3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
We chose this cruise because it focused on Cuba, not just a "sail by" with one stop, and we had been on this ship on the Great Lakes where it works in the summer. We liked the small boat, but be prepared for rock n roll on the ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it focused on Cuba, not just a "sail by" with one stop, and we had been on this ship on the Great Lakes where it works in the summer. We liked the small boat, but be prepared for rock n roll on the open ocean- even in good weather. I never get sea sick, but lots of passengers did. The average age of the passengers was well into their 80s, about ten years older than my wife & I yielding lots of medical issues. A 20 minute bus stop on tour turned into an hour for all the passengers to offload and get back on. The young tour directors were frustrated by the "old" people, and were not real familiar with the places we visited. (They should take a tour as a passenger first). We had very high expectations for the very high price. That said, the crew was fantastic, ship very clean, and the ports very interesting. The food was ordinary-- no flavors, salt, etc. I am sure it was fit for many passengers, but not me. I like flavorful food, and local dishes, not food brought from Florida. Use caution with the departure hotel stay. They switched the hotel after booking but forgot to tell me or give hotel pick up instructions so we did not have to spend 2 hours at the airport figuring this out on our own. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
My husband and I recently took this cruise to Cuba, we have both always wanted to go there. I can't say enough good things about it. This ship goes to places most Americans will never see, We enjoyed the daily talks on the ship ... Read More
My husband and I recently took this cruise to Cuba, we have both always wanted to go there. I can't say enough good things about it. This ship goes to places most Americans will never see, We enjoyed the daily talks on the ship providing information on various topics in regards to the ports we were visiting etc.. At each stop the tours that we went on were very good and educational, The food was very good on the ship and the staff was great. My husband and I were probably one of the youngest people on this trip which was fine with us. The cruise ship does not have a casino or swimming pool. All rooms are a decent size and all have balcony's. If you have ever thought about going to Cuba this is the cruise to take, Oh, and we felt very safe everywhere we went in Cuba, Believe it or not they have a very low crime rate Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise PRIMARILY for Havana. 2 days were promised. We already had plans to travel via Canada or mexico, but the lure of additional stops and 2 days in Havana were too much to resist. What a BIG mistake!!! The cruise line ... Read More
We chose this cruise PRIMARILY for Havana. 2 days were promised. We already had plans to travel via Canada or mexico, but the lure of additional stops and 2 days in Havana were too much to resist. What a BIG mistake!!! The cruise line reneged on the Havana stop and we got CHEATED out of a day in Havana , instead we spent an extra day at sea doing NOTHING!!! davidfhumo wrote a review from a different time and it seems to be the norm. DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY !!!! The food on board is palatable but far from luxurious. Never mind the pretend bartenders. They couldn't make a decent drink if their life depended on it. That may have something to do with tending bar was an added responsibility after a primary job on board such as housecleaning. (That really surprised me to see the bartender cleaning rooms). Entertainment consist of a 2 man no talent band with terribly laughable interpretations on popular music. The crew corporate staff was non helpful in offering any insight as to why we were cheated out of our contracted cruise. The "SERVICE" staff were VERY helpful and deserve to be in better company. To them my heart goes out to. One more thought, please be honest with yourself. If you have physical limitations, this is not the cruise for you. The excursions do not bode well for some. The boat has minimal facilities and a serious lack of amusement potential during sailing times. Cuba is GREAT! But DON"T waste your money with this cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
We have sailed on small and large ships and they both have something going for them. This cruise had about 150 passengers and was a great way to meet new people. On this size ship you see the same people all the time and it is easy to ... Read More
We have sailed on small and large ships and they both have something going for them. This cruise had about 150 passengers and was a great way to meet new people. On this size ship you see the same people all the time and it is easy to get to know each other. The lectures are very topical and even the entertainment although limited came down and joined us for our meals. On a large ship you may not see someone more than once with dinner shifts and sheer volume of people. On the other hand a larger ship has more entertainment and certainly more glam in the entertainment stage productions. It is all about what you want on the cruise. This trip to the coast of Main was certainly more enjoyable with new met friends and an excellent smaller ship and crew. The food was excellent and the daily menus offered a good variety of selections. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose this cruise to be with our aging parents. The good news: nobody died. The bad news: we had to live through a week of noisy nights, cheap over cooked or processed food, missed excursions, and cheap accommodations. We arrived at ... Read More
