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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: January 2019
We booked this trip over a year ago - for the itinereary - our first time with CMV - and our last unless they come up with an exceptional route. The first port of call, Belize, was cancelled a week or so before we flew. CMV hadn't ... Read More
We booked this trip over a year ago - for the itinereary - our first time with CMV - and our last unless they come up with an exceptional route. The first port of call, Belize, was cancelled a week or so before we flew. CMV hadn't realised the chartered Virgib Atlantic flights couldn't land at the embarakation port of Cozumel due to their size. Consequently we landed at Cancun then coach to Playa Del Carmen and ferry to Cozumel adding over 5 hours to our trip after a long flight. We arrived at 8 pm - the second flight was 3 hrs later. Consequently there was no time to include Belize (which was one of the reasons we booked). Surely CMV must have known about this when they planned the cruise. Our cabin was ok and our steward exceptional. No fridge but kettle etc and good shower. The ship, despite a refurb, is nearing the end of its days The food was palapatable at best but not up to the standard of the several cruise lines we've sailed with before. It was a treat to have a live 6 piece band but the compant shows were unispiring. The 4 British singers were good and the 12 European dancers were proficient but the choreographty was samey and some of the costumes were dire. Some nights a singer had to inroduce the show and request applause at the end - where was the CD? We had two excellent guest speakers, one gave 4 lectures about the canal (and a useful commentary as we traversed the canal. The other chap gave 4 talks about photography and his travels which I enjoyed. We usually enjoy dancing on a cruise but the male of the duo in the Captains Club lounge was, quite frankly, so poor - choosing songs out of his range - that we couldn't bare to listen. The TV films in our cabin had a habit of "freezing" half way through then starting from scratch or were in a foreign language - Forrest Gump in Chinese! The daytime "activities" were uninspired and in many cases do it yourself with no cruise staff presiding. Two days before we were due to stop in Nicargua we were advised that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office only endorsed essential travel. This edict had been in place for several months and other cruise ships were callling there with no problems. Even though CMV secured a second Costa Rica port of call to replace Nicaragua they should have advised us much earlier rather than rely on a last minute change of policy. We were due to stop to refuel in Barbados on our return flight (either it was cheaper there or the plane was too heavy to take off from San Jose with a full fuel load. As soon as we took off the pilot announced that we couldn't go to Barbados as air space over Columbia was denied to us - following a car bomb in Bogata 4 days earlier. Surely Virgin Atlantic must have known before take off. We were diverted tp Montego Bay where we were told that they had no food prepared and were there any volunteers to forgo a meal. After an hour's delay hot pasta and beef was supplied - a packet of crisps for the vegetarians. Next year's CMV Panama Canal cruise already has 2 fewer ports of call. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
A cruise around the Canaries and the Caribbean over Xmas/New Year sounded idillic. Alas, it proved totally the opposite, mainly boring due to lack of organised entertainment during "at sea" days which could be four days in a ... Read More
A cruise around the Canaries and the Caribbean over Xmas/New Year sounded idillic. Alas, it proved totally the opposite, mainly boring due to lack of organised entertainment during "at sea" days which could be four days in a row. Furthermore, we found ourselves on a ship built over 33 years ago, so very outdated. We experieced rough seas between UK and Lisbon and the ship could not cope and rolled like a cork. Only the islands of Madeira, Antigua and Cozulmel were of interest. So much for visitng the Caribbean? Our cabin was very small and did not represent anything like in the cruise brochure.It was stuffy with faulty air conditioning, no window to open and there was a constant smell of nausiating food and kitchen in the hallway and cabin. On arrival in Las Palmas we went out an bought ourselves a fan for the cabin. On arrival back home we had to wash every item of clothing, even new clothing not worn to try and get rid of the horrible food/kitchen smell. The only bright aspect of the cabin was the excellent steward from Honduras called Nelson. The food was terrible. At one lunchtime sitting, all 8 of us on the table left the food and told the Manager to throw it overboard along with the chef. Yes it was that bad. The highlight each evening was the 45 minute show in the in the Magellan Show Lounge. The ship has its own group of about 8 dancers and 6 singers and they put on a great show each evening. The singers were superb. They are worthy of being on a major cruise liner. Another pre-dinner highlight was the classical recital in the Hampton's Bar with a lovely pianist and an excellen violinist. There was nightly entertaiment in the Captains Club if you can call the duo, Derya & Tolga entertainment as neither could sing in tune and we often completely off key. Another complaint is the scam tactics of the barmen who give short measure with wine drinks. I sent my so-called 250ml drinks back more than 20 times for top-up and not once was there any objection from a barman? They need glasses with measurement amounts shown on the glass to stop this practise. The ports of call, with the exception of Madeira, Antigua & Cozumel were a complete waste of time. Cape Verde was stepping into the a poor third world country with filth and poverty everywhere. We were happy to reach Cozumel at the end of the cruise and disembark, but we still had organisational disasters. It took almost a whole day to get from Cozumel to Cancun airport. Then there was a 2 hour flight delay. This was made worse by having to sit on the bus at Gatwick to take us back to Tilbury for over one hour. Upon arrival back at Tilbury Docks we found all our cars unaccessable due to being advised where to park by the cruise car parking attendants. The police were called who removed a fence and help us, one by one to break free. My car was in a far corner and it took 2 hours before I was out. Need I say that my crusing days are over and it you decide to cruise I suggest you made sure it is not on the Magellan. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This was our 9th Cruise and our second with CMV, the first being on the Marco Polo to Iceland Greenland & Canada and we still rate this as our best ever cruise. The food, service and entertainment were all superb so we were very much ... Read More
