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4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
REVIEW:      I am back from my May 23rd, AmaDolce Taste of Bordeaux.    Lets just say I'm glad I sailed on AmaStella and AmaPrima previously.  If this was my first Ama sailing I would never have sailed her again.    The ... Read More
REVIEW:      I am back from my May 23rd, AmaDolce Taste of Bordeaux.    Lets just say I'm glad I sailed on AmaStella and AmaPrima previously.  If this was my first Ama sailing I would never have sailed her again.    The bad:  The food offerings were far different from my previous experience.  There were two main entrees in the evening to chose from, one fish and then one meat.  Then had the always available burger, chicken breast or steak.  I can honestly say that neither the steak or meat options was ever tasty.   I recall their meat dishes melting in your mouth.  This wasn't the case.  The service was terrible.   They would bring french fries, disappear and when you finally get their attention to bring ketchup it would take 15 minutes and usually a second request.    Same with the drink service during dinner.  One night we sat and there was no butter (normally there were three types), one was missing and again, after asking we had to ask again after 15 minutes it was brought.     Two nights prior to disembarkation, we decided to sit in a different section and did receive good service, so shame on us for not changing servers sooner.  (although service should be the same throughout).    Keep in mind this ship that normally sails with 146 only had 115 passengers on board.   There were many empty cabins.   Being in wine country we expected to have more tastings and such on the excursions.   It just seemed a lot of time was spent trying to kill time.   Overall, in a day we may have actually visited one winery a day and received three small tastings.     The good:     Love the new Wellness coach on board who held fitness stretches, yoga, to high intensity classes each day.    Love the Sip and Sail cocktail hour each night.  Their complimentary wine offerings are very tasty.  My own tips:   If you need a hotel prior/after the cruise in Bordeaux, I highly recommend Hotel Vatel.  It is part of the international hospitality school and the service is excellent, the room large for a European hotel and it was very reasonable ($150).  You can walk to the river cruise from there.   They actually saw us walking towards the ship and a staff ran up to take our bags.  We did our own pre-cruise in Tours & Amboise.  It was very easy.  From Paris CDG we took the high speed rail and in 1 1/2 hours you are in Tours (St. Pierre des Corps station) we stayed in an airbnb nearby.  Took a train for $1.30 to tours one day and Amboise another on our own, recommend the Le Petite trolley in both towns to give you an overview then return to the areas your like.    One day we did a full day excursion to three Chateaux out of Tours.   We got back on the high speed rail and continued onto Bordeaux.   Very easy as that is the same train whether we would have taken if directly CDG-Bordeaux.     Our travel agent knew we would stay one night in Bordeaux before embarking.  He advised us to pick up our Cit du Vin tickets the day we board and arranged that and recommended booking lunch in their rooftop restaurant Le7.  We dropped our bags off at around 10 am with Ama who gave us our tickets (for all passengers this Cit du Vin excursion is done (for our cruise) the last day after arriving back in Bordeaux).   Cit du Vin is an interactive museum (personally my daughter nor I cared for it) and many passengers we spoke with the last day did not either, but it is hyped up to be great.   You will be left on your own and an audiovox to do it at your own pace.   You can spend an hour to half a day if you want.    We did enjoy the glass of wine up top (part of your ticket) and then we proceeded to have lunch at Le7 (i booked this months in advance on my travel agents recommendation.      We really did enjoy doing this.    My daughter did do the city tour of Bordeaux with the excursion but when the rest continue to Cit du Vin she returned to the boat.  I had taken a bicycle from the ship and did my own thing.    Probably my favorite day as it was always the best weather day we had.     Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We took our first river cruise on the AmaDolce Bordeaux cruise. I should have checked the amount of cruising because there was very little scenic cruising on this route. To me, this river cruise is just assisted living on a ship. Your ... Read More