We chose this cruise to be with our aging parents. The good news: nobody died. The bad news: we had to live through a week of noisy nights, cheap over cooked or processed food, missed excursions, and cheap accommodations. We arrived at ports only to be told we could not disembark because of weather. Our itinerary changed with no notice as the staff made poor decisions about excursions. It was obvious from the forecast, for example, that we would not be able to take a tender off the ship to nearby Campobello Island, but we left the safe docking at delightful Eastport, Maine anyway and spent the day anchored two hundred yards away from shore. This happened again two days later when the decision was made to change course to avoid heavy winds while knowing we couldn’t get into the next port. We backtracked to St John’s the next day on a Sunday when there was nothing to do. The food would make Denny’s look like five stars No exercise facility, unless you want to risk falling overboard in a gale Spent an hour waiting in freezing temps for a tender with no explanation as to why none was coming as we were 7 minutes from the ship. The lounges were cramped and did not afford views creating a very claustrophobic environment especially since we spent so much time on board. The entertainers were lovey people; however, their style was not our style but they seemed to be appreciated by many of the guests. If they were only a few of several choices for entertainment, they would have been fine (for others). Since this was a very expensive cruise, per capita per day, we expected the same quality service and amenities that we have enjoyed on other luxury cruise lines. We were sorely disappointed from the moment of check in to our disembarkation. If the cost of this cruise had been significantly lower, our expectations would not have been so high. I have no desire or intention of taking another Pearl of the Seas or American Cruise line cruise again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
For anyone relying on a wheelchair, beware. There were steps to navigate during initial boarding; the day trips were unavailable to us because 5 of the stops we anchored in the harbor and the small boat used to get us to the mainland had ... Read More
For anyone relying on a wheelchair, beware. There were steps to navigate during initial boarding; the day trips were unavailable to us because 5 of the stops we anchored in the harbor and the small boat used to get us to the mainland had steps; and if we were able to get to land, the tour busses were not wheelchair accessible. There were layers of problems getting off and on the boat so even if we had successfully navigated one hurdle, another one existed. For instance, if we had been able to get onto tgevtender boat, on shore the ramp used to get up to the pier had slats across it which the wheelchair couldn’t bump over. The “handicapped” room we were given was a slightly modified able bodied room. The bathroom was the biggest problem. I have tried calling, emailing, post mailing Pearl Seas and they will not return my call. Horrendous trip. Even worse customer service. Caveat emptor. Find another cruise line. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
My husband and I chose this cruise as we had previously toured the area in the late 1990's via two road trips and decided that we'd enjoy viewing it again from the water with fall foliage in its prime. Unfortunately Hurricane ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise as we had previously toured the area in the late 1990's via two road trips and decided that we'd enjoy viewing it again from the water with fall foliage in its prime. Unfortunately Hurricane Michael decided to disappoint us with rough seas and rain through out our cruise, causing us to miss 3 of the 9 ports (Baie-Comeau, Halifax, & Bar Harbor) on our scheduled itinerary. Although this change was disappointing, we did come away with a healthy respect of the hardships and challenges that early mariners faced back in the day. The Pearl Mist proved herself to be sea worthy and it's crew proved up to the challenges that Mother Nature threw at them. Excursions were reworked and the kitchen staff likely faced meal planning challenges in order to accommodate the ever changing itineraries. Passengers interacted in the Atlantic & Pacific Lounges as well as hanging out in the well stocked library. Wi-fi connections, however, left much to be desired as internet connections were spotty at best. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
I prefer to cruise rivers in the USA. This cruise was the St. Lawrence Seaway in Canada, and the eastern coast of the US. The cruise was outstanding! The ports of call were very unique, beautiful, and very accommodating. Cruising on ... Read More
I prefer to cruise rivers in the USA. This cruise was the St. Lawrence Seaway in Canada, and the eastern coast of the US. The cruise was outstanding! The ports of call were very unique, beautiful, and very accommodating. Cruising on a smaller ship is so preferable to larger ships. First of all, smaller ports are accessible and beautiful. The towns are not overwhelmed by the number of people, and all activities are very organized and geared to the cruise. It's so much fun to be able to know all the people on the cruise, and how we take care of each other! The food was outstanding! Many of the meals were from the region. I am a vegetarian, and meals beautifully accommodated this. The vegetarian meals were delicious!!! The staff was excellent! From the captain, cruise director, stewards, and wait staff - all were extremely accommodating and helpful. They each went out of their way to make sure that each person's experience on the Pearl Mist was outstanding, and they succeeded!!! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose it because we had never been on an expensive luxury cruise before and wanted to treat ourselves. We liked that we could relax and be served at each meal and not have to deal with buffet lines. I was picturing outstanding gourmet ... Read More
We chose it because we had never been on an expensive luxury cruise before and wanted to treat ourselves. We liked that we could relax and be served at each meal and not have to deal with buffet lines. I was picturing outstanding gourmet meals in a lovely dining room with creative menus and desserts. Instead what we got at each meal was diner food. For instance when offered a seafood salad with shrimp/scallops etc...the shrimp was the size of your finger nail and the scallops were half of that size. Shrimp almost always had the same rub all over it. Here we were outside of the Quebec City at sailing time, a city with great French bread and every meal the breads were hard rolls and tasteless. They need to change their bread vendor asap! Now most of the folks on this cruise were in their 70's and above and many felt the food was good or they were being polite as we were, but believe me when I say it was not. Most of the meals were not bad but it was at best average. We found it odd that they asked you if you wanted half