This was our 9th Cruise and our second with CMV, the first being on the Marco Polo to Iceland Greenland & Canada and we still rate this as our best ever cruise. The food, service and entertainment were all superb so we were very much looking foward to 46 nights on CMV's new flagship. Regretably, apart from the itinerary this was almost certainly our least enjoyable cruise. The food was poor, there were issues withe service in the MDR and the entertaiment overall was not good. Lot's of passengers complained to the head chef regarding food which no some nights was almost inedible and he blamed it on a restricted budget which did not allow him to purchase the best ingredients. I had read reviews rearding issues with service and assumed that by November these would have been resolved but sadly this was not the case. We often had the feeling that our waiters just wanted us in and out asap. Plates were cleared before everyone had finished, cutlery for one course was put out while the previous course was still being eaten and on one night an attempt was made to serve coffee immediatly after our main course despite the fact we had ordered a sweet and cheese course.Generally there was also something of language issue with some staff from the Indian Subcontinent. The entertainment was also an issue. Overall it was not bad with a very hardworking showteam putting on lot's of shows, but there was a distinct lack of guest entertainers- just two in all for a 46 night cruise and when i challenged the Cruise Director regarding this he confirmed what the chef had said, i.e. that was all his budget would allow him to do, and the two we did have, one was second rate and the other appaling Having had a major re-fit there were some areas which appeared to have been forgotten. The showtheatre in paricular where some of the seating was very shabby and worst of all there were rows of bench seats which are lower that the chairs in front so anyone sitting in these had a very restricted view. I could go on particularly regarding the way in which dining during some very rough weather was handled a bemusing layout in the plantation buffet, what appeared to have been recycled carpet outside "the dome". I was always taught that when launching a new product it is essential to get it right first time as you may not get a second chance and CMV will have to work very hard to persuade me to book another cruise. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: February 2017
Last minute deal, cheap, did no research, should have looked at reports on BBC news from 2014 it would have given some idea of what to expect. Our table staff and steward were very good but they had very little influence on standards. The ... Read More
Last minute deal, cheap, did no research, should have looked at reports on BBC news from 2014 it would have given some idea of what to expect. Our table staff and steward were very good but they had very little influence on standards. The food sometimes tolerable but in the main it was poor fare, even down to the fact that eggs had to be cooked solid in an attempt to avoid salmonella. The entertainment was of the lowest standard,3 supposed comedians in 5 weeks plus resident dancers who doubled as hosts. I do not have the time to list all of the points of dissatisfaction so people will have to make their own minds up. I will mention the fact that tendering with their lifeboats was a disaster as in Jamaica they had to build a step on quayside as the tender was to low in the water and in Georgetown they said the sea was to rough, which it wasn't, so goodness knows what would happen if there was an emergency. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2017
I wanted to take the opportunity to go down the river Amazon and visit some of the Caribbean islands. I stayed in a B & B in Bristol the night before embarkation. Managed to have a look round Bristol (my first time there) must go back ... Read More
I wanted to take the opportunity to go down the river Amazon and visit some of the Caribbean islands. I stayed in a B & B in Bristol the night before embarkation. Managed to have a look round Bristol (my first time there) must go back for a few days sometime soon. The embarkation was a bit of a nightmare, having arrived as requested at 4.00 pm we were herded into a hanger and it took several hours before we were called. However, once on board found our cabin and luggage arrived soon after. The dining was 'free seating' which is not to my liking but this only happened on a few occasions. The ship may have looked a little worn round the edges but it was perfectly serviceable and kept scrupulously clean, staff were constantly cleaning. My inside cabin was at the pointy end and so I felt every bump and swell but fortunately I quite liked that. We had a problem with the shower and it was remedied within an hour or so. Similarly the sink leaked and a new waste was fitted the next day. Dining - I have very fond memories of the food, I ate far too much but it was hard not to. there was a very good selection of food at every sitting. You would be hard put to go hungry. I did not try any of the entertainment so cannot comment. The ports and shore excursions were well planned and when disembarkation was problematic because of shore difficulties the crew always came up trumps by making steps to add to the jetty or boats, nothing was too much for them. Drinks on board were very reasonable. Best thing that made the cruise pleasurable were the staff. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2015
Ship is lovely, but no laundry,cinema or tea/coffee facility in cabins - essential on long cruises, but not according to CMV. Staff are generally lacking in enthusiasm and all crew struggle with English. Restaurant staff and cabin ... Read More
Ship is lovely, but no laundry,cinema or tea/coffee facility in cabins - essential on long cruises, but not according to CMV. Staff are generally lacking in enthusiasm and all crew struggle with English. Restaurant staff and cabin staff are very good. Food is very average - poor quality ingredients and meat was always overcooked, but well presented. Drinks are expensive - beware mixed drinks, ie vodka and tonic, using cheap and nasty spirits. A bottle of house red at dinner will set you back £15 for a wine that could probably be picked up in a supermarket for a fiver. Daytime activities are woeful and evening entertainment poor. Internet is expensive (£35 for 10 hours) and connection was very difficult, if not impossible. Gratuities are, in reality, a service charge and automatically debited to passengers' accounts. Many crew do not benefit from this system, despite what CMV claim. Good points? - Gym, steam and sauna suite ( without drinking water) and the young people that clean and disinfect the staircase handrails - always working, always cheerful and always polite. Will we cruise with CMV again? No. Read Less
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