We took our first river cruise on the AmaDolce Bordeaux cruise. I should have checked the amount of cruising because there was very little scenic cruising on this route. To me, this river cruise is just assisted living on a ship. Your meals are prepared for you at specific times and you go on excursions on large buses. We're not quite at that age, yet. If you like river cruises, then I would recommend not upgrading unless you have a daily scenic cruise. Otherwise, you're paying for balconies and doors to use while you're sitting at the dock, sometimes with other ships attached to your ship. Not really worth the extra money. Plus, and this applies to all Amawaterways ships, DO NOT get a room on the same level with the Chef's Restaurant. Rowdy and inebriated folks will come down the hallway at all hours and will wake you up if you choose to retire after 10PM. We need to age 10 more years until river cruising would be worthwhile. We should have just gotten a hotel in Bordeaux; taken some private chateau tours and then sat at a wine bar every day to try all the different wines. Then, go to a wine shop, order and ship. A local Bordeaux river cruise would have been better. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2018
We were on a wine cruise. The ship is lovely, the staff fabulous. We enjoyed the cities and tours we took of wineries and sites. The cruise director Chris was very good. I generally enjoyed the food but after a few days the food started ... Read More
We were on a wine cruise. The ship is lovely, the staff fabulous. We enjoyed the cities and tours we took of wineries and sites. The cruise director Chris was very good. I generally enjoyed the food but after a few days the food started to taste the same. My last meal of a white fish and risotto was not very good at all. My biggest issue, food handling. I was surprised upon arrival on the ship to find platters of food available without staff present and passengers served themselves. They had many food stations similar to this at breakfast and lunch and I was really uncomfortable with this. Many people do not wash their hands and with everyone touching the utensils many times this can only lead to disaster, which it did for me. I had a terrible gastrointestinal illness as several other passengers did. I am careful to wash my hands many times but on a ship, illness is sometimes unavoidable. I am not an experienced cruiser except for a one time Mediterranean cruise on a smaller ship. On that particular cruise line, I recall that they did not have food available sitting out for self serve. Also, unfortunately, our cabin was on the side of the ship that was parked next to another ship for 24 hours. We did not have a view or sunlight for that amount of time. So bottom line, a very nice ship and staff but I would not travel with them again unless they improve some of the food handling procedures and find out if blocking out my rooms view by another ship would be avoidable. I realize that is no guarantee but it would be an improvement I am sure. Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We knew going into things that this was a difficult itinerary because of the tides on the river. We found the ship to be clean and comfortable, and the staff were very good. Service most times was excellent, but there were constant issues ... Read More
We knew going into things that this was a difficult itinerary because of the tides on the river. We found the ship to be clean and comfortable, and the staff were very good. Service most times was excellent, but there were constant issues with service in the dining room. Several nights were seated by the staff, and the rest of the time it was seat yourself. It was very confusing. We often didn't get the meal ordered, or part of it didn't show up at all. Bar service was excellent. We did enjoy the Chef's tasting, and did this twice during the trip. The excursions were the big problem we had with this cruise. We had several excursions that had real issues. One day only two out of four buses showed up in Bordeaux for an afternoon excursion. The other two buses went to PAUILLAC by mistake. We had mass confusion on the dock while the staff tried to figure out what to do. Groups were moved from one bus to another and back again, while guides were trying to explain what the issue was. At no point did anyone from the ship board our bus to explain what the situation was. Finally approximately 15 people were not able to board a bus, and after 45 minutes with the staff trying to figure things out, the two buses left, and those 15 people waited another hour in the dock for another bus to arrive. In order to straighten the problem out, the two buses from PAUILLAC met us the Chateau Margaux At that point we had some people leave our bus, and we headed to our wine tasting. After about 45 minutes of time at the winery, we went back to the Chateau Margaux, (which was closed), so that people could take pictures, We then back tracked again on our way to Pauillac. We covered the same road 3 times. We then continued on to a bus tour of viewing famous chateaus from the road, and spent