portions. If you asked for a half portion of salad or pasta it was about 1/2 to 3/4 cup. The chef did have some skills but the first day our chicken lunch was hard and my husband's hamburger was dry and tough. On the first night we ordered mushroom soup and it was virtually tasteless, I mean hardly any salt. I tried 3 more soups before giving up on the soups, roasted red pepper (no flavor), ham and pea soup (watered down to the point of being PALE green little taste and no ham) and French onion (3 tiny strips of onion in it and tasted like it came from a very salty can). All of the cake deserts were not as good as a Safeway store bought and were often dry. The only desert that was outstanding was peach cobbler and it was only offered once. Almost every dessert was served with the same creme anglais and a dollop of whipped cream. The breakfasts were great however and the servers were excellent. No tablecloths at breakfast or lunch, only dinner. We missed 3 ports due to weather but that is not the cruise line's fault. Still they said we could not go to Halifax due to a storm yet we sailed right by it to the next city. They may have lost their port. Forget about going to Isle de Madeline because the last two cruises didn't get to dock there and neither did we. The rooms were large but sparse and simple like a Motel 6, bare bones. Entertainment was the same every night but one, two guys playing their guitars and singing, 60's night, 70's night, Elvis night, you get it. Really hokey. Adriana the cruise director was a doll. We enjoyed our tour of the bridge and think the Captain and his crew were very capable. The lectures were very interesting. There was no fitness center or spa to get a massage. The only two treadmills were outside on a side deck and it was too cold to use them. They need to replace the carpet and furniture, pictures etc to update this cruise ship. I felt like a kid at a bad summer camp and just wanted to go home. I guess if we had not paid so much for the cruise and it were half the cost I would not be so upset about it but this cruise was not at all a good value for the money they charged. Read Less
17 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
My wife and I had always wanted to go to New England and see the fall colors. This cruise was suggested to us by some friends with whom we have traveled many times over the years. When we looked the trip up on line we discovered that the ... Read More
My wife and I had always wanted to go to New England and see the fall colors. This cruise was suggested to us by some friends with whom we have traveled many times over the years. When we looked the trip up on line we discovered that the price was very high, and so just assumed that this must be a luxury cruise, which appealed to us. Our mistake. Next time we will certainly do more research and not be fooled by the price. We had to travel from the US to Quebec City in order to start the cruise, so with airfare and hotel stay prior to the cruise the total cost would work out to about $2,000 per night of cruise. But, as I said, we were in the mood for a luxury cruise. The trip started out on the wrong foot. We had booked 5 hours of layover in Toronto because we wanted to make sure there was no chance of missing the connection plane from Toronto to Quebec City. As it turned out, that was barely enough. The flight arrived in Toronto a little over an hour late, and it took us all of three hours to clear customs. The airport was a circus! There were literally thousands of people there. The lines were long and slow, and we had to que up four different times. The airport was obviously understaffed for this amount of traffic. When we got to our gate, we found that that the connecting flight was running 30 minutes late. Once we boarded, we sat on the ground for another 30 minutes waiting for connecting passengers from the Caribbean. I can’t remember the last time a plane full of people sat on the ground for an extended period of time waiting for a few connecting passengers. The flight was completely full. We arrived in Quebec City at 1:30 AM only to find that several of our bags did not connect. The lady at the Westjet counter apologized and promised our bags would be in on the next flight. We noticed that about a half dozen bags were not claimed from our flight, so had obviously misconnected from the previous flight. Not great service. We took a taxi to Quebec City and were dropped off at the Hilton. When we went inside, we were informed that they had no hotel rooms for us. Now, these rooms had been paid for in cash through Travelocity six months previously, so needless to say, we were a bit upset. The lady at the desk said that she was very sorry indeed, and did get us a room in a nearby hotel. The following day when we returned, the lady at the desk suggested that next time I should book using my Hilton Honors to prevent such an incident. No explanation other than it somehow seemed to be my fault for not booking through Hilton. They were also nice enough to refund the room costs for the previous night. Quebec City was very fun. A colorful vibrant place with lots of interesting history and historic buildings. However, the waterfront area was teeming with tourists. There were four cruise ships in the harbor and four conventions. Every hotel room in town was booked as were most good restaurants. We had fun shopping and dining before the cruise, and our missing suitcases showed up the next day. In retrospect, we should have spent the next week in Quebec City and surrounding area and forgot about the cruise. We were picked up by Pearl Cruise lines on time on Saturday morning, and the trip to the boat by bus and check in to the boat went smoothly. Our first hint that this was going to a different type of cruise than those we had previously been on was at our first meal on the boat where we discovered that the vast majority of the passengers were in their mid-seventies and above. Walkers, wheelchairs and canes abounded. The couple that joined us at our table were over 90. As I said previously, I have been on many cruises in the past and this is the first where I have seen this type of demographic. The staterooms were clean and spacious, if somewhat dated both in construction and decor. The king size bed was formed of two mattresses pushed together. The bed was comfortable enough if not a bit on the firm side to my taste. Although the room was equipped with a thermostat, it seemed to be pretty