Corner Brook - Did the Panoramic tour which was 2 hours and was ok for seeing a bit of the area. Sydney, Halifax - no tours and stayed on ship as not too well. Cork and Blarney - would have loved more time in Blarney as lots to see and not enough time. Disembarkation. We were late docking due to it being a very foggy morning but disembarkation soon got caught up. We had our time changed as originally time meant we would have missed our train. We had a phone call a couple of days before saying a person would meet us to take out cases from us and take to TEFRA. After getting off we collected our cases but then had to search for the person. Someone eventually tracked them down and they had no idea they were supposed to be taking our cases. We were trying to order a car to take us to Kings Cross from Tilbury when this person said there were taxis and where to go. When we got there and found the person to see she said the taxis wouldn't take us to Kings Cross. By the time we booked a car and they made it through the traffic (2 ships were in port) and road works we had just over an hour to catch our train. Thanks to the driver from Addison Lee we made it with 7 minutes to spare. Unbelievable. Overall this was a great trip, bar illness. Crossing from Ireland to Canada the sea was a bit choppy but I didn't mind that and the return crossing was like a mill pond. The Marco Polo is an older ship but for size she is fab. A lovely, friendly ship and not too big that you don't get to know people. You got used to seeing the same people and saying hello. The crew spoke to you in passing. The staff from cabin stewards to bar staff and restaurant staff were lovely and were always ready to help less mobile passengers carry their food and drink to a table for them. I wouldn't do again but purely because I've done it and probably wouldn't do one as long again but yes I would definitely travel on the Marco Polo again. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Great ports. Ship immaculate, lovely cabin with two windows, and massive amount of storage. Perfect size. Great attention to detail in cleaning. Great care was taken over making sure everyone used the antiseptic sprays on entering the ... Read More
Great ports. Ship immaculate, lovely cabin with two windows, and massive amount of storage. Perfect size. Great attention to detail in cleaning. Great care was taken over making sure everyone used the antiseptic sprays on entering the restaurants and when returning to the ship from shore. The food was very good, with plenty of choice, and other options if needed. The bistro was a good option for lighter dining in the evening. The Captain was very sociable, and always gave advice on being careful around the ship when the sea was rough. The stabilisers were used several times, and we found the ship behaved very well. It felt very stable. We have been on ships which did not do so well in rough seas. The service was wonderful, from the cabin stewards to the restaurant staff, bar staff and reception. All were very friendly and helpful. The entertainment was superb. It was definitely the best we have experienced on any cruise, of which we have done many. The cruise director was wonderful, and the team so talented. Other guest acts were also much appreciated. There were plenty of daytime activities to suit everyone, and the ship also offered a mile walk by circling deck 10 six times. It is not possible to walk like that on most of the new ships. Much prefer her style compared to the new impersonal monsters. At the gala dinner at the end of the cruise, one of the passengers stood up to thank the whole crew for a wonderful cruise. Will hope to travel on Marco Polo again! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Wanted to see the East side of Canada after visiting the other side last year. The cabin was fine 3 cases already waiting as we arrived at our cabin the steward was very helpful. The ship was kept very clean and tidy. Enjoyed the food ... Read More
Wanted to see the East side of Canada after visiting the other side last year. The cabin was fine 3 cases already waiting as we arrived at our cabin the steward was very helpful. The ship was kept very clean and tidy. Enjoyed the food tried self service and the restaurant, , plenty to chose from, only complaint not enough vegetables on the plate in the restaurant. The ship rides rough weather very well. Though we were lucky not too many rough seas. Enjoyed Glengariff our first port, the tendering is a bit of a slow job, then of of to Canada, enjoyed the exercise classes that that the dancers take, if you wanted there were crafts bridge, games and quizzes every sea day. We had 2 lecturers on board both very good,the one for whales and dolphins was on deck and able to tell us what species we saw which added to the enjoyment. St Johns it poured down but didnt stop our walking trip, the scenery was fantastic. Halifax was hot sunny and a lovely city to explore and Charlotte Town on Prince Edward Island was a lovely town. It was a pity the next 2 days as we sailed down the St Laurence to Montreal it turned dull and cooler. Montreal was great and Quebec, pity our second day there it poured down all day. Most of the time we did our own walks round and exploring as there was usually good maps. The smaller French speaking town were friendly but did not have lot to see, but we were welcomed and usually the locals turned up to wave us off. Entertainment was very good for such a small ship dancers and singers great and the young singer Savannah that had just joined was a pleasure to hear. Enjoyed the chocolate afternoon tea. met some lovely people, all the crew were friendly and helpful, oneor two slight problems but no more than other cruise lines Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
