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7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Clean and bright ship, friendly and caring crew with a very competent Captain. Quality of meat and hotness of food in the restaurant could be improved. Tepid scrambled eggs are not nice! Meat was often tough. The efficiency of delivery ... Read More
Clean and bright ship, friendly and caring crew with a very competent Captain. Quality of meat and hotness of food in the restaurant could be improved. Tepid scrambled eggs are not nice! Meat was often tough. The efficiency of delivery of the evening meal needs to be smarter as there is a long delay in receiving the food after the taking of the order. Doesn't need to be served at speed but there is a happy medium. It was obviously a first time cruise together for the staff, they do need to improve their efficiency and delivery of information to guests. Some staff are more experienced than others however and they compensated for those who were inexperienced. Crew should endeavour to be quieter during the night time hours as there seemed to be constant moving about on the ship both on the out side top deck and inside the ship. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2017
As regular ocean cruisers we decided to try something different. We were not disappointed - this Danube, Mainz, Rhine cruise ticked all the boxes for a small ship. Great food, interesting mix of people and very efficient crew. One of ... Read More
As regular ocean cruisers we decided to try something different. We were not disappointed - this Danube, Mainz, Rhine cruise ticked all the boxes for a small ship. Great food, interesting mix of people and very efficient crew. One of the highlights was a tour of the galley which was something of an eye-opener. How five crew members worked in such a confined space producing such excellent food was a miracle! All the tours were efficiently organised and the innovative communication system recently introduced worked extremely well - all the guides raved about it! Destinations were all well worth the visit with usually sufficient free time to explore. The 'extra' tours/trips which included a visit to the Schonbrun Palace and a private concert in Vienna were excellent. Richard Grey the Tour Director was the best we had ever encountered on any of our previous ocean cruises. The only downside to the whole trip was the mayhem at Heathrow which would probably put us off from doing a similar holiday again unless Eurostar was an option. Otherwise, a most enjoyable two weeks which probably surpassed our expectations. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2017
I chose this cruise because I particularly wished to visit Heidleburg and I had heard people talk about the scenery on the River Rhine . River cruises tend to have fewer passengers on board and this was the case on Emerald Star. All ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I particularly wished to visit Heidleburg and I had heard people talk about the scenery on the River Rhine . River cruises tend to have fewer passengers on board and this was the case on Emerald Star. All passengers received good attention and I was especially pleased the way the staff assisted people with disabilities. There was plenty of space on board. The only time a lot of passengers came together was at Evening Dinner. The table service was great and the menus catered for most tastes. If you were not happy with the selection for the day. The staff would help to find you an alternative. The food was excellent for all the on board meals - breakfast, lunch and Evening Dinner. Breakfast and Lunch were al frescoe, one chose whatever one wanted from the central buffett bar. Everywhere was very clean and hygienic. One of the big pluses for me was the drink machine in the Reflections Lounge. This was constantly in Service and it was wonderful to be able to get a choice of hot drinks whenever one wanted. My only issue with my beautiful, comfortable cabin was the fact that there was NO READING LAMP by the bed head. I hope Emerald Waterways can rectify this for the single cabins. The shore excursions were well organised and most enjoyable. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
This was our 3rd river cruise but our 1st with Emerald. The ship was changed pretty much last minute but it was identical to the 1 we were originally on so no negative impact. We flew into Budapest, got to the luggage carousel to be ... Read More
This was our 3rd river cruise but our 1st with Emerald. The ship was changed pretty much last minute but it was identical to the 1 we were originally on so no negative impact. We flew into Budapest, got to the luggage carousel to be greeted by 3 Emerald representatives. They were very well organised and had us on the bus in minutes...an excellent start. On arrival at the ship we given a warm welcome, checked in quickly and escorted to our cabin and given a quick tour of it. We were on the upper deck and had a panorama balcony....which meant the top half of the window retracted, a very good idea and we used it quite a lot over the week. The cabin was lovely and much larger than we were expecting. We had the bed configured as a double and it might have been a bit tighter as twins. Modern, clean, great shower, plenty of toiletries, 6 large,deep drawers. Not a lot of hanging space due to the safe and minibar but there was enough for us. We liked the bathrobes and slippers too. 1 major plus for me was the hairdryer....it was actually a fully functioning, fit for purpose hairdryer....and after years of traveling worldwide a usable hairdryer is rare ...10 out of 10! We went along to the dining room for the light lunch. Food was the only thing on the whole cruise that disappointed us. It was served lukewarm most of the time. Breakfast was fine but lunch and dinner were pretty awful. The lack of choice when it came to meat dishes was a problem most days. We think we are very easily pleased with food but this cruise proved that perhaps we aren't. Service at dinner was slow and the whole dining system seemed very disorganised and badly managed. Help yourself tea and coffee all day was of a good quality. The tours at every place we stopped were all good with good guides and just the right length of time. Our tour for tea with a local family from Bratislava was wonderful.....they made wine and were happy to share it We only did 1 optional tour which was the classical concert in Vienna...that was wonderful too...excellent quality. All the staff we found to be helpful, friendly and tried to make the cruise a good experience. Very little evening entertainment....a dance troupe in Budapest was nice as was the Ummpah Band in Regensberg. 2 other nights Simona arranged some fun competitions which most folks entered into. The other nights we had a dour pianist. The most amazing person was our cruise director Simona...she was absolutely brilliant. We never saw her without a smile on her face and everything was organised, buses arrived on time and got back on time...she was just wonderful. The other guests were mainly from the UK, a few USA and Canadians. This was the first cruise on the Danube of the season so perhaps the food issues we had will be ironed out. On departure everything went as smoothly as our arrival. Would we cruise Emerald again? If someone assured us that the food would be superior to what we experienced on this cruise then Yes....as everything else exceeded expectation. It was a shame that something so easily rectified marred our experience. Read Less
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