much for show, as temperature settings in the room varied widely. We were in rooms 337 and 339 on the Pearl Mist. I would not suggest these staterooms to anyone who is not a VERY sound sleeper. When the boat prepared to either dock or for tender launch it sounded like the entire crew was taking tap dancing lessons right over your head. This usually started about 5:00 AM. Overall, the food was marginal. Sort of like what you would expect at an Applebee’s if you held all the spices and cut the serving sizes in half (except for the French onion soup, that even Applebee’s would be embarrassed to serve). For breakfast they provided a simple fruit and pastry bar and had a menu you could order from. Stay away from ordering mushrooms on anything. I tried that once and could see they came from a freshly opened can. Every morning at breakfast we were asked to fill in a “wish card” for our choices for the lunch and dinner meals. I suspect that the chef must have spent a few days in a hospital and got the idea there. Each meal had a starter of a soup or salad, a main course with choice of fish, meat or a vegetarian, and a desert of a pastry, custard or ice cream. The deserts were for the most part made in industrial size trays and cut into little rectangles for serving (about half the size of a playing card), reminiscent of what you used to get at your high school lunch cafeteria. You could order a beer at lunch if you wanted, and wine was served at dinner – a bottle each of red and white was on the table when you sat down. The white wine was a 2017 Sauvignon Blanc of no particular pedigree and the red either a 2017 Merlot or a 2017 Pinot Noir on alternating nights. The Pinot would curl your eyebrows, so after the first try at that I stuck to the Merlot, which was almost drinkable, or the Sauvignon Blanc which I drank if it was a Pinot night. By the fourth night I was drinking about a bottle of each every night to try to numb the experience. If you wanted some real wine, they had a limited wine list, but those wines were extra. You could also order a mixed drink at dinner if you requested it, but it was not volunteered by the waiter. For entertainment they hired a local music teacher and his sidekick. They were the guys you remember from your high school prom, only missing half the musicians (the good ones), and no longer able to hit the high notes - same clothes and hair though. They usually held the rapt attention of the old folks for at least 15 minutes after dinner, then people started leaving like rats leaving a sinking ship. They also had a story teller who showed us some neat pictures of a trip he took on his honeymoon to go fishing with some guys he met at a bed and breakfast. I was going to say that the shore excursions were not memorable, but I’m gonna have to be honest here – they were forgettable. The MO seemed to be to take the passengers to an area where all the stores were either closed for the season or closed due to the time of day and drop them off and let them wheel, wobble and wander about until a designated time when they would be picked up. There were also a couple of narrated tours. I forget what they were about. Most of the time was spent on the boat laying on our bed in the stateroom reading or sleeping because the cruise line skipped half the ports we were scheduled into and there was nothing else to do. If you are in your late seventies or above and looking for a place to catch up on your sleep while spending $20,000 on marginal food and poor entertainment, I highly suggest taking this cruise. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I don't know where to start. Everything was really filthy. This includes but not limited to the carpets, furniture, common areas, etc. The furniture felt like we were staying in a dirty hospital room. To make matters worse, the ship ... Read More
I don't know where to start. Everything was really filthy. This includes but not limited to the carpets, furniture, common areas, etc. The furniture felt like we were staying in a dirty hospital room. To make matters worse, the ship left a port and sailed into a storm with 15 foot swells. The captain new this storm was there as the crew boarded the windows on the entire first deck. This occurred while we were eating dinner. No one on the ship explained to us what was happening. The ship was not built to handle a storm of this magnitude. It eventually took on water in the engine room and an engine overheated. The ship rolled and pitched with such intensity, that the furniture fell over, lamps flew off tables, our king size bed slid half way across the stateroom and pitched out out onto the floor. Nothing was secured to the walls or floors. The storm and condition of the ship jeopardized our lives. Knowing the storm was out there, the captain should never have set sail. Please see the attached photos of the condition of our stateroom. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
My husband and I took the Pearl Mist cruise from Chicago to Toronto on September 12, 2018. That is, it was supposed to leave from Chicago, but, in fact, left from Milwaukee, a 90-mile change we did not learn about until the day before our ... Read More
My husband and I took the Pearl Mist cruise from Chicago to Toronto on September 12, 2018. That is, it was supposed to leave from Chicago, but, in fact, left from Milwaukee, a 90-mile change we did not learn about until the day before our scheduled departure. Yes, they did provide us with a bus from Chicago to Milwaukee, albeit a noisy and uncomfortable one. The accommodations on board, the ship, when we finally arrived, were comfortable, if hardly as spacious or luxurious as the price and promotional literature suggested, but the food ranged from barely acceptable to downright terrible. Meats were overcooked and under seasoned, vegetables mushy and not very fresh (except for the occasional salad), fish, mostly frozen, tended to be flavorless, breads and were pastries gummy or cottony not worth eating. My husband and I developed severe gastro-enteritis, as did a goodly portion of the other passengers according to people we spoke to. The number of "Do Not Disturb" signs we saw on cabin doors was depressing. We had to miss several shore excursions because we were sick. One evening, no hors d'oeuvres were served at the cocktail hour--"for sanitary reasons" a staff member explained. On another day, after we had recovered a bit from our illnesses, we went to the ship's library and found all the shelves empty of books--they were being "sterilized" a crew member explained. A few days later, the books were back on the shelves. This was by far the worst cruise we've ever been on, and the most expensive. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Initially concerned after reading some reviews but it was wonderful. The service was impeccable-all were friendly and went out of their way to help people. The passengers on our cruise appeared to be quite well-off and experienced ... Read More