We booked Back to Back cruises on the Magellan, for a grand total of 56 nights and only got home yesterday the 16 of February 2016. The Christmas and New Year cruise was without doubt our worst ever , and although the ship can't ... Read More
We booked Back to Back cruises on the Magellan, for a grand total of 56 nights and only got home yesterday the 16 of February 2016. The Christmas and New Year cruise was without doubt our worst ever , and although the ship can't be held responsible for the weather, there were just so many things wrong. Once we did get away many hours later than scheduled, and informed that the ports of call had changed , which then meant that we would be in Gibraltar one day late and we had planned to meet someone there , they failed to turn up on the 27th and that cause a few problems, the crossing both away and returning home was awful, and it appears that the ship struggles with rough seas. The result was people falling out of chairs, lifts being turned off and glasses falling out of the cabinet behind the bars and leaks coming through the roof of the Captain's lounge. The cabins are fine, but there is not enough seating for all when in the buffet or the lounges and most of the time only half of the lifts were operational. The meals were not that good and the dinners at Raffles the buffet were limited on selection. The entertainment was provided by the regular staff and only one external artist was shown in the whole of the two weeks....very poor as I was song and danced out after about 10 days.The entertainment team, done what they could, but their employer needs to take a good look at itself ! The result was that apart from the magnificent New Years eve overlooking Madeira and the fireworks display, the whole cruise was sub standard and then we had the 42 night cruse to the Amazon and West Indies to look forward to ! To be fair the second cruise was better and although we both went ill on the way back, and so many people ended up in the infirmary with coughs and breathing problems, it still was a case that the Christmas cruise was so poor and I would not go on the Magellan again, for anything over 14 nights as it did not match up to others that we had both been on.Even then it would have to be an offer that we could not refuse. Read Less
25 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
Marco Polo 2015 Canadian Centenary Cruise (34 days) This is our subjective opinion, we are in our late 60,s and being possibly 15/20 years younger than the average person on board. First impressions 3 star, final impression 2 ... Read More
Marco Polo 2015 Canadian Centenary Cruise (34 days) This is our subjective opinion, we are in our late 60,s and being possibly 15/20 years younger than the average person on board. First impressions 3 star, final impression 2 star. Basic cruising on a budget, If you paid more than 50% of the original quoted price you were done. Best point; Restaurant, food fair for mass production, not fine dining or even wholesome. Fish frozen always tasted old some like jelly, Chicken poorly cooked sometimes hard and sometimes pink, beware !! Very poor indian/asian cuisine considering kitchen staff 95% asian!! Water always tasted unpleasant. Self service restaurant was 'staff canteen' level and very busy and very overcrowded, a bun fight on most occasions, always hard to find a free table, which says a lot for the main restaurant. Worst point; Crowd/Client management, i.e. Breakfast, Lunch and afternoon teas were all managed by herding people onto the minimum number of tables in the restaurant, assumedly to keep the relaying of tables to a minimum. Very unpleasant if you happen upon a loud or rude neighbour, and we did on several occasions. Live and let live I say, but not next to me at the dining table, I like to choose my companions. Bed linen and duvets were old, as were the mattresses, Cabins were reasonably clean Overall it felt very much like a holiday camp, with loud ear piercing tannoy announcements from an over enthusiastic red coat leader. Entertainment was not to our taste. It was a shame that the captain could not speak english clear enough to be fully understood in his daily address. Outside area, rear only, polluted for periods with diesel/exhaust fumes,(and smokers) also in lower cabin levels and occasionally in main lounges. Not pleasant at all, when all cabins are sealed from the outside, air con is not really healthy, If you come on a cruise for fresh clean air forget it. Interior of the ship can be best described as equal to a cross channel ferry. Gym very