a further two hours on the bus. We spent 5 hours on a tour that included 45 minutes of time at a winery. The day before our visit to the market at Bazas, we arrived just as the market was closing. Again there was confusion with some guides telling people we had 15 minutes before meeting the bus, and others saying 45 minutes. There is a lot of work to be done on communication with this itinerary. We also had a day where the guide received word that ship was going to be late arriving in Libourne, so again we drove around in circles rather than going to where to ship would be arriving, and letting us decide what we wanted to do. There was a lovely little bar by the river where we would have loved to have relaxed and have a drink while waiting for the ship to dock, but instead we were driving around Libourne, feeling again like we were trapped on a bus. The wineries we visited were all excellent, and we enjoyed the wines we tasted. We also enjoyed the visit to Chateau Roquetaillade. Some excursions were good, but the ones with issues had big issues. I hope they manage to work through some of the excursion issues, as it wasn't a bad a cruise, just some really bad excursions. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2011
We consider ourselves to be seasoned cruise customers, although we had not taken a river cruise until we booked with you for April 25th. We chose AMA because we were told that they ran a Mercedes-Benz type of experience. Sadly, this turned ... Read More
We consider ourselves to be seasoned cruise customers, although we had not taken a river cruise until we booked with you for April 25th. We chose AMA because we were told that they ran a Mercedes-Benz type of experience. Sadly, this turned out to not be true.We do want to acknowledge the staff of the AMADolce, from the cruise director to the hotel director to the Pursers to the support staffs, as being very good overall. However, somewhere in AMA's literature it states that by the second day the crew will know our names. Never happened. There was never any attempt by the crew to learn our names. It's a small issue, but becomes a bigger one because the literature suggests a higher level of personal interaction that never takes place.Our biggest complaint was with the food. The portions were extremely small, and there was not one night that the dinner appeared to have been custom cooked. One evening, the entrEe was rack of lamb, which had the appearance of being precooked and reheated prior to serving. All four of us at our table ordered this main course, and all four servings of lamb had the same preprepared look and taste.I am extremely sensitive to autolyzed yeast extract, also known as MSG. The kitchen either uses this ingredient or a similar one on a daily basis, or there was something else in the meals that caused me to be unable to sleep for the first four nights of the cruise. I'm sure the soups contained this ingredient also. For the last three nights of the cruise, I order the most bland choices available, skipping soups, and, lo and behold, I slept very well.One thing we especially enjoy on our cruises are tasty, creative desserts. Not one of the AMA desserts was appealing to us... they were flavorless and unimaginative.Overall, we liked our cabin, except for the fact that the mattresses were narrower than any we have ever encountered on a cruise line. Neither of us are large people, yet the narrowness of the mattresses was a contributing factor to our sleep deprivation. We also encountered a noise issue that apparently is a way of life in River cruising. Our cabin was on the top deck, and twice while we were trying to sleep we heard the sound of many, many, MANY sets of feet climbing over our cabin on the way to their docked ship. We don't have any clue as to how AMA might solve this problem, but it added to the list of negative issues we encountered during our cruise.Regarding the land tours we took, the tour guides were perfunctory but not special in any way. On the cruise was an older woman whose right leg was fused straight. The tour guides didn't seem to make any special effort to make this passenger comfortable.Lastly, the Captain lacked a professional, authoritarian aura. His demeanor did nothing to improve our overall cruise experience.We have cruised with six Star lines, five Star lines, all away down to our one and only cruise (our last cruise) with Carnival. We hoped that AMAWaterways would in some ways remind us of our Regent Seven Seas experience, and perhaps even excel. We are disappointed this was not the case. Read Less
AmaDolce Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.5
Dining 4.5 4.5
Entertainment 3.5 4.0
Public Rooms 4.0 4.6
Fitness Recreation 4.0 3.7
Family 2.0 3.7
Shore Excursion 4.0 4.3
Enrichment 3.0 4.0
Service 5.0 4.7
Value For Money 4.0 4.3

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