Initially concerned after reading some reviews but it was wonderful. The service was impeccable-all were friendly and went out of their way to help people. The passengers on our cruise appeared to be quite well-off and experienced cruisers. Many were on there 4th Pearl cruise or had sailed with American Cruise (Pearl's sister company). Food was very good and loved the fact that they offered 1/2 portions at lunch and dinner. The more interesting tours are extra and I do think for the price you pay for this cruise all shore excursions should be included. .We did find out that you could have your laundry done on board but they did not advertise this There is no gift shop or spa. There are exercise machines on the 6th deck forward but they are outside so have limited usability. Average are on this cruise was probably 75 and many had limited mobility -the crew was amazing to help them. If they had scooters or walkers, the crew made sure that they got them on the buses and were very careful to describe the tours so that everyone knew what to expect. We were on the younger side but enjoyed ourselves every day. We had a guest lecturer and entertainment every night from two-duos that alternated every other evening. There is a small library and a card room. On our "at sea" days we played trivia and bingo. We never felt bored -there was alway something to do. Highly recommend the Great Lakes tour. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
This is small ship with limited facilities, no spa, no pool. The most disappointing was the lack of internet service, We were told the ship would leave from Chicago however it left from Milwaukee, we had to be bused there and never were ... Read More
This is small ship with limited facilities, no spa, no pool. The most disappointing was the lack of internet service, We were told the ship would leave from Chicago however it left from Milwaukee, we had to be bused there and never were given an explanation as to why this change was made. Things were very disorganized at the Chicago hotel, no one was there to direct us to the buses. Mackinac Island in Michigan.was wonderful but the other ports of call in Canada were mostly small Indian villages with little or no shopping and restaurants. Service and food onboard was good. We had a premium stateroom that was fine although the balcony was uninviting (painted steel and plastic furniture) We had to leave the ship early due to lack of internet service. There is little to do on the two days you are at sea. Unlike most of the other older passengers my wife and I have businesses to run. If you need to stay connected to the internet, this cruise will not be good for you. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Having been on over 30 Ocean and river cruises all over the World we wanted to spend more of our time and money in the United States. This cruise offered an interesting itinerary most of which we had never visited. We prefer small - medium ... Read More
Having been on over 30 Ocean and river cruises all over the World we wanted to spend more of our time and money in the United States. This cruise offered an interesting itinerary most of which we had never visited. We prefer small - medium size ships over the floating malls and their crowds. The staff was excellent, friendly and very helpful, the meal selections good and varied and the sizes and quality outstanding. In addition to a refrigerator stocked with soft drinks and water in our cabin, mixed alcoholic drinks were available at lunch, dinner and all entertainment venues. The on board entertainment was very good and appropriate for our age group. The ship and cabins are comfortable but dated and need to be updated and unless the ship is in port the Wi-Fi is poor to non-existent. Departures, transfers and ship events were punctual and as advertised. We would consider travelling with them again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Interested in itinerary and believed the brochure touting it as a luxury cruise, NOT! Started with delay in picking passengers up to travel to Port. Nobody to ask from Pearl Seas at Hotel and their office and ship not answering phone. ... Read More
Interested in itinerary and believed the brochure touting it as a luxury cruise, NOT! Started with delay in picking passengers up to travel to Port. Nobody to ask from Pearl Seas at Hotel and their office and ship not answering phone. First cruise I've ever been on that you didnt have a permanent bar. Each afternoon they set up a temporary bar for "cocktail hour" and later after dinner during entertainment. Wine served at meals poor quality. Carpet tired. balcony furniture chipped. Had a good time since we were traveling with a group who all new each other. Worse thing was that a member of our group who uses motorized wheelchair couldn't disembark at several ports. She was literaaly trapped on ship. This information was not furnished before the cruise even though all the right questions were asked. Promoted as luxurious and for good for senoirs. Falseadvertising Would never go on this line again and never reccomend it! Only good thing was the entertainent! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
My wife, who is in a motorized wheelchair, wanted to find additional cruise lines that are handicapped friendly. Pearl Mist failed miserably. From the very start the lack of communication, coordination and staff commitment was very ... Read More
My wife, who is in a motorized wheelchair, wanted to find additional cruise lines that are handicapped friendly. Pearl Mist failed miserably. From the very start the lack of communication, coordination and staff commitment was very evident. We were picked up in Toronto almost 2 hours late with no explanation. Our trip was scheduled to end in Chicago but we discovered once on board that we were disembarking in Milwaukee. Of the 8 days we cruised my wife was unable to get off the ship 3 of those days because the crew used stairs instead of a gangplank. Two other days we were stuck in port because the tour buses lacked lifts. Never did any officer apologize to us. The food was fair but very small portions. If you enjoy river cruises book the American Queen Steamboat on the Mississippi or Columbia-Snake. You will not regret it. Sorry Pearl Mist. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