poor as was the library. Exercise is hard as deck is cramped and awkward in places, not really suitable for daily exercise. We washed our white smalls in the bathroom sink only to find the water had turned them orange! Excursions were expensive and poor, as always no responsibility is taken by the cruise ship!! so no comeback. Be aware of being taken for a ride literally, at your expense. Mind your age when considering taking a whale watching trip as these boats and RIBs can be a little unstable, crowded, painful at times and not always rewarding and always too expensive. Overall the ship is too old, too small, uncomfortable in even the mildest storm, and well past its sell by date. Not at all recommended. It felt that the boat was run for the ease/benefit of the crew/staff rather than the clients. We have travelled on a number of different cruise ships (4) one for 3 months in the last 12 months and they were all 100% better. So do some research, be choosy and think carefully before you book. We are also sailors having a yacht of our own, cruising the Med for the past 8 years. Read Less
18 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
16 October 2015 MS Marco Polo Marco Polo 50th Anniversary Canadian voyage. This observation has been prepared on a fair and even handed basis and is as comprehensive as I think that it should be. Neither my wife or I have any ... Read More
16 October 2015 MS Marco Polo Marco Polo 50th Anniversary Canadian voyage. This observation has been prepared on a fair and even handed basis and is as comprehensive as I think that it should be. Neither my wife or I have any connection with the Company, the vessel or its staff. Following the completion of this voyage we wish to present our views regarding the ship and the personnel that we had direct dealings with. Both of us have had many years dealing with all levels of the general public in front line service, in which service was delivered that was not only had to be right the first time, but delivered under no little pressure. I have professional Maritime qualifications and in addition, my wife has professional qualifications in the catering industry and understands how this business is operated. We have to thank all of the staff that we have met, their industrious work ethic does them credit, as does their very pleasant and helpful service. Lectures Eric McVicar A first class lecturer on subjects topical to the voyage. His popular and riveting lectures were well attended. They had it all – the Inuit, Sami people, maritime life and Arctic explorers. I have never seen an audience at a lecture ask to have one of the presentational films shown twice. His lectures are both instructional and humorous and Eric McVicar is a definite ‘must’ for these cruises. As time went by, he proved to have a huge sense of fun with a wicked sense of humour and his recitals were not only appreciated but expected. We hope to see him again. Eric was always available and approachable ‘out of hours’ on the deck and we found he was able to cover a range of interesting subjects. Certainly, Eric McVicar’s attendance on board will be a factor in the planning of any future voyages with Cruise and Maritime. Well done. Ian Butterworth Another good addition to the itinerary. Bearing in mind the number of people who had cameras and associated problems. We thought that Ian’s professional lectures were well targeted, and the attendance at his lectures proved how popular he was. His instruction on photography enabled a lot of people to improve their skills on the voyage, and his contribution was well suited to everyone with a camera. Towards the end of the voyage he ran two challenges for extra fun and instruction. Well done. Again, Ian would always be there ‘out of hours’ to sort out the many problems people were experiencing. Sue Walsh We only attended her bird and animal lectures and found them to be very instructive. Having only a basic knowledge of the wildlife we were about to encounter, we found her information very helpful and our voyage was enriched by her instructions and advice. One Lecturer on Cannibals who I will not name. This was an absolute disaster; whoever planned his performance clearly had not reviewed him. He was embarrassing to watch. His subject matter was not appropriate and delivered in a most unprepared and shambolic manner akin to a badly done home slide show. It was a shame that he wasted valuable Lecture time that could have been filled by the professional Lecturers on board. Bad form. Our Cabin Steward. The Steward was a well presented, very pleasant and helpful person. Our cabin was always cleaned and presented to a high standard and he was most helpful and prompt in dealing with our queries. Both of us are very particular about the accommodation that we stay in, and his work was consistently high. In addition, he has a good command of English. Deputy Matre d’, Waldorf Restaurant. We primarily dealt with one of them, however all the comments below apply equally to the other. Both are very capable men who were always discreetly conducting operations and regularly checked with our table. They managed the restaurant well and were always on hand to provide assistance. We had the occasion to observe them when he dealt with a complaint from someone in the restaurant, and can say that he handled the situation was beautifully handled. It is credit due to them both that the standard of their management contributed to the successful running of the Waldorf Restaurant and our dining experience. Waiter in charge of our table. Again, a very pleasant, positive person who is focused on his job. He was of smart appearance and service was delivered in a highly attentive and professional manner. His command of English was good and he resolved all our queries promptly and it was a pleasure to deal with him. Assistant Waiter to our table. Again he was a very pleasant, approachable and smart person, who also has a good command of English and delivered service in a highly attentive and professional manner. Wine Waitress. This is a very smart, competent young lady who spread sunshine to our table with her happy disposition. She acted in a very smart and professional manner and was quite correct when discharging her services. “Loverley Jubberly,” Chef. It has to be said that was well as running the separate catering and omelette events, his character and humour is a definite asset to the Team. We enjoyed not only his cuisine but his humorous character who engaged with everyone in his own happy style. In short, he spread humour and good will which is very important to any cruise. And now the kitchen staff in the background. In this regard we are mindful that at most times the restaurant was operating at full capacity and normally in the general run of things, there are times when things do not go as they should do. We experienced only one problem during the cruise regarding a beef dish, but we all agreed that this was probably due to a supplier and not the standard of the Chefs. It is all credit due to them that they provided consistent food of a high quality throughout our voyage, working flat out within the constraints of the vessel. Certainly, the whole restaurant was working quite efficiently to achieve this. It is also compliment to the Chefs that they produced such a wide range of food and patisserie in such challenging circumstances. Their showcase of patisserie and chocolate in the restaurant were superb and they have every reason to be proud – well done. We noted that an anti-infection regime for the Restaurant and Buffet Bar was in place for the entire voyage. Most, if not all passengers observed this and in order to reinforce it, waiters were stationed at the entrances to the restaurants to assist. We thought that this was very important point and a definite ‘plus’ for this company. The Buffet Bar was crowded on occasions but with outside snack facilities there was a choice to eat elsewhere, or alter the timings for eating in the Buffet. I was impressed by the young lady who dealt with the Shore Clearances who answered my queries and was very informative. With regards to the remaining staff that we encountered. As a matter of course we engaged with them during the course of the days, (usually with a ‘good morning’ of the like) and they responded in kind within the limits of their current functions. All credit must be given to the sea boat’s crews who dealt with everybody in a very kind and helpful way while tendering ashore. We realised that it is not easy to deal with people in the upper age bracket in a boat while disembarking. Their concern was appreciated and having some Maritime experience I know how much time and effort they put into the care of the passengers. Entertainments We enjoyed what we saw enormously. Richard Sykes is a star performer and superb entertainment backed up by Lee and the boys and girls. His wide repertoire and with his warm and embracing character, he was well received and he had time for everyone ‘out of hours.’ His arrangement and performance of ‘Les Miserables’ was superb! and we enjoyed the shows immensely. Shore Excursions Susan Susan has a wonderful bubbly, open and engaging character who related to all levels, putting people at ease whilst working hard to organise their Tours. Again, she was always available ‘out of hours’ to provide answers to queries. Certainly both she and her assistant are the right people for the position. A word here about venues. Although we did not partake in many Tours, however a feature of our booking Marco Polo was the interesting venues that the ship visited. It enabled us to visit places that were untouched by the ‘plastic’ tourist industry. As such, we were able to walk about and experience how ordinary local people lived and to talk to them. Reception Desk All the staff were first class and we thank them for their help and advice that delivered promptly. Ship’s Officers It was good to see the Captain moving around the ship on a regular basis and chatting with the passengers. His daily navigational information was well received and the frequency of announcements over the ship’s public address system was not intrusive. All the Ships Officers we met were polite and helpful. General observations We think the pricing of the bottled water in the cabins is too high. We suggest that if the charges were more reasonable, we