My wife and I are experienced cruisers. We have sailed on Royal Caribbean, Crystal, Silver Seas, Regent and smaller ships such as Le Ponant, Windstar and Le Soleal. We decided to try Pearl Mist which accommodates about 200 passengers ... Read More
My wife and I are experienced cruisers. We have sailed on Royal Caribbean, Crystal, Silver Seas, Regent and smaller ships such as Le Ponant, Windstar and Le Soleal. We decided to try Pearl Mist which accommodates about 200 passengers because we had never sailed the Great Lakes. The trip was supposed to be a seven day cruise from Midland, Ontario to Chicago. I was under the impression that Pearl Mist was a luxury liner since the cost was luxury liner prices. The fare came to $1,744 per night for two not including tips, airfare, pre-cruise hotel night or land tours. Comparable prices on Regent for a Concierge Suite run from $1,340 to $1,940 per night, depending on destination, but include tips, airfare, pre-cruise hotel night and land tours. But Pearl Mist is definitely not a luxury liner. The only favorable parts of the cruise were stops at Parry Sound, Mackinac Island and Muskegon. The three piece entertainers and the lecturer were good and our waiter was extremely courteous. Otherwise the trip was horrible. 1) Bad things happened immediately. We stayed at the recommended hotel in Toronto the night before and were instructed to check out and be ready to be picked up at 9:00 AM the next morning. The bus would transport approximately 50 of us to the ship about 50 miles away. So here were 50 people with our luggage waiting in the street in front of hotel for the bus that finally arrived 2 1/2 hours late. It was manned by the entertainers and the lecturer since the original bus personnel never showed up. 2) The bus ride was interesting because the entertainer didn’t know the route and got lost. 3) We finally arrived at the port of Midland at 1:30 PM instead of 11:00 AM. 4) They immediately served us lunch but also announced the mandatory Life Boat Drill. We refused to participate since we were starving. 5) Staying with meals, there is one seating for all for breakfast, lunch and dinner. At breakfast each morning we were asked to check off our choices for all three meals each day. The menus had a box to check for 1/2 portions if you weren’t that hungry. I never saw what a 1/2 portion looked like but the full portions were extremely tiny and usually tasteless. Some of the people wound up ordering two main courses each meal. 6) The size of our cabin was adequate since we had ordered the largest suite. But it was not kept clean, there were instances when there were no bath towels and the tiny TV didn’t work for two nights. 7) Courtesy didn’t exist. One evening, at 10:15 PM, I called to request an AM wake-up call. I was told that they don’t accept calls, other than true emergencies after 10:00 PM. I complained the next day and was advised to make calls before 10:00 PM, no apology. The final night we were advised to dis-enbark at 7:00 AM; so I dutifully called at 9:30 PM for a 6:00 AM wake-up call. I was told that the office doesn’t open until 7:00 AM. Thankfully we had an I-Phone so we could escape on time. 8) I said the entertainers were good but the room could only accommodate 1/3 of the 200 passengers. So if you wanted to see them you needed to rush through your tiny meal (maybe that was a positive). The entertainment lounge was laid out with enormous heavy overstuffed couches, many facing the wrong way to see the performers. 9) Two days before the end of the cruise we were all informed that our dis-enbarkation stop was changed to Milwaukee instead of Chicago (appparently no birth available in Chicago although this ship is scheduled to be in Chicago weekly all summer). This was disappointing since we had hoped to spend a day in Chicago sightseeing. It also potentially meant that many of us might miss flights out of Chicago. We did, thankfully, disembark from Milwaukee and were taken in an on-time bus for the 1 1/2 hour drive to Chicago Ohare Airport. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We went to Toronto for two days before the cruise and had a private tour. The following is a summary of our experience: 1. We had the unpleasant surprise of three days of swarming bugs in our cabin. Woke up with them on my face, the ... Read More
We went to Toronto for two days before the cruise and had a private tour. The following is a summary of our experience: 1. We had the unpleasant surprise of three days of swarming bugs in our cabin. Woke up with them on my face, the bed and pillow and on the wall. Problem was finally solved but left me shaken. Because of the bug issue, we were unable to use our veranda for the entire trip. The door was locked tight and sealed. 2. The kitchen ran out of bananas, strawberries, and had limited blueberries, and also ran out of fig Newton snacks. Since we were in port every day, this item could have been restocked by the ship. 3. The décor is depressing and dated in the cabin and public rooms. The palette is bland and looks like an old person decorated the entire place. Certainly not worth the upscale price. 4. We got short changed on Chicago. We were tendered which takes a bit of time and we did not get off the ship until late morning. Then after the 2 hours tour and lunch on our own, we had to get on the ship so we could sail to the other Chicago berth. There was no opportunity to explore Chicago on our own. The ship was docked too far away and too inconveniently. 5. The daily speaker, Richard, repeated himself at least three times in his three talks on each port. Somewhat boring and repetitive. 6. We had to ask for setups for tables almost daily to play games and cards. Also, there is too limited space for playing. Only one area to play comfortably. 7. The access to wi-fi and Internet is a disgrace, too slow and inconsistent availability plus have to log in every few minutes as getting access was terminated often. 