would have used it bearing in mind there were no tea and coffee facilities in the cabin. The cost of laundry was reasonable. We had a few items laundered and they came back to a very satisfactory standard. Our Cabin got very hot on some occasions. The air conditioning would shut down to ‘cool’, but we felt that this should be checked out. We did not mention this as it did not warrant a complaint, just an observation. We noted that throughout the voyage, the crew carried out a programme of discreet maintenance. Paintwork and varnish were refurbished thus ensuring that the vessel was as well presented as far as was possible. Slip resistant deck paint was being refurbished, the teak was always clean and external paintwork was washed down. There were few rust marks to be seen and the credit must be given to the condition and appearance of the foredeck. I assume that the isolated repairs to the teak decking will be completed during the next scheduled maintenance. We saw that the handrails to the stair towers were regularly cleaned with a bleach solution, and reflects the good anti-infection regime operated elsewhere. Well done. For a ship of her age, the Marco Polo is a grand old lady of good appearance and a joy to see. Marco Polo recommendation This is a small very substantially built ‘traditional’ ship unlike the impersonal blocks of flats roaming the oceans. Some passengers who had experienced the larger ships with yards of Formica and endless stainless tell felt the Marco Polo was a bit of a come down. But many of the passengers we met re book with the Polo, and are satisfied with her. This must be a recommendation in itself. This has been described a 'budget' cruise ship. It probably is depending on where you are coming from. We could not afford the high cost of other ships and we got good value for money with the Polo, certainly the staff did not treat us as 'budget' customers. It is clear what the Gratuities Policy is and you have the choice of paying the daily rate chargeable to your on board account and leaving it as it is, upping it - or reducing it to pay staff individually if you want to. We don’t go for a ‘Class’ system anywhere and the passengers were friendly and good natured. It was a very pleasant experience to communicate and associate with a good bunch who returned kindness and courtesy. For sure there were the moaners, you get this everywhere, and some passengers should learn how to address staff properly. I could not do their job and they had our abiding respect for the service that they gave to us. Well done, thank you. The standard of cleanliness was very high and we enjoyed the experience of being with the multinational crew. The ship has a very ‘homely’ and comfortable feel and for the future, the Marco Polo would be first choice in our booking. As customers we thank Cruise and Maritime for making our voyage a very pleasant and rewarding experience. For us it did what it said on the tin. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
This is our personal appraisal and some people like the holiday camp experience because there were many repeat cruisers on this voyage, but it is definately not our scene. In our opinion the ship is much too small for over 800 people ... Read More
This is our personal appraisal and some people like the holiday camp experience because there were many repeat cruisers on this voyage, but it is definately not our scene. In our opinion the ship is much too small for over 800 people and this showed especially in the Bistro at breakfast and lunchtimes on sea days when the weather did not permit taking food on to the outside decks. Waiting for table as well as a buffet is not good especially first thing in the morning. The food was bland and not altogether appetising and there were many complaints. The Waldorf restaurant alternative was OK but the open seating was regimented for breakfast and lunch. Dinner in the Waldorf was OK but again the food was bland and incerdibly small portions. Again many complaints about both quality and amount. The tables are packed much too closely together and we, for example, were unable to access our table without asking people on the next table to move. The entertainment was poor with the exception of the cruise director himself who was a cut above the rest of the show team in terms of professionalism and talent. If you are into bingo, playing blankaty blank, who wants to be a millionaire or similar or watching Laurel & Hardy then this is the cruise for you! The restaurant staff were pleasant and tried their best under the circumstances and we could have no complaint about their service or attitude. The bar staff however were all Eastern European and we found then to be disinterested and surly. They were forever removing glasses almost before you had finished your drink and readjusting chairs and tables even if you just taken a toilet break. It was almost as though they considered you were an intrusion. We took this cruise because the itinerary was great but having read previous reviews we did have some concerns sufficient enough for us to insist on a suite. We were glad that we did because we could at least retire to the sanctuary of our cabin upon which we had no complaints. We also arranged our own tours although the few ships tours we did do were OK. The average age profile would, we guess, be well over 70, almost all British with some Australians, and whilst no doubt there will be many repeat cruisers there were also many who like ourselves will not be sailing with Cruise & Maritime Voyages or the Marco Polo again. As we said this is our personal opinion and it just did not suit what we have become accustomed to both in terms of quality of service or clientel. If you decide to sail with them choose it for the itinerary and make sure you have a good cabin preferably organise your own tours. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2015
We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise to Canada. This cruise was advertised as a commemorative cruise and was always going to be fully booked with passengers travelling from as far Australia to be on it. If the cruise had been in warmer ... Read More
We thoroughly enjoyed our cruise to Canada. This cruise was advertised as a commemorative cruise and was always going to be fully booked with passengers travelling from as far Australia to be on it. If the cruise had been in warmer climes more passengers would have been out on deck so the lounges were quite crowed. The staff very pleasant and tried to carry out any requests made of them. The Captain was very professional as were the officers. The food was good (six courses for dinner and if requested extra vegetables available). Our cabin was very spacious and comfortable and was kept clean and tidy by our steward. The tours were some of the best we have experienced and very efficiently organised, One such tour was to see 'La Fabuleuse' in Saguernay. This was as good as any London West End show with a cast of 200 volunteers (very professional). The show relives the history of the area with some incredible special effects and was specially put on in English for just 85 of us from the ship. We did find that the bistro was crowded but if you delayed going there until the first rush was over usually three quarters of an hour or so, there were plenty of tables to be had. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
Chose this cruise because of its interesting itinerary and because it sailed to countries & places I had never visited...Kirkwall, Iceland, Greenland, St John's, Nova Scotia, Quebec. As cruise virgins my wife & I had ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of its interesting itinerary and because it sailed to countries & places I had never visited...Kirkwall, Iceland, Greenland, St John's, Nova Scotia, Quebec. As cruise virgins my wife & I had nothing to compare this with - other than an excellent & fascinating trip from Bergen up to the Russian border with Hurtigruten a couple of years earlier. The trip turned out to be a few days too long. Routines gradually became repetitive and too many days were spent at sea just adding miles to our next port of call. Nevertheless, for a bargain price and a fascinating cruise, this was a pleasant experience that didn't put us off cruising... but did teach us some good lessons. We were not looking forward to the Marco Polo after reading so many nasty & negative reviews but we were pleasantly surprised. Yes, the hip IS old but it is clean, well looked after and comfortable. It is small enough to have given us a sense of belonging and we were looked after very cheerfully and professionally by our cabin maid and by the two waiters / stewards who served most of our meals. Staff were generally cheerful, polite and industrious. Our Greek captain had a good sense of humour, a thick accent and limited English but proved to be good at his job. Our inner cabin proved comfortable and spacious (the swimming pool was overhead and provided sloshing sounds at times), We took part in many activities that included ballroom dancing, keep fit, photography, choir, pilates and attending lectures and evening shows. We also read a good deal and used the small library which had a fair selection of books. Dining proved interesting: we had almost all our meals served to us in the formal dining room with good cutlery and crockery and attentive, smiling stewards. The food was generally good but rarely noteworthy...some repetition was inevitable but we were fortunate to find pleasant companions and most meals were full of laughter and smiles. We did our own thing at most ports and rarely used the ship's excursions. Most seemed to have been well organised but also expensive and slow. We thoroughly enjoyed being independent but should have realised why we were not very popular by ignoring virtually all of their excursions. We returned with some great memories of ports, activities and people; some fantastic photographs, and the Marco Polo COUGH that had affected so many passengers and that lasted for another 5 days when we reached home. Great value...a happy cruise...cheerful staff...good memories and, apart from the cough, a healthy and enjoyable trip. We have booked aboard the Magellan for a Baltic cruise in October so, yes, we will be going again. Read Less
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