8. The shower kept running hot and cold without warning and could have been dangerous. The pressure was weak. 9. We were overcharged and poorly handled when leaving the ship. We easily could have put all of our luggage and 4 people in one car, but we were forced to take 2. Worse, the taxis were at the gate at 4 a.m., but had to wait an hour and a half for an escort and we were concerned about missing our flight. We had asked the cruise director (Adriana) about just getting one car. She insisted that our luggage would not fit and we could not call an Uber as there was also an issue about getting by the entry gate and the company she used has no problem getting to the boat. They sent two 6-passenger SUV's with plenty of storage. We and all our luggage could have fit using just one transport. Two couples were each charged $160 and we feel that we are due back the price of one SUV ride so that our transportation fee would be $80 per couple. We have written to the ship twice to get a rebate for our double payment for the airport transfer but have not received a reply. Good luck taking this ship. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
Went to fulfill bucket list. Waited several years to book Pearl of Seas Cruise, but Pearl Mist ship went above and beyond. Never knew a cruise line offered at each excursion, travel via mobile scooters, for handicapped to enjoy the ... Read More
Went to fulfill bucket list. Waited several years to book Pearl of Seas Cruise, but Pearl Mist ship went above and beyond. Never knew a cruise line offered at each excursion, travel via mobile scooters, for handicapped to enjoy the wonderful sights. Free by applying with approval. The scooter would be waiting out side ship and would take to bus, they loaded and unloaded at each stop. Even a rain poncho for Niagara Falls! Thought at first, trip was a little pricey, but with cabin comfort, great food (taste and selections), entertainment for fun along with education insight when viewing next port of call, wonderful staff at every turn, who could ask for more. Would recommend without question. Can't wait to book another trip somewhere with Pearl of the Seas. I guess the only thing I missed from other cruise lines was a spa, but being a smaller ship, it still offered a lot. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We like the smaller cruise ships. This one was supposedly a step up from the American cruise line so we wanted to see if that was the case and the destination was one we truly wanted to see and experience. Let’s talk about what was ... Read More
We like the smaller cruise ships. This one was supposedly a step up from the American cruise line so we wanted to see if that was the case and the destination was one we truly wanted to see and experience. Let’s talk about what was best on this cruise. The entertainment was by far the best I’ve experienced on any cruise, large ship or small ship. Dusty and Stevie were phenomenal in that they knew something for everyone, 50s,60s,70s,80s, through today’s music. They played country, jazz, rock, island, dance music and kept everyone having a great time. I’ve ignored entertainment on other cruises but I didn’t want to miss any here. They practically made the cruise in itself. Don’t loose these guys if you know what’s good for business. Food was good, there were highlights and there were some lower quality items at times but overall I was satisfied with the food and presentation of it. Service was the same. We have had friendlier waiters on American cruise lines, they seem to care more for you and your enjoyment. Note I did see this in some just not all. Several times we had to get the dining manager to get our waiters attention. Overall love the cruise and would probably do it again someday. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We heard it was a nice trip through the Great Lakes with lots of history, so we choose Pearl Seas Cruises after checking another lines out, cause even though it was more expensive, it looked to be a better boat with a good itinerary. ... Read More
We heard it was a nice trip through the Great Lakes with lots of history, so we choose Pearl Seas Cruises after checking another lines out, cause even though it was more expensive, it looked to be a better boat with a good itinerary. First let me start off by saying from the book you received about the trip, it stated one day on the lakes with no stops, which was false advertising cause there was 2 days. Two of stops that were included on this trip, Sauté St Marie and Little Current there was nothing to see there and we spent several hours there. There was no one to give you the history of each stop, yes there was a little page that was put in your room each. Ignite giving you a little detail, but not much and the women they had on board to give lectures, didn't lecture about the area, in fact of the lectures was about the Titanic, which I thought was not appropriate. One day we spent more time going thru customs and waiting in line then actually at the Ford Musuem. Nigeria Falls was beautiful, but again you felt like you were rushed through it and did not get to see any of the area around there, which looked beautiful. The food was good and the wait staff and room steward was wonderful! It was also suggested that you tip $20 a day, which I though was high, considering the price we paid for the cruise. I tipped individually and gave a little as a whole. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We had never cruised the Great Lakes and the Pearl Mist seemed like an attractive little ship which carried only about 190 passengers. The 11 day itinerary, from Toronto to Chicago had some interesting stops, both in Canada and the U. S. ... Read More
We had never cruised the Great Lakes and the Pearl Mist seemed like an attractive little ship which carried only about 190 passengers. The 11 day itinerary, from Toronto to Chicago had some interesting stops, both in Canada and the U. S. The highlight of the trip was Mackinac Island and the Grand Hotel. Other stops included a visit to Niagara Falls and a number of small cities and towns which were neat, clean and pleasant, with very friendly folks. A couple of trips across the Canadian/US border were a real pain in the neck. For example, the ship was in Windsor, Ontario and we were booked to visit the Henry Ford museum across the Detroit River in the U. S. We spent a total of 3 1/2 hours on the bus getting through customs and only about the same amount of time in the museum. As for the ship, built (mostly) in Halifax and completed at Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, MD, she has been in service for four years. She's been well maintained and the interior is very clean and neat. She's registered in the Marshall Islands (Majuro) and is crewed largely by foreigners. The steward's department - wait staff and room stewards, mostly Filipinos, were uniformly excellent. Entertainment consisted of two singers/musicians, Kat and Kenny, who were also quite good and a story teller, Pat, who was very entertaining. The cruise director was probably below average for cruise ships. She seemed like she wanted to be elsewhere a good part of the time. The passenger cabins were pretty good size, with very small balconies on the upper decks. As for the cost, we had a cabin on the highest deck, (L) and the fare for the two of us came to $19,040, minus a couple of "special savings" which reduced the cost by $800. There were no children aboard. The youngest passenger was 55 and the oldest 98. The average age was probably well into the 80's. The advanced age of the passengers definitely slowed things down. Lots of walkers and wheelchairs. While the trip was not advertised as a "seniors" cruise, in actuality it was. I say this considering that my wife is 62 and I am 74, but we got around really well - far better than many of our fellow passengers. The ship has other trips, including one to Cuba, but we will not be making any of those. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
I have always wanted to cruise the Great Lakes of Canada and the United States. This cruise became available and we bit the expensive fare to see the Great Lakes. Disappointment came almost immedicately with the person sent to pick us ... Read More
I have always wanted to cruise the Great Lakes of Canada and the United States. This cruise became available and we bit the expensive fare to see the Great Lakes. Disappointment came almost immedicately with the person sent to pick us up. She was new and did not have adequate knowledge about the cruise. In fairness to her, she was one of the two weak musicians onboard. Boarding was acceptable in an out of the way port. Our cabine was very large and very clean. The TV in the cabin was not appropriate for such an expensive fare - a small 17 inch color TV with a DVD player. Dining was mediocre at best. Each day 3 choices that generally included fish, beef, and chicken. The service was outstanding in the dining room. Always a friendly face and eager to serve. There are two small rooms for evening drinks. One is on the second floor and one is on the forth floor. On at least two occasions the bar ran out of certain brands of liquor. They were generally prepared to offer most drink selections. Entertainment consisted of two singers with guitars. The male entertainer was better than the female. Two nights local entertainment was provided and very good. While most people pay $20,000 per cabin we assumed most excursions would be included. That was not the case. They provide some basic excursions such as trolley's that run a loop around town. Some have visits to the local sites. However, the nicer tours have charges. We assumed that we would have a tour around the islands of Parry Sound - only to find out we had to pay for the excursion. The fare charged was less than that charged if you did the excurison on your own. The Cruise Director was less than professional. She sat on the first floor, coordinated excursions and was available for questions most of the time. This cruise line is attractive for people that are over 75 years of age. Many are handicapped and require assistance. The crew did little to provide what I would consider miminal assistance. Often, there are gangplants and steps that need to be navigated. The process is time consuming and often very hard for those with walkers and wheel chairs. The recommended gratuity is $20 per day per person. I did not consider this to be an appropriate amount based on the cruise fare charged. If you need to fly from Chicago the minimum tine to the airport is one hour and thirty minutes - the cruse staff will tell you it takes 45 minutes. The best assets of this cruise were the room and wait staff that were eager to please, the larger cabins that were always cleaned and supplied, and the buses used for the tours each with an onboard toilet. Immigration services were a pain sometimes taking two hours. Whiile tour service on the Great Lakes might be limited the places that you get to see are great. I will not be returning with such high fares and limited services that are included in the base fare. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We took the Pearl Mist 11 night cruise from Chicago to Toronto last August 2018. This cruise is targeted for people 75 years an older, many of which need assistance. That's ok but it should be clearly stated. Let's start by ... Read More
We took the Pearl Mist 11 night cruise from Chicago to Toronto last August 2018. This cruise is targeted for people 75 years an older, many of which need assistance. That's ok but it should be clearly stated. Let's start by saying the good things: 1) Stateroom and bathroom are very big. 2) Probably the best thing was the Staff, they are very friendly and helpful 3) Food was ok. 4) Drinks are included. 5) Some ports of call are very interesting: MACKINAC ISLAND, MUSKEGON / HOLLAND, Parry Sound and Niagara Falls. 6) Cruising the Welland Canal and going through 8 sets locks from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. Now the bad things: 1) Overpriced at 20 grand per stateroom for and outed ship with little to do in it. It has no pool or good onboard activities. We spent 2 days cruising with little to do. The Gym consists of 4 machines located on and outside deck. 2) The TV in the stateroom is ridiculous 3) The ship is very small 108 cabins. 4) Some ports are call should be eliminated specially Sault Sainte Marie and Little Current. Nothing to do in them. 5) The time allocated in each destination is not well planned. We only spend 2-3 hours in Niagara that had a lot of activities to do and spend a full day at Sault Sainte Marie with almost nothing to do. Read Less
Pearl Mist Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 5.0 0.0
Entertainment 4.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 1.0 0.0
Family 2.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 3.0 0.0
Enrichment 5.0 0.0
Service 5.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise